Primary’s park scheme ditched as dead wood

COLERIDGE School has withdrawn a planning application to expand into the woods – to the delight of conservationists and residents living nearby

Charlotte Newton

COLERIDGE School has withdrawn a planning application to expand into the woods - to the delight of conservationists and residents living nearby.

The primary in Crouch End Hill had proposed taking over a piece of parkland previously looked after by the council.

But a storm of opposition has forced governors into a re-think.


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Chairwoman Jill Russell said:"Many local residents are not aware that this strip of land has had designated educational use since it was purchased at the same time as the land was acquired for the school, and has remained owned by the educational authority ever since.

"We have been told that the only reason that the school boundary was set back was because at the time there were GLC plans to widen the road through Crouch End, which fortunately never happened.

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"It now seems apparent that the governors have not communicated well enough their imaginative plans to the council, parents, staff and wider local community. Had these concerned parties known of the full extent of the plans, they would, we feel sure, have been in favour of them.

"We believe that when we have submitted more detailed plans - after consultation with interested parties - that the community will share our enthusiasm."

The school will now consult with all interested parties and resubmit a more detailed plan for its expansion into the woodland.

Bob Maltz, chairman of the Hornsey Conservation Areas Advisory Committee, said: "We were concerned about the loss of an attractive, well-used public space which contributes to the conservation area.

"We are delighted that Coleridge school has withdrawn its application and recognises the importance of this land to the whole community."

Sue Hessel from Hazelmere Residents' Association said: "There was 100 per cent resounding opposition from the local community to these plans.

"This has always been common public land, shared and enjoyed by everyone - and always should be.

"I love the green spaces and trees that we have alongside our roads. They sustain Crouch End, and help give our environment a village quality."

broadway@hamhigh.co.uk

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