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Investment opportunities in the London Borough of Bromley

Investment opportunities in the London Borough of Bromley

Essential Living is redefining the private rental market. By shifting the focus onto the needs of tenants we make renting as easy and fulfilling as possible. We design living spaces with sharers in mind, providing a balance of communal areas and privacy. Through developing and managing vibrant, social places to live, we are determined that renters can find a home that is flexible enough to suit their lifestyle.


Essential Living is excited and proud to be working in association with Bromley Council.

Invest Bromley Issue 4 Autumn 2016

Ready for take-off Bromley: a housing hotspot for London We could be heroes: Bowie’s musical heritage Changing room: Town centre transformers


Welcome to the Future of Renting

Bromley, you’re looking great today! ST MARK’S SQ. A NEW LIFESTYLE QUARTER FOR BROMLEY. A vibrant, urban public square with 200 luxury private and affordable apartments, 8 restaurants, a 9-screen multiplex cinema and 130-bed hotel. WWW.STMARKSSQUARE.CO.UK






A round-up of what’s happening in and around Bromley.

10 TOWN CENTRES A mixture of retail, leisure and restaurant schemes are transforming Bromley’s town centres. 

14 HOUSING With housing zone status granted in March, the council’s plans are moving closer to fruition.


35 CONNECTIVITY With 26 rail stations and fast trains to central London, Bromley’s residents have no shortage of travel options.

Contents Issue 4 Autumn 2016

38 EMPLOYMENT AND SKILLS A new skills-led hospitality college is the first of its kind in London.


T he restoration of Beckenham’s bandstand is honouring former resident David Bowie.

24 PROJECTS  e look at the schemes that are W shaping the borough.

Editorial director: Siobhán Crozier Editor: Maria Shahid Assistant editor: James Wood Reporter: Marco Cillario Head of design: Rachael Schofield Design: Tammy Kerr Production manager: Chris Hazeldine Business development manager: Harry Seal Divisional director of business development: Paul Gussar

A  new museum due to open at the airport will celebrate the role it played in the second world war.

How  Bromley stacks up in numbers.

46 SITEMATCH  hurchill Gardens forms part of the C next phase of the redevelopment of the town centre.

Subscriptions manager: Simon Maxwell Office manager: Sue Mapara Managing director: Toby Fox Printed by: Park Communications Cover image: St George’s RAF Chapel of Remembrance Biggin Hill by Stuart Burns (CC BY 2.0) Images: Intu, Leslie Jones Architecture, Mike Rivett/Fotomotion, U+I, Odeon, Berkeley Homes, London Biggin Hill Airport, Jim Linwood (CC BY 2.0), Berman Guedes Stretton, Crest

“Bromley town centre’s housing zone status brings the council’s longterm strategy for the borough closer to reality”

Nicholson, Essential Land, David Bowie photos courtesy of David Bebbington; Jorvik Press, Eurotunnel, Eurostar, ©TfL, Channel 4, Bromley College, Studio Egret West, East Architects Published by 3FOX INTERNATIONAL Sunley House, Croydon, CR0 2AP 020 7978 6840

© Copyright 3Fox International Ltd 2016. All material is strictly copyright and all rights are reserved. Reproduction in whole or in part without the written permission of 3Fox International Ltd is strictly forbidden. The greatest care has been taken to ensure the accuracy of information at time of going to press, but we accept no responsibility for omissions or errors. The views expressed in this magazine are not necessarily those of 3Fox International Limited.

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New release A striking collection of apartments A stunning collection of just 83 contemporary 1 & 2 bedroom apartments each with private terrace or balcony with secure basement car parking *. Brunswick Square will be a centrepiece for Orpington’s exciting regeneration alongside a hotel, cinema, gym, library, new retail, restaurants and bars. Only 18 minutes to London Bridge from Orpington Station.

Prices from ÂŁ325,000 ** New View Suite showcasing stylish specification now open To register your interest please call on 01689 769 178 View Suite by Appointment Only: Berkeley Homes (Eastern Counties) Ltd, Berkeley House, Oakhill Road, Sevenoaks TN13 1NQ Proud to be a member of the Berkeley Group of companies

*Parking subject to availability. **Price correct at time of going to press and excludes car parking. Journey time is approximate. Source: Computer generated image depicts Brunswick Square and is indicative only.


HOUSING ZONE FOR BROMLEY Bromley town centre has been identified as a housing zone by the former mayor of London. It is among the 11 new housing zones announced by the mayor’s office on 10 March 2016, and is set to provide 1,468 new units. Housing zones are areas designated to stimulate and speed up housebuilding,

regeneration of brownfield sites and development of supporting infrastructure through a range of planning and financial measures. The mayor has allocated an additional £200 million for the new zones, which will provide 24,554 new homes in total.

London now has 31 housing zones, for which £600 million in funding has been made available, estimated to deliver 77,000 new homes – 34% of these are aimed at being affordable. The programme will also provide 150,000 associated jobs over the next 10 years. NEWS 5

NEW CINEMA FOR ORPINGTON A seven-screen Odeon cinema opened at The Walnuts Shopping Centre, Orpington in March 2016, the first facility of its kind to be brought to the town in 34 years. The cinema has 959 seats and boasts an iSense screen with Dolby surround sound. It also features an “in-screen dining concept”, delivered by its Croma Pizza Point counter and a range of food and drink options for film lovers. The cinema’s opening comes shortly after the arrival of new restaurants at The Walnuts – Bella Italia and 1950s-themed Dean’s Diner, all part of the first phase of the shopping centre’s expansion for which planning permission was granted in 2012. Martin Price, centre manager at The Walnuts, said: ”We are really excited, having worked through the development phase to the opening of the Odeon. “The restaurants have already been a fantastic success on top of the new B&M furniture store and Pure Gym. “It’s making a huge difference, but we’re still letting new space and more good news is about to come as we look forward to completion of phase two of the regeneration, with the Premier Inn hotel and more outlets set to open.” The second phase of the development received planning permission in late 2014, and the 63-bedroom Premier Inn hotel opened in August 2016.

BERKELEY HOMES LEADS THE CHARGE Developers at a regeneration scheme in Orpington town centre have committed to protecting the environment by providing residents with charging spaces for electric cars. Berkeley Homes announced in February 2016 that private car parks at Brunswick Square would be equipped with charging points. The announcement came as figures in a report by campaign group Go Ultra Low revealed that 28,000 low emission vehicles were registered in the UK during 2015 – more than the combined total of the previous five years – and the plug-in car market almost 6 INVEST BROMLEY AUTUMN 2016

doubled, rising by 94% from 2014 to 2015. Peter Smith, managing director of Berkeley Homes Eastern Counties, said: “Vast increases in low emission car sales have prompted a sudden surge in charging point installations. “However, Brunswick Square provides a much more convenient way of ‘refuelling’ with designated charging spaces in the residents’ car park. This allows residents to charge their vehicles while in the comfort of their apartments.” For more information about Brunswick Square, see page 29.

READY, WILLING AND ABLE Bromley’s vision for growth is coming to fruition, according to council leader Stephen Carr. Carr spoke exclusively to Invest Bromley magazine about the borough’s growth agenda, commenting that the council was “really pleased with the progress being made, which is not just focused on town centres, but is evident right across the borough in Penge, Crystal Palace, Orpington and Beckenham”. He added that Bromley Council has committed more than £21 million to establish a growth fund, which is being used to enable investments in Biggin Hill, the Cray Business Corridor and Bromley town centre. The latter was granted housing zone status by the London mayor’s office in the spring. Consent has been granted for more than 600 residential units in the town centre, and 220 of these are already complete with a further 200 under construction. Carr emphasised that in addition to housing, the area will also need better infrastructure, including a new primary school. The council is also currently working with Network

Rail and other partners with a view to the redevelopment of Bromley North station. “We are looking for a proposal of the right height and density. We want to see sustainable development, and it needs to be measured and balanced.” Carr confirmed that a preferred development partner for the next phase of the redevelopment of Opportunity Site G would be announced by mid-autumn. One of the council’s key projects, which it is working on with the GLA and Bromley College, is to establish an Aviation and Technology College on the redundant RAF West Camp Estate at Biggin Hill. “We are working with local colleges on creating employment opportunities, and have identified a site for a centre of excellence at Biggin Hill,” Carr commented. “We want to be aspirational as a borough,” he concluded. “We believe we have the right demographic for this and are now delivering on that vision. We are willing and keen to speak to private sector partners to help us deliver the right schemes.”


NOISE ACTION PLAN AT AIRPORT London Biggin Hill Airport has plans to limit aircraft noise after the council approved the extension of its opening hours. On 25 November 2015, Bromley Council granted approval to the airport’s new operating times – 6.30am to 11pm Monday to Friday and 8am to 10pm on weekends and bank holidays. Biggin Hill announced at the end of January 2016 that it was introducing a noise action plan, as requested by the council. It received the final go-ahead from the council in June.

The plan commits the airport to a range of measures aiming to minimise the impact of planes on neighbouring residents. Councillors and local residents will be able to track every flight and receive information about noise levels. Also, tighter controls will be made on light aircraft, which are the subject of many noise complaints. No-fly zones have already been introduced for this type of aircraft, along with bans on circuit training before 9am and after 5pm on summer weekends.

Consultations have been held over plans for a new secondary school on Balmoral Avenue in Beckenham. Eden Park High School, managed by the trust Education for the 21st century (E21C), would be built on a former woodland 4.5-ha site purchased by the Education Funding Agency. The school is due to open in September 2017 in temporary accommodation at The Ravensbourne School on Hayes Lane and then move to its permanent location in September 2018, once planning permission is sought and finalised. There will be 180 places for year 7 students in September 2017, and 240 once the school is on its permanent site. Consultation meetings took place on 9 March and 19 May 2016, before final plans were drawn up to be submitted to the council for outline planning permission. NEWS 7

CRYSTAL PALACE PARK ENGAGES LOCAL COMMUNITY Thousands of pounds have been made available for projects brought forward by community groups as part of the ongoing regeneration of Crystal Palace Park. Bromley Council announced in May 2016 that a community fund was offering grants of up to £20,000 to deliver projects and activities in the 81-ha, Grade II-listed park. A panel made up of local residents is evaluating bids. The park was once home to Joseph Paxton’s Crystal Palace, the structure that housed the Great Exhibition in 1851 and was destroyed by fire in 1936.

Projects awarded grants so far include the reopening of the Crystal Palace subway, an iconic facility enabling pedestrians to enter the park safely. The scheme, devised by Friends of Crystal Palace Subway, was awarded £15,000 and is expected to increase visitor numbers. Activities will be held in the subway to raise funds for additional improvements to the structure. The grants complement the comprehensive £2.4 million regeneration scheme for the park funded by Bromley Council, the London Mayor and Historic England.

Agreed improvements include building a new cafe and skate park, conserving some of the Grade I-listed dinosaurs, as well as landscaping and removing some of the disused structures. Work is now under way, and the first phase of improvements includes the renovation of the sphinxes and the steps, following the original design by Paxton. The sphinxes, which are being painted Victorian terracotta red to restore their original colour, were expected to complete in September 2016.

RESTAURANT TERRACE AT INTU A new restaurant terrace has opened at intu Bromley shopping centre. The alfresco dining scheme overlooking Queen’s Garden was launched in July 2016. It hosts five new restaurants: Byron, Ed’s Diner, Giraffe, Wagamama and Project Pie. The businesses are expected to create 500 jobs in total. The terrace is part of a £14 million redevelopment project for the shopping 8 INVEST BROMLEY AUTUMN 2016

centre, which has an annual footfall of 18 million. A complete refreshment of the building has been carried out and new stores have opened on site, including Fat Face, Jo Malone, Massimo Dutti, The White Company and Timberland. A 1,860sq m luxury boutique cinema with waiter service and a wide food choice will open on the centre’s roof in 2017.

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Counter culture Bromley’s town centres are changing. Suruchi Sharma discovers that new retail and leisure developments in the borough are attracting people in droves


Visitors from far and wide are being tempted to Orpington by the new seven-screen Odeon cinema.

economic success of any area, and in Bromley the pieces are coming together to create lasting prosperity, with new retail, leisure and restaurant schemes inspiring a demographic of residents and visitors who love to eat, drink, shop and play. Orpington’s Business Improvement District (BID) was established in 2013, and has brought to the area popular high street stores, family-friendly eateries and a new cinema, which opened in February 2016. The developments are bringing more people to the town centre, who are staying for longer, boosting the economy and lending the town an energy and vibrancy. Sharon Baldwin, executive director of the BID team at Orpington 1st, realises how vital it is for firms funding the BID to actually see their money is being positively reinvested. Orpington’s new seven-screen, 959-seat Odeon cinema is based in The Walnuts Shopping Centre and is a shining beacon for further large firms to join the area. After waiting for more than three decades, the BID reports that Orpington residents are thrilled with the cinema, which provides a modern, ‘ultra-highdefinition’ iSense screen. Baldwin adds that visitors from other areas including Sevenoaks and Bexleyheath are being drawn in by the new attraction. She says: “With everything we’re doing we try to connect up with another aspect of the town, so these aren’t standalone developments. The footfall that the cinema has brought in has had an effect not just on its own site but obviously on the high street. It has proven to be extremely successful and the general manager quoted great figures on its opening day. You need that kind of momentum behind any major development, and it’s certainly been crucial in getting people to have another look at Orpington.” Apart from the cinema, the shopping centre has gained a number of new occupants, including restaurants Bella Italia and Dean’s Diner, variety retailer B&M, and Pure Gym. A 63-bedroom Premier Inn hotel, which opened in August 2016, had already received interest from businesses and booking queries for events ahead of its opening. Baldwin adds: “The latest developments are really just the start of TOWN CENTRES 11



01 The new restaurant terrace at intu, near Queen’s Garden, has improved the town centre’s dining offer. 02 The spot will be both a day and evening destination. 03 Footwear shop ECCO is one of the newest additions at the thriving intu shopping centre in Bromley. 04 Timberland chose intu to host its 36th UK store.



“The BID was well received and viewed as hugely beneficial to the town” regenerating the town. There is so much more potential and we have many sites that could bring in a lot of employment. The 18-minute journey to London makes the hotel quite good in terms of value, as it’ll probably be much cheaper to stay in Orpington than central London.” She knows it is important to keep businesses on board when the BID seeks renewal in 18 months’ time. Baldwin says: “Hopefully over the three years we’ve been in place we have demonstrated the worth of the BID. What’s good for us now is that these developments are starting to take shape, which is not only an indication of the health of the high street, but also of what else can happen.” Bromley is also improving its offer. The ‘Your Bromley’ BID began working for businesses on 1 April 2016. 12 INVEST BROMLEY AUTUMN 2016

The area’s intu shopping centre is regularly teeming with visitors and has now recruited new additions, such as footwear store ECCO and clothing brands Timberland and Fat Face. Chelsea football legend Gianfranco Zola opened an ice cream parlour, Unico, on Bromley High Street last year. The council said at least £3 million of additional investment would flow into the town centre following the approval of the BID. Kate Miller, general manager of the intu Bromley shopping centre and Your Bromley, adds that intu is very pleased to have great brands in the centre. Further retailers to have joined in the summer include lifestyle brand Joules and footwear company Skechers. Miller adds: “The BID was well

received and viewed as hugely beneficial to the town. Our footfall remains strong and it’s interesting that we have seen an increase in the length of time people stay in the centre and their spend per visit.” The new restaurant terrace, based alongside the Queen’s Garden, has also helped to revitalise the dining offer in the town centre, and includes well-known chains such as Giraffe, Wagamama, Byron, Project Pie and Ed’s Diner. Miller says the restaurant terrace has made an impact: “The positives are endless. It’s a place for families and friends to eat together, somewhere in the centre to come while shopping and after the stores have closed, and it encourages a night-time economy in Bromley. We also believe it will ignite a new love and interest for Queen’s Garden.” Along with Bromley and Orpington, in nearby Beckenham work is soon starting on a £4.1 million scheme to improve the high street, through works such as new lighting, street furniture and wider pavements. Miller feels any improvement is “good for the whole area”, stopping shoppers from heading to Bluewater or central London for their retail therapy. She adds: “It keeps everyone on their toes. Both intu and Bromley town centre have seen major investment in their appearance, giving shoppers more choice.”





PHASE ONE OPEN Welcome to the Walnuts Shopping Centre Phase One complete and open making us a great destination for retail, leisure and relaxation. Watch a movie at the new 7 screen ODEON cinema. Indulge in some great food at our fabulous new restaurants right next door Deans Diner for the 50’s American Diner experience or if you prefer a taste of Italy in Bella Italia. PHASE TWO NEARING COMPLETION WITH PREMIER INN AND CREAMS CAFE AND MORE!

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In the zone The successful outcome of Bromley’s bid for housing zone status will deliver hundreds of new homes in the town centre and accelerate other development schemes, creating the vibrant communities envisioned by the council’s plans, as David Gray finds out


01 Bromley town centre became one of the capital’s housing zones in March 2016. 02 The Old Town Hall forms part of the council’s Town Centre Area Action Plan.




centre’s bid for housing zone status in March 2016 has brought the council’s long-term strategy for the area a step closer to reality. The announcement supports the council’s objective of delivering up to 1,820 new homes in the town centre - it is due to receive £27.1 million in direct grants and soft loans to facilitate this. Bromley has become one of 31 housing zones in the capital under a £600 million scheme by the London mayor’s office to create 77,000 homes, as well as transport hubs and schools. The new zone covers the whole of the town centre and aims to support the creation of a thriving community, mixing residential with entertainment and retail, together with an important transport hub at Bromley North station. The next step is for Bromley Council and the Greater London Authority (GLA) to agree on the delivery contract, and planning permissions for specific schemes. Housing zone status follows on from a longstanding strategy for Bromley’s town centre. The council’s Area Action Plan was adopted in 2010, and by 2025 seeks to

deliver over 20,000sq m of retail space, as well as 7,000sq m of office space and 350 hotel beds. The zone designation will not only spearhead but accelerate housebuilding on council-owned land that is surplus to requirements. Stephen Carr, Bromley Council’s leader, has reported that the first phase of the Action Plan has gone well. By the end of 2015, planning consent had been given for 447 homes, and 360 of these had already commenced or been completed. The Crest Nicholson scheme for 160 apartments at Ringers Road has been fully sold and is occupied, and the U+I scheme for 200 units at Bromley South is well advanced. Permission has also been granted for an additional 51 units as part of the redevelopment of the Old Town Hall, which will be converted into a boutique hotel and restaurants. The next phase of delivery will focus on the key sites of Bromley North station and Opportunity Site G west of the High Street. These sites will be the focus of the housing zone support where the council will be seeking to deliver HOUSING 15



“Bromley is already one of the most popular places in London for firsttime buyers” up to 700 units. Housing zone funding will contribute to meeting the costs of transport infrastructure improvements to key junctions and the provision of new public transport facilities. The funding will also assist with site acquisition costs and the provision of developer loans to support short-term cash flow needs. Big progress was made on Opportunity Site G in April 2016, when the council agreed to procure a development partner. The council is using the GLA’s London Development Panel to do so, and they anticipate one being announced by mid-autumn. The redevelopment of Bromley North station is one of the biggest opportunities in the borough to provide new homes, employment space and improved public infrastructure. The majority of the site is currently owned by public bodies including Network Rail, Southeastern trains, Transport for London, NHS London and Bromley Council. Private sector developer Prime Place, part of the Wilmott Dixon group, also owns some of the site. 16 INVEST BROMLEY AUTUMN 2016


At the moment the partners are working together to understand the site’s development potential and agree on a set of design and development principles. With its many green spaces, Bromley is among the most attractive parts of Greater London for people to live in, and the council believes the new town centre housing should have little problem in attracting buyers. The borough is one of the most popular places in London for homebuyers. According to an Experian report last year, Bromley, Greenwich and Bexley have onethird of the capital’s first-time buyers. With excellent and improving transport connections into central London, plus notably high educational

03 Regent’s Place is Crest Nicholson’s scheme at Ringers Road, and forms part of Opportunity Site G. 04 U+I’s mixed-use scheme at St Mark’s Square is nearing completion. 05 and 06 Berkeley Homes’ Brunswick Square development in Orpington. 07 Langley Court in Beckenham is an Essential Land scheme and will provide up to 200 homes.

standards in its schools and colleges, Bromley also has a very strong appeal for people who need to commute and families with children. As Susan Young of Crest Nicholson says: “On the back of the area’s regeneration, Bromley is enjoying a resurgence in popularity. This is due to its relative affordability and the excellent,



Bromley’s appeal is evidenced by the rapid success of Crest Nicholson’s scheme on Ringers Road in the town centre. This was identified as part of Opportunity Site G in the council’s action plan, and is now known as Regent’s Place, consisting of 160 apartments, all of which sold by April 2016. Almost half were sold off-plan a year earlier during the launch, which bodes well for other housing developments in the town centre. Built around a landscaped courtyard, Regent’s Place is “an unbeatable location” according to Susan Young, Crest Nicholson’s sales and marketing director. “Residents can enjoy the best of Bromley’s nightlife, restaurants, shopping and green space, while being within twenty minutes of central London. We’ve been blown away by the huge demand.”


Next in line for completion is U+I’s major mixed-use scheme on the site of the council’s old car park at Westmoreland Road in the southern part of Bromley town centre. St Mark’s Square will be a £90 million residential and leisure quarter with a landscaped public square surrounded by a multiplex cinema, cafes, restaurants and a Premier Inn hotel. The residential element will comprise 200 private apartments, which are aimed at being affordable. Completion is expected in early 2018. The new square is across the road from Bromley South station, which has direct trains to both Victoria and Blackfriars. Just like Regent’s Place, St Mark’s Square is proving very attractive to young professionals wanting homes in a lively town centre with rapid access to central London.



Berkeley Homes’ scheme at Brunswick Square in Orpington town centre is another housing development under way in the borough. Located on the site of a former police station, it consists of 83 luxury apartments together with a health centre, gym and electric car charging points. As in Bromley, Orpington’s town centre is being regenerated to include restaurants and cafes as well as a cinema and hotel. Regular public transport is crucial for this development in Orpington’s Oysteraccessible travel zone 6, and as of August 2016 commuters have benefited from the doubling of peak-time train services into London. The area is also within close proximity of the M25. Brunswick Square’s first apartments were released for sale in late April 2016, with the final tranche launched in September.


Essential Land’s development of the former Glaxo site in Beckenham will provide 179 homes of different sizes and tenures – building work on the first phase of 22 family homes started in January 2016. The scheme is in a green corridor along the River Beck and will also include a waterside park and a sports academy. It is expected that up to 80 of the homes will be for shared ownership or affordable rent.



improved commute into London.” There is a higher than average rate of owner-occupation in the area’s rich mix of good quality housing. According to the most recent figures from the Land Registry, the average value of a home in the borough had reached £425,325 by February 2016, a year-on-year rise of 13.5%. In particular, in the same month, detached houses in Bromley sold for £841,771; semi-detached houses for £472,564; terraced houses for £376,336 and apartments for £300,462. These are high figures, but they need to be seen in the context of London as a whole. According to the Land Registry, Bromley’s property prices in 2016 are only 80% of the average for Greater London. The average apartment price is just 63% of the wider London level, while terraced houses are 78%. At 90% only the Bromley figure for detached houses approaches that for Greater London. All in all Bromley remains one of the more affordable parts of the capital for buyers of flats and smaller houses. Bromley Council’s housing blueprint envisions town centres where people want 18 INVEST BROMLEY AUTUMN 2016


to live, and brownfield sites that can be transformed into attractive homes and communities. Current developments across the borough suggest that this ambition is well on its way to fruition.

08 Regent’s Place located on Ringers Road allows residents easy access to central London. 09 Apartments in Brunswick Square will offer either a balcony, terrace or garden for residents to enjoy.









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Wild-eyed boy from Bromley Bromley Council and local people are commemorating the life of David Bowie, their former resident, who massively influenced contemporary culture. James Wood reports



the loss of one of popular culture’s most prominent figures, David Bowie, when he died in January 2016. Since then, many have been poring over the influential life of one of the best-loved recording artists of the last 50 years. True fanatics are looking back to the singer’s Bromley roots to trace his inspirational story. This south London borough is proud of its most famous former resident and in recognition of his legacy, the council is promoting the restoration of a bandstand in Beckenham where the singer performed in the late 1960s – a concert widely remembered and admired. Bromley was a big part of Bowie’s early life and career. He attended its Technical High School for boys (now Ravens Wood School) as a teenager, where



01 Bowie performed at the Croydon Road Recreation Ground in Beckenham during the summer of 1969. 02 He was a struggling musician before finding international fame with the Space Oddity single.


03 Bowie on stage at the 1969 ‘Growth’ festival in Beckenham, which he helped to organise. 04 A plaque at the former pub, The Three Tuns, marks the spot where Bowie first used to perform. 05 Bowie on stage in the late 60s at The Three Tuns during an Arts Lab Sunday.



“Bowie said: ‘There’s a lot of talent in the green belt. I never knew there were so many sitar players in Beckenham’” he would achieve an O-level in art in 1963. Earlier, he had developed the eye condition anisocoria, allegedly after being hit in the face by school friend George Underwood. One of Bowie’s pupils was left permanently dilated, giving him the impression of having different coloured eyes. What was not known then was that this teenage scuffle would later form such a key part of the Ziggy Stardust mystique. Family ties were important to Bowie too and he enjoyed a particularly close relationship with his half-brother, Terry, who suffered from mental illness for many years and tragically took his own life in 1983. The fragility of the human mind and body is a theme to which Bowie would return right up until the end of his musical career and his brother’s battle with

psychosis is said to have had a profound impact on the demons Bowie himself would later encounter, influencing his music and art. Returning to Beckenham in 1969 after a brief spell in central London, the 22-year-old Bowie moved in with his then girlfriend, freelance journalist, Mary Finnigan, who worked for The Sunday Times and underground newspaper, IT. In the very early days of the singer’s career – the mid 60s – gigs would largely be confined to haunts in Bromley, with the singer performing at the Assembly Hall in West Wickham and the Hillsiders Youth Club in Biggin Hill. With his career beginning to take off – his first big hit, Space Oddity, would be released later in 1969 – Bowie set up a Sunday evening folk


club at The Three Tuns pub in Beckenham with Finnigan and friends, Christina Ostrom and Barry Jackson, which later became the Arts Lab. During this time, he wrote to the late DJ John Peel, who was a champion of his early work, asking him to fund the project to support grassroots acts. As well as weekly performances from Bowie, the Arts Lab also featured (then) folk heroes Steve Harley, The Strawbs, and Keith Christmas. MUSIC 21


01 Bowie lived on the ground floor of the nowdemolished Haddon Hall in Beckenham in the early 70s. 02 Beckenham Place Park was the location for Bowie and his friends to rehearse street theatre performances. 02


Speaking to weekly music magazine Melody Maker at the time, Bowie said: “There’s a lot of talent in the green belt and there’s a lot of tripe in Drury Lane [the location of the first Arts Lab]…and I never knew there were so many sitar players in Beckenham.” Regarded as a launchpad for Bowie’s success, the Arts Lab would continue until 1973, featuring poetry nights, light shows, street theatre, mime and dance. Finnigan later wrote a book about the period, called Psychedelic Suburbia. In memory of these events, Finnigan and Ostrom unveiled a plaque at the pub in 2001, by then renamed as The Rat and Parrot. The venue later became a Zizzi restaurant, at which time the plaque was removed, but it was quickly restored to its original place following appeals from fans and residents. In 2016, after Bowie’s death, fans came to lay flowers as a tribute to those early years. Back in the summer of 1969, a festival called Growth – hosting those 22 INVEST BROMLEY AUTUMN 2016 2016

“The Bowie bandstand will be a fitting tribute to a superstar musician” who had played at the Arts Lab – took place at the Croydon Road Recreation Ground, three days after the death of Bowie’s father, Haywood Jones. Despite grieving, Bowie performed at the park’s bandstand on the day, along with his longtime producer, Tony Visconti. This is the bandstand that Bromley Council is seeking to restore. A 2014 project in partnership with Friends of Croydon Road Recreation Ground asked residents to support the project by purchasing a special legacy brick for installation, which they could inscribe with a tribute message. Now, according to the council, restoration efforts have “been redoubled”. A council spokesperson says: “The Bowie

bandstand, once restored, is planned to not only become a permanent and fitting tribute to a superstar musician admired and missed by millions, but hopefully a site where future legends might also one day cut their teeth.” Bricks can once again be purchased – for £100 – with those buying them encouraged to write personal messages, to Bowie or “to a loved one, to celebrate a special occasion, or promote a business”. The council is also implementing a pavement feature consisting of a lightning bolt outside Zizzi to reflect Bowie’s connection with the venue. Bromley is an important part of the Bowie story and one that everyone in the area clearly wishes to preserve.


Beautifully restored apartments set in an exclusive gated development, surrounded by 10.5 acres of stunning parkland yet just 11 miles from the City. This impressive 18th Century former school building has been transformed into 20 individual and beautifully refurbished 1, 2, 3 and 4 bedroom apartments and duplexes. Prices start from £450,000, buy with just 5% deposit with Help to Buy London.*

Call: 0845 548 8136 Click: Visit: Thursday - Monday 10am - 5pm Specification on site may differ. Photography of Hampton Grange. Travel distances approximate only. Prices correct at time of press. *YOUR HOME MAY BE REPOSSESSED IF YOU DO NOT KEEP UP REPAYMENTS ON YOUR MORTGAGE OR ANY OTHER DEBT SECURED ON IT. Available on new build homes up to £600,000 subject to the Government ‘Help to Buy London’ terms and conditions and only available to customers where a primary mortgage is secured. Not available on second, additional homes, buy-to-let or let-to-buy properties. HomeBuy agent eligibility check required. The equity loan is interest free for the first five years and needs to be a minimum of 10% of the purchase price up to a maximum of 40%. After five years, an annual fee of 1.75% of the outstanding equity loan is charged. This is increased annually by RPI plus 1%. Subject to status, terms and conditions apply.

Bromley projects


DEVELOPMENT LOCATIONS IN BROMLEY TOWN CENTRE 01 Bromley High Street 02 Bromley Old Town Hall 03 St Mark’s Square TW To Beckenham



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A closer look at what’s coming up around the London Borough of Bromley DEVELOPMENT LOCATIONS IN THE BOROUGH OF BROMLEY 04 Beckenham High Street 05 Langley Court, Beckenham 06 The Walnuts Shopping Centre, Orpington 07 Brunswick Square 08 Crystal Palace Park Royal Blackheath Golf Club

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Addington Palace Golf Club


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Green Street Green


BROMLEY OLD TOWN HALL SITE 02 Cathedral Hotels was granted planning permission in September 2015 to refurbish Bromley Town Hall on Tweedy Road. This will create a 94-bedroom hotel, restaurant, conference and events space, as well as a courtyard garden. Plans also include the construction of a five-storey block of 53 flats and three independently operated restaurants on the adjacent South Street car park site. More than £20 million will be invested in

the development, which is expected to create 120 full-time jobs in the borough. Cathedral Hotels has appointed architect Berman Guedes Stretton to design the hotel and Guy Hollaway is responsible for the residential development. Work will start in 2017. The developer said that when complete the town hall will return to public use and be a place where births and marriages are “no longer registered but celebrated”.

The centre will also be used as a venue for a programme of comedy, music and debates. Many original features of the Grade II-listed construction, built in 1907, will be restored. “We will repurpose Bromley Town Hall as a hotel of unique character and distinction,” said Philippa King, creative and marketing director at Cathedral Hotels. Peter Morgan, executive councillor for renewal and recreation, added: “This is a major step forward for Bromley town centre”.

BROMLEY HIGH STREET SITE 01 The detailed design process is under way for the central part of Bromley High Street, between Market Square and Elmfield Road. The scheme aims to encourage street activity and improve the pedestrian experience by planting trees and shrubs, providing more shelter for shoppers and improving the link to Church House Gardens. Plans involve the creation of a ‘High Street Garden’ between the Elmfield Road end of the street and the Chuchill Theatre, as well as the transformation of the area in front of the theatre into a flexible public space to host seasonal events. Following a concept design produced by SEW Architects, in December 2015 the council approved funding for detailed plans, which should be submitted for approval in autumn 2016. If the project is given the green light, work may start in 2017. BROMLEY PROJECTS 27

CRYSTAL PALACE PARK SITE 08 Bromley Council and the Mayor of London agreed in 2014 to invest £2.4 million to improve Crystal Palace Park. The 81-ha, Grade II-listed park was once home to Joseph Paxton’s Crystal Palace, the structure that originally housed the Great Exhibition in 1851 and was destroyed by fire in 1936. Agreed improvements include building

a new cafe and skate park, conserving some of the Grade I-listed dinosaurs, the Grade II-listed sphinxes and the south terrace steps, as well as landscaping and removing some disused structures. Work is now under way, and the first phase of improvements includes the renovation of the sphinxes and the steps, following the original design by Paxton.

All these works have in part been made possible through an additional grant from Historic England. Further phases of regeneration are currently in the planning stage, and the council announced it would be consulting with the community. It also said it intended to establish a community-led, not-for-profit governance model for the park.

BECKENHAM HIGH STREET SITE 04 Beckenham High Street is due to undergo a series of improvements that will cover all public areas between Beckenham Junction station and the war memorial roundabout at the junction of Croydon Road and Rectory Road. At the end of 2015, a concept design by East Architects was agreed by the Beckenham Town Centre Working Group, representing the views of local residents and businesses. The scheme, funded by Bromley Council and Transport for London, is now undergoing detailed design for construction, and it is expected that work 28 INVEST BROMLEY AUTUMN 2016

will start in September 2016, lasting between 12 and 18 months. All public realm will be resurfaced, bus stands enhanced, pavements widened, new signage and lighting provided and four junctions improved for ease of crossing. New facilities for cyclists will also be introduced, such as cycle stands, parking and a repair facility. Works will include the improvement of Beckenham Green, and will incorporate new lighting, planters, facilities for regular markets and seating. The scheme aims to better integrate Beckenham Junction station forecourt with

the surrounding public realm, and refine the design continuity of privately owned spaces such as the Odeon cinema. The introduction of shared space pavement parking is also included in the plans for the High Street.


BRUNSWICK SQUARE SITE 07 Developer Berkeley Homes is regenerating a building in Orpington, next to The Walnuts Shopping Centre, to provide a mixed-use scheme including 83 homes. The Brunswick Square site was a Metropolitan Police station until late 2013, when the service decided to relocate. The developer bought it in February 2014. In April 2015 the council approved plans to build one and two-bedroom luxury apartments with private balconies, terraces and winter gardens, as well as 7,432sq m for a cafe or retail unit and a health centre. The scheme will also include a 45-space basement car park with cycle storage, equipped with charging points for electric cars. Completion is expected at the end of 2017.

LANGLEY COURT, BECKENHAM SITE 05 Construction of the first properties in Langley Court started in January 2016, and are due to be marketed later this year. Bromley Council first granted planning permission for the ÂŁ150 million regeneration scheme in August 2012. The demolition work on the 10.6-ha site was completed in October 2014, and the developer subsequently submitted a reserved planning application. Detailed consent for the first phase was

granted in July 2015, including 22 family homes, improvements to the road layout, utilities and sewage systems. The scheme comprises up to 179 new homes, a medical surgery, a sports academy, green spaces and landscaping, as well as pedestrian and cycle links.The project was devised by Altessen, a joint venture between Essential Land and Altyon Partners. It is expected to complete in 2017.

The two-phase transformation of The Walnuts Shopping Centre, owned by Rockspring Property Investment Managers, has provided the town with its first cinema in 34 years as well as a new hotel. Planning permission was granted to almost double the size of the centre in 2012. This gave the go-ahead to the 18,730sq m expansion of the 19,000sq m existing space through the demolition of the adjacent Crown House (a former job centre). Plans included a multiplex cinema, three restaurants, three new retail units and a fitness centre, forming phase one of the development. Building work by Miller Construction started in July 2014 and was completed in February 2016. A new B&M Bargains store and Pure Gym opened on site in late 2015 followed by restaurants Bella Italia and 1950s-style Dean’s Diner in early 2016. Other shops and an additional restaurant will be launched in the upcoming months. The cinema, managed by Odeon, opened in March 2016, and features seven screens and 959 seats. It also includes an iSense screen with Dolby surround sound, designed to deliver an ultra high-definition cinema experience. An in-screen dining concept provides cinemagoers with a wide range of food options including freshly baked pizza. The second phase of the development was granted planning permission in November 2014. The scheme saw a 63-bedroom hotel operated by Premier Inn being built, which opened at the beginning of August 2016. BROMLEY PROJECTS 29

ST MARK’S SQUARE SITE 03 The £90 million development scheme at St Mark’s Square, formerly known as Bromley South Central, includes 200 homes, a 400-space underground car park, a hotel, a landscaped public plaza surrounded by a cinema and eight restaurants. Located next to Bromley South railway station, the mixed-use scheme is being developed by a public private partnership between Bromley Council and U+I. 30 INVEST BROMLEY AUTUMN 2016

The one-hectare site was acquired by U+I in September 2010, with plans designed by Guy Hollaway Architects together with Studio Egret West. Granted planning permission in 2012, work started in April 2013 with £9.5 million funding from the Greater London Authority and the Homes and Communities Agency. The scheme is expected to create more than 200 jobs and provide a total of

£220 million gross value added (GVA) to the local economy over the next 10 years. Restaurants on site include Las Iguanas, Nando’s, Prezzo, Turtle Bay, Pizza Express and Rodizio Preto. The new 130-bed hotel will be managed by Premier Inn, while the multiplex cinema surrounding the plaza, operated by Vue Entertainment, will feature nine screens. The basement car park and the cinema shells have been completed.





The Airport and adjoining business area are a major asset to the Borough and are direct and indirect generators of employment. Bromley Borough Council Unitary Development Plan

London Biggin Hill Airport, one of the biggest employers in Bromley, hosts 65 resident companies, supporting over 1,000 local jobs.

Biggin Hill has been selected by the Mayor of London as a Strategic Outer London Development Centre, with support to develop significant additional and sustainable development capacity, on the 500 acre airport site.


We are committed to increasing opportunities for young people and aim to establish a new aviation training college, supporting the next generation to attain good skilled jobs at the airport.

Eye on the sky Big plans to celebrate the heritage of Biggin Hill by documenting its past will help to secure its future. James Wood reports USED AS AN RAF BASE IN THE SECOND WORLD

War, Biggin Hill has an illustrious past. Plans are now afoot to create a museum there to celebrate its history. The Biggin Hill Memorial Museum Trust was set up with the assistance of Bromley Council to secure the future of St George’s RAF Chapel of Remembrance based at the airport. Earmarked to open in summer 2018, memories of the airfield as an RAF base in the second world war will form the basis of the main section – one of three at the museum – with a focus on the Battle of Britain and the human stories of bravery that defined it. A TV production company has been hired, which so far has interviewed eight people who will feature in the exhibition. Geoffrey Wellum, a fighter pilot who survived the 1940 battle, is one of those taking part. Wellum wrote a popular memoir released in 2002 about his time in the RAF, First Light, which was later adapted for a BBC2 documentary. Others interviewed include people who were children at the time. One recalls his first distinct memory of an American fighter pilot offering him a gallon of ice-cream when he was aged six. “The museum will tell stories of the Few [the allied airmen of the RAF] – but we also want to tell the story of the many – the

different ways people at Biggin Hill were affected by the war,” says trust chairman, Bruce Walker. The first section of the museum will look further back, to before the first world war, when the airport was used for the development of radar technology and other experimental innovations. There will also be a section devoted to remembrance and the history of the chapel. A fundraising appeal was launched in 2015, with a target of £1.5 million, in addition to £1 million pledged by the council, to safeguard the long-term future of the chapel through the building of the museum. Consultation with more than 900 people so far, based over a 90-mile radius of the site, is helping to shape plans for the museum. Through this funding, the future of the chapel will be secured. The heritage of the airfield will also be celebrated at the annual Festival of Flight, which takes place in June in memory of the famous battle. It features an aerobatic flying display from the RAF’s Red Arrows. Biggin Hill airport has been praised in the past by The economic impact of business aviation in Europe report for boosting the local, national and global economy, but it is the human stories from its past which are being prioritised in 2016, and helping to shape its future.

01 0101


“We want to tell the story of the different ways people at Biggin Hill were affected by the war�


01 Stained glass windows at the RAF Chapel of Remembrance pay tribute to the history of the site. 02 Biggin Hill was an RAF base during the Battle of Britain, the first major campaign to be fought entirely by air forces during the second world war. BIGGIN HILL 33

Bromley is Open for Business To discuss our development opportunities contact: Nigel Davies Strategic Director Environment and Community Services 020 8313 4443

Kevin Munnelly Head of Town Centre Renewal 020 8313 4582

Jim Kehoe Chief Planner 020 8313 4441

Michael Watkins Strategic Property 020 8313 4178

Making connections Bromley has no shortage of options when it comes to easy accessibility into London and the rest of the country, as Kirsty MacAulay finds out



around London is like the weather in the rest of the country – always part of the daily conversation. Having a good or bad commute can make or break your day; it’s as simple as that. So, the better the transport accessibility, the higher the likelihood of having a good day and maintaining a cheery mood – something the people of Bromley know all about.

Bromley residents benefit from access to 26 rail stations in the borough and being just 16 minutes by fast train from central London. There are four trains an hour travelling direct to London Victoria, and a further four trains an hour stopping at all stations to Victoria. Additionally there are regular trains to Ashford International and to other destinations throughout Kent. London

01 Bromley offers excellent connectivity options to central London and the continent.

Overground trains offer frequent and useful connections to Canada Water and other important employment and leisure destinations north of the Thames. And it’s not just rail – trams also run through Bromley providing essential links to CONNECTIVITY 35

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Croydon and Wimbledon. Add to that its proximity to the M20 and M25, which allow access to mainland Europe via the Channel Tunnel and south-east ports, all easily reached in around an hour, and it’s clear that Bromley is an extremely well-connected borough. But things are set to get even better with proposals for stations throughout the borough to be redeveloped, and plans to improve connections further. These plans are in the very early stages, but possibilities could include extending the Tramlink between Crystal Palace and Harrington Road, and the Docklands Light Railway (DLR) to Bromley North and South. There are also proposals from central government to transfer a number of outer suburban services to Transport for London from the Department for Transport, to become part of an extended London Overground network. The promise of improved connectivity would be a huge bonus for local businesses, providing access for clients and customers. Bromley is a great location for distribution across the south of England due to the nearby M25 and M20. Europe is within easy reach via Eurostar, which is a short hop away on the train to Ashford International or just over an hour’s drive to the Eurotunnel. If travel further afield is required, Gatwick Airport is just 35 miles away (48 minutes by car) and Heathrow is 58 miles away (one hour 10 minutes by car). And then there is London Biggin Hill


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★ 41

Serving up skills Boasting a pioneering hospitality college and great links with local employers, Bromley College’s ambitious plans are bearing fruit, finds Lucy Purdy THE CURRENT EMPLOYMENT MARKET IS

a tough one to crack but enthusiasm, an impressive CV and a proven aptitude for the job in hand will always put candidates in a strong position. Bromley College’s belief in skills provides the perfect opportunity for students to step onto the career ladder. Bromley College and Bexley College merged on 1 August 2016 in a move both boards of governors promise will further boost education and training opportunities in the region. It comes after the merger of Bromley College and Greenwich Community College in January 2016, and signals the emergence of an important force in education in the area. Bromley, Bexley and Greenwich Colleges, which had a combined turnover of £48 million, will retain their commitment to each community they serve and operate under the new banner of Bromley College Group London, to be known as BCGL. The merged college is led by the former Bromley principal, Sam Parrett OBE, and provision offered across the colleges includes a 14-16 academy, a broad work-related and vocational skills programme, apprenticeships, higher education and professional qualifications across a wide range of subjects and industries. The merger will strengthen further education provision across the region, says

Parrett. “It will ensure we can continue to offer communities in Bexley, Bromley and Greenwich a wide range of courses and qualifications, with excellent facilities, teaching and outcomes. “Each college will maintain its own brand and identity, under the BCGL umbrella. We focus on providing all our students with ‘real skills for the real world’ – equipping them with the skills that they need to succeed. Each college has close links with both local and national employers, which will be maintained and indeed strengthened as a result of the planned merger.” Bromley’s Hospitality, Food and Enterprise Career College, which opened in September 2014, is the first of its kind in London and provides one example of this skills-led approach. Here, year 10 students can learn the practical skills they need for employment in the hospitality and catering industry, alongside GCSEs at college. Students aged 16 and over can study a fast-track course to gain their professional catering qualifications, along with English and maths skills. TV chefs, Chris and James Tanner are celebrity patrons. Gary Farrelly is head of the hospitality college and explains how it fits in: “Our pioneering Career College provides 14 to 19 year-olds with employerled training in our industry-standard facilities. The Career College is part of a


national network, which aims to ensure young people are prepared for work. The curriculum of each Career College is designed and delivered in part by employers, to ensure that students gain both qualifications and the practical skills they need to succeed in a specific industry. “The hospitality industry is booming and there are many career opportunities opening up. Our students will have a fantastic advantage, having been trained by industry experts. Our board of advisers includes representatives from major hospitality employers including the Hilton, Hyatt and Springboard groups. They have helped to ensure the curriculum we offer is relevant to the industry as well as offering our


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“Bromley is pushing ahead with its own plans. Part of this is a major extension to intu Bromley”

“The hospitality industry is booming and there are many career opportunities opening up” 01 Channel 4 series Kitchen Impossible, starring Michel Roux Jr was filmed at a Bromley College campus. 02 Students learn catering skills at Bromley’s Hospitality, Food and Enterprise Career College.



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students excellent work experience and shadowing opportunities. “We are hugely grateful for the support we continue to receive from our employer advisory group and are very excited about the opportunities we can offer our students.” BR6, a restaurant operated mainly by students under a professional chef, launched to the public in February 2015. Based at the Orpington campus, it offers ‘beautifully cooked food’, fine wines and premium table service. Guests receive an ‘excellent dining experience’ while supporting chefs, hosts and restaurateurs of the future. Farrelly explains why the venue is special: “BR6 is unique, being student-led and producing very high quality food at reasonable prices. “This restaurant provides a real-life training ground for students, allowing them to demonstrate their skills to paying customers under the guidance of our head chef Jason Main. “On Friday and Saturday evenings the students provide guests with a finedining experience. Our lunch service is of a very different style, yet still high

“This restaurant provides a real-life training ground for students, allowing them to demonstrate their skills” in quality and very reasonably priced. Crucially, BR6 also enables students to develop their commercial understanding and how to actually run a restaurant as opposed to simply working in one.” Since the restaurant opened its doors, students have been coached by a host of top London chefs including James Walters – Arabica Bar and Kitchen; Alan Irwin – The Vine in Sevenoaks; Enzo Oliveri – The Sicilian Chef; Richard Kirkwood – The Wright Brothers Spitalfields; Shaun Searley – The Quality Chophouse, and Rob McLeary – The Modern Pantry in Clerkenwell. Some were even treated to a series of hospitality masterclasses when they visited the Galvin at Windows restaurant at the London Hilton Hotel on Park Lane. Staff at the Michelin-starred restaurant and bar gave practical lessons on the fine art and

etiquette of serving customers, tending to guests, taking orders, and recommending and pouring wine correctly. Back at BR6, guests can view goings-on in the kitchen via TV screens – ramping up the pressure for students. In fact, the Orpington campus featured in the Channel 4 series Kitchen Impossible in 2015, which focused on the journey of eight young people with varying disabilities who were being taught by Michel Roux Jr. Sam Grace, executive producer at Twofour, the company behind the series, says: “On such a major Channel 4 production we needed a location that had equally high standards when it came to its facilities, kitchens and training restaurant – and Bromley College fitted the bill perfectly. Thanks to Michel and Bromley College, our trainees received the very highest standard of training that has


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fully prepared them for their future careers in hospitality and catering.” Running alongside the college is Bromley Technical Academy, a mainstream school for years 10 and 11 students, which opened in September 2014. Pupils here study for GCSEs alongside vocational qualifications, with some enviable facilities at their disposal. Mike Piper, headteacher at the academy, says: “Our college for 14 to 16 yearolds is one of only a few in the country and offers young people a real, careerfocused alternative to a traditional school environment. Combining high quality, vocational study with core academic teaching ensures that our students have a well-rounded education and are equipped with the skills and qualifications that businesses desire.” Students study for GCSEs in core subjects, alongside a vocational specialism in one of the following areas: motor vehicle, hair and beauty, child development and care, sports science, engineering or hospitality and catering. They receive a recognised vocational qualification in their chosen specialism, alongside their GCSE grades.

03 Students play a big part in running operations at the Orpington campus’ BR6 restaurant. 04 Developing construction skills in young people is vital to resolving the country’s housing crisis. 05 Hair and beauty is one of the vocational courses students enrol on at Bromley Technical College.

The Crystal Palace Community Development Trust (CPCDT) is an expanding business centre in Anerley. It was created by a consortium of community and voluntary organisations that had been together as the Crystal Palace Community Forum since 1997. In 2004, the CPCDT, a non-profit making charity, came into existence and took over the management of Anerley town hall. There are 28 serviced offices in the building, 25 of which are currently occupied, ranging from one to six desks. The trust provides photocopying facilities and rooms for hire for training and meetings. Last December the trust was successful in a bid for the Mayor of London’s Regeneration Fund, being granted £360,000 to open up a social enterprise hub within the building and to transform the former caretaker’s flat into creative space. Discussions about future plans continue with the GLA, while in March 2016 the trust announced that it was to sign a 40-year lease with Bromley Council, to continue to run Anerley Town Hall.



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Maths, English and other core subjects are “embedded and contextualised” within the vocational curriculum, with the aim of making learning relevant and interesting for students. Meanwhile the industry-standard facilities and high level of employer engagement ensure that students have exposure to the world of work – a clear line of sight to their career. Unsurprisingly, apprenticeships play a central role at the college too. Bromley offers a range of schemes with both local and national employers in industries ranging from digital, marketing and finance, to care. David Warnes, executive director of business and commercial operations at Bromley College, explains: “Apprenticeships give people the opportunity to learn the skills that employers want, while earning a wage and gaining a qualification. “This year, one of our clients, Travelbag, was recognised at the National Apprenticeship Awards, receiving a highly commended award. We were delighted that the efforts of Bromley College to establish such a high quality and successful apprenticeship programme with Travelbag were recognised nationally.” And the relationship with businesses is two-way. The college has a dedicated Employer Services Team – Capital B – which advises firms on how to grow.



On the subject of growth, the Bromley Advantage scheme launched in April 2015, with the aim of equipping students with the skills and knowledge required to succeed in their chosen career. In a highly competitive labour market, Bromley Advantage gives students ‘the edge’, says the college, helping them find additional work-related experience and ultimately the confidence to be ready for work and to enter employment. Every student who enrols at Bromley College will take part in the scheme, which is designed to complement whatever

06 Using industry-standard equipment prepares students for manufacturing and engineering careers. 07 A hands-on approach to training and development gives Bromley College students a head start. 08 Science is one of the core GCSE subjects taught at Bromley Technical Academy.

course or qualification they are studying for. It covers a wide-range of activities, including social, digital, employability and enterprise skills. Students pick up bronze, silver and gold awards along the way – with additional prizes for the best performing departments.


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Invest Bromley partners group Joining together to support Bromley

Bromley College calfordseaden Joe Parody Guy Hollaway Architects Guy Hollaway Michael Rogers Mike Lewis

Mul-disciplinary Consultancy

Robinson Escott Planning Stiles Harold Williams Partnership Jon Dickman For more information about these companies visit

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Bromley by numbers

Affluent: Residents’ gross annual pay (2014):

£31,000 (Transport for London)

Housing zone status for Bromley town centre –

£27.1 million expected from the GLA

£4.1 million

to improve Beckenham High Street Funded by Bromley Council and Transport for London

Retail hub: 18 million annual footfall at intu Bromley


321,300 (2014, Source:


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Bromley attracts of London’s first-time buyers (Source: Experian report 2015)

20,000sq m retail space 7,000sq m office space 350 hotel beds to be delivered by 2025

Affordable for living:

Average apartment price is 63% of the wider London level (Source: Land Registry, February 2016)

(Town Centre Area Action Plan, adopted 2010)


average house price


year-on-year rise (Source: Land Registry, February 2016)

79.7% of the population is economically active – above the national average

Well connected: 26 rail stations

16 minutes from central London by train 35 miles from Gatwick airport (48 minutes drive) MARKETS 45

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Churchill Gardens 46 INVEST BROMLEY SPRING 2016

Huub Nieuwstadt looks at the council’s latest development opportunity ONE OF BROMLEY COUNCIL’S NEWEST

opportunities is Churchill Gardens, a comprehensive redevelopment of a part of the town centre. The site is the next phase of the redevelopment of Opportunity Site G, referred to in the Bromley Town Centre Area Action Plan, which includes the recently completed Regent’s Place redevelopment by Crest Nicholson. The site is a five-minute walk from Bromley South station and the area is serviced by 10 bus lines. Ethelbert Road and Churchill Way provide the main access points to the site, and the High Street is located just to the east of the site, while a park and an important nearby landmark, Churchill Theatre, are located just north of the site. Churchill Gardens currently consists of a number of residential properties, a church, a closed public toilet, a councilowned car park and access to the rear of retail properties along the High Street. The council is looking to recruit a development partner to redevelop the land. It offers a number of possibilities, including creating a new public square with direct access to the High Street. Other opportunities include a new mixed-use building with courtyards facing the park as well as tall buildings – but designed to complement the nearby theatre and park. The focus of all potential proposals should be housing. Important constraints that potential developer partners need to keep in mind


include significant elevation changes, restricted views from the site due to trees, which are protected, and the Bromley Town Centre Conservation Area. The council is committed to supporting the redevelopment of the site and is looking to work with a partner that can demonstrate the creative flair, aspiration, regeneration pedigree and long-term commitment to deliver a high quality mixed-use scheme in this prominent town centre location.

Sitematch London is an event that enables public sector landowners to engage with private sector developers, investors and occupiers. Book your place at the next Sitematch London event to meet senior representatives from Bromley Council. Contact Josie Brewer on 020 7978 6840 or visit

01 Bromley Council is seeking a development partner to help transform this part of Bromley town centre.


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Developers – meet councils 8 February 2017, The Shard, London Visit or contact the Sitematch team on 0207 978 6840


Associate sponsors

C85 M21 Y0 K0

R0 G152 B219

Organiser C71 M43 Y23 K63

R57 G74 B88

Capita Real Estate

Investment opportunities in the London Borough of Bromley

Investment opportunities in the London Borough of Bromley

Essential Living is redefining the private rental market. By shifting the focus onto the needs of tenants we make renting as easy and fulfilling as possible. We design living spaces with sharers in mind, providing a balance of communal areas and privacy. Through developing and managing vibrant, social places to live, we are determined that renters can find a home that is flexible enough to suit their lifestyle.


Essential Living is excited and proud to be working in association with Bromley Council.

Invest Bromley Issue 4 Autumn 2016

Ready for take-off Bromley: a housing hotspot for London We could be heroes: Bowie’s musical heritage Changing room: Town centre transformers


Welcome to the Future of Renting

Invest Bromley #4  

Published in September, Invest Bromley #4 looks at the ongoing regeneration work in the London Borough of Bromley.

Invest Bromley #4  

Published in September, Invest Bromley #4 looks at the ongoing regeneration work in the London Borough of Bromley.