Regeneration in Tottenham: 'It's not about moving people out'

Haringey Independent: Regeneration in Tottenham: 'It's not about moving people out' Regeneration in Tottenham: 'It's not about moving people out'

A councillor rejected claims that he is “gentrifying” Tottenham when he faced campaigners at a council meeting.

Speaking at a Haringey Borough Council's cabinet meeting, Councillor Alan Strickland said the authority's regeneration schemes are “not about moving people out”.

The cabinet member for regeneration and housing added that building affordable housing in London is “incredibly difficult”.

Cllr Strickland was responding to a deputation from Our Tottenham, a group representing more than 45 businesses, early in the meeting.

A spokesman for Our Tottenham said the council’s various housing policies amounted to “profit-led mega-development and gentrification, in which large numbers of people will be priced out of their homes”.

Cllr Strickland replied that the council did not want to displace existing residents, and wanted "genuinely mixed communities".

The Labour politician also answered questions on housing from Liberal Democrat leader Cllr Sarah Elliott.

He said: “With regards to council estates, we’ve said again and again and again that our priorities are to support existing residents and improve existing homes. It’s not about moving people out.”

He added that the council were piloting shared ownership schemes “to get people on the housing ladder”.

Later in the meeting, Cllr Strickland said the 40 per cent affordable housing figure earmarked for the Apex House development was “really high” by London standards.

He said: “It’s incredibly difficult, in London, to get high levels of affordable housing, and councils struggle with this so 40 per cent is actually really high. Some places in Tottenham have ten per cent or 20 per cent.

“The council has taken a hit in our land value to make sure that it’s got up to 40 per cent.”

Comments (4)

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11:56pm Tue 15 Jul 14

Paul_Burnham says...

Cllr Strickland is defending the indefensible.

Looking at Haringey’s ‘Housing Investment and Estate Renewal Strategy’ (Cabinet Report, 28/11/13), Paragraph 6.11 casually refers to council housing as a cause of social deprivation. We disagree. The authors forget that many council tenants have been private tenants in the past, and that we learned that council housing is a good thing for renters, and it enables us to better ourselves and enjoy better lives.

Paragraph 8.9 is a very clear statement that the council considers council housing to be a cause of crime, benefit dependency and low life expectancy. We reply that council tenants are being blamed for social problems not of our own making.

Paragraph 8.2 states that estate renewal will be “strategic”, focusing on estates where there is an “opportunity to influence the tenure balance of neighbourhoods by increasing the number of affordable, private rented sector, housing ladder type products or market sale homes”. What cynicism: as these are all council estates to begin with, the intention is very clear: to privatise, and to replace council rent with insecure, higher-cost private housing.

If successful, these mistaken policies would price working class people out of Haringey - our own Borough. Instead, Haringey needs to invest in council housing – we need more and better council homes.
Cllr Strickland is defending the indefensible. Looking at Haringey’s ‘Housing Investment and Estate Renewal Strategy’ (Cabinet Report, 28/11/13), Paragraph 6.11 casually refers to council housing as a cause of social deprivation. We disagree. The authors forget that many council tenants have been private tenants in the past, and that we learned that council housing is a good thing for renters, and it enables us to better ourselves and enjoy better lives. Paragraph 8.9 is a very clear statement that the council considers council housing to be a cause of crime, benefit dependency and low life expectancy. We reply that council tenants are being blamed for social problems not of our own making. Paragraph 8.2 states that estate renewal will be “strategic”, focusing on estates where there is an “opportunity to influence the tenure balance of neighbourhoods by increasing the number of affordable, private rented sector, housing ladder type products or market sale homes”. What cynicism: as these are all council estates to begin with, the intention is very clear: to privatise, and to replace council rent with insecure, higher-cost private housing. If successful, these mistaken policies would price working class people out of Haringey - our own Borough. Instead, Haringey needs to invest in council housing – we need more and better council homes. Paul_Burnham
  • Score: -1

12:39pm Thu 17 Jul 14

jjbearst says...

One also has to ask who is really benefitting from Haringey Council's direct help to large developers at the expense of smaller established local entrepreneurs? And in what way?
Why is Grainger PLC being given preferential treatment in the selloff of Apex house? Why is the physical Tottenham Historic Corridor and its conservation areas being given only lip service attention? Why was Hotspurs allowed to knock down the streetfrontage in White Hart Lane with plans for more widespread council sponsored demolition planned? Why has Grainger been granted planning permission to knock down a landmark building at Seven Sisters that sits at the heart of a conservation area, to erect an archtitecturally mundane (some say ugly) building?

Heaven and earth are being moved to give financial and administrative assistance to already big and successful? concerns like Grainger PLC and THotspurs. What about supporting small businesses, providing much much more proactive backup and support for them. Instead in the Regeneration Stakeholder Group I sit on, we discuss pittance grant funding, begging TFL to provide proper street scape and Network rail to live up to their corporate duty and maintain the BRuce Grove station to a proper standard! We hear repeatedly and endlessly that Haringey Council doesn't have the resources to provide basic urban services to the area!
I understand why people come out and riot although there is NO EXCUSE for it! There's always an air of desperation about and the solutions aren't dealing with people's problems. Its probably why, allegedly, a very high up council officer in charge of the problems, contemptuously referred to the area as a war zone!

The solutions being mooted are not going to help those that need it. In any case it will take 20 years and a whole generation will have expired. We need urgent resources to be applied to support the council's social services, housing department, planning and enforcement departments, inter alia. And when schemes are developed to improve (stop saying regenerate it means nothing!) things like the public realm, standards as high as those used in Westminster and other more affluent areas need to be applied and adhered to so that local people see that we are worth it and not some second consideration. Then too, systems need to be put in place to ensure ongoing quality servicing backs up the initial capital investment. And that the situation is constantly monitored to ensure it doesn't deteriorate again. I don't hear any of that being discussed but for me it is changing 'the way we do things around here' that is THE priority.

Deprivation is akin to underdevelopment. Haringey and Tottenham politicians are not giving the right political direction to the technocrats in charge. They say that they are working on 'regeneration' and have primed the PR machine to assist them. But all they are doing is protecting and boosting the stranglehold of outside vested interests and their own and these do not coincide with the interests of many residents and businesses in Tottenham.

But we aren't being fooled! Shame on them! Especially since this is a Labour regime!
One also has to ask who is really benefitting from Haringey Council's direct help to large developers at the expense of smaller established local entrepreneurs? And in what way? Why is Grainger PLC being given preferential treatment in the selloff of Apex house? Why is the physical Tottenham Historic Corridor and its conservation areas being given only lip service attention? Why was Hotspurs allowed to knock down the streetfrontage in White Hart Lane with plans for more widespread council sponsored demolition planned? Why has Grainger been granted planning permission to knock down a landmark building at Seven Sisters that sits at the heart of a conservation area, to erect an archtitecturally mundane (some say ugly) building? Heaven and earth are being moved to give financial and administrative assistance to already big and successful? concerns like Grainger PLC and THotspurs. What about supporting small businesses, providing much much more proactive backup and support for them. Instead in the Regeneration Stakeholder Group I sit on, we discuss pittance grant funding, begging TFL to provide proper street scape and Network rail to live up to their corporate duty and maintain the BRuce Grove station to a proper standard! We hear repeatedly and endlessly that Haringey Council doesn't have the resources to provide basic urban services to the area! I understand why people come out and riot although there is NO EXCUSE for it! There's always an air of desperation about and the solutions aren't dealing with people's problems. Its probably why, allegedly, a very high up council officer in charge of the problems, contemptuously referred to the area as a war zone! The solutions being mooted are not going to help those that need it. In any case it will take 20 years and a whole generation will have expired. We need urgent resources to be applied to support the council's social services, housing department, planning and enforcement departments, inter alia. And when schemes are developed to improve (stop saying regenerate it means nothing!) things like the public realm, standards as high as those used in Westminster and other more affluent areas need to be applied and adhered to so that local people see that we are worth it and not some second consideration. Then too, systems need to be put in place to ensure ongoing quality servicing backs up the initial capital investment. And that the situation is constantly monitored to ensure it doesn't deteriorate again. I don't hear any of that being discussed but for me it is changing 'the way we do things around here' that is THE priority. Deprivation is akin to underdevelopment. Haringey and Tottenham politicians are not giving the right political direction to the technocrats in charge. They say that they are working on 'regeneration' and have primed the PR machine to assist them. But all they are doing is protecting and boosting the stranglehold of outside vested interests and their own and these do not coincide with the interests of many residents and businesses in Tottenham. But we aren't being fooled! Shame on them! Especially since this is a Labour regime! jjbearst
  • Score: 0

1:14pm Thu 17 Jul 14

Tottenham Business Group says...

The current Housing Policy in force in Haringey is 50% in each new development. Councillor Strickland is guilty of accepting a lower percentage
at Apex House!! He and is team are not driving a hard bargain in North Tottenham either where they have agreed with THFC to just 100 affordable homes in Northumberland Park.
The current Housing Policy in force in Haringey is 50% in each new development. Councillor Strickland is guilty of accepting a lower percentage at Apex House!! He and is team are not driving a hard bargain in North Tottenham either where they have agreed with THFC to just 100 affordable homes in Northumberland Park. Tottenham Business Group
  • Score: -1

1:22pm Tue 22 Jul 14

Zena Brabazon says...

Alan Strickland says he wants "genuinely mixed communities". Its time to come clean Alan on what you actually mean. Answering my question which I've sent in for the Tottenham event next Wednesday would be a start.

'N17 and N15 are described as the most diverse postcodes in Europe with some 190+ languages spoken. In addition, the Tottenham I live in includes barristers, teachers, social workers, youth workers, students, academics, graphic designers, artists, journalists, older people, people who worked in factories,schools, hospitals, offices, private and public sectors. So what do you mean when you say we need a mixed community in Tottenham? '
Alan Strickland says he wants "genuinely mixed communities". Its time to come clean Alan on what you actually mean. Answering my question which I've sent in for the Tottenham event next Wednesday would be a start. 'N17 and N15 are described as the most diverse postcodes in Europe with some 190+ languages spoken. In addition, the Tottenham I live in includes barristers, teachers, social workers, youth workers, students, academics, graphic designers, artists, journalists, older people, people who worked in factories,schools, hospitals, offices, private and public sectors. So what do you mean when you say we need a mixed community in Tottenham? ' Zena Brabazon
  • Score: 0
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