Click above for what became the consented plan, plus Transport page.


TKTS Brent Cross now closed, as of 26 April 2012

"The curtain comes down on TKTS Brent Cross, but the show goes on.

"After almost four years at Brent Cross shopping centre, we’re sorry to say that TKTS Brent Cross has now closed. But don’t worry, you can still buy your half price and discount theatre tickets from TKTS in Leicester Square, at the Clocktower building."


"As a thank you to all our customers at Brent Cross, we’re giving you a voucher to save an extra £3 per ticket at TKTS Leicester Square, where you’ll find the same wide variety of London’s West End shows. Pick this up from the Brent Cross information desk near Marks & Spencers, on the upper level throughout May."
Terms & Conditions: Save £3 per ticket. Valid on half price and discounted tickets only. Two tickets per voucher. Not valid on full price tickets or with any other offer. Valid until 31/12/2012 at TKTS Leicester Square. Sales are at the discretion of TKTS staff. Subject to availability.

Where to buy Theatre Tokens at Brent Cross

"You can still buy theatre Tokens in Brent Cross, from WHSmith on the Lower Mall. Alternatively, you can buy online, over the phone, and at participating theatres.

"Theatre Tokens are the perfect gift vouchers for any occasion. With no expiry date the recipient can pick exactly when and where to exchange them from over 240 theatres nationwide, including all of London's West End."

NEW: Brent Cross Kids Club! EVERY SATURDAY, 11AM-1PM & 2PM-4PM

"Brent Cross shopping centre is pleased to announce the launch of over [sic] very own Kids Club!"

"From 5 May, we'll be hosting fun-filled events every Saturday, at 11am – 1pm, and 2pm – 4pm, to keep your little rascals entertained!

"Activities will include everything from arts and crafts with Makendoo, and cookie-decorating with Millie’s Cookies, to bath-bomb-making with Lush, and much much more!

"Brent Cross general manager, Tom Nathan, said:
“We asked our shoppers how they felt about their weekends, and it’s obvious that for many the fun has gone out of them. We wanted to put the fun back into weekends, so we’re launching the Brent Cross Kids Club, and it won’t cost parents a penny."

Coming up:

Saturday 5 May – Carnival themed arts & crafts with Makendoo. Take your creations home and have your very own carnival!

Saturday 12 May – Bath-bomb-making with Lush. Lush are making bath time fun by helping you create a Spaceship-shaped bath bomb, with popping candy included!

Saturday 19 May – Cookie decorating with Millie’s Cookies. Come and be taught the art of icing by the professionals at Millie’s, and take home your treat home for tea!

"Brent Cross Kids Club is aimed at children between 3 and 13, but of course, everyone is welcome! Best of all? It's free. Entertaining the kids shouldn't be a chore. So pop down and get involved in some family fun."

"Brent Cross Kids Club will be situated next to John Lewis on the Lower Mall, near Costa and Baby Gap."
"Note to adults: activities are subject to availability, and limited to one turn per child; please stay to enjoy the activities with your children; there are lots of fun events, and unfortunately some may not be suitable if your child has allergies; we may occasionally have to change activities at a moment’s notice and it isn’t always possible to notify people, but we will do our best."

Additional text from Barnet Times.

The Times: "Mayor jeered for ‘insulting’ cyclists"

Link to web site
(does not appear to be behind any pay wall !)

"Boris Johnson was today jeered at The Times’s cycling hustings for stereotyping cyclists as dreadlocked, lycra-clad men who jump red lights. The incumbent mayor was also criticised by his Labour opponent Ken Livingstone for jeopardising cyclist safety, with high transport fares that make it cheaper to travel by car.

"Liberal Democrat candidate Brian Paddick compared Mr Johnson to an 'irresponsible general'. Green Party Jenny Jones pledged to extend 20mph zones to ten boroughs within London, while adding that London has 'gone backwards' on the 'scandal' of air pollution."

"Mr Johnson said he would appoint a cycling commissioner, and press on with TfL’s review of 500 dangerous junctions in the capital."

BBC: "Is Mr Potato Head to blame for 'pester power' ads?"

(Click on image for BBC story)
Hammerson 2011 submission to Parliament:
"There is a danger that [regeneration] could be side-tracked by
agitators, and that NIMBYS will undermine the process. Therefore, 
it is key to have strong local leadership in the Local Authority
at Leader and Chief Executive level." [pictured above]

"It is 60 years since Mr Potato Head starred in the world's first television toy advert. Did the plastic spud unleash the era of pester power?

"It was an innovation that, by pitching directly to the product's juvenile target market, ushered in a post-war era in which children were specifically targeted as a consumer demographic.

"... In the UK, the Advertising Standards Authority, an independent body which oversees the industry, has strict rules on what can be shown in commercials. Under the Committee of Advertising Practice code, adverts must not "encourage [children] to ask their parents, guardians or other persons to buy or enquire about a product or service for them".

"Yet fears persist, leading Prime Minister David Cameron to propose an education programme to promote awareness of advertising techniques, as well as banning the use of under-16s as 'brand ambassadors' in peer-to-peer marketing campaigns'."


The Cycling Lobby! "10,000 brave the rain to tell politicians London is ready for a Dutch-style cycling revolution"

Link to London Cycling Campaign

"A herd of zebras, a boatful of sailors in oilskins, a pack of bandits on bikes, along with hundreds of families and children waving flags and balloons helped make the 10,000-strong Big Ride a spectacular success, sending a powerful message to the capital’s and the country’s politicians.

"The massive crowd, representing every age and background, braved at-times atrocious weather to be part of the UK’s largest-ever bike ride, supporting safer streets for cycling, organised by the London Cycling Campaign."

Back Boris (or Ken, or Brian, or Jenny,...)

Link to PDF about orbital rail at Brent Cross
(we knew you'd be interested)

Part of originally proposed route -
possibly now from Old Oak Common to Alexandra Palace,
and maybe a mixture of Overground trains and light-rail

There is further material on the 'TRANSPORT' page.

[Reposted from early April] London Shopping Centre Mess - Boris Steps In

Link to Croydon Guardian

"Launching his mayoral election economic manifesto, Boris Johnson has said he will work to mediate in the growing row over development of the Whitgift Centre.

"This week, Centrale [and Brent Cross] owners Hammerson was appointed to redevelop the town centre shopping mall, but rival bidders Westfield countered by stating they believe they still have a stake in the site, after reaching an agreement with freeholder the Whitgift Foundation."

... ...

"... Boris said:
"Investing in Croydon’s tramlink is key. We are looking at expansion of the tram link and are determined to do it."

Link to web page and PDF file

"Today I launched my economy manifesto, and I wanted you to be one of the first to read it."

"We are going through tough economic times, and Londoners are understandably concerned about their jobs and the cost of living. That is why my priorities over the last four years have been cutting waste and bureaucracy at City Hall and ensuring your tax money is put where Londoners want to see it spent.

"Despite the impact of the economic downturn, London has remained resilient. The employment rate has grown faster in London than anywhere else in the country. The capital continues to be the economic engine room of the nation, with Londoners generating around 22% of the UK’s economy (measured by gross value added). This has been driven not only by the large multinationals located here and our financial services, but also by London’s growing creative and digital industries, its small and medium enterprises, and its sole traders.

"The millions of people who work in business here have all, in one way or another, contributed to London’s phenomenal success and will contribute to the sustained recovery of the UK economy as a whole.

"My predecessor had no economic growth plan for London."

[Reposted from last June] Haringey Journal: "Tram plans for Wood Green, if Ken Livingstone takes City Hall"

Link to Haringey Journal

"Ken Livingstone, the London mayoral contender, revealed his vision of a network of trams linking north London suburbs - similar to the Croydon Tramlink in south London - during a campaign trail visit to Wood Green and Tottenham on Monday.

"He said trams could stretch from Wembley and Ealing to Wood Green, so commuters are no longer forced to travel into London and out again."

(An independent 'DLR for north London' proposal,
via Brent Cross, Finchley, and Arnos Grove [and/or Alexandra Palace],
and based on redevelopment areas, is described here.)

Amazon Locker: "Seattle... New York... Brent Cross!"

"We're pleased to welcome the new Amazon Locker to Brent Cross! Amazon Locker allow you to pick up your Amazon orders at a time that's convenient for you right here at Brent Cross, instead of having your package delivered to your home.

"Once your parcel arrives at the Brent Cross Amazon Locker, you'll receive an email notification and a unique pick-up code. At the pick-up location you'll find a set of lockers, one of which will contain your parcel. Enter your pick-up code and the locker will open!

"The Brent Cross Amazon Locker are located at the top of the escalators near the food court and Level 3 multi-storey car park."

Following London Communication Agency's less than successful Brent Cross association: Simon Hoggart on PR outfits

Link to The Guardian

"... One element of the Jeremy Hunt - BSkyB yarn did ring true. Public relations people [like London Communications Agency] usually live in a fantasy world of their own.

 "Everything is wildly exaggerated. 'X is really on board with us on this' means 'I have spoken at a party to X, and he didn't reply with a screed of abuse.'

"'Z could not be more enthusiastic' is code for 'I took Z for lunch, and when I raised your bid over dessert, he didn't actually gob in my tiramisu.

"To deceive others, it often helps to first deceive yourself."

Link to Sunday Telegraph:


Daily Telegraph: "Bauhaus: two German towns that gave the world 'total art’"

Link to Daily Telegraph

"With 400 works on display, the Bauhaus exhibition that opens at the Barbican Art Gallery in London next Thursday is likely to be a blockbuster. Star attractions range from the globe-shaped Wagenfeld table lamp and the tubular Marcel Breuer chair to paintings by Klee and Kandinsky. Many items look startlingly contemporary.

"What puzzles me is how flat-roofed houses and sleek skyscrapers were dreamt up among the Renaissance and Baroque of Weimar. ... In the chaos that reigned in Germany after the First World War, the 36 year-old architect Walter Gropius wanted artists to embrace the industrial world and create a new way of life. At the Bauhaus (Building School), he integrated the arts and crafts with technology."

Link to web site

The Guardian: "Bauhaus at the Barbican: art as life" 

"...There was, however, growing opposition to the Bauhaus, with its progressive artistic ideals, as rightwing elements took over in the Weimar state government. Financial support was withdrawn from the school. Gropius made the decision to move the Bauhaus further north, to the industrial estate of Dessau, encouraged by support from the local mayor and by the prospect of links between the school and local industry.

"Gropius designed a new building for the Bauhaus in Dessau, a radiantly inspiring functional design with a great glass curtain-wall rising high above the city. The interior was fitted by the Bauhaus workshops. The building was immediately hugely influential. It's one of the real masterworks of international modernist design."

London Bauhaus houses,
immediately north of Stanmore Underground station

Barnet Times: "Brent Cross shoppers encouraged to give more to charity"

Link to Barnet Times

"A campaign inspiring people to give more to charity was launched at Brent Cross Shopping Centre yesterday.

"Hundreds of people pledged to give money and time to good causes.

"A wall in the centre is covered with photos of supporters and their promises."

The Guardian: "Why has anti-London anger been so slow to find effective expression?"

Link to The Guardian

"The Shard stands across the Thames at London Bridge; only a few miles away, but a remote location for the north Londoner. Plainer evidence for the city's exceptionalism is nearer to hand. 

"...  Being 'out of touch' is a ritual denunciation of the government, but perhaps it isn't any more out of touch than the city – a lagoon ruffled only occasionally by its natives – to which it belongs. The wonder is that anti-metropolitan anger has been slow to find effective expression. Lord Adonis calls for the House of Lords to be moved to Manchester, and describes London as an unsustainable amalgamation of Los Angeles, Washington and New York. George Galloway wins Bradford West. Scotland goes its own way.

"These may be just straws in the wind, with the gale still to come."

Evening Standard: "Mary Portas? We didn’t need her cash to revive our high street"

Link to Evening Standard

"A community scheme that has helped revitalise Crouch End should be used as a blueprint to regenerate high streets across London without 'Mary Portas money', it was claimed today.

"The Crouch End Project has enabled retailers to compete against chain stores with a loyalty card, late shopping nights, an online discount network, and a Crouch End shopping bag."


Evening Standard: "Give London Assembly more power or get rid of it, says Tory"

Link to Evening Standard

"The London Assembly came under pressure to justify its worth today after one of its own members suggested that it should be scrapped.

"Tory Andrew Boff claimed that members spent much of their time making themselves 'look busy' to justify the body’s £7.7  million annual cost.

"He said that the Assembly, which is supposed to act as the 'eyes and ears' of London and hold the Mayor to account, should either be given 'proper powers' or be wound down.

"... Elections expert Robert Gordon Clark, chairman of the London Communications Agency, said: 'These could be the most interesting Assembly elections since 2000'."


Barnet Press: "Brent Cross shoppers left stranded by one-way bus trip"

Link to Barnet Press

"Sylvia Jordan, of Park View Road, Finchley, and Fifi Harouche, of Holders Hill Avenue, Hendon, were at Brent Cross Shopping Centre on Saturday when they decided to visit the nearby retail park in Tilling Road.

"But after getting a 266 bus across the A406 flyover, when they tried to go back they were told by shop staff that there was no service for the return journey.

"Instead, their only option was to walk along a footpath to a bus stop at Staples Corner, some half a mile away. Mrs Jordan said:
"It was raining heavily, and Fifi can’t walk too far, so we had to call a cab."

Sharecast: "Hammerson to buy back bonds at 7.355 pc premium"

Link to Sharecast

"Brent Cross property group Hammerson has been snowed under with Dutch auction bids from investors keen to sell back their bonds to the company, and has had to scale down its tender offer.

"... All bonds repurchased will be cancelled, furthering Hammerson's objective of reducing its running cost of maintaining its debt by using excess current liquidity to reduce the number of short-dated bonds it has in the market."

Harrow and Brent Observer

(Click above to enlarge.)


BBC: "Could congestion offer a road to economic growth?"

Link to BBC web site

"Road use is expected to grow 25-30% by 2030, according to government figures. Which begs the question: what should the response be?

"There are no simple answers to the question, but one thing is clear, according to business secretary Vince Cable:
"The idea that we can build our way out of the problem is no longer credible."

Schuh To Open New Store At Brent Cross

"Footwear specialist Schuh is to open a new store at Brent Cross Shopping Centre in North London."

"The shoe retailer will open a two-floor store comprising 2,515 sq ft on the ground floor and 2,460 sq ft in a first floor roof box (total 4,970 sq ft). It will be located on the first floor level of the centre, adjacent to Boots.

"The new opening at Brent Cross is part of the retailer’s expansion plans for the capital, which will see it open a number of stores in various Central and Greater London locations over the next 18 months."

"Harper Dennis Hobbs advises Schuh in the London area, and
represented it on the deal. Hammerson/Standard Life was 
advised by Lunson Mitchenall and Cushman Wakefield."

Fenwick Brent Cross | Dune

"Step into Spring with the latest collections from Dune. From glamorous court shoes, to cheeky peep toes, fabulous prints and textures and fashionable flats. There’s something for every lady who loves to shop for the best in shoes and accessories." 

"Fenwick | Dune Level 1"

CoStar Group: "Oxford runs rule over Hammerson's entire London office portfolio"

Link to CoStar Group

"Canadian investor and developer Oxford (video) is one of a handful of parties to have bid on part or the whole of Hammerson’s office portfolio. The talks between Hammerson and Oxford are not exclusive, and the bidding process remains at an early stage.

"...  The move was seen as a way for Hammerson to capitalise on the migration of shoppers towards large purpose-built developments. With rents across its London office portfolio flatlining last year, Hammerson will sell the assets and redeploy the capital into retail development in a bid to increase focus and size."

Hammerson's Chairman John Nelson: "Strong operational performance"

Statement at 81st Annual General Meeting

Link to Big Cheese's report

"Our results posted in February this year show a strong operational performance. Our portfolio increased in value to £5.7 billion, which meant that our net asset value per share at 31 December 2011 was £5.30, up 7% from £4.95 at the start of the year.

"... We are making good progress with a number of our major development schemes [and bad progress at one of them, Brent Cross Cricklewood!] and in addition have other extension opportunities within our existing portfolio in both the UK and France worth some £320 million.

"... Looking forward, we announced that, following a full review of our strategy, the Board had decided to focus on being a specialist retail property company. We believe that this strategy will enable us to generate superior returns, deepen customer relationships, capitalise on multi-channel opportunities and better position Hammerson to exploit acquisitions and developments." [But it's cut and run at Brent Cross!]

Hammerson's Chief Exec. David Atkins: The James Murdoch of the Brent Cross Cricklewood development


ShoppingCentre: "Footfall and sales down at Hammerson"

Link to ShoppingCentre

"Hammerson has reported a downturn in its UK shopping centres during the first quarter of 2012. Footfall in the UK shopping centre portfolio declined 1.9 per cent compared to Q1 2011, although the properties outperformed the UK index which fell by 2.9 per cent.

"... And in line with its revised strategy to become a retail specialist, Hammerson is making good progress working up business plans for the sale of its London office portfolio."

Fenwick Brent Cross | Carluccios on Level One: THE TWO GREEDY ITALIANS

"The Two Greedy Italians series is currently on Thursdays on BBC2 at 8pm."
"Following on the success of "Two Greedy Italians", Antonio Carluccio and Gennaro Contaldo are back on a culinary journey to explore Italy's distinct and varied terrains, from the comfort food of the mountains, to the fresh flavours from the coast, to the larder of the river and plains.

"On Thursday 26th April, Antonio and Gennaro search for the meaning of the Italian phrase 'la bella figura' - making the best of yourself.

"The new book 'Two Greedy Italians eat Italy' contains over 80 recipes, and is essential for anyone who is passionate about Italian food. Delicious fresh products related to the book will be available in our food shop."


Evening Standard: "A bigger Brent Cross back on the Hammerson agenda"

Link to more details in
the Evening Standard

"A plan to almost double the size of the Brent Cross shopping centre is being revived by developer Hammerson.

"Fresh designs are being drawn up for a 600,000 sq ft southern extension to the 850,000 sq ft North London mall. An application to vary permission granted in 2010 will be submitted in the second half of the year to Barnet council." [Not now, it won't.]


ψωνίζω until you drop

(Evening Standard, 18 April)

Costa Coffee planning application,
Hammerson's 'Brent Cross South Shopping Park'

"WHOOPS. Bit of a slip-up from Redwood Consulting, the outfit that put out an announcement showing off about being
"appointed to provide PR and communications services for the British Council of Shopping Centres".
"Beyond the headline, the rest of its email was in Greek. [Any worse than the PR 'outfit' called 'London Communications Agency'?]

"Perhaps a sign that the UK's retail landlords [like Hammerson?] reckon Athens is a hot new investment destination? Not likely.

"A second email arrived soon after:
"If you received the below email in Greek a moment ago, please accept our apologies... It was a coding error."

Ted Baker - John Lewis Brent Cross Shopping Center (sic)

Link to
'DressMe' web site

"Having launched as a shirt specialist of some repute in Glasgow, Ted Baker quickly became the place to buy some of the very best contemporary men’s shirting around. 

"From the beginning Ted has had a very clear, unswerving focus on quality, attention to detail and a quirky sense of humour. So much so in fact, the first stores used to provide a laundry service for every shirt purchased – something that gained the quickly-growing brand the title of ‘No Ordinary Designer Label’.

"Everything produced under the Ted Baker name has his personality woven into its very heart."

Ham & High, and Brent & Kilburn Times

(Click to enlarge.)


Brent & Kilburn Times: "Clean air campaigners claim pollution levels in Neasden has already broken the limit for 2012"

Link to web site

"Jugal Mehda, chairman of Neasden Neighbourhood Watch and a long standing campaigner against the air pollution told the Times that ‘enough was enough'.

"It is claimed that the poor quality of air is due to waste transfer activities at Neasden Goods Yard and the proximity of the North Circular Road.

"Last year the maximum amount of pollution allowed was exceeded 77 times, more than double the acceptable level."

Daily Telegraph: "Tesco unveils £1bn revamp after drop in UK profits"

Link to Daily Telegraph
(picture of Brent Cross Tesco)

"Philip Clarke, Tesco chief executive, said that it would cut the company’s capital expenditure from £3.8bn a year to £3.3bn this year, to fund a full 'refresh' programme in Britain, with 430 of its largest supermarkets given a revamp this year.

"It said trial stores had already used less garish signs, and 'warmer colours, better lighting'. It has already announced a revamp of its £1bn Value range of low-priced food, and put its advertising contract out to tender."


BBC: "Traffic pollution kills 5,000 a year in UK, says study"

Link to web site

"Road pollution is more than twice as deadly as traffic accidents, according to a study of UK air quality.

"The analysis appears in 'Environmental Science and Technology', carried out by Steve Yim and Steven Barrett, pollution experts from MIT in Massachusetts. They estimate that combustion exhausts across the UK cause nearly 5,000 premature deaths each year."

The Guardian: "Blow to UK high street as more retailers move out of town"

Link to The Guardian

"In a blow to retail guru Mary Portas, who came up with a raft of recommendations to halt the decline of the high street last year, a report by Trevor Wood Associates shows the shift to out-of-town retail parks is gathering pace.

"... While the number of empty shops on the high street is increasing, the retailers that would once have expanded there such as Next and Poundworld are moving out of town wherever possible, said Trevor Wood, who set up the retail warehousing database."

After The City's Gherkin and Paddington's Cucumber, Hammerson's Brent Cross Turnip?

Link to Evening Standard

"One of the scheme’s design goals is to reinvent the classic London garden square, with softer architecture and green space. “We don’t want it to look like a part of corporate America,” says Richard Banks, director of developer European Land, with a reference, perhaps, to Canary Wharf.

"At the moment, the new eateries and bars at the basin are used mainly by in-the-know residents and office workers. Marks & Spencer, Orange and Visa are among the 40 companies who have relocated there, joining small support businesses who operate from barges moored on the canal.

"When complete in four years’ time, more than 30,000 people will live and work there. Buoyed by Crossrail, this new business hub should underpin property values for people buying now."


BBC: "Some store card debtors may be let off"

Link to BBC web site

"Some issuers of store-branded credit cards may be unable to collect debts run up by some of their defaulting card holders, following a court ruling.

"Judge Henrietta Manners ruled at Clerkenwell and Shoreditch county court that Santander could not collect a debt of £5,126 on a Harrods card.

"She said this was mainly because the store card's terms and conditions were not properly supplied and signed."

CBRD: "London Ringways"

"This is the story of a plan. It was a plan created by successive governments in London from the 1940s through to the 1970s. It would have affected life in the capital in every conceivable way, changing the way London looked and functioned. It would have changed the development of the city forever. It was far-reaching and visionary; planning on a scale rarely seen in this country. It was a transport scheme to end all transport schemes. And it was utterly unacceptable to the general public." 

Link to CBRD on the London Ringways
"The M1's approach to the A406 North Circular Road opened in 1977, some five years after the Greater London Council had been forced to cancel large parts of the London Ringway plan, and Ringway 1 had been thrown out by both the Treasury and the Cabinet. There was room for the M1 to continue south, but nowhere for it to go.

"So why, five years after its destination was permanently cancelled, would the M1 still be built with space for its southern extension?"


Evening Standard (slow news day): "Hammerson tweet shows wild side"

Link, if you can be bothered,
to Evening Standard web site

"Landlord Hammerson, owner of Brent Cross shopping centre, is normally, frankly, pretty boring on Twitter. Sample missives include 'First pre-lets signed @ManorWalks, Cramlington — M&S Simply Food and Vue. Work starts on the new scheme in April for opening in summer 2013' and 'Planning application submitted for £50m redevelopment of Centrale, Croydon'.

"But a splash of excitement yesterday, ..."

The Independent: "Painting roofs white is as green as taking cars off the roads for 50 years"

Link to The Independent

"Painting roofs white and using light-coloured materials to surface roads and pavements would not only make cities cooler in summer, it would save the same amount of carbon as taking all the cars in the world off the roads for 50 years, a study has found.

"One of the simplest, yet most effective, ways of engineering the urban environment to cope with global warming is to increase the reflectivity of the cityscape, so that more of the incoming sunlight is directed back into space, scientists said."


21-30 April: Fenwick Brent Cross: ORIGINAL PAINTINGS BY ROLF HARRIS

"Whitewall Galleries at Fenwick warmly invites you to come and view an exhibition of original paintings from the incomparable Rolf Harris, opening with a Champagne reception on Saturday 21 April till Monday 30 April. We are delighted to have secured a brand new collection of original paintings from Rolf's Studio.

"Join us in the gallery where we will also be showcasing the 'Signature Collection', a superb series of collectable limited editions which demonstrate that Rolf is an artist at the height of his powers.

"Contact the gallery for further information."

Whitewall Brent Cross, Level 3, Fenwick Ltd, Brent Cross Shopping Centre
T: 020 8203 4712