But the London tram is on the move once again. Homes & Propertycan reveal that Transport for London (TfL) has committed £70 million to an extension of the Croydon network. The new branch will run from South Wimbledon, through Morden to Sutton.
In 2017, the number of children in residential care in England rose to 72,670[pdf] – an increase of more than 2,000 on the previous year. Given that it costs a local authority, on average, £3,000 a week to keep a child in residential care, it’s not surprising that most want to do all they can to keep children with their families.
Five London boroughs are working to tackle the problem by putting intensive, specialist services in place. Sutton, Tower Hamlets, Bexley, Merton and Newham – which have 1,350 children in residential care between them – are taking part in the Positive Families Partnership (PFP), a programme of therapeutic intervention.
Michael Gove has suggested water fountains to combat the tide of plastic produced in Britain. Sadiq Khan wants drinking points to dot the London landscape. Twice in the same week, two of the most powerful environmental decision-makers in the UK have offered the same antidote to the country’s plastic addiction: don’t re-buy, refill.
It’s a timely idea. A million plastic bottles are bought worldwide every minute, and drinking fountains have the potential to dramatically cut the consumption of such single-use plastic.
Mr Maxwell, who is librarian at Glenthorne High School, in the South London borough of Sutton, was presented with his award and new title this afternoon by Chris Riddell, children’s author and illustrator and former children’s laureate.
In April 2016, Sutton Council initiated a project called Smaller Bigger Different. The aim of the project was to review and refresh our whole approach to organisational development to ensure that everyone working at and for Sutton has the skills necessary to meet the new challenges facing the organisation. Fundamental to this was refreshing our corporate values and launching a new ‘organisational purpose’, and we used the ‘21st century public servant’ characteristics to help begin this conversation with staff.
Chair of the London Financial Advisory Committee Gerald Almeroth has written to the education secretary to explain that spending on high needs services significantly outweighed the amounts allocated through the high needs block in 23 of 28 boroughs, amounting to a £94m funding gap.
‘All children should have an education that unlocks their potential and allows them to go as far as their talent and hard work will take them. That is key to improving social mobility.’ So said the secretary of state for education, Justine Greening, last month, when announcing an additional £1.3bn of funding for schools over the next two years.
This investment is welcome. Nevertheless, as chair of the London Financial Advisory Committee, part of the Society of London Treasurers (SLT), I continue to have considerable concern about shortfalls in funding, especially for pupils with Special Educational Needs (SEN) such as learning problems or disabilities that make it harder for them than most children of the same age.
Completed 15 years ago, the scheme, comprising around 100 homes, workspaces and communal facilities designed to be carbon-neutral, has blazed the trail for further developments, so much so that the local borough, Sutton, aims to become UK’s greenest.
Kate and Jon Henderson have devoted the past decade to looking after their 67-year-old mother, Sally, who has dementia. At first the siblings, who, until this February shared their bungalow in Rottingdean, near Brighton with her, were able to cope. But as Sally’s condition worsened, she began to lose her balance and had to use a wheelchair. Her speech deteriorated so much that Jon and Kate had to anticipate her needs by reading her body language. They installed a wet room, a disabled access door and a hospital bed with rails.
Last year, constant urinary tract infections made Sally more confused and a bad cold led to acute illness because she could not clear her throat. Kate was so worried she began sleeping on an air bed in her mum’s room.
The bid was submitted by the South London Commissioning Programme which has combined the buying power of 10 boroughs and developed shared systems to improve the supply of affordable, high-quality accommodation for looked after children.
Cllr Jayne McCoy, chairwoman of the housing, economy and business committee, said: “The safety of our residents is a priority for the council and we understand that there may be concerns and questions in the wake of this incident."
Cllr McCoy added: “We would like to reassure residents that quarterly fire safety inspections are carried out by Sutton Housing Partnership at the council’s high-rise properties, in accordance with current legislation.
This showpiece zero-energy housing project was shortlisted for the Stirling Prize for architecture, triggering more eco-developments that are turning the area into the “UK’s first sustainable suburb, one of the greenest places in the country to live”, says the local council.