send the Dame your information, discretion assured.
Comments are welcome but do not necessarily reflect the view of the Dame.
Offensive/inappropriate comments will be deleted and the poster banned.

Friday, 27 March 2015


A reader reports the very sad news below and raises the question as to the eventual plans for this highly regarded local pub.
The Council has a duty to protect important community assets such as the Hour Glass.

"The landlady of the above pub, just down the road from the V&A has told me that her landlord is terminating her lease (after 24 years) and she will be leaving next month.  Very sad for her, since she did want to carry on a few more years.  Moreover, what are the intentions of the landlord?  Is it to be turned into another home for a wealthy absentee oligarch?  
It already has a basement."

Click to see the good things said about this charming pub

Thursday, 26 March 2015


The old Dame may not know much about modern music, but she knows a vibrantly successsful local asset, when she sees one. 
So she asks what Angela McConville has against the hugely popular The Flyover?
Angela really seems to hate the people of North Kensington

Dear Dame

I've been reading your recent posts on the Westway Trust and their current shenanigans with great interest and thought you might like to know about another of their tenants, The Flyover ( who have recently lost their lease.   This might be part of the Trust's bigger plans for gentrification or it could just be total incompetence.

I have it on good information (from one of the guys who set up the Flyover - who is happy for me to share this information) that despite......
(a) delivering what they said they would 
(b) always being on time with their rent 
(c) no discussion of a rent increase and 
(d) with little warning 

The Flyover was put on a three month lease by Westway which made it impossible for them to continue to operate.  How can any business operate with the prospect they might be kicked out within three months?  They ended up closing in February. 
Happy and Safe

Despite only operating for three years, the Flyover was becoming a really important asset for local people (as was Inn on the Green which was ousted from the same premises by Westway before them).  They employed a friendly team of local bar staff, security, Djs and performers and put on cultural events catering to various diverse elements of the local community.  They also managed to attract some really fantastic international bands back into North Kensington.  
What with the Stables, Maxilla, Universal and Flyover coupled with the Portobello Village Development and rumours of deals with organisations like Gumball 3000 it really feels like Westway are trying to rip out the heart of our community and they need to be held to account!

Wednesday, 25 March 2015


A senior officer informs the old Dame a vacancy in Stanley Ward cannot be announced until Cockell sends his resignation letter in.
Nothing can happen until he does.

Still, as Cockell did bugger all for Stanley ward residents they won't be notice much.
But could this have anything to with getting his final quarter's allowance in?
Nothing this greedy piece of work does would surprise the Dame.
Come on, Pooter, get your resignation letter in now. 
We want you 'off the premises'


The Dame is appalled that a 'charity' can be so scary a long standing tenant dare not give his/her name.

Ian Henderson has sent the Dame this letter. 

Address blacked out
I would just like to say thank you for trying to save our flats in Chelsea. I went to see the new homes which are an example of what Suttons are going to try and get planning permission to do on our estate.
Firstly they state they are better homes for all of us. Well I totally disagree with what I saw of the new homes, they did not impress me at all. 
The home I live in is much better which most people on the visit agreed. We do not want this redevelopment to go ahead. If we have to take these new homes it will break families up as there is not enough room to have children and grandchildren visit and have dinner, as there is no where you can sit and eat.  I think the designer done these flats and realized he forgot to put kitchens in them, realized he forgot to put kitchens in and as an afterthought decided to put a row of cabinets in the sitting room and call it a kitchen. I would have more room in a coffin.  As for the winter garden, it is a large plant bed. I had more space in my unmodernised flat 30 years ago when I had a bath in my kitchen with a work top.

They state they are putting planning permission in as some blocks that are empty do not meet the needs of social housing, well why don’t they do what they did to all the other flats on the estate, knock through and modernize. It is good enough for the ones that are not being knocked down wonder why? Money that’s what this is all about so they get the flats. Also they (social housing) are around the back of the site from Private buyers. I think it is unfair to put us social housing people at the back of the flats while private buyers have to be facing the front and have the best views. Shame on them, William Sutton must be turning in his grave.

If a flat is worth 1 million plus let the rich buy their own homes they can afford it. Social Housing is needed badly in London. Who needs underground parking and penthouses on the estate for the rich; this was meant to be an estate for the needy people, stop discriminating us for being poorer. Leave us social housing residents alone. I think we should have a door to door petition before planning is put in. There are over 1000 people supporting saving the Estate on Facebook. All the excuses they are making for planning permission is nothing to do with this, it is all for selling and making money. Just wanted to let you know my views and a lot more are thinking the same.
Regards, Name has been blacked out

The Save Our Sutton / Save The Sutton Estate Supporters have also been informed of a terrible ordeal residents in Chadwick Mews, Easthampstead had to endure after moving in to new premises built in 2011. The article highlights the fact that just because something is new does not always mean better. 

Read the article:

'Nightmare' three-year wait for heating and hot water

Tuesday, 24 March 2015


The Dame, being a bit of an old revolutionary, has decided to run an online hustings. 
She already has her own set of questions, but invites gentle readers to submit their own.
She will then amalgamate those she selects and asks the candidates to respond.
The Dame has enjoyed meeting Rod, Victoria and Robin and is saddened Toby, Jack and Robina have snubbed and ignored her!
Obviously, they hold her little blog in contempt!

Labour: Rod Abouharb

Alliance for Green Socialism: Toby Abse

Conservative: Victoria Borwick

Liberal Democrat: Robin McGhee

UKIP: Jack Bovill

Green: Robina Rose

Monday, 23 March 2015


Angela McConville, the brash boss of Westway Trust boasts of her 'business school' background. But, like many business school graduates, she despises small business.

Her latest assault on small business is Universal, a garage at the Latimer Rd end of Westway.
Universal specialises in car servicing.
It's been in business for many years with a reputation for being reputable-a rare quality in the motor trade.
The Hornet wrote about Westway Trust's support of National Apprentice Week, yet in that same week, McConville decided not to renew the lease of a garage providing local employment and, as importantly, training for apprentices!


Annie Redmile writes to every candidate fighting to represent the people of Kensington.

....oh, and congratulations, Annie.....
Your TV performance was stellar. How well you put the case against demolition of Warwick Road Estate. 
You can see Annie in action HERE

Dear Candidate,

I am writing to you as a Prospective Parliamentary Candidate at the forthcoming election for the Kensington constituency in which I live.

I am sure you will be aware of plans by the Royal Borough of Kensington and Chelsea for the Warwick Road Estate, in which I and another 200 plus people live (116 households) in a very settled and long established community in your constituency.

One of the four options the Royal Borough is considering is a plan to demolish all our homes and scatter the community to ‘who knows where’! This is Option 4. And there ARE other viable options where we would keep our homes,

I have been asked by many of the residents to write to you to ask if you will commit, as part of your election pledge, to OPPOSE THE DEMOLITION OF OUR HOMES as contained in Option 4.

When I have received your reply, and those of your opponents in the election who I am also writing to, I will circulate them to all the residents of the estate so that they can make their decisions on how to cast their ballot on May 7.

I know as a candidate you will more than understand the huge stress and anxiety the proposed loss of our homes is to our community in Kensington - particularly the elderly, disabled and more vulnerable residents.  With this in mind, I look forward to an early reply so your views can be shared with your voters on what is for us, a pivotal aspect in how we will choose to vote on May 7.

With grateful thanks for your swift attention. Please do feel free to email your response to me.....
Best wishes

Annie Redmile   

Thursday, 19 March 2015


An annoying councillor for Earl's Court is Cllr Spalding. 
Once he stood as an Inde and accused the Conservatives of not listening to residents.  After a 'talking to' by his Philbeach Gardens neighbour, Sir Pooter Cockell(and a promise of a safe seat)he recanted and turned Tory.

Members of the Earl's Court Society have been regaling the Dame with tales of the pompous ass.
In particular, his report tonight of all his achivements........
Pity he omitted to mention his other bit of HYPOCRISY

"Hasn’t Malcolm been a busy bee?

The Chairman’s report of the Earl’s Court Society, an organisation that purports to be a non-political community grouping of local residents associations, appears to be more a litany of what he has done as a Councillor and not as a chair.  
In other organisations/companies, the norm is that a Chair’s report includes a report-back on the activities of the Society and its sub-groups, over the previous year—is this a Spalding takeover?

Before the May 2014 elections, he said that he would stand down as chair, now he is not aiming to retire until 2016.

Signed by a member of the Malcolm Spalding Appreciation Society."

CHAIRMAN'S ANNUAL REPORT                      AGM  Thursday 19th March 2015

Since the last AGM on 27th February 2014 I have attended:

      Five full Council meetings – as your newly elected Councillor
      Fourteen Planning Committees
      Four Adult Social Care & Health scrutiny
      Two Public Realm scrutiny
      Four Licensing hearings
      Two Learning Work & Business group meetings
      The Appointment committee for Chief Executive Nicholas Holgate
      Mayor's Awards ceremony and Mayor's annual party 
      Eight meetings of the ECS Planning Group
      Four meetings of the ECS Executive Council

With CapCo, chaired by Ken Courtenay and Anette Simpson, the launch and subsequent six meetings of the ECS Neighbours Group which deals with party wall, structural surveys, property maintenance,and any damage & nuisance to direct neighbouring properties. The EC redevelopment will be a major issue for us for the next four years. Demolition started in December.

ECCT Earls Courtiers  Performances of “Twelfth Night” at Barkston Gardens and “Childhood Memories” at St Cuthbert's funded by CLLL on 8 November.  Performance of “Under Milkwood” ECCT at St Cuthbert's 5 December.  Community Carol Service at St Cuthbert's 13 December

RBKC Civic Service in June and Remembrance day ceremony and church service 9 November
Solidarity Sports fundraiser event. ECS annual summer party with the Mayor at ECO with the Routemaster cavalcade managed by the HTTG and WLLG.

Attendance at various RA AGMs (Earl's Court Square, Earl's Court Village, Philbeach Gardens, K&C Chamber of Commerce) 

Other local issues dealt with include:

      Sale of the Philbeach Garden  (Committee EGM, AGM, sub-committee and meeting with chair Carola Hickling and leader of the Council)
      Water presssure in Earl's Court Square
      Rats due to TfL station works over Christmas
      Demolition of bridge 19 over Christmas
      Potential for demolition HGVs etc using Penywern Road as a short cut
      Maintaining the St Cuthbert's Church garden (Four sessions)
      Thames Water Consultation on Counters Creek sewer flood relief tunnel
      Save the Odeon Cinema
      Consultation on West Cromwell Road planting
      Street waste dumping, Road safety, planning issues, phone boxes
      Potential for a new farmers' market at Hogarth Road or St Cuthberts'

I have been appointed Trustee of the Earl's Court Charity and the Westway Trust.  Friedererike Maeda, Ann Kutek and Cllr Fenella Aouane were co-opted onto the Executive Council.
Congratulations for Mayor's awards to Jennifer Ware and Toby Brown, and many thanks to Hilary Temple, who is retiring, for an excellent job as founder Member and Treasurer of the Society.

Malcolm Spalding

RBKC Gold Standard Society