Is Brentford bothered about the Cycle Superhighway
The IBAF went a bit wonky because we had long debates about controlled parking zones in Osterley and Isleworth and didn’t have much time left to talk about the Cycle Superhighway or the Brentford/GWR plans. There’s been huge interest in CS9 from Chiswick but I’ve heard very little from Brentford even though it is actually much more challenging for us than for the Cheese Farmers up the road. I’m hoping people are getting along to the consultation events and also getting ready to give feedback to the various planning related consultations: you’ll find the Superhighway here and this will be where to look for the others when they open – they don’t seem to be up yet.
If you want some real engagement there are some public enquiries on. I’m breaking the habit of a lifetime and doing a bit of cut and paste here in case anyone is interested!
Public Inquiry into the Compulsory Purchase Order served on an area of Brentford Town Centre to facilitate the redevelopment of Brentford Town Centre, also known locally as the Ballymore scheme. As a number of landowners objected to being served with a compulsory purchase order for their property, a public inquiry is being held. This will start on 3rd October, and is scheduled to last 10 days (although that may be less). This inquiry is to be held in the Park Grand Hotel on Great West Road / Lampton Road. The inquiry is scheduled to begin at 10am each day.
Planning inquiry into the refusal of advertisement consent to allow a large illuminated advert sign on the side of the former Alfa Laval building in Brentford, facing west. There has previously been an appeal on this proposal, which was turned down by the Planning Inspectorate, but the applicants challenged this in the High Court. The outcome of that was that the appeal decision was quashed and the appeal is to be head again, this time at a public inquiry.This will start on 21st November, and is scheduled to last 3 days. This inquiry is to be held in Brentford Free Church, Boston Manor Road, Brentford. The inquiry is scheduled to begin at 10am each day.
Planning inquiry into the refusal of planning and advertisement consent to erect a 32 storey tower and illuminated advertisements on a site adjacent to Chiswick Roundabout, Brentford. This development is known as the Chiswick Curve. This will start on 12 June 2018, and is scheduled to last 15 inquiry days / 4 weeks (although that may be less). This inquiry is to be held in Brentford Free Church, Boston Manor Road, Brentford. The inquiry is scheduled to begin at 10am each day.
Friday was a bit of door-knocking down New and Braemar Roads. The concerns I noted included large artics going down New Road (New Road, Artics, WHY?) and vans going too fast down the same. People are getting used to the new recycling regime and most are happy with it (which is a great contrast to the situation a couple of months ago) other than concerns about room for containers in bijou front gardens (I’ve heard that complaint before, somewhere). We hear at Overview and Scrutiny (I’ll come back to that later) that, though it’s too early to be definitive, recycling rates seem to be creeping up as people get used to the new system, as we hoped. Space Waye should be reopening before Christmas and that should help some more, particularly for those who live out in the wild west of the borough.
Saturday was a bit bonkers. I looked in at the Macmillan coffee morning at Brentford Dock and was lucky to find the resplendent Deputy Mayor in all his finery and with a little coat of arms on the top of his personal limousine arriving with boxes of stuff.
Cllr Mukesh Malhotra, Deputy Mayor of Hounslow
He has cried foul on my last week’s blog because I very wrongly suggested he is no longer on the audit committee (in fact he’s deputy chair thereof!)
Following the coffee morning I zoomed off on the superbike to the Civic Centre to a Foodbox event. I encountered Cllr Ellar on his own bike at the civic (first time I’ve seen him on one) and he accused mine of being electric – no, it’s just my unrivalled athleticism that confuses people that there must be mechanical assistance. Anyway, turned out that I was a day late for the Foodbox. Twerp. So then it’s back to Chiswick for our campaign day stall – Labour messages are going down very well in Chiswick these days – up to Lionel Road to investigate a parking problem then back to Chiswick for beer (I felt I had earned it).
On Monday a meeting in the Civic centre about changes to the Complaints policy – we’re trying to make it slicker but councillors want more consultation – and in the evening we’re up to the café in GWQ to talk to residents about their concerns. It’s difficult to establish contact with these private blocks because we generally can’t get in to door knock, so it was good to meet a bunch of block representatives and we hope to build on that. The Melvinator and I then repair (Myra Savin being unwell today) to the Griffin to catch the end of the meeting of the Friends of St Pauls. I get to look at the artwork for their calendar, which is small children doing paintings of their dogs with accompanying snapshots of the pooches. The resemblance is not always obvious but I find the pictures absolutely delightful and Martin Case observes that I’m sitting there giggling and with an inane grin on. You’d think I was in Borough Council. They are hoping to arrange a free Christmas event in the park, like apparently used to happen years ago. Sounds really great – what a team!
Tuesday we’re up to Boston Manor Park to get some feedback from the parks officers and from Linda Massey – the head of the Friends Group and someone who has made a massive contribution to the park. We want to get from the horses’ mouths what the impact of the recent Junction 2 festival was, as consideration is given to a licence application for next year. The three councillors have a common view and we will be expressing this to the licensing team.
In the evening it’s Overview and Scrutiny Committee. We talk about non-permanent staff (temps and interim staff) and I’m very impressed that the proportion of them has been cut almost in half over the last year or so, meaning Hounslow is now the second lowest user of these expensive resources in London Boroughs (after Greenwich). Adult Social Care, which has had some problems in the past, appears to be on the right track although the awkward squad (a certain blogging councillor from Brentford) found some discrepancies in the figures which they are off looking at. A good update on Waste and Recycling – see above, and as a flat dweller I asked what’s happening to improve the performance in flats. I was very heartened to get an email this morning from our excellent area officer about a planned visit to Ferry Quays to improve our facilities here.
I spent Wednesday trying to get a grip on my email etc backlog which had got a bit out of control, then a Labour party meeting in the evening, and here we are, back at Thursday again. Planning this evening so I’d better read the papers and decide which ones need a quick look-see.
Councillor Guy Lambert
September 15, 2017