Two Cities MP Nickie Aiken & The Property Speculator Elite

In recent months we’ve noticed grumbles on Barbican Talk about new Two Cities MP Nickie Aiken that resemble the complaints we heard about her predecessor Mark Field for years. Today Aiken put out a statement about the top government advisor Dominic Cummings. From what we’ve seen on Twitter, Aiken’s statement on this matter hasn’t gone down well with her constituents. So this is likely to overshadow Aiken’s truly loopy interview with City of London council boss Catherine McGuinness in which the latter claims sandwich shops make the square mile ‘exciting’….

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Another Denizen Howler From Taylor Wimpey

Those living around Golden Lane who opposed Taylor Wimpey’s demolition of 110 social housing units to build 99 investment flats for ghost home investors (with no on site social or affordable housing), weren’t too surprised by the latest billboards to go up around this developer’s Denizen site. These claim the sales office for The Denizen AKA The Turd is up the road in Golden ‘Street’ (sic) despite the fact it’s in Golden Lane where Taylor Wimpey’s luxury flats are being built on the corner with Fann Street. The hoarding is illustrative of how little the developer knows about the area or indeed cares about it. Just as Taylor Wimpey doesn’t care about the up to 70% loss of light those living in neighbouring council flats have seen disappear from their homes as a result of this building. Or the impact on the park and schools The Turd also overshadows.

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No Matter What Taylor Wimpey Call ‘The Denizen’, It’s Still The Turd!

Taylor Wimpey’s PR lackeys at Cascade Communications sent out an email yesterday suggesting their paymaster was suffering from second thoughts about the name of their proposed Golden Lane development being The Denizen. Local people don’t want 99 luxury flats replacing 110 social housing units on the site, but rather than listening to us, the ‘community specialists’ hired by the developer are offering a vote on an absurd list of names for the building.

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Is it a burger bar? Is it a Wetherspoons? No, it’s The Denizen!

Children who don’t know The Denizen is a block of luxury flats tend to assume it’s some sort of fast food joint, and so when the hoardings first appeared it wasn’t unusual to hear kids saying things like: “Mummy can we go there to get a pizza?” The entrance interior looks remarkably similar to those of local J. D. Wetherspoon budget chain pubs such as the Masque Haunt on the corner of Old Street and Bunhill Row, or the Sir John Oldcastle on Farringdon Road. Once children understand the building is a block of supposedly luxury flats, it isn’t unusual to hear them cry: “But why would anyone live there? It’s so ugly!”

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Culture Mile: A Cynical Exercise in Marginalisation & Social Exclusion

Before I sat down to write this piece, I came across a photograph on social media posted yesterday and captioned: “Back of Liverpool Street Station – the sterile hell of a corporate winter wonderland.” The area shown in this smartphone snap is in the City of London and what was said about it really chimed with my feelings over not just the Culture Mile but also most City Public Realm projects in recent years. The council’s Department of the Built Environment is clearly in need of reform just as much as the political body that controls it. We really do need to take back the city.

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Mark Boleat’s Attack On Democracy: Catherine McGuinness Must Go Too!

GLERA calling for Mark Boleat to resign represents a start to dealing with this scandal, but it is not enough! All those with a seat on the City of London council who aren’t prepared to defend democracy from Boleat’s attacks on it should go immediately; although whether any will agree to resign is a moot point. That said, as the most prominent ‘face’ right now on a local council that has financially supported the Housing & Finance Institute, it is Catherine McGuinness who should be the focus of our disquiet. And so our most immediate demand is: “McGUINNESS MUST GO!”

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Right-Wing Rag Steps In Its Own PR Spin About Taylor Wimpey’s The Turd Development

Either David Spittles’ is an idiot or he’s misleading his readers, or both! Living inside City of London boundaries has never boiled ‘down to a Barbican apartment or a crash pad conversion in an outdated commercial building’. Spittles even mentions the Golden Lane Estate, which is very literally next to The Denizen site and like it just inside City of London boundaries; walk across Golden Lane and you’re in Islington. Two minutes down Fann Street from The Denizen is Blake Tower, recently converted from student accommodation to luxury flats. Many of these new ghost homes have yet to sell but they’re in the City of London. A little to the east is The Heron AKA Milton Court, which contains yet more unsold buy to leave flats. These are just a few of the developments Spittles overlooked in the immediate vicinity of what he calls The Denizen and we call The Turd, there are many more around The City.

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The Denizen & Life Within, A Rum Old Story

Since The Denizen is being marketed to property investors in Hong Kong among other places, some of those who buy into these as yet unbuilt ghost flats are likely to hail from that territory. The lack of democracy in the City of London will be familiar to them from their hometown. The local council here is positively feudal and is largely elected on a business vote (something long abolished in the rest of the UK). Both Hong Kong and the City of London could do with a revived version of the ‘umbrella revolution’ associated with the Occupy Central democracy movement on Hong Kong Island. However it seems more likely that those buying into The Denizen off-plan will come to terms with ‘the life within’ by drinking several bottles of rum a day, rather than by participating in future Occupy London protests.

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Denizen Property Investors Go To Hell!

Fraudulent Denizen promotional blurb aimed at residential property investors: “The Barbican is the ancient heart of the City of London, a place steeped in history. During the 17th century, it attracted the entrepreneurial, the conspiring and the artistic. In the area’s many coffeehouses, plans were laid, and great minds met. William Shakespeare, Ben Johnson and John Milton all worked here. It’s a legacy we see today in the Barbican Centre and the City’s enterprising spirit.” The Barbican Complex is actually a world-class example of brutalist architecture built around fifty years ago. It is located in a neighbourhood called Cripplegate, and it lies beyond the original city wall; obviously this is not ‘the ancient heart of the City of London’ because it was not actually a part of the original city at all, it lay outside it! Likewise, in Shakespeare and Johnson’s time the area was notorious for its brothels. This is why Johnson among others refers to the place as Pict-hatch; which was also the name for the studded split entry doors that were a feature of bawdy houses of that time. Taylor Wimpey should be reported to the Advertising Standards Authority for their blatant misrepresentation of Cripplegate Without’s location and history!

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