Eighteenth Report of the Mayor of London to the London
This is my eighteenth report to the Assembly, fulfilling
my duty under Section 45 of the Greater London Authority Act 1999. It
covers the period from 5 December 2001 to 8 January 2002.
Planning and Development Control
Organisation and Building
At the start of the New Year, I announced that the freeze on the
real level of London Underground fares and freeze on bus fares will
continue for a second year. Under the new fares from 6 January 2002
bus fares are frozen - representing a reduction in real terms - and
Underground fare rises are limited to the rate of inflation.
Between 1986 and 2000 in real terms tube fares rose
by a massive 44 per cent and bus fares by 18 per cent. In contrast my
policy has been to hold down fares in order to encourage people to transfer
to public transport, particularly buses. Since my election in May 2000,
I have held tube fares constant in real terms, and reduced bus fares
in real terms. As a result bus rider-ship has risen substantially -
with passenger use up 6 per cent overall, the highest level since 1975,
and night bus use up 16 per cent. I hope that this year's fare changes
will continue this trend.
From Sunday 6 January 2002, the main fare changes
are as follows:
- No bus or tram fares will increase
- All Zones Bus Pass Season price cut again
The weekly All-Zones ticket price is reduced from £9.50 to £8.50,
the same as the current Zone 2+3+4 ticket which is withdrawn. Monthly
and longer period ticket prices are reduced in proportion.
- Zone restrictions removed for Travelcard use on buses
Any Travelcard will be valid on any bus, regardless of the Underground
zones it covers.
- Average Underground fares frozen in real terms
The Zone 1 single fare increases to £1.60, having been held
at £1.50 last year. The Zone 1 Carnet price is unchanged at
£11.50 for ten tickets £1.15 per journey).
- A new Day Travelcard is introduced
Like the existing One Day Travelcard, this will be valid on Underground,
DLR, Tramlink, bus and National Rail services, but it can be used
for the whole day. (The One Day Travelcard which will still be available
cannot be used before 9.30am on weekdays). Various zone combinations
of the new ticket will be available. Some zonal variations of the
existing One Day LT Card will be withdrawn. The Day Travelcard will
cost, for example, £5.30 Zones 1+2, compared to £4.10
off peak One Day Travelcard.
At the beginning of December I attended the start of construction
ceremony for the northern extension of the East London Line. This phase
of work will see the ELL extended from Whitechapel, via new stations
at Bishopsgate, Hoxton, Haggerston and Dalston, to link with national
rail network lines towards Highbury & Islington and Finsbury Park.
Powers have also recently been granted by the Secretary of State to
extend the East London southwards in two directions running towards
Wimbledon, Crystal Palace and West Croydon. Work on all lines is scheduled
for completion by 2006.
On 17 January 2002 I will be attending the launch
of Cross London Rail Links - a joint venture company between TfL and
the SRA that will see the vision of the Crossrail project become a reality.
Sir Christopher Benson, as Chairman, will steer the consultation process
before deciding on the optimum route, stations and service patterns
for both the east-west and Hackney-south west Crossrail routes.
Light Rail/River Crossings
TfL is pressing ahead with plans for a tunnel to carry the DLR under
the river from North Woolwich to Woolwich Arsenal south of the river.
Further consultation on the fine details of the whole scheme will be
undertaken early this year, with construction work planned to start
in 2004 and to finish mid-2007. TfL will also be consulting later next
year on plans for two other Thames crossings: one between Barking and
Thamesmead and another linking North Greenwich and Silvertown.
We are also awaiting the announcement of the Transport
and Works Act giving the go-ahead for the DLR to be extended to London
As part of the continuing consultation process, TfL has proposed
to widen the alternative fuels discount to cover vans, lorries and cars
that meet specified emissions standards. TfL has also recommended that
recovery vehicles used by the likes of the AA, Green Flag and the RAC
should receive a 100% discount. Under these proposals, mini-cabs once
licensed would not have to pay the charge, providing more transport
choice for Londoners. I am due to make further announcements on Congestion
Charging Scheme in February.
I am also committed to making London a better
city for pedestrians. Working with TfL, I will establish a rationale
for a Walking Plan by the end of 2002, agree a funding model and implement
the Plan by 2015.
TfL is currently facilitating the development
of six strategic walking routes and enlisting key stakeholders in the
development of the Plan. These routes are: The London Outer Orbital
Path, The Capital Ring, The Thames Path National Trail, The Jubilee
Walkway, The South-East Green Chain and The Lee Valley Walk. All members
of the community will be given a voice on the consultative process.
Transport Policing Initiative
I have had further meetings with
Bob Kiley, the MPS Commissioner, Sir John Stevens and Lord Harris, to
discuss the proposed implementation of a Transport Operational Command
Unit within the Metropolitan Police. The objectives of this dedicated
unit are to enable the efficient movement of buses on agreed bus corridors
through enforcement activities, to provide reassurance to the public
and staff by providing high visibility policing and enforcing the law
relating to taxi and private hire enforcement. The funding of this unit,
if agreed, will come from the TfL budget.
In January this year I published
my criteria for granting London Service Permits which announced that
bus operators in London, who are not part of TfL's London Bus Network
will be asked to prove their green credentials. The permit allows TfL
to decide conditions for running services such as tourism, hotel transfer,
private school buses - they will need to satisfy London Buses that their
vehicles comply with exhaust emission requirements and that they have
strategies in place to further reduce them.
London River Services
In January this year I announced
that a new passenger pier is to be built at Millbank to create a direct
transport link between Tate Modern and Tate Britain. This new pier will
also create yet another additional river stop for commuters. Millbank
Millennium Pier is due to open in Autumn 2002.
Following consultation with the GLA and
the functional bodies I formally prepared their draft budgets in accordance
with the requirements of the GLA Act on 14 December. Wider consultation
on my budget proposals then began with the issue of the document: Greater
London Authority - Budget Requirement and Precepts 2002-03. All Members
of the Assembly have all been provided with a copy.
I will finally determine the contents of the
draft consolidated budget following proper consideration of the responses
received. This draft budget will be presented to the Assembly on 23
January in the form of a detailed report, including among other things
an explanation of and justification for the budgetary provisions sought
and my response to issues raised during the consultation exercise.
My proposed draft budget continues the investment
in public services which I started last year, including the largest
programme of investment in transport improvements for many years. There
are also be resources for about 1,240 more police officers, over and
above the increase of 1,050 agreed for this year.
A key proposal is to bring together the Metropolitan
Police Service and Transport for London in partnership to deliver a
modern enforcement strategy for London's buses and taxis. This will
ensure the efficient movement of buses, combat crime and make the public
feel safe using bus services on key routes and corridors, as well enforcing
the law relating to the licensing of taxis and private hire vehicles.
The investment in services and ensuring that
they are accessible to all and available equally to London's citizens
is, however, not matched by the increase in grants from central government
grant. It is therefore not possible to deliver this investment without
increasing the contribution from council tax payers.
The Greatest Show on Earth
On 5 December, as part of the continuing
drive to assist the tourist industry in London, I launched the Greatest
Show on Earth, unveiling a celebrity chorus-line poster to publicise
London's largest ever theatre and restaurant promotion. A half a million
pound cash injection will provide a minimum of 60,000 subsidised tickets
at £10, £15 and £20, representing a minimum saving
of £17 per theatre ticket. Free tickets will also be distributed
to selected organisations for young, disabled and older people.
The half a million pounds theatre ticket promotion
is part of a four million pound package secured the London Tourism Action
Group for businesses badly affected by the events of September 11. £1
million of this has already been awarded to help the worst-hit businesses
in the capital's tourism industry. An additional £2million of
support and promotion has been generated as a result of the initial
£500, 000 cash injection.
The promotion ran from 10 to 22 December and
runs again from the 7 January to 17 February and applies to over 30
of London's best shows and productions, offering people some of the
best seats in the house.
Actors, comedians, models and celebrity chefs,
including Linda Gray, Sophie Dahl and Dame Judi Dench, gave their time
to be photographed individually for a 200 foot long poster. Celebrities
including Brian Blessed, Joan Collins and Miriam Margoyles joined with
me to unveil a copy of the poster at the Prince of Wales Theatre.
The theatre ticket promotion is intended to
entice people back into the West End to enjoy some of the best and most
exciting theatre in the world at cut prices. I am also delighted that
ninety of London's leading restaurants and the Hilton Hotels in London
have joined in to offer people a great time in central London.
I have passed on my congratulations to Sir
John Stevens, the Metropolitan Police Commissioner, in light of the
latest police recruitment figures released on 18 December, The national
figures released by the Home Office, state that the MPS gained 680 officers
(2.8%) bringing the number of police officers up to 25, 374 for the
year up to September 2001. This was the largest increase in England
The MPS figures also show a 48% rise in recruitment
in the first seven intakes of 2001-2 compared with the same period last
A year ago I promised Londoners that my proposed
budget would lead to an increase of more than 1000 police officers this
financial year. The announcement shows that the Met Police's current
campaign is on the right track. I have reaffirmed my commitment for
the recruitment of a further 1000 officers and support the Commissioner's
drive in getting a police service which reflects the racial and cultural
diversity of London.
Planning and Development Control
Planning decisions (Stage Two referrals)
I have sent letters in response to
the following statutory referrals:
Empress State Building, West Brompton
I have written to the London Borough of Hammersmith and Fulham stating
that I would not direct refusal of this application.
Land South of Auriol Drive, Greenford
I have written to the London Borough of Ealing stating that I would
not direct refusal of this application.
Planning Decisions (Stage One referrals)
I have asked officers to send letters
giving my comments about the following stage one referrals:
· Southwood Site, Greenwich
· Southwark Station, Blackfriars Road
· 211 Long Lane, Southwark
· Addington Place, Croydon
· Land adjacent to Croydon Park Hotel, Croydon
· Indescon Court, 20 Millharbour
· Byng Street/ Westferry Road, Tower Hamlets
· St Vincent's Hospital, Pinner
· Distillers Co Ltd, Chequers Lane, Dagenham
· Former Chelsea Metals Ltd, Barking
· 39-42 Portman Square, Westminster
· Hadley House, Uxbridge Road
· Norheads Farm, Biggin Hill
Any Assembly members seeking a copy of a planning
report should contact Hannah Elliott on x 4265.
I welcomed the announcement on 18
December on the future of the Dome site in Greenwich. The Meridian Delta
Ltd bid can substantially contribute to the regeneration of Greenwich
and the entire Thames Gateway region. The MDL scheme has the potential
to deliver a high-quality, mixed-use quarter in the Peninsula, centred
around a new leisure role for the Dome and East London along with new
diversified employment space and substantial amounts of housing.
I look forward to working with MDL and English
Partnerships to ensure the scheme provides the maximum benefits for
the region and meets my policy aspirations for transport improvements,
social and community facilities, affordable housing and environmental
I have welcomed the decision by the
Football Association on the 19 December to build the national football
stadium at Wembley.
Retaining the national football stadium at
Wembley was the only viable option, and the decision confirmed the case
that London has put from day one. Only a stadium in London can secure
the premium seating required to make it work financially in the long-term.
All parties now need to work together to ensure
that Wembley is a success. Central to this is to reinstate the plans
for the re-build of Wembley Park tube station which appear to have been
dropped in favour of only superficial improvements. A modern stadium,
encouraging spectators to come by tube and train, and guaranteeing a
smooth, quick exit at the end of a match or concert, requires the extra
capacity from the full station restructuring. Failure to do so will
gridlock the surrounding roads and make leaving by tube more difficult
than it needs to be. London Underground told the London Development
Agency last summer that the Department of Transport, Local Government
and the Regions had to include the station rebuild in its proposals
for the Public Private Partnership of the tube. The DTLR has not done
There is still time to put the Wembley Park
rebuild back into London Underground's long-term business plan and Ministers
must now reinstate the full £90 million to rebuild the station
in order to make this good news a long-term success.
Visit to Dublin
On 14 December, I visited Dublin
as part of my commitment to strengthening ties between London and the
Irish capital and to discuss plans for St Patrick's Day 2002.
I met with Councillor Michael Mulcahy, the
Lord Mayor of Dublin, and attended the opening of the Live Animal Crib
outside Mansion House. We attended a business event at the K-Club, Straffan,
Co. Kildare, to raise awareness for the plans for St Patrick's Day 2002
in London. I also attended a business event hosted by the Dublin Chamber
As a world city London's dynamism stems from
the many communities that have made their home here. London's Irish
community has contributed to the social, cultural and economic life
of London over many, many generations and is the largest single minority
group in London. I want this historic role to be recognised.
This year, for the first time, the Greater
London Authority will officially be celebrating St Patrick's Day in
London. I would like to see St Patrick's Day become an attraction along
the lines of those seen in the United States and am working with London's
Irish community to develop it into a cultural celebration for Londoners
and tourists alike. The plans incorporate the traditional service in
Westminster Cathedral, followed by parade along Victoria Street, through
Whitehall and finishing with a music and cultural event on Trafalgar
On 16 December I switched on the
green lights installed on the tower at Canary Wharf in celebration of
Eid on Sunday 16 December. The illuminations, which will remain until
2 January, mark the first day that the new moon can be viewed from Mecca,
and the end of Ramadan.
I welcomed this opportunity to wish Londoners
a happy Eid. Eid-ul-Fitr is a day of great joy and festivity for all
Muslims coming after a whole month of fasting and abstinence. It symbolises
compassion and care for people. Canary Wharf is an important part of
London's skyline and lighting the tower for Eid reminds us that sharing
the joy in each others' festivals is one way for London's communities
to celebrate our diversity and stand together.
Standing Together Against Intolerance
I have approved funding to support
work on Islamophobia and race hate crime to be undertaken through the
London Civic Forum. The project will build on the success of the Standing
Together against Intolerance event held in October last year, with all
major faiths pledging tolerance and mutual understanding.
The focus of the work will be to promote effective
action against hate crime and develop community partnerships to combat
race hate crime and Islamophobia. The work will also seek to incorporate
the implementation of the recommendations of the Report of the Runnymede
Trust Commission on British Muslims and Islamophobia.
A report will be produced and the work will
be incorporated into the activities around respect week later this year.
The London Partnerships Register
Couples will have the opportunity
to record their relationships in the London Partnerships Register on
14 February, St Valentine's Day. The register is usually only signed
on Wednesdays and Saturdays. With St Valentine's Day falling on a Thursday
this year, London couples will have the chance to register their partnerships
on this day.
On 20 December I launched a hard-hitting
cinema ad which reveals thatr staggering tonne of litter is dropped
in London every minute. The ad, which has the slogan 'Dropping Litter
Ruins Lives', reminds people what an anti-social habit dropping litter
is and is aimed mainly at teenagers. More than a million people saw
the ad, which was screened before Lord of the Rings on 530 screens over
Dropping litter is a dirty and expensive habit
which costs more than £100m a year to clean up. I hope this ad
makes people think twice about dropping litter and use bins. The ad
is the first stage in my campaign to clean up the capital. The leaders
of London's 33 boroughs have agreed to participate in a 'Capital Standard
Campaign', which I first set out in my draft waste strategy. This is
a sustained initiative to improve the cleanliness of the streets over
the next four years.
I have agreed to the offer from the
European Commission for funding for the Megapoles project. An initial
bid for funding for the project was made in January 2001 in conjunction
with the London Regional Office of the NHS and was revised later in
the year. The project will look at the issue of alcohol and young people
under 25 and will be funded over a period of 18 months. Findings and
recommendations will be fed into national and broader EU policy development.
Organisation and Building
Contract for Moving to City Hall
I have approved the contract for
the management of the GLA move to City Hall in the summer. After a two-stage
tendering process, the contract has been awarded to Edes.
Ordnance Survey Service Level Agreement
I have approved an agreement with
Ordnance Survey for the supply of geographic datasets for the GLA and
functional bodies. The GLA family have a strategic requirement for cartographic
information which allows analysis of information to be located within
the geographic framework of Greater London. Some of the information
is specific to the national mapping agency, Ordnance Survey. The datasets
are of value to the GLA and functional bodies for use across a range
of strategies. Therefore I have agreed to a service level agreement
for the supply of information over a three year period.
Other key engagements over the past month have
- I attended the East London Line start of
works ceremony in Dalston on 6 December
- I spoke at the City Renewal and Health Conference
and attended the Dinner at the Mansion House on 6 December
- I met with the Lord Mayor of Dublin on
- I addressed the Building for the 21st Century
Conference on10 December
- I met with the Sir John Stevens, Commissioner
of the Metropolitan Police Service and Toby Harris, the Chair of the
MPA on 10 December
- I attended the Thames Gateway Strategic
Partnership meeting on 11 December
- I met with Richard Rogers on 11 December
- I met with Sir Peter Davis, Chairman of
Sainsbury's on 11 December
- I met with London Labour MPs on 11 December
- I attended the Asian Business reception
on 11 December
- I met with Stephen Byers, Secretary of
State for Transport Local Government and the Regions on 12 December
- I met with John Spellar, Minister for Transport
on 13 December
- I visited Dublin on 14 December
- I attended the Eid celebration at Canary
Wharf on 16 December
- I opened Sainsbury's London Food Centre
on 17 December
- I spoke at the Learning the lessons from
New York conference on 17 December
- I met with Glenda Jackson, my Cabinet advisor
on Homelessness on 18 December
- I attended the London Film Commission reception
on 19 December
- I attended the Civil Contingencies Committee
meeting on 20 December
- I spoke at the London Government Dinner
at the Mansion House on 3 January
- I met with the ALG cross-party group about
the Budget on 8 January
- I met with Nick Raynsford, Minister for
London on 8 January
8 January 2002