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It’s a sham!

PUBLISHED: 12:38 04 February 2010 | UPDATED: 14:52 24 August 2010

Residents have blasted a consultation as a sham after works to build a new bus lay-by began before their voices had been heard. Brent Council said they are investigating why works started at least a week before consultation with residents was due to en

Residents have blasted a consultation as a 'sham' after works to build a new bus lay-by began before their voices had been heard.

Brent Council said they are investigating why works started at least a week before consultation with residents was due to end on February 5.

Campaigners in Kensal Rise said it was evidence that the council was determined to go ahead with the works - regardless of their views.

In particular, they are concerned that the plans, to build the new bus stop in Chamberlayne Road, will mean the felling of a century-old tree.

Doron Atzmon, who arrived at his café Minkie's Deli one morning last week to find the pavement dug up outside his doorstep. He said: "They didn't care about the neighbours or what Kensal Rise has to say about it. They just went ahead with the work."

Mr Atzmon has begun a petition to save the tree, which is just outside his café.

"Instead of putting in more trees and making it beautiful they are going to make it more dangerous for pedestrians."

Secretary of the Aylestone Park Residents' and Tenants' Association, Ruth Dar said her organisation had made a formal complaint about the consultation to the council.

She added that she believed the new lay-by would create more congestion in Chamberlayne Road. She said: "It's a ruinous thing. They're putting a bus stop right on a junction and that's a no-no. It will be gridlock."

Labour's Parliamentary spokeswoman for Hampstead and Kilburn, Glenda Jackson, said: "It is clear that the so-called consultation on this plan by the Lib Dem led council has been completely inadequate."

Ms Jackson, who is currently the MP for Hampstead and Highgate, added: "I am flabbergasted to find that Brent Council are seriously proposing to chop down such a fine tree. I'm backing residents' calls for a stay of execution."

Queen's Park Lib Cllr Dem Simon Green said he was investigating why the work began prematurely.

He added: "I'm interested in hearing what the wider community's views are but this has to be within an inclusive consultation process.

"I'm also keen this proposal will be decided by the highways committee rather than by council officers so that local people have a chance to put forward their points more effectively."

A council spokesman said: "The consultation period has not finished and we are investigating why this work has been started.

"A decision on this scheme has not been made and will not until the consultation period has ended and proper consideration to the views expressed has been given.


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