Somewhat against the grain in political terms, but in the spirit of the season, I started a small campaign today that I encourage you all to join.
Forest Hill, SE23 recently topped a poll to find the place residents were most proud of in their area. Called 'Pride of Place', Forest Hill and the Horniman Museum won comfortably despite being in competition with Blackheath, the Catford Cat, the Laban centre and others. And quite rightly too.
The trouble is that we are a quite small and, relatively speaking, affluent part of Lewisham. I totally understand that there are big problems to address in other parts of the Borough that take up a lot of the Mayor's (Sir Steve Bullock) time and that of those involved with Lewisham Council. However, we too have our issues such as the ongoing closure of the pools, the terrible state and services of our station (as well as the shops that are part of that area, including the new Post Office within the WH Smiths) and the total lack of any visible effort to generate new businesses to fill the empty retail properties.
I decided, therefore, that rather than complain (again) I would turn it around and be nice; after all, it works in most other aspects of my life.
I have written a Christmas Card to "Sir Steve" to wish him well, and with a simple request to make Forest Hill a greater priority for 2008.
If you are a member of SE23.com you may already have read the discussion and text here, if not (and you should be), here is the text of the card. If you are a Forest Hill resident and wish to join in, please do. It only takes a few seconds and the cost of a second class stamp. After all, this will only work if we get a reasonable number of people doing the same thing.
My family and I wish you, your family and everyone at Lewisham Council all the best for Christmas and the New Year.
We are proud residents of Forest Hill and we were not surprised that Forest Hill and the Horniman Museum were recently voted Lewisham's top 'Pride of Place'. However, there are still too many empty shops, we desperately need our pool back and we would appreciate your active support in helping to regenerate our sadly neglected station area.
The best gift we could hope for would be for you and Lewisham Council to make Forest Hill a much greater priority in the coming year.
Wishing you a happy 2008
I'm sure others will word their notes better, but a few cards like this might just make the difference, you never know.
Please send your cards or emails to:
Sir Steve Bullock
Mayor of Lewisham and Forest Hill
Town Hall, Catford
Tel: 020 8314 6193
Thanks! (oh, and drop me a note if you do decide to join in)