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Thursday, 17 August 2017

We Stop Labour Bid to Remove Park Land and Annoy Residents

Redbridge Wharf Park

VICTORY: We Defeat Council Bid to Sell and Remove Redbridge Wharf Park Land Near You and Increase Light, Noise and Diesel Train Pollution 

Another victory for Southampton Independents, working with residents who objected to the Labour Council's plans with Network Rail and ABP. We opposed their plans and have defeated them.

The Labour councillors for Redbridge McEwing and Whitbread did not stand up for you. Labour supported the Labour Council proposals. They said in emails to Council officers:

“I’m happy to accept the proposal” (Labour Councillor Cathie McEwing)
“I second the comments from my colleague Cllr McEwing.” (Labour Councillor Lee Whitbread)

If you saw our previous letter that we delivered to residents of roads near to Redbridge Wharf Park, we warned that Network Rail and the Council’s plan to increase rail freight, remove park land and to increase light, noise and air pollution for residents. It is bad enough already.

Around 180 trees would have been removed. No noise barrier would have been erected. Network Rail wanted 24-hour working during construction. And the Council ignored our suggestions for improving heritage and park land nearby.

Southampton Independents Councillor Andrew Pope
Southampton Independents Councillor for Redbridge, Andrew Pope (above), objected to the plans.

He ordered the plans to come before a public planning panel so that Southampton Independents and residents could speak up. Otherwise the Labour Council would have approved them against your wishes.

Southampton Independents Leader Denise Wyatt
At the public meeting on Tuesday 1st August, Councillor Pope and Leader of Southampton Independents, Denise Wyatt, spoke up for local residents who objected.

We won! It was refused. 

The Council, Network Rail and ABP wanted to ignore residents. We didn’t let them ignore you.

Be warned – Network Rail are likely to COME BACK with another plan.

Tell us if you hear anything and we will keep you informed.

Thanks for working with us to win, working with you.

Vote for Denise Wyatt to become a Redbridge Councillor in May 2018. Vote Labour out! It’s time for change.

Thursday, 10 August 2017

Council STILL Failing on Fire Safety in Tower Blocks

Research and evidence gathered by Southampton Independents shows that despite:

1. the fatal Grenfell Tower tragedy in London on 14th June 2017, which killed around 100 people but for which the investigation has not concluded, and
2. the fatal Shirley Towers tragedy in Southampton 5th April 2010, in which two firefighters were killed and the Coroner making recommendations to the Council and Hampshire Fire and Rescue Service (HFRS), and
3. the Redbridge Towers fire in Southampton on 9th April 2017, which thankfully killed nobody

that fire safety in the Southampton City Council’s tower blocks is lacking in several ways, including a lack of sprinklers, a lack of adequate signage and a lack of standard cabling. 

Leader of Southampton Independents, Denise Wyatt, says:

Southampton City Council claims to have fire assessments done “regularly”, and that its fire assessments are up-to-date.  
Yet these flaws in fire safety are very clear to residents and Southampton Independents has provided evidence to the media this week. 
Southampton Independents is calling for fire safety in tower blocks to be properly and independently assessed in the City’s tower blocks, NOT by the Council and NOT by 3SFire which is not “independent”, as claimed by the Council. 
More evidence on the lack of fire safety will be published by Southampton Independents in the near future. 
It seems that Kensington and Chelsea Borough Council are not the only Council to fail on fire safety. Southampton City Council has failed to take action, whether under Labour or Conservative control since Shirley Towers in 2010. 
Why did it take pressure from Southampton Independents and public opinion following the Grenfell disaster to make the Council take action? That is totally wrong.”