Wednesday 30th August 2023, The Civic Centre, Uxbridge
HTRA Janet Brown
HTRA Jenny Shave
Hillingdon Village Ward Cllr Jane Palmer
Ickenham & South Harefield Ward Cllr Martin Goddard
KSIMC Abbas Merali
KSIMC Imran Dewji
KSIMC Salim Hamir
1. Current position with KSIMC’s Plans
- KSIMC completed the purchase of the property in October 2022
- Their plans for the change of use and planning application for the site have not yet been finalised.
- However, in broad principle, it is currently intended to create three main areas of activity:
Residential - Senior living
Serviced offices for rental
Community Centre: Sports hall/gym Medical facilities Nursery Cafe Conference/meeting rooms
There will not be a Mosque included within the planning application.¹
Planning Consultant (DP9) has been appointed to assist with a future planning application.
A PR consultancy (Consilio) has been appointed.
No architects have been appointed yet although the appointment process is currently ongoing.
There are no plans to evict the current business tenants and indeed it is expected that KSIMC will look to collect rents for at least the next 2 or 3 years.
A lease has been granted to The World Federation of KSIMC, a separate UK registered charity which is affiliated to the KSIMC of London, such that they can use part of the existing offices.
¹ The conference/meeting rooms within the community centre will be used for various events including weddings, funerals, and religious services. This use is similar in scope to the existing premises in Stanmore.
Some internal adaptations have been made to accommodate the new tenant’s requirements. Advice was received that these adaptations did not require planning consent.
2. Communications with the Harefield Community
It was explained to KSIMC that communications to the local population had thus far been very limited and that this had caused anxiety and rumours to spread, which could have been avoided. Eg rumour of purchase of recreation park and community centre, which the Local Authority would not sell. KSIMC were unaware of the rumour and there was no foundation in it.
KSIMC said that advice received from their PR consultants was to constructively engage with the local community once there were more substantive proposals for the site. KSIMC agreed to re-evaluate this policy, and this was encouraged.
Recent episodes such as the vandalism to windows and the demonstration were cited as direct examples of the lack of communication. KSIMC Comment: We do not agree that vandalism and criminality should be attributed to any actions or decisions on the part of KSIMC of London. The police have requested that no conclusions are drawn as to the motivation of the criminal behaviour.
It was suggested that small groups could be invited to visit the site in order to understand the way in which it is currently being used.
KSIMC said they had been considering possible options for local community engagement – medical checks, jobs fare. Other ideas would be welcome.
KSIMC are carrying out permitted works to develop smaller, serviced office units that will be available for the public. ² The works are not to develop a school as had been queried.
KSIMC suggested that the local community would be invited to make use of sports, medical, nursery and office facilities at the site if and when developed.
KSIMC Comment : The KSIMC of London are a welcoming and open community which is open to all (Including non-members).
It was emphasised that the objective was to support cohesion within the Harefield community.
² The serviced offices are being marketed as a co-working space entitled FUTR. KSIMC of London are seeking a Community Manager for FUTR and a job specification has been included with these minutes.
3. Future meetings
It was agreed that this group should meet on a quarterly basis going forward.
It was also agreed that HTRA could include 1 more participant and KSIMC should consider the most appropriate delegates to attend.