Croydon Crisis Up-date 23 May

Dare To Dream

Photo of Thornton Mural posted on twitter by Cllr Chalton Young


As the number of cases of COVID-19 and resultant deaths reduces the Council’s Scrutiny Committee will discuss the situation on Tuesday.  Croydon Communities Consortium virtual meeting clashes with it. The Council has launched several new initiatives as well as beginning to relax some of the lockdown rules, such as more leisure use of parks and intending to reintroduce parking restrictions and fines. There is uncertainty about whether schools will reopen on 1 June, given the opposition of the Croydon teachers’ union about safety.  In relation to other Croydon news the Climate Change Commission has had its first virtual meeting discussing the impact of Covid-19. It resolved to ensure its work helps Croydon’s economic recovery through promoting climate-friendly jobs and fairness for all residents. With the publication of the Scrutiny minutes of previous meetings I discuss its misunderstanding about the Borough’s musical heritage. It is sad to see the delusion about the delusion involved in the campaign for a directly elected Mayor. Finally solidarity clapping for the NHS is a reminder of solidarity singing of the labour movement.

Tuesday 26 May. 6.30pm. COVID-19 Update

Joint virtual meeting Scrutiny & Overview Committee and the Health & Social Care Sub-Committee. The report has not yet been posted up on the website.

Tuesday 26 May. 6.45-8.30. Croydon Communities Consortium Zoom meeting

CCC may have made a tactical mistake as the Zoom is being hosted by Simon Brew through the Conservative Federation. And it is a pity that it clashes with the Scrutiny COVID-19 virtual meeting, a date that has been on the Council diary for some time.

COVID-19 News


Running total cases in Croydon as at 17 May: 1, 478

Deaths at Croydon University Hospital 9 May 292 (Office of National Statistics)

Deaths care at homes 4 May 68  127 (Public Health England); 9 May: 68 (Office of National Statistics)

Four Thornton Heath Businesses Forced To Close For Breaching Trading Exemption

New Council Initiatives

Use Of Council Park Relaxed

Residents can now:

  • Spend an unlimited amount of time outdoors and can use parks for exercising, picnicking, sunbathing or sitting in to enjoy the fresh air
  • Meet one other person from a different household at the park, but both must remain two metres apart
  • Exercise outdoors multiple times a day
  • Use outdoor sports courts, such as a tennis and basketball courts

Parking Rules To Be Re-activated

Parking enforcement across Croydon will be gradually reintroduced from next week as part of easing the  lockdown. From the afternoon of Tuesday 26 May drivers will be able to apply for new permits and pay and display machines will be reactivated. From Monday 8 June, parking enforcement will resume and those parking illegally, or failing to display valid permits or parking tickets risk being issued with a fine.

Croydon Education Union Opposes 1 June Schools Restart

Council Leader Tony Newman states:

‘I also particularly want to mention our schools across Croydon, who I know are working around the clock now to prepare for some pupils in reception, year 1 and year 6 to return from 1 June onwards. This has been an absolutely mammoth task for school staff and I want to pay tribute to them for their absolute dedication in all the work they have been doing, and to our own council staff in education who have been supporting them in this. It goes without saying that we all want our children back in education as soon as possible but teachers, parents and the children themselves must first have the reassurances that it is safe for them to do so.

Schools will be making their own individual decisions about what is appropriate for them in terms of children returning, and we are working with them to support them as they implement those decisions, to ensure that the appropriate risk assessments have been carried out and that they have plans in place to address them before opening. I know schools have been in consultation with parents about their plans, if so you have any questions or concerns about your child returning please do speak to them.’

Croydon Central Labour MP Sarah Jones is carrying out a survey of parents opinion on the proposed start back.

Her Coronavirus Advice Hub is at

Ludiquist Reopens To Offer Take-away Service

Factory Lane Recycling Facility Closed Due To Heavy Use

The Council has had to re-close the Factory Lane recycling centre due to heavy use.

Training On Offer As Mental Health First Aiders

Rowena image

Croydon teacher and Labour activist Rowena Davis is promoting the availability of free training to become a mental health first aider. @jgc1966

The aim is to train 1,000 Croydon residents to help with the fall out from Covid-19. Fill in this form to register your interest…

Other Croydon News

Croydon Climate Crisis Commission First Meeting

The Commission held its first meeting (virtual) on Tuesday at which  members mapped out their key areas of focus including housing, transport and jobs. They also discussed the impact of Covid-19 and resolved to ensure its work helps Croydon’s economic recovery through promoting climate-friendly jobs and fairness for all residents. Five working groups will focus on creating an action plan and priority actions for the future;

  • Housing, built environment and planning
  • Transport and energy
  • Adaptation and resilience
  • Skills, jobs and development
  • Awareness, engagement and communication

Croydon To Monitor Air Pollution At Construction Sites

Network Rail Starts Consultation On East Croydon Station and Brighton Line

Council Leader Tony Newman comments: ‘This is great news for our town and demonstrates their confidence in Croydon, as an important economic centre. We will be working closely with Network Rail as they develop their plans and would urge you all to get involved – find out more at We may be facing tough times but this is a reminder that there is light at the end of the tunnel, and that the confidence in Croydon as a destination, which we had seen growing at pace prior to Covid-19, is still there and will return.’

£75,000 Donation to Legacy Project

Business Rates Not Paid on Ambassador House

New Ruskin Square Building Contractor  Announced

Scrutiny Misunderstands Croydon’s Musical Heritage

When it questioned Oliver Lewis, the Cabinet member for Culture, Leisure  & Sport at its meeting on 10 February the Scrutiny Committee minutes record:

‘Concern was raised about the scope of the Music City project with it highlighted that it only seemed to focus on the musical history of the borough since the late 1970’s when there was a significant history prior to this in the 1950’s and 1960’s. It was confirmed that the list was not definitive and instead outlined the key musical genres that had been highlighted as important for the borough. Other genres of music would also be celebrated though the musical heritage trail and the Music City project.’

‘The Committee RESOLVED to recommend to the Cabinet Member for Culture, Leisure and Sport that:- 1. That the musical heritage trial be developed to include Croydon’s rich musical heritage in the genres of rock, R&B and folk music.’

While this is welcome it ignored the long richness of the musical heritage back down the centuries, as discussed in my Borough of Culture paper.

The following minute extra is also welcome: ‘It was advised that groups such as the Local Study Forum were important to promoting and preserving the history and heritage of the borough, and the Cabinet Member was happy to engage with these groups.’

Lewis met representatives of the Forum on ???? Its importance is discussed in my Borough of Culture paper.

The full minutes can be seen at

Directly Elected Mayor Democracy Delusion Continues

The campaign for a directly elected Mayor continues to seek support.

It is a pity that so many Residents Associations have accepted the delusion that it will increase democracy, when it will not. Croydon Labour is split on the issue with Croydon South in support but not Croydon Central or North. Cllr Stuart Collins probably sums up the majority Labour view in his tweet on 16 May.


For previous coverage on the issue see

Solidarity Singing

The COVID-19 crisis has seen the expression of solidarity with the NHS through clapping on Thursday evenings across the country. There is a long tradition of e solidarity through song in the labour movement, which finds its expression at Croydon events at Ruskin House. Nationally Mike Rice, a former shop steward at Lucas Aerospace, and a candidate for the Unite Retired members seat on the national executive elections being held at the moment,  started activities involving solidarity singing outside bad employers premises. He set up the Union Song Club. This site contains songs, lyrics and some videos e.g. about Joe Hill and Paul Robeson.

The Janey and Norman Buchan Political Song Collection is at

The Centre also has the Workers Music Association archive.

About seancreighton1947

Since moving to Norbury in July 2011 I have been active on local economy, housing and environment issues with Croydon TUC and Croydon Assembly. I am a member of the Love Norbury Residents Associations Planning & Transport Committees, and Chair of Nobury Community Land Trust. I write for Croydon Citizen at I co-ordinate the Samuel Coleridge-Taylor and Croydon Radical History Networks and edit the North East Popular Politics database. History Project.. I give history talks and lead history walks. I retired in 2012 having worked in the community/voluntary sector and on heritage projects. My history interests include labour movement, mutuality, Black British, slavery & abolition, Edwardian roller skating and the social and political use of music and song. I have a particular interest in the histories of Battersea and Wandsworth, Croydon and Lambeth. I have a publishing imprint History & Social Action Publications.
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3 Responses to Croydon Crisis Up-date 23 May

  1. behemothuk says:

    Elected mayor delusion.
    I’m all in favour of more democracy but what’s good for a French village of a few hundred people is no good for a city of 300,000. We need more democracy at our local village of 30 odd districts of Croydon. I’d like to see proportional representation in each district for a start and cross party committees.

  2. The Council is moving to a system of local ‘committees’ for different areas of the Borough. e.g. Norbury’s Regeneration Steering Group made up of the local Councillors, residents groups, friends of the parks, and other community/voluntary groups. See notes regarding it on this blog site, and in terms of the general policy direction at my fur part discussion posting starting with


  3. Pingback: Norbury Update 24 May | Norbury Watch

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