Earls Court residents launch legal proceedings against development

The
West Kensington and Gibbs Green Tenants and Residents Associations have
launched legal proceedings against the planning policy underpinning the
Earl’s Court scheme.

They claim the adoption of the Earl’s
Court/West Kensington Supplementary Planning Document (SPD)
by the London
Borough of Hammersmith and Fulham (LBHF) and by the Royal Borough of Kensington
and Chelsea (RBKC) was unlawful.

The claim was served on EC Properties,
the wholly-owned subsidiary of Capital and Counties Properties (Capco);
Transport for London; and the Mayor of London’s Office/Greater London
Authority.

“The defendants have failed to follow the correct
procedures in adopting their regeneration plans despite receiving
several warnings from residents and others that their actions were
unlawful,” said Michael Webster, a Partner in the City firm representing
the residents, Webster Dixon.

“There is an overwhelming
objection by the residents to the demolition of their homes for the sake
of a private development. The protection of family homes and the
welfare of individuals, many of whom are vulnerable, should not be
sacrificed for the profits of a billion pound developer.”

The majority of estate residents rejected the plans in a resident survey earlier this year.

Sally Taylor, Chair of West Kensington Tenants and Residents Association, said residents won’t accept demolition.

“This
is a close-knit community; there’s nothing wrong with our homes,” she
said. “The council’s planning policy is not only immoral, now we have
asked the High Court of Justice to declare it unlawful.”

A
Hammersmith and Fulham Council Spokesman said: “We have just received
notification of this claim and the matter is currently being considered
by our lawyers.”

In a statement Capco said: “An application for a
judicial review of the local authorities’ Supplementary Planning
Document for the Earls Court Opportunity Area has been made by certain
residents of the Gibbs Green and West Kensington Estates who are opposed
to the council’s plans.

“Capco has been notified as an
interested party but this is a matter for RBKC and LBHF to consider. We
believe the SPD and our respective planning applications made in June of
last year will deliver huge benefits and command considerable public
support. The applications are in line with the adopted Core Strategies
and planning policies of the local authorities. We look forward to their
consideration in due course.”

Got a story for Conference News? Email me: conferencenews@mashmedia.net

Paul Colston

Author

Paul Colston

Managing Editor, Conference News & Conference & Meetings World.

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