OpinioN8

Connecting Crouch End and Hornsey with news, views and information

Local residents will remember the battle against the establishment of the concrete factory in Cranford Way, just yards from a children's playground at Chettle Court at the end of Mountview and Ridge Roads. Towards the end of last year I got the impression that London Concrete who operate this site were exceeding the number of vehicles and movements and these drivers were often taking short cuts along Oakfield Road and then exiting via the ladder roads. I asked Haringey to investigate and although they have not replied to me except to acknowledge my complaints they have encouraged London Concrete, it would seem, to regularise the situation. Haringey do not seem to be enforcing the planning conditions, although I could be wrong, if they won't tell me (or us) how can we know - here is the text of an email I sent to Haringey Planning today concerning the application - London Concrete want to regularise the situation by a 200% increase in the number of vehicles and vehicle movements from this plant because they have been more successful than they originally thought! I have just learned that London Concrete have made an application for a staggering variation in the number of vehicle movements permitted from their site following a visit made, it would seem, by Ms Begum to 'regularise' the situation.

"I intend to protest in the strongest terms over this application and would be grateful if Haringey could assist me and other concerned residents over an application which makes a laughing stock of the conditions imposed by the Inspector at the original planning meetings some 10 years ago where local residents fought long and hard for reasonable conditions to be imposed. Those reasonable conditions are not merely being flouted but it would seem that London Concrete intend to drive a coach, sundry horses and a concrete lorry through them, and indeed I believe they are already doing so.

I read in their application that where the original number of vehicle movements was limited, without prior permission to 50 per day they now wish to increase this by 200% to 150 per day! They now want not 5 vehicles to be based at this depot but an increase of 120% to eleven vehicles - all eleven being franchised vehicles meaning that the vehicle drivers are not under the supervision, direction or control of London Concrete. If they were under supervision, direction and control they would, of course be employees. In effect 11 Deliveroo Concrete lorries!

They want to increase the number of private lorries from 6 per day (3 in, 3 out) to 18 per day with a maximum increased from 10 to 30 movements per day (15 in, 15 out). Arguably if their own drivers are in fact franchisees as they claim then this should be the maximum limit on their movements as well.

They also want to increase the number of cement deliveries to a maximum of 12 in any one day and six on a Saturday from four in one day and two on a Saturday although they seem happy to keep the overall average at nine. One of the prime factors that London Concrete kept stressing during the hearings was the 'sustainability' of deliveries to the site taking place by rail - how 'sustainable' is this.

Yours faithfully"

London Concrete's application letter can be read here -http://www.planningservices.haringey.gov.uk/…/AttachmentSho…

Tags: Concrete, Factory, Haringey, Heavy, Lorries, Planning, concrete factory

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Here is the text of the objection I have sent to Haringey today.  If you visit this site there is a button that allows you make an objection online...http://www.planningservices.haringey.gov.uk/portal/servlets/Applica...

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This is an application to vary conditions established by a Planning Inspector made back in 2005.  At the time the Inspector, following a public investigation carefully considered the application made by London Concrete, he approved the application but made a number of conditions intended to ameliorate the effect on the local community of this new heavy industrial use and the effect of a large number of vehicle journeys by very heavy concrete lorries on suburban streets that were never designed for this type of traffic in an area which is primarily residential.  Although the site of the installation is at the end of an industrial/commercial area in Cranford Way it is an exception and the surrounding area is residential in character and has been since developed in Victorian times.  London Concrete now propose to vary the very reasonable conditions established by the planning inspector by quite ludicrous and unreasonable amounts.  A 120% increase in the number of London Concrete vehicles operating out of the site.  An increase of 200% from 50 vehicle movements per day to 150 movements per day and a commensurate increase on a daily but not a weekly basis in the number of 'private' (ie non-London Concrete) vehicles using the site, and of course a substantial increase in the number of cement deliveries to the site.  One of the reasons originally advanced for this site was it's sustainability because aggregate would be brought in by train - this is not subject to planning consent as I understand it but causes nuisance by the number of deliveries in bulk.  It would seem, according to their own Transport Survey carried out by Bellamy Richards that they are already operating at these levels and so wish to 'regularise' the position.  Had it not been for local residents (including myself) querying what seemed to be a very large number of these vehicles using not only main roads but residential side roads, particularly in the Stroud Green and Hornsey Vale areas London Concrete would surely have continued to operate at a level grossly in excess of that agreed by the Planning Inspector.  We are already suffering a considerable nuisance from these vehicles and I would hope that a more reasonable number of permitted journeys and vehicles could be established, preferably at the level set in 2005.  London Concrete may be a victim of their own success and the demand for building work in the immediate area but this is no justification for an application for an increase which is so out of keeping with the local area.  If any increase is permitted as a result of this application I would hope that Haringey would take action to protect all local residential roads by imposing a weight limit such as that that applies to Wightman Road and the ladder roads so that heavy vehicles are prevented from using residential roads as a rat run. 

I also note that in their application London Concrete admit that "their" drivers now operate on a franchised basis so that they are not employed by London Concrete and, significantly, are therefore not under supervision direction or control which would make them employees.  As therefore technically private contractors surely the much lower daily limit for privately owned vehicles should apply to all of these journeys.  Surely London Concrete cannot pretend that it's drivers are self-employed but then claim that they are London Concrete vehicles for the purpose of vehicle movements?  The lack of supervision, direction or control over these drivers does not suggest that residents could place trust in any assurances given by this company that has so recklessly and arrogantly flouted the reasonable conditions in the original application."

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