Churchfield Car Park Protesters Delighted by Vote
Ealing Councillors unanimously reject housing proposal
Residents, councillors and local businesses were delighted to hear last week that their protests, petitions and objections had not fallen on deaf ears at Ealing Council.
At the Planning Meeting last week, Acton Central Ward Councillor Vlod Barczuk made a passionate and well-researched speech about the proposal to build high density housing on the Churchfield Road car park. His speech, the presence of around 35 concerned locals at the site meeting on January 6th, letters objecting to the development and at least two petitions against it seem to have persuaded the councillors responsible for making the decision Dominion Housing Association's proposal was was not what Churchfield Road wanted or needed.
The Planning Committee was chaired by Cllr John Popham and the Vice Chair was Marie Randall. Reasons given by the numerous councillors on the Committee for not allowing the proposed development to go ahead were: density, lack of amenity space and the fact that the plan overlooked many properties and was of an unsympathetic design. Not one of the councillors was in favour of the proposal. The unanimous decision was greeted by delighted shouts and applause from the Acton residents in the public gallery.
Camilla Phelps, who has worked hard to improve St Mary's burial ground which is next to the car park and who speaks on behalf of residents in Grove Place where she lives, said she was very happy the proposal had been turned down. "I hope that the Council will recommend that planners or developers should consult fully with local residents before making decisions about something which could have such a big impact on Churchfield Road.
She continued: "The unanimous 'no' vote gave us a very positive feeling about Ealing Council."
Vlod Barczuk told me: "As the planning committee rightly and unanimously recognized, the proposal was completely inappropriate for this site. Everyone agrees that the car park is ripe for development, but putting 72 flats on it would not be an improvement."
His opinion of the proposal seems to reflect the feelings of concerned residents and local businesses. It remains to be seen what the next chapter will be for Churchfield Road car park.