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Croydon Gateway stadium plans kiboshed

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Communities Sectary Hazel Blears (pictured) has ruled out the possibility of a 12,500-seat arena being built on Croydon Gateway site in south London.

Blears has quashed the Croydon Council-backed Arrowcroft scheme, designed by Michael Aukett Architects, in her public inquiry verdict today (31 July), leaving Foster + Partners’ approved office-led development, backed by Stanhope Schroders, as the only viable option.

Blears’ decision effectively ends a 10-year battle over the Croydon Gateway site, but she has delayed the decision over Arrowcroft’s and Croydon Council’s compulsory purchase order (CPO).

A spokesman from Croydon Council said the decision to refuse the arena was ‘extremely disappointing’.

In a joint statement, managing director of Schroders Investment Managers William Hill and chief executive of Stanhope David Camp, said: ‘We are not surprised that the Secretary of State has refused to grant planning permission for a 12,500-seat arena given the weaknesses in the scheme which were identified at a public inquiry last year.

‘Schroders and Stanhope will now take time to study the decision by the Secretary of State and to consider its implications.

‘As an expected decision on Croydon Council’s CPO has been delayed, we do not wish to say anything further at the moment.’

The potential development of the Croydon Gateway site next to East Croydon Station has been running for more than 40 years.

Arrowcroft has the right to appeal the decision in the High Court.

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