Today we have woken to the fantastic news that the Scottish people have voted to stay a part of the United Kingdom. Over two million people voted to stay together, to work through our problems together and come to a solution that works in everyone’s interests. This is not the end, but the beginning. 84 per cent of those registered to vote had their voice heard yesterday; the highest turnout in Scottish history. This is a referendum that has engaged not just the people of Scotland, but the rest of the United Kingdom too. Over the last few weeks the referendum has been discussed at dinner tables, in offices and at school gates all over the UK.
This referendum has now provided us with the chance to change our country for the better: I want to see more power taken away from Westminster and handed to the people of Scotland, and the people of London and other major cities too. The referendum has also showed us that young people are keen to have a voice in the democratic process, as for the first time we have seen 16 and 17 year olds get to have their say and they turned up to vote in their thousands. As a campaigner for Votes at 16, I hope as a result of the referendum, we see 16 and 17 year olds across the UK get the vote for the General Elections sooner rather than later.
So today, let us celebrate that we remain united, but let us also look to the exciting changes that we all hope the Scottish referendum will bring.
Did you make it to the Balham and Tooting Community Fun Day on Saturday?
I was there with family and friends, and once again I was hugely proud to be part of the Fun Day. We always seem to be incredibly lucky with the weather, and this year was no different, as the sun shone over Tooting all day long. This year we also saw BATCA join forces with the terrific Tooting Foodival for the first time, making this year one of the biggest and best events to date. With Islamic ethos, Gatton Primary School coming together with St. Augustine's Church to put on another brilliant event, we send a strong signal that we are tolerant and respectful of one another, whilst raising money for our local hospital, St. George’s. Click here to view a collection of photos from the day. And why not read my column in this week’s Wandsworth Guardian, which includes the Fun Day, the Foodival and more, just click here.
Latest hurdle in crossing campaign
You may remember earlier this year I joined parents and councillors in calling on Wandsworth Council to install a zebra crossing outside Fircroft Primary School on Glenburnie Road in Tooting. The petition was handed to the council in February by Cllr James Daley, and they agreed to consider our request.
After more than six months of stalling on making a decision, the issue will finally come to council committee on 25th September. But the good news ends there, as it looks like we won’t get the answer we are hoping for. The report produced by council officers for Councillors on the committee in advance of the meeting has recommended that the committee do not support the installation of a crossing. You can read the full report here.
This is extremely frustrating for everyone involved in the campaign. We know how dangerous Glenburnie Road can be and how much the crossing is needed, for local school children and residents, but it is a shame the council doesn’t seem to agree.
I’m asking everyone involved in the campaign and who wants to see a crossing installed to join me in emailing every councillor on the committee for the 25th September meeting and urge them to ignore the report and listen to local parents and residents instead. Want to get involved? Click here to see a copy of the email I have sent and a full list of the committee members you need to email. The more people that email the committee, the harder it will be for them to ignore us. Will you join me?
Until next time.