Notes from coordination meeting:  21 November 2019 at Kitapevi / Garden House cafe

In attendance:  Dave K (StArt), Pamela H (Sustainable Haringey), Jasmine T (Friends of Marcus Garvey Library), Martin B (Friends of Down Lane Park), Paul B and Gary K (Haringey Defend Council Housing), Shirley H and Sue P (Wards Corner Coalition), Dave (Friends of Lordship Rec, and various networks HFRA, HFoPF, HCCN)      Apologies: Mark P (Researcher),

1.  Brief local updates/summaries from the groups present:

StArt    A well attended AGM. Frustration over lack of support from GLA and Council for the community plan for the ex-hospital site. Internal stresses and strains within StArt.

Latin Market / Ward’s Corner   Are promoting their revised Community Plan and calling for support from the Council. A special Scrutiny Cttee of the Council has largely backed the traders and community and the recommendations are going to the full LBH Scrutiny Cttee next week. The Labour Group of Councillors is also backing the local campaign.

Friends of Marcus Garvey Library  Jasmine outlined the issues with the children’s garden at the back of the premises.  They want the whole space back, and volunteers may be able to restore it. They also want a staffed reception desk in the children’s area of the library.

Spurs and High Rd West   Mark and Amanda reported (by email) that they aim to do a follow up next year to their well-received graphic book.  Local complaints continue, related to Event Days which dominate the north of Tottenham for the whole day. The Love Lane Temporary Accommodation Group continue to campaign, and recently got more national publicity. The estate ballot re demolition or not has been postponed as the Council doesn’t have the money to move ahead with their controversial plans. Meanwhile spurs have now bought up 35% of the High Rd West area, no doubt wanting to gentrify it all – the Tottenham Business Group on the Peacocvk estate continue to fight back.

Tottenham Hale   Lots of horrendous tower blocks going up, causing dangerous lorry movements.

Selby Trust   Are working in partnership with the Council to develop their site. They have successfully lobbied over the last couple of years to achieve a purpose-built new centre to house all the existing groups occupying the current site. But what type of housing will also be built and what about Bull Lane green space? Selby have been holding meetings around Tottenham seeking feedback on the future of the site.

2.   Wider updates

Haringey Defend Council Housing  Campaigning continues over defending estates still under threat, and Council seems to be changing its previous demolition policies. But one estate Woodside Ave still being threatened have made a 5,000-strong protest petition.   Concern over planning officers allowing ‘poor doors’ on the new Altitude Estate.  Also Pamela expressed concern over planning officers failure to ensure all new homes reach the zero-carbon standard.

Haringey Community Centres Network  Reconvened over the summer to respond to an internal review Council officers have been conducting into their policies regarding support for community centres and the voluntary sector generally.  The policies brought in 5 years ago (to increaser rents to market levels, and only 5 year leases etc) were highly controversial, unpopular and as expected totally impractical for community centres. It turns out that many centres refused to sign such contracts. Now the Council have agreed they should be listening to and working with the sector. HCCN have set up a sub group who have held a couple of constructive meetings with the relevant Council officers.

Haringey Federation of Residents Associations  After a quiet couple of years for the HFRA, a meeting in September brought 13 associations together for an excellent meeting re housing, planning, public services, local reports etc. 

Haringey Friends of Parks Forum   Continue their well-attended bi-monthly meetings. Pursuing a petition calling for more resources for the underfunded and understaffed parks service.  This has been demonstrated by the service having to put in a lot of extra resources in to maintain their 22 Green Flag parks accreditation.  Also joint meetings with Council officers to develop a new 15 years strategy for parks.

Extinction Rebellion / Climate Change:  Local events in 7-8 September a success, ending with 500-strong march/procession from Turnpike Lane to Finsbury Park. There was a Haringey contingent helping organise the occupation of Trafalgar Square and surrounding streets in October. Council declared a climate emergency last March and are preparing an Action Plan by the end of the year.  Sustainable Haringey continues as an informal network. Next Climate Strike day is Friday 29th Nov, with gathering/rally at Wood Green Library, 12.30pm.

London Plan and Just Space  The Inspector has now produced a report on the draft London Plan. Fails to challenge the developer-led approach, but some criticism of handing over housing space standards to developers. Some other small concessions were achieved during the hearings (which a couple of us took part in). Just Space network is holding a meeting Friday 22nd Nov to review what was achieved by community groups lobbying and collaborating during the hearings.  Just Space members (like the Our Tottenham network, Wards Corner etc) have had some expert support from planning students – now people are talking about how to get the most of what is sometimes a difficult and time-consuming collaboration.

3.   Other

London Mayor’s Public Question Time  In Wood Green in January. We agreed to encourage people to come and lobby and raise a range of issues.

Freedom of Information Act requests.  Council often seem to be failing to reply to requests for info for ages. Also want people to go through a convoluted method. This will be investigated and questioned.

Next Meetings  Maybe a meeting in mid Jan to discuss the the Mayor’s Question Time. Next full Coordination Meeting on Thurs Feb 20th

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