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Another Year of Transforming Brent Cross

December 21, 2022

It’s been another busy year for the Brent Cross Cricklewood regeneration programme team. Across the project, we’ve opened a new park, supported four local businesses to open new premises, and funded 11 projects via the Brent Cross Town community fund.

We’ve also continued to recruit local people into jobs on our construction sites and provided skills and training opportunities, as well as announcing a future partnership with Sheffield Hallam University. Read on for some of our highlights this year.

A new community park opened

In June, we opened Claremont Park, providing our neighbours a place to socialise, play and enjoy nature. On our regeneration programme we’re delivering facilities that bring benefits to the community first before any new homes to buy are built. Since opening, the park has been much loved by locals – whether you are going for walks, meeting friends, or passing through. Find out more about Claremont Park here.

New artwork was unveiled

Shortly after the park opened, we unveiled a new art piece Rainbow Ribbons by London-based artist Hanna Benihoud.  The colourful ribbons float down in front of the park’s family-run kiosk, Gussy’s Ice Cream Parlour. So next time you’re passing through the park, keep an eye out for this impressive artwork.  Read more about Rainbow Ribbons here.

Stranger Things happened

In the summer we saw Stranger Things: The Experience open at the new Troubadour Brent Cross Studios at Brent Cross Town.  Not only did we revamp and recycle materials in the former Toys ‘R’ Us store but we also opened the doors to a vibrant community of international film, media, and entertainment professionals to the area. In future, a skills academy promises to enable 150 locals to be trained in the film and TV industry. Read more about our plans for Troubadour Brent Cross Studios here.

The fourth round of community funding was granted

The Brent Cross Community Fund supported 11 new local groups with an increased share of £40,000 – more than ever before. From skateboarding and a basketball group to supporting a women’s mental health group, grants of between £500 and £5,000 are supporting good causes based in and around Childs Hill, Golders Green and West Hendon. Find out more about the community fund here.

We encouraged #TimeTogether and unveiled future plans for Clitterhouse Playing Fields

In August and October, we worked with Brent Cross Town and Women in Sport to encourage mums and daughters in the area to join the charity’s #TimeTogether campaign and tackle barriers to enjoy sport and exercise.  Our partners at Brent Cross Town, led a programme of free wellbeing events and activities including yoga, wellbeing walks, skateboarding lessons and dance aerobics. Read more about the events here.

Our future ambitions for increasing play and wellbeing at Brent Cross Town were also showcased as part of the Clitterhouse Playing Fields consultation. This year, two more rounds of consultation took place, and an application was submitted in November.

A huge thank you to everyone that contributed their ideas. Read more to find out about next steps.

New places to eat and drink opened in the area

In October, the transformation of Claremont Way was completed with the opening of Cricklewood Coffee Roasters who joined Karma Bread Bakery, Happy Face Pizza, and the Visitor Pavilion’s Spruce and Larch. And let’s not forget Gussy’s Ice Cream Parlour in Claremont Park.

A key commitment in the Brent Cross Cricklewood regeneration scheme is to provide new community amenities for residents to enjoy early in the development, as well as supporting local businesses to grow. Find out more about the retailers and their opening hours here.

A new University campus was announced  

In October, we made an exciting announcement that Sheffield Hallam University will open a new campus at the heart of our Brent Cross Cricklewood regeneration programme. Chosen by our partners, Related Argent, it will be the University’s first campus outside of Sheffield and focus on recruiting locally. In Sheffield, 40% of the students come from within a 25-mile radius, a recruitment model we aim to recreate in Barnet when it opens in 2025/26. Find out more about the Sheffield Hallam partnership.

We celebrated the holidays and hosted family events

Following a packed programme of free family summer and half-term events at the park and Brent Cross Town Visitor Pavilion, we wrapped up this year with two festive community events. A winter lights event saw Claremont Park lit up for the winter and school children singing carols. We also celebrated Chanukah with a Menorah lighting ceremony led by Rabbi Overlander. There’s still time to enjoy a treat or two from our local retailers – with minced pies and winter coffee blends, festive pizzas, and bakes.

And created new jobs and opportunities for local people

Across the year we’ve created all kinds of opportunities for local people across the programme with our partners at Galldris and VolkerFitzPatrick. From ground worker apprentices like Ryan McCabe, to championing women like Belul Mesfin, into construction, we want to leave a positive legacy of upskilling local people.

These are some of the ways we’re delivering on our commitment to ensure 20% of people working across the project are from Brent, Camden or Barnet. In addition to thousands of jobs building the new town and Brent Cross West, we’ll see 27,000 new jobs created in the future. You can keep up to date on the roles available on our opportunities page.

Brent Cross West’s journey continued

Over on Brent Cross West, teams led by contractor VolkerFitzpatrick and project managed by Mace on behalf of Barnet Council continued to work day and night to complete the station.

Passengers travelling through the station on the existing Midland Main Line route can see the completed grey cladding around the impressive, glass fronted concourse and overbridge which towers over the railway lines.

We know people are excited about the opening of Brent Cross West and we’re working with our rail partners to agree on an opening date, which we will share as soon as we can. More information on Brent Cross West can be found here.

What’s next for the Brent Cross Cricklewood Programme

Next year, as well as the station opening, we look forward to unveiling new artworks and completing the first new homes on the development, which will be for some of the residents relocating from the Whitefield Estate. We’ll also be starting works on the first new commercial space and other residential buildings, as well as consulting on new squares and buildings that make up the vision for our new park town.

Keep up to date with everything happening across the Brent Cross Cricklewood programme by signing up for our e-newsletter.

For image usage requests and media enquiries, please contact transformingbx@barnet.gov.uk