An update on Shepherd’s Bush Market

shepmarkFurther this post last month I have been given an update by Matt Butler, Hammersmith and Fulham Council’s Head of Policy & Spatial Planning.

He says:

“We have recently been approached by U+I who advise us that they are now taking over from Orion.

“U+I advise that they aim to resolve current matters with the market tenants before consulting and discussing any new proposals that may come forward.”

A note of the meeting with the Council and the Shepherds Bush Market Tenants Association says that Richard Upton of U+I..

“…advised that he would send a letter to all the market tenants introducing U+I and updating them on the current situation. He would also send a letter in both legal and layperson terms setting out how U+I intends to resolve all the outstanding issues with the tenants, as documented by the SBMTA, which will be followed by a meeting in September with the SBMTA. The aim being to resolve all issues before the end of September.  In the meantime U+I will review market issues including management , increasing appropriate diversity and footfall for the benefit of all.”

That’s fine so far as it goes.

But according to a report in the Evening Standard the number of customers has been falling rapidly. We need to crack on with an attractive, sympathetic regeneration scheme – which means a design brief specifying that traditional architecture must be used.

I would expect that new homes will be needed for a viable long term solution. It is important to get on with it – not go back to square one.

Save Hammersmith Farmers Market

HAMMERSMITH 2A guest post from Chris Elder  of City & Country Farmers Markets,  a family owned and run business which organises regular farmers’ markets and seasonal fine food and craft fairs where items are sold by the producer or artisan direct to the public.

It would mean a lot to me if you took a moment to add your name to this petition because: Hammersmith and Fulham Council want to takeover this Thursday Farmers Market that has been running very successfully for over 10 years.

They say their decision is purely commercial  – it is absolutely extraordinary that a current administration at the Town Hall want to get into the business of farmers’ markets! What do they know about farmers’ market? This market has the support of all of it’s stallholders – they do not want the council to takeover the market!

Hammersmith Market 1The market is probably the busiest and best weekday food market in London that attracts over 3,500 people every Thursday in the heart of Hammersmith Broadway in Lyric Square.

The organiser has painstakingly brought together a group of stallholders who produce some pretty fantastic food and local produce and to have this taken away will have serious implications not only for people who use the market but for areas around the country who have similar markets, if other councils decide to do the same.

The existing organiser has award winning food and craft markets that run very successfully all over London, therefore they have expertise to continue to run this market and Hammersmith and Fulham Council do not, despite what they might say.

Already the market has had great support from local councillors and businesses, therefore we urge you to sign this petition to give the market the best possible chance!

Real change happens when everyday people like you and I come together and stand up for what we believe in.  Together we can reach heaps of people and help create change around this important issue.

More variety at Brook Green Market as new traders start

Push Dhawan reports

Brook Green Market and Kitchen is your local food market with  fruit, Veg, meats, cheeses, fresh pasta, raw milk, cakes, eggs, artisan bread and so much more.  We champion British naturally grown free rang and organic meats and produce, we believe it is much healthier for you.  We want to tell you that we are expanding our range at the market to make it more of a one stop shop.  We will have fresh fish, granola, porridge and lots more fruit and veg all starting on the 19th March 2016.

unnamed(2)Perry Court Farm is joining us at the market and will be trading with us every week. It will mean we will have all the full range of fruit and veg that is available in season throughout the whole year. They will bring along everything and importantly they will have everything that you can get in winter as well as summer. This will bring much more variety to the market and will make it a one-stop shop when it comes to getting fruit and veg that is in season. You can also expect Tomatoes all year round. They also produce their own range of healthy fruit crisps that count as part of your 1 a day as well as their own juices.

The farm itself produces a huge range of salad and vegetable crops but also work with neighbouring farms to make sure they can bring all that is needed to your plate.  They don’t use any fertilisers or crop sprays at all, relying on a traditional rotation system.  So fresh produce that is delicious in taste and is natural.  One thing you will also find is that they are also very competitive with their pricing. Millets Farm will also be back as soon as asparagus is in season.
Channel Fish have already started with us last week, they actually sell the fish that they catch so you are buying direct from the fisherman.  They also sell some organic farmed fish but only from sources they know and trust.  Their Fish is less than 24 hours out of the sea, you can’t get fresher fish and they are cheaper than most fishmongers.  All their fish is caught in the English Channel in a 2-8 mile radius of Shoreham harbour where they land.  They fish using fixed nets, gill nets and lines off small day boats which means all their fish is caught sustainably.

Lastly we have The Crunch joining us, here is what they had to say: -The Granola at The Crunch is made using the finest ingredients and is slowly baked to create delicious aroma, texture and flavour.  The Crunch is a small – batch granola street food company based in Brockley.  Our unique inventions are all natural, preservative – free and have many organic ingredients. Always using local fruits and thick and tasty ”Court Lodge” yoghurt.  We serve granola with a choice of fruits, yoghurt or milk (or both!) and different syrups.

As well as fresh produce we also have street food, live music, a bar, coffee and board games so there is plenty to do for all ages and the little ones can also play on the climbing frames that we have.  We are very much a community market.

Brook Green Market and Kitchen every Saturday

10:00am to 3:00pm

Addison Primary School, Addison Gardens, W14 0DT

Labour threaten London’s tech success warns Brent Hoberman

In the Evening Standard Brent Hoberman writes:

“When my partner and I set up in 1998, Britain’s tech scene looked very different from today.

Nobody had smartphones, most businesses weren’t using email addresses, and Twitter was the sound from a bird. We started with a lot of hope and chutzpah — but could never have predicted that the tech scene here in the UK would explode like it has.

The UK now has the largest digital economy in the G20, measured by percentage of GDP: greater than China, Germany and even the home of Silicon Valley itself, the United States.

London has been right at the forefront of this change. Think of the must-have apps on your phone: Shazam, JustEat or CityMapper. These and countless other start-ups have conquered the world from their London bases. London is now the envy of Europe for its technology entrepreneurs and momentum.

He adds that low tax has helped attract business. But he warns that Labour could threaten jobs and prosperity in our capital:

“We need to continue to build on this British success story. The tech successes create a huge number of jobs, save  people money and time, helping us to enjoy life more and are important for our children’s future. They position Britain as a country with a bright and strong future.

Many entrepreneurs I’ve spoken to are worried by the attitude towards enterprise coming from the top of the Labour Party. We need people in Westminster who appreciate enterprise, who will back digital entrepreneurs and keep London’s tech sector thriving and creating new jobs. All the evidence tells us that’s the Conservatives. They’ve taken the country a long way already — and they need to see the job through.”

Cllr Charlie Dewhirst: Unemployment is down in Hammersmith and thousands more jobs are on the way

charliedewA guest post from Cllr Charlie Dewhirst, the Conservative candidate for Hammersmith. This is the text of speech that was to be delivered last night at a Council meeting. But Labour used a procedural tactic to block debate on a motion welcoming the fall in unemployment.

There can be no doubt that one of the great successes of the current Conservative-led Government has been the jobs miracle currently underway in the UK.

Figures released last week by the Office for National Statistics show 1.75 million more people in work than in 2010 and wages rising faster than inflation.

A new milestone has been reached with the unemployment rate falling below 6 per cent for the first time in six years – that means more people with the stability and security of a job, able to provide for themselves and their family.

And these jobs are not insecure or poorly paid – in fact three-quarters of the new jobs that have been created since the election are full-time and wages are rising faster than inflation with regular pay (not including bonuses) going up by 1.8 per cent and inflation at 0.5 per cent.

The Conservatives’ long-term economic plan to create more jobs and cap benefits to reward work is working, but we know there is more to do and that families are still feeling the impact of Labour’s Great Recession.

Labour left nearly half a million more people without a job and Ed Miliband predicted that our economic plan would ‘lead to the disappearance of a million jobs’.

But there are now more than 1.75 million more people in work. This shows Ed Miliband is just not up to the job and Labour don’t have a plan for Britain’s future.

They would put all the progress we have made at risk with their call for more spending and more borrowing.

Now, each and every time we get good news on jobs, the Labour are quick to shout out that these aren’t “real jobs”.

They keep telling us about the UK’s “cost of living crisis” and how the gap between rich and poor is getting worse.

Let’s consider the latest ONS statistics.
·         Employment: 30.8 million (up 1.75 million since the election).

·         Unemployment: 1.91 million (down 596,000 since the election).

·         Claimant count: 867,700 in December (down 627,100 since the election).

·         Wages: regular pay (average earnings excluding bonuses) is up 1.8 per cent on the year and private sector pay is up 2.2 per cent. Inflation measured by the CPI is currently 0.5 per cent.

·         Nearly 2.2 million more people are employed in the private sector since the election – the increase in private sector employment is over five times the fall in public sector jobs.

·         Three quarters of the number of people in work since the election are in full-time jobs – full-time jobs accounted for 83 per cent of the rise in employment over the past year.

·         Youth unemployment is 175,000 lower than at the election and the number of young people claiming the main unemployment benefit is at its lowest level since the 1970s.

·         Long-term unemployment (over 12 months) is down 130,000 since the election.

·         Three quarters of the rise in employment has been in managerial, professional and associate professional jobs.

·         The number of women in work is at a record high of 14.4 million.

·         The number of people claiming the main unemployment benefit is at its lowest level since June 2008.

Now I am not for one minute saying that the job is done. Far from it – there are still 1.9 million people without work.

However, the future is bright. Nationally there are currently a record 700,000 job vacancies and here in Hammersmith and Fulham there are some fantastic opportunities for local employment.

The transformation of Old Oak Common will bring around 55,000 new jobs and I am sure every councillor in the chamber welcomed today’s news that Eric Pickles has given the go ahead for a Mayoral Development Corporation.

This will allow LBHF to play a key role in shaping the redevelopment and bringing these new jobs and new homes closer to reality.

The redevelopment of Earls Court will bring a further 10,000 new jobs and the extension of Westfield is set to create another 6,700 new permanent roles on top of the 2,500 jobs at the old BBC Television Centre.

But it is crucial that the current Administration learns lessons from previous Labour Councils in H&F. When the original Westfield scheme was given the go ahead the then leader of the Council, now MP of Hammersmith, did not put the necessary safeguards in to guarantee local employment.

The result: Westfield employs 10,000 people of which just 350 come from the local area.

However, I am sure the current Leader’s famed negotiating prowess will ensure no repeat over the next three years but we must make sure that we take advantage of every opportunity to create jobs for local people.

I welcome the continued reduction in unemployment but we must not be complacent. We have a great opportunity in this borough to create many thousands more new jobs in the coming years and I commend this motion.

Council revenue comes in for using underground ducts to provide better Broadband

In February last year the ITS Technology Group agreed a landmark deal in April 2014 to manage a super-fast fibre optic network in the borough of Hammersmith and Fulham. In a pioneering move we chose to become the first council in England to let out the underground ducts through which the authority’s CCTV network runs. All 10 miles of it.

Cllr Greg Smith, then the Deputy Leader of the Council was responsible for the initiative. He is now the Conservative Group leader. The deal means  a new source of revenue to the council – it will bring in £160,000 in the next financial year. I hope the Labour council leader remembers to send him a thank you note…

Furthermore providing money for the Council is not the only benefit. As the report last year set out:

  • “The indirect benefits will be that the bidder will improve the broadband connectivity speed and coverage for residents in the borough (Fibre to the Home).
  • Creation of new jobs by helping small business to thrive and also attract new businesses into the borough. Businesses will have easier access to the network and faster internet connectivity, (the improved fibre coverage of the utilisation of the duct asset will provide this). The bidder intends to sell to local business at affordable prices, to enable easy access and better connectivity.
  • The bidder will also enable connectivity to multi dwelling units (MDUs). As LBHF have fibre to and running past many MDUs, the bidder will be able to easily provide fast internet connectivity to many people.
  • Registered social landlords will also be able to offer broadband services to tenants as part of their accommodation package. The landlord will be able to include connectivity as part of the rental agreement. This would prove beneficial for example in student accommodation.”

Labour are boasting about how caring they are being – for instance cutting Meals on Wheels fees at a cost of £70,000 or scrapping Home Care fees at a cost of £324,000. But they don’t add that they can only afford these changes thanks to the sort of initiatives brought in by Cllr Smith.

Come and visit North End Road Market

There will a Festive Market on North End Road on Saturday December 6th. It will be pedestrianised up to Lillie Road.

The Conservative Group on the London Assembly have just produced an interesting report on markets. It says those that are independently owned tend to do better than those under local authority ownership.

Anyway here is a film with some of the traders showing what they have to offer: