Category Archives: Brick by Brick

Brick by Brick’s delayed accounts show another £0.8m loss

Report states ‘material uncertainty in respect of going concern’ Fairfield Halls project costs soar to £76.4m New directors find many BxB properties over-valued Auditors ‘unable to determine whether adequate accounting records have been kept’ With just a few hours to … Continue reading

Posted in Brick by Brick, Business, Colm Lacey, Croydon Council, Fairfield Halls, Housing, Jo Negrini, Planning | Tagged , , , , , , , , | 9 Comments

Council’s libraries consultation accused of being unlawful

CROYDON IN CRISIS: The council’s penny-wise and pound-foolish proposals for library closures could end up costing it more money after a badly-organised consultation, according to a national campaign group. By STEVEN DOWNES The council’s latest consultation, over the proposed closure … Continue reading

Posted in Brick by Brick, Broad Green, Community associations, Coulsdon, Croydon Council, Libraries, Old Coulsdon, Sanderstead, Shirley, South Norwood | Tagged , , , , , , , | 1 Comment

Budget is approved but Labour council haunted by its past

CROYDON IN CRISIS: Back-to-back meetings yesterday pushed through the paperwork to balance the books and increase Council Tax. But Hamida Ali’s administration cannot shake off its part in the borough’s financial calamity. By WALTER CRONXITE, political editor With the £120million … Continue reading

Posted in Alison Butler, Andrew Pelling, Andrew Stranack, Brick by Brick, Chris Buss, Council Tax, Croydon Council, Fairfield Halls, Hamida Ali, Ian Parker, Jason Cummings, Jeet Bains, Lynne Hale, Maddie Henson, Paul Scott, Report in the Public Interest, Sean Fitzsimons, Section 114 notice, Simon Hall, Stuart King, Tony Newman, Vidhi Mohan | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Croydon In Crisis: Council handed biggest bail-out ever

EXCLUSIVE: Councillors were being briefed tonight that the government has agreed to a £120m loan arrangement for the bankrupt borough – but it will take at least 20 years for the council to pay down its mountain of debt. By … Continue reading

Posted in Brick by Brick, Croydon Council, Hamida Ali, Improvement Board, Katherine Kerswell, Section 114 notice, Tony McArdle | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , | 6 Comments

Lip-service webinars fail to consider libraries’ community future

CROYDON COMMENTARY: As the council pays lip-service to a legally required consultation process, there’s a sense of inevitability about proposed closures for up to five of the borough’s public libraries. After sitting in on one of the council’s virtual Q&A … Continue reading

Posted in Brick by Brick, Broad Green, Coulsdon, Croydon Council, Education, Libraries, Old Coulsdon, Oliver Lewis, Sarah Hayward, Section 114 notice | Tagged , , , , , , , , , | 4 Comments

Coulsdon ready to ‘fight tooth and nail’ for community centre

A charity is threatening legal action against the council if they try to sell-off their ‘village hall’ without providing replacement facilities. Our south of the borough correspondent, PEARL LEE, reports As Croydon Council tries to crawl from the wreckage created … Continue reading

Posted in Brick by Brick, Community associations, Coulsdon, Coulsdon West, Croydon Council, Planning, Theatre, Theatre Workshop Coulsdon | Tagged , , , , , , | 4 Comments

Leader says she has no idea who approved BxB loans

CROYDON IN CRISIS: The £224m in loans and unpaid interest owed to the council by Brick by Brick may have broken EU and British state aid and competition laws. But after nearly six months in her job, Hamida Ali claims … Continue reading

Posted in Brick by Brick, Croydon Council, Hamida Ali, Report in the Public Interest, Robert Ward, Section 114 notice, Tony Newman | Tagged , , , , , , , , | 8 Comments

Brick by Brick needs £10m loan to avoid going bankrupt

CROYDON IN CRISIS: Consultants’ salvage plan for failed house-builder is accepted, including the council paying a second time for 190 flats which will be used as social housing. But the full extent of potential losses is kept under wraps. By … Continue reading

Posted in Brick by Brick, Colm Lacey, Croydon Council, Fairfield Homes, Hamida Ali, Improvement Board, Property | Tagged , , , , , , | 7 Comments

£100m questions on Ali’s ‘transparent, open and honest’ pledge

CROYDON IN CRISIS: Political editor WALTER CRONXITE on the growing row over council secrecy over Brick by Brick and the fire sale of property assets The secrecy over the consequences of the council’s plan to wind-down failed housing developer Brick … Continue reading

Posted in Brick by Brick, Croydon Council, Hamida Ali, Jason Cummings, Property, Stuart King, Tony Newman | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , | 9 Comments

Reprieved! Buss recommends scrapping dozens of build plans

Among the recommendations contained in the report on the future of Brick by Brick going before next Tuesday’s scrutiny committee is a list of sites which are no longer to be developed by the loss-making council-owned builder. The biggest site … Continue reading

Posted in Alison Butler, Brick by Brick, College Green, Croydon Council, Paul Scott, Planning, Section 114 notice, Tony Newman | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 2 Comments

Council set to take £100m hit as it winds down Brick by Brick

CROYDON IN CRISIS: The borough is looking for a buyer for its failed development company, as a secret report to next week’s scrutiny committee balances the costs of selling off sites currently under development against the price of persisting with … Continue reading

Posted in Brick by Brick, College Green, Colm Lacey, Croydon Council, Fairfield Homes, Hamida Ali, Housing, Katherine Kerswell, Planning, Property, Section 114 notice | Tagged , , , , , , , , , | 10 Comments

£2,400 per day – the high cost of council’s ‘improvement’ panel

The annual cost of having Croydon officials’ work checked by Whitehall-appointed experts comes to ‘three-quarters of a Negrini’, as KEN LEE reports The Improvement Panel imposed on Croydon by the Tory government to check that the cash-strapped council is running … Continue reading

Posted in Adult Social Care, Brick by Brick, Children's Services, Croydon Council, Improvement Board, Jo Negrini, Section 114 notice, Tony McArdle, Tony Newman | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , | 7 Comments

‘There is no alternative’: £25m council bail-out given green light

CROYDON IN CRISIS: Council reports rewritten, lack of commercial experience in key positions and a ‘very controlling’ former leader and his inner circle. The rapid review of Croydon Council paints a picture that will be very familiar to readers of … Continue reading

Posted in Brick by Brick, Croydon Council, Hamida Ali, Improvement Board, Jo Negrini, Katherine Kerswell, Section 114 notice, Tony Newman | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 4 Comments

‘Shame on Croydon Council’: Anyone got a mop and bucket?

Well, this is awkward… What does a bankrupt council, which at the end of December scrapped its dedicated anti-graffiti team, do about the spray-painted messages on the hoardings around a development by its loss-making house-builder Brick by Brick?

Posted in Brick by Brick, Croydon Council, Muhammad Ali, Section 114 notice | Tagged , , , , , , , | 5 Comments

Ex-leader Newman wants to seek election again in 2022

CROYDON IN CRISIS: A former supporter of the discredited councillor has described it as ‘a disgrace’ that no one has ‘been held accountable for bringing the council to its knees’. WALTER CRONXITE, political editor, on growing concerns among local Labour … Continue reading

Posted in Brick by Brick, Croydon Council, Hamida Ali, Jo Negrini, New Addington North, Paul Scott, Report in the Public Interest, Section 114 notice, Simon Hall, Tony Newman, Woodside | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , | 8 Comments

‘Joseph Heller could use Croydon as a sequel to Catch 22’

CROYDON COMMENTARY: The row between the Labour council and Tory government over the possible costs of staging a mayoral referendum has got loyal reader IAN KIERANS crunching some numbers Is it really £1million additional costs to stage a referendum over … Continue reading

Posted in Brick by Brick, Children's Services, Croydon Council, Jo Negrini, Libraries, Planning, Refuse collection, Section 114 notice, Tony Newman, Veolia | Tagged , , , , , , , , | 2 Comments

Conflicts of interest, incomplete contracts, unlawful payments – how the Fairfield Halls refurbishment cost Croydon £50m-plus

EXCLUSIVE: Council was warned in 2017 of problems with the management of works at the borough’s flagship arts centre. By STEVEN DOWNES A report by the council’s internal auditors has raised very serious concerns over the mismanagement of the multi-million-pound … Continue reading

Posted in Art, Ashcroft Theatre, Brick by Brick, Business, Croydon Council, Fairfield Halls, Jo Negrini, Shifa Mustafa, Tony Newman | Tagged , , , , , , , , | 3 Comments

Council set to lend more money to failing Brick by Brick

CROYDON IN CRISIS: When in a hole, stop digging? Not Croydon’s bankrupt council, which is ‘damned if it does, damned if it doesn’t’ according to a senior Tory councillor over plans to throw more cash at its loss-making house-builder. KEN … Continue reading

Posted in Brick by Brick, Croydon Council, Lisa Taylor, Report in the Public Interest, Section 114 notice | Tagged , , , , , , | 8 Comments

Jenrick issues ‘strongly-worded’ warning over property deals

CROYDON IN CRISIS: Government minister targets bankrupt borough when he tells LGA conference ‘Councils shouldn’t make investments for which they are not well-equipped’. By WALTER CRONXITE It seems increasingly likely that Whitehall will insist on Croydon flogging off many of … Continue reading

Posted in Brick by Brick, Business, Colonnades, Croydon Council, Croydon Park Hotel, Section 114 notice | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , | 3 Comments

Council paid £1m compensation for unfinished Fairfield Halls

EXCLUSIVE: A year-long investigation has uncovered multi-million-pound payments by the council on its arts centre, largely because of the bungled refurbishment managed by Brick by Brick. And it is now suggested some payments may have been unlawful. By STEVEN DOWNES … Continue reading

Posted in Ashcroft Theatre, BH Live, Brick by Brick, Croydon Council, Fairfield Halls, Hamida Ali, Oliver Lewis, Tony Newman | Tagged , , , , , , , , | 4 Comments

Council scoops top award among most rotten boroughs

Croydon Council has been handed the ultimate accolade: the most rotten of boroughs in the 2020 Rotten Borough Awards, revealed today in the latest edition of Private Eye magazine. The awards are always hotly contested, with the greed, venality and … Continue reading

Posted in Brick by Brick, Croydon Council, Jo Negrini, Tony Newman | Tagged , , , , , , , | 7 Comments

Hard labour: the Croydon Mayor, dodgy deals and bankruptcy

Town Hall reporter KEN LEE on a tale from Katharine Street’s history which resonates strongly today New Year may be a time for looking forward, but it can also be most useful for taking a backward glance, perhaps to learn … Continue reading

Posted in Brick by Brick, Business, Croydon Council, History, Jo Negrini, Tony Newman | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , | 1 Comment

£30m Fairfield Halls project never went to competitive tender

EXCLUSIVE by STEVEN DOWNES Brick by Brick’s management of the refurbishment of the Halls has been subject to disputes with at least two leading contractors £3m grant to build an art gallery was diverted to pay for other work – … Continue reading

Posted in Alison Butler, Art, Ashcroft Theatre, BH Live, Brick by Brick, Business, Colm Lacey, Croydon Council, Fairfield Halls, Simon Hall, Tony Newman | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , | 22 Comments

£29m deal on flats buys Brick by Brick some breathing space

Yet more public money is being used to bail-out the council’s failed house-building company, as it flogs off 85 flats intended for shared ownership. Our housing correspondent, BARRATT HOLMES, reports In the latest admission of the abject failure of Brick … Continue reading

Posted in Alison Butler, Brick by Brick, Colm Lacey, Croydon Council | Tagged , , , , , , , , | 4 Comments

Commissioner orders council to answer FoI over libel threats

CROYDON IN CRISIS: A year-long struggle with the council has revealed the possibility that Jo Negrini was breaking the law when using the Queen’s solicitors in a failed attempt to have news reports removed from this website The Information Commissioner … Continue reading

Posted in Brick by Brick, Crime, Croydon Council, Jo Negrini, Katherine Kerswell, Niro Sirisena, Tony Newman | Tagged , , , , , , , , | 17 Comments