Agenda and minutes

Venue: Bromley Civic Centre

Contact: Jo Partridge  020 8461 7694

No. Item




Apologies had been received from John Coupland – South East London Business Network, Terri Johnson – South East London Chamber of Commerce, Mike Lewis – Michael Rogers LLP, Colin Maclean – Community Links Bromley, Liz Waghorn – Jobcentre Plus and Katy Woolcott – London Biggin Hill Airport.




The minutes of the meeting held on 15th January 2019 were agreed, and signed as a correct record. There were no matters arising.




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




Virgil Rappa, LBB Town Centre Development Project Planner 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.


With regards to Opportunity Site G: West of the High Street, the proposed Churchill Quarter development, the Council’s development team were continuing to liaise directly with property owners prior to the planning determination, a date for which was hoped to be set by the end of the month. Discussions were ongoing with the Bromley Town Church in relation to temporary relocation options, and officers were also preparing an Equalities Impact Assessment to support the acquisition process.


Phase 2 of the Bromley Town Centre High Street Public Realm Improvement works was continuing. The carriageway works at the High Street and Elmfield Road junction were underway and traffic diversions were in place. The road would be reopened from 18th April 2019, following which the bus routes would revert back to normal. The paving work in the pedestrianised area would be completed by Easter 2019, with the exception of the installation of the planters. Architectural up-lighting would be installed on the Primark building, the adjoining HG Wells building, 145-155 High Street, the adjoining Offspring Shoes building and Marks and Spencer, and it was anticipated that this would be completed by the end of the month.


In Beckenham town centre, the public realm improvement works would be completed this month, with the exception of the planters and any snagging works. The public realm improvement works in Orpington town centre were in the final stages with the remaining work just to be done on the fire escapes and any snagging issues.


The London Borough of Bromley had submitted a bid to the Ministry of Housing, Communities and Local Government’s Future High Street Fund to fund the production of a new masterplan for Orpington town centre. The first phase of the bid was an Expression of Interest, which was submitted on 22nd February 2019 and defined the specific challenges faced by the high street and set out the strategic ambition for what the high street should become. The announcement of the outcome of the bids moving to Phase 2 would take place in July / August 2019. For bids that passed on to Phase 2 there would be revenue funding available to develop project proposals to produce a full business case, which needed to be submitted by spring 2020. Orpington town centre had been selected as it was the major town centre in the Borough, with Bromley town centre defined as a metropolitan town centre, and had received a lower level of investment. One of the key outputs from the masterplan would be to determine the location, mix and amount of development and officers would be working closely with the Orpington 1st BID Company and other stakeholders.


The shopfront improvement project in Penge High Street, as part of the New Homes Bonus, would be completed by May  ...  view the full minutes text for item 3a




Katie Ryde, LBB Planner provided an update on the development of the Draft Local Plan.


Members were advised that the adoption of the Draft Local Plan had been approved at the meetings of the Development Control Committee, the Council’s Executive and at full Council, and would now be used to inform decisions made regarding local priorities.


The Examination in Public of the New London Plan had started at City Hall in January 2019, and consisted of a number of hearing sessions led by a panel of Inspectors. There was currently a three week break in the hearings, with the final sessions due to take place in May 2019, and the report prepared following the evidence heard would be published by the end of the summer. The panel of Inspectors would advise the Mayor of London and make recommendations, however these could still be rejected and the Plan be adopted anyway. It was expected that the New London Plan would be adopted by the end of 2019.


It was noted that the speed of change expected may causes issues, and that the Local Authority would prefer a slower and more stable approach, but they intended to be as ready as they could be. Options for priority would be considered, and a timetable would be set out over the summer.


The Chairman reminded the Partnership that the London Plan proposed a significant increase in the fifteen year target for net housing completions, from the current requirement of 641 homes per annum to 1,424 homes per annum.


A Member noted that there had been a challenge to the number of homes included in the Draft Local Plan. The LBB Planner responded that the challenge had been lodged, and this was currently being led by the LBB Legal Team. Basic information had been provided to the judge around three weeks ago, although nothing further had been heard and there was no set time period.


In response to a question from a Member, the LBB Planner advised that the Bromley CIL was broadly on track, with adoption expected in early 2020.


In response to a question from a Member, the LBB Planner said that the Local Plan policy for Business Improvement Areas and the Article 4 Directions in Bromley Town Centre sent out a clear message of what was wanted in that area.


RESOLVED that the update on the Local Plan be noted.




Ms Zoe Brown, Beckenham Together & Penge SE20 informed members that Meerkat Works had recently met with businesses in both Beckenham and Penge with regards to making the BID levy cost neutral.


In Penge, a radio system had been installed in partnership with ShopSafe, which would allow businesses to radio for assistance and quickly share information about shoplifters or anyone causing antisocial behaviour. Work was also underway to part fund defibrillators and tourniquet kits, and provide retailers with training on how to use them. An Easter egg trail would be taking place to draw people into the town, and it was noted that loyalty cards were on the horizon for both Penge and Beckenham town centres.


In Beckenham, work had taken place to meet with local businesses and invite them to the next meeting of the steering group. It was hoped this would be held in the next month or so, and local Councillors would also be invited to attend. Events scheduled to take place included Clock House Celebrates on 13th April 2019 and the Bec Rec festival in the summer. There were two new Board Directors – Matt from Three Hounds Beer Company, located in Clock House and Clayton from Varley & Varley Funeral Directors on Chancery Parade, which were considered to be two outpoints of the BID area.


Ms Frances Forrest, Your Bromley BID Company provided Members with a copy of their annual report, which presented an overview of the activities that had taken place over the last year. Footfall in the town centre was creeping back up, and a summary of footfall by location and week was circulated. It was noted that footfall data was available to levy payers by emailing


The town centre would shortly see the launch of a campaign encouraging shoppers not to give money directly to beggars, but instead to donate loose change to Bromley Homeless Shelter via special boxes located in stores. This was an attempt to change people’s behaviour, and stop making the high street attractive to beggars. The first phase of the ‘Bromley Parking App’ would also be launching and would provide shoppers with advice as to which car park was nearest to their destination. It would also give users information on the charges and facilities available, and it was hoped it would help ease congestion in the car parks.


Upcoming events included an Easter bunny trail over the two week school holidays in which 31 businesses were participating, and the Food Fest taking place at the end of May / beginning of June 2019 to showcase places to eat and drink in the town centre. A quiz night for employees would also be held to raise money for the Bromley Community Fund.


Mr Mark Haynes, The Glades advised Members that two new retailers would be opening soon. This was extremely positive, however it was noted that retailing was tough at the minute and everything possible should be done to support the retailers. With regards to the two new  ...  view the full minutes text for item 3c




Updates are provided in the relevant sub sections.




Mr Colin Hitchins, Community Engagement Manager, London Biggin Hill Airport advised Members that Will Curtis had stepped down as Managing Director of London Biggin Hill Airport. He had been succeeded by David Winstanley, who had taken up the appointment of Chief Executive Officer.


Work was expected to start on the London Aerospace and Technical College and the hotel, following the Biggin Hill Festival of Flight in August 2019. In terms of property, the site was full with no available spaces, which was extremely positive.




No update was provided to the meeting.




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


In reference to the Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) bid mentioned at the last meeting of the Bromley Economic Partnership, it was clarified that the submission was led by Community Links Bromley on behalf of the Bromley Community Fund Committee (which included several representatives from local businesses, such as Handelsbanken). The bid to the Department of Culture, Media and Sport was unsuccessful and the feedback provided stated the funding pot was over-bid by 800%.




No update was provided to the meeting; however the Chairman noted that Jobcentre Plus would be providing an update on Apprenticeships to the next meeting of the Bromley Economic Partnership.


Ms Lesley Holland, LBB Operations Manager – Bromley Education Business Partnership informed Members that the LBB Youth Service would be delivering a jobs fair in collaboration with the Department for Work and Pensions on 12th July 2019 at Bromley Central Library. Sixth form leavers and those not in education, employment or training would be contacted and invited to attend drop in sessions and meet with employers who would advertise their live vacancies.




Mr Chandra Sharma, attended the meeting representing the Federation of Small Businesses (FSB). A joint meeting had taken place with the FSB, Councillor Morgan, John Coupland (SELBN) and Lorraine McQuillan to discuss changes to the business section of the Bromley Council website. The majority of the changes suggested had been accepted including:


- Broken links repaired

- Links to the Growth Hub / London South East Colleges

- A comprehensive list of networking groups listed on the site

- A list of business support workshops

- Business Opportunity Profiles

- Links to the Bromley Business Directory

- Links to the Business Rates section

- Dates published for the Bromley Business e-bulletins

- Links to the Borough’s BIDs

- Links to Council commercial properties to let or for sale


A follow up meeting between the FSB and Councillor Morgan had taken place on 6th March 2019. Councillor Hannah Gray had been appointed Small Business Champion, becoming the main contact for small businesses in the Borough. Councillors were also being encouraged to attend local business events.


A number of very successful FSB networking meetings had taken place in Orpington and Bromley since the last meeting of the Bromley Economic Partnership. A networking event focussing on procurement would be taking place on 17th May 2019 at the Cow & Pig Restaurant, Bromley, delivered by Maddy Pryor and Laurence Downes, LBB Assistant Director – Governance and Contracts. The FSB were asking for a follow up event with key partners in autumn 2019 and a ‘Meet the Buyer’ event in spring 2020.


Other FSB initiatives had been to arrange a joint meeting with London South East Colleges, the South East London Chamber of Commerce and the Orpington 1st BID Company, and a Networking Cupper Expo event at The Glades on Friday 29th and Saturday 30th March 2019. The FSB were also running a campaign for ‘Fair Pay, Fair Play’, asking for a three point plan which was felt would make a big difference in the fight to tackle poor payment processes. The latest FSB Policy Report, ‘Small Business, Big Heart: Bringing Communities Together’ had been written by the FSB's Employment and Pensions Policy Advisor, Emelia Quist, and it was suggested that she could attend a future meeting of the Bromley Economic Partnership to deliver a short presentation.


The next FSB Policy report in progress was the Business Crime report. The FSB were encouraging businesses to share any business crime related issues in the Bromley borough to Sarah King, FSB Development Manager by 8th April 2019.


Upcoming events included the FSB Business Crime event, taking place on 20th May 2019, the Borough Friendly Business Awards, and the FSB London Small Business Awards on 17th April 2019.


Monday 1st April 2019 had been named ‘Blue Monday’ by the FSB due to some significant changes which would affect a lot of small businesses including: making tax digital, which could cost small businesses over £500 a year; increased NI contributions of  ...  view the full minutes text for item 4e




Ms Louise Wolsey, London South East Colleges informed Members that the planning application for the London Aerospace and Technical College had been submitted on 14th March 2019, with the outcome expected in June 2019. A number of letters of support for the College had come forward, and the visit of the Aviation Minister had emphasised the high level and local impact that the proposals had. Two public consultation events had taken place in September 2018 and February 2019, which had helped shape the designs and location of the final plan, and had been publicised in the News Shopper and Bromley Times over the last couple of weeks. The timescales would be tight, but the College was expected to open in September 2020.


Members were advised that London South East Colleges was the trading name following the incorporation of a number of Colleges across the London Boroughs of Bromley, Bexley and the Royal Borough of Greenwich in summer 2016. At the time, Greenwich College had been struggling in terms of performance, but this deficit had now been turned around. The big project in Bromley was the London Aerospace and Technical College, but there were also other GLA projects that they were delivering, including the Mayor’s Construction Academy scheme. They had received revenue funding to deliver construction training and also achieved the Quality Mark for the scheme. In Bexley and Greenwich, pop-up construction schemes had been installed on live building sites, and further investment may be used to create more pop-up skills centres. A bid had also been made for money to redevelop the Greenwich College campus, re-providing the campus along with residential accommodation and social housing.


In November 2018, London South East Colleges had worked in collaboration with Mytime Active to deliver a ‘Twilight College’, at the campus between 4.00pm-6.00pm. These were intended to help aid a reduction the number of gang incidents and knife crime by keeping pupils on site and providing after school activities. This highlighted how seriously safeguarding was considered, and an article on these sessions had recently featured in The Times Educational Supplement.


Mr Steve Lipscombe, Ronin Marketing advised Members that he lived and worked locally, and his design and marketing business was located on East Street. He hoped to be able to contribute to the group at future meetings.


Mr Alex Henderson, Henderson Biomedical said that the former site on which his business had been located had been redeveloped by Bellway Homes to provided residential accommodation, and  the issues of fly-tipping along Kangley Bridge Road was highlighted. Members were advised that Mr Henderson would be working with Thackary Williams to set up a life sciences advisory group.


Ms Lorna Giffin, Bromley Court Hotel informed Members that from last year, the hotel had a new Managing Director, Stephen Allison. Ms Giffin had been in post for around five weeks, and would be working to build connections and support local businesses.


Mr Michael Humphries, Handelsbanken said that business was carrying on as normal and as their offer  ...  view the full minutes text for item 4f




Members of the Partnership considered the forward rolling work programme for the Bromley Economic Partnership for 2019/20.


Members were asked to send any suggestions for future agenda items to the clerk.




There was no other business.



4.00pm, Tuesday 25th June 2019

4.00pm, Tuesday 15th October 2019

4.00pm, Tuesday 14th January 2020

4.00pm, Tuesday 31st March 2020


4.00pm, Tuesday 25th June 2019

4.00pm, Tuesday 15th October 2019

4.00pm, Tuesday 14th January 2020

4.00pm, Tuesday 31st March 2020


Original Text: