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Labour leader Jeremy Corbyn and ruling NEC body asks Haringey Council to stop HDV plans

PUBLISHED: 18:07 23 January 2018 | UPDATED: 10:13 24 January 2018

Labour leader Jeremy Corbyn voted in favour of urging the council to halt its plans

Labour leader Jeremy Corbyn voted in favour of urging the council to halt its plans

PA Wire/PA Images

The Labour Party’s national executive committee (NEC), including leader Jeremy Corbyn, have voted to ask Haringey Council to stop the controversial Haringey Development Vehicle (HDV).

Councillor Claire Kober Leader of Haringey CouncilCouncillor Claire Kober Leader of Haringey Council

The unprecedented move follows campaigning within the area, and resignations from council leader Claire Kober’s front bench in recent months.

Some serving Labour councillors who have supported the HDV have been deselected by their local party ahead of May’s council elections. Of 28 councillors that support the HDV, only six will stand again.

The HDV plans to give away a share of council owned homes, land and business premises to private developer Lendlease. It has been described by critics as a £2bn sell off and the subject of a judge-led review.

The Shadow Communities and Local Government Secretary Andrew Gwynne will mediate between the two sides in the dispute to reach a solution.

Haringey Civic Centre in Wood Green, London. Credit: Katie CollinsHaringey Civic Centre in Wood Green, London. Credit: Katie Collins

The motion urging the party’s ruling body to intervene was passed unanimously by the group. The Labour leader Jeremy Corbyn, who sits on the NEC, was at the meeting on Tuesday January 23.

A letter sent by 22 Haringey Labour councillors opposing the HDV plans was read out in the meeting.

Hornsey and Wood Green MP Catherine West also opposes the plans.

A senior source within Haringey Labour said the support for the policy within the council’s Labour group is diminishing. “Over the past seven months, it has become clear that the party, and the local community are substantially opposed to progress with the policy.”

However Haringey Council Leader Cllr Claire Kober defended the plans, saying they were “well-thought through”.

She said: “Our plans offer the only viable option for building new homes, replacing unacceptably inadequate estates, creating new jobs, and safeguarding the future of the Council within a sensible timeframe.

“We need to deliver homes, jobs and community facilities at scale. A partnership like the HDV could help us deliver on our ambition,” she said.

A source within Labour Party Headquarters confirmed the move. “HDV is deeply unpopular in Haringey. Following a request from local councillors for the NEC to intervene, the NEC has agreed to advise Haringey Council to pause the plans if mediation processes do not bring about a resolution.”

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