Monday, 4 May 2015

SLM Digest 9-4-14


This is the Weekly Digest of Save Lea Marshes.  We are an open group of people living in the Lea 

Valley area, who share a common concern that the marshes and other green local spaces be kept for 

wildlife to thrive and local people to appreciate and enjoy now and in future years.  Do visit our 

website to find out more about our work and campaigns 

Well, here’s hoping your Easter Holidays went well.  As the weather improved on Easter Monday, 

there were simply masses of people walking, cycling and running along the River Lea and relaxing in 

the local parks and marshlands.  The leisure aspect of marshes, demonstrates the deep need we all 

feel to get out and enjoy natural surroundings.  Around this time of year, it is traditional to spot the 

first thing of spring, alas, this year it is the first human homesteaders of Essex Wharf flats.   Ho 


GLYPHOSATE -  an article in the current issue of Private Eye last week  on the latest International 

Agency for Research on Cancer (IARC) for the World Health Organisation, that Glyphosate  more 

commonly known as “Roundup” is “probably carcinogenic to humans”, Hackney’s Lea Bridge Ward 

Councillor, Ian Rathbone, (whilst not endorsing the comment), responded to on line conversation 

about the weed-killer by following up with Hackney Council recommendations again.  He sent a 

quote from Dr. Penny Bevan, Director of Public Health at Hackney Council which included this quote: 

“Whether a substance is meaningfully ‘carcinogenic’ often depends on the dose and circumstances.  

For instance, also classified as 2A by the IARC, are alcohol, sunlight and night shifts.  The concerns 

over Glyphosate have been raised in larger scale agricultural use on food crops and in laboratory 

tests on animals.. not on used on individual weeds.  Hackney Council will continue to follow 

government guidance and will be open to other methods that are affordable and efficient”.  As, I see 

it, the weakness in this argument is that to some extent we can choose to avoid alcohol, sunlight and 

night shifts if we wish to, it is much more difficult to avoid eating something we don’t know whether  

or not it has been sprayed .  The real danger of this substance is that once absorbed it cannot be 

removed and therefore has a cumulative effect.

IN THE PRESS – this week’s “Hackney Gazette” on page 2 has a story by Dominik Lemanski headed 

“Games legacy bosses slammed for bonuses; Chiefs criticised in the face of ‘lacklustre’ Olympic 

legacy.  The story describes how recently released accounts, show how the ODA’s leading executives 

have enjoyed pay rises whilst cutting their working hours and how the ‘legacy” of active sport has 

significantly declined instead of increased.  (Well, if they had only bothered to put a few thousand 

quid into supporting the SLM’s campaign to renew two basketball pitches for local kids instead of 

squandering £5 million on a barely used basketball facility that wrecked Leyton Marsh ....)   Meanwhile, over in Walthamstow, The Walthamstow Guardian is again 

warning of another bout of high pollution over the next few days and also  reports on a second 

cyclist, targeted by thieves whilst cycling through the popular Walthamstow Marshes route in the 

last two weeks.   


For those of you that haven’t yet seen these three:

1.  You’ve heard about the Thames Garden Bridge – which sounds attractive but the newly 

formed Thames Central Open Spaces Group have come up with some strong arguments 

against  including: it will block views of St Paul’s Cathedral from the Lambeth riverside; it will 

be private with no public right of access outside of certain times and closed for corporate 

events on many occasions;  there will be no picnic space or cycling and it is doubtful whether 

many trees will survive on its narrow green strip; wildlife organisations have withdrawn their 

support and it is a vanity project costing a whopping £40m in contrast to the £6m spent on a 

park which provides all this bridge does not.  Read the article in  The Guardian

London garden bridge: the Thames is now a playground fo...
It’s no surprise that Boris ‘self-styled tsar of novelty infrastructure projects’ Johnson has rubber-stamped this bridge folly
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then if you are not in support of the bridge go to 

Eric Pickles: Eric Pickles; put the Garden Bridge where ...
The Thames is London's biggest piece of open space, its largest nature conservation area, and its greatest natural feature. Its openness is under threat as there ar...
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2. Epping Forest District Councils have granted permission on 11 February to knock down a 

horse stables and put up executive houses on green belt land. The petition link was previously sent on to 

this list.

3. The Save Dundonald  Rec Campaign are trying to save an open space in Merton, where the 

Council are trying to get away with an unsubstantiated comment that the site “is not 

CEO Merton Council: Investigate false claims by local Co...
Appropriation of a public park by abusing the planning system must not be allowed. Merton Council has removed public rights over public open space and has created a...
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Our friends at Hedge Herbs have a very busy programme over the summer, so do check their social 

media pages.  For example on the 12-14th June at Crabapple Housing Coop near Shrewsbury, 

Shropshire, there is a weekend event designed for people who are interested in the connections 

between plan medicine, health, equality, social justice and ecology.  They are also promoting  the 

annual Waltham Forest Green Homes event, with the opportunity for people to come and share 

their money saving and ecological tips (you need to be quick to book a place ideally by 10 April by 

telephoning 0208 558 6880 or email  For further information on 

Hedge Herbs notices telephone Rasheeqa on 07784506494 or Hedge Herbs on Facebook or 

Twittering Hedge on Twitter.

Our friends at Sustainable Hackney have also sent us a programme of very interesting events, 

classes and enterprises go to for further information .

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