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£130,000 to rename Collier Row estate? ‘No thanks’

PUBLISHED: 07:00 30 January 2015 | UPDATED: 16:56 02 February 2015

Highfield estate is to be redeveloped by the council

Highfield estate is to be redeveloped by the council

Archant

“A complete waste of taxpayers money,” “crass” and “a stupid idea.”

"I am in the process of writing to the Queen now and asking her if she can put a stop to this"

Resident Sheila Clements

These are some of the terms residents have used to describe Havering Council’s “quirky” new plans to celebrate the Queen becoming the longest-reigning monarch.

The idea, proposed by housing boss and deputy leader Cllr Damian White at last week’s cabinet meeting, is to rename buildings within the Highfield Road estate in Collier Row after Commonwealth countries – to the tune of £100-130,000.

It would form part of a £1.85m redevelopment, aiming to redecorate blocks, repair balconies and improve landscapes by the September 9 anniversary.

The £130,000 would be spent on “signage” and the administration involved in changing the names. Discussions with emergency services, who can reject plans due to possible confusion, will be needed.

Social media reaction

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Janet Shaw: No way, complete waste of taxpayers money

Janna Sherriden: Really don’t see the point of it

Linda Fuller in this time of austerity it is scandalous that this kind of money is being spent, and I am sure the queen would not want it

Alan Fenn: Why people vote for these idiots is beyond me

Paul Jenkins: what a stupid idea. and a waste of money

John Dennis: Has April fools day come early?

Dave Catlin: Can i sugest renaming cllr white... Four letters only please...

Streetlife

Miss: omg! are they serious, they are bleating on about reducing services etc due to lack of cash and making savings and low n behold they find that lump of money to rename a street

Rosemary E: Total waste of public money!!! But thats typical of this council!!!

Phil Wailing: It beggers belief that a cabinet member can even go to council with this utterly crass waste of public money.

Christine: Surely there must be a list as long as your arm where this money could be put to better use for the boroughs needs, who on earth thought this was a good idea?

And it’s safe to say responses from the public and local businesses suggest it is a royally bad idea, with many asking why the money could not be spent elsewhere in the midst of huge budget cuts.

One resident is so annoyed by the idea, she is taking the matter to Her Majesty herself.

Sheila Clements, of Dawes Avenue, Hornchurch, said: “I was absolutely fuming. We are supposed to be in austerity measures. I am in the process of writing to the Queen now and asking her if she can put a stop to this.”

Romford MP and former councillor for the area, Andrew Rosindell, a staunch Royalist who supports Commonwealth relations, said it was a “magnificent” idea as the estate had been “neglected for decades”.

Poll resultsPoll results

He called the milestone the “most historic event in the history of the British monarchy.”

Cllr White, said: “It sounds a bit quirky but there is a great sense of pride among residents that they have been selected to benefit from it.”

Opposition councillors are not convinced. Residents’ Association leader Cllr Ray Morgon said “it’s a huge cost just to rename something” while Ukip leader Cllr Lawrence Webb called it a “vanity project”.


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