30 March 2009

No smoke without fire

Residents of Gibbs Green and West Kensington estates have been bemused to receive in swift succession letters from the Tory leader of the council and members of the local Conservative party.

This could of course have been coincidence. Or panic by the Tories that local residents are outraged by the council's plans to demolish their homes and redevelop the estates.

The Tory council/Conservative party deny that any specific plans or decisions have been made about the future of the estates. But they go to great lengths to attack so-called scaremongering. Residents will no doubt judge for themselves.

24 March 2009

Where is Rochdale?

Regular hfconwatch readers will know that Tory H&F council recently moved its call centre to Rochdale.

But the council leader Stephen Grenhalgh is clearly only just catching up with this development.

When asked at a recent public meeting why the response to telephone enquiries had deteriorated recently, he explained that the call centre had been relocated to Yorkshire!

But when he was reminded that Rochdale is in Lancashire, Cllr Greenhalgh quipped that it was the home of former MP, Cyril Smith.

13 March 2009

What's in store for the libraries?

Tory cabinet member Cllr Paul Bristow is starting a consultation tour of H&F's six libraries. Which must mean that at least one of them faces closure shortly...

Who went to Cannes?

Which representatives of H&F Tory council went to Cannes this week for the international property development conference? And with whom did they discuss the sale and development of more estates in H&F?

09 March 2009

Which estates will be next?

Speculation is rife about which estates Tory H&F council will choose next for redevelopment.

Already the council has earmarked Gibbs Green and West Kensington estates in north Fulham; and Ashcroft Square and Queen Caroline estates in central Hammersmith were recently identified by Tory councillors as being up for sale.

Every estate in the borough is now a Tory target, leaving thousands of tenants without a home locally.

Putting developers first and tenants last seems to be the new Tory council slogan. Or as the Gazette said: Let the rich inherit the borough.

04 March 2009

Bristow fails Mayor's parks challenge

Despite umpteen photo calls of Tory cabinet member Cllr Paul Bristow in local parks, the Mayor of London has not awarded any refurbishment money to H&F council for South Park and Hammersmith Park.

Clearly Cllr Bristow failed to enthuse local residents about the parks challenge. Questions are now being asked about how much H&F council spent on the pointless publicity exercise.

Ironically the nearest park to the borough to receive funding is Little Wormwood Scrubs, recently transferred from H&F to Kensington & Chelsea.

PS People in Cllr Bristow's newly adopted home, Middlesbrough, are asking where their Tory candidate is after he failed to appear at Boro's recent FA Cup triumph.

Not first choice in H&F

H&F parents were less likely to get their children into their first choice secondary school than parents in most other boroughs in London, according to league tables published this week. And over 10% of H&F pupils have been left without a secondary place for September.

01 March 2009

No one for tennis?

One of the Tories' many hidden increases in council fees and charges has incensed tennis coaches. H&F council is planning to more than double the licence fee for tennis coaches using the borough's courts.

The huge hike in fees was due to be debated at the annual council meeting last week. But the failure to present the figures at the meeting has called into doubt the legality of the proposals.