Friary Park Development Doomed Say Opponents
TV presenter Sean Fletcher claims it requires use of common land
Opponents of the massive Friary Park development in Acton are saying that the increase in size applied for has made the scheme unviable.
Good Morning Britain presenter and local resident Sean Fletcher, along with the Cap The Towers: Acton campaign group, believe that the revised scheme, which has increased the height of the main tower to 37 storeys, could not be completed without using common land on Friars Green Place and therefore is doomed.
Furthermore it is claimed that the developer was unaware that its scheme required the use of common land and Ealing Council’s planning officers failed to inform it.
The developer Mount Anvil told representatives of Cap The Towers: Acton this October that it needed to build higher due to the impact of Covid-19 and Brexit on the original plan which had a maximum height of 24 storeys and has already been granted planning permission.
However, as the number of units in the development increased, so did the requirement under the planning regulations for the amount of amenity space for residents.
Sean Fletcher said, “Because the developers want to build even higher towers for their additional big-profit private housing, the regulations demand that there must be a proportionate increase in the area of open space, called ‘amenity’ space, because there would be approximately 300 more people living on the site.
“Where are they seeking to find this necessary extra amenity space? Answer: they want to take over Friars Place Green, over the road. Effectively a land grab. Cap the Towers has discovered that Ealing Council told them they could do this when they got their planning permission in 2019, so that if they wanted to build their towers even higher in the future, they could.
“What Ealing’s Planning Department didn’t tell the developers apparently was that Friars Place Green is Common Land. Shockingly, it seems that the Planning Department didn’t know this, or, even worse perhaps, knew it but ignored it. It also looks as if they’ve promised the developers something ( i.e. to be able to re-landscape the Green, install play equipment, cycle hub etc) which it is not in the Council’s gift to allow or authorise.
“There have been over a thousand objections to the developers’ plans to take over Friars Place Green (not a single person supported the plan in the public consultation). That cannot possibly be ignored by the developer or Ealing Council or even, if it ever comes to that, by the Government in Westminster.”
The development near Acton Mainline Station, is a joint enterprise between Catalyst Housing and Mount Anvil, could provide over 900 flats in the area.
Completion of the project is currently scheduled for 2027.
Mount Anvil and Ealing Council have been approached for comment.
December 16, 2021