Hundreds of people, including children and ponies, took to the streets to protest against the plans of The Westway Trust.
The demonstration was organised by Westway23 against the plans of the charitable organisation set up to look after the 23 acres of Ladbroke Grove land beneath the A40 elevated motorway.
The group was set up earlier this year in response to The Westway Trust’s 15-year strategy called Destination Westway.
Westway23 member Toby Laurent Belson, who helped organise the event, said the first stage of this strategy is the Portobello Village Development, which will see the total redevelopment under the section of the Westway which crosses Portobello Road.
He said: “Currently there’s various markets and a green space. They want to replace it with a modern shopping centre like Westfield. The area is being bulldozed for a new shiny development.
“This is a strategy to commercially exploit the area with all the gentrification and social cleansing you would expect with that.
“So we thought it would be nice to do a single event to raise awareness and have a procession along the length of the Westway.”
He said around 300 people attended the “creative procession and fun demo” which included sports, music and dancing.
He added: “It was a big success. There was a huge range of people and the diversity was phenomenal. There were loads of children, their parents and elders from the community. It was really representative of the people living in the area.”
Among their key demands is the saving of Maxilla Children’s Centre. This is run by the council but on Westway land.
Mr Laurent Belson said: “The council have shut it because The Westway Trust are charging them commercial rent and they say it’s not economically viable.
“Services provided there will be split to other centres. So we are losing a really important integrated service. We want it rebuilt so they can provide an integrated service again. There is space nearby where this could happen.”
Also under threat are the West London Stables, with around 200 people meeting there to protest as part of the Sunday’s demonstration.
Westway Trust chief executive Angela McConville responded to Sunday’s event by saying its mission is to build a strong, resilient local community, and through responsible estate management provide a range of social, economic, health and cultural opportunities for local people and local groups.
She said: “In everything that we do, we try to be deeply sensitive to the views and wishes of the local community and involve them as much as possible in any changes which are taking place. This is not an easy task and we often have to balance a diverse range of views and interests.
“More than 700 people have taken part in the on-going consultations on the Portobello Village plans, and more than 400 people took part in our recent survey on the local need for sports and horse riding services.
“We are always happy to meet with any groups or individuals, including members of Westway23, to listen to their concerns and ideas so that these can be taken into consideration as we try to balance the differing needs of the local community.”
A spokesman for the trust added: “Westway Trust does not manage Maxilla Children’s Centre. Equally the Children Centre is not our tenant. Our tenant is the Royal Borough of Kensington & Chelsea.”