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Camden Council has posted it’s winter weather pages once again this Decemeber, to carry all the information local residents will need if predictions of severe weather in the Borough prove to be correct.
If you’re a local community group in Camden you can get prepared by claiming your free snow shovel from the council.
Camden Town is known for it’s buzzing music scene and a new street installation, based on the famous Hollywood Walk of Fame, is set to bring our unique heritage to life.
The project, led by the innovative business group Camden Town Unlimited, could see up to 25 artists honoured by a series of stones set into the pavement along Chalk Farm Road.
While lots of people will love seeing Camden’s cultural contribution recognised in this way, there’s no doubt some residents will shudder at yet another ploy to drag more tourists to Camden Town. Camden Market is already one of the most visited attractions in London – and while that’s great for the local economy and thriving local businesses, there’s no doubt the heavy flow of people can take its toll.
Personally, I think this installation could help. By focussing attention on the main streets, we should hold visitor’s attention and discourage them from heading off into the smaller residential roads where people live.
There will be a drop-in event for local residents and businesses to hear more information and express their own views on Saturday 17th November, from 10am until 2pm, at Castlehaven Community Centre. I first wrote about this idea almost a year ago, so it’s great the project is now at a stage where the community can have their say.
Council cuts to the street cleaning service has led to a large number of complaints from residents living off Chalk Farm Road.
Camden Town has the fourth largest night-time economy in the UK. This may be good for local businesses – but the inevitable by-product is unfortunately a whole trail of rubbish and debris down residential streets in the morning. This is worst on Saturday and Sunday mornings, after the local bars and clubs have been at their busiest – and residents often emerge to find discrded take aways, vomit – and worse – on their doorsteps.
It therefore makes no sense that the streets off Chalk Farm Road have been allocated their (now weekly) sweep on a Wednesday – four days later.
While everyone understands that councils have to save money in difficult economic times, they must do everything they can to minimise the impact. Labour-run Camden’s £4m cut to street sweeping (almost 50% of the total £9m budget) is going to be felt even more keenly when it is being applied in such an illogical way.
Streets in the heart of Camden Town need a weekend sweep – not rubbish sitting in the street to ferment until Wednesday.
Camden is looking fresh and white today, after heavy snow fall last night. I’ve just got back from a walk on Primrose Hill, dodging the hundreds of people who’ve dug out the sledge (and the odd snow board) to enjoy the cold weather.
However fun the snow may be for some, there will inevitably be an impact on some council services. You can keep up to date with the lastest news here.
I’ve reproduced the council’s email to councillors below. As ever, do get in touch if there are issues you need us to raise with the council on your behalf.
Because we starting gritting early yesterday and carried this out throughout the evening all priority roads remained open and many side roads are also passable with care.
We will continue to grit priority roads throughout the day and evening as necessary.
Cleaning services remain suspended today with all staff redirected to snow clearance and pavement gritting. We will focus on priority areas such as hospital entrances and high footfall areas.
Refuse collection services have been suspended this morning so staff can assist clearing snow but we expect the service to resume by 2pm today. On Sundays we only collect from the main high roads so we are not expecting this to be a significant problem and we aim to catch up with the collections when the service is resumed.
All parks are now open, but some parks on the higher ground areas, such as Waterlow and in the Kilburn area, were opened later due to access difficulties.
Parking enforcement will be affected today.
North of Euston Road, main roads only will be enforced by both CCTV and on foot patrols. Main roads are bus routes.
South of Euston Road, bus lane and moving traffic contraventions will be enforced by CCTV and there will be on street foot patrol on main roads.
Camden’s musical heritage could be celebrated by bringing a “Music Walk of Fame” to our streets.
The walk of fame is being proposed by a group of local entrepeneurs, working closely with Camden Town Unlimited, and would initially honour 25 artists with stones set into the pavement along Camden High Street and Chalk Farm Road.
The installation could give local residents a real sense of pride in the exciting, dynamic and creative part of London that we live in – while helping local businesses by bringing fans to the area for the first time. And, by following the route along the main road, visitors would be encouraged not to wander off into residential side streets.
What do you think of this idea? Do you support it? How do you think the first stars should be chosen? How can local residents get involved? I’d love to hear your views so do drop me a line.
We spotted this graffiti at the end of Provost Road when we we out and about today, and have already reported it to Camden’s free graffiti removal service.
Graffiti like this really brings an area down and should be removed quickly. If you have any problems with graffiti or vandalism on your street please do get in touch.
Earlier this month, I reported that after a strong lobbying campaign from local Liberal Democrat councillors, Athlone Street will be getting a face lift.
Now, I’m really pleased to say that St. Thomas’s Gardens, off Queen’s Crescent, has also been added to the list of roads to be resurfaced.
I first met with residents in St. Thomas’s Gardens last Summer, and we have been piling the pressure on the council ever since then. The road really is in a bit of a mess, with a rough and uneven surface that is unsightly, but also a trip hazard. The resurfacing work should return this picturesque cul-de-sac to it’s former glory.
If you have problems with your street, please do get in touch.
I was amazed to open my curtains this morning and discover that it’s still snowing. Camden has now had to grit roads every night bar one since the 17th December – an absolutely unprecedented period. I’ve been assured that all staff are working around the clock (often literally) to keep things going.
The snow last night and today was heavier and more widespread than predicted, with 2-3 centimetres falling in the central part of Camden, and 5-8 centimetres falling in the north. Here’s a summary of the latest news (and if you have any problems or questions, please do get in touch):
In line with government instructions to conserve grit Camden will continue to grit priority roads only. Gritters were out last night and will continue gritting roads today. Thankfully, all main routes remain open and buses are running.
Snow falling on frozen surfaces may cause icy stretches. Many side roads have not been gritted, and will not be gritted, so remain hazardous. Please, please, take care!
The gritting and maintenance of Red Routes and their adjoining pavements – Finchley Road, Camden Road and Euston Road – is the responsibility of Transport for London.
Maintenance teams will continue to break up ice off and sweep snow off main pavements today but will not be able to spread grit. This work will continue today.
Snow falling on frozen surfaces may cause icy stretches so pavements will remain hazardous for pedestrians all the time the severe weather continues.
The salt in these bins is available for use by residents and businesses on Camden’s streets. However, salt stocks are being managed nationally and the advice is this must be restricted to use on the main road network only. Camden will therefore not, unfortunately, be able to replenish stocks for some time. Residents are being asked to use whatever salt is left in the bins sensibly and try to conserve it.
Refuse and recycling
The heavier than expected snow will mean refuse and recycling services will continue to be disrupted. Regis Road recycling centre is open as normal.
All parks are open today as normal, though Cantelowes and Talacre pitches are unfortunately still out of action due to snow and ice.
Ponds are now starting to thaw which means they are much more dangerous than before. There are safety signs in place and staff are warning residents to keep off them.
Camden will “exercise discretion” on side roads north of Parkway / Camden Road and will not enforce where parking lines and signs have been obscured by the snow.
The council are prioritising gritting on walkways on estates to ensure supplies last for as long as possible.
Athlone Street must be in contention for one of the least well maintained roads in Kentish Town, if not Camden! Anyone who lives nearby knows that the potholes and uneven surface are terrible.
Over the last six months local Liberal Democrat councillors have been working with local residents to put pressure on the Council to get the road resurfaced. The good news is that Camden’s traffic engineers have now made it a priority and have just enough money left in the budget this year to fix it. Under the Traffic Management Act 2004 the Council has to give three months notice, so the resurfacing should happen in March this year!
If you have problems on your street, please do contact us.