Lynne Featherstone MP to host Apprenticeship event in Haringey

Lynne Featherstone MP  with Gordon Birtwistle MP, talking to an organisation representative at the Haringey Apprenticeship eventThe MP for Hornsey and Wood Green is to host her annual apprenticeship event on the 28th August at Haringey Civic Centre, from 2-6pm.

The MP will be teaming up with JobCentre Plus in Wood Green once again to put on the event, so that Haringey youngsters can meet companies with apprenticeship vacancies, find out more about how to apply and even secure apprenticeships that will kick start their future career.

Last year, the event was attended by around 20 employers, with over 1000 opportunities between them, and over 100 young jobseekers. Following the event, companies have confirmed that they have taken on some of Haringey’s young people – with one young person being offered an apprenticeship the very next day.

There have been over 1.8 million apprenticeship starts since the start of 2010 and Liberal Democrats in Government are committed to delivering 2 million apprenticeships by the end of this Parliament.

In Lynne Featherstone’s constituency of Hornsey and Wood Green, youth unemployment has halved since 2010.

Commenting, Liberal Democrat MP Lynne Featherstone said:

“With youth unemployment continuing to fall in Haringey, I’m pleased to be able to do my bit to bring these great opportunities to young people in Haringey and I’m really looking forward to this year’s event.

“Apprenticeships are a great way to kick start a career and combine practical training in a job with study. That means you get paid to study and learn a trade, whilst also being able to make contacts in an industry.

“If you’re a young person, a parent, looking for work, or looking to try something different, please do come along and find out more!”

Over 700 local residents sign Lynne Featherstone MP’s Royal Mail petition  

Lynne Featherstone MP, Cllr Richard Wilson and Cllr David Schmitz outside Hornsey Sorting Office with petition slips.Over 700 local residents have signed Lynne Featherstone’s recent petition, calling on Royal Mail to rethink the closure of Hornsey Delivery Office.

The petition was launched last week, in response to Royal Mail announcing that the delivery office would close, and that services would relocate to the Bush Industrial Estate in N19.

The move means that residents would have to make longer journeys to collect undelivered parcels.

Royal Mail attempted the same move in 2012, but eventually postponed the plans indefinitely in the face of the local Lib Dem and resident campaign.

The Liberal Democrat MP will meet with Royal Mail representatives next week to present the petition, and ask for a replacement parcel collection point in the N8 area.

Lynne Featherstone MP commented:

“The strength of feeling on this is clear. Ideally, we want the office to stay where it is and to carry on operating as normal. But at the very least, we need a place in N8 where we can collect our undelivered parcels. Many residents simply won’t be able to travel all the way to N19.

“This weekend the local Lib Dems and I will be out on the streets trying to get more signatures for the petition – the more we get, the more weight it will carry.

“I’ll present the petition to Royal Mail on Thursday, and argue strongly for a local parcel collection point to stay in N8.”

Lynne Featherstone MP attends Iftar dinners in Hornsey and Wood Green

Lynne Featherstone MP speaking at the Fatih Mosque in Wood Green. Lynne Featherstone MP, along with Lib Dem parliamentary candidate for Tottenham Turhan Ozen, last week visited two local Mosques for Iftar dinners – the evening meal where Muslims break their daily fast during Ramadan.

The Liberal Democrat MP gave speeches at both the Fatih Mosque in Wood Green and at the Diyanet Mosque in Hornsey.

In both speeches the local MP spoke about the strong Muslim community in Haringey, and how she has met so many local Muslims by holding advice surgeries at Mosques and opening new local businesses.

The MP for Hornsey and Wood Green also spoke about her experiences as a Government Minister at the Department for International Development, which has enabled her to meet Muslim and other communities in Africa.

Lynne Featherstone MP commented:

“It was an honour to attend the Iftar dinners and share the wonderful food and experience with the local mosque communities. I’d like to thank both Mosques for the invitations.

“When Ramadan falls in the summer months, it is particularly demanding, and I have huge respect for the many Muslims who commit to fasting every day for a month, between sunrise and sunset.

“My work in international development means I get to travel overseas to meet such a wide range of communities. But Haringey is just as diverse – with 180 languages spoken here! It’s great to spend time with the communities here too and take part in these important events.”


Campaign to save parcel collection point in Hornsey starts again…

I have just heard, via a Royal Mail press release, that Hornsey Delivery Office and parcel collection point will be relocated in September – to the Bush Industrial Estate in N19.

I am angry – to say the least!

After local residents and I successfully campaigned to prevent the closure in 2012, Royal Mail assured me that I would be kept informed of any future plans. Yet this came out of the blue. Just two weeks ago, a Royal Mail representative wrote to me saying: ‘I can confirm that there are no plans in place to close Hornsey Delivery Office.’

This is simply unacceptable. Royal Mail have not taken into account the views and needs of local people and customers. The Delivery Office and parcel collection point are vital and valuable local resources. Many residents simply won’t be able to travel all the way to N19 to pick up their parcels – so will be forced to pay for redelivery.

Even if we can’t save the Office itself, the local Lib Dems and I will fight with residents again to keep a parcel collection service in N8. I have already called a meeting with the top officers at Royal Mail and will be putting the case very strongly to them.

Residents can sign the petition calling on Royal Mail to rethink and retain a free, local, parcel collection point here.

Hornsey Bowls club – vote now!

The Hornsey Bowling Club is a great local asset – the local Lib Dems use it for social events from time to time, and I know from talking to local residents that it has produced many fond memories.

Cyril Meadows and the 100 or so members are now looking to regenerate the club – they want to make a number of improvements including the redecoration of the clubhouse, replacing the boiler, and improving the bar area.

The total cost will be about £25,000, which the club is seeking to fund through a Community Award from Engage Mutual.

This is where you come in – the Community Award is based on support from local people, and the more votes the Club gets the better their chances.

There is a lot of competition for the money, so if you want to help the club please take a few minutes to vote at the following link –

Voting is open to all UK citizens over the age of 16, and ends on 31st May. This is a very worthy cause, and with the help of local people I hope to see the Club get the repairs they need.

£800 tax cut for 45,090 people in Hornsey and Wood Green

An £800 income tax cut for people in Hornsey and Wood Green is the real budget boost, Liberal Democrat MP Lynne Featherstone said today.

The budget revealed plans to increase the personal allowance from April 2015 and put an extra £100 back in taxpayers’ pockets.

Lib Dems have already delivered on a £700 tax cut for low to middle earners, but today’s news goes even further for hardworking people.

The number of people who could benefit from a cut to the personal allowance in Hornsey and Wood Green is expected to be around 45,090

Liberal Democrat MP for Hornsey and Wood Green, Lynne Featherstone said:

“This tax cut is the real budget boost for working people and would not have happened without Lib Dems in Government creating a stronger economy and a fairer society. This was on the front page of our manifesto!

“The Tories are desperate to claim credit, but in reality their focus is on changes such as an inheritance tax cut for millionaires which we blocked, while Labour simply cannot be trusted with the economy.

“We are also helping people with a freeze on fuel duty and new tax-free childcare to help parents.”

Mayor rubber stamps Hornsey High Street application

Lynne Featherstone discusses the development with local residents.  The Conservative Mayor of London, Boris Johnson, has refused Liberal Democrat and local resident calls to reject the Hornsey Depot application.

Liberal Democrat MP Lynne Featherstone and Hornsey Councillor Monica Whyte both wrote to the Mayor, and asked him not to approve the application in its current form. They repeated the concerns on quality of development, housing density and impact on local trade and traffic – alongside concerns about drainage and possible damp problems on the depot site.

The Mayor of London had the power to instruct the Council to reject the application or to take over the application himself – however he opted to do neither.

The rubber stamping is the latest bad news in the on-going Hornsey Depot saga. Local Liberal Democrats and residents remain outraged, as Labour-run Haringey Council approved the application, despite objections from Hornsey Liberal Democrat councillors and local residents.

At Council level, the application went through on the Labour Chair’s casting vote even though all the Liberal Democrat members on the committee voted against the application.

Hornsey Campaigner Dawn Barnes said:

“Local residents are really worried about this development. It’s clear that the Labour-run Council have rushed this through and missed the chance to make crucial amendments. Now the Conservative Mayor has let us down, too.

“We’ll continue to speak up for residents, to try and get the best deal possible for Hornsey.”

Commenting, Lynne Featherstone MP said:

“It’s appalling that such a flawed application has been waived through by both the Labour Council and now, the Conservative Mayor.

“The Liberal Democrats in Hornsey will keep representing local residents and fighting for changes to these plans.

“We will be going back to the developers, and I’ll be writing to Sainsbury’s to ask that they recruit local residents to work in the store once it’s open. It is so important that local residents benefit from this development as much as possible.”

Lib Dems hand in free high street parking petition

Last week Haringey Liberal Democrats submitted their petition calling for 30 minutes of free parking on local high streets. The petition has been signed by 1,750 people and will be officially received by Haringey Council at the Budget meeting on Wednesday 26th February.

The Lib Dems believe that 30 minutes of free parking would boost trade on local high streets and support the independent shops that make Haringey’s high streets unique.

At the budget meeting on Wednesday the Liberal Democrat councillors will be putting forward a budget amendment to implement 30 minutes of free parking on local high streets. The proposal would be funded by cutting the council’s huge agency staff bill and by ending the automatic refilling of vacant posts, ensuring only those posts that are needed are filled.

The campaign by Haringey Lib Dems for 30 minutes of free parking attracted the support of traders in Muswell Hill who gathered a petition with over 5,000 signatures calling for lower parking charges.

The campaign for 30 minutes of free parking was sparked by the Labour-run council’s decision to double parking charges in Muswell Hill, Crouch End and Green Lanes from £1.40 to £3 per hour. So far the council has refused to bow to pressure from traders, residents and Haringey Lib Dems on the issue.

Cara Jenkinson, Lib Dem candidate for Muswell Hill and lead petitioner, comments:

“Haringey Labour’s high parking charges encourage people to drive further to out-of-town supermarkets where the parking is free. We want people to be able to stop, park and shop locally.

“Local people clearly want to see the Labour council take some action on parking. We had 1,700 people support the Lib Dem petition for 30 minutes free parking on local high streets. I hope councillors on all sides consider that when they vote on the Lib Dem budget amendment proposing free parking on local high streets.”

Lynne Featherstone, Lib Dem MP for Hornsey and Wood Green, comments:

“Local shopkeepers have told me that they are suffering because of these ridiculously high charges. 30 minutes of free parking is vital to keep small independent shops on our local high streets – and it would benefit residents too.

“Labour may say there’s no money available – but as the Lib Dem budget amendment shows – Labour-run Haringey Council could easily afford 30 minutes of free parking on local high streets by cutting the agency staff bill and not automatically filling jobs when people leave.”

Calls for quicker action on New River repairs

Lynne Featherstone MP and a local resident make demands to the Circle 33 Managing Director outside the New River Village Colorado apartments. Lynne Featherstone MP last week met with Circle 33 managing director to discuss the ongoing saga at Colorado apartments, part of the New River Village in Hornsey.

Together with local campaigner Dawn Barnes, the Liberal Democrat MP has long been campaigning for better conditions for these residents – last year publishing a video on Youtube to get Circle 33’s attention.

Since then, Circle 33 have committed to make numerous repairs and to re-house residents on the ground floor. The Managing Director said that work to the roof and pumping to remove water coming through the floor has started.

But, the residents who are still experiencing poor living conditions made their voices heard – they want faster repairs and better conditions now.

At a recent planning meeting at Haringey Council, a representative from New River Village developers St James admitted that there were “a number of design issues and operational problems” with the development.

Local Liberal Democrat campaigner and candidate for Hornsey, Dawn Barnes, said:

“Whilst it’s good news that work is in progress, these residents are still living in awful conditions on a day to day basis. We will continue to push Circle 33 to act as quickly as possible.

“The St James chairman has publicly admitted there were design issues. This is something that should have been picked up by Labour-run Haringey Council building control, when they were overseeing the development.

“There has been complete failure all around – and it’s the residents who are paying the price.”

Hornsey and Wood Green MP Lynne Featherstone MP said:

“Circle 33 know we are watching them and the New River Village closely.  We know how substantial the repair work is, but it must continue without any further delay. These residents have suffered enough.”

Backing local residents' campaign to save Park Road diving

Lynne Featherstone MP is backing a local community campaign to save diving facilities at Park Road leisure centre in Crouch End.

Dozens of local residents have contacted the local MP asking for support, after Haringey Council announced that they would remove the diving boards.

The Labour-run Council took this decision without any consultation, and despite previous assurances that the diving boards would remain in place and be improved.

The Liberal Democrat MP last week contacted the Council and demanded an explanation, and is backing local residents’ calls to pause the plans and think again.

Hornsey and Wood Green MP Lynne Featherstone commented:

“When Haringey Council gave Fusion the contract to manage Park Road – they promised residents that the diving facilities would remain in place and be improved.

“Now, the Labour-run Council and Fusion are about to remove these facilities without consultation.

“Many local residents have contacted me to express their disappointment and concern at the loss of the diving boards. I am right behind them – and very happy to support their campaign to save the boards.

“As I haven’t yet received a response from the Council – I have contacted the Chief Executive today to request his urgent intervention.”

Residents can sign the petition to save the diving facilities here.