Following from our last post written in trepidation of what could be revealed at this weekend’s The Elephant Leisure Centre consultation, we were stunned even beyond our usual cynical selves when we read this on one of the Council’s panels there today:
So we take your time again to ask one more basic question of a Rip-Off in Progress:
The Elephant regeneration fable has been maintained for over ten years on a promise of a few benefits for local people to come as a compromise on the selling off of public land and allowing a massive increase in housing that is unaffordable to most local people. Two of these benefits were a new shopping centre and a new bigger and better Leisure Centre. As of last year it was decided, although not by any local people, that the Shopping Centre will only be refurbished and more new private housing built on the top of it. Regarding the Leisure Centre, a deal has been struck between The Council and LendLease for a new Centre with less space and facilities than the old one provisional on the developers building a 100% unaffordable private housing tower block on half the old site. When people are consulted on half the facts and plans, it’s not a real consultation. In fact it’s an insult to the local people who for 10 years or more have put up with different Council administration’s blundering, deceit, manipulation and now blatant disregard for the few crumbs that could come from re-making the area as a fist of tower blocks, come and coming soon, for the more wealthy (Strata, Tribeca Square, Eileen House, 360 London and so).
Consultation is loaded. That much is clear from the Leisure Centre shenanigans. When will local people have a genuine say in what’s going on at The Elephant and by genuine we mean a chance to actually say ‘NO MORE’ to these weasel RIP-OFFs?