Agenda and minutes

Venue: Bromley Civic Centre

Contact: Jo Partridge  020 8461 7694

Items
No. Item

1.

APOLOGIES FOR ABSENCE

Minutes:

Apologies had been received from Carol Arnfield – LBB Head of Service - Early Years, School Standards and Adult Education, Alex Henderson – MSE UK, Lesley Holland – LBB Operations Manager, Bromley Education Business Partnership, Mike Lewis – Michael Rogers LLP, Helen McIntosh – South East London Chamber of Commerce, Colin Maclean – Community Links Bromley, Kate Miller – The Glades, Steve Wheeler – Federation of Small Businesses and Katy Woolcott – London Biggin Hill Airport.

2.

MINUTES OF THE MEETING HELD ON 10TH OCTOBER 2017 AND MATTERS ARISING pdf icon PDF 173 KB

Minutes:

The minutes of the meeting held on 10th October 2017 were agreed, and signed as a correct record. There were no matters arising.

3.

PRESENTATION BY COUNTRYSIDE PROPERTIES (UK) LIMITED - REGARDING AN UPDATE ON CHURCHILL QUARTER (SITE G)

Minutes:

Mr Sam Wilson (Cascade Communications), Mr Nick Clarke (Countryside Properties), Mr Piers Kortlang (Countryside Properties), Ms Louise Billingham (Stitch Architects), Ms Sally Lewis (Stitch Architects) and Mr Will Edmonds (Montagu Evans) gave a presentation providing an update on Churchill Quarter.

 

Countryside Properties (UK) Limited had been selected by the London Borough of Bromley as their preferred development partner in March 2017, and Cascade Communications were working alongside them on stakeholder engagement. The first resident consultations had taken place over three days in July 2017, and a second three-day consultation took place in November 2017, during which they engaged with around 650 people. This extensive engagement had allowed them to reach the current stage of the development plans, but there were still some tweaks to be made prior to the final submission of the planning application.

 

The scheme would provide 411 new homes, including affordable homes to meet a range of housing needs; high quality landscaping with the historic Library Gardens cedar tree at its heart; and new commercial space, including space for local small to medium sized companies or start-ups. There would be an enhanced public realm linking Churchill Quarter, the High Street and Church House Gardens, and community space to provide a new home for Bromley Town Church. All of this would create a new cultural destination around the Churchill Theatre and Library.

 

The benefits of the scheme would include the delivery of 39% affordable housing on site, which had increased from 35% at the bid stage, and new ground floor commercial space for shops and restaurants to support the vitality of the town centre and increase footfall. The enhanced public realm around the Churchill Theatre and Library would integrate with the High Street public realm improvements being delivered by the London Borough of Bromley. Further benefits included work space for small to medium sized businesses and incubator units for start-up businesses, and the creation of new jobs and training opportunities.

 

The Churchill Quarter site was situated between the High Street and Library Gardens, with the aim of the project to link them all together, and bordered Ethelbert Road to the south. The scheme had evolved throughout the consultation process, and the current proposals had changed significantly from the initial consultation in July 2017, although the footprint was similar. The heights of the proposed buildings were between 21 metres and 44 metres, and were within the realm of surrounding buildings. The site was also next to a conservation area so the architects were working closely with the London Borough of Bromley to ensure that the scheme fitted with their requirements.

 

Instead of the current narrow entrance leading to the Churchill Theatre, the view from the High Street would be opened up, with the removal of the unit that housed Halifax PLC. Retail units would be positioned at the entrance from the High Street, with restaurants and cafés positioned around the historic cedar tree and areas for outside seating. The larger, improved home for Bromley Town Church would be situated  ...  view the full minutes text for item 3.

4.

UPDATES ON MAIN PARTNERSHIP THEMES AND OTHER RELEVANT COUNCIL INITIATIVES:

Minutes:

Members of the Partnership gave an update around progress across the main themes of the Partnership.

4a

TOWN CENTRES DEVELOPMENT PROGRAMME UPDATE (VERBAL UPDATE)

Minutes:

Mr Kevin Munnelly, LBB Head of Town Centre Renewal attended to provide an update on Town Centre Development across the Borough. Progress was continuing across the sites that made up the Bromley Town Centre Area Action Plan. A Masterplan for the whole of Opportunity Site G: West of the High Street, which indicated a mixture of uses, was to be published and consulted on. The six week consultation period would be conditioned by the Local Election, and was likely to take place following this. A planning application for Opportunity Site A: Bromley North Station, had been submitted by developers Be Living Ltd, formerly Prime Place, for the first phase of a mixed-use scheme on the site.

 

The first phase of the Bromley Town Centre Public Realm Improvements between Market Square and Marks and Spencer had been completed in November 2017, and the second phase had commenced. A planning application for the relocation of the market would be considered at Committee in early February 2018 and, if approved, the market would be relocated on 19th March 2018.

 

Further public realm improvements were taking place in Beckenham town centre. The implementation of the works was going well, and positive feedback had been received when liaising with businesses. In Orpington, the first phase of the public realm improvements had been completed, with the second phase expected to commence in early February 2018.

 

The first phase of the public realm improvements had also been completed in Penge, and it was anticipate that both the squares would be completed by the end of February 2018. As part of the New Homes Bonus, a pop-up shop had traded for a period of twelve months, and a shopfront improvement scheme was expected to commence in February 2018.

 

RESOLVED that the update on the town centre development programme be noted.

4b

LOCAL PLAN DEVELOPMENT UPDATE (VERBAL UPDATE)

Minutes:

The Chairman advised members that the outcome of the Local Plan’s Examination in Public was expected in March 2018.

4c

BUSINESS IMPROVEMENT DISTRICTS AND BUSINESS SUPPORT UPDATE (VERBAL UPDATE)

Minutes:

Mr Martin Pinnell, LBB Head of Town Centre Management and Business Support, gave an update on Business Improvement Districts and Business Support in Quarter 3, 2017/18.

 

The Council was continuing to work closely with the steering groups for the Beckenham and Penge BIDs. The finalised research had been completed at the end of 2017, and the business plans had now been signed off. A list of the 500 business rate payers to be balloted had been provided to Electoral Services. Notice of the ballot would be made on Thursday 18th January 2018, with the postal ballots taking place during the 28 days ending on 1st March 2018.

 

With regards to business support, a seminar on Leadership and Management had been co-hosted with Pro-actions in October 2017. Support had also been provided for the Bromley Business Awards that had taken place at The Warren on 2nd November 2017. Business support workshops had been delivered during November 2017, and Successful Mums taster sessions had taken place at the Civic Centre earlier that day.

 

Work had also been undertaken with the Regeneration team in relation to the pop up shop and shopfront improvement scheme in Penge, and the team would be continuing to deliver the Local Parades Improvement Scheme.

 

RESOLVED that the recent work around Business Improvement Districts and Business Support in the 3rd Quarter of 2017/18 be noted.

5.

PARTNER UPDATES AND OPPORTUNITIES FOR JOINT WORKING TO INCLUDE:

Minutes:

Updates are provided in the relevant sub sections.

5a

BIGGIN HILL AIRPORT (VERBAL UPDATE)

Minutes:

No update was provided to the meeting.

5b

COMMERCIAL PROPERTY (VERBAL UPDATE)

Minutes:

Mr Mike Lewis, Michael Rogers LLP, was not present at the meeting but provided a written update to the Partnership as follows:

 

The commercial market continued to be active, even in the run up to the Christmas and New Year break, which was unusual as this tended to be a pretty quiet time. The proposed Elmfield Road office scheme with the John Baker Group was progressing, with most of the building owners along the eastern side of the road now on board.

 

Discussions with a potential occupier of One Elmfield Park (the CLS scheme) were underway, and further deals had been reported at Wren Court and Hanover Place.

5c

COMMUNITY LINKS BROMLEY (VERBAL UPDATE)

Minutes:

Mr Colin Maclean, Community Links Bromley, was not present at the meeting but provided a written update to the Partnership as follows:

 

The Bromley Community Fund panel, led by mainly private sector representatives and hosted by the Chair, Chris Pye, Handelsbanken, would be meeting on Thursday 18th January 2018 to undertake its annual allocation of grants to the voluntary and community sector. The grants were for £500 to £3,000. This year’s funding allocation was £24,369. From the 21 applications submitted, 13 had been short-listed with a total value of £34,929.

5d

JOBCENTRE PLUS - BOROUGH UNEMPLOYMENT AND EMPLOYMENT DATA (VERBAL UPDATE)

Minutes:

Ms Liz Waghorn, Jobcentre Plus, informed the Partnership that the number of people claiming Job Seekers Allowance (JSA) was 2,141, and a further 1,087 were claiming Universal Credit. An area of concern was the 8,000 claimants of Employment Support Allowance (ESA), but the 1,700 claimants of Income Support was holding compared to the previous year. It was noted that the figures provided were approximate as of September 2017. Due to the roll out of Universal Credit Full Service, Management Information in a number of offices was not being produced at such a detailed and consistent level, as it was collected in a different format.

 

December and January tended to be quiet on the job front, but Jobcentre Plus had been working with Bunnings, who had taken over Homebase, on a recruitment drive for their Penge store. Bunnings had recruited for 25 permanent vacancies and 20 temporary vacancies, and had also retained and retrained the existing staff. Further recruitment campaigns would be undertaken for their Catford and Orpington stores. They had also been working with logistics companies including BCA Logistics and UPS, and filling vacancies of street cleaners for Kier, meter readers for SSE and staff for a new Co-op in Chislehurst.

 

A job fair had taken place in October 2017, which had proved very successful. Around 35 employers had attended, including Sainsbury’s, Asda, Tesco and Waitrose.

5e

GENERAL NEWS ROUND (VERBAL UPDATE)

Minutes:

Members of the Partnership had undertaken a range of activities since the last meeting.

 

Ms Kate Miller, The Glades was not present at the meeting, but provided a written update to the Partnership as follows:

 

  The Glades finished 2017 with footfall -1.5% compared to 2016.

  Gift card sales were down 10%, but this could in part be attributed to the rebranding of the centre from intu to The Glades. The intu gift card could be used in all intu centres.

  The car park remained busy all year with usage flat compared to 2016.

  The new Christmas Grotto was well received, and over 4,000 children had visited.

  Despite 2017 having been challenging for some retailers, strong performances were seen from a good number of tenants including; Joules, Fat Face, Massimo Dutti, Ecco, Holland & Barrett, Lush, to name a few.

  There were a few new lettings in 2017; HMV, Explore Learning, and the Fragrance Shop, and a number of others invested in refurbishing their units, including Carphone Warehouse, L’Occitane and Quiznos.

  Pia jewellers left the centre at the end of December 2017, and Swag jewellers would be leaving in the next couple of months. Toys R Us would continue to be monitored closely, but for now had no plans to close in The Glades.

  It was expected that 2018 would now see a higher number of new lettings start to come through in all areas of the mall, with some beginning their shop fits at the end of January 2018.

 

Ms Helen McIntosh, South East London Chamber of Commerce, was not present at the meeting, but provided a written update on behalf of U+I Group PLC with regard to the St Mark’s Square development:

 

   The first residential core was due to be handed over in February 2018, and U+I Group PLC were due to complete the final phase of the development in June 2018.

 

   The cinema was taking occupation in January 2018 to start their 18-week fit out; with the restaurants and hotel following in March 2018. This would allow them time to complete their fit outs and have soft launches before the scheme completed in June 2018.

 

   U+I Group PLC were working with a creative agency on the launch plans, and members would be advised when further details were available.

 

Mr Michael Foxhall, Barclays Bank PLC advised members that the requirement for people depositing cash at the bank to have identification would go live the following day. If customers did not have the debit card to the account into which the cash would be paid, a driving license or other form of identification would need to be presented.

 

Mr Lee Thomas, Fairlight Group said that the company was very busy, with lots of enquiries continuing to be received. They were still looking for more spaces, and were in contact with the agents regarding the Churchill Quarter development.

 

Mr Dave Freeborn, Proctors advised that land sales continued  ...  view the full minutes text for item 5e

6.

BROMLEY ECONOMIC PARTNERSHIP WORK PROGRAMME 2017/18 (VERBAL UPDATE)

Minutes:

Members of the Partnership considered the forward rolling work programme for the Bromley Economic Partnership for 2017/18.

 

The Chairman requested that U+I Group PLC attend to provide an update on the St Mark’s Square development, and the possibility of a visit to the site be explored. It was suggested that more networking time could be allowed for at the end of the meetings, and members were asked to email with any ideas for future agenda items.

7.

ANY OTHER BUSINESS

Minutes:

The Chairman informed the Partnership that Mr Martin Pinnell would be leaving the Local Authority the following week, and Mr Matthew Smallwood-Conway would be taking over his role in relation to the Bromley Economic Partnership. On behalf of the Partnership, the Chairman offered his thanks to Mr Pinnell for all his hard work and wished him all the best for the future.

 

8.

DATES OF FUTURE MEETINGS

4.00pm, Tuesday 27th March 2018

Minutes:

4.00pm, Tuesday 27th March 2018

 

Original Text: