Brent yet again a target for disproportionate cuts – this time it’s our fire service

I find it terrible that two fire stations in Brent are under threat of closure – LINK

Last year a family in my ward were victims of a devastating blaze which rocked the community – LINK

One year later, we are hearing that fire stations are under threat in Brent. I believe that this will have a negative impact on response times for fire emergencies.

We are petitioning on the doorstep to campaign to maintain our fire emergency services.

An inquest is underway on the tragic Sonia Gardens fire.

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Boris Johnson Outnumbered

Love this show. It’s called Outnumbered. Here is one of my favourite clips from it. Enjoy!

In all seriousness, Boris Johnson is actually the Mayor of London! Frightening isn’t it?

Ken Livingstone polled more than all other candidates put together in Brent!

 

Specific data released on the London Mayoral 2012 elections has revealed that former Brent East MP Ken Livingstone polled more than all the other candidates put together. Ken Livingstone won 54% of first preference votes, winning 22% more votes in Brent than the eventual winner of the overall election Boris Johnson who won 32% of the vote in Brent.

The vote spells bad news for the Liberals who’s candidate Brian Paddick only polled 5% in Brent.

There was more encouraging signs for Labour as Brent and Harrow London Assembly Member Navin Shah was the highest polling candidate in every single Ward in Brent. There is a huge drop in Lib Dem in Brnet with them coming an embarrassing third and even fourth in some wards where they have three Councillors!

I’ll blog further on this later.

VOTE LABOUR

Polling stations are now open all around the country. I am encouraging all to get out and vote… and vote well (by that I mean Labour of course!)

In London we have elections for the Mayor of London where Ken Livingstone is the Labour Party candidate. Those who want to give a first preference vote to a candidate other than Boris and Ken can still give Ken Livingstone their second preference vote and these will count towards the final result.

There are elections for the Greater London Assembly and Navin Shah is the Labour candidate for Brent and Harrow. In addition there is also a vote for a Party and I am also encouraging people to vote Labour on the list ballot paper.

Voters in Barnhill ward in the London Borough of Brent will also have an opportunity to vote in a Council by-election. Labour’s candidate for this election is Michael Pavey who will be a formidable colleague on Brent Council if elected on May 3rd.

London Needs Ken

Compare Ken’s response to the 7/7 bombings to the Boris response to the London riots.

London needs a serious Mayor for serious times who can provide leadership. Not Boris, who is too preoccupied with his main job as a columnist for the Daily Telegraph and has no time to be an effective Mayor for London – and does not care enough to cut his luxury holiday short to fulfil his duty as Mayor of London to provide assurance to the City after major events such as the riots last summer.

Vote Ken Livingstone for a real leader for London!

Residents in Brent now need a take home household income of over £3,857 a month to afford a typical two-bedroom home in the area

Shelter
Shelter (Photo credit: markhillary)

The Charity Shelter has revealed that rises in the costs of renting means that “residents in Brent now need a take home household income of over £3,857 a month to afford a typical two-bedroom home in the area.

Renting has often been thought of as the cheap alternative to home ownership, but over the past year rents in the capital have risen at nearly twice the rate of wages, meaning that London voters are struggling.”

Labour’s candidate for the London Mayoralty, Ken Livingstone has said that he will establish an all-London non-profit making lettings agency which, by cutting out Estate Agents’ profit, will help reduce rents and provide secure tenancies, and will campaign for a London Living Rent – no Londoner should pay more than a third of their income in rent.

For Ken’s webpage on Housing, click here – LINK

More Jubilee line misery this weekend

London - Moving Tube London - 550d
(Photo credit: @Doug88888)

More incompetence from the Mayor of London yet again, failing to deliver for Dudden Hill residents who continue to be deprived of a weekend tube service. This is addition to the troubles that commuters faced this morning when the line was part suspended.

I recall a conversation I had on the doorstep with one of my residents who lives on Aberdeen Road who said that she had factored into her life that she doesn’t have a weekend tube service.

We were told that we would have no more weekend closures on the Jubilee Line. With the line not operating between Willesden Green and Stanmore this weekend, this promise has failed to materialise. Boris Johnson has lost his grip on the issue and it’s time that we had a Mayor that truly cares about our transport system.

That is why it is important that Ken Livingstone is elected as the Mayor of London on May 3rd as he is an individual that studies the detail, and takes a hands on approach to the Mayoral office rather than being one that poses for press and photo opportunities.

Frontline Police cuts are unacceptable

An article in the Independent has revealed that nine out of ten police officers lost because of Tory Liberal cuts were to the frontline.

In Brent, we know this is true as we have lost Police Sergeants in Brent as all were made to reapply for their jobs so that spending targets could be met.

At a Brent Council Partnership and Place Committee Meeting I revealed that even losses to back office staff to the domestic violence team in Brent meant that frontline staff were spending time they would otherwise spend helping people, doing paperwork and desk office functions.

The anwers I received reveals that even back office cuts has a profound impact on frontline services.

Labour Candidate for the London Mayoralty Ken Livingstone has pledged to reverse Boris Johnson’s cut of 1,700 police officers.

Even Margaret Thatcher knew that when times are hard, there should not be cuts to Police because crime usually goes up in a recession.

The Tory Liberals are failing to learn from their own idols.

Guest Blogpost: Cllr George Crane on the regeneration of Willesden High Road

It was disappointing to see local MP Sarah Teather  “saddened” at the Council’s plans to regenerate Willesden High Road. The new Library and Cultural Centre will be a major Civic building in the southern part of Brent and a major boost to the regeneration of the area for business, shops and residents.

English: Post Office, Willesden High Rd

Both Willesden Bookshop and BIAS will be assisted by the Council to find alternative accommodation in the High Road, in one of the many empty shops. The Council has also approved a detailed interim delivery strategy for the Library, Museum and Archive during the rebuilding period.  The Customer contact point will be temporarily re located to the Job Centre in Harlesden a short bus ride away. Adequate study space is being planned at a number of locations in the vicinity. Local Liberal democrat Councillors are very supportive of the plans and see the potential long term benefits for the area.

What is of more interest is the deafening silence from Sarah Teather  at the devastating news that London Mayor Boris Johnson has rejected Brent’s bid for 1.6 million pounds to continue the regeneration work in Willesden. Last year the Council implemented a very successful project “New Windows on Willesden”. The rejected Brent bid was for this project to continue during 2012. I hope the Brent Central MP will join me and Navin Shah Brent London Assembly member in asking Boris Johnson to reconsider Brent’s bid.

Cllr George Crane is a Brent Labour Party Councillor for Fryent Ward. He is the Lead Member at Brent Council for Regeneration. Fryent Ward Councillors blog on http://fryent-councillors-brent.blogspot.com/

Boris rejects Brent regeneration bid

Ealing Road Bazaar
Ealing Road, Wembley (Image by Route79 via Flickr)

At a Council meeting last November the Coalition parties made much of the Mayor of London’s Outer London Regeneration Fund so it comes as some surprise to see that both of Brent Council’s bids have been denied. Brent’s Lead Member for Regeneration and Economic Development, Cllr George Crane has expressed his disbelief that the Mayor has chosen to ignore the needs of Outer London’s most diverse borough.

Brent put in a bid for 1.65 million to continue the successful work started in Willesden High Road in an earlier bid agreed last year. The bid would have helped transform Willesden Green High Road by renting some empty shop units on a long-term basis. These would be used by emerging businesses to help employment and skills of local people. The other part of the bid was to improve the area around the Willesden Green Library centre and make it a focal point to showcase local creative talent.  (For more info on Willesden project see http://willesdenwindows.com )

The second bid was for 1.8 million for Ealing Road between Wembley Central and Alperton. The programme was designed to promote Ealing Road to deliver physical, economic social and cultural benefits to Ealing Road, Wembley and Brent.

Ealing Road is already attracting high visitor numbers from around London and beyond with its unique style of Indian shopping experience.

Cllr Crane said

”All our neighbouring Boroughs have received money and it is difficult to understand why Brent has been singled out to have both projects rejected..

I will be asking Navin Shah, Brent’s London Assembly Member to raise this with Mayor Johnson and ask him to reconsider both Brent’s bids.”