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Brent neighbours gather to shine a light on council’s plans to redevelop Northwick Park

PUBLISHED: 10:30 15 August 2018 | UPDATED: 10:30 15 August 2018

Communities protecting Northwick Park gather at Brent Council cabinet meeting (Picture: Nathalie Raffray)

Communities protecting Northwick Park gather at Brent Council cabinet meeting (Picture: Nathalie Raffray)

Archant

Neighbours gathered at Brent Civic Centre to shine a light on the council’s “destructive” plan for Northwick Park this week.

The council’s cabinet met at 4pm on Monday to agree funding arrangements for two housing projects – one in South Kilburn and the other in Northwick Park.

The plan to redevelop Northwick Park is part of the government’s One Public Estate, which allows the use of public land for developments.

Environmental activists from Preston, Kenton, Barnhill, Kingsbury and Harrow came to defend the designated Metropolitan Open Land (MOL).

Activist Gaynor Lloyd had just three minutes to make the case for the “much loved local facility” which includes playing fields, sports pitches, a golf course and a Grade I nature conservation site.

She said: “There is local concern about the possibility of our park and its margins being designated a regeneration zone, allowing for higher density high rise blocks – even though no one can recall this potential allocation as having been mentioned in any general local plan consultation meetings.”

She explained that on the government’s website, to qualify for grants to develop green space, evidence has to be given of “demonstrable market failure”, “extensive local consultation”.

Her freedom of information requests to the council on these points had not been answered, which caused the leader Cllr Muhammed Butt to shout her down when she demanded to know why, saying her “time was up”.

Regeneration chief Cllr Shama Tatler said: “There are no plans at this stage to even look at removing open space.

“We are for protecting our open space.

“I give assurances that protecting local space is important but we all have responsibilities in making sure that we’re working with other public organisations, that we’re able to provide housing and infrastructure for Brent.”

After the meeting, Ken Sinclair of the Northwick Park Residents Association said: “If they build this, they will have to build a road right through Northwick Park, which will destroy the concept of an open public park.”

Debbie Nyman, of the Roe Green Village Residents Association, added: “If something like this goes through, it will set a precedent for all our parks.”

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