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your ISSUE 78 – AUTUMN 2017

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Your main source of community news

Norbury’s new BMX track proves hit with riders of all ages – pages 4 and 5


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AUTUMN 2017

Managing your money It's once again the time of year that our thoughts in the Town Hall really begin to focus in detail on next year's council budget. Our main concern is that, even in these tough times, we continue to deliver what you have told us are your priorities, while ensuring we again keep any council tax increase below inflation, as we have achieved over the first three years of our administration. It is precisely because we have a tight grip on the council’s budget that we have been able to invest an additional £1m into children’s services to quickly deliver the improvements recommended in the recent Ofsted report. Our strong financial planning means we had the resources, last month, to introduce the new high-tech kit to further improve our street cleaning – see the article on page eight. Additionally, it ensures that major projects – such as the new modernised Fairfield Halls, the swimming pool and sports centre in New Addington, and the Onside youth zone in Selhurst – will all be opening next year, providing first-class facilities for residents of all age groups across the borough, just as they rightly expect. However, as local politicians of all political parties have highlighted, national government has cut more from local government budgets than any other area of service, and this simply cannot go on. That is why I, as council leader, have written to ministers highlighting the need for a fair funding deal for Croydon – one that truly recognises the needs of our growing population. Your thoughts and ideas on what our priorities should be going forward are always welcome, as well as any suggestions about how we can improve our existing services. So please do not hesitate to contact me at tony.newman@croydon.gov.uk and I promise we will look closely at every message we receive, and that we will respond.

Highlights Riding high........................... 4 The new BMX track in Norbury Park is proving a hit with riders of all ages.

Building a lasting Legacy........................ 6 A state-of-the-art £6m youth zone has got the planning thumbs-up and is now gearing up for building work to get under way.

Litter picking goes high-tech...................... 8 Efficient and versatile vacuum street-cleaning kit set to be rolled out across the borough.

Splash of colour for Thornton Heath .......... 11 Eye-catching murals and shopfront makeovers are making the streets a brighter place.

New building for Heathfield.................. 12 The borough’s latest new school is open for business in its own bespoke building.

Full speed ahead for Fairfield................17 Big changes have been taking place, with the main construction phase for the venue’s £30m transformation now under way.

Cllr Tony Newman Leader of the council @cllrtony

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For up-to-the-minute council news visit www.croydon.gov.uk/news

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PUTTING THINGS RIGHT A recent Ofsted inspection presented some tough challenges, but improvements are already under way in the council’s children’s services. Ofsted inspectors have said that changes are needed to deliver better services for the borough’s children and young people. Some areas of the service were rated inadequate in the inspectors’ report, and the council is urgently addressing the issues raised to ensure that the best possible support and a quality service is provided to the children and young people it cares for. Immediate action has been taken, including the investment of an additional £1m funding to further support and modernise working practices for all children’s social workers and frontline staff. An action plan has already been put in place and can be viewed here.

It sets out the key actions the council will be taking over the next three months following the inspection, which took place between 20 June and 13 July, ahead of the formal improvement plan, which will be submitted to Ofsted in early December. Focused on four areas – strategic, structural, operation and communications – the plan details the impact each action will have and how it supports the improvement of the service overall. In addition to the action plan, a number of other improvements have been made since the inspection which has included establishing an extra interim social work team to help reduce workloads, launching a recruitment

drive, and setting up an improvement board with an independent chair to oversee changes. Councillor Alisa Flemming, cabinet member for children, young people and learning, said: “The care and safety of vulnerable children in the borough is our absolute priority. “The findings of the Ofsted report were disappointing, but we accept them and are committed to ensuring our services improve. “We’ve taken immediate action and are working towards the improvements in our action plan. We are determined to put this right as quickly as possible and will make sure our young people receive the high standard of service they deserve.

GIVING HIGH STREET TO THE PEOPLE Traffic to be excluded for year-long pedestrianisation pilot. A section of High Street, in the town centre, is to be pedestrianised with a view to improving traffic flow and boosting the night-time economy. The 12-month pilot aims to drive footfall to and from North End, and increase customer numbers for nearby businesses by closing High Street to all vehicles, including buses and taxis, between Katharine Street and Park Street, creating a new public space. Work is already under way to relocate bus and taxi stands and alter the road layout to make Park Street one way, rerouting traffic that used to travel along High Street via St George’s Walk instead. High Street will remain accessible to cyclists, and the second phase of the scheme will focus on how the newly pedestrianised area is used.

High Street

Park Street


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NEW

AUTUMN 2017

BMX TRACK

proves a giant hit

With riders of all ages stoked to go shredding on their 20s, Norbury Park’s sick new trail has brought renewed energy – and its own slang.* The end of the summer saw the launch of what is already proving to be a popular attraction when the council finished work on a new £125,000 BMX track in Norbury Park. The challenging course of jumps, berms, step-ups and hairpin bends has already proved popular with riders of all ages and abilities, and has been getting great feedback online. Reviewing the track on www.ibikeride.com, local mum

Sonia said: “It’s fantastic to have a track like this in the local community. “We’ve spent several afternoons there this week with our daughter, and it’s great to see children – and adults – having so much fun.” Another local parent, Dan, added his comments to the site, saying: “This little BMX track has made an otherwise quiet park come alive. “My stepdaughter has joined the club and I'm down there many an evening and weekend on my just-purchased BMX – my first one. “I love it. It has four lanes and each one has its technical challenges. You spend an hour and still won't be bored. Come grab your BMX and give it a go.” The Croydon BMX Club was created by Access Sport and runs regular sessions, as well as having equipment for members to borrow. *Translation – With BMX cyclists of all ages keen to ride their bikes, Norbury Park’s great new BMX track has brought renewed energy – and its own language.


For up-to-the-minute council news visit www.croydon.gov.uk/news

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AUTUMN 2017

FIRST STEP TO NEW LEGACY A state-of-the-art £6m youth zone has got the planning thumbs-up and is now gearing up for building work to get under way. A youth centre offering 20 exciting activities in a new building on the junction of Whitehorse Road and Boulogne Road, near Thornton Heath, has cleared the planning hurdle. The Legacy OnSide Youth Zone is for anyone aged between eight and 19, or up to 25 for those with additional needs. Dr Mark Ward, project director of national charity Onside, said: “Gaining planning consent in Croydon is really exciting for everybody involved, especially the young people of the area. “Youth zones have a remarkable track record of changing the lives of so many young people and we can’t wait for that offer to extend to Croydon.”

Legacy will join a network established across the northwest and the Midlands which currently has more than 30,000 members. Sports facilities will include an outdoor pitch, indoor sports hall and a fully equipped gymnasium and fitness suite. The centre will also have a music room, and an arts, crafts and media room, as well as an enterprise and employability suite, group project rooms, and a recreation area with games, pool tables and sofas. The council is contributing £3.25m toward the construction costs and £300,000 of the annual £1m revenue budget.

IT’S FOR THE CHILDREN Children’s safety is compromised by cars parked close to school entrances, so the council is piloting a scheme aimed at protecting youngsters. Parents driving their children to three borough primary schools noticed a change at the start of the new school year. They found they were no longer able to drive along – nor park in – each school’s approach road. The council has closed the approach roads to cars during the morning and afternoon school runs to Heavers Farm and St Chad’s primaries in Selhurst, and Woodcote Primary in Coulsdon. The schools signed up to

the six-month trial scheme because of concerns about parking and pedestrian safety. The council is asking for feedback during the trial and, if it proves successful, the scheme will become regular at these schools, and could be trialled at others. Temporary automatic number plate recognition cameras are used to scan vehicles passing through the pedestrian zones. Residents and their visitors are able to enter or leave the

zones by applying for a free access permit. Motorists caught on camera driving in the zones during the school run without a valid permit will receive a £130 penalty-charge notice, reduced to £65 if paid within a fortnight. Susan Papas, headteacher at Heavers Farm, said that the main approach road to her school is now quiet in the mornings, and that residents

had told her they liked the scheme. She said: “We feel very positive about it. It’s much safer for the children to walk into school.” Ms Papas asked that parents email feedback to the council as part of the trial’s consultation: “We’ve been seeking a solution outside the school gates for a good many years, so long may it continue.”


For up-to-the-minute council news visit www.croydon.gov.uk/news

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BIG GRADING CHANGES FOR GCSE RESULTS DAY New system based on exam results sees joy and pain as borough students learn how they fared. Smiles and tears were in evidence on 24 August as students across Croydon received their GCSE results. The 2017 exams in English language, English literature and maths were, for the first time, graded on a 1 to 9 range rather than the old system of U to A*. These core subjects also now rely almost entirely on exam results rather than taking into account coursework scores.

On the day, the council’s Storify online page was used to collect Tweets from local schools as they reported their results. Although across the UK there was a noticeable dip in results, many Croydon schools bucked the trend and achieved some notable successes. The local stories, as they emerged, can be found here.

IT’S NEVER TOO LATE Of course, you are never too old to take a GCSE, and Croydon’s adult learners showed they were up to the task by achieving an amazing 92.3% pass rate at grade 4 or above – against the national pass rate of 64.9%. Huma Rizvi, the Calat GCSE tutor who helped students gain these impressive grades, said: “Gaining skills and qualifications like an English GCSE can help open up new options for work and further study – or with everyday things like helping your child with their homework or just improving your confidence in communicating. “I’m looking forward to working with this year’s students and I’m confident we can repeat these results.”

Art for youths’ sake

Youngsters can enjoy a fantastic day of free activities and entertainment when a group of young creatives takes over a town-centre space. Well-being, and how the arts can provide a life-changing experience, is the theme of a day of activities that is set to echo the success of last year’s inaugural event. Croydon Youth Arts Takeover takes place on Saturday 28 October, between 11am and 5pm at Croydon Clocktower, Katharine Street. Visitors will be able to enjoy face painting, arts and crafts, virtual reality workshops, live music, interactive art exhibitions, a pop-up forest, theatre, dance, film screenings, relaxation

workshops and more. Organised by Croydon Youth Arts Collective (CYAC) and attended by more than 1,000 people last year, the event is designed to get more youngsters involved in creative activities. There are lots of ways to get involved – community members of all ages can contribute something, such as a performance or film; young people can volunteer to help on the day; and creative organisations or those working with young people can apply to have a stall in the foyer promoting their work.

All ages are welcome to show up and soak up the creativity. For more information or to get involved, email or telephone 020 8681 0909. CYAC member Darris, 18, said the best thing about last year’s event was “the mass turnout and seeing people of all ages get involved in the workshops”. Nee, 18, added: “The thing I’m most looking forward to this year is seeing the community come together to an event run by young people from around the borough.”


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AUTUMN 2017

Clamping down on shopfront fly-tippers Success of commercial waste-collection scheme sees it extended to more parts of the borough. The number of Croydon areas to get a council scheme that clamps down on shopfront fly-tipping will reach double figures by Christmas. Kenley will become the tenth area of the borough to get time-banded waste collection, which tackles flytipping dumped on top of local shops’ rubbish left for private contractors to take away. The council introduced the scheme last year to make local areas more attractive, discourage fly-tippers and ensure shopkeepers have a proper business waste-disposal contract with a private company. It means that shopkeepers can no longer leave their business waste on the pavement between 8am and 5pm. Since being piloted in High Street, Thornton Heath, the scheme covers parts of: • West Croydon (London Road) • Thornton Heath (London Road, High Street and Brigstock Road) • Norbury (London Road) • South Norwood (Portland Road) • Selhurst (Selhurst Road and Station Road) • Upper Norwood (triangle) • South Croydon (Godstone Road) • Purley (Godstone Road) • Coulsdon (Brighton Road and Chipstead Valley Road)

The Kenley phase will begin between Whytecliffe Road South and Station Road, while other areas of Purley (High Street, Russell Hill Road and Purley Road) are scheduled to get the scheme by Christmas. Enforcement is led by council neighbourhood safety officers, who visit shopkeepers to check they have a commercial waste licence and are following the new rules. A specialist fly-tipping response team focuses on identifying fly-tippers and issuing them with fixed-penalty notices. Bharat Patel, supervisor at Coulsdon News in Brighton Road, said: “It’s brilliant. If people find out that

somebody is watching they won’t dump their rubbish outside.” The Don’t Mess with Croydon – Take Pride campaign combines getting local people to become community champions with enforcement against the worst offences. As well as prosecuting 171 people since launching the initiative in summer 2014, the council has signed up more than 300 community champions who lead litter picks. Fly-tips can be reported confidentially using the My Croydon app, notifying the council through My account, calling 020 8604 7000 or emailing flytip@croydon.gov.uk

Bharat Patel, of Coulsdon News: 'It's brilliant.'

borough Litter picking goes high-tech Don’t be alarmed if, while out shopping or on your way to work, you’re confronted by a large white machine sucking up litter and debris from the pavement ahead of you. The machine is just one of the new street vacuum cleaners brought in by the council as part of its Don’t Mess with Croydon – Take Pride campaign. New Addington, Coulsdon, Thornton Heath and Waddon streets are to receive the next batch of the machines this autumn.

More efficient and versatile than brushes and barrows, they are able to collect waste from previously hardto-reach spots, such as from between closely parked cars. Council contractors started using them in Croydon town centre, Norbury and Broad Green in August, and it is planned to have introduced 17 by year’s end. Councillor Stuart Collins, cabinet member for clean, green Croydon, introduces the new street vacuum cleaners in this short video. They are part of a £1.3m council

investment in better street-cleaning equipment, waste-collection vehicles and solar-powered bins.


For up-to-the-minute council news visit www.croydon.gov.uk/news

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Return of Surrey Street Sundays The Sunday market has returned to Surrey Street, bringing with it an exciting variety of offerings for customers old and new. Foodie heaven has returned to the town centre with the resumption of the Sunday market in Surrey Street, with wares including street food, homemade cakes, hand-crafted tarts and artisan bread. As well as all these goodies, there will be flowers, stationery and arts and crafts on offer, providing shoppers with a different range of products to those available at the popular market Monday to Saturday. The return of Sunday trading was celebrated with Little Canada Comes to Croydon, an event celebrating the 150th anniversary of Canada that brought stalls of Canadian street food, Canadian craft beer, cocktails and whiskies to Surrey Street, all to the accompaniment of live music performances. A diverse programme of events is now running alongside the Sunday market each week. The line-up includes street theatre, an entrepreneurs’ market, outdoor musical entertainment and Christmas-themed events as the festivities draw near. Last month, the council asked what you’d like to see and experience at the Sunday market. Go to https://getinvolved.croydon.gov.uk/project/302 to find out what people said.

Surrey Street is home to one of Britain’s oldest street markets, and a host of new traders has been attracted to set up stall each week at the Sunday market. Here’s what attracted three of them to Croydon. Chris Kojie, owner of La Crêperie Anglaise, said: “Croydon’s expanding as a destination for foodies. Surrey Street Market’s a traditional market which will, hopefully, be given a new lease of life with some new stalls, including La Creperie Anglaise.” Phyllis Rooney, owner of the flower stall, said: “Having lived in Croydon for many years – and worked in Croydon for a few years as well – I’m really honoured to have secured the flower stall in the Sunday market. I’m looking forward to being part of the new Sunday offering in Croydon.” Bev and Ang, of Butterfly & Angel, said: “We wanted Butterfly and Angel to be part of something new and fresh, and felt Surrey Street’s Sunday Market was the ideal opportunity to connect with the local community of Croydon. We’ve seen the market change and develop over the years and it’ll be wonderful to be part of this exciting transformation.”


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ADVERTORIAL

AUTUMN 2017

Croydon asked to support those struggling with grief by taking part in St Christopher’s Moonlight Walk St Christopher’s Moonlight Walk is coming to Croydon for the first time on 21 October, inviting locals to step out and raise money for the hospice’s bereavement services. Nearly 400 Croydon families, including 78 children, received bereavement counselling from St Christopher’s in the past year, providing invaluable support for people coming to terms with loss. Although 2017 is the first year that St Christopher’s has held its four-mile Moonlight Walk in Croydon, nearly 30% of the 6,500 patients and families that the hospice supports every year come from within the borough, and the occasion is a great way for the community to get involved. St Christopher’s Moonlight Walk is being held alongside Croydon’s Woodside Bereavement Service – a free counselling service for families living in the Croydon area who are experiencing bereavement and loss. Walkers can sign-in from 7pm and then take part in a fun warm-up Zumba session, before setting off at 8pm from Coloma Convent Girls' School, Upper Shirley Road. Stewards will be stationed along the route to cheer walkers along and keep them on the right track, and a wheelchair friendly route is also available. Walkers, who must register before Monday 16 October, will enjoy spectacular views of London by night from the Addington Hills Viewing Platform, and there will be a refreshment stop at The Chateau, in Coombe Lane. The registration fee is £20 for adults, £10 for ages 12 to 17, and free to the under 12s. Anyone aged 17 or under

must be accompanied by a parent or guardian on the walk. The walk, supported by the Rotary Clubs of Croydon, is a four-mile circular route, from Coloma Convent Girls' School, Upper Shirley Road, CR9 5AS. Julie, 48, from New Addington, explains how St Christopher’s supported her family after her son Craig died, aged 22, in March 2012. She said: “After Craig died, we all benefitted from bereavement care at St Christopher’s. “Craig’s siblings Kirsti and Callum went to group sessions at the hospice specifically for young people who were bereaved. “They preferred this to private counselling, as they got to do group activities and it was a space for everyone to share their stories. “My husband Alan and I also went to counselling sessions. “We were sometimes on different paths

of grieving and if I was having a bad day I wouldn’t want to bring Alan down, and vice versa. “The sessions really helped us to work through our grief together”. For Julie and her friends and family, fundraising in Craig’s name has become a powerful motivator and together they have raised more than £40,000 for St Christopher’s. She added: “If you can take part in St Christopher’s Moonlight Walk, your sponsorship, will help support families facing terribly difficult times”.

Help support our bereavement services in Croydon

St Christopher’s is a registered charity (210667)

Join us on Saturday 21 October 2017 at 8pm

www.stchristophers.org.uk/moonlightwalk to register or 020 8768 4575 43287CH StChris Moonlight Walk advert (183x130).indd 1

05/09/2017 10:40


For up-to-the-minute council news visit www.croydon.gov.uk/news

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Splash of colour welcomed in Thornton Heath The streets of Thornton Heath are a brighter place following the application of gallons of paint in a number of striking murals and shopfront makeovers. Thornton Heath has been given a dazzling splash of colour thanks to new murals and public artwork. The work of four artists with strong connections to the local area, the street art is part of the council’s £2.7m investment in Thornton Heath, which has also seen improvements to the street scene. As well as the installation of public art, shopfronts have been repainted to create a more uniform look, with architectural features of the buildings being repaired and reinterpreted in patterns used at the front of shops. The artwork has been welcomed by local residents, including Mike Howe, who has lived in the area for just over two years, and thanked the regeneration team in an email.

His message said: “I just wanted to say that my partner and I both think that the recent works, the redecoration of the shops facades in the high street and the fantastic mural are beautiful, and give a real lift to the area – the pastels look very Mediterranean. “It's touches like these that make us love Thornton Heath even more. We're looking forward to seeing what happens next!”


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AUTUMN 2017

HEATHFIELD OPENS ITS OWN DOORS FOR THE FIRST TIME The borough’s latest new school is now open for business. The council’s programme of building and expanding schools to meet growing demand for places has been advanced with the handing over of the Heathfield Academy primary school. Step Academy Trust takes over the running of the newly completed £10m Aberdeen Road building, which admits up to 60 pupils each year, and already has 97 enrolled after spending two years in temporary accommodation while building work was completed. Once at capacity, as many as 420 pupils will be taught at Heathfield in its 14 classrooms. The school also has two halls, an ICT suite, library, and a learning deck on the roof, as well as small group rooms and a therapy space to support children with special educational needs. Two head teachers – Lana-Lea O'Keefe and Rachael Atkinson – share responsibility for leading the school. Ms O’Keefe said: “It’s so good to now be settled in, and the children are all loving the new building. “Our new team are a huge asset, and every member of staff knows how important their role is in ensuring that our children have an excellent education. “We’re doing our best to create a family environment – so,

for example, we do family dining at lunch time where staff and children sit at round tables, serving each other and giving children further opportunities to develop their social skills.”

BRINGING SPACE TO LIFE A programme of short-term lets – known as meanwhile-use projects – is ensuring the town centre remains a lively, vibrant destination. With lots of exciting regeneration plans on the horizon for central Croydon, a number of short-term projects are being introduced within temporarily empty or underused spaces, to ensure the area continues to thrive during this period of change. The projects will see spaces revitalised to facilitate a number of arts, creative and cultural activities, bringing communities together while also creating a better physical and social environment for the town centre. www.croydon.gov.uk/ meanwhilecroydon The first projects in the pipeline are:

Croydon Arts Store Croydon Arts Store is the temporary takeover of a four-storey unit within Whitgift Shopping Centre and transformed into a buzzing arts and cultural venue. This innovation is providing affordable studio space for budding artists, arts workshops, activities and exhibitions, a bookable creative event space, and a research space to develop a Croydon biannual art exhibition in partnership with Kingston School of Art.

In addition to Croydon Arts Store: community art providing a unique and inspiring visual arts and events programme with a focus on youth engagement and learning, the store is helping the council assess how arts and cultural activities can be made more accessible in shopping centres and commercial places. The store will be open until early next year.

Street Parks The success of an initiative in Scandinavia, Canada and the Netherlands, is seeing Croydon swapping parking spaces for people spaces. The move will allow pedestrians space beyond the pavement, and create interesting, innovative pop-ups in parking spaces. The first of Croydon’s parklets will be in College Road, a soon-to-be-popular walkway to and from East Croydon station for theatre goers when Fairfield reopens next year. The project will initially see four parking spaces temporarily transformed into pedestrian safe spaces – creating small but important public spaces right in the heart of the town centre.


For events and meetings across Croydon visit www.croydon.gov.uk/events

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SEPTEMBER IN CROYDON WAS ALL ABOUT ANDY WA RHOL ‘Warhol Croydon’ saw the town taken over by giant images painted by contemporary artists who had drawn their inspiration from the pop-art legend’s works. Daily tours of the outdoor ‘gallery’ were led by the man behind the project, Kevin Zuckowsky-Morrison, whose own gallery, Rise, in St George’s walk, hosted an exhibition of Warhol originals for the month. Alongside the tours and exhibition, thousands of visitors were treated to a series of talks and films that explained and celebrated the artist’s life and works. And, of course, plenty of people were chatting about their experiences of the project on social media: @Jessica Letters: “Really enjoyed the @WarholCroydon walking tour last night. I'm no expert but loved hearing about Croydon's street art. Thoroughly recommend…” @bernibee: “One of the best things happening in Croydon – or, in fact, the world – this month. The Warhol art walk” Warhol Croydon has firmly cemented Croydon’s place as one of the leading centres for street art in Europe.

Showcasing Croydon for the web The town centre’s vibrant public art has proved an irresistible draw for keen social media fans A flock of avid Instagrammers descended on Croydon from all points of the compass during the summer. Armed with smartphones and instant cameras, they were in town to capture images of the burgeoning public art displays and frame glimpses of its architectural history on the social media site. Organised by Tiny Atlas – a photography-led lifestyle travel magazine and social community – the tour was designed to open up parts of London that are often missed by the standard tourist guides. Led by Rise Gallery owner, Kevin Zuchowski-Morrison, the group was shown many of the amazing murals that have sprung up over the past year or so. He explained how the project has grown into what is now one of the largest areas for legal wall art in the UK and how it is playing a major part in changing opinions about the town.

Robbie Woodward, founder of Ohana Communications and campaign director for #MyTinyAtlasLondon, said: "We had a key objective for the campaign – to showcase real life London and the cultural diversity of the nation’s capital. “We chose Croydon for its idiosyncrasies and beautiful surprises around every corner. “Life in Croydon is life, the community vibe is prevalent everywhere you look. “We truly felt that Croydon was one of the most up-and-coming boroughs of London, with a street art culture that rivals the very best in the world and a focused regeneration effort that will, in no time at all, see people flock to the borough from all over the world. “It was the perfect choice for this campaign.”


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AUTUMN 2017

JAMMING THE BO XPARK The JamBox professional jam night launched in Boxpark recently with a surprise guest appearance from chart-topping singer-songwriter Emili Sande. The JamBox professional jam night launched in Boxpark recently with a surprise guest appearance from charttopping singer-songwriter Emeli Sandé. The project is supported by the council’s Cultural Partnership Fund and gives musicians the chance to perform alongside some of the top names in the business. The next session is roughly pencilled in for November – keep an eye on the

Boxpark website. Those wanting to take part are encouraged to get along early to sign up for a slot as the first night was one of the busiest live music sessions the Boxbar space has had this season. The organisers are keen to see performers take part who don’t just sing or play guitar. The hope is that the house band of session musicians will eventually be providing backing to a wide range of

different instruments and musicians. Speaking before the opening session, Emeli Sandé said: “I love getting together and having a jam with other musicians. It’s not often you get to express yourself spontaneously and authentically. “My favourite part of music is the creation and when you jam. It’s an honest expression of everyone’s mood and energy that day – including the audience.”

HAVE YOU HAD YOUR SAY ON THE CROYDON LOCAL PLAN? The Croydon Local Plan sets out the borough’s growth and development vision over the next 20 years.

The public consultation, which runs until 10 October, follows the independent planning inspector’s examination of the plan documents, which included holding a number of public examination hearings. As well as detailing how the council will provide 32,880 new homes across the borough, with a proposed minimum requirement of 30% of new homes on larger sites to be affordable, the plan outlines how infrastructure such as schools, roads, transport hubs and health facilities will be improved. It also explains how local communities will be strengthened by the revival of district and neighbourhood centres through the support of local shops, services and community facilities. Public representations on the changes

must relate only to the Main Modifications to the Croydon Local Plan: Strategic Policies – Partial Review and the Croydon Local Plan: Detailed Policies and Proposals. References to any other parts of the submitted local plans will not be considered. The representation form and the main modifications documents can be viewed at: • the borough’s libraries (during normal opening hours); • Access Croydon, Bernard Weatherill House, Mint Walk, Croydon, between 8:30am and 4:45pm Monday to Friday; or • by downloading from www.croydon. gov.uk/localplanone and www. croydon.gov.uk/localplantwo.

Alternative formats of the document are available on request at ldf@ croydon.gov.uk or 020 8726 6000 or 020 8407 1385. For enquiries or further information email ldf@croydon.gov.uk or call us on 020 8407 1385


For up-to-the-minute council news visit www.croydon.gov.uk/news

Council launches campaign with aim of helping youngsters make the right choices for a productive and successful life. We all have choices to make in our daily lives and young people deserve to have every possible option to make the right ones. That’s why a campaign has been launched to focus on choice – how the effects of bad choices can be long lasting, but how good choices improve the lives of not only the people who make them, but also of those around them. Choosing to study, train for a dream job, or learn new creative skills are all examples of actions that make a positive difference. But someone who, for instance, chooses to carry a knife, is more likely to become a victim – as well as potentially being responsible for injury or death of others. Clicking on www.croydon.gov.uk/ chooseyourfuture will tell you more. What we will do together • Support young people in avoiding the poor decisions that could ruin their lives. • Promote and celebrate the positive choices made by Croydon’s young people.

What you can do to help • Do you provide any assistance or support to young people in the area? If so get in touch so we can make sure they can find you. • Do you have a business that could offer young people an employment or volunteering opportunity? • Spread the word and encourage positive choices – share the campaign on your social media channels – look for ways to offer young people the opportunity to be the best they can be.

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PURLEY’S PARKING PICK-ME-UP Shoppers and businesses in Purley are enjoying improved parking facilities with the completion of works to the multi-storey car park. Step-free access to the town’s shops is only one of the positives to emerge from £200,000-worth of improvements carried out by Croydon Council to Purley’s main car park. Two new upgraded lifts are now working in the 424-space building in Whytecliffe Road South, with new lighting, roller shutters in front of the lift areas on every level of the car park – enabling them to be closed overnight – and an interior repaint. Christine Milne, of Barnados, in High Street, gave the news a ‘big thumbs-up’, while Deban Sqbramaniyam, Londis staff member, said: “It’s a good thing, as this area hasn’t got any other big car parks. It’s good for us.”

Harmony’s choices are to become a professional dancer and to never carry weapons

The council decision to upgrade the car park followed its backing last year for the creation of a Business Improvement District to support local firms and attract more investment in Purley.

TEN YEARS – AND COUNTING Croydon will celebrate Black History Month with a variety of community events running across October and November. Each year, Croydon marks the national Black History Month by recognising the contribution of people, places and events that have made a historical impact on the life of the borough.

This year's event pays tribute to the contributions of black institutions that have been active in the borough for 10 or more years, and those that are leading communities today. The diverse programme will offer opportunities to discover historical events through performance, music, storytelling and song, and also to take part in thought-provoking discussions.

Many events are free, all take place in Croydon, and there is sure to be something to interest everybody. The full programme of events is available online at www.croydon.gov. uk/community/CCBH and www. cbmeforum.org For more information, email or call 020 8604 7029.


16 An innovative, gravity-defying dance spectacular is on its way to Croydon. Origami, an awe-inspiring, open-air performance that forms part of London’s international dance festival, Dance Umbrella, is coming to the town centre next month. The 2017 Dance Umbrella programme describes Origami as “the unlikely pairing of a monumental shipping container and a gravity-defying dancer”. Inspired by the Japanese art of paper folding, the performance is a breathtaking spectacle that sees the container unfurl as dancer and choreographer Satchie Noro dangles from its sharp corners and glides on its edges. The container continues to move throughout the performance. Croydon is one of just five locations across the capital selected to host the free 40-minute show, supported by Croydon Council in what it hopes will be the start of an annual partnership with the festival.

AUTUMN 2017

DANCING ON THE EDGE

Suitable for everyone, the performance will take place in The Queen's Gardens on Saturday 14 October at 1.30pm and 6.30pm. In support, Croydon will be holding its own community dance workshops and performances in the Braithwaite Hall, with details available nearer the time at www.croydon.gov.uk Councillor Timothy Godfrey, cabinet

member for culture, said: “Our cultural programme continues to go from strength to strength, and this year has seen us welcome some fabulous new artists and organisations to the borough, while helping to grow our own local talent. It’s great to see our cultural scene evolving.” For more information on the show visit www.danceumbrella.co.uk

FESTIVAL OF CAPITAL JAZZ COMES TO CROYDON Marking its 25th anniversary, the London Jazz Festival is making its Croydon debut. Jazz aficionados are in for a treat this November as some of the hottest young talent, and others with a little more history, aim to make Croydon swing. A hometown gig from the IDMC gospel choir on 10 November will be

followed by a night curated by singer/ songwriter The Floacist on 16 November. IDMC have previously toured with Michael Jackson and sung for Pavarotti on his birthday, as well as having been nominated for a Mobo award.

They will perform at Croydon Minster on 10 November, exploring the influence of gospel music on jazz, and featuring excerpts from Gershwin’s acclaimed jazz opera Porgy and Bess. Doors open at 7pm, and tickets cost £10. Then, on 16 November, seven-time Grammy nominee The Floacist headlines a special evening at Stanley Halls, in South Norwood Hill. The night celebrates the ongoing cultural explosion in south London that has witnessed the emergence of some of the most exciting young British jazz talent for many years. Joining The Floacist on the line-up are London-based bands Maisha and Triforce, and DJ Dave Koor. Doors 7pm, tickets £15. For full event details and tickets to both events, visit www.bigsouth.london


For up-to-the-minute council news visit www.croydon.gov.uk/news

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FAIRFIELD REFURB FORGES AHEAD Big changes have been taking place at Fairfield Halls, with the main construction phase for the venue’s £30m transformation now under way. The summer has seen serious progress made in the refurbishment of entertainment complex Fairfield Halls. Most significant was the arrival on site of main contractor, Vinci

Construction UK, to take the venue through the next leg of its exciting journey to completion in 2018. By the end of this year, major works on site will include the demolition of the Arnhem Gallery, the demolition of the NCP car park to make way for housing, and the reconfiguration of College Green to create a new public space. Brick by Brick, the building company set up by Croydon Council, appointed Vinci for the refurbishment following a competitive tendering process. The company has worked on several major developments in the borough, including Fairfield Road’s Altitude 25, and The Ashburton Learning Village, Shirley Road. Regional director Jason Griffiths said: “We’re absolutely delighted to have been appointed on this prestige project, and look forward to delivering a first-class restoration project with the client and their wider team.” Since the venue closed last summer, extensive work has taken place behind the hoardings, including detailed surveys, ground investigations, asbestos removal and the stripping of loose fixtures and fittings. Fairfield recently opened its doors, for the first time since the refurbishment began, granting the public a behind-thescenes tour, led by the design project team, for Open House London weekend.

Local contractors arrive onsite to take Fairfield on toward completion

Marketplace heroes The Human Zoo is bringing its free openair production, Theatre on the Market, back to Surrey Street to celebrate the return of the Sunday market. This follows the success of the Croydon-based company’s sessions in August. In the run-up to Christmas, market-goers will be able to enjoy

further free, open-air Sunday performances on 1 October, 5 November and 3 December. From puppetry to poetry, from storytelling to dance, the company’s exciting and varied programme promises something for everyone. For more information visit The Human Zoo.


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AUTUMN 2017

Toasting 30 years of Innovative project that helps elderly and disabled maintain their independence celebrates landmark anniversary. A council-run service which has adapted and improved thousands of homes for elderly and disabled Croydon homeowners is now 30 years young. The Staying Put home improvement agency was set up in 1987 with one project officer arranging for elderly residents to get improvements ranging from grab rails to stair lifts. It was also on hand with specialist advice and help with renovation grants to get repairs and improvements done. Three decades on, Staying Put is run by eight council staff, offering help and advice to elderly borough residents needing home upgrades, and those who are disabled or vulnerable. In the past five years alone, the council has helped: • more than 2,058 people with home improvements and adaptations; • over 6,947 with safe discharge home after hospital stays; and • gardening services for more than 450 clients. The project was originally set up by Hyde Housing Association and Croydon Churches Housing Association

with funding assistance from Croydon Council and the government. The council took full control in 1999. Service manager Lesley Roman, who has worked for Staying Put for 28 of the 30 years, said: “We’ve helped people living in very poor housing conditions to have improvements such as a new roof in winter, new electrics and replacement windows. “We find that people’s well-being improves when the worry is taken away because they’re living in a safer environment after our Staying Put staff organise the work. “What we want to do is as much preventative work as we can so they don’t have a fall, go to hospital and then into care. “The majority of people would rather live independently in their own home, and that’s what we try to do for them.” She added: “A lot of elderly people are at home struggling but they don’t want to ask for help because they view it as charity – it isn’t, because there are government grants and the council also

offers interestfree loans that are means-tested.” Residents who approach the Staying Put team receive a home visit to check what needs doing. If they are unable to pay for the work, the team member discusses grants or loans they might qualify for. Once the work is agreed, the council organises trustworthy builders to do the work. The Staying Put team’s improvements include: • repairs to a leaking roof; • damp-proofing and rewiring; • loft and other insulation; • structural work; and • adaptations to provide easier access in and around the home. Want to learn how the Staying Put service can help you? Visit the council’s website, call 020 8760 5505 or email hsg-stayingput@croydon.gov.uk

Staying Put to the rescue Michael Bobb, 52, contacted Croydon Council in March to ask for help with a wet room because he was having difficulty using the stairs to his bathroom, and getting in and out of his bath. Michael, who was diagnosed with motor neurone disease in 2014 and lives in Sanderstead with his wife Toni and two grown-up sons, was passed to the Staying Put team, who installed the wet room, as well as a lift, a wheelchair, a reclining armchair and a ramp to his widened front door. He said: “When I made the phone call, all I wanted was a wet room, just to be comfortable, but Toni said I was entitled to it and I didn’t ask to be ill, so that’s what I did. The team is very good and I can’t fault any of them.” Michael and Toni Bobb with grand-daughter Elsie.

Michael’s lift.


For up-to-the-minute council news visit www.croydon.gov.uk/news

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GIG BUDDIES comes to Croydon Helping those with learning disabilities or autism to attend gigs, plays or other live events is the aim of a scheme recently launched in Croydon. Volunteers are being sought to get involved with the Gig Buddies project, which will match them to an adult with a learning disability who find it difficult to get out and about on their own to enjoy live music, theatre or comedy. The project was launched – thanks to a successful council funding bid – at Boxpark last month, with DJs from the long-established Club Soda team on the decks. Dennis Ellis, club goer, said: “I love going out but it can be really difficult. Having a gig buddy will really give me the

confidence to be able to enjoy myself.” Paul Barnard volunteered so that he could help people do the things they love without fear. He said: “Most people take going to gigs and shows for granted, but for those with disabilities it can be a daunting experience if they have to go on their own.” Gig Buddies was originally set up by the Brighton-based charity Stay Up Late, which has chosen Croydon as one of 10 partners to roll out the scheme across the country. Learn more here.

Lighting the way Innovative lighting solution is announced winner of Croydon’s i-street competition. An interactive, LED-lit, halo device that will help people find their way around Croydon’s changing streetscape has been crowned winner of the Croydon i-street competition. The halos, which come in three forms – a simple ring, a ribbon and a clover – are designed to hover above street level, suspended by cables from adjacent buildings or poles. Their LED displays will deliver a range of information from way finding, locations of local landmarks, and the time, to information about local events or the weather. The striking displays also have the ability to turn an area of pavement into a temporary stage, perfect for street theatre, by projecting light down on to the street. The concept was submitted by a multi-disciplinary team comprising vPPR Architects, Twelve Studio and HTS Structural Engineers. The challenge was to come up with a state-of-the-art piece of tech that, as well as being a useful directional tool for visitors, was interactive and easily adaptable to accommodate the town centre’s rapidly changing surroundings.


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AUTUMN 2017

VIGILANCE – THE KEY TO SAFETY The threat from terrorism remains real, and incidents in Westminster, Manchester, London Bridge and Parsons Green remind us of the need to remain alert but not alarmed.

offences continue, there has been an encouraging reduction of over 30%. In the run-up to Hallowe’en and bonfire night, we will launch our Autumn Nights Campaign, designed to crack down on particular offences that are more prevalent at this time of year. This will see an increased focus on burglary, robbery and motor vehicle crime. We ask that you all play your part in helping prevent these crimes. Safeguarding vulnerable people remains our key priority – and all of my officers see this as a priority. Domestic abuse, child sexual exploitation and mental health are areas which are always at the forefront of our minds, and will continue to be so for the foreseeable future. Finally, I lead an extremely

Croydon police will continue to provide reassurance through high-visibility patrols and by engaging with local business, religious establishments, schools and transport hubs. We must all remain vigilant and if you notice any suspicious activity please report it to the police in confidence by calling 0800 789 321. Serious youth violence remains a concern; we continue to work in partnership to tackle knife crime offences and robbery. While the

professional and committed workforce who look after your neighbourhood. They carry out regular drop-in surgeries at key locations on all wards, and we also have contact points, details of which are on our website. Please come and meet your officers and let us know what it is you want your police to concentrate on. We are happy to attend community events that you are planning; just contact your local team. In addition to the website, you can follow us on Twitter #MPSCroydon

Jeff Boothe

Chief Supt Jeff Boothe Croydon borough commander

STUB IT

OUT FOR The Stoptober campaign is back, helping smokers to feel healthier, save cash and protect their family and friends. October sees the return of the annual campaign that encourages smokers in Croydon, and across the country, to quit smoking for the month – and beyond. Smokers are being urged to join the thousands who are quitting with Stoptober, getting all the support they need to help them on their quit journey. To date, the Public Health England campaign has kick-started more than a million quit attempts and is the biggest mass-quit attempt in the country. Research shows that stopping smoking for 28 days sees a five times

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increase in the likelihood of quitting for good. No matter how long you've smoked, giving up will make you feel healthier, and you'll have much more cash in your pocket – if you smoke a packet a day, you could save around £250 each month. Plus, you’ll protect your loved ones from harmful secondhand smoke – reducing their risk of developing asthma, meningitis and some cancers. Stoptober offers a range of free support, including an app, daily emails, Facebook Messenger and lots

of encouragement from the Stoptober community on Facebook. In addition, you can get expert local advice at Croydon’s online health platform – www.justbecroydon.org Everyone’s quitting journey is different, but with Stoptober, you won’t be alone – start your journey at the Stoptober website.


For up-to-the-minute council news visit www.croydon.gov.uk/news

Council meeting dates Public questions for council meetings (starting at 6.30pm) should be emailed to council.questions@croydon.gov.uk by noon on the indicated date. Meetings: Monday 30 Oct Deadlines: Friday 27 Oct Monday 4 Dec Friday 1 Dec Questions for council meetings (50 words maximum) can be put in one of the following ways: • email a question, by the deadline, and attend the meeting to ask your question; or, • if unable to attend, email a question, by the deadline; if time allows, the Mayor will put the question to the cabinet member. • Alternatively, attend the council meeting and request to ask a question in person. Unless otherwise stated, cabinet meetings start at 6.30pm, in the Council Chamber of the Town Hall. Meetings: 16 Oct 20 Nov For information on meetings, minutes and agendas, go to www. croydon.gov.uk/meetings For information on cabinet and shadow cabinet members, go to www.croydon.gov.uk/cabinet Unless otherwise stated, scrutiny meetings start at 6.30pm, in the Council Chamber of the Town Hall. Meetings: 17 Oct Children and young people scrutiny sub-committee 31 Oct Scrutiny and overview committee 7 Nov

Streets, environment and homes scrutiny sub-committee

21 Nov Health and social care scrutiny sub-committee 28 Nov Children and young people scrutiny sub-committee

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Useful contacts For police, fire brigade, ambulance, call: 999 or 112, Text phone 1800

Croydon Council general enquiries 020 8726 6000 Croydon NHS Walk-in Centre 020 3040 0800 Non-emergency urgent care - 111 Croydon University Hospital 020 8401 3000

Get in touch To get in touch with the Your Croydon editorial team, email: yourcroydon@croydon.gov.uk If anybody you know isn't receiving the online Your Croydon weekly, tell them that they can ensure delivery by subscribing at www.croydon.gov.uk/subscribe

Central Library and Museum of Croydon Katharine Street, Croydon CR9 1ET Open: Monday to Saturday (see website for daily hours) Library – www.croydon.gov.uk/ Museum – www. central-library museumofcroydon.com Telephone: 020 8726 6900 Telephone: 020 8253 1022 Email: libraries@croydon.gov.uk Email: museum@croydon.gov.uk

For information on scrutiny, go to www.croydon.gov.uk/scrutiny or email scrutiny@croydon.gov.uk Meetings of the Safer Neighbourhood Board are held in the venues indicated. For further information, look www.croydononline.org/ safer-neighbourhood-board Forthcoming public meeting: Meeting: Wednesday 4 October at 6.30pm – Council Chamber, Town Hall Details of all Croydon Council meetings can be found at www.croydon.gov.uk/meetings.

Guided Walks OCTOBER Friday 6 October Bats over South Norwood Country Park Join the community partnership officer and the Friends of the Country Park Sunday 8 October Selsdon Wood fungus hunt Join the Friends of Selsdon Wood at 1pm

Sunday 15 October Go wild in Happy Valley Join the warden to discover the history and wildlife of some of the hidden areas of Happy Valley. Sunday 15th October Great galls of fire This is a chance to find out more about those peculiar growths on plants that can be seen all year round.

For full details, visit: www.croydon.gov.uk/ leisure/parksandopenspaces/walks

NOVEMBER Sunday 11 November Autumn leaves in Selsdon Wood Join the Friends of Selsdon Wood for a stroll. Sunday 12th November. Fungus Foray on the Sanderstead to Whyteleafe countryside area Join the countryside warden.

Sunday 19 November A nature trail with the Happy Valley warden Walk the scenic section of the Happy Valley and Farthing Downs nature trail. This (usually) self-guided trail was recently relaunched as a high-tech smartphone-based trail, but you can leave your phone at home – the warden will be your guide!

Sunday 19 November Family holly wreath-making in Beaulieu Heights Afternoon of seasonal art and craft around the fire. Use local holly and other greenery to make yourself a wreath. All materials and tools provided, as well as tea and hot apple juice. Suitable for children.


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AUTUMN 2017

Your A to Z of council services The council provides a comprehensive range of services designed to offer help and advice to residents. Below is only a small selection of those services – for the full list, visit www.croydon.gov.uk and follow the “A-Z” link in the purple field near the top of the home page. Adult education Information on the courses available to older students. Blocked drains Information on how to deal with drain problems. Bulky waste collection What it is, how to book it and how much it will cost. CCTV Helping to ensure the safety of people in Croydon.

CCTV

Careline Providing a home safety and personal security system, helping people to live independently within their own homes. Direct payments Giving a person the choice to buy and arrange their own social care services.

Disabled parking Providing parking bays throughout Croydon for vehicles used by the holders of blue badges.

Instrumental tuition Service for children and young people. Job search Find the latest vacancies for positions within the council.

Recycling What to recycle, how to recycle and where to recycle.

Leisure centres Links and information on all the borough’s leisure centres. Disabled parking

Emergency planning Keeping Croydon running in the event of serious incidents. Extended schools Providing a range of services and activities to help meet the needs of pupils, their families and the wider community. Fly-tipping How to report it, your responsibilities as a landowner, and how the council prosecutes fly-tippers. Gambling The different types of licences – and how to apply for them. Home safety advice See if you are eligible for a free home safety check.

Lottery registration Running a lottery to raise funds for a charity or an organisation such as a sports club, church or school, requires registration. Mice and rats Information on the telltale signs and how to get help eradicating them. My Croydon Download the council’s app for easy reporting of a number of issues. Neighbourhood wardens Offering help and support to local communities. Out-of-school activities After-school clubs, breakfast clubs, holiday play schemes – they’re all here. Planning applications Advice on all aspects of the planning process.

Recycling

Safer Croydon Partnership Working to make the borough safer for all who live, work and visit here. Trading standards Dealing with doorstep crime and rogue traders, and offering advice to residents and businesses.

Trading Standards

Voluntary organisations Details on available funding. Welfare benefit advice Know what you’re entitled to and claim it. Youth projects All you need to know about Croydon’s youth provision. Zoo licence You need to apply for a licence to run a zoo – should you really want to!

www.cro ydon. gov.uk/atoz

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Planning

Your Croydon 78 - Autumn 2017