Tag Archives: Kensington and Chelsea

TOP TEN TORY FAILS #9 – from ‘the most unequal borough in Britain’

 

Every day between 20 Feb and 5 March, when they will announce their alternative Budget, Kensington Labour Group will announce an area of extreme inequality in Kensington and Chelsea ‘the most unequal borough in Britain’.

The borough known as ‘The Royal Bank of Kensington and Chelsea’ has £180m in Reserves – and some of the poorest residents in London.

#9, 4.3.14,sportsandactivitiesTues 4 March

9. SPORTS/ACTIVITIES FOR YOUNG PEOPLE

RBKC is blessed with parks and green space, tennis courts and other sporting facilities. However, over the years these have been ‘monetised’, with former kickabout spaces developed or transformed to ‘booking only’.

Funding for primary school sports activities has been decimated, and free swimming for children (and over 60s) stopped.

Physical activity for children 2009/11 reduced from 7939 to 6947

In the same period, obesity in Year 6 students has nearly doubled

Number of homeless children 0-18 in B&B/temporary accommodation estimated to be 1,800; two-thirds are housed out of the borough, far from school and other sporting activities.

TOP TEN TORY FAILURES #5 – from ‘the most unequal borough in Britain’

Every day between 20 Feb and 5 March, when they will announce their alternative Budget, Kensington Labour Group will announce an area of extreme inequality in Kensington and Chelsea ‘the most unequal borough in Britain’.

The borough known as ‘The Royal Bank of Kensington and Chelsea’ has £180m in Reserves – and some of the poorest residents in London.

 

#5, 26.2.14 income, LLWopera (2)Weds 26 Feb

5. INCOME INEQUALITY

The median income in Kensington and Chelsea is now £101,600, the highest in the country; this is still not enough to buy a home at the average cost of £1,178,000. However the mean average income is £36,000, and one-third of all workers, the majority in North Kensington earn below £20,000.

World’s End estate, income inequality = worst (£13,125 equivalent of a year at minimum wage)

Hobury Street, Stanley ward = best (cc£100,000)

Cross King’s Road in this area and you go from the best to the worst income in London.

The Council has refused to pay its own low-paid workers London Living Wage of £8.80, or to insist its contractors pay the same, stating it would cost £1m; this is nearly equal to the sum the Council underwrites for the losses of running Opera Holland Park.

TOP TEN TORY FAILURES #1- from ‘the most unequal borough in Britain’

Every day between 20 Feb and 5 March, when they will announce their alternative Budget, Kensington Labour Group will announce an area of extreme inequality in Kensington and Chelsea ‘the most unequal borough in Britain’.

The borough known as ‘The Royal Bank of Kensington and Chelsea’ has £180m in Reserves – and some of the poorest residents in London.

toryfail1childpovertyThursday 20 Feb

1. CHILD POVERTY

The London average for child poverty is 28%. Kensington and Chelsea, the richest borough in Europe, nonetheless comes in with 27%. This is an average, including:

Queen’s Gate – just 2.8%

Henry Dickens Court, Norland – a disgraceful 57.6% (worse than the Gorbals in Glasgow, at 49.7%)

The Child Poverty Action Group states that the 4,467 children living in poverty in the borough cost the economy £49m/year, that’s £10,000/child/year.

Child poverty, ‘Made in Chelsea’

In one part of Chelsea, if you cross the road the incidence of child poverty increases ten times. Where is it? You’ll be very surprised!

VICTORY FOR MARKET AS BT PLANS ATM PHONE KIOSKS

British Telecom are planning to open new telephone kiosk ATMs on Portobello and Golborne Road Market.

Following the closure of the HSBC Bank and their ATMs in Portobello Road last December that was bitterly opposed by Councillors, market traders, shops and local residents, North Kensington Labour Councillors worked hard to have the lost ATMs replaced. Colville Councillor, Dez O’Neill, has worked with HSBC, the Council and several local property owners to find alternative ATM sites. And Golborne Councillor Pat Mason contacted other banks and providers including British Telecom who operate the public telephone boxes on our streets.

The HSBC ATMs were used every weekend by thousands of visitors to the Portobello and Golborne Market. These visitors often needed cash for small sales it was not financially viable for traders to make by credit card. And Golborne Road visitors and traders have long complained that there is no bank and ATM facility there.

This week, British Telecom made planning applications to RBKC to replace their existing telephone boxes at Talbot Road and Golborne Road with new models that will include an ATM service.

Colville Councillor Dez O’Neill said, “This is welcome news since cash machines assist visitors to spend their money on Portobello and Golborne Market, and are very important for the local economy”.

Golborne Councillor Pat Mason said, “Visitors now have less money to spend because of the recession, and if putting these new ATMs on the market helps them to spend more, then that will be a good thing”.

14.5.12

‘A LIGHT TOUCH WILL NOT PROTECT OUR CHILDREN’

Labour Opposition Group appalled at Council decision not to tighten standards regime in wake of second child pornography case

After a bad-tempered Council meeting on 18 April,  Labour opposition councillors have expressed their disgust and shame at the ruling Conservative group’s decision to dilute further the Council’s standards regime rather than introduce additional protections proposed by Labour. Changes to the standards regime are required as from 1 July under the Localism Act.

In the wake of the conviction of former Conservative councillor Andrew Lamont on child and animal pornography charges, Labour argued that it was essential to introduce a more robust system in Kensington and Chelsea to address any possible similar situations.

Lamont, who was convicted and placed on the sex offenders’ register on 2 April, told the Tory Leader and Whip in November 2010 that he was facing accusations of downloading extreme pornography and that obscene magazines had been found in the house by his wife. The Council leadership kept these accusations quiet in view of his protestations of innocence. Almost a year later, Lamont resigned the day before he went to Court. In the meantime he was allowed to continue as a member of the Council, including an appointment as governor of a nursery school.

The Opposition challenged the secrecy Lamont had enjoyed, first through the standards committee and subsequently on review, but were told that the Council had followed the procedures correctly. However, they remain firmly of the view that the failure to address the situation immediately had brought the Council into disrepute.

After Lamont’s conviction, Labour restated their concerns, citing the action of the Mayor of London, who required a colleague in a similar position to resign immediately and in advance of any prosecution. Labour’s view is that more robust standards are now necessary in Kensington and Chelsea to protect vulnerable residents and children.

However, rejecting Labour attempts to tighten up the regime, Council Leader Sir Merrick Cockell insisted that a ‘sensible light touch’ is all that is needed, with Deputy Leader Cllr Nicholas Paget-Brown claiming that it was ‘not until Lamont was charged with a criminal offence that any decision could be made’.

Labour Group Leader Cllr Judith Blakeman said: ‘we are shocked that this Council, which has faced three resignations of Conservative councillors in less than two years on matters relating to child pornography, has nevertheless decide to dilute rather than strengthen its standards regime. We have to question whether the leadership understands the importance of robust child protection in this age of social media.”  Deputy Leader Cllr Emma Dent Coad said: ‘A light touch will not protect our children. The council must review these procedures, and do it now.’