Wimbledon police station consultation meeting

Wimbledon resident and local campaigner Paul Kohler gives a summary of the public meeting on Tuesday 26 September:

 

"I just wanted to write to you with some info from tonight’s public meeting about the plans from the Mayor of London to close Wimbledon Police Station.

Under the proposals around half London's police stations - including Wimbledon's - would be shut down and the land sold off. This would mean there was no 24 hour base for police in Wimbledon town centre.

Tonight there was a consultation on “public access to the police”, held in Wimbledon Chase Primary School.

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Fight to save Ridgway Stables continues

Lib Cems Carl Quilliam & Hugo Forshaw with Julia HardyFight to save Ridgway Stables only just beginning, local community vows

As Ridgway Stables officially closes its doors today (28 September) local community campaigners have vowed that the fight to save the stables 'is only just beginning'.

Ridgway Stables is closing after almost a century, following a decision by the landlords to evict the tenants.

Ridgway Stables has long been a fixture of the Wimbledon Village community, offering affordable and accessible riding lessons for children across Wimbledon.

Stables manager Julia Hardy, who has run the business for 37 years, has devoted her career to making riding accessible to all, especially underprivileged young people in the local area. As well as offering lessons, the stables runs a number of programmes to widen participation in the sport, in partnership with Merton Council, Camp Beaumont and several local schools.

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Plans to close Wimbledon police station a "false economy"

Carl Quilliam & Brian Paddick at Wimbledon Police StationResidents have been shocked by London Mayor Sadiq Khan's plans to close Wimbledon Police Station.

Under the proposals around half London's police stations - including Wimbledon's - would be shut down and the land sold off. The police station on Queens Road is currently home to the only 24/7 police "front desk" in the borough.

This latest move comes on the back of over £600 million worth of cuts to London's police services by Conservatives in Government since 2010. This has seen front-line services in Wimbledon, and across the capital, stretched to the limit.

After seeing the plans, Carl Quilliam, Lib Dem Parliamentary spokesman for Wimbledon, said:

"The London Mayor's plan to shut down Wimbledon Police Station is totally unacceptable. Funding for local police services has been consistently cut by administration after administration, while residents in Wimbledon are being put at risk.

"The station promotes visible community policing and makes reporting crime easier.

"The Lib Dems will lead the fight to protect our vital local police and public services from the savage cuts of a Tory Government in Westminster and Labour's London Mayor."

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Future of St Helier hospital

St Helier is a great local hospital with hard-working staff who deliver good care, but they're let down by outdated, poor quality buildings.

Today, the Epsom and St Helier NHS Trust, which runs St Helier Hospital, announced that it is putting together a case to secure up to £400 million of investment to replace the Trust’s failing buildings with modern, purpose-built facilities.

The Trust is starting an engagement programme with local residents which will run between now and 30 September - they want your help to secure the funding the Trust will need, and to choose where the new facilities should be.

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Lessons from the General Election (Jun 2017)

Let's Talk Merton is our monthly informal political discussion, which takes place on the 2nd Monday of the month.

In June, the theme was lessons from the General Election. See below for the full review of the meeting.

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Government's plans for EU nationals' rights - our thoughts

Rights of people living/working in the UK who happen to be EU nationals

The Government has recently announced that all 3 million EU citizens resident in Britain will have to apply for inclusion on a “settled status” register if they want to stay in the country after Brexit.

Those living in the UK for at least five years will have two years to apply for “settled status”. Any EU citizens who arrived before the cut-off point will be given “blanket permission” to stay for around 2 years, and then will be able to gain “settled status” when they’ve been here for 5 years in total. During that two year “blanket permission” period, they will need to apply for a temporary residence document from the Home Office, and then again for "settled status" when they've been here for 5 years.

We say: this offers little in the way of reassurance to EU citizens who have made Britain their home, and continues to use them as bargaining chips. It also risks the rights of Brits abroad.

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St Helier by-election on 20 July

key_geoff_stall.jpgLocal Liberal Democrats are backing Geoff Cooper in the St Helier Ward by-election on 20 July.

The by-election was called after the resignation of a Labour councillor who is under investigation by the Solicitors Regulation Authority due to "suspicion of dishonesty".

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General Election 2017 – Wimbledon Lib Dems increase vote by over 1,300

Count.jpgAcross the country the Lib Dems went forward, increasing their number of MPs to 12. In South West London the Lib Dems returned 3 MPs, including Vince Cable who is expected to take up the role of party leader over the Summer.

Lib Dems also narrowly lost out on returning by-election winner Sarah Olney to parliament in Richmond Park, with just 45 votes in it.

Locally, in Wimbledon the Lib Dems, Carl Quilliam increased the total number of votes and the overall percentage, securing double the Lib Dems’ national vote share and achieving one of the best results for the party in London.

In Mitcham & Morden, the total number of votes and the vote share were up, with Claire Mathys, the party's candidate moving up to 3rd.

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A greener Merton (Apr 2017)

Let's Talk Merton is our monthly informal political discussion, which takes place on the 2nd Monday of the month.

In April, the theme was a greener Merton. See below for the full review of the meeting.

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Local NHS referrals for children on the autistic spectrum - open letter

Open letter - 3 June 2017 (and the response from 14 June)

To: Mr David Bradley, CEO,
South West London and St George's Mental Health NHS Trust

CC: Merton CCG's Clinical Chair, Dr Andrew Murray

Dear Mr Bradley,

It was with disappointment that we read of the recent proposal to limit NHS referrals for children on the autistic spectrum. We understand from reports that only those children who present with other mental health disorders would be able to receive an NHS diagnosis of Autistic Spectrum Disorder (ASD), if the proposal moves forward.

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