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Mar 13 2012

Harrow Council to ‘open up’ 60 acres of green belt

Around 60 acres of green belt land are a step closer to being opened to the public, offering some of the best views of London anywhere in the capital, after a decision by Harrow Council’s Cabinet.

The Council’s decision-making body has provisionally agreed a deal that returns the use of Wood Farm in Stanmore to the Council so that it can be incorporated into an enlarged Stanmore Country Park. However, the Council must consider any statutory objections to the proposals before any final decision is taken. These significant improvements to public open space will be made possible by selling two parts of the land to the current tenant for development.

In line with a previous agreement made in 2008 the developer will purchase land on Wood Farm, currently the site of agricultural buildings, to build ten homes. In return, the developer will pay for all landscaping and other improvements to the area of land set to be incorporated into Stanmore Country Park.

The developer will also purchase the derelict Pear Wood Cottage and lease part of the adjacent 10 acre field. The lease will put in place robust controls on the field, limiting the tenant to fewer uses than currently allowed under the agricultural tenancy.

The remainder of the field, around 40%, will be incorporated into the Pear Wood nature reserve.

The sale of Pear Wood Cottage is subject to approval by the Secretary of State and any development is subject to planning permission and other conditions.

Cllr Thaya Idaikkadar, Portfolio holder for property and major contracts on Harrow Council, said:

“This agreement will help to give Harrow residents access to some of the best views in the capital and significantly increase public open space in Stanmore.

“In this difficult economic climate, this is a practical opportunity to expand Stanmore Country Park, opening up one of the very best views of London, at no cost to taxpayers.

“We appreciate how sensitive this issue is and have taken on board all of the views of people who are passionate about the future of this important site.

“Proposed contracts provide very strong protective measures for the ancient woodland, other biodiversity concerns and archaeological sites.”

Source: Harrow Council

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