Local residents need councillors who will deal with local issues including overdevelopment, repairs, street cleaning and public toilet provision. In Aldersgte Christopher Makin has a positive track record on these matters, Melissa Collett does not. Makin put an image of Barbican residential blocks on his first and only election flyer. Collett went for an image of iconic City office blocks in her first attempt to woo the residential electorate with a leaflet. The visual iconography of these electoral addresses speaks volumes about the candidates.Read more "Upcoming Aldermanic Elections In Aldersgate, Cordwainer & Cornhill: May Madness Or Opportunity For City Residents To Have A Say?"
As a partner at DLA Piper Alison Gowman appears to us to be remarkably similar to current lord mayor Vincent Keaveny, who is also a partner at DLA Piper. Likewise what is fictional in the tale of Dick Whittington invoked in the FT piece about City changes is the spin of him being a poor boy – he was a historical Lord Mayor of London who came from a privileged family background. That said, for centuries most of those with seats on the City of London council – not just the ‘leadership’ – have come from trade rather than aristocratic family backgrounds. Beyond gender, Gowman appears a rather typical City grandee both in terms of her background and her opportunist politics.Read more "Alison Gowman, Chris Hayward & The City of London Corporation’s Branding & Identity Crisis"
We’ve posted several blogs about the proposed increase in height and massing to the 1 Golden Lane site purchased by property developer Castleforge. Those objecting – and who wouldn’t want to object to a heritage degrading planning application that will steal sunlight from homes, schools and a park? – have until Friday this week to make comments on the City of London website (link in post). There are already over 100 comments and objections but more would be welcome.Read more "Last Chance To Lodge Objections To Castleforge’s Sunlight Stealing Plans For 1 Golden Lane"
From a resident perspective, Shravan Joshi has an abysmal record on planning and other issues and while it is unsurprising given that local politics are determined by undemocratic business votes, his ascension to the post of chair of the planning committee is still bad news. The issues raised in the petition to reform the planning process in the City of London are unlikely to be addressed by Joshi unless he is forced to do so. The planning committee as it stands and as it looks like Joshi will seek to maintain it simply isn’t fit for purpose.Read more "City Establishment ‘Elects’ Shravan Joshi Head of Planning Committee As Alastair Moss Slides Into ‘Deputy’ Chair Position"
Stakeholders’ were gaslit with an extraordinarily inaccurate A3 graphic prominently displayed last week at the 1 Golden Lane post-submission exhibition. Key point 5 with an arrow pointing to Great Arthur House on the Golden Lane Estate – a building adjacent to the Community Centre where the post-submission exhibition took place – is described in words as “Golden Lane Estate. Office high-rise surrounded by residential blocks”. There are no office blocks on the Golden Lane Estate, all blocks including the high-rise tower are residential – anyone walking in or out of the Community Centre exhibition could hardly fail to miss this since Great Arthur House (the high rise tower) looms over it.Read more "Concilio, Luke Tatton & The Sham Castleforge Consultation Over 1 Golden Lane"
There is a tradition stretching back decades of City of London lord mayor’s cozying up to the repressive Kazakhstani regime. This week current lord mayor Vincent Keaveny continued this sleazy affair by inviting ambassador Erlan Idrissov to his Mansion House residence for talks that both sides no doubt hoped would lead to more dirty money from this corrupt regime coursing through the square mile.Read more "City Of London Lord Mayor Vincent Keaveny Welcomes The Repressive Kazakhstani Regime & Its Dirty Money To The Mansion House"
St Anne and St Agnes church now houses the Voces8 Centre, a choir group and ‘educational’ charity that not only features the busts of the Drax slavers in a good number of promotional photographs currently to be found on its website and elsewhere, but also unapologetically promotes the building it is housed in as the work of slave trade investor Christopher Wren. Likewise the Voces8 Centre isn’t shy about featuring the coat of arms of Charles II in pictures of the interior of its building. Charles II is the monarch who issued the 1663 charter to the Royal Adventurers which marks the moment at which the transatlantic slave trade officially began, with royal approval, in the English (later British) Empire.Read more "Remove The Drax Slaver Memorials From St Anne and St Agnes Church AKA The Voces8 Centre In The City of London"
In May 2017 planning approval was given to Taylor Wimpey, despite strong opposition from local residents and businesses. During this process it emerged that the then chair of the City’s planning and transportation committee, Chris Hayward, was a director of Indigo Planning, whose clients included Taylor Wimpey. Hayward was also a member of the police committee and there has been speculation the building sold to Taylor Wimpey was flogged off at an inflated price to cover a blown police budget, so there is another potential conflict of interest there. And as recently as 2020, Hayward played a prominent role in the annual City celebration of slaver John Cass.Read more "Chris Hayward Shouldn’t Lead City 0f London Council Due To His Role In Celebrating Slaver John Cass & While Conflict of Interest Questions Swirl Around Him"
Despite the plethora of ‘independents’ on the City council, it is basically made up of two blocks, even if these aren’t formally organised as political parties. There are those committed to a self-interested right-wing and resident bashing financial city agenda, and a far smaller number of councillors who stand up for local people. The democratic deficit in the City of London is absurd and obscene, its business vote political system is in urgent need of reform. Nonetheless residents need to fight for repairs and against the overdevelopment of London Wall West and 1 Golden Lane right now, before much needed political reform can be put in place.Read more "London Wall West, 1 Golden Lane & The City Of London Election Results"
Royal Institute of British Architects president Simon Allford is no friend of City residents. Advocating for the sunlight stealing and carbon busting Houndsditch Tower at a City planning meeting, Allford introduced himself not just as the co-founder of AHMM but for extra credibility as the current president of the Royal Institute of British Architects. Allford used his RIBA position to push forward plans that will blight the lives of Middlesex Street Estate residents in the east of the City.Read more "Protest Against AHMM’s Simon Allford At Start Of RIBA Barbican Highwalk Tour On 2 April 2022"