£2.5bn regeneration of Wembley Stadium gets green light despite warning from FA

£2.5bn regeneration of Wembley Stadium gets green light despite warning from FA

A £2.5billion regeneration scheme around Wembley Stadium has been given the green light despite warnings from football chiefs that it was a “recipe for disaster”.

The FA said funnelling thousands of departing fans “like cattle” down narrow streets to two new car parks to the west of the national stadium would see them held in a “kettling pen” on match days.

It said it risked repeat scenes of violence which saw Manchester United’s team coach attacked by West Ham fans at Tuesday’s historic last game at the Boleyn Ground.

A local politician warned that replacing the existing easy-to-access car parks risked a repeat of the Hillsborough disaster.

But plans for the car parks were approved last night by Brent Council, along with a scheme to bring 4,850 new homes, 350,000sq ft of new offices and shops, two new hotels, a new seven-acre public park, student accomodation and a 600-place primary school to Wembley Park as part of one of the biggest regeneration schemes in Europe.

The FA could now call on new Mayor of London Sadiq Khan to call in the plans based on their safety concerns.

Sport England and the Department of Culture, Media and Sport have also both written to the council to formally raise concerns.

The plans “created genuine public order and safety concerns”

Julie Harrington, operations director at the FA

Julie Harrington, operations director at the FA, last night told the council’s planning committee the location of the car parks off South Way “created genuine public order and safety concerns which would serve as a retrograde step for the stadium.”

She said: “Tuesday night’s disturbing scenes at West Ham’s Boleyn Ground only go to show that we absolutely cannot be complacent when it comes to fan management around the stadium.”

She said developer Quintain was ”working from a position to maximise profits” rather than to “protect fan safety”.

She said: “The holding of fans, the kettling of fans, that’s a return to the 1970s in my view.

“Even a short amount of time holding people, irate fans from teams that have lost, or rival fans mixing together is too much.”

Transport consultants working for the FA presented analysis showing fans could have to wait for up to three hours to board coaches under the new layout.

Ms Harrington warned that the FA “would not be able to attract major events to Wembley if fan’s can’t leave the car park.”

She said: “If fans can’t get to their coaches and can’t get to their vehicles, if up to 9,000 fans are pooled behind the stadium with nowhere to go, if 15,000 fans are pushed down back streets to their coaches, it’s a recipe for disaster, a public order disaster, and the FA will not stand by and see fans treated in this way.

“We cannot be complacent about the huge steps forward made in stadium safety in the past two decades. No-one should believe that its acceptable to herd fans like cattle. We must learn from past mistakes.”

Councillor Michael Maurice, the only member of the planning committee to vote against the proposals, told the meeting: “Up to 5,000 fans kettled? We don’t want to see another Hillsborough.”

He added: “Surely there should be no kettling at all, many of the fans might be somewhat inebriated. Surely if you start putting 10,000 to 15,000 people in a confined space you are asking for trouble.”

Objectors are also opposed to the size and scale of seven residential and commerical tower blocks of up to 19 storeys which were also given outline approval. Critics say they could block “iconic” views of Wembley from across London.

Sam Stopp, a Wembley Central councillor who is not on the planning committee, said: “If this goes ahead it will be so obscured it may no longer be a major draw. The arch is the something special, it’s not about profit, wealth and greed. What it suggests to young girls and boys is hope, and if they can’t see it it will be very sad and depressing.”

Quintain rejected the FA’s concerns but said it would continue to work with them to try and find a solution, while council officers rejected comparisons with Hillsborough.

Anne Clements, Quintain’s Senior Planning Manager,told the committee: “We reject any assertion that our future plans for pedestrians are unsafe and we do not accept claims about the impact on leaving times at the stadium.”

Speaking after the meeting Max James, chief executive of Quintain, said: “We are delighted that Brent Council has approved our new plans, accelerating the delivery of thousands of new homes, jobs and a fantastic new park in this prime location next to the iconic Wembley Stadium.

“We are excited to be playing such a pivotal role in creating the next chapter of this great city. We are creating a vision for Wembley which will truly fulfil its global heritage as the most famous sports and music destination in the world, now combined with modern urban living.

“We are committed to working with all stakeholders, including Wembley Stadium, to make the scheme a great success.”

A spokesman for Quintain added: “The safety of fans and all visitors to Wembley Park is our top priority at all times. To be clear our preferred future coach park pedestrian solution, endorsed by Brent, does not involve any holding pens for fans.”

“We have developed a clear and workable solution for event day traffic management in our new masterplan and we remain in detailed discussions with Wembley Stadium to address the wider transport issues they have raised.

Source: Evening Standard

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Wembley regeneration plans get go ahead

Wembley regeneration plans get go ahead

Wembley regeneration plans

Plans for 4,850 new homes, a new school and student accommodation around Wembley Stadium have been given the green light.


The creation of 7,000 new jobs, new retail and leisure space as well as new community facilities and parking spaces around the national stadium all formed part of the planning applications, which were submitted by property developer Quintain. More than £80million will also be provided by Quintain to improve local infrastructure.


After listening to a number of representations about the proposals, including hearing speakers from The FA, the council’s Planning Committee granted approval to the applications yesterday evening (May 11).


During the three and a half hour meeting, Members discussed in detail matters relating to transport, safety and design and found that, on balance, the plans should be granted approval subject to a number of conditions including ones to improve transport, safety and the exit of fans from the stadium.


A council spokesperson said: “These plans mark the next phase in the regeneration of Wembley and will create much needed new homes, jobs, leisure and educational facilities around the iconic home of football.


“While these plans will help accelerate the transformation of Wembley, the committee did consider all representations in detail and these concerns have been taken on board with the series of additional conditions which were imposed.”


“Safety always comes first and we are confident that the plans will ensure that fans and other visitors to the national stadium can continue to enjoy these facilities while providing the significant regeneration which the area needs.”


Quintain’s plans will now be subject to consideration by the Mayor of London.


To view details of the planning applications

Source: Brent

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Minicab Gatwick Airport

Minicab Gatwick Airport. Minicab Gatwick Airport.

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Harlesden Cars have over 25-years of experience in providing comfortable and hassle-free airport transfer services. The number of years we have served in the transportation industry speaks a volume about our credentials. Harlesden Cars cover all London and Greater London Airports. We have a wide range of MPVs, minibus, estate and executive cars. With such a dynamic fleet of vehicles, we can easily take care of your entire group. The other prominent advantage is that we will pick you up from airports at short notice. We just need 35 minutes on average to reach Gatwick Airport, so by the time you checkout, our minicab will be there to take you to desired destination. Isn’t that amazing!

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Minicab Kensal Green

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Twin towers plan unveil for old oak common By Squires.

Squire and Partners has submitted plans for Old Oak Common’s first residential tower blocks as part of a wider scheme for up to 534 new homes

The two skyscrapers – which would be up to 33-storeys tall – are the stand-out elements of a redevelopment of the former Elizabeth Arden factory in the west London development zone, which is scheduled to become a transport hub with the arrival of Crossrail and HS2.

Developer Essential Living’s plans for the 1.16ha site in Wales Farm Road would remove all current buildings, except for the north-western façade of the current factory building. The private-rented specialist said the retained structure would underscore an ‘Art Deco influence’ for the scheme, which is dubbed ‘The Perfume Factory’.

Under outline proposals lodged with London Mayor Boris Johnson’s Old Oak and Park Royal Development Corporation, the development would provide a mix of flats, four bedroom houses, 6,147m2 of live-work space, 2,175m2 of business space and 1,381m2 of retail and restaurant space.
Development director Quentin Keeble said the scheme would also feature a winter garden and a ‘ladder’ of commercial space that enabled start-ups to graduate from shared desk space to larger office environments.

Squire and Partners has submitted plans for Old Oak Common’s first residential tower blocks as part of a wider scheme for up to 534 new homes

The two skyscrapers – which would be up to 33-storeys tall – are the stand-out elements of a redevelopment of the former Elizabeth Arden factory in the west London development zone, which is scheduled to become a transport hub with the arrival of Crossrail and HS2.

Developer Essential Living’s plans for the 1.16ha site in Wales Farm Road would remove all current buildings, except for the north-western façade of the current factory building. The private-rented specialist said the retained structure would underscore an ‘Art Deco influence’ for the scheme, which is dubbed ‘The Perfume Factory’.

Under outline proposals lodged with London Mayor Boris Johnson’s Old Oak and Park Royal Development Corporation, the development would provide a mix of flats, four bedroom houses, 6,147m2 of live-work space, 2,175m2 of business space and 1,381m2 of retail and restaurant space.

Development director Quentin Keeble said the scheme would also feature a winter garden and a ‘ladder’ of commercial space that enabled start-ups to graduate from shared desk space to larger office environments.

‘We are also highly focused on improving the public realm and enhance the local area and we believe the Perfume Factory gives Ealing the ideal chance to develop its first digital hub and tap into London’s booming digital economy,’ he said.

Earlier this week, Johnson’s office announced that Design Council CABE had been appointed to set up and manage an independent review group tasked with improving the quality of development proposals for the corporation area.

It said the appointment had been made following a competitive tender process and that the review group would operate along the planning, landscape, conservation, and engineering (PLACE) principles set out in last year’s Farrell Review.

The Old Oak and Park Royal Development Corporation area straddles three London boroughs and is earmarked for the delivery of up to 25,500 new homes.

Squire and Partners’ Perfume Factory proposals

Squire and Partners’ Perfume Factory proposals for the former Elizabeth Arden factory in west London

  The Elizabeth Arden factory 
 The Elizabeth Arden factory as it is today

 Source: Architectsjournal

Pothole puts all UK cars at risk

Pothole peril puts UK cars at risk
A pothole in a road in Tooting, SW London

BREAKDOWN callouts to motorists whose vehicles have been damaged by potholes have risen by almost a quarter in a year, the RAC said.

There were more than 25,000 incidents last year involving damaged suspensions, wheels and shock absorbers, figures released by the motoring organisation to coincide with the second National Pothole Day show.

Drivers in East Anglia made the most calls for help (4,547), but the largest rise in callouts over the past year was in the south east of England where the increase was 62%, to 2,686.

The north east of England saw callouts rise by almost a third to 3,783, while incidents in Scotland increased by more than a quarter to 2,537.

The biggest headache for drivers was damaged suspension springs, with 42% more incidents reported last year compared with 2014.The RAC described the rise in callouts as worrying.

Chief engineer David Bizley said: “Potholes can wreak havoc with vehicles and are therefore understandably hated by motorists.

“It is very worrying that our patrols have dealt with more pothole-related breakdowns in 2015 than they did the year before because we did not experience a particularly cold winter in either year.”

Recently announced investment should help improve the condition of Britain’s roads but there is still a way to go, Mr Bizley said.

Some local authorities have invested more in road maintenance to address the backlog but problems experienced, even in mild weather, suggest the fight against potholes is being lost, he added.

“We shall only win the battle once sufficient preventative road surface maintenance is undertaken to prevent potholes appearing when the first bad weather arrives.

“On top of the £6 billion already promised, the Chancellor made available further funds in the Autumn Statement and whilst this is still not enough to meet the shortfall, it may hopefully mean we will see a decline in ‘pothole generated breakdowns’ this time next year.”

Drivers are being encouraged to report potholes using the RAC Report Pothole app.

Source: Yahoo News

Man guilty of manslaughter

Man guilty of manslaughter after killing Harrow-on-the-Hill mechanic over car dispute.

Dwayne King stabbed a mechanic in a dispute over the cost of repairs to a car.

Dwayne King was found guilty of manslaughter

A man who stabbed a Harrow-on-the-Hill mechanic over a car repair dispute has been found guilty of manslaughter and jailed for twelve years.

Dwayne King, 30, of no fixed address killed Granville Thomas, 55, on June 29.

Metropolitan Police officers were called at about 6.30pm after receiving reports of a disturbance near garages in a courtyard at Ranelagh Road, Harlesden .

Officers and London Ambulance Service attended the scene and found Thomas, also known as ‘Rat’ or ‘Blacks’, with stab wounds to the chest and he was pronounced dead at the scene.

Officers spoke to King who admitted he was the person that called the emergency services.

He also admitted to the stabbing but said he did it after Thomas attacked him with a knife.

Embroiled in a dispute about costs

The court heard that King was working as a mechanic in garages in Ranelagh Road and Granville Thomas undertook car repairs on the roadside.

In April he was asked to repair a Vauxhall Astra, which he took to King’s workplace.

The owner of the vehicle was unhappy with the repairs and King and Thomas became embroiled in a dispute about the cost King was charging Thomas to repair the vehicle at his place of work.

King refused to let Thomas take the vehicle from the garages until he paid the money they agreed.

King was arrested at the scene and later charged with the murder of Granville Thomas.

Detective Chief Inspector Noel McHugh, Homicide and Major Crime Command, said: “Sadly, it would seem that the origins of the dispute that led to Granville Thomas being killed was something as trivial as the repairs of a vehicle.

“Granville Thomas lost his life and now King will send a considerable period of time in custody as a result.

“I hope that today’s verdict brings some degree of comfort to Granville Thomas’ family and friends.”

Sourc: GetwestLondon

West Londoners urged

West Londoners urged to attend public meeting on future of fire services

People will have the chance to discuss the two proposals outlined in the public consultation.

A list of suggested stations where fire engines could be withdrawn will be discussed

West Londoners are being urged to have their say on the future of fire services at a public meeting on Monday (January 11).

Two proposals were outlined as part of a public consultation launched in December last year, on how the London Fire Brigade can save £6.4m, in response to budget cuts demanded by Mayor of London Boris Johnson for 2016/17.

The first option recommends the return of the 13 fire engines withdrawn from service including Willesden, Ealing and Chelsea, but makes the savings by having alternate crewing at fire stations, and the second option suggests the permanent removal of 13 fire engines including in Hammersmith and Ealing, using savings to reinvest in staff.

London Assembly Members Navin Shah and Murad Qureshi warned that cutting more fire engines could lead to a rise in response times across the capital.

In Brent 11 wards have seen a rise in response times in 2014/15 compared to the previous year; before Mr Johnson’s closure of 10 fire stations and scrapping of 14 fire engines.

Similarly 14 wards in Ealing have seen a rise in response times; 10 wards in Hammersmith and nine wards in Kensington and Chelsea.

Mr Shah said: “With our fire services facing uncertain times, and response times already rising significantly in Brent, it’s important that local people have their say over the future of London’s fire service.

“The mayor’s cuts mean that there are very tough decisions ahead. If you take fire engines out of service then of course response times could rise and lives could be put at risk. Nobody wants to see that happen.

“With frontline services at stake, it is hugely important that local people are given the opportunity to make their views known.”

Londoners are urged to attend the meeting which will discuss both proposals and their impact at the Conference Hall, Brent Civic Centre, Engineers Way, Wembley, at 7pm on Monday.

For people unable to attend the meeting, the first ever online meeting will be held allowing people to ask their questions between 12.30pm and 1.30pm on January 22.

For more information on this, and to have your say on the proposals, visit the LFB website.

Alternatively email your questions to consultation@london-fire.gov.uk.

The first list of stations with a fire engine currently withdrawn from service:



Erith Bexley
Willesden Brent
Ealing Ealing
Shoreditch Hackney
Romford Havering
Holloway Islington
Chelsea Kensington and Chelsea
Forest Hill Lewisham
Plaistow Newham
Stratford Newham
Old Kent Road Southwark
Poplar Tower Hamlets
Wandsworth Wandsworth

The second is a list of the stations the LFB view to be the optimum ones to withdraw a fire engine from to minimise the impact on response times:



West Hampstead Camden
Norbury Croydon
Ealing Ealing
East Greenwich Greenwich
Shoreditch Hackney
Hammersmith Hammersmith and Fulham
Romford Havering
Forest Hill Lewisham
Stratford Newham
Old Kent Road Southwark
Wandsworth Wandsworth
Sidcup Bexley
Hornsey Haringey

Sourc: GetwestLondon

Seven taken to hospital

Seven taken to hospital with carbon monoxide poisoning in Harlesden.

Two adults and five children were treated for carbon monoxide poisoning late on Monday night.

A London firefighter
Seven people were evacuated from the building by firefighters

Two adults and five children were taken to hospital with carbon monoxide poisoning suffered in their house in Harlesden on Monday (January 11).

According to London Fire Brigade , the occupants left the house on High Street before the arrival of fire services and were treated on the scene by London Ambulance Service before being taken to hospital.

Seven people were evacuated from nearby properties as a precaution and crews shut down the gas supply to the house before handing the scene over to the police.

London Fire Brigade was called at 11.25pm and the incident took around an hour to deal with.

Fire engines from Park Royal and Willesden fire stations attended the incident.

Source: GetWestLondon

Woman dies after being rescued from Wembley garage fire

Woman dies after being rescued from Wembley garage fire

A woman who was rescued from a garage fire in Wembley has since died, the Times has learned.

The victim was left unconscious after the blaze tore through the garage at the rear of a property in Bowrons Avenue shortly before 1am yesterday morning.

Firefighters wearing breathing apparatus rescued the woman from the burning building.

She was treated by London Ambulance Service crews before being taken to a nearby hospital for treatment.

But the victim later died, the Times has learned.

The woman has been named locally but the Times will not reveal her identity until her family has been informed by the authorities.

It is thought the woman was asleep as the fire broke out. It is believed it started accidentally.

The flames were brought under control by 2.20am.

More to follow.

Source: Kilburn Times