Andrew Southern, the man behind the Manor Road tower blocks, celebrates his victory over local residents.

Stop the Towers (STT) is deeply disappointed by Friday’s announcement that the Manor Road Tower appeal has overturned the original planning decision. This means the developer has won against the wishes of nearly 3000 residents, the planning committee and the GLA Stage 2, and this disastrous 22 storey tower will now be built.  
STT have yet to fully analyse the decision; but it seems clear that the incompetence of Ealing Council made it difficult for the planning inspector to do anything but support the developer.  The council’s failure to publish housing figures – which it is legally obliged to do but failed to do- was a major factor.  The lack of any Council policy on tall buildings was another key factor that acted against STT.


Speaking after the announcement on Friday, Dr Gerald Power, Chair of local residents’ assocation DCA said:
“The failure to defend this appeal lies firmly with a weak and incompetent council that has spent the last ten years cosying up to developers like the people behind the Manor Road Tower. The Council talked endlessly about hitting housing targets but didn’t even think to record how many new flats it was approving or are actually being built in the borough. It beggars belief that such mismanagement can happen. Worse is that this scheme isn’t true social  housing. The planning inspector admitted that they would not be affordable to  Ealing residents when he granted the appeal so the only winners are the developers: this is not housing that’s affordable to Ealing’s most needy residents.”

James Murray, MP for Ealing North, said:
“Like so many local residents, I was immensely disappointed and exasperated when  I read the planning inspector’s decision to allow the developer’s appeal. Thousands of local people were opposed to this development, and many spent a huge amount of time and effort making the case against this tower. I am deeply frustrated that, despite the fact we won the argument with the local planning committee and the GLA to refuse the original planning application, the refusal has now been overturned by a single national planning inspector

STT Co-Chairs Denise Colliver and Justine Sullivan added 
“We’d go as far as to call the council negligent for failing to keep or produce [to the enquiry] any housing delivery projections. The previous council leadership continually failed to produce the figure the inspector needed to allow him room to reject this development. The councillors in charge failed to do so, therefore crippling STTs chance of succeeding at the appeal. This is the type of mismanagement the Local Government Ombudsman has already highlighted. Ealing residents deserve better from their local politicians. Approval of the Manor Road Tower opens the floodgates for more development of a disproportionate size and scale across Central Ealing, West Ealing and the wider area.. And it’s this council which is firmly to blame for the desecration of our borough”.

Not downhearted the STT team vow to continue to fight inappropriate development and to campaign for better planning decision making processes in Ealing. Many thanks again for your support