Brent Council branded farcical over Willesden Green Library blunder

PUBLISHED: 16:39 14 February 2013 | UPDATED: 16:39 14 February 2013

Campaigners outside Willesden Green Library 10.03.12. Pictured front Gill Wood with petition.

Campaigners outside Willesden Green Library 10.03.12. Pictured front Gill Wood with petition.


Website wrongly stated controversial development plans for site had been given the green light

An application for the Willesden Green Cultural Centre was branded “farcical” today after Brent Council’s website claimed it had been given the green light despite not being voted on.

A planning application, due to be voted on by the council’s planning committee last night (Wed), was pulled from the agenda at the last minute due to “technical reasons”.

However, this morning, (Thurs) the council’s planning department claimed the scheme had been granted consent at the meeting.

The council quickly retracted the error but it led to campaigners branding the whole project a farce.

A message posted on campaign group Keep Willesden Green’s official blog this morning, said: “I was amazed when I got the message that the Planning Committee would have the audacity to consider the application after announcing the items deferral.

“This is developing into a farce!”

If the plans do go ahead it will see Willesden Green Library in High Road, Willesden knocked down, rebuilt and replaced with a cultural centre and 95 new private flats.

However, campaigners against the scheme claim it will result in a smaller library space being available and the loss of public land.

The public land, which stands at the front of the current library, is currently the subject of a ‘Town Square’ bid by local resident Martin Redston which could thwart a development.

The planning committee will now meet on Thursday, February 21, where they will consider the plans.

It is recommended they grant consent “in principle” subject to the Town Square enquiry and an approval from the secretary of state.

On the error, a spokesman for Brent Council told the Times: “An administrative error occurred which meant the website said the decision had been approved when it had not. This was a simple mistake which Brent Council quickly corrected. The planning application will now be heard on 21 February.”

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