East London Line's future

Rush down to chair a meeting of the East London Line Group. It’s a brainstorming session for the key stakeholders on the northern extension planned for Phase 2 of the project.

Phase 1 has now got the go-ahead and funding is arranged, but it leaves the parts that some of us need most for Phase 2 – particularly the extension on to Highbury and Islington. For details see the TfL website.

We brainstorm away – and the key issues surface pretty quickly. More capacity is needed – otherwise we can’t cope with both the freight demands on the North London Line and the needs of Phase 2 of the East London Line extension.

It is clear that there are decisions being made about signalling on other parts of the line that need to cater for this. The contributors were really excellent – so I end the meeting hopeful.

Later, I get a call from the Hornsey Journal to inform me that ex-councillor Tory Peter Forrest has announced his candidacy in the General Election in Hornsey and Wood Green and would I like to comment. Apparently he has launched himself by calling Barbara Roche (the incumbent MP) a ‘Blair babe’ and myself a ‘Stepford Wife’.

Apart from the obvious low-grade tone he apparently intends to bring to his campaign – I am astonished that he is standing given that he has already admitted that the Tories can’t win. He went into press a few weeks ago saying that it was a close race between Featherstone and Roche

Anyway, I finish the day delivering more bundles of clerical work to wonderful local people who have volunteered to help me. Zip around having chats, dropping or picking up envelopes and getting promises to display posters.