London Planning Survey - ALG (Supplementary) [9]

Session date: 
November 18, 2006
Question By: 
Tony Arbour
Organisation: 
GLA Conservatives
Asked Of: 
The Mayor

Question

Well, let me give you an example. As a matter of fact, of course, this demonstrates that we are not behaving strategically, and you are not behaving strategically, because we are discussing individual planning applications. However, let us consider the Lots Road development, where the local authorities were quite clear that they did not want that to occur. You, on the other hand, were quite clear that you did want it to occur. So you, together with the Secretary of State at the time, campaigned, along with the developers, for that scheme to go ahead, despite the fact that the scheme was not only against what the local boroughs wanted, but is against many of your own policies, particularly the blue ribbon policy. Nevertheless, you persisted with that. How is it that you are able to come to us as a Labour Mayor, going against what is the policy of the present Government, to say that localism is important? In that particular case, down at Lots Road, the locals were quite clear what they wanted, but you substituted your own decision for what the locals wanted. How do you justify that?

Supplementary To: 

Answer

Answer for London Planning Survey - ALG (Supplementary) [9]

Answer for London Planning Survey - ALG (Supplementary) [9]

Answered By: 
The Mayor

Your recollection is actually slightly faulty on this. One council supported the scheme, one council opposed it, as it crossed the borough boundary. In the end, I thought, on balance, that the proposal should go ahead, but there was not unanimity of the two local councils. They did not agree. That is exactly the sort of scheme where somebody has to be able to step in and take that decision. You could say you would rather have the Secretary of State do it. I think most Londoners would rather actually have the elected Mayor of London to do that, and this, therefore, is actually a step forward in my view.