New Year Eve warning by UK police

Police are warning people not to attend New Year celebrations on the River Thames in London without a ticket, as the UK prepares to usher in 2020.

More than 100,000 tickets have been bought for Tuesday night’s sold-out fireworks display.

See the source image

The Metropolitan Police urged those without tickets to watch from home or attend other events in the city.

Firework shows are also to be held in cities including Manchester, Cardiff, Newcastle, Inverness and Nottingham.

And in Edinburgh, the streets of Edinburgh are filling up as an estimated 100,000 Hogmanay revellers prepare to welcome in the start of a new decade.

Celebrations began on Monday evening with thousands taking part in a pre-Hogmanay torchlight procession.

In a statement to those visiting London for the celebrations, the Met said it wanted “everyone who comes to London for New Year’s Eve to have a good time”.

However, referencing the fireworks on the Thames, the force added: “If visitors do not have a ticket, entry will not be permitted to the event, so the advice from the Met is to watch the fireworks from the comfort of your home.”

Source: BBC News

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Grenfell fire inquiry report reveals earlier evacuation would have saved many lives

A 1,000-page document follows the first phase of an inquiry looking into the fire in west London on 14 June 2017, when 72 people were killed.

Fewer people would have died if the tower block had been evacuated sooner, the inquiry chairman concluded.

Sir Martin Moore-Bick’s full report will be published on Wednesday morning.

Parts of it were published early by the media following a leak to the Daily Telegraph.

Issues highlighted in the report included:

  • A lack of training in how to “recognise the need for an evacuation or how to organise one”
  • Incident commanders “of relatively junior rank” being unable to change strategy
  • Control room officers lacking training on when to advise callers to evacuate
  • An assumption that crews would reach callers, resulting in “assurances which were not well founded”
  • Communication between the control room and those on the ground being “improvised, uncertain and prone to error”
  • A lack of an organised way to share information within the control room, meaning officers had “no overall picture of the speed or pattern of fire spread”

IRA plans to Knockout power supply in England Homes

The IRA planned to knock out the power supply to the south east of England in the final years of its bombing campaign, a former insider has claimed.

Details are revealed in the final episode of the BBC series Spotlight on the Troubles: A Secret History.

Insiders describe a battle of wits between the IRA and British intelligence.

When the British Government refused to admit Sinn Féin to peace talks in the mid-1990s, Canary Wharf was bombed.

IRA-bomb

Two people were killed and damage was estimated at £150m in the attack in February 1996.

In June of the same year, the IRA exploded what was reported as the largest bomb to be planted in Great Britain since World War Two.

More than 200 people were injured in the blast in Manchester and significant damage to infrastructure caused.

The final programme in the landmark BBC series, presented by Darragh MacIntyre, includes first-hand accounts of the campaign in Britain after the IRA ceasefire was temporarily abandoned in 1996.

Source: BBC News

2019 UK Award winning House in the Garden

Located in the back garden of a 19th Century townhouse, House in a Garden replaces a dilapidated 1960s bungalow with a contemporary home that places attention to detail and manipulation of natural light at the heart of the scheme.

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Overshadowed by houses on three sides and a large plane tree within the garden, 3-D modelling techniques were used from the outset to test ideas and evolve the building’s architecture.

Upon arrival through a narrow entrance route to the side of the townhouse, you are immediately struck by the wonderous single storey pavilion-like structure that sits within the pocket garden. A series of light wells are discreetly integrated within the landscape setting to maximise natural light to the floors below.

The primary architectural feature comprises the sculptural copper roof made up of prefabricated glue laminated timbers exposed internally that appear to float above walls of full height glazing. Rising up within the centre of the living area, the complex double curvature of the tent-like structure concludes in a glazed OCUIUS that enables sunlight to track across the immaculate internal environment. Externally, the funnel-shaped copper roof is visible from adjoining properties providing a welcome addition to the neighbourhood while respecting surrounding apartment owners’ privacy and access to daylight.

From the ground floor living and dining space a suspended wooden staircase leads down to the bedrooms below. These spaces receive light from the two generous greenery-filled light wells that permeate through the two floors below ground. The lowest floor provides a 10m swimming pool and gallery-style sitting area for exercise and relaxation.

At every turn, the quality and refinement of the materials palette and deftness of detailing is apparent. From the extensive use of grooved panels of grey Carrara marble and Douglas fir timbers to the impeccable kitchen comprising copper cabinets and splash backs, these combine to give a strong sensual quality to the interiors.

In conclusion, the building offers a clever response to a unique set of circumstances, where natural light has been enthusiastically embraced to inform and direct the development of an accomplished piece of architecture.

Internal Area 253 m²

Contractor New Wave

Structural Engineer Built Engineers

Environmental / M&E Engineer Pearce and Associates

Landscape Architect Todd Longstaffe-Gowan

Quantity Surveyor / Cost Consultant Leslie Clark

Lighting Design Isometrix

 

 

 

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Source: RIBA London Award 2019

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Residents in London approve regeneration plans

The Brent council in London Borough held a residents’ ballot in South Kilburn in autumn 2019 to make sure that the community continued to support the award-winning regeneration of the estate.

The result saw residents overwhelmingly back the council’s plans to rebuild the neighbourhood. 84% of residents voted Yes in the ballot, with 72% of residents taking part in the vote.

The South Kilburn regeneration is a 15 year programme that is almost half way through. It aims to transform the area into a sustainable and mixed neighbourhood and create a real sense of place and belonging.

South Kilburn from the air 319px by 180px

The Masterplan aims to deliver the following:

  • 2,400 new high quality homes of which around 1,400 will be made available to existing South Kilburn existing secure tenants
  • A new larger high quality urban park and improved public realm
  • A new primary school and health facilities
  • New retail facilities
  • Improved environmental standards and a site-wide energy solution

It means 17 housing blocks will be knocked down and rebuilt.

SK Brent

Councillor Shama Tatler said: “It is only right that local people had the final say on the future of their neighbourhood.“

All current tenants are guaranteed a home on the rebuilt estate, while leaseholders can choose to leave the estate with a market value payment for their home or stay with a share of the equity in one of the new homes.

Those living in temporary accommodation will be entitled to a secure tenancy in a new home on the estate when one becomes available the council said.

Source: Brent Council

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Rental Properties in UK rose by 2% average

UK-wide rental prices are up by an average of 2% in the last year, which is about half the typical level of wage rises.

The survey, from property website Zoopla, said tenants moving into a Nottingham home this summer paid 5.4% more in rent than a year earlier.

Leeds and Bristol (up 4.5%) were the only other UK cities where rents rose faster than UK average wage growth.

Rental

On average, renting a UK home has become more affordable, Zoopla said.

Part of the reason lies in an increase in the number of people buying their first own home, relieving some of the pressure on the rental sector.

The Zoopla report suggests that the typical tenant in the UK spends nearly a third of their earnings on rent (31.8%), slightly less than the peak in 2016.

Outside of London, tenants spent the highest proportion of earnings in Oxford, Brighton and Cambridge, with the lowest in Hull, Bradford and Stoke.

Source: BBC News

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Dennis Bebo – MSC, BSC, DEA, CeMAP

TA DenEco Consultancy – www.deneco.co.uk