Tuesday, 5 February 2013

Barnet is flogging off the green belt !

This advert appeared in the Hendon Times this week

This site is in Mill Hill. It is in a protected area of green belt and zoned only for agricultural use. The Barnet Eye has no idea what the eventual use for it will be. What I do know is this. If the Council sell it for around £45,000 then whoever buys it is either planning to use it for agricultural use or they are spending £45,000 on a big punt. If however it sells for £450,000 it means that someone at Barnet Council has told someone that they are likely to be able to eventually put a residential development on the site. People do not take punts with £450,000 on the off chance that there will be a relaxation of planning regs.

I have no idea what the piece of land will sell for. I know what the site is worth for agricultural land and what it is worth if it is sold on a nod and a wink for something else. I am disturbed that this advert does not mention the green belt and the status of the land. It looks to me as if the council are inviting people to take a punt. What alarms me is that if a developer takes this site and we have a protracted planning case, then the site will go to rack and ruin and become a dump. This will be bad for everyone in Mill Hill. It is next to the Mill Hill Village playing fields where many local children take part in sporting activities. It would be a scandal if such a site became a danger to the public. What the advert doesn't tell the prospective buyers is that the site has been neglected for years, is in bad condition,asbestos on site,weed ridden, prone to flooding with water and sewage, off-grid for water/gas/electric. It also has a population of protected bats on the site. That is only what the guy at the sports club pointed out to me. God knows what else is lurking there
More details here - 
Lets hope that the council do the right thing and make it clear that the Green Belt will be vigorously enforced. I love the green space in Mill Hill. I suggest that if you do, you inform your local councillor that inviting such auctions are not helpful. It is instructive that the department dealing with the green belt is the "commercial property" arm of Barnet Council. Is this part of ONE BARNET or is what we've all suspected true, One Barnet is all about selling off assets on the cheap for people with no association with Barnet to make a fortune. Alll will become clear on the 8th March. We will be watching this with special interest.

1 comment:

Zoe said...

Barnet are large landlords. They own or owned Darlands Farm circa 40 acres (accessed from Totteridge lane) ,Burtonhole Farm 100+ acres(or did)all in the same valley.The new Localism bill is a disaster. Barnet is not only for sale it has sold it's residents down the river. As a child i used to be sent to buy a lettuce from Eric who ran the little market garden on that site. If Eric wasn't there i would leave a tanner ( 2 1/2p in new money) in the greenhouse and cut a lettuce. Now you would need CCTV and a Rottveiller. They also sold off the old fire station/scouts hut on Holcombe Hill with a piece of land.