Westfield shareholders confirm Unibail sale

Westfield shareholders have voted in favour of a £18.5 billion takeover by Unibail-Rodamco, it has been announced.

The approval was the final hurdle for the takeover, which has already received approval from Unibail shareholders, boards of both companies, as well as Australia’s Foreign Investment Review Board.

Chairman Frank Lowy, who also announced his retirement after 58 years with the company, said in a statement that the buyout was “supported by the vast majority of shareholders”.

He added that two Westfield directors, Peter Lowy and John McFarlane, would join the supervisory board of Unibail.

Unibail, Europe’s biggest property firm, and Westfield announced the deal in December, looking to create a global leader in the retail sector that is grappling with the online shopping challenges led by Amazon.

It is understood the transaction will go ahead from June 1, 2018.

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Fulham Broadway BID closes on ballot

The proposed Fulham Broadway Business Improvement District is heading towards its ballot.

The BID’s proponents say Fulham Broadway as a designated Town Centre has remained largely unchanged, but that with Chelsea’s stadium at Stamford Bridge being redeveloped the opportunity has arisen for Fulham Broadway and the surrounding area to “position itself as a visitor destination in its own right, with new venues such as Market Hall bringing in customers from across London and beyond”.

The ballot in July 2018 proposes that an organisation be set up to improve trading conditions, promote the area as a destination and enable businesses to take ownership of their locality.

The BID is being championed by a collection of local businesses and traders.

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Troubadour Theatre heads for Wembley

The Troubadour Theatre Group is to create a new 2000 seat theatre in Wembley, in what is now the Fountain Studios.

The flexible 1,000-2,000 seat capacity Troubadour Wembley Park Theatre is being created inside the former Fountain Studios, currently home to the X Factor live rounds.

Troubadour Theatres will run the brand-new theatre in Wembley Park, and will aim to work with well-known and emerging production companies and artists to stage “world-class entertainment within a flexible space unmatched by other London theatres”.

In addition to a flexible performance space, Troubadour Wembley Park Theatre will also house a restaurant and bar space.

Located within the former Fountain Studios, which are best known for being the venue of live televised shows including The X Factor, Britain’s Got Talent and Pop Idol, the new theatre will be in the heart of one of West London’s key entertainment destinations.

Troubadour Wembley Park Theatre will be a fully flexible theatre; a space that can be transformed to suit the requirements for every show – traditional proscenium arch theatre, in-the-round theatrical experiences, or immersive shows. It aims to encourage theatrical producers to think big, offering them an affordable alternative space to present bold and ambitious shows.

Troubadour run the King’s Cross Theatre (which consisted of two 1,000 seat theatres and one 450 seat studio housing the Olivier Award-winning production of The Railway Children, Lin-Manuel Miranda’s In The Heights, David Bowie’s Lazarus and the Donmar’s Shakespeare Trilogy). This will be the first theatre to open in Wembley and the first venture between Wembley Park developer Quintain, and Troubadour.

Speaking about the announcement Tristan Baker and Oliver Royds of Troubadour Theatres said: “We are delighted to be creating a state-of-the-art theatre in Wembley Park, in the heart of one of Europe’s largest regeneration areas. Troubadour Wembley Park Theatre will be a modern venue for modern audiences: comfortable seating, increased leg room, a spacious and welcoming bar, a seasonal and innovative restaurant. And for theatre makers, we offer a flexible, dynamic and exciting performance space which can be designed around the shows.

“We see theatre audiences increasing year on year and we are excited, once again, to break the mould of traditional theatres and bring new innovative spaces to audiences and producers alike.”

Speaking about the deal, James Saunders, Chief Operating Officer of Quintain, said: “We are thrilled to welcome Troubadour Theatres to Wembley Park and can’t wait to see the iconic Fountain Studios given a new lease of life, as it’s transformed into a brand-new theatre for those living, working and visiting Wembley Park. This new theatre opens as London is seeing a decline in live venues across the capital and is a further example of how Wembley Park is growing in stature as a cultural destination.”

Troubadour Theatre Wembley Park is set to open in the Autumn of 2018.

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Capco plan demerger

Capital & Counties has announced it is considering a demerger, which would result in two separately-listed businesses – one focussed on Earls Court, and one on Covent Garden.

The Earls Court holdings (pictured left after the demolition of the Earls Court Exhibition Centre) would be put in to a development company focussed on delivering the Earls Court masterplan. This company would be led by current development director Gary Yardley. Capco’s share of property interests at Earls Court was independently valued at £759 million at 31 December 2017.

Capco say the demerger would enhance the strategic flexibility of the two businesses going forward; and deliver the opportunity for investors to continue to participate in both businesses, which have “distinct risk and reward profiles and capital requirements”.

The Covent Garden element was valued at over £2.5 billion at 31 December 2017, and would be launched as an independent, retail-focused REIT, led by current CEO Ian Hawksworth. Capco say it is expected that a demerger, if pursued, would be formalised by the end of this year.

Ian Hawksworth, Chief Executive of Capco, said: “Capco has achieved significant growth since listing, driving value creation from its two prime central London estates, both of which have positive long-term growth prospects. Underpinned by a strong balance sheet, Capco is well-positioned to support the current capital requirements of both of its prime assets. Against this backdrop, the Board believes the time is right to consider the structure of the business in order to realise the potential of these unique assets and enhance shareholder value.”

As a consequence of the decision, Ian Durant has said he thinks it would be appropriate to put in place his successor to lead the Board through this process and will therefore resign as Chairman. Henry Staunton, the current Senior Independent Director, will become Chairman with effect from 5 June 2018.

Capco have had well-publicised difficulties with their Earls Court project, and are in dispute with the local authority over the West Kensington and Gibbs Green estates. Both were the subject of a conditional land sale agreement by a previous administration, which the current one wants to roll back. Capco are seeking to revise their consented masterplan to take account of the changes in the economic climate since consent was granted.

It could be that the new structure assists the resolution of this issue.

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H&F confirms new cabinet

Cllr Stephen Cowan has been re-confirmed as Leader of the Hammersmith & Fulham Council at the H&F Annual Council and Mayor Making meeting.

On 23 May 2018 Cllr Cowna was confirmed as staying in the Leader’s role, while Cllr Daryl Brown was inaugurated as the new Mayor.

They take office following the local elections on 3 May, at which they grew their majority over the opposition Conservatives.

Other Cabinet and committee appointments were also confirmed at the Annual Council meeting:

Cabinet Member for Children and Education – Cllr Larry Culhane
Cabinet Member for the Economy and the Arts – Cllr Andrew Jones
Cabinet Member for the Environment – Cllr Wesley Harcourt
Cabinet Member for Finance and Commercial Services – Cllr Max Schmid
Cabinet Member for Health and Adult Social Care – Cllr Ben Coleman
Cabinet Member for Housing – Cllr Lisa Homan
Cabinet Member for Public Services Reform – Cllr Adam Connell
Cabinet Member for Strategy – Cllr Sue Macmillan

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Sky to build innovation centre on Osterley base

Sky has announced plans to create and build a dedicated innovation centre on its Osterley campus as it continues its push into developing world-leading consumer technology.

The space will house an ever-growing number of technology engineers and software developers focusing on innovation across Sky’s world-class broadcast and streaming platforms, consumer products and the latest content innovations, including virtual reality.

The centre, totalling around 70,000 square feet, is being designed to create a new space where Sky’s most inventive, forward-thinking minds can come together to match customer insight with rapidly changing technology requirements.

Jeremy Darroch, Group Chief Executive of Sky, said:Sky customers have always enjoyed cutting edge technology and the best products available – from satellite to streaming Sky has led the way. The launch of this dedicated innovation centre will enable us to push the boundaries even further.”

The creation of the Innovation Centre will further strengthen Sky’s tech expertise, adding to Sky’s existing tech sites in Leeds and Milan.

As part of Sky’s commitment to attracting and developing more women in tech roles and to address the chronic shortage of female talent in the industry, the new centre will become the home of the company’s brand new Get into Tech for Young Women scheme.

Based on the success of Sky’s Get into Tech course, which has already helped over 100 women train to be coders, the new programme will provide girls of school leaving age the chance to train for free as a coder, with further opportunities at the Sky Software Academy when they have completed the course. This is just one of a number of programmes Sky is running to encourage more women to consider roles in tech and engineering.

The re-development of Sky’s campus has included the construction of five new buildings designed to promote the free flow of people and ideas, enabling talent to collaborate and deliver the best outcomes for customers. The campus and landscapes are designed to inspire Sky colleagues as well as benefit the environment. Sky has built sustainable, energy-efficient buildings that carefully combine innovative design with comfort and simplicity of use.

These include Sky Central’s open and flexible workspace, at its heart featuring its recognisable Sky News glass box live news studio; the Hub, NOW TV’s agile tech environment; Sky’s best in class studios building, bringing news, sport and production all together in one place; and our Believe in Better building, a centre for learning and development. This next stage of Sky’s campus development represents a further investment in people, and in their performance and wellbeing.

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Watkin Jones submits Uxbridge plans

Watkin Jones has submitted plans for a 295 home private rental scheme in Uxbridge.

The development of up to 13 storeys would be on the 2.3-acre site of the Halfords and Wickes retail warehouse on Harefield Road, owned by Canada Life. Watkin Jones has agreed to buy the site conditional on obtaining planning onsent.

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Sadiq awards green spaces funds

The Mayor of London, Sadiq Khan, has today announced the six winners of over £2 million of grant funding for green space improvements, as part of his push to make London the world’s first National Park City.

The winning projects include a cycling and walking greenways Ealing, a park regeneration in Barnet, and new wetlands in Harrow, which will help preserve a 14th century moat.

The awards were made as part of the Mayor’s Greener City Fund. Sadiq has today also announced that he is allocating an extra £3 million to the fund, bringing the total to £12 million. In addition to today’s winners (£2m), the fund provides grants for community green spaces and tree planting (£5m), greening the built environment (£800k), trees and woodlands (£3m) and community engagement to help make London a National Park City (£1m).

The Mayor of London, Sadiq Khan, said: “London is the greatest city in the world and I want to make it one of the greenest too. That’s what my Environment Strategy is all about: cleaning our air, reducing waste, and becoming a zero-carbon city.

“For too many Londoners, nature simply doesn’t feature in their daily lives. That’s why we’re aiming to become a National Park City, with more than half of our capital green. Today’s funding will draw even more people into our outstanding parks by making green spaces more attractive and better for the environment.”

Projects included:

Barnet: Silkstream Valley Parks regeneration project (£324,000)
Improvements to two existing parks, including new facilities for football, tennis, basketball, skateboarding, and parkour. The project will also deliver a new café, event space, and river improvements to support new trees and wildlife habitats.

Ealing: Brent River Park – Greenford to Gurnell Greenway (£325,000)
River improvements to transform underused green space to open up the riverside to Londoners, reduce flooding, and improve river biodiversity and habitats.

Harrow: Headstone Manor Park (£300,000)
Construction of new ponds, reeds beds, and wetlands to help preserve a 14th century moat. The project will improve water quality, protect the river network, and increase biodiversity.

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Colindale gets TfL Growth Fund cash

The Mayor of London, Sadiq Khan, has announced the latest schemes to receive funding from Transport for London’s (TfL’s) Growth Fund, including one in Colindale.

The latest funding, which totals around £24m, will help accelerate the delivery of a range of important transport improvements across the capital, helping to unlock homes, jobs and growth.

The plan to deliver a new station building at Colindale will be funded. The scheme will deliver a new station building with step-free access and new pedestrian and cycle links – helping to support around 10,000 new homes, 1,000 jobs and the wider regeneration of the area.

Also funded were schemes in Walthamstow, Elmers End, and Ilford.

TfL is now working with the local councils, property developers and stakeholders to finalise the funding packages for the scheme, with a hope that work can begin later in 2018.

The Mayor and TfL expanded the Growth Fund to £550m in December 2016 to allow more schemes to be brought forward. By providing funding to schemes through the fund, the Mayor and TfL can help leverage additional funding from developers and third parties to help unlock complex transport schemes and provide improved services at less well connected sites that might otherwise not see investment.

More than 15 schemes have been supported by the Growth Fund so far, including new stations in Tottenham Hale and White Hart Lane, as well as road and public realm schemes in Wandsworth and the new Barking Riverside London Overground Extension, which will be delivered by next summer.

Mayor of London, Sadiq Khan, said: “I’m delighted to be announcing the next four schemes that will benefit from our Growth Fund – millions of pounds of investment that will directly improve people’s daily experience on our public transport network and unlock vital new housing and jobs. As London’s population grows, it is essential we continue to build world-class infrastructure like new Tube stations across the capital, but also target improvements in a way that can help deliver the new homes Londoners desperately need.”

Alex Williams, Director of City Planning at TfL, said: “Good transport links are vital to supporting growth in a city. Our Growth Fund is helping to unlock transport schemes which might not have been funded, helping to create more homes and jobs across London. By promoting ‘good growth’ across London, we can help the capital continue to prosper while providing new transport options for Londoners.”

The Leader of Barnet Council, Councillor Richard Cornelius, said: “We’re pleased to be working with TfL to deliver a new and improved station in Colindale. The completed works will improve the lives of many Colindale commuters, as well as being an attractive new public building for the local area.”

TfL is now reviewing a range of other schemes from across London to see whether they would be suitable for part-funding from the remaining £80m and hopes to be able to confirm these later this year.

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Brent Cross CPO approved

The Communities Secretary James Brokenshire has approved the Compulsory Purchase Order for the new Brent Cross West Thameslink station.

This enables Barnet Council to move the £250m programme to the next stage of the development process, which will deliver an additional new station to support the development of 7,500 new homes, offices and an expanded shopping centre at Brent Cross, along with replacement freight and waste facilities. The new station will open in 2022.

The Leader of Barnet Council, Councillor Richard Cornelius, said: “The Secretary of State’s decision marks a significant milestone in the Brent Cross Cricklewood regeneration scheme, which will bring great benefits to Barnet and also to London.

“This approval will now advance Barnet Council and partners Network Rail to delivering the new Brent Cross West station, which will link residents to Kings Cross St Pancras in 12 minutes.

“A compulsory purchase order is always a last resort and we acknowledge those whose properties may fall within the boundary of the development. We will continue to work to reach agreement with them, local business and all our partners, to realise the potential of the area and deliver for Barnet.”

The Secretary of State’s confirmation follows a public inquiry in September 2017.

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Barratt starts work in Hounslow

Construction work has begun on Barratt’s Hounslow High Street Quarter sheme, which will produce 528 homes, a new Cineworld cinema, shops and office space.

The development will include a 27-storey residential tower, a new addtition to the West London skyline, and a new public square which the developers hope wil provide a new centre for the community, and which will double as an events and performance space.

The development, whih will have over 40% affordable content, is expected to complete by 2021.

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Primark scale up in Harrow

Primark are to take the former BHS unit at Harrow’s St Ann’s Centre, while their own unit will become a Lidl.

The store, three times the size of the current Primark at 67,000 sq, has been vacant since BHS collapsed in 2016. A Lidl store will open in place of the current Primark.

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Hounslow Highways success

Hounslow Council and contractor Hounslow Highways have been nominated for an MJ award recognising outstanding performance in highways management.

The council is a finalist in the Municipal Journal’s local government achievement awards in the Highways Management/Asset Management category.

A Hounslow Council spokesperson said: “Councils up and down the country entered these awards so we are immensely proud to have been shortlisted. We’ve invested £97million over five years and an ongoing £20million until the end of our Public Finance Initiative (PFI) Highways Maintenance contract, into bringing the worst Hounslow roads and footways up to a high and maintainable standard; into multiple schemes renewing street lighting, bridges and other structures; into tree maintenance; and into ensuring our streets are kept clean and fly-tips are cleared quickly.”

Martin Clack, Divisional Director at Hounslow Highways, said: “Hounslow Highways is delighted to have been shortlisted and recognised for the intensive renewal works delivered across Hounslow since the start of the Highways Maintenance contract. Since January 2013, we have resurfaced approximately 206km of carriageways, 230km of footpaths, replaced 15,093 street lights with new LED lanterns, refurbished five major structures, upgraded 10 specialist sites, updated 2,743 powered apparatus to more efficient LED lighting and replaced 13,336 traffic signs, whilst continuing to deliver cleansing, removal of fly tips, and managing trees and grounds maintenance.

“The improvements have helped Hounslow improve from 32nd to 2nd best for road condition in London. Hounslow Highways is extremely proud to contribute towards improving Hounslow as a cleaner, greener and safer borough for the residents and visitors of Hounslow to enjoy for years to come.”

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TfL to take over Heathrow Connect

Transport for London will be running the Heathrow Connect service from this weekend, part of the programme heading for delivery of an opeational Crossrail service.

From Sunday 20 May 2018 Transport for London (TfL) will take over the Heathrow Connect services between Paddington and Heathrow terminals 2/3 and 4 in another major milestone in the creation of the Elizabeth line. From Monday 21 May it will also take over the half hourly Great Western Railway (GWR) services from Paddington which terminate at Hayes & Harlington.

These services will be operated as TfL Rail, which will become Elizabeth line services in December this year when the line opens through central London, transforming travel with quicker, easier and more accessible journeys for customers.

Under TfL Rail, the current service frequency of two trains an hour between Paddington and Heathrow will be maintained using the existing trains, alongside two trains an hour between Paddington and Hayes & Harlington using new Elizabeth line trains, which replace part of the Great Western inner suburban route.
Testing continues to enable TfL to introduce the new Elizabeth line trains on services to the airport.

Single fares on TfL Rail to the airport will be in line with, or cheaper than, the Heathrow Connect fare. TfL zones do not apply to Heathrow pay as you go fares, but for the first time, customers will be able to use pay as you go with Oyster and contactless across the route all the way from Paddington to Heathrow.

As part of the integrated service, daily fare capping for Oyster and contactless and weekly fare capping for contactless will apply, with travelcards that cover Zone 6 able to be used on services to Heathrow. For daily and weekly capping, Heathrow will be designated as ‘Zone 6’, meaning that ‘pay as you go’ customers travelling to and from the Airport from within Zones 1-6 will never pay more than the daily cap of £12.50.

Val Shawcross, Deputy Mayor for Transport, said: “The opening of the Elizabeth line this year will transform travel across London, and TfL taking over services to Heathrow is a major milestone in the project. From Sunday, people travelling to Heathrow will now be able to benefit from Oyster, contactless technology and cheaper fares, providing a better service for thousands of Londoners and visitors every week.”

Jo Johnson, Rail Minister, said: “This is a significant milestone in the delivery of the Elizabeth line, which will transform rail travel for over 200 million passengers every year across the South East, significantly boosting capacity on our network and acting as a catalyst for housing and regeneration.

“When fully open in 2019 the Elizabeth line will provide a faster connection to Heathrow, as well as giving people new interchanges to Gatwick and Luton airports via Thameslink services at Farringdon and helping drive forward economic growth and business opportunities.”

TfL has begun operations at the new, purpose-built train depot at Old Oak Common. The depot will house and maintain up to 42 of the Elizabeth line’s 70 new trains. The maintenance infrastructure at Old Oak Common will play a critical role in the day-to-day operation of the Elizabeth line when it launches later this year, helping to transform travel across London and the South East.

 

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Double win for Brent

Two Brent redevelopment schemes won a joint award at the RESI Awards.

Kilburn Quarter and Wembley Park’s Tipi Alto took the joint award for ‘Development of the Year’ at the 2018 Property Week RESI Awards on Wednesday, May 16.

Network Homes’ Kilburn Quarter, a scheme which saw 229 homes built, of which 103 were made available for social rent, and the Quintain-owned Tipi Alto development in Wembley Park, which has seen 140 homes completed so far for market rent, won the award jointly.

Both schemes are part of major regeneration projects in Brent and the RESI Award is, for the south Kilburn regeneration programme in particular, the latest in a long-line of accolades.

Cllr Shama Tatler, Brent Council’s Cabinet Member for Regeneration, Highways and Planning, said: “We’re committed to delivering the homes, the quality of life and the economic opportunities that people need in the borough and this Property Week RESI award demonstrates that the homes that are being built, are delivering on quality too.

“The award also goes to show the results that can be achieved by working in partnership with external organisations such as Network Homes and Quintain, who developed the sites at South Kilburn and Wembley Park, which have ultimately have helped to improve the lives of our residents.”

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BYM Capital to build new resi development on former BSkyB office campus

Residential developer BYM Capital are set to transform the former headquarters of British Sky Broadcasting into a new £98million scheme.

Four of the five office buildings on the campus on Grant Way, Osterley will be converted into 271 flats – ranging from studio to two bedrooms.

The site has been unoccupied since 2016, when BSkyB redeveloped several parts of its wider office and studio campus.

The development will also provide underground parking for each flat, 24-hour security and CCTV, a private porter, a residents’ gym and landscaped grounds. The last of the five buildings will be retained as office space.

Construction has already begun and the scheme is scheduled to be completed in early 2019.

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Unibail-Rodamco confirms Westfield deal

Unibail-Rodamco has confirmed approval of the acquisition of Westfield Corporation, owners of Westfield London.

Shareholders confirmed the transaction at Unibail’s Annual General Meeting. The combined company will be listed on Amsterdam, Paris and Sydney stock exchanges.

On May 24, 2018, Westfield shareholders will convene to vote on the schemes of arrangement to
approve the transaction, which has been recommended by the Westfield board.

Christophe Cuvillier, CEO of Unibail-Rodamco commented: “Today marks a new and
major step forward in the acquisition of Westfield, a natural extension of Unibail-Rodamco’s strategy of
concentration, differentiation and innovation. I would like to thank our shareholders
for their support for the proposed transaction, which represents a compelling opportunity
for continued profitable growth and value creation.”

Shareholders also approved the appointment of two former Westfield board members – John
McFarlane and Peter Lowy, as members of the new Supervisory Board.

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Wembley back in profit ahead of Shahid Khan takeover bid

The latest accounts for Wembley Stadium show a return to profit, ahead of the proposed takeover by American billionaire Shahid Khan.

The National Stadium made pre-tax profits of £5.5million in the year to July 2017, compared with a £5m loss in 2016. Operating profits were £12.5m, up by £500,000.

It was revealed last month that Fulham and Jackonsville Jaguars owner Khan launched a bid over more than £500m to buy the ground from the Football Association.

Wembley’s strategic report which revealed the latest figures, said: “Hosting the most high-profile, showpiece events is critical to maintaining Wembley’s position as one of the world’s leading stadia.”

Wembley’s profits for 2016-17 were boosted by Tottenham playing four fixtures there — three in the Champions League and one in the Europa League. The stadium also hosted the record-breaking world heavyweight title fight between Anthony Joshua and Wladimir Klitschko

The turnover for 2016‑17 was £104.1m — a drop of £300,00 from the previous year, partly due to fewer concerts. However, a gig by Adele there last July attracted a record crowd for the ground of 98,000.

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Mayor produces council housing cash

The Mayor of London, Sadiq Khan, has announced a programme aimed at boosting the building of new council homes, aiming for 10,000 over the next four years.

Sadiq is using funds from the £1.67bn he secured from government in the Spring Statement to help support London’s councils to increase the rate of council homebuilding in the capital.

The Mayor says he believes a “modern comeback for council housing” is needed to fix the housing crisis.

In the 1970s London councils were supported by central government and built more than 20,000 homes a year, but that number fell to almost zero during the 1990s. In 2018 councils are able to contribute less than two per cent of London’s new homes per year. London councils built 2,100 homes over the last seven years, including 300 that were completed last year.‎

Alongside offers of expertise and flexibility over funding, the Mayor is offering councils the opportunity to bid for grant funding at a special rate which should allow them more easily to offer new homes based on social rent levels.

The first deals struck under “Building Council Homes for Londoners” are with Waltham Forest Newham and Lewisham, and should result in 2500 new homes by 2022.

The programme also offers councils a way to ringfence their Right to Buy receipts to help them build new homes to replace those sold in the local area.

Right to Buy was introduced in 1980 and, according to Ministry of Housing, Communities & Local Government figures, it has resulted in 306,000 social homes sold by councils in London since 1980. During the same period, councils have built only 62,000 homes at social rent – equivalent to just one in five of those homes sold being replaced.

The Mayor of London, Sadiq Khan, said: “Back in the 1970s, when I was growing up, London councils built thousands of social homes, providing homes for families and generations of Londoners. But the government has turned its back on local authorities, severely hampering their ambition to build by cutting funding and imposing arbitrary restrictions on borrowing.”

“I am proud to launch Building Council Homes for Londoners – the first ever City Hall programme dedicated to new council housing. I want to help councils get back to building homes for Londoners again, and I’m doing that with support from the £1.67bn fund I secured from government to help get 10,000 new homes underway over the next four years.”

“I am offering councils expertise and resources from City Hall to scale up their homebuilding programmes, and I will help them to replace homes sold through Right to Buy. The government is failing to enable councils to replace the hundreds of thousands of council homes sold through Right to Buy, and so I will do all I can to help councils replace as many of them as possible.”

Building Council Homes for Londoners aims to support councils to enhance their capacity to deliver large-scale new-build programmes with skills, expertise and resources from City Hall.

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Spelthorne Council calls for Heathrow compensation extension

Spelthorne Council has called for the compensation scheme proposed by Heathrow Airport in its current third runway consultation to be expanded to include parts of their borough.

Although the Council has been a long-standing supporter of Heathrow expansion due to the economic benefits, it says it wants its residents to be compensated.

The Council says it is particularly concerned that, under the current proposals, no Spelthorne residents will benefit from the package of measures known as the “Wider Property Offer Zone”. These measures include residents being able to sell their home at the market value of the property “as if expansion had never been promised or taken place” plus a 25% uplift.

It says that excluding south of the airport from the WPOZ is wrong, as they will also be affected bynoise, air quality, and construction work, and that their property value could be negatively affected.

Cllr Ian Harvey, Leader of Spelthorne Borough Council, said: “Whilst we recognise the economic benefits that expansion can bring to the local area as well as nationally, it is important that we continue to fight for our residents to be properly compensated and left with community legacy benefits. We must not be the poor relation in terms of the compensation packages on offer elsewhere.”

The Council has previously published a list of 10 demands that it is seeking from Heathrow which include the expansion of the WPOZ to cover the whole of Stanwell Moor and large parts of Stanwell, a promise not to site any immigration removal centres in the borough, and a commitment to support the council in its bid to have the borough included in TfL’s zone 6.

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