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Brentwood Borough Council

FOI 3346

Privatisation of selling off London Road Cemetery

Request

Is it true that Brentwood Borough Council is proposing to sell off/privatise the London Road Cemetery and other sites /buildings /places in Brentwood? As reported in a local paper.

Please list and detail ALL proposed targets for privatisation/selling off in Brentwood.

We have already lost a landmark pub completely against our wishes -the Sir Charles Napier - sorely missed. The company declare on the billboard at the site of the pub, as if to mock us, and with no
sense of irony or honesty that it was to preserve the historic look of Brentwood.

Down by the railway where the gas holders used to be, countless flats have been squashed in, one on top of the other (were the legal spacing conditions applied here?) I am sure that many people
would say if asked, which is most aesthetically pleasing, this development of flats or the gas holders, they would prefer the old gas holders.

Along London Road the woods (our lungs) have been bulldozed to make room for a development. Who asked US? When? It just appeared!

Please list /detail the official process/procedure for the proposed sell-offs/privatisations, including stating exactly WHEN the public are to be PROPERLY and GENUINELY consulted, and by what
means, and please state what their rights are if they object.

If someone has relatives buried in the London Road cemetery, are they ALL to be contacted and consulted about who will own their relatives remains?

Will there be safeguards as to the private charges, and looking into the future?

Please tell us the legal position on selling off Brentwood citizens' great grandmothers, great grandfathers, grandmothers, grandfathers, fathers, mothers, brothers, sisters, Great Uncles,
Great Aunts, aunts, uncles, children, babies, and friends, and in some cases, fallen heroes of WWII, to a private company for business profit / money reasons? Many of these departed souls will
have contributed to Brentwood life, and history. Is this how we repay them / honour them?

Please provide the public with all related documents re any proposed sell-off or privatisations in Brentwood and in the Brentwood area.

Have the Brentwood people been consulted PROPERLY as to which ways THEY can suggest making money for the Brentwood coffers instead of the BBC foisting fait accomplis / ready-made decisions on them?

How can Brentwood people properly have their say when we hear of decisions or proposals via newspaper?

Response

Can I reassure you that there are no plans to sell off London Road Cemetery. The Council has a number of assets and it is undertaking a review of all of these to see which are still required for service delivery, which are underutilised and which are surplus to requirements and can be considered for other uses or disposal. At this stage the Council’s Asset panel has considered 4 properties, as follows:

• Old House – which is being considered for retention and conversion into flats
• Hutton Parish Hall – all community users have been relocated, most to the new community facility at Willowbrook school and the Hall is being considered for disposal
• Land at Bell Mead Ingatestone – this is an empty site being considered for development and
• Warley Training Centre – this is surplus to Council requirements and is being considered for disposal

Any further major disposals would need to be referred to this panel before they could go ahead. The next meeting will be in June.

Consultations have taken place with Ward Councillors, and where appropriate the Parish Council. Reports on each property are on the web site under the Asset panel meeting on 28th February.

A procedure is being implemented under the Localism Act which will give communities the right to list assets of community value and to potentially bid to retain them – this has been introduced to cover precisely the situation you mention as regards the loss of the pub.

The Council is very happy to hear any ideas you may have about raising revenue in other ways.