This petition is now closed, as its deadline has passed.
We the undersigned petition Westminster City Council to prioritise the site of Balmoral Castle pub on Churchill Gardens estate for new-build sheltered housing. More details
Petition update from the council, 24 August 20181. Executive Summary
1.1 This report was delayed while an initial assessment of the site could be considered. It considers a petition, that requested the following:
“Calls on the Council to prioritise the site of Balmoral Castle pub on Churchill Gardens estate for new-build sheltered housing”
1.2 The petition: had 320 signatures; was submitted at Full Council in March 2018 by Councillor Murad Gassanly.
2.1 That the Cabinet Member for Finance, Property and Regeneration:
•Acknowledges the dilapidated condition of the building and the ongoing costs to keep the building safe and secure.
•Recognises the potential of the site to contribute to the Council’s ambitions to deliver an increase in levels of affordable housing for the residents of Westminster.
•Commits to engaging with the local community and ward members on the opportunities achievable on this site.
• Acknowledges the need for more sheltered and other supportive accommodation in this area.
3. Reasons for Decision
3.1 Following full consideration of the petition it was considered that there are clear imperatives to consider opportunities to the site as it not feasible or desirable to maintain the site in its current state. The ongoing costs to secure the building do not represent value for money.
4. Background, including Policy Context
4.1 The Balmoral Castle pub site is owned by Westminster City Council and has been in a dilapidated state for a number of years.
5. Financial Implications
5.1 The council is currently incurring fees of approx. £20k per annum on security and scaffolding for the site, to ensure our occupier’s liability responsibilities are met. The financial implications of any future development of the site will be assessed at the time of options being put forward in a business case and factored into the Council’s capital budget setting process.
6. Legal Implications
6.1 There are no legal implications, in respect of the recommendations.
More details from petition creator
The site is a derelict former public house that has been in scaffolding for over ten years. The Council sought to resolve the issue and find appropriate use for the building for some time now but with no success - the structure has been deemed unsafe and it is difficult to see how it can be salvaged without extremely high cost to the taxpayer.
Therefore, Churchill ward Conservatives are proposing to utilise the site for new-built sheltered housing to benefit local senior citizens. Over the past month we have spoken to hundreds of Churchill Gardens residents to garner their opinions on this proposal and received enthusiastic support. This petition has been signed by over 300 residents and many have also asked us to consider providing extra-care and community-supported homes on site, along with sheltered accommodation.
Given the strength of public feeling and support for action on Balmoral Castle, I hope the Council will consider this petition and we can proceed with more formal plans at the earliest opportunity.
Cllr Murad Gassanly
Cllr Murad Gassanly, the petition creator, joined by: