Dear Mr Holloway
I would like to correct your assertion that I had hatched a plot with L&Q with respect to the Greyhound Stadium. It could not be further from the truth.
I am pretty certain that I had no meetings with L&Q about their scheme. The only discussions I had were with Officers and I certainly and I believe Officers thought the original scheme was awful.
The only meeting outside of officers I can recall was with Save Our Stow with Clyde Loakes. At that meeting we were both warm to the SOS/Morton proposal.
I also at about the same time ensured that the Planning Brief would insist there was a leisure/community element to any planning application in the context of ensuring that Planning delivers neighbourhoods that work. This approach should have been helpful to the Bob Morton proposal which was interesting
Development Control is a quasi judicial process and has to operate independently within Planning Policies i n making its decisions.
There is a “duty” on Council Planners to work with major developers to improve their proposals so they conform with Policies and are potentially successful. I am not familiar with the application that ultimately went to committee; but would expect that it would be very different from the original
In this case in a local context the Development Control Committee may see that an application complies with policy and should be approved- even if they personally would prefer an alternative use. It is likely that a Bob Morton application could also gain approval- as I am sure you know it is not usual but there can be more than one valid planning approval for a particular location.
The decision is a local one albeit it has to take account of the Mayors Policies. It may well be if the Mayor has called it in that he could legitamately reach a different decision because he has a wider remit than a Local Council Development Control process.
L&Q who “own” the site do not have to proceed with this particular scheme and this where the argument has always needed to be made- it is perhaps a pity that they were hemmed in by the price they paid for the site- it was in my view a wrongheaded decision made worse by an initially awful scheme.
Reply sent back by Barrie Clegg
Dear Councillor Wheeler
The point is that L&Q’s plans do not comply with policy-nowhere near.
Unfortunately, as you are aware, this was a carefully contrived plan from the outset. Its a shame that you did not attend Tuesday’s meeting. You would have seen David Scourfield warmly greeting L&Q’s representatives like family. You would have seen the planning committee completely ignoring planning policy. You would have seen 100% of the gallery angry with the Labour Council and L&Q. You would have seen your old colleague Gary Ince tell a pack of lies-I understand that he was invited by a member of the planning committee. You would have seen hundreds of good, decent people standing up for local democracy but witnessing a local disgrace orchestrated by Labour Councillors such as Marie Pye who I am copying in on this e mail. I will never forget her smug face after the meeting-job well done Marie. You would have seen two Labour members of the planning committee virtually silent and voting in line with the party whip.
Its very interesting that you chose to contact us after the decision, not beforehand. You and your colleagues have no interest in the well being of this Borough. Please can you or Marie advise me in simple terms just what L&Q’s plans will bring to this community? As a Waltham Forest resident there seems hundreds of properties available in Estate Agents windows if you have the money to buy. L&Q’s plans offer hardly anything for the less fortunate who quite rightly need help with their housing requirements. And please do not insult my intelligence with their ‘leisure proposals’. It is quite clear that Marie’s relationship with L&Q was/is completely inappropriate evidenced by L&Q sending her Bob Morton’s plans as just one example.
So to you, Marie and your fellow Labour colleagues-well done-congratulations-job well done. Don’t bother about representing the people that voted you in to office. That’s an inconveneniece I’m sure you can manage,