Nick Tiratsoo's Posts

Fire safety in Waltham Forest: Cabinet portfolio holder for housing, Cllr. Louise Mitchell, responds but fails to convince

Following on from this blog’s earlier post about fire risks at LBWF’s Goddarts House in Walthamstow, the East London & West Essex Guardian has published a related story, which includes a response from Cllr. Louise Mitchell, Cabinet portfolio member for housing: www.guardian-series.co.uk/news/17824818.man-handed-eviction-notice-raising-fire-safety-concerns-council/ Much of what Cllr... »

LBWF and fire safety in its housing stock: Goddarts House sheltered housing in Walthamstow, a new low which shames the council

Following on from recent discussion of fire hazards in LBWF housing provision, this post presents a further case study, which is certainly the most disturbing yet. Goddarts House in Hoe Street, Walthamstow, is sheltered accommodation and consists of 27 flats, with the ‘occupancy types’ officially described as ‘Elderly, Hearing Impairment, Mental Health, Sight Impairment, [and] Wheelchair Users’. U... »

LBWF and customer service: ‘I wouldn’t even give this council 1 star’ UPDATED

LBWF likes to project itself as a ‘forward-thinking’ and ‘innovative’ council, listening to the preoccupations of its residents in order to deliver ‘high-quality public services’, and thus improve everyone’s lives. But as this blog periodically points out, projected image and hard reality are often two very different things. A further depressing example of such divergence is the way that LBWF hand... »

LBWF and fire hazards in its housing stock: the appalling case of Northwood Tower in Walthamstow (3)

Lest there is anybody out there who still thinks that LBWF’s handling of fire risks at Northwood Tower has been commensurate with its boast that ‘The safety of our residents is always our top priority [emphasis added]’, reproduced below are the overall Fire Risk Assessments (FRAs) provided by the assessor Ridge and Partners LLP from 2014 to 2018. Nobody, of course, would want to ... »

LBWF and fire hazards in its housing stock: the appalling case of Northwood Tower in Walthamstow (2)

In response to ‘[s]everal recent articles in local newspapers’ about Northwood Tower, LBWF has just issued a PR release which predictably claims that the latter contain unspecified ‘misunderstandings and inaccuracies’ and seeks to reassure ‘residents and the wider community’ that the building is ‘safe and secure’. No doubt local newspapers can respon... »

LBWF and fire hazards in its housing stock: the appalling case of Northwood Tower in Walthamstow (1)

In the past few months, journalists James Cracknell and Michelle Edwards of the Waltham Forest Echo have done sterling work in exposing the serious safety flaws that currently blight many of the 22 tower blocks in the borough, see here https://walthamforestecho.co.uk/fire-safety-flaws-at-borough-tower-blocks/ here https://walthamforestecho.co.uk/tower-residents-fire-safety-fears/ and here https://... »

Cllr. Clare Coghill responds to a polite inquiry about Universal Credit: first there is prevarication, then she complains about ‘sexually aggressive’ abuse

I try not to post about issues where I am directly involved, but sometimes it’s unavoidable, and what follows is a case in point. During September 2018, I signed a joint letter to LBWF Leader Clare Coghill inquiring about what steps the council was taking to mitigate the disastrous introduction of Universal Credit. The tenor of the letter was thoughtful, evidenced, non-partisan, and of course abou... »

The Connecting Communities Programme in Waltham Forest: everyone’s welcome (except the disabled and poverty-stricken)

In March 2018, the government launched a new £50m. Integrated Communities Strategy (ICS), ‘to tackle the root causes of poor integration and create a stronger, more united Britain’. Shortly afterwards, it was announced that LBWF was to be one of five authorities in England involved in piloting the ICS to 2019/20, supported by an initial grant of £1.2m.; and subsequently, LBWF has published Waltham... »

Health inequalities by ward in Waltham Forest: an investigation in eight acts

Prologue In the early 2000s, it was often noted that health in Waltham Forest varied noticeably from ward to ward. For example, the Primary Health Trust’s Public Health Report 2003/04 included the following graphic: What this showed, to take one example, was that men and women in Cann Hall at that date were likely to die 5.3 years and 4.4 years earlier that their equivalents in Endlebury. Fo... »

LBWF old boy Daniel Fenwick makes the news in Newham

This week’s Private Eye has some disquieting news about LBWF old boy Daniel Fenwick, now working for Newham, see ‘Truth Will Doubt’, below: Many will remember then LBWF Director and Governance Mr. Fenwick fondly as a stout defender of his employer’s interests. He worked for LBWF at a time when the authority had its fair share of scandals – the Better Neighbourhoods In... »

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