Tag Archives: West Ham

General election update

7 Apr

GE2015 predictions

The brainiacs at FiveThirtyEight.com have come up with constituency-by-constituency predictions for the UK general election.

Their prognostications for the two Newham seats make for predictable reading. I doubt it took them very long to come to forecast the winners or their overwhelming share of the vote.

If I had any quibble with their forecast, I’d say they have significantly over-estimated the likely Lib Dem scores. In my view, they’ll be lucky to save their deposits.

Cheap shot

10 Feb

Tory fundraiser WHU

The Conservatives held a fund-raising auction on Monday night. One of the items up for sale was match day hospitality in the Directors’ Box at West Ham.

It won’t have fetched much. We know from councillor Lester Hudson’s register of gifts and hospitality that it’s only worth £25.


3 Feb

In a piece in today’s Guardian on the failure of the 2012 Olympics to deliver a legacy of greater participation in sport David Conn observes

The real Olympic legacy winners, of course, are West Ham United, owned by David Sullivan and David Gold, who made their first fortunes in pornography. Next year the Premier League club will take charge of the Olympic stadium, built with £429m of public money, and for which the public is paying a further £160m to convert for West Ham. The club will pay rent, and stands to make a fortune from the 54,000-seat capacity – far more than than its current Upton Park home – and enhanced corporate feasting. Karren Brady, who has worked loyally for Sullivan all her career, negotiated this stadium deal of the century with London’s mayor, Boris Johnson, and has since been made a Conservative peer – Baroness Brady of Knightsbridge.

And a quarter of that £160m conversion cost is being met by the council taxpayers of Newham – local people who are struggling with falling wages and rising prices. Meanwhile, David Cameron promises to drive even more of them into poverty by cutting the benefits cap if his party wins in May.

But of course there’s no cap on handouts to the wealthy. Multimillionaire pornographers and their Tory chief executive can have their business subsidised by the taxpayer: it’s enough to turn your stomach. 

Affordable housing

21 Jan

ClaptonUltras 2015 Jan 18

Will the council stand up for local people or just let Galliard get away with it? I think we all know the answer to that question.

To rub salt into the wound, the developer is proposing that just 51 of the 838 homes to be built on the Boleyn Ground site will be ‘affordable’ housing. That’s made up of 5 studios, 8 one bedroom flats, 25 two bed units and 13 three bed homes. These will be offered on a shared ownership basis: there will be no affordable homes for rent.

As bad as that seems, things are even worse in Stratford.

CBRE are proposing to redevelop Morgan House – an office block – and part of the shopping centre to provide more than 500 new homes. These will overlook the Olympic Park and provide easy access to both east London’s best connected transport hub and Europe’s largest shopping mall. 

Given the high prices such a prime location will attract, it comes as no surprise that, according to the developer:

There are a number of unique and exceptional site-specific circumstances which result cumulatively in the proposal site being entirely unsuitable for on-site affordable housing provision.

The reasoning is that Newham’s priority is family homes, and a town centre location surrounded by busy roads would not be the right place to house families.

So what about the option of providing affordable homes on another site? That’s not going to happen either.

an initial review of site availability in the area has not identified an appropriate donor site for affordable housing provision. Further, the applicant does not have any suitable sites that could be identified for affordable housing provision.

The only option the developer will consider is bunging the council some cash:

Subject to viability, given the very special circumstances involved with the existing site and emerging proposals, it is considered that a commuted payment towards affordable housing provision would be the most appropriate mechanism for the provision of affordable housing.

Of course once the council has the cash – assuming the viability assessment even requires it to be paid – there’s no obligation to actually spend it on providing affordable housing. It can just vanish into the general pot and pay for whatever the mayor wants.

Next year’s council election results today

8 Jul

This is the full list of Labour party candidates selected this weekend to fight next year’s local elections. Given the electoral history of the borough, the vast majority of these people – and probably all of them – will be elected as Newham councillors on May 22nd 2014:

Beckton: David Christie, Ayesha Chowdhury, Alec Kellaway

Canning Town North: Ann Easter, Kay Scoresby, Clive Furness

Canning Town South: Sheila Thomas, Alan Griffiths, Bryan Collier

Custom House: Pat Holland, Rokhsana Fiaz, Conor McAuley

East Ham Central: Unmesh Desai, Ian Corbett, Julianne Marriott

East Ham North: Paul Sathianesan, Zuber Gulamussen, Firoza Nekiwala

East Ham South: Quintin Peppiatt, Lakmini Shah, Susan Masters

Forest Gate North: Ellie Robinson, Seyi Akiwowo, Rachel Tripp

Forest Gate South: Mas Patel, Winston Vaughan, Dianne Walls

Green Street East: Jose Alexander, Rohima Rahman, Mukesh Patel

Green Street West: Hanif Abdulmuhit, Tahmina Rahman, Idris Ibrahim

Little Ilford: Andrew Baikie, Farah Nazeer, Ken Clark

Manor Park: Amarjit Singh, Jo Corbett, Salim Patel

Plaistow North: Forhad Hussain, Joy Laguda, James Beckles

Plaistow South: Gordon Mackinnon-Miller, Aleen Alarice, Neil Wilson

Royal Docks: Steve Brayshaw, Anthony McAlmont, Pat Murphy

Stratford: Richard Crawford, Terry Paul, Charlene McLean

Wall End: Lester Hudson, Ted Sparrowhawk, Frances Clarke

West Ham: John Gray, John Whitworth, Freda Bourne

Boleyn ward has not yet been able to select its candidates due to a dispute with East Ham CLP. The ward party was unexpectedly suspended last week, despite this being the sole prerogative of the national executive. So expect any of Sir Robin’s favourites who failed to make it in the other 19 wards to be imposed on Boleyn.