Agenda and draft minutes

Venue: London Biggin Hill Airport

Contact: Jo Partridge  020 8461 7694

No. Item




Apologies for absence had been received from Councillor Vanessa Allen, Russell Clarke – Sundridge Investments, John Coupland – South East London Business Network, Dave Freeborn – Proctors, Mark Haynes – The Glades, Lesley Holland – LBB Operations Manager, Bromley Education Business Partnership, Peter Manlay – Contingent Works, Tina Powley – Nugent Shopping Park and Robert Sargent – Acorn Group.




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




David Winstanley, Chief Executive Officer – London Biggin Hill Airport (“Chief Executive Officer”) gave a presentation to the Partnership.


London Biggin Hill Airport’s (LBHA) vision was to “strive to be London’s pre-eminent full-service Business Aviation Airport and a leading centre for Aviation Technology and Enterprise”. The Chief Executive Officer highlighted that the airport’s values were for their customers, stakeholders and the community to see the delivery of this vision “safely and securely through integrity, innovation, professionalism, accountability and respect” which would be underpinned by “building trust and exceptional teamwork”.


The airport’s strategy involved three interlocking elements: a London Gateway for business; an Aircraft Home Base for aircraft owners; and an Aircraft Service Centre providing facilities for aircraft managers and agencies. As London’s only dedicated Business Aviation airport, LBHA had brought over £70m Gross Value Added (GVA) to the UK economy. It provided 1,300 jobs; housed more than 70 aerospace companies; and flights from the airport flew to more than 750 destinations in over 70 countries.


The LBHA Business Plan for the next five to ten years included Market and Demand Analysis, in recognition of the competitive environment. Other airports made 65%-75% of their revenue from car parking and shopping, whereas at LBHA, 95% of revenue was directly from aviation movements. Work would also be undertaken in relation to a Capacity Assessment; Revenue Simulation and Forecasting; and a Strategy Document had be drawn up for discussions with the landlord.


LBHA had been identified as an Outer London Development Centre as part of the London Plan. Planning permission had been approved for the OEM Hanger, which would provide their London engineering headquarters. The development would “break ground” on 18th February 2020, with the build expected to be completed in April 2020. Other developments on the site included the London Aerospace and Technical College and airport hotel, for which landlord consent was expected within 24 hours. Both developments were situated on the same piece of development land, and it was anticipated that they would “break ground” in September 2020. Future developments were proposed over the next couple of year, subject to planning permission being granted.


LBHA had launched its Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) Policy, which would be integrated into the day to day running, business planning and future strategy of the airport to the benefit of their people, community and environment. LBHA was a supporter of AOA Sustainable Aviation, and had signed up to its long term strategy, which set out a collective approach to tackling the challenge of ensuring a cleaner, quieter and smarter future for the industry.


In response to a question, the Chief Executive Officer said that ‘driverless’ technology would be difficult due to the need for vertical take-off and landing. Licenses were being developed for this type of technology, but it would not be used for scheduled services. It was noted that even if it was considered for short duration flights with limited capacity, there would be a number of issues and it may not be commercially viable.  ...  view the full minutes text for item 33.




Henrietta Nowne, Senior Development Manager – U+I plc (“Senior Development Manager”) gave a presentation providing an update on the St Mark’s Square development.


The St Mark’s Square development was a mixed-use scheme situated opposite Bromley South Station. Elements of the development were located underground, including a nine-screen VUE cinema and a 400-space car park, of which 300 spaces were for public use. The development also included lower and upper plazas, which were both wrapped by restaurants, and a 130-bed Premier Inn hotel, which had been at 85% occupancy since opening the previous year. Of the 200 residential units, 62 units had been affordable housing managed by Moat, 60% of which were shared ownership.


The development had been a Public Private Partnership between U+I plc and the London Borough of Bromley, who owned the site. The new development had been a complex build, with demolition of the former Westmoreland Road car park and digging down six storeys. It had been a long journey with their main contractor, McLaren. However the hotel had been built by modular construction methods, and had therefore been a much quicker process. Following the Grenfell Tower fire, and the timing of the build, a three week slot was secured in Dubai to replicate and fire test the cladding used on site. There were now just a few Section 278 works and basements works to be finished, with final practical completion expected at the end of the month.


There had been a refresh of the branding for the residential campaign, and the run rate had exceeded expectations, as once people arrived in Bromley, the location sold itself. The VUE cinema had exceeded the expected 750,000 visitors, which highlighted that the footfall was there, yet the restaurants had been more challenging. At practical completion, there had been a full line up of tenants, but only two were currently operating. These were Pizza Express and Nando’s, who had adapted to a Company Voluntary Arrangement (CVA), and both were trading extremely well. In particular, the Pizza Express restaurant had noticeably different branding to the other restaurants in the chain, and had been fitted out to a new specification.


The unit housing Cocktail Embassy, for which there had been an influx of enquiries, would be fitted out the following week and open in eight weeks’ time. The scheme refresh would be launched in the next fortnight, and it was hoped that the remaining units would be fully let by the end of April 2020.


In response to a question, the Senior Development Manager said that the development had a varied mix of residential units, which ranged in price from £320k to £600k, and the retail rents were around £30 per square foot. None of the residential units had been bought by investors, and 70% of purchases had been through ‘Help to Buy’ schemes. The demographic of residents ranged from 27 to 80 years old, with some residents having downsized from bigger properties and were attracted by the easy access to London. It  ...  view the full minutes text for item 34.




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




Hannah Jackson, LBB Head of Renewal attended to provide an update on Town Centre Development across the Borough.


Members were advised that the town centre development work that had been undertaken over the last couple of years was drawing to a close. Following a restructure, there was a new LBB team that would be reflecting on regeneration across the whole Borough. Officers were working behind the scenes to draft a Regeneration Strategy, which would shortly be presented to the Chief Executive, and reviewed by the Portfolio Holder for Renewal, Recreation and Housing and Members. Following this, it would be provided to stakeholders for consultation, including the membership of the Bromley Economic Partnership.


The Regeneration Strategy would focus on five key themes:


-  nurturing green space, which would build on the work undertaken in Crystal Palace Park;

-  the Leisure and Culture provision;

-  supporting existing communities;

-  strengthening town centres and the local economy; and

-  encouraging tourism.


It was noted that further information would be provided to Members at the next meeting of the Partnership.


The Bromley Town Centre High Street Public Realm Improvement works would be completed in March 2020, and following cladding work to the Churchill Theatre, the scaffolding would be removed by the end of the month. Work was also being undertaken by officers to review the business cases submitted for the use of two commercial units near Metro Bank.


In Penge town centre, procurement for alternative wayfinding was currently going through the authorisation process. In relation to the shop front improvement scheme, the first round had been completed and had been a great success. It was noted that a second round of shopfront improvements were planned for the following year.


Updates on other development work that had been undertaken included LBB officers meeting with Areli Real Estate to bring forward consultation plans for The Walnuts Shopping Centre. The planning application for Opportunity Site G: West of the High Street had been submitted, and suggested amendments were currently awaited.


In response to a question, the LBB Head of Renewal said that delivery of strategic planning guidance would form part of the Regeneration Strategy, looking at what was needed in the town centres, as well as protecting their unique assets.


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




Gill Slater, LBB Planner provided an update on the development of the Local Plan, which had been adopted in January 2019, and the London Plan.


The London Plan had been subject to an Examination in Public, from which the Panel of Inspector had recently provided a report to the Mayor of London containing recommended changes. The new draft London Plan had 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. However, the Panel of Inspectors recommended this figure be reduced to 774 homes per annum. This was due to recommended changes to the Small Sites Policy reducing the housing target previously proposed from such sites. It was not anticipated that the Mayor of London would challenge these figures.


The next stage in the process was consideration by the Secretary of State, following which approval by the London Assembly would be sought. However the timings of this were unclear, due to a period of Purdah for the GLA Elections which, if there was a hold up in the steps outlined, could take effect before the London Plan was agreed. Officers were currently looking at the ‘Intend to Publish’ version, to assess its consistency with the adopted Local Plan and consider possible implications for the Borough.


A member noted that there were difficulties in bringing forward sites for planning approval. The Chairman indicated that there had been a shift in terms of the decision making process. It was noted that small sites formed part of the adopted Local Plan Housing Trajectory and would continue to be an important element of housing delivery.


In response to a question, the LBB Planner said that the annual monitoring of housing completions for the previous year showed that the figure of 641 had been exceeded. The Chairman noted that historic trends of housing completions did not indicate that this figure was unachievable.


RESOLVED that the update on the Local Plan be noted.




Lorraine McQuillan, LBB Town Centres & BID Development Manager informed Members that work was continuing on the West Wickham BID. Officers had met with local business before Christmas, and the ballot was expected to take place in summer 2020.


In terms of business support, upcoming events included Successful Mums events in January and February 2020; a Business Doctors event in February 2020 and a Federation of Small Businesses (FSB) ‘Meet the Buyer’ event in March 2020.


Members were encouraged to sign up to the Bromley Business pages, and provide any information on news, upcoming events and opportunities for inclusion in the Bromley e-Bulletin, which was sent out every two months.


Mrs Zoe Carr, Beckenham Together & Penge SE20 informed Members that recent events had included Halloween trails, in both town centres, and ‘Pengefest’ which had been organised by community volunteers.


Successful Christmas festivities had taken place in both town centres. The “Pengemas” Christmas event had taken place on Saturday 30th November, and had included a Christmas market, dancing, music and Santa and his elves. In Beckenham there had been a parade and Christmas Lights switch-on, and an ice rink was installed on Market Green, along with a Christmas market, over the festive period. The ice rink had been a great success, with around 5,000 people taking part. It was hoped that an extended run of dates could be secured for 2020.


In Penge town centre, tourniquet kits had been provided to traders, and they had successfully bid for funding towards defibrillators. Training was being provided to a group of traders by a local NHS volunteer, with the intention that they would then train other traders. Work was also being undertaken to analyse areas of the High Street that were not covered by CCTV, and consider how this could be managed.


Upcoming events included ‘Screen on the Green’ in Beckenham during Wimbledon and Euro 2020, and both town centres would be involved in ‘Purple Tuesday’ which focused on changing the customer experience for disabled people.


Ms Frances Forrest, Your Bromley BID Company informed Members that the Christmas events in the town centre had been well received, and the lights, rides and Christmas market had really animated the High Street.


Upcoming events in the town centre included a ‘Health and Fitness’ day on 31st January 2020, which would take place in the promotional space between Pret a Manger and H&M. Work was also underway in relation to planning for summer events such as Wimbledon and the Film Festival that took place in the Queen’s Gardens.


Operation Gemini had taken place in the town centre during December and over the school holidays, for which the BID funded additional police officers at peak periods. The main focuses were on preventing shop lifting and the street population, including begging and street sleeping. It was noted that during one operation, over £4k worth of stolen stock had been returned.


Ms Sharon Baldwin, Orpington 1st BID Company informed Members that recent events had included a  ...  view the full minutes text for item 35c






Mr Mike Lewis, Michael Rogers LLP noted that it had been an interesting few years in relation to the market for office space, which had been relatively immune to the ‘Brexit effect’. Following the General Election on 12th December 2019, enquiries had increased and good rents were being achieved.


The owners of 1 Wren Court (Columbia Threadneedle Investments) were refurbishing the space to bring it up to prime grade ‘A’ standards, and there was a lot of interest in this space already.




Mr Christopher Evans, Community Links Bromley informed Members that Mottingham had been earmarked for a £1m investment into resident led projects, which would run until 2025. Two new staff members were being recruited to lead on how the money should be committed and spent.


Part of the project had included installing Christmas lights. A light switch-on event had taken place, which had a significant impact on the area and resident had been enthused. Consideration would be given to future community participation events such as Euro 2020.


A refresh of the current Volunteering Strategy was required. Community Links Bromley would be speaking with the Local Authority and Metropolitan Police about their approach to volunteering and how they could market volunteering opportunities more widely.




Mr Chandra Sharma attended the meeting representing the Federation of Small Businesses (FSB). The FSB had 180,000 members, and locally they delivered two networking events each month. From February, these events would be extended into Westerham and Beckenham.


Small Business Saturday had taken place in December 2019, and Councillor Michael Tickner had attended events in Beckenham, including a speed networking event.


Upcoming events included: a round table session with Lord Harris at the end of January 2020, to discuss infrastructure, planning and business rates; a ‘Meet the Buyer’ event would be taking place on 18th March 2020 in the Great Hall; and providing support for ‘Purple Tuesday’ events.




No update was provided to the meeting.




Helen McIntosh FCIPR, South East London Chamber of Commerce informed members that the Chamber, which now covered the London Boroughs of Bexley, Bromley, Greenwich and Lewisham, had celebrated its 130th anniversary the previous year with an event at City Hall.


Upcoming events included the Bromley Breakfast Meeting on Thursday 30th January 2020 at The Bromley Court Hotel, with speaker including Councillor Colin Smith, Leader of Bromley Council and Councillor Peter Morgan, Portfolio Holder for Renewal, Recreation & Housing.


Tickets would also be released that week for a lunch on Thursday 5th March 2020, with Deputy Mayor for Business, Rajesh Agrawal.




Lee Thomas, Fairlight Group said that in terms of commercial workspace, the market had been flat with little fluctuation. However, there had recently been a dramatic increase in the number of enquiries being received.


Caroline Tatchell, Splash Damage informed Members that the company had been busy, with another office move taking place to accommodate more tenants.


Suzanne Elsey, Furnishing Interiors noted that last year had been quiet in terms of working with property developer and hotels, and the residential element had been stable. However, an improvement had already been seen this year.


Chris Glover, Churchill Theatre Bromley informed Members that this Christmas had seen them stage their most successful pantomime ever, which had featured on the BBC’s One Show and Today Programme. The new tour of ‘Beautiful’ had recently been launched, and dates had already sold out.


Neil Coates, LSEC noted that the first National Apprenticeship Week would be taking place at the beginning of February 2020. An event to mark this would be taking place at the National Maritime Museum in Greenwich.


Gary Hillman, The Royal Bell and Cray Wanderers FC informed Members that work was underway in relation to the Legal Agreement for The Royal Bell. It was hoped that the front of the site would be open by April 2020.


New hoardings had been put up and the Cray Wanderers FC youth teams had now staring playing at the former Flamingo Park site. A Euro 2020 event was planned for 11th July 2020, and preparations were underway to mark the 160th Anniversary of the club.


Bruce Walker, Lansdowne Asset Management advised Members that they had recently exchanged contracts on a site in Bromley for nine houses in excess of £1m, and work was starting on a site of 37 units in Beckenham. It was noted that a number of other developments were caught up in the planning process.


Michael Humphries, Handelsbanken noted that business remained buoyant. They had been relatively unaffected by the ‘Brexit effect’, but business had been busy after the General Election, and had continued into the New Year.


Steve Lipscombe, Ronin Marketing informed Members that the business was sensitive to economic changes. Last year had been gloomy for clients, however big changes had already been seen this year, which was extremely positive.


Louise Wolsey, LSEC informed Members that LSEC had been formed following the merger of Bromley College with Bexley College and Greenwich College. LSEC had recently been awarded the Queen’s Anniversary Prize, which celebrated excellence in higher and further education.


RESOLVED that the updates be noted.




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


U+I plc had very kindly offered to host the next meeting of the Partnership at St Mark’s Square.


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




No other business was brought to the meeting.



4.00pm, Tuesday 31st March 2020


4.00pm, Tuesday 31st March 2020


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