Friends of Millfield Lane
Friends of Millfield Lane
The Friends of Millfield Lane
The Friends of Millfield Lane

Protect Millfield Lane and Hampstead Heath from Urbanisation!

Who are we petitioning?

Camden Council – petition is here


What do we want them to do?

Reject Planning Application 2018/3672/P to redevelop 55 Fitzroy Park with five houses, two of which would front directly onto Hampstead Heath, immediately opposite the Bird Sanctuary Pond.


Why is this important?

Hampstead Heath, one of London’s most treasured open spaces that is free and open to all, is under threat from large scale property development.  Camden Council is currently considering plans to demolish an existing single house and annexe, to be replaced with five houses, all with basements.


In particular, the character and ecology of Millfield Lane, a historic path running along the eastern side of the Heath, is threatened.  Two of the luxury houses would directly face the Heath across Millfield Lane.


This application potentially represents the development of Hampstead Heath by stealth. It is presented as a family-backed ‘self-build’ project which would be exempt from Community Infrastructure Levy (a charge designed to fund improvements to London infrastructure).  A development of this size would also usually be expected to include an element of affordable housing given the additional floor space being created.


In 2015 an alliance of local community groups successfully petitioned the Council to refuse an application for an overdevelopment in a neighbouring property – The Water House – which would have had similar impacts on the surrounding area.  We call on Camden Council to reject this new application because of the harm it will cause to the local environment, particularly Millfield Lane and the Bird Sanctuary Pond on Hampstead Heath.


Hampstead Heath belongs to us all and should not be damaged by large scale property developments, for personal gain .  Concerns raised by the proposals include:


Potential for significant increase in traffic along Millfield Lane:


  • Although not stated in the plans, three of the proposed properties may require vehicle access onto Millfield Lane rather than Fitzroy Park, using two access points which currently have limited use.  This could in time radically increase vehicle traffic in Millfield Lane, which is an unmade road with a predominantly rural character.


  • The increase in residential and service traffic would put at risk thousands of walkers, joggers, swimmers and dogs who use this rural track regularly and would make a fundamental and irrevocable change to the tranquil nature of the lane.


Loss of numerous trees, many bordering Millfield Lane:


  • It appears that the number of trees to be felled during the building works has been underestimated by over 50.  The actual figure is close to 90 trees rather than the 34 stated and includes trees subject to Tree Protection Orders as part of Camden’s environmental policy.


  • This sensitive environment hosts a variety of bird life including kingfishers, tawny owls, sparrowhawks, herons and tree-creepers.  The resultant breaks in the tree canopy will threaten this diversity.


  • No assessment has been made of the impact of the proposed development on an environmentally sensitive site adjacent to the Bird Sanctuary Pond in terms of noise pollution, light pollution or heat island effects from the presence of five new houses in place of one.


Unprecedented levels of heavy engineering adjacent to Millfield Lane:


This development would permanently change the natural environment of Millfield Lane in many ways including:


  • Replacement of natural vegetation with chain link fences and cultivated hedges.
  • Creation of stabilised bunding similar to road embankments to contain the new development
  • Use of sheet piling to stabilise basement developments is likely to divert or cut off natural water flows toward the Heath ponds, resulting in the loss of wetland habitats.
  • Wildlife corridors will be permanently lost as a result of the proposed works.


More information about this development can be found on Camden’s website here.


Supporters of this campaign include:


Camden New Journal 25 July 2019 - Heath Swimmers' Homes Protest
Further coverage in Camden New Journal highlighting environmental impact near borders of Hampstead Heath and risk of permanent increase in traffic in Millfield Lane if 5 house development allowed to go ahead.
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Camden New Journal 7 Mar 2019 - fears for Heath
Camden New Journal article 7 March 2019 "Homes Scheme - fear for Heath"
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31 July 2019 Petition has surpassed 4,500 and continues to grow.  Latest Camden New Joural article now on line here.


27 July 2019 Petition stands at 4,417, help us to get it to 5000!


July 2019 Renewed objections from Kenwood Ladies' Pond Association, Heath & Hampstead Society, Fitzroy Park Residents' Association, City of London and Highgate Conservation Area Advisory Committee uploaded to Camden Council planning portal.


7 June 2019 Further documents from applicants uploaded on council website, fail to address concerns about environmental impacts and permanent increase to traffic in Millfield Lane.


20 March 2019 Now have 4000 signatures.  Objections still being sent to Camden Council, you can see them here.


7 March 2019 Great coverage in the local press today, Camden New Journal (above) and Ham & High


5 March 2019 3000 signatures in just over a week.


1 March 2019 Surpassed 2000 signatures on St David's Day!  Support keeps coming in.


27 February 2019 We made 1000 signatures in little more than one day, petition still growing


25 February 2019 Online Petition launched and already growing!



PS:  if you live in the London Borough of Camden, please contact your local Councillor to tell them how you feel about this development too.  Quote planning reference for 55 Fitzroy Park - 2018/3672/P. Contact


Did you know they have the final say by voting on the proposals at the council's Development Control Committee meeting?  Highgate Ward Councillors may also address the planning meeting in respect of this application.

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