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Consultation over Whitchurch Fields set to start
THE organisation chosen to manage playing fields in Stanmore has set up a public meeting to discuss the future of the site and to get the community involved.
Out of borough leisure group Whitchurch Consortium was selected by Harrow Council in November as the preferred bidder to manage Whitchurch Playing Fields, while a bid by a consortium made up of local sports club, including Harrow RFC, was rejected.
The leisure group, together with the council which owns the site, is holding a public consultation meeting on March 26 to launch a consultation on its plans to redevelop the dilapidated pavilion into sports facilities and make improvements to the fields.
A cabinet decision to select the group, based on public consultation held in 2009, has angered some neighbours and opposition councillors, however, who have previously told the Observer that the new consultation should have been held before the selection was made.
Councillor Thaya Idaikkadar, portfolio holder for property and major contracts on Harrow Council, has defended the decision ahead of the first public meeting.
Mr Idaikkadar said: "We want to provide excellent sports and leisure facilities to Harrow residents that encourage more people of all ages to lead healthy, active lifestyles. The proposals for Whitchurch Pavilion are to provide better facilities for the whole community at no cost to council tax payers in Harrow.
"However, it is important that residents and interested parties have a real influence on the project.
"That is why in November Cabinet chose the Whitchurch Consortium as the preferred bidder to give them the confidence to spend considerable resources on a full and far reaching consultation with the community."
The meeting comes after the council rejected a call-in last month and a motion at cabinet last week, asking for the bidding process to be restarted.
It will take place at Whitchurch First School in Wemborough Road on Monday, March 26, at 7.30pm.
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