Archive by Author | Helen Godwin Teige

Bedford Ward summer update from Fleur & Rosena: Changes to Dr Johnson Avenue, Balham Boulevard & Bedford Hill

Balham High Road petition – please sign

We are really worried about the recent accident which happened on Balham High Road involving a motorbike, and have seen several other accidents on the same stretch of road in the last year. So with your MP Sadiq Khan we have launched a petition to ask the Council and Transport for London to urgently work together to make this road safer.

Lots of people have been signing – please sign too!

In the meantime we have written and been talking with the Council, Transport for London and the local Police Commander – as a result you might have seen extra police officers at the Ritherdon Rd junction assessing the traffic along the road.

Balham Boulevard latest news

A couple of years ago a plan to make Balham High Road between the Ritherdon Road and Balham a much nicer environment was brought to the Council and agreed. This ‘Balham Boulevard’ plan was to change the current four lane highway into a two lane highway with a nice side road and more greenery and a café style to the pavements – making it a nice place to come to and not just move through. This has multi-million pound backing, and agreement for happen in 2017. But no plans have come about.

Fleur went to progress meeting at the Town Hall and was very disappointed to find that there has been no progress and that Transport for London have found it too hard to make any plans for the road yet. We will both be working with local groups and other Councillors to revive the project, agree a clear vision and hope to get it back on track.

Closure of Triangle nursery

Many local parents have been very upset that the Tooting Locality Nursery at the Triangle was suddenly closed at the end of the Summer term, another sad loss of a much loved facility for under 5s in the area.

Park Run – still on its way!

Park Run have been working on a  course around Tooting Common which doesn’t go over any roads, doesn’t impact too much on the busiest paths (we hope) and is the necessary 5km.

The current plan is to start near the cricket pitch by Hillbury Road and go up or down the Chestnut Walk and use the bridleway. Using Chestnut Avenue may well be too busy and the grass on the other side of the lake too boggy in Winter so its still being worked on but is nearly there.

All being well it should be going to committee for approval in September – so hopefully it won’t be too long until we can be getting our trainers on every Saturday morning for Tooting Commons very own ParkRun and join thousands of others all over the country.

Balham Leisure Centre creche concerns – tell all young mums about the crèche!

Talking of facilities for under 5s, we love the refurbishment to Balham Leisure Centre, but no need for a crèche has be built into the contract between Enable and the Council. As a result there is no room especially designated for a crèche, no advertising of the crèche and as a result the morning facility currently in a squash court is in danger of being closed.

Talks are on-going with Balham Leisure Centre and we really hope that they continue to offer the crèche as it is vital to enabling young mums to get exercise at a time of life when too many young mums can be quite isolated.

Dr Johnson Ave closure consultation

Dr Johnson Avenue s lovely - could it be lovelier without traffic?

Do you want Dr Johnson Avenue to be closed to traffic, grassed over and be a cycle track instead of a road? Whatever you think about this – do have your say here.

Elmbourne Road and Hillbury Road road safety

Residents of Elmbourne Road and Hillbury Road have felt for quite some time that traffic is increasing and getting faster and more aggressive with cyclists , other cars and even pedestrians. These are quite narrow roads with heavy traffic flow. Changes to Dr Johnson Avenue could have an impact on them, but this is an opportunity into how to make these roads safer too. We have raised this with the Council and also support the residents’ petition to the Council assessment of these rooads and options such as making them no through roads be considered.

‘Who put that there?’

All too often it is easy to forget how the day-to-day lives of the partially sighted can be so different to ours.

That is why we are extremely grateful to one Bedford resident who helped give us insight into life for the blind and partially sighted.

Did you know?

  • 95 per cent of blind and partially sighted people have collided with an obstacle in their local neighbourhood over a three-month period.
  • Nearly a third of those were injured, yet less than one percent claimed compensation for injuries.
  • The most common obstacles collided with are:

–   cars parked on pavements (70% )

–   bins of all kinds (64%)

–     permanent and temporary street furniture (59%)

We will be taking some walks around the ward to identify potential hazards but if you can think of any, please do get in touch!

 ‘Lets Talk’ and Tooting Town Centre Manager meetings

Lets Talk meetings are held regularly around Wandsworth and come to our ward every few years. Its a chance to speak directly to the Council Leader, opposition leader and lots of officers.

The Bedford Ward meeting was attended by about 30 people and the issues raised included: too many betting shops, Balham creche, Elmbourne Road safety, parking and speeding, investment in ‘Tooting Bec village’, litter and street cleaning around Tooting Bec station, hedges obstructing pavements, what will replace Barclays Bank, the ‘legal high’ shop on Garratt Lane, enforcement of the 20MPH zone and what is happening to Tooting Bec Lodge.

Issues for Tooting Common were: concerns about the removal of the white line and poor signage on the pedestrian/cycle track, floodlights when the triangle football pitch is renovated, rats, litter by the pond and repairs to the tennis court. Wider Borough issues raised were concerns about the lack of affordable housing and despite lots of new developments there is nowhere affordable for first/second time buyers, and what the merger of some services with Richmond council will mean for us.

Rosena and Fleur are following up on these issues, and this week raised many of them with the Tooting Centre Manager in meeting held with Sadiq Khan MP.

Bedford Hill side of the railway bridge – an eyesore

The Bedford Hill railway bridge could do with some love and less signs, graffiti and weeds

We’ve been to look at this neglected corner of Balham with a local resident and agree with him that this is an eyesore – lots of weeds, scrubland and graffiti. We’ve been in touch with Transport for London and the Balham Partnership to ask them to look into making something much nicer of this corner of land and of the railway bridge itself.

Stapleton Road improvements

There will be some upgrading of the Tooting Bec station end of Stapleton Road with a proposal for more trees, two way cycling, café tables, cycle hoops and clearer signs at each end of the one way. The consultation for this finishes on August 3rd.

Whilst we really welcome these improvements, we are disappointed that this is all that came of a much more ambitious scheme to look at all of the streets around Tooting Bec Station as ‘Tooting Bec Village’ and see what could be done to enhance the whole area. This is really needed but seems to have been dropped.

With the finances coming for the Tooting Broadway area roads, this maybe an opportunity to look again at the streets around Tooting Bec Station. I have talked about this with the Tooting Town Manager and will continue to work on this.

A new Wandsworth wide cycling strategy is being consulted on – whatever your views on cycling, or good ideas about how to increase cycling either on specific roads or generally – do add them to the consultation here:

Well, its one way to cycle!

Cllr Fleur gets on her bike

Air pollution is a very big issue for Londoners and kills 1400 of us every year, as well as contributing to lung and heart diseases. There is a new air quality plan for Wandsworth also out for consultation at the moment – do take some time to see if you think it could be improved or any comments you would like to make on it. The deadline is August 5th.

Source: Road safety and other issues – July 2015

Votes and Voices from Earlsfield

Originally posted on Rachael Stokes:

Election Night 22 May 2014 So I am now writing this blog as an elected councillor for Earlsfield. Wow. When I decided a few years ago that I wanted to get more involved in my local community, I has no idea it would end – or should I say begin – with this!

Having had a week to digest the news, I am still feeling utterly thrilled, honoured and excited, not to mention a little daunted by the responsbilities I now hold. Thank you for voting, thank you for voting for me, and thank you for spending time on your doorstep to share with me and the Earlsfield Labour team the issues matter to you and the problems you think need addressing in Earlsfield.

I plan to use this blog to update you on what I’m doing, both in our ward and on the Council. But perhaps more importantly I want to use this as…

View original 308 more words

Wandsworth Labour Makes 6 Gains in Local Elections

Labour re-drew the political map of Wandsworth on Thursday night, winning council seats in Putney, Battersea and Tooting. Roehampton ward gained two Labour councillors, Sue McKinney and former Lib-Dem candidate Jeremy Ambache. In Battersea Labour held Latchmere comfortably and gained a seat in Queenstown for Sally-Ann Ephson.

Rex Osborn - Labour Group Leader

Rex Osborn – Labour Group Leader

But the biggest prize of the night was three Labour gains in Tooting – two in Bedford ward, where Rosena Allin-Khan and Fleur Anderson both defeated Tory candidates and in Earlsfield where Rachel Stokes also won a seat from the Conservatives.

Labour strongholds Graveney and Furzedown showed massively increased majorities and Tooting was won comfortably, despite a desperate attempt by the Tories to take it. In Tooting ward Annamarie Critchard was newly elected to replace Sheila Boswell, Labour’s  prospective parliamentary candidate in Putney and in Graveney ward Alaina Mcdonald replaced retiring Councillor Dr. Billi Randall.

With 19 Councillors to the Conservatives 41 this is the biggest Labour group since the 1980’s and Tooting now has more Labour than Tory Councillors for the first time since 1986.

Labour Group Leader Rex Osborn said:  “We held every gain we made in 2010 and made six more gains. The people of Wandsworth are sending a message to the Conservatives. They are no longer convinced by this tired, out-dated, inward looking, bonus obsessed, Conservative council.”

Full results here:

http://goo.gl/h14BXk

 

 

 

Election 2014: Wandsworth Council opposition leader Rex Osborn says Labour can keep council tax low and stop cuts

Read the story here:

http://www.wandsworthguardian.co.uk/news/11223050.display/?ref=twtrec

 

Promoted by D J Bellamy on behalf of Tooting Labour Party,
both at 273 Balham High Road, London, SW17 7BD
Published and promoted by Sean Lawless on behalf of 
Battersea Labour Party, 
both at 177 Lavender Hill, Battersea, London, SW11 5TE
Promoted by Fiona McLachlan on behalf of Putney Labour Party. 
Both at 35 Felsham Road London SW15 1AY

 

Labour’s Pledges for Wandsworth

1. Low council tax and value for money.
Both parties support low council tax. The difference is that the Tories waste £3 million of your money on bonuses for Town Hall bosses. Labour says that money should be used to ensure you get the high quality services you deserve. Lbour-rose
2. Keeping you safe
Labour is campaigning hard for all residential streets to have a 20mph limit.  We will also bring back lollipop wardens outside schools. Labour brought back local police teams, which the Tories have since slashed.
3. Supporting local shops, pubs and the community
Labour’s “save our high street” campaign has forced  the government to finally give council powers to tackle about betting chains taking over valued local shops. We’re fighting Wandsworth Tories’ foot-dragging over saving the Wheatsheaf pub at Tooting Bec. We will re-open the One o’clock Clubs closed by the Tories at Bolingbroke, Coronation Gardens, Windmill and Alton. And we’d recruit  new frontline enforcement staff to tackle fly tipping, littering and dog fouling.
4. Addressing London’s housing crisis
Nationally, Labour will introduce 3-year rental contracts to protect tenants from unaffordable rent rises, ban letting agent fees and get house building moving again. The Tories are standing by while rents go up 10% a year. Wandsworth Labour would create 1000 additional homes for social rent, freeze rent for council tenants until 2016 and bring it into line with the rest of London.
5. Tackling the cost of living crisis
For years now, prices have gone up faster than most people’s wages. A Labour government would freeze energy prices and provide more help with childcare. The out-of-touch Tories are denying that there’s a problem. Wandsworth Labour supports the London Living Wage.

 

Want to help? Get in touch….

Tooting

office@tootinglabour.org.uk

Battersea

battersealabourparty@googlemail.com

Putney

info@putneylabour.org.uk

 

Promoted by D J Bellamy on behalf of Tooting Labour Party,
both at 273 Balham High Road, London, SW17 7BD
Published and promoted by Sean Lawless on behalf of 
Battersea Labour Party, 
both at 177 Lavender Hill, Battersea, London, SW11 5TE
Promoted by Fiona McLachlan on behalf of Putney Labour Party. 
Both at 35 Felsham Road London SW15 1AY


Save Our High Streets!

Wandsworth Labour Group will put forward a proposal to protect our high streets at next Wednesday’s Council meeting. Town centres

‘This Council notes the tremendous contribution made by our Town Centre Managers to the five Town Centres spread across the Borough – Tooting, Balham, Clapham Junction, Wandsworth Town and Putney. The challenges they have faced in addressing the need to maintain and improve our Town Centres are not to be under-estimated and they have worked hard to maximise vibrancy.

Maintaining a diverse and thriving range of shops giving the current level of applications for betting shops is proving difficult, and this Council is concerned that improvements seen to our Town Centres over recent years might be threatened.

This Council resolves:

1.) To retain and support the team of Town Centre Managers, who have developed close relationships with local businesses and are best placed to maintain and oversee further improvement in our Town Centres;

2.) To work closely with the Police, as an adequate police presence is required to deter pickpockets and street robbery, and to deal with anti-social behaviour;

3.) To instruct officers to investigate options for increasing staff able to issue Fixed Penalty Notices for littering, dog fouling, fly-tipping and parking offences;

4.) To closely scrutinise applications by gambling outlets and payday lenders – ensuring our High Streets are not over-run with betting offices and slot machines.’

Find out how you can help here:

http://www.sadiqkhan.org.uk/save_our_high_street

 

First victory for ‘Save our High Street’ campaign

Planning permission for two Coral betting shops near Tooting Broadway tube has been refused by Wandsworth Council’s Planning Application Committee. This follows a swell of opposition by local residents, local Labour Councillors and MP for Tooting Sadiq Khan. DSC_1703

Wandworth Councillors voted against granting planning permission for the betting shop at 64 Tooting High Street on design grounds, and at the site of the former H Samuels at 17A Mitcham Road, on grounds that it would not be in keeping with the character of the town centre. Approval of the applications would have brought the number of betting shops in Tooting up to 24.

Local MP Sadiq Khan had raised objections to both applications to Wandsworth Council on behalf of the local community, urging the council to listen to residents’ concerns and to take action to encourage diversity on Wandsworth’s high streets.

Following government changes to the rules on high street planning, last year, which has made it easier for betting shops to open in our town centres, Sadiq recently launched his ‘Save Our High Street’ campaign. The campaign calls on the government to give more power to residents to shape our high streets and local councils to be given power to control the number of betting shops that open – a power they don’t currently possess.

Sadiq Khan MP said:

“Like many local residents I am relieved that Wandsworth Council have refused planning permission for yet another two bookies in Tooting. We already have too many, and certainly don’t want any more, and that is why alongside the community I have been so vocal in my objections.

“The response to the ‘Save Our High Street’ campaign, with hundreds of people already adding their name to the petition in the last month, has demonstrated the strength of feeling against more betting shops.

“Coral can still appeal these decisions – and if they are successful this would mean local views are ignored. The lack of Council powers to control the number of betting shops that open in our community needs to change – and I would encourage people to sign the petition now – to send a clear message to the government; that we need to say no to more betting shops.”

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