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Issue two spring 2015

West London Citygrove Securities is proud to be working in Hillingdon. Creating a new heart for South Ruislip, with new homes and further retail and leisure facilities for local residents. • 132 new homes • 11-screen Cineworld • • • •

Enquiries: 10 Albemarle Street London W1S 4HH Tel 020 7647 1700

Issue two spring 2015

Find out more at:

multiplex cinema Family-themed restaurants Asda foodstore 536 new jobs Landscaped public open space

Vinyl revival central research laboratory – turning hayes around

CE NTRAL RE SEARCH LA BORATOR Y HA YES The Old Vinyl Factory in Hayes was once a global centre for innovation in product design and Manufacturing as the European headquarters of EMI/HMV. The CAT scanner, stereo sound recording and airborne radar were all invented there in a building called The Central Research Laboratory. We have created a plan to bring it back to life as a key part of the redevelopment of the entire site. The new CRL will provide fledgling entrepreneurs with cutting edge prototyping facilities, expert mentoring, technical support and an inspiring place to work. It’s jointly funded by the developers, the Mayor of London (through the Growing Places Fund) and Brunel University London in partnership with the Higher Education Funding Council for England.

C E N T R A L R E S E A R C H L A B O R A TO R Y . C O M

TRANSFORMING CONCEPTS INTO PRODUCTS AND INVENTORS INTO SUCCESSFUL ENTREPRENEURS WE WANT TO HEAR FROM YOU IF: You’re an entrepreneur interested in basing your business at the CRL You’re looking for opportunities to invest in our member businesses Your business is interested in supporting the CRL and getting closer to the UK’s best product design & manufacturing talent


woRKSPaCE Providing Hillingdon with unique working environments that enable new and growing businesses to have the freedom and opportunity to thrive.

1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8

Horton Road Enterprise House Arches Business Centre QWest Park Royal Business Centre The LightBox Europa Studios Chandelier Building

















Europa Studios

Chandelier Building


The LightBox

Arches Business Centre

Case study Enterprise House


Enterprise House, a grade II listed building, situated on Blyth Road was formerly a Vinyl Factory. Following detailed heritage and structural assessments, Workspace has now developed proposals for the full restoration of Enterprise House and has submitted these to the Council’s planning department. The proposals involve:

• Full restoration of the original concrete frame of the building and its iconic rooftop water tower • Full restoration of the Otis Waygood lift in the west staircase, one of the earliest lifts of its type in the UK

• Replacement of all the existing windows with new matching windows • Improvement of the buildings environmental performance • Retention of the Vinyl Factory at ground floor with new expanded facilities and a café • New business units for new and growing companies aimed at creative and sound industries.

020 7369 2390


19 Editorial director Siobhán Crozier Editor Maria Shahid Chief reporter James Wood Head of design Rachael Schofield Art direction Kate Harkus Production assistant Christopher Hazeldine Business development director Paul Gussar Office manager Sue Mapara Subscriptions manager Simon Maxwell Managing director Toby Fox Cover Image Vinyl Record – Radoman Durkovic/Shutterstock Images London Borough of Hillingdon, ASK Italian, Cathedral Group, Persimmon Homes, Inland Homes, Crossrail, NEXT, Designed by Good People, Wagamama, David Tothill, intu Properties, Crossrail, dn-a, Uxbridge College, Rackspace, Charles Church, Stockley Park Printed by Bishops Printers Published by 3Fox International 375 Kennington Lane London SE11 5QY 020 7978 6840 London Borough of Hillingdon Civic Centre, High Street, Uxbridge, Middlesex UB8 1UW Subscriptions and feedback © 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 f­ orbidden. 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 ­necessarily those of 3Fox International Limited.


Contents 6 News A round-up of developments and regeneration in the offing.

43 crossrail Crossrail is hotting up housing demand in Hillingdon.

10 parks and Leisure With 200 parks and 1,800 acres of green space, residents and visitors are spoilt for choice.

44 housing Businesses, homebuyers and developers are taking a closer look at Hayes.

16 Town Centres Towns in Hillingdon are being transformed, and local businesses are reaping the rewards.

48 markets Money matters in Hillingdon.

19 Retail, food and drink With an eclectic mix of old and new, the borough is undergoing a retail and restaurant revolution. 28 projects Hillingdon schemes that are making headway. 38 regeneration priorities The council’s cabinet member for community, commerce and regeneration highlights how the authority is helping investors.

51 workplace Hillingdon is becoming a hotbed for innovations in office space. 54 Sitematch We look at a prime opportunity site available in the borough.


Sound signings at The Old Vinyl Factory New signings have been confirmed at The Old Vinyl Factory development in Hayes for three businesses, including SONOS, the global technology firm that produces wireless music systems. Joining SONOS at The Shipping Building – an art deco office space at the scheme – will be the privately-owned web hosting provider Host Europe Group (HEG), and the global IT firm which serves the air cargo industry, CHAMP Cargosystems. Formerly the headquarters of record label EMI, the £250 million scheme is being developed by Cathedral Group. The project is set over 6.9ha, and will feature 630 homes and 70,000sq m of space for commercial and leisure facilities. Cathedral estimates the project will generate 4,000 jobs by 2022. The three companies to move into The Shipping Building have each taken

out a 10-year lease. SONOS will move into a 540sq m space on the first floor, HEG has taken 825sq m on the fifth floor and CHAMP 940sq m on the sixth floor. The building is now 85% let, with 1,800sq m remaining. The ambition for the Central Research Laboratory part of the scheme is for it to become the UK’s first full-service incubator for hi-tech manufacturing entrepreneurs, combining research and development space with commercial training, mentoring and seed-funding, as well as a high-spec prototyping facility. Richard Upton, chief executive of Cathedral Group, said: “We have adopted a new approach at The Old Vinyl Factory, offering something different to UK and international companies that want to be in this great location west of London, and whose investment is critical to the growth of London’s creative economy.”

SEGRO buys Nestlé site SEGRO has purchased a 12.14-ha site in Hayes, which has been home to the coffee and food production company, Nestlé, for more than a century. Nestlé will continue to occupy the site, while decommissioning it, for up to six months from the beginning of 2015.


Throughout this period, SEGRO will consult with Hillingdon Council, the Greater London Authority and the local community over its plans for the site. Located less than a mile from junction 3 of the M4, the site is also next to Hayes and Harlington railway station, which is due to

become a Crossrail station in 2019. Andrew Gulliford, SEGRO’s chief operating officer, said: “2014 was a busy year for development and this transaction is an excellent way to add to our Greater London land bank in a location where occupier demand is strong.”

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Landscape award for developer’s Hillingdon scheme

Inland Homes has won a national award for “best landscape design” for its Drayton Garden Village scheme in West Drayton. The project, which includes 779 homes, as well as village greens with seasonal-themed play areas, was presented at the What House? awards at London’s Grosvenor House. The scheme won several awards during 2014, including being ‘Highly Commended’ in The Sunday Times British Homes Awards for Development of the Year (over 100 houses), Best Regeneration Project at The Housebuilder Awards and Development of the Year (for 51+ units) at The Bricks Awards. Stephen Wicks, chief executive at Inland Homes, said: “Drayton Garden Village is a fantastic example of a brownfield site being transformed into a thriving community of sustainable homes in a beautifully landscaped setting. It was thrilling to win silver at these esteemed awards, especially after all our other commendations in 2014, and we were delighted to learn that the judges found the development as exciting as we do.”

Progress on St Andrew’s Park

Prologis expand portfolio

Work is progressing on St Andrew’s Park in Uxbridge, according to the developer, St. Modwen. Development manager for the company, James Stockdale, said: “The John Locke Academy Primary School opened in September 2014 and there are already 165 new homes on site. “Construction has started on the next phases of the development, which total 290 new homes and we are looking

Industrial real estate company, Prologis, has secured two sites in Hillingdon, and is preparing planning applications for both. Proposals for a 12.1-ha project in Stockley Park include mixed light industrial and distribution units. The planning application will also detail proposals to bring 16.1ha of land near Stockley Park into the public realm. Andrew Griffiths, managing director at Prologis, said: “There is a good level of demand for industrial and distribution property in west London, so we are delighted to have secured this site.” The company also purchased a 2.6-ha site in Hayes’ Venturis Park, where it is proposing a development of 10,684sq m. Both sites are near Prologis’ two schemes on Dawley Road and Stockley Road. Both have easy access to the M4’s junctions 3 and 4 and are less than two miles from Heathrow Airport.

to submit a detailed planning application for two new office buildings in spring 2015”. The scheme is being built on the site of the former RAF Uxbridge and will eventually feature 1,340 homes, as well as the school, a theatre, park and commercial space. According to the developer, 15% of the homes being built will be affordable.

Tesco commits to former Master Brewer site Tesco has committed to developing a 3,540sq m supermarket, a six-storey, 70-bedroom hotel and 125 homes on the site of the former Master Brewer hotel at Hillingdon Circus. Despite announcing the closure of 49 stores and putting on hold a number of other developments, Tesco has said it


issue 2 spring 2015

will forge ahead with plans for the Master Brewer project. The scheme will bring 200 jobs to the area, with 30% going to the long-term unemployed, a spokesperson for the supermarket brand said. Dave Lewis, chief executive officer, said: “We’ve carefully reviewed our

planned new store developments across the country and it remains our intention to open our planned store in Hillingdon. “We continue to believe that the store will provide a valued service to the local community. It will also provide a great shopping experience as well as bringing new jobs and investment to the area.”



Station proposals submitted Crossrail has submitted a planning application to build a new station at Hayes and Harlington. The proposals include a ticket hall, a footbridge with four lifts to provide stepfree access to every platform, a waiting room, platform extensions, replacement canopies, lighting, customer information

screens, signage, help points and CCTV. The new building was designed by architects Bennetts Associates and will replace a commercial property currently on the site. From the end of 2017, it will be run by Transport for London as part of the capital’s integrated transport network.

Next stop Hillingdon Home and fashion retailer, Next, is to open a new superstore at the Lombardy Retail Park in Hayes. Hillingdon Council gave planning permission for the project in November. Next will relocate from its current location at the retail park and, by upsizing, will create 36 jobs. Councillor Douglas Mills, cabinet member for community, commerce and regeneration, said: “Hayes has undergone a real transformation over the last few years and we are seeing more large retailers wanting to base themselves there. “We are very pleased to see more jobs being created and I expect retail opportunities such as this will encourage people to shop locally too.” The store is expected to open in summer 2015.

Matthew White, Crossrail’s surface director, said: “Our proposals are for a modern, prominent building that reflects the importance of the station to the area. A bright, spacious ticket hall and other upgrades will make using the station a much better experience for the thousands of people who pass through every day.”

Phased improvements start in Hayes Hillingdon Council was due to begin its town centre improvements scheme in Hayes in February. Work will begin on Coldharbour Lane as part of phase one of the project, which will see the renovation of cycle lanes and bus stops, scheduled for completion in spring 2016. Phase two of the project, which focuses on Station Road and Crown Close, will run from spring to autumn 2016. New junction improvements are planned for phase three, due to complete in spring 2017. Councillor Keith Burrows, cabinet member for planning, transportation and recycling, said: “Once the work has been completed, Hayes will be much improved, attracting new businesses, increasing footfall and giving residents a town centre they can feel proud of.”

hillingdon house prices set to rise An interactive graphic to forecast house price growth driven by Crossrail has shown property in Hillingdon is set to rise. Property consultants JLL carried out the research and developed the graphic, which predicts West Drayton’s house prices will rise by 51% between 2015 and 2020 – the third highest jump in the capital. The cost of houses in Hayes and Harlington are forecast to grow by 41%.


West Drayton was ranked fourth in the “overall Crossrail impact score”, which takes into account the regeneration already under way, as well as development which is likely to happen. Both West Drayton and Hayes and Harlington were placed in the top 10 for “development desire and opportunity”, ranking ninth and 10th respectively.

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Green zone Hillingdon is London’s green and pleasant land, with more award-winning parks than anywhere else in the UK. James Cracknell discovers the secret to its success


f you want to go green, go to Hillingdon. Not only does the west London borough boast 200 parks and 1,800 acres of green space – five times the size of Hyde Park – but it also has more Green Flags than anywhere else in the UK. This has not happened by accident. Less than a decade ago the borough had only six of these awards, which are presented to parks and open spaces that have been judged against eight strict environmental criteria. A winning combination of investment by Hillingdon Council and community involvement on the part of local people has seen the west London borough

improve parks, along with our green spaces team. They are very passionate.” One park in particular stands out as an example of this collaboration. Eastcote House Gardens, close to the borough border with Harrow, earned its Green Flag in 2011 just three years after the Friends of Eastcote House Gardens community group was formed, with the aim of restoring the park to its former glory. Further success followed in 2013 when the Heritage Lottery Fund (HLF) awarded a £1.28 million grant for the restoration of the gardens’ historic buildings and provision of new community facilities. Work is

we have volunteer groups that are not justi vocal but have physically helped improve parks,i along with our green spaces team. they arei very passionatei shoot up the Green Flag league table. It now has 28 parks with this status, above Edinburgh on 25 and 23 for Westminster. After maintaining the Green Flag record for a second year in 2014, Councillor Jonathan Bianco described the rating as “a wonderful achievement” and thanked “all of the volunteers and community groups who have helped us achieve this”. Paul Richards, Hillingdon’s senior manager for green spaces, puts the success down to voluntary co-operation and effort: “It wouldn’t be possible without the assistance of volunteers, it is pretty unique for a London borough. “We have volunteer groups that are not just vocal but have physically helped


now well under way on the project. Lesley Crowcroft, who founded the friends’ group, remarks on how much has been achieved in such a short space of time: “It’s tremendous. We were told by the HLF that to have got this far in six years is a miracle. “An awful lot of work went into the bid from volunteers and this is the sort of thing HLF like to see,” she says. “Before we started, the garden had become overgrown and vandalised and local people had decided not to go in there. “When we publicised the group, people became very

Parks & leisure

supportive and it has snowballed from there. I can’t believe how many are involved now – we’ve got 50 [active] volunteers. “All the way through it has been about teamwork.” The historic structures at Eastcote House Gardens are Grade II-listed, but in need of urgent repair. Once restored the timber-framed 16th century stables will house a community hall and the 18th century dovecote will form an education centre. A new building will also create a cafe. Richards adds: “Eastcote House Gardens is the best example of where people have rallied together to improve a park. They have rolled up their sleeves and got pruning. It sums up what Hillingdon’s success has been about.” Crowcroft says the group couldn’t have made the progress it had without council backing. “Without the support of [council leader] Ray Puddifoot we wouldn’t have got this far. He has put the case to his council that we should make the Lottery bid and match-fund it. “The green spaces officers like coming here to work with us – they know we’ll give them a cup of tea,” she adds. Eastcote House Gardens is one example of success among Hillingdon’s impressive range of leisure amenities, but there are plenty more. In recent years the council has invested £50 million in renovating and building leisure centres, boosted by grants from government bodies and S106 contributions Eastcote House Gardens was from local developers. awarded a Green Flag award It all adds up to make in 2011, and funding from the Hillingdon one of the best Heritage Lottery Fund in 2013. places for a day out in London.


Parks & leisure

Investment in parks Many of Hillingdon’s 28 Green Flag parks have been boosted by investments from the council, developers and Lottery grants. Hillingdon looks at what has been achieved.

Ruislip Lido The picturesque Ruislip Lido is nestled on the edge of Ruislip Woods. It was opened as a feeder reservoir for the Grand Junction Canal in 1811, but reopened in 1933 as a lido for public bathing, complete with artificial beach. In 1945 a miniature railway was built around its perimeter and still runs today. Hillingdon Council announced a £2 million enhancement programme in 2010 following a period of decline during which the lido was declared unsafe for swimming and its main building was destroyed by fire. The revamp is under way and in 2014 one of the cornerstones of the project, the Woodlands Centre, opened to the public. It became one of the lido’s most popular attractions, providing information on nearby Ruislip Woods and a history of the lido itself. Other improvements include new playground equipment, toilet facilities and rain shelters, works which helped the lido win a Green Flag in 2014.

Lake Farm Country Park is popular for its cycling track and skate park, as well as being rich in wildlife.


A £2 million redevelopment of Ruislip Lido is under way, improvements which helped the lido win a Green Flag in 2014.

Lake Farm Country Park Lake Farm Country Park in Hayes is an important site for wildlife, where rare species include the skylark, a threatened bird in the UK. As well as being notable for biodiversity this Green Flag park is also known for its cycling track, used by Hayes Hawks BMX Club. Hillingdon Council built upon the popularity of this facility by adding a £180,000 skate park using money contributed from local developers. Its design was drawn up with help from the BMX club and the Friends of Lake Farm community group. Paul Richards, senior manager for green spaces at Hillingdon Council, says it had been a big hit since it opened in 2013. “Local youngsters had been after a skate park there and it has been very popular since we put it in a couple of years ago.”

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Investment in leisure facilities Over the past five years, Hillingdon Council has invested more than £50 million updating indoor and outdoor leisure facilities. Some were even good enough to be used as Olympic training camps.

Hillingdon Sports and Leisure Complex is one of the top leisure facilities in the UK after a £26 million revamp in 2010.

Manor Farm Manor Farm in Ruislip is Hillingdon’s “flagship heritage site” with a motte and bailey fort dating back 1,000 years, making it one of London’s most important archaeological sites. There is also a range of farm buildings on the site, some dating back to the 12th century, which were renovated in 2008 using Lottery funding. They now provide an art gallery, education centre and community hall. The Great Barn has become a popular wedding facility and hosts a weekly farmers’ market, turning Manor Farm into a valuable source of income for the council and a major tourist attraction in the local area. Richards says: “Manor Farm now hosts weddings nearly every weekend. It is a fantastic facility that benefits everyone.” The site won its first Green Flag in 2014.

Winning its first Green Flag in 2014, Manor Farm is Hillingdon’s “flagship heritage site” and a big tourist attraction in the area.

Hillingdon Sports and Leisure Complex This large centre has become one of the top leisure facilities in the UK since it was redeveloped in 2010 at a cost of £26 million, funded mainly by the council, with help from Sport England, the London Development Agency and Heritage Lottery Fund. It is based around the site of Uxbridge Lido, an outdoor pool that originally opened in 1935. It had closed to the public in 1998 and was heavily vandalised, but has once again become hugely popular since its renovation and reopening four years ago. Other features include a running track, an Olympic-sized indoor pool, astroturf pitches, gym, sports hall, cycling studio and cafe. It is operated on behalf of the council by Fusion Lifestyles, a charitable trust. In 2012 the complex was used as a training base by the South Korean Olympic Team.


Parks & leisure Highgrove Pool The pool in Ruislip was refurbished by the council at a cost of £5.7 million in 2013 and now boasts a brand new pool, improved accessibility, enhanced changing rooms and larger gym. The upgraded gym at Highgrove provides 92 workstations, an aero-biking studio and refurbished changing rooms.

Highgrove Pool has a brand new pool and an upgraded gym providing a range of activities such as aero-biking.

The “adiZone” outdoor gym at Fassnidge Park is part of Hillingdon’s 2012 Olympic Legacy.

Botwell Green Leisure Centre

The £20 million leisure centre also has a library.

Work out A series of outdoor gyms have begun opening around Hillingdon and more are being planned. At Fassnidge Park near Uxbridge town centre the “adiZone” equipment – sponsored by Adidas and part of the London 2012 Olympic Legacy – includes an exercise bike, chest press, doublesided climbing wall, basketball court, tennis wall and freestyle area for aerobics, dance, martial arts, and yoga. Other outdoor gyms have opened at Shenley Recreation Ground in Ruislip, Elephant Park in Hillingdon village and at Ruislip Lido.


This award-winning leisure facility in Hayes is unique because of its inclusion of a library among its range of sports activities. It is managed by Greenwich Leisure and includes a 25m swimming pool, children’s pool, sauna, fitness suite, gym, creche and 3G football pitch. The centre was built in 2010 at a cost of £20 million to the council, and replaced the former Hayes Swimming Pool.

And more

Queensmead Sports Centre in South Ruislip was refurbished in 2004 and includes a two-floor gym, exercise studio, multi-purpose sports hall and fully floodlit netball courts. In addition to the council’s sports facilities, William Byrd Pool in Harlington is run by a private trust and offers “a personal swimming experience” with more privacy offered than rival pools.

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St. Modwen’s £150 million regeneration of the former RAF Uxbridge site is creating a sustainable new community. Around 1,300 new homes will be delivered, alongside a primary school, 40-acre public park, office park, theatre and community facilities.

Town centres

Urban hymns


ny retail centre can begin to look tired over time, as stretches even of Oxford Street demonstrate – but strategic investment pays dividends, boosting an area’s economic strength with the success of its individual businesses. As commercial rents and business costs shoot up in central London, enterprising startup businesses are finding opportunities in outer boroughs. Along with them, a fresh demographic of potential residents are seeking more affordable properties with good transport connections, bringing additional spending power into the local economy. In Hillingdon, the council has commissioned specialist designers to spruce up aspects of its towns. A flagship scheme is one to improve shop fronts across the borough. To make this happen, the council has brought in Designed By Good People, which has undertaken similar work in areas across the capital. Lee Newham, partner of the design agency, explains how the company came to be involved: “When we started out, we worked on marketing campaigns for global corporations, but quickly decided that wasn’t what we wanted to do. “It’s much more rewarding to work with small, local businesses where you can see the effect of your work and how it changes perceptions of a place. We have found this really positive. You learn a lot through talking to people directly about what they want. The challenges vary, but the results can be very rewarding.” Designed by Good People has worked on the shop fronts across the Hillingdon towns, including garages, florists, butchers, pet shops and funeral directors. Newham says just one or two projects are yet to complete in Northwood Hills, one in Ruislip Manor, and in Harefield village the scheme is in full swing. The Manor Farm Butchers in Ruislip Manor had its exterior renovated in early 2014. Ian Hallam, owner, sees tangible results. He says: “The work has made the place look more traditional, which is what I wanted. About 95% of the people who have commented on our new look have been positive. One or two even said they wouldn’t have come in before, but our new look changed their minds.”


Above and below – before and after the shop front improvement scheme in Ruislip Manor, by Designed By Good People.

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Improving people’s perceptions of a town is good for business, and funding – from the council, London mayor and Greater London Authority – supports retailers in lifting their game and brightening up the urban scene. James Wood finds town centres high on Hillingdon’s agenda

Open to all, but with smaller businesses favoured, applicants apply to the council for the work to be done. Rather than being allocated on a firstcome-first-served basis, the council is placing emphasis on the quality of the design and how it will contribute to upgrading the place as a whole when it considers potential recipients, which could receive up to £4,800 for the work. In Hayes, the council has undertaken major consultation with residents on aspects of the town centre they would like to see improved. The authority received more than 650 responses, with proposals to emerge with strong support including more 30 minutes free “stop and shop parking”, renovating the town canal bridge, improving cycle safety and removing the central reservation in Coldharbour Lane. New junction improvements (pictured left), as part of the Hayes town centre scheme, were due to start in February 2015, and complete spring 2017. Northwood Hills is the recipient of £2 million, funded by £1.3 million from the Mayor’s Regeneration Fund and £450,000 from Hillingdon Council, plus additional cash from Transport for London. This has provided shop front grants for 35 businesses, 35 saplings have been planted to create a tree-lined central boulevard in Joel Street and a mural was unveiled at Northwood Hills tube station in December 2014, thought to be the third biggest of its kind in Europe. Elsewhere, improvements to Yiewsley and West Drayton, which include landscaping and resurfacing roads, are complete. For shopping, the major hub is Uxbridge (see page 19), which performs strongly for employment opportunities. Key to the success of the ongoing economic development of Hillingdon is its urban centres, which are attractive to residents, capable of supporting existing businesses and enticing new ones. And with investment from the public sector, local companies are reaping rewards.

It’s much more rewarding to work withi ismall, local businesses where you cani ireally see the effect of your worki


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Buckinghamshire New University announces new Human Performance, Exercise & Wellbeing Centre Buckinghamshire New University is delighted to announce plans to open a Human Performance, Exercise & Wellbeing Centre which will bring together the University’s existing health and sports provision as well as host new undergraduate programmes which are actively recruiting students for September 2015. The multi-million pound centre which will lead in premium sports science will house a state-of-the-art Sports Injury and Physiotherapy Clinic at which members of the public can arrange appointments for competitively-priced treatments. Other cutting-edge facilities will include an integrated Human Performance Laboratory and three lane running track with motion-capture technology. In addition to the University’s BSc (Hons) Sport & Exercise Science, a new MSci in Sports Therapy is being offered which will be accredited by The Society of Sports Therapists. There is also a Foundation Degree in Sport, Exercise & Health and BA (Hons) Exercise, Health, and Fitness Management. Dr Alison Chambers, Pro Vice Chancellor of the University’s Faculty of Society & Health, said: “We are really excited about establishing this new Centre of Excellence for Human Performance, Exercise & Wellbeing which has an innovative academic portfolio and integrates teaching, research and enterprise. “The new Bucks Sports Injury and Physiotherapy Clinic will initially be operated by qualified practitioners to support and supervise students as they build their skills and knowledge base.

The clinic will also offer other employability opportunities including student work placements, research and professional consultancy services for sport, fitness and health care providers.” Sport, exercise and wellbeing are key aspects of the UK Government’s focus, reflecting the fact that future generations will require a workforce that is knowledgeable and skilled to drive the fundamental importance of sport, exercise and physical activity for healthier and happier lives. The 2012 London Olympic Games legacy is also a government priority to ensure that there is a lasting economic, social and cultural benefit that will positively affect the whole of the UK. The Centre will provide an excellent vehicle to achieve positive health legacy impacts from the London 2012 Olympic and Paralympic Games as one of the objectives will be to look at ways in which disabled people can be supported in developing and maintaining physical and mental health. Paralympic rower from the 2012 Games Naomi Riches MBE, a member of the Bucks New University Sports Advisory Board and mentor for students, said: “Since I graduated from Bucks New University in 2006 it has undergone many positive changes. The Human Performance, Exercise & Wellbeing Centre is probably the most important step in taking the University to the next level in this arena. Bringing together students, high performance athletes and coaches, along with members of the public being able to access the various treatments will further raise Bucks New University’s profile as having one of the best performance centres around. I am very excited about making use of the facilities on offer myself.” Students applying to study the new sport, exercise and wellbeing courses in September 2015 should refer to the UCAS website at 0800 0565 660

Retail, food & drink

What’s cooking? Quality and choice are on the up in Hillingdon, when it comes to shopping and dining. James Wood takes a look at some of the borough’s best restaurants as well as its latest retail attractions

Hillingdon's Wagamama is the first of the chain's newly-designed restaurants.


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Retail, food & drink


erceptions of shopping centres have changed. In the past, perhaps only those with a penchant for finding a bargain could be seen braving the crowds of a shopping centre. But times have moved on, and thanks to stimulating retail environments of bright and open spaces, multiplex cinemas, acclaimed restaurant chains, kids clubs and live dance shows, shopping centres are becoming destinations. Opening in 2001 as The Chimes, Hillingdon’s biggest mall became intu Uxbridge in 2013, following the name change of the parent group – Capital Shopping Centres. A number of existing old buildings in Uxbridge High Street were restored and incorporated into the new retail centre, designed so the building could blend into its surroundings. Intu entered into a joint venture agreement in June 2014 with Kumpulan Wang Persaraan, the £19 billion Malaysian pension fund, which acquired an 80% interest in intu Uxbridge for £175 million. Intu retains 20% and continues to manage the centre. Shelley Peppard, general manager of intu Uxbridge, says: “The centre has seen an increased footfall in 2014, driven by a number of great retailers opening and the development of our external piazza space. “Our letting strategy will see the small number of void units in the centre replaced by brands that are new to Uxbridge. We are absolutely committed to working with all parties to ensure that the town is the first choice for shopping in and around the borough.”


Come dine with me

While chain restaurants are nothing new for the average shopping centre – most will feature a Burger King or McDonalds – rarely have they been considered a place for sit-down dining or for discovering new and intriguing cuisines. As international food becomes more commonplace, popular brands such as the Japanese fusion chain, Wagamama, are able to come into malls and thrive.

Opening its first store in Bloomsbury in 1992, Wagamama can now be found in 17 countries across the world. Its Hillingdon branch – the first of the chain’s newly designed restaurants – opened in December 2014 at intu Uxbridge. A 240sq m unit, it opens on to the pedestrianised High Street between Nando’s and Bella Italia. A letting was also confirmed in the summer of 2014 for the Mexican chain

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we are absolutely committedi to ... ensure that the town isi the first choice for shoppingi in and around the boroughi

Above right and below – Pizza Express and Wagamama at intu Uxbridge. Above and right – Mr Simms Olde Sweet Shoppe and Five Guys on Uxbridge's High Street.

restaurant, Chiquito, which opened its Uxbridge branch at the end of that year, and together with Wagamama, has helped enhance the food offering to customers and to the people of Uxbridge, according to Peppard. It adds another option to a diverse range of intu eateries, which also include Italian staples Pizza Express, Ask Italian and Zizzi’s. Chiquito can be found in a 320sq m space above the upper mall, next to


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Retail, food & drink

Left – Italian food at Zizzi, intu Uxbridge. Above – The Odeon at intu Uxbridge features an Imax screen. Below – The homely vibes of Martin's Place in Uxbridge.

people tell me that what theyi like about the restauranti is that it offers somethingi a bit differenti

the foyer of the Odeon cinema. The cinema itself is one of only five Odeons in London to feature an Imax screen, attracting those who come to watch the latest blockbusters in 3D. Family facilities are also available at the centre: “Kiddy Kruzzers” miniature cars keep children entertained, while story sessions for youngsters, and dance students from Uxbridge College have also featured; all elements that intu hopes are making it stand out. But it isn’t the only shopping centre


in town. The Pavilions, which opened in the early 1970s near Uxbridge’s market square, was bought by LaSalle Investment Management for £64.5 million in July 2013. It is now primed for a major overhaul and planning permission was granted in October 2014 to turn 15 shops into one giant store. Last refurbished in the 1980s, Hillingdon Council is hopeful that the plans to regenerate the site will be carried out in 2015, with two further phases set to go before the planning committee. The

first of these would see the remodeling and refurbishing of the Market Square mall entrance and the exterior on the High Street – and the next and final phase would be to improve the public spaces surrounding the adjoining Tesco.

The big eat

Away from the shopping centres, Hillingdon offers a wide variety of independent restaurants and shops, such as Mr Simms Olde Sweet Shoppe on Uxbridge High Street.

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Curry houses are in abundance, with Ruislip Manor home to one of the borough’s most established – the Raj Tandoori, which dates back to the 1970s. It now has strong competition in the town with Simply Indian, Elachi, Darjeeling Tandoori and Gurkah’s Pride – which also serves Nepalese food – all offering further choice. Not to be outdone by their neighbouring towns, Hayes has the popular Grapes Tandoori and Annayu, and Uxbridge has a few Indian gems of its


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own. Javitari and Curry Culture have all received mass plaudits on the TripAdvisor website. Meanwhile, diners head to the stylish furnishings of Lumbini for Nepalese cuisine, with Indian options also on the menu. And there is no lack of other cuisines: Country Thai and Nabrasa Brazilian demonstrate the vast range of global eateries on offer, while Italian joint, Nonna Rosa, serves delicious “Mama’s kitchen” fair, catering for birthdays, weddings and anniversaries. Also popular

are Five Guys and Red Iron Burgers, both on the High Street. An Uxbridge favourite in the local community is the homely French bistro, Martin’s Place, which has been based in the town for 20 years. With near unanimous acclaim, it seems Hillingdon folk are rather attracted to the lightsdown, front room feel it offers. The restaurant has just five tables, catering for around 20 people at a time. Owner and chef, Martin Wiedemann says most of his customers are regulars:


Retail, food & drink “People tell me that what they like about the restaurant is that it offers something a bit different. One thing they are particularly attracted by is my fillet steaks, which I do with a range of sauces. In fact, it’s maybe thanks to those steaks that I’m still going today! “I’m amazed by the amount of new restaurants in the town, but luckily, it hasn’t affected my business too much. That’s good, because Uxbridge is really lively and a great place to be. It has a nice mix of old streets and new shopping centres.”

For Lebanese food, Hillingdon’s foodies head to family-run restaurant, The Cedar Tree, in Ruislip Manor, which has won 36 awards and accolades, including a TripAdvisor certificate of excellence, and was named as the highest “diner-rated” Lebanese restaurant in the world on The restaurant’s website proclaims its chef has been recognised as the “queen of Lebanese cooking within the London Lebanese community”, and that people now travel from all over Europe to try it out. The borough also boasts a number

of pubs, and one that has gained a reputation for the quality of food is The Pheasant Restaurant and Pheasant Inn in Hayes; often a good choice for those staying at the nearby Heathrow Hotel. The extensive specials menu includes a steak and ale pie, herb-crusted rack of lamb and mixed seafood a la crème. As the pace of change through regeneration accelerates, Hillingdon is an increasingly attractive proposition – and restaurants and retail feature highly when it comes to offering both visitors and residents a good quality of life.

Uxbridge is really lively andi a great place to be. It has ai nice mix of old streets andi new shopping centresi

Above – Rustic pasta bakes at Ask Italian. Below – Wagamama's inclusive Japanese dining can be enjoyed at intu Uxbridge.


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hillingdon on the map

An in-depth look at the main regeneration projects shaping the London borough of hillingdon – what is planned and what has been delivered



iSt andrew’s parki 5

the old vinyl factoryi central researchl llaboratoryi Charter Placei

3 hillingdon central london

town centre improvementsi



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Above and left – The new Hayes and Harlington station will bring Crossrail to Hillingdon. Top and top right – Improved traffic management in Hayes town centre is expected to complete in 2017. Right and below right – A unique mural for Northwood Hills tube station, part of the £2 million worth of improvements made to the town.


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Town centre improvements

As part of its town centre improvement programme, Hillingdon Council is investing more than £11 million in Hayes, Ruislip Manor, Harefield village and Northwood Hills. Two million pounds of this has already been spent in sprucing up Northwood Hills to make it more attractive to live, work and visit. Improvements have included over 35 shop front grants for town centre businesses, new pavements, updated lighting and fresh street furniture, as well as a unique mural at Northwood Hills tube station. A number of improvements have also been completed at Ruislip Manor, including the refurbishment of the railway bridge over Victoria Road with bright lighting, as well as new shop fronts for over 50 businesses with the aid of the council’s grant scheme. Next in line is Harefield village, where grants have been offered to local businesses. As it is a conservation area, care will be taken to ensure that the village’s history and heritage is retained in the refurbished frontages. In Hayes, the improvement scheme will be completed in two phases. Transport for London has committed £4.5 million to the Hayes town centre improved traffic management scheme. In total £6 million will be spent in transforming the town in this first phase, which started in February 2015, and is expected to complete in 2017. Improvements will include better pavements, and brighter street lighting to make the area feel secure and welcoming, especially at night. There will be more safe and convenient places for people to cross the road, as well as easy access for shoppers and visitors driving to the town centre to use the existing car parks. Cycle lanes that are separate from traffic will also be introduced, as well as new, centrally located bus stops. Phase 2, which is scheduled to start in April 2016 and complete in 2018, will then cover the area of the town centre from the canal bridge along Station Road, and through the junction of North Hyde Road. This will include the area surrounding Hayes and Harlington station and will complement the new station that will be constructed. Crossrail recently submitted a planning application to the council for the station.


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Projects 2

The Old Vinyl Factory

The former EMI site in Hayes was at the heart of the UK’s vinyl record production for decades. The Beatles, Elvis Presley and Jimi Hendrix all had records pressed here. Hidden and forgotten for many years, it was bought by Cathedral Group which then received planning permission for the site in April 2013. Cathedral’s intention is to transform The Old Vinyl Factory into a thriving, mixed-use neighbourhood for Hayes, which will help bring economic growth to the town. As Hillingdon went to press, three prestigious companies signed 10-year leases for space in The Shipping Building, one of which was leading US wireless music systems manufacturer SONOS. Considered one of the largest regeneration projects in west London, The Old Vinyl Factory will eventually deliver more than 630 homes and 70,000sq m of commercial space, featuring a cinema, museum, restaurant complex, shops and bars. All of this will be set in 16,723sq m of landscaped public space, and will create a whole new part of Hayes town centre. The scheme mixes the existing historic buildings with new-build elements. Phase 1 of housing, consisting of 132 homes at The Gatefold Building, is currently under construction by Invesco Real Estate and Willmott Dixon. Outline permission has also now been granted for phase 2 of the development. The housing developer, HUB, exchanged contracts with Cathedral Group and Development Securities in July 2014, and 213 homes are being built at two sites at The Boiler Room and Material Store. Cathedral has also recently secured new tenants for The Shipping Building, a distinctive art deco design by Wallis, Gilbert and Partners, who were the architects of such landmarks as the Hoover Building. Discussions are now being held with the council on the detailed design of The Old Vinyl Factory.


Below left – Cathedral Group’s mixed-use redevelopment of The Old Vinyl Factory will create more than 630 homes and commercial space. Right and below – The Central Research Laboratory at The Old Vinyl Factory will be launched in 2016, bringing new startups, jobs and business incubation support to the area.

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Central Research Laboratory

The Central Research Laboratory (CRL) is located at The Old Vinyl Factory on the site of The Record Store. Designed by renowned architects Allford Hall Monaghan Morris, it is due to launch in 2016. Cathedral describes the CRL as a jobs factory which aims to nurture and train a highly skilled workforce. New startups in hi-tech, design-led, manufacturing industries will be provided with comprehensive business incubation support, including access to approximately 929sq m of highspec prototyping space. Mayor of London, Boris Johnson, backed the project with funding of ÂŁ7.7 million from the Growing Places Fund, contributing to a total investment of ÂŁ11 million. Businesses will have access to mentoring through partnerships with the likes of Brunel University and innovative manufacturing businesses, as well as early seed capital funding. Investment will be available to CRL entrepreneurs.


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St Andrew’s Park

The transformation of RAF Uxbridge, now called St Andrew’s Park, is well under way. The ultimate aim is to create a complete community at the site, which will feature 18ha of public space, a 1,200-seat theatre, museum, doctor’s surgery, 90-bed hotel, primary school, care home, as well as 14,400sq m of retail and office space. The new primary school, John Locke Academy (pictured above), opened its doors to the first intake of children in September 2014, and will provide places from reception to year 6. The construction of a new road and improvements to access to the school from Park Road complete the development. Phases 1 to 3 of the scheme will see the development of 500 new homes at the site by residential developer, Persimmon. Development manager at St. Modwen, James Stockdale, said: “The development of St Andrew’s Park is progressing well. The John Locke Academy primary school opened in September 2014 and there are already 165 new homes on-site. Construction has started on the next phases of the development, which total 290 new homes, and we are looking to submit a detailed planning application for two new office buildings this spring.” The marketing of phase 4 of the scheme is due to start in late spring. St Andrew’s Park will comprise seven phases in total, and is expected to take around 10 years to complete. The 45-ha site will eventually create 14,400sq m of commercial space, as well as 1,340 new homes; 15% of these are expected to be affordable.


Top left – The new homes at St Andrew’s Park are progressing well, with construction having started on the next phases of the St. Modwen development. Above and left – Office building, Charter Place, adjacent to Uxbridge tube station, will be refurbished and extended by Landid and Brockton Capital.

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Charter Place

Located just off Uxbridge High Street and adjacent to the town’s tube station, Charter Place is a 1980s office building that until recently, housed soft drinks giant, Coca-Cola, and oil and gas company, Nexen. Landid and Brockton Capital acquired the freehold of the 14,670sq m building in 2013, with the intention of refurbishing the existing building. The developers’ plans were granted permission by the council in mid-2014, and include a 6,968sq m extension to the existing building, as well as improved sustainability credentials. In addition to around 200 cycle spaces, the building will also benefit from electric charging points.


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C nnected Made 4

4 Business


Connecting the best of London...

...with the rest of the world

we want developers to knowi that we are ready and willingi to talk to them, and to worki with themi


Regeneration priorities

The time, the place Long a hotspot for national and global headquarters, the proliferation of large employers around Hillingdon backs up the council’s “open for business” boast. The cabinet member for community, commerce and regeneration speaks to Maria Shahid about the priorities for economic development and regeneration


Councillor Douglas Mills outside Hillingdon Council’s Civic Centre in Uxbridge town centre.

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ouncillor Douglas Mills has been at Hillingdon for 32 years, and in that time has seen the borough’s fortunes change considerably; never more so than in the last few years. His role, he says, is to make it clear to investors that the council’s “commitment to be commercially minded and open for business is all true”. Mills exudes an air of confidence when talking about what the borough is able to offer investors. “We’ve got direct links to motorways such as the M25, the M4 and M40, which provide unrivalled access to the south-east and the rest of the country. And of course we’re only a 15 minute drive from Heathrow Airport. Added to this, the western section of Crossrail will be opening up stations in Hayes and Harlington as well as West Drayton, with services due to begin from 2019, providing access to Canary Wharf in 35 and 36 minutes from each station respectively. “We want developers to know that we are ready and willing to talk to them, and to work with them,” says Mills, citing the council’s major applications committee as a great example of how seriously it is taking investors. The committee, set up

by the council in 2014, deals exclusively with “larger, more controversial or complex planning applications”, and, according to Mills, really helped focus everyone’s attention on what needed to be done, in order to make sure these development projects secured the green light, ahead of the wave of infrastructure projects such as Crossrail. “We recognised the need to have a separate, bespoke committee to deal with this type of application”, Mills explains, adding that it has proved to be a great success, allowing them to be processed far more rapidly. Mills is understandably proud of what has been achieved in Uxbridge; walking along the town’s historic High Street it’s clear to see that a lot of thought has gone into creating a safe and inviting shopping district. “It’s a great place to be,” enthuses Mills. “This is really coming across from feedback we’ve had from local agents, who are reporting an increasing number of enquiries from companies that have identified Uxbridge as an ideal place for a major European headquarters.”

Office rules

St Andrew’s Park, on the former RAF Uxbridge site, primarily a residential development but with a significant commercial element, is a prime example of the increasing popularity of office developments in the borough. Mills explains that the start of the scheme’s commercial phase was initially 2017, but that this is likely to be brought forward to 2015. “We have been approached by the developers with a view to putting back some phases of the residential elements in favour of developing the commercial side. We’re really open to that, and are in detailed discussions with the developers at the moment.” Mills’ enthusiasm for what St Andrew’s Park represents is palpable: “It’s really a game changer for Uxbridge, and


The feedback we’ve had fromi local businesses on thei improvements we’ve made toi date is that it has completelyi exceeded their expectationsi

will shift the focus of the town away from the station and the existing High Street, and up to where we are based at the Civic Centre; it really creates place.” Also on the way to the Civic Centre, a five-minute walk from the station, is Charter Place. Mills explains that the recent sale of this 1980s office block further underlines the borough’s increasing popularity as a prime location for office development. Landid and Brockton Capital bought the freehold interest in the 14,668sq m site in 2013, and were granted planning permission to regenerate it in mid-2014. They are committed to investing around £70 million in the development with a view to transforming it into two state-ofthe-art corporate headquarters, which are due to complete in 2016. The developers are expecting to attract “a mix of corporate occupiers”, drawn to the excellent transport links, as well as the growing vibrancy of Uxbridge town centre. Mills cites Charter Place as a shining example of how the council’s improved planning processes helped the developers get on-site as quickly as possible. “We understood what they were trying to achieve and dealt with the planning side with the minimum of fuss”.

Urban revival

The council’s vision for Uxbridge is to create a town that is thriving and vibrant in its own right, and not just a dormant suburb at the end of the Metropolitan and Piccadilly underground lines. Mills explains that the priority has been to provide a range of good infrastructure such as leisure facilities and libraries, which have all added to a “sense of wellbeing”. He proudly refers to CocaCola and Nexen, both companies that have chosen to keep their European headquarters in Uxbridge, after coming to the end of their leases at Charter Place.


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Regeneration priorities

s ie t i n u t r o p p o g Creatin

Above – intu Uxbridge Below left – Wagamama on the High Street Below – one of many public realm improvements in Uxbridge town centre.


Hillingdon’s jobseeker’s allowance (JSA) figures are currently at their lowest level since 2008. Mills believes that these figures are partly a reflection of the general economic upturn, but more specifically a reflection of initiatives introduced by the council. “We have Jobcentre Plus (JCP) sitting in the Civic Centre. Where any development of a significant size is due to take place, the JCP has engaged in discussions with the employers to see whether suitable people can be channelled into their path. A great example of this was the Asda supermarket in Hayes, which is opening next summer. The kind of jobs on offer at Asda fits nicely with the profile of jobseekers registered with the JCP.” Added to this, the council has strong links with the local schools and colleges, including De Salis and Uxbridge College. “[Retailer] Next has just got approval for a site off Uxbridge Road in Hayes. JCP and Next are working together to maximise local recruitment. In addition, the council has brokered an agreement between De Salis College and Next to support young people gaining employment there via their apprenticeship scheme”.

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As part of this continuing programme of public realm improvements, the council is now looking to spend £3 million from its 2015 budget in refurbishing and modernising the Cedars and Grainges car parks; sending a strong message that: “we are providing core infrastructure to make the town a safe place to be”, according to Mills. He adds that it also helps developers in their discussions with major retailers and restaurant chains. “We want Uxbridge to be a place where people stay and linger after work, which is why we are creating cultural and leisure opportunities such as the theatre – due to be developed at St Andrew’s Park; it will be the first theatre in the town. We are also increasing the number of restaurants on offer.” The intu Uxbridge shopping centre (formerly The Chimes) has also been on a mission to increase the number of restaurants. One of its most recent arrivals is Wagamama, renowned for its pan-Asian cuisine, which opened the first of its new-look restaurants in the town at the end of 2014. Mills explains that the council’s ambitions do not stop at Uxbridge, Hillingdon’s metropolitan town centre, but extend to Hayes, Ruislip – both main district town centres – as well as secondary districts including Northwood Hills, Ruislip Manor and Harefield village, where a programme of shop front improvements has been carried out. “We have successfully managed our resources, enabling us to allocate the type of money needed to make this a reality. The feedback we’ve had from local businesses on the improvements we’ve made to date is that it has completely exceeded their expectations. They are blown away by what we’ve achieved. The commitment from the mayor’s Outer London Fund really gave us the kickstart and financial support to see things differently. It also helps to work with likeminded organisations: we have genuine partners like St. Modwen and Cathedral working with us.” There’s a lot happening in Hillingdon. Mills reels off projects such as the forthcoming Asda and cinema complex in Ruislip, and Cathedral’s Central Research Laboratory in Hayes, opening in 2016. “We want investors to know our commitment to be open for business is true, and that we are for real.”


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Crossrail’s impact on property values along the entire route is transforming the market in previously overlooked outer London neighbourhoods. Crossrail is stimulating development to meet the demand for housing, as Paul Coleman reports

Train spotting


rossrail is now only four years from completion and London’s new east-west rail link is already creating property hotspots in Hillingdon. Only 23 minutes will separate West Drayton station (pictured above) from Bond Street and in just 37 minutes, passengers will arrive at Canary Wharf. In anticipation, West Drayton property prices rose by up to 20% during 2013-14 – with further rises possible as the start of Crossrail nears. Newly built houses are also satisfying demand for homes in the area – the new Drayton Garden Village development

Prices range from £200,000 for onebedroom flats to just under £400,000 for a three-bedroom house. Local estate agents, the Cameron Group, also launched off-plan a series of one, two, and three-bedroom apartments in a private, gated development along the Grand Union Canal. The company markets these homes as a “fantastic investment opportunity in the latest Crossrail hotspot, West Drayton Waterside”. Cameron Group director Nicholas Jordan says: “We have seen a huge increase in investors confident their investment will achieve a rise in value once Crossrail opens.” Jamie Kinch of managed cloud

west drayton property prices rose by upi to 20% during 2013-14 – with further risesi possible as the start of crossrail nearsi occupies a 12.5-ha site with 779 homes. The site used to host the UK’s main air traffic control centre but is undergoing a complete transformation. The first 123 one and two-bedroom homes will be for private rent – after developer Inland Homes secured an £8.7 million deal with the government.


issue 2 spring 2015

company, Rackspace, says Crossrail’s station at Hayes and Harlington will further enhance Hillingdon’s attractiveness as a place for ‘Rackers’ (Rackspace employees) to work and live. Crossrail’s link to Heathrow will also increase Rackspace’s connectivity to its global locations and markets.

The first new units at Drayton Garden Village by developer Inland Homes.

“Heathrow Airport has always been convenient for us and our customers,” says Kinch. “We’ve a lot of international travel between our Hayes location and our Hong Kong offices and our HQ at San Antonio in Texas.” But Crossrail’s impact is not just about immediate boosts to Hillingdon’s housing market. Hillingdon Council aims to see an additional 4,000 jobs coming to Hayes over the next few years, which can partly be achieved through mixed-use schemes that can provide employment opportunities alongside housing. The ambition of the Central Research Laboratory at The Old Vinyl Factory in Hayes – which has already attracted public sector investment of £7.7 million from the Growing Places Fund – demonstrates the possibilities for such developments.



Hillingdon’s range of new houses and development opportunities – close to the borough’s musical and aviation legacies – is proving attractive to new businesses, homebuyers and developers. Paul Coleman finds out why


ake a look around Rackspace’s amazing offices at Hayes in the heart of Hillingdon. The global leader in managed cloudcomputing likes to make its employees feel at home. ‘Rackers’, as Rackspace employees tag themselves, work through a range of 24/7 shifts in offices that recreate ‘home’ environments. They meet in quiet rooms on openplan floors with themes that include carmakers, 1970s music groups and children’s authors. Retro-lounge furniture, Chesterfield sofas and rugs punctuate the floors. Picnic benches adorn a courtyard garden overlooked by a glass-covered atrium. Rackspace’s complex also features placid ‘downtime’ areas, a state-of-the-



art gym, library and a restaurant. The boardroom replicates 10 Downing Street’s famous door – complete with a cardboard cutout of prime minister David Cameron. Floor rugs add to that homely feel throughout the 9,290sq m complex. Hayes – and Hillingdon – as a place and a borough, also makes Rackspace employees feel at home. Since moving to Hayes, the company has taken on more staff. Jamie Kinch, Rackspace’s real estate director, recalls the move from two offices in Stockley Park, a location outgrown by the business. “About 800 of our 1,000 UK ‘Rackers’ work at Hayes,” says Kinch. A significant proportion of Rackspace’s Hayes workforce has taken advantage of Hillingdon’s increasingly modern housing stock. “We’ve a mix of locally based

employees as well as people commuting from outside,” says Kinch. Rackspace already benefits from the existing Hayes and Harlington station – and the arrival of Crossrail in 2019 will help its onward growth. “Prospective job candidates look favourably at our Hayes location,” he adds. Other Rackers benefit from Hillingdon’s increasingly fast connectivity to London, the M4 corridor and the Thames Valley. “Being located in Hillingdon is economically advantageous to Rackspace. It’s a location where we can access a large pool of talent.” Hillingdon – and Hayes, in particular – also hosts a plethora of some of London’s highest-quality new homes. The £250 million redevelopment of The Old Vinyl Factory (TOVF) near

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Far left – The new Hayes and Harlington station bringing Crossrail to the borough in 2019.

Hayes Hayes and Harlington station regenerates an evocative strand of London’s 20th century history – the vast former HMV/ EMI record factory. Thousands of people once worked at the 23.5-ha factory between 1907 and 1988. From here, 22,000 people worked at the site in its 1960s heyday, making vinyl records that brought music – Jimi Hendrix, the Beatles and Elvis Presley – to the gramophones and stereos of the masses.

British engineering innovation also flourished here – new broadcasting systems originated at this place. Alan Blumlein developed stereo sound technology at EMI’s Central Research Laboratories. Airborne radar and the CAT scanner were also developed here. Akin to many industrial areas around the UK, Hayes experienced manufacturing decline, along with the attendant loss of jobs and dereliction of once busy factory sites.

being located in hillingdon isi economically advantageous toi rackspace. it’s a location where we cani access a large pool of talenti hillingdon

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Above – Rackspace’s homely offices.

Spanning 6.9ha, TOVF site represents one of west London’s largest and most ambitious regeneration projects, and will form a new area of Hayes town centre. Hillingdon Council granted planning consent to TOVF masterplan in April 2013 – a joint venture between developers Cathedral Group and Development Securities, that also enjoys the backing of the mayor of London. The multi-phased, mixed-use development is expected to generate 4,000 jobs and more than 630 new homes – including affordable housing – by 2022. The development will also create 70,000sq m of commercial and leisure space – featuring shops, bars, restaurants, a museum and a seven-screen multiplex cinema. Landscaped squares and public spaces will cover 16,723sq m.


Housing Residents of TOVF homes will also benefit from the start of Crossrail eastwest services in 2019. From a new Hayes and Harlington station, local people using Crossrail will travel to Bond Street in 20 minutes and Canary Wharf in 35, enabling residents ease of access to central London’s major employment markets. All of these factors will strengthen Hayes’ heartbeat and connect this west London suburban enclave in fast journey times to the centre and east of the capital. Important TOVF milestones were reached during 2014, as construction continued apace on the first phase. A partnership between Willmott Dixon and Invesco Real Estate is delivering

132 homes at The Gatefold Building. HUB, the mid-market home developer, also signed up to develop homes on two TOVF sites owned by Cathedral Group and Development Securities. “We are delighted to bring HUB’s experience on to the project,” says Cathedral Group chief executive Richard Upton. “Since we and our partners at Development Securities acquired the site in 2011, we have taken care to rediscover its past and make plans for its future.” Award-winning architects Studio Egret West and Duggan Morris have designed a mixed-use neighbourhood, creating a town centre but reinstating many of the footprints of TOVF’s original buildings. It reuses the old factory’s listed

shipping, cabinet making and record store buildings. The Boiler House and Material Store will host some 213 homes – detailed planning consent for The Boiler House was secured in 2014. A new, shared surface street – The Groove – creates a pedestrian route through a series of spaces that connect to Hayes town centre and to the rail station. At the heart of the development will be The Power House, an existing building that will become a performance venue and a district-wide energy centre. The Record Store will become the Central Research Laboratory (CRL), which will establish an incubator base for hi-tech manufacturing entrepreneurs, combining research and development

cathedral’s redevelopment of the oldi vinyl factory regenerates a classic parti of london’s history, with a schemei that will give a huge amount back toi the communityi

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Connectivity activities. Commercial training, seedfunding and mentoring will be offered, and an approximately 929sq m high-spec prototyping facility will be available. Soon, Hayes will fit alongside other parts of Hillingdon that host international companies such as Apple, Canon and IBM. “Cathedral’s redevelopment of The Old Vinyl Factory regenerates a classic part of London’s history, with a scheme that will give a huge amount back to the community,” says Steve Sanham, HUB Residential’s development director. “Projects like this demonstrate close working between residents, local authorities and developers, bringing to the market high quality homes and creating interesting places where people want to live.”

Below left – The Old Vinyl Factory will create 630 new homes by 2022. Top and right – St Andrew’s Park by St. Modwen.

k r a P s ’ w e r d n A St

As part of a £150 million transformation, St. Modwen is creating a new community at St Andrew’s Park on the 44.5-ha former site of RAF Uxbridge. In the summer of 2014, Persimmon and Charles Church completed the first new dwellings, part of a phased development of 500 homes. Located at the heart of the development, the new John Locke Academy primary school welcomed its first pupils in September 2014. It is one of many new or upgraded schools throughout Hillingdon, resulting from the council’s £150 million investment in its school building programme, the largest of its kind in London. The 10-year St Andrew’s Park regeneration project will see up to 1,340 new homes, of which 15% will be affordable housing. The scheme also creates a new town centre with around 18,581sq m of offices and retail space created on the old RAF Uxbridge site. This will also feature a hotel, theatre, museum, and community facilities – and as befitting the development’s name – a new 16-ha public park due to open in 2016. The park surrounds Hillingdon House, a listed building, and once the home of RAF Bomber Command. Robert Barton, St. Modwen’s residential land director, says work on the new town centre begins in 2015 and most of the 150 homes are now occupied: “It’s Hillingdon’s exemplar development. The new town centre will be completed in 2017 and will include a beautiful park built on the site of a rifle range where guns for First World War bi-planes were developed.”


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Hillingdon money facts… £7.7 million

2.9% per annum

Growing Places Fund investment in the Central Research Laboratory at The Old Vinyl Factory

Average predicted increase in residential values on western stretch of Crossrail

£10 million Council’s libraries investment programme

£150 million

investment in primary schools


new primary schools opened in September 2014

(with a third to be delivered in September 2015)

£28 million

for new secondary school, Northwood, opening in 2016


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£3.4 million

2015-2019 budget for highway and town centre improvements at key access points to Hayes and Uxbridge

£1.25 million 2015-2019 budget for shop fronts

£3 million 2015 budget for investment in Uxbridge car parks by Hillingdon Council


Average house price predicted within 1km of Hayes and Harlington station by 2021 (Source: Crossrail Property Impact Study by GVA (2012)


Average house price in Hillingdon

Commitment to Hayes town centre improvements

Hayes, Ruislip Manor, Harefield Village and Northwood Hills improvements

£6 million

£11 million


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(Land Registry data for November 2014)


Uxbridge College employer services working with Hillingdon for Hillingdon Shape and develop your current and future workforce with Uxbridge College. We work closely with Hillingdon Council to support recruitment and training for Hillingdon employers, providing you with a pipeline for future talent. Whether you need to attract staff to fill your short term or permanent vacancies , or you want to train current staff to gain higher level or specialist industry skills, we are here to help.

Our success rates make us the top college in west London.

We are experienced in providing recruitment, training and business services to small, medium and large employers. Our technical and professional training is delivered by expert staff using the latest technologies. Significant investment has been made in developing InfinIT Training, our professional IT Training and Test Centre, and Engineering facilities to meet sector needs.

The Employer Experience “We have been working closely with Uxbridge College, being the local college to Heathrow, in the recruitment of some of their electrical and mechanical candidates for landmark projects such as the Heathrow Terminal 2B Project. We appointed eight high calibre candidates, most of whom are now an integral part of our business plans. There are likely to be some similar forthcoming landmark projects and we would be looking forward to working with the College again.�

Alastair Green Labour Manager

Balfour Beatty Engineering Services.


Space odyssey

Hillingdon has long been home to global companies, and with developments creating more high quality workspace, the borough is ready to welcome new employers, from startups to multinationals, writes David Blackman


ith Heathrow Airport on its doorstep, Hillingdon’s blue chip credentials as an office location are clear. A host of major companies have based themselves in its main town centre of Uxbridge, including Coca-Cola, Parexel, Canadian oil company Nexen, Rank Xerox, Raytheon and United Biscuits.


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Meanwhile at Stockley Park, which has grown into one of western Europe’s most established business parks over the past 25 years, occupiers include Apple, Canon, GlaxoSmithKline and IBM. Hillingdon has traditionally had a strong manufacturing heritage. However, the council’s development plan estimates the bulk of approximately 20,000 new jobs that will be created across the borough by 2026 will be office based. As the main town centre, Uxbridge

Stockley Park is one of western Europe’s most established business parks.

will be the focus for much of this growth. The development plan identifies demand across Uxbridge for 70,000sq m of office floorspace until 2021. Uxbridge town centre’s showpiece development is Charter Place (see page 54). The scheme by Landid and Brockton Capital involves the refurbishment of a 1980s office building, which was until recently home to Coca-Cola and Nexen. The project, designed by dn-a (De Novo Architecture), has set a new


Workplace There are no other majori developments like Charteri Place in the Thames Valley,i right next door to the tubei and a healthy high streeti

Picture captions to run in coloured boxes. Any colour from palette, but tie in with dropcap/ quote colours. Sits anywhere.

benchmark for office developments in the borough’s main town centre. The 21,400sq m scheme is located less than a minute’s walk from Uxbridge tube station, which is served by both the Piccadilly and District lines. Independent local office agent Simon Williams says Charter Place is a “very exciting” office development for the Uxbridge market, both in terms of its design and location. “There are no other major developments like Charter Place in the Thames Valley, right next door to the tube and a healthy high street,” he says.


Chief executive of Hillingdon Council, Fran Beasley, says the development, which won planning permission in record time, is being targeted at high-end, corporate occupiers. Meanwhile both Coca-Cola and Nexen have decided to stay put in the borough. Coca-Cola has taken space at Baker’s Yard, a stone’s throw from Charter Place. Nexen took premises at Segro’s nearby Riverside Way Estate, which also boasts Xerox as a tenant. “Both companies could have moved anywhere in the UK,” says Beasley. Immediately to the south of Uxbridge

centre, at St. Modwen’s development St Andrew’s Park, a new community is taking shape on the site of the town’s former RAF base. The 44.5-ha site is earmarked for 18,581sq m of commercial space in addition to 1,340 homes, a theatre, hotel, and GP surgery, all of which is set in 16ha of parkland. The commercial space will be housed in three buildings. John Locke Academy, the primary school which opened in September 2014, sits alongside these planned developments, playing a vital role in the foundation of this new community.

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Left – Setting a new benchmark for office developments, Charter Place. Above – Charter Place is just over a minute’s walk from Uxbridge tube station. Below – The Central Research Laboratory will provide space for hi-tech startups.

The sprawling site of the former EMI factory at Hayes is another chunk of Hillingdon’s heritage which is being brought back to life. While part of the EMI empire, the site became a hotbed of innovation – both the CAT scanner and radar were developed in laboratories on the site, which has been largely redundant for the last two decades. Cathedral Group, which recently became part of commercial property giant Development Securities, has ambitious plans to turn it into a centre of cutting edge business. Commemorating the location’s historic role, when the site


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was pumping out millions of Beatles and Pink Floyd albums, Cathedral has named the scheme The Old Vinyl Factory. As part of the redevelopment, Cathedral is creating the Central Research Laboratory (CRL), which will offer space for startups in hi-tech, designled manufacturing industries. CRL programme director, James Nettleton, says: “That story is incredibly powerful to the types of businesses we work with. It connects with them because they care about heritage and about the type of innovation that took place there.” However, while record production

was revived on the site to meet new demand for vinyl music, the developer’s sights are set squarely on fostering the businesses of the future. These firms won’t just get accommodation when they move into the CRL. In addition, the development will offer business incubation support and an approximately 929sq m high-spec prototyping facility, where firms will be able to make models. By taking space at the CRL, startups will have access to the kind of equipment they could not otherwise afford. They will also receive access to early seed capital funding and business mentoring from organisations like Brunel University, and innovative manufacturing companies. Nettleton, who observes that targeted firms like the site’s heritage, says: “The CRL aims to create for startups the type of community that Old Street’s Google Campus provides for digital companies.” The CRL, which recently received £7.7 million of investment from the mayor of London’s Growing Places Fund, will offer the kind of environment found in London’s trendy Silicon Roundabout. The difference is that more space is available in Hayes, which will soon be a 20-minute train ride from central London’s Bond Street, thanks to Crossrail – and at a much more affordable rent. Nettleton says: “This is the type of site that is hard to deliver in the centre of London.”


Sitematch opportunity

Charter Place


andid and Brockton Capital received planning consent in July 2014 for an ambitious redevelopment of Charter Place, a 1980s office building in central Uxbridge. The building is adjacent to Uxbridge underground station and High Street, providing excellent accessibility and an amenity-rich environment. The building will be stripped down to its structural frame, and completely remodelled with terracotta cladding and glazed walls. The renovation will be delivered to high sustainability standards, achieving a BREEAM “very good” rating and an Energy Performance Certificate “B” rating. The existing floor plates of the building will be extended, with a penthouse floor added. This will extend

Refurbishment and extension of a 1980s office block offers new opportunities for a range of commercial occupiers, writes Sitematch research manager Huub Nieuwstadt

the revamped building isi expected to attract a mix ofi national and internationali corporate occupiersi the building by 6,968sq m, to a total of roughly 21,400sq m. A new atrium and indoor ‘street-scene’ will be created, offering amenities such as restaurants and cafes, as well as breakout spaces and concierge facilities. Landid and Brockton Capital bought the freehold interest in the building in 2013 from Ignis Asset Management. The revamped building is expected to attract a mix of national and international corporate occupiers wanting to take advantage of a modern and energyefficient building in an increasingly vibrant part of west London with excellent transport and communication links. It will offer great flexibility to tenants by providing a range of finishes and the option to incorporate specific fit-out requirements.


Charter Place is conveniently located next to Uxbridge underground station and High Street.

The two existing floors of car parking will be retained, and bicycle parking and shower facilities will be added, as well as a series of electric car charging points. Construction works commenced in late 2014 and are expected to complete in 2016. The marketing agents are DTRE, JLL and Rose Williams. For more information about Charter Place, contact the team at Landid on 020 7495 9100.

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BRUNEL TALENT RESEARCH INNOVATION ENGAGEMENT If you are a business and not quite sure how you would like to work with Brunel, please contact Andrew Ward, Director of Corporate Relations, Brunel University London.

Email: Tel: 01895 267698

Issue two spring 2015

West London Citygrove Securities is proud to be working in Hillingdon. Creating a new heart for South Ruislip, with new homes and further retail and leisure facilities for local residents. • 132 new homes • 11-screen Cineworld • • • •

Enquiries: 10 Albemarle Street London W1S 4HH Tel 020 7647 1700

Issue two spring 2015

Find out more at:

multiplex cinema Family-themed restaurants Asda foodstore 536 new jobs Landscaped public open space

Vinyl revival central research laboratory – turning hayes around

Hillingdon #2  

Hillingdon is a business publication, highlighting the regeneration progress and future investment opportunities across the London Borough o...

Hillingdon #2  

Hillingdon is a business publication, highlighting the regeneration progress and future investment opportunities across the London Borough o...