16 December 2016
Greens Join Fighting Fund Appeal
Waltham Forest and Redbridge Green Party are today calling on local residents and beyond to donate money to the Save Oakfields Society campaign that is fighting to protect a vital community hub and Green Belt space. For those who don't know, Oakfield Playing Fields is an area of protected Green Belt established in the 1930s, located near Fairlop underground station. The land is currently being used as sports playing fields by many local football and cricket clubs and is complemented by the indoor sporting facilities located at the nearby Redbridge Sports Centre, creating the leading sporting hub for the residents of Redbridge.
Sadly, Redbridge Council have earmarked the site for the development of new housing, with approximately 75% of the land set to be built on. The draft local plan was approved by councillors earlier this year, with it subsequently being put out to consultation. The council will present the local plan to the government next year. Earlier this year, Green Party candidate for Mayor of London and Assembly Member Sian Berry and local GLA candidate Lee Burkwood visited the playing fields and vowed to do what they could to help protect it.
On the latest developments at Oakfields, Lee has said this: “Often when political candidates take up local issues during a campaign, they forget about it afterwards if they’re not elected. However since the result, I have continued to stay in touch with the Save Oakfield Society, turned up to council meetings showing my support, personally responded to the consultation and written letters to the local papers. Now I’m calling on Green Party members, supporters and local residents to donate to the legal costs SOS will have to incur in continuing to challenge the council. SOS need at least another £5000 in their fight to protect Oakfields. If just a thousand people donated £5 each, the target would be met. If you’re looking to donate to a worthy cause this Christmas, then this would definitely be one.”
Sian Berry added: "I visted Oakfields during the campaign and was so impressed by the space, facilities and the crucial way it supports so much community activity across many cultures and sports. We have a new Mayor who wants to make London a city with better social cohesion, healthier citizens and - crucially - to protect green space. I hope many local people will chip in to help the campaign succeed."
To find out how to contribute, please contact Chris Nutt of the Save Oakfields Society at firstname.lastname@example.org or on 07771 585 062. Watch this space to find out about more action we will take to fight the development on this vital Green Belt space.