Tuesday, 10 August 2010

Brent Cross - They don't give a toss

I am yet again reproducing a real eye-opener for Brent, from the Barnet Eye blog. Brent will ultimately pay the price - so this is wake-up time!

One should not forget the so far friendly exchanges between Brent and Barnet councils, but the attitude of, "Let's see what happens next" will not save Brent children and others from respiratory illnesses, ill- health in general and miserable living conditions, including noise and disastrous environmental harm in and around Dollis Hill, Cricklewood, Willesden, Welsh Harp, Neasden, Hendon, Kingsbury and the whole of Wembley. (I am deliberately not including the Barnet side of the area.)

Therefore I urge you to spare TWO minutes and read below

Have a look at this picture, mocked up by the architects to demonstrate just how lovely the new Brent Cross is. Look really carefully at the "riverside scene". What do you see? Can you see the toddlers playing by the River Brent. Can you see that there is drop of a couple of feet into the river? Are they really promoting picnics in such dangerous spots? The use of perspective in the picture intrigues me. By clever angles a river which is 25ft wide appears the same size as a huge block of flats six stories high. The backside of a young mum is larger than the top three stories of the tower at the back of the picture. There is another view of this idylic development. Try this

In this picture, you can see just how big the blocks are. Nope they are not the same size as a young mum's Bum. They dwarf the London Bus in the bottom right hand corner. The Leader of Barnet Council proudly boasted that the Brent Cross Development would give the Borough an exciting new Town Centre. What sort of a Town will it be? It will be one with the largest road junction in London, an eleven lane highway, clogged with traffic dividing it in half. It is bounded by the Brent Cross flyover to the East, and the M1/Staples Corner flyover to the West. As to being a safe environment to raise children, well I'd guess that there wouldn't be anywhere in London with more cars spouting out pollution than this. Is there a larger conglomeration of roads anywhere? Of course the planners of this feel that this already polluted air quality is not polluted enough and are planning an incinerator. It is no secret that there are all sorts of cancer hotspots in the vicinity of such installations. Where is the "green space" for children to play? Down by the ungarded banks of the River Brent where there is no fencing to prevent them falling in? A river prone to flash flooding. There is also the railway passing by to the East. I guess if the kids get bored with the river, they could play on the tracks, maybe a nice game of chicken in front of the Freight Trains carrying nuclear waste to Sellafield, which rumble through.
At a hurriedly convened meeting of the Hendon planning committee last week, the plans for this monstrosity received approval. For some strange reason, the whole process was suddenly speeded up just as the holiday season started.
I attended the Hendon & District residents Forum where Barnet Council Official, Martin Cowie informed us that the meeting was only discussing the extension of the time limits, as a legal requirement, which seemed reasonable enough. This week the Times tells us that the extension will give stakeholders a chance to give extra input- They said "These controls will ensure Barnet Council and the other stakeholders and in particular TfL will continue to have real control and input into how the Brent Cross Cricklewood regeneration is taken forward - and that public transport, infrastructure and community investment keeps pace with development." So who thinks this is a good idea? Well it seems that the chair of the planning committee does. Her name Wendy Prentice.

Wendy Prentice thinks that children who grow up in an extremely polluted environment, with no green spaces to play, bounded by dangerous roads, railways and rivers will grow up into happy, healthy children. So what sort of a road does Ms Prentice live in. Well I googled her road and looked at the streetview? What does Ms Greenspan see when she walks down her road? Well she sees something like this :-
Make no mistake, if you live in the London Borough of Barnet, you are a stakeholder. How many people of the board of TFL live in Barnet. It is telling that the most important stakeholder mentioned in the Times article is TFL, who are responsible for the roads which run through it. Their remit is not the well being of the children of Barnet. If like me you think that this whole scheme is scandalous and we are building a future slum city, with huge urban problems, which will blight Barnet forever, please don't sit on your hands. Send an email to Ms Prentice, who is the councillor responsible for the decision and tell her that you think Barnet should put the wellbeing of children before the profits of developers and that you think multi story tower blocks, roads, dangerous rivers, railway sidings and gas incinerators are no environment to raise your family - cllr.w.prentice@barnet.gov.uk

Posted by Rog T at Saturday, August 07, 2010 2 comments

Labels: Barnet Council, Brent Cross Incinerator, Brent Cross redevelopment, Councillor Eva Greenspan, Cricklewood regeneration


  1. I hope Brent council opposed this plan for Brent Cross.

  2. Just goes to show you shouldn't believe the spin. Yes Brent should oppose it - no question about it.