With three weeks to go until Christmas, the streets are looking festive. Even private banks are getting in on the season, baubles adorn the large windows of Coutts on The Strand.
Amongst Westminster Council’s stranger ideas of 2013, is this inflatable ball placed over the world famous Eros statue in London’s Piccadilly Circus. Planned to blow around ‘snow’ flakes within the structure; an external hoarding is to feature Christmas messages during the festive season. In the run up to Christmas it is perceived centrally located statues and monuments become the target of drunks and practical jokers.
Launching at London’s Canary Wharf, Liquity aims to act as a secondary market for SMEs to increase their exposure to a pool of qualified investors. This new concept brings to an otherwise difficult market, much appreciated outside funds. Liquity is the latest in a succession of variations on the alternative finance theme. The team claims the venture will release £1 billion of new cash in to the UK economy.
This week saw over 300 people register for the three simultaneous hackfests at London Earls Court. The auto element sponsored by GM received several great submissions. With the main winners walking away with £3000 between them.
The UK Government is keen to kick start the housing market, and has launched the Help to Buy Scheme. The premise is the working population can afford monthly repayments but struggle with the mortgage deposit. In a year where housebuilding has risen from a recession low, affordability is still a struggle for many domestic buyers. The current ‘boom’ has resulted in a lack of tradespeople, volume of empty houses in the wrong places and a frothy London residential market. The factors combining to make living arrangements difficult for the average capital dweller. On the positive, HSBC signed up today to the scheme, the first non-Government backed bank to join the group. But the question remains, has Help to Buy come too late?
This weekend London’s Park Lane added the latest sculpture to its roster, an enviable location for artists which sees their work featured at the prestigious address well in to next year. The wider plan for the upmarket street is to become an art destination in the capital. Many works have been located in the area over the last few months. The latest of these is pictured above, and called DUNAMIS. It shows the strength and triumph of humankind by featuring a man supporting an elephant at flat of its trunk. The resin creation towers up nine metres and is instantly viewable by the abundant passing traffic.
Celebrating 15 years of the Goodwood Revival, the event gets bigger and bigger. Wet weather did not dampen down the crowds, who as ever attended in period costume to blend in amongst the historic cars, varied planes and British Royals.
The London tech incubator scene is hot, with shared workspace and incentives springing up across town. At the swisher end, Level 39 is a fairly new addition in the space. Located in the Canary Wharf business district, it is based at Level 39 of the original Canada Square tower. Aimed at financial, retail and future city related firms, the high level of demand means another site at nearby Wood Wharf is being considered for expansion.
BMW’s first from the ground up design and build electric car launches in London this week. By the Thames, media, trade and other stakeholders were invited to the debate on the future of personal transport.
Marking 20 years of Earl March’s Festival of Speed at Goodwood, the weekend celebrations just wrapped up. A record attendance with visitors from around the globe, saw this to be one of the most successful Festival of Speed events so far. Porsche was a key sponsor, celebrating 40 years of the iconic 911 model. The renowned front lawn art work, featured three of their cars suspended high above the formal gardens and rolling Sussex countryside.