Monday, March 30, 2015

Save Oakfield Campaign keeps up Pressure at March Full Council

Notes from Full Council 19th March 2015 provided by the Save Oakfield Site team:

Councillor Athwal responded to concerns about the impact of traffic by saying there were no plans yet to deal with increased traffic and that infrastructure issues would not be considered until developers put forward specific proposals. We are concerned that Councillor Athwal did not provide an answer to the impact on infrastructure of the Council's own proposal to build 800 dwellings, another school and a possible NHS clinic. We draw Councillor Athwal's attention to the Council's 2013 Preferred Options Report and the 2014 Extension Report, which consider accessible development and sustainable transport criteria and concluded that "worsening of highways conditions would be expected" if Oakfields were developed.

Councillor Coomb responded to a question about brownfield sites, advising that 145 sites with the potential for almost 10,000 dwellings has been identified. When asked to join the thousands of people and organisations supporting the finest cricket and football facilities in the borough Councillor Coomb said we were right to be proud of Oakfields.

Councillor Streeting was asked about provision for the national game. He said £500,000 had been spent on changing facilities at Hainault, that the Government had reduced funding, that the FA should be doing more and that astroturf pitches are more efficient. When reminded that clubs at Oakfields were providing grass roots sports to young and old at no cost to the Council but needed secure tenure he said he had attended a meeting at Old Parks and was impressed by the facilities.

Councillor Hatfull was advised that 7% of Redbridge deaths are due to PM2.5 pollution and that residents around Fulwell Cross have consistently been exposed to NO2 levels 50% above maximum limits for human health. Councillor Hatfull was asked what the Council had done to reduce the measured levels of pollution and whether concreting Green Belt Oakfields would cause even more deaths by exposing even more people to even more pollution. Councillor Hatfull advised that the Council was no longer spending money measuring pollution but spending limited money on practical improvements, such as a green walls. Councillor Hatfull said that other boroughs were polluting Redbridge and that children should be educated to walk and cycle.

Meanwhile in the press:
Ilford Recorder Council Meeting - Oakfields
Ilford Recorder - World Cup star at Oakfields Charity Day

Together we will Save Oakfield Site for Redbridge


  1. oh my Mr Bside 21 i could write an essay on this one but i do not have the time (let alone the english skills) but i do have one thing to say. judging by the chaos and erraticness of lifestyle in the "very overpopulated" and "over developed" south of the borough I dont think that we will have to worry about the air quality as we will all be dying prematurely from stress related illnesses.

  2. I'd like the Save Oakfield Campaign to consider the green belt arguments in the light of all the reasons in favour of building on it. I think they have overlooked commuters from outside the greenbelt as a cause of pollution. And we need so many more homes than are being planned, I strongly feel we need to say yes to homes on Oakfield, and in fact on all four proposed sites.

    Have a look/listen at:

    1. This is a complex problem and will not be solved simply by building more homes in already densely populated areas.

      In the 20th century whole new towns such as Harlow and Milton Keynes were built in what had been rural areas.The great advantage of new towns is that the infrastructure can be planned alongside the house building. The disadvantage, of course, is that people have to move away from their families or the area where they grew up, although house prices in our cities is bringing that about anyway.

      I recognise the need to face the situation and not take an 'I'm all right Jack' attitude. However, to sacrifice much used and well tended open space in a crowded borough seems to me to be a sad way to begin to solve the housing problem.

      Of course the Local Authority will be glad to build on the Oakfield site as it will help them to meet their government-imposed quota for added units of housing. But only a fool would suggest that meeting these quotas year after year in any London borough can go on forever. There must come a time when there is simply no way to fit in more housing, and unfortunately by then the quality of life for all the residents, longstanding and newly arrived, will have seriously deteriorated.

      And of course, it always pays to take with a pinch of salt what you are told by the media.

  3. however could be used by those looking to further their careers...... up their profiles,get them noticed useful for those who maybe looking for a carrer in polotics etc etc

  4. Sorry MIra - you have got it all wrong! Once the green belt goes it is gone for ever. Once we lose Oakfield and similar sports facilities, they are gone for ever. Ok - I understand that we need more homes - and homes that young people (like my grandchildren) can afford to buy- but not on the green belt. There are plenty of defunct shopping parades and brownfield sites. Build on them. Pubs are closing. Build on them. Build over railway lines. Get innovative!

  5. Hello Patsy, Ron,

    Brownfield sites - while there are certainly enough bedrooms in the capital to accommodate the population (just unevenly distributed), my understanding is that there isn't enough brownfield. Local forum notes from Jan this year explain the situation - brownfield is indeed the vast majority of the land being built on. That said, our old rubbish tip did somehow get turned into a golf course which is very sparsely peopled most of the time (a bit like Oakfield in my experience). One other thing on brownfield - reading the Redbridge i paper I was struck by the results of the consultation showing support for the council "releasing council land for development".

    Greenbelt gone - I'm not sure greenbelt is the best use of that land. It is not natural England by any stretch - pesticided monocultures of grass and oilseed rape. I think we'd be better off addressing the unhealthy levels of motorism round here, ensuring there are ample corridors for wildlife which would also function as pleasant green spaces for people, and encouraging the regreening of the home-belts aka front and back gardens.

    Quotas year on year forever - very unlikely indeed. And in the grand scheme of things we're not very crowded or densely populated in Redbridge - 4,988 per sqkm compared to 13,057 in Kensington & Chelsea or 8,980 in Wandsworth. Nice places, those.

    I hope all the sports personalities who have parachuted in to protest a home building project realise these things.

  6. however could be used by those looking to further their careers...... up their profiles,get them noticed useful for those who maybe looking for a carrer in polotics etc etc