Agenda and minutes

Venue: Bromley Civic Centre

Contact: Kerry Nicholls  020 8313 4602

No. Item




RESOLVED that Katy Woolcott – London Biggin Hill Airport be appointed Vice-Chairman for the 2014/15 municipal year.




Apologies had been received from Karen Hine – Baker Tilly Tax and Accounting Limited, Marc Hume – LBB Director: Regeneration and Transformation, Mike Lewis – Michael Rogers LLP, Mary Manuel – LBB Head of Planning Strategy and Projects, Kevin Munnelly – LBB Head of Town Centre Renewal and Donna Still – Federation of Small Businesses.



Additional documents:


The minutes of the meeting held on 10th April 2014 were agreed subject to the first sentence of Item 3f: Outer London Fund being amended to read:


“The Head of Town Centre Planning confirmed that projects funded by the Outer London Fund had almost been competed at the end of March 2014, including the transformation of green space at St Mark’s Church, Bromley into a semi-public park”


In considering Item 2d) Local Plan Development, Members were advised that it was incorrect to report that 11,000 square metres of office space had been lost to residential development since May 2013.  Prior approval had been given for around 11,000 square metres of office space across 30-40 individual schemes, however to date only a very small number of these schemes had been implemented and office space actually lost.


RESOLVED that the minutes of the meeting held on 10th April 2014 be agreed, subject to the above amendments.




The Chairman advised members of the Partnership that there was a need to nominate a member of the Bromley Economic Partnership as the Business Representative to the Safer Neighbourhood Board for the 2014/15 municipal year. 


RESOLVED that Sharon Baldwin – Manager, Orpington 1st BID Company be confirmed as the Business Representative to the Safer Neighbourhood Board for the 2014/15 municipal year.




Michael Heanue, Principal Policy Officer (Skills, Employment and SMEs) - Greater London Authority gave a presentation on the work of the London Enterprise Panel.


The London Enterprise Panel was the local enterprise partnership for London.  Chaired by the Mayor of London, the London Enterprise Panel was the body through which the Mayoralty worked with London boroughs, business and Transport for London to take a strategic view of the regeneration, employment and skills agenda for the London region. 


The vision of the London Enterprise Panel was set out in the Jobs and Growth Plan for London and had four main priorities.  These comprised:


1.  Skills and employment, ensuring that skills funding reflected the needs of employers and learners


2.  Support for growth of micro, small and medium-sized enterprises, including access to finance, increasing trade and export, workspace and business support opportunities


3.  The development of London’s digital creative, science and technology industries as a world-leading hub


4.  A robust infrastructure for London, including investment to unlock new growth areas, management of energy production and use, and the provision of digital and telecommunications technology.


Following the announcement of the Growth Deal in July 2014, the London region had been awarded £55m capital funding for further education and skills funding (with £65m provisionally agreed for 2016/17), £5m to increase digital skills amongst young people, and £70m to be spent in partnership with London Boroughs to support the delivery of the Jobs and Growth Plan for London.  Funding to increase the apprenticeship grant for small and medium-sized employers in London from £1500 to £3000, and £1.2m to pilot a mental health and employment project in East London had also been agreed.  In addition to this, €746m of European Social Fund and European Regional Development Fund had been allocated to the London Enterprise Panel for 2014-20 which would be matched with a further 50% of domestic funding, as well as €42.8m European Social Fund for Youth Employment Initiative funding.  There was a requirement for European Structural and Investment Funds to align with London Enterprise Panel Priorities, and discussions between the Government and the European Commission were ongoing to support this. 


The London Enterprise Partnership was currently consulting on a new Economic Development Plan for London up to 2020 which would help sustain growth across London into the future.  The final draft plan would be presented to the London Enterprise Panel on 29th October 2014 with a view to launching it before the end of 2014.


In response to a question from a member of the Partnership, Michael Heanue, Principal Policy Officer (Skills, Employment and SMEs) confirmed that the New Homes Bonus was allocated to London Boroughs based on the number of new homes created.  Sharon Baldwin, Manager, Orpington 1st BID Company underlined the need for local enterprise partnerships to work together to maximise economic growth across communities and regions.


Sam Parrett, Bromley College of Further and Higher Education was pleased to note the additional skills funding available in London, and noted  ...  view the full minutes text for item 5.




John Dell, LBB CCTV Manager outlined the use of CCTV cameras in the Borough to members of the Partnership.


The Local Authority had 184 CCTV cameras based in eight town centres across the Borough.  Of these, 89 were on street, with the remainder based in multi-storey car parks and on the Bromley Civic Centre site.  The Town Centre ‘Shop Safe’ radio system was connected to the CCTV control room, as was a police radio, and the CCTV control room was also able to feed CCTV images directly to the police control room for south east London .  Every month the CCTV control room dealt with approximately 3000 incidents and had won a Safer Bromley Award in the ‘Above and Beyond’ category for its work to capture footage and close ups of the perpetrators during the public disorder in 2011. 


The CCTV control room had recently been awarded funding to upgrade its internal equipment to digital, which would support the close working of the service with the Metropolitan Police Service and other enforcement agencies.  The potential to develop the broadcasting of live pictures to the CCTV control room using mobile phone technology was also being explored. 


In response to a query from a member of the Partnership, the CCTV Manager confirmed that short term CCTV cameras could be located in the Borough in conjunction with the Police if an ongoing issue was identified.


Sharon Baldwin noted the need for the Town Centre ‘Shop Safe’ radio system to be upgraded.  The CCTV Manager confirmed that an upgrade request had been made to the company that delivered this service.


RESOLVED that the update be noted.




The Head of Town Centre Management and Business Support outlined an initial project proposal for the marketing of the Borough.


Bromley was considered to be an excellent location for business for a number of reasons including excellent transport links, a strong and vibrant business community and a high quality of life and educational attainment.  It was proposed that a potential project be established to market the Borough as a business location and to make businesses seeking opportunities for growth in London and the South East aware of the benefits of locating in Bromley.


In considering the proposal, the Chairman underlined the need to convey the message that Bromley was ‘open for Business’.  Invest Bromley had been launched in 2012 and there was potential to link any future marketing to this brand as well as raise the Borough’s business profile with organisations such as ‘London First’, who worked to promote London as the best city in the world to do business.


Sharon Baldwin, Manager, Orpington 1st BID noted the potential for larger developers in the Borough also to market the benefits of living and working in Bromley.


RESOLVED that comments by members of the Partnership on the initial project proposal be noted.




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




The Head of Town Centre Management and Business Support provided an update on the development of planning policy in the Borough.


The analysis of the consultation response to the Local Plan would be reported to Development Control Committee at its meeting on 4th September 2014.  The assessment of sites identified through the ‘Call for Sites’, which formed part of the consultation would also be assessed over the summer and reported to Members in autumn 2014.


Further work was being undertaken to evidence housing capacity and need in the Borough, and Planning Policy Officers were also reviewing non-designated employment land and business areas to ensure the most up-to-date information was held, which together with the work exploring development capacity in Bromley, Biggin Hill and Cray Valley, would inform Bromley’s Local Plan.


Consultation was currently taking place on the proposed Article 4 Direction to remove the permitted development rights to change of use from office to residential for three specific areas in Bromley town centre. The consultation would run until 31st July 2014 and, should the Article 4 Direction subsequently be confirmed, it would come into operation after a period of one year.  Article 4 protection for other identified growth areas in the Borough was under consideration. The Department for Communities and Local Government had recently asked for additional evidence to support the proposal to protect office space in these areas, which had been submitted by Officers.


The Mayor’s draft Further Alterations to the London Plan would be examined by an Inspector in September 2014, and the Local Authority would be making representations in line with the response submitted by the Council’s Executive to the formal consultation in April 2014.


RESOLVED that the update be noted.





The Head of Town Centre Management and Business Support gave an update on progress across the main Partnership themes of Town Centre Management and Business Support in Quarter 1 2014/15.


In Quarter 1 2014/15, a number of events had taken place in town centres including a very successful local produce market delivered in partnership with the Copers Cope Area Residents Association and the Beckenham Business Association on Beckenham Green.  A ‘Request for Quotes’ procurement process had started in June 2014 to secure the services of a suitable contractor to install and maintain Christmas lights for Christmas 2014.  The contract would include the supply of new lights and maintenance of existing lights in eight town centres across the Borough, five of which were externally funded by local business groups and lights committees.


The Local Authority continued to maintain direct contact with the Orpington 1st BID Company through the attendance of non-voting members, Councillor William Huntington-Thresher and Martin Pinnell.  Bills for the 2014/15 BID levy had been issued and the Orpington 1st BID Company had been finalising its budget and activity programme for the new financial year.. 


Following a feasibility study on the potential for further Business Improvement Districts (BID) being established in other town centres across the Borough, recommendations for action were reported to the meeting of the Council’s Executive on 15th January 2014, and the Council’s Executive had endorsed the setting aside of £110k from reserves to fund a project to introduce a BID to Bromley Town Centre.  Following consideration at the meeting of the Renewal and Recreation PDS Committee, it was agreed that a Bromley BID Working Group be formed of people representative of Bromley Town Centre and that a grant of up to £90k be provided to the Bromley BID Working Group, subject to an agreement which stipulated a funding schedule conditional upon the Working Group meeting certain project milestones.  The Bromley BID Working Group was chaired by Marc Myers, General Manager, Intu Bromley Shopping Centre, and had recently signed off its governance arrangements with a view to appointing a delivery partner following the finalisation of the Local Authority’s grant agreement.  It was anticipated that the Bromley BID ballot might take place in October 2015 with a view to starting the BID (if successful) on 1st April 2016.  Before the Bromley BID Ballot could take place, a feasibility study would be undertaken followed by an in-depth consultation of at least 45% of the potential levy payers to understand the key issues for the town centre.


In considering town centre vacancy units, 12.8% of units were currently vacant in Bromley town centre, and 8.1% of units were vacant in Penge town centre, which was lower than the national average of 13.5%.  Orpington town centre had a vacancy rate of 15.5%.  A significant proportion of the vacant units in both Bromley and Orpington town centres were within the shopping centres.  Work was ongoing to implement improvement projects agreed for funding from the Local Parades Improvement Initiative  ...  view the full minutes text for item 8b




Stella Marshall, Youth Support Programme Development Officer and Lesley Holland, Operations Manager, Bromley Education Business Partnership gave an update on the Bromley Youth Employment Project Round 2 which had been developed by Bromley Council to support sustainable employment opportunities for young people who were unemployed.


In Phase 1, Bromley College of Further and Higher Education had been commissioned to deliver 198 internship and apprenticeship opportunities for unemployed Bromley residents between 18 and 24 over a three year period from April 2013.  The Star Project had supported a number of young people into internship and apprenticeship opportunities over the past year, but following the agreement of both parties, the contract had been terminated and the Bromley Education Business Partnership had been requested to undertake a review of the best way to support sustainable employment opportunities for young people who were unemployed into the future.  A task and finish group had been established to review current options on youth employment in consultation with a wide range of stakeholders, including business support organisations, Community Links, and the National Careers and Apprenticeship Services. 


The recommendations from this review had now been reported to Members.  It was proposed to:


1.  Target priority client groups, including young people identified as at risk of being ‘Not in Employment, Education or Training’ (NEET), young people aged 18-24 years claiming Jobseekers Allowance and Looked After Children aged 15-24 years.


2.  Increase the supply of local employment opportunities for young people by implementing a Borough-wide employer engagement programme, creating a Local Authority graduate internship opportunity to develop a Local Authority strategy to increase the offer of work experience placements, traineeships and apprenticeships across the Local Authority and its partners, and working with Community Links to create a voluntary and community sector based graduate internship to stimulate the creation of work experience placements, traineeships and apprenticeships across the voluntary and community sector.


3.  Increase the work readiness of young people and raise their awareness of apprenticeships by delivering Next Step employability conferences and employability workshops to priority client groups, providing a tailored recruitment and matching service, and supporting short intervention mentoring relationships aimed at Jobseekers Allowance claimants aged 18-24 years


The key project outcomes over the two year project included creating 100 employment opportunities for young people, getting 500 employers participating in awareness raising events, offering one to one support for 200 employers, and creating 25 employment or work experience opportunities within the voluntary and community sector.  It was also aimed to provide employability support to 900 students, enhanced employment opportunities for 25 Looked After Children, targeted mentoring support for 40 Jobseekers Allowance claimants aged 18-24 years, and to support 100 young people into contracted employment lasting a minimum of six months. 


To support the delivery of these project outcomes, Stella Marshall, Youth Support Programme Development Officer emphasised the need for the programme to work in partnership with the business community in Bromley, and requested members of the Bromley Economic Partnership consider becoming involved in the project.


In considering the update,  ...  view the full minutes text for item 8c




The Head of Town Centre Management and Business Support gave an update on developments across the Lower Sydenham industrial area. 


Initial work was being undertaken to explore the potential to establish a Business Improvement District (BID) in the Bromley part of the Industrial area, although there would be potential to establish a cross-borough BID if there was support by the businesses across the Lewisham border.  There were approximately 100 business rate payers in the proposed location for the BID, which had the potential to generate around £45-£55k per annum in BID levy to support business-led projects, such as the introduction of CCTV, signage or road improvements to the area.  Initial conversations were being held with business rate payers to assess support for a BID.  The next stage would be to approach the Greater London Authority or other appropriate organisation to access funding to further explore the BID process.


RESOLVED that the update be noted.





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




Amanda Grice, Jobcentre Plus advised Members of the Partnership that the Jobseekers Allowance Count in Bromley in May 2014 was 3545 claimants.  This was a decrease of 110 claimants on the previous month and 1465 claimants since May 2013.  There had been a significant reduction in the number of Jobseeker Allowance claimants aged 18-24 years.  In May 2014, there were 770 claimants aged 18-24 years, which was a decrease of 70 claimants on the previous month and 270 claimants since May 2013.  Work to support Employment Support Allowance claimants into sustained employment where appropriate remained a priority.  Bromley continued to perform well in comparison with other Local Authorities across London and had achieved a reduction of 29.2% in Jobseekers Allowance claimants between May 2013 and May 2014, which was the sixth best performance in London.


Colin Maclean, Community Links Bromley, was pleased to advise members of the Partnership that work was being undertaken to develop an ‘Our Place’ project in partnership with Jobcentre Plus which would pilot the impact of volunteering on improving the employability of Jobseekers Allowance claimants aged 18-24 years in the Penge and Cator area.





Katy Woolcott, London Biggin Hill Airport provided an update on developments at London Biggin Hill Airport following its identification as a Strategic Outer London Development Centre in the London Plan, and as part of the LoCATE (London Centre for Aviation Technology and Enterprise) project which brought together a cluster of modern aviation-related businesses at and around London Biggin Hill Airport to support continued economic development in the area.  Work would continue to be undertaken to ensure that the economic development potential of London Biggin Hill Airport as a Strategic Outer London Development Centre was reflected fully in the Local Plan for Bromley and support the airport in its aim to realise a further 2300 jobs in and around the airport by 2031. 





Mike Lewis, Michael Rogers LLP had provided a written update for the meeting which reported that the supply of office space across Bromley was very limited due to increased take-up, and there was evidence of increasing rental levels, a reduction in the amount of incentives being agreed and reducing yields, all of which would lead to increasing capital values. There was no Grade A space available in the Borough at present, although Wren Court, London Road was currently being refurbished and would bring an additional 14,500 sq. ft. of space to the market later in 2014.


Dave Freeborn, George Proctor & Partners, confirmed that interest in land development in Bromley had increased over the past six months, but that changes to mortgage criteria continued to impact sales levels. 





Colin Maclean, Community Links Bromley advised Members that the Corporate Social Responsibility Expo had taken place on 13th March 2014 at Bromley Civic Centre.  This event had showcased the voluntary sector in the Borough and support the development of links between local businesses and third sector organisations. 


Feedback from the event had been very positive and the evaluation of this had identified that following the event, 100% of respondents had made contact with one or more of the community organisations they had met and were seeking to maintain a relationship with these organisations.  All respondents to the survey had indicated they would attend a similar event in future.


RESOLVED that the updates be noted.





Mike Ellis, Prospects / South London Business advised Members that the National start up loan scheme available to young people aged 18-30 years to support them to start their own businesses had now been opened up to those aged 30+ years, and that there had been strong take up of the scheme over the past year.  There had been an increase in referrals of Jobcentre Plus clients from the Work Programme.


Steve Nelson, South East London Chamber of Commerce reported that the Chamber of Commerce was working to introduce an Executives’ Club which would be launched later in 2014.


Sam Parrett, Bromley College of Further and Higher Education confirmed that Bromley College of Further and Higher Education would shortly be opening the career college specialising in food and enterprise.  This provision would be based at the College’s Orpington Campus from September 2014, and would prepare students for employment in the catering and hospitality industry.  A conference centre would also be opening at the College’s Orpington campus shortly, offering opportunities for Orpington-based businesses to use the space as well as providing event management experience for students.  The new sports facilities at the College’s Bromley campus would open in September 2014, which would also be managed by the students.  The College had recently been interviewed in its bid to become a University Technical College specialising in health and wellbeing.  Work was also underway to explore the potential for the College to offer a specialist provision in the creative and cultural industries.


Sharon Baldwin, Manager, Orpington 1st BID Company was pleased to advise Members that the Orpington 1st BID Company had leased ten High Street offices which would provide office space for small and medium enterprises in Orpington.  A lease had also been negotiated for a pop-up shop in the Walnuts Shopping Centre, and discussions were being undertaken on the potential provision of an information centre in the High Street which could also offer a base for the Police.  Work on the cinema development at the Walnut’s Shopping Centre was now underway.


RESOLVED that the updates be noted.





Members of the Partnership considered the forward rolling work programme for the Bromley Economic Partnership for 2014/15. 


In discussion, it was agreed that a representative of London Councils be invited to a future meeting to discuss the economic development role of London Councils.


RESOLVED that the update be noted.




There was no other business.



4.00pm, Tuesday 7th October 2014

4.00pm, Tuesday 20th January 2015

4.00pm, Tuesday 14th April 2015


4.00pm, Tuesday 7th October 2014

4.00pm, Tuesday 20th January 2015

4.00pm, Tuesday 14th April 2015



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