Sim City in Colindale

Either side of the Edgware Road a colossal amount of building is going on. Old art-deco factories, DIY stores and their attendant car parks give way to blocks of shiny new flats – some of which seem to have more gyms than people. Dusty old pubs are replaced by Care Homes – though this has been going on long enough for some of the signage to drop off, as if they were slogans on the backdrop at the Conservative party conference. Ashton Lodge has become Ashto Lodge – which is altogether more exotic. The old Hendon police College site is now a massive sea of mud and foundations. Very few of the swish flats that are being built are likely to be “affordable” in any real sense. At the Welsh Harp one bedroom flats cost £250 000 and two bed flats rent at £900 a week. What kind of slick holograms are coming to live amongst us and how long will they tolerate our company?

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