Council Chooses Free Fireworks Over Library Funding!

At the Council’s budget meeting Liberal Democrat councillors highlighted the Council’s spending of £130,000 on fireworks in January. This money could have kept the Library at Harrow Green open for a year.

At the meeting it was said funding of Harrow Green library is a waste of money. Labour councillors also said that they liked the fireworks. This is astonishing given that Harrow Green library is situated in one of the most deprived areas of Waltham Forest.

Children and families in this area now see that their Council prefers half hour of fireworks rather than keeping open their library.

What do you think – should the Council spend money on fireworks or open Harrow Green Library?

Focus says: This is not all. The Council is planning to spend another million of tax payers money on fireworks and other events this year. Given the current financial situation is this the right priority?

Minutes of Leyton Ward Forum – 28 February 2013

Minutes of 28 February 2013 LEYTON WARD RESIDENTS FORUM Meeting

Leyton Cricket Ground Leyton E10


Officers/Councillors in Attendance: Cllr Bob Sullivan, Cllr Naheed Qureshi, Leyton Safer Neighbourhood Team,  Sally Hobson & Library Team, Ron Presswell and Jacinta Fisher Conservation area consultation  Alex of Groundwork London. And Bettina Aruoture (WF Council)


The Chair, Cllr Bob Sullivan welcomed everybody to the meeting. Cllr Sullivan introduced the Councillors and Officers in attendance.  Fire and Safety measures were explained.


Page 1 – agreed

Page 2:

  • Auckland Road – Travellers are still there and the council officers are monitoring the area
  • County Ground – Squatters are still present  and the Council is seeking a Court Order

Page 3:

  • Leyton Arts Trail – still pending
  • Coopers Lane – problem of 20mph signs – still pending
  • Temple Mills – the Chair understood the painted sign had not been removed and is investigating
  • Temporary barriers opposite Leyton Midland Road Station – removed
  • High Road improvements – still pending
  • Buckingham Road – The Chair has been advised  that the Authority receives no income and is pressing for the road to be reopened
  • Leyton Mills – The Chair advised that tenants are still being sought for the empty properties, but understands that the problem is that there is no access for service lorries
  • Street Trees – residents are requested to provide locations of missing trees so that they can be checked.


AGENDA ITEM 3: Conservation Area Consultation

Ron Presswell led the presentation and introduced Jacinta Fisher, the new Conservation Officer.

Attention was drawn to the display at the rear of the room. It was explained that a conservation area gives the Planning Officers tighter control over developments within the Conservation Area, and have engendered increased civic pride in the community.

In response to a question it was confirmed that home owners within the area may be able to apply for grants from the Council. There will be a small grants scheme, in the region of £1-£2k maximum.

The consultation closes on 18th March.

A resident commented that the ugly modern building, immediately behind the Library, in Ruckholt Road must surely be outside the conservation area, and wondered how planning approval could have been awarded.

A resident queried whether the railway cottages behind Coronation Gardens, were included in the Conservation Area

 ACTION:  Chair to clarify

Ron Presswell advised that an improvement scheme being finalised for the Bakers Arms shopping centre, which should be introduced next year. He advised a resident that the changes to the Bakers Arms Public House did not require planning permission

The Chair thanked the officers for their presentation.


The Leyton SNT is now based at Waltham House, Kirkdale Road, following the closure of Leyton Police Station.

The SNT informed residents that there had been a cross-London operation yesterday (27 February), which resulted in 240 arrests, and included a drugs raid on the Beaumont Estate.

There have been plain clothes operations in the ward to combat robbery and burglary.

Motor vehicle crime is being tackled using AMPR technology which highlights offenders.

A bike stamping session saw 30 more bikes stamped.

The SNT is also working various hours to cover incidents.

A resident said that he finds the new lighting is not as bright as the old lamps, which he feels is responsible for some increase in crime. He advised that the garages in Dunedin Road were broken into twice in one week.

101 Service – a resident cited lack of response. The SNT advised that this service is run by civilian’s staff, who are currently receiving further training. Residents were advised to dial the emergency 999 service if they have problems with 101.

A Brewster Road resident complained about the problem of dumped cars. The SNT confirmed that they can only get cars moved immediately if they are causing an obstruction. Otherwise dumped vehicles are a matter for the Council. If a vehicle has a current tax disc, it cannot be moved unless it has been confirmed as ‘stolen’. Abandoned vehicles can only be removed once the tax disc has expired. The council direct line is: 020 8721 2737.

The Chair thanked the members of the SNT for their attendance.

AGENDA ITEM 5: Leyton Library improvements

Sally Hodgson led the presentation and explained that usage of the Library had increased following the introduction of extended hours. She explained that the Library Service now comes under the Customer Service division and they are consulting on changing the way that libraries are used. This includes expansion of  ‘ E-services’ – downloading books etc., provision of adult education books and audio books.

Other facilities could encompass accepting payments for Council Tax etc., benefits advice. She is happy to receive suggestions by email to

An order of books is due to be received by mid-March, and there is a system in place for stock management.

The Chair thanked the officers for their presentation.

AGENDA ITEM 6: 2012/2013 Ward Funding/Spend

The Chair explained the details of the ward fund, which were compiled from suggestions made by residents. The total committed is £9,896.00, which leaves £193.96 unallocated. Any suggestions for use of this sum were welcomed by the Chair.  There may be some carry over from last year.

A comment was made about the lack of publicity for events. It was agreed that a press release should be supplied to both WFN and the Guardian about the Leyton Arts Trail. The Chair also agreed that details would be uploaded on to the ward councillors’ websites.


AGENDA ITEM 7: Coronation Gardens Annexe Consultation

A representative of Groundwork London explained some preliminary ideas including, skateboard park, wildlife area, seating, and access to beach volleyball area. One proviso was stressed, namely that they will be unable to offer any facility for growing food plants.

There will be an event on Saturday 16th March from 10.30 until 2pm., when residents will be able to discuss ideas with Groundwork London.

He stressed that, at the present, there is no funding in place.

The Chair thanked Groundwork London for the presentation.

AGENDA ITEM 8: Update on Leyton Sports Ground

Peter Towler reported that the initial meeting in mid-January was attended by 16 local people. Points raised include:

  • Establishment of a permanent residents group
  • Survey improvements needed to the bowling green and tennis courts
  • Better promotion
  • Bring facilities up to standard

He has a meeting arranged with the Leader of the Council on 16th March. One question he will be asking is – When the council is spending £24 million on leisure improvements, why is there no mention of the Sports Ground?  He asked what other questions residents would like raised.

A resident commented about the lack of pruning of the trees bordering Brewster Road, but has noted that there appears to be some activity.

The Chair thanked Peter Towler for his report.

AGENDA ITEM 9: Community Forum

In view of time constraints this item was shorter than usual

  • Hainault Road/High Road site – A resident asked about this site – the Chair suggested he talk to him after the close of the meeting
  • Coopers Lane – The Chair confirmed that the YMCA leased property would need planning permission for a change of use.

The Chair closed the meeting and thanked everyone for coming.

Leyton FOCUS Newsletter 339

The latest issue of the Leyton FOCUS number 339 has just gone to press, and will be distributed free across the ward by volunteers.

Please contact Bob Sullivan if you would like to help the Lib Dems by delivering the FOCUS near your home. It is published approximately every six weeks and around takes about 45 minutes.

You can call Bob on 020 8556 8335, or email him via this website.

You can access an advance copy here:  Leyton 339

Leyton Focus 335

The latest issue of the Focus Newsletter is being delivered.

The lead story is a survey seeking your views on parking in Leyton. You will have, by now, received a consultation from the Council asking your views on whether you would like controlled parking restrictions to be introduced in your road.

The Lib Dems are stressing the importance of every household completing and return the Council’s consultation document, whatever your views, to make sure that the Town Hall has no doubts about the views of the majority of residents.

It also reports on the recent death of Neal Chubb, who was a very experienced local politician, who will be missed by the many people he helped over the years.

On the back page you will find some other local news together with details of the next ward meeting at the SCORE Centre on 9th. October.

I can confirm that the meeting will begin at 7pm and is scheduled to finish at 9pm. Unfortunately the times were not included in the Focus.

You can access the Focus here: Leyton 335

Next Ward Forum – Tuesday 9th October

A Forum meeting

Our next Resident and Councillor ward forum meeting will be on Tuesday 9th October at the SCORE Centre in Oliver Road

The meeting will start at 7pm and is due to finish at 9pm

 The agenda will include an update and discussion on parking after the Olympics, a local Police report, and a discussion on the budget spend and how we are going to spend £10,000 next year. 

All Leyton Ward residents are welcome. 



Don’t miss the next Residents’ Ward Forum

Following on from the very successful Resident Ward Forums your Liberal Democrat ward councillors, Bob, Naheed and Winnie, have arranged for the next meeting to be held on:

Tuesday 17 April

7.00pm to 9.00pm

Leyton Orient F.C. Stadium

Olympic Suite on the third floor

 On the agenda will be a report back on the locally agreed projects, Olympic traffic management and parking, local police and any other local issues.


If you live in Leyton ward you should have received a copy of the latest FOCUS newsletter delivered by dedicated volunteers.

However, if you have been unable to get your hands on a copy you can do so HERE.

 As always we welcome your comments / suggestions / grievances…………………..and look forward to hearing from you.

 Similarly, if there is anything you would like to have included in the FOCUS please do not hesitate to contact us!