Just over 10 years ago I started working from home and began to become much more aware of my own community. I would go out shopping msot days and gradually learnt much more about the area I’d lived in for 20 years. Over the first few months of working at home I became more and more aware of, and irritated by, rubbish that had been dumped in the streets. It reached teh point where I felt I had to do something about it. After having a letter complaining about the state of our local streets published in the Ealing Gazette I was contacted by Susan Wyatt at the Council and she told me about the volunteer Streetwatchers scheme. Here was an easy way to do something! I joined up and have stayed a Streetwatcher ever since. As a Streetwatcher you get direct access to the Council’s contact centre vie email of a free phone number and you can give as little or as much time as you want. A weekly walk around your street or streets noting any problems to report works well. And it’s not just dumped rubbish you can report, there’s also broken paving stones, faulty lampposts, dog fouling, missed rubbish collections, abandoned cars amd more. Streetwatchers gives you the chance to help your local community.
Following on from Streetwatchers, Susan has started the volunteer Tree Wardens. She writes:
‘The Tree Care Campaign was launched on 21 March 2012. Members of the public who have a young tree close by in a public space, are asked to make a real difference to its survival. All anyone has to do is save some of their water and apply it to the tree. (Please do not use dishwater as this is very high in salt and other potential pollutants). One bucket a week would be ideal and this should be poured gently around the tree allowing it time soak in. This could make all the difference in the successful establishment of trees in our community. We would need you to be prepared to care for a street tree in your street?
One of the new trees in Melbourne Ave
Ealing was the first London Borough to introduce a Tree Warden scheme last December. Street Trees need to be looked after during the first three years of being planted. Thereafter they are usually fully established and tend to look after themselves. We have recently finished this year’s planting. If you wish to become one of Ealing’s Tree Wardens you will need to be prepared to water the trees during the warmer periods. If there is a newly planted tree outside or close to your house and you would like to care for it we would welcome your support and ensure that you receive brief training with the Tree and Ealing Council on common sense tree related matters.
I am currently looking after four trees in my road and this takes up no more than an hour per fortnight. I have also met some fab residents who love trees as I do. I hope to have all of our recently planted street trees looked after within the next three years by our local residents. We would also really like residents who have trees recently planted outside of their houses assisting us with a tree audit on about July/August of each year.
By agreeing to water and audit the trees ourselves we could cut back massively on costs we pass on to our contractors and double the amount of street trees in Ealing Borough as a consequence. We were once known as Queen of the Suburbs – we could achieve this again with your help.’
There is more information on our website . If you’re interested in helping out with either of these schemes do please contact Susan by email email@example.com.
After weeks of rumour about who is taking over the now-empty Blockbusters shop on the corner of St James Ave and the Uxbridge Road, a simple A4 notice in the window definitely confirms it will be the supermarket chain Morrisons. The notice is about their application for a licence to sell alcohol. This will be Morrisons’ second store in West Ealing. It follows close on their recent opening of a store in part of the ground floor of the old Daniels building . They also plan to have a large store in the revamped Arcadia shopping centre in Ealing Broadway.
As this photo shows, work is already underway on the new hotel in West Ealing following agreement at last night’s (Wednesday 15th May) Planning Committee meeting. The plan is for a new 60-bedroom hotel on the corner of Melbourne Ave and the Uxbridge Road. The concerns about the traders at the top of Melbourne Ave and Luckhurst’s the butchers appear to have all been resolved. You can read the background to this story here.
Notice of 2013 Annual General Meeting of West Ealing Neighbours – all welcome.
[Click here for pdf version ‘Notice of WEN’s AGM MAY 2013’]
Date: Tuesday 28th May
Venue: in the lounge at St John’s Church in Mattock Lane starting at 7.30pm
This is to give formal notice that the seventh Annual General Meeting of West Ealing Neighbours will be held on Tuesday 28th May at St John’s Church in Mattock Lane starting at 7.30pm.
The theme of this year’s meeting is What’s happening on our high street? It feels that West Ealing is on the edge of change. We have two major housing developments in the heart of West Ealing, Green Man Lane and Sherwood Close, which will bring in many hundreds of new residents. At the same time Crossrail is already having an effect on housing prices and is one of the reasons for the proposed new 60-bedroom Continue reading “What’s happening on our high street? WEN public meeting and AGM on Tuesday 28th May 7.30pm at St John’s Church in Mattock Lane”
I’ve posted this item because this is just an amazing apple tree. It’s a Bramley and it’s on the Northfields allotments. The allotments date back to 1832 and I’d like to think it’s a link to West Ealing’s past as a fruit growing area supplying Victorian London but I don’t think it is. I think this tree is pretty old but not that old. This year it’s flowering its heart out and if you look at the second photo you’ll see what’s so amazing – there’s no centre to the trunk, it’s almost completely hollow. Somehow or other it still thrives and long may it do so.
You can read more about the history of West Ealing here.
Bringing added spice to W7 is TV chef and cookery writer Manju Malhi. Spend an evening with Manju when she demonstrates how you can make the most of your barbecue by creating scrumptious Indian Tandoori dishes.
Plus, learn how to blend spices and create the perfect Basmati rice. Savour the flavours of regional Indian cuisine with a three course meal cooked by Manju in a relaxing, fun and chilled out night. Not to be missed, pop in or call to reserve tickets…they are sure to sell out fast!
Date: Saturday 18th MAY 2013
Time: 7.30 (dinner served at 8.30)
Price: £35 per person
Well, I thought Wenzels’ had closed as it was not open this morning and looked deserted and I was going to miss their rye bread. Then the power of Twitter kicked in and I found out they are not closing. They will be re-opening tomorrow as a 99p bread shop so that’s where I’ll be off to in the morning. I’m delighted they are not closing. Further west along the high stret The Cake Box has opened and looks tempting.
Even so, it’s clearly tough going for traders and raises questions about our high street. I still feel optimistic in the long run with the new housing developments and Crossrail but they are the future and it’s the present that is the immediate challenge for traders. If you’re concerned about what’s happening to our high street and want to find out about some of the ideas and plans already being worked over the next few months – pop-up shops, OPEN Ealing returning, Big Lunch in Dean Gardens in June – then do please come along to West Ealing Neighbours public meeting on Tuesday 28th May at St John’s Church IN Mattock Lane from 7.30pm. The current and future state of our high street is the main item. Details of this meeting, pop-up shops and more in our May newsletter.
Join renowned flautist Keith Waithe at OPENShop 13 Drayton Green Road, W13 0NG, tonight ( Thursday 9 May) for an introduction to ‘Flute Journey’. OPEN Ealing hope this will encourage you to stay on for the entire five-session course of workshops designed for flautists, singers and djembe drummers (please bring your own instrument) and aimed at developing your own musical journey, culminating with a performance of all involved, at the Drayton Park Hotel, Ealing.
Course introduction evening, 9 May: Entrance, donation to OPEN (suggested donation, £5.00) All welcome, whether you stay on for the course or not.
Course dates Thursdays 9, 16, 30 May, 6 and 13 June. Cost, £10.00 per 2-hour session (pay per session)
A new school for St John’s
At long last the Council has come round to exploring the option to build a new and larger St John’s Primary School as part of the redevelopment of the Green Man Lane Estate. WEN has argued from the very start of the development process that this was a golden opportunity to rebuild the school to add much-needed extra capacity. Indeed, rebuilding the school was in the original plans from Rydon/A2Dominion who eventually won the contract. The school would have been moved a little way south onto its original 1894 site and in its place there would have been three-storey houses. For whatever reason this idea was dropped but has now been revived and the Council Cabinet recentlyagreed to explore with the developers the option of rebuilding the school on its existing site but, this time, it would be a three-storey school plus two storeys of homes, making a five-storey building on this road of mostly two-storey Victorian/Edwardian homes. (See Plans for Green Man Lane April 2009 )
There is likely to be some strong local opposition to the height of this proposed building. This could have been avoided if the Council had been more forward-looking at the very start of the planning and discussion for the Green Man Lane development.
Although it’s not specifically on the agenda for tonight’s Elthorne Ward Forum meeting questions about these plans are very likely to be raised. The meeting is at the Green Man Lane Community Centre and the meeting starts at 7.15pm.
Update Wednesday 11pm
I went to tonight’s Elthorne Ward Forum meeting. The discussion about St John’s School was feisty. Some nearby residents made clear their concerns about the consultation process and the Council’s poor performance over the installation of portakabin classrooms a couple of years ago when the Council had to admit it had failed in a proper consultation for their installation.
Some useful information emerged. The Council is looking at two possible options for rebuilding the school. One is the 50-storey option mentioned above. The second is to rebuild the school a little further south and put a row of houses along Felix Road. This second option sounds very similar to the one first floated in 2009 (see Plans for Green Man Lane April 2009 link above).
The consultation process was explained. There will be an initial consultation about the principle of expanding the school and this is about the need for additional school places in the light of projected birth rates and population growth. Assuming this consultation shows there is a need for more primary school places then the second consultation will be about the proposed design of the new school. If both consultations approve the proposals and planning permission is granted then a possible completion date is 2017/18.
The discussion concluded with a plea for consultation at the early formative stage of plans, better communication from the Council about its thinking and a consultation process that covers all stakeholders including residents of all the surrounding roads.