Meeting on future of Alexandra Post Office

Lynne Featherstone MP on Saturday attended a local residents meeting, to discuss the future of Alexandra Parade Post Office. A representative from the Post Office was also there to answer questions.

The Post Office was closed without notice due to a dispute between the Post Office and the Post Master, and residents have been advised to use the Muswell Hill branch instead.  The Post Office have stated that the closure is temporary.

Local residents contacted the Liberal Democrat MP, as they were worried about losing the post office for good, and having to brave the queues at Muswell Hill branch on a permanent basis.

At the meeting, residents made it clear that an ongoing Post Office service is needed in the area.

Lynne Featherstone MP is now writing to the Chief Executive of the Post Office to formally raise the residents’ concerns.

Lynne Featherstone MP commented:

“Post Offices are a vital part of our local communities. They provide a range of services to local residents and attract people to the high street.

“The residents obviously care a great deal about the Alexandra Parade office – and I’m glad they were able to make their voices heard to the Post Office representative.

“There are still a number of unanswered questions about the closure, and about when the service will return. On behalf of local residents, I will contact the Chief Executive to get some answers.”


Growing economy – Good news for Haringey!

Great news – the economy is growing at the fastest rate we’ve seen since 2007 – according to the Office of National Statistics.

The International Monetary Fund (IMF) also increased its growth forecast for the UK economy from 1.9% to 2.4%.

The UK has also seen a sharp drop in unemployment, and there are now more people in work than ever before. All good signs that the economy is recovering.

And we’re really leading the way in Hornsey and Wood Green. There are now over 1100 fewer people claiming Job Seekers Allowance than there were in 2010.

Youth unemployment here is now 3.8% – almost halved since 2010.

And finally, the number of registered enterprises in Hornsey and Wood Green is on the up, from 4,855 in 2011 to 5,450 now.

The plan is working – and so are we!

What changes would you like to see in Haringey?

Here’s my latest Muswell Flyer article – on the changes I want to see in our borough this year. Also available here

The Christmas festivities are over and I hope everyone had a great time welcoming in the New Year. Alongside my usual resolutions, there is something specific I want to see in 2014.

This year, I want to see a change in how our local services are run and how our council tax money is spent. And with a local election taking place in May – change is a real possibility!

Our borough has so much potential – it is a truly vibrant and diverse area. But, like many Haringey residents who contact me, I am fed up of paying one of the highest rates of Council Tax in London and receiving a poor service in return.

Last year, Haringey Council (which is currently run by Labour) failed to deliver on many key local services.

On housing, the Council allowed £3.7 million to be spent on bonuses for housing staff while cancelling vital and long-overdue repair works for local homes. I receive so many complaints from local residents in social housing about the lack of repairs – and I just cannot believe that millions have been spent on bonuses for failure.

Our local streets are also not up to scratch. A survey I ran last year on rubbish collections turned up over 400 complaints about missed collections, bins in the wrong place, and piles of rotting rubbish.

Another survey revealed hundreds of complaints about potholes and lighting, too – despite the Council promising a ‘pothole blitz’ earlier in the year.

And also – the Labour-run Council is still refusing Lib Dem calls for an independent review into Children’s Services, despite further shocking failures to protect some of the borough’s most vulnerable children.

This is a small summary of the problems we have in Haringey. Labour has had 40 years in charge of Haringey Council, and I think it’s about time that changed.

In contrast to Labour, the local Lib Dems are constantly campaigning for improved local services. They’ve been instrumental in saving our parcel collection points and local train services, alongside pushing the Council into action on numerous issues – forcing them to consult on 20mph roads and to build new homes to ease the housing crisis, for instance.

The local Lib Dems are also committed to continuing the fight against development on Pinkham Way, and to improving the state of our streets. We’ve fought hard for independent shops by campaigning for thirty minutes free parking, and free parking over the entire Christmas period. And, the Lib Dems are committed to supporting our local Credit Union as an alternative to payday loan shops.

For me, the choice is easy. What we need is a Council that listens to residents and works for them. I will be campaigning hard to help the Lib Dems take control of the Council so that we can see real, positive changes to Haringey in 2014. Now, that really would be a happy new year!

A year of local delivery!

Here’s my latest Ham and High column, following a great year of working with local residents to protect our services

2013 was a year of people power in Haringey – with thousands of local residents and Liberal Democrats joining forces to protect local services.

At the beginning of the year, the proposed sell off of land at the Whittington Hospital was successfully halted, following a campaign by over 4,500 local residents and the Haringey Liberal Democrats.

Later in the year thousands of Lib Dem petition signers also prevented Royal Mail’s planned closure of Hornsey Sorting Office, and also stopped the threatened loss of local rail services at Hornsey and Harringay stations.

Local High Street traders also made their voices heard, calling for lower High Street parking charges. The Haringey Lib Dems and I backed them, by running a campaign for thirty minutes free parking and holding the Independent Shops Competition to give our best local stores some much deserved publicity.

The North London Waste Authority also finally backtracked on their idea to build a waste plant on the Pinkham Way site, thanks to a great campaign effort by the Pinkham Way Alliance, local residents and the Lib Dems. The NLWA still own the land, though – so we remain vigilant.

Last year was also great for jobs and apprenticeships – with more and more Haringey residents finding work. Since 2010, unemployment is at its lowest level in my constituency (over 1000 less JSA claimants), and youth unemployment has fallen by a third.

The apprenticeship event I ran this year was very popular and successful. I was so impressed with the ambition and drive of the young people who attended – and so were the employers. One Haringey young person was snapped up by an employer just a day after the event!

Looking forward to next year, I hope for more hard work and successes for the Lib Dems and people power. And one date in particular springs to mind – May 22nd, the next round of local elections.

Last year, Haringey Council (which is currently run by Labour) failed to deliver on many key local services. Our roads are in a state, two thirds of residents are dissatisfied with their rubbish collections, and Childrens Services has been tarnished with more child protection scandals.

And at the same time, the Labour-run Council continues to waste money. £3.7 million in shockingly large bonuses were dished out to repairs staff – while essential repair work to local homes was cancelled. It’s no wonder Haringey Council is the fourth most complained about in the country.

That’s why I want to see a change in how our local services are run and how our Council Tax money is spent.

And after this great year of local delivery and working with residents, I hope it’s the Haringey Liberal Democrats that take control of Haringey Council, so they can work with residents to fix Haringey for good.

Now, that really would be a happy new year!

Pinkham Way – one step closer to victory!

Lynne Featherstone and Haringey Liberal Democrats protesting at the proposed site of a waste processing plant on Pinkham WayI have just sent the below comment to the local papers regarding the North London Waste Authority’s (NLWA) decision to end their procurement process for long term waste management services.

In short – they have decided to keep using the waste facility in Edmonton and keep waste management under control of the local authority (rather than contract them out to a private bidder).

There are now no current plans to use the Pinkham Way site for waste management. I’d like to echo the words of the Pinkham Way Alliance: ‘This is very good news!’

Here’s what I’ve told the local papers:

“The decision to end the procurement for long-term waste management in North London marks a great victory for the Pinkham Way Alliance, the local Liberal Democrats and local residents, who have campaigned hard against the NLWA’s plans.

“From day one, the whole process has been a farce and the strategy deeply flawed. The plan to use Pinkham Way for a waste plant, for instance, was simply inappropriate. They should have been looking at ways to reduce wastage – not thinking of building huge incinerators in unsuitable places.

“It’s all very well the NLWA saying they’re saving us money now by keeping waste management services ‘in house’ – but what about the public money wasted to date on their flawed plans?

“I am of course glad that the NLWA has finally seen sense – but it shouldn’t have taken this long to realise their existing Edmonton site would be suitable.

“We must remain vigilant, though. Although there are now no immediate plans to use the Pinkham Way site, it is still an asset of the NLWA, and different plans to use the site may surface in the future.

“The local Lib Dems and I will be sure to keep residents updated as and when we receive information.”

Lynne Featherstone MP backs Pinkham Way Alliance petition

Lynne Featherstone and Haringey Liberal Democrats protesting at the proposed site of a waste processing plant on Pinkham WayLiberal Democrat MP Lynne Featherstone has encouraged local residents to sign the Pinkham Way Alliance’s current petition to halt the £3 billion waste contract for North London.

The North London Waste Authority is intending to award a 30 year waste contract worth £3 billion for the management of waste across all seven of its member boroughs – including Haringey.

The Alliance assert that the contract is deeply flawed, as it is based on waste predictions for 30 years ahead – absurdly far in advance and already shown to be inaccurate and based on guesstimates.

The new contract could also see renewed plans for a waste facility on Pinkham Way.

The MP for Hornsey and Wood Green and the PWA have teamed up before, and successfully stopped the building of a massive waste plant on the Pinkham Way site.

Lynne Featherstone MP commented:

“Last year, we successfully prevented the building of a completely unsuitable waste plant – but the fight goes on.

“The Haringey Lib Dems and I are now supporting the PWA’s latest petition – and encouraging residents to do the same.”

Lynne Featherstone MP discusses future of Alexandra Palace with Chief Executive

Lynne Featherstone MP at Alexandra Palace, with the television tower in the backgroundLynne Featherstone MP met with Duncan Wilson, the Chief Executive of Alexandra Palace, today. The local landmark recently secured funding of £16.8million to regenerate the Palace from the Heritage Lottery Fund.

The local MP was updated on plans for the regeneration work, which is scheduled for completion in 2017 and will include a renovation of the theatre and the BBC television studios. The lighting in the great hall will also be restored and made more energy efficient.

Lynne was also informed about upcoming events at the Palace this year such as the Red Bull Soap Box Rally and the 150th Anniversary of the park. Celebrations will feature local bands, hot air ballooning, cricket and archery.

After the meeting Lynne Featherstone MP said:

“I am thrilled that Alexandra Palace has secured funding for its regeneration. It is a wonderful building and a source of great pride for the community. I’m very excited to see it return to its glory days.

“I wish them every success with the 150th anniversary celebrations this year and I look forward to seeing the end result of the regeneration project in 2017.”