Kaupthing have confirmed they intend to sell the former Middlesex Hospital site and are no longer prepared to go ahead with allowing temporary allotments to be created. Documents were sent out last week to allotment stakeholders confirming that the community project would not go ahead. However, when the company were made aware of the strength of feeling and support for a garden in Fitzrovia they have indicated they may yet consider allowing the project to go ahead.
Ms Rebecca Hossack, who has been campaigning to bring allotments onto the open space, told Fitzrovia News: “Kauthing had the courtesy to come and see me in person on Friday afternoon. They were taken aback with my arguments as to the extent of community involvement and desire to make this project work. They said their lawyers had advised them against it, I said their lawyers hadn’t spoken to the community. Anyway, I said please let us on for the summer at least, that it’s the least they could do after all the time and effort and money we’ve invested in this. They’ve promised to get back to me.”
Prior to the announcement of the sale of the site, developer Stanhope plc had agreed in principle to allow local people and All Souls’ School to have use of part of the site for temporary garden allotments. Stanhope until recently was in the process of submitting a planning application to Westminster City Council for planning permission for temporary allotments on the vacant site. Stanhope have confirmed that they intend to bid to buy the site.
Kaupthing took control of the three acre site after the previous proposals by Candy & Candy fell through due to the economic recession. Stanhope were appointed by Kaupthing to draw up plans to develop on the site.
Background information on sale of site here: http://www.propertyweek.com/story.asp?sectioncode=297&storycode=3159120&c=1#ixzz0hS25SVGB
Information about the proposed garden allotments at fitzgrovia.com