Pressure mounts over greenfield tunnelling

Published: Thursday 26th May 11

Thousands more Londoners are backing a campaign to save Barn Elms Playing Fields from being used as a giant construction compound as part of the Thames Tunnel super sewer scheme.

Barn Elms playing fieldSouth West London campaign group Stop the Shaft has reported a sharp increase in the number of people signing a petition calling for the seven year tunnelling project to be relocated to a brownfield site.

In the last few weeks the signature total has risen from 5,500 to 8,500.

The SAVE BARN ELMS campaign, which is backed by Wandsworth Council, has now attracted support from high profile Londoners including Philip Glennister, Peter Snow, Anneke Rice, Gyles Brandreth, Patricia Hodge, Shebah Ronay, Alistair McGowan and Jonathan Yeo.

Crucially, the pressure group is not opposed to the Thames Tunnel scheme, only to the use of a popular greenfield sports and recreation space as a main tunnelling site.

Thames Water has now identified an alternative location where they could base the construction compound intended for Barn Elms. This semi-derelict industrial site has no trees, no grassland, no sports pitches, no riverside towpath and no natural habitat to disturb.

The campaigners hope to convince the water company that this, or another brownfield site, is a more suitable location for such long lasting and disruptive work.

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Recent comments

How inconsiderate of Thames water to use a popular greenfield site at Barm Elms instead of the nearby brownfield site across the river in the disused industrial site at Carnwarth Rd, Fulham. It must be something to do with cost and profit margins rather than any consideration to the effects upon local traffic and environmetal concerns.
Martin Ireland

3 June 2011