Monday, 13 June 2016

SLM Digest 20-6-16

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Save Lea Marshes is an open group of  local people concerned to keep the marshes and green spaces of the Lea Valley open and green for wildlife and local people.  For further information go to

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SLM Weekly Digest

Keep Our Marshes Open and Green!

Bee orchids at Coppermill Fields, spotted by ranger @etlawlor1

This is the Weekly Digest of Save Lea Marshes.  We are a group of people living in the Lea Valley area who originally came together to protest against the building of the Olympic Basketball Facility on Leyton Marsh and have since expanded the campaign towards the protection and preservation of the marshes and other local green spaces for the benefit of wildlife and local people, now and in the future.  If you would like to know more about our work and on-going campaigns do visit our

Firstly, last week we organised a special edition to alert people to what they could do to prevent the latest main threat to the Metropolitan Open Land (MOL) on Leyton Marsh.  There is still time to make your position known to the Lee Valley Regional Park Authority, which will be making the next stage of decision making concerning the Ice Centre at its committee meeting on Thursday 16 June at 1.30pm.  Please refer to last week’s digest or see our website.

Secondly, we would like to welcome the new signers to our weekly digest that we met at the Stoke Newington event earlier this month.  The digest is SLM’s way of keeping people up to date with concerns as well as, positive news about the marshes and our local environ plus any other news and events which we think our readers will be interested in locally, nationally and internationally.  We are always keen to hear from our readers if there is anything they would like to share e.g. if you have spotted a rare plant or animal on the marshes or if you have seen any oil spills on the River Lea.

  • We have previously reported plans to build a mixed development including three 18 storey tower blocks at 97 Lea Bridge Road.  Sadly, Waltham Forest Planning Committee agreed the plan this week see  for further details and for the looming architecture that will shadow the local area.
  • The dreaded Cricket screens have arrived on Hackney Marshes and Oh, dear!  The Council, the Architects of the Cricket Pavilion and the Cricketers did not include in their plans a place to store them. Owzat for a balls-up!
  • Many of you lingering at bus-stops may have spotted the information posters about the referendum featuring Hackney Marshes demonstrating the view.   A clear view of the future of Europe therefore  becomes entwined with the lack of a clear view the Cricket Pavilion will provide ...
  • Two items of interest from the Hackney Planning Sub-Committee on Thursday this week (1) the current plans for a school on the site of the Old Police Station next to St. John’s Church have been turned down and (2) a plan for one temporary and six permanent mooring spaces on a site between Daubney Road and Kingsland Estate on the Lea have been turned down as “they would impact adversely on waterborne sport and leisure and located off the main navigational routes where facilities should normally be put; in order to protect and enhance the existing site and LVRPA land and because of flood risk.
  • Artwork in the Underpass organised with the RARA art group is progressing, go and have a look – just off the Lea Bridge Road near the Water Works Centre.
ENOUGH TO MAKE YOU “BRIDLE” – one of our group has been doggedly pursuing the issue of horses on the marshes and what the LVRPA’s policies are.  In a recent reply to correspondence we learn that the Riding School does not charge its livery clients for roaming the bridle ways of the marshes they are treated as normal users.  That sounds fine on the one hand but also involved in this decision appears to be the 5 year relationship between the Authority and the new Trust “Vibrant Partnerships” and that a “cost” isn’t charged because it would generate a “management charge” which would be counter to trying to keep costs to the ratepayers low.  Also it would apparently negate one (which?) of the trust aims.  I hope I have got this right, in any case I think SLM will want to look at this issue more closely.

PETITIONS OF THE WEEK -  our friends at Council for the Protection for Rural England – London have a new map of the areas of green belt that could be under threat from mass house-building.  They are inviting people to write to their MPs about the issue via  - if you don’t know your own MP or are concerned about another area there is a system that will direct you to the right representative.

There is a complete Frack Out going on – first Greenpeace are organising to help the campaign around the first site agreed in Yorkshire   On twitter there are lots of active groups e.g. No Fracking in North Berwick  @noFrackingNB

IN THE PRESS – The Evening Standard on Friday 3 June  “Activitists persuade council to kill weeds without chemicals” – this is as a result of campaigners in Hammersmith & Fulham to stop spraying with glyphosate-based herbicides and use chemical-free methods such as foam and steam and how a growing campaign is trying to urge more local councils not to spray toxic chemicals around parks and schools.

Plans to build workers’ houses on a farm in the Nazeing green belt have been approved by Epping Forest District Councils, although they will have to be removed if the farm closes.

Notice in The Guardian on 7 June – In Memoriam for Katy Andrews.  Katy – always with us.  We plan to have a contemplative walk.


Thursday 16th June
 is the first public meeting of the Pesticide Free Hackney Campaign at 6.30pm at Hackney City Farm. Nick Mole from PAN UK will be speaking about alternatives to chemicals that councils can use and the international campaign against glyphosate. All welcome!

Eamonn the LVPRA ranger has sent us news of Scything on the marshes for beginners sessions on 15th and 28 June from 10.00-1.00 p.m (meet at 9.45 at the Waterworks E10 7QB.  Also, the annual Community Haystacks event takes place on the weekend of the 30-31 June.  For further details Tweet  @etlawlor1  or the LVRPA website  (We like to encourage more natural methods of grass management than machines).

Stephen Vince an artist who made some artistic contributions to the Save Leyton Marsh Campaign has a new exhibition in Norwich which will later transfer to London see

The Tree Musketeers will be out watering new trees on South Millfields 6-8 p.m. see the Sustainable Hackney website for details

Friends of Mabley Green continue their free weekly gardening session – bring family, friends and picknics – entrance on Lee Conservancy Road on Saturdays from 11.00 a.m..  All welcome.

Rasheeq or Hedge Herbs has sent us the latest news on lots of interesting courses and events for June for further details email or telephone her on 07784 506 404

Clapton Jumble Trail this Sunday 12 June – come and visit “Maison Hattie’s Bits & Bobs” at 138 Millfields Road E5 0AD – as well as selling books, toys etc, we’ll be raising funds for Save Lea Marshes.

NEXT SLM MEETING ON MONDAY 13TH JUNE AT 7.30 AT THE PRINCESS OF WALES PUB, LEA BRIDGE ROAD.  All welcome – we will be discussing the Ice Centre amongst other issues.
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