Community campaigners looking to shape a major redevelopment of the area around Seven Sisters tube station are one step closer to realising their ambitions.
The Ward’s Corner Coalition recently obtained planning consent from Haringey Council for its plans to save the market and shops above the underground station, which both sit on landowned by Transport for London.
The local authority wants to build new homes in the area has entered into a development agreement with Grainger PLC, which is looking to demolish the Ward’s Department Store to make way for new homes and a new market place.
The developers obtained planning consent for its latest proposals in 2012 but the plans, which have been in the pipeline for the best part of a decade, have been a contentious issue among the local community.
A High Court appeal against the designs was won by the coalition in 2010 on a technical point but Grainger has since made the relevant amendment to obtain permission to go ahead.
Alongside Grainger’s application, the volunteer-run Ward’s Corner Coalition, made up of community stakeholders, has spent the past seven years compiling its own designs.
After several knock-backs, the group finally received planning permission late last month and held a meeting on Monday to discuss how it can work with the developers to influence the plans in the community’s favour.
Project leader Abigail Stevenson said: “It has been a lot of hard work. I was bouncing off the walls when we got the planning consent.
“Initially it was elation but after a couple of days the realisation set in that this is just the beginning.”
The coalition believes even a temporary displacement of the market will threaten its future, and it is battling various compulsory purchase orders for shops in the area, who would have to leave under Grainger’s plans.
The group is now looking to meet with TfL and Grainger to find a compromise that would involve keeping the Ward’s Corner Department Store intact.
Ms Stevenson said: “Once you displace people from this area, there won’t be any customers to come back to.
“This is a really vibrant and culturally important part of Tottenham – it is a gem of a place. Wouldn’t it be nice to have a beautiful heritage asset as the headstone of the development?”