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New school and 66 flats on way on Golden Lane Estate as Richard Cloudesley plans signed off

PUBLISHED: 16:03 02 March 2018 | UPDATED: 16:34 02 March 2018

Golden Lane Estate. Picture: Matt Brown (CC BY 2.0)

Golden Lane Estate. Picture: Matt Brown (CC BY 2.0)

Archant

A new school and 66 new social homes are on their way in the south of the borough after councillors signed off proposals last night.

The decision to demolish the old Richard Cloudesley school on the listed Golden Lane estate and rebuild it with a 14-storey tower on top was approved despite huge concern among people who live there.

The new two-form entry school will be a City of London Academy primary with places for 420 children.

Those who have opposed the scheme since it was announced a year ago say it would ruin the character of the 1960s estate, which when it was built in the 1950s was seen as a torchbearer of social integration.

One man, a former conservation and design officer, told councillors last night it was a “gross overdevelopment”.

Charles Humphries, chair of the Golden Lane Estate Residents’ Association revealed campaigners had worked with architects to come up with an alternative scheme that didn’t include a tower block and would result in 10 more homes.

He asked that the decision be put on hold until planners had the chance to look at their proposal, an idea not even referred to by councillors on the commitee during their discussion.

“Don’t look a gift horse in the mouth,” he said. “That’s what they say. Here is a scheme for 6 flats, paid for with s106 money from the City of London.

“That has been the attitude from the inception of this scheme. Don’t rock the boat. But this is a balance of harm and public benefit, and we consider this isn’t a gift horse, it is a Trojan horse, and should be looked at very carefully indeed.”

Their argument was countered by parents of children at the school waiting to move into the new build, City of London Primary Academy Islington (COLPAI).

One father, an architect, said: “The school is currently in temporary accommodation and must move to the site by 2019

“This plan puts social homes right in the middle of the catchment area. It’s inclusivity at its best.”

Planning committee chair Cllr Robert Khan summed up the discussion by saying there was some harm to the heritage assets on the site, and some to the neighbouring amenities, but that it should still be passed.

The other councillors agreed and the proposal was rubber stamped.

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