The huge investment coming to Covid-hit Church End

Mohammad Mohammad runs Uncle Mo’s on the town’s main shopping street Church Road

Mohammad Mohammad runs Uncle Mo’s on the town’s main shopping street Church Road - Credit: Adam Shaw

A deprived London town that found itself in the spotlight at the peak of the Covid pandemic could benefit from huge new investment. 

There are plans to build 1,300 homes in Brent’s Church End, alongside new community facilities and more green spaces.

The neighbourhood is also set to benefit from a new market square as part of ambitions to make it “more inviting to businesses and residents”.

Town sign Church End in Brent

Church End in Brent - Credit: Adam Shaw

Families living and working in Church End welcomed Brent Council’s plans to improve the area, but said it should focus on tackling antisocial behaviour. 

Grocer Mohammad Mohammad, who runs Uncle Mo’s on the town’s main shopping street Church Road, said seeing people “on drugs every day” makes him “angry inside”. 

He said: “There isn’t much trouble – no big fights – but you see people walking around who are drunk or have taken drugs. 

“I can see what it’s doing to them. I think the council need to stop this.”

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Mohammad, 61, who moved to Church End nine years ago after living in Sweden, said he likes the area but said it does feel as if it has been left behind. 

Said Takoo, who has lived in Church End for the past 20 years, said he believes more high-quality housing in the area would attract residents and investment. 

Church Road shops

Church Road shops - Credit: Adam Shaw

He pointed out there has been significant improvements in nearby Wembley.

Omar Akhter, who works in takeaway shop Bagel and Shake, said there needs to be more for people to do.

Omar said: “There is one pub, which has little activity, there are no bars, cinemas and, outside of the mosque, nowhere for people to meet up.”

While most people recognised the area could be improved, there were several who took great pride.

The staff at Adam’s barbers, who have been a fixture in Church Road for decades, said they were happy with how things are. 

Another resident, who did not want to be named, said the people of Church End should be “left alone” as they are getting on fine. 

Brent Council is setting a “long term plan” for Church End to make it a “more attractive, safer neighbourhood”. 

There are plans to build hundreds of homes in the area, enhance green spaces and provide job opportunities. 

The council is currently consulting with residents on how best to improve the region, with ambitions to set the plans in motion in 2022.