Archive for December 2018

Rubbish Dumping

There have long been problems with rubbish being dumped on many of the streets in Fitzrovia and East Marylebone as well as issues with rubbish being left at the wrong times. 

Following a local consultation, Westminster Council are testing the removal of some on street rubbish and recycling bins on Riding House Street, where the issues have been particularly bad. In other areas, this has been found to help overall.

It has been decided to experiment with the temporary removal of these bins to see what would happen and we are very keen to hear from local residents whether this leads to an improvement in their view.

I am also liaising with Veolia to ensure that we ask them to improve the reliability of their timing for collections, and, if possible, improve street cleansing.

If you would like to find out about more events going on around Westminster, or about my activities as a Councillor for West End Ward, please sign up for my email updates here.






New Mayfair Special Status in Future Planning

A newly revised version of the Westminster City Plan, covering 2019 to 2040, has been drafted following an extensive review process.

The plan sets out a long-term vision for the buildings and spaces where we all live, work and have fun.


Key to the plan is a desire to build more affordable homes, the regeneration of areas around Victoria and Paddington and the introduction of a neighbourly development policy.

Once this revision has been made, it will be the ‘local plan’ for Westminster. Throughout, the plan prioritises sustainability, and encourages walking and cycling. 

The plan also identifies ‘specialist clusters’, places whose character adds significantly to our community including Mayfair, St James and Savile Row in West End Ward.

The specific provisions for Mayfair and St James reflect the unique character of the area and the proposed new guidelines will protect and enhance the existing scale and type of buildings as well as the mixture of styles and functions.

This includes recognition of the prestigious buildings and activities located there. Mayfair has long been the epicentre of the UK’s art and antiques markets and galleries are highlighted as one key activity that mark out the area. The City Plan encourages the development of new gallery spaces.

Similarly, the tradition of bespoke tailoring is highlighted in guidance on future plans for Savile Row. The City Plan makes clear the desire of Westminster Council and local people to see that continue with a stated ambition to retain what is there and grow the workshops and retail facilities needed.

Mayfair is a gem in the heart of our city and its facets reflect centuries of tradition. Today it has a global reputation that we need to protect and enhance by allowing only for developments that will improve the area and build on its heritage and the City Plan goes a long way to ensuring that will happen.

For more information please click here.

If you would like to find out about more events going on around Westminster, or about my activities as a Councillor for West End Ward, please sign up for my email updates here.


Local Casino Developments

Two recent proposals for casinos in Mayfair have met with strong local opposition by residents close to the developments. I have also written to Westminster Council in support of residents’ objections.

Residents living close to the new casinos proposed for Charles Street and Brick Street have raised real issues that must be considered and addressed. New businesses of this type can have significant negative impact on those nearby and we need to ensure that is minimised or – even better – stopped!

If you would like to find out about more events going on around Westminster, or about my activities as a Councillor for West End Ward, please sign up for my email updates here.


Better Broadband across Soho

Westminster City Council and Community Fibre have announced the roll out of new “ultrafast” broadband across Soho. The faster, cheaper services will be available to residents and businesses. 

As the Lead Member for Broadband on Westminster City Council I have pushed hard for new services. 

Conservative-led Westminster City Council has campaigned for ultrafast broadband to be rolled out across our city for several years. We have worked with Community Fibre and other potential providers to bring this service to local residents that will open up a wealth of opportunities for everyone who lives here and local businesses that need ultrafast connections to be competitive.

BT has been the only option for most residents of Soho and their service has suffered from poor speeds and reports of terrible reliability. The Community Fibre option will bring competition, lower prices and faster service for all residents and businesses in the area.

The new service is expected to be available by the end of the year. 

If you want to be kept up to date with developments and learn when the services launch, please register here.

If you would like to find out about more events going on around Westminster, or about my activities as a Councillor for West End Ward, please sign up for my email updates here.



New Soho Special Status in Future Planning

A newly revised version of the Westminster City Plan, covering 2019 to 2040, has been drafted following an extensive review process.

The plan sets out a long-term vision for the buildings and spaces where we all live, work and have fun.

Key to the plan is a desire to build more affordable homes, the regeneration of areas around Victoria and Paddington and the introduction of a neighbourly development policy.

Once this revision has been made, it will be the ‘local plan’ for Westminster. Throughout, the plan prioritises sustainability, and encourages walking and cycling.

The plan also identifies ‘specialist clusters’, places whose character adds significantly to our community including Soho, Mayfair and Savile Row in West End Ward.

This is the first time specific provisions have been made for Soho in planning policies in this way and the City Plan reflects its unique character and proposes new guidelines to protect and enhance the existing scale and type of buildings and the mixture of styles and functions. This includes support for small creative businesses and housing to meet the needs of Soho residents and workers. Music venues, specialist shops and other activities that make Soho what it is are all encouraged. 

By contrast, there will be a limit on the size of new hotels with none more than 2,500 sq m and new cafes and restaurants will be subject to greater consideration of the cumulative impact they make on the area. The green spaces of Soho Square, Golden Square and St Anne’s Churchyard are highlighted for protection and future enhancement.

For more information please click here.

If you would like to find out about more events going on around Westminster, or about my activities as a Councillor for West End Ward, please sign up for my email updates here.