News from your three Queen’s Park Ward Labour Councillors Paul Dimoldenberg, Patricia McAllister and Hamza Taouzzale
We hope you are well.
As more people are getting vaccinated and the number of people testing positive for coronavirus is falling, we hope that the pandemic will soon be at end. Along with Karen Buck MP, we are doing all we can to help the local community and individual residents and their families.
You can read our latest news on www.westminsterlabour.org.uk
Please let us know if we can be of help or assistance on any local issues.
Please feel free to pass this report on to any of your neighbours who may be interested.
WARD NEWS AND ACTION
Residents in Fernhead Road have been concerned that a number of buses are exceeding the 20mph speed limit and we have raised this with Transport for London who say:
“The safety team visited Fernhead Road in December to look at speeding issues. They will now be visiting the road again to carry out speed checks to make sure drivers are observing the limits. The drivers on these routes will also be spoken to individually at the garage and communications will be circulated internally to notify drivers the problem has been observed and we are taking action to ensure that they adhere to the speed limit. The current situation is not acceptable.”
We have written to the owners of the building site on the canal on behalf of residents living along Harrow Road who can get little sleep because of the bright blazing lights at night which are glaring from the building site. We have asked for the lights to be turned off at night.
We have also asked the Council to reinstate the bench by St John’s Church which was removed while the junction works were underway. We have also asked for two bikes chained to a pole near the bench to be removed.
Finally, we have reported the regular ‘engine idling’ from 28 buses that are now stopping and resting in the bus stops by what was Tyre and Wheel depot and opposite St Johns Terrace. Residents say:
“The drivers are leaving their engines running while they rest and the noise is really bad. I’m not sure why they are resting here as there end and start point is Kensal Rise station.”
Marban Road and Portnall Road junction
Following our enquiries, we are pleased to see that the Road Safety team will be investigating ways to improve safety at the Marban Road/Portnall Road junction:
“Although the location is not on the Local Safety Scheme (LSS) programme, analysis of the safety record does highlight road safety concerns and we are currently reviewing measures feasible to improve safety at the junction, which is also subject to funding.”
We have asked the Tree Officers to investigate this issue:
“A large tall tree outside number 96 Kilravock Street is causing concern for residents at 96 and 98 Kilravock Street. It has not been pruned for years. This tree cuts off day lights, interferes with tv signals, branches encroaching outside facing windows and likely to cause subsidence to the properties nearby. Despite various phone calls to the Council no action was taken.”
The Tree Officer told us: “An order to prune this tree has been issued to our contractors. I have asked them to get this completed next week.”
We asked Nuno, our local inspector to investigate a caravan which appeared outside a house in Fifth Avenue. The Council took action to require the owners to remove the caravan and it has now gone.
We are also assisting residents who want to set up a Neighbourhood Watch in the area after this incident:
“Recently some lunatic went about damaging parked cars in our area. Two of the cars near me had been badly scratched. One of my neighbours whose car was damaged reported to the police. Yesterday she had a call from the police who informed her that a man has been arrested who admitted damaged to 30 cars in this area. In the light of the circumstances I am thinking of setting up a ” Neighbourhood Watch” in my immediate area where I live. “
Following reports from residents about the contractors working beyond the permitted hours at the former Jubilee Centre building site, we contacted the Council to take the necessary action to control the building works during the permitted times.
We have asked the Street Lighting Team to investigate this issue:
“The street light outside 88 Ashmore Road has been out for 2 months. The street bulbs they use seem to be very dark and don’t light the street.”
The Street Lighting Team say, “there was an issue with an EV charger socket here within the column, and is now resolved. We are arranging for light readings to be taken on Ashmore Road to confirm if the levels are ok.”
Queen’s Park Court
Following the Council decision to give planning permission to build 23 new affordable homes on the Queen’s Park Court car park, a contractor has now been appointed and has been carrying out site investigations before the main construction starts in August 2021. The site investigation works included scanning the ground under the site for utilities such as underground cables and CCTV surveys of drainage.
The new homes will include a number of ‘green’ features, including:
- Photovoltaic “solar” panels on the roof of the flats
- Cycle storage to encourage and support non-car journeys
- 10% of the car parking spaces will have electric vehicle charging points
- A new central landscaped area between the blocks
Priority for the new homes, which will be completed by January 2023, will be existing Council tenants who need a larger flat and tenants who want to downsize to a smaller flat.
Following our enquiries, work is underway in clearing up the rubbish and vermin from under Ha’Penny Steps and the paving slabs have been relaid. Residents told us:
“I would like to thank all of you for taking the time to listen to my concerns regarding the pedestrian bridge. I walked by the bridge today and I could see that all the loose paving slabs have been fixed”
Maida Hill Market place
After years of lobbying, a court decision has granted Westminster Council’s application for a pre-emptive injunction at Maida Hill Market. The injunction imposes legal restrictions on the type of behaviour that Maida Hill market has experienced for a long time.
Residents have often complained about anti-social behaviour, however without formal complaints the police and council had few legal powers to act. The injunction prohibits such behaviour and is location specific, not person specific, allowing much greater enforcement action when needed. The injunction needs to be enforced sensitively, to continue to allow genuine community activity and needs active co-operation between the council and police.
Following enquiries from residents about helicopter noise, we asked the police to explain why and when they are used. The police say:
“The helicopters are a very valuable piece of equipment for the police and are shared over a number of counties in and around London. As a result, they are only deployed to the most serious incidents – usually when life is at risk or when offenders for serious offences and being pursued. They are not used for general patrols
“Unfortunately, helicopters are inherently noisy, but that has to be a small trade off when lives and public safety are at risk. Police helicopters are not liveried vehicles like our cars are, so the noise may not always be from our helicopters, but from other sources as those that covey paramedics and doctors to the most serious incidents.”
Fernhead Road – what you say
“I was very pleased to read the news about your support for a pedestrian crossing and two vehicle activated speed signs in Fernhead Road. Crossing the road to get to the school has become more hazardous since the school crossing patrol lady retired last year, and a raised crossing near the school gates will make the journey to school much safer once children can return. I hope you’re able to press for an early start on these works.”
- Oliphant Street – We have asked the Street Lighting Team to investigate a defective street light in Oliphant Street which has now been repaired.
- Portnall Road – We have reported this issue for investigation – “I have reported 261 Portnall Road on the “report it” site but no one seems to take any action. It’s not a lot of garbage but keeps piling up and hopefully a quick note from the inspector asking them to clear it will work.”
- Sixth Avenue/Lothrop Street – We have asked the Street Lighting Team to investigate a defective street light at the corner of Sixth Avenue/Lothrop Street. It has now been repaired.
- Shirland Road – We have again urged the Council to issue immediate fines to those responsible for the regular dumping of rubbish on the pavements.
- Caird Street – We asked the contractors to dim the safety lights in the building site on Caird Street. Residents commented, “thank you for dimming the lights on the building site at night, it makes a big difference and we appreciate it.”
- Marne Street – We have asked the Street Lighting Team to investigate a defective street light in Marne Street, near the Fifth Avenue junction – which is now working again.
- Droop Street – We have asked the Highways Team to fix a blocked drain outside Birch House, Droop Street.
- Third Avenue – We have asked the Street Lighting Team to investigate a defective street light outside 54 and 56 Third Avenue and it is now fixed.
- Oak House – We have asked the Housing Office to investigate continuing problems with water penetration in a flat in Oak House.
- Kilravock Street – We have asked the Noise Team to investigate noisy building work in Kilravock Street by the Housing Department contractors.
- Boyce House – We have asked the Housing Office to investigate continuing problems with water penetration in a flat in Boyce House.
- Portnall Road – We have asked the Housing Department to clear a back garden in Portnall Road which is full of rubbish
- Bravington Road – We are making enquiries with the Housing Office about a property in Bravington Road where ivy has covered surrounding houses and causing problems. We have also asked the Housing Office to fix a faulty door handle at a flat in Bravington Road.
- Fifth Avenue – We have asked the Housing Department to investigate reports of falling masonry from the first-floor window-sill of a house in Fifth Avenue which was reported before Christmas and still has not been fixed. We have also asked about a seemingly unoccupied Council property in Fifth Avenue where there have been complaints from neighbours about the property being neglected.
- Queen’s Park Court – We have asked the Housing Office to investigate long-standing issues of mould and condensation at a flat in Queen’s Park Court.
If you have any issues with dogs you can contact Crissie Chambers (firstname.lastname@example.org) as well as Nuno Reis (email@example.com) and they will deal with them together on their twice weekly patrols.
North Paddington Foodbank
If you can help the foodbank or are in need of emergency support, please see the information here: https://www.npfoodbank.org.uk/
If you need the foodbank, or know someone in need please call 07511 590997
The Foodbank is on the frontline helping more people than ever before in a very difficult situation. Please donate here
The NHS Blood and Transplant service is appealing for donations from people who have recovered from coronavirus to help save lives as London moves from “medium” to “high” alert. Donating blood plasma is a simple procedure and very similar to giving a normal blood donation but the red blood cells are returned to the patient and the process takes a little longer.
The nearest donor centre is at 26 Margaret Street, Fitzrovia. W1. Anyone who has had coronavirus, either a test result or the symptoms, can offer to donate by calling 0300 123 23 23 or visitinghttps://www.nhsbt.nhs.uk to arrange an appointment to donate.
Warm Homes Discount Scheme
You could get £140 off your electricity bill for winter 2020 to 2021 under the Warm Home Discount Scheme. The Warm Home Discount Scheme for winter 2020 to 2021 will open on 12 October 2020. The money is a one-off discount on your electricity bill, between September and March. See here for more details https://www.gov.uk/the-warm-home-discount-scheme
Mayoral Election on 6th May – Voting by post
The Government has announced that the London Mayoral and GLA elections will go ahead on 6th May 2021.
Some people may be concerned about going to the polling stations in person, having to wear a mask and waiting in a socially-distanced queue.
It will be much easier, quicker and safer to vote by post.
You can use this form to apply for a postal vote
You can email your completed form to firstname.lastname@example.org or post it to Electoral Services, Westminster City Council, 14th Floor City Hall, 64 Victoria Street, London, SW1E 6QP.
Rita Begum is Labour’s candidate for West Central in the GLA Elections
You can visit Rita’s website at https://www.ritabegum.com/
You can read the ‘Westminster Extra’ online https://edition.pagesuite.com/html5/reader/production/default.aspx?pubname=&pubid=09649383-4dbb-4a3d-b164-9d26398578f3
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&Shttps://www.cosmopolitan.com/uk/worklife/g15049323/brands-reward-throwing-things-away/
You can report dumped rubbish, graffiti, broken paving stones and street lights and more to the Report It service 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).
You can keep an eye on the latest local crime information through the Met Police website:https://www.met.police.uk/a/your-area/met/westminster/queens-park/
Coronavirus (Covid-19) UPDATE
Dispelling the vaccination myths
Here is the link to a video featuring Black, Asian and Minority Ethnic celebrities dispelling myths about the vaccine and encouraging people to have the vaccination
You can see the latest data for your area here
Test and Trace Support Payments
You may be entitled to a Test and Trace Support Payment of £500 if you are self-isolating because of COVID-19 and you are either employed or self-employed. The payment is to support people on low incomes who are unable to work from home if they are told to self-isolate by NHS Test and Trace and lose income as a result.
Westminster Council’s advice and response website:
Queen’s Park Covid-19 Task Force
Queen’s Park Community Council has set up a Covid-19 Task Force. The Task Force is coordinating help and support for local people. If you can spare some time and would like to volunteer during lockdown please sign up here
For help or further information, you can phone 0208 960 5644 and leave a message, or text 07511 590 997 or visit https://queensparkcommunitycouncil.gov.uk/covid-19-response/.
Beware the Coronavirus scammers
What you say
“Thanks again for all the great work”
“Thanks guys for all the hard work and effort you put in. Speaking with friends & neighbours, your help is very much appreciated.”
“Many thanks for all your help. I really appreciate it.”
“Many thanks for the update, your work is very much appreciated.”
“Thank you for fighting our corner. You have made a difference to Kilravock Street. We appreciate everything your team has done to stand up for us”
“Thanks again, you are fantastic, you’ve never let me down”
“Thank you so much for your support. Your constituents speak highly of you.”
“I really appreciate your help in facilitating this, and am really glad that I started my query with you as it has been handled very efficiently.”
Please let us know if we can be of any assistance.
Please feel free to pass this newsletter on to your neighbours. If you know of anyone else who might like to receive this report, please send them this sign-up link http://bit.ly/signuplabnews
Keep well, take care and look after yourself and your neighbours.
Paul Dimoldenberg, Patricia McAllister and Hamza Taouzzale
Your Queen’s Park Ward Labour Councillors – Here to Help