TO RPA STATUS FUELS CONCERN OVER FUTURE TRAFFIC ACCESS
TO RICHMOND PARK
Wandsworth Council's regeneration
and transport chairman Kathy Tracey is calling for government
assurances that changes to the status of the Royal Parks
Agency will not be used to introduce a ban on cars using
The Government has announced its
intention to turn the Royal Parks Agency, which manages
Richmond Park, into a non-departmental public body (NDPB)
to be run by a quango of non-elected trustees appointed
by Whitehall. These changes were announced on July 20
by Culture Secretary Tessa Jowell in a written parliamentary
answer on the day the House of Commons broke for its
Now Cllr Tracey is calling on the
Secretary of State to give more information on who will
be appointed to the new quango.
And she has also asked for cast
iron assurances that the quango will not attempt to ban
cars from using Richmond Park without full public consultation.
She said: "Last year the Royal
Parks Agency tried to steamroll through plans for what
was essentially a total ban on cars using Richmond Park.
They tried to do this without any meaningful public consultation,
and indeed were prepared to take the decision before
anyone who lived in the area even knew about it.
"They were prepared to take
this rash decision with the support of one or two pressure
groups, who claim to be representative of local feeling,
but who in fact represent only a very narrow viewpoint.
These pressure groups certainly do not speak for the
very many people whose lives would be adversely affected
if traffic was banned from the park and forced onto already
congested local roads in the three boroughs that adjoin
"I am extremely concerned
that the new quango - whose members will be handpicked
by ministers on the advice of the RPA, will be packed
with people from those same pressure groups who have
totally closed minds on this issue and have proved unwilling
in the past to take on board the views of those who disagree
"I hope that this change in
the structure and status of the RPA is not being used
by ministers so they can escape criticism for making
a deeply unpopular decision like banning cars from the
of the Proposals made by the Friends of Richmond Park
arguements against closure of the gates
RPA response to the issue
Duffy argues against the plans for restricting traffic in Richmond Park
you have a view on the Richmond
Park? Use our pages to express yourself!
contribute to our forum
site is an open platform for all points
of view on local issues - we hope to have
an article on the case for closure soon.
articles on this site are contributed
by local people.
you want to contact your local councillor
on this issue and are not sure how - click