Read Daniel Levy’s angry letter to Haringey Council regarding redevelopment plans


Daniel Levy has written a strongly worded letter expressing his objection to Haringey Council’s redevelopment proposals, which has now been made public. 

Last week, the Haringey Community Press revealed the decision on whether to approve a major regeneration scheme in Tottenham had been postponed in light of objections, including one from Spurs.

The scheme is planned for the sites opposite to the Tottenham Hotspur Stadium and entails knocking down some of the existing buildings to make way for up to 2929 new homes in the area, out of which 564 homes would be for council rent.

However, it was explained that there were late objections to the plans, including letters from Tottenham Hotspur Football Club raising several concerns over the scheme’s impact on the area’s heritage.

Football.London have now revealed that the letter of objection from Levy played a part in delaying the redevelopment plays, with Haringey Council’s planning officers deciding to defer the decision in order to give proper consideration to the objections made.

In the letter, the Tottenham chairman makes it clear that the proposals for the scheme are not fit for purpose, expressing the club’s discontent at the lack of jobs created in the area.

Levy wrote: “On Thursday 17 March you will be asked to determine a planning application for High Road West that will have a profound impact upon the future of North Tottenham.

“I am taking the unusual step of writing to you in advance of that meeting, on behalf of Tottenham Hotspur Football Club, the largest private-sector employer and socio-economic driver in the Borough.

“We are extremely concerned that this application not only lets down our communities and residents, but that it utterly fails to live up to even the most basic of aspirations that the Council set for positive change in the area.

“The terrible August 2011 riots, the second riots to rock this area, were a wake-up call for everyone. The aspirations and objectives set out by the council in response to the riots were not just about housing – but about real transformative change.

“This was to be achieved through the delivery of jobs, social and community infrastructure and the creation of a premier leisure destination for London.

“That aspiration was long consulted upon and subsequently endorsed in both the High Road West Masterplan and the Adopted Tottenham Area Action Plan.

“It was on this basis that we confirmed our decision, in a written agreement with the council, to remain in Tottenham and to commit £1.2bn of investment in the Tottenham Hotspur Stadium and the wider Northumberland Development Project.

“Unforgivably, there has been no focus on jobs at all in these proposals. No space is secured for industrial use and just 1.6 per cent of the total possible development is secured for employment.

“On the basis of what is actually secured by the council, your own officer report confirms that just 374 jobs would be provided on site, a loss of 316 jobs compared with employment on site right now.

“What is coming before the planning committee has no socio-economic or community benefits to speak of. It is plainly and simply a dense housing estate of up to 3,000 homes.

“There is no mixed-use – the proposals are for up to 97 per cent residential uses. The total space secured for indoor sports and recreation use is just 500 square metres across the whole area.

“The new ‘Moselle Square Library and Learning Centre’, despite this being much heralded through consultation, is also secured at just 500 square metres, smaller than the current library.

“There is no new creche and nursery provision at all, no medical or healthcare facilities, and a minimum of just 500 square metres of community hall space.

“No other developer would be allowed to even progress a planning application on this basis, let alone have it taken to committee with a recommendation to grant permission.

“Is this what councillors really want to deliver for North Tottenham, after ten years of consultation and engagement?

“The application itself also contains fundamental flaws and is so vague in nature that it is simply impossible to know what would be delivered, let alone properly assess the impact on listed buildings, conservation areas or crowd movement.

“There has been an inexplicable failure to properly assess the safe movement of people. Nearly one million people pass through the space to and from the Stadium and White Hart Lane Station each year.

“Crowd Flow assessments formed no part of the original application, with the detailed assessments only shared with the club a few days ago, on 4 March 2022.

“Even with such limited time to assess it, our expert advisors have identified serious flaws which lead us to the conclusion that the measures proposed would be unsafe and have major adverse consequences on anyone living in the area.

“The club has no choice other than to object in the strongest possible terms and the sheer volume of other objections that this application has generated is testament to the strength of local feeling.

“If, like the club and the local community, you are unhappy with the scheme or have concerns, now is the time to make that clear.

“This application is self-evidently rushed and not ready for consideration by the planning committee, and we are calling for it to be refused or at the very least deferred to allow proper consideration of the matters raised.

“We are willing, as we always have been, to work together with the Council and Lendlease as part of this process.

“Indeed, we have been waiting for the establishment of a Strategic Forum to enable this to happen. This is not about finances or creating a new walkway to our stadium door. We already have our stadium and our fans have found their way to our front door quite happily.

“Unlike any developer, we are not here to develop, take a profit and leave – we are here for the long term. This is our home. We fundamentally care about our neighbourhood.

“That’s why we have delivered new, affordable homes, schools, shops and jobs alongside our stadium and embedded our Foundation.

“Our vision is that our neighbourhood is a prosperous mixed community. That if you live here, you should be able to study, work and play here. The proposals before you on Thursday do little to uplift the lives of people living in the area.

“It fails those it should be helping, and I urge you to reject or at the very least defer this application. Yours sincerely, Daniel Levy.”

The objections raised by Levy certainly seem reasonable, which is perhaps why the decision on the redevelopment plan has been deferred. One would expect the council to modify their plans so as to create more jobs and to address the other issues raised.