Wednesday 5 April 2023

How Edgware has changed in 100 years

 A friend pinged me this wonderful map of Edgware made in 1929. It is well worth a click and a proper gander, as it were!

The map was produced by the London Underground to promote travel on the tube. It is quite interesting that despite it being designed to promote Edgware, it only has about 1/4 of Edgware in it, in fact it is a far better map for Elstree. I love old maps and it opens a little window into what Edgware and the surrounding district used to be like. Pubs such as The Leather Bottle, long since lost, are mentioned. The rather wonderful @Time_NW Twitter account did a wonderful thread on this topic

 Other interesting references are the tramways. Again there are some wonderful tweets on the subject of trams in Edgware

Edgware has changed beyond recognition from those days. Now BArnet Council are planning to do a very major 'regeneration' of the area. This will involve bulldozing many of the remaining reminders of those halcyon years. The @Time_NW twitter account is run by BBC Radio London Industrial Historian Mark Amies, who also tweets as @Superfast72. Mark drew my attention to a 'consultation survey' (anyone familiar with Barnet Council knows that what this means is that you answer a load of questions and give your opinions, so that they can ignore you).  Here is Mark's tweet

If you are an Edgware resident or have a connection with the area, please have a look at the plan and add your comments. You will then be able to see other people's comments as well.  CLICK HERE FOR THE REGENERATION SCHEME WEBSITE

Here are a few

"You don’t show the massive towers and lack of parking and how hard it will be to get around and traffic that will be caused by the large towers"

"Large towers with no suitable leisure and public services like schools or doctors or upgrades transport means this will be a hell on earth for residents. Adding some small playgrounds won’t do anything. What about sports facilities like running tracks or tennis and basketball courts."

"Go back to the drawing board and listen to the people who live in Edgware"

"This is just a concrete jungle. Parking is already a problem yet you are goimg to use the already overfull car park. Where is the new school(s) to accomodate all the children who will live here, where is t he new Doctors Surgery for the new people's healthcare. Edgware and Barnet Hospitals are already heaving and unable to cope with the amount of people in their care, what plans do you have to overcome this? Where is the dentist surgery for the new people. This is just not been thought out! Also, when the old Spur Road Estate was rebuilt we were told that there would not be any more high rise buildings in Edgware as they were ugly and also caused/created lots of problems. Were Barnet Council lying to us?"

I concur with these comments. I am all for more proper social housing. Barnet has had its heart ripped out by regeneration schemes and yet it is impossible for young people to live locally unless they are subsidised by the bank of Mum and Dad. I have just lost a key member of staff, a young man evicted  from 'unsecure social housing' by Barnet Homes, for a 'regeneration project' in Grahame Park. The letter sent to him by Barnet Homes told him he was getting booted out and was not entitled to rehousing, despite having been a tenant since 2013. After I intervened, he was told that Barnet Homes would assist him and they didn't mean what they'd said in the letter they sent him. He was so traumatised by his treatment, as someone who had mental health challenges, that he has moved away from Barnet. This is the true story of regeneration. Local people, born and raised in the Borough are treated like dirt. All of the building in the Borough in the last 20 years has changed it beyond recognition, but the waiting list for council housing is as long as ever and it is more difficult than ever for our young people to afford to buy flats and homes. 

If you want to know the truth of the Edgware regeneration, email your local councillor and ask them if the regeneration will make it easier for young people born and raised in Barnet to rent or buy affordably. My question for the council is this. My daughter is a teaching assistant at a local school. Will this scheme mean she will be able to afford to live in Edgware and as a key worker, will she be guaranteed a home is she needs one. Sadly, with most of these schemes the only people that are guaranteed a place are offshore millionaires, who have fat deposits to put down. 

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