We Love Stoke Newington is for residents living in the local area providing updates about local meetings, campaigns and useful information. This site is maintained by your local Labour team for Stoke Newington.

Thursday, 24 December 2009

Season's Greetings from Stoke Newington Central councillors!

Merry Christmas and a happy new year to all our readers and all Stoke Newington residents!

It's been a busy new year for the three of us and 2010 will be even more so - with a general election and council elections. We look forward to continuing to work with you all in improving our local area.

In the meantime - have a lovely restful holiday period and see you all next year!

Louisa, Rita and Muttalip

(We'll be taking a short break from blogging and will be back in January)

Wednesday, 23 December 2009

Have a happy green Christmas!

Hackney Council has been encouraging all local residents to carry on recycling over the festive period. Most of the waste generated over Christmas can be recycled through the Council's recycling services – alongside the usual refuse collection services, which makes it even easier for residents to recycle this year.

As well as all the other materials you can recycle make sure you recycle the following this Christmas:

  • Christmas cards
  • Glass bottles
  • Sauce jars
  • Plastic drinks bottles and packaging
  • TV guides and magazines
  • Foil from your turkey
  • Vegetable peelings
  • Real Christmas trees
More tips on recycling this Christmas here.

Tuesday, 22 December 2009

Two new licensing applications in Stoke Newington

Two new licence applications just before Christmas!

The Three Crowns, 175 Stoke Newington High Street, N16 0LH have put in an application to vary their existing licence:
  • to allow the supply of alcohol from 7am to 3.30am Sun to Weds and 7am to 4.30am Thurs to Sat and Christmas Eve
  • regulated entertainment of plays, films, indoor sporting events, boxing and wrestling, live music, recorded music, performances of dance and facilities for making music and dancing from 7am to 4am Sun to Weds; 7am-5am Thurs to Sat and Christmas Eve
  • Late night refreshment from 23.00-3.30am Sun-Weds and 23.00-4.30am Thurs-Sat and Christmas Eve
Trapdoor at the Basement of 175 Stoke Newington Road have put in an application for a premises license
  • to allow the supply of alcohol from 1oam-2am Mon to Sat and 12noon-23.00 on Sunday
  • regulated entertainment comprising of plays, films, live music, recorded music, performance of dance, facilities for making music, dancing from 10-midnight Mon-Thurs; 10-2am Fri and Sat; and 10-23.00 Sun.
  • late night refreshment from 23.00-midnight Mon-Thurs; and 23.00 to 2am Fri and Sat
If you wish to make a representation these must address the licensing objectives:
  • prevention of crime and disorder
  • prevention of public nuisance
  • public safety
  • the protection of children from harm
The deadline for the Three Crowns is 8th January 2010 and for Trapdoor 7th January 2010.

Representations can be made in writing to The Licensing Service, 263 Mare Street, London, E8 3HT or by emailing licensing@hackney.gov.uk.

Please contact us if you have any questions.

Monday, 21 December 2009

Recycling and waste collection over Christmas and New Year

During the Christmas and New Year holidays there will be some changes to refuse and recycling collection days in Hackney.

This year, refuse collections scheduled to take place between Monday 21 December and Friday 25 December will all be collected a day before the normal service.
That means if your waste is normally collected on Monday, it will picked up on Sunday 20 December, and if it’s normally on Friday, it will be collected on Thursday 24 December instead of the 25th.

A normal service will be carried out between Monday 28 December and Thursday 31 December.

Refuse collections due on Friday 1 January will be collected on Saturday 2 January instead.

Recycling collections will be carried out as normal except on Christmas Day and New Year’s Day, Friday 25 December and 1 January, which will be collected on Saturday 26 December and 2 January, respectively.

Refuse and recycling collections will return to normal service on Monday 4 January 2010. For more information regarding these service changes, please visit www.hackney.gov.uk or call 020 8356 6688.

Sunday, 20 December 2009

Safer Stoke Newington newsletter

The latest edition of the Safer Stoke Newington newsletter has just been published.

The newsletter gives information about what the local Safer Neighbourhood Team have been doing in our ward, and also celebrates four years of neighbourhood policing. In our area, crime has falled by 13% since the teams were introduced in 2005.

The newsletter is delivered with your copy of Hackney Today so please let us know if you haven't received it. You can also download it here.

REMINDER - the consultation on a borough wide controlled drinking area runs until Christmas Eve. Have you say online here.

Saturday, 19 December 2009

Events in Stoke Newington this weekend.

Festivities in Stoke Newington over the next two days...

There's a Christmas market in Abney Public Hall on Saturday 19th from 10.30am - 5pm with lots of stalls from local designers.
More information here.

Our local Safer Neighbourhood Team will be at the Farmers Market on Church Street tomorrow - Saturday 19th - between 10am and 4pm for a crime prevention surgery.

There is another craft fair at Leswin Place on Sunday.

St Paul's on Amhurst Road has a carol service on Sunday evening at 6pm, followed by mince pies and mulled wine.

Friday, 18 December 2009

Do we need another betting shop on the High Street?

REMINDER: The deadline is approaching for representations on Paddy Power's application for a betting shop on Stoke Newington High Street. If you wish to make a representation - it needs to reach the Licensing Department by 21st December 2009. The application is online here and you can find out more about how to make a representation here.

At the moment, local authorities have little control over the proliferation of betting shops on our high streets. Hackney Council made a submission under the Sustainable Communities Act for stronger powers to help control the number of betting shops and protect our local area. The current situation is very frustrating as the Council does not have the legal powers to respond to residents' concerns on this issue.

There was good news this month as we found out that Hackney's proposal has been shortlisted by the Local Government Association. At the end of the month we will find out whether it will go to government ministers for their consideration.

Carol singing in Stoke Newington

Stoke Newington Business Association organised carol singing, mince pies and mulled wine outside the fire station on Church Street yesterday evening.

Despite the cold temperatures, everyone entered into the festive spirit - thanks to the SNBA for putting together such a successful event!

Wednesday, 16 December 2009

20mph zones save lives

Hackney Mayor Jules Pipe's decision to introduce 20mph speed limits on local streets has been proven to be a life saver.

Researchers have found that 20mph zones cut road injuries by a huge 40%.

The 20mph zones are particularly useful in saving young children from death and injury, according to researchers from the University of London. Reductions are greatest for younger children (aged up to 11 years), and higher for the category of killed or seriously injured casualties than for those suffering minor injuries. More information about the research is here.

In Stoke Newington Central, the latest 20mph zone in the Shacklewell area was consulted on in the autumn after a strong campaign from residents. Your local councillors have also lobbied hard for the area around Darville/Bayston/Leswin Road to be consulted on in the next financial year - 2010/11.

Tuesday, 15 December 2009

Boxing day parking in Hackney

You may have seen this story about how London councils are deciding on how to treat Boxing Day with respect to parking enforcement.

Boxing Day is normally a bank holiday in England, but due to it falling on a Saturday, it isn't actually a holiday, which is instead on the 28th.

As a result, the 33 London councils are taking different approaches to how they are planning on dealing with parking. Boroughs like Westminster will be enforcing parking restrictions as usual.

Hackney was going to be doing the same - until a discussion was led by Labour councillors with officers of the council and, as a result, the council has decided to extend the season of goodwill to include Boxing Day and so we will be treating the 26th of December as if it was a bank holiday - giving much greater freedom for people parking when they're visiting their friends and families.

Saturday, 12 December 2009

Christmas market - today!

There's a Christmas market in Abney Public Hall today from 10.30am - 5pm. There will be lots of stalls from local designers and carol singing at 12.15pm.

Come along and do your Christmas shopping locally!

More information here.

Thursday, 10 December 2009

Free screening of Crash

Young people in Hackney aged 15 and over, are invited to a free screening of the Oscar award-winning film “Crash”, featuring Ludacris, Matt Dillon, Sandra Bullock, Terrance Howard and Thandi Newton, on Friday 11 December 2009, 5-8pm, at Hackney Town Hall, Council Chamber.

The free screening has been organised by Hackney Democracy Ambassadors with support from the Council’s Youth Service. The film brings out prejudice and racial stereotypes in a plot where several stories interweave over two days involving a collection of inter-related characters. A debate around the film's key issues will follow the screening, which is restricted to young people aged 15 and over.

The event is funded under the Youth Opportunity Fund (YOF), part of the Government’s Aiming High for Young people strategy to increase the participation of young people in positive leisure time activities, particularly on Friday and Saturday nights.

To reserve a seat text or call: Mandy 07527 385680 or Fiona 07972 008927.

Wednesday, 9 December 2009

Hackney Enterprise Network launches

Businesses in Hackney are being offered the opportunity to join a new network that can offer them targeted support and advice.

The Hackney Enterprise Network (HEN) has been launched for local businesses in the borough. It is designed to help local entrepreneurs to make new contacts, enter new markets, grow and fund their businesses. It will also offer targeted support and advice – with networking events, business skills workshops, advice on enterprise growth, loans and small grants, advice for recession-hit businesses, and information on central government support.

Businesses can register their interest in joining the Hackney Enterprise Network (HEN) by calling: 020 7241 7087, visiting the website: www.hbv.org.uk/hackneyenterprisenetwork.html or e-mailing: hen@hbv.org.uk Alternatively, visit: HBV Enterprise, 34-38 Dalston Lane, London, E8 2AZ.

Tuesday, 8 December 2009

New application under the Gambling Act

Paddy Power have put in an application for a betting shop at 117-119 Stoke Newington High Street, N16 0PH. Representations against the above applications can be made by responsible authorities and interested parties. The Gambling Act defines interested parties as:
  • a person living sufficiently close to the premises to be likely to be affected by the authorised activities
  • has business interests that might be affected by the authorised activities
  • representing persons who satisfy the above bullet points
Representations should be based on the licensing objectives, the Gambling Commission’s Guidance and Code of Practice:
  • preventing gambling from being a source of crime or disorder, being associated with crime and disorder or being used to support crime
  • ensuring that gambling is carried out in a fair and open way and
  • protecting children and other vulnerable persons from being harmed or exploited by gambling
The deadline for representations is 21/12/2009 and these can be made in writing to licensing@hackney.gov.uk.

We do have concerns about this application – as the concentration of betting shops is an issue in Hackney. Find out more here about what Hackney has proposed through the Sustainable Communities Act, although as this is still in process, unfortunately it won’t help with regards to this application. Please contact us for any further information.

Monday, 7 December 2009

Beck house meeting

There is a meeting tonight at 7pm in Stoke Newington Town Hall to discuss future options for Beck House.

Officers from Hackney Homes will be presenting their proposals to residents and representatives from the Neighbourhood office will also be on hand to answer any housing management questions. This meeting is open to Beck House residents only.

Saturday, 5 December 2009

In Clean Air We Fly

An exciting art event is taking place down the road in Dalston tomorrow - Sunday 6th December 12 - 9pm. Gillet Square will be hosting an audio installation - an outdoor electronic symphony to highlight air pollution in London - created by local Hackney artist, Kaffe Matthews, with pupils from Shacklewell Primary and Colvestone School.

The installation is bein powered by bicycle! Willing participants are needed throughout the day to pedal for 15 minutes at a time.

The event is being staged the weekend before the UN Climate Change conference opens in Copenhagen. It continues indoors at the Vortex Jazz Club, Gillett Square 12-6pm 7th-11th December. More information here.

Friday, 4 December 2009

Christmas Fair - St Paul's - tomorrow

St Paul's Church on Amhurst Road is holding its Christmas fair tomorrow, Saturday 5th December.

It's taking place in the Church Hall between 11am and 4pm and there will be Christmas goodies, a bric a brac, tombola and raffle, mulled wine and mince pies... and much more!

And don't forget that the Christmas forest is outside the Church again this year where you can pick up your Christmas tree!

New license application

The Renkart Centre at 86 Stoke Newington High Street has put in an application for a premises licence to allow supply of alcohol, regulated entertainment comprising of plays, films, live music, recorded music, performances of dance, any entertainment of a similar description and facilities for dancing from 18:00 to 02:00 Fri to Sun. The application is online here.

If you would like to make a representation on this application, it must address the four licensing objectives:
  • the prevention of crime and disorder
  • public safety
  • the prevention of public nuisance
  • the protection of children from harm
Representations must be made in writing, and should be sent to: The Licensing Service, 263 Mare Street, London E8 3HT by the closing date. Alternatively, you can email it to licensing@hackney.gov.uk. The closing date for representations is 23rd December 2009.

Wednesday, 2 December 2009

Update from the Town Hall

At November's Full Council meeting last week, alongside the deputation opposing Boris Johnson's road safety cuts and the campaign to make Hackney plastic bag free from pupils at London Fields primary school, a number of other issues were raised during questions to the Mayor and Cabinet members, including:
  • Clean streets - it was reported that there have been consistent improvements in keeping Hackney streets clean over the last three years. This is measured by Keep Britain Tidy, and this year 89% of our streets were judged as clean, and Hackney was the fifth cleanest Borough in London. Teams work from 5am-1am the following morning to remove waste, cleanse and deep clean streets and remove graffiti
  • Decluttering - Stoke Newington Church Street was cited as the best example of decluttering in Hackney, with 56 signposts, 65 signs, 51 bollards and 28m of guardrailing being removed. Cllr Alan Laing also reported that he will be lobbying TfL to ensure there is major investment in improvements along the A10.
  • The Council is promoting road safety and cycling through the 'Be Safe and Be Seen' campaign - giving out reflective bands and spoke reflectors at schools. There are also free Dr Bike services in Hackney. It was reported that £2m a year is invested in improving cycling in Hackney and we have more cyclists that anywhere else in London!
  • Cllr Louisa Thomson also asked a question about the Council's green procurement strategy and Cllr Sophie Linden, the Cabinet member for sustainability reported that Hackney recently won a gold standard award for its green procurement code - one of only 16 other local authorities that were recognised.

Tuesday, 1 December 2009

Satchmo's update

At the weekend, we attended another meeting with the management of Satchmo's and local residents.

Although there has been some progress since the last meeting, and new security staff are now in place, it appears that a number of conditions of Satchmo's license are still being breached, and residents are being disturbed in the early hours of the morning.

A further set of action points were agreed - and residents made it clear that the venue has to ensure it closes at 2am - as set out in the terms of its premises license. We will also be following up all the points that were raised at the meeting with the Council to make sure they are fully aware of residents' concerns. A commitment was made to continue to work together to try and ensure that the bar operates successfully but with more responsibility to those living nearby.

Monday, 30 November 2009

Make Hackney plastic bag free!

Year 5 pupils from London Fields Primary School came to Hackney Town Hall to sign up councillors to their campaign to make Hackney plastic bag free.

The pupils from Year 5 made have been working hard on ideas to cut down on plastic bag use - taking steps in their school to encourage more people to thing twice about using a plastic bag and use a cloth one instead.

Cllr Sophie Linden, Cabinet member for sustainability, told the pupils that there are around 60 million plastic bags in Hackney every year and that the average length of use for each one is 12 minutes. Hackney Council is already doing a lot to encourage people not to use plastic bags - by promoting cloth bags and recycling used bags in residents' green boxes.

Everyone agreed that we need to continue to work together to find ways to reduce waste.

In the busy life of a councillor it can sometimes be hard to plan ahead and one of the things that Stoke Newington councillors have pledged to do is to remember to always have a cloth bag with them when they go to the local shops.

Sunday, 29 November 2009

Campaign against road safety cuts

The London Cycling Campaign in Hackney and Hackney Living Streets came to the Full Council meeting at Hackney Town Hall last week to ask for urgent action following the Mayor of London’s decision to cut funding for the Commercial Vehicles Education Unit.

The unit played a vital role in helping to reduce collisions between large vehicles and cyclists or pedestrians. It also had the power to investigate unsafe lorry operators and make sure they were meeting health and safety standards. As a result of Boris Johnson’s funding cuts, the unit will be disbanded.

Cllr Alan Laing, Cabinet member for Neighbourhoods, responded to the deputation, stressed that Hackney Council has already called on Boris Johnson to reinstate funding for the unit, He said: “This is another cut by the London Mayor. Despite this we continue to work with the police and cyclists to reduce the number of cyclists being injured on our roads. We have a number of initiatives in place including education events along the A10, improving signage on the Council's own lorries and continuing to improve our road surfaces.”

The campaigners also secured a commitment that the Lorry Safety Working Group which brings together user groups, the Police, freight operators and the Olympic Delivery Authority, will meet quarterly and work throughout the year to tackle the hazards and threats associated with lorries.

Saturday, 28 November 2009

Smalley Road Youth Club open day

The Smalley Road Youth Club has organised a drop in session today for residents on Smalley Road Estate.

For one day only, the Youth Club will be open to adults to come and enjoy its facilities and have a festive drink and mince pie.

Come along today from 3.30-5.30pm at the Basement of the Old Fire Station, Leswin Road to find out more about the Youth Club. Volunteers are also needed and there will be elections for a sub-committee to help run the youth project.

Thursday, 26 November 2009

New health centre

A reminder that the new plans for Somerford Grove health centre will be on display in the community hall on Somerford and Shacklewell Estates between 2-8pm today.

Members of staff from the Primary Care Trust will be present to answer any questions about the redevelopment.

Wednesday, 25 November 2009

Minicab parking

Residents have contacted us regarding problems on streets off the High Street (particularly Victorian Grove and Garnham Street) with minicabs parking in residential areas. We're aware that this is a cause of considerable nuisance for local residents.

We have been lobbying the Council to ensure that there is more enforcement by parking officers and that areas are designated as 'hot spots' to try and address the problem.

Cllr Alan Laing - the Cabinet member with responsibility for neighbourhoods on Hackney Council has now called a meeting with the Public Carriage Office (who regulate minicabs across London) to discuss the issue of minicab parking on residential streets in our area.

This meeting will be taking place tomorrow Thursday 26th November at 6pm at Stoke Newington School. This will be an important opportunity for residents to talk about the extent of the problem with the Public Carriage Office, officers from Parking services and the community safety team and hopefully find a way forward.

Please let us know if you would like to attend by emailing stokenewingtoncentral@hackney-labour.org.uk or calling us on 07794 637 870.

Tuesday, 24 November 2009

Get a lid for your green box

When we were out speaking to residents over the weekend during one of our regular walkabout surgeries, one issue that came up a number of times was recycling being blown out of the green boxes - especially as it's so windy at the moment.

However, you can get a net lid from Hackney Council for FREE which should help to solve the problem. See here for more info, or email recycling@hackney.gov.uk to ask for your own net lid.

Monday, 23 November 2009

Have your say on housing

Hackney Homes is currently carrying out a tenant satisfaction survey.

A selection of Hackney Homes tenants have been sent the postal survey which is used to assess how well Hackney Homes are doing and look for ways to improve housing services based on tenants' feedback.

If you complete the survey, you will be entered into a prize draw and could win a digital TV, pay as you go phone or an iPod shuffle.

The responses are kept anonymous and it will not be possible for any person or address to be identified from the survey findings.
For more details see here.

Friday, 20 November 2009

Job fair - today

There's a job fair taking place today in St Paul’s Church Hall on Stoke Newington Road between 11 – 4.

The event is being organised by Pathmeads who run the Stoke Newington Neighbourhood housing office as part of their campaign to tackle worklessness within the neighbourhood.

The fair will provide on the spot help and advice to members of the community on training and employment opportunities.

Thursday, 19 November 2009

Neighbourhood Panel meeting - tonight

The Stoke Newington Neighbourhood Panel meets tonight - at 7pm at Howard Road Resource Centre, N16 8PX.

The focus of the meeting is on community development and resident participation. There will also be updates from the previous meeting from the local Housing office in Stoke Newington.

Wednesday, 18 November 2009

Be 'fare' to Hackney

At the last meeting of the council, a motion was passed condemning the decision of the Mayor of London, Boris Johnson, to increase bus fares by 20%.

As a result, the council has launched a "Boris - be "Fare" to Hackney" campaign, asking the Mayor to reverse his decision. The extra revenue that we all accept is needed in public transport could have been raised by retaining the western extension of the congestion charge area and by keeping the decision to increase the charge to those vehicles that are the most polluting.
Instead, the London Mayor has decided to increase bus fares.

It means that for the average Hackney family where both adults take the bus to work they will pay £263 more every year in additional bus fares. That is the equivalent of increasing council tax by 27% - something that is unthinkable, or Boris Johnson increasing his share of the tax by almost 100%.

82% of Hackney residents use the bus at least once a week and we have the lowest level of car ownership in London - we rely most heavily on buses.

Join the council's campaign to ask Boris to reverse his decision. Send him an ecard directly, telling him exactly what you think here.

Monday, 16 November 2009

Community Engagement Board

The next community engagement board is this Wednesday 18th November 2009 at 6.30pm at the West Reservoir Centre, Green Lanes, N4 2H.

The Community Engagement Board is responsible for consulting with the police and crime reduction partners about policing in Hackney, prioritising crime reduction and dealing with all crime and disorder related issues.

This is a chance to have your say on policing priorities - and question the Hackney Borough Commander.

Friday, 13 November 2009

Stokey Fashion Rocks!

You may have seen posters up about this along Church Street, but tickets are selling out fast for Stokey Fashion Rocks - a charity gala night in aid of Breakthrough Breast Cancer on Friday 27th November in Abney Hall.

The brainchild of Rosanne of Rosa lingerie, Stokey Fashion Rocks! promises to be an evening of fun-filled fashion entertainment. Now on its third outing, Rosanne hopes the show will raise even more money for Breakthrough Breastcancer whilst providing another memorable evening for Stokey locals.

Stoke Newington’s most loved independent boutiques will be taking part in the seasonal fashion show which starts at 6pm. Some familiar locals will be taking to the runway to model some sensational looks.
Back by popular demand the Stoke Newington fire service will be coming to the rescue once again as they fight their way up the runway.

Tickets are only £20 and it includes your choice from a feast of world cuisine courtesy of local restaurants, a cocktail and a generous goody bag all donated from local businesses.

They are available now from Rosa 3, Stoke Newington Church St. and other participating businesses.

Bike marking - tomorrow

Our local Safer Neighbourhood Team will be at the Farmers Market on Church Street tomorrow - Saturday 14th - between 10am and 4pm to mark people's bikes.

Come along and get your bike marked to help reduce theft and help with recovery if it is stolen.

Thursday, 12 November 2009

Cycle route on Palatine Road

Residents contacted us recently with their concerns about the proposals for the cycleway at the end of Palatine Road.

The cycle lane is part of a new Olympic cycle route and the Council consulted with residents recently over the proposed changes.

There are concerns about the proposal to move the cycle route into the centre, and residents also felt that more could be done to improve the area with planting and landscaping. As a result, we have joined with the Shakespeare Neighbourhood Residents’ Association to arrange a meeting with council officers tomorrow at 9.30am on the site to discuss the scheme further and put forward ideas.

If you live on Palatine Road and are interested in this issue, please come and join us and have your say!

New health centre plans

Unfortunately, the PCT have had to cancel today's drop in session to see the plans for the new health centre on Somerford Grove.

They've told us that the new date for the drop-in session is Thursday 26th November, 2pm-8pm in Somerford and Shacklewell Community Hall.

The plans will be on display and members of staff from the PCT will be on hand to answer questions. As you are aware, the future of Somerford Gardens has been held in limbo whilst the plans have been developed and residents' concerns about light and the size of the building were addressed. When the health centre is rebuilt the Gardens will be improved at the same time - long overdue and much needed.

Tuesday, 10 November 2009

Church Street update

We have been working closely with the Stoke Newington Business Association to make sure that any disruption to businesses is kept at a minimum whilst the Church Street works are underway.

Following a request from the Stoke Newington Business Association, the one way traffic diversion will be removed during December and there will be two way traffic again along Church Street.

Cllr Alan Laing, Cabinet Member for Neighbourhoods, said: "I recognise the importance of trading in the run up to Christmas for all businesses and we will suspend the works during the whole of December to ensure that there is no adverse impact of trade at this important time. The substantial investment being made and the improvements to Church Street will help shops, restaurants and bars by creating a far nicer pedestrian environment and I am confident that businesses will see this upon the completion of the works."

The works are currently two weeks ahead of schedule. Please do contact us if you have any concerns about the Church Street scheme.

Monday, 9 November 2009

Safer Stoke Newington

At the Community Advisory Panel meeting last week with the local Safer Neighbourhood Team for Stoke Newington, the following priorities were set for the coming months:
  • Anti social behaviour from groups of young people
  • Drug dealing and using
  • Licensing issues
We heard that there have been a number of successful drug warrants issued in the ward, dealing with problem addresses where known drug dealing had been taking place.

Another issue that came up at the meeting was the length of time it can take to queue at Stoke Newington Police Station to report a crime. The Safer Neighbourhood Team stressed that you can report crimes online or using the non-emergency number 0300 123 1212.

You can read the latest newsletter from our team here. These should be delivered with your copy of Hackney Today so please let us know if you haven't received it.

Don't forget there's a consultation at the moment on introducing a Controlled Drinking Area for Hackney - more information here.

Friday, 6 November 2009

Two more licence applications

The Prince on Kynaston Road has put in an application to vary its existing premises licence to allow the supply of alcohol and recorded music from:
  • 10:00 to 23:00 Mon to Thurs
  • 10:00 to 00:00 Fri, Sat and Bank Holiday Mondays
  • 10:00 to 22:30 Sun
The venue would also like to remove some of the conditions on its licence, including the ones that restrict the hours of use of the conservatory (currently to 23:00) and the courtyard (currently to 20:00), and that the first floor bar area is not to be used for live entertainment, music or dancing. Mount Strive Restaurant and Banque at 92 Stoke Newington High Street, has put in an application to allow supply of alcohol, live music, recorded music, any entertainment of a similar description and facilities for dancing from:
  • 12:00 to 23:30 Sun to Thurs, 2:00 to 02:00 Fri and Sat and 12:00 to 03:00 on Bank Holidays, Christmas Eve, Christmas Day and New Years Eve
  • late night refreshment from 00:00 to 02:00 Sun to Thurs and 00:00 to 03:00 Fri, Sat, Bank Holidays, Christmas Eve, Christmas Day and New Years Eve.
Representations must be made in writing, and should be sent to: The Licensing Service, 263 Mare Street, London E8 3HT by the closing date. Alternatively, you can email it to licensing@hackney.gov.uk. The closing date for representations on the Prince application is 24th November and for Mount Strive, 25th November 2009.

Thursday, 5 November 2009

Launch of Hackney's Family Information Service

The Family Information Service in Hackney has just been relaunched providing information on childcare, education, leisure and family services in the Borough.

You can find out more on the
website, calling the helpline on 020 8820 7590 or visiting the Service at The Learning Trust, 1 Reading Lane between 9am-5pm, Mon-Fri. Below are some other useful links for families in Hackney:

Wednesday, 4 November 2009

Help to set the priorities of our local police team - tonight

The Community Advisory Panel meeting for Stoke Newington Central is tonight at 7pm in Somerford Grove Community Hall.

Come along and have your say in setting the policing priorities of our local Safer Neighbourhood Team for the coming months. More details about our team here.

Tuesday, 3 November 2009

New licence application

Datte Focco, 10 Stoke Newington Church Street has put in a licence application to allow the supply of alcohol from 11:00 to 23:00 daily and recorded music from 09:00 to 00:00 daily.

If you are a resident who lives near the venue and want to make a representation about the application, you must address the four licensing objectives:
  • the prevention of crime and disorder
  • the prevention of public nuisance
  • public safety
  • the protection of children from harm
Representations must be made in writing, and should be sent to: The Licensing Service, 263 Mare Street, London E8 3HT by the closing date. Alternatively, you can email it to licensing@hackney.gov.uk.

The closing date for representations is 20th November.

Monday, 2 November 2009

Community payback

Local residents and community groups are being invited to suggest outdoor spaces, streets or building in Hackney that could potentially benefit from a facelift through the Community Payback Scheme.

The London Probation Service and Hackney Council will consider all requests for jobs, so long as the work visibly benefits the community. The first Community Payback project - the Lea Bridge Tow Path - was suggested by local residents back in April and is now complete after 1000 hours of work. The team has also completed work on 30 Hackney Homes gardens where residents had been unable to maintain these themselves.

Do you have a favourite place in Stoke Newington that could benefit from the project? Let us know or fill in the online form here.

Friday, 30 October 2009

News from the Council chamber

As well as the motion on the Mayor of London's fare increases, there was the usual opportunity at Full Council on Wednesday for backbench councillors to ask the Mayor and the Cabinet questions.

A few of the issues that were raised included:
  • Confirmation that the Mayor and Cabinet have agreed plans to freeze council tax in Hackney for the fifth year in a row
  • Hackney Council has made £46m of efficiency savings - the highest in London and the third highest in the country. This has been achieved with no cuts to frontline services.
  • Reassurance from the Mayor that freezing council tax does not mean a cut to vital local services - contrasting with other London boroughs like Hammersmith and Fulham where a cut in council tax meant that youth service budgets were slashed and services like garden waste collection were scrapped
  • Hackney has the most affordable and extensive range of wormeries and compost bins available in England (find out more here)
  • The Safer Neighbourhood Teams in Hackney are signed up to a pledge to respond to your calls within 24 hours
The full agenda is here.

Thursday, 29 October 2009

Tories say 'ask the public'

Last night was the monthly Full Council meeting at the Town Hall.

One of the items on the agenda was a motion condemning the recent fare increases on public transport from the Conservative Mayor of London, Boris Johnson. The massive hikes include:

Raising the cost of a single bus fare by 20%, from £1 to £1.20

Raising the cost of a weekly bus pass by over 20%, from £13.80 to £16.60

Raising the cost of an off-peak tube journey from Hackney into central London by 12.5%, from £1.60 to £1.80

The latest TfL business plan also outlines plans to reduce bus routes.

In Hackney, we know that alongside walking, buses are the most popular mode of transport for residents, and in Stoke Newington Central where we have no train or tube stations in the ward, it's no exception.

The Mayor of London's fare increases will hit those in low paid jobs or part time work the hardest. In Hackney, we need more improvements to our bus routes - not a reduction.

During the debate in the Council chamber last night, the Tory group of councillors praised Boris's plans, and refused to stand up for Hackney residents. At one point the Leader of the Group said 'ask the public' what they think about the fare rises.

We're clear that the fare increases and cuts to bus routes will have a big impact on Hackney residents. What do you think?

Wednesday, 28 October 2009

Family event - West Hackney Recreation Ground - TODAY

We're fully behind Groundwork's masterplan to improve West Hackney Recreation Ground - it's a large park that could be put to much better use and provide an important green space for the local community.

As part of their ongoing work, Groundwork have organised a family event there - from 2-3.30pm today - Wednesday 28th October.
It's called 'Portraits from the Past' and there will be storytelling, photography and tales all linked to West Hackney Recreation Ground.

These will be displayed at the Church at a later date. For more information contact Imogen Sherwood at Groundwork on 020 8985 1755.
Download the poster here.

Tuesday, 27 October 2009

Yorkshire Grove trees

We were contacted by residents on Yorkshire Grove who were fed up with overhanging trees cutting the light out of their properties.
After lobbying Hackney Homes to sort this out - the trees in question have finally been pruned.

We're aware that there are other trees on the estate that also need attention and we've asked Hackney Homes to look into this as a matter of urgency. We'll keep you posted.

Monday, 26 October 2009

No armed police patrols in Hackney

Some people may have seen press reports about the Met Police deciding to allow armed officers to patrol some of London's "worst" estates and neighbourhoods as a way of tackling gun and gang crime.

Cllr Alan Laing - the Cabinet member on Hackney Council with responsibility for community safety has confirmed that this will not happen in our borough.

On Alan's blog he quotes Hackney's Detective Chief Superintendent as saying:

"On no occasion has there been the deployment of armed officers on foot patrol in Hackney.

"I am proud that all of the officers stationed within this borough are unarmed and that will continue to be the case."

Green power for Hackney?

As you may have read in Hackney Today and the Hackney Gazette last week, there are proposals from the Olympic Delivery Authority (ODA) to build a wind turbine on Hackney Marshes.

If the 120 metre high turbine goes ahead, it will offer Hackney the opportunity to buy green energy for up to 25 years, cutting carbon emissions significantly.

The ODA is already going ahead with one wind turbine on Eton Manor in the neighbouring borough of Waltham Forest. If a turbine was built on East Marsh, the two together could generate enough green electricity to power Hackney's street lighting at night and all the main Council buildings by day.

We wholeheartedly support the proposals and think this is an excellent opportunity to help Hackney meet carbon reduction targets, support the Council's commitment to sustainability, and ensure that more green energy could be produced in Hackney than in any other London borough.

The Council is aware that there are strong feelings about Hackney Marshes which is why there is a public consultation on the wind turbine proposal - you can fill this in online here, find out more about the proposals here or drop into one of the information sessions locally - in Stoke Newington library on 23rd November from 3-5pm.

Sunday, 25 October 2009

Resident meeting - Morris Blitz Court

There's a meeting tomorrow to discuss the next set of proposals for Decent Homes improvements on Morris Blitz Court.

Come along on Monday 26th October at 6.30pm at the Beckers Community Hall and have your say on the proposals from Hackney Homes on:
  • the new roof over the top floor flats and walkway
  • the podium - creating private gardens for ground floor flats
  • private balconies for the masionette flats
  • new windows for masionette flats

Saturday, 24 October 2009

Have your say on recycling services in Hackney

We know that local residents care a great deal about their local recycling services. As we reported earlier this month, you can now recycle more items than ever before - with tetrapak and plastic tubs now being collected in the kerbside collections.

Hackney Council is now asking for residents' views on what we can do next to improve recycling services.

In particular, the Council is interested in your views on:
  • Recycling for houses and estates
  • Food waste collections
  • Garden waste collections
  • Bulky wate collections
  • Rubbish collections
  • Waste minimaisation such as composting, real nappies , junk mail
The survey is available online here until Friday 18th December 2009.

Friday, 23 October 2009

Update on Bar A Bar

Residents living near Bar A Bar are aware that this venue has been a source of noise nuisance and disturbance for a number of years.

The police have been gathering evidence over the last few months showing that the club is breaking the terms of its license - opening until the early hours of the morning.

As a result, the police submitted a review of Bar A Bar's license and this was heard at a committee hearing at the Town Hall last week.

A number of conditions were imposed - including closing the club for a fortnight, with it not being allowed to re-open until the Police are satisfied that the owners will act more responsibly in the management and operation of the club.

This was also put on record at the hearing:
"For the public record, the sub-committee gave long and serious consideration of the options to revoke the premises licence and/or remove the designated premises supervisor and we reiterate the words of the police representation that this is seen as a last and final chance for the licensee to demonstrate that he can operate within both the terms of his licence and the spirit and words of the Licensing Act."

Please do not hesitate to contact us if you have any concerns or complaints about Bar A Bar.

Tuesday, 20 October 2009

Anti social drinking

Residents and businesses across Hackney have been raising their concerns about the increase in anti social behaviour relating to alcohol. As a result, Hackney Council is considering introducing a borough-wide Controlled Drinking Area (CDA).

A borough-wide CDA will give police powers to confiscate alcohol or issue fixed penalty fines to those drinking and causing disorder or threatening behaviour in streets, parks and open spaces. A CDA is not a ban and does not make it illegal to drink alcohol responsibly in a public place.

There have been designated areas in Hackney where CDAs have been in operation and these have been successful in reducing drunkenness and rowdy behaviour in public. However, this can mean that the problem is then moved to a new area, so a borough wide CDA is now being consulted on.

The public consultation runs until 24th December 2009. You can fill in your views online here or download more information about the proposed CDA here.

Watch your waste week

This week is 'Watch Your Waste' week - an annual event to challenge residents to think about reducing the amount of rubbish they throw away. It's a chance for every local resident to work together to contribute to a more sustainable Hackney.

Participants will be entered into a prize draw to win one of 43 organic vegetable boxes from Growing Communities.

There are a number of events taking place this week:
  • You can download a 'Challenger's Pack' from this page, full of top tips to reduce your waste
  • You can reduce the amount of unwanted mail you receive. Call 020 8356 6688 or pick up a pack from 2 Hillman Street, E8
  • Food Rescue Pack Give Away (until 23rd October). Packs contain fridge thermometers, bag clips, spaghetti measurers, tea towels and more. Complete an online quiz or pick one up from reception at 2 Hillman Street, E8.
  • 23 October, 2-3.30pm – Nappuccino at Hackney City Farm, 1 Goldsmiths Row, E2. Collect a £54 real nappy voucher. To attend, call Leonor on: 020 8356 7930 or email: leonor.barricartebulnes@hackney.gov.uk
Remember you can also get a Council sponsored wormery and compost bin - more info here.

Friday, 16 October 2009

Church Street - works update

The works to improve Church Street started on 14th September and are now well underway - you can already see the newly laid paving stones on some stretches.

The Council is working closely with the contractors to make sure that the scheme is delivered as soon as possible to the highest standard.

We have stressed the importance of maintaining access to shops during the works, and the contractors are working closely with shop owners to address their concerns.
The traffic diversion in the first week caused problems for many, and we asked for additional signs to be placed at the Church Street/Albion Road junction to prevent drivers from turning along the street.

There was also an issue with the gas main outside 40 Stoke Newington Church Street - the contractors discovered a leak. A number of abandoned cellars have also been discovered whilst excavating the footways and damp proofing is being put in.

We are aware that there has been a lot of disruption on Church Street in recent years and that it is frustrating for those living and working on the street. Please do
contact us with ANY concerns and we will pass these on the manager of the works.