Friday, August 29, 2014

It’s Quiet, Too Quiet

Well it is “summer” and we’ve just had the traditional August Bank Holiday with lashings of rain and the heating on. Nevertheless you may have noticed that there hasn’t been much posted on this blog. This is because I‘ve had nothing much to write about. Well, nothing that has energised my digits to interact with my keyboard in a creative manner. We are in waiting mode. Waiting to hear when Redbridge council wish to engage with us so we can raise issues like toilets at Fullwell Cross and a replacement swimming pool.

However, next Monday it is September and things should start moving. On Tuesday the Policy and Resources Service Committee consider the proposals for Local Forums. As we understand it, if this is agreed at this meeting it can go ahead without being referred to Cabinet, on the following Tuesday, for a decision.

However, while there is considerable detail on the format and structure of these Forums, there remains little in the way of those crucial things like er, dates, times and venues, without which we cannot plan ahead. There is a “sample” venue list (para 8.1) where we get to see Wes Streeting at Fullwell Cross library in September 2015 but I doubt this will be the final selection.

And our Member of Parliament, Lee Scott, is also in limbo and cannot finalise the dates for his Area Forums without running the risk of clashing with one of the undisclosed council meetings above.

All this indecision means that our September hard copy newsletter will not contain any notice of these meetings. We have a schedule too, and our first autumn coffee morning is on 23rd September, so we need to get this out early in the month to give our volunteer deliverers sufficient notice. We can’t even put a note in to say keep an eye on our notice board because it isn’t there at the moment.

This is all very unsatisfactory and we are considering purchasing one of these for council use.

Thursday, August 21, 2014

Name that Square

At the Redbridge Cabinet meeting on 22nd July 2014, the Cabinet Member for Planning and Regeneration, Cllr Helen Coomb, announced that there would be a public competition on the naming of the remodelled paved area between the Leisure Centre and the Library in Barkingside High Street.

There will be a two week period from now until Wednesday 3rd September to submit suggestions for a new name. This can be done at the Library where you can get a form (below) and post it in a ballot box. Alternatively you can submit your suggestions over at Redbridge-i but don't forget to let us know in the comments below.

There will then be a sifting process to produce a short list of 3 potential names followed by a ballot on those options. The panel will consist of local ward councillors, a business representative and a representative from the community. The winner will be announced on Saturday 27th September 2014 at the Barkingside Light Night event.

Saturday, August 16, 2014

999 Call for the NHS

Starting off from Jarrow early today, a group of local mums from Darlington known as the #Darlomums are beginning the 999 March for the NHS. They'll make their way 300 miles to London entirely on foot.

They're trying to draw attention to the critical condition of the NHS as it is gradually eroded by privatisation. Following the route of the Jarrow hunger march, they'll pass through 23 towns and cities over 21 days. On each stretch they'll be joined by NHS workers, NHS users, and other supporters of all stripes. It looks like it's going to be big and bold. After all, there's so much at stake.

They'll be in this neck of the woods on Saturday 6th September leaving Edmonton at 10am and arriving in Westminster at 3pm for a rally which is likely to be a landmark event in the campaign to keep the NHS public.

They want us to join them. Here is a day-by-day route and a place to let them know you're coming. Being volunteers with a lot to organise, they need funds too - you can help by buying a T-Shirt and/or donating. If you use Twitter, big up @999CallforNHS with the hashtag #march4nhs . If you use Facebook, they're here.

Here is why:
Closer to Saturday 6th I'll post plans for the day - perhaps we can get a Barkingside 21 contingent down there. Anybody up for that?

And on a practical note, don't forget to get involved with opposing Redbridge's most recent round of NHS cuts.