Monday 2 December 2013

Send Them Your Comments About The New Application To Privatise Hammersmith Park

The Council’s Conservative Administration and their partner Playfootball are bringing their application to turn a third of Hammersmith Park into a commercial business venture back to the Planning Applications Committee (PAC). Residents might want to send their comments into the planning officer by emailing her here and quoting the reference 2013/04980/FUL.
This is very unusual as planning permission has already been granted for everything Playfootball wanted by a majority vote of Conservative councillors on the PAC as recently as 31st July 2013 - as you can read here.
This new application is almost certainly the result of H&F Council’s fears around its likelihood of losing the Judicial Review which has been organised by local residents opposed to this awful scheme. This new application is virtually the same project but this time H&F Council will try to better explain why they didn’t bother to consider the damaging effects on the local environment, why they used the cynical ruse of leasing the site for 35 years knowing that if they’d sold it (which they are doing for all practical purposes) that would need that decision to be signed off by the Secretary of State and why they deliberately chose to take a very limited consultation ignoring many local residents and residents associations. H&F Council wants all comments in by 19th December but it is actually possible to send comments in after that and up until the PAC sits to consider the application.

This scheme is in a conservation area and will affect its character and appearance. These are the details of the application:
  • A third of Hammersmith Park is being leased to a private firm that will charge an estimated £50 per hour fee to use their facilities.
  • Part of the park will become a bar and a car park for 19 vehicles.
  • The bowling green will be ripped up.
  • The tennis courts will be bulldozed.
  • The playground will be built over
  • The current basketball pitch will eliminated.
  • Twenty four mature tree will be felled.
  • Valuable flower beds will be destroyed
  • New powerful floodlights will pollute the neighbourhood
  • An ugly 12 foot high fence will surround the third of the park that the commercial venture takes over
  • Noise from people playing football will go on late into the night.
  • H&F Council and Playfootball say they want to extend the opening hours of the 'pavilion' until midnight on Saturdays and until 11.00pm on Sundays.
To see more details please click onto the attached letter.

Residents who care about the Borough's other parks may want to take note of what's happening here. In the past H&F Conservatives have tried to turn local parks over for a wide variety of events such as wrestling shows, raves and other private ventures. I imagine that they won't want to admit to any  more alarming plans this close to the council elections but few doubt they have them.

Please forward this article to anyone who might be concerned about this and might want to let H&F Council know their views by emailing the planning officer on the above link.

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