We are continuing to look after everyone affected by the fire in Sycamore House, London Road, which happened last Saturday. Some residents have made their own accommodation arrangements, and many are staying in local hotels organised by the council. Council teams remain on site at these hotels and in close contact with those residents who have made their own arrangements, to make sure they have food, toiletries, clothing and other essentials, and to provide support at this difficult time. Thank you to everyone who continues to go above and beyond to look after those affected, and to our community – council staff, residents, businesses, faith and voluntary groups – for all they have done and continue to do to help. It is times like these that we see Croydon pull together to look after those in need and it shows how much we care about our borough.
At this week’s cabinet I was pleased to give the go-ahead for Croydon’s new graffiti removal service to get cracking with cleaning up Croydon, fixing the ‘broken windows’ and restoring pride in our borough – so look out for our removal teams on streets and in parks near you. I also approved plans for nine new Healthy School Streets to be trialled, which I hope will help thousands of children and young people enjoy safer, healthier journeys to school. At the same meeting I agreed that we will ask for your views on some changes to our council tax support scheme – there is a consultation coming up and I want to listen to residents before making any decision, so please do get involved.
This week I have had the opportunity to listen to residents at a Local Community Partnership meeting, as well as attending Croydon’s u3a Annual General Meeting. I also met with some of our key community partners earlier today at the Croydon Youth Consortium meeting where we discussed the great work happening in our communities that not only helps keep our young people safe but provides fantastic development opportunities and celebrates their achievements. It is a privilege to be able to attend engagements such as these and hear from our residents and community partners about the issues that matter most to them.
Finally, it was great to attend the launch of one of Croydon’s first London Borough of Culture 2023 initiatives this week. Croydon Stands Tall, an art trail organised by Croydon BID with Wild in Art, which promises to bring our town centre to life and encourage everyone to take pride in our borough, when it opens next year.
Executive Mayor of Croydon