Frith Grange is under threat! – Update

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Frith Grange is under threat! – Update

6 December 2018

No doubt you are wondering what’s happening since we last emailed you about the Millbrook Park development that will surround Frith Grange.

Silence hasn’t meant nothing was happening!  Far from it as a small team has been working extremely hard to discover all of the facts, research opportunities and plan a strategy.  A Town Planner was retained, as was a Barrister so that we have the best possible advice to hand.  Many of our members gave us good advice as well.

Outline Planning permissions that were granted for numerous aspects of the development over the period 2011/2014 mean that we will have blocks of apartments bordering our site on two sides.  The latest applications do give us a very small opportunity to object in respect of an increase in the height of one block.  We had intended to mobilise everybody to submit letters or emails etc on this aspect (plus some other points) however, professional advice was that the developers would succeed for a multitude of political and commercial reasons!  Two other organisations have submitted well researched objections that cover the height issue.

Rather than be confrontational, the Executive decided that an attempt to co-operate with the developers might have better results.  Earlier meetings with them had already achieved design changes to address our serious concerns over safeguarding and site security.

On Monday, representatives of Barnet District met the Developers at their City offices and tabled a suggestion that they should consider making a substantial contribution (financial or practical) to Frith so that significant changes/enhancements/rebuilds could be undertaken over the next few years.  The initial reaction was that we were asking for too much (but they would say that wouldn’t they!)  It was agreed that they would go back and refer to head office in Beijing and would give us an initial response later this week.

In the meantime, because of these ongoing discussions we sought and were given a 14 day extension to the Council’s deadline for submissions – we have until the 20th.  Our plan is simple!  If the developers reject outright our suggestion/proposal then our detailed letter of objection (which they have already seen) will be submitted to the Council and we will then seek your support in mobilising parents and leaders to send in emails and register views online. This will be a major irritant for the developers! A positive response from the developers will require some very fast negotiating to see if an acceptable deal can be struck before the planning applications go before the Planning Committee and we drop our threat to blitz the council with objections.

Trevor Young
Chair, Barnet Borough Scout District Executive Committee