News and political views

A photo-journal of news and views from The Meadows, Nottingham and the Labour Party, by Councillor Michael M Edwards, using Wordpress

Maasai Cricket Warriors

IMG_9144mb1347h OMS Maasai Cricket Warriors visit Nottingham montage

As featured in The Guardian.
Full res photos available on Facebook.

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Planning committee – August 2018

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Two buildings on Station Street with distinguished fronts are proposed to be replaced with an office block.  The Civic Society and English Heritage expressed strong concerns.
It is hard to see how for instance how a hotel with Victorian standards on room heights can be re-used for the need of a modern office with expectations for higher floors and open plans.
And the device of a dark glass building to create a space between an old building and a new block is plausible.
But looking at the buildings either side, you see decoration, stronger eaves, stronger features on the floor levels.
The colonnade could define the building into thirds, and the window pattern almost reflects that although the brick pillars above the middle 2 columns are not aligned – hence the remark “bar-code windows”.
The graphics for the new building also suggested that it stood forward from the line of other buildings, which was hard to understand cos the plans show it all in line, but if it’s gonna be prominent in a street with high quality frontages, it should pay them more respect.
I’ve written this piece cos the summary of my objections published by the N Post are a tad too crude.  (And, this is not a complaint about the journalist.)
But the Planning committee worked hard to put its concerns in perspective.

Jermaine Pennant publishes memories of The Meadows

Now 35, Pennant, man of the match in a European Cup Final and twice close to major silverware, has published an autobiography which starts with some challenging memories of The Meadows.
WP_20180806_16_20_30_Pro ab0800h DMirror p1617 Jermaine Pennant
No gratitude to the community in the first extract; instead, football was his only way out;  dramatic stories – of a father who was a dealer; a mother who moved away; gangs in The Meadows, lined up against gangs from St.Ann’s; a set-to at a fried chicken restaurant in town, which led to a lad from St.Ann’s being kicked to death; a grand-auto style car chase.
I didn’t recall it being as bad as that, then.  Later, I do know a teenage lad was shot and killed in The Meadows; and a teenage girl was shot and killed in St.Ann’s by an indiscriminate shot aimed into a group of girls fired from a moving car from The Meadows.
But we’d made progress from then.  The council employed neighbourhood wardens. There was a major drive on gun crime.  We were tough on the causes of crime.  More jobs.  Children’s centres.  Higher attainment at schools.  We had made significant progress.
Some of the progress has been lost.  Now, we’ve had a period of knifings between dealers.  Tackled, but the underlying causes – lack of proper jobs, insufficient earnings – not so visible, but witnessed by our schools – are ongoing and getting worse.
I was struck by an assertion by Pennant that he would still be at risk if he came back to The Meadows.
Jermaine Jenas survived a visit to The Meadows with a TV camera crew, about a year ago, but the risk factor seemed talked up given community activists who live on the featured Holgate Road have not reported any problems.
As for football, following goals put in at The Green, we are planning to improve the MUGA equipment at Queens Walk Rec., and possibly find some kit to install on Arkwright Walk.  And we want to support local clubs more.  But the finance is a challenge.  Not saying either Jermaine should be obliged to help, but it would be nice.  Not so much to help kids find a way out; just for the enjoyment of the game.

publishes

Bridge ward monthly report 82

July 2018.
We celebrated 70 years of the NHS.
Britain had an extraordinary heatwave.
Brexit negotiations delivered a political shockwave.  Threats of food and fuel shortages next year, promises of noticing the difference in 50 years time and political opinion took a step change.
Trump hated the ridicule when he came to Britain and had to retract a defence of Putin.
Sacha Baron Cohen was back and how.
And England threw it away again.

MME Bridge ward OVERVIEW progress v180717 1845 aa1764hCanvassing around Arkwright Walk.
Ward walk along council housing facing Queens Walk, and a walk with NeMTRA’s Bel Edis.
Probably 2120 cases etc. from around 883 clients since Oct. 2011.
Visited the security camera centre to check which cameras are blocked by trees.
Planning committee was chock full of concerns for developments in the ward.
An OMTRA public meeting, with a lot of discussion on the Victoria Embankment.
Another excellent AMCG fayre, with smiles captured by a year 3 pupilOne Stop Shop celebrated its 20th anniversary.
A bigger Notts Pride parade.

Splendour had some great acts.
The Blue Orchids were excellent.
A documentary on Jack Jones was a trip down memory lane.
33 decorated fibre glass robins installed in the city centre.
Schools painted bookbenches to accompany them.  One at the Meadows Library, which also hosted a Gingerbread Man show.
Barker Gate Rest Gardens was one of the latest parks in the city to be awarded a green flag.

Robin Hood Energy started trading in surplus and are switching to renewable energy sources.
Rough sleeping was debated in Parliament.

Paddy visits Arkwright Walk

IMG_8698 ab0500h BSC MME CllrNH a PTpcc
Canvassing in the streets in The Meadows most affected by drug dealers and users in the last few months.
There is a multi-agency day of action on the forthcoming Wednesday in the neighbourhood.
All following a public meeting with Lilian Greenwood MP and a major uniform initiative – after a series of knifing wounds inflicted by dealers upon dealers.
IMG_8456 bb0759h DRAFT Arkwright Walk leaflet w QWRec half-MUGA
We had a special leaflet printed, to help seek opinions including a possibility of re-used play equipment for the neighbourhood.
Plans for investment in parks elsewhere in the city might release a 3 sided fence which includes a goal, a basketball hoop and a cricket wicket.
But it needs a kinda 22 yard by 12 yard piece of tarmac, so there is a cost.  If we can find the money, we’d like to offer this “half-muga” for the neighbourhood, either to the west of the play area on Arkwright Walk, or to the south.
Crudely, the play-area would continue to serve toddlers and younger children, and the “half-muga” would serve teenagers.
Response on the doors was positive, including from older residents.

Paddy found one home that was still displaying a “vote Labour” poster from last year’s General Election; he spoke to a number of residents about policing matters.
Nicola and I picked up some general case-work.