A ‘NIGHTMARE’ could be in store for neighbours if a former day centre plot makes way for housing association homes and a supermarket.
It was announced on Tuesday an agreement has been reached between Notting Hill Housing Association, Marks and Spencer and Harrow Council for redeveloping the
council-owned Anmer Lodge, in Coverdale Close, Stanmore, and the adjacent car park.
Linda Koke, who has lived in Rainsford Close since 1974 when the road was built, said: “I have not been consulted at all by the council on what they’re doing with it.
“We do not need another supermarket, and it will deteriorate Stanmore’s character.”
Tuesday’s announcement was the first news about the Anmer Lodge site since a public exhibition was held in December 2011 in Bernays Memorial Hall in The Broadway, Stanmore, seeking locals’ views on three draft anonymised plans.
It was confirmed one of those was Notting Hill Housing Group’s scheme to build a 15,000 sq ft Marks and Spencer Simply Food store on the site along with housing.
The exact number, type and mix of properties has not been revealed, but the council’s Site Allocations Development Plan Document, part of the borough’s planning blueprint, specifies the site has capacity for up to 105 homes and 21,527 sq ft, of retail.
Bob Blackman, Conservative MP for Harrow East, said: “Harrow Council failed to provide a planning brief for this project so the building agreement has been put into place without any guidelines as to the density of homes on this site.
“I am concerned that it could be a potential nightmare for current local residents.”
Councillor Marilyn Ashton (Conservative), a Stanmore Park ward councillor, said: “Anmer Lodge is a key district centre, so the decision to sell it for development won’t just affect Stanmore residents, but those in Belmont and Canons as well.
“It is therefore absolutely vital that Notting Hill Housing succeed where the council has failed – in communicating their plans and listening to residents, democratically elected representatives, and those who know the area best.”
Roger Arkell, the scheme’s project manager from Notting Hill Housing Group, said: “We appreciate there will be a number of interested parties and individuals with views about the design, the impact of the proposals and effects of the construction on the local area.
“It’s for these reasons that it’s vital the community are able to feed into our emerging proposals from a very early stage.”
Notting Hill Housing Association will eventually need to submit a planning application and get approval before any construction begins.
Harrow Council leader Thaya Idaikkadar (Independent Labour) said: “This is an important site in Stanmore and I’m pleased that we are making positive progress towards its revitalisation.
“We are excited about the plans to enhance the current retail mix and provide much-needed high-quality homes for the local community.”