At a recent meeting Bromley, Croydon, Lambeth, Lewisham and Southwark Green parties all backed a statement proposed by Cllr. Darren Johnson AM, Leader of the Green Party Group in the London Assembly, that the site be retained as green open space.
Cllr. Johnson commented, “Given the desperate need to preserve green space in the area, we believe the best possible future for the site is for it to be retained and protected as green open space. Of course, the site has suffered chronic neglect over the years and it does need to be enhanced so that South Londoners can properly enjoy it. However, we will be opposing any development proposals to build on this site.”
The proposed multiplex cinema complex on Crystal Palace Park was vehemently opposed by local residents, concerned at the destruction of such a historic site and the huge traffic increases it would bring. They were backed up by Green Party Members of the London Assembly and local Green Party activists. However, even though the multiplex scheme collapsed in May 2001 there are real fears that other unacceptable development proposals are in the pipeline.
NOTES TO EDITORS
The full text of the position statement is reproduced as follows:
The London Federation of Green Parties notes that pressure to develop the site of the former Crystal Palace is likely to result in further planning applications in the near future.
We recognize both the historical significance of this site to Londoners, and its value as a public green space and Metropolitan Open Land, despite the chronic neglect which it has endured.
Our policy is :-
(i) We call for the site to be retained and protected as public green open space
(ii) We oppose any permanent structures on the land inconsistent with this aim.
(iii) We call for sufficient resources to be allocated to allow necessary enhancement: any management plan should be developed in consultation with the local community.