Can you believe it? Within weeks of buying Blackberry Hill Hospital, including Laundry Field, the government's Homes and Communities Agency has been surveying Laundry Field and have now put up signs seeking to prevent any public access beyond the existing public footpaths that cross the field and go around the edge of it.
This is despite the HCA's original statement that they had "identified the site as suitable for mixed-use development which when brought forward, may include shops, commercial space, community facilities and open space, as well as up to 350 new homes"
And a promise that: "the development will include extensive consultation with local community and stakeholder groups, and will meet the HCA’s quality design and environmental standards." Well if putting up bullying signs is their idea of extensive consultation with the local community, we're not very impressed.
We've been checking on the status of Laundry Field and it is marked on the Council's own planning documents as open space. The action of the HCA are clearly intended to prevent the designation of a Town or Village Green for the site, but we have already been sent enough evidence to show that it has been used for legal sports and pastimes for more than twenty years. So they'll have a real fight on their hands, especially if they continue to behave in such a heavy handed manner. Snuff Mills Action Group are meeting later this week to discuss how we should respond to yet another threat to the greenspaces that make this area so special. In the meantime we urge you to keep enjoying Laundry Field.
You can also let the Regional Director of the HCA know your feelings about their actions by emailing him at firstname.lastname@example.org