• CarolineShah

Unilever's proposed Hogsmill River complex - simply wrong

Updated: Oct 11, 2020

Development at any cost along the Hogsmill River, a rare chalk stream, in Kingston

Unilever is proposing to build a modern high-rise complex of offices and a 22-storey residential tower on the banks of the Hogsmill River in Kingston. The complex is on the old John Austin Jam Factory site, jam jars from which were used as an emergency measure to shore up the banks of this rare chalk stream

I have tonight sent a letter to Alan Jope, Chief Executive of Unilever plc, making him aware of why Unilever's proposals are bad for Kingston and will harm our natural and historic environment and communities, and in particular how there has been no environmental, health or equalities impact assessment of the plans of which Unilever's proposal forms part

Mr. Jope replied immediately saying that he has shared my concerns with the Unilever project team who will raise them with the developer responsible for the site

Unilever says in its press release for the proposed development that it will include a "new residential building set within landscaped gardens adjacent to the restored historic Hogsmill River". But how can building a 22-storey tower next to a chalk stream be considered to be "restoring" the Hogsmill?

Mr. Jope said that the proposed Unilever buildings will meet the highest environmental and aesthetic standards. However, this does not address the issues to which I have drawn his attention and about which I hope to receive a reply in due course

Concreting of the wild Hogsmill at The Guildhall, Kingston

Please write to Mr. Jope* with any of your own concerns about Unilever's proposals which you can see in pictures here

Please also donate to my fundraising to help me challenge the London Plan and Kingston's massive housing and jobs targets at judicial review and stop many, many more of these towers from being built with NO overriding environmental, health or equalities assessments

* Please contact me for Mr Jope's email address

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