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Tuesday, 26 January 2016


Just days ago, with great fanfare, Cllr Coleridge announced there would be transparency in all conversations between council planning officers and applicants.

Mr Fairholme, and his spivvy advisers, Savills, have clearly had conversations with Stallwood's team. 
This has led to the withdrawal of the application to have been discussed this evening.
Cllr Coleridge should immediately put out a statement on the Council website explaining what the hell is going on and publishing any conversations.

"A man of words and not of deeds is like a garden full of weeds" the Dame's old Scottish nanny would say...


  1. The Dames Investigator26 January 2016 at 18:31

    This is quite an extraordinary state of affairs. The Managing Director of Cranbrook basement writes making accusations of illegal activity and oversize basement by Mr Fairholme at 32 Abingdon Villas. Fairholme fires Cranbrook but letter sent to Council with a request to investigate. The Council does nothing for six months while Fairholme completes his "illegal" basement and hires Savills to negotiate retrospective planning approval. Kensington Society Objects. Officers recommend retrospective approval.

    Decision scheduled TODAY at the Tuesday Planning Committee. Yesterday Evening Standard runs the story and asks questions. The owner, Mr Fairholme, told the Standard that he "did not know what was going on. Did not know about the illegal basement. Now being put right with a retrospective approval".

    15 hours after report in Evening Standard, Council withdraws application from Planning Committee Agenda. 3 hours before the meeting is due to start.

    Smell a fish?

  2. Cllr Putin Colleridge is the Cabinet Member for Planning. He does not have to consult about someone else's brief. He just needs to explain what is going on.

    He should do so fast. He can issue a press release or blog on the Hornet. In the meantime his Planning Department looks compromised.

    1. Compromised? Compromised??

      Fly has left the planet. This is corruption. Plain and simple. Owner builds illegal basement. Hires "consultant" (Savills) to fix things in private with Officers.

      Problem is that the Dame found out.

  3. Person Familiar With The Situation26 January 2016 at 18:46

    The Planning Department was in chaos this afternoon. Planning Committee Chairman Cllr Mackover read the Riot Act and the whole "retrospective application" for the basement at 32 Abingdon Villas collapsed into a dust cloud.

    This is a testing time for Cllr Mackover. There is bated breath. Everywhere.

    Watch this space.

  4. Wasp is absolutely correct. Of course it's corruption. Plain as daylight. RBKC planning has been riddled with it for decades.

    This time, thanks to the fantastic levels of publicity achieved by the objectors, it's obvious to everyone. This case is so outrageous, not even the rotten borough can carry on as usual. What part did individuals play? Will senior heads roll?

  5. There is no way this situation can resolve in anything less than either the firing of a senior person in Hornton Street or a corruption investigation. A retrospective approval of a basement previously turned down is so unheard of that no planning officer would be authorized to do that on their own, meaning that this surely went to the top of the house. The only other explanation is Mr Fairholme / Savills actually did present knowingly falsified information. If so, criminal prosecution must be pursued.

    1. Actually not true.
      Occurred in c2005 with 64 Bedford Gardens.
      There may well be other cases.
      Important if one wishes to effect change to be accurate, rather than to descend into the frenzy of righteousness to which this forum is occasionally prone.

  6. The situation is so serious, both are needed. The leadership of RBKC's planning department is at best dim and at worst: criminal. This is nothing new. For years RBKC planning has addressed applicants rather than applications. Every long term resident of the rotten borough has personal experience of the corruption in the planning department. Those in the know can obtain planning permission for whatever they wish. The rest get nothing. Certain architects are known for being able to do as they wish with listed buildings; a former councillor has a unique ability to negotiate his way round the system, for selected clients. Those same clients need not worry about enforcement. Planning and building regulations are for the impecunious. The rotten borough is rotten through and through.


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