27 November 2010

P5 bus route to be returned to Lothian Road from April

Transport for London will be returning the P5 bus to its original route along Langton Road from April 2011.

Following a consultation about changing the route (detailed on Vassall View) TfL have decided to return the route of the bus to its original running prior to 2001.

From April it will run along Vassall Road, Langton Road, Lothian Road and then on to the Patmore Estate rather than the current route down Knatchbull Road (pictured). Lambeth will be working to install double yellow lines and other parking restrictions along the route to ensure that the bus is not held up by parked cars.

26 November 2010

Lambeth and Southwark London Assembly Member calls for Boris to get a grip as London faces tube strike

Valerie Shawcross, Labour Member of the London Assembly for Lambeth and Southwark, has called on Boris Johnson to "get a grip" as London faces another Tube strike starting on Sunday evening.

Val who acts as the Labour Transport spokesperson at City Hall said "How many more times will Londoners have their commute ruined because of the Mayor's failure to get a grip? I have leaflets Boris Johnson handed out when he was trying to get elected two years ago saying he had a plan to end strikes once and for all but it seems things are just getting worse. He needs to end his stubborn, childish attitude of not talking to the unions, get around the table and sort this out."

A 24-hour strike by thousands of London Underground workers will go ahead from Sunday evening after hopes of a resolution to the dispute over ticket office job losses collapsed.

The Rail Maritime and Transport union (RMT) and the Transport Salaried Staffs Association (TSSA) said the strike will begin at 6.30pm on Sunday.

Boris Johnson said in his election literature that he "has a plan to deal once and for all with endless Tube strikes." He said he "will be pro-active and negotiate a no-strike deal with the unions".

The Mayor also promised to "stop the planned ticket office closures" and signed a petition to keep them open.

In official answers, the Mayor admitted he has not met once with the trade unions to discuss his promised no-strike deal. He said in September: "I have not spoken directly with union leaders but with plenty of people in Government"

25 November 2010

Work day in Myatt's Fields Park wildlife area this Saturday

Come along to Myatt's Fields Park, Camberwell on Saturday and help prepare the wildlife area for winter. All ages welcome for the session 11am - 2pm. Lunch in the depot cooked using vegetables from the park. To help organisers get an idea of numbers please email vsherwin@lambeth.gov.uk or phone 020 7926 0394.

Myatt's Fields Park is situated between Calais Street, Cormont Road and Knatchbull Road, SE5 in Vassall Ward in Lambeth.

24 November 2010

Advent procession and carol service at St John the Divine, Vassall Road this Sunday

Everyone is invited to St John the Divine Church in Vassall Road, SW9 on Sunday, 28 November 2010, for a candlelit Advent procession and carol service. The service will begin at 4pm.

Further information is available on the St John the Divine Church website

Ken Livingstone condemns rail fare increases

Labour Mayoral candidate Ken Livingstone has hit out at above inflation fare increases and asked what the current Mayor Boris Johnson is doing to protect the capital's commuters.

Speaking yesterday on the day that they were announced Ken said "Although the fares details are hidden behind averages, today’s fare increases will hit commuters in London and the South East hard. The government should be investing in rail travel rather forcing fare rises, some of over 10 per cent, whilst passengers continue to face frequent delays and overcrowded services."

He went on
“And while millions of Londoners are facing unprecedented fare hikes the Mayor seems to have gone missing: does anyone know if Boris Johnson supports his Tory colleagues’ fare rises or not? It seems every time that London needs leadership and a Mayor to stand up for them, Boris Johnson goes AWOL. He needs to get a grip and put London first.”

23 November 2010

Lambeth Labour Party members resolve to protect most vulnerable from Government cuts

On Saturday Labour Party members from across Lambeth came together to consider the strategy for resisting cuts imposed by central Government.

Labour Party members resolved to protect the most vulnerable from the effects of the cuts but to do so responsibly.

Council Leader Steve Reed has written further about the meeting on his blog

22 November 2010

Stockwell Good Neighbours Christmas Fayre Monday 29 November

Stockwell Good Neighbours will be holding a Christmas Fayre next Monday 29 November 2010 to which everyoine is invited. The event will take place at the Oval House Theatre, 52 Kennington Park, SE11 (opposite the Oval cricket ground) from 11am - 2pm.

Stockwell Good Neighbours is a registered charity which has been operating since 1978. It provides a wide range of social activities and projects to benefit people's health and wellbeing and prevent social isolation for older adults who live in the Lambeth area.

More information on Stockwell Good Neighbours

21 November 2010

Elections for Lambeth Youth Mayor: could you be Lambeth’s next young politician?

In December elections for Lambeth Youth Mayor will take place in the borough - do you have what it takes?

Details are on the Lambeth website:

Calling all Lambeth’s young people!

If you would like to stand in the Youth Elections to be the borough’s new youth mayor, deputy youth mayor or youth parliament members, you must sign up by
17 December.

The youth elections are a chance for young people in the borough to vote for local representatives to fight for their causes.

Each year the youth mayor is given a budget of £25,000 to spend on projects that help improve the lives of young people in the borough. Last year’s mayor was Darren Tenkorang.

Darren said: “I’ve had an amazing time, learned a lot, and helped some great projects take off.”

Lambeth’s Cabinet Member for Children and Young People, Councillor Peter Robbins said: “Young people in Lambeth have been voting for a Youth Mayor to represent them since 2007 and the elections are going from strength to strength. Last year there were more than 10,000 votes cast at polling stations in schools and youth clubs, which goes to show how popular the scheme is."

He went on “Young people want to be involved in local democracy and the Youth Mayor and Youth Parliament is perfect for giving them that chance to be involved – whether as a candidate or by casting their votes in the election. With £25,000 available for youth projects in the borough these elections are real opportunity to improve things for the young people who live in Lambeth. Anyone who thinks they have something to offer Lambeth’s young people should stand in the
upcoming elections.”

All 11 to 19-year-olds who live, work or study in Lambeth are entitled to vote in the elections, with the ballots taking place in February 2011. Eighteen schools and colleges as well as five youth centres in the borough will host youth elections voting days. Young people who do not go to school in the
borough but live in Lambeth can still vote in the elections by registering online.

Application forms to stand in the youth elections are available by phoning or texting 07506 676 266.

More information at www.youthmayor4lambeth.com including details of how to apply to be a candidate and how to register to vote.

20 November 2010

Free dog chipping in Myatt's Fields Park on Wednesday

Come and get your dog fitted with microchip on Wednesday 23 November 2010 in Myatt's Fields Park in Vassall Ward, Lambeth. The microchip enable the dogs to be reunited with their owners if they are found on the streets.

Lambeth Animal Welfare is organising a dog chipping session in the roundhouse at Myatt’s Fields Park on 24th November from 1pm to 3pm. This service is free.

19 November 2010

Vassall Labour Councillors set up new surgery to help people in Stannard Hall

Vassall Ward Labour Councillors Kingsley Abrams and Adrian Garden have set up a new monthly surgery at Stannard Hall in Vassall Ward to provide help to residents with money and other issues.

Stannard Hall (pictured) is a housing association block of flats on Cormont Road, SE5 specifically aimed at single unemployed people who would otherwise be homeless. Many of the residents have serious financial problems and have difficulty in obtaining the benefits and support that they are entitled to.

At the request of a resident, and with the support of the management, Labour Vassall Ward Councillors we have set up a monthly surgery in Stannard Hall to deal with a queue of people at each session. The Councillors work to help people by forwarding queries and complaints to the appropriate officers in Lambeth as well as providing advice and support.

To contact Vassall Ward Labour Councillors Councillor Kingsley Abrams tel 020 7274 1257 / 07932447763 or email kabrams@lambeth.gov.uk. To contact Councillor Adrian Garden tel
07980 645 033 or email agarden@lambeth.gov.uk.

18 November 2010

Vassall Councillors ask local people for their ideas to improve the area

Vassall Labour Councillors Kingsley Abrams and Adrian Garden are asking Vassall residents for their ideas for small local projects that will imporve the local area. These projects will be put to Lambeth Council as suggestions for funding from the Ward Purse scheme.

The Ward Purse is an innovative initiative which makes funds available for small projects that bring real benefits to local communities in each of the Lambeth’s 21 wards.

There is £12,000 available for Vassall to be spent on such things as small building works or the purchase of equipment. These improvementys are carried out either by the council itself or by community organisations. Councillors in each ward can choose to pool the money for one big project or use it to pay for up to three smaller schemes.

The ideas will be agreed jointly between all of Vassall's Councillors and put to the Council at the end of November. Last year's Ward Purse funding was used to support community gardens projects in eight areas around Vassall, provided PCs for a training project on the Holland Rise estate and bought a film camera for a youth club in the ward.

Councillor Kingsley Abrams commented "This is a really great scheme allowing funding to be channelled to local Vassall projects that will really improve the quality of life. Whilst the big housing, transport and other projects are important it is often the small things that make the difference day to day and we are open to suggestions from anyone in Vassall with ideas about how they can the area better."

If you have any suggestions or ideas for projects to receive funding from the Ward Purse contact Councillor Kingsley Abrams or Councillor Adrian Garden as soon as possible.

For more information see the Lambeth website: Claim cash for your community: Ward Purse 2010/11

17 November 2010

Your borough, your budget, your choice

Lambeth is consulting residents on spending priorities for next year. Through a process called Your borough, your budget, your choice residents across Lambeth are being asked which projects should be funded from a shortlist of 12.

16 November 2010

Learn how to salsa in Myatts Fields Park this Saturday!

Come along to Myatt's Fields Park in Vassall Ward, SE5 this Saturday 20 November 2010 for salsa dancing.

Learn how to salsa with fun relaxed classes in the bandstand 2-3pm. These will be led by Homero Gonzalez, cost is £3 for children aged 6 to 16 years, and £5 for 16 years and above. All abilities welcome.

Why not combine salsa with a visit to the park cafe? - This will be open for the sale of hot and cold drinks and other refreshments from 12:30 - 3pm.

Myatt's Fields Park is situated between Calais Street, Cormont Road and Knatchbull Road, SE5 in Vassall Ward in Lambeth.

15 November 2010

Lambeth Labour joins with Lib Dems to argue for more funding for Lambeth's schools

On Monday 8 November 2010 a cross-party delegation from Lambeth Council went to Westminster to lobby the Coalition Government on fair funding for Lambeth’s school building programme.

The Leader of Lambeth Council, Councillor Steve Reed, along with the Cabinet Member for Children and Young People’s Services, Councillor Pete Robbins, Leader of the Opposition, Councillor Ashley Lumsden, and senior officers went to the Department for Education to meet Schools Minister, Lord Hill, to discuss  how Lambeth can meet the demand for school places in the borough.

In Lambeth, Schools have already been affected by a cut to the Building Schools for the Future programme and with further cuts to council budgets following the Comprehensive Spending Review, the Council is faced with a huge challenge to find the necessary £130million required to repair, expand and build new primary schools.

Councillor Robbins said ‘Ministers must understand the serious need for major investment in Lambeth’s schools both at primary and secondary level. We are not talking about vanity projects, we are talking about the basic need for funding to meet the unprecedented demand for primary school places, particularly in the south of the Borough, and cash to make secondary schools fit for purpose. On top of that, every time we get a new school, or new classroom in an existing school, it costs us more money to run, and not only is the government not granting us the required funds, but they seem intent on making Lambeth’s pot even smaller.’

The delegation set out Lambeth’s situation and asked Lord Hill for a commitment to fund repairs and expand the number of school places as an absolute minimum. Councillors also told the minister that the Department for Education needs to find a fairer method calculating how money is allocated to Councils to build and maintain schools. Lord Hill refused to give this commitment.

14 November 2010

Council warns that cuts are deeper than expected

In a statement on its website Lambeth Council has warned that cuts to services as a result of the central Conservative/ Liberal Democrat cutbacks are likely to be deeper than expected.
Full text of statement:
"The recent Comprehensive Spending Review has given us a large target to deliver in terms of savings. The calculations are £79million across the next four years and £40million in the next financial year.

We have already been working hard to identify savings through cutting waste but Leader of the Council, Steve Reed, warned of tough times ahead, saying: "The Government's decision to pay off the debt in such a tight timeframe will hit Lambeth hard." However he also added that the council would be fighting hard to get the best deal possible for residents.

Chief Executive, Derrick Anderson spoke of the council's determination to meet the challenge, he said; "It goes without saying that we are looking at the ways we will deliver these savings and I am confident that we will manage within our budgets. It will not be easy and there will be decisions that need to be taken that I would rather avoid. However, I will not be knocked off course. I am committed to the Co-operative Council and I am committed to delivering services that make a real difference to people here in Lambeth.

"We will keep focused on our vision of a Lambeth where everyone is valued, where there are real opportunities and we share responsibilities with our communities."

13 November 2010

Vassall Labour Councillors work with local people to improve the streets around Caldwell Gardens

Vassall Labour Councillors have been working with local residents on the Grass Routes project in the Caldwell Gardens and the other streets around Hackford Road in Vassall Ward, Lambeth SW9 (see map).

The project came about as a result of the development of the Freemans site between Clapham Road and Liberty Street, SW9. Lambeth Council received 'Section 106' monies from the developers. The new development is set to be complete by the end of 2010 bringing around 900 new residents to the area. The funding was assigned towards a project to make the local streets more pleasant and safe particularly for vulnerable road users.

The Grass Routes project is being managed by a partnership between local residents from Streets Ahead and the Caldwell Gardens Estate, local Vassall Councillors, Lambeth Officers and Reay and Durand primary schools.

The steering group commissioned a stage one consultation to: 
  • Gauge local people’s response to some improvements to the local area suggested by the steering group
  • Assess what other improvements local people would like to see

The results of the consultation revealed that there are three key issues of concern to local residents. Many residents are keen to see an area developed where children can play safely maybe with the closure of Isabel Street to through traffic so that a play street can be developed. Many residents would like to see a number of environmental enhancements incorporated into the local streets.

If Isabel Street was developed into a play street it could become a focal point for local residents with some raised flower beds, picnic tables and seats installed in the area. This would provide a place where residents can meet and socialise informally, particularly in the summer months.

Residents are also keen to see more flowers and shrubs planted in local streets. The Living Streets project has already begun to address this by planting bulbs and sunflowers at the base of trees which many residents feel have brightened up the area. This could be extended to maybe include some fruit trees and vegetables where residents can eat the produce that grows. There are examples nationally, particularly in Devon where towns have made great efforts to use available space to grow fruit and vegetables that community members can pick and eat. This area has two local schools that may be keen to be involved in a project like this working alongside local residents to enhance the living environment.

A public art project could be instigated which could encourage residents and children to become involved in designing raised flowerbeds and seats which are unique to the local area and would provide visual interest and local ownership.

It is also evident from the results of the consultation that residents are concerned about the traffic locally.  They have highlighted their concerns about the speed that the traffic travels at and the concerns they have about children’s safety when crossing roads to get to the two local schools. Many of the roads are used as shortcuts between the two major roads that straddle the area and residents want to see some traffic calming measures installed to reduce the speed and generally make the area feel safer for residents.

Vassall Labour Councillor Adrian Garden commented "Both Kingsley and I support this local initiative. We feel that this is Lambeth at its best: the Council working with local residents to make their area better."

To find out more contact your Vassall Labour Councillors Kingsley Abrams and Adrian Garden

10 November 2010

No service on the Victoria line this weekend

The Victoria Line will be shut this Saturday 13 and Sunday 14 November 2010 for engineering works. Passengers are advised to use alternative routes, a replacement bus service will operate in addition between Brixton and Victoria and between Finsbury Park and Walthamstow at the Northern end of the line.

06 November 2010

Lambeth Labour publishes guide to the cooperative council

Lambeth Labour have published a guide to the cooperative council for Labour Party members - its explains the thinking behind the policy and the implications for the way that services are provided.

The guide is available to download on Council Leader Councillor Steve Reed's website

03 November 2010

Vauxhall Society to hold evening of rememberance poems and local Lambeth stories

The Vauxhall Society is holding an evening of Remembrance poems and stories with Lambeth connections, on Thursday 11 November at 7pm at LASSCO, Brunswick House at Vauxhall.

The evening will be hosted by Philippa Owen, and will feature local authors Naomi Lourie Klein and Ross Davies. You are invited to bring your favourite Remembrance poem to read out, or we can read it for you. Please email vauxhallcs@gmail.com with your choice and visit www.vauxhallcivicsociety.org.uk for more information.

Admission is free, and open to non-members of the Society although a contribution towards Society funds is welcome. Refreshments will be served and you are welcome to call in at the Brunswick House café before or after.

30 Wandsworth Road
London SW8 2LG
See map 

Edited to add: there is a summary of the evening on the Vauxhall Society website

01 November 2010

Come to the fireworks on Clapham Common on Friday!

The biggest fireworks display in Lambeth will be held this Friday evening on Clapham Common, SW4

In a sign of the times Lambeth Council this year will only be having one fireworks display in the borough on Friday 5 November 2010. Where previously Lambeth ran three displays: Brockwell Park, Clapham Common and Streatham Common this year only the Clapham Common display will operate.

The fun starts at 7:30pm at Clapham Common on Friday 5 November 2010. Local residents are encouraged to walk, cycle or come by public transport to the event. Clapham Common tube station will be exit only from 6:30-8:30pm and the roads will be very congested.

Further information on the Lambeth website