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


DCLG: "Eric Pickles takes steps to kick-start stalled development"

Link to DCLG web site

"Expert brokers will spearhead a fresh drive to get stalled housing deals up and running and builders back on moth-balled sites, Communities Secretary Eric Pickles has announced.

"Mr Pickles is concerned that too much development is being stalled because of economically unrealistic agreements negotiated between councils and developers at the height of the housing boom. This results in no development, no regeneration and no community benefits at all when agreements are no longer economically viable.

"The deals, known legally as Section 106 agreements, require developers to make a financial contribution to the community or provide housing, amenities or infrastructure as part of their planning permission.

"Teams of intermediaries will now offer a free-of-charge advice and support service to councils and developers and will be available to help kick-start renegotiations of these deals to stop them being a barrier to getting building underway.

"Communities Secretary Eric Pickles said:
"Tackling problems with stalled development is essential to getting builders back on moth-balled sites and building the homes we need. There is huge potential in sites to boost local economies and we simply cannot afford to have them lying idle because of earlier agreements that are no longer viable."

Link to DCLG web site

"Town Hall doors unlocked to social media and bloggers"

"New law changes to introduce greater openness and transparency in executive councils meetings will mean all decisions, including those affecting budgets and local services, will have to be taken in an open and public forum, Local Government Secretary Eric Pickles has announced.

"Ministers have put new regulations before Parliament that would come into force next month to extend the rights of people to attend all meetings of a council's executive, its committees and subcommittees.

"The changes will result in greater public scrutiny. The existing media definition will be broadened to cover organisations that provide internet news thereby opening up councils to local online news outlets. Individual councillors will also have stronger rights to scrutinise the actions of their council.

"Eric Pickles said:
"Every decision a council takes has a major impact on the lives of local people, so it is crucial that whenever it takes a significant decision about local budgets that affect local communities, whether it is in a full council meeting or in a unheard of sub-committee, it has got to be taken in the full glare of all the press and any of the public."
"Chris Taggart, of OpenlyLocal.com, which has long championed the need to open council business up to public scrutiny, added:
"In a world where hi-definition video cameras are under £100, and hyperlocal bloggers are doing some of the best council reporting in the country, it is crazy that councils are prohibiting members of the public from videoing, tweeting and live-blogging their meetings." [Pity people were not even allowed to take verbatum notes at the Brent Cross Cricklewood planning committee!]

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