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Earls Court redevelopment could be at risk

An £8m project to redevelop the Earls Court Exhibition Centre could be in jeopardy, after Labour's shock victory in the Hammersmith and Fulham Council election.

Labour pledged in its manifesto to stop project which involves bulldozing 760 homes, and building 7.500 new ones. But experts say doing so could bring the council to its knees.

Our Political Correspondent Simon Harris explains.

No evidence of criminal offence, says IPCC

IPCC say 'in the absence of any evidence to indicate that Mr Greenhalgh may have committed a criminal offence', it will not be investigating

The London Authority (GLA) police and crime panel referred a complaint to the IPCC, based on claims made by residents whose homes were facing demolition as part of the regeneration of Earls Court.

They alleged that council officials had offered priority housing to residents if they supported the regeneration.

However the IPCC said it had carried out an assessment that included consulting with police and lawyers and would not launch an investigation. It said:

"The IPCC undertook an assessment of the complaint in order to establish whether it was necessary to conduct a criminal investigation into Mr Greenhalgh.

This involved consideration of material submitted by the complainant, examination of an investigation report compiled by Hammersmith and Fulham Council's auditors,...

...consultation with officers from the Metropolitan Police Service who assessed criminal allegations made against the council officials, obtaining specialist legal advice and inquiries with one resident who was said to have information which referred directly to Mr Greenhalgh.

The IPCC has now concluded that assessment, and in the absence of any evidence to indicate that Mr Greenhalgh may have committed a criminal offence, the IPCC will not be investigating the complaint. The complaint has been referred back to the police and crime panel for its consideration."

Mr Greenhalgh, whose current role means he has the authority to appoint and sack senior officers in the capital, said when the claim was referred to the IPCC: "I am immensely proud of my record as Hammersmith and Fulham Council leader.

These baseless allegations are politically motivated. I refuse to be distracted from my important role as deputy mayor for policing and crime."

Greenhalgh claimed allegations were 'baseless'

Deputy Mayor for Policing will not face investigation Credit: Johnny Green/PA Wire/Press Association Images

The deputy mayor for policing in London will not face investigation after he was referred to the police watchdog over claims linked to his previous job as a council leader.

Stephen Greenhalgh was referred to the Independent Police Complaints Commission (IPCC) in January over the allegations from his time at Hammersmith and Fulham Council.

He said that the claims were "baseless allegations" that were "politically motivated".Today the IPCC said:

"In the absence of any evidence to indicate that Mr Greenhalgh may have committed a criminal offence, the IPCC will not be investigating the complaint."


Hammersmith Council: Thames Water is 'ripping off' consumers

Hammersmith and Fulham Council has accused Thames Water of ripping off its customers.

They claim that the super sewer isn't necessary - and that the company is being motivated by financial gain, rather than the environment.

“Water industry experts are lining up to say that Thames Water’s case for the super sewer is flawed. The Thames has won awards for its cleanliness but we all agree that it could be cleaner still. The question is how this is delivered and it appears Thames Water’s true motivation for pushing through this massive concrete tunnel has more to do with financial gain than cleanliness.”

– Cllr Stephen Greenhalgh, Hammersmith and Fulham Council Leader

The council argues that there are alternative solutions to the capital's sewage overflow problems - new drainage systems, for example, that could minimise the amount of fresh rain water entering the sewerage system.

They also claim that Thames Water stands to make "colossal returns at bill payers' expense".