Login | Register

Judge hits out at ‘plainly inadequate’ green space consultation

Words: Huw Morris
Playing field

The High Court has criticised a West London council over its consultation of a decision not to designate playing fields as green space.

Udney Park Playing Fields (UPPF) in Teddington were donated by press baron Lord Beaverbrook to St Mary's Hospital Medical School in 1937, but have been owned since 2015 by developer Quantum Teddington.

The company is proposing to build 107 apartments and a doctor’s surgery on the site, a move opposed by the London Borough of Richmond Upon Thames.

The judicial review follows a planning inspector’s statutory examination of Richmond’s local plan last year, which rejected the fields’ designation as a green space.

Local campaigners Friends of Udney Park Playing Fields claimed that modifications proposed by the inspector and put out for consultation did not make clear the site’s ‘de-designation’ as a local green space. The group’s judicial review challenge was contested by Quantum but not by the council.

Backing the campaigners, Mr Justice Waksman branded the consultation as “manifestly unfair” and “plainly inadequate” and said campaigners had little opportunity to comment. He ruled that the outcome could have been different if campaigners had been allowed a proper opportunity to take part and that they have “sufficient substantial prejudice as a result of the procedural defects”.

Image credit | Shutterstock