25 May 2012

Peckham Rye Police Ward Panel Meeting

Last night I went to our Ward Panel Meeting with our local police team. These are meetings which allow residents of Peckham Rye to raise concerns and issues with local police teams and to influence their priorities. Last night’s meeting took place in a meeting room at Honor oak Baptist Church on the corner of Forest Hill Road and Therapia Road.

Last night’s meeting was particularly timely for me because I’d just been contacted by a local resident who was concerned about several muggings which had taken place between the south part of Nunhead and the route to Brockley train station. The area in question is outside the patch covered by our police team, but they did undertake to speak to their colleagues in the neighbouring ward, check the stats to see if there was a problem and said action would be taken to increase patrols if necessary.

I always find these meetings to be very congenial and constructive. Other items which were discussed included a person pestering people around a local cash-machine, the impact of the Olympics and the level of burglary in Peckham Rye. On the last point, the police told us that there had been a small increase in the number of burglaries taking place in recent months. They emphasised that the general level was still very low when compared to other parts of inner London, but that people should always take care to secure their property. One particularly common occurrence, they said, was opportunistic burglaries happening when people leave their windows open because of hot weather and then forget to close them when they go out.

The next ward panel meeting will take place on 5th September at 7pm. Anyone who lives locally can attend, so if you’re interested, come along.

16 May 2012

How Peckham Rye Voted

Last week people across London voted for who they wanted to be their Mayor and representatives on the London Assembly. Obviously we're disappointed that Ken Livingstone couldn't quite pip Boris Johnson to be Mayor of London, but we're very pleased that Val Shawcross was re-elected as our Assembly Member. Val is an excellent and hard-working representative for our area and I'm sure she'll continue to campaign for us on issues like extending the 63 bus route to Honor Oak Park station.

One of the helpful things about the publication of the London election results is that you can get the ward breakdowns of how areas voted from the London Elects website. The results from Peckham Rye are fascinating (particularly if you're a bit of a geek and happen to be a Councillor). Each voter had the opportunity to vote on three ballot papers (one for Mayor on which you could put first and second preferences, one for the top up 'list' members of the GLA and one for your constituency member of the GLA).

The first thing to say about Peckham Rye is that turnout was slightly down on the last time people cast these votes in 2008. I haven't worked out the exact % figures for our ward, but in the first preferences for Mayor 300 less votes were cast than in 2008. However, it's worth pointing out that turnout was down across London and in 'Southwark-terms' , our local turnout was good.

Labour performed very strongly in Peckham Rye across all three ballot papers. In the vote for Mayor, the first preference vote the chart below shows that Ken Livingstone polled just short of 50%. Noticeably the Lib Dem (Brian Paddick) vote collapsed into 5th place and they were beaten by both the Greens and the Independent candidate. (You can click on the images to make them bigger).

On the GLA 'list' vote where people just had to choose their preference between different parties, Labour again polled just shy of the 50% mark. The chart below shows the change in this vote from the same election back in 2008. As you can see the Labour vote has surged (good news!) whilst the Lib Dems have dropped by almost 8% (more good news you might say!).

This trend is even more marked when it comes to the vote for who people in Peckham Rye wanted to represent them on the London Assembly. Val Shawcross (Labour candidate) secured 53% of the votes cast.

It's also interesting to see that the trends seen in Peckham Rye were repeated in neighbouring East Dulwich ward, which has had less Labour voters in recent elections and which has three Lib Dem Councillors. The reasons for this will be complex but my guess is that people are very angry about the hypocritical behaviour of the Lib Dems in government. Others are perhaps coming round to Ed Miliband as a future Prime Minister. Whatever the reasons for this voting pattern, it's good to see people putting their faith in the Labour Party. As local Councillors Victoria, Renata and I will continue to work hard to retain your confidence.