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Showing posts from January, 2011

Harris Girls' new wing opening

The report below is from Renata:

I've just been to Harris Girl's Academy ED for the opening of their new wing by Lord Adonis. Lord Harris, Harriet Harman MP and Cllrs Peter John, Catherine McDonald and Althea Smith also attended. This school has fantastic facilities and under the Head Jane Fletcher is going from strength to strength. We heard that the school is performing above the national average at GCSE and it has a thriving mixed sixth form, with 50% of pupils joining from other schools. We listened the school choir sing and were dazzled by an array of outfits produced by year 7 to 13 students in their textiles classes. The latter included winning designs in a competition where pupils redesigned the school uniform. Well done Harris Girls!

A report about housing repairs statistics - less boring than it sounds

I've mentioned my role as Chair of Southwark's Housing Scrutiny committee a couple of times on this blog. Since taking this on in May last year our biggest piece of work has been an investigation into the statistics used to measure performance in Southwark's housing repairs service. Sounds technical, remote and boring doesn't it? I will do my best to convince you otherwise.

Back in July 2010, the committee had to decide which housing issues we wanted to look into. Councillors on the committee (from all parties) had just been through an election campaign in which we'd knocked on lots and lots of doors. Among Southwark's tenants, by far the biggest concern was the quality of the contracted-out repairs service.

But there was a problem. All of the statistics used to measure the quality of the service showed not just good, but brilliant levels of performance. 99.9% of appointments made by contractors were kept. Satisfaction levels hovered around the 94% mark. 90%+ of…

You're recycling more!

Peckham Rye Residents will recall that during the 2010 election campaign the issue of recycling rates was a huge issue. People we spoke to on the doorstep simply could not believe that the Liberal Democrats who had run the council for 8 years had left Southwark as the 6th worst recycling authority in the country. In November 2009, official league tables showed that in Lib Dem Southwark less than 21% of household waste was recycled. In that year, the recycling rate had risen less than 1%.

Southwark Labour candidates made a pledge during that election campaign to double our borough's recycling rate. In order to meet that pledge Labour needed to prepare the ground for some big changes. The new Cabinet Member with responsibility for recycling, Barrie Hargrove, immediately took steps to introduce a pilot scheme in six wards, including Peckham Rye. In October the pilot started, introducing a weekly food and garden waste collections and supplying people with compostable bags to enable th…

Ivydale/Cheltenham Road surface and bus issues - meeting on the 10th February

As mentioned in the post below, finding a solution to the issues the road surface and speed of buses on Cheltenham and Ivydale Roads is a top priority for people in that area.Numerous people have contacted us about this issue.As you will see from posts here, here and here – this has been a long running issue.This is now on the agenda for the Nunhead and Peckham Rye Traffic and Transport Sub-Committee meeting taking place at 6.30pm on the 10th February at Southwark Town Hall, 35 Peckham Road SE5 8UB, Room B.If you're concerned about this issue, do come along to discuss it and help us to agree a way to resolve these issues.In the interests of openness and clarity, I should declare a personal interest in this issue: I am a resident of Ivydale Road myself.As Chair of the Committee it may be that I will need to "stand down" for this item.I'll be consulting with council officers to clarify if I need to do this.

Bus and road surface issues on Cheltenham and Ivydale Road

Below is an anonymised version of an email from Victoria (one of my fellow Ward Councillors) to a resident of our ward who contacted us about their concerns regarding the road surface and speed of buses on Ivydale Road. This is also an ongoing issue for a number of people on Cheltenham Road too. The email gives a full and detailed account of this issue and sets out a way forward. Clearly it is now important that we move this issue on by putting together a firm set of actions at the forthcoming Nunhead and Peckham Rye Traffic and Transport sub-committee meeting on the 10th February. More details on this to follow.

Read on to find out more:


Dear ------

I understand that you have also contacted my fellow councillors about this matter - I am cc'ing them in so that they are aware of the latest progress on this issue which I have been dealing with.

I live at 340 Ivydale so am very aware of the problematic road surface and also the impact the b…

Councillor's report - January 2011

Each month Victoria, Renata and I produce a written branch report for our local ward Labour Party. At last night's meeting we circulated a report which included an update on a number of local ward issues and news on campaigning. Councillors producing a written report like this for the branch is a long established convention, but for some reason we've never made it publicly available before. Well, we thought it was time to change that and to put the full report up on the blog on a regular basis. So, here is the January Councillors' report to our local branch. Get in touch if you have any views or comments on the issues raised:

Branch report

Forest Hill Road/Colyton Road Traffic Lights

Although the traffic lights here were put in on a ‘temporary’ basis we supported them remaining in place longer in the hope that the Council secured funding for improvement works along the length of Forest Hill Road. Approx. £560k has now been secured from TfL for improvements to FHR and some of …

Southwark Labour comes to Peckham Rye - 8th and 9th Jan

A quick advert for Southwark Labour's campaigning weekend in our ward on the Saturday 8th and Sunday 9th January. Labour Councillors and members from across the borough will be coming to Peckham Rye to talk to local people about the issues that concern them.

Lots of people in our ward are concerned about the impact on local services coming from the coalition's draconian cuts - so it's really important that people know that there is a progressive alternative to the Lib Dem Tory approach. Talking to people face to face is best way of finding out what they're thinking and informing keeping them up to date about Southwark Labour's work in running the council. If you're one of the many new Labour Party members in Peckham Rye or just interested in getting involved in your local party, come along and join us. You don't need to be experienced in knocking on doors and talking to people. There will always be people on hand to help out, and nobody is left on thei…