‘Systemic discrimination can be described as patterns of behaviour, procedures, routines, policies or practices that are part of the structures of an organization (Brent Council) and contributes to less favourable outcomes for minority groups (Newland Court Residents). Behaviours may include dismissive or derogatory comments, gossip, ignoring others, judgemental attitudes, isolating others, laying blame, lack of respect, labelling, intimidation, name calling, bullying, and physical altercations.’
Brent Council have shown nothing but Systemic discrimination towards the residents of Newland Court over their proposed ‘infill’ plans of building 7 TINY town houses by demolishing the garages at Newland Court. They have shown no empathy been dismissive and ignored our thoughts and feelings to go ahead with this ‘infill’ contributing to a less favourable outcome for the residents (especially the elderly and disabled) of Newland Court who they are treating like a nobodies or a minority group.
These new 7 TINY town houses are so tiny that the width of the first unit is around 3.3 metres. The other units are between 5.8 and 6.2 metres in width and are going to be 3 and 4 bed roomed houses. These tiny houses are going to have their own gated security and their own bin and cycle storage with a front and back fore-court all within each unit. And Brent wants to reduce our urban green space and build a new playground for these new residents after all these years of ignoring our children’s needs for a play area. Our children are now adults.
For years we have asked for:-
1) New security gates installed at both entrances for the safety of residents, to stop drug pushers, drug users and to stop fly tipping.
2) Proper security lighting and cameras installed for the safety of residents.
3) Not reduced parking spaces but more made with at least 4 disabled parking bays.
4) Bins situated away from the flats because of the stench. (The bins have never been jet cleaned or disinfected and more bins not less to service 60 flats.
5) Drainage sorted out because water accumulates when it rains heavily at the entrance of Newland Court.
We all know that there is a chronic shortage of social housing and the
truth is, there always will be because the councils let it happen. Brent
Council’s favourite slogan as an excuse is always ‘there’s a chronic
shortage of affordable housing’ yet Brent Council are building 250
"New Council Homes" on the former Copland School site at Cecil Avenue
in Wembley. They have had full planning permission for this scheme since
February 2021, although it will probably be early 2023 before work begins (so
much for the 'urgent need' for new homes that they talk
And guess what? 152 of these new homes at Cecil Avenue, on land Brent Council already owns, will be for Brent's "developer partner" to sell privately, for profit. But under the proposals for Cecil Avenue, approved by Cabinet on 16 August, only 37 of the 250 homes will be for London Affordable Rent, and none will be for Social Rent (which the Brent Poverty Commission Report in 2020 said should be the Council’s priority for genuinely affordable homes). That is why Brent Council needs to squeeze 7 new TINY homes on the Newland Court estate, and other such Council "infill" schemes.
Brent Council have known for years that the roofs of these garages that they want to replace with the 7 houses have asbestos but have deliberately let them run down and have done nothing about it. A few years ago an elderly disabled resident who still parks her car in one of these garages contracted lung cancer, believes she got it from the asbestos but can’t prove it. She only has one lung now. What measures are going to put in place to ensure the safe removal of the asbestos and the safety of the current residents? Probably none as the residents are just nobodies, a minority group to Brent Council.
Three councillors, their architect and other team members met with residents living at Newland Court as part of the pre-planning stage of this development. This enabled residents to directly feed into the design of privacy, parking and trees. It was a waste of time and just a pen pushing procedure just to say that they had consulted with us.
They said no trees would be removed during the site meeting. LIES!! In the final plans they are removing 13 trees from our view which were specifically positioned where they are many years ago to make a screen between Newland C0urt and the gardens of the residents of Grendon Gardens. They prevent overlooking between Newland Court and the residents gardens of Grendon Garden.
These trees which are a mix of sycamore, lime and ash were designed to make a pleasant landscape and form part of our URBAN GREENERY and are therapeutic to residents, especially those who can’t get out much as it helps their mental wellbeing and reduces depression and anxiety. They are homes to robins, magpies, parquets and even the occasional bats that have been sighted by keen residential bird watchers. Birds have their nests in these trees and the different chirping and tweeting sounds that they make will be greatly missed if these trees are removed.
Some of the landscaped trees to be removed
We spoke about the need to retain our parking spaces, being reduced from (around 40 down to 12) as we have at least 5 residents who are disabled badge holders, several cab and delivery drivers and other self-employed car users. They haven’t even factored any disabled parking bays in their new plans and to drive us into despair they intend to introduce pay and display all around the streets by Newland Court because of the impact of the overflow this will cause. Instead Brent Council are now trying to imply that parking along Newland Court is not designated for car parking (even though we’ve parked there for years) as there are no formal demarcated parking bays.
Loads of estates don't all have designated parking bays but have controlled parking with signage stating valid permit holders only just like Newland Court has. I have lived at Newland Court since 1988 and about 15 or so years ago Brent introduced parking restrictions and charged us £10 for permits and another £10 to have a visitors permit. Earlier this year we received letters from Wing Parking saying that we wouldn't be charged anymore for our permits. We still had to have them displayed or we would be ticketed. We all wondered why?? But guess what??? We were still all clueless about this proposal and now we know why.
They are actually reducing our residual waste bins from 14 to 6 and taking some of our urban green space to make way for the limited 12 car spaces they intend to leave us with and create a playground for the new residents. Not only is it unfair to have our residual waste reduced from 14 to 6 as the 14 we have is not enough for the current residents but we want them away from our urban green space so that the residents and visitors do not have to endure the stench every time we enter our flats. When emptied they stink and have never been jet washed or disinfected.
The 10 metre overlooking rule is actually around 8 metres at one point and around 9 metres at another even though Brent’s planning guidance recommends 18 metres for overlooking. Do you know how imposing and close the proximity of having buildings only 8-9 metres that close will feel like? So as you can see, there are lots of flaws in their plans apart from them ignoring a lot of their own Brent planning guidance. Brent Council DO NOT care about their residents’ interest. Brent Council have shown nothing but Systemic discrimination towards the current residents of Newland Court.