(P.35) Multiplex firm accused of reneging on its promise

by Marcus Thornley : Croydon Guardian - 18 May 2000

The company behind the controversial Crystal Palace Park cinema development has been accused of reneging on promises to consult the community.

The charge is levelled at London & Regional Properties Limited in a letter signed by some of south London's most powerful politicians - including MPs MEPs, London Assembly members and Croydon councillors.

The political delegation is now demanding a high level Westminster meeting to review the state of the multi-million multiplex proposal.

According to signatories, among them Croydon North MP Malcolm Wicks and council leader Hugh Malyan, construction work on the top site of the park is now imminent, even though a promised community forum has never been delivered.

Protesters from the Crystal Palace Campaign used a mayoral visit on Monday to voice opposition to the controversial multiplex.

Ian Livingstone, chairman of L&RP, has now been summoned to the House of Commons to explain why the forum, promised more than a year ago, is still not up and running.

The signatories also fear that the company intends to change the nature of any future forum - restricting its scope and allowing it to only discuss "the impact on the community arising from construction" and no wider issues.

The letter to L&RP, written by Dulwich and West Norwood MP Tessa Jowell, and co-signed by 33 leading political and community figures, calls for an early meeting "as a matter of urgency" to discuss the issue. It continues: "We are extremely disappointed that you appear to be reneging on the undertakings you have previously given."

The letter is signed by politicians and leaders of societies representing tens of thousands of people in the five boroughs adjoining Crystal Palace Park.

As well as Mr Wicks and councillor Hugh Malyan, signatories include: Croydon councillors Ian Payne and Pat Ryan the Crystal Palace and Upper Norwood Chamber of Commerce, the Crystal Palace Campaign; the Crystal Palace Foundation; the Crystal Palace Triangle Association; the Norwood Society; and Valerie Shawcross, London Assembly member for Lambeth and Southwark.

Nobody from London & Regional Properties was available to talk to the Guardian at the time of going to press.

Top of page; return to Publications index; copy of letter to London & Regional from Rt. Hon. Tessa Jowell;


Last updated 30/05/00