Hammersmith and Fulham Council’s leadership has been boasting for the last three years about the the vast extra sums it has supposedly negotiated from property developers in Section 106 payments – where funds are provided for community projects in return for allowing new buildings to appear. Not much of the money has materialised in reality. Furthermore a lot of money that was paid over to the Council from earlier periods sits ring fenced in the bank account still unspent.
Specific undertakings for improvements to Ravenscourt Park, yet to materialise, give an illustration of the wider story of mismanagement. Funding from the 282-292 Goldhawk Road are an example already documented on this site.
A year ago I wrote to the Council’s Planning Change Manager. I queried the sums the in the Section 106 schedule current at the time:
By my tally we seem to be sitting on £591,906 of Section 106 money due
to be spent on parks that came from developments near Ravenscourt Park
(see my list below).
Please may I have an update on when and how this money is due to be spent.
684 Goldhawk Industrial Estate, 2A Brackenbury Road £90,000.00 Parks
684 Goldhawk Industrial Estate, 2A Brackenbury Road £100,000.00 Parks
805 258 – 264 Goldhawk Road £10,000.00 Parks
725 Ashlar Court, Ravenscourt Gardens £75,000.00 Parks
784 282 – 292 Goldhawk Road, W12 9PF £76,221.00 Parks
784 282 – 292 Goldhawk Road, W12 9PF £20,685.26 Parks
805 258 – 264 Goldhawk Road £70,000.00 Parks
830 271-281 King Street, W6 £150,000.00 Parks
“The contributions above are received to enable the Council to mitigate against the impact of each of those developments which would include improvements to the park together with enhanced operation. The Council’s parks team and residents groups are aware of the funds and proposals are being put forward for consideration by members as to how the funds can be spent.”
A year later and the new schedule shows nothing much has changed.
Yet there is no shortage of work that is needed. The Friends of Ravenscourt Park are never short of ideas. Neither am I. Better drainage would be welcome. So would more litter bins. So would enhancing the condition of the lavatories. Or smartening up the lake.
Of course dealing with bureaucratic delays is something we are all familiar with but this really is pretty hopeless. Especially when the Council’s dysfunctional leadership is so quick to complain about “austerity”…