‘Very little support’ for proposals to build on Oakfield playing fields, council meeting hears

Councillors have heard how a campaign to keep the Oakfield playing fields free of development is gathering pace.

The site to the north of Barkingside town centre, including the Oakfield sports ground in Forest Road and land used by the Hainault and Clayhall Cricket Club, has been deemed suitable for development by Redbridge Council during a review.

Consultants said the area should no longer be considered green belt but one of the public speakers, Simon Copsey, told the meeting “there seems to be very little support for these proposals”.

An e-petition on the council’s website objecting to any development on the land has been signed by 261 people.

The council’s review seeks to address housing and infrastructure needs over the next 15 years.

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The playing fields could be used for housing, a new school and a NHS polyclinic, though plans still have to be drawn up and subjected to further consultation.

Speaking at Wednesday’s area committee three meeting, held in Hainault Forest Community Association in Manford Way, Hainault, Cllr Joyce Ryan said: “I find the whole thing horrendous.

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“I know we need new homes but we don’t have to use our precious green belt to do it.”

And Cllr Alex Phillips said: “It’s narrow thinking from the council and I’m opposed to it.”

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