Friday, 6 September 2013

Chief Planner recommends refusal of Kensal Rise Library change of use

Kensal Rise library campaigners have welcomed the news that Brent's Chief Planner has recommended that the application for change of use of the building should be refused.

The Planning Committee will make the decision on September 18th after hearing the Officer's report and ant submissions by the applicant and opponents.  It is not unknown, but unusual, for the Committee to go against the Officer's recommendation.

The battle to save Kensal Rise library has been a long one but if the planning application is refused it will be one more step in the campaign's ultimate aim of having a library return to Kensal Rise.

I applaud the commitment and tenacity of the Save Kensal Rise Library campaign.


Anonymous said...

I welcome the news, but also note that among the many comments on this application on the Brent Planning website, there are recently quite a large number of "supporters" as well as "objectors". Some of the support is probably genuine, but there seem to be some distinct themes and similarities in wording emerging.
One theme is summed up in the comment 'lets avoid wasting money on an appeal and award planning', and another is attacks on FKRL. Although the support comments seem to be individually drafted, some claim to come from odd or even spurious addresses. One is from the supposedly empty Kensal Rise Library building itself, another from 95 High Road, NW10, which I recognise as the address of the pile of rubble which used to be Willesden Green Library Centre.
When there was a battle over the planning application for the 94 new private flats + Willesden Green Cultural Centre, there were certainly some dirty tricks used by the developer (or its planning consultants and/or PR company). It looks as if there may be something of the same sort going on here, trying to pressure Brent's Planning Committee into ignoring the advice of its Officers by suggesting that by refusing the application they would simply incur costs while the developer would still win planning approval on appeal.

Meg Howarth said...

Planners record 125 letters supporting the development. Names/addresses need to be checked but can't currently see these on the planning website.