Haringey Community Press

Haringey Community Press

A new era for Wards Corner

Campaigner Sue Penny on what's next for Latin Village

Hero for A new era for Wards Corner
Impressions of how Seven Sisters Indoor Market could look in future, as part of the Wards Corner Community Plan proposals
By Sue Penny 15 May 2022

In November 2003 the proprietor of Seven Sisters Indoor Market, a group of concerned residents and I addressed Haringey Council's regeneration scrutiny panel on the important proposals to redevelop the Wards Corner site.In November 2003 the proprietor of Seven Sisters Indoor Market, a group of concerned residents and I addressed Haringey Council's regeneration scrutiny panel on the important proposals to redevelop the Wards Corner site.

We asked for the “thriving, multicultural Seven Sisters market community to be celebrated and supported” and for “restoration of the elegant and distinctive Wards department store”.We asked for the “thriving, multicultural Seven Sisters market community to be celebrated and supported” and for “restoration of the elegant and distinctive Wards department store”.

Unfortunately, the council dismissed our advice and, in 2007, signed up with a developer to replace the building with a clone town of expensive flats and high street shops. Ever since then, hundreds of local residents, traders and visitors have campaigned against the proposed demolition.Unfortunately, the council dismissed our advice and, in 2007, signed up with a developer to replace the building with a clone town of expensive flats and high street shops. Ever since then, hundreds of local residents, traders and visitors have campaigned against the proposed demolition.

In June 2010, campaign group Wards Corner Community Coalition won a landmark legal case, with the Court of Appeal ruling the council had acted unlawfully by not properly considering the impact of the development on Tottenham’s diverse local community. It set a precedent for local authorities to assess the impact of major developments on race equality.In June 2010, campaign group Wards Corner Community Coalition won a landmark legal case, with the Court of Appeal ruling the council had acted unlawfully by not properly considering the impact of the development on Tottenham’s diverse local community. It set a precedent for local authorities to assess the impact of major developments on race equality.

Until its closure during the first Covid-19 lockdown, the 'Latin Village' market was a major destination for London’s large South American population (estimated at one million) and other visitors who wanted to purchase particular goods and foods not available elsewhere. It was also a place they could speak their own languages, meet friends, let their children play with other families, and enjoy live music. It was indeed a place where people lingered and spent money. If properly restored and managed, as the Wards Corner Community Plan now proposes, the market has even more potential and could attract many more visitors to Tottenham.Until its closure during the first Covid-19 lockdown, the 'Latin Village' market was a major destination for London’s large South American population (estimated at one million) and other visitors who wanted to purchase particular goods and foods not available elsewhere. It was also a place they could speak their own languages, meet friends, let their children play with other families, and enjoy live music. It was indeed a place where people lingered and spent money. If properly restored and managed, as the Wards Corner Community Plan now proposes, the market has even more potential and could attract many more visitors to Tottenham.

The site sits within the Seven Sisters/Page Green Conservation Area and the Wards Corner building at 227 High Road/725 Seven Sisters Road, together with numbers 1A and 1B West Green Road, are all locally listed buildings of merit. The ground floor of the Wards building has also been listed as an 'Asset of Community Value'.The site sits within the Seven Sisters/Page Green Conservation Area and the Wards Corner building at 227 High Road/725 Seven Sisters Road, together with numbers 1A and 1B West Green Road, are all locally listed buildings of merit. The ground floor of the Wards building has also been listed as an 'Asset of Community Value'.

The community-led plan will restore this building, reinstating historic features. It will enhance and increase existing community facilities, including business start-ups, cafes, restaurants and performances, with a stage provided. This plan received planning permission in 2014 and again 2019.The community-led plan will restore this building, reinstating historic features. It will enhance and increase existing community facilities, including business start-ups, cafes, restaurants and performances, with a stage provided. This plan received planning permission in 2014 and again 2019.

You can imagine our excitement when, after all this time, in August last year developer Grainger abandoned its own proposal to redevelop the area and the council declared its support for our alternative community-led plan.You can imagine our excitement when, after all this time, in August last year developer Grainger abandoned its own proposal to redevelop the area and the council declared its support for our alternative community-led plan.

So, what now? It is time to take the next step, which is to establish a community benefit society to obtain a long lease from (site owners) Transport for London to restore and manage the Wards building, which has been left empty for far too long.So, what now? It is time to take the next step, which is to establish a community benefit society to obtain a long lease from (site owners) Transport for London to restore and manage the Wards building, which has been left empty for far too long.

Various workshops have been held to consult traders, residents and visitors to the area about the community benefit society, including a one in November which was addressed by the leader of the council, Peray Ahmet, with some 75 participants.Various workshops have been held to consult traders, residents and visitors to the area about the community benefit society, including a one in November which was addressed by the leader of the council, Peray Ahmet, with some 75 participants.

The new society will carry out business for the benefit of the diverse communities who live and work in Tottenham or who use its economic, social and cultural facilities – including Latin American, black and other minority groups. This includes retail spaces at affordable rents, supporting local start-ups, and developing cultural and social spaces.The new society will carry out business for the benefit of the diverse communities who live and work in Tottenham or who use its economic, social and cultural facilities – including Latin American, black and other minority groups. This includes retail spaces at affordable rents, supporting local start-ups, and developing cultural and social spaces.

We want to turn this neglected entrance to Tottenham into something welcoming and vibrant. We invite everyone to bring their enthusiasm, support and ideas to make this work.We want to turn this neglected entrance to Tottenham into something welcoming and vibrant. We invite everyone to bring their enthusiasm, support and ideas to make this work.

For more information about the Wards Corner Community Plan:For more information about the Wards Corner Community Plan:

Email [email protected]Email [email protected]

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Visit wardscornerplan.orgVisit wardscornerplan.org