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Barking and Dagenham

Fever pitch In the zone: breathing new life into housing and arts The big draw: the perfect location for film and TV Local legends: a celebration of past and present

A new Sainsbury’s for Barking The first phase of the exciting regeneration of the Abbey Retail Park by Estates & Agency Properties Ltd for a new Sainsbury’s has now received planning consent from the London Borough of Barking and Dagenham. The development will make a significant contribution to the on-going regeneration of Barking, and will create up to 450 new full-time and part-time jobs. For further enquiries please contact Alun Hayes on 020 3725 3842 or email

Estates & Agency Group has a strong track record of successful involvement in Barking. Through continued investment, Estates & Agency is making a significant contribution to the ongoing regeneration of the Borough. Sites Previously Developed by E&A

Current Property Holdings


Roding House Cambridge Road


Maritime House 1 Linton Road


Abbey Retail Park Abbey Road, Barking


Central House Cambridge Road


50-74 Station Parade Barking


Clock House East Street, Barking


Focal House 12/18 Station Parade


Radial House Ripple Road


Trocoll House Wakering Road

Capital Trading Estate Alfred’s Way (not on map)

Bespoke training, short courses, apprenticeships & higher apprenticeships


Siemens only works with truly excellent partners to deliver skills and knowledge to our apprentices Barking & Dagenham College is our partner in London.


Martin Hottass, General Manager Siemens Professional Education

Whether you are a global name or a sole trader, your business needs professional and technical training which can make a positive difference to your balance sheet. From higher apprenticeships through to short courses tailored just for your business, talk to the Employer Services Team at Barking & Dagenham College today.

020 3667 0333

editorial director: Siobhán Crozier editor: Maria Shahid chief reporter: James Wood head of design: Rachael Schofield Art Direction: Smallfury Designs prOduction assistant: Christopher Hazeldine business Development director: Paul Gussar business development manager: Shelley Cook Office manager: Sue Mapara subscriptions manager: Simon Maxwell Managing director: Toby Fox cover IMAGES: Clockwise: The Queen provided by London Borough of Barking and Dagenham, Locke by ShoeboxFilms, The Colour of Time photo by Anita Adeshina, Billy Bragg at the Barking Folk Festival by Jeff G Photography, Barking Town Square Street Party by Gar Powell-Evans, No Fit State Circus by Creative Barking and Dagenham IMAGES: ©Anita Adeshina, Des Willie / Kudos / Channel 4, The Abbey Spa, London Borough of Barking and Dagenham, Levitt Bernstein / Allies and Morrison, Countryside Properties, ©Jeff G Photography /, Elutec, ©Ant Smith, Heinrich Klaffs (CC BY-SA 2.0), Ice House Quarter, LBBD Archive, Nationaal Archief / Den Haag (CC BY-SA 3.0 nl), Allan Warren (CC BY-SA 3.0) Koch, Eric / Anefo (CC BY-SA 3.0), Tim Crocker, Londoneastuk, Broadway Malyan, ninety90, Paul Crawley, Nicola Dove, Hal Shinnie / Channel 4, ©ShoeboxFilms, Barking and Dagenham College, National Media Museum UK Printed by: Bishops Printers Published by: 3Fox International Southbank House, Black Prince Road London SE1 7SJ 020 7978 6840


7 News

24 map and projects

43 leisure

All the latest from in and around the borough

Mapping out the borough’s creative quarter and updates on other developments

A luxury spa opened by the Queen is just one of the leisure facilities in Barking and Dagenham which is creating waves among the local community

12 Arts and music With a musical heritage that includes the bard of Barking and a blossoming creative quarter, this part of east London has plenty to celebrate 18 History and culture

For the London Borough of Barking and Dagenham David Harley, group manager (economic development and sustainable communities) Town Hall, 1 Town Square Barking IG11 7LU © 3Fox International Limited 2015. All material is ­strictly copyright and all rights are reserved. Reproduction in whole or in part without the written ­permission of 3Fox International Limited is strictly f­orbidden. The greatest care has been taken to ensure the accuracy of information in this magazine at time of going to press, but we accept no responsibility for omissions or errors. The views expressed in this m ­ agazine are not n ­ ecessarily those of 3Fox International Limited.

30 neighbourhoods With housing zone status granted to Barking town centre, the council’s ambitions to build thriving communities are moving up a gear

Barking and Dagenham is marking its anniversary by 35 film and tv remembering 50 of its most A council-run film office famous residents is helping to build the borough’s reputation as 35 the place to be for film and TV productions 40 markets Facts and figures on what is making Barking and Dagenham tick


46 sitematch The council’s bid to become London’s first creative industries zone is tackling the capital’s shortage of suitable space head on


MADE TO MEASURE BUILT TO SCALE Flexibility, availability and creativity... All vital components that guarantee a successful outcome everytime. From National Distribution Centres to last mile delivery, SEGRO is committed to fulfilling customer requirements, with a portfolio that covers the entire spectrum. Ranging from 5,000 to 250,000 sq ft, we have the scale and flexibility to meet demands and exceed our clients’ expectations. Call 01753 537171 to discuss your property requirements or visit:


Art celebrates Barking’s history Works of art installed across Barking this summer were part of the Creekmouth Heritage Project to celebrate the area’s history. The scheme was funded by the Heritage Lottery Fund and Transport for London, and involved the installation of three pieces of art: at the Rivergate Centre, Barking Riverside; at Creekmouth Open Space; and on Farr Avenue. The charity Living Streets also organised a series of walks.

Royal visit Thousands gathered on the streets of Barking and Dagenham in July to welcome the Queen and the Duke of Edinburgh on an official visit. As part of the celebrations to mark the borough’s 50th anniversary, the head of state and her husband visited venues throughout the borough. The Queen officially opened Abbey Leisure Centre, Chadwell Heath Community Centre and the Kingsley Building at the Sydney Royal Comprehensive School in Barking and Dagenham on 16 July. A performance by the Dagenham Girl Pipers formed part of the celebrations at the community centre, and the royal couple joined in French and German language classes and watched a polo match at the comprehensive school. They also attended a lunch at The Broadway Theatre, to officially mark 50 years since the London Borough of Barking and Dagenham was established. Leader of Barking and Dagenham, Councillor Darren Rodwell, said: “It was a real honour to welcome her majesty and the Duke of Edinburgh to the borough. “I am so proud her majesty chose to come to visit the borough and I am also proud of the warm welcome our amazing residents gave to the royal couple. “The thousands who lined the streets reflect our wonderfully diverse borough and Britain. Today Barking and Dagenham was the pride of London.”

Council seeks views on Local Plan Barking and Dagenham Council is seeking views from members of the public about the development of the borough’s Local Plan. The planning document will shape growth in the borough for the next 15 years in line with the council’s theme of “one borough; one community; London’s growth opportunity”. From 14 October until 16 December public consultation will take place, with the council seeking feedback on its approach. A report about the plan, Issues and Options, is available on the council’s website for stakeholders and members of the public. A full draft is scheduled for publication in mid-2016.


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Zone for culture

Bouygues UK for Barking estate Bouygues UK has been announced as the contractor to build homes at the Gascoigne estate in Barking. The development of the eastern end of the estate is being delivered in a partnership between East Thames and the council. Bouygues UK will deliver the first 190 homes as part of phase one of the project – a contract worth £41.5 million. The overall masterplan for the eastern side of the estate is for 1,575 new homes, a secondary and primary school, green spaces and a community centre to be built over the next nine years – all part of the council’s Estate Renewal Programme. Commenting on the contract, Bouygues UK managing director for housing in London, John Campion, said: “We have a strong presence in Barking and Dagenham through our existing relationship with the council, which has also seen us working on the mixed-use scheme on London Road and the Ice House Quarter


development at Abbey Road. “We’re very happy to be working with East Thames and the London Borough of Barking and Dagenham as part of the overall masterplan to regenerate Gascoigne estate, as well as increasing our contribution to the wider regeneration of the borough.” Designed by architects Levitt Bernstein and Allies & Morrison, the new homes will range from one to four bedrooms, and will be available for rent, shared ownership and private sale. The first new homes are due to become available by 2018. Director of development at East Thames, Trevor Burns, said: “Bouygues UK has a wealth of experience in delivering large scale regeneration projects and we’re confident that they will support us to deliver a very high quality product for Gascoigne East. This project is a testimony to successful partnership working and we’re looking forward to delivering it with the council.”

After a successful summer of artistic events to mark Barking and Dagenham’s 50th anniversary, the council has submitted a bid to the Greater London Authority’s Regeneration Fund for the borough to become the capital’s first creative industries zone. If successful, this will boost the borough’s provision of affordable workspace for businesses working in the creative sector across a number of sites. The council’s plans also include affordable apartments for artists in some locations. The deadline for the bid was 2 October and the council has said it is confident of its success. David Harley, group manager for economic development and sustainable communities, said: “London is facing a severe shortage of space for creative industries, hindering the capital’s economic growth. Our innovative approach is part of the long-term plan to ensure that Barking’s full potential is unlocked.” Harley pointed to the success of the Ice House Quarter, home to those working in the creative sector, and initiatives to encourage community engagement in the arts such as Creative Barking and Dagenham and The Broadway Theatre – run by Barking & Dagenham College – as firm foundations for the borough to become a creative industries zone. The college has been working in partnership with the council to help shape the creative and cultural programme for the borough’s bid by taking the helm at The Broadway Theatre. Under its management, the theatre will continue to offer a professional programme, as part of an enhanced schedule including training courses, performances, events, workshops and talks.

College campus opens A temporary campus for the East London University Technical College (Elutec) has opened at the Londoneastuk business and technical park – the former Sanofi pharmaceutical production site in Dagenham. A team of 15 technicians has transformed existing buildings, including workshops and laboratories, fitting them out with machinery and equipment for the start of term in September 2015. The 4,645sq m campus will provide temporary accommodation for up to 450 students for a year, during which time a multimillion-pound, purpose-built permanent campus will be created. It will eventually house 600 students by 2017. The site will also feature 22 classrooms, engineering workshops, scientific laboratories, sixth form study spaces, a recreational area, staff room, student dining room, kitchen and toilets. The site is owned by SOG, and managing director John Lewis said securing a deal with Elutec has enabled Londoneast-uk to be trading profitably in its first year of operation: “The park has made tremendous progress since it was launched in December 2014 and we expect to maintain that momentum.” Work on developing the permanent campus for Elutec at Londoneast-uk is due to get under way in the autumn and is scheduled for completion by September 2016.

Not bragging, but… Music festivals formed a big part of Barking and Dagenham’s celebrations to mark 50 years since its establishment as a London borough this summer, and have attracted thousands who came to watch performances such as that of folk legend and Barking native, Billy Bragg, at the Abbey Ruins. More than 15,000 attended the two-day Barking Folk Festival, which took place in July. Bragg played a set which included pro-trade union anthem There is Power in a Union, as well as other political songs such as To have and have not, A New England and The Saturday Boy. The weekend also included morris dancers and circus performers as well as other musicians. Around 8,000 came to the Roundhouse Music Festival at Central Park in Dagenham, which celebrated the borough’s musical heritage and the Roundhouse Pub, which was once the venue for performances from some of the country’s most famous rock bands, including Queen, Pink Floyd, Status Quo, Elton John and Led Zeppelin. The event featured local rock acts, which took part in a battle-of-thebands competition. Tribute bands included homages to The Who, Status Quo, Pink Floyd and Queen. The One Borough Community Day was also popular, with crowds of almost 15,000. It featured a live airing of Made in Dagenham, 60s band The Tremeloes and Artonik’s Colour of Time, a music and dance show with explosions of colourful powder. More events occured throughout the summer, including the Family Cultural Mela in August.


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Creativity alive and Well A well-received performance piece at the former Sanofi pharmaceutical factory in Dagenham celebrated the history of the site, which closed in 2013 after being in operation for 79 years. Artist Geraldine Pilgrim’s show, Well, told the story of the factory through the medium of dance and music. The focus of the show was how the factory, which opened as May & Baker in 1934, inspired “love and happy memories” from its former employees. Well was performed between 31 August and 6 September 2015 and was commissioned by Creative Barking and Dagenham (CBD) – the organisation funded by Arts Council England to encourage more community engagement with the arts in the borough (see page 15). Liza Vallance, the artistic director of Studio 3 Arts, the organisation responsible for CBD, said: “The landmark commissions are all about showcasing Barking and Dagenham as a place where great art happens. It’s a really exciting time for culture in the borough at the moment. ”All of our CBD commissions are sensitive, locally-owned projects which are uniquely inspired by local people and places and chosen by our cultural connectors.”


Appointment brings new chapter to college Barking & Dagenham College has appointed a new principal and chief executive. Mark Robertson has been principal at City of Wolverhampton College since 2013, and will take up his new position on 1 November 2015. Former principal and CEO, Cathy Walsh, left her role on 31 August 2015. Chief operating officer, Yvonne Kelly, is acting principal and CEO during September and October, and is supported by other members of the executive team. On stepping down, Walsh said: “It has been an absolute honour and privilege to serve this great college and to have witnessed the achievements that we have collectively secured, through being an aspirational college and delivering high performance. “The dedicated and talented staff team continue to make a positive difference to the life chances of all who study with us. “I know that under the leadership of Mark Robertson, the college will continue to go from strength to strength.”

Countryside is proud to be working in partnership with barking & dagenham CounCil Top L to R: CGIs of Becontree Heath. We have been chosen, together with our partner Newlon, to develop new homes and a pharmacy. We look forward to working with the community on this exciting new project

Countryside works in partnership with public and private sector organisations to regenerate housing estates and to secure the provision of high quality mixed-use and mixed-tenure schemes. Our projects are developed with local authorities, housing associations and local communities and we regard partnering as key to delivering this. We have undertaken more than 45 estate regeneration schemes since the 1980s and we have been building new homes in London and the South East since 1958.

Bottom L to R: The recently completed homes at Castle Green Place in Dagenham

For further information please visit:

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Power in a union A series of festivals celebrating Barking and Dagenham’s artistic and musical heritage have attracted thousands of people in 2015. James Wood reports on the creative ventures that are ensuring culture in the borough continues to thrive


Above: Billy Bragg at the Barking Folk Festival in summer 2015. Right: Led Zeppelin – one of the bands who performed at the Dagenham Roundhouse, in 1969.

Rock music enthusiasts usually consider the late 60s and early 70s as the period where more memorable live performances took place than any other period in history – by bands still fawned over almost half a century later. In Dagenham, a run-down bingo hall, revamped as the Village Blues Club in 1969 and later becoming the Dagenham Roundhouse, was a regular gigging venue for some of the world’s most successful bands.

Led Zeppelin headlined the second ever gig at the club. Their heavy rock sound was uncharacteristic of the late 60s, but spearheaded a shift in musical styles at the time, and attracted enough attention for their debut album, Led Zeppelin I, to climb into the top 10 in the charts, reaching its peak position of number six on 31 March 1969. Less than a week later, crowds packed into the Dagenham Roundhouse, where they may have heard Led Zeppelin perform classic songs still in their infancy, such as Good times, Bad times and Dazed and Confused. That night proved to be a taste of the calibre of acts that would later perform there. Pink Floyd, Tyrannosaurus Rex, Fleetwood Mac, The Velvet Underground and Parliament/Funkadelic are just some of the bands that played at the venue in the period up until its closure in 1975. It was also a regular haunt for folk stars Fairport Convention – not the only link the London Borough of Barking and Dagenham has with the genre. Billy Bragg, one of folk’s most respected and pioneering voices, is a proud Barking native. It is little wonder then that both long-time residents of the area and the local authority are keen to show off this musical heritage, and with 2015 marking 50 years since the formation of the borough, there could

scarcely be a better time to celebrate. A different event has taken place in Barking and Dagenham nearly every weekend throughout the summer – occasions that have not just tapped into the area’s musical history, but which have successfully encouraged community engagement, brought out the artistic streak in residents and attracted crowds of thousands. At the beginning of June, around 8,000 came to the Roundhouse Music Festival in the sunshine at Central Park in Dagenham, where tribute bands performed in homage to some of the acts that once played at the venue, including The Who, Status Quo, Pink Floyd and Queen. It also featured a battle-of-the-bands competition for local acts, topped by The Lucettas who won £500 and a trophy. Barking’s political activist and songwriter, Billy Bragg, starred at the first ever Barking Folk Festival, which took place at five venues across Barking town centre on 5 July. Closing the event at the Abbey Ruins, Bragg or ‘the bard of Barking’, as he is known, played a rabblerousing set, which included pro-trade union anthem There is Power in a Union, as well as other popular songs such as To have and have not, A New England and The Saturday Boy. Bragg paid tribute to Barking, closing his performance with his tribute to Ford cars (the former Ford Dagenham automotive factory was the subject of


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popular film and stage show Made in Dagenham) and the A13 – A13, Trunk Road to the Sea. He closed the set by saying: “My name’s Billy Bragg and I’m from Barking, Essex.” The folk festival, which took place over two days and attracted more than 15,000 people, featured more than 50 musicians and was curated and organised by the Barbican, the council and members of the local community. Largely funded through sponsorship, the success of the festival means it could become an annual event, and a 2016 festival is already confirmed, according to Carole Pluckrose, one of the key organisers. She says that Bragg has committed to taking part in the future and, as in 2015, has agreed to take a reduction from his normal rates – such is his desire to play at the event. Pluckrose is also the artistic director at the Boathouse, which

People seem to love the idea that they can make creative use of what’s available to them, as it helps with their artistic thinking is located on the River Roding in Barking, part of the Ice House Quarter studio development for creative entrepreneurs, where the Abbey Ruins are located, as well as other buildings which are a part of the borough’s heritage such as the Granary and the Malthouse. An autumn programme of events includes a regular comedy night, theatre performances and film nights – and those who use the flexible space Barking Folk Festival (main image); space for creative use at the Boathouse (top left) and performers in Geraldine Pilgrim’s Well at the Sanofi site in Dagenham (below left).


are encouraged to be as imaginative as possible. Pluckrose explains: “The idea is for people who host exhibitions at the Boathouse to see the space as a blank canvas. People seem to love the idea that they can make creative use of what’s available to them, as it helps with their artistic thinking. “For me, it is exciting to let the theatre production companies or artists who use it have free rein over

Artonik’s Colour of Time, an event which took place in Parsloes Park this summer.

how to get the best out of the Boathouse.” The local community is also engaged – on surprising levels. A recent exhibition by abstract artist Stewart Cohen attracted teenagers from the Gascoigne estate across the road: “They were peering through the window and I think they were pretty amazed when they were invited in,” says Pluckrose. “Teenagers aren’t used to that hospitality. I showed them around and it was amazing to see that they really engaged with the exhibition. That’s what we’re all about – encouraging the artist in everyone.” Permanent studios at the Ice House Quarter are managed and owned by construction company, Rooff, and are on offer for short-term and long-term hire. Creative tenants benefit from sharing space, according to Rooff’s development director, Steve Drury: “The fact that the Ice House Quarter is such a collective hub is attractive to

micro-entrepreneurs,” he explains. “There are a lot of people who make things here and these small businesses really thrive on being around like-minded individuals. They feed off each other and that can only make for a positive atmosphere. The quarter is now seeing real growth in the variety of creative companies attracted to the location. One tenant is both a watchmaker and music producer, another is a seamstress and dressmaker, and there is also a makeup and beauty artist, a film production company, a micro-food manufacturer and several fine artists.” With such diverse and imaginative businesses coming to Barking and Dagenham and more space being developed for them, the borough is changing – something that was picked up in the borough’s 50th anniversary celebrations, with the Inspire Festival in June 2015 adopting the theme of social change. It featured

performances and artworks shown across different locations reflecting on how Barking and Dagenham’s residents have been affected by international events, movements and ideas since the borough was established in 1965. Community organisation Green Shoes Art invited three primary schools and two secondary schools to take part. Pupils were asked to consider historically significant periods of time, such as the gender pay dispute at Dagenham’s Ford manufacturing plant during the 1960s. Initiatives to help locals engage with the arts in the borough are abundant. Funded by Arts Council England, Creative Barking and Dagenham (CBD) is a three-year project (2014 – 2016) for people living, working and socialising in the borough, to deal with the low levels of interaction in the arts by encouraging residents to become more engaged creatively.


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Geraldine Pilgrim’s Well, which celebrated the history of the Sanofi manufacturing plant in Dagenham.

We work with people across the borough... getting more and more involved with the arts. It’s growing all the time


Programme director, Miriam Nelken, says: “We work with people across the borough and so far we have pulled in about 110 people for the project, who we call cultural connectors. They range in age from about five to those in their 60s, and the concept relies partly on us going out and talking to people and partly on word of mouth. It’s an approach that really seems to have worked in terms of getting more and more people involved with the arts. It’s growing all the time.” Current commissions include a project by production company Close and Remote, who are making 50 one-minute films to look at the impact of global issues on the borough. Summer 2015 in Parsloes Park saw a performance of Artonik’s Colour of Time, a music and dance show with explosions of colourful powder – a reinvention of the traditional Indian Holi festival, a spring celebration also known as the Festival of Colours.

It was organised by CBD in July, as part of the One Borough Community Day festival and attracted crowds of almost 15,000. A production called Well was another major project. Artist Geraldine Pilgrim’s show told the story of the Sanofi manufacturing plant and its history through musical and dance performances, featuring choirs, line dancers, contemporary dance groups and strictly ballroom couples. Building on the success of initiatives such as the Ice House Quarter, the Boathouse and CBD, the council has now submitted a bid to the London Regeneration Fund for the borough to become a creative industries zone. If successful, this will provide the borough with workspace for the sector across a number of venues. It was a memorable summer in Barking and Dagenham. During the half a century since the borough was established, art and music have continued to spur change on both a social and reputational level. Longheld and inaccurate connotations of Barking and Dagenham as the run-down and dilapidated end of east London have been transformed by new and creative use of the borough’s spaces, which are attracting artistic entrepreneurs into the fold and fashioning a new legacy. But Barking and Dagenham is rightly proud of its history and the organisers of the 50th anniversary celebrations have been astute enough to understand that a big part of this heritage is in its musical past. The sounds of tribute act Pink Floyd UK in Central Park over the summer served as a reminder of the swirling psychedelia of the early 70s at the Dagenham Roundhouse; just as Billy Bragg singing in the Abbey Ruins about once helping to drive fascism out of his home town, reminded the locals of the borough’s colourful past. As more cultural events appear on the horizon and creative companies continue to discover its advantages, Barking and Dagenham’s artistic adventure continues apace.


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Made in Dagenham Barking and Dagenham boasts some inspirational figures as former residents. Lucy Purdy discovers a borough marking its 50th anniversary by delving into its history books 18

Far left and centre: Sandie Shaw is another famous borough resident who sang the theme tune to Made in Dagenham, based on a strike by Ford Dagenham workers. Below and left: Valence House Museum contains a number of historic local collections.

Choosing 50 people to mark 50 years of the London Borough of Barking and Dagenham was no mean feat. The borough boasts an impressive list of notable people from its past and present. The final 50 packs quite a punch: from intrepid explorers and footballing legends, to singers loved by music fans around the world. The aim was to inspire Barking and Dagenham’s residents to feel proud and knowledgeable about the place they call home. Famous residents include Sandie Shaw, Ken Kiff and Edwin Hardy Amies. A new person is being added to the council’s website each week using information supplied by the borough’s Archives and Local Studies Centre, based at Valence House Museum in Becontree Avenue. Among them is Captain James Cook, one of the world’s most famous explorers. Historians have been perplexed for a long time as to why Cook would choose St Margaret’s Church in Barking as the venue for his wedding. While lodging at the Bell Inn at Execution Dock in Wapping, Cook met and fell in love with his landlord’s daughter Elizabeth Batts. They were married in December 1762 at the church – so time has revealed – due to the fact that Elizabeth was staying with family friends at the time,

in their house at Croucher’s Yard on Ilford High Road, which then lay in the parish of Barking. Cook’s unrivalled talent for surveying and mapping was soon recognised and he was commissioned by the Royal Society to lead voyages to corners of the globe never before explored by Europeans. He was away for years at a time, leaving Elizabeth alone, and the explorer was eventually murdered in Hawaii. His widow lived for another 56 years, until the age of 93. She outlived all of her six children. Her two eldest sons joined the Royal Navy but both tragically died young in shipwrecks. And the church isn’t the only building in the borough to be inextricably intertwined with its heritage and residents. Valence House is the only surviving of the five manor houses of Dagenham, a striking, timber-

framed building partially surrounded by a moat, which has previously been used as a town hall, family home, headquarters of the borough’s library service and now, as a museum. Many an hour could be whiled away behind its pristine white walls. Collections housed here include those on women’s history, the First World War and a heritage photograph collection. The oral histories collection is capable of piquing the interest of even those with no connection to Barking and Dagenham: who could resist hearing voices from the past talk about being a wartime evacuee, working on Dagenham docks or – more recently – being a refugee from the DR Congo or Kosovo? Valence House places its visitors just a pair of headphones away from history. Barking Abbey is another important landmark. The former royal monastery in Barking was established in the


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seventh century and thrived until 1377 when the River Thames flooded much of its land; it was closed in 1539 as part of King Henry VIII’s dissolution of the monasteries. The ruined remains of Barking Abbey now form part of a public open space known as Abbey Green. The borough played an important role in the abolition of slavery too. The first Lord Denman, Thomas Denman, was Lord Chief Justice of England, and lived in Parsloes in Dagenham from 1850 until 1852. He is thought to have retreated to the borough seeking rest and recuperation after overwork forced him to resign his post as Lord Chief Justice. A well-known liberal figure and father of 15, among the projects Denman dedicated his career to was a desire to end slavery. In both his legal work and as a respected writer, Denman fought to stop a practice that had enslaved millions of people of African origin over more than 200 years. Barking and Dagenham took centre-stage in the feminist movement too. Razor-sharp intellectual and feminist pioneer Mary Wollstonecraft was just five when her family moved from Spitalfields to a farm near the Whalebone junction at Chadwell Heath, which stood where Kings Avenue is today. Soon after, they moved to ‘a convenient house behind the town of Barking’ from where Mary’s father held the office of Overseer of the Poor for Ripple Ward. Her mother died in 1780 and Mary launched herself into a life of writing, teaching and travelling. Her landmark text: A Vindication of the Rights of Women, argued that education – and not a natural inferiority – was the only thing holding women back, and that a society which undermined women’s rights to equality and justice was wasting their skills and abilities. “Strengthen the female mind by enlarging it,” she wrote, “and there will be an end to blind obedience.” In 1797, Mary married journalist and novelist William Godwin, whose


radical convictions allied with her own. She died in September that year, shortly after giving birth to her daughter Mary, who would go on to pen the gothic horror novel, Frankenstein. Godwin Primary School in Dagenham is named in honour of Mary Wollstonecraft. The feminist spirit lived on in the borough long after Wollstonecraft’s death. In 2010 Rosamund Pike, Andrea Riseborough and Jaime Winstone were cast as the beehived and bobbed heroines of the 2010 British film Made in Dagenham, directed by Nigel Cole. The film dramatised a strike by Ford sewing machinists in 1968 as they campaigned to bring about equal pay for men and women. Sandie Shaw,

Barking and Dagenham took centre-stage in the feminist movement too

Far left: Former Barking resident, Vera Lynn. Left: The ruined remains of Barking Abbey now form part of Abbey Green. Below: Captain James Cook married Elizabeth Batts at St Margaret’s Church, and Valence House boasts exhibits of the First World War.

a Barking and Dagenham native and former Ford Dagenham clerk, performed the film’s theme song, with lyrics by Billy Bragg. A stage musical version of the film opened at London’s Adelphi Theatre last year: testament to the story’s universal appeal and its importance in feminist history. Other well-known female figures include ‘forces sweetheart’ Vera Lynn. Born Vera Margaret Welch in East Ham in 1917, she made a name for herself singing professionally in working men’s clubs from the tender age of seven. Choosing her grandmother’s maiden name ‘Lynn’ as her stage name, by the mid-1930s her recognisable voice was the subject of regular recordings and radio broadcasts. In 1938, Lynn bought a property in Upney Lane, Barking, where she lived with her parents Annie and Bertram Welch. Her classic wartime song We’ll Meet Again won her the nickname ‘the forces sweetheart’ and she became the first British artist to soar to the top of the American hit parade. Two of her singles, Auf Wiedersehen Sweetheart and Yours, each sold a million copies in the UK in 1952. Lynn was awarded an OBE in 1969

and made a dame in 1975. She admits never having fully retired, despite turning 98 in March, and even sang a few bars of We’ll Meet Again at the 60th anniversary of VE Day in 2005. Lynn’s mother, Annie Welch, was widowed in 1955 and continued to live at the same house in Upney Lane until her death in 1975, a


Bold History and culture Right: Bobby Moore was born at Barking Hospital. Below: Dudley Moore’s musical talent eventually took him to Hollywood.

Bobby Moore will forever be remembered as the captain of the England team that won the 1966 World Cup Barking family through and through. Another Barking resident to have found global fame from humble beginnings in the borough is the actor Dudley Moore. Moore became a choirboy at the age of six and won a scholarship to the Guildhall School of Music at 11, and then a place at Magdalen College, Oxford. The young Moore must have dreamt of musical success while growing up in Dagenham, and his natural talent and hard work saw early dreams become reality. His skill as a jazz musician led to him working with leading musicians such as John Dankworth and Cleo Laine, and he


went on to appear in Hollywood films, becoming a much-loved comedian, composer and film star. Married and divorced four times and the co-owner of a restaurant in California, Moore remained passionate about his east London roots. He is said to have maintained a close connection with Peter Cork, a music teacher at the then Dagenham County High School, and he continued to write to him until 1994, despite his worldwide success. Some of their correspondence was published in the book, Letters from Dudley. In 2013, these letters were gifted to the school, and are being

kept at the Valence House Museum on its behalf. And then there’s one of the country’s most iconic footballing figures, Bobby Moore. As an air raid raged outside in 1941, Robert Frederick Chelsea Moore was born at Barking Hospital. Moore will forever be remembered as the captain of the England team that won the World Cup in 1966, (see page 38). The drama and eventual triumph of that match, in which England beat West Germany 4-2 at Wembley Stadium, helped catapult him to global fame. An only child, Moore lived with his parents in Waverley Gardens, Barking, attended Westbury infant and junior schools and was known to hone his football skills in Greatfields Park. He was captain of the Barking primary schools football team that won the London-wide schools tournament, the Crisp Shield, before joining West Ham United’s youth squad. Moore stayed with the club until 1974 and clocked up 108 matches for England, 90 as captain. After the World Cup win he was voted BBC Sports Personality of the Year and the following year was awarded an OBE. Moore is considered one of the best defenders of all time and an enduring figure of football’s golden age. He is commemorated in a public artwork by the A13, which also includes Alf Ramsay, Beverley Gull and Jason Leonard. Others in the list of 50 include: the former archbishop of Canterbury, George Carey; footballer, John Terry; and boxer Frank Bruno; as well as light entertainer Max Bygraves – all confirming the influential role that Barking and Dagenham has played in shaping the country’s cultural and sporting history. With plans for London’s first OnSide Youth Zone, which includes sports and arts programmes and facilities, together with a bid to become the first Creative Industries Zone, Barking and Dagenham could continue delivering stars for many a year to come.

Building partnerships

Lindhill was established with the primary objective to operate in the area of property development We specialise in the sourcing, management, financial appraisals and delivery of mixed-use property developments. Lindhill’s approach is centered on working in partnership with all key stakeholders, Housing Associations, Local communities, Local Authority Housing and planning departments, Architects and Contractors. 104 Spirella Building Bridge Road Letchworth Garden City Hertfordshire SG6 4ET

Bold Map

Ice House Quarter Riverside walk




Gascoigne estate


Outside performance spaces



09 08

Abbey Road

East Street


14 01 Abbey Green and Abbey Ruins


02 15


Ripple Road

16 19

07 06 05 17

03 18 04

Creative industries zone Developments in Barking town centre Key Points of interest

Key Proposals

01 The Broadway Theatre 02 Abbey Leisure Centre – including The Idol 03 Studio 3 Arts, Open Estate, Living Museum 04 Studio 3 Arts Galleon Centre 05 Ice House Court – Bow Arts 06 The Malthouse, the Boathouse and the Granary – the Ice House Quarter 07 Riverside moorings 08 Technical Skills Academy 09 London Road/North Street 10 Barking Enterprise Centre

11 Cambridge Road – including creative industries hub 12 Linton Road – artist live/work space 13 Transformation of Barking Market 14 Former Magistrates Court – High Street Fund project 15 Three-screen cinema and Care City 16 Redevelopment with ground floor creative space 17 Timber Court – affordable housing with creative space 18 Gascoigne West – housing development with artist live/work space 19 Fresh Wharf – riverside housing 20 Trocoll House – housing scheme adjacent to station 21 Housing between Abbey Ruins and the River Roding



Projects The Ice House Quarter This quarter for creative industries, opened in 2014, is an important part of the wider regeneration of the Roding Riverside, which is also home to Barking Abbey, Abbey Green and the town quay. The quarter comprises the Malthouse and Granary buildings, owned and converted by Rooff, with the newly converted Boathouse between the two acting as a venue space for the quarter. The objective of this creative hub is to form a collective of creative entrepreneurs, who can interact and collaborate on projects for shared mutual benefit. Subsidies or discounts are available for certain entrepreneurial startups or emerging creative talent. The Ice House Quarter is already home to a range of companies that includes Pimento Hill, which makes Caribbean-inspired sauces; PR and branding agency, Freelance [The Work Space]; Filim, a multimedia production company; Catch 22, a social business; and Duffy London, a furniture maker.

The Boathouse At the heart of the Ice House Quarter, between the Malthouse and the Granary, the Boathouse offers flexible riverside studios including spaces for rehearsal and dance, as well as a 150-seat performance venue, and a terrace cafe. The space at the Boathouse can be used for anything from rehearsals or performances, to training or corporate events. The Boathouse CIC is a social enterprise with local people, facilitated by Rooff as part of its CSR strategy. As a community interest company, all profits go back into the business, and the staff is mainly made up of volunteers.


Bold Projects

Gascoigne estate renewal August 2015 saw a £41.5 million contract awarded for this ambitious regeneration project to Bouygues UK, to deliver the first 190 homes, as part of phase one, as well as the construction of an energy centre. The scheme to renew the eastern end of the Gascoigne estate is a joint project between East Thames and the London Borough of Barking and Dagenham, which will share the responsibility for funding, design, construction and maintenance. The beginning of this first phase represents a major milestone in the overall Gascoigne East masterplan, which will create 1,575 new homes, a secondary and primary school, green spaces and a community centre over the next nine years. The masterplan itself forms part of the borough’s vast estate renewal programme. Designed by architects Levitt Bernstein and Allies & Morrison, the new homes will have between one to four bedrooms, and will be available through affordable rent, shared ownership and private sale. The first new homes will become available by 2018.


This first phase of the scheme has already won a ‘Project Award’ at the Housing Design Awards in July 2015, which is promoted by a “unique partnership of government and industry” that includes the Department for Communities and Local Government, RIBA, the Greater London Authority and the Royal Institution of Chartered Surveyors. The awards celebrate innovative and thoughtful design in planned and newly built developments across the public and private housing sectors in the UK. As part of the regeneration, Barking-based Studio 3 Arts has taken over a disused shop as its project headquarters for Open Estate, an 18-month long programme of artsled, social heritage exploration. Aiming to celebrate the past, present and future of the Gascoigne estate area, and uncover its social history, this collaborative project will include artists, heritage professionals, local organisations and residents, and conclude with a festival in September 2016 during the Open House weekend. Studio 3 Arts has been in the borough since 1987. It runs a creative venue to collaborate with local communities and people.

Londoneast-uk The first tenants are moving into Londoneast-uk, a 6.9-ha campus-style business and technical park (formerly known as businesseast) with around 41,800sq m of quality business space, laboratories, and manufacturing plant to let on a long or short-term basis. The former Sanofi plant, now under the ownership of SOG Group, retains the scientific facilities of its former occupier, and is renting the research and manufacturing facilities to businesses seeking immediate access to high quality laboratory and manufacturing space, specialist facilities and support services. The space is ideal both for existing businesses looking to expand and for startup companies engaged in scientific research, innovation and development. The accommodation is perfect for companies in such sectors as health and medical, scientific R&D, forensic, IT, medical devices, test laboratories, and sterile or scientific manufacturing and distribution. The facilities can either be

reused as they stand for immediate occupancy, or redesigned to meet specific occupier requirements. The extensive scientific accommodation includes modern laboratories fully equipped with demineralised water, fume cupboards, inlets for inert gas, safety cabinets, a heavy goods lift and isolator technology. Microbiology labs are also available with self-contained units with air cascade and separate labs, write up offices, meeting rooms and amenities – ideal where a clean environment is required. A range of sizes is available, with the largest sterile building comprising more than 9,290sq m including a plant room, WFI stills, clean steam generation and individual HVAC units. Londoneast-uk also offers serviced office space, in flexible configurations, on either a traditional lease basis or on a flexible license basis to all business sectors. In addition, the site has space for conferences, meetings and events.

Fully equipped meeting rooms are available, as are conference facilities that can seat up to 200 delegates. The first tenant to move in is facilities management specialist Arcus Solutions, which has opened a technical training academy for engineers, and the East London University Technical College (Elutec), moved in at the beginning of September. The current site is providing temporary accommodation for around 450 students, and will be in place for one year while a multimillion-pound purpose-built campus is created at the same location, which will ultimately house more than 600 students by 2017. The site has also become popular as a location for film and TV productions recently, including a new prime-time BBC TV series. Londoneast-uk is currently in negotiations with several other businesses, which are hoping to take space at the business and technical park over the coming months.


Bold Projects

Beam Park

Abbey Retail Park This 3.6-ha riverside site, a short walk from the town centre and next to Barking Abbey is set for regeneration and the creation of a vibrant new community. Owned by Estates & Agency, Abbey Retail Park is earmarked for up to 650 new private rented homes and a school. A Sainsbury’s supermarket is already on-site. The housing will be delivered by Willmott Dixon’s private rental company, be:here, which has bought approximately 1.6ha from Estates & Agency. It is currently subject to planning consent and be:here is in early discussions with the council, and waiting to agree a submission date for the application to be heard in January or February 2016. Designed to attract young professionals, the homes will consist of studio, one and two-bedroom apartments, each with their own balcony. They may also feature a residents’ roof terrace. The scheme will have an on-site property management team, securely managed communal spaces and extra storage units for hire by residents. In addition, there will be cycle storage, and be:here is currently working with the council to bring forward a cycle hub to support residents. An element of on-site car parking and provision for electric charging points will also be included. Commercial uses for residents currently being explored include a coffee shop or juice bar. be:here is working with the council to exhibit large heritage artefacts in an exhibition space linked with the historic abbey. Work is expected to start on-site in early 2016, with a view to renting the first homes out by 2018. Simon Chatfield, director of research and operations at be:here, said: “This is a great site in Barking town centre and less than a 10-minute walk from the train station. It’s also separated from the town by an attractive park and Barking Abbey grounds, with the River Roding on the other side.”


At 29 hectares, this former industrial land in South Dagenham is one of the area’s largest development opportunities. In June 2015, mayor of London Boris Johnson asked members of his London Development Panel to provide proposals on how to best develop the site into a vibrant new neighbourhood, which could provide up to 2,000 homes, 35% of which would be affordable. The site, which is bisected by the River Beam, inside the mayor’s London Riverside Opportunity Area and alongside the Ford Stamping Plant, is one of the borough’s six growth hubs, which collectively will deliver 35,000 homes and 10,000 new jobs by 2035. Beam Park will be connected to central London via the c2c rail line. A new fully funded station is set to be built in partnership with Network Rail, Transport for London and c2c Rail, and £9 million from Transport for London’s Growth Fund – designed to provide targeted investment in transport improvements to help unlock regeneration areas across the capital. Network Rail has already been commissioned to carry out design work and take forward the business case for the new station. When complete, it will provide a 20-minute link into Fenchurch Street in the heart of the City, giving residents a quick trip into work, and also encouraging businesses to move into the area. Development proposals should include connections to bus, cycle and pedestrian routes. The mayor has pledged to exit all areas currently owned by City Hall by the end of 2016. Beam Park follows the release of other major parcels of land including the Royal Docks in east London, the 10.6-ha Stephenson Street site near West Ham station, and the 40-ha industrial land portfolio in London Riverside. Part of the Willmott Dixon Group

Everyone’s talking about the problems with renting. We’re solving them. be:here is a new approach to the private rented sector. • We create vibrant new communities and then ensure they act as catalysts for local regeneration • Our homes are designed specifically for rent. For example our 2 beds have two equal sized bedrooms that both enjoy en-suite bathrooms • We have an on-site management team who resolve any issues as soon as they arise and look after the buildings

be:here Barking coming in 2017

• We provide a range of additional facilities and services that makes people’s lives easier such as superfast broadband, extra storage and dry cleaning • All of our charges are fair and transparent In short we’ve looked at every aspect of the rental experience and created a complete package that offers renters a distinctly better deal. be:here schemes also available in East India (letting now), Hayes (May 2016) and Kew (2017).

Bold Neighbourhoods

Living social With the promise of thousands of homes in Barking town centre alone, and a burgeoning artistic community on the River Roding, Barking and Dagenham is creating not just housing, but thriving communities that are the envy of other boroughs, as Suruchi Sharma finds out 30

Left: Artist’s impression of Swan Housing’s Cambridge Road scheme by Studio Egret West. Below and right: The Abbey Leisure Centre, opened by the Queen.

Proposals in October 2014 by Barking and Dagenham Council suggested the possibility of changing the name of the Hammersmith and City line to include Barking. An obvious recommendation, since Barking is the origin of its tube trains from the east, that then cut across the heart of London to the west. Altering the famous pink line to Hammersmith and Barking is an apt reflection of the evolution of the borough. Celebrating half a century this year, the council’s name change proposal is just one indicator of its ambitious plans for the borough. The area received a major vote of confidence in February from the Greater London Authority (GLA), when it chose Barking town centre to become one of its first nine housing zones. As part of the mayor’s commitment to double housebuilding as London’s population continues to boom, the £400 million housing zones programme will see 28,000 new homes created in the capital by 2025. The 97-ha site in Barking town centre is a central part of the ambition to realise the town’s full potential, and will include new homes and thousands of new jobs. Council leader, Councillor Darren Rodwell, has a clear

We want topquality homes at affordable prices that... inspire the people that are already here and refreshing outlook on what makes a thriving borough: “We’re very excited about the prospect of the change to the borough. The housing zone just recognises the determination of the council in leading the way in London when providing homes. “This is for the people of the borough because even though we’re celebrating our 50th anniversary, we’re actually talking about the next 50 to 100 years. What we’re now doing as a grown-up borough is asking what do we do next, and how do we make what is our regeneration today the heritage of tomorrow. We want topquality homes at affordable prices that

attract not only people from outside, but also inspire the people that are already here.” Barking has a long list of advantages to living there already. As Rodwell mentions, “the rail and the road links are absolutely superb,” with four ways to get into the city centre including the London Overground line to Gospel Oak in the north, a 15-minute link to Fenchurch Street in the City and two tube routes – the Hammersmith and City line and the District line service. Rodwell confidently adds: “We’re hoping to change it to the Hammersmith and Barking line, because that is what the line is and we are part of London after all.” There is also the borough’s proximity to London City Airport as well as good road links with the A13 and A406. The area is known for the beautiful Barking Abbey ruins and is famous for its historic fishing and boat-building industries on the River Roding. The council’s vision of what the future holds for Barking does not stop at creating extra housing, but is also about creating an artistic and creative industries hub. For instance, the town’s market on East Street has secured High Street Fund investment


Bold Neighbourhoods

Below: Housing as well as creative hubs such as the Ice House Quarter are intrinsic to the council’s vision for the borough.


from the mayor of London to transform its layout and appearance, and includes stalls which reflect the town’s improving cultural offer. In July, the Queen officially opened the new Abbey Leisure Centre that the council leader views as a beacon to draw people to other town centre attractions such as the Broadway Theatre and the cultural area that is the Ice House Quarter, in Abbey Road. Rodwell adds: “We are also going to bring in a high art cinema company and really make Barking into a cultural nucleus. If you look at the Ice House Quarter, it’s a fantastic space already and I’ve been happy to see its wonderful development, but it’s only the start of the creative space that will be available.” Based near the River Roding, the Ice House Quarter provides affordable studio space in pretty surroundings. An important part of the quarter is the Boathouse, which offers a home to the borough’s creative entrepreneurs. Steve Drury is director of

construction company, Rooff, and is also on the board of directors for the Boathouse. He is aware of the important role Barking’s cultural spots play in enticing new businesses and residents to the area: “It’s still early days for the Boathouse but it had the privilege to be involved with hosting and arranging the Barking Folk Festival held in July, which was a superb event. Another good example is that it has picked up a commission from the Big Lottery Fund to run a project with other local groups on the history of the Magna Carta in the borough. We’re currently approaching the next phase of work around this area with more of the residential scheme that is being developed coming to an end. We’re now on that path where we’re attracting more people down here, so it’s exciting times ahead.” The beauty of the plans for Barking is that the fate of the cultural community and the new housing for the area go hand in hand. Drury adds: “If you look around, the wider

regeneration of the Roding Riverside has plenty going on. If you speak to marketing people they’ll talk about a brand. The brand is the Ice House Cultural Quarter, but what it’s really about is the people who are here and about the people who are coming.” London has a recognised shortage of affordable space for creative industries and the borough believes it can help address that. Many of the schemes planned are in the early stages, but a Barking Housing Zone Board had its first meeting in September to ensure each development adds positively to the town centre, and the £42.3 million investment is spent wisely. NU Living, part of the Swan Housing Group, is creating around 275 energy-efficient flats with a concierge service in Cambridge Road (pictured left). Its planning application was submitted in September, and on its ground floor will be a creative industry hub and a permanent home for the Bath House Barking spa. Geoff Pearce, executive director

of regeneration and development at Swan Housing, said the project would be completed in three years if given the green light. He adds: “We are excited to be working on a high quality landmark residential development that will contribute to the successful regeneration of Barking town centre, while also providing a new permanent home for the Bath House within the ground floor of our development.” New housing that overlooks the River Roding is also planned by Weston Homes for Abbey Road Industrial Park. Bob Weston, CEO of Weston Homes, says the plan was “positively received” by the council and subject to permission will commence in spring 2016. He adds: “We are having early conversations with the council to redevelop an industrial brownfield site into 105 one and twobedroom apartments with a special space for creative industries on the ground floor. The development will have an 18-month build programme and will play an important role in the regeneration of the area.” Housing developer Willmott Dixon’s private rental company be:here is aimed at young professionals and has recently acquired 1.57ha of land at Abbey Retail Park, in Abbey Road. The company is in early discussions on the proposals including up to 650 flats built alongside a Sainsbury’s superstore (pictured above). Simon Chatfield, director of research and operations at be:here, says: “This is a great site in Barking town centre and less than a 10-minute walk from the train station. It’s also separated from the town by an attractive park and the Barking Abbey grounds with the River Roding on the other side.” The flats will have facilities such as a gym and lounge with an on-site property management team to help integrate new residents into the area. Chatfield sums up the aspiration for Barking when he says: “To create a sense of place and community is very important to us, as is creating something that is going to be of a lasting benefit.”


Then Londoneast-uk is the obvious place to be. Office Laboratories Manufacturing Space Clean Rooms Conference & Events

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+44 (0) 77538 32114 londoneast-uk Business and Technical Park, Rainham Road South, Dagenham East RM10 7XS


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Fever pitch With plans to create a studio at one of east London’s most popular locations for shoots, a college with its own TV channel and a council-run film office dedicated to attracting production companies, Barking and Dagenham is building a film-friendly reputation. James Wood reports 35

Bold Film and TV

Film-makers and television producers are discovering that the London Borough of Barking and Dagenham is not only a cost-effective location for shoots but that the variety of different sites allows them to get the best out of their productions. Accessible from the M25, London City Airport and the city centre, the borough’s increased exposure is largely thanks to the council’s film office, set up in 2012 to present Barking and Dagenham as a viable

acclaimed TV dramas such as The Interceptor, Silk and Hustle, adverts for Nike and Adidas, and recent films including The Riot Club, Locke and London Road. Scenes for the latter were shot at the Grade II-listed Dagenham Civic Centre. The film, about the five prostitutes murdered in Ipswich in 2006, went on general release in June 2015 and stars Olivia Coleman and Tom Hardy. Shooting for a forthcoming BBC drama, New Blood, written by Anthony Horowitz, is also

taking place in the borough, and an announcement is expected soon about another big feature scheduled for later in the year. A key location in the borough is the business and technical park, Londoneast-uk. In late 2014, the former Sanofi site in Dagenham was the setting for Code of a Killer, screened on ITV in early 2015. It saw the labs and manufacturing buildings, once used for the real-life research and production of cancer

The borough has an eclectic mix of filmfriendly council premises, ranging from art deco to medieval to modern alternative to some of the more established shoot locations in London. Lisa Dee, who runs the office, says: “The borough has an eclectic mix of film-friendly council premises, ranging from the art deco to the medieval to the modern, as well as great open spaces, streets and parks. We are also proud to work in partnership with local businesses as a successful agent, promoting their locations to production companies. “Working with council departments such as licensing, legal, parking and highways, allows us to cut out the middle man and streamline our services, making us very competitive.” It seems the film-makers agree. The roll call of productions shot in the borough includes both popular and


TV programmes shot at Londoneastuk include Black Mirror (above) starring Mad Men’s Jon Hamm, and Code of a Killer (left).

drugs, turned into the set for the drama about the discovery of DNA fingerprinting by Alec Jeffreys. Other productions shot at Londoneast-uk include Channel 4 dramas, Humans and Charlie Brooker’s Black Mirror, as well as Patient Zero, a film about an outbreak of a deadly virus, which is due to go on general release in late 2016. And now, the owner of the site, John Lewis, has announced a desire to create a permanent studio facility. He explains: “I believe Londoneastuk is ideally positioned to create an exciting new studio. I see no reason why Dagenham shouldn’t become the next Pinewood! “I am currently talking to a number of individuals and organisations within the film and TV industry to turn this aspiration into reality. We need to get the message out there that Londoneast-uk is situated closer to the City of London than the other leading studios, and that we can provide very competitive rates.” Barking and Dagenham’s reputation for film and TV could be boosted further by the local college’s desire to foster homegrown talent. BBC Drama, Luther, stars former Barking & Dagenham College student, Idris Elba, and parts of the second series were shot on Rainham Road South. The college is now laying the foundations to encourage the next generation of screen stars. Established half way through the 2014-2015 academic year, #TheChannel was introduced as a way for media students to experience a real-life newsroom, intended to replicate the studios of Sky or the BBC. The facility is part of the college’s iCreate@BDC space – an industry-standard 1,000sq m training hub where students can develop the skills needed to work in the sector. #TheChannel is broadcast live on the college’s network and through its YouTube channel and has featured guests such as Guardian columnist and author, Owen Jones, and Labour MP, Jon Cruddas.

New programmes were introduced at the beginning of the academic year (2015/2016), including quiz shows, live music – such as BBC Introducing sessions – and a drama show, which will be written, directed and acted by the college’s students. The initiative has been extended to those on unrelated courses too, as Ana Guimaraes, the college’s curriculum director for creative, digital and enterprise, explains: “Students working in fields as diverse as construction are becoming involved in the project, which is now open to the whole college. “We’re conducting auditions during September 2015 for different roles. The students love it. It really gives them that experience of having to work in a collaborative way and they relish the chance to experience a reallife working environment. One thing is clear: Barking and Dagenham is building a reputation as a borough with ample opportunities for film-makers, producers and those just starting out in the industry. Locke (left) was shot at an industrial estate in Barking. #TheChannel (below): studio space for students at Barking & Dagenham College, visited by Guardian columnist, Owen Jones.


Bold Film and TV

Local hero A documentary feature released next year to mark 50 years since England won the World Cup celebrates the life of Barking-born football legend, Bobby Moore. James Wood meets producer Matt Lorenzo and Sir Geoff Hurst to find out more

“The best footballer I played against was Pelé, but the best I played with was undoubtedly Bobby Moore.” So says 1966 World Cup hat-trick scoring hero, Sir Geoff Hurst, in an interview with BOLD to promote a film about his old Barking-born England and West Ham team-mate. BO66Y, produced by sports journalist and broadcaster Matt Lorenzo and directed by Ron Scalpello is set for a 2016 release to celebrate 50 years since Moore captained the England team that held the Jules Rimet trophy aloft. Lorenzo, the first sports journalist to appear on Sky Sports in 1989, grew up with Moore. The film has been in development for two years and the list


of footballing greats who have signed up to appear in the feature include present day greats as well as legends from the ’66 team. But BO66Y also explores what Moore meant to local people, as Lorenzo explains: “The word ‘hero’ is overused, but that’s the commonly held opinion of people from Barking and the surrounding area about him. “What comes across in the film is not only what he did on the football field, but that no one had a bad word to say about him off it. He was a great ambassador. The support was fantastic when he passed away in 1993: the reaction from the West Ham public who went to the ground to pay tribute was truly astonishing.”

Below left: Bobby Moore accepts the World Cup from the Queen. Below: Sir Geoff Hurst (left) and Matt Lorenzo (right).

Hurst regales BOLD with anecdotes about Moore: a strict training and playing schedule during the years he played with him meant there was little time for socialising, but on the occasions when the team was afforded a glass of wine, Moore’s character would apparently shine through. BO66Y has the potential to influence young people in Moore’s birthplace and beyond, says Hurst: “Time marches on but the great thing about the film is that it will jog people’s memories about the different aspects of his life – the great highs and the great lows, such as [his arrest in] Mexico and the cancer battles.” Hurst pauses for reflection. “He called me not long before he died, as he did a few other people, and it was just to say goodbye, really. The film will be a massive inspiration to young people and when those from the surrounding area watch it, I think they will feel very proud.” The film will be funded through crowdfunding, and football and film fans worldwide can back it through Kickstarter, the world’s largest platform for creative projects.

BOLD partners joining together to support Barking and Dagenham 01









01 Bilfinger GVA, John Jones 02 Bouygues Development, Olivier Soulier 03 c2c, Chris Atkinson 04 Golf Kingdom, Scott Cranfield 05 Iceni Projects, Ian Anderson 06 Levitt Berstein, Rose Marshall 07 Rooff, Steve Drury 08 Sitematch London, Sophie Gosling 09 Willmott Dixon, Chris Tredget

For more information about these companies, visit

Bold Markets

Facts and figures Creative Barking and Dagenham – a three-year project for people living and working in the borough to become more engaged with artistic projects

£42 million secured by Barking’s housing zone from the GLA – a mixture of loans and grants

First Onside Youth Zone in London proposed

more than Number of attendees – over 100,000 40

110 – Cultural connectors (a network of residents who are making decisions on the Creative Barking and Dagenham programme)

Travel times from Barking station City (Fenchurch St) London City Airport St Pancras (Eurostar) Heathrow Stansted


– number of homes expected to be built at Barking Riverside

£1.4 million Heritage Lottery Grant for town centre improvements

Number of England caps won by local footballing legend, Bobby Moore:

15 minutes 22 minutes 45 minutes 75 minutes 80 minutes


average property price (all properties) in June 2015 (Source: Land Registry)


– number of homes expected to be built in Barking town centre, one of the GLA’s housing zones

London’s First Creative Industries Zone 41

Your construction partner in Barking and Dagenham We deliver Project Innova on Sustainable construc on Socially responsible construc on Mul -award winning projects Con nuous opera onal improvement

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The lap of luxury

Ultimate relaxation: a top-of-the-range leisure centre has opened in Barking and Dagenham.

With a brand new spa that rivals those to be found at any of the capital’s five-star hotels, Abbey Leisure Centre is proving to be a firm favourite among Barking and Dagenham residents, as James Cracknell discovers 43

Bold Leisure

A LUXURIOUS spa, officially opened by the Queen, that features a combination of water, heat, cooling and relaxation experiences to improve mind, body and wellbeing. No, it’s not a new five-star hotel in Mayfair. This is a council-run leisure centre in Barking, east London. When Barking and Dagenham Council decided to upgrade its ageing Abbey Sports Centre, it didn’t take the usual tried-and-tested route. The local authority sought a commercial partner to create a luxury spa that would help finance a brand new £14 million facility. Abbey Leisure Centre opened in March 2015 and boasts the sort of facilities more commonly found at any top resort. In addition, you get to spend time revitalising your body and clearing your mind with a thermal spa experience which has eight relaxing features including a rock sauna, crystal steam and aromatherapy rooms, an ice chute and a salt inhalation steam room. The spa was built by DaleSauna, a leading specialist in the spa industry. It now provides a valuable income stream for the council and is expected to contribute around 15% towards the costs of the day-to-day running of the leisure centre. In addition to the spa, Abbey Leisure Centre has a 140-station gymnasium, three large studios catering for around 70 classes a week, plus a six-lane, 25-metre swimming pool for regular use by the community. There is also a children’s soft play facility, designed by Turner Prize-nominated artist Marvin Gaye Chetwynd. In its first month alone the centre had 25,000 visitors, including the Queen, who formally opened the building and unveiled a commemorative plaque. Councillor Darren Rodwell, leader of Barking and Dagenham Council, says: “Abbey Leisure Centre is something for us all to be proud of. “There is no doubt that this new facility is going to be of huge benefit to borough residents and another great


Abbey Leisure Centre is something for us all to be proud of Luxury facilities are a feature of Barking and Dagenham’s £14 million Abbey Leisure Centre.

addition to our leisure offer.” Abbey Leisure Centre is the second to be built in the borough in the past three years, following the opening of Becontree Heath Leisure Centre in 2012. A recent survey by the Amateur Swimming Association found Becontree was the country’s busiest pool. It was also a training venue during the London 2012 Olympics. Rodwell adds: “With the pool at Becontree Heath being the busiest in the UK and the centre continually growing in popularity, we know we can provide a great service and now, with the addition of Abbey Leisure Centre, I think we probably have some of the

best facilities of any London borough.” Both DaleSauna and the project’s building contractor Willmott Dixon Construction have praised the council for the way it presided over the development at Bobby Moore Way, in Barking town centre. DaleSauna has delivered several luxury spa projects for the public sector in recent years and its sales manager, Dean Edwards, says the local authority was a great partner to work with. He says: “Having such an enlightened client as Barking and Dagenham Council has allowed us to create a thermal suite which boasts the same quality of design and facilities that you would expect to find in a five-star hotel or destination spa. “The council has been very innovative in their choice of facilities ensuring that the new spa will act as a great additional revenue stream, and

also attract people who may not have considered using a local authority centre previously. It is a great facility for residents.” Willmott Dixon’s managing director, Chris Tredget, adds: “The excellent quality of the finished building reflects the close working relationship with Barking and Dagenham and is an exemplar for future projects in the community.” Abbey Leisure Centre replaces the 29-year-old Abbey Sports Centre on an adjacent site in Axe Street. When deciding on options for the derelict site, Barking and Dagenham Council considered new ways to boost Barking’s night-time economy. The council found another commercial partner, Lindhill, to help develop a plan for a building that will include a three-screen cinema and commercial units on the ground floor, a permanent base for health and

social care innovation centre, Care City, on the first floor, and privately rented homes on the floors above. Plans will be submitted later this year. The council’s economic development and sustainable communities group manager, David Harley, describes them as “striking”. He says: “A cinema is an important element of the Barking town centre strategy and will help improve the town’s leisure and evening economy alongside both the leisure centre and The Broadway Theatre. “We wanted a cinema, as Barking has a limited evening offer, and we felt a cinema, as well as the theatre and leisure centre, would help support that and attract new restaurants alongside proposals for 5,000 homes.” The new cinema building should be completed by 2017 /18, bringing another exciting element to Barking and Dagenham’s growing leisure offer.


Bold Sitematch

Barking and Dagenham creative industries zone London is facing a severe shortage of affordable space for the creative industries. Huub Nieuwstadt finds out how one London borough plans on addressing the problem with an ambitious bid to become the first creative industries zone London is facing a substantial challenge whereby affordable workspace and living accommodation serving creative industries is being lost. This is having a negative impact on the capital’s economy. Barking and Dagenham is a superb location for a wide range of creative industries. With this in mind the London Borough of Barking and Dagenham has submitted a bid to the London Regeneration Fund for a package of projects delivering affordable workspace for creative industries as well as affordable rented accommodation for artists. The council already has an excellent track record when it comes to stimulating the creative sector by engaging the local community. Creative Barking and Dagenham is a three-year project which aims to create new ways for local people to experience outstanding arts and creative activities. The Broadway Theatre run by Barking & Dagenham College, working in partnership with the Barbican and Guildhall, is another great asset. Those working in the creative sector can find excellent accommodation in Barking. The Ice House Quarter on the River Roding is home to film-makers, fashion designers, fine artists, furniture makers and chutney makers. The Boathouse is another excellent venue for those working in the creative sector. But more is needed. Future accommodation through the creative


industries zone will provide scope for a full range of creative industries to find a home in Barking, which supports their growth. The London Borough of Barking and Dagenham is working on this project with partners including Create London, Creative Barking and Dagenham, Barking and Dagenham College, Bow Arts, Studio 3 Arts, the Ice House Quarter and Barking Enterprise Centre. For more information contact David Harley, group manager economic development and sustainable communities at Barking and Dagenham Council: Sitematch London is an event enabling public sector landowners to engage with private sector developers, investors and occupiers. For more information, visit

A view of the Ice House Quarter in Barking, which offers studio space for creative businesses.

Find out why Barking and Dagenham is London’s Growth Opportunity at Jeremy Grint Divisional Director of Regeneration and Economic Development 020 8227 2443

David Harley Group Manager Economic Development and Sustainable Communities 020 8227 5316

Daniel Pope Group Manager Development Planning 020 8227 3929

The Local Partner Swan is committed to supporting Barking and Dagenham to deliver its vision for regeneration. Swan Group have over 20 years of experience of delivering homes and regeneration in East London and South Essex and a reputation for delivering innovative, sustainable homes and exemplary communities. To discuss partnership opportunities that can make a difference, contact Graham Kauders, Senior New Business Manager, on 01277844231 or

BOLD #5 - Barking and Dagenham  

BOLD magazine publicises the work of regeneration organisations in Barking & Dagenham.

BOLD #5 - Barking and Dagenham  

BOLD magazine publicises the work of regeneration organisations in Barking & Dagenham.