28 Sep - 2 Oct
Now that autumn has set in, I’ve kicked off my blog again, this is my first one since early summer. I hope you’ve managed to take some time off with your family and friends.If that’s not been possible because of COVID, I’m sorry that you’ve been in that situation. I’ve spoken to many residents and businesses over the summer; it’s been an extremely difficult time for everyone and with the schools reopening it’s been even more challenging for young people and families. I know many of you will be worried about the second wave of coronavirus that we’re in and some people will be worried about losing their jobs, and for those people who already have, I’m very sorry. We will continue to do everything we can to help you.
Sadly, we still face the threat of coronavirus and cases have been on the rise for some weeks now up and down the country and London added to Public Health England’s watchlist. A stark reminder that we’re not out of the woods and we must continue to work together to ensure we protect and support our most vulnerable residents. We can all do our part by continuing to follow the government’s guidance; remembering to wash your hands, wear a face covering and maintain social distancing.
I would like to highlight the work the Council has been doing over the recent weeks and months, by continuing to work with many public and private sector partners, community groups and residents focussing on the borough’s economic and social recovery. In September, the Council hosted a virtual Borough Conference, an opportunity to reflect on the positive outcomes of coming together as a community since the beginning of the crisis and to look ahead at how we harness these to confront the challenges ahead and shape the priorities for our future vision. It was encouraging to see over 200 people join the event and the continued support and interest in working together for the benefit of our borough.
I would like to take this opportunity to again thank all those involved for working tremendously hard to keep our residents and communities safe and supported through these most difficult times, and I’m proud of our residents for their resilience. As I’ve said before, together we will be stronger for it.
One of the recent highlights for me was to be invited to the new Brentford Football Club stadium by Ian Innis, our Head of Building Control, who has responsibility for granting the safety certificate for the stadium. A truly proud moment for Hounslow. As you know, the Council supports the Club, and as I live adjacent to the homestand in Braemar Road, it’s sad to see the old ground closed as I know it holds many fantastic memories for Brentford fans. But times move on and they now have a brilliant ground which will keep them in good stead for many a year to come. Congratulations to the Bees for their victory yesterday against Fulham. Come on you Bees!!!
Me at Brentford Football Club’s new community stadium.
Over two years ago I was approached by a local resident of Strand on the Green, who wanted to make a pedestrian bridge over the railway line safer by having lights installed (Deans Lane Footbridge). I’m sorry to say it took so long, but it wasn’t for the want of trying from the residents, myself and our Transport Team, but Network Rail are not to be trifled with so there were numerous hoops to go through and these were finally overcome in September. So, we have two spanking new bulkhead lights at each end of the bridge, I’m told you can see them from space! Thanks to Charlotte and Andy who never gave up and have now got their just rewards.
A momentous day at Dean’s Lane footbridge, Strand on the Green.
Earlier this week, I was delighted to be joined by Tom (in black) from London Wildlife Trust and representatives David and Sue from Commerce Road residents’ group at Brentford Bridge to plant the new cycle stand with perennial plants. I hope this further improves the environment for residents which they can enjoy. The Commerce Road residents have agreed to set up a small team of volunteers to work with the Council, the London Wildlife Trust and Canal & River Trust to maintain the canal bank adjacent to the bridge. Further work is planned over the coming weeks and months. If you see us there, please come and say hello, we’ll be happy to explain what we’re doing.
I’m here with Sue, David and Tom at the newly installed cycle stand at Brentford Bridge
Another proud moment this week attending the topping out ceremony for the Sparrow Farm council home development in Feltham on Thursday. The development will provide 25 new council homes for our residents; 15 two-bed and 10 three-bed homes, also providing three wheelchair adapted homes. I’m delighted that work has progressed despite the challenges we’re facing as a result of COVID and I would like to thank our Housing Development Team for all their hard work and commitment in making this project a reality. I can’t wait to welcome the first families into their new homes. I should also mention there is a spanking brand-new community centre being built as part of the development. As a Council, we’re committed to building 1,000 new council homes for Hounslow residents by 2022.
Sparrow Farm Development being pointed out by the black glove.
A miserable Friday to start off the weekend, more rain to follow. Whatever you’re doing this weekend, please remember to follow the government’s guidance.
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Have good weekend everyone, stay safe.