King's Cross Railway Lands Group (KXRLG): what they say about the group
Chris Smith, MP for Islington South, says
The future of the railway lands gives us the opportunity to create real, lasting improvement for the whole King's Cross area - or to see a nightmare of inappropriate development. The fact that there's a real chance that the first of these might happen is due to the hard, consistent, community-focussed work of the Railway Lands Group. Please keep up the good work!
Darren Johnson, Leader of the Greens, Greater London Assembly, says
Fact: local people have a unique understanding of their area and care about a neighbourhood in a way which no developer can. Groups like KXRLG have been doing an important job putting the local perspective at the heart of the big Kings Cross development debate. I know from personal experience that local involvement makes a real difference - to the environment, to heritage sites and ultimately to the final outcome. Decisions being made today will affect your future - get involved and make sure your voice is heard!
Albert Beale, from Houseman's Bookshop in the Caledonian Road, says
The King's Cross Railway Lands Group's campaigns have been a way of pulling together the local residents, community groups and businesses. They have been a lynchpin in getting them to work together effectively to stop some of the worst aspects of some of the crazy 'development schemes'.
Camley Street Natural Park says
Through the passage of the ill-fated Kings Cross Railways Bill, the CTRL Bill and subsequent passing of the CTRL Act, the Railway Lands Group has been a stalwart supporter and defender of our legitimate right to exist. The battle to protect the park in the face of overwhelming opposition became part of a much wider campaign to protect the area and its communities from the juggernaut of development which sought to radically redesign the area.
Although the London Wildlife Trust independently fought the Camley Street corner during the passage of the CTRL Bill, the support of the Railway Lands Group was vital in representing the interests of Camley Street Natural Park in the context of a vital community resource.
Since the CTRL Bill became the CTRL Act, the Railway Lands Group has supported the Park by helping create and maintain contacts with the key players in the area's development. This has enabled us to keep abreast of developments and work with Camden Officers, developers and contractors on a daily basis.
Despite restriction of their resources, they have worked tirelessly behind the scenes and have guided Camley Street Staff through reams of plans and documents to identify the important issues that need addressing, and even possible benefits that can arise. Without this help it is doubtful that we would have had such a firm grasp on the facts (which often changed regularly), and we certainly would have been less familiar with procedures and personnel.
In terms of building our confidence to address these matters, the work of the Railway Lands Group has been of inestimable importance.
What cannot be overstated is the part the Railway Lands Group has played in bringing groups together. Without this, Camley Street and many other community projects would have been lone voices in the wilderness. Instead, we feel very much part of the King's Cross community working together to safeguard the interests of local people.
Diana Shelley, Cally Rail Group, says
The Railway Lands Group provides one of the best training grounds for community activists I know.
Roger Robinson, Councillor, St Pancras Ward, says
The Kings Cross Railway Lands Group have worked very hard to bring to everyone's attention the needs of the area and they deserve our support and to that end, as a councillor for the area, I intend to continue my campaign to make Kings Cross an arts and tourism area and the land to be used for the people, and not profit.
Ray Yates, 14 years a resident, Chair of Shortlife Community Housing 1998-2000, has the last word. He says
I found the Kings Cross Railway Lands Group very educational, informative, enlightening and intriguing. It provided an insight into local and national politics, acting locally and thinking nationally and internationally.
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