The green light has been given for Transport for London (TfL) and Barratt London’s second joint venture. Brent Council has approved their proposal for 454 new homes by Wembley Park London Underground station.
The new development, which covers a 1.6-acre site, will include 40% affordable housing, a retail unit, improvements to public spaces and new operational space for TfL.
Designed by TateHindle architects, the new homes will be delivered across five buildings and will be a mixture of studio, one, two and three-bedroom properties.
The affordable homes will be offered as a combination of intermediate housing, such as shared ownership, and London Affordable Rent.
To help improve air quality in the capital and in line with the Mayor’s Transport Strategy, the development will be car-free for residents, with the exception of blue badge parking. The proximity of Wembley Park station, serviced by both the Jubilee and Metropolitan lines as well as a number of bus routes, enables the residents to more easily make the switch from driving to public transport. It’s also hoped the provision of cycle parking within the development will encourage residents to cycle when making journeys.
With green and biodiverse roofs, the planting of new trees and hedges, as well as wildlife-friendly landscaping such as bird boxes and bee bricks included as part of the scheme, the designs aim to positively enhance the local environment.
The development will also use renewable forms of energy through solar panels and air source heat pumps. The homes have been designed to encourage natural light within them and reduce energy usage; 70% of the homes are dual aspect and the remainder have been designed to ensure that they are not north facing.
Emma Hatch, senior property development manager at TfL, said: “We are thrilled to get the go-ahead for our development at Wembley, which will deliver hundreds of new homes as well as a new retail opportunity and improvements for the local community.
“This is the second project with Barratt London and builds on our track record for delivering much-needed new homes in the capital. Our first homes at Blackhorse View in Waltham Forest started selling earlier this year, showing our developments have been designed thoughtfully with both the community and residents in mind.”
The Wembley Park scheme forms part of TfL’s housing programme, which aims to provide 10,000 homes across the capital as well as a commitment to deliver 50% affordable housing on average across all sites brought to the market since May 2016.
TfL launched their Property Partnership Framework in 2016, which provides a pool of partners eligible to bid to work with TfL in joint ventures as sites become available.
The number of pubs in London has fallen by more than a quarter since 2001, but new figures from City Hall show a change in the downward pattern. Between 2017 and 2018 the count remained stable, with a handful of the capital’s boroughs even increasing their numbers.
The figures, published by the Mayor of London, Sadiq Khan, identified 3,540 pubs in the capital in March 2018 – an increase of 10 pubs from 2017.
A total of 11 boroughs saw an increase in pubs, with numbers staying the same in nine boroughs, but falling in 13 boroughs.
The boroughs to see an increase were Brent, Bromley, Croydon, Hackney, Harrow, Islington, Lambeth, Lewisham, Tower Hamlets, Wandsworth and Westminster.
The figures come after the Mayor revealed last month that the number of grassroots music venues in the capital has risen in the last year and the number of LGBTQ+ venues remained stable for a second year running, following a decade of decline for both.
Despite ongoing pressures, the traditional London pub remains a key part of life in the capital. A City Hall survey shows 74 per cent of Londoners think that they are important for the London’s cultural heritage, with 45 per cent visiting a pub at least once a month.
The main reasons for a visit are to socialise with friends (68%) and eat (27%). Pubs are also an important attraction for tourists, with previous research showing that 54% of international visitors visited one during their stay in the capital.
The mayor’s measures to support the pub trade and London’s cultural venues include: tough new planning rules to protect venues in his draft London Plan, establishing a Culture at Risk Office to help support pubs at risk of closure, and calling on the the Government to review its valuation policy for pubs following large rises in business rates.
As with the rest of the UK, London has seen a decline in pub numbers for decades, with the number of small pubs in London falling by more than half between 2001 and 2018.
However, these new figures show signs of improvement as the number of both small and large pubs in the capital have increased very slightly between 2017 and 2018. There are now more large pubs in the capital than there were in 2001.
Employment across the pub sector has also remained stable between 2017 and 2018 at 46,000. However, despite recent improvements, a large proportion of jobs in London pubs continue to be paid below the London Living Wage.
The Mayor of London, Sadiq Khan, said: “London pubs have been a key part of our capital’s heritage for generations, helping to unite Londoners and acting as a vital hub in the community.
“Sadly their numbers have been falling for decades, which is why I’ve been doing all I can to support the trade and turn this tide of closures. I’m encouraged by these results, but with pressure from rates, rent and development, it’s crucial that the Government and local authorities give them their full support too.”
Hannah Wright, of The Leytonstone Tavern, said: “After being empty for four years, and saved at the last minute by a community asset order, we were anxious but incredibly proud to give the neighbourhood back its pub.
“For us, a pub is more than just a place where you serve drinks. It’s a sanctuary for the whole community, existing to help people create real human connections and feel a sense of worth. And it needs to serve its locals.”
Town and Country Housing (TCHG) has joined the Peabody Group, becoming a subsidiary of the G15 housing provider.
The housing association currently provides more than 9,500 affordable homes in 15 local authority areas in Kent and Sussex.
The move to become part of the Peabody Group was originally announced in November 2018. It’s now been agreed following a period of consultations with residents and stakeholders and gaining the relevant consents.
Although it’s joining the Peabody family, Town and Country Housing will retain its name and operate as a subsidiary.
The link-up will enable the two organisations to combine their strength and build 800 new homes across the South East every year – 500 more than Kent-based TCHG would be able to deliver on its own.
It takes Peabody’s new homes target to 3,300 per year from 2021.
The move sees TCHG CEO Bob Heapy joining Peabody’s executive team, and the company’s chair, Francis Salway, joining the Peabody board.
A joint statement from Lord Kerslake, chair of Peabody, and Francis Salway said: “This combines the strength of two organisations to deliver more much-needed affordable homes in the South East.
“Becoming part of the Peabody family, while remaining as a separate subsidiary, will help strengthen Town and Country’s offer in the South East, ensuring Peabody remains focused on its heartland in London.”
The Peabody Group now owns and manages more than 66,000 homes across London and the South East.
Peabody through the years
In 2017 Peabody completed a merger with Family Mosaic. As a result, the housing association has homes spread across 29 London boroughs along with homes in Essex, Sussex, Hampshire and Kent.
Read more about Peabody’s growth and development here.
For more information about Town and Country Housing, click here.