St George's Day

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St George's Church will be holding a free St George's Day concert. Please see the poster below for further information about the event.


Mayfair Spring Market

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Please see the below poster for the Mayfair Spring Market which is taking place tomorrow between 11am - 4pm at Brown Hart Gardens and Lumley Street.

2014_TheMayfairMarketLeafletv1.pdf

Virgin Money London Marathon - Update

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Yesterday I completed the Virgin Money London Marathon 2014 in a time of 04:15:49, some 16 minutes faster than my 2012 time, and met my fund raising target of £3,000.

This is just a quick note to thank you for taking the time to sponsor me and for donating to a great cause. Your support is very much appreciated and makes all the training and hard work worthwhile.

It is still not too late to donate... Jonathan's Just Giving



Fitzroy Place Development

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Please see below the Fitzroy Place Newsletter for April 2014 for the latest works and upcoming activities:

Exemplar_Newsletter_April_2014 LR.pdf

London Marathon 2014

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In three days’ time I will be running my second London Marathon in aid of the Sir Simon Milton Foundation.

The charity was set up following the death of a close friend and former Council Leader in 2011. The Foundation focuses on providing educational opportunities for young people at the new University Technical College and also looks after lonely elderly people within the borough.

I have now raised over half of my target but if you are yet to sponsor and are feeling generous please follow this link to my Just Giving page: Just Giving - Jonathan Glanz


1 Grosvenor Square - Public Exhibition

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Earlier in the year a Public Exhibition was held in relation to 1 Grosvenor Square. Following that consultation, the team have now had time to take in feedback from local residents and other parties and are now ready to display further plans on this redevelopment.

The second Public Exhibition will be held at the Millennium Hotel, 44 Grosvenor Square, London W1K 2HP on Thursday 10 April 2014 at 4.00pm – 8.00pm and Saturday 12 April 2014 at 12.30pm – 3.30pm.

Local residents and business are encouraged to attend this exhibition as it gives you the opportunity to see plans of the proposal, speak to members of the team and have your voice heard before a Planning Application is submitted to Westminster City Council.

Please see the document below for further information.

1 Grosvenor Square April Newsletter.pdf

Fitzroy Place Development

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Please see below the Fitzroy Place Newsletter for March 2014 for the latest works and upcoming activities:

Exemplar_Newsletter_Mar_2013_RGB_AW_HR

MOPAC Challenge - 25th March 2014

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On Tuesday 25 March at 10.00am, the Deputy Mayor for Policing and Crime will be hosting a meeting of MOPAC Challenge to discuss how to improve the confidence that all of London’s communities have in the police. The Mayor wants to make the Met Police the world’s most effective, efficient, and even most loved force, and MOPAC have set them a target to increase confidence by 20% by 2016.



Members of the public are invited to attend the meeting, which will be held in the Chamber at City Hall and webcast live here.

More Londoners than ever before (68%) think that the Met are doing a good or excellent job, but confidence levels fluctuate significantly between London’s neighborhoods and groups. The criminal justice system is also one of the few public services where dissatisfaction actually increases as individuals go through the system. The Deputy Mayor will hear from the police and partners on what more can be done to focus on the drivers of public confidence and achieve our ambitious goals.

Key speakers at MOPAC Challenge will include Dr Ben Bradford, Lecturer in Criminology at Oxford University, representatives from the London Borough of Lewisham, the Met Police’s head of community engagement, and John Azah OBE, of the Met Police’s Independent Advisory Group on Race.

A transcript of the last Challenge meeting can be found here.

Business Rates are holding back the West End

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Business Rates have long been a prohibitive drag on the West End economy. A welcome report by the BIS committee of the House of Commons last week agreed, and called for urgent reform of this outdated tax.
The report finds “Business rates are a substantial cost to doing business in the United Kingdom, and are one of the highest forms of local property tax in the European Union. Our evidence overwhelmingly cited the issue of Business Rates as one of the principal threats to the survival of existing retail businesses…”
The report continues “We conclude that Business Rates, in their current form, are not fit for purpose. The Government needs to carry out a wholesale review of the current Business Rate system.”
It is not difficult to see why.
The total burden of business rates is designed to remain the same year-on-year, only rising with inflation, but is based on a snapshot figure rather than an annual average. With small business rate relief extended the burden falls increasingly on those businesses with higher rateable values – regardless of their profitability. This tax is a callous way to raise revenue that bears no reflection on the underlying performance of the business or its ability to pay.
In times of plenty, it may even be the case that this business property tax fails to reflect a fair share that businesses should be paying. However during a recession and at times of extreme price competitiveness and tight margins on the High Street West End retailers are unfairly penalised.
The Committee recommend that a review includes: “whether retail taxes should be based on sales, rather than on property; whether the retail sector should have its own form of taxation, calculated in a different way from other businesses; and how frequently the revaluation of Business Rates should take place.”
This is nothing new, in 2005 a report for the GLA on the West End economy already found a compelling case for rate reform in the West End, highlighting the abnormality of rates which are based on notional rental values. It found “rateable values for retail space in London are more than £140 per square metre compared to around £100 per square metre for south east England, the closest region in terms of rateable values.”
According to the Valuation Office Agency (who are responsible for assessing the rateable value of a property), the West End has the largest amount of retail floorspace and the highest rateable value of any ward in England and Wales, with 864,000 square metres of retail floorspace and £331 million of retail rateable value, figures that will have significantly increased since the report in 2003.
The total rates collected from businesses in the West End alone exceed the tax collected from the whole of Wales.
Reform is needed to ensure the West End remains a robust and driving force within the UK economy. The West End performed well in 2013, with sales up 5.7 per cent on the bumper 2012 Olympic year. But as the Evening Standard reported footfall rose only 0.1 per cent and actually dipped 2.8 per cent in the second half of the year.
This unsustainable drain on central London businesses sees cash and profitability literally sucked from the capital which in unfairly penalised in a way that fails to reflect the true cost of doing business. The internet, supplying goods from low cost, low rateable value premises make the position even more unfair especially as consumers view goods in the West End only to source them later via the on-line providers.
Published this month, the annual health check on the West End economy co-commissioned by the New West End Company and Heart of London Business Alliance, finds “The West End is in danger of becoming ‘hooked’ on the spending of wealthy foreign tourists and needs to do more to appeal to Londoners and other British visitors. It warns the huge growth in foreign tourism since the Olympics has left the West End vulnerable to sudden changes, such as swings in exchange rates, which could make London far less attractive.”
As the health check report highlights, there are huge risks to the West End if we fail to invest and continually reinvent the consumer offering to compete both nationally and internationally. Sucking vast amounts of profitability out of the economy through business rates, of which Westminster only retains only 7 per cent does not allow the West End to maximise its appeal. Much needed cash, raised through a more appropriate tax, on profitability or sales, would allow significant new investment in public realm and broaden the appeal of the West End.
Rates are a complex and unfair burden on business based on arbitrary property values, that in many central London locations add cost to the bottom line of business which is simple unaffordable.
Urgent comprehensive reform is needed.

Bond Street Station Tunnelling Update

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Please see below the latest works information sheet for tunnelling works at the western ticket hall on Davies Street:

Crossrail - bond_st_station_tunnelling_update.pdf

1 Grosvenor Square - Public Exhibition

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A Public Exhibition will be taking place tomorrow (1 March) at Grosvenor Chapel, 24 Audley Street, London W1K 2PA.

Please make sure to visit this exhibition to share your views on the proposals before a Planning Application is submitted. Please see the document below for further information:

1 Grosvenor Square newsletter Final -

Time the Raise the Roof on UK Housing Pressures

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My article for the Huntington Post yesterday

It goes without saying that there are no easy solutions to the UK's housing problems. With a growing population and increasing attractions for people to come to London, both from within the UK and around the world, London has exceptional pressures. We need to build more homes of all tenures in the capital to keep up with demand.



This month the NHBC have reported very welcome news that in London, the number of new home registrations made in 2013 - total of 26,230 - was the highest since records began more than 26 years ago, an improvement of 60% on 2012. We need significant further advances on this figure in the coming years to keep up with demand, but genuine progress is being made, which is welcome.

However, after decades of under delivery of new homes, we need to help bring relief to housing pressures in the short term and medium term while we catch up on building. That is why I am supporting a new campaign by the UK's leading flatshare websiteSpareRoom.co.uk and supported by Shelter - 'Raise the Roof'.

The campaign has a very simple aim, which has the chance to deliver a real change for London's rental market - to increase the Rent a Room Scheme tax-free threshold from £4,250 to £7,500 per year.

Under the scheme, householders can receive tax-free rental income on their spare room(s) up to the threshold amount. This is not only simpler for the taxman and the householder, but also encourages those with extra space to rent it out.

The campaign calculates that homeowners are sitting on 15 million spare bedrooms in England. Encouraging them to let those rooms by raising the Rent A Room Scheme threshold will not only help them cope better with rising living costs, but will also go some way to solving the supply issue in the short and medium terms.

With 7.7 million one person households in the UK, a figure that has grown by over 500,000 in the last 10 years, helping tackle loneliness is an added benefit. Nearly a third of London's household comprised one person living alone, the vast majority of which are of working age.

This simple but effective change is needed as the current Rent A Room threshold discourages people from letting rooms for fear of falling foul of the tax man, but raising the threshold to reflect market rents would alleviate that concern for many and reduce the pressure on the hyper competitive rental market within the capital and across the UK.

The shocking facts are:
  • The Rent-a-Room scheme tax free threshold has not changed, even in line with inflation, since 1997
  • There are no areas in London with average room rents under the current threshold of £4,250 per year
  • Only 33% of rooms in the UK are under the threshold with the average annual rental in the UK currently at £5,593
The Chancellor will deliver his 4th Budget on 19th March. Now is the time to Raise the Roof on the Rent A Room threshold.

For further information about the campaign please visit SpareRoom.co.uk/raisetheroof

Fitzroy Place Development

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Please see below the Fitzroy Place Newsletter for February 2014 for the latest works and upcoming activities:


Exemplar_Newsletter_Feb_2014 EMAIL -

Consultation on the Introduction of Water Cannons

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Recent discussions have been taking place on whether the police in London should be able to use Water Cannons when facing significant public disorder.

MOPAC will be holding a public meeting that the Deputy Mayor for Policing, Stephen Greenhalgh, will be hosting, along with Assistant Commissioner Mark Rowley of the Metropolitan Police Service, on 17 February at 19:00 in committee room 5 of City Hall. It is important that you attend this consultation to learn more, have your questions answered and to make your views known.

Please follow this link for further information: Public Engagement on Police Use of Water Cannon