After the very unpopular decision of Brent Planning Committee to allow the building of 4 bulky houses in Barham Park, residents have been concerned that a precedent has been set which could threaten our other parks and public spaces. This is particularly the case where there are existing buildings in the park or green space that could be declared redundant or poorly maintained and the site redeveloped.
We learnt how important green spaces are during the pandemic and open access is important. Access has already been lost to the Copland Fields and green space is likely to be lost in South Kilburn. The St Raphael's green space may be eaten into in future redevelopment. At the same time Brent's tower block building boom means that the population has increased and the new residents have no gardens, just access to a balcony or a small shared space consisting mainly of concrete. An exception will be the new Union Park near the stadium.
Barham Park is supposedly protected by covenant, a fact that the Planning Committee discounted as not a planning consideration, but unfortunately even that is not the case with other parks.
In Brent only King Edward VII Park, Wembley; Roe Green Walled Garden in Kingsbury and Mapesbury Dell in Cricklewood are protected by Fields in Trust. Their mission is to protect parks and green spaces. Owners can apply to Fields in Trust whether private, community or local authority for a potection agreement. Brent Council is of course the owner of our parks and public spaces apart from Queens Park which is owned by the Corporation of London.
Brent Council as the landowner would have to apply for a protection agreement and that will need pressure from residents to persuade them that such action is vital.
Meanwhile a petition has been launched in the wake of the Barham Park decision calling on Brent Council to uphold its Strategic Plan commitment to protecting parks and open spaces.
The petition is on Brent Council's website HERE
Save Brent Parks from house building & development
We the undersigned petition the council to uphold its long standing Strategic Policy of protecting Brent Parks and Open Spaces at all cost.
We are concerned that Brent Council's Planning Committee has ignored Strategic Core Policy of protecting Parks and Open Spaces and also the Sudbury Town Neighbourhood Plan, which designated Barham Park as a Local Green Space and developed a specific Planning Policy BP1 which stated that any housing building or redevelopment in Barham Park should be refused. That decision has effectively undermined Neighbourhood Planning, ignored the views of local people and put at risk other Parks and Open Spaces across Brent.