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


Daily Telegraph: "Inflation could near double digits, says leading fund manager."

Link to web site

"Inflation could near double digits over the next five years, according to Jupiter Asset Management's chief investment officer.

"John Chatfeild-Roberts told leading trade publication Money Marketing that rising inflation was 'inevitable', and would be the 'Achilles' heel' of the UK economy.

"... Other investment experts have agreed with Mr Chatfield-Roberts's forecast."

The Guardian: "Redevelopment project: avoidable unpleasantness?"

Link to web site

"A fortnight has passed since a dossier was handed to the police, alleging that residents of two West London housing estates had been promised preferential treatment in the allocation of replacement homes if they gave their backing to the estates' demolition, and arguing that such behaviour could constitute a criminal offence.

"...Way back in February 2007, the then new leader of the council Stephen Greenhalgh – who Boris Johnson has recently made head of his new office for policing and crime – appeared on the internet channel 18 Doughty Street TV with local Tory MP Greg Hands.

Both argued that they wanted to improve the lot of poorer people on their patch of inner West London and tackle deep inequalities. I can no longer find this item online – perhaps someone else have better luck – but I recall feeling that they believed what they were saying.

"Greenhalgh championed the Earls Court project right up until he stepped down as leader earlier this year.

Yet to some in the regeneration business, the entire Earls Court enterprise has looked unwieldy, impractical and undesirably old-fashioned from the start – a top-heavy, top-down, wrecking ball of a scheme, that will be difficult to finance, characterised by unrealistic claims, and always at risk of incurring resentment. [Thankfully, there's no similarity to Hammerson's 'Brent Cross Cricklewood' proposals, then!]

"And it doesn't look to me like a project guided by the bottom-up, localist, 'big society' principles that modern Conservative administrations are supposed to be applying, particularly in a London borough seen as a trailblazer for national party policy – David Cameron's favourite council, no less."


Great World Cultural Artifacts related to North London suburb

Number One

Number Two

"What do you think of 
Hammerson, and its possible retail 'Living Bridge' over the ten lanes of the North Circular Road at Brent Cross,
so far?"


Cycling infrastructure

"I had a chance to sample the cycling infrastructure between the Sir Chris Hoy Velodrome and Glasgow City Centre. This is what I found...

"To be fair, there has been an attempt to put in some segregated infrastructure, and with some adjustment it could be good. But it is not connected, and so will be used little. To get people cycling infrastructure needs to be fully FUNDED, properly DESIGNED, and fully CONNECTED.

"Come on Glasgow, it's time to become a cycling city."


[Updated] Cycling Revolution - Us Next?

"Road building traditions go back a long way, and they are influenced by many factors. But the way Dutch streets and roads are built today is largely the result of deliberate political decisions in the 1970s to turn away from the car centric policies of the prosperous post war era. 

"Changed ideas about mobility, safer and more livable cities and about the environment led to a new type of streets in the Netherlands."

Link to
'Spectacular New Floating Cycle Roundabout'



Ham & High

Laura Mercier @ Brent Cross

"Hi Beauties! It has been quite some time now, and there has been a blog post that we have been urging to post, yet time has been kind of hectic over at the Make-up London Academy {MLA). A couple of months ago, we paid a little visit to our Friends At Laura Mercier over at Brent Cross. We had the delight to meet Flauza, who did our make-up, and it was absolutely amazing.

"Over at MLA we believe that anyone that has the desire and a pair of hands can do make-up. However from time to time we come across people such as Flauza, who not only has the skills and passion, but a magic that cannot be described. A born MUA. Her hands as light as feathers, precision as sharp as blades and in overall, getting our make-up done by her was almost as glorious as meeting Johny Depp or Angelina Jolie. Next time we go, it may require some prior preparation to embrace the opulence and glory of her creations.

"One would have never thought we could find someone so magical and world-class such as Flauza in Brent Cross. It was a delight and honour to have gotten our make-up done that day by someone as special as her. Laura Mercier, BRAVA! you have a great MUA behind the counter at Brent Cross. Touché for Flauz + Laura Mercier = Magic

"So darlings, next time you are popping over to Brent Cross, make sure you pay a visit to the Laura Mercier Counter and ask for our dear Flauza, so that you can experience her magic too.

"xoxo MLA"


Institutes for Fiscal Studies and Employment Research: "Who Gains from Growth? Living Standards to 2020"

Link to 'Resolution Foundation' web site
taken up by Financial Times (behind its pay wall)
and The Observer (below)

"Living standards for Britain’s low and middle income households will be lower in 2020 than they were a decade earlier, even if growth returns. Households in this group are set for income falls of between 3 and 15 percent from 2008 to 2020.

" 'Who Gains from Growth?' examines the changing structure of the UK jobs market in tandem with the effects of the tax and benefit system. It produces the most sophisticated modelling yet of the prospects for low to middle income households in the recovery."

Link to The Observer
The Observer:
"Living standards report shows bleak future of a divided Britain"

"Living standards for low- and middle-income households will fall until 2020, even if the country enters a golden period of steady economic growth, according to an incendiary analysis of deepening income inequality in Britain.

"The independent study, carried out for the Resolution Foundation by the Institute for Fiscal Studies and the Institute for Employment Research, paints a stark picture of a nation increasingly polarised between a poorer half whose incomes are set to fall, and a top half whose living standards will continue to rise."

Thu 27 Sep: The Barnet Obsession: Parking

Link to web site

"Town Centres have come under the spotlight from the Coalition government in recent times, during which parking – or, rather, the lack, high cost or poor management of - has often been cited as a major contributory factor for failing towns and cities. 

"There is no doubt that parking is a key issue for all communities. Getting it right is not just about minimising conflict it is also about improving quality of life and better public realm provision. Focus should be less on proving or disproving whether parking is a significant contributory factor to economic decline and more about whether it is fulfilling its potential as a major influencer in attracting people to a town or city. 

"The more accessible, vibrant and well thought out towns will most certainly win the race for footfall every time. Ensuring due consideration is given to how people are going to get to their destination, and the experience they will have when they arrive, is something the parking profession has the power to ensure is done well. 

"This BPA conference, in partnership with the ATCM, presents an upbeat day looking at examples of joined up thinking, innovation, excellence and case studies from places that are improving parking management to help turn their fortunes around."

Class 1a - The parking charges debate
Charging strategies
John Siraut – Sinclair Knight Merz

This session will explore the rationale behind parking charges, why charge, how much should we charge, what impact does charging have on retail spend and the success of our town centres, what happens when you change parking charges, how much are people prepared to pay to park? Every town centre is different but there is often a tension between parking and town centre managers over parking strategies that need to be addressed to create a successful town centre while still generating much needed revenue for town halls.
Case Study – Making Parking Free 
Clare Turner – Blackburn Borough Council

Blackburn with Darwen Borough Council has recently implemented a 9 month trial for free parking in all its car parks on Saturday in Blackburn Town Centre to great acclaim by government ministers. This is topical at a time when the government has recently responded to Mary Portas on her recommendations as to how they and councils can support the High Street with parking highlighted as a key issue.

Research carried out across town centre retailers in Blackburn overwhelmingly highlighted the cost of parking as the top concern for businesses. The council’s Town Centres First planning policy has resulted in successfully challenging further out of town and large scale competitive retail development in the surrounding area. However, in this challenging and sustained period of economic difficulty, their focus has also turned towards supporting existing businesses in the centre and encouraging new investment. This session will explore how parking policy can be an important tool in delivering the wider objective of helping our high streets become more sustainable, particularly outside the larger cities. 

Class 1b - Accessible Towns
Making town centres accessible for all 
Travel Planning - ACT Travelwise, invited
Special considerations for Historic places - Ian Poole, Historic Towns Forum executive
Disability access - Speakers TBC

Class 1c - Residential Parking
The right number of the right spaces in the right places – Residential Parking in a more enlightened age
Bob White, Development Planning Manager, Kent County Council 

The issues surrounding parking provision, and the inadequacies of it, can inflame an entire community. The joint CIHT/IHE Residential guidance note sets out advice and recommendations to help ease parking problems in residential areas.

Government policy has now placed an emphasis on local decisions, and has seen a shift in the attitude towards parking provision. With this changing landscape, it has become apparent that a fresh approach is needed for advising and informing planners, highway engineers and developers.

Bob White’s presentation considers the background to what has become a real problem to many people, and looks at how we can use the Government’s call to tackle ‘design mediocrity’ to support the objective of getting the right number of the right spaces in the right places. 
Case study on Borough of Poole’s residential parking/town centre residential development plans
Lee Smith, Senior Development Management Officer (Transportation), Borough of Poole 

In July 2011 the Borough of Poole introduced a new parking guidelines document for new development in the borough. The document was based on a Dorset wide study of residential car ownership levels. The presentation will look at how Poole’s new parking guidelines impact on development in the Town Centre, what the wider study discovered about residential car ownership levels in the Town Centre and how we square the need to provide Town Centre parking for both residents and businesses. 

Class 1d - Sustainable Towns 
The Future of the High Street – Where Does Parking Fit In?
John Dales, Urban Initiatives

The Portas Review recommendation that high streets need more and cheaper parking was a sad reflection of the fact that local retailers rarely campaign for improvements to travel by any other mode than car. While the evidence for the high street till-ringing powers of parking is little more than human instinct, and the importance of travel by other modes routinely ignored by retailers and politicians alike, challenging the pro-parking lobby is to imply that traders don’t know their customers very well and that elected decision-makers don’t know what they’re talking about.

This presentation will explain some of the logical disconnects in the more-parking-must-be-better position, place in the hands of practitioners actual evidence about the role of different forms transport in underpinning high street retail vitality, and also help to broaden the debate concerning the most important ways in which local high streets will need to change if they are to continue to perform a valuable role for the communities at which they are, and will remain, the heart. 

Small Towns of the Future not the Past
Dr Gordon Morris, Director & Alison Eardley, Policy Manager
- Action for Market Towns/Small Towns of Tomorrow

(There's more, so click on image above.)


Time Out: "Arresting Developments" (No, not the Brian Coleman Story)

"Post-Olympic Stratford? Pah! Yet more momentous changes are afoot in the capital. And we've got the future mapped, so you can see which bits of the city will never be the same again."

"January 2013 will see Croydon Council make a final call on whether Westfield or Hammerson (which you might know from Brent Cross) gets to make a monster £1-billion mall out of the old Whitgift Centre." [Actually, it is not up to Croydon Council.]

"WHAT IF..."

Brent Cross

"reflects the 'make do and mend' vision of the future, and becomes a huge flea market?"

Barnet Times: "North Finchley traders vent their frustrations to London Assembly Member Andrew Dismore"

Link to web site

"Traders in North Finchley were given the opportunity to vent their frustrations to London Assembly member Andrew Dismore.

"... He was shown around the High Road by [the, at that time, uninjured] Helen Michael, the owner of Cafe Buzz, who introduced him to a number of struggling business people.

"... Mr Dismore’s trip to North Finchley was made as part of an investigation the London Assembly is doing, into how best to help London’s 197 local high streets."


SHOPPING CENTRE WARS (with Brent Cross's Hammerson): Evening Standard: "Westfield £1bn mall 'will lure top brands to Croydon'"

Link to Evening Standard

"A proposed £1 billion Westfield shopping centre in Croydon could draw prestige brands such as Prada and Burberry to a much-maligned area, its backers claimed.

"... Plans for the 1.5  million sq ft Croydon project, which would be London’s third biggest mall after the Westfields in Shepherd’s Bush and Stratford, were submitted last week to the local council.

"... Westfield faces competition from property company Hammerson, which owns Brent Cross and Croydon’s Centrale Shopping Centre. Croydon council is expected to make its decision in January, and the winning centre would be completed in 2016."


Daily Telegraph: "Twitter jokers ruin 'Why I shop at Waitrose Brent Cross...' promotion". (We added the Brent Cross bit)

Link to Daily Telegraph

"A social media stunt by posh supermarket chain Waitrose failed spectacularly, when people were asked "I shop at Waitrose because..."

Unexpected answers included one shopper who insited she went to the store because she 'didn't like being surrounded by poor people.'

"Another said they liked 'watching Daily Mail readers support a neo-socialist institution.'

"Many of the tweets were derisory about the upmarket chain's reputation for catering for the middle-class shopper, typified by the 4x4-driving yummy mummy."

BBC: "Bristol Pound launched to keep trade in the city"

Link to BBC web site and iPlayer

"It is a direct assault on global trade. The city of Bristol has launched its own currency, which cannot be used in Bath, never mind Berlin or Bombay.

"More than 350 firms in the city have signed up, making it the UK's largest alternative to sterling.

"Unlike previous schemes which have relied on paper, the Bristol Pound can be used online, even by mobile phone.

"But other local currencies have never really taken off, so can the Bristol scheme really fly?"

Successful launch of €500 million 7-year bond (similar to the 7-year itch, but without the flowers)

For immediate release
19 September 2012

"Hammerson plc announces the successful launch and pricing of a 7 year, €500 million
(c. £400 million) bond maturing 2019. The bond was priced at 145 basis points over the mid swap rate, and has an annual coupon of 2.75%. The issue was six times oversubscribed. 

"Following this issue, Hammerson will have available committed financing of £2.8 billion. The proceeds will be used to fund growth in Hammerson's chosen retail property sectors of prime shopping centres, convenient retail parks and designer outlet villages. 

"Hammerson is rated Baa2 by Moodys and A- by Fitch. Barclays and HSBC acted as joint active bookrunner. 

Timon Drakesmith, CFO of Hammerson, said:
"We have had an excellent response from our debt investors for this transaction, which we greatly appreciate. The funds from this bond issue will be put to good use in a variety of growth projects." [Can't think where.]

For more information please contact:
Timon Drakesmith, Chief Financial Officer
Tel: +44 (0) 20 7887 1000

Morgan Bone, Director of Communications
Tel: +44 (0) 20 7887 1009




"Busy going nowhere, now the monorail is just going" (unlike the Brent Cross Railway)

Climb aboard the 'Sydney Morning Herald'

"THE state government will spend up to $15 million extricating the monorail from Sydney's central business district, after announcing it had bought the company that owns it and Sydney's light-rail line.

The purchase marks the imminent end to what has been a divisive presence on the western edge of the city, since it was built almost 25 years ago. But it will also allow an expansion of Sydney's light rail network [below, alongside the monorail].

"Premier Mr O'Farrell said:
"The real problem with the monorail, I think for most Sydneysiders, is that it doesn't actually go anywhere that you want to go." [again, unlike the Brent Cross Railway!]

The Springfield Monorail (operator: Homer Simpson)


LONDON SHOPPING CENTRE WARS: Reuters: "Hammerson strengthens hand in London mall battle" (and 'Royal London Asset Management' bail out of it)

"British developer Hammerson strengthened its hand in the long-running battle with Australia's Westfield, by buying a 25 percent stake in a shopping centre that Westfield wants to develop into its third major London mall.

"Hammerson said on Monday it would pay Royal London Asset Management (RLAM) 65 million pounds, for the fund manager's stake in the leasehold of the 42-year-old Whitgift Centre in Croydon, south London." 

Link to PDF:
Sep 2012 Economic Update:
"Economist Ian Kernohan on UK growth prospects"
[Summary: There aren't any]

So it's still a toss-up between...


"Retailer buys 25 per cent in Croydon shopping centre"
Link above to 'Croydon Guardian'

David Atkins, Chief Executive of Hammerson, said:

"This transaction with Royal London is a key milestone in the development

of our plans, and our strategy to deliver a new retail core for Croydon.
We are seeking to work collaboratively with all the owners, and
other stakeholders, to bring forward this exciting scheme."

[Reposted from Apr 2012] The Independent: "Meet the women who lead the charge in our top businesses"

"Male directors of British companies still vastly outnumber female ones, but things could soon change thanks to the efforts of pioneers such as these. Kate Youde reports on gender imbalance in the boardroom."

Link to The Independent
(pic: Hammerson)

"Sheila King, Group retail leasing director at Hammerson"

"This is the woman to thank for introducing fashion brands such as Hollister and Forever 21 to this country. Hammerson runs nine UK shopping centres – from Aberdeen to Southampton – and it is her job to ensure the right mix of retailers. 'I love my job; it's like a hobby,' says the businesswoman, 51, who lives in Mayfair, London. She joined Hammerson in 1994. 'It's really fun if you like shopping, and retail's always changing.'

"She always wanted to go into land management, having been influenced by her architect father while growing up in Derbyshire, and she studied the subject at Reading University. Ms King welcomed Judy Gibbons's appointment as a non-executive director last year. 'Shopping is a very female thing, and you do need that element influencing development and investment in property'."

From Hammerson web site:

"Carolyn Kenney,
Assistant Director, Development"
"I manage all the commercial aspects of major mixed-use regeneration schemes from the beginning stages of initial planning, feasibility studies and community consultation to legal aspects, site assembly and design.

"Hammerson is very rigorous in its approach, investing a lot of time and paying a lot of attention to detail to ensure we are doing the right thing. Development is not only a collaborative process, but also very complex and constantly evolving with more emphasis placed on the ambience and quality of living."

The Observer: "Could virtual high streets save local shops?"

Link to The Observer

"Most people want a thriving high street with butchers, bakers, greengrocers, bookshops, boutiques, cafes and restaurants. So figures from the Local Data Company, showing that nearly 15% of shops are vacant, make for depressing reading. They seem to reinforce the gloom of Deloitte's prediction earlier this year that four in 10 shops will be forced to close in the next five years.

No one wants to see their high street crumble. But with household budgets at breaking point, what's the incentive to go local? Supermarkets and online retail giants offer discount prices, 24/7 shopping and deliveries. According to a recent report, some products, such as toys, are as much as 60% cheaper online.

However, two schemes aim to breathe life back into our beleaguered high streets. Openhighstreet.com and Myhigh.St both allow customers to shop locally on their mobile, PC or tablet. Customers can either click and collect, or have purchases delivered to their door.

Link to web site

Evening Standard:
"Welcome to the London suburb that’s fighting back for small shops..."

"The suburbs are battling back against the rising tide of high street closures — with one south-west London neighbourhood at the forefront.

"A new report shows that while one in seven shops is currently empty across Britain, in London nine out of 10 are open for business.

"... Other booming high streets include Mill Hill and East Finchley, with 97 per cent of their shops open for business. East Finchley’s performance has improved by almost five per cent in the last year.

"Other strong performers include Kingsbury, Burnt Oak, South Woodford, Blackheath, Hayes, and Barkingside."

[Reposted] Doh! Bestway defends its ownership of Geron Way (Brent Cross) land

(Picture: Evening Standard)

To set the scene, link to:

Statement of Case
On Behalf of:
Bestway Holdings Ltd
(Representation No. 126)
In Relation to:
North London Waste Plan:
Public Examination
Main Matter ‘Specific Sites – Geron Way‘ [Brent Cross]
To be Heard on Thursday 14th June 2012
14 May 2012

Wembley and Greenwich: Quintain hitting the jackpot in London's regeneration game (Hammerson only holds a joker on the North Circular)

Max James of Quintain
Link to Evening Standard

"The great thing about being an investment banker is you can strike a deal, pocket the fees, and move on to the next one. Max James doesn’t have that excuse any more. Nearly two decades of cut and thrust for HSBC, Lazard and others are behind him. Now at the helm of Quintain, the property group, he can’t waltz away before the ink is dry. Nor do you sense he wants to.

"Poring over glossy brochures for Quintain’s flagship regenerations of Wembley and Greenwich, he says:
"We have now got to deliver — there is no doubt about it."

BBC: "Transformation of London's Olympic Park gets under way"

Link to web site and iPlayer

"Workmen have moved in to the Olympic Park in Stratford, London, to begin the £300m process of transforming it into a site that will includes homes, workspaces, sports venues and facilities.

"Planners promise a vibrant, mixed community but, as Graham Satchell has been finding out, some local residents fear they will not reap the benefits of the new-look park."


Mon 17 - Fri 21 Sep: Barnet and Hammerson's Nemesis and Hypocrisy (as a sponsor): "Green Sky Thinking Week"

Link to Green Sky Thinking web site

"Open-City's Green Sky Thinking Week is a London-wide programme for built environment and property professionals highlighting new thinking and practice in how to 'design in' sustainability, from 17 to 21 Sept 2012.

"Sustainability-focused B2B events hosted by leading companies, practices and public sector organisations will be taking place across London. Programme listings are available now here. Advance booking for each event is essential as spaces are strictly limited.

"Open-City’s Green Sky Thinking Week 2012 gives an inside view from top experts, industry leaders and collaborative teams of how we could move towards successfully ‘greening’ entire districts and neighbourhoods, as well as buildings, to inform better decision-making.

"To give a true picture of how professionals are leading the transformation to a greener built environment for the capital, we will also be creating a map of sustainable London highlighting key projects, communities and planned development."


"Events exploring future concepts and solutions for a sustainable city, and sustainability in practice" 
As an example:
The Glass-House Community Led Design
 ‘Future Cities: A Collective Vision’

Wednesday 19 Sept, 8.30am –10.00am

This interactive workshop explores how we collaborate towards change in our cities

and develop a collective vision of communities, considering questions like:
How do changes to an area impact how the place works?
Do we favour organic growth, or large-scale regeneration?
What are the implications in each case?
Supported by examples of Glass-House projects, this playful start to your day
will increase your understanding of the spatial complexities of urban placemaking,
and how these contribute to developing sustainable communities.

Location: Second Floor, 29-31 Oxford Street, London W1D 2DR

To book:
Website: www.theglasshouse.org.uk
Twitter: @GlassHouseCLD

"Events and activities exploring how we can adapt the city to continuous change"
As an example:
Marks Barfield Architects
 'Green Retrofit'

Tuesday 18 Sept, 8.15am for 8.30am start – 9.30am

Presentation & Q&A on the challenge of reducing carbon emissions

in the context of updating the UK’s ageing housing stock.
Priory Grove is a 150-year-old family home within a Conservation Area
transformed with a contemporary extension for the 21st Century
achieving a one-third reduction in carbon emissions.

Location: Marks Barfield Architects, 50 Bromells Road, SW4 0BG

To book:
green@open-city.org.uk (20 places)
Website: www.marksbarfield.com
Twitter: @MarksBarfield

"Events and activities exploring the wider issues relating to a sustainable city - including public realm, infrastructure and energy" 
As an example:
Ash Sakula Architects
 ‘Adaptable Neighbourhoods and Friends’

Monday 17 Sept, 5.30pm – 9.00pm

Adaptable Neighbourhoods Think Tank:
eating, drinking, drawing and gaming designed to shake up ideas
on greener, richer, more friendly neighbourhoods.
A fresh way of thinking about our cities is needed, that harnesses the potential
of our existing buildings, communities and businesses.
We can build upon these assets to create resilient, vibrant towns and cities.
Big change does not always require large investment.
Thinking creatively and working with what you have can be transformative.
Finding, facilitating and harnessing the grass-roots energy of these
'adaptable neighbourhoods' provides an efficient means to rapidly
initiate regeneration without large, singular capital injections.
We are testing these concepts at three scales,
that of the street, the market and the city.
These projects are live, ongoing and all completely
dependant on working directly with communities.

Location: Ash Sakula Architects, 5 Hatton Wall, EC1N 8HX

To book: adaptable@ashsak.com (40 places)
Website: http://adaptableneighbourhoods.com

"26% of city centre shops are empty", says survey

Link to Sheffield Telegraph

"After years of delays, Sheffield council is expected to express its frustrations at this month's negotiations with developer [and Brent Cross owner] Hammerson.

Hammerson project director Richard Brown said:
"In the past three months, we have agreed six new lettings in the area of the development site. In addition, five existing businesses have agreed to continue to trade, to maintain an active presence.

... We continue to actively manage the site, in advance of our development proposals coming forward."
"Hammerson has exchanged contracts to acquire Leeds’ Victoria Quarter, which is anchored by upmarket department store Harvey Nichols, for £136m, reinforcing its presence both in Leeds and in the fast-growing luxury retail sector."

150 great things about the Underground: Brent Cross

Link to web site

"When the retail complex that shares this station’s name was opened in the 1970s, a problem was created that has yet to be solved: how to persuade people intending to visit Brent Cross shopping centre that they should not use Brent Cross Underground station.
"... I know that, as a consequence of the bungled planning and construction of Brent Cross shopping centre, local residents (not consumers) are blessed with a rather lovely station, whose bearing sits wonderfully at odds with its neighbourhood."