Dollis Hill loses fight as green light given to Barnet’s compulsory purchase order for Brent Cross

Former Dollis Hill Liberal Democrat councillor Alison Hopkins, centre, with fellow Stop The Dump cam

Former Dollis Hill Liberal Democrat councillor Alison Hopkins, centre, with fellow Stop The Dump campaigners - Credit: Archant

Campaigners in Dollis Hill have lost their fight to avoid a dump and aggregrate site which will blight their corner of Brent.

Work will soon begin on Brent Cross Cricklewood sites, after the Communities Secretary approved an order allowing Barnet council to obtain land or property despite massive opposition.

The Compulsory Purchase Order (CPO) for the Brent Cross West Thameslink station is the last to receive approval, following two previous CPOs approved in December last year.

But while Barnet chiefs were overjoyed with the decision, Brent neighbours see it as catastrophic.

Alison Hopkins, a former Liberal Democrat councillor who has been an outspoken critic of the plans, said: “The CPO is needed so that rubbish dump that nobody wants here can be built. I gave went and gave evidence at the enquiry, about the impacts on the road layout plans and Brent Council said nothing. No-one was fighting for us here except me. It all has to go to planning committee for approval and I’m down to speak. There isn’t one Brent councillor who is speaking out or helping us.”

Last year more than 1,400 people signed a petition against the waste transfer station (WTS) in Geron Way, in nearby Cricklewood.

Our Lady of Grace Infant School lodged a separate objection on Barnet Council’s website calling for a halt to the scheme as it hadn’t been consulted.

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The CPO decision also allows for a site on Edgware Road become a freight transfer site for aggregate and other transport materials.

Ms Hopkins added: “Road layout changes will lead to huge rat-runs, far worse than we have now. We’ll have up to 500 lorries a day taking rubbish in and out right next to an infant school.

“Then there’s the noise, the pollution and the smell, the current dump stinks to high heaven in the summer. Naturally, Barnet didn’t want it anywhere near them.

“All Brent Council cares about is Wembley. We are the forgotten edges of Brent and the council are not supporting us.”

Brent cabinet spokesman said: “If the recent elections are anything to go by, Dollis Hill residents are clear who they support and who they want representing them. The massive increase in majority can be attributed in part to Labour’s tireless campaign against the worst aspects of Barnet’s Brent Cross developments. Obviously the Secretary of State’s unhelpful intervention fails to recognise the scale of local opposition. Nevertheless, residents can rely on their Labour councillors to continue pressuring the neighbouring borough, impressing on them the obligation to act responsibly.”

Barnet Council leader, Cllr Richard Cornelius (Con), said: “The Secretary of State’s decision marks a significant milestone in the Brent Cross Cricklewood regeneration scheme, which will bring great benefits to Barnet and also to London.”

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