Supporting Crossrail 2 but only if station development is low key

I was concerned, but not surprised, to read reports in the media that the Crossrail 2 project could be derailed or side-lined because of cost and competing infrastructure demands.

Residents will know that the Council is a staunch supporter of a Crossrail 2 Station on the King’s Road. We believe there is an overwhelming case for a station in an area that many people visit but is poorly served by public transport. Continue reading

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Food banks are a fine and noble thing

Sometimes in the debating chamber a cloud of unreason seems to descend on my colleagues from the Labour Party. They become emotional, they make speeches that are unwittingly mock-heroic.

It seems to happen whenever they sense an opportunity to demonstrate their superior passion and humanity. It is seldom, if ever, linked to any practical action. There is a new and useful term for this kind of behaviour: virtue signalling.

There was a veritable orgy of virtue signalling just the other week when the subject of food banks came up in debate. Continue reading

Budget speech 2017

Cllr Paget-Brown’s Budget speech Wednesday 8 March 2017

I am delighted to propose the Budget for 2017/18. In doing so I would urge colleagues and the public to study the excellent accompanying document which sets out how this Council accounts for the £409m revenue expenditure which we will undertake in the coming financial year and almost £400m of capital spending over the next four years. How we spend that money is an important determinant of the character of the place in which we live and an indicator of a Council that seeks to create opportunities for everyone to succeed and to shape a borough that is one of the best places to live in London. Continue reading

No class war in Kensington and Chelsea

The Council stands accused on the front page of the Kensington and Chelsea News of engaging in a ‘class war’ over its decision to lease the old North Kensington Library building to a prep school while building a brand new, larger library 50 yards away. The accusation is thrown down by a councillor, but not just any old councillor, oh no, it’s the view of a ‘leading councillor’. Continue reading