News from your Church Street Labour Councillors Aicha Less, Matt Noble and Aziz Toki
We are living in very difficult times and our usual monthly report includes mostly information about the Coronavirus pandemic.
Along with Karen Buck MP, we are doing all we can to help the local community and individual residents and their families.
Please let us know if we can be of any help or assistance.
In these unprecedented times, we all need to care of ourselves and help our neighbours. For the latest information, visit the following
How to get help as an extremely vulnerable person
Westminster Council’s advice and response website:
The Council operates a ‘Local Support Payment’ scheme:
If you are willing and able to volunteer to help in the community support operations please register at https://airtable.com/shrAXhe5ABMIlJCfQ
Westminster Connects COVID-19 phone line– 020 7641 1222
We have had to cancel our regular advice surgeries but we are available by email and phone. Also, here are some contact details for other advice agencies
We have issued the following statement on the coronavirus epidemic, with details of the additional actions we believe need to be takento protect the most vulnerable
Self-employment Income Support Scheme
Parking for Key workers
NHS workers and care workers can park for free and without time limit in pay-to-park bays in Westminster until further notice.
- If this applies to you, to enable Marshals to identify who should be granted this concession we ask that supporting evidence be placed in your windscreen, such as photocopies of your work pass with sensitive information removed, or a letter of evidence on headed paper from your employer.
- Should you receive a Penalty Charge Notice (PCN) whilst carrying out your critical work, please tell us using the information on the PCN and with your supporting evidence and it will be considered sympathetically.
We have also received the following information from Westminster Council’s Head of Parking:
“The Chief Executive has agreed that parking disregards can be issued for GP’s, nurses, Pharmacists and other hospital workers, those WCC staff in Children’s and Adults Services supporting vulnerable people and those teachers supporting vulnerable children and those of key workers. Parking dispensation permits parking in Paid for Bays and on Single Yellow Lines where sensible to do so.”
For details of how to apply see https://www.westminsterlabour.org.uk/westminster-news/2020/03/23/parking-for-key-workers-in-westminster/
Beware the Coronavirus scammers
How to get an isolation note on line https://www.westminsterlabour.org.uk/?p=1289&preview=true
Church Street Library – Computer and internet access
Some residents rely on using the public computers at Westminster libraries because they don’t have their own computer or internet access at home. During the lockdown, computers are now provided in special areas at Church Street library to help those residents access essential services.
Residents can use a computer for up to 45 minutes from Monday to Friday, between 10am and 4pm. Each computer and work station is carefully cleaned after each customer and there is a 2-metre distance between desks. Staff are on hand to help with IT queries and to ensure that safe social distancing is observed at all times including queuing when demand is high.
The rest of the library will remain closed, and there will be no access to printers or other services.
We have called on the Council to halt building works on its regeneration projects during the current situation. Residents say:
“Bearing in mind the Mayor’s comments/pleas/instructions about construction work, does Westminster consider regeneration construction work as ‘essential’?Luton Street has been working all morning and are still hard at it. If they have an industrial accident, would they be treated in the first instance by NHS emergency staff who are currently dealing with more important patients?”
Residents have started a petition calling for all noisy building refurbishment works to be postponed noisy building works during the Covid-19 lockdown
Household waste collection
We have welcomed the Council’s decision to change the focus of waste collection services to concentrate on residential areas and away from commercial and tourist areas, to deal with the impact of the coronavirus epidemic.
North Paddington Foodbank
Westminster Labour Councillors have agreed that any underspend in our2019/20 ward budgets (the Council’s funding pot for small projects in each ward) should be used to support the foodbank. Three wards had underspend and were able to assist, led by Maida Vale ward councillors who were able to provide £14,953.53; Harrow Road supported with £5,171.96 and Westbourne gave its remaining £309.58 for a total grant of £20,405.07.
If you can help the foodbank or are in need of emergency support please see the information here: https://www.npfoodbank.org.uk/
Church Street shops
We are delighted that the Council has waived rents for the next 3 months for Church Street shopkeepers who had petitioned the Council:
“To ease immediate concerns, assist with cashflow, and to allow you to prioritise other costs including salaries, Westminster City Council has decided to grant you a 3-month rent free period from the March Quarter day.”
The shopkeepers said the petition was successful “thanks to the excellent assistance and parliamentary authority of our MP, Karen Buck who picked up the petition before the ink was dry, and immediately made representations to the Westminster Council CEO at on behalf of our group and Church Street business.”
We have made enquiries with Royal Mail about the current difficulties with postal services that some residents are experiencing. Royal Mail say:
“St Johns Wood Delivery Office and Maida Hill Delivery Office are both experiencing approximately 30% absence at the current time. I would like to reassure you that we are rotating deliveries in the areas so mail is delivered regularly. The team is working hard to improve the service levels in these areas. I know that postmen and women are working flat out to ensure residents stay connected.”
Karen Buck MP writes, “We must act now to help young Londoners struggling under the lockdown”
Residents in Hatton Street have objected to proposals by the Abbey Road recording studio to convert an office at 15 Hatton Street into a music school. The studio wants to expand by opening a school for production and sound engineering at 15 Hatton Street. However, residents have criticised it as a “very upsetting and unsettling prospect”, fearing it will turn their quiet street into a noisy, late-night venue with students chatting and smoking outside their windows.
20mph speed limit
We have welcomed Westminster Council’s decision to introduce a 20mph speed limit on all roads, following recent consultation when two thirds of the respondents supported the proposal. The 20mph speed limit comes after there were 3 deaths and 269 seriously injured casualties on Westminster’s roads in 2018 – the highest of any London Borough.
You can now read the ‘Westminster Extra’ online
Refuse collection and Recycling collection times
Recycling bags can be ordered from https://webforms.westminster.gov.uk/order-recycling-bags/
Bags will be delivered within approximately 48 hours of order.
You can check when refuse and recycling is collected from your street here http://transact.westminster.gov.uk/env/streetsearch.aspx
The doorstep recycling service concentrates on the recyclable materials most commonly produced by houses so that these can be easily separated into the different material types. The link below summarises what can be put in recycling bags
Lots of other materials can be recycled but not through the doorstep collection service. The A-Z list below gives details of what and where items can be recycled or re-used:
Also, here are details of 9 companies that reward you for donating unwanted things, from H&M to M&S https://www.cosmopolitan.com/uk/worklife/g15049323/brands-reward-throwing-things-away/
The new Report It service has been unveiled. https://www.westminster.gov.uk/report-it
You can register here https://www.fixmystreet.com/alert for alerts of everything reported in your area (just use your post code and it will offer you options).
What you say
“Thank you for all that you are doing”
Please let us know if we can be of help or assistance on any local issues.
Keep well, take care and look after yourself and your neighbours in these difficult times.
Councillors Aicha Less, Matt Noble and Aziz Toki
Your Church Street Labour Councillors