Tuesday 28 February 2023

Supreme Court to rule on sale of park land to developer without adequate consultation


From Good Law Project

The Supreme Court will decide tomorrow (Wednesday 1 March) whether planning permission should have been granted for a piece of sold off park land, after locals argued that they have a right to continue using the space for recreation. 

The decision could have far reaching repercussions for the sale of green spaces in the future.

A section of Greenfields Recreation Ground was sold to a housing developer in 2017 and earmarked for 15 homes.

Local residents, who have been campaigning for six years to reclaim the site, say the local authority should have consulted with them before the sale was made.  

The Greenfields land was first bought by the local authority in 1926 for £1,000 and held in trust for community use.

Shrewsbury Town Council was criticised in a judicial review in 2019 for failing to identify the status of the land before selling it. The local authority has already apologised for its "failures".

Good Law Project has been supporting and helping to fund the legal action and believes the case will set a precedent for councils to consult with residents before they sell off land that has public value.

Campaigns Manager for Good Law Project, Hannah Greer, said:  

Recreational spaces are so important for our quality of life, and that was especially highlighted during the pandemic.

It’s simply not right for these spaces to be taken away by a local authority without consulting those who use it. We hope the Supreme Court will agree with us and help stop this happening again.

Further information LINK


Philip Grant said...

The land in this case may well have been bought for public recreation use, with money partly provided under public health legislation. It should have been registered as for that use and no other.

It's too late apologising for a "failure" after you have wrongly sold the land, but to build on it would require the local Council to agree that the land should be appropriated for planning purposes. That can only be done if the land is no longer required for its previous purpose. And that could stop the developer from building on it, so they could sell the land back to the Council or community.

David Walton said...

In South Kilburn Granville Road Public Open Space 1 ha was 0.8 ha built on in 2009 by the Council. On the GLA Public Land Register in 2023 that land ( Granville New Homes now) is listed as being private owned, while much of South Kilburn new build otherwise remains council land? I suppose the worry was it's going back to park green again.

The Granville Public Open Space remains is a 2010 renewed 0.2ha pocket public park currently council padlocked and neglect as happened also to it in 2017. As regards green public rights of way blocked up and destroyed in South Kilburn since 2001 Brent Master planner in 2023 says that it "does not know" how many.

Maybe Shrewsbury needs Brent advice next green space and public right of way grab? Look at the Brent Brownfield Register 2022 for green spaces and green public rights of way destruction in the Brent pipeline for car-free, no gardens South Kilburn Population Growth Area towards 2041.

David Walton said...

Brent Brownfield registered 2022 are;

43. Granville Community Centre
49. BSESA3/ BSESA 9 Carlton House, playground and Community Centre/ Neville House, Winterleys and green open space/green public right of way PA 18/4920
56. South Kilburn Job Centre Plus PA 20/0881 (to become 19 flats). This public service re-located to Queens Park Conservation Area.
87. BSESA1. Austen House/Catholic Church/ Marian Community Centre
88. BSESA2. Blake Court/ green open space and playground
89. BSESA4. Carlton Vale Infants School
90. BSESA5. Craik Court and green open spaces
91. BSESA6. Crone and Zangwill and green open spaces/ green public right of way
92. BSESA7. Dickens House and green open spaces/ green public right of way
93. BSESA 8/ BSESA11 Hereford and Exeter/ Granville Road Local Designated Public Open Space
94. BSESA 13. John Ratcliffe House
95. BSESA 14. Saville and Dunbar, green open space and community centre
96. BSESA 15. Albanian Muslim Centre
97. BSESA16. OK Club/ Christian Holt House
109. BSESA 34. Kilburn Park Underground Station

167. Chippenham Gardens (52 flats) green open space 2022 renewed but halved in its size for population growth.

171. Peel Precinct/ central main public square renewal to ¼ its original size for a quintupling of population? New single staircase only 17 storey tower is on site.

Anonymous said...

This reminds we readers and contributors of the Barham Cottages sale and Butt now trying to remove the protective covenants for his friend (who went to whose son's wedding?), just reference the minutes of the Barham Trust which is now chaired by Butt to see that he has instigated a project to remove the protective covenant. Titus Barham must be rolling in his grave.

Jaine Lunn said...

Perhaps I should contact these people re: Coplands Fields, which originally was public land but now seems to be leased and controlled by Ark Elvin Academy, who by the way don't use it at all St Joseph RC School and Elsley Primary have access and use it occasionally and have protected rights under the 100 yr covenants. However, the rest of the public are blocked by 3 metre high fencing and padlocked gates. I don't ever recall there being a public consultation about this, and I don't believe it was ever mentioned that access would be withdrawn in the original planning documents for the school.

So much for Brent Council banging on about Healthy Environments for recreation and childrens play space when the majority of flats being built have little or no where near enough amenity space for the density of the development and people!

Anonymous said...

John Copland and his sisters must be turning in their graves as to what has happened with their legacy to the people of Wembley.

David Walton said...

Granville Road Public Open Space is a strange Grey Brent happening too...

This park by regeneration funds renewed in 2010, yet padlocked both gates neglect and public use excluded in 2017, and again 2022-23- EXHAUSTING!

Anonymous said...

If no one has access they will say no-one uses it so we will build flats on it :(