Recorder letters: Remembrance Sunday, Armistice 100 tribute, Brexit, old library site, A12 footbridge, school meals week and dementia care.

PUBLISHED: 12:00 18 November 2018 | UPDATED: 09:29 19 November 2018

Letters, contributions and comments sent in from Recorder readers this week.

Remembrance service made me proud of my community

Cllr Barry Mugglestone, Chairman Elm Park Royal British Legion, writes:

I would like to give sincere thanks to all who participated in the Elm Park Remembrance Parade and Service at St Nicholas Church.

A special thank you to the Rt Rev Peter Hill, Bishop of Barking, Rev Amanda and Father Tom Keighley for a very special service.

I must congratulate the children of Benhurst and Elm Park

primary schools for their outstanding singing and reading of their work.

They prepared until they were absolutely perfect.

We were also pleased to have many young people join us once again this year in the parade from R J Mitchell School, cubs, scouts, brownies and guides and led by the Haverettes.

I would like to thank the two parade marshals Gary and Trevor, volunteer marshals and also our local police officers.

I would also like to thank Joanne White, for organizing the parade and her Poppy Team for all the work they have done leading up to Remembrance Sunday and for their continuing work for the Royal British Legion.

After the parade we went back to the RBL in Maylands Avenue for an afternoon of raffles, competitions and an auction which raised approx £2,000.

Thank you to local businesses for supporting us and residents who turned out to watch the parade.

A big thank you to the Elm Park RBL Club for their assistance on the day and Steve the MC.

I was so proud to be part of the Elm Park community on that day.

I doubt we learn lessons of war

Alex Donald, Harold Wood, writes:

I was honoured to be part of Harold Wood’s first Remembrance Service at the new war memorial.

The service commemorating those taken by war and conflict was all the more poignant being the centenary of World War One.

With well over 150 people in attendance and eleven wreaths laid, I reflected on the sacrifices made by soldiers and civilians caught up in that and the many wars between then and now.

I can’t with all honesty say that we have learnt or will ever learn the lessons of war – I doubt we ever will.


One of the things we can do is to support those soldiers affected physically and mentally from active combat, and their families.

However, for the countless souls cut down in the trenches and other pointless theatres of war: We will remember them…but I wish we didn’t need to.

MP missed chance to pay tribute

Mervyn Hughes, Toppesfield Avenue, Wickford, writes:

Many thanks for the wonderful “Armistice 100” pullout in last week’s Recorder.

I can always rely on the Romford Recorder to provide a suitable supplement when it comes to marking these sort of anniversaries, I have a box full in the loft going back to about 1965!

What a pity that Andrew Rosindell MP missed the opportunity [in his Recorder column last week] to pay tribute to the hundreds of brave men and women of Havering who gave their lives for us in The Great War.

He chose instead to recycle the same old Tory lies that the global recession, which has brought us 10 years of austerity, was due to the mismanagement of the last Labour government rather than the actions of the greedy bankers that he reveres so highly.

No doubt he thinks that if you repeat the same lies often enough (as in the EU Referendum debate) people will start to believe them.

End ridiculous nonsense of Brexit

Eamonn Mahon, Sheila Road, Romford, writes:

It makes sense that Remain would win a new Brexit poll by 54per cent to 46per cent, along the lines of the new survation poll for Channel 4, because in spite of what Ukip leader Nigel “Project Farage” has to say, the penny is indeed dropping.

All 33.6 million of us voters were lied to.

I call upon all the Havering MPs to support measures in Parliament to end the ridiculous nonsense that is Brexit.

Liars, cheats and bandits have no mandate on this most important issue our future generations will be left to deal with.

Trying to resolve library homes issue

Cllr David Durant, Rainham and Wennington Independent Residents Group, writes:

Over two years ago the council awarded Persimmon Homes the contract to develop the old library site in Rainham Village Conservation Area, but their initial plans were so bad local councillors protested and they were withdrawn.

Their new plans were a vast improvement with enhanced design and materials almost throughout the scheme and the four storey block at the back reduced to three.

The plans were approved by the strategic planning committee on November 8.

This followed a request by Jon Cruddas MP and local councillors to defer the matter on behalf of chartered architect Alan Smith, who lives next door, who had concerns about overlooking at the back. Mr Smith told the meeting the overlooking could be easily designed out, but he had been ignored by planning officers.

Alas the vote to defer was lost on the chairman’s casting vote. However local councillors have contacted Persimmon Homes to request a meeting to resolve matters, by pointing out an improved scheme which had the support of local councillors and the neighbours would be good publicity for Persimmon Homes.

TfL agree to look at A12 footbridge

Keith Prince AM, Assembly Member for Havering and Redbridge, City Hall, The Queen’s Walk, London, writes:

I would like to thank all those residents and TfL officials for recently meeting with me to discuss the pedestrian safety issues surrounding the A12 and Pettits Lane junction.

Local residents know that the footbridge over the A12 is far from user friendly; getting a wheelchair up the ramps is hard work for anyone, but especially for elderly people.

What I believe we need is surface level crossings to make it much easier for people to cross the road.

TfL agreed to go away and look at the possibility of installing street level crossings and islands in the road.

I will continue to monitor their progress with interest.

Hungry children do not learn

Tom Copley AM, Londonwide Assembly Member, writes:

Last week was School Meals Week, acting as a reminder of how important it is that our school children get a healthy meal during the school day.

Since their introduction, universal infant school meals have ensured that thousands more children in London get a nutritious lunch.

This is an important step in the right direction – it helps their learning and their health - but children don’t stop needing decent food when they are seven.

With the threshold for free school meals in Year 3 and above unfairly limited to children in families earning less than £7,400 a year under the Universal Credit rules, thousands of young Londoners are not getting the school dinner they deserve.

Poor diet in childhood all too often leads to poor outcomes in later life.

The government would help children now and help prevent problems in the future if they extended universal free school meals to all children in state funded schools, starting with primary schools and nurseries.

Hungry children do not learn and children in Havering deserve better.

Dementia care is not free on NHS

Linda O’Sullivan, head of region, Alzheimer’s London, writes:

According to YouGov figures released by Alzheimer’s Society, many people in London are oblivious to the catastrophic costs of dementia care, believing it is free on the NHS.

People with dementia typically spend £100,000 on care over their lifetime – a shocking statistic that 76.7per cent of people surveyed in London were unaware of.

The research also highlighted that 56pc of the public didn’t know that dementia care isn’t provided for free by the NHS.

People with dementia rely on social care for support every day, and decades of chronic under-funding mean families are often forced to foot the bill for spiralling care costs themselves.

There are 72,000 people living with dementia in London and this number is expected to rise.

I want to encourage your readers to unite against dementia and take action to fix dementia care in London.

To join the campaign, go to

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