Supermarket Asda plans to develop homes on its Park Royal site 

Supermarket Asda plans to develop homes on its Park Royal site 

The supermarket chain will use the land for both a new store and housing…

Asda is aiming to transform the land of its Park Royal store in north west London into a new mixed-use development. 

The retailer is partnering with property developer Barratt London on the redevelopment of the brownfield site, which is currently home to its Park Royal superstore.

The plans, which Asda have unveiled for the ten-acre plot, will feature a new 60,000 square foot flagship Asda Superstore and up to 400 car parking spaces for customers. In addition, 1500 new homes are planned, 500 of which will be provided as affordable. 

A large number of the apartments will utilise a landscaped podium above the new store.

The proposal, which is subject to planning approval, includes creating a new town centre for the local community, at the heart of the Old Oak and Park Royal Development Corporation major regeneration area.

The use of public transport will be encouraged at the proposed car free residential development, while the Asda car park will include EV parking spaces.

This mixed-use redevelopment of an established store site is a first for Asda and represents one of the largest land deals of the last couple of years.

The planned building work would allow for Asda’s existing Park Royal Superstore to remain open whilst work is carried out on the new store development.  

Ian Lawrence, head of mixed-use developments at Asda, said: “Asda’s venture into mixed-use property redevelopment marks a significant milestone for the business. By working with leading developers like Barratt London, we are able to maximise the full potential of our property portfolio for the first time.”

“This allows us the opportunity to better serve local communities like Park Royal, with a new flagship store fit for the future, whilst creating windfall sites for housing delivery.

“We are also unlocking further opportunities to release value from our extensive property portfolio, which can be reinvested back into the business to fund other initiatives and support our long-term growth ambition to become the UK’s second largest supermarket chain.”

Work on the planning application is already underway and will be submitted later this year to the relevant bodies.  

Craig Carson, managing director of Barratt West London, comments: “We are proud to be partnering with Asda on their first mixed-use development. At Barratt London, we have a strong track record in both rejuvenating brownfield sites and delivering new homes in the Borough of Ealing, so it’s a partnership and site that makes perfect sense for us.

“This transaction is a sign that there is still land to be unlocked in the capital and reflects one of the market’s largest land transactions since 2019. 

“The redevelopment of Park Royal will have a huge impact on the area, with the new town centre unlocking new commercial opportunities for local businesses and providing a new hub for the local community. The proposed delivery of 1,500 new homes will play a vital part in the Old Oak and Park Royal regeneration plans and will help to unlock much needed new and affordable homes in Ealing.”

Newsteer Real Estate, who have worked with other major retailers on similar redevelopment deals in the past, are acting as advisors to Asda throughout the process. 

Ross Bettridge, Newsteer director, said: “Retailers such as Asda at Park Royal provide great opportunities to utilise brownfield sites and deliver much needed housing for people living in the capital. 

“At Newsteer, we are actively advising on similar opportunities with the potential to deliver circa 12,000 homes. The key to unlocking these sites is about protecting and enhancing the retail offer while balancing the viability.”

Asda recently announced it has now opened 479 Asda Express stores, as part of its rapid convenience expansion, enabling the retailer to reach the landmark of 1,000 UK sites for the first time in its 59-year history.

Peabody set to build their first Passive House-standard homes

Peabody set to build their first Passive House-standard homes

The project is part of a wider development in Deptford, London 

Peabody is making its first venture into providing homes that achieve Passive House certification. 

The G15 housing association has appointed property developers Higgins Partnerships to build affordable, low-energy homes in the capital.

The project will consist of 189 homes at Deptford Landings in south east London and will be made up of three eight-storey buildings, two of which will have large roof terraces, and a central landscaped courtyard.

The Passive House concept is widely accepted by the construction industry as the standard to aim for when reducing a building’s running costs and the amount of energy it uses. 

The energy needed to heat and cool Passive House buildings can be 90 per cent lower than that of regular buildings, and more than 75 per cent lower than typical new ones.

Peabody’s homes at Deptford Landings will be one of the largest single-phase Passive House projects in the UK to date and will see residents benefiting from reduced energy costs and a significant improvement in comfort and air quality.

The fully affordable scheme, managed by Peabody, will include social rent and shared ownership homes. 

The development, designed by architects Allford Hall Monaghan Morris (AHMM) with Max Fordham engineers, will be part of a community being developed by Lendlease with new homes, shops, a renovated pub and green spaces connected to the Waterline Way walking and cycling route. 

Simon Barry, managing director of development at Peabody, said: “At a time when building new, affordable homes in the capital is increasingly challenging, our investment of more than £75m, including grant support, will provide nearly 200 homes for Londoners.

“As well as being fully affordable, they’re the first we’re building to Passive House standards. Every home will be low cost and low energy, helping to significantly reduce energy bills for residents while being better for the environment. 

“Together with our new partners at Higgins, we’re looking forward to continuing this pioneering work alongside Lendlease and the council.”

Declan Higgins, CEO of Higgins, added: “Plot 6 forms part of the exciting regeneration plans for Deptford Landings which will eventually see the creation of a brand-new community with over 1,000 new homes, retail and workspaces to support local businesses along with new landscaping, a park and public realm to enhance the area.

“We are pleased to once again be working in partnership with Peabody to deliver these much-needed new homes for the local area and look forward to moving ahead with work on site.”

New appointments: Clarion, Tpas, Peabody and Places for People

New appointments: Clarion, Tpas, Peabody and Places for People

An update on who is starting new roles in the housing sector


Clarion Housing Group has appointed Jock Lennox as its new chair.

The chartered accountant, who is also a non-executive director for house builder Barratt, will take over from David Avery, who has completed his nine-year tenure with Clarion’s board and is stepping down after five years as chair. 

Mr Lennox will start working with the housing association from the start of May, but will not take over the role until Mr Avery steps down as chair at the end of July.

The incoming chair, who spent 30 years with accountancy firm Ernst & Young and has developed an active board career said of the appointment: “It is a privilege to join Clarion and its excellent team, who are dedicated to providing and maintaining homes for those who need them most. 

“I look forward to supporting the executive and non-executive team, helping them continue the legacy of William Sutton, who bequeathed his fortune to provide homes for the working poor nearly 125 years ago. I want to thank David Avery for all his hard work in maintaining this legacy under his Chairmanship, and for his support in ensuring my smooth transition into the role.”

Clare Miller, Clarion’s chief executive, said: “We are delighted to welcome Jock to Clarion. He brings tremendous energy and enthusiasm to the role, as well as extensive relevant experience. 

“Jock’s appointment comes at a time of transition and challenge to our sector as we navigate the UK’s desperate need for more social housing, an increasingly complex regulatory environment and significant financial pressures, as well as our need to retrofit our homes to reduce energy bills for our residents. I look forward to working with Jock to lead Clarion through this period.”


Places for People make Judy Hardy their permanent Chief Risk Officer.

The appointment comes after Judy initially held the role on an interim basis. She joins Places for People’s executive leadership team and will attend its Audit & Risk Committee. 

Judy joined Places for People in 2005 and was most recently the company’s Director of Regulation. 

Speaking about Judy’s appointment, Greg Reed, Places for People Group CEO said: “I’m proud that one of our own, someone who has been with us for 18 years, is now our Chief Risk Officer. Judy’s vast experience, her knowledge of UK Housing Regulation and her relationships with our regulatory and governance stakeholders, as well as her brilliant awareness and judgment, made her the right person for this critical role.  

“At Places for People, we talk about being a ‘force for good’. Judy is the embodiment of that phrase and I’m delighted therefore that she is now part of our executive team and is leading risk across our whole organisation.”


Tpas appoints new board chair

Former president of the Chartered Institute of Housing, Alison Inman, has been appointed as the new independent chair of tenant engagement experts, Tpas

Alison, who has served on the Tpas board as an independent member, is also a board member at Saffron Housing Trust, in addition to being co-founder of social housing campaign group, SHOUT.

“It is an honour to be stepping into the role of Chair at Tpas having been part of the organisation’s growth over recent years,” Alison said of the appointment.

“Like all of us here at Tpas, I am a firm believer that when the voice of the tenant is heard, social housing works better. This has been one of my values for many years and I’ll continue to be a vocal champion of tenant involvement as I take on this role.”


Peabody has named Tariq Kazi as new their Group Treasurer.

A former financier who helped set up the government’s Affordable Housing Guarantee Scheme, Tariq joins from Southern Housing where he was Director of Financial Strategy. 

Tariq will help look after Peabody’s borrowings and ensure the Group, which has more than 108,000 homes and 220,000 residents, has enough long-term financial resources to invest in its existing homes, build new homes and create communities. 

He’ll also be responsible for credit ratings agencies and bank and bond market investor relations across the Group’s £6bn treasury portfolio. 

“The current economic climate means it’s more important than ever that we keep a strong balance sheet to deliver benefits for residents now and in the future,” said Tariq. 

“We need to carefully manage financial risk so we can continue to invest in our homes and communities and help people flourish.”

Tariq’s arrival at Peabody follows on from the announcement earlier this month that Phil Day will join as the Group’s new Chief Financial Officer starting in September.

UK’s housing stock ‘worst value for money’ of any advanced economy

UK’s housing stock ‘worst value for money’ of any advanced economy

New analysis says Britons pay more for less when it comes to housing

Britain housing stock offers the worst value for money of any advanced economy, according to the Resolution Foundation, who have published their new findings.

The data looked at housing costs, floorspace, quality and price levels to compare nations, finding high costs and low quantity in the UK.

The Foundation’s latest Housing Outlook uses OCED (Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development) data to compare various housing metrics across advanced economies. The analysis assessed the scale and uniqueness of the UK’s much-discussed housing crisis compared to other similar economies – many with their own housing problems.

The report notes that the share of household income spent on housing is the most common way to assess housing costs but this measure is less useful for international comparisons due to being affected by a country’s share of outright (mortgage-free) owners, who don’t have ongoing housing costs.

For example, Italy (61%), Spain (49%) and the UK (36%) have a far greater share of outright owners than Germany (26%) and the Netherlands (9%).

Therefore to make an international comparison of the actual market cost of housing, the analysis examines what it would cost to rent all homes – incorporating the imputed rents, or what owners would pay if they rented their home at market rates – to show how the market price of housing varies across a range of countries.

It finds that housing represents a greater share of consumption on this basis in the UK than in any other advanced economy bar Finland.

In theory, these high housing costs could reflect the cost of a superior quantity or quality of housing in the UK, but the Foundation reports that is not the reality – people instead pay more and get less.

The report shows that English homes actually have less average floorspace per person (38 m2) than many similar countries, including the US (66 m2), Germany (46 m2), France (43 m2) and even Japan (40 m2).

The findings show English homes even have less floor space, on average, than homes in New York City (43 m2).

Overall Brits get 24% less housing per person than Austrians and 22% less than Canadians, both of whom have similar consumption levels overall.

It’s noted, the UK’s housing stock is also the oldest of any of European countries, with a greater share of homes built before 1946 (38%) than anywhere else. For example, just 21% of homes in Italy, and 11% in Spain, were built before the end of the war.

Older homes tend to be poorly insulated, leading to higher energy bills and a higher risk of damp, remarks the Foundation.

UK households pay 57% more for the same (quality-adjusted) housing as their counterparts in Austria, for example, and 36% more than those in Canada. Housing in New Zealand offers the second worst value for money, followed by Australia and Ireland – all countries also gripped by housing crises.

Adam Corlett, principal economist at the Resolution Foundation, said: “Britain’s housing crisis is likely to be a big topic in the election campaign, as parties debate how to address the problems of high costs, poor quality and low security that face so many households.

“Britain is one of many countries apparently in the midst of a housing crisis, and it can be difficult to separate rhetoric from reality. But by looking at housing costs, floorspace and wider issues of quality, we find that the UK’s expensive, cramped and ageing housing stock offers the worst value for money of any advanced economy.

“Britain’s housing crisis is decades in the making, with successive governments failing to build enough new homes and modernise our existing stock. That now has to change.”

LFB completes all Grenfell Tower Inquiry recommendations

LFB completes all Grenfell Tower Inquiry recommendations

Phase 1 of the Inquiry included 29 recommendations for the London Fire Brigade

The London Fire Brigade (LFB) has announced that it has completed all 29 of the recommendations from Phase 1 of the Grenfell Tower Inquiry and promised further change to come.

Updates and improvements made by the LFB range from changes to firefighter training and refreshed processes for managing major incidents, to new equipment and technology, and improved communication.

72 people tragically lost their lives in the Grenfell Tower fire that started in the early hours of 14 June 2017. It is one of the UK’s worst disasters in modern history with a whole community losing their homes.

On 30 October 2019, the Grenfell Tower Inquiry, chaired by Sir Martin Moore-Bick, published its Phase 1 report, which looked at the events that took place during 14 June 2017, investigating the cause of the fire, its subsequent development and the steps taken by the LFB and the other emergency services in response to it.

It also contains recommendations arising out of the findings.

Phase 2 of the Inquiry examines the causes of the events of 14 June 2017, including how Grenfell Tower came to be in a condition which allowed the fire to spread in the way identified by Phase 1. Phase 2 is yet to be published.


The Phase 1 report made 46 recommendations, directed at bodies including the London Fire Brigade, fire and rescue services more widely, other emergency services, national Government and owners and managers of residential buildings.

In total there were 29 recommendations aimed at the London Fire Brigade, 14 solely for the Brigade to address and 15 to address in conjunction with other organisations.

The changes and updates announced by the LFB include replacing the entire fleet of high-reach vehicles and the introduction of new 64 metre Turntable Ladders, the tallest ladders in service across Europe.

New command units equipped with technology to improve incident commanders’ ability to respond at the incident ground entered service at the end of 2023.

Since their introduction in 2018 over 200 people have been rescued using escape hoods, which offer the public protection from toxic smoke. London’s firefighters are amongst the first in the UK to carry them.

To improve communication new fire ground radios have been introduced that allow firefighters wearing helmets and breathing apparatus sets to communicate effectively with their teams and entry control officers when inside buildings.

Drones are also used to transmit information about incidents. The drones provide live images and thermal imagery to better allow incident commanders to develop tactics to tackle fires. The drones can also act as a loudspeaker to provide instructions or reassurance and provide light in dark conditions.

Changes to processes include control officers benefiting from improved training on providing fire survival guidance, as well as software that allows members of the public to provide control officers with a video feed from an incident.

London Fire Commissioner Andy Roe said: “We accepted every recommendation from the Grenfell Tower Inquiry and have been working hard over the past five years to implement significant changes to the way we operate.

“We are the only organisation to have completed every recommendation directed specifically to them and I am proud of the work that staff have put into this, but I also know that there is still much more to do. Fundamental change in large, complex organisations takes time and while our transformation programme is safely on track, we are not finished. I’m dedicated to continuing this journey with full commitment so that we can continue to be trusted to serve and protect our capital.  

“These improvements are paving the way forward for further change as we await the next report from Phase 2 of the Inquiry. We owe it to the bereaved families, the survivors, the residents of Grenfell Tower and Londoners to change and improve.”

Mayor of London Sadiq Khan said: “The Grenfell Tower fire was an appalling tragedy and we will always remember the 72 people who lost their lives. The most fitting tribute to the people who died, their loved ones and those who survived is to ensure that nothing like this ever happens again.

“I have been relentless in doing everything I can to ensure the recommendations from Phase 1 of the Grenfell Tower Inquiry are implemented in full. Following City Hall’s significant investment, the LFB’s new equipment and protocols will help save lives. I welcome the significant steps the London Fire Brigade have taken to transform the way in which it responds to incidents, and high-rise building fires in particular.

“But there is more to do, and it is vital that the Government steps up along with housing and building industries to act now and ban combustible materials in external walls no matter their height and provide funding support for those unfairly saddled with large costs to remediate unsafe cladding. It’s vital that all possible steps are taken now to prevent another tragedy.”

The announcement that all recommendations have been met comes a week after His Majesty’s Inspectorate of Constabulary and Fire & Rescue Services (HMICFRS) removed LFB from enhanced monitoring, in recognition of the improvements delivered by the Brigade.