Little Venice Action Report
Little Venice Action Report

St Mary’s Church Christmas Carols

It was wonderful to celebrate at this year’s interfaith Christmas carol service supported by the Paddington Waterways and Maida Vale Society.  As always, singing from the choir and St Saviour’s school was wonderful. Thank you to all those involved.

Warwick Avenue Piazza and the Paddington Public Realm Plan

An architectural firm has been hired for the project which is expected to deliver significant improvements to Little Venice. Stakeholder engagement and scoping are due to take place from Jan 2024. The project includes plans to improve the area around Warwick Avenue with greening and seating and a play park on Paddington Green accessible for children with disabilities and special needs. You can access information on the plan here.

Sgt Peter Brown Memorial Plaque

Earlier this year, we requested a memorial plaque for the bench used daily by World War II RAF Veteran Peter Brown. It has now been installed. He was a Little Venice resident who lived on Warrington Crescent. Peter Brown was referred to as the last of the ‘pilots of the Caribbean’. He died at his home on the 17th of December 2022.

Ugly Canal Boat

Following complaints from residents concerned about damage to the conservation area, Council officers met with the Canal River Trust and Paddington Waterways & Maida Vale Society to discuss what action, if any, could be taken against this rather unattractive canal boat moored on Blomfield Road.

Although planning permission is required for the mooring and any structure on the towpath, the vessels are out of scope, no matter how out of keeping with their surroundings. King’s Counsel advice secured by Westminster Council confirms that boats are not buildings. There is nothing the Council can do here. Paddington Waterways and the Council have asked the Canal River Trust to control the design of boats through its mooring agreements.

Street Lighting on the Hall Place Estate 

We have been concerned about poor street lighting on the Hall Place estate and in other parts of the ward.  Poor lighting can make people feel unsafe.  We have reported a number of faulty streetlamps and requested an inspection. This took place and repairs are underway.  This includes the lampposts by the recycling hub opposite Parson’s House. We suggested he was a Little Venice resident who lived on Warrington Crescent. Poor lighting may contribute to ASB and fly-tipping in this area. Officers also wrote to TFL as one of the faulty lampposts was on the Edgware Road and is under their responsibility. We have also made requests for the bollards to be repainted and paving stones adjusted where there is a potential trip hazard on the estate.

Parking on the Hall Place Estate

Residents are finding it increasingly difficult to park on Hall Place even when they have permits. We have asked our housing team to allow residents to close and lock gates to prevent non-residents from parking in residents-only parking areas.  Previously, residents had not been able to lock the gates.  We have also asked for more enforcement, patrols and fines for those found violating the rules in that area.

Leaf Clearing

Street cleaning teams have been working hard in Little Venice to stop leaves from accumulating especially near drains. This is particularly important because of concerns over flood risk. We have been reporting areas in the ward in need of sweeping every week and we are grateful for residents who do the same. Please continue to report areas in need of sweeping as this is an important preventative measure!

Abandoned Bikes

City inspectors have been monitoring bicycles in Little Venice ward which appear in abandoned or unusable conditions. These are identified and stickered to alert potential owners that they have been identified as such that they need to be collected. If bikes subsequently remain uncollected, we will tag them and pass these on to our contractors to collect, improving the streetscape and allowing other users to use the bike racks in future.

Rough Sleeping by the West Way and Graffiti by the Underpass

Renewed efforts have been made to support rough sleepers in this area. The City Inspectors have also written to TFL Deputy Mayor Seb Dance to seek greater cooperation from their side.  We have also been following up on graffiti by the underpass which has now been removed.

Anglo Educational Services, 129-131 Sutherland Avenue

After complaints from our residents, repeated fire alarms and visits by the London Fire Brigade, our City Inspectors working with the London Fire Brigade requested a fire risk assessment. The assessment was also found to be woefully inadequate. LFB is now working through updating the fire risk assessment with the premises and remodelling the alarm system for a more appropriate, gradual response. They have committed to serving any necessary enforcement measure to achieve these aims. It is hoped this will soon result in less nuisance for residents, the students living there.

Black Comms Box on Sutherland Avenue: Incomplete repairs on the Comms box owned by Virgin were reported to Westminster Highways who confirmed that Virgin have committed to complete the works ASAP. This has now been checked and can now confirm that the works have been completed.

Bench Outside Everyman Cinema Replaced

A bench that was well-used by the community was been taken by vandals, has now been replaced. The bench was replaced and secured to the ground to prevent it from being taken again.

Phone Box Porteus Road/St Mary’s Removed

An unused BT phone box that was unclean and frequently contained rubbish was removed by BT after lengthy petitioning.

Ward Budget

We are pleased to report that Octavia Housing and Care on Lanark Road received £1120 from the ward budget for their Christmas party.

Christmas Tree Request Refusal

We made a request for a Christmas tree for the area outside Warwick Avenue tube station. This would be an ideal location for a tree and carol singing. We proposed that this be funded by the ward budget given that we have a surplus. However, this Labour proposal was rejected by fellow Conservative ward councillors.  If you support the idea of a Christmas tree in Little Venice for next year, please write to Cllr Sara.  We are one of the few Westminster wards without a tree-lighting event.

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