Enfield RoadWatch Action Group

The Local Plan consultation is under way. Your participation is essential. Read on to find out how to object simply and effectively.

We’ll be posting frequent updates and actions. Please keep checking back.  Thanks for your support.

The Regulation 19 consultation is now under way.  The deadline is midnight on Monday, May 20.  It’s essential that as many people as possible object to the plans to develop two large and several smaller areas of our precious Green Belt. We are particularly concerned about the so-called Chase Park development on both sides of Enfield Road [Policy PL10] and the transformation of Crews Hill into a ‘rural settlement’ [Policy PL11]   Please spead the word!  You do not have to live in Enfield to object.  Every person in a household can object separately, including children.

This consultation is more technical than previous consultations and objections must be based on planning policy and submitted using a defined template.  But don’t let that put you off taking part. We are partnering with The Enfield Society who are providing a user-friendly online form on their website, which makes the process quick and simple.   You will also find valid planning arguments there that you can use in your objections.  Whatever you say will be forwarded to the government Planning Inspector, so you are really writing to him/her, not the Council this time. Please put the suggested arguments in your own words.  You can preview them below and think about what to say before completing the form.  Please avoid emotional, personal or angry statements.

Enfield RoadWatch will be submitting comprehensive and thorough representations for several policies and we will post our submissions here once they are finalised.

The Council’s vision for the Enfield Road corridor – Policy PL 10 Chase Park

The Council’s declared intention is to turn Enfield Road into an urban residential corridor, a ‘high street’. Pink means residential development, becoming denser [maybe 5-6 storeys] as it gets closer to Enfield Road. You’ll see there is also a proposed shopping parade along Enfield Road close to Jubilee Cottage and a couple of access roads going into the development off Enfield Road.  Also a new primary school. Building on the Green Belt is NOT necessary and this particular area of Green Belt is too important to lose.  Full details of the policy can be found here.

PL10 [Chase Park] Objections:

  • High level of harm to the character and identity of the area arising from the loss of countryside and semi-rural character
  • Green Belt countryside designated as an Enfield Chase Area of Special Character within the current statutory Development Plan
  • Loss of an important part of the historic landscape of Enfield Chase
  • Urbanisation of the Merryhills Way, a popular Public Right of Way established comparatively recently to provide easy access on foot to high quality countryside
  • Impact on Trent Park Conservation area from development at the Equestrian Centre
  • Likely to be car-dominated with few jobs in the area and steep slopes making cycling hard

The Council’s vision for Crew’s Hill – Policy PL11

Crews Hill as we know it right up to the M25 it will disappear.  The garden centres, golf course and other much-loved amenities will be replaced by a new ‘rural settlement’ of around 5,500 homes. The plan essentially carves a large chunk out of the Green Belt.  Despite the presence of Crews Hill Station, we believe the settlement would be car-dependent and not sustainable and would destroy a much-valued part of Enfield’s life and history.  Full details of the policy can be found here.

PL11 [Crews Hill] Objections:

  • Impact on the designated Sites of Importance for Nature Conservation at Crews Hill Golf Course and Glasgow Stud
  • Urbanisation of the setting of the Chain Walk Public Right of Way and Burnt Farm Ride Public Bridleway
  • Impact on views from the Ridgeway across Enfield Chase historic landscape
  • Possible future impact of development from deletion of Green Belt at Kings Oak Plain, an area of countryside recently planted with trees by volunteers
  • Loss of popular garden centres and supporting businesses
  • Harm to the rural setting of the Whitewebbs Transport Museum
  • Traffic pressure harming the character of narrow rural lanes including Whitewebbs Road, Cattlegate Road and East Lodge Lane
  • Traffic pressure on the Conservation Areas at Clay Hill and Forty Hall
  • Likely to be car-dominated with few jobs in the area and steep slopes making cycling hard

We have highlighted the two most egregious Green Belt policies here but there are others. Green Belt in Hadley Wood is also targeted as well as Holly Hill Farm where the Council proposes to build a logistics hub, while the former Whitewebbs Golf Course will become another football training camp.   The Enfield Society website also offers the opportunity to object to these policies and others, including some Tall Buildings policies, with appropriate arguments suggested for each.

Here are our most recent newsletters with information about the consultation and the campaign.  The most recent provides a step by step guide the form on The Enfield Society website:  REG 19 CONSULTATION – 1   REG 19 CONSULTATION – 2

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 19/3/24   There was an excellent turnout this evening at the Civic Centre for the Local Plan vote.  Thanks to everyone who came!  Although the result was predictable, our presence made a point.  The plan was approved for consultation by the Labour majority and the consultation will run from March 28 and to run until May 20.

How will the local plan affect you where you live?

How you can help now

There will be a London Mayoral election on May 2 this year.  The London Plan, which sits as policy between Enfield’s plan and the National Planning Policy Framework [NPPF], is critical to the success or failure of the council’s plan. Currently they are not in compliance with the London Plan and the present Mayor, Sadiq Khan, has consistently objected to the proposed loss of Green Belt.  We understand he is standing firm on that, but it would be a good idea to write to all the Mayoral candidates and to the candidates vying to be Enfield’s GLA representative asking for a firm commitment that they will a] object to Enfield’s proposals for Chase Park and Crews Hill during the upcoming Regulation 19 consultation and b] if elected use their powers to block the developments. See what we wrote.     We are providing their email addresses below:

Mayoral candidates

Sadiq Khan [Labour]  mayor@london.gov.uk 

Susan Hall [Conservative     susan.hall@london.gov.uk

Rob Blackie [Lib Dem]  rob@robblackie.com

Zoe Garbett [Green]  Zoe.garbett@hackney.gov.uk

Howard Cox [Reform UK] howard.cox@reformuk.com

GLA candidates

[Labour – encumbent] Joanne.McCartney@london.gov.uk

[Conservative] Calum McGillivray  office@enfieldnorth.org

[Lib Dem]  Guy Russo  guy.russo@enfieldlibdems.org.uk

[Green] Katie Knight  contact@enfieldgreens.org.uk

[Reform UK] Roger Gravett roger.gravett@reformparty.uk

The next few months are critical to Enfield’s future so please stay tuned.  We’ll also be posting on our Facebook page and sending our newsletters so please sign up if you are not on our email list.  info@enfieldroadwatch.co.uk

5/1/24  The fight to save Whitewebbs Park for the community continues, with a High Court hearing set for early February. The second phase of CrowdJustice fundraising kicked off today to pay for the judicial review. There is a lot more information on the site. Please help out with whatever you can afford – however little.  The deadline for pledges is February 4. Thanks.
CrowdJustice link

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Anglo Aquatic – LBE has granted permission for the development of a Green Belt site on Strayfield Road in Crews Hill subject to GLA approval.  We have written to the Mayor objecting and asking for the GLA to refuse permission.  CPRE-London have also objected and their letter lays out the issues clearly. CPRE letter to Mayor 210923 – Anglo Aquarium   If you would like to object too, please email mayor@london.gov.uk.  We are most concerned about the precedent permission would set.

Whitewebbs – the legal battle to save Whitewebbs Park continues.  Updates will be posted as this progresses.

A campaign is under way for a major new park on Enfield’s eastern side. Led by EnCaf [Enfield Climate Action Forum] and CPRE-London, the park could extend up to 60 hectares around Banbury Reservoir on unloved Green Belt land. The campaign would love to know what ideas you have for the park. Please click on the link to complete the short survey and share your ideas. It takes less than 5-minutes. Please share it too. Thanks.      https://tinyurl.com/2p8xnby3

12/6/23 The £18,000 needed for the first phase of the legal campaign to save Whitewebbs was met in record time! Thanks to everyone who contributed. The barristers will now start working on the case and this phase may take a few weeks. We’ll update as soon as we hear anything. If this phase is successful, another fundraising campaign will be launched for phase 2.  Stay tuned ….

27/5/23 Thanks to everyone who sent in objections to the Whitewebbs lease earlier this year. The Council is moving forwards with the process to lease 60% of Whitewebbs Park to Tottenham Hotspur Limited (or a wholly owned subsidiary of that company) (“THL”), so it’s time for the legal challenge. 

The Friends of Whitewebbs are now fundraising via CrowdJustice.  The short message is that, based on an opinion from barristers, we believe that the Council’s proposal to dispose of 60% of Whitewebbs Park to THFC is unlawful.  £18,000 needs to be raised to get the process of Judicial Review started. If all supporters of Whitewebbs chip in, that initial goal can be met.  At this stage you are simply asked to pledge an amount. It will be collected only when the initial target is met.  If you’re ready to pledge, please go to https://www.crowdjustice.com/case/save-whitewebbs/ and thanks!

Full information about the legal challenge and more can be found at https://whitewebbspark.org.uk/  

Please share this with your friends and family.  There is a deadline to be met and we hope you can help.

We will be back with more information about the Local Plan in due course.  

11/1/23 You have until midnight on Sunday to object to the leasing of Whitewebbs Park to Spurs. Please read our post on the urgent action needed to save Whitewebbs hereThe Sun newspaper has  picked up on the story.  Click here. And Dispatch has covered the well-attended demo outside the Civic Centre on January 10.  Click here.

15/10/22  Our presentation to the full council in front a packed public gallery went very well and the council leader agreed to all three of our requests.  Thanks again to everyone who signed the petition and helped to collect signatures.  You can read more about the council meeting here.

When the next version of the local plan comes forward [which may be early next year], it has been agreed that:

  1. The revised local plan will come to the full council for a free and open debate with sufficient time allowed for the councillors to debate the plan’s merits
  2. Each councillor will have a chance to vote for or against the plan and, in the interests of transparency, this vote will be subject to a ‘Roll Call’ so there is a public record of how each councillor voted
  3. The revised plan will be published in fully-accessible formats at least 12 weeks before the council meeting to allow all the councillors, especially those who are new, to engage with their constituents in a meaningful and productive consultation about plan, which will affect every aspect of life in the borough for the next 15 years.

The Action for Enfield’s Future coalition has been very effective and we propose to continue working with the other organisations and groups moving forwards.

Thanks for your continued support.

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9/6/22  Thank you again for all your hard work during the Local Plan consultation last year. It was a magnificent effort with about 7,000 responses sent in to the Council.  Now we need your help again, please.  Last time you helped in various ways. This time it is much more specific.  In collaboration with other local groups who are trying to save the Green Belt, we have launched a petition on the council website, trying to force the local plan process into the daylight with a full council debate and public vote.  The next phase is less about numbers and more about technical planning arguments but we can still bring pressure to bear on the council as they finalise the plan. Please reach out to your friends, family and neighbours again, mobilise your networks, and spread the word however you can so we can reach at least 3,124 signatures – and hopefully many more.

Anyone who lives, works or studies in Enfield and can provide a legitimate Enfield postcode, can sign our petition on the Enfield Council website and help to save the Green Belt. This includes children but separate email addresses are needed.  Just click below.
Councillors: We Voted for You. Now Speak for Us! #Debate Enfield’s Local Plan

When you sign online, you have a choice of registering for the council website and signing and just signing.  Either is fine.

We can provide paper petitions too if you would like to go around your neighbourhood asking people to sign and/or for people who cannot sign online.  Just let us know and we can either email you a Word copy to print out or have some paper copies delivered to you.

Voting for a Local Plan is the most significant and important policy choice that can be made by local governments. 29 of the 63 current councillors are new since the recent council election in May so have had no input into the local plan. The swing away from Labour in Enfield, which bucked the London trend, signifies considerable discontent among Enfield voters and we believe all the councillors should have transparent and open communication with their constituents about the proposals and be prepared to have their vote noted.

Here is the full e-Petition.

The deadline is July 31.  Let’s see those numbers soar so we can send a loud message that any Local Plan that removes our Green Belt is not one we support. As always, thank you for your help.

We voted for them. Now they should speak for us! #Debate Enfield’s Local Plan!

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6/4/22  We have no news yet on the Local Plan, but we have geared up to encourage all eligible voters to take part in the Local Council Elections on Thursday, May 5.   It’s easy to ignore local elections, but these ones are vital to the future and character of our borough . If you are not registered to vote, please note that the deadline is one week away – Thursday, April 14.  You can register online at https://www.gov.uk/register-to-vote

There are several contentious issues that will affect how the vote goes and saving our Green Belt is high on the list.  The draft local plan proposes to take large swathes of the Green Belt for housing – unnecessarily because there are alternatives.  Especially at risk are Vicarage Farm and other fields to the north and south of the A110 and the whole Crews Hill area. 

Enfield RoadWatch is a non-partisan group so we will not endorse specific candidates, but we ask you to consider carefully how the various candidates stand on destroying the Green Belt and to vote accordingly.  We need to judge the candidates on their track record/ and or their party manifesto. A large turnout voting for candidates who share our goals could really make a difference.

There are a lot of new candidates. To make it a bit easier, below are a list of candidates who previously voted for the draft local plan and its proposals to develop the Green Belt [they are all Labour candidates] and brief party manifestos courtesy of Enfield Dispatch.

Candidates who voted for the draft Local Plan

Conservative Party manifesto

Green Party manifesto

Labour Party manifesto

Lib Dem manifesto

There are independent candidates too.  If you’d like to see the complete list of candidates and who nominated them click here.

You can read our response to the draft local plan here so you can refresh your mind on the issues. These elections will dictate the future direction and character of Enfield.  Please take the time to vote and send the message that Enfield’s residents want to keep our countryside areas open, green and concrete-free!  We’ll be back in touch soon when the next Local Plan consultation is announced. 

Thanks for your continued support.

 

The Draft Local Plan Consultation closed on September 13. Your response was amazing!

Thank you!! We can’t thank you enough for answering the call to help save Enfield’s Green Belt. We delivered over 1,500 consultation letters to the Civic Centre and were copied on over 200 email responses.  Many people will have responded direct so that should amount to several hundred more people telling the Council NO! Let’s hope they listen!  And a special thank to our army of volunteers! You’re all stars!

What’s Next?  The recent consultation is known as ‘Regulation 18’. The Council will review the input from everywhere and finalise the Draft Local Plan. There will be a ‘Regulation 19’ consultation next year followed by an ‘Examination in Public’. The process of preparing a Local Plan is lengthy and convoluted but we will keep you informed. Please ask your friends, neighbours and family members to share their email addresses with us so they can also stay informed and engaged.  Just drop us an email and we’ll sign you up.

Official responses to the consultation

We are always anxious to see what politicians higher up the chain make of Enfield’s proposals. So far we have heard from the Mayor of London and Enfield North MP, Feryal Clark.

The Mayor of London makes it clear that he does not support the plan as proposed and would like to see many changes. With respect to releasing Green Belt he says: Having considered Enfield’s draft Plan and the evidence to support the preferred approach it is the Mayor’s opinion that the exceptional circumstances that are required to justify the release of Green Belt land through the Local Plan process have not been established. This is good news and we hope the council pays due attention. You can find the full response here. Click on the 2021 link.

Enfield North MP, Feryal Clark has also made her response public. She states that an adequate case has not been made for releasing Green Belt and that therefore ‘the inclusion of this land represents a waste of the Council’s Regeneration and Planning resources as these sites have no realistic chance of being successfully brought forward’. You can read her full response here.

The Council should now be considering all the input they have received and deciding what changes, if any, they should make to the draft plan. We hope they make a lot!

Please note, information about the Draft Local Plan consultation has moved to the Past Consultations page.

Thanks for your continued support.

Please sign our petition at change.org.uk   Search for ‘Protect Enfield’.

We’re now over 35,000!  But we are not done yet. Have you signed yet? 

There are many ways you can contribute our campaign, from volunteering to making a donation.  Find out more at Supporting the campaign.   ,

11-6-21  The campaign is gearing up and we will be back in touch once we’ve had a chance to review the consultation materials.  Here is the newsletter we sent out to supporters yesterday with more details about what we are planning.

9-6-21  As anticipated, the vote went along party lines at the Council meeting tonight so the consultation will proceed on the preferred option.  The consultation will start around June 20 and will run for 12 weeks.  We’ll post information about it when we see the various options for responding.  We must get as many people as possible to respond.  We will be gearing up soon with banners, posters, fliers, ads and intensifying our social media.  We’ll post more about how you can get a banner or yard sign in a few days. Losing the vote tonight was expected – though we had hoped that some Labour councillors would defy the whip – but we are now ready for the next phase.

7-6-21  Today the combined campaigns to save Enfield’s Green Belt wrote to all the Councillors in advance of the Wednesday council meeting.  We urged them to do the following:

  1. That the consultation period should be of 12 weeks duration, the same as the previous consultation.
  2. A public consultation about the development options only, not the Preferred Option draft Local Plan.
  3. A public debate in an all-Member panel with powers to decide and agree the Preferred Option prior to endorsement by Full Council.
  4. Panel reports accompanied by sufficient and accurate information on each option so Councillors’ decisions affecting Enfield for the next 20 years are fully informed and transparent to the public, to whom they are accountable.

The Preferred Option would be a disaster for Enfield and is being pushed through with undue haste, when there are better alternatives. The local plan documents are voluminous, incorrect and incomplete and we want the Councillors to pause for a breath and consider whether they really want this to be their legacy to the borough.

Please feel free to use any of these points and information in your own communication to local politicians – and others.

For those who want more information about the problems, here are additional documents to read:

Consultation Letter to all Councillors – Final 060621

Scenarios and Options in Plan

Issues with Option B 07-06-21

Enfield Draft Local Plan Analysis of Documentation June 6 2021

Enfield Draft Local Plan – key extracts (1)(1)

2-6-21 Draft local plan released and it’s an assault on our Green Belt!

The Council’s preferred option is to build 3,500+ homes on the Green Belt farmland both sides of the A110 all the way to Oakwood Station and to build 7,500+ homes at Crews Hill, which is also Green Belt, pushing aside all the garden centres and family businesses there.  The developers must be cracking open the champagne.

None of this is necessary as homes can be built on brownfield elsewhere and it’s a tragic short-term decision that will haunt Enfield’s residents forever.

We don’t know yet when the consultation will start but we will let you know so you can respond and say NO!!!  In the meantime, it’s important to write to your Councillors before they vote on the plan on June 9 and tell them that they represent you, not the party.  You can find your Councillors here.

We will be updating the website frequently and sending out email updates as necessary.  If you’d like to be added to our email list, please let us know.  And if you’d like to read the draft local plan for yourself it is here

20-5-21  New report released on the Green Belt and affordable housing

Council’s lose-lose housing strategy is a disaster for Enfield, say campaigners

In a new report, released today, [1] a coalition of local groups [2] say Enfield’s approach to new housing fails to deliver desperately needed family homes and unnecessarily promotes paving over our precious green fields instead of regenerating deprived areas.

The campaigners say the latest attempt to oblige release of Green Belt land [3] is unlikely to solve Enfield’s housing crisis [4] and ignores the vast amounts of previously-developed brownfield sites in need of regeneration. There are enough of these brownfield sites to provide the new homes that are needed, without building tower blocks, but the Council says it is unable to demonstrate a five-year supply of housing land and has only met 56% of its housing requirements [5].

Matt Burn of Better Homes for Enfield observed that “Our research also shows that affordable housing targets are routinely missed, especially targets for genuinely affordable social rent housing”.

“Enfield’s housing needs are being routinely side-lined in a drive to meet overall targets. We think that now more than ever, a new approach to housing is required that focuses on needs, not numbers”[6]

Alice Roberts of CPRE London said: “The London Borough of Enfield recently released a local Strategic Housing Land Availability Assessment including 29 Green Belt sites which they say have potential for housing development”.

“But Green Belt housing is typically well out of range of anyone on low income. CPRE research [7] shows only a tenth of homes built in the Green Belt are ‘affordable’ and these are rarely for social rent. Additionally, people living in Green Belt developments have poor access to public transport and are tied to owning and using cars, as well as being stuck with the cost of commuting, creating further financial stress for families on low incomes”.

“The Council claims to be working for low-income residents but building on the Green Belt is likely to benefit only developers and wealthier people ”.

Among the Green Belt sites targeted for destruction are: [8]
• Eight horticulture nurseries in Crews Hill, which campaigners say should be saved to provide local jobs and locally produced food
• Several large areas of productive farmland, vital for local food production at a time of food insecurity and climate emergency
• Edmonton Marsh, part of the Lee Valley Regional Park which is essential to provide a new park for residents in Meridian Water; an area already deprived of green space, vital for the well-being of local communities . [9]

Furthermore, Enfield Council is conducting another Green Belt Review for publication with the Local Plan [10]. Since the preceding comprehensive review is only 7 years old [11], this is either suspicious or precipitate, especially since the London Plan 2020 states that “The Green Belt should be protected from inappropriate development”.[12]

David Flint of EnCaf (Enfield Climate Action Forum) said: “Building on the Green Belt also leads to urban sprawl, undermines our ability to tackle pollution, climate change and the collapse of ecosystems, and eliminates local food production, wildlife habitats and of course areas for recreation for Enfield’s growing population.”

“We are urging local residents to contact their MP and local councillors, and to respond to the upcoming Local Plan consultation. They should say No to Green Belt destruction and Yes to urban regeneration and genuinely affordable homes and a sustainable future.”

Carol Fisk of Enfield RoadWatch added : “We need to secure London’s Green Belt for future generations. It would be tragic indeed to squander it just as millions of Londoners, in the wake of the pandemic, have discovered its life-saving value”.

A lot of the Green Belt is already owned or optioned by developers; the threats to Enfield’s Green Belt are very real.

Media Release Footnotes

Our Campaign – a Snapshot  –  Enfield’s Green Belt and Open Spaces are under attack in the Local Plan Revision process. The Council would like to remove 7% or more of the Green Belt, including Crew’s Hill, for development.  This is an area equivalent to more than Trent Park or Forty Hall, two Durants Parks or ten Jubilees or Oakwoods!  Developers are working hard to make this happen, despite the fact that there is sufficient brownfield and previously-developed land for housing and infrastructure.  [Read more about that here: Space to Build in Enfield]  Enfield RoadWatch is fighting to protect the Green Belt for current and future generations because of its many benefits. [Click here to learn about them Why is the Green Belt important?]   Please add your voice to the campaign.

What is the Local Plan Revision Process? The Local Plan is Enfield Council’s vision for the future. The revision process includes pubic consultations when you can have your say. The first consultation closed at the end of February, 2019 and we hope the Council received a loud and clear message that Enfield’s residents want to keep all the borough’s Green Belt and Open Spaces.  [You can see more information about the first consultation under the Consultations tab.]  The next consultation will happen late this year or early in 2020 but we need to keep up the pressure while decisions are being made behind closed doors.  Please help us!   Click through here to find out how: How Can I Help?

About Enfield RoadWatch

Enfield RoadWatch began life in 2015 to protest the potential development of an important area of Green Belt South of Enfield Road – but because of the importance and many benefits of the borough’s entire network of Green Belt and Metropolitan Open Land [MOL] the action group now has a broader focus.   Please help us to save the Green Belt for the community and future generations!

Enfield RoadWatch is not alone, please visit Supporting the campaign for a list of people and associations who are also concerned and wish to save the Green Belt.

Objectives

  • To raise awareness of the five main purposes of the Green Belt according to the 2012 National Planning Policy Framework (NPPF) and the wider benefits it provides including improving air quality, supporting ecosystems and biodiversity, assisting the reduction of flood threats, creating opportunities for local food production, and providing areas for recreation and sport.
  • To identify any threats to the Green Belt, including any changes to Green Belt designations and pressure from inappropriate development proposals, and to share these with validated evidence with supporters on a regular basis.
  • To highlight the need for developers/bodies/authorities to comply with national policies and Mayoral commitment to first develop/ regenerate existing Brownfield sites and to discourage tactics such as land banking, which cause unnecessary pressures on protected green space to meet housing targets.
  • To campaign against and challenge any proposals to threaten the Green Belt in collaboration with community partners/associations, groups and volunteers, both locally and nationally by highlighting threats, gaining support and furthering our aims of protecting the Green Belt.
  • To securely keep and maintain a database of members so updates can be circulated.
  • To create and maintain appropriate communication channels with supporters, through the development of a user-friendly and functional website, regular news updates, and the use of social media to highlight both the benefits of and threats to Green Belt, locally and elsewhere, and to arrange meetings as appropriate.
  • To raise funds to further our aims through donations, grants, contributions, fund raising activities and any other lawful means.

Membership

  • The Action group is made up of residents who represent the community opposed to any development on Enfield’s Green Belt.  Ian D’Souza is the Chair, Carol Fisk is the Vice Chair.

 

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