Wandsworth Council accuses community groups of being 'NIMBYs' after they write to David Cameron to complain

Wandsworth Guardian: The council has some harsh words for some community campaigners The council has some harsh words for some community campaigners

Wandsworth Council has accused community groups of being ‘NIMBYs’ after they wrote to David Cameron to complain about the borough’s planning procedures.

NIMBY, which stands for ‘not in my back yard’, is a pejorative term used to refer to people who oppose developments being carried out near them but do not object to them being carried out elsewhere.

The Putney Society, Clapham Junction Action Group, the Wandsworth Society and the Friends of Putney Common joined forces to write to the prime minister arguing the council’s planning procedures and localism practice had ‘failed’.

But a council spokesman hit back at the campaigners saying all the council's decisions were based on planning legislation.

He added: "It is always regrettable therefore that some people have a more NIMBYist approach and choose to hurl false and groundless allegations around when they don't get their own way."

The groups claim the council has committed ‘major failures’ in its planning procedures. They are asking for Mr Cameron to set up an urgent, independent review.

Their letter was accompanied by a 42-page dossier containing examples of when the council has fallen short in certain policy areas and guidelines such as affordable housing, children’s play-space and sustainability.

A spokesman for the community groups said: "Many residents have lost faith in the fairness and impartiality of the planning procedures used by Wandsworth Council.

"Our analysis of recent planning decisions makes damning reading.

"We hope that David Cameron, who has always supported localism personally and as Prime Minister, will respond to our appeal for an urgent review of what is going wrong in Wandsworth."

A spokesman for the council said planning decisions were made by ordinary local people who have to make hundreds of decisions each year having weighed up all the evidence and arguments.

He said: "The council has worked in partnership with organisations like the Putney and Wandsworth Societies for many years with the shared aim of creating a better borough for people to live and work in and we are proud of our record.

"Unfortunately this letter, and the evidence presented alongside it, is based on a skewed and wholly selective picture of the local planning system.

"All our decisions are based on planning legislation and we scrupulously follow our own local guidelines where these do not conflict with national planning rules."

Tell us what you think by writing to letters@wandsworthguardian.co.uk.


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Comments (3)

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12:30pm Tue 15 Apr 14

janee says...

This is a bit rich coming from the Council. When I see unsympathetic developments going up around their homes and poor maintenance in their streets, then I think they can complain of Nimbyism. In the meantime, their planing policies are destroying community cohesion (where it exists), allowing flats to be built and left empty as investments, and caring little for the "other half" of Wandsworth residents.

I have just been speaking to one of my neighbours who has always been a Tory voter - even she is disgusted and has said that she will not be voting this time round.
This is a bit rich coming from the Council. When I see unsympathetic developments going up around their homes and poor maintenance in their streets, then I think they can complain of Nimbyism. In the meantime, their planing policies are destroying community cohesion (where it exists), allowing flats to be built and left empty as investments, and caring little for the "other half" of Wandsworth residents. I have just been speaking to one of my neighbours who has always been a Tory voter - even she is disgusted and has said that she will not be voting this time round. janee
  • Score: 2

1:49pm Tue 15 Apr 14

QPR4Me says...

While they may have a small reason to gripe, the fact is, most of these groups object to any modernisation whatsoever. Some of them would be content if the area was full of Victorian houses with outside dunnies!!
Cities evolve and change. If they don't, they die!
While they may have a small reason to gripe, the fact is, most of these groups object to any modernisation whatsoever. Some of them would be content if the area was full of Victorian houses with outside dunnies!! Cities evolve and change. If they don't, they die! QPR4Me
  • Score: -1

9:14am Wed 16 Apr 14

buggsie says...

Every spare bit of land getting housing built on it - in our already overpopulated borough.
No thoughts about improving and widening roads to accommodate all the new residents.
Just more road narrowing (Clapham Junction) - bus lanes (for 1 bus in Nine Elms & Trinity Road) - cycle lanes (for cyclists who don't use them - Wandsworth Bridge roundabout - to name 1 example) - humps - chicanes - potholes.
Shoving traffic into one slow lane and then bleating about Air Pollution.
Whilst on about traffic - how about banning all these huge continental sized lorries (who block up roads parking on double yellows all over) from inside the M25.
Every spare bit of land getting housing built on it - in our already overpopulated borough. No thoughts about improving and widening roads to accommodate all the new residents. Just more road narrowing (Clapham Junction) - bus lanes (for 1 bus in Nine Elms & Trinity Road) - cycle lanes (for cyclists who don't use them - Wandsworth Bridge roundabout - to name 1 example) - humps - chicanes - potholes. Shoving traffic into one slow lane and then bleating about Air Pollution. Whilst on about traffic - how about banning all these huge continental sized lorries (who block up roads parking on double yellows all over) from inside the M25. buggsie
  • Score: -1

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