Tuesday 22 July 2008

H&F Council Raises Suspicions With Secret Thames Water “Super Sewer” Meeting

I had a long conversation with a senior executive at Thames Water yesterday and plan to meet with them in September to discuss their proposal to put a gateway to the "super sewer" in Furnival Gardens, Hammersmith. It is now clear TW have identified Furnival Gardens as a possible site but told me that they are very keen to work with H&F Council to look at other possible sites in the area and is meeting with Council representatives today.

Oddly, the Conservative Administration is refusing to have a cross-party approach to this issue and does not want Labour representatives to be at that meeting. This is highly suspicious and given their history with Furnival Gardens and their dealings with property developers (in particular the Hammersmith Grove Armadillo) I am concerned to find out why the Conservatives don’t want a public spot light into their dealings with Thames Water. I wrote to the Administration to say:

“You will recall that when Labour was in Administration we arranged a meeting with TW and invited Conservative representatives to attend - which they did. Why therefore, is H&F Council now taking a party political approach to this issue, when it is obvious that local people will be better served if H&F Council puts up a united political front in opposing the use of Furnival Gardens as an entry point to the "super sewer"? Having witnessed the Council's dealings around the Hammersmith Grove Armadillo building, this approach leaves me extremely concerned about what deals H&F Council may be doing behind closed doors”.

Please email me here if you want to be kept in touch with this matter. My fellow ward councillors and I will raise you concerns or suggestions when we meet with TW in September. Meanwhile, I have used the Freedom of Information Act to request all documents relating to the H&F Conservative Administration's dealings with Thames Water on this matter. I have also asked for the total amount of Section 106 payment that could be given by Thames Water to H&F Council if it grants planning permission for Furnival Gardens to be used as a gateway to the "Super Sewer".

No comments: