Gazette letters: Festivals, water works, April showers and general election

Main stage at the Wireless Festival in Finsbury Park in 2015. Picture: ANDREW WHITTON

Main stage at the Wireless Festival in Finsbury Park in 2015. Picture: ANDREW WHITTON - Credit: Archant

I’m dismayed that Haringey Council is yet again inflicting a tsunami of extra drug dealing, alcohol/drug misuse, noise pollution and anti-social behaviour upon Finsbury Park citizens (many of whom live within Hackney), writes T Simon Couzens, full address supplied.

This summer we will suffer not only the Wireless Festival, but also four other “festivals”.

A key function of governance is to nullify preventable evils. Haringey Council can and must reverse its 2017 decision to impose sustained misery and mayhem upon Finsbury Park inhabitants, forthwith.

Five more months of bus hell...why?

I notice work to replace the water main that burst at the Angel last year started in April and is going to take some five months, writes Mr J E Kirby, Clissold Crescent, Stoke Newington.

I estimate if the work was done on an around the clock basis it could be done in one and a half months at most.

On May 15, I was on a bus passing these works at 3.25pm. There was not a single person in sight doing any work. Very often when there are people there you will see them walking up and down or having a confab on the mobile phone, but actual work being done is zilch.

Most Read

So far we have had holes dug but it appears little if any water mains replacement is actually being done. There seems to be no sense of urgency to get the work done as soon as possible to minimise disruption. It doesn’t help having the bus routes (38, 56, 73, 341 and 476) that normally turn right at Islington Green and go down Essex Road diverted along Upper Street, round Highbury Corner and down Canonbury Road.

So my question is: why does it have to take so long?

Tory: I’ll be good for our schools

The sudden bursts of sun that managed to interrupt London’s grey sky caught me out every time writes Will McCallum, Newington Green.

Like a true Englishman seeing sun, I quickly changed to head out running, only to get drenched half an hour later on my way home.

I am glad of the weather this week, though.

Not just because it fed the new water-hungry almond tree in my garden, but because the early warnings of a summer drought had me worried.

Hopefully the week’s downpour means our greatest water problem remains the leaky Victorian pipes beneath our feet, responsible for the various floods in Islington and Hackney this year.

Spring highlight this week: although they were as sodden as I was, petals weighed down with the rain, the bright roses of De Beauvoir Square have begun to appear in force.

It was not just me that was pleased to see them – bees aplenty were to be seen among the flowers.

It is such a privilege to be standing for election in my home constituency of Hackney North, writes Amy Gray, Conservative candidate for Hackney North and Stoke Newington.

This is where I first became interested in politics when I was teaching at the old Skinners’ Girls’ School on Stamford Hill.

I have never lost my passion for education and commitment to ensuring that all our children have the best start in life. That’s why I was so pleased to see the Conservative manifesto published last week contained a commitment to ensure no school has its budget cut as a result of any new funding formula.

I know from the number of emails I have received that a lot of people in Hackney were concerned about the possible impact of the previous proposals. The Conservatives have listened, the proposals will change and Hackney’s schools will benefit.

This sits alongside a commitment to ensure our poorest children still receive a free lunch, all primary schools will receive a free breakfast and the pupil premium grant will continue.

Schools, like the NHS, are facing a crisis caused by cruel and economically short-sighted Conservative cuts, writes Alastair Binnie-Lubbock, Green candidate for Hackney North and Stoke Newington.

Already since 2015 £2.2billion has been taken out of education. Teachers and support staff are feeling the strain with many leaving the profession due to a lack of resources and support and yet before 2020 the government plans to cut a further £3bn! In Hackney, one of the worst affected areas, this means £26m of further cuts by 2020 – almost £1000 per pupil. This is leading to job losses, larger class sizes and narrower options for our young people.

The Greens are taking a bold but necessary approach. We would invest £7bn to fill the funding gap. We would abolish constant assessment tests. We would end the Tory academies programme and bring existing academies under local control. Hackney has some of the most fantastic schools and can produce the most brilliant young people but the resources need to be there and the people we trust to educate them need to feel properly supported and listened to.