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Gazette letters: Climate change, burglary victim, by-election and car park closing

PUBLISHED: 08:30 31 August 2019

The River Lea looks beautiful in the sunshine. Picture: LOU RAYBURN

The River Lea looks beautiful in the sunshine. Picture: LOU RAYBURN

Archant

It is an emergency, writes Will McCallum, Newington Green.

We may not always realise it, arranging picnics in the sun in Clissold Park or sitting outside for a drink on warm evening.

But it is increasingly easy to remember that it really is when you're crammed into the Overground or squeezing into the number 38, worried for very young and more elderly of your fellow passengers and how they will cope with the heat.

It was the hottest August bank holiday on record - its closest competitor just two years before that.

After decades of moaning about the weather, we are beginning to have good reason - unpredictable heat, impromptu downpours, and seasons that don't follow the rules are now de rigueur.

The weekend heat brought a kind of stillness - unused to moving around in such heat the wildlife did as we do: went very slowly. Waterfowl on Woodberry Wetlands sat on the water waiting for dusk; magpies and blackbirds hopped lazily inside the canopies of rowan trees feasting on summer snacks.

The cats and dogs of Hackney sprawled out on the pavement basking in the heat, tongues out. In such peaceful scenes the emergency can feel far away, but it isn't - it's here, and it's been this way in many parts of the world for a while. We are living in a changed climate, and without action immediately from those in power at every level to phase out the burning of fossil fuels, the changes may yet become more unbearable.

As we all know every time it snows, pours or blazes with sunshine, London is not a city equipped to deal with weather extremes.

I came home from work on August 15, 2019, writes Nigel Thompson, Metropolitan Housing tenant, living in the flats opposite the Mary Seacole Nursing home on Nuttall Street, Hackney.

I gained access to open the sturdy communal door by using my fob key and went to my flat on the ground floor. I noticed dug out markings in my front door near the lock and my flat door was unlatched. As I went into my flat I noticed my belongings were scattered about the bedroom.

I called 999 and police arrived within half an hour. Later, when the forensic officers arrived, they went to work in the bedroom looking for clues of identities. I was fingerprinted at the table and the officers left to find the burglars.

Stolen items were a Versace men's cologne and a blue striped tartan designer gentlemen's gym bag. A red DW Fitness First combination lock was also inside the bag's inside compartment.

With burglars on our doorstep who are willing to destroy what is not their property we need people to be vigilant in our beloved communities.

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The matter is ongoing. However, if anybody saw anyone leaving the flat building opposite the Mary Seacole home on August 15 with a blue striped tartan gentlemen's bag I would be very grateful if you could report it to the authorities.

I have had the busiest August ever, apart from 1996 due to the Trotter Affair which broke at the end of July and was a major social services scandal involving Hackney Council when I was the Conservative social services spokesperson, writes Christopher Sills, Dunsmure Road, Stamford Hill.

This time I was not helped due to the fact everybody I needed to contact seemed to be on holiday, which is not surprising in view of the political position.

On the national situation, all I will say is that the silly children cannot stop Brexit. All they can now achieve is to make the terms worse for Britain, contrary to what they claim.

For Hackney Labour Party it is a damage limitation exercise and the longer it fails to face reality the more damage will be done.

At present the price will be the resignation of two councillors in Hackney and the third long-standing councillor, who is not to blame, may choose to go as well.

The Conservative Party has three candidates lined up and two have accepted. The third has spent most of August in her native Poland and I am due to see her before this letter is published.

As she planned to stand in 2022, once she gets over her initial surprise, I think she will accept and she could easily be a councillor by Christmas.

The clue is obvious if you read every issue of the Gazette this year, but bear in the national political situation at the time.

I couldn't help but notice the irony in a recent issue of the Gazette, writes Oliver, Newington Green (full name and address supplied).

We had people moaning about Hackney closing a car park and TfL making it safer to cycle, in the same week the council had been awarded funding to improve air quality.

How will we ever tackle air pollution and the growing child obesity crisis in London with attitudes like this?

I use the busy cycleway next to the Britannia everyday and I'm sure my fellow commuters would join me in thanking the council for taking steps to reduce traffic.

These readers should think how the proposals support the wider community, and not just the few it inconveniences. I know some people genuinely need to use a car but how about joining a car club instead? They can be parked almost anywhere in the borough. We all need to make changes if we want to live in a healthier city.

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