Background to the 9-42 The Broadway public inquiry
The 9-42 The Broadway scheme
was approved by Ealing Council in February 2016 despite wide ranging objections
from national and local heritage groups, local ward councillors and MP, Dr Rupa
Huq, together with a public petition containing more than 2,000 signatures.
Due to the scale of the
objections, the then Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government,
Greg Clark, decided to call in the application. This requires a public inquiry
to be held so that an independent Planning Inspector can examine the arguments
for and against the scheme. He will then make a recommendation to the Secretary
of State with whom the final decision resides.
It is unusual for planning
applications to be called in in this way. Since 2010 no more than a dozen
applications have been called in each year. Most unusually this is the second
time that an application for this particular site has been called in. Save
Ealing’s Centre (SEC) challenged our Council and the developers in 2009 and
The lines are similarly drawn
in this latest inquiry. The chart below shows the main parties, i.e. those who
are entitled to give evidence and who will be cross-examined. At the
Inspector’s discretion members of the public will also be able to speak either
for or against the application without cross-examination. They are usually
required to register at the beginning of the inquiry.
The following chart shows the
inquiry timetable and lists the range of documents that each party has had to
produce as evidence of their case.
Both Ealing Council and
Benson Elliot will put forward witnesses to support their case for the
development. They have each employed some of the most expensive QCs in the
business (our Council at the local taxpayers’ expense) to make their case.
Benson Elliot will also be demonstrating their scheme using state of the art
virtual reality technology.
SEC will be represented by
the following team. Will, like all members of SEC, is a volunteer. The other
team members are being funded by your donations.
Save Ealing’s Centre team
Charles Streeten is a barrister in the Francis
Taylor Building Chambers, which has a leading reputation for planning and
environmental work. Charles has a wide public law practice including
environmental, planning, licensing, EU and wider public law/human rights
cases. His clients have ranged from Tarmac and Shell UK Oil Products to the
Sheffield Tree Protesters and Friends of the Earth. He regularly acts for
pressure groups in environmental judicial reviews, and he has appeared before
the Court of Justice of the European Union. Charles is ranked among the top
10 planning barristers aged under 35.
Will French is the Chairman of Save
Ealing’s Centre. In 2009 he led SEC’s victorious case against Glenkerrin’s
proposals for this site. Will has around 40 years’ experience of planning in
this country and overseas. Now retired, he has worked in a very wide range of
planning fields including for local authorities, government departments, the
commercial sector and the Royal Town Planning Institute. Will’s
evidence considers the planning arguments surrounding this development. (See
Will’s evidence HERE.)
Nicholas Boys Smith is the Director of Create
Streets, a social enterprise that conducts award-winning research into urban
form. Nicholas has written extensively on issues to do with design,
wellbeing, planning and housing policy and has been featured in The Economist, The FT and The Guardian.
He is a Commissioner of Historic England (formerly English Heritage) and was
a member of the Government’s Design Review Panel and Lord Heseltine’s Estate
Regeneration Panel. Nicholas’s evidence examines the design of the proposed
development and its inadequate referencing to the context of the site in
central Ealing. (See Nicholas’s evidence HERE .)
Paul Velluet is a chartered architect
specialising in building conservation and development in historic areas. He
is a member of RIBA and the Institute of Historic Building Conservation. During his 35-year career he has held
senior roles in the public and private sectors. Having served as a Trustee of
the Covent Garden Area Trust and as Chairman of the Richmond Society, he has
been involved in several major town centre developments. Paul’s evidence
addresses the special historic and architectural significance of the Ealing
Town Centre Conservation Area and the settings of listed buildings affected
by the proposals. (See Paul’s evidence HERE.)