Recent News

  • More campaigning for the GLA

    Tomorrow I’ll be out with GLA West Central candidate Tony Devenish and Zac in Westminster North. Here’s a pic of the kind of numbers we saw in Hampstead earlier this month.

  • Royal Parks to become a charity

    This has been planned for a while by the government. The model is that of the Canals and Rivers Trust, created out of British Waterways to manage – well, Britain’s public waterways. The potential is to attract more charitable giving than is the case at present, with the Parks run by a government agency, alongside a…

  • Dealing with fly tipping, street furniture damage and all the rest

    Our City Inspector John Whelan does such a good job tackling black bin overflow, fly tipping hot spots, rough sleepers’ waste and the rest that I’d like to broadcast his report this month. Here it is: Norfolk Crescent- I have been monitoring the bin chambers on a regular basis checking to see if still being…

  • Police report progress to ward panel

    Joint working with Home Office enforcement officers and the council is the right approach to the vice problem in streets near Paddington station, the Safer Neighbourhood team reported to residents today. The majority of the prostitutes currently being cautioned are East European, with evidence that many are under duress. Because they are not exercising their treaty…

  • Paddington Pole axed

    You spoke – we listened! It was very clear that while we want improvements around Paddington station, a 72 storey tower was no way to achieve that. After very clear signals from WCC Conservative councillors, Sellar Properties withdrew their plans for 72 stories at Paddington Place. Irvine Sellar is now promising something “meaningfully” smaller on the…

  • Charities wasting money on high pay for top brass

    Great to see the Charity Commission highlighting unreasonably high salaries for bosses of small charities. When I was working on the Review of the Charities Act for Lord Hodgson, I pointed out that these pay levels needed to be drawn to the attention of the public. Good to see that is now happening – see…

  • AirBnB horror stories – protecting Hyde Park ward

    Mark Field MP, Cllr Acton, WCC officers, residents’ representatives and I recently visited Brandon Lewis, the Housing Minister, to ask for protection against industrial-scale holiday letting in Westminster. Nobody minds homeowners earning a bit extra through AirBnB and other short letting websites. However, when this activity takes over a whole block on a regular basis,…

  • Help on deterring vice

    Hyde Park’s neighbourhood team have just publicised the 20 arrests, 35 cautions and 22 community protection notices they have made recently. The HPEA, Paddington BID and other stakeholders and residents were represented today at a meeting to discuss possible supplementary private patrols, with police training and co-operation. This could be a way forward.

  • Look out for Neighbourhood Link

    After meeting Neighbourhood cluster officers this morning, I’m delighted that PC Kennedy-Hill has sent out the new email address for reports of vice in the ward, asking for descriptions, dates, times and locations of sightings and in particular, vehicle registration numbers. Sign up via hydepark.snt@met.police.uk

  • Proposals for Portsea Hall – on show tomorrow

    I took  a look at the plans for 6 new flats on the roof at Portsea Hall in Portsea Place. The brick structures containing the lift motor and water tanks are being moved to the basement, creating space for new 1, 2 and 3 bedroom flats. The flats are set back from the roof edge…