Sunday, July 05, 2009

Photos and press cuttings from Sustainable Communities Act demo

Shasha Khan and Amelie Boleyn - highlight the emergency

Croham Road, South Croydon

Brigstock Road, Thornton Heath

Lower Addiscombe Road, Addiscombe

Online versions of story can be viewed here (Croydon Advertiser) and here (Croydon Guardian)

PRESS RELEASE – “ACT NOW!” Photo Opp.

For Release on Wednesday 1st July:

CROYDON SHOPKEEPERS AND LOCAL CAMPAIGNERS CALL ON CROYDON COUNCIL TO JOIN OTHER COUNCILS AND ‘OPT IN’ TO THE SUSTAINABLE COMMUNITIES ACT.

Croydon Green Party campaigners today stood alongside local shopkeepers in the north, centre and south of the borough (see locations and time below) in calling on this council to ‘opt in’ (1) to the Sustainable Communities Act (2). This Act, would give the council the opportunity to charge business rates on the car parks of out of town retail parks. The money that is collected could be given to shops on our local high streets in the form of a discount on their business rates. Local shops that have yellow lines or red routes outside their premises are presently disadvantaged.

This Act of parliament gives local communities the opportunity to improve the quality of life and social wellbeing in their local area.

Commenting on the council’s failure, Shasha Khan said:

“Having spoken to many shopkeepers over the last few weeks, I am now acutely aware that local shops – which define our communities - need support to get through this recession.

“Unfortunately, local shops can’t compete on a level playing field and this Act addresses the situation.

“We all realise the importance of thriving local communities with local shops and services. Thanks to this piece of legislation, which was championed by groups such as the National Federation of Postmasters and Help the Aged, councils can put forward proposals to government which assist the economic wellbeing of a community.

“However, time is running out for Croydon council to ‘opt in’. The London borough’s of Lambeth, Lewisham, Sutton and Kingston have joined the process and so should Croydon. 31st July is the deadline so today marks the start of the final month.

“The last time I spoke to a council official about the Act, I was told they were thinking about it.

“I am forever seeing Conservatives mourning the loss of local shops and post offices but I am beginning to think that these are just gestures. By not ‘opting in’ to this Act, Croydon Council will fail to help local businesses. The reality must be that Croydon Conservatives are signed up to the big business agenda and champion the unrestricted growth of supermarkets and cloned retail parks. Local shopkeepers regularly identify these developments as the main reason why they are closing down.

Green Party campaigner Amelie Boleyn added:

“We have started a petition because it gives worried customers an opportunity to express to the council how important local shops are for our communities. Croydon Council must act now so we can give more say to our communities”

Customers can sign the petition where they see the Croydon Council Act Now! posters. An online version is available at:

http://www.gopetition.com/petitions/sustainable-communities.html

Three separate protests will be held in the north, centre and south of the borough on 1st July.

  • 10.30am outside Bouquet Florists 21-23 Croham Rd South Croydon, CR2 7PB
  • 11.15am outside Gibson Butchers 301 Lower Addiscombe Road, Croydon CR0 6RF
  • Midday outside Roberts Greengrocers 50 Brigstock Road, Thornton Heath, CR7 8RX

Ends

Notes:

(1) (2) http://www.localworks.org/




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2 comments:

Sue said...

Great stuff Shasha!

Shasha Khan said...

Thanks Sue!

How is the Act working for Lewisham?

Standing up for what matters