Where You Live: Bexley

Where You Live >> Bexley

London is more than just the City and its famous landmarks. More than its museums, theatres, palaces, taxis and red buses. It is home to some 8 million people. You live, work and socialise across London’s 32 boroughs – you make them tick. You give Bexley’s neighbourhoods, Thamesmead North to Sidcup, their unique identity. It is these distinct areas that make our great capital such a rich and diverse city. Unlike the previous Mayor, Boris is working to give all your boroughs - not just Zones 1-3 - his attention.

Boris Johnson has a nine point plan to secure Greater London’s future. He is paying for this plan by cutting waste at City Hall to free up £3.5 billion for services.

In Bexley the plan means:

  • Freezing City Hall’s share of council tax for three successive years and cutting it this year, benefitting 86,268 Bexley households and putting an average £445 back into pockets. (GLA Website, ‘Budget archive’, link, DLG Website, Calculation of Council Tax Base for Formula, Grant Purposes, October 2011, link)
  • Investing in the local high streets with economic boosts for Bexleyheath Town Centre and Sidcup Town Centre from the Mayor’s £50 million Outer London Fund. (GLA, Outer London Fund – Round 1 Grant Funding, 8 December 2011, link).
  • Investing in local transport by building Crossrail with direct access at Abbey Wood station, rolling-out Oyster cards onto national rail, spending £1.4 million to improve local Bexley’s roads and funding of £15.1 million to boost local transport in Bexley (TfL, Press Release, 20 November 2008, link; TfL, Press Release, November 2008; TfL, Press Release, December 2009; link; TfL, Press Release, December 2010; link; TfL, Press Release, December 2011, link).
  • Boris is also supporting local pensioners by reversing the previous Labour Government’s decision to stop those at 60 getting the Freedom pass until 65 (GLA, Mayor’s Questions, 17 December 2008, link)
  • He is also the only candidate in this election who can secure a better deal for London from No 10.

Freezing council tax

  • Boris Johnson has frozen council tax for three years and is cutting it this year. Boris Johnson has frozen his share council tax for three years and is cutting it this year (GLA, Mayor’s Final Draft Consolidated Budget 2012-13, link). This has helped keep cost of living low for 86,268 households in Bexley (DCLG, Council Tax Base , October 2011),  putting an extra £445 back in the pocket of households.

Restoring green space

  • 319 street trees. 319 street trees have been planted in Bexley under Boris Johnson (London Assembly, Written answers to Mayoral questions, 17 January 2010, link).
  • 9 green spaces. 9 green spaces have been created for Bexley residents to grow their own food. (Capital Growth Website, link).
  • Parish Wood Park. The ‘Help in London’ Park Scheme has invested £6 million to improve the quality and safety of London’s parks. Parish Wood Park in Bexley received £400,000 to develop a better entrance way into the park linked to the River Shuttle walk, restore the river to a more natural form, develop wild flower meadows, improve the woodland management; and provide new play equipment for children (Help in London Website, ‘Help a London Park’, link).

Investing to transform local high streets

  • More than £2 million for Bexley from the Outer London Fund. Bexley has received an economic boost of £2,148,349 from the Outer London Fund:
  • Bexleyheath Town Centre. Bexleyheath Town Centre received £270,500 sponsored by the Mayor’s £50 million Outer London Fund to support local the high street and local businesses (GLA, ‘Outer London Fund: Round 1 Grant Funding’, link).
  • Sidcup Town Centre. Sidcup Town Centre received £1,807,780 (including matching funds) from the Outer London Fund. The Sidcup Town Area Renewal Scheme will deliver marked public realm improvements to Sidcup High Street. The package of proposals will provide a foundation that will transform the high street, support and provide new business opportunities and improve investor confidence in the area. The Mayor’s funding will also encourage people to explore, learn, shop, and trade in Sidcup providing a much needed high-quality uplift to the area (GLA, ‘Outer London Fund: Round 2 Summary of Winners’, 12 January 2012, link).

Making your streets and homes safer

  • 1,000 more police across London by May and £132 million more investment under Boris. The number of Special Constables has more than doubled from 2,500 to well over 5,000. (GLA, The Mayor’s Consultation Budget, 22 December 2011, link; MPA Website, Police numbers, link; GLA, Mayor’s Final Budget 2011-12, link; Evening Standard, 30 January 2012, link).
  • 739 more patrols a month. In Bexley there were 739 more patrols per month in January 2012, compared to April 2008. (GLA, Mayor’s questions, 25 February 2012, p169, link).
  • Total crime and robberies in Bexley have fallen. Since May 2008, Bexley has seen a 19%% decrease in total crime and a 25% reduction in the number of robberies. Youth violence is down 26.6% and bus crime has fallen 63% fall in bus crime (MOPC, Monthly Report: Police and Crime Committee, 8 March 2012, May 08 – Jan 12 compared to Aug 04-April 08; MPS Statistics).

Ensuring a true Olympic legacy

  • Boris Johnson has funded five sport participation programmes in Bexley so far. They are (Mayor of London, Sporting future for London, April 2009, p. 9, link):
  • Sports Legacy Programme. 4 organisations in Bexley are receiving Sports Legacy Programme Grants to offer free sports coaching to Londoners (Freesport Programme Website, link).
  • Investing in Sports Facilities. The Mayor has helped fund two sports facilities in Bexley (IOG, ‘Funding boost for London Sports Facilities, 26 October 2010, link). They are:

Investing in transport

  • £15.1 million of funding for local transport in Bexley. Since becoming Mayor, Boris Johnson has invested over £15.1 million to boost local transport in Bexley, including £600,000 for continued improvements to the Welling corridor including a better junction design. (TfL, Press Release, 20 November 2008, link; TfL, Press Release, November 2008; TfL, Press Release, December 2009; link; TfL, Press Release, December 2010; link; TfL, Press Release, December 2011, link).

Rail

  • Crossrail. Bexley will be served by Abbey Wood Crossrail station on the Bexley-Greenwich border (HMT, Spending Review, 22 October 2010, p.23, link).
  • Oyster Cards rolled out on national rail. After years of talk under Ken Livingstone, Boris Johnson secured the roll-out of Oyster cards onto national rail. Bexley is now the 27th highest oyster-using borough on national rail services (TfL Website, ‘Oyster on National Rail’, December 2009, link).

Roads and congestion

  • Traffic lights. Timings of 1 set of traffic lights in Bexley have been reviewed since 2009 to improve traffic flow and reduce congestion (Bexley Borough Website, Bexleyheath Development and Improvement, link)
  • C-Charge. Boris also scrapped Ken Livingstone’s plans to introduce a £25 charge for family vehicles. (London Legacy, Press Release, 8 July 2008, link)
  • Bendy Buses replaced. Nearly 500 new vehicles boasting the latest clean engine technology will replace the Bendy buses. This will save more than £7 million a year and the 207 in Bexley is one of the routes served by a new bus. (TFL, Press Release, 5 October 2011, link, Tfl, Press Release, 25 November 2011, link).

Buses

  • Bus improvements. 13 bus routes in Bexley have been expanded and or improved under Boris Johnson. (TFL, ‘Bus service changes May 2008-January 2012, 2012 link).

Cycling

  • Cycle funding. Bexley gained £25,000 in funding to encourage residents to take up cycling (Going Going Biking Website, ‘Funding made available to London Borough’s’, 18 February 2011, link)

Housing

  • 740 total affordable housing units completed in Bexley. 460 social rented and 280 intermediate affordable housing units were completed in Bexley between 2008/09 and 2010/11 (DCLG, Affordable Housing Live Tables 1006, 1007, 1008, link).

Mayoral visits

  • Boris Johnson has made more visits to Bexley in his first term than Ken Livingstone made in his first term Boris Johnson has visited Bexley seven times since July 2008. Ken Livingstone visited Bexley just once in his first term (2000-2004). Mayor (GLA, Mayor’s Report to the Assembly, May 2000 – April 2008; GLA, Mayor’s Report to the Assembly, May 2008 – March 2012).

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