4 - 10 March
Hi everyone, I hope you’ve all had a wonderful week despite the inclement weather we’ve been having, a bit of a shock after the early spring sunshine! It’s really taken its toll on me, as I’ve been suffering with a chest infection which doesn’t want to go away – back to the GP!
On Monday and Tuesday, I worked from home, answering emails and taking phone calls which kept me busy and helped take my mind off the chest infection. I had to rearrange a few meetings with council officers.
I started my action-packed day at 8.30am on Wednesday, with my first meeting with Alderman Alison Gowman, City of London Corporation, also Chair of the City Bridge Trust, a charitable organisation which provides funding through grants. Their focus is to reduce inequality and grow more cohesive communities for a London that serves everyone. We’re working with them to look at how they can support our local charities and community organisations.
I also had my regular catch up with Councillor Corinna Smart, Chair of the Planning Committee. As lead member for Planning and Regeneration it is vital to hold these one-to-one meetings to ensure that the right support is given to the Planning Committee to carry out their challenging duties.
On Wednesday evening, I was invited to the Heston Residents’ Association (HRA) AGM again by David Blackett, Chair of the HRA. David and his team do a fantastic job on behalf of the Heston community.
The RAM magazine put together by the Heston Residents’ Association.
On Thursday, I chaired our Dukes Meadows Project Board where we discussed and celebrated Transport for London’s (TfL) announcement of the successful bids for the multi-million pound Liveable Neighbourhoods programme. I am proud to announce that Hounslow was one of the eleven boroughs who were successful in their bid and we will be receiving a share of £50 million pounds to transform local neighbourhoods.
The investment which is worth up to £2 million pounds will help to provide funding for a new pedestrian bridge under the Barnes railway bridge, as well as improvements to the Thames Pathway through Dukes Meadows.
An artists' impression of the new pedestrian footbridge at Dukes Meadows
Another early start for me this morning, as I made my way to New Road in Feltham for a ground-breaking ceremony.
Joining the Mayor of Hounslow, Cllr Samia Chaudhry, Fairview Homes and Peter Matthew, Strategic Director of Housing at the New Road ground breaking ceremony in Feltham.
This marks the start of the new housing being built for local people as part of the council’s 5000 pledge. 120 houses will be built with 40 per cent being affordable housing. Twenty-eight of these properties will be affordable rent, with nine properties being family-sized three bed room units.
We have worked very closely with the developer, Fairview Homes, and the GLA to ensure that the 40 per cent strategic target for affordable housing is met. Increasing housing supply is part of our strategic plan for the regeneration of Feltham and Heston.
We want to keep the community at the heart of this project and as a result, the application will generate £1.4 million in CIL monies for improvements to the local infrastructure. In addition to this Fairview Homes are also contributing towards a new footbridge which will link the Longford River to the local parks and will also be contributing towards a new riverside walk.
This weekend I will be preparing for the annual trip to MIPIM in France in order to showcase our fantastic borough– see press release.
This Saturday, the Bees are away to fifth place Middlesbrough, I’m hoping they secure the three points this weekend keeping them above local rivals QPR.
Good luck to the England Rugby Union team this weekend as they take on the Azzurri (Italy) at Twickenham in the Six Nations Championship. Hopefully, it will be commiserations to our Italian residents and friends in Hounslow.
Kick-off is at 4.45pm - if you are travelling on Saturday please prepare for any travel disruption and allow extra time for your journeys.
While I’m away at MIPIM next week, I will be handing over the reins to Deputy Leader, Cllr Lily Bath. I hope you all have a great weekend and I will be back in a week’s time!