The Leisure Media Company Ltd
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Schroders and Stanhope get green light in Croydon

Developer Stanhope and its partner, asset management company Schroders, have been given the green light for their plans to redevelop Croydon Gateway in south London.

The communities secretary, Hazel Blears, rejected Croydon Council's compulsory purchase order (CPO) on the site next to East Croydon railway station.

The proposals for the 8.5-acre Ruskin Square site, which is already jointly owned by Schroders and Stanhope, will see a new 200-seat Warehouse theatre being built. alongside restaurants and leisure facilities centred around a 4.5-acre public park. Office, retail and residential developments also feature among the plans, designed by architects Foster and Partners.

Communities secretary Hazel Blears decided not to grant the CPO for the site a week after rejecting council-backed redevelopment plans drawn up by property company Arrowcroft, including a new 12,500-seat arena "in light of uncertainty about the viability of the scheme."

In a letter to Croydon Council, Blears said that the Schroder and Stanhope scheme would deliver the same benefits to the area as Arrowcroft's proposals, even without an arena, while adding: "There is no compelling need in the public interest for the Order."

Schroders and Stanhope expect work to begin by the end of the year on the site, having gained planning permission for the project in June 2006 from then-communities secretary Ruth Kelly.

In a joint statement, managing director of Schroder Investment Managers, William Hill, and Stanhope's chief executive, David Camp, said: "We argued at the planning stage that the arena scheme was not appropriate for this site and we are please to see the secretary of state agrees that it does not justify taking our land."

Developer Stanhope and its partner, asset management company Schroders, have been given the green light for their plans to redevelop Croydon Gateway in south London. The communities secretary, Hazel Blears, rejected Croydon Council's compulsory purchase order (CPO) on the site next to East Croydon railway station. The proposals for the 8.5-acre Ruskin Square site, which is already jointly owned by Schroders and Stanhope, will see a new 200-seat Warehouse theatre
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