Last night’s landmark decision by the Board of Trustees, to abandon the search for a single developer for Alexandra Palace, has been welcomed by local Liberal Democrats. Yesterday the Ally Pally Board agreed to a more realistic and ‘organic’ approach towards development at the Palace, rather than through one developer.
The Liberal Democrats hope that the important decision now draws a line under repeated and failed attempts, driven by the Labour Council, to impose a ‘big bang’ development solution on the much-loved Palace. This strategy led to the failed deal with Firoka, a mistake that has already cost local taxpayers millions of pounds. The Palace was only saved by a successful judicial review driven by local campaigners, and has since endured damning reports on woefully lax governance arrangements that were exposed in the fiasco.
Cllr Robert Gorrie, Leader of Haringey Liberal Democrats, comments:
“Finally, we are seeing some much-overdue sense prevailing at Alexandra Palace. Local taxpayers lost millions of pounds when the Labour decided to flog the Palace off, without regard for the consequences or the views of local residents. That expensive fiasco highlighted the virtual collapse of effective governance at Alexandra Palace and has prompted a number of long-overdue changes in personnel and approach.
“I am glad that there is recognition of the flaws in the previous approach. However, a successful and sustainable future for Alexandra Palace will only come with independence from Haringey Council and the leadership of independent trustees.”
Lynne Featherstone MP adds:
“The botched Firoka deal was never going to be in the best interests of the residents of Haringey. Campaigners and Liberal Democrats told Haringey Council this at the time, yet they forged ahead on a path which was only doomed to failure.
“I welcome the news that a new path has been set and I look forward to a revived Alexandra Palace for the people of Haringey to enjoy.”