In 2016 Westminster’s Conservative led Council made a U-turn on its previous commitment to give residents a vote on estate regeneration schemes. Despite a number of schemes successfully persuading residents to go ahead, this commitment was ditched after the Council’s unpopular Brunel Estate Masterplan and its underprepared and poorly consulted Westbourne Green Masterplan were rejected by residents. The Tories plan to proceed with future regeneration schemes without a resident vote.
Westminster Labour has strongly opposed Westminster’s change of policy, challenging it at Full Council and in committee, calling for the continued use of ballots as part of a proper local consultation around major regeneration schemes, including the ‘Phase 2’ of the Church Street regeneration. Labour’s Shadow Cabinet Member for Housing Tim Roca has now written to the Mayor of London’s consultation on a Good Practice Guide to Estate Regeneration to argue the case in favour of retaining resident’s ballot as an integral part of, rather than alternative to, meaningful resident consultation on regeneration schemes.