Click above for Planning Application submission (we submit, we submit!) plus Transport page.

2014-10-24

This-is-Money: Boris's proposed Old Oak Common to Brent Cross London Overground service apparently now supported by high-speed railways called HS2 and HS3


Link to web site

"The Government’s high speed rail 'tsar' Sir David Higgins will spark fresh controversy on Monday when he sets out details of his recommended route and stations for the Northern half of the controversial £50billion HS2 line.
"The Y-shaped second phase of the route is to run from Birmingham to Leeds in the East and Manchester in the West.

"But Sir David is also set to outline plans for an additional West to East express train route - dubbed 'HS3' - linking Liverpool, Manchester, Leeds and Hull. The idea has the support of Chancellor George Osborne who wants to stimulate economic growth in the region.

"Using it as a 'centrepiece' of his Autumn statement, he is expected to announce investment of up to £15billion to turn the North of England into an economic 'powerhouse'.

"Significantly Sir David will unveil his report – called 'Rebalancing Britain - Towards a national transport strategy' – in Leeds on Monday."




Barnet Times: "Activist cut free after padlocking herself to a gate in West Hendon estate" (West Hendon is part of Brent Cross Supplementary Planning Guidance area)


Link to web site

"A woman padlocked herself to a gate in a protest over housebuilding. Demonstrators gathered on the West Hendon estate this morning, to protest about the regeneration scheme that will see many homes demolished.

"People living on the estate will be moved out of their homes next year, to make way for 2,000 new flats being built.

"Glynis Walker is campaigning on behalf of her 85-year-old mother, Adelaid Adams, who lives in Tyrell Way, one of the blocks facing bulldozing. She padlocked herself round the neck to the gate this morning to prevent lorries from entering the building site."

Early days at a multi-billion-pound north London regeneration site! (Not like Barnet and its corrupt Brent Cross planning consent)


The Dudding Hill Line, top left, heads to Brent Cross





2014-10-23

Barnet Big Cheese says London councils 'should unite to attract more investment' (Pity about the corrupt Brent Cross planning consent then)


Link to Barnet Press

"Barnet’s chief operating officer Chris Naylor has argued that cash-strapped councils could be missing out on cross-borough development opportunities under the the capital’s existing two-tier system, which states that decisions can only be governed by the Greater London Authority or individual boroughs.

"In a new report by the Society of London Treasurers, Mr Naylor writes that local authorities in London should have 'the opportunity to establish combined authority-type arrangements of the kind available to other councils, including the ability, through these arrangements, to negotiate their own city-type deals'.

"He added that arrangements like this would have been necessary if, say, the £4-billion Brent Cross Cricklewood regeneration project had been based across the borough boundaries of Barnet, Camden and Brent." [Whereas only the downsides are felt by Camden and Brent. Which historically is what was intended.]

Barnet Press: "Labour slams 'low-pay, low-skilled' council job shop at Brent Cross shopping centre"


Link to web site
"LABOUR has slammed a council initiative aimed at getting more residents into work and its use of public money to perpetuate a 'low-pay, low-skilled, zero-hour contract economy'.

"On Monday, Barnet Council announced that, since the launch of the Brent Cross retail job shop three months ago, 80 people have found work through the 'one-stop recruitment shop' aimed at developing and filling vacancies with retailers at the shopping centre.

"The council is working with Jobcentre Plus to find residents work with retailers including Fenwick, Mothercare, Banana Republic, Timberland, Toys R Us and Victoria’s Secret.

"However, Labour group leader Alison Moore raised concerns over the fact that a large number of the jobs are paid the minimum wage and are on zero-hour contracts. She believes public funds should not be spent on recruitment for such vacancies."


Islington Gazette: Mount Not-So-Pleasant



Daily Telegraph: "Supermarket trick: 'I save £1,000 a year - and don't even buy basic'"


Link to web site

"...Shoppers don’t have to wait for the chains to start cutting prices before they see their food bills start to fall. And abandoning their local Tesco or Sainsbury's in search of the nearest Lidl and Aldi – or switching to cheaper 'value' ranges – isn't necessary either.

Some resourceful households are making huge savings on their weekly shopping bills by using a range of new tricks to buy their favourite foods at big discounts.

Samantha Shelford is one of this new breed. Miss Shelford spends just £25 a week to feed her family of three despite being fussy about buying branded products such as Heinz and Cussons:
"I have a real stigma about buying basic products. I'll never buy low-end food, and all our shampoo and baby things are branded."
"But her shopping involves more than a quick trip to Tesco. She uses a mix of smartphone apps, coupons and price promotions from all the major supermarkets to get the best price possible on her weekly shopping."

2014-10-21

[Reposted] YOU'VE MISSED IT! But don't confuse the Ninky Nonk with the proposed Brent Cross Shopping Centre expansion, from Hammy Sonn.



This is the NINKY NONK.
Link to
(can book tickets there as well)





This is the BRENT CROSS RAILWAY.
Link to
and





This is the promised
Brent Cross 'LIVING BRIDGE'.
Early design from Chapman Taylor
- traffic not shown.
(CT: If you get round to creating a fly-through,
don't forget audio of the North Circular Road.)



OLD OAK COMMON:
This is Sir Terry Farrell's Ninky Nonk,
on the London Borough of
Hammersmith & Fulham's
web site.



Byesy-wysey to HOME (see all posts).

Road.cc: "Author scores parliamentary first as cycling and motoring groups co-host history talk"


"Carlton Reid, writer of 'Roads Were Not Built For Cars', will speak about parliament's early attitudes towards the motor car"

http://road.cc/content/news/133479-author-scores-parliamentary-first-cycling-motoring-groups-co-host-history-talk
Paddle across to web site

"Carlton Reid, who recently published his book Roads Were Not Built For Cars, will speak about some of his historical findings at the Houses of Parliament next month, with his talk making some history of its own; the event will be jointly hosted by the All-Party Parliamentary Motor Group (APPMG) and the All-Party Parliamentary Cycling Group (APPCG) – the first time that has ever happened.

"Reid, executive editor of the trade website BikeBiz.com, will be speaking in the invitation-only event on 19 November about parliamentary attitudes towards motoring prior to 1905, a time when motoring had yet to become widespread.

"As his book recounts, there were very close links between cycling and many early motoring pioneers, including a number of firms that would later become household names for manufacturing cars starting out in the bicycle business.

"He also highlights how many early motorists having a background of riding bikes – far removed from the depiction of 'two tribes' of road users often reported nowadays."



At the other end of the Brent Cross Railway: Financial Times: "Cargiant and Queens Park Rangers battle to build thousands of London homes"


(The Dudding Hill freight line is not shown,
but runs from the western London Overground
station, almost due north - to Harlesden,
Neasden, Brent Cross [ha!] and
Hendon Thameslink and RAF Museum.)

"Two businesses have unveiled rival plans to build thousands of homes on the last big undeveloped site in London – even though neither has ever built a single house.

"Cargiant, the car dealership, and Premier League football club Queens Park Rangers may not be builders but they have lined up teams of planners, architects and property developers as they try to cash in on the capital's housing market.

"The prize is a semi-industrial site of more than 100 acres called Old Oak Common, in west London. At first glance, it does not look a promising site for real estate, flanked by the unremarkable districts of Acton and Harlesden, with Wormwood Scrubs prison to the south and the Grand Union Canal running through the middle.

"Yet this is London’s biggest regeneration opportunity since the Olympics. A Crossrail and HS2 superstation the size of Waterloo will help create what Boris Johnson, mayor of London, called 'an entirely new city quarter for London'. Sir Edward Lister, deputy mayor, has hailed it as 'one of the largest and most exciting schemes of its kind in London for decades' and 'a once-in-a-lifetime pportunity to transform a vast area, the size of a small London borough'.

"Whoever wins will hope to emulate developers that are building big housing projects on land that was long derelict, such as King’s Cross, Battersea Power Station, Earls Court and Royal Docks. As Cargiant is already the biggest landowner and the major employer on Old Oak Common, it would appear to have the upper hand in the contest.

"QPR and the club’s owners own not a square inch of the land but they bring clout, profile and deep pockets. AirAsia entrepreneur Tony Fernandes, QPR chairman, is part of a consortium that includes the scion of the billionaire Gnanalingam family, which is the major shareholder of Malaysian ports operator Westports Holdings.

"The QPR team believe their plan to move out of their 18,000-seat ground in Shepherd’s Bush for a new, multipurpose stadium seating 40,000 on the Old Oak Common site is in tune with the regeneration policies of the mayor and local politicians. Their scheme promises 24,000 homes and 55,000 jobs in a project they call 'New Queens Park' – what Mr Fernandes describes as 'much more than just a stadium'.

"The master plan will be produced by Farrells and Tony Spencer, the property consultant who found Arsenal the site for its Emirates stadium and helped the club to become a one-off property developer to help fund the project.

"But Cargiant’s trump card is that it is already on Old Oak Common, where it employs 700 people and sells 40,000 cars a year, and has been there for 35 years. With PLP in charge of its master plan and First Base and Lipton Rogers its developers, Cargiant’s scheme would see it relocate its dealership and build 9,500 homes.

"The Greater London Authority sees the potential of a stadium as part of any redevelopment and has talked to QPR. But it will not attempt to strong-arm Cargiant to give way. 'The mayor hopes that an agreement between all parties can be reached,' Sir Edward said.

"Property industry figures downplay QPR’s chances of snatching Cargiant’s land out from underneath them. The club has little chance of obtaining a compulsory purchase order to force Cargiant to sell, according to one experienced planning adviser who did not want to be named because of his involvement in previous plans for the site. 'If the Cargiant plan is consistent with the mayor’s vision and they are making progress, then there would be no grounds [for an order],' he said.

"Cargiant is owned by Geoffrey Michael Warren, who is not a football fan – though his company once sponsored QPR and the company’s managing director, Tony Mendes, is a season-ticket holder. 'They [QPR] don’t own a blade of grass on Old Oak Common,' said Mr Mendes, adding that a football stadium in the middle of the site would 'sterilise' the area.

"QPR has responded by saying the future of Old Oak requires all to work for the common good, not in 'unco-ordinated and piecemeal development of individual land holdings', pointing out that Arsenal did not own any of the land it eventually acquired for its north London stadium.

"However, despite property industry speculation that Mr Warren is merely trying to inflate the price Cargiant will eventually get for the land, Mr Mendes dismisses any thought of the company being bought out. There were talks at one stage but no more, he says. 'We won’t engage with them again – we are too far down the road'."

Politics.co.uk: "The pro-car lobby is trying to destroy London"


Vroom to the web site

"In 28 out of 32 London boroughs, motor vehicle traffic fell significantly over the past 13 years, with the biggest falls in central London.

"This shift was not an accident. It was a deliberate result of public policy.

"Under Ken Livingstone billions were spent on public transport in an attempt to get people out of their cars. Livingstone's combination of congestion charging and new transport connections was hugely successful. It was a remarkable achievement over a period when the number of people living in the capital boomed.

"The long consensus, pushed by road lobbyists and the government alike, that car use would continue to rise inexorably had been broken.

"This was a huge victory for those who wanted to make London a more liveable city. It was also a major threat to those whose financial interest lay in maintaining the status quo of putting more and more cars on the road.

"For some time it looked like the battle was being won. Sadly the current Conservative mayor of London, Boris Johnson, has decided to abandon this agenda."



The new John Lewis Brent Cross entrance!
(Hammerson's promised Spaghetti Junction
at Brent Cross)

The Guardian: Housing: "Lyons and London"


"Has Labour’s housing review failed to recommend the very measures the capital most needs?"

Link to web site

"Four paragraphs of Sir Michael Lyons’s review of the nation’s housing problems and how to fix them are devoted exclusively to London, but pretty much all its 174 pages are very relevant to the capital. But is it missing some crucial bits? Alex Hilton of Generation Rent thinks the gaps numerous and vast:
"It's not that the report has a lack of ambition, the problem seems to be that the ambition was not to solve the housing crisis but to come up with a set of proposals that neither have a negative impact on house prices nor have any cost implications for the Treasury...

So this is Labour’s problem. They don't want to spend any money and they don’t want to interfere with a failed housing market. This has left the members of the Lyons group with an unenviable straightjacket and they broadly did the best they could given the constraints. Though even then, you can see a lack of inspiration in the recommendations."

[Reposted] Hammerson's (or more likely, someone else's) Waste Incinerator: Still planned for Brent Cross

This already has planning permission!
(Click to enlarge; the labels have been added to the original.
Barnet is to the left of the A5, Brent to the right.)




Link to PDF file

A BXC document (dated 1 December 2011) has been produced by LB of Barnet.
"A new rail linked WHF to replace and significantly enhance the existing Hendon Waste Transfer Station (HWTS) is proposed on a site fronting Edgware Road (A5) and Geron Way. This will be secured in partnership with the North London Waste Authority (NLWA) whose existing HWTS will close [and is presumably this tax-haven-based 'Cricklewood' site, alongside this tax-haven-based Willesden site].

"A Combined Heat and Power (CHP) plant will be built close to Staples Corner [with permission for a 140-metre chimney, near the shopping centre].

It is intended (subject to feasibility studies and further statutory approvals in relation to detailed design and operating processes) to use a refuse derived fuel supplied by the new Waste Handling Facility (WHF), which would fulfil high standards of on-site renewable energy generation."

2014-10-20

Evening Standard: "City comment: Shareholders must speak for capitalism"


Sleaze to the web site

"Something has gone wrong with capitalism. That remark was made to me recently not by a Marxist agitator, but by a former Tory minister — one who also happens to have a long and successful track record in business.

"... Directors of FTSE 100 companies now earn 120 times the average pay of their employees, according to IDS, compared to 47 times in 2000.

"That reflects a pendulum swing since the late 1970s, when the multiple was only about 20 times, and undervalued British executives were generally demoralized as a result. It also reflects the globalisation of companies in the index, including mining giants whose workforces in Africa and elsewhere typically earn very little.

"But it's striking that in a period when average UK earnings have been rising at less than 1% per annum — and real wages, adjusted for inflation, stand below where they were in 2008 — executive pay rose by more than a fifth in the past year."

Link to Paul Mason,
The Guardian

"The unending economic crisis makes us feel powerless – and paranoid"
"In economics, big, uncontrollable forces are the norm; but by understanding them – by charting the rules of the game we’re supposed to play – we gain the ability to act. So, as one Lehman trader anecdotally told his new recruit before the crash: “Stay here, keep your head down, do nothing extraordinary and in 20 years you will have a Lamborghini, just like me.” Agency in a normal capitalist system is about knowing the rules.

"But in a disrupted system, power flies to the extremes. The majority of people feel powerless because the rules no longer apply: you can keep your head down, do nothing extraordinary, and still leave the building with only a cardboard box. Meanwhile, for a tiny minority, disrupted systems seem to endow them with kryptonite powers.

"Such people set up companies and close them down with ease, long before any requirement to file accounts comes due. A whole new international class of scam-trepreneurs has grown up: running island nightclubs, free porn sites, car-wash businesses we never realised we needed, and finance companies for which there is no adequate label."

4 Nov and 9 Nov: Finchley Society: Greenways to Osidge


Greenways to Osidge Slide Show 4-11-14-2



Greenways to Osidge Walk 9-11-14



Barnet Times: "Mixed reaction to Brent Cross Regeneration plans"

Link to web site

"Initial plans for a multi-billion pound regeneration scheme at Brent Cross shopping centre have polarised opinion.

"More than 100 people attended an open exhibition at Hendon Leisure Centre, in Marble Drive, Hendon, to get a glimpse of the £4billion scheme that will transform Brent Cross shopping centre and the surrounding area.

"The plans form part of a scheme to turn Brent Cross Shopping Centre, in Prince Charles Drive, Hendon, into the 'finest centre in Britain' [sic].


[Reposted] Out-of-Town Brent Cross Shopping Centre: From congestion hell to, er, 'living bridge' and congestion hell?

(Click to enlarge images)
1996
(multi-storey car parks along all four sides;
plan finally rejected at appeal in 2002)


2011
(rest of 'town centre' plan abandoned indefinitely;
now just 'shops and leisure')



Link to:


2014-10-16

Broken Barnet: "Mrs Angry tries her best to disturb the composure of Mr Travers and Cllr Cornelius"


Link to Broken Barnet

Question from Mrs Angry: "In view of the unprecedented level of criticism levelled at the standard of governance and legal services in this authority, does the Chief Executive still retain the full confidence of the Chair, and the Conservative administration, and if not, have they asked for his resignation, or has he offered to resign?"

A: "Yes"
      "N/A"
      "N/A"

"Oh dear. Rather short on information, wasn't it?

"Mrs Angry took her place at the table.

"She confessed herself to be rather astonished by the fact that the Chief Executive - no offence, Mr Travers, she murmured, soothingly, in his direction, in case his feelings were hurt -that the Chief Executive still enjoyed the full confidence of Councillor Cornelius. 

"What would happen if, say, it was discovered that the caretakers of the Town Hall had, since April 2013 or thereabouts, been in the habit of leaving the doors and windows of the building unlocked, and open to intruders, every night (which they would not, and here Mrs Angry must take the opportunity to say how very polite and conscientious they are). Would they not be instantly dismissed?

"And yet: here we were, with a Chief Executive who had allowed the authority to proceed without the protection of an adequate legal service, or rule of governance, and still he retained his job, and the support of the Tory leader. And despite the fact that, as the response to Q 35 makes clear:
"As Head of paid Service, the Chief Executive is ultimately responsible for all officer activity."
"He is surely responsible, ultimately responsible, for all serious failures by those officers, therefore, and yet ... Maryellen Salter carries the can, and the more senior officer, who has a legal duty to ensure compliance with all statutory requirements, goes scot free. 

"Hmm. 

"Cornelius made one of his pained faces, the one that looks as if he might be suffering from prolonged constipation, but usually signifies a determination to avoid answering an awkward question. 

"In this instance, he decided to go further than merely avoiding a response, and produced an observation which was quite breathtaking in its display of indifference to the significance of Ms Lloyd-Jones' findings: 

" 'Mistakes will happen,' he said, shrugging his shoulders."

Local Government Chronicle: Barnet big cheese: "Call for London combined authorities" (and Brent Cross Cricklewood difficulties)



"London boroughs should be allowed to set up combined authorities, the Society of London Treasurers has said.

"A report by the group – Capitalising on the Boroughs – said new forms of governance would be required in London to implement the type of greater fiscal devolution that was being widely discussed following the Scottish referendum.

"But local government minister Kris Hopkins has questioned the proposal, saying an additional tier of governance 'does not make sense' for the capital.

"Report author Chris Naylor, chief operating officer and director of finance at Barnet LBC, told LGC:
"It's almost as if the policy zeitgeist is that we have sorted governance out in London and if you are in Manchester, what you want is what London has got.

That is understandable, in a way. But that assumes that the combined authority in London is the Greater London Authority.

The point we are making is that if you look at growth opportunities and the governance of those opportunities, someone is borrowing some money, investing that money and managing the returns.

There are only two levels of authority in London at present that can do that, which are the GLA or an individual London borough.

This implies that the opportunities are only at the whole of London level, or they exist within the boundaries of an individual London borough. Our report is saying that there are some instances where that opportunity will exist on a cross-borough basis."
"An example, said Mr Naylor, would have been if the Brent Cross shopping centre had been located on a cross-borough site, requiring different boroughs to act together on site development, transport and regeneration. [It would certainly have made it a lot less corrupt.]

"He added that the speed at which discussions were taking place on fiscal devolution made it urgent to resolve the issue of combined authority arrangements in London.

"However, local government minister Kris Hopkins said he disagreed with the approach. He said:
"The government is supportive of more joint working across London boroughs, especially after such locally led successes such as the tri-borough initiative.

London already has an upper tier of local government in the form of the Greater London Authority, so inserting an additional combined authority tier does not make sense.

But we are open to representations on how the likes of boroughs, London Councils and the GLA, and indeed other London public services, can better work together to save money and improve frontline services."
"The Local Democracy, Economic Development and Construction Act 2009 allows the communities secretary to approve combined authorities where councils believe they will facilitate joint working on such matters as transport, regeneration and economic development. However, the legislation excludes London.

"Combined authorities have been set up in the north-east, Merseyside, South Yorkshire, West Yorkshire and Greater Manchester."

2014-10-15

Daily Telegraph: "Boris Johnson: opponents of foreign investment in London property are 'illogical'"


Blunder to the web site

"Boris Johnson defended the injection of overseas wealth into the London housing market and rubbished 'xenophobic left-wing commentators' who want to 'fight them off with pitch forks'.

"To a packed room at the inaugural UK MIPIM property conference, the Major of London promised the delivery of 500,000 affordably-priced new homes for Londoners within the next ten years.

"In his key note speech to the British property industry, Mr Johnson said there was 'no logic' to bashing overseas investment but that there is a 'social injustice' that Londoners cannot afford to live anywhere near their place of work, following a 20pc increase in property prices in the capital over the last year."



Link to web site

Get-West-London:
"Protestors gathered outside the UK’s biggest property trade show today to campaign against the sell-off of social housing in the capital"

"About 100 protesters from all over London and even some from Spain rallied the inaugural MIPIM UK conference which started today at Olympia, and is normally held in Cannes, France.

"There were chants of ‘homes for people not for profit’ and ‘social housing not social cleansing', as around 4,000 property developers, architects, investors, agents and local government representatives queued up to make their way into the conference centre.

"Mayor of London Boris Johnson gave the opening speech at 10am but protesters hoping to catch a glimpse of the mayor, who much of their vitriol was directed at, were disappointed when he chose not to enter through the main door."

The Guardian: "At yacht parties in Cannes, councils have been selling our homes from under us"


"Property developers wining and dining town hall executives - it’s a jaunt so lavish as to be almost comic"

Link to web site

"Starting [today], 4,000 men - and, yes, they’ll mainly be men - will gather in a giant hall in London. Among them will be major property developers, billionaire investors and officials of your local council or one nearby.

"And what they’ll discuss will be the sale of public real estate, prime land already owned by you and me, to the private sector. The marketing people brand this a property trade show, but let’s drop the euphemisms and call it the sales fair to flog off Britain.

"For the past 25 years, this conference – Mipim for short – has been held in Cannes. It’s a jaunt so lavish as to be almost comic – where big money developers invite town hall executives for secret discussions aboard private yachts, and whose regulars boast that they get through more champagne than all the liggers at the film festival.

"Suitably oiled-up, local officials open talks with multinational developers to sell council housing estates and other sites. All this networking is so lucrative for the builders that they even fly over council staff. Last year, Australia's Lend Lease paid for Southwark’s boss, Peter John, to attend Cannes.

"This is the same Lend Lease to which Southwark sold the giant Heygate estate at a knockdown price: 1,100 council flats in inner London to be demolished and replaced with 2,500 units, of which only 79 will be for 'social rent'.

"... Against that backdrop even the smallest victory looks historic. Up on the northwestern perimeter of London, in West Hendon, other council residents are fighting the borough of Barnet over the redevelopment of their estate on terms that suit the developer, Barratt Developments, not locals. Just under 700 homes are to be smashed up to make way for 2,000 new units. Just under 1,500 will be sold privately: the rest will be “affordable”, which in the doublespeak of housing means unaffordable.

"Barnet council cannot say how many social-rental homes will be provided, but it is clear that whatever provision there is will be grudging. With a quick Google you’ll find a video of the chair of Barnet’s housing committee, Tom Davey, claiming that his council is providing affordable housing because people are buying them. An objector points out that only the wealthy can afford them and the young Conservative thumps the desk and says: 'Those are the people we want'."

Barnet Times (Hammerson criticism), Barnet Press (Hammerson criticism), Evening Standard (Old Oak Common article and 'Hendon response')





(8 October)

Evening Standard: Call to make rail hub 'Stratford of West'

THE planned rail hub at Old Oak Common needs to be the anchor for a 'Stratford of the West' and not just a place to change trains, a Transport for London official has said.

Michele Dix, TfL’s managing director of planning, told the Standard that good local rail connections would be just as important to the area as the HS2 and Crossrail stations.

She said:
"It needs people who live in the west and south-west of London to get to it not just to get on to HS2 but to get to work.

"[We don’t want the junction at Old Oak Common] just being a great big railway interchange like Crewe where you just change trains.

We want to ensure it supports homes and jobs and so we are working with colleagues to ensure that space for development can be made available but also the local connections.

We are consulting on the Overground. We are very keen to have a connection to link it to HS2 and Crossrail. That makes the whole area more of a centre, a bit like Stratford, which has a lot of connections into it."
"When HS2’s Birmingham-to-London section opens in 2026, around one third of the southbound passengers will change at Old Oak Common to connect to Crossrail.

"Old Oak’s proposed Crossrail station, on the new £16 billion line between Paddington and Acton Mainline, could be built in the early 2020s"



2014-10-14

Barnet: "Unitas Efficit Ministerium" ("Grab What You Can, Before They Find You Out")








Croydon Advertiser: "Investors given guided tour [including by Hammerson] to show the best Croydon has to offer"


Link to web site

"GUIDED tours might be more synonymous with pensioners’ holidays, but potential investors in Croydon are being wooed with just that.

"Representatives from a diverse range of businesses, from housing associations to equity firms, all took part in the fifth tour last month, which is designed to win their hearts and minds and convince them that Croydon is the best place for them to do business.

"... One group hoping to play a key role in that improvement is the Croydon Partnership, the joint venture between Westfield and Hammerson to transform the town's retail centre, which gave an update on the progress.

"Speaking on last month's tour, Carolyn Kenney, development director of Hammerson [not according to the Hammerson web site - or has Mike McGuinness got the boot? Or maybe there are LOTS of development directors!], said they were now looking to start on site in early 2016, with the intention to open in autumn 2019. She said:
"We are confident that with the investment we bring, we can reinvigorate the town centre and it will mean other people are prepared to come into Croydon and invest and develop.

At least we are not operating here under a corrupt planning consent regime, unlike at Brent Cross." [She didn't say that.]


BBC: "Which Riba Stirling Prize 2014 building is your favourite?" (Bet the New Parts of Brent Cross Shopping Centre, Expanding under Barnet's Corrupt Planning Consent Covering Several Square Miles, Never Features)



"The UK's most prestigious prize for new buildings, the Riba Stirling Prize, will be awarded on 16 October. BBC News Online, in partnership with Riba, is taking a look at each of the contenders for the prize. The London School of Economics Saw Swee Hock Student Centre was designed by O'Donnell and Tuomey Architects.

"Standing in the middle of medieval London streets and period properties, its sharp edges and irregular geometric facets stand out from its surroundings. At the same time, the red brick structure has also been designed to fit in.

"The Royal Institute of British Architects (Riba) has described it as a 'lesson in mobilising the limitations of a site into a startlingly original building which makes a massive contribution to its townscape' [can you mobilise a limitation?]."

2014-10-13

Broken Barnet: "Giving it (not very) Large: Barnet's new interim, part-time, temporary Monitoring Officer steps into the breach. Sort of."


"Our new, part-time, interim, temporary Monitoring Officer, Peter Large, on loan from Westminster City Council (hours to be negotiated), clearly looking forward to his association with Broken Barnet. Pic courtesy of Nutsville.com"

Link to Mrs Angry's Broken Barnet

" 'So ...', as our former Monitoring Officer would begin all her remarks ... 'So: where were we?'

"Ah yes: our former Monitoring Officer, see? 
Gone, but not forgotten. 
Gone where, Mrs Angry? I hear you ask. 
Not sure, but it is 'by mutual consent'.

"All the best things happen by mutual consent, don't they? In the bedroom, in the boardroom, in the free world, where life continues without the bondage of contractual obligation, or the frisson of fear that comes from that imbalance of power between partners, personal, or corporate.

"Between the boundaries of Broken Barnet, however, the ties that bind are usually stretched tight as tight can be, and consent is neither sought, nor granted. When push comes to shove: off you go.

"Bye bye.

"Who knows what happened in the case of Ms Maryellen Salter, sometime Monitoring Officer, now replaced by an 'interim' MO, although not replaced, we were told, until Thursday, 9th October, after the most almighty reaction to the events that led to that damning report by Claer Lloyd-Jones into the collapse of governance and legal services in this benighted borough."

2014-10-12

London Communications Agency: "First look at [the result of corrupt planning consent] for £4bn Brent Cross Cricklewood regeneration" (It's not the first look.)



  • "Come and see the first detailed designs for creating a new town centre at a series of public exhibitions through October."
  • "This first stage includes renewing and reviving local parks, major improvements to local roads and junctions for all road users [carbon emissions?], a landmark new Living Bridge to connect local communities and delivering of the first new homes [by demolishing over 200 other ones]."
  • "All of this will pave the way for a new town centre in North London with a transformed Brent Cross Shopping Centre at its heart [which is all we've really wanted since 1996; the 'town centre' business is fluff]."
  • "Oh, I so like my inappropriate use of bullet points!" [Simon didn't say that.]

  • Further dates:
    Crown Moran Hotel, Sala Room, 142-152 Cricklewood Broadway, London NW2 3ED
    • Tuesday 14 October, 12pm – 8pm
    • Wednesday 15 October, 12pm – 8pm
    Hendon Leisure Centre, Studio 1, Marble Drive, Brent Cross, London NW2 1XQ
    • Friday 17 October, 12pm – 8pm
    • Saturday 18 October, 11am – 5pm

2014-10-11

The Guardian: "We can't let lobbyists destroy London's segregated cycle lane plans"


"The main political parties and 60 big employers support 'Crossrail for bikes' – yet behind the scenes there are intense efforts to poison the project, says Chris Boardman"

Scoot to the web site

"There is a battle going on in central London right now which will decide its future, and perhaps the future of every other city centre in Britain. Officially, it’s about cycling – in particular, Boris Johnson’s plan for a new segregated cycle superhighway from Tower Hill to Hyde Park Corner. In reality, it is a battle about health, about noise, about pollution, about the kind of cities we want to live in – and the kind of politics we want to have.

"All the political parties support the superhighway scheme. So do more than 60 big London employers, including RBS, Deloitte, Orange and Unilever. Two years ago, more than a million Londoners elected Johnson on a promise to 'implement three Dutch-style cycle schemes [with] segregated bike tracks' and 'complete the superhighways to Dutch standards'.

"What the mayor proposes is big by cycling standards, but not that big by most other standards. It involves converting one of the four traffic lanes into a cycle track on Upper Thames Street and the Victoria Embankment, a stretch of road all of two and a half miles long. Some motorists’ journeys will take longer, but most of the delays are small and some journeys will actually be quicker. The average delay along the route at the busiest two peak hours is 1 minute 26 seconds."

[Reposted] Mike McGuinness: "Do I HAVE to front the Brent Cross Cricklewood Public Exhibition 2014? Can't JJ - we pay him enough! Oh, he's a busted flush, is he? Gawd, give me the slanted wording then, London Communications Public Relations..."



"Hello, Gullible Punters! [He didn't say that.]

"I am pleased to inform you that the Brent Cross Cricklewood development partners, having gained planning consent for the masterplan earlier this year, will shortly begin a series of public exhibitions showcasing the detailed designs for the first stage of the regeneration.

"This first part of the scheme will:
  • Renew and revive Clitterhouse Playing Fields and Claremont Park creating two beautiful community parks, as well as starting to create Brent Riverside Park
  • Make major improvements to local roads and junctions for the benefits of drivers, pedestrians and cyclists
  • Prepare the ground for a new town centre on either side of the North Circular, linked by a landmark new Living Bridge.
["Why aren't we saying anything about the !#@$%& shopping centre? And the waste incinerator? And the extra 29,000 cars per day? Oh, we deliberately don't mention 'em! I've never understood PR."]
 
"The public exhibitions will start on Friday 10 October at Brent Cross Shopping Centre and continue until Saturday 18 October, visiting two other venues in the area – the Crown Moran Hotel on Cricklewood Broadway, and the Hendon Leisure Centre. Details of the public exhibition times and venues can be found below. ["Did you see wot I wrote for the Commons Select Committee? They didn't ask me again. Funny that."]

"The exhibitions will provide an opportunity to learn more about Brent Cross Cricklewood and how it will be delivered over the coming years as well as ask any questions and meet the project team. ["Do we mention that Hammerson is clearing off as soon as possible, and Barnet is trying to find another poor punter to keep the miserable show on the road? Oh, we keep shtum about that? Mmm."]

"In the meantime if you would like any further information about the plans, please do not hesitate to contact the consultation team on 0800 881 5303 (freephone) or email info@brentcrosscricklewood.com. Our plans will also be available on our website www.brentcrosscricklewood.com from the 10 October. ["And not a second before. We're no fools!"]

"I look forward to seeing you." ["Do we do irony, then?"]

Mike McGuinness,
Development Director ["Can I go now?"]




BRENT CROSS SHOPPING CENTRE
Centre Court, Prince Charles Drive, London, NW4 3FP
on
Friday 10 October, 10am – 8pm
Saturday 11 October, 9am – 8pm
Sunday 12 October, 12pm – 6pm


CROWN MORAN HOTEL
Sala Room, 142-152 Cricklewood Broadway, London NW2 3ED
on
Tuesday 14 October, 12pm – 8pm
Wednesday 15 October, 12pm – 8pm


HENDON LEISURE CENTRE
Studio 1, Marble Drive, Brent Cross, London, NW2 1XQ
on
Friday 17 October, 12pm – 8pm
Saturday 18 October, 11am – 5pm