'Furious' residents oppose council housing plans in Crouch End
- Credit: Polly Hancock
Crouch End residents have voiced their anger over Haringey Council’s plan to build nine new homes in Ramsey Court.
More than 1,100 people have signed a petition against the town hall’s proposal to build six flats and three houses, with planning documents stating that seven of these would be council homes and the remaining two sold at private market value.
Residents’ objections have centred on the removal of green space in Park Road, with nine trees facing felling across the site.
The remaining three terraced houses would be built on a parking area facing Barrington Road.
Neighbours, who gathered in protest on June 30, fear the development will damage the local environment and increase congestion.
The council says it will listen to residents’ concerns, and that the new housing will be in keeping with the neighbourhood.
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But Harefield Road resident Nick Kochan told the Ham&High the plans are a “disaster” for the local environment, and that they would “blight” the area.
Describing neighbours as “furious" and "very disappointed”, Nick said: “Build houses by all means but don't build them in tight, small spaces where more people are disadvantaged than are advantaged.
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“There are plenty of spaces in the borough which would be more suitable. This is a tight space that impacts on a lot of people. It is upsetting a lot of people and it is not ideal.”
The three houses are a mix of two and three bedrooms, and the six flats include one, two and three-bed properties. Each home will have either a private garden or a terrace.
Harefield Road resident Barney Forrest said he “strongly” opposes the plans over their impact to the site’s green space.
“I think it will impact the people who live very close to it,” he said.
“I think it will also change the character of that part of the road, from being quite green to quite in-your-face built up.”
In a written statement to Haringey Council, local resident Geoffrey Coast cited the loss of light, privacy, green space and parking as reasons behind his objection.
In response to residents’ opposition, the council says it is considering a landscaping scheme that will aim to improve local biodiversity, and that it is undertaking an ecological survey that covers the prospective impact to bats.
Haringey says there would be new trees planted at Ramsey Court to ensure there is a net gain compared to the local coverage now.
Cllr Ruth Gordon, Haringey’s cabinet member for planning, said: “I’m absolutely committed to listening to what local residents have to say and of course on any development the council will ensure that the maximum amount of greenspace is available for residents to enjoy.
“We have been ever more aware of the value placed on maintaining and improving our open spaces especially since coming through the pandemic.
“We have started an engagement process with the community and will continue to listen to residents’ views.
“We want to make sure that the new homes, including those at council rents, reflect the needs and aspirations of all residents around Ramsey Court.
“In particular, I am committed to building new homes to the highest standards, paying respect to the character and appearance of the surrounding area.”
The local authority has around 3,000 families living in temporary accommodation, and 10,000 people are on the waiting list for council housing.
The Ramsey Court plans include two wheelchair parking spaces, a communal courtyard area for existing residents, refuse facilities and bicycle storage. A parking survey will undertaken by the local authority.
“The views of residents will always be considered as we develop proposals in line with planning policy and policy guidance,” Cllr Gordon added.
In addition to an earlier round in February, a consultation inviting residents to comment on the plans was held from June 14 to July 4.
Some neighbours claim the consultation was too short and not advertised widely enough among local residents.
A planning application to formally lodge the proposals is expected later this summer, with the development –if approved – prospectively finishing in late 2023.