GreenN4 & N15
GreenN4 & N15 email list
group is now organising their campaign strategy and separate email
group co-ordinated by Jenny Cooper and Mario Petrou is being established.
As some of you live within this area,
you might be interested to join the new group forming by subscribing
to their email
To allow this group to grow its autonomy and avoid duplication
of information and confusion, GreenN8 will not circulate all of the GreenN4&N15
emails to GreenN8 members, unless meetings are announced or
help is requested from our group. This way people may choose to belong
to both groups and not get the same emails twice.
If you are interested please:
Concrete Factory potential impact
on East Haringey
By Mario Petrou
Concrete Batching Plant
A giant concrete factory about 200m (over 600ft) long may be constructed on an
almost 3 acre stretch of land by the railway tracks about 100m behind Wightman
Road, at the Ferme Park Depot, Cranford Way, N8, if the developer, London Concrete
Ltd, gets its way.
Running at just 50% capacity, the concrete factory expects to receive 2 or 3
approx. 1,400 tonne deliveries of concrete aggregates each week by rail and,
with its own site-based fleet of 30-tonne HGVs, make 56 movements on our roads
a day delivering mainly environmentally hazardous wet-batch concrete and some
of the even more dangerous dry-batch mixes.
In addition, independent hauliers will make an unspecified number of H/MGV movements
through our roads every day to collect and transport concrete from the batching
It’s proposed that the concrete factory will run inbetween and parallel
to Wightman Road in the east and Uplands Road in the west, and almost touching
Hornsey School for Girls in the north and Chettle Court in the south.
The associated dust, HGVs and noise associated with concrete batching plants
radiate outwards 360° in all directions raising serious concerns for many
nearby roads and businesses and also for several conservation areas on both sides
of the railway.
The focus of this article is to highlight the impacts toxic dust and HGVs will
have on east Haringey, which is largely unaware of the proposal’s implications.
Slap, bang in the middle of our dense residential community the proposal will
be responsible for 2 types of toxic, carcinogenic dust, PM10 and PM 75 , via
3 sources. Particles smaller than 10 µm in diameter (PM10) are associated
with effects on the respiratory and cardiovascular system, asthma and mortality
(death). Larger particles between 10 – 75 µm (PM 75) visible to the
naked eye when they accumulate are technically referred to as “nuisance
The 3 sources of dust originate from the freight train and when it is being unloaded,
the concrete factory's operations and from the H/MGVs.
The developers' own dust report shows that west and south-westerly winds blow
stronger and more frequently towards east Haringey; that’s why St Ann’s
Road and Gardens residents always complain that litter from Green Lanes covers
Dust dispersion is measured by receptors at sensitive points within a 200 metre
radius. In the case of London Concrete's reports, the wind speed and direction
are calculated from a wind rose at Heathrow. However, the dust report tries to
have it both ways!
First it says Chettle Court, at a measly 70m, is not at risk because the wind
blows milder and less frequently in that direction and as it’s up an embankment,
the dust will accumulate at the bottom and not disperse uphill (perhaps the phenomenon
of updrafts never occurred to the consultants).
Then, having identified Wightman Road, approx. 130 metres, as “the location
of potential dust impact” it concludes by saying that the risk is “insignificant”.
Do we accept the dust reports conclusions at face value?
Two pre-schools on Wightman Road have not been identified as “sensitive
receptors”. South Harringay Infants and Junior Schools are just down the
road and North Harringay Primary School is nearby.
Wightman Road is about 70 metres inside the 200 metre footprint impact radius.
How far away are our children’s pre-schools and schools from Wightman Road
and why weren't they considered in the dust report or consulted by the council?
Isn't it fair to say our children are at potential risk if Wightman Road is at
risk from dust dispersal?
If dust can't be blown uphill, can it be blown downhill towards the pre-schools
It must be noted that traces of particulates over 2,000 years old from Spanish
silver smelting and mining works were detected in core ice samples taken from
the Arctic. This proves that particulates don't require violent propulsion from
exploding volcanoes to travel vast distances and that dust will get blown all
According to the Haringey Health Report 2003, on our “wrong side of the
tracks” we die 13.1 years younger than people in the west and suffer from
high rates of cancer, heart disease and TB. (It’s a pity that a 5 year
study begun in August looking at how traffic pollution (PM10) narrows blood arteries
leading to heart attacks isn't available now.)
The Health Report also shows Harringay (& Hornsey) ward has one of the highest
hospital admission rates for children with asthma in the borough, that overall
Haringey often has above average rates than other boroughs, which presumably
means Harringay has one of the highest children’s asthma rates in the country,
and it goes on to show St Ann’s ward as having the highest rates for people
whose health was not good and for limiting long-term illness.
East Haringey has astonishing HMO/Conversion rates of over 62% , which the council
doesn't even acknowledge let alone address, when the UDP states a maximum rate
of 20% in specially designated suitable zones. We live in smaller, poorer, overcrowded
houses, crime rates are high, youth unemployment is 2_ times the London average
(Crime & Drugs Audit 2001-04),and our roads are badly congested and polluted.
The whole of Haringey is declared an Air Quality Management Area (AQMA) on the
basis of exceedances for NO2 and PM10 (of over 25%). At the 2nd Development Control
Forum in west Haringey on 16.9.04, the developer’s air quality expert described
asthma as a “lifestyle illness” caused by “psychological factors” and
the Managing Director, Derek Casey, said it was “an amenity for the area” that
would have “insignificant impact” on local traffic levels.
Suppose the Concrete Factory has a delivery to make off the Great Cambridge Road
and Turnpike Lane, as often happens, is traffic-jammed, will the HGVs turn left
into residential Hornsey Park Road and go around the houses of Wood Green or
take a short cut through Wightman Road, down a lovely one way Ladder road (perhaps
Frobisher and past North Harringay Primary School) and then onto Green Lanes,
West Green Road and Belmont Road. Or suppose there’s a big job on in Stamford
Hill and only one driver knows the way, so the others decide to follow there
We're looking at HGV convoys on Wightman Road, Ladder roads, Green Lanes and
St Ann’s Road.
Imagine the house vibrations when the 30 tonne HGVs thunder over the road humps
on the Ladder roads, the toxic dust escaping from the mixer and flying all over
the place and the damage to the bridges over the New River from Seymour to Umfreville
Have I mentioned HGVs also pose a serious threat to cyclists, pedestrians and
children? Neither does the transport report! Maybe that’s why they’re
banned from the streets of Paris!
A single, additional HGV on our roads is an HGV too many. Although HGVs delivering
from the batching plant are meant to be staggered by a few minutes and Ladder
roads are a declared home-zone and have brand new signage probibiting vehicles
over 7.5T, except for access, who’s going to monitor and enforce the law?
And if the HGV drivers do abide by it, won’t it just mean they’ll
be on our narrow, congested and polluted, highly residential main roads which
are the hearts of our community?
No one doubts the sense of a sustainable transport policy, moving freight by
rail to reduce national HGV movements but in this instance it’s not a case
of nimbyism; the multiple detrimental impacts on people and the environment far
outweigh any national benefit.
Besides, Haringey is surrounded by concrete factories, there are three in nearby
Edmonton alone and some are rail served.
Indeed, London Concrete Ltd alone has 8 rail served batching plants in and around
London and London has a number of concrete suppliers.
Amongst a raft of anomalies, half truths and predictions contained in the dust,
noise and transport reports the developer commissioned since 2003, none of them
makes any reference to the area to the east beyond Wightman Road.
Haringey Council didn’t carry out independent reports on dust or traffic
impacts etc but has relied on the objective veracity of the developer’s
reports. However, on instruction from the council, environmental consultant,
Casella Stanger, completed a Peer Review on the dust report in Sept 2005. One
reconnaissance site visit consisting of a walk around the Ferme Park Depot and
to the south and west of it was made. A desk report was then written up by analyzing
the methodology and results of the dust report.
Some of the critiques it presents are:
- it doesn’t identify any sources or potential sources of particulate matter
in any part of the assessment;
- climatic effect on dust has not been assessed
- site specific dust deposition monitoring hasn’t been carried out;
- uses 10-year-old wind data up to Dec 1995 when more updated information is
- analysis of impact potential construction phase dust deposition and PM10 concentrations
are not included;
- monitoring results from a similar plant don’t reveal its location;
- the report shifts between quantitative and qualitative methodology (taken with
the admission that a conservative screening model was used to measure air quality
in the original report, it’s obvious every trick in the book was used to
mask straightforward understanding of the data leaving it open to enable flexible
interpretation to the developer’s advantage).
It must be noted that the Peer review contains a number of errors such as describing
Wightman Road as being in west Haringey and by a misdirection at a crucial point
in its conclusions.
What has Happened Recently?
A public meeting was hastily organised in late August at the Salisbury pub on
A diverse community representation turned up and a notice to the council for
a Development Control Forum to be held in the east was signed by more than the
required minimum 25 local people. I believe submissions for a DCF from at least
South Harringay School and the Haringey Traders’ Association have since
It was the catalyst for an also hastily convened “super” public meeting
by the Council at Hornsey School for Girls on 14th September (unprecedented on
many levels; some of the precedents it set are ground-breaking issues for debate
The developer didn't show and the team of expert consultants failed to justify
the merits of a concrete factory in a dense residential area. But although the
council and both of Haringey's MPs very strongly opposed the establishment of
the concrete factory, the policies and forces favouring the development are stronger
than those affording the public and environment protection.
A major concern is due to the development and transportation costs being heavily
subsidised by the government; it in effect means the developer has a silent and
all powerful partner with long tentacles. Govt. agent, Lord Berkeley, Chair of
the Rail Freight Group, wrote to former MP Barbara Roche in 2004 for support
with the persuasive words of “if only to get a few lorries off the road”.
The council requested London Concrete Ltd to undertake a full impact assessment,
but the Office of the Deputy Prime Minister deemed it unnecessary after the developer
The west is complaining that the quality of consultation on their side has been
poor and inadequate.
Other than a token consultation with some Wightman Road residents, consultation
in the east has been virtually non-existent with neither residents, schools,
community groups, traders’ associations, the Green Lanes Strategy Group
or our MP having been formally consulted.
It’s as if Haringey is a flat, 180° semi-circle existing only in the
west. What annoys me as well is the negating of Haringey's Community Strategy
which proclaims to narrow the huge and growing inequality gap between east and
west and also the passing of the precautionary principle into the realm of myth
In the Planning System
The first application by London Concrete Ltd was not determined within the statutory
time limit and has been deferred to a Planning Inspector to determine at a Public
Inquiry scheduled for 13th – 16th December at the Civic Centre, that may
continue on 10th – 11th January if it overruns.
The second application, which incidentally due to appease the understandable
protest from the west has been reorientated 180° to face in our direction,
is due to be determined on Monday 10th October by the Council's Planning Application
Sub-Committee, also at the Civic Centre. Should the second application be refused
it has already been decided to consider it along with the first application at
the Public Inquiry.
If the application is granted planning permission on 10th October, a third party
can challenge the decision by judicial review on a point of law. If the application
is refused consent on 10th October but is successful at the Public Inquiry 13th-16th
December, a third party may challenge the decision by judicial review on a point
of law. The option of a judicial review is also open to London Concrete Ltd on
a point of law if it were to lose the decision at the Public Inquiry.
What to Do?
So now you know what is roughly going on and how you will be affected
- what can you do about it?
Attend the Planning Application Sub-Committee meeting
on 10 th October 2005
21.3.06 | The Appeal Public Inquiry
session took place yesterday 20th of March 2006 at Haringey
Civic Centre, in Wood Green. It was an intense day with all
parties delivering their final say in their highly detailed
closing argument. It ended around 5:00pm with the inspector
indicating we should be able to hear his final ruling on this
matter in the first week of May 2006.
To read the parties' closing argument
Hundreds of people demonstrated outsided
the Civic Centre, demanding Councillors reject plans for a
concrete factory by the Hornsey rail line. There were banners
and placards, leaflets, chants especially from the young people
present and speeches. Inside the Council chamber the gallery
was packed. A petition of over 2500 people, and hundreds of
letters of objection were referred to including from residents
associations, local schools and a traders organisation
The planning officers called on the application to be rejected on various grounds.
To great cheers and prolonged applause, the Councillors voted unanimously to
turn it down.
This was a magnificent victory for grass roots people power, in particular
the determined efforts throughout the last 15 month of local residents
of GreenN8 and GreenN4&N15
However, the developer has lodged an appeal and the planning process will grind
on and on. Local residents are determined to continue until the idea of
a concrete factory in a residential area is totally rejected.
Meeting Appeal Planning workshop
Thursday, 3rd November
at 6.30pm Finishes 8.45pm,
all out by 9.00pm sharp.
South Harringay Junior School Mattison Road, N4
Parking available in school playground
The meeting tonight was very well attended
over 150 people turned up. Many schools, parents and political
parties were represented. The debate was rich and people willingness
to spring into action was more then evident.
Haringey Planning Officers have published
their report today. The report recommend planning sub committee
refuse the application
full planning officers report click here. Word
Schools and Parents Action - Another
Public Meeting was organised, this time on the Harringay ladder.
The meeting on Monday
3rd of October 2005 7:30 pm will
take place at South Harringay Junior
School, Mattison Rd N4, and parking will be available
on school grounds. The meeting will focus on schools parent
and kids action.