Telegraph Hill campaigners fight play closure


Campaigners hoping to save the Telegraph Hill Play Group, which faces the threat of closure due to funding cuts, will present a petition of more than 800 signatures this to Lewisham Council this evening. 

60 comments:

Anonymous said...

if each of those 800 signatories gave a £1 a week to keep the service open that would help wouldn't it? Not too much to pay, in fact they may have more money than they do now. And lets be honest, as soon as your child stops going there you probably don't care any more anyway.

Anonymous said...

mate, you're not going to start all this again are you? we've listened to your argument on this forum before and it's rubbish.

Anonymous said...

What if you're strugling and have to contribute £1 extra for school meals, uniform, bus fairs, school trips, dentists, libraries, play groups etc, etc.... Some people don't resent some of their taxes being spent on our future. Even those without kids see the value I that. It's all very civilised and enlightened. Rich, safe, civilised countries spread opportunity and don't define children's futures based on the income of their parents.

Anonymous said...

Anonymous @ 15:47. Did you pay a pound every day you went to school? Or do you pay a pound every time you walk into a hospital? Your argument is tosh.

Anonymous said...

We seem to be returning to the particularly Labour argument that those who can't afford children should be able to have them anyway.

Anonymous said...

What's the Tory option? Enforced sterilisation?

Anonymous said...

Not at all... it's "have children when you're ready, and until then, put something on it"

Is that hard to understand or would you find that a bit "oppressive"?

I said...

And what about when they are 'ready' (ie in love and want children) but still poor?

Anonymous said...

"have children when you're ready, and until then, put something on it"

That's not what you said though. You said people who couldn't afford to have children shouldn't. How will you stop them? Apart from stating the bleeding obvious.

Anonymous said...

The point remains:
- A lot (and I'd wager in fact the vast majority) of people have never been to a playgroup like this. It is not necessary
- I bet Anon @15.47 that closing it saves more than £40k p.a. so each signatory paying £1 a week would not be enough (though may be enough for the Government to choose to contribute a smaller amount to keep it running)

I "don't resent some of their taxes being spent on our future". I resent my taxes being spent on fairly frivolous and unnecessary things in a time of cuts.

Lou Baker said...

People shouldn't have children until they can afford them.

Part of being 'ready' to have kids is actually having the means to support them.

Of course enforcing this is not easy.

But naming and shaming those on benefits may help deter future spongers.

Anonymous said...

Exactly. It's impossible to stop people having children if they want so it's a stupid comment.

Anonymous said...

So does that mean we should just let it be a free-for-all? Everyone gets to have a little Mungo if they want to? You lot love 'sustainability', do you think that's a sustainable way of running a society?

You can't stop people from stripping naked in the street but they sure as hell don't do it because there's a societal expectation, made clear from childhood, that they don't.

Why are we so limp-wristed when it comes to preventing these enormous expenses being thrust unto the world to face a life of misery?

Who said you have a right to have children?

Anonymous said...

"Naming and shaming those on benefits" revealing yourself again. Those on benefits are low lifes, including the new unemployed who lost their jobs through no fault of their own and who paid taxes to ensure that they are not thrown on the heap and will pay taxes again should they find work. A stupid, crass, Ill informed post from the house idiot.

You always claim to be on the side of the little man but the mask keeps slipping, you detest the poor or even those who are struggling.

Detestable little man, I fully expect the grunts of approval from the self styled upholders of decent values. .

Brockley Nick said...

You keep talking as if this facility is for parents. It's not. It's for kids. It doesn't matter whether (by your standards) the parents are feckless or not (and it's a ridiculous argument to make that only the well-off should have children) - closing educational facilities harms the future of children - and the future of our society and economy. Invest in education. Produce better adults.

Anonymous said...

But only dealing with the symptoms of uncontrolled child-rearing does nothing to fix it in the long term.

Nick, rather than say that peoples views are ridiculous, elucidate why.

Anonymous said...

Hear hear Brockley Nick. The playclubs can be and are a lifeline for local children and their parents and carers, who may be grandparents, relatives or childminders and want their charges to socialise and play with other children in an environment that turns away no one, because it is free.

Lou Baker said...

@nick

This is not an educational facility. It's mainly for mums (note: not dads) to meet each other. They even say so in the video. Yes there are some grotty toys dotted around but please don't pretend the centre is something that is not.

And - yes - people should only have children if they can afford them. I like your PR spin suggesting I said only the well off should have children. That is not what I said. You don't have to be well off to have kids but you should have sufficient means to support them.

I'd love a Ferrari. But you know what? I can't afford it so I have a beat up car instead. Children should be no different. You should only expect to have them once you can support them. You don't have to be loaded but you shouldn't expect others to support your kids for you if you have them when you shouldn't.

As for the angry anon - I don't believe all people on benefits are feckless. If you lose your job the benefits system should be there to help. Likewise if you're disabled. But it should help you to get back in a position where you can help yourself. The system as it stands doesn't do that. It encourages fecklessness.

I think a system which helps people up while they're down is admirable and desirable. You support a system which keeps people down and provides them with no help.

PS: the playcentre is not free. How hard is it for people to understand this basic concept? Just because you don't pay at the door doesn't mean you don't pay.

Anonymous said...

I agree with Lou. Thank god at least one person is cutting through the "lets just let everyone have what they want" BS that permeates this site.

Anonymous said...

I hope you and your children were/are privately educated and that you only use private healthcare and never use public transport or else you might be full of BS yourself.

I said...

@Anonymous 18.50. The reason people don't strip naked in the street is because, in general, they don't want to. Love, sex and children are an entirely different matter but it's clear from your personality that this is an area you will be very unfamiliar with.

Bakerlooo said...

Lou's devastating "Ferrari" argument again. A little desperate if we're honest. Play facilities for kids, any kids or the state paying for Lou's penis extension for the exclusive use of Lou presumably. In what way is that an illuminating comparison.

And no Lou, you don't convince when you say that you don't have a visceral dislike of those poorer than you. Your foul rants consistently prove otherwise until some one pulls you up and you try and qualify the point.

Anon, no one is saying anyone can have what they want. It's saying that children's facilities are good for kids who don't get to choose how well off their parents are and longer term its good for everyone even you. We can choose what to spend money on, cable cars for about 50 people a day, royal weddings or child care.

I'm sure Lou would endorse that idiot MP who advocates the vote being reserved for those who pay tax. Masterly.

Lou Baker said...

@bakerloo

Seriously. For someone who thinks they're full of love, you're actually full of hate.

I don't dislike those poorer than me. I don't despise them. I sympathise with those who have nothing. Actually, I advocate complete reform of the benefits system so those with nothing get far more help than they do now. You don't. You advocate masses of guff for the middle classes. But then you're a hypocrit.

I ask no more of anyone than they do their share. Everyone can do their share. You are happy for people not to do their share.

And if there is an MP who says non tax payers shouldn't vote: bravo. I agree wholeheartedly. No pay, no say.

Bakerloo said...

So if you're too poor to pay tax you have no say in laws you have to abide? But you have every sympathy with the poor, just don't allow them the vote?

Beyond parody, I gave you an inch of rope and you hung yourself. Bravo for being so predictable.

You really need to think about moving to one of the more crackpot regimes out their or possibly travel back in time a couple of hundread years. Desperately low brow views held by the swivel eyed fringes of the political landscape.

Lou Baker said...

It's amusing you think yourself so smart. I'm chuckling at you - not with you.

Anyway, it's all well and good pretending you're a big supporter of the downtrodden masses but what have your policies actually done for them? Enlighten us? Oh, wait you can't because the policies YOU advocate have decreased social mobility and led to the poor becoming entrenched in poverty. These policies have led to the creation of an underclass - an underclass who live on welfare and never move off it.

I support a reformed system of welfare that makes work pay. That gives people a hand up. A system which makes people much more responsible for their own lives.
A system which provides proper help to the most needy but which stops trying to be all things to all men.

The equation is simple. If you contribute to society you can vote, if you don't you can't. I can understand why you struggle with the notion that only those who do their bit get their say. It's because you believe the state should be prepared to wipe the backsides of those too lazy or feckless to do their own. I believe in personal responsibility and you believe irresponsibility is fine.

£1 per week is a reasonable amount to use the centre as the first anon says. Very few people couldn't afford it. And of those few they could virtually all afford it if they gave up booze, fags, take aways, the lottery etc.

Anonymous said...

If I was asked where I would prefer my taxes to go; A childrens playgroup in the local area that helps the community come closer together or more nuclear powered weaponry, i know which one i would go for. You can't tell me that we have to cut all these local services which make the community we live in a better place while billions are poured into weaponry which by the way generally makes the whole world a worse place.

Anonymous said...

What Lou and all the other cynics on here don't realise is that places like this make where we live a nicer and more desirable place to live. You talk about this place like it's a bad thing . Without this facility, the area, you live would be a worse off place to live. don't you get it? you have all been brainwashed by politicians telling you that we need to make these cuts.

Anonymous said...

@anon 2343:

One saved us from WW3; one stops a few mums getting bored. I know where I'd rather my taxes were spent.

Vesta Curry said...

Must be something in the drinking water at the moment ... despite thinking we'd already surveyed the limits of bathos ... the level of debate round here seems to have plummeted though what I thought was a concrete floor (I'm listening to *you* Lou) - grammatically articulate sentences signifying nothing but a flaccid, intellectual standing wave!

Honestly! Transfer your energies to something useful ... like crochet. Harrumph.

Anonymous said...

seems a waste of money. if parents want a playgroup, then there's nothing stopping them getting together, arranging-for and paying for it themselves.
council funds are limited - and are best spent on facilities that benefit everybody. the upkeep of the park itself, litter/graffiti clearance are good examples - a local playgroup, opening at discreet times when many working parents are unable to attend - with subsidised tea, coffee and biscuits is not.

Brockley Nick said...

@Vesta - any story about parents and kids sets the misanthropes off.

It's grimly fascinating to see how much some people like to pontificate about other people's parenting. If you believe that the world is going to hell in a handcart, you start by blaming the parents and "kids today". And you ignore any argument that investing in "kids today" might stop the world going to hell in a handcart. Where would be the masochistic fun in that?

See also, any thread about kids and cafes, etc.

Brockley Nick said...

PS - Anon0051 makes reasonable arguments against it, without name calling or use of non sequiturs about whether poor people should be allowed to breed. I agree with some of anon's points, even if I disagree with the conclusion.

Anonymous said...

must have taken a lot of work to get over 800 signatures - I'd wonder how many of those are directly involved with the playgroup

still, the Council ignores petitions anyway

next thing you know the playgroup will be dragged into some umbrella PFI - along with most other things the council does, and has been doing so for years - and you'll find that a large proportion of the money that should be going to facilities goes on management fees, ie a fat bloke eating pies in a portakabin in orpington.

Teahound said...

What happens if this does close? It becomes boarded up, vandalised and ends up costing more money than it does being left open. It's a sorry state when as a society we can't even afford or worse resent the cost of subsidised tea, coffee and biscuits. Working parents who might have some time off once in a while could use it then, if they choose not too, fair enough. Like Nick says it's for kids, invest in education and produce better adults.

Pete said...

So Lou, you argue that people shouldn't have children if they can't afford them. OK, but what does that have to do with this particular facility? We have state schools, do you think they should be closed down and fee paying schools open in their place. If you can't afford the fees tough?

Also what is your opinion on families where people lose their jobs and have to claim benefits? I don't know if you've noticed but the economy isn't exactly on a high so there are people who want to work, have worked in the past, but can't find work now. Are they to be vilified?

Anonymous said...

@anon 2357:

You have been brainwashed by all those politicians telling us that war is necessary. Meanwhile, david cameron recently visits the middle east on a jaunt to go off and sell jetfighters and other weaponry. http://www.guardian.co.uk/politics/2012/nov/05/david-cameron-gulf-arms-trip
Our hard earned taxes go on developing these weapons. And your worried about saving tax payers money for a tiny little shed in telegraph hill that helps bring a community together. please...

bakerloo said...

Lou, you want to remove the vote from the unemployed?

I'll leave that for people to chew over. Nothing more to say really

Anonymous said...

incidentally - there were a large number of public written questions to the playgroup issue answered at the Council meeting on the 28th - these will be available (presumably) on the councils website somewhere. They outline the councils position very clearly.

Also, I noted, a number of questions (and answers) from "Mr B Supiya (Representative for Goldcrest, Supercuts and The Honeypot)" about the situation there as well.

Lou Baker said...

@ Pete

I think much more money should be invested in schools. I have always said so. But to invest more in genuinely essential services - like schools - you have to lose the non-essential stuff. And the playcentre - however desirable it might be - is not essential. It's a nice added extra in a time where there is no money for added extras.

Government does too much. It tries to do too much. It should do fewer things better.

As for benefits, as I've said all along benefits should be there to help people out and help then up. So, yes, you lose your job and the system is there to support you and to help you get another one. The help thing being key - that doesn't happen now. BUT - and it's a big but - you should be expected to take whatever work you can get as soon as you can get it. Universal benefits should be axed - child benefit should go completely for any higher rate tax payer, no free bus passes or winter fuel payments for better off pensioners, council houses no longer for life only for short term help.

It should all be about short term help for the neediest - help to make them less needy. Obviously the most seriously disabled should get permanent help.

Some think I'm unreasonable. The same people who think the NHS is free. They're also the ones who don't realise that 50% of their earnings go to the government.

Anonymous said...

50% of our earnings don't 'go to the government' - they go towards educating and healing our fellow citizens and running our society. Many of us with money are happy to spread the wealth.
Sounds to me like you're just a bit tight.

terrencetrentderby said...

Send the poor to Australia.

max said...

How selective, you're in favour of schools today because essential services are good.

Only that two days ago you were in favour of closing Lewisham A£E and maternity, just because it goes with your dumb simple free-market simple solution ideology.

And this despite the fact that the study that proposal is based upon is completely incoherent and void of any merit.

http://www.savelewishamhospital.com/lewisham-emergency-department-says-no/

Your contributions to this blog have become a series of foaming rants and tory boy wet fantasies.
I once thought you were representing a legitimate point of view that's a healthy counter to some other eccesses on the other side but now you've become a parody Lou.

Lou Partridge said...

I just hate the general public

Danja said...

Your contributions to this blog have become a series of foaming rants and tory boy wet fantasies.

Foaming rants are nothing new, and nor is the right wing stuff. However, i have him placed as more Orange Book Lib-Dem, not that there is any substantive difference.

Anonymous said...

Where in paradoxical reality, Max, an inverted foaming version of Lou in my book, is actually a Lib Dem.

Lou Baker said...

I don't hate the public. And just because I think there are legitimate grounds for closing the local A&E doesn't mean I hate the NHS either.

I think hospitals and schools should be better than they are - and I think one of the reasons they're not as good as they should be is because so many people are selfish Nimbys.

Closing Lewisham A&E might actually benefit the NHS overall. But Max and the local protest brigade can't see beyond Woolwich.

@Anon
50% of what we earn DOES go to the government who decide who to spend it. We have no say. And please don't make the mistake of thinking voting is a say - most of us live in safe seats. If I could choose how my taxes were spent - I'd spend virtually zero on defence, I'd axe the benefits bill, would freeze health spending but would spend much more on education, international development, green energy and transport.

The playcentre would have to become much more self sustaining.

Sadly I don't run the country yet but give me time.

Anonymous said...

Max stood as a Lib Dem in the last local elections . . .

max said...

Remarkable indeed, I share more than one human fallacy with Lou.

Just to clarify, I consider myself a free thinking left-leaning liberal.

I have been a Lib Dem member and I may well be again one day, who knows. I'll never be a Tory and I'm unlikely to join Labour.

max said...

Lou, are you talking in riddles now.

Closing Lewisham A&E and maternity could benefit the NHS overall means what?

That they'll be able to cut their budget leaving us without essential services.

Can you make that case please, because authoritative clinical amalysis of the proposal says it's an incoherent tory boy wet fantasy so it's just right that you step up to its defence.

Go on, make a convincing case without running away and without calling those that disagree with you scroungers that don't appreciate the value of hard earned money.

The Lou Hunter said...

Lou, please. Leave with a shred of dignity intact. You're not in anyway reasonable, or a valuable counterweight to the anarchists, liberal elite or Trots. You're not speaking for the common man or articulating 'what everyone really thinks'. You're not standing up for the 'deserving poor' or 'hard working families'. Your a self important, self-righteous misanthrope. If you owned a gun you’d be dangerous. As it is your simply an exasperating, laughable Daily Mail columnist. Sadly for you, you haven’t a shred of self awareness or knowledge of the gaps in your understanding of how enlightened societies have developed over the last 500 years, you know, the concept of basic human rights and dignity. In short your a pub bore with better spelling and impressive grammar.

Totally off topic and an entirely ad homonym attack but I stand but it.

TLH said...

No, Lou is especialy nasty and especially pompous and hates everyone equally. He's very neutral in that respect.

Anonymous said...

So basically anyone who doesn't offer a pithy, Labour, "let everyone have what they want" viewpoint is chastised?

Anonymous said...

No, just Lou and his crazy rants. Keep up.

Lou Baker said...

So, I'm evil because I believe - in tough times - a playcentre should have to pay its way? Because I believe everyone should do their share? Because, I believe, there is a case for the local A&E to close in the interests of the wider NHS?

Just to scare you all for a minute. I have never voted Tory in my life. Never. The most "right wing" party I have ever supported is the Lib Dems. I usually vote Labour. Once - probably while drunk - I voted Green. So sorry to disappoint you all with dreams that I'm rabidly right wing.

I think the coalition government has done a reasonable job cobsidering it was dealt such a shit hand. They have made mistakes - all governments do - but they have the basic ideas right. I credit both Cameron and Clegg with making it work. Of course the true impact of their tenure will only be clear 5 years from now. Sadly for all you ├╝ber lefties we are living in Brown's Britain.

The reason why you all think I'm right wing is because you're major lefties. For ages Telegraph Hill was the only ward in London with Socialist councillors and the Greenies aren't exactly commonplace.

You hate to read it but I'm the centrist and you're all on the political extremes. Scary eh?

max said...

You're not evil, more like a fool.

BTW, the two socialist Councillors elected in Telegraph Hill were among the best Councillors Lewisham ever had.

I saw them working at Council committees and they were always those that had read all the papers and knew what they were talking about.

Honestly, it takes an army of you to generate the brain power of each of them two.

max said...

And just to prove how confused you are as you rant against the Socialists you also say that you almost always voted... Labour!
Let me inform you, Labour is traditionally a bit of Socialist party!

max said...

Oh, and you haven't come back with what exactly your argument in favour of closing Lewisham A&E is!

It turns out you haven't got one!

Anonymous said...

Lou, you want to deny the vote to those who don't pay tax. So you loose your job and live on benefits (that you paid for thought tax) and you strip the vote from them. You have to abide by laws made by people you have no say on whether they get a seat in parliament.

It illustrates your mind set perfectly. It's insane and laughable.

Danja said...

I'm sure that Lou includes VAT etc in his definition of tax (not least because it would be hard not to), so his auto-rant proposal is probably more innocuous (and even more stupidly pointless) than it might seem.

Purplepazazz said...

Has anyone here actually used the playclub ? Places like this can be a life line for some parents. I think some people need to think before they type, particularly if they have never used the facility or are unable to empathise with others. And by the way, contrary to popular belief, men are seen there too, and not just one-at-a-time-when-mum-is-shopping ; real live dads who read books with groups of children and converse with mums! To say this place isn't necessary is insulting to those that have benefited from using it and those who are employed there..fifty years or so of use can't be wrong....

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