Advice for retirement

Advice for retirement

3 ways 2020 may have impacted your retirement plans – and what you need to do NOW

At Rose Financial Planning, In Whetstone, Barnet we’re seeing an increase in clients contacting us who find themselves in one of three situations with their retirement plans following the pandemic.

I am here to help you in 2021 to make sure your retirement plans are as good as they can be. Answering any questions you may have, I can provide you with reassurance and make sure you avoid any pitfalls.

These are the three main groups of people we’re seeing, which you may identify with. At Rose Financial Planning we’re used to supporting people in a wide range of situations and providing personal, tailored advice to put our clients’ minds at rest after a difficult year.



Your retirement date has been pushed back. You’ve decided not to retire at this time as you are unable to enjoy retirement because celebration events (such as dream holidays) are not possible.



Your retirement date has been moved forward – possibly outside of your control due to redundancy. You could be under pressure to access your pension earlier than you planned or want to.



For the first time you have found yourself wanting to know when you can retire. You are suddenly motivated to sort out your retirement plans and get them into shape.




·     Make sure your investments are ready for when you do choose to retire.

·     Help you navigate the complex tax rules about topping up your pension if you have excess income to save for retirement.

·     Help you understand all the different ways you can access your pension and how to make sure it lasts for as long as possible.

·     Make sure you don’t pay too much in tax and avoid the mistakes people make when they do things themselves.

·     Review your current pension plans and help you find any that you have lost.

·     Shop around for the best deal and make sure you have the confidence that your retirement plans are now fighting fit.

Please contact me to talk about your retirement plans. If You have a variety of pension policies that span across your career it is important they are reviewed to see if they are still fit for purpose. For example dying in the wrong pension could cause you a massive tax problem. To find out more call David Rose on 020 3327 2767.

North Bridge House update

North Bridge House update

North Bridge House celebrates return to school with Reception move to Pre-Prep

While the past year has seen schools adapt their provision around the global pandemic and parents juggle home schooling, North Bridge House has been lauded by the CEO of Microsoft for its online provision and praised by parents for its ‘amazing response to the pandemic.’ Now with all pupils settled back into face-to-face teaching and learning, the school is looking forward to the exciting relocation of its Reception year group in September 2021.

September will see Reception take up residency at the school’s Pre-Prep campus, 8 Netherhall Gardens, minutes around the corner from the current Nursery School location. A logistical move given that Reception is a commonplace entry point to Pre-Prep, and one that proved a success when NBH adapted its provision around Lockdown 1 to accommodate the children here.

Set in a spacious yet homely Victorian villa, Reception children will continue to benefit from outstanding Early Years provision at NBH Pre-Prep, with specialist music, storytelling, PE and French lessons, as well as Forest School and philosophy – all in addition to the national EYFS curriculum. The newly installed playground and expansive outdoor space will allow for additional extra-curricular opportunities, including tending to the pet chickens.

North Bridge House is holding COVID-secure tours of the Prep-Prep School on Saturday 17 April. Book now at www. or call 020 7428 1520 for further appointments.

Muswell Hill & Fortis Green Association Update – news from your local residents’ association

Muswell Hill & Fortis Green Association Update – news from your local residents’ association

MHFGA moves events online!

Despite the ongoing restrictions, MHFGA members have recently benefitted from two enthralling Zoom talks from local experts. In February, art historian Peter Webb guided us through his fascinating collection of prints from Michelangelo through to Picasso. In March, we were delighted to welcome renowned gadget collector Maurice Collins OBE, who demonstrated some of the weird and wonderful items from his collection. We are also very pleased to announce that Peter Webb will be returning – by popular demand! – to give a follow up talk later in the year, covering the more modern section of his portfolio. So, please watch this space for further details, or better still, join the MHFGA to get advance notice of all meetings and events. We are also hopeful that Peter’s second talk might be an in-person one, depending on restrictions at the time.

Parkland Walk Chewing Gum Trail

Ben Wilson, known locally as the ‘Chewing Gum Man’, has been working on a trail of chewing gum pictures along Parkland Walk, the remarkable nature reserve that follows the track of a long-abandoned railway line from Finsbury Park to Muswell Hill. Ben started work on this project in October 2019 and is still working on it. So far there are 35 pictures that celebrate and are inspired by the history of the Parkland Walk and the insects, animals, birds, trees and some of the people he encountered there. The project was commissioned by The Friends of the Parkland Walk, who set up a crowdfunding page to pay for it.

Planning matters

As always, the MHFGA has been commenting on local planning applications on behalf of our members. Of particular note recently were an application to add a storey onto Whitehall Lodge, Pages Lane, and an application to build houses in back gardens on Tetherdown. Both were refused permission by Haringey Council following objections from the MHFGA and many others. An appeal has been filed against the decision at Whitehall Lodge. The planning inspector will automatically be supplied with all the objections which were made.

The MHFGA is concerned at the recent admonishment from the Government on Haringey Council (amongst others), at the fact that an insufficient number of new homes had been built. Putting pressure on Councils to simply approve more applications is a worrying ‘penalty’ in our view especially in an already largely built-up urban environment with many conservation areas like Haringey. We would welcome an assurance from the Council that each application will continue to be considered on its merits and that any concerns expressed will still be taken into consideration.

MHFGA is your local residents’ association (since 1948!) We produce six bi-monthly Newsletters per year, which are distributed to over 770 members. Membership for households is just £10 per year and gives you the chance to attend our special events, such as our guided tour of Lauderdale House last year. We have hosted the popular ‘Odd One Out’ competition three times, and our Christmas Charity Tombola has raised almost £800 for local causes. To join MHFGA and be kept up to date on local issues and our planned activities, visit or email our Membership Secretary on

Splitting up: Mediation and Family Law

Splitting up: Mediation and Family Law


Splitting up: Mediation and Family Law

Mediation can be a practical way to hold a conversation with an ex-partner about something that needs discussion. If relations are raw and heated, face-to-face disagreements can revisit old rows and betrayals. This makes it very difficult to find compromise and agreement. In my experience, discussions about children can be the most heated of all.

Solicitors discuss using mediation before considering the need to start a Court process. Many mediators, like myself, are practicing solicitors too, so we bring a high level of legal knowledge to a dispute as well as mediation skills. For any readers interested, I describe the connection between law and mediation in a publication to which I was invited to contribute following lectures at the University of London[1].

If there are issues of domestic abuse, mediation might not be advised because both parties need to disagree and negotiate without fear of repercussions. Mediation is voluntary although Courts require parties to consider it before starting Court proceedings. Whilst a mediated agreement will save a lot of time and legal costs, it is not always possible, especially if there are issues of abuse, addiction, mental health problems or one party is particularly unreasonable or has a wish to litigate.

Mediation is not counselling or reconciliation, or to explore old dynamics. Rather, it can offer meetings to provide an effective mechanism to air issues and search for agreement on practical matters for the future. I have found that even when people seem to be miles apart, the differences may not be as great as they first appeared. Mediation can assist by keeping the focus on practical issues and solving joint problems, avoiding drifting into past hurts and anger.   

You might have already tried to have conversations about apparently easy or innocuous issues, such as dates for holidays, or sharing items from the home, and found it is hard to get a simple matter agreed. More involved matters such as sharing the assets of the relationship or fundamental disagreements as to where children should live are even harder to tackle if relations are not calm.

A mediator’s first step is to talk to both people, with some separate time for each, to explain the process and see if they would be happy to use mediation. If the situation is very fraught, it is possible for parties not to have direct conversations, but to hold discussions through the mediator instead.  This can be in separate rooms, or the use of zoom or skype technology.

If you agree on arrangements for children, a shared written record is prepared. It does not usually have to go through the Court process unless it began in Court.   Mediated financial divorce agreements need to go through Court to become binding, and this is usually something that can be done through an on-line process through your solicitor. 

If you have any questions to ask about this article or any other articles in previous

months, please contact me at

[1] Samia Bano editor: Gender and Justice in Family Law Disputes, Women, Mediation and Family Law Disputes


Keep active 4 Barnet

Keep active 4 Barnet


Young Barnet Foundation is a member led organisation set up to help grow local activities and opportunities for children and young people across the London Borough of Barnet.

We’ve launched #KeepActive4Barnet, a fundraising campaign raising funds to support our most vulnerable young people.

43% of young people in Barnet feel their long-term mental health and wellbeing has been affected and that 38% feel less secure than before the pandemic.

Back in May 2020 it was reported* that over half of the children in Barnet were doing less physical activity than before lockdown, this percentage is likely to have risen since then (*source: Children and Young People’s Online Survey – Barnet Children’s Service)

Young Barnet is leading the charge to address this with #KeepActive4Barnet, a campaign giving young people and their families the opportunity to get active and raise money at the same time.

Some ideas include committing to going for a walk/run/cycle every day for a month, travelling the equivalent length of Barnet (from the Battle of Barnet monument in the north to Cricklewood station in the south = 9 miles or 19,000 steps), completing the number of steps equivalent to the population of Barnet – 402,000 or perhaps a swimathon, danceathon, marathon, fitness class, sports tournament… even a catch-a-ball-athon!

Fundraising for us can be as simple or as elaborate as you like. Whether you raise £5, £50 or £500, every penny will help us to support the children and young people of Barnet.

We must unite as one community to create change for the children and young people of Barnet by keeping active, raising money and having fun!

Why not get your family, friends and colleagues doing something active to raise money?

You could enter an active challenge event (like a run or cycle) and nominate Young Barnet Foundation as your chosen charity…

Or even join us on one of the limited challenge events that we have organised for our staff and partners!

Let’s work together to make our children and young people feel happier, fitter, healthier and safer, aiding their bounceback into post-lockdown life.

All the funds raised will support Young Barnet Foundation’s work to invest in children and young people, ensuring that they have opportunities for fun, growth, connection, success and celebration – helping today’s children become tomorrow’s confident, successful adults.