Weekly Update From Councillor Guy Lambert

Casework continues to pile up despite approach of 'purdah'

Packing Easter hampers at a Heathrow warehouse
Packing Easter hampers at a Heathrow warehouse



tel 07804 284948

Finding out where to get grosseries when out campaigning

Weeds, the Labour manifesto and the ugliest building in the western hemisphere

Observing mayhem at the Windmill Road/A4 traffic lights

Hounslow definitely isn't boring despite what the psephologists say

Idiocy not Kryptonite proves to be bike thief's undoing

Sign up for our Brentford newsletter

Comment on this story on the

Well, that worked out nicely. I was getting my tickets together for Goodwood and I suddenly began to smell a rat. All the letters they had been sending me encouraging me to plan my day were for Members Meeting 79, but when I looked at my tickets they were for Members Meeting 78. Doing a quick reverse ferret, I remembered that I bought tickets for this event in 2020. But that was the height of Downing Street Party Season the first lockdown so the meeting was postponed and the tickets rolled over until 2021, but on a date I could not attend. In short, I had tickets for something that took place last summer, and this year’s event was sold out, so I suddenly had a free weekend.

Never mind, there were other things to do. First of all, I had been asked by the Hounslow Community FoodBox and their great supporters Alexanders Removals to help out with packing the 160 Easter hampers they were making up at their warehouse in Green Lane. By the time I found the warehouse a lot of the work had been done (always a good outcome in my book) but there were some vouchers for the Snakes and Ladders play place which needed matching with the correct boxes, a lot more complicated than it sounds when there are 160 of them so I spent about an hour and a half tidying up that and a few other bits and bobs.

So that was a nice way to spend Saturday morning and I could take part in Sunday activities too, this time our little Labour Party stall by Brentford Market. It was good to see Steve Curran out and about, though he has started treatment and life is not easy for him.

After the market Lara and I did some more door knocking up Half Acre and Boston Manor Road, all pretty pleasant, though as a councillor you always pick up issues when you speak to people on the doors (which is good – it’s in large part what we’re there for and it sometimes disappoints me that people have not alerted us sooner).

The Labour Party stall at the Brentford Market
The Labour Party stall at the Brentford Market

On Monday I had to go down to Kingston for the 6 monthly MoT check on my hearing aids. A lovely day for a bike ride down by the river and good to get them tuned up again, though my hearing will never recover to how it was before I was headbanging with my head in the speakers at Dingwall’s Dance Hall back in the 1970s.

On Tuesday morning I go for a bit of a tour of the Haverfield estate with a resident there who is unhappy about littering and some other issues, mainly that there is mess left around the new bin units from stuff that people don’t get to fall properly into the bins inside – or that they don’t put in in the first place. I write to the caretaking team about this needing improvement, though really this shouldn’t need a resident and councillor complaining – we get very few such issues on other estates. Housing management is in the process of being reformed and I’m really hopeful that in the new regime the responsible housing officers will have both the motivation and authority to ensure these things are better.

In the evening, a trustee meeting of the Hounslow Community FoodBox. The service is OK at the moment, thanks to our wonderful volunteers and partners. Demand has not reduced, having grown by 5 times between 2019 and 2021, and we are braced for another spike of growth as benefits and pensions fail to keep pace with accelerating inflation, enormous rises in utility bills and extra National Insurance contributions take their toll. At least our most vulnerable residents are protected from paying council tax but we are under no illusions, life will be tough and the FoodBox will be under stress. Donations of food, which were so generous during lockdown, have reduced sharply and we are having to buy food to keep pace with demand, so if anybody can spare a few pounds for food or financial donations (with gift aid!) they will be especially welcome.

On Wednesday Lara and I are out in Challis Road and thereabouts. I was rather amazed at the number of houses in Clayton Crescent that are apparently being renovated, with scaffolding on every other house, and I remarked on this to a resident I was chatting to. He explained that it is the council who are applying insulation to the outside walls, which was news to me and really welcome. The government’s new British Energy Security Strategy has been widely criticised as a mere light rehash of previous ‘strategies’ with ‘Security’ added because they woke up to the fact that relying on international markets is not super-secure. All very well (or not) relying on nukes etc but the current construction of Hinkley Point C (by a partnership between the Chinese and EDF of France) is already going to be 10 years late, meanwhile France is importing energy because the current EDF plants there are producing far less energy than they’re supposed to.

The one thing that might alleviate the energy crisis this winter is better insulation, and I read that across the UK “2,300 social housing homes are in the process of being improved”. There must be about 50 of those in one short Crescent in Brentford, and it doesn’t augur too well for the other 4M or so social homes across the country!

We bumped into some Greens, busy leafletting and they trusted me to deliver a couple of their leaflets whilst I was doorknocking. I did warn them I was a politician and obviously not to be trusted but they still recklessly put their trust in me (Secret: I really did deliver them).

Today, a catch-up again with the Lampton Group Chair – perhaps my last such Zooting©. Mostly going well but still some issues in the housing area, though I was pleased to hear that the repairs backlog that arose during lockdowns has been virtually eliminated. I believe some councils still have a huge problem with this.

It’s been good this week as I cycle past Watermans Park to see the playground and outdoor gym now open and really heavily used. Very happy that we have two brand new playgrounds in the ward, plus now the newly-completed ‘MUGA’ court in St Paul’s Rec ground. During the course of this year we’ll carry on with the major works in Boston Manor and it was great to see loads of new trees and other new features when I cycled through the park yesterday. Unfortunately it’s too late to join Vanessa’s walkabout this morning.

Every time I visit the park I can see progress and as far as I know it’s still on schedule to be finished this year. Apparently there’s an online update on 26th April but the Eventbrite link to book a place seems to be missing from the website.

Volunteers at Boston Manor Park
Volunteers at Boston Manor Park

Off to the Watermans later to help someone who has been injured on a bus through what he says was bad driving – needs help formulating a claim.

Well that’s it for this week. Council meetings are more or less all in abeyance during the ‘pre-election period’ also widely known as Purdah. It doesn’t stop the casework though and I have some rather horrendous ASB and overcrowding matters to deal with amongst the normal run of bins, black bags and dog doings.

We’re supposed to begetting Labour party leaflets for the ward today so I’ll be trying to mobilise our lovely volunteers to help get them through letter boxes. No Russian benefactors for Labour to pay for them to be posted, unlike some. Allegedly.

Cllr Guy Lambert

Like Reading Articles Like This? Help Us Produce More

This site remains committed to providing local community news and public interest journalism.

Articles such as the one above are integral to what we do. We aim to feature as much as possible on local societies, charities based in the area, fundraising efforts by residents, community-based initiatives and even helping people find missing pets.

We’ve always done that and won’t be changing, in fact we’d like to do more.

However, the readership that these stories generates is often below that needed to cover the cost of producing them. Our financial resources are limited and the local media environment is intensely competitive so there is a constraint on what we can do.

We are therefore asking our readers to consider offering financial support to these efforts. Any money given will help support community and public interest news and the expansion of our coverage in this area.

A suggested monthly payment is £8 but we would be grateful for any amount for instance if you think this site offers the equivalent value of a subscription to a daily printed newspaper you may wish to consider £20 per month. If neither of these amounts is suitable for you then contact info@neighbournet.com and we can set up an alternative. All payments are made through a secure web site.

One-off donations are also appreciated. Choose The Amount You Wish To Contribute.

If you do support us in this way we’d be interested to hear what kind of articles you would like to see more of on the site – send your suggestions to the editor.

For businesses we offer the chance to be a corporate sponsor of community content on the site. For £30 plus VAT per month you will be the designated sponsor of at least one article a month with your logo appearing if supplied. If there is a specific community group or initiative you’d like to support we can make sure your sponsorship is featured on related content for a one off payment of £50 plus VAT. All payments are made through a secure web site.

April 14, 2022

Bookmark and Share