Croydon Council has said it is eager to work with Stanhope and Schroders to deliver the long awaited scheme on the Gateway site in East Croydon, after the termination of its agreement with rival developer Arrowcroft at midnight last night.

The council had originally supported Arrowcroft’s arena-led plans for the site, however the Secretary of State rejected this plan six weeks ago.

The pair had six weeks to mount a legal challenge to the Secretary of State’s refusal of planning permission. Having not made this challenge, the pair’s agreement terminated last night and the council is now talking to Stanhope and Schroders about taking their rival 1m sq ft Ruskin Square scheme forwards.

Councillor Tim Pollard said: ‘By there being no challenge to the public inquiry decisions, the opportunity exists for the Stanhope Schroder partnership to make its mark in Croydon through the early development of the site.

‘What matters now is building a positive relationship with Stanhope so that their scheme can be taken forward on what is the most prestigious building site in the town.

‘The Gateway site has stood empty for far too long – a real blot on our landscape and an unwelcome sight for every train passenger passing through East Croydon. Now that planning issues have finally been resolved there is no longer any obstacle preventing its redevelopment. A chapter has closed and a new one opened – with a great opportunity for Stanhope to do something special for Croydon. Our early talks with the developer will aim at achieving a happy ending.’