Campaigners will continue to 'fight for the greenbelt' after plans to build mausoleum dropped

Campaigners will continue to 'fight for the greenbelt' after mausoleum plans dropped

Campaigners will continue to 'fight for the greenbelt' after mausoleum plans dropped

First published in News
Last updated
Times Series: Photograph of the Author by , Chief Reporter

Campaigners have vowed to "fight for every scrap of greenbelt left" after plans to build a huge tomb were dropped at the eleventh hour.

The new mausoleum was due to be built next to Westminster Cemetery, in Milespit Hill, Mill Hill, but proposals were withdrawn two days before they were due to be heard at the planning committee.

Barnet Borough Council officers had recommended the application be rejected, citing it would be too "intrusive, inappropriate and unjustified".

More than 1,000 people rallied together to block the plans, but they are now fearful developers Monument Investment Holdings could come back with a second application.

Mill Hill Preservation Society member John Gillett said: "There was fierce opposition for this so we’re happy – but with a certain reservation. We don’t want to go through this again.

"There was so much wrong with this application, but we are now anxiously waiting to see if they come back with something different.

"We do want to encourage investors to bring us good things to Mill Hill and don’t want to be labelled as nimbys – but they should be under no illusion that we will fight for every scrap of green belt we have left here."

It would have been the first multi-faith mausoleum in England – but surveys show there are enough burial plots in the area for the next 60 years.

The application featured a storage room for urns, a new access road and a 43 space car park, but the council’s report said this would destroy trees with preservation orders.

Richard Logue, chairman of the Mill Hill Residents Association, said: "We have won the battle, but have we won the war? I am concerned they could come back with another proposal.

"Rest assured, we will continue to fight this and any other inappropriate developments on the land. It’s wrong to put up huge massive buildings.

"We will work closely with the preservation society on these issues."

Although the land has already been classed for use as a cemetery, it was last used as a pig farm before the Second World War and has never housed any graves.

Others raised concerns the building would "wreak havoc" on the environment, as it is a haven for wildlife, badgers, hedgehogs, slow worms and deer.

Wildlife expert Chris Packham also supported the campaign, saying it would be a "far more fitting memorial" if it could be protected for future generations.

Labour GLA member for Barnet Andrew Dismore led a campaign against the proposals.

He said: "This wonderful result is a real credit to the strong community campaign that has seen off this appalling proposal.

"If everyone sticks together we can fight these unwelcome people off yet again and wear them down instead."

Peter Smallwood, property director at Monument, said: “The planning officer was going to recommend a refusal and we were concerned – we wanted to discuss the comments further with them.

“It also had to do with the fact that the Mill Hill Preservation Society had voiced their opinion. We’re not here to ignore that.

“It’s too early to say if we’ll reapply.”

Comments (6)

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10:49pm Wed 30 Apr 14

Mr unreasonable and always looking for fault says...

Makes me laugh even though plans dropped they continue to fight against plans.....some people like victim status even thought they're not victims. Just want something to fight against no matter what. Sad.
Makes me laugh even though plans dropped they continue to fight against plans.....some people like victim status even thought they're not victims. Just want something to fight against no matter what. Sad. Mr unreasonable and always looking for fault
  • Score: -5

10:50pm Wed 30 Apr 14

Mr unreasonable and always looking for fault says...

Usual rent a left wing mob in background!
Usual rent a left wing mob in background! Mr unreasonable and always looking for fault
  • Score: -6

5:08pm Thu 1 May 14

Mike NW7 says...

Mr unreasonable and always looking for fault wrote:
Usual rent a left wing mob in background!
That Trot Matthew Offord and those Leninists in the Mill Hill Preservation Society eh? I suppose I shouldn't expect incisive informed comment from the little Tory trollboys on here.
[quote][p][bold]Mr unreasonable and always looking for fault[/bold] wrote: Usual rent a left wing mob in background![/p][/quote]That Trot Matthew Offord and those Leninists in the Mill Hill Preservation Society eh? I suppose I shouldn't expect incisive informed comment from the little Tory trollboys on here. Mike NW7
  • Score: 6

6:46pm Thu 1 May 14

Rog T says...

Funny that. I thought Trotskyites and Communists generally were pro mausoleum. I often visited Lenins tomb in Red Square on my many visits to receive orders on what to write on my blog from my Communist controllers. Had I realised that I could have just nipped up the Adam and Eve and got my orders from the Trots in the Mill Hill Preservation Society, I could have saved myself a whole load of hassle.

Maybe we can expect some Facebook expose on the MH pres society. Or should that be the Peoples Front for the Preservation of Mill Hill
Funny that. I thought Trotskyites and Communists generally were pro mausoleum. I often visited Lenins tomb in Red Square on my many visits to receive orders on what to write on my blog from my Communist controllers. Had I realised that I could have just nipped up the Adam and Eve and got my orders from the Trots in the Mill Hill Preservation Society, I could have saved myself a whole load of hassle. Maybe we can expect some Facebook expose on the MH pres society. Or should that be the Peoples Front for the Preservation of Mill Hill Rog T
  • Score: 5

6:19am Fri 2 May 14

Mr unreasonable and always looking for fault says...

Offord is the exception to my comment! The rest are the usual lot, what an earth does the east finchley councillor have to do with it, he's just making up the labour numbers. Sad.
Offord is the exception to my comment! The rest are the usual lot, what an earth does the east finchley councillor have to do with it, he's just making up the labour numbers. Sad. Mr unreasonable and always looking for fault
  • Score: -4

3:27pm Fri 2 May 14

Edgar de Jarnac says...

Mr unreasonable and always looking for fault wrote:
Offord is the exception to my comment! The rest are the usual lot, what an earth does the east finchley councillor have to do with it, he's just making up the labour numbers. Sad.
I'm not sure why I am bothering to respond to someone so stupid that he actually declares himself to be "unreasonable and always looking for fault".

But why is Mr UAALFF trying to introduce party politics into this issue? Personally, I am heartened to see people of all political persuasions uniting against a cynical assault on Mill Hill's Green Belt. In 50 years on the electorate I have never once voted Labour, but I welcome support for this non-political campaign from Andrew Dismore and other Labour politicians.

And why on earth should a Barnet councillor representing East Finchley not be able to lend support to a campaign elsewhere in the borough?

Mr UAALFF is a sad and bigoted wazzock who deserves to be ridiculed by other contributors to this website.
[quote][p][bold]Mr unreasonable and always looking for fault[/bold] wrote: Offord is the exception to my comment! The rest are the usual lot, what an earth does the east finchley councillor have to do with it, he's just making up the labour numbers. Sad.[/p][/quote]I'm not sure why I am bothering to respond to someone so stupid that he actually declares himself to be "unreasonable and always looking for fault". But why is Mr UAALFF trying to introduce party politics into this issue? Personally, I am heartened to see people of all political persuasions uniting against a cynical assault on Mill Hill's Green Belt. In 50 years on the electorate I have never once voted Labour, but I welcome support for this non-political campaign from Andrew Dismore and other Labour politicians. And why on earth should a Barnet councillor representing East Finchley not be able to lend support to a campaign elsewhere in the borough? Mr UAALFF is a sad and bigoted wazzock who deserves to be ridiculed by other contributors to this website. Edgar de Jarnac
  • Score: 3

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