30 March 2012

Property developers behind Hammersmith Tories' West Ken demolition plan arrested for corruption

Just a week after the Guardian featured West Kensington residents' pain and frustration in the face of Tory Hammersmith & Fulham council's plan to demolish their estate, the two property speculators behind the scheme have been arrested for corruption. See details in the ever-sharp Cowan Report here.

What this means for the Tories' much-loathed plans for the estate isn't yet clear but on past form, we're unlikely to get a straight answer any time soon.

After all, less than a fortnight ago, Tory councillors twisted every which way to justify not putting their plans to a vote of the West Ken residents because they knew they'd lose. See details here.

They also tried to cover up their intentions from the very beginning. As Labour group leader Steve Cowan recalls, when the Fulham Chronicle first exposed the planned demolition of the West Ken and Gibbs Green homes, "The Council's PR department actually threatened that newspaper with legal action unless they retracted the story. But within six months the Council had officially started consulting on its proposal and last Monday night they altered the Council’s planning documents to make it easier to demolish all the homes in that area."

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