|'We Will Not Roll Over' Oaks Reaction|
Former Chair of Churchfield Community Association Sara Nathan:
I was shocked but not surprised by the decision at the Ealing Council planning meeting yesterday.
It was apparent, once I knew that Acton Central's Councillor Abdullah Gulaid would not be on the Labour benches, that this would be effectively a whipped vote. And that's how it turned out. The seven Labour councillors - none of them from the affected ward - supported these essentially flawed plans.
Many things concern me about the process:
The Council owning the car park on which the development depends, now, as a consequence of the decision, much more valuable, which is in fact if not in law a conflict of interest.
The fear expressed by one of the Labour councillors during the meeting that the developer would appeal a negative decision – this fear became a reason for supporting the plans.
Public support of Julian Bell – council leader and lead for regeneration - for the plans and his politicising of the issue
The exclusion of more than 80 members of the public from the chamber even though the council had due notice of a large number of would-be auditors.
All these are shocking but make the result a forgone conclusion.
17th October 2013