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.

Wednesday, 23 February 2011

Belgrade Road

Several of you contacted us regarding the appearance of a sauna sign at the end of Belgrade Road next to the Rose Hotel.

A licence is required if a sauna or steam room wants to operate and after we'd raised your concerns with the Licensing Department, it appears that the premises do not currently have a licence.

Officers from the Council spoke to the operator and the Police are also aware of the issue, so it will continue to be monitored. If you notice any further activity around the venue - please either contact the local Safer Neighbourhood Team on 020 8721 2922 or the Licensing Department on licensing@hackney.gov.uk.

Tuesday, 22 February 2011

Amhurst crossing

We've been very concerned at the length of time it's been taking to complete the crossings at Amhurst Road, Rectory Road and Shacklewell Lane.

The works to the pavement and kerbs were the responsibility of the Council and this work was completed in autumn last year.

However, Transport for London have yet to complete their part of the works - the signal installations. This is very frustrating indeed and we've been lobbying the Council to make sure they raise this unacceptable delay with TfL at the regular meetings senior officers have with TfL.

The new signals need to be configured and TfL have said there was an error with the signal controller software which has caused delays. A new one will be installed next week and after that the signals should be working within weeks.

In the meantime we will continue to stress the importance of completing these works as soon as possible - it is a busy junction that lots of school children use which is why it was scheduled for upgrading in the first place.

Wednesday, 16 February 2011

West Hackney Recreation Ground needs you!

This might be of interest for residents who are keen to see West Hackney Recreation Ground brought back into use - there is an important meeting tonight at 7.30pm in St Paul's Church Hall to discuss the future of the park.

Groundwork is supporting St Paul's and the Council to put together a bid for funding to the Heritage Lottery Fund. £75,000 has already been awarded from the London Marathon Trust. The user group needs your support at this important time as the application is about to go in. Many residents have been in contact with us about this project so now's the time to come and show your support and find out more about the latest developments.

Refreshments will be provided!

Wednesday, 9 February 2011

Discover Young Hackney festival

Discover Young Hackney, Hackney Council’s annual youth arts festival, is back this month for its fifth year.

The festival aims to offer young people in Hackney the chance to build their skills, try something new, challenge themselves, and get to meet at range of professionals from across the arts industry – and 2011 offers more opportunities than ever before.

The festival launched with the ‘I’m In’ talent show at the Hackney Empire, and continues with more than twenty events across the borough throughout February.

You can find out more about the festival, and about other activities available for young people in Hackney here.

Tuesday, 8 February 2011

Have your say on local transport

All boroughs in London are required to produce a Local Implementation Plan (LIP) which shows how Hackney is addressing the Mayor of London's Transport Strategy.

The LIP sets out Hackney's plans and aspirations for the next five years - from improvements to town centres and public spaces, to new cycling facilities, safer roads and measures to improve traffic flows.

We know there are a lot of transport issues locally in our ward - from the one-way system (which was recently consulted on and we will update you as soon as we have the results), to demand for more cycle parking, and 20mph zones on the last remaining streets in Stoke Newington Central. We have been working on these issues with residents over the last couple of years.

So it's important too have your say on local and Borough wide transport issues. The documents for the LIP are here, and the consultation questionnaire is open until 6th May 2011.

Thursday, 3 February 2011

Update from the Town Hall

There was a Full Council meeting last week. Here's a summary of what went on:

Students from Bsix college and Hackney Community College presented a deputation on cuts to the Educational Maintenance Allowance. The Educational Maintenance Allowance was designed to help pupils from lower income backgrounds to stay on in education post 16. Students were entitled to up to £30 a week from the EMA making all the difference in supporting their studies. From 31st Dec last year, the EMA has been scrapped.

Hackney has 54% of 16-18 year old students receiving EMA - this is one of the highest percentages in London. At Hackney Community College, 720 students out of 1400, and at BSix college 760 out of 1300 currently receive the EMA.

The cuts will have a massive impact in Hackney. The students told us of their experiences and how the EMA has enabled them to stay on in education. We firmly believe that post 16 education should not be dependent on whether your family can pay for it or not. Hackney students have been really active in the national Save EMA campaign and councillors across political divides in the Chamber were fully behind their campaign.

There was also a deputation about the changes to the NHS, which Cllr Jonathan McShane, the Cabinet member for Community Services described as “a car crash in the waiting” and outlined concerns about the pace of change and fears that giving GPs powers for commissioning will lead to this being sub contracted to private companies. He stressed the importance of maintaining standards despite the rapid budget cuts.

Jules Pipe also updated councillors on the cuts to local government budgets. With the details of the Local Government Finance Settlement now much clearer, we know Hackney faces a cut of £44m to our 2011/12 budget. Hackney was one of the areas in the country worst hit by the cuts.

Jules Pipe emphasised that in 2011/12 there will be no cuts to frontline services, no raising of eligibility criteria for social care, and no closure of Children Centres in Hackney. This is largely due to Hackney having managed its finances efficiently over the last few years. But we do face tough decision ahead for 2012 and beyond.

Some of the other issues raised during the Council meeting were:

  • An update on works to Ridley Road market – involving new footways and road surfaces, and CCTV. There will also be major streetscene improvements from Dalston Lane-Shacklewell Lane starting in June 2011
  • Confirmation that Hackney’s MyPlace funding for new youth centres will still go ahead
  • An update on the CO2 reduction pilot in Hackney Downs ward – where Global Action Plan have engaged with households to offer expert advice on behavioural and technical measures which can be taken to reduce fuel bills and carbon emissions.