Thursday, 30 June 2011

BHRA - Newsletter

Here is BHRA Newsletter dated May 2011 for your information

"As I mentioned in our last Newsletter, unfortunately we are still suffering an increase in burglaries in the Barn Hill area.We are in regular contact with Sgt.Gor and his Safer Neighbourhood Team, and on the 15thMarch we held a meeting with local residents, Sgt Gor’s Team and local Councillors, Shafique Choudhary and Abdi Aden, to enable local residents to air their views.

After this meeting I wrote to Commander Gardiner asking for extra resources to assist our Safer neighbourhood team to try and apprehend these criminals.Sgt.Gor assures me that he has the required assistance in place.

He also asks that each and every resident play their part in stopping these burglaries. Most important that before you leave your home that you take time and make sure that you have closed and locked all your windows and side gates. Also make it sure that you do not leave your wheelie bins close to your back gate as this helps burglars to gain entry into your back garden without being seen.

Sgt Gor's team is currently distributing an " Operation Bumblebee" leaflet giving 10 tips on how to secure your property.If, for any reason, you do not receive one please either email or phone us and we shall arrange one for your received.

Earlier this year we were approached by a very concerned resident who had been having problems with her gas supply for over a year and she had already spent over £1,000 to gas fitters without any luck. We took up her case with both Brent Council and British Gas and it became apparent that a cluster of houses had the same problem of water mixing with the gas supply. These remedial works have been more extensive than we envisaged but when completed everyone should reap the benefits of this work.
You will recall that we reported in our newsletter in February, that an Appeal had been submitted by Vodapone for the Mast proposed for the bottom of West Hill, beside the railway bridge. Unfortunately, the Planning Inspectorate upheld the appeal, despite many letters of objection sent by residents and indeed the council planners had rejected the plan so the Mast will soon be erected . On a positive note, it was good to see so many residents putting care for our environment first.

Pavements that have grass verges need extra care. If you are intending to do any building work, however small, on your property, consider your neighbours please & ensure your builders make as little mess as possible, and clear up any materials on the pavement &/or road at the end of each day.

Transport-Orbital Rail

Members of the Brent Cross Coalition have urged Mayor Boris Johnson to direct 'planning gain' money from the huge north and west London redevelopment areas to spending on light-rail instead of roads.

This would share the existing hardly-used freight line corridors that join Park Royal/Wembley to Brent Cross, Colindale and West Hampstead, and the old railway trackbed to Mill Hill East.

(The map here was originally published in Transport for London's 'Transport 2025' document.)

Below is a London Development Agency (RIP) map of north London development areas. There is no fast and reliable east-west travel in these outer London boroughs. The lack of an orbital, east-west railway in outer north London can be clearly seen:

To the west of the boroughs in the LDA area above, this Brent Council map below shows Brent Cross in the east, and a possible 'North and West London Light Railway' (here called the 'Brent Cross Railway'). Most of the possible light-rail extensions beyond Brent itself are not shown.

The Brent Cross developers have dismissed attempts to reopen the freight line across Brent and into Ealing for passengers, even though their own map below shows that rail access from the west to Brent Cross (it shows origins of journeys in red) is non-existent. This implies road access only, and lots of road congestion!

Below shows the Brent Cross area, the freight line to the west, and the current lack of orbital railway across Barnet:

A leaflet being distributed in Barnet is show below. (Light-rail routes beyond Brent Cross have not been endorsed by the Brent Cross Coalition.)

(You may need to download and install the free font called London Tube for best results)

Click below for a discussion of possible light rail routes across the Brent Cross site:

An essay by pundit Christian Wolmar is below:

A critique of the whole Brent Cross plan is here:

A study for a possible 'Phase One' (since modified across the Brent Cross site) is described below.

(A different 'Phase One', from Brent Cross Northern Line station, via the shopping centre, to either Hendon or Cricklewood Thameslink stations, would perhaps be more likely.)

March 2011: The two light-rail western terminuses have to be in doubt, unfortunately. 

Firstly, the proposed Central Line platforms at Park Royal (Piccadilly Line) station have been abandoned, due to the commercial failure (so far) of the Diageo First Central business park.

Secondly, making Ealing Broadway a light-rail terminus would reduce the capacity of that station to handle Great Western Line trains that were terminating there, when Paddington was closed (for whatever reason). On the other hand, Crossrail is almost independent of the Paddington main-line terminus, so the likelihood of complete closure of the route east of Ealing Broadway will decline.

A convenient alternative western terminus for the light-rail service is the proposed 'Old Oak Common' Crossrail and High-Speed-Two station, shown here, which would give excellent new connections from stations on the light-rail line:

Click to enlarge

One (perhaps unlikely) possibility for a rail system is to use "tram-trains", as featured below:
Link to 'lrta' web site

Wednesday, 22 June 2011

"We need in north London is what south London has got " Ken Livingstone

Mayoral contender Ken Livingstone on the campaign trail in Wood Green. Picture: Tony Gay
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 (June 20).
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.
Labour candidate Mr Livingstone, who was the first ever Mayor of London from 2000 to 2008, said: “I’ve always thought what we need in north London is what south London has got - a tram that links the suburbs. No one has done any real work on this, but there would be an arc linking north London boroughs.”
The former mayor is considering the plan for his manifesto to retake City Hall in May 2012 - but similar schemes have proved controversial.
Ealing Council vetoed a £1billion west London tramlink in 2007 and any new tram route would need the backing of residents and councils.
Chris Barker, transport spokesman for the Haringey Federation of Residents Associations, said: “When it comes down to discussing where it would go there would be problems, because fitting in the infrastructure would be difficult.
“But I would hope residents would respond very positively to having a tram system - as residents have in Croydon, where it is very popular and has revived the town centre. We’d like to be able to replicate that. I’m delighted that Ken has taken this up.”
Tram routes have run through Haringey in the past, with horse-drawn trams serving Tottenham as early as 1885.
In 1904 an electric tramway was set up linking Finsbury Park to Wood Green and Tottenham, but by 1938 all tram routes were replaced by bus routes and in 1961 overhead wires were finally removed.

A tram pictured in Seven Sisters Road in 1938.
A Tram pictured in Seven Sisters Road in 1938
courtesy of Tottenham Journal.

Tuesday, 21 June 2011

The council director responsible for the £4.5bn regeneration of Brent Cross in north-west London has been made redundant as part of a shake-up of Barnet's senior management team.

Stewart Murray, former director for planning, housing and regeneration at the London Borough of Barnet, has left the council, with his post - as well as that of the director for environment and operations - having been deleted.

The two posts are to be merged into a new director for planning, environment and regeneration role, which will be covered by Barnet’s interim director of environment and operations until a new person is recruited, according to a spokesman for Barnet council.

The spokesman said: "The directors post [of planning, housing and regeneration] has been merged with that of environment and operations. This is a long heralded proposal, originally agreed last year." The restructure was first announced by the council shortly after the Comprehensive Spending Review last October.

Murray told delegates at Regeneration & Renewal’s National Regeneration Summit last month that Barnet council
is submitting a bid to the Government to use a funding mechanism known as Tax Increment Financing (TIF), which lets councils borrow money against future business rate income, for the 20-year scheme to regenerate 150ha in Brent Cross and Cricklewood.
 courtesy of google

Monday, 20 June 2011

Enfield Independent: "Pinkham Way waste plant slammed as 'unjustified' at public meeting"

CONCERNED residents gathered on Friday night for a rally against plans for a major new waste plant in Bounds Green.

"Opposition is growing to the Pinkham Way proposals, which could see Europe's largest waste plant built on the doorsteps of residents from Barnet, Enfield and Haringey."
Residents of Cricklewood/Dolis Hill/ Hendon/ Golders Green/ Wembley and beyond - wacky, wacky, you need to stand together against Staple Corner's Waste Plant.

Saturday, 11 June 2011

Barnhill Ward - Anti-social Behaviour and Wardens' Report (Feb to April 2011)

In Barnhill Ward, the Brent Housing Partnership wardens received 13 calls. 8 of the calls resulted in the wardens being called out, and 5 resulted in a patrol of the area.
The majority of the calls were from Kings Drive and John Perrin Place. 

Wardens have now started increased patrol at Farnborough Close for rough sleepers, as well at John Perrin Place, where loitering and drug taking in communal areas have been reported.

Tuesday, 7 June 2011

Tax increment financing: an update

Tax Increment Financing?

The US has pioneered this financial mechanism - which allows the cost of building infrastructure TODAY to be paid for by the extra taxes generated TOMORROW.

The government is interested in introducing it into Britain, using future business rates, and maybe other future taxes, from property development. It has been hailed as a possible lifeline for stalled regeneration schemes.

Can we use this, to save front line services? Any comments?