View from the council: We’re putting residents at heart of future decisions

PUBLISHED: 15:00 26 July 2018

Councillor Danny Beales

Councillor Danny Beales


Local planning issues are often in the news, an area of controversy and debate.

Camden has one of the highest numbers of new planning applications each year. These vary significantly from the smallest tree application, to major developments of hundreds of homes or Google’s new HQ. Camden is place of much change and significant pressure. There are well established communities, distinctive urban villages and active local groups and associations.

This is a context for great change and dynamism and planning plays a key role in positively shaping this change. Camden 2025 outlined the hopes residents have for Camden. The borough adopted a new set of planning policies in July 2017 after much consultation and engagement. These policies very much support the aims and themes of Camden 2025. Policies to boost genuinely affordable housing, protect our heritage, pubs and cultural venues, whilst also supporting growth. The spirit of Camden 2025 is also one of genuine collaboration, with communities telling us they want a say.

This collaborative approach and strong community groups enabled Camden to lead the way nationally in terms of neighbourhood plans. The most recent to pass a referendum was the Hampstead Neighbourhood Plan which saw 1,484 local people supporting its introduction. These plans, driven by local volunteers, help ensure planning policies reflect local concerns and circumstances.

A part of our commitment to ensure local areas are compensated and see the benefits of development in their area, we agreed that all local areas will receive 25 per cent of all Community Infrastructure Levy, a tax on developers. The spending of this is led by councillors and invested in local projects. Moving forward, we will also launch an online public consultation platform for residents to suggest local projects and ideas.

Camden responded to community concerns over basements applications, which were becoming increasingly contentious. New policies are some of the most robust in the country. Super basements are a thing of the past, with residential basements limited to one-storey and cannot exceed 50pc of the garden. We have also introduced an Article 4 Direction so that all basement works must now secure planning permission.

Across the borough access to decent and genuinely affordable housing is top concern. There has been local discussion over potential lost homes for key workers at the Royal Free. Camden’s plan has ambitious targets for affordable housing, and also introduced a requirement that small sites (under 10 homes) must contribute towards affordable housing too. This made Camden the first council to introduce this change, against government policy. The council has also now agreed a requirement for developers to publish publically, and in full, their profit calculations (viability assessments).

Pubs and other community venues are under significant pressure, with hundreds having been lost in the capital in recent years. Our new Local Plan includes a strong policy to protect pubs and community facilities. The developer must demonstrate that there are equivalent premises available and no interest in its continued use. A marketing exercise and community survey are required. We have already started to see the benefits with the tide of pubs being lost slowing and some re-opening with new protections.

Latest Hampstead & Highgate News Stories

8 minutes ago

The chief executive of the Royal Free Trust, Sir David Sloman, is set to leave his role in the new year.

Yesterday, 18:06

A young man was stabbed in Kentish Town this afternoon.

Yesterday, 16:15

Police are trying to find Nadia Ellewood, who has gone missing from Belsize Park.

Yesterday, 13:35

Police chased a Volkswagen Polo across three boroughs on Monday morning after it crashed into a patrol car at low speed.

Friday, December 7, 2018

A Crouch End inventor is crowdfunding to launch an innovative and wearable air pollution monitor inspired by his own worries as a new dad.

Friday, December 7, 2018

British Transport Police are looking to speak to a man about three women being racially abused on an underground train.

Friday, December 7, 2018

The Carlton Tavern could be reopened in April, nine months after the planning inspectorate told them to rebuild it.

Friday, December 7, 2018

Coffee isn’t the only thing Deniz Korkmaz is brewing up in Kentish Town.


Looking to get your child interested in a sport? Allianz Park, home to rugby union team Saracens, welcomes people of all ages to join their family of supporters and discover how their core values Honesty, Discipline, Humility and Work Rate underpin everything they do off and on the pitch.

As part of a major refurb, the London Marriott Hotel Maida Vale has renamed its three new-look function rooms to reflect the geography and rich history of the area. The largest, perfect for weddings and large meetings, is named after a Hampstead subterranean river, The Westbourne.

Londoners seeking high quality houses for sale within easy commuting distance of the capital are being advised to look north to St Albans’ prestigious Gabriel Square development.

Newsletter Sign Up

Sign up to the following newsletters:

Sign up to receive our regular email newsletter

Our Privacy Policy

Most read Hampstead & Highgate news

Hot Jobs

Show Job Lists

Digital Edition


Enjoy the
Hampstead & Highgate Express
e-edition today


Education and Training


Read the
Education and Training
e-edition today

Read Now