Thursday 16 March 2017

Brent Planners recommend approval of Spurs' bid to increase number of full capacity events at Wembley Stadium

Brent Planning Committee will decide the application to increase the number of full capacity events at Wembley Stadium on Thursday March 23rd. The planners recommend approval 'on balance' and in the face of opposition from local residents and Barry Gardiner MP and Bob Blackman MP. After discussions the number of additional major events proposed has been reduced from 31 to 22. The planning commitee will be held at the earlier time of 6.30pm at Brent Civic Centre.

This is the officers' conclusion:

123.    The objections received indicate that there is a level of impact currently experienced by events at the stadium. Comments received suggest that these mainly fall under the headings of anti-social behaviour and transport. Some impacts are expected, as it is a large stadium in a location with residents and businesses nearby.

124.    Additional events can take place at the stadium irrespective of the outcome of the application. However, those events that are beyond the existing cap would be limited to a capacity of approximately 51,000.

125.    The original cap on events was imposed to manage the impacts until such time as specific transport improvements had been made. Whilst most of these have taken place, not all of them have been realised. Circumstances have changed since the original planning permission in 2002, which suggest that the final piece of transport infrastructure (the Stadium Access Corridor) will not be provided in the originally envisaged form, but will be a variant of this. A further change is the level of development within the area, which has increased the population and will continue to do so. Therefore, the Council considers that the cap remains relevant, and any further impact associated with the additional events must therefore be assessed.

126.    Clearly, to increase the number of events to accommodate Tottenham Hotspur would imply a commensurate increase in the impact, albeit that it is proposed to be temporary for 12 months. In addition, following discussions the number of additional major events has also been decreased from 31 to 22, which would reduced the number of instances within which those impacts are apparent over that 12 month period.

127.    In analysing the impacts there has been some concern about the level of economic

benefit which would result, and this is primarily centred on visitor expenditure. In any event it seems common sense that there would be winners and losers on event days, dependent on the type of business. This makes it all the more important that the social impacts on event days are further mitigated. A number of additional measures have been secured to deal with some of these issues.

128.    Transportation issues have been extensively raised, and there are ongoing efforts to reduce the number of vehicles on a match day. A number of mitigation measures are proposed to continue this work. Some of these allow for existing work to continue, and others are new or updated. The pirate parking initiative is considered particularly important. On an individual event basis, Tottenham Hotspur do have the ability to influence their supporters’ behaviour over the course of a year, which is more difficult than for visitors on a one-off basis such as the FA Cup final. Addressing transport issues will also contribute to reducing noise and air quality issues.

129.    In summary, it is recognised that there is a level of impact being caused by major events now, and that this would increase with an increase in the number of high capacity major events. However, the measures proposed would ensure that this is mollified as much as is reasonably achievable. All are considered necessary to mitigate the increased number of matches which this application proposes. A further consideration is that Tottenham Hotspur could use the stadium for major events up to 51,000 now without restriction, and were they to do that then no additional mitigation measures would be formally secured. The proposed additional mitigation would apply to Tottenham Hotspur events, and with some of these being within the existing cap would represent a theoretical improvement for these major events.

130.    The proposal is, on balance, recommended for approval. 

Full Report HERE


Sandro said...

Not surprised in the least to read this. Had a brief look at the full report from the above link & as suspected us local residents & our views count for nothing! Brent Council/Spurs FC will put this in place & that in place to ease this & that for local residents, blah blah blah & more blah! Nothing will happen & we won't benefit from a single thing! The only people who will benefit are the FA & certain members of Brent Council whom I'm sure have been given early Xmas stockings filled with lovely 'presents' courtesy of Tottenham FC so that they could arrive at this decision.

Anonymous said...

Disgusting. Correct me if I'm wrong but isn't there an investigation currently being undertaken by Deloitte in relation to allegations of bribery within the planning department?

As a resident and a City worker, this means that I will have to put up with the yobs both on the tube back to Wembley and when I'm trying to enjoy my

I fail to see how the council will mitigate for any disruptions caused to residents. I for one have recently had to purchase two additional event day permits so that my family and I can park on streets when shopping or visiting elderly family members.

I really can't wait to move out of the borough.

Eagerly awaiting either Butt or Khan's comments on this one!

Anonymous said...

Let's see Tom Miller comment when residents suffer consequences of fans brawling, urinating etc... as a result of Spurs (who are a business) not being able to control their event properly.

Philip Grant said...

Having read all the downsides set out in paras. 123 to 129 of the planning officer's conclusions, I would say that 'on balance' even a reduced number of 22 extra "major events" a year at Wembley Stadium would be detrimental to local people and most local businesses, and that the proposal should be rejected.

I hope that Brent's Planning Committee will feel the same way, but I have an uneasy feeling that they won't. One backbench councillor commented to me recently:

'Brent Council has a culture of inappropriate political interference. For example the entire Planning process is utterly compromised: the recent audit shows how weak the administrative systems are - but the political abuse is far, far worse.'


Jaine Lunn said...

Zero Tolerance to all of it. Brent Council do the job you have been elected to do and support Residents and Businesses.
If as purported in the Press you are intent on approving this I sincerely hope it will have Zero cost implications for the decent honest hardworking residents and businesses who are experiencing a huge rise in Council Tax and Business rates to support current services. That our Police and Safer Neigbhourhood Team which have been under severe pressure to retain a viable service are not despatched to babysit fans around the stadium, which relegates us a receiving a second rate service. THFC profits for 2015/2016 were reported by Forbes 100 to be £196 Million. They should be made to pay the whole cost of everything associated with extra events if this is granted.
I did wonder though, why could the FA not sort out the games so they could use the Olympic Stadium currently enjoyed by West Ham, and share with them? After all, London Borough of Newham would be much better suited logistically to hosting this. Their infrastructure is state of the art 21st Century.

Alison Hopkins said...

Interesting comment to say the least. MO B was at a "consultation" meeting last week where a number of residents had a real go at him. He - off his own bat - said loudly that people kep accusing him of meddling with Planning but that it simply wasn't true. He also spouted at length about planning law, somewhat inaccurately.

Philip Grant said...

Dear Alison,

My "source" did not say who was responsible for the 'inappropriate political interference' or the 'political abuse' of Brent's planning process, but it is interesting that the Council Leader should feel the need to defend himself in that way!

As a former councillor, you will know about Brent's Planning Code of Practice; but for other readers I will set out the prime paragraph from that part of the Council's Constitution:

'Members of the Planning Committee shall determine applications in accordance with the Unitary Development Plan unless material considerations indicate otherwise. The Brent Members’ Code of Conduct and the law relating to Brent Council members' disclosable pecuniary interests, personal interests and prejudicial interests MUST be complied with throughout the decision making
process. Decisions should not be influenced by the interests of Councillors or because of pressure exerted by applicants, agents or third parties. Members of the Planning Committee MUST take decisions in the public interest and take account
only of material planning considerations. They should not allow themselves to be influenced by members of the public and applicants, agents or third parties who might approach them and they should not be influenced by party politics.'

If anyone has evidence that any member of the Planning Committee is allowing themself to be influenced by party politics, or by another councillor who has some party authority over them, they should report the matter to Brent Council's Monitoring Officer.

Likewise, if you have a credible reason to believe that a member of the Council has tried to influence one or more members of the Planning Committee to decide an application in a particular way, you should lodge a complaint about this with Brent's Monitoring Officer.

Having said that, I am not sure WHO IS Brent's Monitoring Officer at the moment! Unless someone can answer this point (in reply to this comment) with the relevant name and email address, I would suggest sending the complaint, marked "IN CONFIDENCE - for the attention of the Monitoring Officer" to Brent's Chief Executive, Carolyn Downs, at: .


Anonymous said...

It doesn't feel like it's about residents anymore Jaine. This may well be the last straw for me, having moved here 3 years ago and enjoying the landscape of Fryent and the shops and restaurants it now feels on the weekend it becomes over run by drunk football supporters, unashamedly littering everywhere, terrible traffic, and no where to relax with my friends and family.