The Barnet Eye was intrigued to see a very slick marketiong video have been produced by the Mill Hill Belmont Zoo. The most interesting feature of this slick video was the fact that it is clearly a promotion tool for UKIP. The Zoo owner Mr Andrew Reid uses the opportunity to use a planning dispute with Barnet Council, to explain why he quit the local Tory party and jumped ship to UKIP. Mr Reid was formerly a senior executive officer in the Hendon Conservative association. It appears from the video that the dispute with Barnet Council concerning enforcement of Green Belt legislation in regards to Mr Reids zoo has caused him to quit the Tories (who run the local council) and jump ship to UKIP.
Whilst it is quite clear that Mr Reids zoo has brought many benefits to the local community (as highlighted in his expensive promo video), it is also clear that Barnet Council and Mr Reid have a "different" interpretation of planning law.( Mr Reid's day job, when not running the Zoo, is a lawyer). The Barnet Eye is intrigued as to how a man with his knowledge and his connections in the local Conservatives can have found himself in the position he is in. Is Mr Reid the victim of infighting in the local Tories, resulting in a "flawed planning enforcement action" or is there more to this than meets the eye?
As the Belmont Zoo is clearly loved by a sizeable selection of the Mill Hill Community, we think the issue needs to be explored more vigorously. We suggest that maybe Mr Reid would like to discuss the matter with the Barnet Eye for one of our videos, giving the people of Barnet the opportunity to make their minds up. We would like to hold a public Q&A with Mr Reid and get a member from the Mill Hill Preservation Society and Residents Association involved, to ensure that all issues are properly explored.
Here is Mr Reids video.
Barnet Council close a beloved Community Hub from Belmont Farm on Vimeo.