14th July, 7pm, Lymington Road Residents’ Association Hall
The community meeting developers refused to organise
To date, community involvement in the proposal to build 200 housing ‘units’ at 156 West End Lane has been neglibible, to put it mildly. Only a small number (we don’t know how many) of the local residents were invited to two ‘exhibitions’ – referred to in a linguistic connivance by the developers’ PR company as ‘consultations’ – on 11th and 13th June. A total of just 6.5 hours was offered for those who knew about the exhibitions to attend. By the developer’s own admission only 120 people attended in total.
The next round of ‘consultations’ offered by the current preferred supplier is by invitation only. Invitations have only been extended to the residents of the south (even-numbered) side of Lymingon Road, houses inside the West End Green Conservation Area that directly adjoin the site at 156 West End Lane, and are to be held on 21st July. The developers are favouring brief one-to-one meetings with the residents of just 15 houses, rather than seeking input from the wider West Hampstead community and residents, all of whom will have their amenity impacted by the over-intensive over-development proposed.
When we challenged the developers about whether any public consultation would be held, we were informed that they viewed one-to-one meetings with a small number of people as ‘beneficial’.
This prompts the question: “Beneficial to whom?”
It would appear that neither the developers nor Camden Council want the wider community engaged in any meaningful way with what happens in the West Hampstead area. And herein lies the reason for the Save West Hampstead “Stop the Blocks!” Residents and Community meeting. Thus far, our request to the developers for them to attend the meeting has been ignored.
We have however invited our MP, local councillors, the leader of Camden council and our GLA representative to attend to learn about the community’s objections to the plans for the council-owned Travis Perkins site at 156 West End Lane. Unfortunately, most of the officials appear to have found prior commitments or are on Camden’s Development Control Committee and therefore reluctant to attend and listen to the concerns of their constituents. We are pleased to say that Andrew Dismore, our local GLA member, will be attending and can opt to make the community’s widespread objections known to the Mayor and the Greater London Authority.
The meeting will be chaired by Neil Fletcher, 40 years a resident of West Hampstead and a former Deputy Leader of the Council. You can read Neil’s article in the Camden New Journal expressing his concerns about what is happening in the area. Speakers will include representatives from:
- Save West Hampstead “Stop the Blocks!” campaign team
- Crediton Hill Residents’ Association
- West End Green Conservation Area Committee
- West Hampstead Gardens & Residents Association
- Travis Perkins
Whatever development occurs at the 156 West End Lane will directly affect all of the West Hampstead community and directly impact amenity and services to existing residents. If you care about your local community and what happens in it, we look forward to seeing you at the meeting.