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Ealing and Northfield National politics

Don’t believe the hype

Today one of our residents emailed to point out this story to her local councillors. She feels that this government scheme is a good one and was asking if Ealing was involved. She is right that this is a good scheme, as far as it goes, but I am afraid she is a victim of the government’s summer communications strategy. This announcement is straight off Labour’s communications grid. Lazy old Yahoo just regurgitated the press release without analysis.

You can see the original DCLG press release here. This shows how all of the money is already allocated in equal, tiny lumps of £52,632. All of the money is going to Labour or Labour marginal boroughs with the only cash in London going to Hackney. Most of the money is going to the north.

120-uxbridge-road-hanwell

Ealing is doing town centre regeneration itself on a large scale. In Hanwell where we are buying up the lease and doing up 120 Uxbridge Road (my picture above grabbed off Google Street View) to stabilise and enhance Hanwell town centre. This disused bakery is a key site that is dragging the whole town centre down. See press release here. The report is here.

The government’s announcement is a joke. £3 million for the whole country is being used for gerrymandering. £3 million into the re-elect Gordon Brown fund.

Check out the Council’s budget book here. On page 149 you will see that last year Ealing spent £1.8 on town centre regeneration schemes and is planning to spend £15.8 this year. The Hanwell project alone is about £1 million.

Don’t believe the (government) hype.

5 replies on “Don’t believe the hype”

‘…town centre regeneration on a huge scale..’. Oh come on Councillor. Just how do you define ‘huge’?

Your Hanwell story is pathetic. The defunct bakery is not the reason for Hanwell centre’s decline and it’s not even symptomatic of the town’s decline. Why the Council has bought the lease is quite beyond me.

Ealing, like all Local Authorities, does not have the cash to bring about any viable regeneration. The whole game is run by property developers and has been for quite a while.

The Council ought to be ashamed of itself for the cash-back £6.1 million which could have been spent on something or some things of use to the community.

It’s glaringly obvious to any intelligent person that the current National Government is a shambles. You lot have a big local majority and a Regional Tory Mayor. You’ll probably get re-elected in May 2010 as well. I’m also sure that you and your mates locally are trying to do a good job – but it’s just way too poor I’m afraid.

Expect more local fly-tippng.

Eric,

Your intemperate comments do you no favours. It is too easy to write you off and no doubt people will think me a fool for not just deleting your comments.

You are right that the council can only do a small amount. But, if we can keep the public realm looking attractive and working well there is at least some hope that the commercial sector can do its bit. £17.5 million is not the small beer you contend.

BTW, just to be clear, the bakery bt of the Hanwell project is only a small fraction of the whole regeneration exercise in Hanwell.

Phil

I think buying the shop was a very good move. I would like to see the Council do more of this, and then let at- slightly – concessionary rents during the initial period. That will lead to regeneration.

For readers I would draw attention to the large fraction of the Hanwell £1M money. This is mainly for pavements and fees – in fact over half the £1M.

That is one reason why I disagree with the cashback which should have been spent on further regeneration.

I know of no one who thinks that David Cameron will allow the Councils to spend large new regeneration monies assuming Labour loses. So the £6M is lost money.

George,

It is a bit silly to begrudge the payment of fees. How do you think architects, surveyors, designers, etc get paid? Do you want us to do these projects without professional input? I think we would end up with pretty rubbish schemes.

I don’t think anyone is going to trust your analysis of future Conservative policy. Combine localism and a mistrust of quangos and we will see local authorities having more money to spend as they see fit, ie according to local priorities. I for one am looking forward to it.

Phil

I did not and do not begrudge fee payment.

I don’t like quangos anymore than you do.

I want to know that the next local administration will spend a lot more on regeneration. How can that be the next local Tory pledge if the country is broke? But this is another thread which perhaps you will enlighten us with at some point.

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