On Monday 4th November NVL received an email from our MP Nick Hurd who has maintained his awareness of the TfL redevelopment threat to Northwood for some while now. As many of you will know Mr Hurd has decided not to stand at the next General Election and we thank him for his constant support for our town over many years. We wish him well for the future.
Mr Hurd talks in his email (essential points below), quite properly, about the need for some sort of “uplift” to Station Approach which in general NVL would support, but NVL is against the destruction of part of our Town Centre Conservation Area and especially against the potential loss of many of our small specialised service type businesses (eg: Dental Surgery, Dry Cleaners, Post Office, Hairdresser, Café, Restaurant, Cobbler and Car Repair Workshop) who currently inhabit the Harry Neale buildings in the Station Approach area and who have served Northwood so well over many years.
Many of you may feel that TfL should now concentrate on letting their existing empty shops that are so affecting Northwood and also to now focus on providing Step Free Access at the Station.
Our thanks to all the thousands of Northwood residents who supported the recent Northwood Petition, delivered on the 25th September 2019 to 10 Downing Street.
NVL. 11th November 2019
Mr N. Hurd MP – Meeting With TfL – Monday 4th November 2019
In his email to Northwood’s Voice (4.11.2019) Mr Hurd mentions three important points from his meeting in Northwood on Monday 4th November 2019. This meeting was with a TfL delegation led by Graeme Craig, Commercial Development Director at Transport for London. Also present were two officers from Hillingdon Council. He mentions the meeting was prompted by correspondence from Cllr. Douglas Mills.
Mr Hurd states:-
- They (TfL/Notting Hill/Genesis) will NOT be submitting an application in the near future,
- will also not attempt to force anything through to appeal and the London Mayor.
- they will take time to think, and re-engage.
Mr Hurd considers a reason is that they are occupied with the rest of their portfolio. He goes on to put forward they cannot get Northwood to work in:-
- economics for them.
- community support.
Mr Hurd further mentions that he is pleased that we have “seen off” the third proposal (which he felt was worse than the second). Further, he states his disquiet about further drift and uncertainty. He has encouraged TfL to re-engage promptly with residents and the Council. Everyone agrees that Station Parade is not the right look for Northwood and should be the priority for an upliftEmpty premises.
2. Empty Shops
Mr Hurd refers to the empty TfL units, some of which have been vacant for a long time with the ones in Station Parade contributing to an atmosphere of neglect. Mr Hurd further says that TfL will be more proactive in their marketing approach and they are prepared to be very flexible in terms for tenants. TfL would like to work with Council and residents to understand whether there may be an opportunity to offer space on a flexible basis for community services.Parking
Mr Hurd, on this point, mentions it seems clear that commuters are parking on station parade all day with impunity, despite clear signs. TfL and LBH have agreed to discuss what reasonable change is needed to support Station Parade with its bus presence. He encouraged both parties to engage with residents before taking any decisions on red lines or a new scheme that allows drop off/pick up/loading.
Finally, his view remains that the site will get developed at some point. and that the key thing is to get TfL, LBH and residents talking in a proper way about what will work for TfL and the community stating, “we have not found it yet.”