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Get in on the act civic centre opening - you’re invited Annual review Spending for 2012/13



Contents Features

11 12 14 15 19 21

The fight against fly-tippers


Report it and help keep Brent clean

New school is top class The fantastic, new Village School

Growing places How you can grow your own

Your new civic centre A guide to the Opening Ceremony

Rising from the rubble Rebuilding Willesden Green Library

15 27

Annual review How we spent our budget


4 27 29 31



All in a day’s work Competitions

Every penny counts in times like these and it’s only natural that some people wonder what they get in return for their council tax. In this issue, we show you exactly how Brent Council spent your money in the last financial year. Sticking with the money theme, in this edition we also tell you where you can grow your own vegetables in Brent, we’re running some great competitions – one with a fantastic prize worth £2,000 – and there’s details of lots of free events. All of which could help you balance your own budget. We also hope you will come to see your new civic centre this month – there’s lots of exciting, fun activities planned to mark the official opening. Read all about it in the centre pages. Unfortunately, for editorial reasons, we couldn’t include Brent People or Secret History features in this edition. They will be back next month as normal. Jason Grimsley, Editor The Brent Magazine

What’s on

Orla Sedze is away this month

Issue No. 136 October 2013 BDU 6935 9 .13 The Brent Magazine contacts Distribution queries and editorial 020 8937 1062 Advertising 020 8937 1076 Published by the London Borough of Brent, Brent Civic Centre, Engineers Way, Wembley HA9 0FJ.

The London Borough of Brent does not accept responsibility for any goods or services offered by advertisers. Publication of an advertisement does not imply recommendation by the council of goods or services advertised. Printed on 100% recycled paper. Please use your local paper bank when disposing of this and other paper.

Brent Customer Service Office 020 8937 1200 The Brent Magazine is available in large print and on audio tape. Please ring 020 8937 2700


Blooming Brent The borough’s best gardeners have been honoured at this year’s Brent in Bloom awards. Judges were impressed by the entries, which included front gardens, hanging baskets and window boxes, with many using excellent planting schemes and demonstrating environmentally sustainable planting. The competition is organised every year by Brent Council to applaud the high quality of gardening and horticulture in Brent. It is the first heat of the In Bloom competition and leads to the regional London in Bloom

and national Britain in Bloom contests. The 12 winners in the four different categories were: s schools category: joint 1st Mora Primary School and Leopold Primary School, 2nd Byron Primary School s neighbourhood category: 1st Campbell Gordon Way Residents’ Association, 2nd NW2 Residents’ Association s front garden category: 1st John Quinn, 2nd Lena Jefferies, 3rd Dr Sonia Sassoon s container category: 1st Carol Nichols, joint 2nd Chris Elsdale and Nazir Bahadur, 3rd Patrick Rock.

A field forever England The England football team’s first captain finally has a fitting memorial at his Kilburn graveside. Cuthbert Ottaway was captain when England played Scotland in 1872. He was buried at Paddington

Campbell Gordon Way Residents’ Association

Old Cemetery and, after his memorial was removed for being unsafe in the 1970s, lay almost forgotten for years. England fan Paul McKay led a fundraising drive to pay for new one. Brent Council helped with the arrangements.

Cuthbert Ottaway’s new memorial stone

Citizens needed Want to have more of a say on how the council provides services such as education or housing? Now’s your chance. More local people are wanted to join Brent Citizens’ Panel, a representative group of around 2,000 residents which Brent consults to find out local people’s views. The role is vital in helping ensure the council provides the kind of services that local

people want. If you volunteer, you can devote as much or as little time to it as you want. Panel members are asked to complete regular postal and/ or online questionnaires – sometimes up to three a year – and may at times be contacted by telephone. Sign up at www.brent. Email Call 020 8937 1073/1055

Have your say on Brent’s libraries Brent Libraries is starting a survey from 21 October to find out what children and young people in the borough think of its services. Anyone aged up to 16 years of age can take part. It runs until 3 November. Pop into your nearest library to complete the questionnaire. For more contact 020 8937 5619.





Hidden heroes in the spotlight Brent celebrated hidden heroes – people who may have, or care for someone with, a learning disability – with an event at the Civic Centre. People with learning disabilities showcased their talents in fields such as Indian dance, poetry, rap, and arts and crafts. Carers, friends and family were also invited. Brent Council, Mencap and

partners organised the event, which tied in with Mencap’s national campaign about ‘hidden heroes’. Brent Clinical Commissioning Group, the NHS and Brent Carers Hub were involved. The aim was to raise awareness of national Learning Disability Week, and recognise the part people with learning disabilities play in our community.

Don’t lose your vote Residents are being urged to put their names on the electoral register so they don’t miss out on the chance to vote. The council has begun delivering registration forms to all households which by law local people must complete and return. Failure to re-register or return the completed form is an offence which could lead to a fine of up to £1,000. People on the register can vote in local elections and elections to the European Parliament, which are scheduled for May 2014.

Households who are making no changes to their details can easily re-register by phone, internet or text for free rather than return the form. Electoral Services Manager Sean O’Sullivan said: “If you aren’t on the register you won’t be able to vote next May, so make sure you have your say by registering.” You can choose not to appear in the edited register by ticking the relevant box on the form. For more, call 020 8937 1372 or

Top tips for cyclists Do you like to ride your bicycle? In which case, a free new cycle guide packed with useful information would be for you. The booklet, produced on behalf of the council by transport consultants SKM, has details of free training, rides, maintenance sessions and much more. To order one, phone or email Sharleen Hannon on 020 7939 6221 or

Youth showcase Young people celebrated their holiday achievements at the BIS Showcase at Roundwood Youth Centre. Participants in youth activities aged from 13 to 19 exhibited the skills they have developed in singing,

dancing, art, fashion, cooking, photography, hairdressing and film editing. BIS (Brent in Summer) is the council’s programme of sport, libraries and youth holiday activities.

A competition to note Young instrumental and vocal performers are being invited to compete for the title of Brent Young Musician of the Year 2014. The competition, which is run by the council’s music service and supported by the Wembley Charitable Foundation, is an exciting opportunity for Brent’s young solo performers. The winner will appear as special guest soloist at Brent Makes Music 2014 at Wembley Arena. There is also a total prize fund of £800.

Entry forms must be returned to Brent Music Service no later than Friday 1 November. After preliminary heats, six finalists will compete on Wednesday 5 March next year at Claremont High School. The prestigious contest is open to any instrumentalist or vocalist in any musical style, aged between 13 and under the age of 19 on 1 September 2013, who attends a school in, or lives in, Brent. Participants can get entry forms from or





Gym’ll fix it Brent Council Leader, Cllr Muhammed Butt, got fitter for free when he tried out one of Brent’s new outdoor gyms. Six outdoor gyms - costing over £180,000 in total and with modern equipment such as chest press, rower and pull down machines – have opened in local parks and are free to use. Cllr Butt said: “Residents’ health and wellbeing is one of my top priorities as Leader and I believe the best way for Brent to become a healthy borough is to widen access to sport and exercise activities. “Most residents will now be within walking distance of one of our outdoor gyms which are a great way to keep fit without paying high gym fees.” Visit for more.

Secondary school deadline Families of pupils due to start at secondary school next year should apply by 31 October this year for a school place if they haven’t already done so. It’s easiest to apply online. Go to admissions for information. From here, go to www. to apply.

You can use a computer for free at your local library or Brent Customer Services office. Families have until 15 January next year to apply for a primary place starting September 2014. Call 020 8937 3110 or email school.admissions@brent.

Constructing a new career Kieran Robinson-Malcolm from Kilburn is among the jobseekers who have gained from the Brent Council-led £40 million project to rebuild the E-ACT sponsored Crest Academies in Neasden. The council’s contract with Wates Construction to design and build the Academies specifies that the local community should benefit from the project. Local people were offered places on a Wates training course which led to a plumbing apprenticeship for Kieran. Councillor George Crane, Brent Council’s Lead Member for Regeneration and Major Projects, said: “Not only is the rebuild of the Crest Academies creating modern facilities for students, staff and local people and helping regenerate the area but there are also opportunities for training and getting a foot onto the career ladder for our local unemployed.” Kieran Robinson-Malcolm




Designer outlet opens London Designer Outlet will open its doors to the public on 24 October, next to Wembley Stadium, with a festival involving schools and dance groups. The launch also marks the completion of the first phase of the major new Wembley Park development being created by Quintain. The full array of up to 85 shops - all offering up to 70 per cent discounts on current season lines – along with 15 restaurants, will be open for business in spring 2014. com


Equipped for success Fitness enthusiasts have been enjoying a new £300,000 gym full of the latest equipment at Willesden Sports Centre. Leisure Connection, which operates the centre at Donnington Road, NW10 on behalf of Brent Council, has totally revamped the gym, with improvements such as all new updated kit, a dedicated area for PT, the centre’s first suspension training machine and new decor.

It launched the gym with an open day packed full with fun classes including trampolining, dodgeball, athletics, free swimming sessions for under 16s and a karate demonstration for members of the local community to enjoy. For more, visit

Have your say on housing

Civic Centre has the X Factor

Local people are being invited to have their say on the council’s housing strategy this month. The council is reviewing its approach to providing housing and housing services in the borough following significant changes in government policy.

Visitors and staff at Brent Civic Centre got a glimpse of what goes on behind the scenes at the top TV show the X Factor when the building was used as a venue for filming the current series. Contestants practised in the restaurant queue and people took photos with presenter Dermot O’Leary in the Atrium after The Grand Hall was hired for three days for judging during the boot camp stage. Marketing Officer Louise McKenna said: “There was a

Local residents have until 25 October to comment on the draft housing strategy. Visit consultation to view it. For more information, contact brenthousingstrategy or 020 8937 2343.

great buzz at the civic centre when the X Factor was here. The fact that they chose it shows what a great venue this is.”There was more showbiz sparkle for Brent when the old Town Hall was used as a set for two feature films, including thriller War Book starring Oscar nominated Sophie Okonedo. The building is being used as a film location until it is handed over to the new owners. Filming brings in a substantial revenue to the borough.

Do you want to work with young people? If you are aged between 16 and 19 why not apply to be a Youth and Community Apprentice at Poplar Grove Youth Club, Wembley. Staff at the council’s centre have teamed up with Youthforce and Well London to recruit young people to the paid positions. Contact Guy James on 07868 376 993 or at

Staff member Colette Brown with X FactorColette presenter Staff member Brown Dermot O’Leary with Dermot O’Leary




Brent’s celebration of books and reading inspired by Black History Month, the Family Learning Festival, Halloween and more returns with free events in your libraries. For more information on the acts and performances visit Here are some of the highlights…

Friday 25 October

Thursday 3 October

Tuesday 15 October

Celebrating Black History Month 7-10pm Brent Civic Centre, Conference Hall

Poetry Day: Spoken Word All Stars 7-8.30pm Brent Civic Centre, Grand Hall

Kingsbury’s Notorious Duchess 2.30-3.30pm Kingsbury Library Plus

The Spoken Word All Stars is a spectacular evening of wall-to-wall words with an unflagging back beat and an explosion of words and music, including Mr Gee, Oneness Sankara, El Crisis and jazz musician Jason Yarde. Come and share the buzz of National Poetry Day.

A beautiful woman who had three husbands (an army officer, Duke and MP); mysterious deaths; wealth, scandal and a ‘cottage’ in Kingsbury. Queen Victoria would not have been amused, but you may be amazed at the extraordinary story of the Duchess of Sutherland.

Enjoy a great night out and celebrate Black History Month. Broadcaster Alex Pascall OBE will speak about the rise of black British music makers. The UK’s premier saxophonist Lascelles James will help the celebration swing with an eclectic mix of jazz, soul, and blues. True Identity, the female vocal reggae trio, will bring their sweet vocal harmonies. Gospel singer Jacqui Manning will pack a punch with her amazing voice and Jamaica’s funniest comedian Ping Wing will have you laughing. For adults only. Please collect free ticket in advance from Wembley library. Arrive early to avoid disappointment.

Tickets £5/£4 concessions. Advanced booking

Thursday 10 October Lost Civilisations of Central Africa 6.30-7.30pm Wembley Library What has Africa contributed to world civilisation? Robin Walker AKA The Black History Man introduces the early history of the kingdoms of inner Africa such as the empires of Kongo.

Wednesday 16 October Sugar in the Blood – Andrea Stuart 6.30-7.30pm Wembley Library

Left: Black History Month. Above: Lost Civilisations. Right: The Duchess of Sutherland.

Andrea Stuart discusses Sugar in the Blood her unique personal history and story of slavery and empire. She follows her own family’s involvement with sugar, telling a story of greed and forbidden love, of abuse and liberation.

Monday 21 October

Tuesday 29 October

Irish Londoners and The Paddy Fahey Collection of Photographs 2-3pm Kilburn Library

Owl Babies 11.15am-12.15pm Ealing Road Library

Discover the life of the Irish community in London documented by press photographer Paddy Fahey. He lived in Brent and photographed the Irish community in the 1950s and 1960s.

Bookstart story and craft workshop for under 5s. Haunted Halloween 2.30-4pm Willesden Green Library at the Lewinson Centre Children’s story and craft workshop. Over 5s.

Tuesday 22 October Thursday 17 October The Comedy Network Carl Donnelly, Jarlath Regan and Sunil Patel 7.30pm Brent Civic Centre, Conference Hall Join us for a great evening of comedy with star of Mock the Week Carl Donnelly, supported by BBC New Comedy Award finalist and Chortle Best Newcomer nominee Sunil Patel. The evening will be hosted by Jarlath Regan, award-winning comedian and star of The Panel. Tickets £8/£6 concessions. Bookings:

Rainy Day Bear’s Adventure 11am-12noon Brent Civic Centre, Olympic View A fun, interactive show telling the story of a girl named Milly and the adventures she has with her favourite toy Rainy Day Bear. The show also incorporates children’s songs that the audience can join in with. For children aged 2-6. Arrive early to guarantee admittance.

Wednesday 23 October

Advance booking advised. Cash on the door.

Martina Cole Talks Revenge with Bling Fashion Show and Live Music 5-8pm Wembley Library

Saturday 19 October

Join novelist Martina Cole for a great evening featuring music and a talk on her new book Revenge. It closes with a crosscultural bling fashion show that celebrates Martina’s gutsy heroines with the best of bling from Asian, African, Irish, and Romany cultures.

South Asian Creative Fiction Writing Workshop 10.30am-1.30pm, Brent Civic Centre, Olympic View Considered becoming a writer or want to know how to get published? Then join this creative writing workshop led by Preti Taneja, with a focus on South Asian themes. £3 in advance, £5 on the door. Book at creative-writing-brent

Monday 28 October The Adventures of Robin Hood 2.30-3.30pm Brent Civic Centre, Foyer Enjoy the classic legend of Robin Hood, the famous outlaw who steals from the rich to give to the poor, with this theatre show including music, puppetry and mime. For children aged 4-9 and their families.

Cotton Comes to Harlem by Chester Himes 6.30-9pm, Wembley Library Join the writer and broadcaster Lindsay Johns for a book club discussion and screening of this seminal blaxploitation film. Free. Tickets collected from Library.

Wednesday 30 October Scary Halloween Decorations Workshop 11am-12noon Ealing Road Library Children’s craft workshop. Over 5s. Big Draw – Get Drawing! 12noon-5pm, Brent Civic Centre, Foyer and Library A fun afternoon of brain storming and future visioning. For all ages and abilities.

Want to save money on your gas and electricity bills?

“I know times are hard for many families in Brent. That’s why I’m supporting this scheme, which could save you up to £200 a year. Register for free today and tell your friends and family about it.” – Brent Council Leader, Cllr Muhammed Butt

Join thousands of Londoners who are signing up to the Big London Energy Switch to get a better deal on their energy bills.

Reg is 15 O ter by ctob er

The fight against fly-tippers Fed up with fly-tipping? So is Brent Council – here’s what we’re doing about it. From dumped mattresses to sofas, car seats, fridges, baths and bags of abandoned rubbish – fly-tipping is possibly the number one complaint by Brent’s residents. The problem blights many of our town centres, streets, parks, grass verges and public spaces. Brent Council is aiming to reduce flytipping across the borough by stepping up its investigations into the culprits and asking residents to play their part in reporting it. Fly-tipping is when rubbish is illegally dumped on land without permission from landowners or without a licence. If fly-tippers are caught and prosecuted, they can be fined up to £50,000 or face up to five years’ jail. “We will not tolerate fly-tipping,” says Councillor Roxanne Mashari, the council’s Lead Member for Environment and Neighbourhoods. “It blights too many of our public places in Brent and we are doing all we can to catch those responsible and will investigate and prosecute fly-tippers. “There is no excuse for fly-tipping anywhere in Brent when we offer a free bulky waste service of three collections per household every financial year.” Brent Council officers have recently stepped up investigations and enforcement of fly-tipping in Harlesden and Willesden town centres. Dumped waste is now put into distinctive red sacks reminding everyone that fly-tipping is a crime.

“We are putting a really strong focus on enforcement in our town centres which are affected by fly-tipping. Where necessary we are prosecuting people and the fines which people can receive are very substantial. Fly-tipping costs hundreds of thousands a year in public money to clear up and residents are rightly fed up with it,” added Councillor Mashari.

To report fly-tipping call 020 8937 5050 or do it online at For Brent’s free bulky waste collection call 020 8937 5050.

on your side

If you find fly-tipping: • don't touch! it may contain syringes, toxic chemicals or other hazardous substances • note the day, date and time you saw it and its exact location • report it.

If you see fly-tipping: • note vehicle registration • note time, location and description of waste • note description of fly-tipper • be careful and don’t approach them • report it.



New school is top class Parents, pupils and staff at the Village School are delighted with their new, modern building and its first-class facilities.

The long-awaited new school has opened in Grove Park, marking the end of a three-year project to provide a centre of excellence for children and young people with complex learning difficulties and disabilities. The £29 million building replaced Hay Lane and Grove Park schools and is Brent Council's largest-ever investment in special educational needs provision. The purpose-built facilities will provide the best care and education possible for over 230 pupils aged two to 19 years old, as well as activities and work-related learning for the local community. Pupils were taught in temporary accommodation at nearby Kingsbury High while the demolition and building work took place, visiting their new school as it began to take shape.




They also helped to design the new logo and uniform. Headteacher at the Village, Kay Johnson, said: “When I first walked into the school at the early stage of its completion it was impossible to fight back the tears. It was simply inspirational; all the things the pupils, staff, governors and parents wanted were inside. “The building reflects progress, inclusion and entitlement, and the high expectations we have for our pupils and they in turn have for themselves in terms of the provision they need to fulfill their goals. The council made a landmark decision to invest in the very best facilities for the most vulnerable in our community, at a time of economic uncertainty, and I think this was a

brave, but much appreciated, forwardthinking move. "We were a bit anxious at first about the temporary move to Kingsbury High but it proved to be a fantastic experience. The school was constantly supportive on a daily basis and, more importantly, it provided exciting opportunities for many of our pupils. We look forward to sharing our wonderful facilities with them and our local community.” The concrete framed school, clad in a mixture of render, brick and cedar, has five split levels across the sloping site, arranged around a main central courtyard play area. There is a large performing arts centre with music, art and drama facilities, a sports and assembly hall,

and even a self-contained flat – complete with kitchen, bedroom and bathroom – to give older pupils independence and choice and the chance to learn important life skills. Outdoor space has been maximised by using a large part of the flat roof for a sports and play area with a running track, play equipment and shaded areas on a rubber crumb deck. On the same site is a new specialist short break centre for families of children with disabilities, which was opened by the Paralympic medalist and TV presenter Ade Adepitan in May. Parent governor Tina Barratt, whose six-year-old son Emerson is at the Village, said: “The facilities are breathtaking and I am so excited at the endless opportunities that Emerson is

going to have here. He’s already been up to explore the rooftop play area and he loves music so he’s going to be in his element in the performing arts centre.” Sharon St Louis, mum of 11-year-old pupil Lerisa, said: “The children were kept constantly informed about the construction and got the chance to see the building at various stages so, in that sense, they have grown up with the new school. I’ve been quite surprised at how comfortable Lerisa has felt about the move; she loves the building and has been very excited about moving in.” The building has achieved a BREEAM ‘Excellent’ rating for being environmentally-friendly, with sustainable features including rainwater harvesting, presence-controlled lighting and under floor heating.

What’s at the Village? I a multi-use games area (MUGA) and

woodland walk I sensory, soft play and calm rooms I dedicated space for occupational

therapists, physiotherapists and speech and language therapists to work with pupils I a hydrotherapy pool I a cafe, which pupils will

help to run I training and family

workers’ rooms.

Pictures show pupils at the Village. Photos: Big Picture Photography




“A great way to grow healthy food and keep active.”

Growing places Fancy the good life? From the veteran green-fingered to the beginner, Brent has allotments and new food growing projects to offer everyone. There are vacancies now for plots at allotment sites in Cecil Avenue, Wembley, Lyon Park Avenue, Alperton and Sudbury Court Road, Sudbury. Interested? It’s not just about food growing. “Allotment gardening is a great way to grow healthy food and keep active,” explains Brent Council’s Allotments Officer Vanessa Hampton. “It’s also very sociable with a community spirit among allotment holders.” There are good financial reasons in what has been a tough economic climate for many Brent households. “An allotment works out at a cost of just 22p a day for a standard size-five pole plot,” adds Vanessa. “That’s about half the size of a tennis court and is big enough to grow enough fruit and vegetables for a small family. “While we have some vacancies in Wembley and Sudbury there is a high demand in other parts of Brent for allotments.” So another option is one of the small food growing projects which Brent Council is helping to set up.




“As part of the new Food Growing and Allotment Strategy we’re encouraging other food growing places. Some are small – just a few grow bags on empty land.” These smaller projects have seen marginal areas of land turned into food growing places. The latest will be Challenge Close in Willesden NW10 which will have a food growing area as well as sports facilities and landscaping. “We have around 30 in Brent and there are more on the way – perhaps it could be on a small patch of land you didn’t even know could be used for growing,” she added. “You’ll be surprised how easy and enjoyable it is to plant seeds, cultivate and watch things grow!”

Apply for an allotment or find out more about food growing projects on 020 8937 5619 at or by emailing

Allotment holders in Cecil Avenue, Wembley.

on your side

Brent celebrates


9_l_Y9[djh[ Your guide to the Opening Ceremony Sunday 6 October 12noon to 7.30pm A FREE event for the whole family

We are celebrating the opening of the Brent Civic Centre with a grand spectacle of music, dance, arts and performance. Come along and enjoy a lively day of family activities, a fun run and walk, a mass Zumba class, ballet fusion, African dance, storytelling and many more workshops and performances for all ages. There will also be guided tours of the building.

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Poetry Slam: Chill Pill Collective and Simon Mole The event is hosted by Simon Mole, Brent’s Poet Laureate and Chill Pill, one of London’s coolest poetry collectives. Join in or listen to some great poetry and spoken word and decide for yourself who you think should win. Fun Run and Walk Run or walk around the perimeter of the iconic Wembley Stadium. Starts at 12noon, so put your trainers on and see how far you can go or how fast you can do it! Prizes will be given. Do it in fancy dress or for charity to make it even better.

Ballet:Fused English National Ballet and Brent Council present Ballet:Fused, an innovative dance fusion performance project to celebrate the opening of the civic centre. This collaboration fuses the classical forms of ballet and classical Indian ‘kathak’ dance with contemporary choreographic techniques. The choreography will explore themes of civic pride, citizenship and ‘the drum’ (inspired by the civic centre’s community space). Brent Music Service, an ensemble of young musicians from Brent, will provide live music for the performance.

Adanta Innovative African dance and theatre company, Adanta, will be performing ‘Amazing Feet’, a showcase of exciting dance, drumming and acrobatics fusing dances from Ghana, Nigeria, Guinea and South Africa with hip hop moves. A vibrant celebration of movement and rhythm performed in traditional costume that is not to be missed!

Don’t Opening Ceremony- Ribbon miss! Cutting Ceremony The Leader of the Council and the Mayor of Brent will be officially opening the civic centre alongside 21 young people representing each ward in Brent. These young people have been selected after winning a borough-wide competition to depict what they love about where they live.

fhe]hWcc[ A whole day packed full of fun There will be a wide range of FREE performances and workshops throughout the day for the whole family to enjoy starting from 12pm to 7.30pm including: Foyer (Ground Floor) Brent Music Service St Michaels Steel Band Rhythm Studios Grupo Esporao Capoeira Elders Voice Choir Nutkut Eastern Illusion Frisco Rose Mahogany Carnival Arts

Library (Ground Floor) Spoken word and workshop for young people Fiction writing for 55+yrs Fiction platform hosted by Aoife Mannix Spread the Word writing activities for all Henna art and back massage Hopkins architectural tours Outdoor gardens Bang On junk percussion duo

Don’t miss! Upswing’s Grand Finale Performance Upswing is a circus company with a difference that will be bringing the Brent Civic Centre to life in a spectacular finale performance at the Opening Ceremony. There will be some dance, aerial work, brilliant music and a few surprises thrown in. Vicky Amedume, Artistic Director of Upswing said: “Our work is always a little unexpected and surprising which you can definitely look forward to seeing at the Opening Ceremony. We will be bringing something spectacular that makes people look at the civic centre differently and makes them feel like the building belongs to them.”

Full programme at

Grand Hall and Winter Garden (Floor 1) Hartbeeps under 5’s Ballet:Fused – ENB London School of Samba Ballroom dancing demonstration Conference Hall (Floor 3) Poetry Slam with Chill Pill On the Level Productions graffiti collage TMAnimate animation popping workshop DJ Workshops

A state of the art wedding venue How to get there

Wembley Park Station

Wembley Park station will be closed on the day. A rail replacement bus service will be operating. ay ew r Wembley Central and i p Brent Em Wembley Stadium Civic stations will be Centre open. Buses 83, Engineers Way 182, 92, 297, Wembley 206 and 223 Arena stop nearby. Please check www.t for up to date travel information. Bicycle spaces are available.

Brent Civic Centre Engineers Way Wembley HA9 0FJ


Olympic Way

If you are searching for the perfect venue for your wedding or civil ceremony, then the brand new Brent Civic Centre could be the answer to all your dreams! The civic centre is in a remarkably breathtaking setting, surrounded by two iconic landmarks Wembley Stadium and Wembley Arena. The venue boasts: s a choice of nine different licensed wedding venues s capacity of up to 1000 guests s licensed bar s outdoor terrace and landscaped garden s state-of-the-art audio-visual technology s live streaming of your wedding on the internet s catering services s excellent transport links s disabled access. Come along to the Opening Ceremony for your chance to talk to the dedicated team of highly experienced and professional staff. Meet the Registrars, Conference and Events Team and caterers from 12pm-5pm. You will be able to take a tour of the marriage rooms and gardens, see the rooms dressed up for a wedding and meet Shanice, Brent’s virtual assistant who will be on hand to greet visitors. You will also be able to make a booking on the day! For enquiries email or call 020 8937 4340.

Wembley Stadium

Rising from the rubble It took less than two months to reduce what used to be Willesden Green Library into a mountain of rubble, but out of the debris the new cultural centre is taking shape. Galliford Try’s Project Manager John Murray can be found on site in Willesden and is responsible for the day to day management of the redevelopment. “We’re really pleased with the progress,” he said, “demolition of the building went pretty smoothly. “The actual concrete and brickwork from the old library has been recycled and used as the base for the foundations of the new library. The trees were donated to Salusbury Primary School, so nothing has gone to waste. “We are mindful of the noise and dust being created by the redevelopment and are doing what we can to minimise disturbance to residents. “A project like this is bound to raise concerns from locals and my door is open to anyone who wants to talk.

“In fact, the residents have also been great at alerting us about any unusual activity. Thanks to their feedback additional security cameras have been installed. This has actually stopped a group that had been bothering residents for a long time, from loitering.” The new cultural centre is due to open in summer 2015 but it’s not the only way the council is regenerating the High Road. A short walk down the High Road and you are met by the pop up project Queens Parade, whose shop owners are celebrating the extension of their lease.

Some of the shop owners and staff from Queen’s Parade

The shops will now be open until February of next year and have recently been joined by the Designer Jumble Sale, Urban Woot, Wonderland and BAR art gallery. Diana Grisales from Meanwhile Space, the organisation which manages the project, said: “Having BAR here means Willesden continues to have gallery space despite the library redevelopment. We are also now offering free workspace for anyone who wants to run their business from here and we have community space for hire. “The shop owners are also offering internships; they have an enormous amount of experience to share.” Visit John at the site office or call 07764 208 782 and follow Queens Parade on Facebook for more info.

Livija Dale, Assistant Manager, Designer Jumble, selling vintage designer clothes.

Jasmin Toresse, partner, Urban Woot offering positive psychology for urban life.

John Murray



On your side Spending 2012/13 Annual Review One thing really stands out about Brent Council’s work over the last year; the creative solutions we’ve developed to accommodate unprecedented cuts to our funding whilst

In 2010 the council

continually improving services. We’ve worked tirelessly to create new jobs, put money back

launched Brent –

in residents’ pockets and protect our community’s most vulnerable members from the

Our Future - a four

worst effects of the government’s severe welfare reforms.

year borough plan. Each October TBM

This year has been one of great challenges for Brent.

looks back at the past year and provides a

However, against a backdrop of cuts, we’ve reshaped the way the council runs to make

snapshot of how we, as a council, in the last

it more efficient - most notably by moving almost 2000 staff out of 14 buildings into our

financial year (31 March 2012 - 1 April 2013)

state-of-the-art civic centre. This will lead to savings of up to £2.5million a year and has

delivered the priorities in this plan.

provided residents with a fantastic new community hub and customer facilities.

Brent Council’s strategic objectives are

My top priority is to make sure Brent residents get a fair deal. Our energy switching

divided into three groups with clearly

scheme has reduced many residents’ energy bills significantly, and by standardising

defined aims to help meet objectives:

parking charges we’ve made them simpler and fairer.

One borough

Through hard work and a relentless focus on our priorities we can emerge from these


difficult times as a stronger borough. Major regeneration projects continue across Brent,


and schemes like the ‘Coming Soon Club’ have allowed residents to try their hand at


running their own business for free, bringing new life to our high streets. I’m delighted


that Brent is now an official London Living Wage employer and I’ve written to every business in the borough


encouraging them to sign up too.


We’re on your side in tough times, and I’m proud that


this is reflected in this year’s annual review.

sSUPPORTINGGREATERPERSONALCHOICEAND independence in adult social care

Cllr Muhammed Butt Leader of Brent Council



Turn the page to find what we’ve done to meet our aims…




One council Objective: Improving services for residents by working with our partners to deliver local priorities more effectively and achieve greater value for money from public resources.


One c


35% 93.6% of Brent school leavers are in education or training according to the Department of Education.

has been saved in 2012/13 through the council’s efficiency programme, bringing the grand total to £54.6million since the programme began in 2010/11.


4,410 Is the number of extra full time primary school places Brent Council has committed to create by 2020/21.

fewer complaints (148) were received about anti-social behaviour in 2012/13 compared to the previous year (198).


will go towards rebuilding Copland Community School and Alperton School after our successful bid to government.

projects responding to community

concerns were delivered by the ward working fund in 2012/13. This included funding for; tree planting, youth projects, and initiatives for older people including revamping neglected gardens to reduce the likelihood of burglaries.

Extensive consultation was carried out on a new council house

Roundwood Youth Centre

Allocation Scheme, which will go

The brand new Roundwood Youth Centre opened in November

live this month. Because of your

2012 complete with music recording studios and a sports hall.

feedback we have decided to give added priority to those in work and only allow people living Brent Council’s new Park Online system allows Brent residents and drivers to apply for parking permits, arrange visitor parking, renew a residential permit or pay for a penalty control notice (PCN) online or over the phone.

23 22


in the borough for at least five years to apply.



100,000 people took to the streets of Wembley to watch the Olympic Flame blaze through Brent. As a host borough, the council helped deliver a safe and successful Games.

The Brent Integrated Community Safety Team and the Metropolitan Police were successful in building up a case ďŹ le on grafďŹ ti tagger ‘Zerk’ who had caused over ÂŁ80,000 worth of damage across London and received a 12 month custodial sentence. Eight brothels were also closed in the borough by Brent Integrated Community Safety Team.

We became a London Living Wage Employer in January 2013 and have recently received ofďŹ cial accreditation. We are also encouraging local businesses to do the same.

The council has responded to the impact of welfare reform by establishing a of on time applicants

dedicated team that works

were offered a school

closely with Job Centre Plus

place for 2013/14,

and other partners to direct

despite considerable

help to households worst


affectedbeneďŹ by t affected beneďŹ t changes. changes.

135 days of council ofďŹ cer time has been saved in processing and monitoring social care payments due to issuing users of Direct Payments with a pre-payment card. The innovative scheme also reduces the amount of paperwork for service users.

In 2012/13 the Brent Drug and Alcohol Action Team was the highest performer across London in terms of the numbers of adults successfully completing drug treatment programmes. We launched The Coming Soon

Village School The ÂŁ29 million Village School was completed and caters for young people aged 2-19 years old with education needs. On the same site is a specialist short break centre for families of children with disabilities.

Club in April 2012 to help budding entrepreneurs test out business ideas in empty shops in Wembley. Similar schemes include Queen’s Parade and the Library Lab in Willesden, SK Studios and The Albert in South Kilburn.



22 23


The Hilton Wembley opened in July 2012 and employed 59 local people who were helped into work by the Wembley Works OfďŹ ce. The ofďŹ ce is run by the council and partner agencies to ensure residents beneďŹ t from the employment opportunities the multi-million pound regeneration of Wembley is creating.


of Brent’s waste is now recycled, up from 29% in 2011.

1132 new affordable homes were started and 438 were completed, these are a mixture of rented homes and low cost home-ownership.


is the amount our carbon emissions has reduced since 2009/10. Our emissions will reduce further now that we have closed 14 council buildings and moved into the civic centre, the greenest public building in the UK.

was saved as a result of sending 14,562 fewer tonnes to landďŹ ll than in previous year.

One borough Objective: Creating a sustainable built environment that drives



21,000 residents joined Brent libraries in 2012/13, up by 35% compared to last year.

of respondents in an independent library survey rated their Brent library as ‘very good’ or ‘good’.



south of the borough, work is underway to deCultural Centre,

books have been added to our library stock which, if laid end to end, would run from Wembley Stadium to Canary Wharf.

The civic centre was completed March 2013 and ofďŹ cially opened to the public in June this year. It features the new state of the art Wembley Library.


council services in the

velop Willesden Green

Brent Civic Centre


Willesden Green Cultural Centre

To improve access to

providing improved community facilities, a customer service point and an advanced library.

Investment in local sports facilities include a new artiďŹ cial grass pitch at Vale Farm Sports Centre and four new multi-use game areas across the borough.

1.2 million visits to our sport centres in 2012/13.

It all adds up! Council spending 2012/13 Services we provide


Sales, Fees & Charges ÂŁ77m

The council provides a large number of essential services including: sSCHOOLS sKILOMETRESOFROADSANDPAVEMENTS sRUBBISHCOLLECTIONFROM HOUSEHOLDS and recycling 45,000 tonnes of waste

General Government Grant ÂŁ155m Council Tax income ÂŁ105m

Talk to us Dedicated Schools Grant ÂŁ210m


Other grants and contributions ÂŁ183m

Did you know? Council tax accounts for less than 10% of our income

What we spent on services for residents in 2012/13 In 2012/13, we spent ÂŁ1,078million on

Mandatory Rent Allowances and Council Tax BeneďŹ t ÂŁ348m

Income was received from central government grants, from businesses through non domestic rates, money generated by fees/charges and what you paid in council tax.


020 8937 1200

Anti-Social Behaviour Team

020 8733 3932

Brent Register OfďŹ ce

020 8937 1010

Committee meetings

020 8937 1366

Councillor surgeries

020 8937 1200

Council tax

020 8937 1790

Business rates

020 8937 1525



Adult Social Care ÂŁ101m

services for residents and paying housing and council tax beneďŹ ts.

Customer services

Other housing services including housing beneďŹ t, tackling homelessness, supporting people ÂŁ416m

Central Services including council tax beneďŹ t, customer services ÂŁ51m

Cultural Services including libraries, arts, parks & Other ÂŁ43m sports ÂŁ20m Environmental ÂŁ35m Planning and Development ÂŁ6m

(24 hour service)

020 8937 1234

Pay council bills

020 8937 1717

Environment Pest control

020 8937 5252

Recycling and refuse collection

020 8937 5050

Abandoned vehicles

020 8937 5050

Noise service

020 8937 5252

Out of hours

020 8937 1234

Other Housing advice Education ÂŁ308m

020 8937 2000

Housing beneďŹ t

020 8937 1800


020 8937 3400


020 8937 5210

Sports Service

020 8937 3707 Did you know? The ÂŁ54million raised from rent and charges fully covered the spend on council housing in 2012/13

Highways and Transport Services ÂŁ53m

Children’s Social Care £45m

Want to know more? A copy of the council’s full accounts is available at your local library or visit OCTOBER 2013



BeYWb and LeYWb Stay connected with your council, ďŹ nd out more about how council policies on local service provision affect you as a Brent resident; use the soapbox to have a say about issues affecting you, your neighbourhood or members of your community. Come along to any of the area forums to put your questions to your local councillors, council ofďŹ cers and partner agencies.

Brent Connects Kilburn & Kensal Tuesday 1 October 2013 Kensal Rise Primary School Hall, Harvist Road, Kilburn NW6 Brent Connects Wembley Wednesday 2 October 2013 Brent Civic Centre, Engineers Way, Wembley HA9 Brent Connects Harlesden Tuesday 15 October 2013 Tavistock Hall, Tavistock Road (next to Burger King drive-thru), Harlesden NW10

020 8937 1055

Brent Connects Willesden Wednesday 16 October 2013 College of N.W. London Denzil Road, Willesden NW10 Brent Connects Kingsbury & Kenton Tuesday 22 October 2013 Brent Civic Centre Engineers Way, Wembley HA9 All meetings start at 7pm.

Brent connects

ALL IN Aday’s


Say hello to Shanice Visitors to Brent’s Registration and Nationality Service can be sure of the same perfect welcome every single time. But the friendly, polite and smartly-dressed employee who greets arrivals isn’t human – Shanice is a virtual assistant. What's more, she's the first of her kind to be used by any council and is proving to be superb value for money while improving the service Brent Council customers get. Shanice is in the foyer of the Registration and Nationality Service on the ground floor of the civic centre. She sits behind a desk just like a real receptionist, but on closer inspection she's actually projected onto a screen. In her day to day role she helps point people in the right direction if they've come to register a birth or death, apply for a marriage licence, citizenship or even tie the knot. She is activated by movement but also has a ‘touch screen' function, so that visitors can get a tailor made presentation about where they need to go and the documentation they need. Shanice is costing the council £12,000 for three years which is many thousands of pounds cheaper than employing real people to do the job. Brent’s Head of Registration and Nationality, Mark Rimmer, got the idea after seeing a hologram at Luton Airport. He commissioned a high-tech company to recruit and film an actor to play the role. Mark said: “We are a seven-day service and you need cover for holidays and sickness, so it would take more than one person to do this job. I estimate that would cost around £90,000 over three years.

“The council can’t afford this at a time when we are under financial pressure. “Shanice hasn’t replaced a real receptionist – she is filling an extra role that we would never be able to fill normally. And she’s never ill, never takes holidays and is always smart and friendly. “This is a great example of the innovative solutions Brent is using to maintain and improve the standard of customer service while still getting best value for council taxpayers.”

“She’s never ill, never takes holidays and is always smart and friendly.”




Get together and feel all right

adopt Brent

You can change a child’s life

COUNCIL HOUSING Houses and flats available No deposits Move in today Call Bernard 07774 164 679 28



Library photo posed by models. © John Birdsall, Photofusion.

Adoption information evening on Thursday 3 October from 5.45pm at Brent Civic Centre. Call on 020 8937 4525 or email to book your place


Win an evening at The Drum worth £2,000 Want a night to remember? TBM is giving one lucky reader the chance to win a drinks and canapé reception for you and up to 40 guests at The Drum worth over £2,000! You will have exclusive use of a Terrace room overlooking Wembley Stadium as well as a dedicated event manager who will help organise your entire evening, which includes food by in-house caterers Europa, flowers and background music, ensuring it will be a night you’ll never forget. The Drum, which forms part of the £90 million civic centre, contains a collection of magnificent event spaces including the Grand Hall, Conference Hall, boardrooms and Terrace Rooms. To win tell us:

What is the name of our in-house caterers? Prize valid from 2 January – 31 March 2014, Mon to Fri 6- 9pm, dependent on availability.

Send your entries on a postcard with your name, address and daytime telephone number to: (name of competition) The Brent Magazine, 4th floor, Brent Civic Centre, Engineers Way, Wembley, Middlesex HA9 0FJ or email (add the name of the competition to the subject line and provide your contact details). Competitions deadline 25 October visit for full terms and conditions. We reserve the right to withdraw competitions at any time.

Win a coffee a day for two weeks Fancy a free coffee next time you cosy up to a good book at Wembley Library? TBM is giving three readers the chance to win two weeks worth of coffee from its new café. Each winner will also get either a set of Rastamouse books, a signed copy of Revenge - the latest Martina Cole book - or a signed copy of Sugar in the Blood by Andrea Stuart. To win tell us:

What is the name of Martina Cole’s latest book? Books to be allocated at random, choose between tea or coffee, 14 vouchers per winner, one per day when combined with borrowing at least one book – valid until 31 March 2014.

Win a free wedding ceremony To celebrate the opening of the brand new civic centre, TBM is giving away another big day to remember! One lucky reader can win themselves a free evening wedding ceremony worth over £300. The winning bride or groom and up to 90 guests can choose to have their ceremony in the Marriage Suite within the civic centre or outdoors in the Marriage Garden. To win tell us:

Where are outdoor weddings conducted at the civic centre? Now, all you have to do is say I do! Valid evenings Mon- Fri until 1 Oct 2014.




6916TBM136 p31.qxp



Page 1


What’s going on…


Your guide to what’s on in Brent during October 2013. To get your event listed for free, email us using the subject heading ‘What’s On’. Describe your event, in no more than 50 words, tell us what section you want your ad to appear, include a pic and a title and email or tel 020 8937 1062. CHILDREN PEBBLES AT STONEBRIDGE Parent and toddler group. 10.30am-12noon, Stonebridge Evangelical Church, Hillside, London NW10 8LB. With play, crafts, singing and storytime. £1 entry. 07811 350 161 LGBT YOUTH CLUB Lesbian, Gay, Bi and unsure under 19s youth club. Weds 07931 336 668 4TH NEASDEN BROWNIES Girls aged 7-10 only, Tues 6-7.30pm, St Mary’s and St Andrew’s Church Hall, Dollis Hill Lane, NW2. 07794 018 819 2ND WEMBLEY BOYS BRIGADE Park Lane Methodist Church, Wembley. Thurs 6.15-7.30pm for 5-11 year olds. Fri 7-9pm for 11-18 year olds. 020 8248 3265

COMMUNITY WEMBLEY HISTORY SOCIETY 18 October, 7.30pm. “London 1837” – A talk by Malcolm Barres-Baker from Brent Archives. English Martyrs’ Hall, Chalkhill Road, Wembley, HA9 9EW. 020 8200 0211 WILLESDEN LOCAL HISTORY SOCIETY Wed 16 Oct, 7.30pm. St.Mary’s Parish Centre, Neasden Lane, NW10. Talk by Margaret Pratt, “Artists of Willesden.” Members free, visitors £1. BRENT & HARROW NAT ORG OF WIDOWED 8 Oct: Meal out c/o Julia. 22 Oct: Talk from Harrow University of the 3rd Age at 7.30pm, The Bridge, Wembley, Middlesex, HA3 5BD. 020 8969 3198 GET CREATIVE TO MARK BLACK HISTORY 25 Oct, 6-9pm. Celebrate with art and dance at Poplar Grove Youth Club, Wembley. David Bailey will lead Black History Discovery Through Art. The event is free. Contact

NORTH WEST LONDON LESBIAN AND GAY GROUP Mon 8.30pm, Tenterden Sports Centre, Preston Road, Wembley. 07941 707 884 PARKLIFE SINGERS A community choir for Brent. Open to all. Mon 8-10pm, Salusbury Sch., Queen’s Park. Term starts 16 Sept. First session FREE! BRENT CITIZENS’ PANEL Join the panel to have your say on how decisions should be made in the borough. www.brent. Email: consultation@ Call: 020 8937 1073

MUSIC MANOR AND PHILBEACH SINGERS Tues 7.30-10pm Goodwill Hall, Chichester Rd, Kilburn Park. No singing experience needed, no auditions 020 8455 8865

SPORTS & LEISURE SKY RIDE All rides organised and guided by British Cycling trained ride leaders. For all ages and abilities. Sun 6 Oct, steady (20 miles), (children over eight), meet at Gladstone Park, 10am. Sun 13 Oct, easy-going (3 mile), meet at Tokyngton Recreation Ground, 10am.

GENTLE EXERCISE CLASS FOR OLDER PEOPLE Age UK Brent’s new exercise class. Fri, pm. An hour’s gentle exercise at the SPA London Centre, 519 North Circular Road, Neasden, NW2 7QG. 020 8965 7711

CYCLING Drop-in Dr Bike on 26 Oct. Cycle Maintenance Class on 27 Oct. Both at Charteris Sports Centre, For info contact

SEA URCHINS Thurs 8pm. Swimming club for young people and adults with learning difficulties. Willesden Sports Centre, NW10. Free. 020 8452 6912

INNER SPACE WEMBLEY Free courses and seminars: Meditation, Positive Thinking, Overcoming Anger etc. Inner Space, 528 High Road, Wembley, HA9 7BS. 020 8903 1911 wembley

AIKIDO CLASSES Wed 8-10pm. St Andrews Church, Scout Hall, Church Gardens, Harrow Road, Sudbury. Contact Steve 07775 588 343


All events are selected at the editor’s discretion

DANCE NEW TEA DANCE AT BRENT CIVIC CENTRE Mons (not bank holidays) at The Grand Hall, Civic Centre, Engineers Way, Wembley. Doors open 12.30pm, Dances from 1.30-4.30pm. £5.00 per person. Licensed bar and refreshments. 020 8937 4340

DRAMA FRESH ARTS THEATRE SCHOOL Sat, 10am-1pm. Drama, dance and singing for ages 3-13, at Newman Catholic College, Harlesden Road, NW10 3RN. 0845 269 9529 or 07506 363 585

ENVIRONMENT BARN HILL CONSERVATION GROUP Sun, Fryent Country Park. Tues, Thurs and Sat, Roe Green Walled Garden. 020 8206 0492

LEARNING MANDARIN AND CALLIGRAPHY TUTORING Various levels: speaking, reading, listening and writing. Minimum £15/hr first 30 minutes free. 07540 753 562

Brent celebrates

FIREWORKS NIGHT Free fireworks show 5 November 8pm main display Children’s small display at 6.30pm

Roundwood Park, NW10

BRENT ARCHIVES George Furness House 2-12 Grange Road Willesden NW10 2QY 020 8937 3541 THE DRUM Brent Civic Centre Engineers Way Wembley HA9 0FJ 020 8937 4340 TRICYCLE THEATRE CINEMA AND GALLERY 269 Kilburn High Road London NW6 Theatre Box Office 020 7328 1000 Cinema 020 7328 1900 Disabled access to auditorium and cafe, induction loop in auditorium Minicom 020 7625 5105

LIBRARIES EALING ROAD LIBRARY Coronet Parade, Ealing Road Wembley HA0 4BA 020 8937 3560 HARLESDEN LIBRARY Craven Park Road Harlesden, NW10 8SE 020 8937 3570 KILBURN LIBRARY 42 Salusbury Road Kilburn NW6 6NN 020 8937 3530 KINGSBURY LIBRARY PLUS Kingsbury Road Kingsbury NW9 9HE 020 8937 3520 WEMBLEY LIBRARY Brent Civic Centre Engineers Way Wembley HA9 0FJ 020 8937 3500 WILLESDEN GREEN LIBRARY George Furness House 2-12 Grange Road Willesden NW10 2QY 020 8937 3400 WILLESDEN GREEN LIBRARY The Lewinson Centre 165-167 High Road Willesden NW10 2SG 020 8937 3400


Please use public transport No parking available

Steelers vs Vikings, 29 September England vs Montenegro, 11 October England vs Poland, 15 October Saracens vs Toulouse, 18 October 49ers vs Jaguars, 27 October

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Subject to change




The Brent Magazine issue 136 October 2013  

Read the Annual Review 12/13 and the upcoming Brent Civic Centre grand opening event