Tuesday, August 04, 2020

Hypocrisy Of The Highest Order: After Causing Massive Congestion, Islington Council Calls For Drivers To Turn Engines Off.

The ‘Engines Off’ campaign, run by the Idling Action Project, seeks to educate drivers and change behaviours around car idling. Yet new measures in the borough have seen congestion increase as cars are held back by badly implemented schemes such as the new Highbury Corner layout and now the restriction of through routes. 

The campaign comes amidst emerging evidence that air pollution is linked to poor recovery and higher infection rates of Covid-19 due to damage caused to the lungs.

But this new evidence is of no concern to Islington Council who are blocking residential side roads forcing traffic to be in greater concentration on main roads such as Upper Street and Essex Road. 

Hypocritically, Islington Council has joined forces with 29 other London authorities, and the worst culprit of contrived pollution, the City of London Corporation, to sign up to the Engines Off campaign, which asks businesses to pledge that their drivers and other employees will not leave their engines on when parked.

That’s if you can find a parking space as they also appear to be disappearing at a rate of knots. 

As part of the initiative, Islington’s own fleet of council vehicles will be taking the pledge and will receive driver training.

Is this just a knee jerk reaction from the council who are embarrassed by the rise in pollution due to their latest batch of road closures, or just another case of don’t do as I do, do as I say. 

The main problem is that councillors and council planners don’t appear to understand that if you remove traffic from one street, the pollution doesn’t disappear, you just move it to another street making that street’s air quality even worse. 

It’s as if someone at the council comes up with an idea that sounds good, no one bothers to investigate cause or effect, but as it sounds good they just do it 

I spent the day today walking around the borough, and although I saw heavily congested main roads, I never saw one vehicle delivering goods or services with their engine left running... it’s a problem that just doesn’t exist. 

Cllr Rowena Champion, Islington Council’s Executive Member for Environment and Transport, said: “Air pollution is a major health emergency affecting people in Islington and across London.... If that’s the case, why is she sanctioning schemes that will make air quality in the borough worse???

Why is she not promoting schemes for freedom of movement, that help traffic to dissipate and ease the pollution caused by the council forced congestion ???

Help Dispel The Big Lie : The Council Want To Break You, Show Them We Are Unbreakable 1pm Wednesday

A so called local residents group, have claimed that in a recent survey they organised, 90% (yes that’s 90%) of those who received the survey voted in favour of the council restrictions. 

The survey, we are told, was hand delivered by volunteers to residents in the afflicted area over a four week period. 

In an article in the Islington Gazette, this apparent resident group said they hand delivered 10,000 leaflets through the letterboxes of homes affected by the council’s “people friendly streets” scheme in St Peter’s, the area bordered by Caledonian Road, Holloway Road, Canonbury Road, Essex Road and Pentonville Road.

The amazing thing is that another group (Ludicrous Road Closures), one that opposes the scheme, with over 3,300 members, the majority living within this targeted area.... when asked, not one member said they received this survey. 
Funny that!!!  

It’s well known amongst agencies that peddle propaganda, that if you make a lie big enough and tell it often enough, then people will start to believe it as the truth. 

Reading through the article, it’s alleged that 353 surveys were completed with 315 in favour (let’s not forget, this is out of 10,000 leaflets).

The Gazette headline proclaimed this as equating to a whopping 90% of residents in favour -not exactly right- as so few of the people who actually received a copy, bothered to fill in the survey.

Another little untruth that pops up in the article, is the playing down of the effect from the restrictions. 

It proposed that people used cut through residential streets to knock just 20 seconds off a journey, rather than stay on the main roads..... Funny thing is that’s not what the emergency services said about response times when the restriction first went in. 

The council had to quickly rethink the restrictions and remove a number of bollards to let ambulances and fire trucks through, after dangerous, deadly delays were reported. 

Again, funny how the Gazette, Tribune and Islington council have ignored the 5k plus signatures the protest group have acquired against these traffic restrictions yet hold up 315 in favour as a 90% landslide in favour!!!

But then, as they say.... never let the truth get in the way of a good story. 
And Now For A Little coincidence::::🙄
Who is behind this survey?
Well it’s none other than our old friend John Hartley, of London Living Streets, WC1 (that’s Camden BTW). 

The same John Hartley (London Living Streets) who suggested in an open letter to Camden Council -published in the Tribune- what a great idea it would be to stop through traffic, by closing off the north end of Judd Street from Euston Road, leaving clear access and exit for cyclists and pedestrians only!!!

The very same John Hartley (LLS WC1) who cross examined Ray Alleeson at the Tavistock Place Public Inquiry, published https://camdencyclists.org.uk/2017/10/taviplace/

If you believe you’ve been misrepresented by the Gazette and mr John Hartley, and you have nothing planned for this Wednesday, 5th August 2020, come along and join like minded people outside Islington Town Hall 1pm... 

What happened to Islington Green Party Air Quality Consultation response 2019-2023 by GLA Cllr Caroline Russell. 

Number 1 ) on her agenda was to protect the vulnerable.... is closing off streets more like discrimination towards people who can not walk or ride a bike ???

Number 2 ) keeping traffic moving healthily....surely kettling traffic on main roads is not keeping it healthily moving but causing even more pollution from the Insuring congestion 

Number 3 ) better air quality...well I think that’s covered in number 2.

So that’s a full house of failure from the very green councillor. 

Monday, August 03, 2020

From Parachute Regiment to Fundraising London Cabbie

Born in 1959 in Kensington, Dennis Hayes is a London Cabbie and sits on the committee of a charity very close to his heart, The Taxi Charity for Military Veterans.

Before becoming a cabbie, Dennis had a 26-year career with the military and then worked in the security business in the UK and abroad, before doing The Knowledge.

Dennis Hayes, London Cabbie,  said, “I had an amazing career in the Parachute Regiment between 1977-2003 as both a Regular and a Reservist and saw active service in Northern Ireland, Kosovo and Iraq, completing three tours with 1 Para and three tours with The Pathfinder Platoon. 

While in the elite force Pathfinder Unit, I learnt the special skills of halo (military freefall) which led me to join the Red Devils Parachute Team.”

Dennis was very honoured to be part of the Red Devils Competition Team and in his final tour with them was promoted to Team Display Leader.  

Dennis travelled all over the world with them doing demonstrations and competitions, including competing in the Nationals where the team performed well enough to go to the World Championships in 1991, representing Great Britain, in former Czechoslovakia and finishing in the top ten.

Dennis continued, “In 1987 during my first tour with the Red Devils, I jumped out of a Chinook into Greenwich to represent the army and met Her Majesty the Queen. 

In the 90’s I parachuted into Wembley, in full England Kit carrying the match ball before an England V Georgia game and had a penalty shootout against my childhood hero, Chelsea and England goalkeeper Peter Bonnetti.”

In 2013, when Denis was a Yellow Badge, he picked up a Chelsea Pensioner from the Putney Rank who was wearing a Parachute Regiment staple belt which signified he had been in the Paras. 

Dennis asked which Battalion he had been in and he had been in 1 Para, the same unit as him. At the end of their long conversation the Chelsea Pensioner suggested that Dennis find out about The Taxi Charity and liking what he heard he became one of their regular drivers, volunteering for charity events across the UK and in The Netherlands and France.

Dennis said, “With my military background it was great to be part of The Taxi Charity family, and I was delighted when just a year later in 2014, I was asked to join the committee and some six years later I’m still helping them to support veterans.”

Every year Dennis plans a fundraising Golf Day at Cuddington Golf Club in Surrey to raise much needed money for the Taxi Charity and in the last three years has raised an amazing £40,000. 

This year, the charity had to cancel the fundraising day due to Coronavirus, but Dennis is already planning for next summer’s event.

Dick Goodwin, Vice President, Taxi Charity for Military Veterans said, “The success of the Taxi Charity relies on the goodwill of our volunteer cabbies like Dennis. 

The fundraising golf days he organises have raised an incredible amount of money which helps towards the costs of taking veterans to WWII commemoration events throughout Europe.”

If you are able to help the Taxi Charity by donating please visit www.taxicharity.org

Sunday, August 02, 2020

HORRIFIC STORY - An Indian serial killer has confessed to murdering 50 taxi drivers, then feeding their bodies to crocodiles.

An Indian serial killer has confessed to murdering 50 taxi drivers and dumping their bodies in a crocodile-infested river.

Devender Sharma, 62, from the northern state of Uttar Pradesh, admitted that he would hire a cab to drive to a secluded area, kill the cabby before dumping his corpse and stealing his car. 

Sharma, who was picked up by police for jumping parole, came clean to cops about his chilling murder spree in the early 2000s.

The doctor, who practises traditional Indian medicine, said he lost count of the number of taxi drivers he slaughtered and then fed to crocs in the Hazara canal, Kashganj.

Police reportedly fear he could have been involved in more than 100 murders, reports NDTV.

After the bodies were dumped and eaten by the reptiles, Sharma sold the taxis -— either whole or in parts — and made about £170 for each car.

Sharma had been convicted of murdering taxi drivers in 2004.

But he was only convicted of killing seven cabbies and was sentenced to life in prison in Jaipur, a city in the northern state of Rajasthan.

After spending 16 years in jail, the 62-year-old was given a short parole in January. 

But when his 20 days on the outside were up, Sharma didn't return to prison, according to Indian police.

On Wednesday Indian police arrested Sharma in the capital Delhi, where he had been holed up with a widow.

It was during the interrogation that he laid bare the extent of his killings.

As well as being involved in mass murder, he was invovled in a scheme involving illegal kidney transplants.

According to police, he admitted being involved with more than 125 such transplants, with each earning him up to £7,000.

Massive Scandal Of Euston Cycle Lanes... Misappropriation Of Funding And Malfeasance, From Councillors. Major Investigation by CNJ.

An article in the Camden new journal this week, has finally exposed the scandal surrounding Camden’s multi-million pound Section 106 income. Investigated many months ago by this site, the CNJ article focusses solely on income secured in lieu of affordable housing provision, which tops out at £130M over 7 years.

Section 106 is a mechanism by which local authorities can secure financial contributions in exchange for granting planning permission. It was introduced in 1990 to ensure that harm caused by a development could be offset by other means.

National policy and regulation dictates that these payments must be used only to address harm directly caused by a development. The government gives as an example that oversubscription at a local gym due to a new housing development could be offset by funding an extension to that gym, only to accommodate the new residents of the housing development.

But Camden Council has adopted a long term strategy of maximising these payments and spending them on entirely unrelated projects all across the borough.

It is now a vital source of income and funds all of Camden’s infamous public realm projects, while also funding their numerous affordable housing ventures.

But aside from the dubious legality of this strategy, there are a number of controversies surrounding the scheme which have been particularly damaging to those living in Central London.

The enormous pressure for redevelopment in this area means that Camden can effectively extract millions of pounds in exchange for granting a single application, given that it is large enough. This means that there is a strong presumption of overdevelopment throughout Bloomsbury and beyond.

It is thought that it is this presumption which has seen an increasing number of absurd developments granted throughout Bloomsbury, which very often impact negatively upon conservation areas and listed buildings, or even see historic buildings demolished.

The most recent example is that of the Eastman Dental Hospital decision, which saw three sides of an historic hospital courtyard demolished. Camden secured in excess of £3M for this application.

But the real scandal is that those communities negatively affected by overdevelopment have no say in how the millions won at their expense is spent.

Very often those same funds are used to fund projects which are then opposed at great length by the same communities.

Residents, businesses, and societies opposed the Gray’s Inn Road cycle lane scheme proposed earlier this year, which included no-stop zones along the entire length of the street.

Businesses were told that they should organise their deliveries in batches and have them wheeled on a cart from Pentonville Road.

It’s been alleged that certain councillors have financial interests in cycle delivery platforms.

The funds for this project were secured from the Eastman Dental Hospital Section 106, which was opposed by those same businesses and residents.

The CNJ article focusses on PiLs (Payments in Lieu), which is a Section 106 payment secured in exchange for developers not providing affordable housing.

The article showed that the vast majority of developments across the borough are permitted to not provide affordable housing, so long as they pay sums of up to £7M.

The public scrutiny into Camden’s Section 106 empire coupled with a reduced development pressure in the wake of a pandemic should hopefully ease the strain upon Bloomsbury’s heritage and communities.

Perhaps councillors could consider consulting with those same communities on how the tens of millions currently in savings should be spent.

Source : CNJ online 


Ambulances, Fire and rescue services, police on emergency calls... caught up in the horrendous congestion caused by the new cycle lane layout along Euston Road.

The extra toxic pollution from exhausts fumes, as traffic is kettled along the stretch from Kings Cross to Great Portland Street Junction. 

What happened to the climate emergency?
Is air quality in Central London, no longer an issue??

Joseph Goebbels said:
If you tell a lie big enough and keep repeating it, people will eventually come to believe it. 

We always knew there was more to this than meets the eye 
This article lays it all out for you :

Thursday, July 30, 2020

For a second week running, residents of Islington successfully protested outside the Town Hall in Upper Street.

After last weeks protest, covertly, without consultation, the council out in more restrictions forcing all traffic into already congested main roads. 

Reports have come in from emergency service vehicles that response times have been seriously delayed. 

The main body of protesters made up from local residents and local businesses again took over the crossing outside the town hall m, bringing traffic to a complete full stop. Preferential treatment was given to emergency vehicles such as ambulances, fire engines and police. 

After about an hour, the protest moved on down to Islington Green traffic lights, which caught TfL buses (on diversion from Upper Street) by complete surprise. Nothing could get up or down Upper Street or Essex Road. 

Again, preferential treatment was given to emergency vehicles only. 

After a second hour, the group marched back to the town hall, with a view of voicing their grievances with local councillors. 

But on arrival at the town hall the first two protesters were let inside, then the door was slammed shut with police guard. 

After a short while the two protesters emerged saying the council wasn’t interested in residents views. 

Just before the protest broke up, it was announced by the organisers, it will be much of the same, next Thursday 1pm. 
We will of course give updates on this site closer to the event next week. 

These protests have been well organised and well attended. 
The behaviour of the protesters was impeccable.

The council are acting more like a dictatorship, rather than an elected body looking after the wellbeing of the people who voted them in and pay their wages through council tax. 

Let’s hope that these protests spread to other boroughs affected by these completely unnecessary schemes which are causing so much extra congestion. 

See video of today’s event below.