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Your guide to council services | September 2016

Exam success Camden students celebrate results



8 The Camden magazine is distributed free to all homes in Camden to give you information about our services. It is printed on paper that is 50% recycled and 50% from sustainable sources.

Digital edition Go to camden to find out how to access our digital magazine 2 | Camden | September 2016

Apply for 2017 school places now

Website: Email: Twitter: @camdentalking Communications team Camden Council Camden Town Hall, Judd Street, WC1H 9JE

Distribution from 6 September 2016 Published by Camden Council Editorial, advertising and distribution: 020 7974 5717 Costs 15 pence a copy to produce. Cover image: Justin Thomas

You can receive your copy of the Camden magazine in large print, on audio tape or in another language by phoning 020 7974 5717.



News in focus A-level results New centre for homeless people


News in brief Primary school pupils perform A Midsummer Night’s Dream


School admissions Brushing for life Tackling tenancy fraud


Feature Camden is open


Feature A borough for everyone

Camden gets growing




Torrington Place and Tavistock Place trial

24-25 Feature

Cuts to council funding

28-29 Feature Free and low-cost ways to get active



4 | Camden | September 2016


to the September edition of the Camden magazine Sadly, incidents of hate crime were reported throughout the country in the wake of the referendum. We will absolutely not tolerate this in Camden. On page 12 you can find out what to do if you experience or witness a hate crime. We must all stand together to make sure that Camden remains a resilient and diverse borough. On page 11 you can also read about how we’re working with other organisations in the borough, alongside the Mayor of London’s #LondonIsOpen campaign, to ensure that Camden remains open for business, and that EU workers continue to be welcome here.

Councillor Sarah Hayward Leader of the Council


ne of the things that makes Camden such an amazing place is our mix of people. We welcome people from all over the world – from holidaymakers visiting historic landmarks, to students studying at our world-class universities, and those who make London their permanent home. It’s going to take time to work out what the consequences of the Brexit vote are likely to be for Camden but two things are clear to me: we remain open for business with Europe, and residents and visitors of all backgrounds must continue to feel safe and respected within our borough.

As you receive this magazine, we will be appearing in front of the House of Lords Select Committee to make Camden’s case around the proposed High Speed 2 (HS2) railway. We’ve challenged HS2 at every stage and we continue to have major concerns about the way they are handling the project. We’ll be calling again for the government to bring forward plans for the comprehensive redevelopment of Euston Station and a fair offer of compensation to Camden residents. Beyond that we’ll continue to work hard to make sure that HS2 Ltd. is held to account on the issues that will affect Camden residents. You can read more about this on pages 28 and 29.

Camden’s secondary students have been celebrating their exam results over the past few weeks. Many will be moving on to university, taking up apprenticeships, or taking their first steps on the career ladder. Our A-level results coverage is on page 6. As many pupils return to school, some parents will be thinking about children who will be joining reception or year 7 in 2017. If this applies to you, don’t forget that you can apply for a school place online now (page 8). In Camden the percentage of children attending primary schools rated ‘good’ or ‘outstanding’ by Ofsted is higher than almost anywhere else in the country. We’re very proud of this and our schools offer a fantastic educational experience for pupils in the borough. We’re committed to ensuring that Camden children get the best start in life. On page 19 you can find out how we can support you, from the moment you know you’re expecting a baby. There’s lots of information in this magazine about how to access our services. We hope you find it useful, and we welcome your feedback.


News in focus

A-level joy for Camden students Camden young people celebrate another impressive set of A-level results and several students are now heading to top universities and vocational degrees, including aerospace engineering. Among the top performers was Maya Eadie-Catling, 18, of LaSWAP sixth form and Acland Burghley School, who gained three A*s and an A at A-level and has a place to study English literature at Oxford University. Chinedu Kalu, 18, of LaSWAP and William Ellis School, is off to the University of the West of England, Bristol, to study aerospace engineering with pilot studies. Chinedu said: “I’m really pleased as I’ve been interested in flying since becoming an RAF air cadet at 13 and now I want to go on to be a pilot.” Councillor Sarah Hayward, Leader of the Council, who visited LaSWAP sixth form to congratulate students on results day, said: “Our secondary

6 | Camden | September 2016

Acland Burghley head Nicholas John, with LaSWAP students (left to right) Kate Winter, Jonathan Lloyd and Maya Eadie-Catling

schools help young people to succeed, whatever their potential, talent or background, and that is exactly the platform that we want our schools to provide. Today we have seen achievements from inspirational young people, who are going on to great things.” The LaSWAP sixth form is the largest post-16 provision in Camden and the longest-established sixth form consortium in London. It combines the strengths of its four partner schools - Acland Burghley, La Sainte Union, Parliament Hill and William Ellis - and aims to ensure outstanding progress and achievement for all students, equipping them for future success. Meanwhile, Camden School for Girls was celebrating another outstanding

set of results with 75% of all grades at A* to B and 93% at A* to C. Among the successes were friends Holly Mae Bootland and Molly Mae Whitmey, who are both off to Manchester University after getting a string of top grades in their A-levels. Other Camden school leavers will be going into apprenticeships, which offer opportunities to earn while they learn, get a foot on the career ladder, and can also lead to a degree.

Find out more

News in focus

Supporting homeless people New centre offers housing, health facilities and training all on one site. We are celebrating the relaunch of the Endsleigh Gardens centre in St Pancras, after a major £2.5 million transformation. The centre is part of our adult pathway service, which supports approximately 250 homeless people each year to rebuild their confidence, develop their skills and ultimately equip them to live independently. Homelessness is a big issue for London, with 8,096 people reported to be sleeping rough last year by the Greater London Authority (GLA), a six per cent rise on the previous year. Endsleigh Gardens, which is run by a homeless charity called St Mungo’s, is taking a new approach to tackling homelessness by providing housing, health and employment training services under one roof.

Councillor Pat Callaghan tries her hand at bricklaying in the new multi-skills centre

All 48 bedrooms are now en suite and arranged in clusters that share modern kitchen facilities. Six of the bedrooms are designated for single homeless people who have been discharged from hospital and need ongoing nursing care for up to 12 weeks. The basement has been upgraded to a multi-skills workshop. This will enable more clients from the centre and other pathway services to gain valuable construction skills, including bricklaying, plastering, painting and decorating, and begin their journey back to work.

Changing lives: David’s story David, who attends the bricklaying workshop, is living proof of how the centre can help transform lives. “I was chronically addicted to drugs and couldn’t see a future. I was at a real low, and then a friend told

me about Endsleigh Gardens. I was able to join the bricklaying class and learn a new skill,” he said. “As time went on, I began to have a good reason to get up in the mornings and enjoyed being around people again. The support of the staff at the centre and gaining a new skill has totally transformed my life. I’m no longer addicted to drugs and I’m now qualified to teach bricklaying skills to others.”

Find out more


News in brief

Applying for primary school places If your child starts reception in September 2017 you can apply for their school place online now.

In Camden the percentage of children attending primary schools rated ‘good’ or ‘outstanding’ by Ofsted is an amazing 98% - higher than almost anywhere else in the country. Primary pupils in Camden also perform consistently above the national average in test results for 11 year-olds. This year’s provisional figures show 61% of Camden’s primary pupils achieving the national standard and above in reading, writing and maths - significantly above the national figure of 53%. Our annual guide for parents, Starting School in Camden 2017, is

due out this month. The deadline to apply for reception places is 15 January 2017. You can name up to six primary schools in your preferences. If you have recently moved to Camden and want to find out about getting your child into school, you can ask our school admissions team for advice then apply direct to local primary schools.

Find out more

Secondary school open days and evenings Find out more about Camden secondary schools at our events in September and October. Whether your child is aiming for university, work or an apprenticeship, Camden schools will help them succeed. You need to apply for year 7 places for autumn 2017 by 31 October 2016. You can visit Camden secondary schools on their open days and evenings in September and October. You can also find out more about local schools at our 8 | Camden | September 2016

Moving On event at the Camden Centre, Bidborough Street, King’s Cross, from 3.30 to 6.30pm on Thursday 15 September. There you’ll be able to meet heads, senior teachers and students from all our schools. You can register for a free place online. The Meet the Parents organisation also runs informal discussions at primary schools where you can

find out more about your local secondary schools from current students and their parents.

Find out more

News in brief Brushing for life

Nearly one in four children in Camden has had significant tooth decay. Keeping teeth healthy from an early age is really important. The level of tooth decay in Camden’s children has recently fallen to below the London average, but we want all children in Camden to have healthy teeth.

Top tips to protect your children’s teeth • Make sure your child is registered at a dentist. NHS dental treatment is free for under-18s and you can find a dentist near you on the NHS choices website. • Avoid sugary food and drink in your children’s diet. • Brush their teeth twice a day.

It’s easy to prevent problems Councillor Georgia Gould, Camden’s Cabinet Member for Young People, Adults and Health,

said: “Tooth decay in children can affect their teeth throughout their lives. The good news is that this is easily preventable through a sensible diet, regular brushing and regular trips to the dentist.” We run ‘Brushing for Life’ sessions at Camden Sure Start children’s centres, where you can learn about good brushing habits, and we also offer fluoride varnish applications in some Camden primary schools.

Find out more c n

Consultation 2016 - 2017 We are consulting on proposed changes to the Council Tax Reduction Scheme. This helps people on benefits or who have low incomes and may affect the amount of council tax they have to pay. We are proposing to increase the discount available by 8.5% up to a maximum of 100%. This would mean the Camden residents in most need will receive a higher discount and in many instances a full discount on their council tax payable from 1 April 2017.

Now is your chance to have your say. To take part in the consultation please go to and complete the online survey. The consultation closes on 17 October 2016.


News in brief

Nature watch in Camden Help us understand more about nature in the borough. We want to improve Camden’s wildlife and provide residents with more opportunities to experience the natural environment. You can help us understand more about wildlife in the borough by spotting wildlife in your local area and recording it on a Camden nature watch survey.

Nature watch surveys for both autumn and spring can be found on our website. Between 2013 and 2015 Camden hosted over 1,000 nature events and activities. Events were run by the London Wildlife Trust, RSPB, the Conservation Volunteers and Camden community groups.

More than 1,500 volunteers gave up their time to help out and improve Camden’s wildlife. You can find out more about these events on our website.

Find out more

Tackling tenancy fraud Our housing is in high demand, so we need to make sure that council homes go to the people who need them most. We carry out regular checks and take action against tenants who break the law by illegally subletting. Since April we have taken back 32 properties from people committing or attempting tenancy fraud. Cases include: • An attempt to succeed to a four-bedroom property by the tenant’s daughter, who falsely claimed to have been living there. 10 | Camden | September 2016

• The subletting of a fourbedroom property, discovered during a forced entry to carry out a gas safety check.

If you’re renting privately, check on the ilatch website that the flat doesn’t belong to the Council before you sign the lease.

• A Right to Buy application for a two-bedroom property, with a possible discount of £103,900, where we discovered that the applicant lived in Bedfordshire.

Find out more 020 7974 5848

Please contact us if you have any concerns about illegal subletting.


Camden is open We make our case to the Government following the decision to leave the EU. Businesses, institutions and the Council have jointly written to the government and the message is clear – our vibrant and economically successful borough must remain open for business with Europe.

contribution to Camden and London’s economy employ large numbers of workers who hold nonUK EU passports.

Thousands of migrants and people with migrant heritage live The letter, signed on behalf of in Camden and more than 10 the Council by Councillor Theo per cent of the workforce was Blackwell, Cabinet Member for born in a non-UK EU country. Finance, Technology and Growth, The Council and local businesses follows the launch of the Mayor of want everyone to continue to feel London’s #LondonIsOpen campaign, welcome in Camden, and their which highlights that the capital is skills are needed so Camden still open for business and retains its continues to thrive. entrepreneurial and creative spirit. The letter makes the following Following the vote to leave the requests that will help ensure the European Union, many of Camden’s continued success of our borough: businesses and residents have been • EU workers already in Camden asking questions about what the should remain welcome to stay result means for them. Many of the in the UK. businesses that make an important

• Camden’s businesses and institutions should be allowed to continue to attract staff with the skills they need through the free movement of talent from the EU and elsewhere. • Camden’s businesses and institutions should continue to have access to the EU single market with over 500 million people. • Investment is maintained in locally-supported infrastructure projects that Camden needs to continue to grow and prosper.

Find out more economicdevelopment@



A borough for everyone There’s no place for hate in Camden. As one of the busiest and most diverse boroughs in London, Camden has always welcomed people from a variety of countries and backgrounds to live, work, study and visit. With the dust settling after the EU referendum in June, it’s been a time of adjustment and looking to the future. Through this uncertain time we want residents and visitors alike to feel safe and respected within our borough and we are committed to working with our communities to challenge any negative or hateful behaviour.

What is a hate crime? A hate crime is any act of physical violence or hostile behaviour directed at someone because of who they are or who someone thinks they are, including because of their race, sexuality or gender identity. 12 | Camden | September 2016

The behaviour could involve verbal abuse, damage to property, negative comments online, or the fly-posting of abusive materials. While there have been a few incidents of negative behaviour across the borough, our communities continue to stand together to bring these to our attention so we can address them. If you see or hear of any hate crime taking place, it’s important that you report it. If you aren’t sure whether what you have seen classes as a hate crime, please do still get in touch. We act on information from the public to deal with any incidents swiftly.

Find out more c

Here’s what to do: Keep calm: Even if you are angry or scared.

If anyone is in danger: Dial 999.

Evidence: Note the time, the perpetrator’s appearance, behaviour and what they said.

Report it: Even if you are unsure of what happened - the perpetrator may do it again. For non-emergencies, call the police on 101. If the crime is on public transport and is not an emergency, report it to the Transport Police on 0800 40 50 40 (24 hours), or text 61016. You can also report incidents anonymously to Crimestoppers on 0800 555 111.

Feature Torrington Place and Tavistock Place trial: have your say We’re launching a consultation to decide whether or not the current traffic trial along Torrington Place and Tavistock Place should be made permanent. In 2015, the route between Torrington Place, Byng Place, Gordon Square, Tavistock Square and Tavistock Place was the busiest street in Camden for cycling, and one of the busiest in London. The two-way cycling lane had become overcrowded, causing safety problems. In November last year we introduced a trial that temporarily changed traffic along this route: • the main two-way vehicle road was replaced with a one-way system • the previous two-way cycling lane was replaced with two one-way cycling lanes on either side of the main vehicle road. The trial was intended to make the route safer and simpler to use for pedestrians and cyclists by allowing them more room to overtake and pass through the route.

Proposed changes at Torrington Place and Tavistock Place

We want to hear from you The trial is still going on and we want your views on whether or not the changes should be made permanent and whether we should make further changes to the route. These further changes include wider pavements, stepped cycle lanes, more cycle parking facilities and, where possible, the planting of new trees. Throughout the trial our transport service has been meeting with residents and businesses to collect their feedback. We are now opening our formal consultation. It will run from Monday 12 September to Friday 21 October 2016. We will be mailing details of the consultation to residents and business owners in the local area, but you can also complete the survey online, or ask for a printed copy by emailing us.

Join the discussion at one of our drop-in sessions: • Thursday 22 September, Room 3A, Camden Town Hall, 12 noon to 2pm • Wednesday 12 October, Room 3A, Camden Town Hall, 6.30 to 8.30pm. You can see a copy of the proposed changes at Holborn and Pancras Square Libraries.

Find out more torringtontavistocktrial t orringtontavistocktrial@



Delivering for the community It’s been another busy year for our Community Investment Programme (CIP), with lots of our major projects across Camden reaching significant milestones. CIP is our 15-year plan to invest money into schools, homes and community facilities. Now - five and a half years into the programme - we have delivered some big things: • We have built or started construction on 900 new homes • A further 1,100 have planning approval • £  58 million has been invested to improve schools and children’s centres – including new buildings for Netley Primary School and

Montpelier Community Nursery • We have provided 1,242 m2 of improved community facilities. What CIP will ultimately deliver for Camden: • 3,050 new homes will be built • 1  ,400 new and replacement homes for council rent and intermediate rent • £  117 million will be reinvested into 53 schools and children’s centres • 420 much needed primary

school places will be created in the north-west of Camden • 9,000m² of improved community facilities and space • An estimated 4,500 construction jobs will be created through the CIP.

Work across Camden Agar Grove – providing 493 new homes At Agar Grove, in Camden Town, builders will soon lay the top beam on the first new block of homes, as part of the largest housing project in the CIP. The first block will provide 38 much-needed council homes for people on our waiting list, as well as replacement homes for people from the estate. Once completed, the whole redevelopment will create 493 new or replacement homes, which will be a mix of council, intermediate rent and private homes.

Greenwood Place – work starts

Leader of the Council, Councillor Sarah Hayward, at the new St Pancras Community Centre

14 | Camden | September 2016

Demolition work has kicked off in Kentish Town to pave the way for building Greenwood Place, a high-quality community resource centre for people with a range of care needs that will support them to live independently and achieve the outcomes they want for themselves.

Feature Getting involved

Brand new community facilities

Gospel Oak – developing plans for the future

St Pancras Community Centre – new space for residents

Over in Gospel Oak, we’ve spent lots of time involving local people in developing and consulting on a set of priorities to make the area a better place to live, work and visit. We got over 1,000 comments on the consultation, which is one of our biggest ever responses – and we’re continuing to work with local people over the coming months as we develop plans for the area.

Councillor Sarah Hayward, Leader of the Council, officially opened St Pancras Community Centre on Plender Street on 26 July. The old community centre building on Camden Street was in bad condition, wasn’t accessible and was costly for St Pancras Community Assocation to run. The new building has more space for meetings, sports events, catering and childcare – and what’s more, it’s right at the heart of the new affordable homes that will be built on the site of the old community centre later in the year.

Highgate Newtown Community Centre and the Fresh Youth Academy – consultation Making sure local residents are involved in changes to their area is a key priority for the CIP. Earlier this year, residents got the opportunity to have their say on proposals to redevelop Highgate Newtown Community Centre and the Fresh Youth Academy. Over 100 people attended the exhibition events and told us their views. We are currently reviewing the comments.

Central Somers Town – plans approved Following consultation with residents last year, a planning application to build a new school, community facilities and housing in Central Somers Town was approved over the summer.

Holmes Road Studios – new home for the homeless Holmes Road Studios have just won a top prize at the New London Architecture awards. When it opens in the autumn, people who are homeless will not only be able to benefit from high-quality accommodation, but also employment and life skills training to help them get back on their feet and stay independent. The above projects are just a few examples of some of the exciting developments that have taken place this year, and there’s lots more coming up.

Find out more

Housing Act There is a housing crisis in London. We believe that the government’s Housing and Planning Act, which has now become law, risks affecting all housing tenures, and will reduce the availability of genuinely affordable homes. While much of the detail is still to come, we continue to oppose the policies set out in the Act. We’re also responding to the situation it has created by using innovative ways to offer more affordable housing options for our residents.

Affordable housing for residents Making Camden homes affordable for residents is a priority. Through the creation of Camden Living, a wholly council-controlled company, we will be able to retain more of the new homes we’re building through CIP and offer affordable rents to residents. The first set of flats that will be acquired through Camden Living will be 52 flats from Maiden Lane. Previously earmarked for shared ownership, they will be let at intermediate rent early next year.

More information about the Act We are opposed to the government’s Housing and Planning Act which we believe, far from offering solutions, is likely to make the housing crisis worse. You can keep up to date on the Act by visiting our website, and if you have any comments, please email us. 15


How to recycle more Recycle Week is from 12 to 18 September and taking part is easy – just get recycling.


Waste infographic CG 16.55.34 copy.pdf




Camden residents are already good recyclers, with 26% of Camden’s waste currently being recycled. But we need more help from you, so that we can reach our goal of 40% by 2020. Why not give your recycling habits an overhaul during Recycle Week and see if there’s even more you could recycle?

We could recycle 85% We’ve analysed Camden’s rubbish and found that around 85% of the contents of the average rubbish sack are recyclable. A massive 28% of this is food and garden

waste. Food waste can be turned into compost and used to grow more food. To make it easier for Camden residents to recycle their food waste we supply food caddies. If you haven’t got a food caddy, you can order one through our website. We’re also giving away free compostable caddy liners at all Camden libraries from September to the end of November 2016.

You can recycle more than you think Aerosol cans, foil trays, face cream jars and tissue boxes can go in your recycling. Don’t forget

You’ll find a lot of recycling in your bathroom. Toothpaste boxes and toilet roll tubes, plastic shampoo, shower gel and moisturiser bottles can all be recycled. Every tonne of waste recycled saves us £30. If you need to order a recycling container or want more information, please visit our website. We’ll also be providing tips on Twitter during Recycle Week, so do follow us there.

Around 85%

Food and garden waste

Paper and card











16 | Camden | September 2016

glass perfume or aftershave bottles. They’re all recyclable. So are aluminium aerosol cans for deodorant and air freshener. If everyone in the UK recycled one aerosol can, enough energy could be saved to run fridges for more than 91,000 homes for a year.

Find out more @camdentalking


Scrubbed up well Our teams have been out sprucing up the borough. Our education and enforcement team works hard year-round to keep Camden’s streets clean, and to crack down on littering, dog fouling and fly-tipping. In the past year the team has issued thousands of enforcement notices.

Clean Camden fortnight During Clean Camden fortnight, which was held during the summer, we gave out 23 fixed penalty notices to businesses that were not keeping to regulations for disposing of waste. We also gave out 17 fixed penalty notices to people for littering and dog fouling. We held two events during the fortnight. The first was a litterpick with 15 volunteers from the O2 Centre on Finchley Road. The volunteers walked to West End Lane and back, and collected 35 bags of litter and 16 of recycling in just under three hours.

Dog event in St Martin’s Gardens

We also held a dog event in St Martin’s Gardens, Camden Town. Twenty-eight dog owners (we lost count of actual dogs) came along to get advice, free dog poo bags and – for nine of the dogs – a free microchip. Since 6 April this year all dogs over the age of eight weeks have had to be microchipped by law, and the owner’s contact details kept up to date. We advised people on how to do this.

Help keep Camden clean Why not arrange a litter-pick in your local area? We can provide equipment and training. If you’d like more information on how to do this, or need to report fly-tipping, littering or dog problems, please visit our website.

In the year between 1 July 2015 and 30 June 2016, our education and enforcement team issued:

• 849 Section 47 notices telling businesses to provide rubbish bins for their customers

• 1,445 Section 34 notices asking businesses to provide information about their waste disposal

• 337 Section 87 notices to residents who had been leaving their rubbish illegally on the street. We also issued the following fixed penalty notices: • 256 to businesses for not disposing of rubbish correctly

Find out more

• 128 to residents for littering and smoking-related litter.



The greenest school Ten Camden schools win awards in this year’s Camden in Bloom schools’ competition.

Greenest school award-winning Rhyl Primary School pupils with Chris Collins

meadow and apple orchard in Talacre Gardens next door. Students cook and eat the food they grow.

Rhyl Primary School were the overall winners of the competition, winning the greenest school award. Rhyl has a ‘whole school’ approach. There is a huge range of opportunities for the school’s pupils to find out about how things grow and how we depend on the environment for food.

The school has also built a wildlife hotel for insects and bird-feeders around the school. It even has an apiary with three beehives at nearby Kentish Town City Farm.

Find out more

Former Blue Peter gardener, Chris Collins, who was one of the judges, said: “It was wonderful to see the

Projects include bee-friendly planting in the ‘pollinators’ paradise’ and helping with the wildflower

Energy efficiency

achievements and enthusiasm of Camden schoolchildren, who often do not have gardens of their own. I wish all of them continued success with gardening and recycling.”


Reduce, reuse, recycle

Healthy start award for food growing

First prize

First prize

First prize

Argyle Primary School

Rhyl Primary School

Sarum Hall School

Second prize (joint)

Second prize

Second prize

Second prize (joint)

The Cavendish School

Eleanor Palmer School

Torriano School and La Sainte Union

Rhyl Primary School and Argyle Primary School


First prize

St Paul’s CE Primary School

18 | Camden | September 2016


Helping you to give your child the best start in life Camden Sure Start supports families with children under the age of five. From the moment you know you’re expecting a baby, we are there to support you and your child’s early development through our five children’s centres.

to help you find training or job opportunities. Our staff can help you find a free early education and childcare place and we offer free drop-in ‘stay and play’ sessions.

We can advise you about your child’s healthy development, breastfeeding, and other parenting issues. We also provide housing, employment and benefits advice

We can give you all the information and skills needed to bring up your child, so come along to one of our centres to see what we offer.

One Camden mother, who uses Agar Children’s Centre, said: “I have used their services since I was pregnant and they have been incredibly helpful. I cannot describe how important and supportive these services have been in my life.” Tracy, another local mother, who uses Kilburn Grange Children’s Centre, said: “They have been a lifesaver for me – like a big family. “There is so much going on in that place. My youngest son, who is a month old, was diagnosed with Down’s syndrome. I had so many questions and they just helped me with everything I needed to know.”

Find out more camdensurestart 19

Camden schools Full STEAM ahead for science, tech and arts opportunities We’re opening up a wealth of opportunities to local children and young people. The aim of the Camden STEAM Commission (science, technology, engineering, arts and maths) is to strengthen relationships between schools, colleges and businesses in the vibrant STEAM sector and unlock the wide range of learning and career opportunities available. Camden is home to world-leading institutions and businesses, such as the Francis Crick Institute, Wellcome Trust, Central Saint Martins art college and Google. The Knowledge Quarter, which brings many of these institutions together, has gained international recognition, while almost a third of Camden’s economy is made up of the STEAM sector. The growth of these organisations contributed to an increase in employment in the borough over the last five years of 19.5%,

20 | Camden | September 2016

Camden headteachers Helen Bruckdorfer and Sam White, with pharmacy clinical director Alistair Murray (far left) and BBC head of diversity and inclusion Tunde Ogungbesan (far right) at a recent STEAM event

compared with only 4.1% nationally. Councillor Georgia Gould, Cabinet Member for Young People, Adults and Health, said: “By bringing together our schools, colleges and businesses, the STEAM Commission will help make sure that as many young people as possible can take advantage of the huge opportunities in this rapidly growing sector of our economy.” Camden’s STEAM Commission will bring together our schools, colleges, businesses and other key institutions to: • highlight Camden’s unique STEAM economy and ensure that businesses and institutions feel a connection with their local area, • ensure children and young people in our schools and

colleges benefit from related school visits, classroom resources, work placements, apprenticeships, training and career opportunities, • ensure local students aspire to gaining the high levels of skill and academic qualifications required for this competitive sector, • enable students to find vocational routes, such as high quality apprenticeships, into the STEAM economy. The first meeting of the STEAM Commission is due to take place this month and a full report will be published in early 2017.

Find out more

Camden schools

Shakespeare dream comes true for pupils Primary pupils stage two stunning ‘promenade’ productions of Shakespeare’s comedy A Midsummer Night’s Dream. Almost 300 pupils from reception to year 5 were involved in the ambitious production at Argyle Primary School in King’s Cross, which took over much of the school and playground for an afternoon.

performance starting as the other was finishing.

The audience was led around the school by children in the roles of the Moon and Stars, taking in seven separate sets and scenarios covering different parts of the play. Two casts were involved in the overlapping productions – with one

The production was co-directed by year 5 teachers from Argyle Primary in collaboration with the English Pocket Opera Company.

Future First

Future First, which began in Camden and is now a national charity, helps state schools and colleges harness the experiences and skills of their former students to motivate the current generation to academic and career success.

Charity offers inspiring role models for students.

Greta Bucinskaite, MSc in Biomedical Science, with Maria Fidelis students

Headteacher Jemima Wade said: “It was fantastic to see our vision

Former students can be inspiring role models and can also become mentors, e-mentors, work experience providers, governors, or even fundraisers and donors. Future First works with 400 schools and colleges across Britain to build a secure database of alumni, both recent school leavers and those in established careers and vocations, as well as facilitate assemblies or workshops for schools, or support them to do so themselves.

for a whole school promenade performance come together so beautifully.”

Find out more

Maria Fidelis Catholic Secondary School, in Camden, recently held an alumni event, supported by Future First, where current students met and talked to former students who are now studying or working in fields ranging from creative and tech industries, to biomedical science and human resources. The event was organised on a ‘speed dating’ model, allowing the year 10 students to circulate and meet several alumni during one afternoon.

Find out more



Become an apprentice

Viacom International Media Networks apprentice Omar Rehim

22 | Camden | September 2016

Feature Do you know someone who’s just finished school or college and is exploring their options? Camden Apprenticeships has the answer for 16 to 24 year-olds.

Our apprenticeships offer the best of both worlds, giving 16 to 24 yearolds the opportunity to study for a qualification and at the same time enabling them to earn money and get valuable experience in the world of work. We’ve placed apprentices at Lord’s Cricket Ground, Warner Bros and Shed Media. We talked to Omar Rehim, 17, from Camden Town about his apprenticeship with Viacom International Media Networks, whose brands include MTV, Comedy Central and Nickelodeon.Omar’s work includes everything from supporting production teams on shoots to writing and publishing web content. Omar says: “I didn’t want to do A levels, so I started by looking for an apprenticeship. I looked at a lot of apprenticeships with different media companies, then one of my friends sent me a link to the information about this opportunity with Viacom International Media Networks. When I read the job description, I knew it was what I’d been looking for.

“I had a pre-interview session that took up most of one day, then a workshop that was a whole day with an interview at the end, and they offered me the apprenticeship. I’ll get a work-related qualification – NVQ level 3 in digital marketing and social media – in one year, that gives me experience and lets me earn money and is equal to doing A levels.” A Camden apprenticeship can be in just about any field, including IT, marketing, digital and social media, accountancy and horticulture. Different types of business apprenticeship are particularly popular, and there are frequent openings for receptionists and administrators leading to NVQs in business administration or customer care. There are also lots of apprenticeships in the construction industry, enabling people to train, for example, as carpenters, plasterers, plumbers or electricians. Apprenticeships typically start at NVQ level 2 and may go up to level 4, equivalent to a degree.

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Meet our new construction training provider From September 2016, we’ll have a new partner, College of North West London, providing training for our construction apprentices at the King’s Cross Construction Skills Centre on York Way. The college also has sites in Willesden and Wembley, and will provide training in carpentry and joinery, plumbing and electrical trades. Apprentices typically spend a day each week studying with the college, and four days a week working onsite.

Award nominations We’re delighted that former Camden adult apprentice, Denise Brown, has been nominated for ‘Best progression by an apprentice’ in this year’s London Council Boroughs Apprenticeships Awards, and council repairs manager Kieran Bukowski has been nominated for ‘Best manager or mentor’.


Financial challenge

Cuts to council funding Most of our funding comes from central government, but between 2010 and 2018/19 our likefor-like funding will have been cut in half. This means we have to find new ways of doing things, so that we can continue to provide the essential services that the people of Camden need.

Finding out about planning applications From this autumn we are going to stop sending adjoining occupier letters for planning applications. This will achieve a budget reduction of £200,000 a year. So, from 1 October 2016 you will not receive a letter from us if your neighbour submits a planning application. Information about planning applications will continue to be available on our new-look posters on lamp posts, on our website, in planning e-alerts and via weekly adverts in the local papers. Residents have told us that they want to know more about what’s

24 | Camden | September 2016

happening in their area. While the letters used only to be sent to immediate neighbours, through our improved planning e-alerts, residents can now be notified whenever a planning application is made in their street or within a certain distance from their home. You can sign up to planning e-alerts on our website. After you’ve signed up to the service, you’ll be alerted by email to any planning activity in your area, such as new applications, decisions and appeals. For example, you can choose to receive alerts on all applications within 500 metres of your

property, or for a specific Council ward. All 90,000 Camden Account holders can now also view information on planning applications within their account.

Find out more

Financial challenge

Proposed changes to council tax reduction scheme We are facing significant financial challenges as the government continues to cut our budget and by the end of 2017/18 we will have £171 million less than we did in 2010. Despite these challenges, we have sought to reduce the impact of government cuts on the borough’s poorest households. As part of this work, we offer a discount on council tax to eligible people in Camden through the council tax reduction scheme. The poorest pensioners can already claim up to a maximum of 100% discount on their council tax. The maximum discount available to working-age people is currently 91.5%, which means everyone has to pay a contribution irrespective of income. The Council has reviewed the scheme and is now consulting on five options for the future. It is recommending an option to increase the maximum discount for working-age households up to 100%, the same as pensioner households, and would mean approximately 11,000 households would receive a full discount. This would relieve some of the financial pressures and indebtedness facing our poorest working-age households, and enable resources to be focused on collecting council tax from those seeking to avoid paying. We want to know what you think about this proposal and the other options, which include maintaining the current scheme. Please go to our website and complete the online survey. The consultation closes on 17 October 2016.

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Community safety service consultation From 17 May to 12 July 2016 we asked for residents’ views on proposed changes to our community safety service. We wanted to make sure as many people as possible had the chance to respond to our consultation, so we placed consultation documents in libraries and community centres across the borough and spoke to residents, partners and community groups. We also worked with Camden Safer Neighbourhood Board and community researchers to reach Camden people. We have considered the responses to the consultation and the report will soon be published on our website.

Find out more c communitysafetyreview



Get more active in Camden Be inspired by the Rio Olympic and Paralympic Games this autumn. This summer we’ve seen amazing achievements by athletes from around the world in the Rio Olympic and Paralympic Games. In Camden we support you to be active all year round with free and low-cost ways to reach your goals, so you don’t have to be a worldclass athlete to enjoy the health benefits of taking part in sport and physical activity.

Camden Active Communities Camden Active Communities helps residents to get more active by offering free local activities that are fun and easy to take part in. Examples include: Somers Town Striders – a beginners running club for adults, family athletics, walking football, Zumba and boxercise as well as multi-sports for young people. Activities take place in local venues such as community centres and parks. 26 | Camden | September 2016

Enjoy a women-only boxercise session

New women-only activity sessions start in September and will include boxercise and buggy bootcamp.

Get some fresh air with our outdoor gyms Our nine outdoor gyms are free and easy to use with user-friendly on-site diagrams. A number of gyms were upgraded this summer with new equipment to help you improve and vary your workout. If you are new to exercise, we will be offering sessions to help you use the equipment and get the best out of your workout.

new swim, gym or group exercise membership at Pancras Square Leisure, which means that you only pay for the activity you use. Concessions are available for residents who are disabled, a student, over 55 or in receipt of benefits.

Camden Active map If you’re looking for more inspiration, download the new Camden Active map from our website. The map provides details of free and low-cost sports and physical activity sessions across the borough.

Camden leisure centres Activities at our leisure centres include free swimming for older adults and reduced price sessions for children. You don’t need a membership and can pay as you go each time you visit. There are also a range of concessionary prices including the

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Feature © Sport England

Give it a Go! Exercise can improve mental as well as physical health – try a range of sports free on World Mental Health Day for a healthier, happier you. Tai chi changed Daniel’s life. Severely depressed and withdrawn, Daniel* took up the calming activity, which involves slow movements and deep breathing, after his doctor sent him to a Camden exercise scheme for people in poor health. According to his GP: “The result has been quite remarkable. Not only is Daniel more confident generally but his depression, which had been severe, has lifted.”

Happy hormones Daniel is among many people who are discovering that exercise not only makes them physically fitter, but mentally healthier, too. One reason is that your body releases chemicals such as endorphins – so-called ‘feel-good hormones’ – when you’re active.

Anxiety and depression can both be alleviated by regular exercise. Mental health charity Mind says you may be able to cut your risk of depression by almost a fifth if you go from doing nothing to exercising three times a week. That’s a pretty powerful reason to get active. But how do you start?

Try it yourself On World Mental Health Day (Monday 10 October), you can try out a range of sports at three leisure centres: The Armoury, Central YMCA and Swiss Cottage Leisure Centre. Badminton, tai chi, swimming, yoga, indoor cycling, climbing, weights, aerobics and a host of other activities are on offer. It won’t cost you a penny: our Give it a Go! activity scheme means you can turn up and try for free that day.

If you’re on a low income, you may be able to get three free day passes, too. That’ll give you more time to find out what you like doing. Ask leisure centre staff how to apply for Give it a Go! passes.

Other options If you have a health condition ask your GP about the exercise referral scheme. *name has been changed

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HS2: Pushing for the best deal for Camden We’re continuing to challenge HS2 Ltd and press for the best deal for Camden at the highest levels of government in the event of HS2 going ahead. The government remains committed to pushing ahead with plans for High Speed 2 (HS2), the proposed railway from London to Birmingham. The Council is opposed to plans as they stand, as they will bring decades of blight to Camden.

Camden heads to Select Committee By the time you read this edition of the magazine, we will have just made our case for Camden to the House of Lords Select Committee on 6 September. The Council will be followed by over 140 petitions from Camden residents, businesses and organisations. The numbers appearing at Select Committee reflect the deep concern within the community about plans for HS2. The Council and the community have fought HS2 at every stage, from the first consultations in 2011 to this appearance before the House of Lords. At each stage we have supported residents to participate in the process and have their say on the scheme. 28 | Camden | September 2016

Further, as we go to press, HS2 Ltd has said that they are considering changing how they build the railway in the approach to Euston station, but have not provided any detail. This could change how they deliver the recommendations they made to the Secretary of State for Transport to take just 15% of lorries off our roads by moving materials by rail and lower the proposed Hampstead Road bridge by 0.5m1m. Cllr Sarah Hayward, Leader of the Council, challenged HS2 Ltd on the apparent lack of confidence in its own advice and urged HS2 Ltd to start to take the concerns of residents more seriously.

Challenging HS2 At our Select Committee appearance, we’re challenging HS2 Ltd to transport more materials by rail to reduce the impact of over 366,000 lorry movements on Camden’s residents and roads and to identify ways they can further reduce the height of the new Hampstead Road bridge. We will also make the case for:

Fairer compensation  S2 must offer fairer compensation H for Camden residents who will bear the brunt of 17 years of HS2 construction and may be forced to sell their homes. HS2 Ltd wrongly believes residents in urban areas like Camden won’t be as negatively affected by HS2, and so is offering Camden residents inadequate compensation compared to rural areas. We are also urging the rateable value for small businesses to be differently assessed so there is a fair application of compensation for Camden businesses.

Full redevelopment of Euston station We’re calling for the government to commit to funding a full redevelopment of Euston mainline station in time for it to integrate with plans for HS2 and Crossrail 2. This would minimise disruption and create the opportunity for 2,200 new homes and 16,000 jobs.


Councillor Sarah Hayward, Leader of the Council, with Andrew Dismore, London Assembly Member for Barnet and Camden (left) and Sadiq Khan, Mayor of London

Assurances Before our Select Committee appearance, we were negotiating with HS2 Ltd on the issues raised in our petition to the House of Lords to secure further agreements, known as assurances, to reduce the impact of HS2 on Camden. At the time of writing, we are negotiating assurances on: • HS2 Ltd providing better, twoway community engagement between HS2 Ltd and Camden residents. • Extra allocations of community and environment funding. • Establishing an independent advice service for residents who are impacted by construction noise.

• Allowing local authority and community representatives to have a role in the board that appoints, establishes terms of reference and monitors the independent Construction Commissioner. The Construction Commissioner will deal with complaints unresolved by HS2 Ltd. The HS2 Hybrid Bill is expected to receive Royal Assent and become law in December. This will give HS2 Ltd permission to build the railway.

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watch the video

Meeting the Mayor Over the summer, the Mayor of London, Sadiq Khan, visited the Euston area to meet residents and business owners, and see first-hand the disruption that HS2 will bring. Councillor Sarah Hayward, Leader of the Council, met the Mayor and stressed the need for the full redevelopment of Euston mainline station to align it with the proposed HS2 station and the Crossrail 2 station, which will provide links across London. We also recently wrote to the new Secretary of State for Transport, Chris Grayling, to urge him to address continuing concerns around HS2, and submitted our concerns as written evidence to the Public Accounts Committee’s HS2 inquiry. 29


Camden’s libraries We’re introducing open access technology in five of our libraries from September this year. Kilburn, Kentish Town, Queen’s Crescent, Camden Town and West Hampstead will be having the technology installed. Kilburn will be the first to get a facelift, and will temporarily close from 12 September to 25 September 2016. The self-service technology will allow residents to access the libraries, and use the vast majority of services without needing help from staff. We’ll also be making other improvements and redecorating the libraries to make them even better community spaces. When each of these five libraries reopen they will operate on a ‘peak’ and ‘off-peak’ system. You will need to register your library card for open access to get into these libraries during off-peak hours. Ask your librarian to register your card for open access next time you are in the library.

30 | Camden | September 2016

Changes at Swiss Cottage From 4 September 2016, Swiss Cottage library and art gallery will no longer open on Sundays.

A full range of Sunday library services will be available in Camden at:

We have made this decision following the Camden future libraries consultation, where we asked for your ideas on how we might save £800,000 from the current libraries budget of £4.5 million. We have to reduce the budget because our funding from central government will be cut in half from 2010 levels by 2018/19.

Pancras Square Library 5 Pancras Square N1C 4AG Open 11am to 5pm every Sunday.

Closing Swiss Cottage on Sundays is one of the ways we are able to keep all our libraries open.

• renew your items

Find out more

You can access the following library services online anytime: • browse the catalogue • reserve a book/CD/DVD • borrow an e-book or e-audio book.


My Camden Lesley Rowe was recently awarded the British Empire Medal for services to older people What is your Camden connection?

Favourite local theatre or music venue?

I was born and raised in King’s Cross when it was in the borough of St Pancras. I was a pupil at Argyle Primary School and went on to Dame Alice Owen in Islington and then the London School of Economics. I have worked in Camden for 22 years as the manager of Kingsgate and Charlie Ratchford resource centres for older people in Kilburn and Chalk Farm.

Shaftesbury Theatre, where I recently went to sing and dance to Motown. I was showing my age, as I knew all the words!

Tell us about your work in Camden The Kingsgate and Charlie Ratchford resource centres provide a range of activities and support for older people, some of whom have a disability or dementia. I really love my job as I get a huge amount of satisfaction that I don’t think I would get in any other profession. I think I am lucky to work in Camden because it is a borough that has continued to invest in services for older people. I am particularly proud

What makes Camden special? Its diversity of food, places and people – you can find anything and everything in Camden Town.

of the stroke survivors’ group, which I launched in Camden in 2002 following several visits to a similar service in Hackney, where I was impressed with their results. The group, launched with a small grant, is still well attended with about 15 members.

Favourite places in Camden? There’s nothing better than lunch at Castle’s Pie and Mash shop, in Royal College Street, and the Pirate Castle, in Camden Town, is great for boat trips along the canal. We regularly take our service users there for a special day out.

Best park or open space? Regent’s Park has something for everyone, from rose gardens to open air theatre to the zoo.

Find out more adultsocialcare


CHANGE YOUR LIFE GET A PLACE AT BIRKBECK Birkbeck is a unique and special place. We know the ‘standard’ university model isn’t for everyone. Whatever your age, if you are interested in continuing with your education, keen to develop new skills to enhance or change your career, or looking to get back into education, we’ll be able to offer the right course for you.

Open Evening Weds 7 September


Camden magazine September 2016  
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