Clifton Road Festive Lights
Once again your Conservative Little Venice Councillors are helping to bring some additional Festive Cheer to the shopping parade on Clifton Road, with the planned installation of Christmas lights due in early December. The street is popular with local shoppers, especially in the run-up to Christmas, when many of the local retailers host special events and promotions.
Explained Councillor Ian Adams: "The Christmas lights are very popular which is why we have set aside funding from our local ward budget to pay for the lights and their installation once more this year. We hope that people will enjoy the special atmosphere in Clifton Road again this Christmas."
As we advised in our last newsletter, Westminster Conservatives are introducing a pilot scheme for some roads to have a 20MPH limit. It is important that the number of roads is chosen carefully so that motorists see the change and proceed more cautiously. Many Labour councils have tried to convert all their roads to a 20MPH limit and this has resulted in the limit being largely ignored. Your Conservative Councillors are pushing for Randolph Avenue and Shirland Road to be included in the 20MPH pilots, as these roads are adjacent to schools and require more caution to be exercised. Councillor Melvyn Caplan said: “The safety of our residents is very important and we particularly need to protect our more vulnerable residents such as schoolchildren. A reduced speed limit on specific roads will alert motorists to the potential dangers and hopefully make them slow down.”
New openings for recycling bins
We know how important that recycling is to Little Venice residents and we have paid for a second weekly recycling collection for our residents out of our ward budget for many years.
In response to a number of requests, we are piloting new lids on some of recycling bins. These new lids have wider openings and are easier to open to enable larger pieces of cardboard and full blue recycling bags to be put into the recycling bins. Do let us know what you think. Commented Councillor Melvyn Caplan: “Making life easier for our residents who want to recycle is a key objective for us and we believe that the new recycling lids should enable residents to have easier access to recycling containers.”
Supporting dogs in Little Venice
Little Venice has long been a dog-friendly area. In addition to local streets, dog walkers can access Rembrandt Gardens, Paddington Green and routes around the canal to exercise their canine friends.
New rules for microchipping dogs came into force in April this year. If a dog is found without a chip the keeper can be issued with a notice requiring chipping within 21 days. After this period a fine of £500 may be imposed. As well as local authorities, these regulations can be enforced by police constables and community support officers.
Westminster City Council (WCC) joined with Mayhew Animal Home and the Dog Welfare Service to offer a free microchipping service at Paddington Green in October. However, it is not too late for anyone who missed this opportunity. You can still book a visit through our wardens. Just email email@example.com .
Anyone seeking dog welfare advice can also visit the WCC animal welfare website: https://www.westminster.gov.uk/animal-welfare . Your Council has also been campaigning to encourage cleaning up after dogs.
Cllr Barbara Arzymanow says, “Your Councillors recognise that dogs are much loved members of many families. Owners should feel free to draw on the support provided by Westminster City Council. Guidance aimed at protecting the interests of non-dog owners is also available.”
9,000 and growing as Westminster plants more trees
The number of trees planted by Conservative-run Westminster Council is up by more than a third in a decade, helping to make our city greener every year. Over the last three years an annual average of 200 extra trees have been planted, going well beyond just replacing the 40 or so which die or have to be taken down for safety reasons. Councillor Heather Acton, Cabinet Member for Sustainability and Parking said: “Westminster Conservatives know that trees are vital to our city and help contribute to the physical and mental health of our residents and visitors. As well as this, they help to reduce on-street flooding.”
Under London’s previous Conservative Mayor, Boris Johnson, Westminster received assistance with its tree planting programme. Labour Mayor, Sadiq Khan, by contrast, does not plan to keep his promise to plant 2 million trees by 2020, having reduced the commitment to a 5% increase by 2025.
Trees on urban streets provide shade in hot weather and contribute to better air quality. They improve the beauty and liveability of our neighbourhoods. Research shows people prefer to live in areas with more trees and greenery and are prepared to pay more to do so.
Westminster now has 9,000 trees on its streets, from the magnificent planes of the Mall to smaller fruit trees and dogwoods that fit the scale of residential areas and it continues to plant more.
Nine million investment in Westminster’s sports centres underway
Westminster’s sports centres are benefiting from a £9 million investment thanks to an innovative contract. The Queen Mother Sports Centre in Pimlico will receive £1.6 million to refurbish the spa, add a new yoga studio in addition to the recently refurbished changing rooms already delivered. Funds will also go towards a new entrance and a refurbished state-of-the-art gym, with work starting in December.
Cllr David Harvey, Cabinet Member for Sports and Leisure, said: “Investing in the future of sport and leisure centres across Westminster will help to more people to keep healthy and active. More people than ever before are taking part in physical activity and it’s vital we offer the facilities and opportunities they need.”
Money will also go towards improvements at Marshall Street Leisure Centre and the Porchester Centre. Little Venice Sports Centre on Edgware Road and Jubilee Sports Centre in Queen’s Park have already reopened their new gyms following refurbishment earlier in the year.
A consultation on a plan for the upper Vauxhall Bridge Road area, which includes the Queen Mother Sport’s Centre, is currently taking place. This work aims to ensure that future developments in the area involve local people and are in keeping with the character of the area.
Councillor David Harvey said: “Despite what the Labour Party have been trying to insinuate, we are committed to retaining and improving the much loved and popular Queen Mother Sports Centre, which will remain at the heart of the area and any future developments.”