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London-wide + Camden stories

Why do we still not know how noisy London has become?

Speaking on the first day of the judicial review into the decision by Newham Council to allow 50% more flights a year from London City Airport, Caroline Pidgeon, Leader of the Liberal Democrat London Assembly Group, said:

“I wish the campaigners every success with their legal action. The aviation industry has a long record of exaggerating their economic importance while denying the true impact they have in terms of noise, disturbance and harm to the environment, and this is especially the case in relation to City Airport.

Remembrance Sunday tube closures are an insult to veterans

Commenting on Transport for London’s plans to close several tube lines serving central London on Remembrance Sunday - when only three tube lines will provide a "good" service - Caroline Pidgeon, leader of the Liberal Democrat London Assembly Group, said:

“Thousands of veterans and their families will wish to come into central London to take part in the Remembrance Sunday events at the Cenotaph.

“It is simply disgraceful that so many tube lines will be closed on this very important day, making access difficult if not impossible for veterans, their families and others wishing to honour our armed forces.”

“I know that many Londoners will wish to show their appreciation to veterans and honour those who have fallen in combat. The Mayor and Transport for London need to rethink their plans."

The Mayor needs to make walking more attractive

If the Mayor is serious about his plans to see an extra million journeys made on foot in the capital every day, he needs to push for bigger, bolder pedestrianisation projects alongside smaller initiatives to get people walking, a new report by the London Assembly says today.

Holborn and St Pancras Pizza and Politics

Caroline was delighted to join lots of members of Holborn and St Pancras Liberal Democrats on Wednesday 13th October as their guest speaker at a regular social evening.

After campaigning in the Kentish Town By-election, Xaroline enjoyed some pizza with members, before talking about life at the London Assembly, challenging the Mayor of London on what he is doing – or not as the case may be – and what lies ahead for Lib Dems in the capital.

Out and about in Kentish Town

Caroline joined local Liberal Democrats, including Nick Russell, in Kentish Town last week, where there is a by-election for one of the local council seats. Nick was one of the Lib Dem Councillors for the area previously.

“It was really good knocking on doors and talking to local people about issues that they are worried about. Clearly people are concerned about the terrible state of the economy after years of a Labour Government spending beyond their means. However, education was an important issue for a number of residents as well as very local issues which Nick and the local Lib Dems are helping with” commented Caroline.

TfL and unions must both put passengers first

Caroline Pidgeon has backed a recent House of Commosn motion tabled by Martin Horwood MP, the co-chair of the Liberal Democrat Parliamentary Committee on Transport, denouncing the recent tube strikes and highlighting the inconvenience suffered by commuters. Martin has criticised both the unions and the Mayor of London’s office for not doing enough to reach an agreement between all parties, and encouraged the Mayor of London to bring the current talks to a settlement.

Mayor is hitting the lowest paid Londoners once again

Caroline Pidgeon, leader of the Liberal Democrat London Assembly Group, commenting on the Mayor’s fare package for 2011 said:

“The Mayor’s fare package is hitting hardest the Londoners who are on the lowest incomes.

“Last year the Mayor racked up Oyster pay as you go bus fares by an eye watering 20%. Now again he is hitting hard people in temporary or low income jobs who simply cannot afford a season ticket.

Crossrail go-ahead is great news for all Londoners

Caroline Pidgeon, Leader of the Liberal Democrat London Assembly Group, commenting on the announcement in today’s Comprehensive Spending Review that Crossrail will go ahead, said:

“This is good news for London and Londoners. When difficult short term decisions are having to be made in so many areas it is excellent news that long term plans to improve transport in London have not been compromised.

Assembly urges Mayor to rethink Tube ticket office staff cuts

The London Assembly has called on the Mayor and Transport for London (TfL) to rethink plans to cull up to 800 jobs on the Underground because of the adverse affects for passengers.

The Assembly believes the proposed cuts will damage customer service and leave passengers feeling less safe at stations where only one member of staff is present, particularly early in the morning and late at night.

Ticket office hours will be reduced, forcing people into long queues for ticket machines. This will especially disadvantage passengers with disabilities who find it difficult to use the machines and who rely on Underground staff for assistance when travelling by Tube.

Jubilee line upgrade cost up to £12m

The Harrow Observer, the News Shopper and the Docklands24 papers all report on the revelation that the Jubilee line upgrade works have led to up to £12m in lost ticket revenue, as Boris Johnson admitted when responding to a question from Caroline Pidgeon.

In the News Shopper, Caroline says:

The upgrade of the Jubilee Line has turned out to be a case study in exactly how not to upgrade the tube.

There is now overwhelming evidence that carefully planned blockades of short sections of the tube for two or three weeks would be a far better way to upgrade the tube than the expensive fiasco of literally years and years of weekend closures.

You can read full coverage in the Harrow Observer, the News Shopper and at Docklands24.