Wednesday, May 25, 2016

What the incinerator looks like on 24th May 2016

Councillor Nick Mattey took this photo yesterday.
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Tuesday, May 24, 2016

Jim Clugston RIP

Jim Clugston (left)

Earlier this month we heard that Jim Clugston had sadly passed away.

Jim was a unique individual. He lived in New Addington, which is demographically speaking the area in Croydon you are least likely to find a Green party member. The fact that the British National Party has attracted significant support in New Addington indicated how it is the polar opposite of North Laine in Brighton, for example.

I recall he told me his next door neighbour had a BNP poster on his their window!

Jim had stood for council elections in New Addington and had been active for a number of years. He was always on hand to support the local party, whether it be leafleting, writing letters to the local paper or standing as a candidate. He was very much active in the local CND group and was one of the first to embrace the transition town concept in Croydon. He was also someone who would take the time to send me an email (to comment/credit) if he spotted something Green party related in the local paper.

This blog has some record of this Green party activity here, including how he generated power from scrap metal!

In recent times, due to a misunderstanding, this is how I would describe it, with regard to a social media post, Jim had decided to distanced himself from the Green party. I think those of us who observed the episode were quite frankly disappointed it ever happened. I remember my colleague Bernice Golberg pointing out it reinforced her view to stay clear of social media.

It is sad to think we won't see Jim again.

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Tuesday, May 03, 2016

West Thornton By Election - MAY 5th 2016

Lady Emily Benn is off to New York. This has triggered a by election. Greens have an excellent candidate: David Beall. He's the only candidate who lives in the ward. This has not gone unnoticed.

Thornton Heath Community Action Team tweeted:

David and I have done a few bits of activism together over the years. The most famous one - which has nearly 7000 views - can be watched below. Mr Beall is Mr ANTI-ESSO MAN. Its not often you will see a candidate in his underwear...

Personal statement from David Beall.

My name is David Beall. I am 34 years of age and was born in Mayday Hospital and went to Gonville Primary School and the Archbishop Lanfranc School. I have lived in West Thornton ward since 1980. I am a qualified Mental Health Nurse and have been a community support worker before, during and after qualifying in the borough of Bromley.

This will be the third time David will be standing in West Thornton ward. He stood in 2010 and in 2014. In 2014 he was the highest placed candidate who wasn't a Labour or Tory, finishing highest among the Greens and above the Lib Dem and UKIP candidates. 

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Tuesday, April 26, 2016

A nice Selhurst to Woodside walk

Brickfields Meadow

On Good Friday this year I went on my favourite walk in Croydon. It is my favourite walk because it is through fields and grassland, yet you are in a very urban environment. 

I took a pic of my finishing point and it appeared in the Croydon Advertiser under YOUR VIEWS. 

The walk is from Heavers Meadow to Brickfields Meadow. The map above doesn't show the route!

1) From Selhurst station cross the road towards the Selhurst Rail Depot.
2) The entrance to Heavers Meadow is a few yards up the road towards Norwood Junction.
3) Walk along the path - watch for the giant rats!
4) You have no choice but to use Tennison Road to get over the railway lines.
5) Turn off the main road to Brickfields Meadow and enjoy the fish filled pond!

Wednesday, March 23, 2016

The Croydon Derby - support your local clubs

This post was sent to Inside Croydon

I am a Croydon Athletic supporter. Saturday 6th March 2016 was derby day.  I met up with a friend at The Horsehoe pub on Thornton Heath pond to watch Tottenham v Arsenal, and after that game we walked down Silverleigh Road to the Mayfields Stadium to watch AFC Croydon Athletic v Croydon FC.

It was my first ever Croydon derby. A fixture between these two Croydon clubs is a rarity. Not only have these two clubs been in different divisions, but also in different leagues over the past few seasons.

Upon going through the turnstiles, I was immediately surprised by the number of supporters behind the Croydon (Trams) goal, the preferred location for the Croydon Athletic Rams Army. It seemed like a number of occasional attendees had made a special effort for the clash between Rams v Trams. I've been going to Mayfields since the 2006-07 season, and it was about as populated as its ever been behind the goal,

I usually bring a drum with me, which in recent matches has been played by young James who comes with his mum and dad. James was keen to have the drum again.

A quick scan of the terraces and stands indicated that the Trams had not bought many fans with them.

After the first Croydon Athletic attack, James had started the familiar 'Da-Da... Da-Da-Da...Da-Da-Da-Da' drum beat which finishes with the supporters chanting 'Croydon.' As if in auto-response mode, upon hearing the beat, I chanted Croydon with only a handful of others, only to see Mick look over at us and say, "think about it..."

Banter with Croydon keeper, Francis Ameyaw, started early with a rendition of the saxaphone solo from the Pink Panther theme. Well, what do you expect if you turn up to play in dayglo pink!

There ought to be a fierce rivalry between the Rams and the Trams but I have never got a sense that has been the case. Tackles weren't really flying on Saturday. There was one moment, shortly after commencement of the second half, when a couple of players confronted each other - but that happens in every game nowadays.

Croydon FC have hovered around the foot of the Southern Counties East - Premier Division for most of the season, whereas Croydon Athletic have been floating around the top half. If the league table is supposed to reflect the comparative standard of each team then it was wholly accurate with regards to this fixture.

The Rams took the lead in the 11th minute through a cool finish from striker Lee Jansen. In the 28th minute, top scorer Raheem Sterling-Parker was upended by goalkeeper Ameyaw resulting in a penalty. There's only one Raheem Sterling took the penalty himself and calmly slotted it away. Athletic pushed for a third goal but never seemed to get into a high gear. At the other end of the pitch the Rams keeper was largely untroubled.

In the second half, Athletic continued to control the game but found it difficult to add to their lead. I got the sense that the Rams were coasting to the finish line when out of the blue Lauris Chin pulled a goal back after a defensive mishap. Manager Anthony Williams went ballistic and screamed and shouted at the defence. Any complacency which had set in was soon erased and the Rams held on to win 2-1.

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Friday, March 18, 2016

How to deliver a very Tory budget.

Tuesday 15th March. A meeting is taking place at No. 10 Downing Street. Present are PM David Cameron, his next door neighbour, Inner Circle guy number 1 and Inner Circle guy number 2. 


(George Osborne is coming to the end of a run through of his budget speech)

George: "....and I commend this budget to the house!"

IC No. 2: "Good job Georgie. Bravo!"

Dave: "Isn't it a bit heavy on cut taxes for the rich and cut benefits for the disabled? 

IC No 1: "Not forgetting the wholesale privitsation of all schools through the academies programme."

Dave: "Not to mention public debt is rising and you're not going to make your budget surplus target."

George: "Yeah I know."

IC No.1: "We need a diversion."

IC No.2: "Agreed"

IC No.1: "What's that fellow Oliver off the TV lathering himself up about nowadays."

George: "School dinners??"

Dave: "No, you mean the 'sugar tax' on fizzy drinks? Yes, Sam mentioned it the other night."

IC No. 1: "Yes that's perfect! Give the corporations some time to administer a substitute like aspartame. The papers will be all over the 'sugar tax' story like a rash. The more controversial stuff will be in the inside pages. I'll have a word with you know who."

Dave: "It's still a very Tory budget. I mean, I like it George, don't get me wrong, but..."

IC No.2: "Hmmmm. Is the Home Secretary about?"

Dave: "What Teri?? I'll give her a call."

(Within 30 minutes the Home Secretary has joined the meeting. IC No.2 is giving her instructions)

IC No. 2: "So, are you okay with this? You'll have to make sure you sit to the left of George for maximum impact."

Theresa: "Yes. I think I have just the outfit."

Dave: "Are you sure you're okay with this, Teri? We need you and the 'sugar tax' to occupy the headlines if we're to slip this other stuff through."

Theresa: "So long as I can choose the colour Prime Minister."

IC No.1: "Twitter will go into meltdown over your cleavage, I am sure!"

(The next day - midway through George Osborne's speech)

George [turns to Theresa] : "Good show Teri, I think our plan will work."


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Sunday, February 21, 2016

Croydon is deathtown

According to The Architecture Foundation, owing to its 'uniformed commercial utility', 'Croydon is deathtown'. The actual quote appears on the Inside Croydon news site.
Occasionally, one spots an eye-catching natural phenomenon in among the sprawling metropolis that is Croydon town centre:

I sent in the picture above the Croydon Guardian:

Croydon Guardian 27.01.16

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Wednesday, February 17, 2016

No need for new build with capacity elsewhere

Three weeks have elapsed since I sent in an open letter to the Croydon Advertiser regarding the incinerator and I still haven't seen a reply......

Dear Editor,

Croydon residents are entitled to submit written questions to councillors at full council meetings. The full details are on the council web site. Unfortunately, we are all restricted to submitting just one written question per a meeting. As I have used up my quota, I would like to send the following open question to the council as my next opportunity to submit a written question is in April 2016: 

In December Councillor Stuart Collins cited the waste hierarchy, where incineration is deemed preferable to landfill, in a written reply when explaining why 20 per cent of South London Waste Partnership (SLWP) rubbish - waste collected from Croydon, Sutton, Kingston and Merton - is being sent to the Colnbrook incinerator whilst Viridor’s incinerator in Beddington is under construction. He also stated that more of our waste will be diverted to Colnbrook in Berkshire. Colnbrook and Allington incinerator in Kent, have spare capacity, indeed the universally respected environmental consultants, Eunomia, who are actually contracted by the SLWP, state that there is over capacity across the country. Does Croydon council now accept that the Beddington incinerator is simply not needed? 

Shasha Khan
Croydon Green Party & Stop the Incinerator
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