Tag Archives: hammersmith and fulham

Opinion: Beware of Tesco towns

The Government’s chief design adviser has warned against the danger of supermarket led developments in town centres. Mixed-use developments involving the building of housing, schools and parks linked to supermarkets are often badly conceived and may not thrive in the long term, said the Commission for Architecture and the Built Environment (CABE) in its report published this week.

While developers are keen to sign up a key anchor tenant such as Tesco, Sainsbury or Homebase to lease their retail and commercial spaces, this may not be what residents or local communities want or need. A formula that works for an out-of-town …

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Even top Tory admits their shadow cabinet “haven’t run a piss-up in a brewery”

The Public Finance website reports the comments of Stephen Greenhalgh, Tory leader of the London Borough of Hammersmith and Fulham and head of the Conservative councils’ innovation unit, at a debate two days ago:

‘My mates are all in the shadow Cabinet, waiting to get those boxes, being terribly excited. I went to university with them, they haven’t run a piss-up in a brewery,’ he said.

‘They’re going to get a department of state, in one case running the finances of the nation.’

Greenhalgh pointed to other countries, such as France and the US, where members of the government had typically

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Opinion: Tories’ housing plot uncovered?

The Evening Standard published a bold article last Thursday suggesting that Hammersmith & Fulham Council and the Tory leadership were in a plot reminiscent of the days of Dame Shirley Porter (‘Plot to rid council estates of Poor’, 9 July 2009)

Hammersmith & Fulham Council is currently consulting on their Local Development Framework (LDF) Core Strategy Options which repeatedly refers to a need for ‘decent neighbourhoods’. Neighbourhoods that are currently not ‘decent’ have been identified throughout the borough.

It seems to me that if these neighbourhoods contained homes which do not meet national ‘decent homes standards’ then the Council and Hammersmith & Fulham Homes should be working to bring them up to standard. Where the neighbourhoods have residents who are jobless and on benefits, then the Council has a duty to provide training and improved skills. The solution should not be to demolish and decant whole estates.

The Council has, however, shown a preference for the easy fix by proposing the rebuilding of properties primarily for sale. The only assurance they provide existing residents is that the equivalent number of ‘habitable rooms’ (not number of units) for social renting will be preserved, and this over the next 20 years!

There are two conclusions that we can draw from this. First, many local residents will be without a home in Hammersmith & Fulham in years to come and will be likely to have to seek housing outside of the borough. Second, the Tory Council seems to be focussed on changing the demographics of their voters in this marginal constituency.

The present Labour MP Andrew Slaughter has felt suitably threatened and has raised the alarm claiming to have uncovered a trail of evidence showing possible complicity amongst the leadership of Hammersmith & Fulham Council – the Tory leadership as well as the right wing think tank, Localis – on this subject.

So what can we do about this?

Posted in Local government, London and Op-eds | Also tagged , and | 3 Comments
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