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Entries in Planning (17)


News: Barnet Council grants Belmont Children's farm a month's reprieve against imminent closure due to planning enforcement

Barnet Council has given Belmont Children's Farm a last minute month's reprieve from a planning enforcement notice that would require it to close. Mr Joe Henry wrote to the farm to confirm this late last week.

In the video below, shot before the recent news of a 'stay of execution' from 30 March until end of April owner of Belmont Farm, together with charities, children and vetinary students appeal directly to Barnet Council in the film below not to close the farm down on Monday using a 'flawed' planning enforcement process. 

Video courtesy of Belmont Farm.

Should the farm fail to reach an agreement with the Council they have now stated on facebook that they will open their doors after May 1st for free


Comment: Boris needs to take Andrew Boff and Create Streets a lot more seriously

We at Bugle Towers are fans and broad supporters of the Mayor of London. We have written before and remain concerned over a lack of distinctiveness from his predecessor over high rise building, especially in outer London. Andrew Boff AM is a huge champion of street based developments, as is the Mayor of London - at least on paper - but notnecessarily in practice.

At Mayor's Question Time on 23 July Andrew Boff took Boris to task and thought he'd secured a concession and made some progress.


However returning to the matter on 17 September Andrew Boff was clearly annoyed by the tenor and content of the the Mayor's reply and somewhat dismissive attitude. Many supported Boris amongst other reasons on the back of his claim that, unlike Livingstone, he wouldn't just be a Zone One Mayor. One the attitude to outer London suburban development it's not always easy to see much to differentiate the current Mayor from his predecessors.

We wish Mr Boff well is tenaciously pursusing this matter on behalf of Londoners and fully support his efforts.


Finally is this the same Cat Hill high rise development that Boris prayed in aid as one of the few examples of low rise 'street based' developments in suburban outer London? It is no such thing and was rightly condemned by Theresa Villiers MP.

Disqus below...


MQT 23/10 : It's the Boris v Dismore punch and judy show again

Other clash between Andrew Dismore, AM for Barnet and Camden and Boris Johnson, Mayor of London at Mayor's Question Time on 23 October 2013. Highlights include Boris branding Dismore a slug, a hippo and three toed sloth and Dismore urging Boris to wash his ears out!

Dismore quizzes Boris on Chinese immigration to the UK

On regeneration in Barnet. Dismore accuses Boris of signing off on schemes with reduced social housing that are targeted at overseas oligarchs and quotes Barnet Cabinet Member Tom Davey on how he would prefer people who pay Council tax but consume no local services. Boris retorts that Dismore is xenophobic and surprised he takes against people from overseas.


Barnet Council and Beaufort Park feature on BBC London News 8 October


GLA Conservative Leader, Andrew Boff, joins calls to end housing families in Tower Blocks

Leader of the London Assembly Conservative Group, Andrew Boff AM, was on ITV London Tonight calling on an to families being housed in Tower Blocks. He endorses the respected joint work of Create Streets and Policy Exchange who argue that state regulation through the planning system has led to:

super high density and high rise, box sized flats, the smallest in Europe and smaller than ever before in the UK.

The report highlights the swift failure state led social engineering and design of the 1960s and calls for 

Recent changes to the planning system (that) give a chance to change this that local government and neighbourhoods should seize to take control of redevelopment in their area

As you will see in the clip Robert Oxley of the Taxpayer's Alliance, takes an unexpected position against allowing the market to provide the housing that polling consistently shows people want and pretty much advocates the line put out by London Labour via their spokesman Tom Copley AM. We have contacted them for a clarification as to why TPA opposes what many view as the deregulatory position of those above.

Chipping Barnet MP and Secretary of State for Northern Ireland recently took a passionate stance against 'Tower Blocks' in a residential setting (albeit just outside of her constituency and borough). Video below.

Is Andrew Boff right? Is this deregulation or what the TPA claims: lecturing from politicians? Do you think the market should provide the housing people say they demand or government and developers provide volume of housing and expect you to be grateful for it? Disqus below...


Barnet Council approves an Eruv for Woodside Park

Earlier this evening, Barnet Council's Planning and Environment Committee approved a planning application for an Eruv for the Woodside Park area. There was quite a bit of cut and thrust as some of the public speakers clashed with members of the committee over remarks that appeared to cause offence. Sailing to the rescue, however, was Barnet's big hitter, Councillor Brian Coleman, who addressed the committee as much of Totteridge Ward would be affected.

At the end of the debate the Eruv was supported by all but one of the Councillors, namely Labour's Anita Campbell (Underhill Ward) who abstained. Cons Councillors Wendy Prentice, Andreas Tambourides, Stephen Sowerby, Mark Shooter, John Marshall, Maureen Braun, Jim Tierney (Lab) and Jack Cohen (LibDem) voted for the Eruv.

Below is Brian Coleman addressing the committee

and the public comments that just preceded Cllr Coleman's comments. Councillor Jack Cohen took offence at one commenters remarks that resulted in some sharp exchanges.



Barnet Labour continue their crusade to turn family houses into flats wherever they can

UPDATE Sept 13th. Barnet activist, and Labour list editor Mark Ferguson, has added to the debate on twitter. weighing in with Cllr Jim Tierney.

Seems house to flat conversions and social housing are coming to your street should Labour win in 2014!

Original article ->Labour Councillor Jim Tierney, continued his crusade against family houses with gardens. Speaking at the full Council meeting of September 11th 2012, he boasted and gloated at how Labour had persuaded the planning inspector to make it easier to turn family houses into flats.

Leader of the Council, Conservative Councillor Richard Cornelius is a passionate defender of Barnet's family houses. He spoke up against Officer proposals for flats in a recent planning committee.

And repeated his defence in a rare intervention at the meeting of Barnet's cabinet in July 2012.

When he again expressed his concern at the weakening of Barnet's policy to limit conversions to certain areas at the Council meeting, he was met by Labour jeers of "more flats in Totteridge".

Labour's continued assault on those who wish to live in streets characterised by houses and not stuffed full of urban style flats shows that, on planning, they are still very much out of touch with Barnet's voters.

Disqus below.


What's the Time, Councillor Tambourides?

Two updates below 18 and 27 June.

Both meetings of the Area Planning Sub-Committees were running out of time last night, at Hendon Town Hall. Some four hours after the meeting started, at around 10.15pm chairman of the West Committee, Councillor Maureen Braun, told the remaining speakers that they had to go home and come back next time as the Constitution did not allow them to transact business past 10.30pm (the rule, as below, is 10pm but an exception can be made to go to 10.30pm, at the latest, if the Committee agree decisions taken after this time are void)

Meanwhilst, at the East Committee, chaired by Councillor Andreas Tambourides, there seemed to be a very different interpretation to the clear wording of the Constitution. The first extention (for 15 minutes) was granted at just before 10pm.

At 3m20s, of this second clip a bit later on, the Chairman says the meeting will be 'extended further' past 10.30pm as the clock shows. Keep your eye on the clock and the huddled chats between the Officers. One can only imagine what they were saying to each other...

Update: Below is the last hour of the Committee meeting in full from just before 10pm (as the clock shows and the Chairman orally confirms) until it's close after a few rushed applications at just before 11pm.

The Bugle wonders what the Council will do with the 'null and void' decisions taken after 10.30pm. Will those planning permissions be granted as if the rule in the Constitution didn't exist? See update below.

Update 18 June 2012. Barnet Council's Chief Executive, Nick Walkley, speaking to The Bugle said,

...I can confirm that in accordance with the Council’s Constitution, the Committee should have ended its business at 10.30 p.m. and matters dealt with after that time must be treated as null and void. The relevant matters will now be dealt with either at an additional meeting of the Committee or at the next meeting.

I do not have sufficient information to hand to understand why the Committee continued beyond 10:30 and you will understand that I will not enter into speculation on the matter.

Update 27 June 2012. Having bungled this planning meeting and had four decided applications declared unlawful Andreas Tambourides appealed to the most senior Councillors to change the rules to make it lawful for him to proceed up until 11pm. Here's the resolute and firm reply below - which they took less than 1 minute to agree!