Don’t destroy our community facility

THE Save The Queensbury Group has now met twice with Fairview Homes, the developers who are proposing the demolition of the Queensbury pub opposite Willesden Green station, replacing it with a 10-storey tower block.

In spite of plans being lodged with Brent Council over six months ago, there is still no decision on the pub’s future.

Developers are desperate to do what they can to secure permission to demolish The Queensbury and are now touting the idea of a token ‘non-residential space’ on the ground-floor of the new building, an area barely a third the size of that currently occupied by the Queensbury. This area will not contain a pub and is not fit for the baby and toddler groups that operate from The Queensbury, six mornings a week.

This is a totally inadequate response to the community outrage generated by this flawed scheme.

Developers have also consistently underplayed the importance of the building in which the Queensbury sits.

It is an iconic building dating back to the 1890s and is an intrinsic part of the Mapesbury conservation area. It is clear that the replacement 10-storey building is overbearing and completely unsuited to the conservation area.

The Queensbury is also a valuable part of Willesden’s night-time economy and contributes to the vitality of the area.

Six months on we call again for Fairview Homes to listen to the 3,000 people who have signed the petition calling for the preservation of Willesden’s best-loved pub.

Listen to the 400 people who have formally objected to the council.

Listen to the many local councillors who have also formally voiced concerns about this scheme.

Fairview Homes: build around our community facilities, don’t demolish them.


On behalf of the Save The Queensbury group

Quiet road. Let’s keep it that way

A HOUSE near mine has just been sold after the advert said it was in ‘a quiet residential cul-de-sac’. I would like Bengarth Drive to be quiet and to stay that way.

Recently some disturbances prompted me to install CCTV and I was surprised at what I saw happening at the front of my house. I was aware that some children used the street as their adventure playground but had not realised that my property had become part of that adventure playground.

I had wondered why the white painted coping on my low side wall was covered in muddy footprints and some of the paint was coming off. When I reviewed my CCTV recordings I saw two children walking along it, which would account for the footprints, and jumping up and down on it, which would chip off the paint. There were other activities that I also regard as trespass and disrespect for residents and their property.

When I made my disapproval known in my part of the road the only response was from one woman who told me that the children were only doing what she regarded as ‘normal’.

I had not identified any of the children by name or house number and had not seen any of her children involved in the trespasses, but she implied that her children had a perfect right to use the street and private property as their playground. She seemed to think that if I did not like that I should keep quiet about it.

Some areas are obviously rough, and you either go to live there or you stay well away.

My road looks respectable so I think neighbours and visitors should see it as such and act accordingly. Perhaps that nice quiet lady was used to rough areas and thought the same activities were acceptable everywhere.

Children naturally follow bad examples because bad examples are fun.

I didn’t want to wait until children come from far and wide and joined in to breach the peace and quiet that usually exists in Bengarth Drive. In this case I think prevention is far better than cure.

What do Harrow Observer readers think?


Bengarth Drive

Harrow Weald

They got same when in office

THIS letter is in response to one that you published recently regarding councillors ‘wages’ sent in by Councillors Susan Hall and Barry Macleod-Cullinane, leader and deputy leader respectively, of the Tory party.

I know nothing of Councillor Currie’s finances, referred to by the above, but I would like to remind the Tory councillors that when they were in office they too were getting the ‘WAGES FOR DOING THE SAME WORK’.

The difference is that Councillor Currie does not have another place of employment which means he is on hand from early morning until late in the evening.

Councillor Macleod-Cullinane does have a full time job and Councillor Hall is a landlord, as well as running her own business. Who do you think does most for their constituents?

Why is it when Councillor Hall sends in a letter, she always has to have the deputy leader at her side. Is it because if there is a problem with what she has written there is someone to take the blame with her?


by email

Caravan plan is just short-sighted

REGARDING your article Caravan park proposal for sports pitch is under way (Harrow Observer, March 14).

I object and cannot believe that this planning proposal has been submitted.

A list of documents have been provided by the applicant to address all aspects of the impact this caravan and camping site will have on the area but frankly they’re nonsensical.

As Headstone Lane has a width restriction outside Pinner Park Primary and Middle School, access to the site will be via Broadfields, a quiet residential cul-de-sac.

It is simply not suitable for the volume of traffic a bustling caravan site with 75 pitches will generate. To gain access to Broadfields, drivers towing caravans will need to turn off Headstone Lane approaching from the railway bridge. Vehicles towing caravans will have to slow down considerably to turn into Broadfields and this will lead to tailbacks outside Hatch End High School. Hatch End Broadway is notoriously congested during peak times as is Long Elms.

It seems a very unusual proposition to develop a caravan and camping site in Harrow, a suburb of London.

The land is next to Pinner Park and there are no other camping sites nearby so any would be campers may not be able to resist the temptation to use that land for pitches as well if the site is full.

Perhaps the owners of the land are struggling to find a use for it but to propose a caravan and camping site is short sighted with no regard, care or concern whatsoever for the impact it will have on the local community.

This is the second time this idea has been mooted by the respectable sounding ‘Harrow Community Sports’ but it is an idea which by it’s very nature is highly objectionable and unpopular.


via email

Harrow tourism could benefit

WE NOTE in this week’s Harrow Observer (March 28) that the Camping and Caravanning Club of Great Britain deny any involvements with the application in hand for the Headstone Lane site.

Had the C and C Club, a professional national organisation, been involved, we should have wished to add support.

However, this is not the case and it seems to leave many problems and issues; without knowing a lot more of the detail, we could not support such a plan.

We have camped in many major cities, such as Birmingham, Bristol, Chertsey, Barcelona, Strasbourg, and, given the right circumstances and good management, Harrow tourism could benefit.


by email

Cardinals team is holding a reunion

STARTING in 1974, the Greenford Cardinals were a local basketball team who competed successfully at Middlesex, London and national level.

Based on students from Cardinal Wiseman, Brentside, Drayton Manor, Cardinal Newman, Elthorne and St Mary’s University College primarily, the men’s, women’s and junior teams regularly won Middlesex, London and regional honours with the junior teams competing successfully in the National League and representing Ealing in the London Youth games and in town twinning events in Kreis Steinfurt, in Germany.

As a result of coaching and playing connections (several of the Cardinals also played and coached in National League clubs) the team often had international guest players who were the National League stars of the 1980s and ‘90s.

Furthermore, the club ran holiday coaching clinics attracting up to 100 players a day giving local kids the opportunity to learn from coaches of the highest national and international calibre.

The club ceased to exist in 1994 but is organising a reunion in May 2013. If any former players or associates of the club wish to be involved, please would they contact Tony Markowski, former player and coach, at Details can also be found on:




Organising Committee

via email

You don’t half whinge in Pinner

I ONLY moved to Pinner last year and love it.

But you lot don’t half whinge around here, don’t you?

We have a great building at The Pinn, super doctors, parking at the door and a whole load more than so many other people both in the UK and overseas.

Well done to the doctors and practice manager is what I say!