LACK of Freedom of Information

On 12 August 2020, Morning Lane People’s Space submitted a Freedom of Information request to Hackney Council. We asked for all communication about 55 Morning Lane between our Council and private developers (“pre-application exchanges (January 2017-present) between Hackney Planning Department and the prospective developers of the 55 Morning Lane (Tesco) site”)

Public authorities have 20 working days to respond to such requests. Hackney Council took over 8 months. Such delays make it harder for residents to get involved and for grassroots campaigns like ours. On 22 April 2021, they replied, refusing to release any information. The Council asked their chosen developer Hackney Walk Ltd “to agree to the release of the information. They have responded saying that releasing the material into the public domain would be highly prejudicial to their client for commercial reasons”

It is not surprising that a private developer does not want this information released. Hackney Walk Ltd have said nothing about their plans for the site in over a year and a half and their previous development in Hackney, the ‘Fashion Hub’ is a total disaster. 

It is disappointing to see Hackney Council once again prioritising the interests of a private developer over those of Hackney citizens.

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