In January 2021, shortly after the community learned what Ocado had planned for the site behind the school, The Nocado Campaign sent a letter to Ocado CEO Tim Steiner imploring him not to build this depot next to our school.

The letter outlined three main concerns around pollution, noise and safety. The letter was signed by several luminary professors of public and paediatric health including:

Professor Sir Stephen Holgate

Professor Stephen Holgate is Medical Research Council Clinical Professor of Immunopharmacology and Honorary Consultant Physician within Medicine at the University of Southampton. His research has focused on the roles of air pollutants, allergens and viruses in driving airway inflammation and remodelling involving injury to the epithelium and aberrant repair

Sir Stephen provided expert evidence to the Ella Roberta Adoo Kissi-Debrah inquest in 2020.

Sir Stephen is also one of three current UK Air Quality Champions.

Professor Jonathan Grigg

Jonathan Grigg is Professor of Paediatric Respiratory and Environmental Medicine at the Centre for Genomics and Child Health at Queen Mary University of London. He is a member of the UK Committee on the Medical Effects of Air Pollution (COMEAP), is the Elected Secretary of the Paediatric Assembly of the European Respiratory Society, is the Deputy Director of the Blizard Institute (Clinical), and Member of the International Advisory Board of Thorax.

Jonathan Grigg is the leading UK paediatrician in the effects of air pollution. His research has identified the mechanisms whereby inhalation of particles increases vulnerability to bacterial infection. These studies have informed the public on the risks of air pollution, and influenced national policy.

Dr Bob Klaber OBE

Dr Bob Klaber is a Yerbury parent and a Consultant General Paediatrician, Imperial College Healthcare NHS Trust. He is director of strategy, research and innovation for Imperial College Healthcare.

Professor Chris Griffiths

Chris Griffiths is Professor of Primary Care at Barts and The London School of Medicine and Dentistry at Queen Mary University of London, Acting Director of the Institute of Population Health Sciences, Centre Lead for the Centre for Primary Care and Public Health, Co-Director of the Asthma UK Centre for Applied Research, Visiting Professor at the University of Edinburgh, Principal Investigator at the MRC-Asthma UK Centre for Allergic Mechanisms in Asthma, Theme co-Lead for the NIHR Applied Research Collaboration North Thames, Fellow of the Royal College of Physicians and Fellow of the Royal College of General Practitioners.

Dr Ian Mudway

Dr Ian Mudway is a senior lecturer in the School of Public Health at Imperial, a member of the MRC-PHE Centre for Environment and Health; MRC & Asthma UK Centre in Allergic Mechanisms of Asthma and the NIHR-PHE Health Protection Research Units in Environmental Exposures and Health and Chemical and Radiation Threats and Hazards.

Currently his work is focused on understanding early life impacts of pollutants on the development of the lung and cognitive function in children living within urban populations, as well as  furthering our fundamental understanding of the mechanisms that drive these adverse effects and modify an individual’s susceptibility to air pollution.

Professor Martin Williams

Sadly, Martin passed away in September 2020. He was one of the foremost authorities on air pollution and policy in the UK. Martin headed Defra’s air quality unit until returning to academia in 2010. He was a member of the UK’s Air Quality Expert Group, a chair of the World Health Organisation’s long-range transport of air pollution committee and one of three UK air quality champions. He will be sadly missed and we are deeply thankful to him for co-signing this letter in support of our campaign.

Ocado completely ignored the plea of the the school, the community and these experts on public and paediatric health.
If Ocado ever put in a full planning application for this site, we urge Islington Council to heed the warning of these experts and reject Ocado’s application to safeguard the school now and into the future.