Where You Live: Richmond

Where you live >> Richmond

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 Richmond’s neighbourhoods, from Hampton Wick to Barnes, 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 Richmond the plan means:

  • Freezing City Hall’s share of council tax for three successive years and cutting it this year, benefitting 13,325 Richmond households and putting an average £445 back into pockets. (Point 2) (GLA, Press Release, 1 February 2012, link: GLA Website, ‘Budget archive’, link)
  • Investing in local high streets with an economic boost of £496,700 for Twickenham, £361,200 for Whitton and £376,595 for Barnes, sponsored by the Mayor’s Outer London Fund. (Point 6) (GLA, Outer London Fund – Round 1 Grant Funding).
  • Investing in transport with £3.9 million of improvements made to Richmond Town Centre, completing London’s first orbital rail with two Overground stations in the borough, rolled out Oyster cards onto national rail, and investing £15.9 million in local transport in Richmond. (Point 8) (TfL, Press Release, November 2008, link; TfL, Press Release, December 2009, link; TfL, Press Release, December 2010, link; TfL, Press Release, December 2011, link).
  • Boris is benefitting local pensioners by reversing the previous Labour government’s decision to stop those at 60 getting the Freedom Pass until 65.
  • 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 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 13,325 households in Richmond (DCLG, Council Tax Base, October 2011), putting an extra £544 back in the pocket of the average Richmond household.

Investing to transform local high streets

  • £361,200 for Whitton from the Outer London Fund. Whitton received an economic boost of £361,200 as part of Round 1 of the Mayor’s £50 million Outer London Fund to support the Capital’s High Streets (GLA, Outer London Fund – Round 1 Grant Funding, link.)
  • £367,595 for Barnes from the Outer London Fund. Barnes received an economic boost of £367,595 as part of Round 1 of the Mayor’s £50 million Outer London Fund to support the Capital’s High Streets (GLA, Outer London Fund – Round 1 Grant Funding, link.)
  • £496,700 for Twickenham from the Outer London Fund. Twickenham received an economic boost of £496,7000 as part of Round 1 of the Mayor’s £50 million Outer London Fund (GLA, Outer London Fund – Round 1 Grant Funding, 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).
  • Total crime and robberies in Richmond have fallen. Since May 2008, Richmond has seen a 13.5% decrease in total crime and a 44.5% reduction in the number of robberies. Youth violence is down 27.6% and bus crime has fallen 36.3% (MPS Statistics, May 08 – Jan 12 compared to Sept 04-April 08).

Restoring green space

  • 41 street trees. 41 street trees have been planted in Richmond under Boris Johnson (London Assembly, Written answers to Mayoral questions, 25 January 2012, link).
  • 29 green spaces. 29 green spaces, which allow local residents the opportunity to grow their own food, have also been created (Capital Growth Website, link).
  • Ending garden grabbing. Boris Johnson has introduced new protections for gardens from development. His revised London Plan enables boroughs to: ‘introduce a presumption against development on back gardens or other private residential gardens where this can be locally justified’ (GLA, The London Plan 2011, July 2011, p. 86-87, link). Draft guidance also urges councils to prevent garden grabbing: ‘Such a presumption reflects Government’s recognition in PPS3 of the need to provide support for justified, local measures to prevent “garden grabbing”’ (GLA, Draft supplementary planning guidance, December 2011, link).

Ensuring a true Olympic legacy

  • Boris Johnson has funded four sport participation programmes in Richmond so far. They are (Mayor of London, Sporting future for London, April 2009, p. 9, link)

  • 9 organisations in Richmond are receiving Sports Legacy Programme grants to offer free sports coaching to London (Freesport Programme Website, link).

Investing in Transport

  • £15.9 million of funding for local transport in Richmond. Since becoming Mayor, Boris Johnson has invested over £15.9 million to boost local transport in Richmond. This includes £1 million to complete traffic and public space improvements around Richmond Town Centre, such as a new pedestrian only forecourt and a new crossing outside Richmond Station, and £330,000  to promote cycling with improved cycle parking, cycle training and converting towpaths to create shared paths for cycling and walking (TfL, Press Release, November 2008, link; TfL, Press Release, December 2009, link; TfL, Press Release, December 2010, link; TfL, Press Release, December 2011, link).

Underground

  • Working to improve reliability on the District Line. This will improve capacity by 24% on District line, meaning the line can carry an additional 10,000 passengers per hour at peak time. 80 new trains will also begin to be introduced from 2013, with all new trains in service 2016. These will be air-conditioned, have walk-through carriages, and wider doors and walkways to improve accessibility (TfL Website, ‘District line upgrade plan’, link).

Rail

  • London Overground, London’s first orbital railway, has two stations in Richmond. Richmond will benefit from London’s first orbital railway, with two stations in Richmond: Richmond and Kew Gardens (TfL Website, ‘London Overground’, 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 in 2010. Richmond is now the 6th highest oyster- using borough (BBC News Online, 10 March 2008, link; TfL Website, ‘Oyster on National Rail’, December 2009, link).

Roads and congestion

  • Introduced the roadworks Permit Scheme. Boris Johnson introduced the roadworks Permit Scheme in 2010, resulting in an average 17% cut in the number of road works by utility companies in those boroughs, such as Richmond, which have adopted the scheme (GLA, Press Release, 11 January 2010, link London Councils, London Permit Scheme: First Year Evaluation Report, 27 May 2011, link).
  • Scrapped the Western Extension Zone. Boris Johnson scrapped Ken Livingstone’s Western Extension of the Congestion Charging Zone in December 2010 after 69% of residents voted in favour of cancelling the zone (TfL, Press Release, 20 October 2010, link).
  • C-Charge. Boris also scrapped plans to introduce a £25 charge for family vehicles.(TfL, Press Release, 20 October 2010, link).

Buses

  • Bus improvements. 18 bus routes in Richmond have been expanded and/or improved under Boris Johnson (TfL, Press Release, May 2008-January 2012)
  • Bendy Buses removed. Nearly 500 new vehicles boasting the latest clean engine technology will replace the Bendy buses. Transport for London estimates this will save more  than £7 million a year (TfL, Press Release, 5 October 2011, link).

River

  • Regeneration of the Thames River Service. Richmond has three piers – Hampton Court Pier, Richmond St Helena, and Kew Pier– which have benefitted from Boris Johnson’s strong support of regenerating the Thames’ river services (TfL Website, ‘River Map’, link).

Housing

  • 250 affordable housing units completed in Richmond. 160 social rented and 90 intermediate affordable housing units were completed in Richmond between 2008/09 and 2010/11 (DCLG, Affordable Housing Live Tables 1006,1007,1008).

Mayoral visits

  • Boris Johnson has visited Richmond three times more in his four years than Ken Livingstone did in his eight years as Mayor. Boris Johnson has visited Richmond six times since July 2008 whilst Ken Livingstone visited Richmond  only twice in his eight years as 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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