“Hugely disappointing”: Secretary of State refuses to call-in controversial Wilmer Place Sainsbury’s development

Campaigners against Sainsbury's Wilmer Place. Pic: Stokey Local

Campaigners against Sainsbury’s Wilmer Place. Pic: Stokey Local

Controversial plans for a new Sainsbury’s supermarket in Stoke Newington are to go ahead after the Secretary of State declined to call-in the planning decision.

Hackney Council is now expected to grant full planning approval to the Wilmer Place development.

Nick Perry of anti-development group, Stokey Local said: “It is obviously hugely disappointing that the Secretary of State has chosen not to intervene, but we always knew the odds were against us with such a tiny fraction of planning applications being called in each year.”

Had the decision to call-in the development been made, the application would be subject to a public planning inspectorate enquiry.

Stokey Local opposed the development on the grounds that it will harm local businesses, increase traffic levels and destroy the ecology of the nearby Abney Park.

The group received over 6,500 signatures on a petition against the development and had some support in all four parties of the Greater London Assembly.

Stokey Local is currently consulting legal advice over whether there are sufficient grounds for a second judicial review.

Perry said: “We are considering our options with the legal advisers from within the community who have generously offered us their time and expertise.”

He added: “I am confident that the near universal-support for our scheme from professional and expert organisations as well as local amenity and community groups, will eventually result in a scheme that brings genuine public benefit through a positive number of affordable homes, business and retail units of an appropriate size and that doesn’t damage the sensitive ecology of North London’s most important nature reserve or intrude on it’s treasured heritage.”

The plans in their current form are the third application submitted for approval by developer Newmark Properties.

The third application was made while an earlier identical application was under judicial review.

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