Controversial Merton Hall Plans Up For Council Scrutiny

Cross-party panel will review decision-making process for church scheme

A controversial scheme to demolish part of historic Merton Hall in South Wimbledon to enable a church to move into the building will be discussed by the council's cross-party scrutiny panel.

Merton Council has agreed the plans to redevelop the building to enable the existing Elim Church in High Path to move into the community centre building. This would then enable the new Harris Wimbledon Academy - a mixed ability free school - to be built on the High Path estate.

A number of community groups protested against the plans last year, with 351 letters of objection being received by the council as well as a petition with more than 3,000 signatures.

Now Conservative Councillors have 'called in' the scheme for discussion by the scrutiny panel in a meeting which starts at the Civic Centre at 7.15pm on Wednesday (January 10).

Wimbledon Tory Councillor Najeeb Latif had asked the council to serve a temporary notice to protect the building for demolition while it is considered for listed building status by Historic England.

The minutes for the panel meeting states that the council's Cabinet decided not to allow the temporary protection notice as it had legal advice that it cannot serve notice on itself.

An application has also been made to the council for the building to be considered an Asset of Community Value.

New design of the front of Merton Hall

New design of the back of Merton Hall

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January 5, 2018

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Merton Hall as it is now

Artist's impression of new design