Haringey says 'Defend Public Services!'

250 local residents and workers joined a very lively and angry march from Wood Green Library to a rally outside Council meeting at the Civic Centre on October 18th. Speeches (including from the HFRA) called for protection of all our public services, and for the Council to demand adequate resources from central Government instead of implementing cuts. Full details, photos etc at the above link..

Haringey Friends of Parks Update

Latest news

Local transport strategy review

Full details

The Residents Federation have circulated an appeal for public consultation responses over priorities set out for travel improvements in Haringey over the next 3 years. The Council is applying to Transport for London for the funding to achieve a range of improvements set out.

At our own link above is a summary of the very large document, which you can read at: There's also an extract from the document summing up the results of the initial public consultation (535 responses) which took place earlier this year. The top six most popular policies were:

1. Reduce public transport overcrowding
2. Encourage walking
3. Improve road safety
4. To make it easier to travel by bicycle
5. Provide cleaner, de-cluttered streets
6. To reduce CO2 emissions from transport by 60% by 2025

Pretty sensible! The key thing is how to achieve those objectives.

Over the last 10 years many residents associations have successfully lobbied for 20mph zones in their neighbourhoods. This has certainly helped to improve road safety and led to less deaths and casualities, encouraged more walking and cycling, and more peaceful neighbourhoods. However, it is taking a very long time to roll out piecemeal to all residential areas. Hence one of the key things we have been lobbying for as a Federation is to make the whole borough a 20mph 'default' speed limit (ie that all streets are 20mph maximum speed, unless a particular street is designated otherwise). This is very popular and has already been implemented elsewhere (eg in neighbouring Islington), so we see no reason why Haringey residents should have a less safe local environment!

To achieve this we need to ensure that the Council's bid for funding from Transport for London includes this proposal. If residents and local community groups can support this (either because they already have secured a 20mph limit in their area, or would benefit from one, or just think its common sense), please email by Monday 8th November.

Groups join forces to fight Haringey cuts

Haringey Advertiser - 8 Sept

Update - Over 120 people braved the rain on Sept 14th for a lively protest rally, with many impassioned speeches...

A NEW alliance has been formed to fight for the protection of local services in the face of swingeing government cuts.

Residents groups, political groups, and trade unionists from all across the borough have joined together to form Haringey Alliance For Public Services and will hold a rally outside Wood Green Civic Centre, in High Road, at 6.30pm next Tuesday to coincide with a meeting of those charged with ushering in the cuts – Haringey Council’s cabinet.

Group members believe that if the council puts in place a predicted £60million of cuts in the next four years, “devastating” impacts will be felt in all sections of the community.

They are encouraging people who live and work in Haringey to join the alliance, “not leave the business of opposition to politicians”.

Michelle Lawson from the group said: “By saying that these cuts are inevitable, the coalition government is peddling an economic myth to pursue its own political agenda. If its cuts are implemented, it will be the poorest who are hit the hardest.”

The group will aim to protect healthcare, schools, nurseries, community centres, parks, libraries, social services, affordable housing, jobs and help for the unemployed.

Member Oktay Sambaz added: “It has been really encouraging to see so many different groups from all over Haringey coming together to resist these cuts.”

Email or visit to find out more.

Defend our green spaces!

Haringey park fans want extra cash not cutbacksHaringey Journal, 04 August 2010

A PLEA has gone out to prevent any cuts and instead pump MORE money into Haringey's parks during the recession.The Haringey Friends of Parks Forum called on the council this week to fight for more cash for the borough's numerous parks "given the huge contribution they make" to society.
A spokesman for the forum said Haringey's green spaces had steadily improved in recent years thanks to strong support from hundreds of residents, who have formed "Friends" groups for their local park to ensure they are better managed and improved. As a result, the spokesman said, they have "gone from, in many cases, forlorn areas of neglect to blooming, attractive places where local residents want to go" - and now is no time to cut budgets.
But a letter from forum secretary Joan Curtis to all Haringey councillors in June revealed deep concerns remained. She wrote: "It seems that already inadequate budgets have been cut again for this year, equipment and machinery are in disrepair, the parks department suffers from front-line understaffing, and now this week we have heard of a freeze on filling much-needed vacant posts."
The forum spokesman added: "A well-resourced park can be the heart of a community, feeding into all the positive aspects of human society. An under-resourced park can soon deteriorate and become a negative space full of fear and anti-social activity."
Haringey saw 19 parks make the Green Flag grade this year, including 11 maintained by the council.
Haringey Council moved to reassure the group, saying: "Top quality parks are important and that's why we've worked so hard with the Friends' groups and our other partners to secure investment to bring our open spaces up to the level of the best. In the wake of the Government cuts we are determined to do all we can to protect services that matter most to residents, including continuing to lobby for funding for our parks and open spaces."

Protect Tenants' Housing Benefits

The Haringey Federation of RAs has joined with other similar organisations around the UK to call for the Government to abandon their threat to cut a percentage of Housing Benefit payments to hundreds of thousands of tenants. This would result in increased stress, poverty and evictions for some of the most vulnerable in our society and is hence an unacceptable attack tenants' basic rights. Full Open Letter to the Government

Licensing and communities

Federation responds to public consultation by calling for stronger protection of community interests regarding the licensing of the sale of alcohol. Full statement

Haringey's Cemetaries for sale?

UPDATE [14.7.2010]! Following objections by the Federation the Council has withdrawn the privatisation threats to Wood Green & Tottenham Cemeteries, and postponed the proposals for the Enfield Crematorium to September to allow some time for consultation...

STATEMENT [8.7.2010]
We have just discovered that it seems that the Cabinet next Tuesday (13th July) will be discussing selling off the management of Haringey's Cemetaries. This would be, as far as we can tell, without any consultation with the borough's residents, and against the advice of the Council officers currently running the bereavement service (who have proposed selling off the management of Haringey Council's crematorium site in Enfield, but keeping those which are within the borough). The idea is likely to be highly controversial, especially as there has been no consultation.

You may want to seek more information or press the Council about this matter further... The Council leader is: Cabinet member for Recreation Services is:

The HFRA hasn't had time to consider our policy on this as we have only just read about it in the Cabinet papers just released (see below) - there seems to be a discrepancy in what the Director of Recreation Services (who manage the crematoria) is recommending, and what the Council's Chief Executive is saying should happen...

However, this proposal is likely to be highly controversial. Everyone should be concerned at the potential long term implications of this so called 'disposal' of a vital public service, and the failure to engage with the borough's residents.

Dave Morris
, HFRA Secretary


North London campaigners win battle to save allotments

Exactly a year after they were told their allotments would be sold as building land, a group of north London campaigners have clinched a deal which ensures the site will stay green forever.

The Save Fortis Green Allotments campaign gathered thousands of signatures for a petition, won backing from celebrities such as Kate Humble and Monty Don, and mobilised all-party political support in the effort to save the field in Muswell Hill where locals have grown their veg for nearly a century. Now, after raising £30,000 from local supporters, they have finalised the purchase of the land and are set to carry on digging.

“This is a great day,” says Don Fisher, chair of the Fortis Green Community Allotments Trust, which now owns the site. “A year ago it looked almost certain that the bulldozers would be moving in on this beautiful little green space. Now, thanks to our fantastic local community, that threat has gone and Fortis Green people will be able to go on growing runner beans and raspberries here forever..”

The field, which is next to a reservoir and has been used for allotments for decades, was owned by Thames Water, which decided last year to auction it off to developers with an expected sale price in six figures. But the strong local campaign, backed by Haringey Council and reported in both local and national press, persuaded the company to take it off the market and discuss a private sale to the Trust instead.

Newly created by the allotmenteers and their supporters, the Trust is committed to securing the site as allotments in perpetuity. Negotiations continued over several months before the price of £30,000 was agreed, and meanwhile fundraisers went to work, organising a barn dance, a comedy night and promises action, while Capital Growth and Haringey also made grants.

“After 12 months of campaigning and fundraising it’s a huge relief to have completed the purchase,” says Don Fisher. “It’s been a massive team effort and we are enormously grateful to all those who’ve donated money, time and ideas. It’s wonderful to know that the site is safe not just in the short term but forever.”

As well as running the allotments the Trust has other plans. “We’re already working with local schools and plan more community involvement because we want to help people learn about growing their own food,” says Don. “Also, the allotments are a significant habitat for many species, from birds to bats to beetles, and we intend to be good custodians and are working with the council on their Allotments Bio-Diversity Plan.”

But Don has a warning too. “No one should think that this spells the end of new development in this area. We already know that someone is trying to get planning permission for houses on some land overlooking the allotments, so there’s more campaigning to be done.”

Victory for Seven Sisters Community!

Tuesday, 22 June, 2010

We are very pleased to announce that today (Tuesday) the Court of Appeal stood by the Community of Tottenham and ruled in our favour. We won. The Grainger (property developers) application has been quashed. We would like to thank the hundreds of people, including you, who have supported us through a diversity of means that won us this result.

It is not over, there is still much to fight for but this is our platform for achieving what will really resource this community.

With gratitude and our warm wishes,

Wards Corner Community Coalition - More info:

Let's defend public services

Residents and workers organisations in Haringey are forming an alliance to support each other defend our much needed local public services and oppose cuts. Full information

Skill Share Extravaganza!

All Day Mid-summer Celebration of our Talents, Communities and the Environment!

Sunday 20th June
10am - 10pm @ Tottenham Chances
399 Tottenham High Rd, N17
Organised by Sustottenham, backed by the Sustainable Haringey network - for Haringey Sustainability Month

A day for sharing and learning, for appreciating the wealth of skills, knowledge and talent all around us in our communities, and for working towards a sustainable society... Organised by and for local residents. Free entry.

Residents are invited to enjoy a range of free workshops and activities including local foraging/harvesting, cooking, food co-op stalls, permaculture, Dr Bike, solar energy & plumbing info, plants and gardening books to 'give and take', films, DIY video-journalism, drumming, crafts, african bead-making, painting & drawing, sharing knowledge, games, mapping, dance, health techniques, discussions, music & performance, poetry, theatre, singing... and more.

The first Skill Share took place at Tottenham Chances on 21 March. The event is planned to run quarterly.

Wendy Keenan said "The Skill Share is back debunking negative mythologies about Tottenham. Everyone is welcome to contribute their part inventing the future. Come and discover how to be joyful!"

Sustottenham is a recently formed member group of the Sustainable Haringey Network aiming to engage and involve the population of Tottenham in developing and promoting community-led solutions to the challenges of climate change, peak oil and economic recession. Sustottenham is currently taking responsibility for a series of major Skill Sharing events.

Tottenham Chances is a thriving new local community centre run by and for local people. Info:

Federation Health Check!

Annual Report 2009-10 now out...

Carers' demand respite breaks

Report of protest at Haringey NHS HQ

Haringey Sustainability Month

June is packed with exciting, informative, relevant, useful, empowering and fun-tastic green community activities throughout all corners of the borough!

Full programme of events

This year's annual Haringey Sustainability Month, co-ordinated by the Sustainable Haringey network, promises to be the most extensive programme of local green events and widespread publicity ever held in the borough. Throughout the whole month, local residents and community groups, environmental organisations and the Council have organised dozens of events in all corners of Haringey including film shows, festivals, nature walks and talks, practical seminars and workshops, skills sharing, information stalls, social events, bike rides and Dr Bike, visits to eco-homes and plant growing sites, games, meetings, protests, foraging trips, and healthy eating! These events will promote the positive green policies and practices our society urgently needs to adopt to deal with mounting environmental concerns and climate change. Tens of thousands of leaflets are being distributed to publicise the activities.

The full programme of events can be accessed from the home page of (please publicise!). By accessing the website, people can get the full details of the events planned, and can also sign up for regular Sustainable Haringey updates.

Sustainable Haringey is a grass-roots community network of local sustainability/transition groups (in Finsbury Park, Tottenham, Crouch End, Highgate, and Muswell Hill), working groups and projects (promoting sustainable food, transport, homes, waste, workplaces/economy etc), backed by over 1,000 residents and 50 Haringey organisations. We are promoting the need for a transition to a sustainable society based on: protection of the earth's environment; sustainable, low carbon lifestyles and economy based on renewable resources and minimum wastage; strong and stable communities; empowerment of local people; and decisions being made for the long term interests of people and the environment.

What we do today affects the future and maybe even the very survival of our society. We are calling on all residents and local organisations to join in the activities, and to help make the changes needed so that we can create a society which is sustainable for future generations.

Residents' Election Questionnaire Results!

Haringey's election candidates responses to HFRA Questionnaire

Councillors to be held to their promises and committments..

The following letter and Residents' Questionnaire (see answers to the 42 Questions, below) was sent on 13th April to all candidates in the local elections: To all candidates: At a recent meeting of residents associations from around the borough it was agreed that we would put a series of questions to all election candidates, as we did successfully before the 2006 elections. We’ve restricted the questions to some of the key issues which affect the physical infrastructure of our local neighbourhoods and affect the strength and quality of our local services around our borough. We recognise there are many other just as relevant issues. Please answer the attached Questionnaire - and add any comments. The responses, or lack of responses, will be noted and publicised to residents associations and to residents generally. Please respond by Thursday 22nd April.

The Questions related to whether, and how, the candidates would, if elected…..
- Improve the borough’s street scene
- Ensure development and regeneration is what residents want and is for our benefit
- Protect, improve and expand Haringey’s open spaces
- Protect and improve local community facilities (eg health, education, leisure, playcentres, play areas, local POs & shops, meeting spaces etc) throughout Haringey
- Protect and improve public services
- Protect the borough’s Council housing
- Ensure long-term environmental sustainability, and an exemplary contribution by Haringey to the prevention of dangerous climate change
- Improve the amount of resources and funding available (from all local and national sources) to achieve the above goals
- Support and work with the borough’s residents associations and the Federation

The promises and commitments in full, in writing, unedited, of all the Haringey Labour Councillors, and all the Haringey Liberal Democrat Councillors, received 22nd April, can be found at the link above.

Dave Morris, Secretary of Haringey Federation of Residents Associations, commented after the local poll results:
" In the light of the Councillors' written responses to the detailed Questionnaire the Federation put to them before the election we would expect all promises and commitments to be fulfilled. One major commitment by both parties on the Council is to defend front-line public services, and to call for additional funding from Central Government.We look forward to them keeping their word, and backing local campaigns, if the national government threatens a programme of cuts. Your readers can view the replies in full on our website - search 'elections'. "

eg In their Response to Q 5a on 22nd April (see below): The LibDem Candidates agreed to 'Protect and improve public services by taking all possible steps to oppose any cuts to front-line public services or facilities' ... and in their response to Q 8a: agreed to 'Improve the amount of of resources and funding available (from all local and national sources)'.... and... 'lobby central government to increase local funding'...
In their Response to Q 5a on 22nd April (see below): The Labour Candidates stated they are 'committed to defending frontline services'.... and in response to Q8b. stated 'Haringey Labour will continue to fight for additional funding from all sources to improve services to local people.'

Campaigners Save the Whittington!

Due to the level of opposition and protests from the public, patients and health professionals, and no doubt due to the impending general election, the controversial 'review' of North Central London's hospitals (in Barnet, Camden, Islington, Haringey and Enfield) has been scrapped by the Government. Hundreds of patients, staff and campaigners celebrated victory with a lunchtime rally outside the Whittington Hospital on 29th April.

The Defend Haringey's Health Services coalition can be very proud of the important role they played. They and the Defend Camden NHS Campaign initiated the original meeting which founded the Defend the Whittington Coalition. They then printed and distributed 15,000 leaflets in Haringey to publicise the 5,000-strong demonstration in February.

However all of us must ensure that all hospital services, and indeed all other NHS services, are defended after the general election is over.

The next meeting of the Defend Haringey's Health Services coalition is on
Monday May 17th, 7.30pm
At Hornsey Central Neighbourhood Centre, Park Road, N8 (opposite Barrington Road)
All concerned residents and community organisations are welcome

Carers Speak Out

At HFRA public meeting for carers, MP candidates agree to demand carers get respite breaks.

Parliamentary candidates from across Haringey joined forces at an extraordinary hustings on Friday 30th April to sign a letter demanding that local carers receive their rightful respite breaks. Full report.

"This must go down as the saddest public meeting I have ever been to," said the organiser Sue Hessel, who represents vulnerable groups for the Haringey Federation of Residents’ Associations.

Over 80 carers came to tell their heart rending stories to the MP candidates at a packed 100-strong public meeting at Middle Lane Methodist Church last Friday. The carers told how they struggled to cope alone with family members who had a complete range of problems, including Alzheimers, Autism, and multiple and profound disabilities. It soon became clear that they had one thing in common - they had not received the respite breaks Prime Minister Gordon Brown had promised them two years ago.

A Freedom of Information question by the Princess Royal Trust for Carers has revealed that over the past two years Haringey Primary Care Trust received over £750,000 for much needed short term breaks, but that they did not allocate it, putting it instead into general funds.

At the suggestion of Conservative candidate Richard Merrin, the candidates put all party differences aside to jointly express their concern that lifelong carers in Haringey had not been given the funding, demanding an explanation and insisting that the money is allocated for carers to receive their much needed breaks.

Text of letter below, signed by Lynne Featherstone (LibDem), Karen Jennings (Labour), Anne Gray (Green), Pete McAskie (Green), Richard Merrin (Conservative), Sean Sullivan (Conservative), Neville Watson (Independent People Together), Stephane De Roche (Independent).

"A Freedom of Information question by the Princess Royal Trust for Carers has revealed that government monies of over £750,000 were given to Haringey Primary Care Trust so that carers could have much needed respite breaks.* We, the undersigned parliamentary candidates have heard that these monies have not been allocated for this purpose. We would like an explanation and seek reassurance that Haringey Primary Care Trust releases these monies for carer respite breaks. *(£265,099 from the government in 2009/10 and £528,397 this financial year)"

Haringey planning & development conference success!

Haringey residents call for the needs of the community to have priority in all planning and development policy-making and decision-making. Community groups begin to mobilise to influence the Council's proposed 'Local Development Framework during the important LDF 6-week consultation period starting on May 10th. The LDF will set the policies governing all development in the borough from 2011-2026.

On April 17th 2010 at Hornsey Vale Community Centre, N8, 40 Haringey residents from many local organisations and groups from all over the borough took part in a residents' conference on planning and development issues. Full Conference Report. Participants included residents associations, 'friends of parks' groups, conservation societies, local campaigns, environmental organisations, political groups as well as individual residents. The conference was organised by The Haringey Federation of Residents Associations, supported by Haringey’s Friends of Parks Forum, Sustainable Haringey network, Haringey's Conservation Area Advisory Committees, Tottenham Civic Society and other local community organisations and networks.

The conference had been called to mobilise concerned community groups and residents to influence the borough's planning and development policies - known as the Local Development Framework - currently being re-written. The consultation documents set out very important policy proposals on how the borough will manage issues of housing, climate change, transport, employment, leisure, retail, open space, and design from 2011 to 2026. The documents are about to undergo 6 wks public consultation from May 10th to June 21st, following which they will be examined at a long and formal public hearing at the Civic Centre, presided over by a Planning Inspector.

This is a new, complex and confusing process which will replace the 'old-style' 10-year Unitary Development Plans, the last of which was adopted in 2006. The conference enabled participants to identify some of the key concerns over the proposed policies, some of the changes we would like to see, and ways in which local people can respond with their views.

Participants took part in a series of workshop discussions on the following topics: design and conservation; housing & development; open space and community facilities; transport & street scene; climate change and sustainability.

Concerns were expressed about over-development and skyscrapers, advertising hoardings, loss of Haringey's heritage and character, threats to some green spaces, the selling off of community facilities and local pubs, and too much traffic. There were strong feelings that what Haringey's communities actually need but are rarely getting is genuinely affordable housing, well-designed buildings, good quality local jobs, community-led regeneration, safer, greener and more friendly local streets and better public transport, more green space and allotment sites, protection of public land and community facilities, safeguarding of small independent shops, and the long term sustainability of our society.

Finally, in a session entitled 'Community Involvement and Empowerment In Planning - what we can do as residents', there were riveting and often inspirational presentations from some of the local campaigns around Haringey where local residents are standing up for their communities against unpopular and inappropriate development, and sometimes creating their own alternative community plans for contested sites. These included Alexandra Palace, Wards Corner, Hornsey Town Hall, various local parks, and certain backland sites.

Participants pledged to continue to work together to ensure residents' voices will be heard loud and clear throughout the coming consultation, and beyond. Special webpages have been set up to help as a reference point and to promote communication and co-ordination:

" Everyone now recognises that we must have environmentally and socially sustainable communities throughout Haringey. However, we are facing extreme pressures from corporate developers and town planners leading to a range of concerns & problems, and pressure on an already inadequate social infrastructure (schools, health facilities, parks, public transport, community centres and other facilities etc).

" Throughout Haringey there are an ever-growing number of residents’ objections, controversies and campaigns over proposed local developments. Residents want to ensure that policies supposedly meant to protect the interests of communities are enforced and that other policies favouring developers are changed. We believe that those who live and work in Haringey should have the maximum possible say over planning and development policies and practices that affect our lives, our communities and our neighbourhoods. As the Council prepares to consult over these matters we are calling on everyone to raise their voices, together. "

- Dave Morris, Secretary, Haringey Federation of Residents Associations

Are you a carer in Haringey?

Public meeting to quiz election candidates : Put your concerns - How should services improve?
Friday 30th April , 11am - 1pm . At Middle Lane Methodist Church, Crouch End, N8
Corner of Lightfoot Road, opp. Priory Park . Bus routes W3, 41, there is some parking
All welcome! Chair: Sue Hessel, Officer for Vulnerable Groups
, Haringey Federation of Residents’ Associations

Raising Our Voices

Residents Federation issues special statement to coincide with the coming elections.

Down Lane Park Friends Victory!

Following a long-running, intense and angry residents campaign spearheaded by the Friends of Down Lane Park in Tottenham Hale the Council have backed down and conceded that Down Lane Park will not be used for a new housing development and will instead receive over £250,000 for improvement works.

Council Leader Claire Kober said that new housing would be confined to existing developed land in the area and that Down Lane Park improvement works will begin immediately, subject to Cabinet approval next week.

The southern part of Down Lane Park had been identified as a potential site for new housing as part of one of two development options for the Ashley Road area of Tottenham Hale. This option - the Park 'land swap' - meant parkland would be released for new homes with a corresponding extension of the park on the north side.

The council received 225 responses to the consultation leaflet, and two public meetings were attended by over 50 people with two petitions received with a total of approximately 607 signatures opposing the "land swap" option.

Subject to Cabinet approval, plans to improve the Park can be taken forward in conjunction with the Friends of Down Lane Park. The first phase of improvements, with allocated funding totalling £255,000, can go ahead straightaway with the detailed measures to be designed and agreed with the Friends of the Park.

The Friends issued a statement, saying: ‘ We have achieved this outcome through the 617 petitions we collected at festivals, meeting local people in the park & high road, knocking at doors etc…. persuading the majority of respondents to the consultation to vote with us… and our activities over the last three years. We are delighted by this news. We very much welcome both decisions. It signals the beginning of far better park facilities for local people. We shall continue to press for funds especially S106 monies , mentioned in the Cabinet report, to create more play and sports facilities and fulfill our vision for the park.’ (See website

The nearby Chesnuts Area Residents Association had backed the campaign, and this week at an Area Assembly event successfully publicly challenged the Council Leader, Claire Kober, to cancel the controversial plans. One of their officers, Sheik Thompson (an independent Councillor), had been due to put a motion to this effect at the next Council meeting on March 22nd, in support of a major lobby planned by the Friends. The lobby has now been cancelled.

Full details

Save The Whittington!

Join the mass demonstratration, Saturday 27th February - meet 12 noon at Highbury Corner (by the tube), to march along Holloway Road to the hospital..

Protesters call for Council Scrutiny Committee to demand proposals be abandoned

On 20th January, the Defend Haringey's Health Services coalition organised an excellent lobby (15 people) of the Overview & Scrutiny Cttee at the Civic Centre. This was in response to the appearance there of the Chief Executive of the Whittington Hospital, following shocking proposals to close the A&E department. The proposals had been secretly developed by health bosses, but had been 'leaked'. They are part of a package of threatened cuts to hospital services across North London which have outraged and united people in all the affected boroughs.

There were protest banners outside the Civic Centre (including one from the Haringey Defend Council Housing Campaign who were attending in solidarity with health campaigners), highly detailed background documents produced for the Cttee, and a heartfelt and persuasive presentation by the Defend Haringey's Health Services coalition's Co-Secretary Janet Shapiro backed by Kieron McGregor from the Save Chase Farm (Enfield) campaign. Campaigners insisted the Committee should exercise its statutory powers to suspend the controversial and unsupported proposals for cuts, and pressurise the NHS to withdraw and abandon them.

The Chief Executive of the Whittington Hospital, as expected, claimed that the internal proposals to cut A&E services shouldn't have been leaked, that formal 'options' are now being developed which he conceded would now include one 'to retain the full Emergency Department'. Under pressure to admit that the proposed changes were to save money not improve services he admitted that 'money is an important driver'. He also admitted that they were looking into setting up an Urgent Care Centre at the Hospital, but incredulously claimed that this would not be to replace the A&E department (as had been originally floated) but as an addition, 'in parallel'. He also admitted that the Hospital was using the highly controversial and secret 'McKinsey Consultants Report' for its 'modelling' of future services.

Councillors on the Cttee expressed support for many of the DHHS campaigners' points, including the concern that these are clearly cuts in services that are not 'clinically-driven'. The Cttee has so far not committed to any effective response except to call for 'transparency' from the Hospital and NHS, that all the relevant documentation be made public, and to say that they will be monitoring the situation closely.

People present took away hundreds of leaflets to publicise the Feb 27th 'Save The Whittington' demo.

The Defend Whittington Hospital Coalition is committed to defending all services at North London hospitals including at the North Middx. The campaign is backed by the Defend Haringey's Health Services coalition (which in turn is supported by the Haringey Federation of Residents Associations).

More details on coming Save The Whittington activities:


Health Visitors face cuts

Federation objects to the suspension of the traditional universal health visiting service

Sue Hessel, the Vulnerable Groups Officer of the Haringey Federation of Residents’ Associations, made a presentation to the Haringey Council Overview and Scrutiny Committee on 20.1.2010. She expressed concern over the suspension of the universal health visiting service for young mothers, the lack of health visitors at local clinics, the 'stigmatisation' of health visitors' role by being used more and more for only 'problematic' circumstances, and the increasing reliance on less experienced assistants.

She called on the Committee to demand that Haringey NHS take action to restore the services so that 'every new mother can once again enjoy a positive, supportive and regular personal relationship, not simply an initial assessment, with her health visitor.'

Many members of the Scrutiny Committee expressed agreement with the above comments. There will be another meeting scheduled (provisionally March 8th) to consider further evidence and discussion.

Full Statement

‘We All Live In Copenhagen’

Sustainability Fortnight Dec 2nd - 20th 2009

Report of the local events throughout Haringey

Tues Nov 24th - 60 people attended a Climate Action Now public meeting to publicise the national demonstration on Dec 5th and the planned fortnight of events in Haringey. It was held at Wood Green Library, jointly organised by Sustainable Haringey and the Campaign vs Climate Change. There were speeches, a showing of the Reel News Countdown To Copenhagen film and much discussion. 6,000 detailed publicity flyers had been distributed in the days before, including at street stalls, which served to alert the public about the issues and what they could do themselves to make a real difference.
Nov 25th to Dec 5th - 20,000 leaflets/programmes were distributed throughout Haringey to publicise the coming fortnight of events. Each event was also publicised separately by the group organising it.
Wed 2nd Dec - Talk about global food issues. Speaker from CAFOD charity. @ St Ignatius, N15.
Fri 4th Dec - A Winter Warmer social evening in Tottenham was organised by the Wards Corner Coalition to promote sustainable urban development - over 120 people joined in the dancing (ceilidh and egyptian), listened to performers (ukelele duo and ballads), and ate scrumptious home cooked food. A rep from Sustainable Haringey made a speech about Copenhagen and the planned fortnight's events...
Sat 5th Dec - About 60,000 people attended a Climate Action Now march in Central London. There were similar marches in capital cities all over the world. There seemed to be a large percentage of young people (always a good sign of a movement that's here to stay!). Afterwards Trafalgar Square was occupied with pop up tents and a Camp for Climate Action set up there to co-ordinate further discussions & protests at relevant locations in central London throughout the whole fortnight. 5 Haringey residents were among the hundreds there early on.
Sun 6th Dec - Green Bike Ride around Haringey. Around a dozen heroes braved the weather and cycled all over the borough visiting green projects and sites.
Sun 6th Dec - A Crouch End family day of festival activities went well, including very informative stalls run by Crouch End & Hornsey Transition Initiative and the SH network.
Tues 8th Dec - 9 people attended the 'Green Your Home' coffee morning at 10am at the Green Lens Studios, N4. It was reported that there was an excellent speaker and discussion.
Tues 8th Dec - About 50 people attended the Highgate and Muswell Hill Area Assembly where the Muswell Hill Sustainability Group and Council reps made a presentation about the plans for the new Muswell Hill Low Carbon Zone. The MHSG explained that the idea was to promote things that everyone can do, as well as specialist sustainable energy projects for public buildings etc - and most importantly they hoped Low Carbon Zones would spread across Haringey, London and the world!
Tues 8th Dec - 25 people went along to the 'Age of Stupid' film show in Tottenham Green Library, organised by the librarians. It was followed by a brief presentation from a rep from the SH network, and then a very good discussion in which over half of those present put forward their views about the very powerful film and what we should all be doing to address the climate change challenge.
Wed 9th Dec - 65 people attended the 'Age of Stupid' film showing @ Hornsey Library. Afterwards there was a speaker from the Crouch End & Hornsey Area Transition Initiative, followed by discussion.
Thu 10th Dec - 30 people attended the 'Age of Stupid' film showing @ Wood Green Library. It was followed by a speaker from Sustainable Haringey, and there was a discussion afterwards.
Thu 10th Dec - 'Plane Stupid!' and other green films @ Green Lens Studios, 4a Atterbury Rd, N4.
Fri 11th Dec - There was delicious home-cooked food and market stalls selling organic and local produce at the lunchtime Community Cafe / Tottenham Food Co-op @ Broadwater Centre, N17.
Sat 12th Dec - 10 people held 'NO! to climate change & capitalism' stall/leafleting, Seven Sisters tube
Sat 12th Dec- 'Ways to create a low carbon future': food, entertainment and discussions. Around 70 took part. Organised byCrouch End & Hornsey Transition initiative @ Hornsey Vale Centre, N8.
Sun 13th Dec - The new Urban Harvest Network was launched with a walkabout around Crouch End, leafleting about the need for harvesting unpicked fruit, followed by a meeting to plan activities for 2010.
Tue 15th Dec- Sustainable Haringey held a special 'How can I get involved and make a difference?' open meeting @ Big Green Bookshop, N8.
Fri 18th Dec - 'Food, glorious food!' 40 people from a range of local food projects attended a mid-winter lunchtime celebration of local food growing and home cooking @ Broadwater Centre, N17. Displays, lunch, market stalls, speeches - organised by the Sustainable Haringey Food Group.
Sun 20th Dec - 'After Copenhagen - Where do we go from here?', @ Tottenham Chances, N17. 30 people watched a superb film made only the day before by Reel News from footage they d just filmed in Copenhagen. It portrayed the fortnight of street protests there by an incredible array of inspirational social movements from around the world. It highlighted their voices, campaigns and demands - contrasted with the failure of the politicians and corporations running the official summit.

Note: Some Haringey residents also travelled to Copenhagen to take part in the fortnight of protests there. Over 100,000 people from all over the world marched, discussed & debated together, and helped establish new grass roots global networks and solidarity in the pursuit of a fair & sustainable world.

* Haringey elderly tenants fight on against scheme closures

Angry elderly tenants urged Haringey Council's Cabinet on Tuesday, 17th November, to rethink plans to demolish sheltered housing schemes in the borough. Their lobby was attended by between thirty and forty people. Tenants brought home-made posters to make their points, and there were angry interventions in the Cabinet meeting by residents at Stokley Court, Hornsey, who were unhappy with what was being said, and who are determined to keep their homes.

A delegation to the Cabinet consisted of Gwenda Owens (Secretary of Campbell Court Tenants' Association, and Secretary of the Association of Tenants' Reps in Elderly and Special Needs Housing), Bill Guy (Chair of the Association of Tenants' Reps), Tyrone Clark (Tenants' rep, Larkspur Close, and Vice-Chair of the Association of Tenants' Reps), John Cordwell (Chair of Tenants' association, Protheroe House), Caroline Page (Tenants' rep, Stokley Court), and Paul Burnham of Haringey Defend Council Housing. They were supported by Haringey UNISON and the Haringey Federation of Residents' Associations.

Bill Guy told the Cabinet: "We are the elderly residents, and we are relying on both Labour and Lib Dems, but especially Labour Councillors, for representing us. We supported you when you wanted to get the decent homes money, because you promised us to improve our homes, but now you are considering to close one of our homes, and to exclude two of our homes from the decent homes. That is going back on your deal with us."

Bill then introduced Paul Burnham, who said: "We have come to ask that you invest in sheltered housing for elderly tenants, rather than knocking it down and destroying it.
Haringey has a sheltered housing waiting list of 311, plus another forty applicants that are likely to be accepted onto the list shortly, making a total of about 350, compared to under 250 two years ago. There are presently 1,000 tenants in the sheltered stock, and so the last thing you should be doing is looking to demolish sheltered housing. We need more of it, not less. Tenants want the right to remain in their homes. David Lammy MP has rightly expressed outrage at Haringey's lack of concern for tenants' wishes. Tenants have not been told about your plans for private development on the sites, or about the apparent need to promote Homes for Haringey's objective of business diversification, by development of the Stokley Court site, after closure and clearance of the sheltered housing there. We recommend that you send this matter to the scrutiny panel to examine and learn from the process failures that have occurred - and you should start to have a real dialogue with tenants."

John Cordwell from Protheroe House said, "I run a prayer and Bible study group, with eight people at Protheroe House. Could you promise to move all of us together, as a group? No."

Bill Guy added that, "These people want to live with dignity, and want to die with dignity."

John Bevan, Executive Member for Housing, responded to the delegation by saying that the tenants moved to new homes would be "living in a different place, and that will be a better place." He argued that with investment in 26 Good neighbour schemes and in 26 sheltered schemes, "It's not a bad news story. It's a good news story." The Cabinet then voted 'on the nod' to start formal consultation on the closure of Protheroe House, Tottenham, and to defer decisons on the future of Stokley Court until after December 2010, and Larkspur Close, Tottenham, until the completion of further options appraisals.

Campbell Court, Tottenham, was faced with closure, but has now been reprieved, and placed in the decent homes programme, after protests by tenants there. After the decision, one senior officer described Campbell Court as a scheme "that shouldn't work, but it does work".
We understand that an amendment to save Protheroe House from closure had been lost by only one vote at a Group meeting of Haringey's 33 Labour Councillors.

There is a webcast of the meeting at:

Paul Burnham
Haringey Defend Council Housing

* Improving Tottenham Hale

A response to Haringey Council Tottenham Hale gyratory proposals.

From: Haringey Living Streets; Sustainable Haringey Network; Campaign for Better Transport London

Living Streets is the national charity which campaigns for better streets and public spaces for people on foot. The Sustainable Haringey Network is concerned with the need to reduce our carbon footprint and therefore campaigns for more opportunities for car free travel. The Campaign for Better Transport is the independent national body that seeks to put people and the environment first in transport decisions and to find sustainable transport solutions.

The proposal to eliminate the notorious one way system which turns a whole area of Tottenham into an island bounded by swirling traffic is very welcome. Also welcome is the proposal to enlarge the bus station at Tottenham Hale station so that it can be served by all the routes. The no-right turn from the High Road into Broad Lane is welcome as it deals with the potential problem of increasing the traffic in that road with its narrow section and tight corner. Wider pavements with opportunities for tree planting are also welcome. There are however some concerns:

· Most proposed pedestrian crossings are staggered. These cause considerable inconvenience to pedestrians. In most cases it would be possible to build them so that they are continuous from one side of the road to the other.

· There are no crossings for pedestrians over the High Road at the corner of Philip Lane.

· Although there are proposals to remove flower planters and some trees there is little concern paid to increasing the greening of the High Road apart from the possibility of some new trees. Planners need to do everything possible to increase to the maximum the amount of pavement area, greenery, social spaces/squares and facilities encouraging community usage (eg benches) along the route.

· No traffic calming measures appear to be proposed. This is particularly important in the High Road where there is an uninterrupted sweep from the Monument to Seven Sisters corner. The design should reflect the fact that alternatives to private car usage are certain to have an ever greater priority in the near future. This is not only due to the increasing recognition of the positive need for liveable urban environments, but also due to the overarching need to create a low/zero-carbon society as soon as humanly possible. For example we note that London Borough of Haringey's recently adopted carbon target is 40% reduction by 2020.

· It is not clear whether there are drop off points for cars within the Hale bus station nor where the entrance to the car park is to be.

· The elimination of the south-bound bus lane in the High Road would cause considerable delays to buses. If two lanes southbound are required for general traffic the right turn lane designated for traffic from the High Road to West Green Road could be used. A right turn prohibition at this point would inconvenience relatively few vehicles and these could be redirected around Monument Way and Broad Lane. At least this part of the High Road could then have a bus lane.

· Cycle lanes are not continuous and cyclists appear to have no priority over other traffic. There are particular problems with the cycle lane alongside the High Road. This appears to be set in the middle of the footpath creating conflicts with pedestrians. The cycle lane could instead be set near the kerb and a cycle crossing incorporated over West Green Road. Northbound the cycle lane appears to end at Town Hall Approach. It should continue up this road allowing cyclists to ride contrary to the one-way bus lane. Traffic lights should be set to allow cyclists to proceed without having to dismount.

If we want a modern urban environment that's fit for purpose in the near future, and value for money, we should be designing it to ensure the priorities are pedestrians, cycling and public transport.

* Community Action - Nov/Dec 09

Federation bulletin/update - November/December 2009

Full Bulletin

Sat 14th November, 3pm: Special Tottenham Food Co-op planning meeting at Broadwater Community Centre, Adams Road N17
Tues 17th November, 6.30pm: 'We Wont Go!' lobby of Council by sheltered housing tenants resisting relocation. At the Civic Centre, N22
Mon 23rd November, 7.45pm: Defend Haringey's Health Services coalition meeting vs cuts, closures and privatisation, and for improvements. At Hornsey Neighbourhood Health Centre, the former hospital site, Park Road, N8.
Tues 24th November, 8pm: Climate Action Now public meeting at Wood Green Library. Film. Invited speakers. Discussion.
Thurs 26th November, 7pm: 'Lives of Others', Haringey Independent Cinema. (£3/£2) at West Green Learning Centre, West Green Rd, N15.
Thurs 3rd December, 11-3.30pm: Launch of Haringey Disability Forum: Celebrate the launch of a new forum for disabled people! At the Bernie Grant Arts Centre, Town Hall Approach Rd, N15
Fri December 4th, 8pm-late: WinterWarmer social nite @ Tottenham Chances, 399 High Rd, N17. Celebrate the local campaign for sustainable community-led development. Organised by Wards Corner Community Coalition:
Dec 5th-18th - Haringey Carbon Reduction / Sustainability Fortnight events throughout the borough. Full programme will be sent out soon. If you can organise a green event in that fortnight
Mon 7th December, 3pm: Sheltered Housing In Crisis - On-site wardens for all! (see below). Sheltered tenants meeting in Trafalgar Square to go to 10 Downing Street with a national petition.
Thurs 17th December, 7pm: 'Looking for Eric', Haringey Independent Cinema. (£3/£2) at West Green Learning Centre, West Green Rd, N15.
Tuesday 12th January 2010, 7.15pm: Federation's General Meeting for all Residents Associations at The Sandbunker, The Sandlings, N22
Every Saturday from 23rd January 2010 till November 2010, 10am - 5pm: Circus Skills training for people with disabilities. Trial sessions Thursdays from 6pm-8pm at Bruce Grove Youth Centre
Tuesday 9th March 2010, 7.15pm: Federation's General Meeting for all Residents Associations at The Sandbunker, The Sandlings, N22
April 2010 (date and venue to be decided): Haringey Planning & Development Conference. Organised by the Federation and other community networks concerned with planning issues

Toilets Scheme delays 'a scandal'

Residents call for the immediate implementation of the agreed Community Toilets Scheme in Haringey. Federation criticises 'scandalous' delays to popular scheme in place in other boroughs and backed by the GLA, and promised to be 'underway' in Haringey by last summer

The Haringey Federation of Residents Associations this week, in a letter to the Leader of the Council, called for the for the immediate implementation of the agreed Community Toilets Scheme in Haringey. The Federation believe (see quote below) that there is no need for any further 'scandalous' delays to what is a long-awaited and popular scheme in place in other boroughs and backed by the GLA. The Council promised in June that the scheme would be 'underway' during the summer of 2009. However, Council officers told the Federation this week that they are still at the 'research and options' stage.

The Community Toilets Scheme is one where the public have free access to toilets in cafes, pubs and other commercial and public buildings all over Haringey - by agreement with those running such venues. The Scheme is highly successful in other boroughs and backed by the GLA.

Following extensive lobbying from the Haringey Federation of Residents Associations and the Haringey Forum for Older People over the previous 18 months, Cllr Matt Cooke (the LBH Cabinet member responsible for regeneration) said at the beginning of June 2009:

"Far from simply talking about providing better public access to toilets Haringey Council has agreed to trial a community toilet scheme starting this summer. We want to see this scheme implemented across Haringey as it's good for the community and has been proven to be good for business in the areas which have tried it. It’s important we get the scheme right which is why we’re funding an 18-month trial this summer. We’re confident that the trial will be successful and the final scheme can be top-notch."

Cllr Cooke added that the Council also does not anticipate that such a scheme will be costly.

On 10th November the Federation was told that officers responsible for launching the Scheme have got bogged down at the ‘research and options’ stage for the last 6 months. This will have disappointed a lot of people. On 11th November the Federation wrote back to the officers responsible, as well as the Council Leader (Cllr Kober), asking for a report on what the options currently being considered are, what the research has shown, and what exactly the challenges are considered to be.

The Federation have offered to advise and help get the scheme implemented very quickly. They are calling on everyone to insist on immediate action to launch the Scheme.

Dave Morris, Federation secretary, said today: " Following over a year of lobbing by residents groups the Council finally agreed to back our proposal and have it up and running over the summer. The much-needed and long-awaited Scheme is already in place in other boroughs, so it would be scandalous to delay it any further. We are calling on all residents and community groups to contact the Council insisting on immediate action. "

* Campbell Court tenants celebrate!

Council drops plans to move out existing sheltered housing residents there, following strong local campaign by their residents association backed by the Haringey Defend Council Housing campaign. Victorious tenants pledge support for 3 other similar sheltered housing schemes who's future is still in doubt. Lobby of the Council Cabinet planned for 17 November.

49 elderly tenants at Campbell Court, North Tottenham, are celebrating this week, after Haringey Council dropped plans to move out all existing sheltered housing residents to reallocate the block to general needs housing. The block has also been restored to the borough's programme of decent homes works.

"We are delighted", said Gwen Owens of the Campbell Court Tenants Association. "Thanks are due to everybody who has supported us. Now we are ready to support the other Haringey sheltered housing tenants still under threat of losing their homes".

Haringey has also had three other sheltered housing schemes under review. Decisions on Larkspur Close, Tottenham, with 36 homes, and Stokley Court, Hornsey, with 47 homes, have been deferred for one year, although neither scheme has been restored to the decent homes programme.

The council wants to demolish Protheroe House, Tottenham, moving out its 47 tenants to make way for an extra care facility, probably to be provided through the sale of the site to a housing association.

The 179 affected tenants have suffered stress and anxiety during this period of uncertainty. Their campaign to stay in their homes has been helped and supported by Haringey Defend Council Housing, Haringey Trades Union Council and the Haringey Federation of Residents Associations.

The council's plans are to set to be discussed at a Cabinet meeting at 7.30pm on Tuesday, 17 November, when tenants and campaigners will be lobbying for all of the homes to be saved, and for all of them to be placed in the decent homes programme.

Please come and join us from 6.30pm on Tuesday 17 November, at the Civic Centre, Wood Green High Road.

* Local Climate Action

Local green campaigners come together to call for practical action to reduce Haringey's collective carbon footprint

- Sustainable Haringey Autumn Gathering welcomes the Council's recent adoption of targets to reduce the borough's carbon footprint (by 10% by 2010, by 40% by 2020)
- calls for immediate practical action to achieve these targets, including a scheme for the mass insulation of all Haringey's homes (already being implemented elsewhere - as explained by guest speaker from Kirklees Council)
- launches preparations for a fortnight of 'We all live in Copenhagen' local events in December during the historic United Nations global Climate Change summit in Copenhagen

On Sunday 25th October, 44 activists representing nearly 20 local community groups and green organisations attended a special Sustainable Haringey Autumn Gathering at Tottenham Chances (the old British Legion) in Tottenham High Road. All pledged to continue to work together to spread green ideas, effective lobbying, and positive alternatives to current practices.

The Gathering welcomed the Council's recent adoption of targets to reduce the borough's carbon footprint (by 10% by the end of 2010, and by 40% by 2020) following lobbying by local Friends of the Earth groups backed by the Sustainable Haringey network. The Gathering called for immediate practical action to achieve these targets, including a scheme for the free mass insulation of all Haringey's homes. This followed a riveting talk from guest speaker, Kirklees Councillor Andrew Cooper (Green Party), who explained why and how this was currently being implemented throughout his town. It was agreed that SH reps would meet up with the Council this week to discuss proposals for developing such a scheme for all Haringey's homes.

The Gathering also saw the launch of detailed preparations for a fortnight of 'We all live in Copenhagen' local events, from December 5th -18th, during the historic United Nations global Climate Change summit in Copenhagen. Events already planned include active support for the national Climate Action central London demonstration on December 5th (including a local Public Meeting on November 24th in Wood Green library); various stalls; evening meetings; bike ride; Reel News daily live broadcasts from Copenhagen direct to the Tottenham Chances community centre (Dec 11-16); tree planting sessions.... Residents are being encouraged to organise their own activities as part of the programme of events..

Pam Harling from the Sustainable Haringey communications group, who chaired Gathering, said afterwards:
We're glad that earlier this month the Council adopted carbon reduction targets lobbied for by campaigners and scientists, and we now call for effective action to achieve these. For example we will be meeting up with them this week to discuss proposals for developing a free mass insulation scheme for all Haringey's homes. The Copenhagen UN Climate Change Summit is being dubbed the most important international event in human history. Here in Haringey we have declared 'We all live in Copenhagen', and are calling for a fortnight of local green events during the summit. We're asking all residents to consider what we can all do together to help make our borough a sustainable place for future generations."

* Fair Deal for Haringey's Schoolchildren!

Haringey’s schools are short changed because the Government gives them less money to teach each child than other Councils with similar costs.
Government cash per pupil: Hackney £6170, Camden £6161, Islington £5812, Haringey £4987. The Government thinks each child in Haringey is worth about £1000 less (each year) than in Hackney, Camden or Islington. £1000 per pupil would pay for smaller classes, more books and computers, and better equipment - more individual attention for your child! The government’s own figures show similar levels of need in all four Councils. A campaign has been launched by the local teachers' union branches, with widespread backing from parents and community organisations including the Haringey Federation of Residents Associations.

More info:

Please sign the online petition - 800 residents have so far!

* Save Sheltered Housing Schemes Under Threat!

Votes for tenants!

Open Meeting

7pm, Friday 25th September
North London Community House, 22 Moorefield Road, Tottenham, N17 6PY
(behind Bruce Grove Station)

Haringey council tenants of sheltered housing schemes at Campbell Court, Protheroe House, Larkspur Close, and Stokley Court have launched a petition to save their homes. They will be lobbying Haringey Council not to close the four schemes, or change their use to general needs housing. The four schemes should be reinstated on Haringey's decent homes refurbishment programme, and there should be votes for tenants to decide on the future of their homes.

All support will be much appreciated for this important campaign. The Branch Committee of Haringey Unison has passed a resolution of support for the sheltered housing tenants. Their campaign is also backed by the Haringey Federation of Residents Associations.

* 10,000 visitors swamp Green Lanes food festival

Haringey Independent: Monday 21st September

More than 10,000 people flooded Green Lanes yesterday to take part in the area's first ever food festival. Live music entertained the crowds between 11am and 4pm, while 100 stalls provided food, drink, books, jewellery and gifts. Many sold out in under three hours due to overwhelming demand.
Designed to represent the diversity of the area, food on offer ranged from Caribbean salt fish fritters and Eritrean fava beans to Vietnamese steamed dumplings and Turkish cous cous.
The bands, performing onstage near Stanhope Gardens, were equally diverse, providing a lively mixture of reggae, klezmer, percussion and folk music.
Festival organiser Nora Mulready, 26, from Allison Road, hailed the event a "huge, huge success. We had to operate on a very low budget - we're talking literally in the hundreds - so we are really pleased with how it turned out. The reason it's worked out so well is because everyone mucked in - traders, residents, Haringey Council, everyone. It is truly a community festival. What we wanted to achieve, mainly, was for everyone to have a really good time. This is a genuinely diverse community, all from different backgrounds, and we thought it would be a great idea to get everyone together. We also wanted to put Harringay on the map as it's such an amazing, special place. Community spirit is so strong here. You can literally walk down any street and not feel frightened. Everyone gets along."
Councillor Nilgun Canver, cabinet member for enforcement and safer communities, was one of the organisers of the event. Speaking to the crowd, she said: "Isn't it fantastic we finally have a festival after having talked about it for seven years?
"They said they couldn't close the roads, they said it was a main artery, but due to the determination of the people of Green Lanes, we proved them wrong. Events like this create community spirit, and that's what it's all about - bringing everyone together."

HFRA Note: Not mentioned in the above article is the active involvement of all the local Residents Associations in the planning, publicity, running the childrens marquee, holding information stalls etc... The Haringey Federation of RAs ran a stall and encouraged people attending... to get involved in their local community groups

* Tottenham Community Festival Success!

On Saturday 12th September 2009 over 4,000 local residents attended an afternoon of fun-packed participatory sports, exercise, horticulture, play, arts, music, nature, leisure and educational activities for all ages and interests in Lordship Recreation Ground, N17 - Tottenham's largest open green space.

Activities included: Tottenham Flower & Produce Show, Dog Agility & Companion Show, Fun Run, Youth Performance Showcase (in the Community Centre), Pedal-Powered Stage (in the park), Community Cafe, Give & Take Marquee, Skateboarding/BMXing, Football Tournament and Skills Display, Fun Bikes, Pony Rides, Arts and Crafts for Under-5s, History Displays, Pond-Dipping and Bug Hunt, Face Painting and Portrait Sketching, Health Checks, Adventure Play, Peace Picnic, Latin American Music and Dance, dozens of Community Stalls, and a Children's Procession. The newly refurbished children's playground was also officially opened during the festivities, and there was a further display and consultation about the future of Lordship Rec.

The annual festival was organised by the Lordship Rec Users Forum, a resident-led coalition of community groups (including the Friends of Lordship Rec, who co-ordinated the event), the Council's Parks Dept, Back To Earth local charity, and other concerned organisations.

The aim of the festival was to showcase the park's great potential, and the community's continuing support for the Council's application to the Heritage Lottery Fund for money to regenerate the beautiful but run-down green space. Planned improvements include the restoration of the river and the historic Model Traffic Area, and creation of an environmental centre and a city farm.

" This year's festival showcased the wide range of talents and efforts of Tottenham's residents and community groups. The breath-taking array of activities for people to join in demonstrated what's great about our local communities and the potential of our green spaces. Someone said to me during the event: 'Its just like a local village fete', which I think pretty much summed up the lively but intimate DIY atmosphere." - Dave Morris, Chair of the Lordship Rec Users Forum

* "We don't want to move!", say sheltered housing tenants

Elderly tenants met in Tottenham on Wednesday, 26th August, to launch a campaign to save their homes at four sheltere d housing schemes: Campbell Court, N17 - 49 flats; Larkspur Close, N17 - 36 flats; Protheroe House, N17 - 47 flats; Stokley Court, Hornsey - 47 flats

The four schemes have been removed from the Haringey's programme of 'decent homes' improvements, pending discussions with residents about the future of their homes.

It seems that Haringey Council wants Campbell Court and Stokley Court to revert to general needs housing, while Larkspur Close and Protheroe House are redeveloped as "extra care" schemes.

All the existing residents would have to be permanently moved from their homes.

The tenants are angry that the council's consultation meetings at their schemes have been uninformative, and that the meetings have not been minuted properly. They want the threat to their homes lifted, and their homes restored onto the decent homes programme.

Gwenda Owens of Campbell Court said, "This a successful community, and we don't want it broken up. We are a family at Campbell Court, and the Bell Estate [Campbell Road and Whitbread Close] is our extended family".

"We are concerned about how it's going to affect the pensioners and the local community. There should be better information for the community", said Janette Lee, Chairperson of the Bell Estate Tenants Association.

"It took me eight years to get into sheltered housing, and the thought of moving is horrible. We really, really want to stay as we are", said Caroline Page, of Stokley Court. "We have proved that one of the main arguments for demolition of Larkspur is incorrect: the site will not flood, as long as the Council keeps the drains in the nearby streets clear, as they should do", said Tyrone Clark, tenant rep at Larkspur Close.

"We don't want to move!" said Neville Giles, of Protheroe House.

"The council should not move these tenants if they don't want to go", said Paul Burnham. "The Council should hold a ballot vote at each scheme on their proposals, and abide by the result".

The next steps will be the launch of a borough-wide petition, and the lobbying of all councillors.

- Haringey Defend Council Housing:

* Tenants protest against eviction threats

Tottenham Journal - 10 September 2009

TENANTS refuse to be kicked out of their homes under controversial housing plans which threaten to evict more than 180 vulnerable people.

Elderly and disabled residents in four sheltered housing blocks are rallying against plans to re-house them - insisting they will not break up the "family" of neighbours, many of whom have lived there for decades.

Paul Burnham, of Haringey Defend Council Housing, is supporting residents in their campaign. He said: "The council should not move these tenants if they don't want to go. The council should hold a ballot vote at each scheme on their proposals, and abide by the result."

The blocks - Campbell Court, Larkspur Close and Protheroe House, all in Tottenham, and Stokley Court in Hornsey - face the axe after Haringey Council deemed them unfit for refurbishment under the Decent Homes programme. Campbell Court and Stokley Court could be converted instead into general housing while Larkspur Close and Protheroe House could become "extra care" homes, meaning all residents would have to be evicted.

Gwenda Owens, 76, secretary of the Campbell Court Tenants' Association, who has lived on the estate for more than 20 years, said: "This is a successful community and we don't want it broken up. We are a family at Campbell Court and the Bell Estate (next door) is our extended family."

An emergency meeting was held with residents from each of the 179 flats at the North London Community House in Moorefield Road, Tottenham, to launch their campaign against the plans. They want the threat to their homes lifted and their homes to be put back into the Decent Homes programme.

Caroline Page, who lives in Stokley Court, said: "It took me eight years to get into sheltered housing and the thought of moving is horrible. We really, really want to stay as we are."

Councillor John Bevan, cabinet member for housing, said: "We expect to reach a view about the best way forward soon and will be setting up more meetings with residents to discuss what happens next. "I can reassure people that whatever decision is taken, the individual circumstances of everyone will be taken into account."

* Do it Yourself Home Zones!

1st August 2009

Home Zones are streets where people and vehicles share the road space safely and on equal terms - where quality of life takes precedence over ease of vehicle movement. They are very expensive to implement and Haringey says they cannot afford to install any new ones. There is already one in Haringey - the Linden Road Home Zone in south-west Tottenham.

But Sustrans, the UK's leading sustainable transport charity, have devised a cheaper way to gain the benefits of a home zone and they have secured funding from the Esme Fairbairn Foundation and Transport for London. They call it DIY Streets. The essence of this approach is that residents make the first approach and are involved all along in the decision making. They might also be involved in physical work, like constructing planters.

It would be great to find groups of residents in Haringey who would like to be involved in such a project. If anyone was to contact me I would see what could be done to take it forward – naturally it can depend on the type of street proposed and the amount of support that can be demonstrated from residents in that street.

You can see much more about how the idea works and some examples, including ones near here in Islington and Hackney, by logging on to Members of Residents Associations can attend the next Federation meeting on Tuesday September 8th where there will be further information and a discussion about the idea.

Chris Barker
Haringey Federation of Residents Associations - Living Streets Officer

* Support Haringey’s Carers

30th July 2009

I have to respond to Cllr. Dogus’s unfeeling reply (Haringey Journal 23 July) to Robert Smith’s distressing letter (Journal 9 July). My heart went out to Mr. Smith when I read his account of his life as a carer. He had devoted his life, night and day, to a severely disabled man for the last 15 years, and as a result lost his job in April, having been given virtually no help from Haringey Council. He had applied for support six times over the last ten years and each time been refused. A year ago he had applied for daily care and had never even received a reply. When he knew he could lose his job unless help could be given, he sent pleading calls and letters to Haringey Council social services, but they had never even responded.

In final despair Mr Smith had put pen to paper and written to this local newspaper because, having read the Haringey spin about how they claimed they helped carers, he wanted to tell the truth. And how does Haringey Council react? They send in a letter to Journal Viewpoints expressing no apology, no compassion, no gratitude for all the money Mr. Smith must have saved them, not even a "well we must try harder." Instead they heave up their spin machine gun and fire off statistics which can neither be of comfort to him nor the vast majority of carers.

When you look closely they reveal what a paltry little service Haringey provides: Cllr. Dogus crows that last year they gave services totalling £925,000 to 921 carers. But she forgets that in this month’s Haringey People (which costs a lot more than that!) they tell us there are 16,000 unpaid carers in Haringey. What about the others?

This man had sacrificed everything to care for someone else. He hadn’t even got a reply from Haringey Council when he’d asked for help. He’d now lost his job. Mr Smith’s heart-breaking testimony proves that, whatever the spin doctors say, most carers are not being cared for by Haringey Council.

Sue Hessel
Haringey Federation of Residents’ Associations (Vulnerable Groups Officer)

Note: Info, advice and support from the Council -

* Tottenham Park Under Threat

Development threat to Down Lane Park, Tottenham Hale

Statement from the Friends of Down Lane Park, 30th July 2009 -

A bombshell has stopped us in our tracks. Haringey Council is proposing to build new housing developments on and around Down Lane Park. The southern section of the park will become a new housing estate, and to the north, a section will be added to the park as compensation when the recycling depot there is vacated. The recycling centre is due to be moved out. The rest of the vacated recycling centre will also have a new housing estate. As will Ashley Road to the west of the park. [See the Friends website for more details]

We are appalled and flabbergasted and have started to mount a public campaign to save our park. Facilities which would have to be moved (to where?) from their present location are the children's playground, basketball court, tennis courts , bowling club, some flower beds and children's nursery. Haringey officers claim that they we are not losing space as such which of course is technically true since some of the park's open space becomes part of the housing estates. However one thing is clear they are reducing the park and substantially.

Claire Kober, Leader of the Council, came to hear us on Monday eve 27th July. She did seem to take on board our complaints and said she would address them in a letter she will send in a fortnight. We have some hope that her response will be positive and will meet our bottom line that parks are sacrosanct and no part of Down Lane Park be cut away or built on.

We need your support to make this outcome come true.

Seamus Carey
Friends of Down Lane Park

* Community Action

Summer 2009 update from the Federation

Full bulletin

Some coming events:
Wednesday 22nd July, 9.30am - 12.30pm: Affordable Warmth Strategy Consultation Event
Sunday 26th July, 1pm-5pm: Sustainable Haringey Summer Gathering
Friday 24th July, 1pm-3pm: Parkforce Launch, and Haringey's Green Flag Parks
Tuesday 8th September, 7.15pm: General Meeting for all Residents Associations
Saturday 12th September, 1pm-5pm: Lordship Rec Community Festival
Sunday 13th September: Muswell Hill Festival
Sunday 20th September: Green Lanes / Harringay Street Festival

Some issues and concerns:
Save Fortis Green Allotments Site!
Wards Corner - the community fights on!
Safe Choices - support local youth, prevent offending
Fair Deal for Haringey's Schoolchildren!
Recycling - Public Survey

Planning for our communities

- Residents groups get together (10th June) to campaign to improve Haringey's planning policies

At a special meeting called by the Haringey Federation of Residents Associations 20 residents groups (including residents associations, friends of parks groups, heritage organisations and green groups) met up on Wednesday June 10th in the Civic Centre. They discussed the Council's latest proposed planning policies, the Local Development Framework Core Strategy, currently out for public consultation until June 30th. The important consultation document sets out 12 policy proposals on how the borough will manage issues of housing, climate change, transport, employment, leisure, retail, open space, and design up until 2026.

After hearing from Council planners and an expert from the London 'Just Space Network' the discussion focused on residents' concerns about over-development, too much high-density and unaffordable housing, the need to protect and value the heritage and character of our borough, to address the deficiencies of green spaces and local community facilities, to improve our street scene, to develop genuinely sustainable local communities and an environmentally sustainable low carbon society, and much much more!

Local community campaigns around Haringey were praised for taking up these issues, and in particular there was great support for community-led plans for certain sites (eg Wards Corner, Bull Lane) in contrast to the many controversial developer-led 'top down' proposals too often backed by the Council.

The groups present agreed to form a loose alliance to stand up for interests of Haringey's residents, communities and environment, and to lobby/campaign to improve the proposed policies.

'Residents all over the borough are having to fight against unwanted, inappropriate and profit-driven developments which too often get the green light from the Council. We need to demand policies and developments which protect community interests, and which fulfil our real need for local facilities in all neighbourhoods, a quality environment, genuinely affordable housing and long-term sustainability.'
- Dave Morris, HFRA Secretary

- full details

Residents flush with success

- community toilets plan gets all cisterns go

Advertiser - Wednesday, 01 April 2009

PENSIONERS and residents’ associations have successfully pushed for Haringey Council to trial a community toilet scheme across the borough.

Haringey’s Federation of Residents’ Associations and the Haringey Forum for Older People first demanded the toilet scheme, which would allow the public free access to toilets in cafés, pubs and shops, in December 2007.

The idea came about as similar schemes existed in other London boroughs to make it easier for those out and about to relieve themselves.

Dave Morris, secretary of the HFRA, said: “The lack of adequate public toilet facilities is no longer acceptable. We now expect immediate action to roll out a Haringey-wide scheme to make community toilet facilities available in every main road and area of the borough.”

David Singh, chairman of the HFOP, argues the lack of public toilets is a problem that affects the elderly the most. “This issue is causing many elderly residents to stay in rather than go out,” he said. “The elderly are less mobile and are less likely to be able to wait for long periods before needing to use a toilet. Nobody wants to have to buy a drink in a pub just so they can use the toilet. It makes no sense that this scheme has not already been implemented as there are very few toilets open to the public in Haringey, which is very bad. The council needs to start coughing up to fund this scheme as we pay enough in council tax.”

Haringey Council has agreed to trial a community toilet scheme starting this summer but has yet to confirm the exact start date. Matt Cooke, cabinet member for community cohesion, said: “This is something that I personally would like to see implemented across Haringey as it would be good for the community. However we have got to get it as right as we possibly can. We have identified some funding for a trial scheme to run for 18 months starting this summer. First we have to confirm areas that will be suitable for the trial. But we are confident that the trial will be successful and hopefully we will be able to roll the scheme out borough-wide.”

He added that the council does not anticipate that it will be a costly scheme.

Growing in Haringey

- Borough-wide network successfully launched!

60 people from over 2 dozen local food-growing organisations hold a successful and historic launch of a new borough-wide network
On Friday 27th March over sixty people of all ages from across the Borough launched a new network to bring together all those who are involved with food-growing projects, and to help those who wish to join this increasingly popular, satisfying and, in today's uncertain world, necessary activity. It began with twenty people planting the first fruit tree in what will soon be a community garden linking the Broadwater Farm Community Centre with the exciting developments in the neighbouring Lordship Rec.

Environmental landscape architect Katrin Bohn presented a wider vision for urban agriculture, and showed fascinating slides including some from Cuba and Middlesbrough. Representatives of over two dozen local groups then listened to descriptions of just a few of the many initiatives already happening and about to begin in Haringey.

Leyla Laksari talked movingly about Living Under One Sun, explaining how this food-growing project on the Tottenham marshes has expanded and diversified, involving the local multicultural community and working in partnership with public, voluntary and private organisations. Kathryn Lwin Brookes of Archway Herbal introduced the River of Flowers, a project to save wildflowers and preserve biodiversity across north London's inhospitable urban landscape, which threatens the survival of bees and other essential pollinators. Kate Allardyce described her work as co-ordinator of the "healthy schools" project involving 60 schools and their gardens across Haringey. Anne Gray talked about the Tottenham Food Coop and its potential as a market for locally grown and organic produce. Helen Steel representing the Haringey Allotments Forum, the network for the borough's 25 allotment sites of 1,800 food growers, pointed out that the hunger for land was so great that Haringey needed to almost double the number of allotments to meet the demand. In the mean time, community food garden areas in the grounds of housing estates, under-used areas in parks and "forgotten corners" are one answer: Ibi Campbell from the Tiverton Estate food project, related how she and her neighbours negotiated the bureaucracy involved in starting up such a project, including consulting and fundraising. Another newly launched initiative is the Friends of Tottenham Marshes Community Permaculture Garden, which will run courses and welcome volunteers, like Naturewise in the west of Haringey (Plot 21 and the Forest garden).

Later, Cllr Bob Hare described the work of CHADAHS, the long-established Central Hornsey and District Allotments and Horticultural Society. Staff from the recently rescued and renamed Wolves Lane Horticultural Centre brought small plants, and said the site wants to play an important and central role in all of Haringey's horticultural and food-growing activities. Martin Burrows, of the Back To Earth projects, told of exciting plans for a new City Farm and environmental centre in Lordship Rec, and of the third annual Tottenham Horticultural Show planned for the community festival there on September 12th. Dave Morris explained that the Haringey Federation of Residents Associations have agreed to encourage local residents groups to support the new network, and help each other to grow more food in their neighbourhoods.

Finally, Judith Hanna, organiser of the recent highly successful Seedswap Sunday at Bruce Castle, outlined the aims and objectives of Growing in Haringey, how it will operate, and its relationship with other organisations. Skilled growers and teachers are already getting on with the practicalities, and residents are finding new sites in many neighbourhoods.

Large maps of Haringey were coloured in and events calendars created, while participants enjoyed tasty snacks made by members of the Sustainable Haringey food group, food coop apples, fair trade tea and coffee, and healthy juices, and swapped used gardening and cookery books.

To join in send an email to