3 Members of the City of London Planning Committee

As noted in an earlier post: “An application to build a huge luxury apartment block on the site of Bernard Morgan House – until now key worker social housing – in Golden Lane was approved by the City of London Planning and Transportation Committee on 23 May 2017. Thirteen of those present voted in favour and ten against. This development will steal light and sunshine from local homes, a park and three local schools. We don’t currently know the identities of all those who voted in favour of this application…” See City of London Planning Committee Roll of Shame.

We’re fairly sure we’ve identified the ten people who voted against Taylor Wimpey’s Gerrymander Mansions development, which leaves those who either didn’t vote or voted in favour of it. So here are three members of the Planning Committee who we suspect didn’t vote against the application:

Emma Edhem
Judith Lindsay Pleasance
Rehana Banu Ameer

In terms of the information provided about them below, what comes first is lifted from the council website; this includes material from declarations of interest. While the City of London council is very unrepresentative of the diversity of London as a whole, in this post we’re focussing on those who aren’t white men but appear not to have opposed the planning application for the site of Bernard Morgan House. Please note, while Rehana Ameer lists The Labour Party and Labour in the City on her declaration of interests, she sits on the council as an independent.

Judith Pleasance also sits as an independent but some might see her former work as a parliamentary researcher as a pointer to her politics. At a minimum parliamentary researchers are expected to agree with the aims and values of the party represented by the MP who employs them. Pleasance worked for Robert Boscawen who was a notorious right-wing Conservative and Monday Club member. He wanted the restoration of capital punishment and drastic cuts in the welfare state and student grants; while opposing abortion. Boscawen supported Ian Smith and Rhodesia’s Unilateral Declaration of Independence; according to his Daily Telegraph obituary (7 January 2014) he voted against the imposition of sanctions on Rhodesia in defiance of the Conservative Party Whip. Like a number of other City of London councillors, including others on the Planning Committee, Pleasance belongs to The Royal Society of St George; this is an English ‘patriotic’ society established in 1894 to encourage interest in the English way of life, and English customs and traditions.

In the near future we’ll take a look at two more members of the committee who didn’t oppose Taylor Wimpey’s proposed development and who aren’t covered here, or in our last blog, or in our Roll of Shame post. You might also like to check out our posts about possible conflicts of interest as regards this with a focus on Chris Hayward, and our look at former Lord Mayor Michael Bear who also voted in favour of the application, as well our take on the politics of representation around this decision.

Emma Edhem


Emma Edhem is a barrister of more than 20 years’ standing. She has been based in Castle Baynard ward for the last eight years, originally at Carmelite Chambers in Carmelite Street and then at No.5 Chambers in Salisbury Court, just off Fleet Street. Emma’s main areas of practice include international arbitration, domestic and cross-border commercial disputes, fraud and libel. She has successfully represented several high profile clients in well-publicised cases some globally over the last few years. Emma has recently been re-elected as Chairman of the Turkish British Chamber of Commerce and Industry, the first woman to hold the position. She is also a Board Member of the Azerbaijani British Law Association and President of the Turkish British Legal Society. As Chairman of the Chamber of Commerce she has been part of the team supporting the Lord Mayor’s visit to Turkey in 2014, seeing to promote our trade with them and to bring additional work to the UK as a whole and to the City in particular.

Non-pecuniary interests: City of London Committee of the Red Cross/Royal Bridewell Hospital/British Azerbaijan Law Association/Turkish British Legal Society/Turkish British Journalists Association/Board of Turkish British Chamber of Commerce and Industry.

From Wikipedia: Emetullah “Emma” Edhem (born August 1966) is a councilwoman of the City of London Corporation where she represents the ward of Castle Baynard.

From No. 5 Barristers Chambers website: advising and successfully representing the Turkish Prime Minister, Reccep Tayip Erdogan in his libel claim against the Daily Telegraph following the publication of false stories suggesting he had negotiated a secret US$25milliion donation with Iran… Emma is Regularly called upon by both the Embassy and Consulate General of the Republic of Turkey and the Turkish Republic of Northern Cyprus to advise on matters of legal sensitivity… EDUCATION First Degree in Psychology BSc (Hons), subsidiary subject Mathematics. Final year logical applications of the systems in Multivariate Statistics and laboratory based empirical thesis investigating “Complex impact of circadian rhythms on the autonomic nervous system and their effects on persuasion” (London University, Goldsmith’s College)…. POST GRADUATE QUALIFICATIONS CPE conversion to Law Degree (City University)/Bar Vocational Course (ICSL)/Mediation accredited by London School of Mediation…

From The Lawyer, “Emma Edhem CC nominated For Grassroot Diplomat Award on Chamber Of Commerce Leadership Initiatives” 19 April: “…Emma Edhem… is the first representative of the Corporation to be shortlisted from over 100 government leaders this year for the 4th Annual Grassroot Diplomat Initiative Award…. The award recognises outstanding politicians and diplomats who are representing civilian interests at the highest levels in areas of policy, social and business overall…. Talyn Rahman-Figueroa, Executive Director of Grassroot Diplomat, said: “All too often, we hear stories of our governments not representing our needs but Grassroot Diplomat looks upon selfless individuals in positions of power, who work tirelessly for their communities. The award seeks to create a culture of positive role models within our governments which encourages others like them to follow suit. Grassroot Diplomat winners go beyond their job descriptions and those shortlisted for the award should be proud to be recognised this far.” Web link: https://www.thelawyer.com/emma-edhem-cc-nominated-for-grassroot-diplomat-award-on-chamber-of-commerce-leadership-initiatives/

Judith Lindsay Pleasance


Judith lives and works in the City and is a Special Projects and Events Consultant with excellent communications and marketing skills. She has managed many projects, including at Buckingham Palace, and is establishing a new business to promote the brand of the City, initially with a series of events at the House of Lords.

Her knowledge of the City is extensive: She was Assistant Clerk to The World Traders, Clerk to The Security Professionals, Special Projects Director to Alderman Sir David Wootton, the Late Lord Mayor and is on the Committee for Square Mile Salute. Judith is a Liveryman Clockmaker and member of the Livery Companies Skills Council, focusing on excellence in skills, apprenticeships and vocational training. An Independent Common Councilman, she also supports several City charities.

Non-pecuniary interests: Member – Langbourn, Cripplegate, Aldgate and Farringdon Ward Clubs/Liveryman – The Clockmakers/Liveryman – The Upholders/Member – City Livery Club/Member- Royal Society of St George/Member – Brand Exchange (May, 2016 onwards).

From Companies House: Judith Lindsay PLEASANCE. Date of birth February 1961. PALACE MEWS MANAGEMENT COMPANY LIMITED (02033555). Company status: Active. Correspondence address… London, SW6.. Role Resigned: Director. Appointed on 12 January 2005. Resigned on 9 June 2011. Nationality British. Country of residence: United Kingdom . Occupation: Fund Raising.

From LinkedIn: Judith lives and works in the City of London as a Special Projects & Events Consultant with excellent communications and marketing skills. An experienced senior executive with a creative and strategic yet hands-on approach. A decisive and positive attitude coupled with tenacity and hard work. Quality-focused, her experience bridges the commercial and non-commercial sectors and includes project management, relationship building, PR, communication, proof reading and fundraising. She is able to work autonomously while also being a keen team player. She is delighted to have started as Clerk to The Company of Public Relations Practitioners (2.5 days pw) in January 2016 and very much looks forward to meeting the Freemen and helping the Company progress to full Livery status. As a Consultant, she was first invited to organise two charity Gala Dinner and Performances at Buckingham Palace. Her portfolio has included being Assistant Clerk to The Worshipful Company of World Traders; Clerk to The Worshipful Company of Security Professionals; and Chief of Staff to Alderman Sir David Wootton when planning his year as Lord Mayor. Other work includes business development with Bicester Shopping Village.

Judith was elected as a Common Councilman in 2013 for Langbourn Ward in the City of London and serves on the Barbican Centre Board (and Barbican Centre Finance and Risk Sub Committees); Culture, Heritage & Libraries; Licensing; Planning & Transportation Committees. (Approx average time of 1 day pw).

Judith is a Liveryman of The Worshipful Companies of Clockmakers, Upholders and Woolmen. She is Chairman Elect of Langbourn Ward Club and is on the Council of City Livery Club. Other interests include music and the Arts; supporting the Barbican Centre; Museum of London; Music at St Paul’s Cathedral; and serving on the Square Mile Salute and Ironbridge Gorge Museums London Committees….

Consultant 2004 – Present (13 years)
2016-date The Company of Public Relations Practitioners – Clerk
2012-2015 Bicester Shopping Village
2012-2015 SPQL
2012-date Common Councilman, City of London
2010-2012 Alderman Sir David Wootton – Chief of Staff
2009-2010 The Worshipful Company of Security Professionals – Clerk (CEO)
2008-2009 Diabetes UK
2007-2008 The South Bank Centre – Appeal Gala at Buckingham Palace
2005-2007 The Royal Ballet School – Appeal Gala at Buckingham Palace
2004-2007 The Worshipful Company of World Traders – Assistant Clerk

Chief of Staff Private Office of Alderman David Wootton September 2010 – July 2012 (1 year 11 months). A very varied role including: Researched and prepared background for speeches, issues, areas of special interest and individuals. Initiated special projects including Yorkshire & Wool and Stoke-on-Trent & The Potteries. Developed creative relationships with Moorcroft, Emma Bridgewater and David Hockney, sourcing, coordinating and negotiating deals on various designs needed for Year as Lord Mayor. Drew up a list of people and organisations to approach to buy floats in the Lord Mayor’s Show 2011 and coordinated the approaches. Gathered information on and strengthened relationships with Livery Companies, Ward Clubs, Past Masters’ Associations, Livery Groups and City business connections. Worked closely with The Lord Mayor’s Appeal 2012.

Early Career
2000-2003 CLIC – Cancer & Leukaemia in Children – Director, London & South East & Head of Major Donors
1998-2000 City Ballet of London – Development Director
1994-1998 Royal Opera House Trust – Head of Membership Development
1990-1994 Bonhams – Manager of Head Office & Chelsea Salerooms
1990 Open Media (TV production) – Assistant to CEO & Production Assistant
1989-90 Central Office of Information – Social Secretary
1989 The Hon Robert Boscawen MC – Parliamentary Researcher
1986-88 Macnaughton Lowe Representation – Theatrical Agent
1985-86 London Management (Arts Management) – Assistant to Literary Agent

Education: University of St. Andrews MA (Hons), History 1980 – 1984/Benenden School, Kent – 8 O’levels; 3 A’levels/Institut Alpin Videmanette, Switzerland, Certificat de l’Universite de Nancy, French, German, Typing & Skiing.

Rehana Banu Ameer


Rehana Ameer is a London business owner. She is the Founder and Director of Prosap Technologies Limited, an IT, Management and Engineering Consulting Company. She has over 20 years of experience in Information Technology, managing and successfully delivering multi-country, large, complex IT and Business Transformation projects for clients in the City and worldwide. She also runs a small retail business. Rehana holds an MBA in International Business from the UK and has gained numerous IT certifications. Her key focus areas are improving road safety, improving air quality, mental health and well-being, safer city and Brexit representation.

Director – Prosap Technologies Limited, Vista Centre, 50 Salisbury Road, Hounslow. TW4 6JQ/Director – Team IT Solutions Limited, 24 Layton Road, Hounslow. TW3 1YH/Director – Adam Halal Meat and Fish UK Limited, Vista Centre, 50 Salisbury Road, Hounslow. TW4 6JQ/ Non-pecuniary interests: Member – Labour in the City Group/Member – Labour Party/Member- Co-Operative Party/Member – Fabian Women’s Network/Member – UK Tamil Nadu Chamber of Commerce (UKTNCC)/Member – GMB.

From Companies House: Total number of appointments 4. Date of birth November 1973 IMPERIAL GROUP OF COMPANIES LIMITED (10817822). Company status Active. Correspondence address: 27 Old Gloucester Street, London, England, WC1N3AX (note this is an accommodation address provided by the company British Monomarks). Role Active Director. Appointed on 14 June 2017. Nationality British. Country of residence. United Kingdom. Occupation Director. ADAM HALAL MEAT AND FISH UK LIMITED (10509012)… PROSAP TECHNOLOGIES LIMITED (07742494)… Occupation It Consultant. TEAM IT SOLUTIONS LIMITED (06597047). Company status. Active. Correspondence address 24 Layton Road, Hounslow, Middlesex, United Kingdom, TW3 1YH. Role Resigned Director. Appointed on 19 May 2008. Resigned on 11 August 2011…

From LinkedIn: 23 years in IT / SAP Programme and Project Management, Change Management, Process Improvements and Business Transformation for MNCs in the City and globally. A result oriented leader, with strong communication skills, listening skills and problem solving skills. Successful delivery record in delivering end to end large, strategic, cross functional and complex Global ERP Transformation Programmes, Integration Transformations, Digital Transformation and Contact Shared Service center set up for 40+ countries worldwide. A specialist in managing CRISIS Projects Transformation Areas – HR, BI, Finance -Banking & Procurement. Industries – Banking, Professional Services (Accounting), Media, Public Sector, Automotive, Utilities, Retail and Manufacturing. Experienced in IT / SAP Strategic Business Transformations, Upgrades, Roll outs, Target Operating Models, Data Migrations, System decommissioning and Transition to Service Delivery.

Strong leadership delivery record in delivering programmes and projects to time, cost, scope and quality. Managed budgets to the value of £15M+ and a programme team size of 100 and above. Part of Global Programmes to the value of £100M. Management of multifaceted global implementation teams, third party system integrators, client staff and niche consultancies in offshore/onshore delivery models.Experienced in tactful communication with the C level stakeholders of the Organization. Skilled in establishing the delivery capability -Governance, Budgeting, Scope / Change control mechanisms, Agile / Waterfall Methodology, Resourcing, Stakeholder Management, Project Communication, Test management, RAID, Change Management ,Training, Cutover planning and Transition to BAU. Expert in MSP, ASAP, PRINCE2, TOGAF, Agile Scrum, Waterfall SDLC & ITIL framework , PMO set up, governance, tools, processes, and best practices. Technologies – SAP, Success Factors, SLO, Oracle Taleo, Siebel, SFDC, SharePoint, Web Applications.

Director Prosap Technologies Limited September 2011 – Present (5 years 11 months)United Kingdom
Programme and Project Manager, Sony Europe Limited, September 2011 – January 2015 (3 years 5 months), United Kingdom.
Technical Manager, Capgemini, November 2009 – September 2011 (1 year 11 months), United Kingdom.
Project Manager Team IT Solutions Limited May 2008 – September 2009 (1 year 5 months), United Kingdom.

Education University of East London. Master of Business Administration (MBA), International Business.

From The Asian Age: A 43-year-old UK entrepreneur has become the first India-born woman to be elected as a councillor to a (City of London) ward in the UK…. Rehana Ameer, who was born and raised in Chennai, contested… Vintry ward… as an independent candidate. She was elected as a councillor to the Court of Common Council, becoming the first India-born woman to be elected to the City of London Corporation. “As an elected councillor, my key focus areas are road safety, improved air quality, mental health and better representation of all types of businesses as part of the Brexit negotiations,” Rehana said. She aims to promote the city’s business international markets and develop the city’s presence overseas. The City corporation is the richest local authority in the country which controls the 1.3 billion pounds city cash fund.

Website: https://www.rehanaameer.com/ – one of a number of peculiar features of Rehana Ameer’s site when we looked at it before writing this was that it had five blog posts but they were all made on the same day, 3 January 2017. Go figure! Perhaps there will be more posts by the time you look at it, if you ever do!

Pippa Henslowe.

NOTE: The image at the top shows the Woolman’s Company annual Sheep Drive across London Bridge; a decade old faux ‘ancient’ tradition that began in 2008. One of the benefits of being a Freeman of the City of London is that you have the right to drive your sheep across London Bridge. In feudal times a ‘free man’ working in the City of London was allowed to carry his tools across the bridge. Sheep were the tools of the trade for woolmen. You also have to be a Freeman (or woman) to stand for election on the local council, which is utterly out of order in the 21st century – and yet another indication of how undemocratic local government in the City of London is. According to her LinkedIn profile Judith Pleasance is a member of The Worshipful Company of Woolmen, although this doesn’t appear on her declaration of interests.

3 thoughts on “3 Members of the City of London Planning Committee

  1. Rehana Ameer didn’t vote as she had to leave the meeting before the vote was taken, as the meeting exceeded its allotted two hours.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thanks for the clarification. Obviously Chris Hayward is an ineffectual chair if meetings overrun and as a result members have to leave before they can vote. The entire process of approving this planning application appears deficient. From what I’ve seen of Hayward, such as his claims in the Watford Observer that his work as a councillor in the City of London will consist of one lunch meeting a month, it appears he isn’t fit to run a masonic lodge let alone a planning committee.


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