Westfield Road allotments - Scrutiny Committee to consider District Council's revoke over right of way

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By debbigg | Tuesday, November 16, 2010, 11:59

St Albans City and District Council has announced that The Overview and Scrutiny (Public Services) Committee is meeting to consider a Cabinet decision revoking an earlier agreement made in principle to grant Harpenden Town Council a right of way across its land to the former allotments at Westfield Road, in Harpenden.

The Scrutiny Committee has called in Cabinet’s decision of 7 September and plans to discuss it at a meeting on 23 November.  The meeting will take place in the Council Chamber at the Civic Centre, St Peter’s Street, St Albans at 7pm.

In 2004 and 2006, Cabinet agreed, in principle, to grant Harpenden Town Council, the owner of the former allotment site, a right of way over the District Council’s land. At the time, the Town Council had plans to develop the land for private housing, but has since decided that the land should be used for affordable housing.

Later, on 7 September 2010, Cabinet reconsidered its decision to allow the Town Council to cross the District Council’s land, having noted that there had been a change of circumstances since its original decision was made. Cabinet’s view was that there was now a shortfall of allotment and community garden space generally and that the site should be restored for this purpose.

Cllr Julian Daly, Chair of the Overview and Scrutiny Committee said: “We will look at Cabinet’s decision to revoke the agreement to grant a right of way to Harpenden Town Council.

The decision appears to be at odds with the officer report to Cabinet. That report identifies that there is no shortage of parks and gardens in Westfield, but that there is a shortage of affordable housing.”

View the agenda for the meeting on 23 of November here.

Affordable housing, allotments, park space, orchard...how would you like to see the former allotment site on Westfield Road used?

What’s your view on this long-running battle between Harpenden Town Council and St Albans City and District Council?

Are you on the waiting list for an allotment in Harpenden? Do you believe that the numbers waiting for allotments are in decline? Or are locals signing on waiting lists with the aim of creating an “on-paper demand” in order to retain green space?

With just one one affordable home at the Jarvis Development behind Bowers Way in Harpenden, isn’t there a real case to develop more affordable homes in Harpenden? Or, is that not something you want to see developed on your doorstep?

Whatever your view, have your say, on Harpenden People below:



  • Profile image for bramblecat

    I think that this is a farce. The council will get a large amount of money, the developer gets even more money. In the meantime, Harpenden looses green space, and gets more congensted, and as the houses go into a 'pot' there is no guarentee that they will even go to local people, but to people outside the area. Harpenden is an expensive area, as it is a lovely place to live, with good schools and good train links. Therefore, demand is high. Most people have to live somewhere cheaper to begin with, then as they move up the property ladder, move into Harpenden. There is no automatic entitlement to live in Harpenden, or anywhere else. As for the affordable housing, as soon as they were sold, and go up in value, they will become too expensive for e.g. a nurse on an average salary to buy.

    By bramblecat at 18:18 on 29/11/10

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