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Harringay, Haringey - So Good they Spelt it Twice!

The post we've waited 17 years to make:
As of 2.30 today, the campaign to save Wards Corner is over. We won.

PRESS RELEASE Issued by The West Green Road/Seven Sisters Development Trust, Seven Sisters Market Tenants Association and Save Latin Village and Wards Corner CIC 06.08.2021

Traders and campaigners welcome the withdrawal of Grainger PLC from the contested Wards Corner site, Tottenham, and commitments from Haringey Council (LBH) expressed in a joint statement with the West Green Road/Seven Sisters Development Trust.

Grainger PLC have abandoned controversial plans for 190 'build-to-rent' flats, with no affordable housing provision, on the Wards Corner site, citing "viability concerns"

Campaigners hail "significant milestone" in long-running campaign to save Seven Sisters Indoor Market, popularly known as Latin Village, and to implement an alternative community plan for the site. Haringey Council has issued a joint statement with the West Green Road/Seven Sisters Development Trust, supporting the Trust's Community Plan, and urging Transport for London to "work with the Trust to co-produce a solution for the long-term future of the market."

The West Green Road/Seven Sisters Development Trust is ready to work with all parties to deliver the Wards Corner Community Plan, which received planning permission in 2019. In light of the ongoing closure of the Market, the Trust and the Seven Sisters Market Tenants Association are calling on the Mayor of London to extend the financial hardship scheme for traders until a temporary or permanent market is delivered.

Contact: Elara Shurety (West Green Road/Seven Sisters Development Trust) - 07980 282 600, n15developmenttrust@gmail.com

The West Green Road/Seven Sisters Development Trust (the Trust) has welcomed the withdrawal of property developer, Grainger plc, from Wards Corner, Tottenham. Grainger's controversial redevelopment plans would have seen the demolition of the historic Wards building and Seven Sisters Indoor Market, a listed Asset of Community Value, to erect 190 'build-to-rent' flats with no affordable housing provision.

Grainger's withdrawal marks the end of a fifteen-year campaign by local residents and market tenants against the development, who contested the scheme would lead to the gentrification of the area and displacement of existing communities. In 2017, a group of United Nations human rights experts warned the development would have: "a disproportionate impact on people belonging to minorities and their right to equal participation in economic, social and cultural rights".

The West Green Road/Seven Sisters Development Trust was formed by local residents, businesses and market tenants to deliver an alternative 'community plan' for the site. Now in it's fourth iteration, the plan proposes the sensitive restoration of the existing buildings and their democratic administration by a community benefit society. Since receiving planning permission in 2019, the Trust has demonstrated the scheme's viability through detailed financial modelling and is engaged in "promising" discussions with ethical investors.

Therefore, the Trust welcomes the comments made by Peray Ahmet, Leader of the Council, issued in a joint statement between the Trust and Haringey Council (LBH) on the future of Wards Corner Site: The Leader of Haringey Council, Peray Ahmet, said "Whilst TfL's Hardship Fund payments to traders was a welcome intervention, we also need to understand their proposals and timeframes for continuing this much needed financial support. "The longer-term renewal of the site is also critical. Having met with the West Green Road/Seven Sisters Development Trust, we are supportive of the Trust's community plan to bring the existing historic building back to life for the next generation, with Seven Sisters market, popularly known as the Latin Village, at its heart, and we are looking forward to seeing the next iteration of the plans. As TfL are the owners of the market, we urge them to work with the Trust to co-produce a solution for the long-term future of the market."

"Developing a new vision for this area is key, and alongside the traders and community of Seven Sisters will do all we can to help TfL make this a reality. A market at Wards Corner has been and will be a very important part of the rich cultural fabric which makes Tottenham such a special part of our great city."

The Chair of the Trust, Carlos Burgos, said: "Grainger's withdrawal finally ends a terrible period of suffering and neglect, marking the beginning of a new chapter for Seven Sisters Market and Wards Corner. Rooted in 15 years' of local organising, the Wards Corner Community Plan is a viable scheme to restore a heritage building, listed community asset and celebrated market, which will revive the high street and town centre for the benefit of the community.

"We welcome Haringey Council's support for the Plan and look forward to working with traders, the wider community, the Council and Transport for London to deliver this urgent project as soon as possible. We also call for the Mayor of London's financial hardship scheme for traders to be extended until a temporary or permanent market is available."

In a further statement, the Trust said: "The West Green Road/Seven Sisters Development Trust welcomes the withdrawal of property developer, Grainger plc, from Wards Corner. Grainger's redevelopment plans would have seen the demolition of the historic Wards building and Seven Sisters Indoor Market, a listed Asset of Community Value. The Trust also welcomes the commitments from Haringey Council to work alongside traders and the community, and their support of the Community Plan.

It is now more urgent than ever to deliver the long-awaited community plan for Wards Corner. Seven Sisters Indoor Market and the Wards building have been neglected for far too long, both by the owners, Transport for London, and by successive market operators, leaving the building with serious health and safety issues. The Market has remained closed since March 2020, leaving the majority of traders without access to their livelihoods, generating an urgent need for a temporary market.

Grainger's demolition plan has cast a cloud over south Tottenham for too long, running down the Wards building and the wider West Green Road/Seven Sisters town centre. It is imperative that the Market, Wards Corner and the wider town centre do not suffer any further delay and neglect. The Trust is committed to working with all parties to deliver the community plan for Wards Corner as soon as possible, delivering much-needed improvements for market traders, local businesses, local residents and town centre users.

Rooted in 15 years of community organising, the community plan is a viable and deliverable plan to restore a heritage building, listed community asset and celebrated market, and revive the high street, with active planning permission from Haringey Council. It will provide 1,700sqm retail/café space (including a new market), 400sqm small business office space and 200 sqm community space, including a childcare centre. Its community-build approach will provide jobs, training and apprenticeships for local people. Income from renting space in the restored Wards building will generate a surplus for reinvestment in other local community and enterprise initiatives in Tottenham.

Earlier this year, the Trust obtained support through the Mayor of London/Coops UK Boosting Community Business programme to develop a new Community Benefit Society to restore and manage the Wards building. The £12.9m development will be funded through a mixture of community investment (£1m), grant funding (£6m) and ethical investment (£6m). Promising conversations are underway with grant funders and ethical investment banks, and the Trust has applied for funding and support to develop a community share offer. The Trust is ready to enter into negotiations with Transport for London to secure an affordable long-term lease of the building. We, alongside Haringey Council, urge Transport for London to work with us to deliver the Community Plan for Wards Corner as soon as possible, bringing to an end a terrible saga which has afflicted the Market and the people of Tottenham for too long."

The Chair of Seven Sisters Market Traders Association, Vicky Alvarez, said: "Grainger's withdrawal is a significant victory for all those fighting gentrification in London. For too long, market tenants and local residents have endured the deliberate neglect of the Market and Wards Corner while fearing their displacement by a scheme which put profits before people. As London focuses on recovering from the Covid-19 pandemic, now is the time for a new approach at Wards Corner. The Community Plan provides a sustainable model for regeneration which ensures local people benefit the most from the changes to their neighbourhoods. We are hugely encouraged by the commitments of Haringey Council to work in collaboration for the community, and their support of the Community Plan. We urge Transport for London, the Greater London Authority, and the Mayor of London to follow suit, and give their support to the Community Plan as soon as possible. "

The Co-Chair of Save Latin Village, Javiera Huxley, said: "The announcement of Grainger's withdrawal from the Wards Corner site is positive news that will be widely welcomed by Latinx people in London. Alongside the traders for whom the market is their livelihood, a 2011 Trust for London report showed 85% of the Latin American community in London accessed their culture through the Latin Quarter in Elephant and Castle and the Latin Village in Tottenham. Following the closure of the Elephant and Castle shopping centre last September in another redevelopment scheme, spaces like the Latin Village are more important than ever. We are heartened by the Haringey Council's support for the Community Plan, which has the Latin Village at its heart. We also welcome their prioritisation of the temporary market, and their calls for further financial support for the market traders. We implore TfL, and the GLA, to move forward with these urgent matters as swiftly as possible. -------- ENDS

Contact: Elara Shurety (West Green Road/Seven Sisters Development Trust) - 07980 282 600, elarashurety@gmail.com

Tags for Forum Posts: seven sisters, wards' corner

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Well done to those involved. As I wrote about a decade ago, this is important for the local distinctiveness of the Seven Sisters area. 

Thanks Hugh and HoL for your support over the years.  HoL has been a key resource for telling the story.

Congratulations! Excellent news! 

Yay, let's keep the area run down and rubbish!

Funny how progressives are against actual progress - homes for people who need them, construction job, change when it goes ones way and not the other.

Well done on blocking progress and keeping Haringey back.

...homes for people who need them... The plans had zero flats for affordable rent.

Well done to the traders and campaigners.

I could never understand why Grainger & Transport for London couldn't seem to grasp why a thriving Latin Market has been and would be a valuable addition to the Seven Sisters area. Or maybe the people who control those organisations don't actually love cities?  Except perhaps when they're Alpha Cities for the stupendously rich?

It amuses me when developers "artist's impressions" are of imaginary places where smart youngish people stroll aimlessly along super clean streets with no beggars, no litter, and no elderly people. My local favourite was an artist's drawing of a business near High Road Tottenham. But minus parked cars; minus litter and litter bins; and completely without the adjacent High Road. The runner-up in these fantasy stakes was a video advertising student housing at Tottenham Hale which used a photo of a cafe in Newington Green.

Let’s hope a positive alternative is come up with. The area clearly needs a massive overhaul.

Looking at the post covid economy - and the utter mess that is Wood Green - can’t help but think a massive economic stimulus that the HDV would have been would be very very useful right now.

Many years ago I was very pessimistic about the prospects for Wards Corner. The enormous work and energy which went into development of the Latin Market proved me wrong. I'm very pleased to learn that lesson. It was also part of set of a wider lessons about large cities and how they can and should work for the benefit of all their residents.

One sad thing is that we have repeated chances to learn these lessons. Not just ourselves but from experts including Loretta Lees and Anna Minton and many others.  Loretta especially has been to Haringey many times and offered her expertise for free. Unfortunately councillors who most needed to listen didn't bother to go.

A very short video: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=f2EAj0ymdK0

It might seem strange to some that TfL is involved in the Ward's Saga.. so I thought I'd add this earlier posting, which might shed light on why.


Wow. I hope your magazine collection is going to a museum. These archives are so important, what will the young ones have to look though from today's media?

Thanks for the Wards fascinating story. Never thought about how they managed to dig out that station while keeping the store functioning. I guess nowadays they would just demolish the lot and slap up an ugly replacement afterwards. 

I have a vague memory of being told that TFL kept the store after it closed in 1973 (?) as they planned to use the elaborate deco-ish frontage as a new station entrance. And then kept it all locked up, only the ground floor re-opening in the 80s for the indoor market, the other 2500 sq m left closed since. There's an investigation left to be done on how that was allowed to happen, a neat PhD maybe.  If not for that plan re the entrance, would the store have survived to go on to this new iteration? 

I keep thinking of all that embedded energy in the brickwork, too.



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