Stratford Olympic Park councillor urges Gove to listen to residents on MSG Sphere

Cllr Nate Higgins, Green Councillor for Stratford Olympic Park, reacting to the Government's recent intervention in the MSG Sphere application, said: "Every local representative at every level, representing different political parties, opposes the MSG Sphere. The local Green councillors, the Mayor of Newham, the London Borough of Newham planning committee, the local London Assembly Member and Assembly Environment Committee, the local MP Lyn Brown, and even the Mayor of London are united in our opposition to this project on behalf of the people we represent. The democratic will of the people could not be more clear here."

"We've all seen the MSG Sphere for what it is – a massive advertising billboard masquerading as an entertainment venue that would have inflicted misery on people's lives, including blackout blinds and incredible disruption at Stratford station. Sadiq Khan was right to reject the application on solid planning grounds. These are the reasons the LLDC should have rejected this Sphere in the first place."

"MSG have already said they're moving on and are selling the land, which Greens have now called to be used for social housing. Even they don't want this to go on further, inflicting yet more heartache on residents who have lived with the uncertainty for half a decade, and costing yet more public money. For Gove to call in the application now would be an assault on democracy and I'm certain the planning inspector would only reach the same conclusions Sadiq Khan and every local representative already has."

"I'm hopeful this intervention is simply procedural. Khan listened, and now must Gove."


Councillor Nate Higgins uses he/him pronouns.

The MSG Sphere was an application to build a new entertainment venue next to Stratford station in between two major residential developments as tall as Big Ben, which would be coated in a Sphere of LED advertising screens. It had been approved by the London Legacy Development Corporation’s Planning Decisions Committee in early 2022, despite overwhelming opposition from local representatives and residents. In November 2023 Sadiq Khan blocked the Sphere in his stage 2 decision. The Sphere was due to be built in Stratford Olympic Park ward.

Stratford Olympic Park is represented by two Green Party councillors.