Soup kitchen in Walthamstow a 'magnet' for trouble says council

The mobile soup kitchen in Walthamstow.

The mobile soup kitchen in Walthamstow.

First published in News
Last updated
East London and West Essex Guardian Series: Photograph of the Author by , Senior reporter

A mobile soup kitchen which provides food for the homeless must move because it has become a "magnet" for troublemakers, the council has insisted.

Organisers of the Christian Kitchen spoke of their outrage earlier this week after being informed they were being evicted from their current spot at Mission Grove car park in Walthamstow.

Volunteers at the soup kitchen, which has been providing hot meals seven days a week for more than 20 years, say many will struggle if its location is moved outside of Walthamstow.

Christian Kitchen believes the council wants to move them to "sanitise" the area before work begins on building 121 homes and multiplex cinema at the nearby Arcade Site in April.

A council statement released in response does not directly deny that claim, but said the reason was due to concerns about anti-social behaviour.

Christian Kitchen denies that its van attracts troublemakers, and says such concerns have never been raised before in its 20 year plus history.

The council has proposed the kitchen moves to an area behind the Chingford Holiday Inn in Walthamstow Avenue, but Christian Kitchen says it is isolated and too far from Mission Grove.

A council spokesman said: "We have asked the soup kitchen to move because of on-going safety concerns raised by residents in the area.

"At a meeting on 14 February, Police gave significant detail about anti-social behaviour problems identified.

“We know that the Christian Kitchen feel passionately about their work, that is why we have found them another site which is on a main bus route and in a non-residential part of the borough close to a large supermarket.

"Whilst the vast majority of the people who use the service are law-abiding, the current site has sadly become a magnet for some people who want to cause trouble and we do not think that it is right that local residents should be made to feel unsafe when a better non-residential site is available."

He added: “The council is happy to continue to talk to Christian Kitchen. We have agreed that they can have a four-week period to discuss the situation with their trustees and after this they will have a further two weeks for plans to be made to relocate."

Christian Kitchen says it has been given a deadline to move of by March 14.

It is considering legal action and is trying to get support from councillors and Walthamstow MP Stella Creasy.

The Guardian is awaiting a comment from Waltham Forest police.

Comments (40)

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12:30pm Sun 24 Feb 13

John J C Moss says...

Mission Grove is nowhere near the Arcade site, but the answer is for the Council to allow them to set up in in the Town Square near the bus station.

Cllr John Moss
Mission Grove is nowhere near the Arcade site, but the answer is for the Council to allow them to set up in in the Town Square near the bus station. Cllr John Moss John J C Moss
  • Score: 0

12:33pm Sun 24 Feb 13

Tom Thumb says...

So there is "significant detail" about anti-social behaviour, but these details have so far not been released.
How many residents have raised
complaints and what exactly are they?
This vagueness is simply not good enough.
So there is "significant detail" about anti-social behaviour, but these details have so far not been released. How many residents have raised complaints and what exactly are they? This vagueness is simply not good enough. Tom Thumb
  • Score: 0

1:53pm Sun 24 Feb 13

Ferdy54 says...

Someone needs to do a FOI request to the council to get their figures of this so called trouble.

"Awaiting a comment from the police" Are the police waiting for the council to tell them what to say to make it sound worse? Just a thought. :-\
Someone needs to do a FOI request to the council to get their figures of this so called trouble. "Awaiting a comment from the police" Are the police waiting for the council to tell them what to say to make it sound worse? Just a thought. :-\ Ferdy54
  • Score: 0

1:59pm Sun 24 Feb 13

Copper Mill says...

Quite obvious Cllr John Moss does not live near or go to this area if he is suggesting the town square as a good location for this soup kitchen.

We already have to deal with the daily drunks and the antisocial behaviour they carry out all day so lets move the van there and attract even more problems.

Great idea!!!!!!!!!!!!! NOT
Quite obvious Cllr John Moss does not live near or go to this area if he is suggesting the town square as a good location for this soup kitchen. We already have to deal with the daily drunks and the antisocial behaviour they carry out all day so lets move the van there and attract even more problems. Great idea!!!!!!!!!!!!! NOT Copper Mill
  • Score: 0

2:37pm Sun 24 Feb 13

GRP100 says...

A soup kitchen to help the poor. The council complains about antisocial behavior. I live two doors away from a teenage home and there is nothing but antisocial behavior. Urinating into an old woman,s ground floor flat bedroom window. Taking drugs in front of the manager who runs it, drunken behavior. Throwing used tampons into peoples gardens, fighting in the street,breaking into cars (mine included). The police are there every day,but ask the council to close this misery making house down, they run the other way and wash their hands of it. COWARDS.
A soup kitchen to help the poor. The council complains about antisocial behavior. I live two doors away from a teenage home and there is nothing but antisocial behavior. Urinating into an old woman,s ground floor flat bedroom window. Taking drugs in front of the manager who runs it, drunken behavior. Throwing used tampons into peoples gardens, fighting in the street,breaking into cars (mine included). The police are there every day,but ask the council to close this misery making house down, they run the other way and wash their hands of it. COWARDS. GRP100
  • Score: 0

5:04pm Sun 24 Feb 13

Techno3 says...

If the police are aware of a tiny minority of 'trouble makers' committing crimes, they should do their duty, arrest the 'trouble makers' and bring them before the courts, not penalise the 'vast majority, who are law abiding.
If the police are aware of a tiny minority of 'trouble makers' committing crimes, they should do their duty, arrest the 'trouble makers' and bring them before the courts, not penalise the 'vast majority, who are law abiding. Techno3
  • Score: 0

5:09pm Sun 24 Feb 13

HottRedMan says...

GRP100 wrote:
A soup kitchen to help the poor. The council complains about antisocial behavior. I live two doors away from a teenage home and there is nothing but antisocial behavior. Urinating into an old woman,s ground floor flat bedroom window. Taking drugs in front of the manager who runs it, drunken behavior. Throwing used tampons into peoples gardens, fighting in the street,breaking into cars (mine included). The police are there every day,but ask the council to close this misery making house down, they run the other way and wash their hands of it. COWARDS.
Why would they, this is LBWF after all, as usual pick on the easy targets.
[quote][p][bold]GRP100[/bold] wrote: A soup kitchen to help the poor. The council complains about antisocial behavior. I live two doors away from a teenage home and there is nothing but antisocial behavior. Urinating into an old woman,s ground floor flat bedroom window. Taking drugs in front of the manager who runs it, drunken behavior. Throwing used tampons into peoples gardens, fighting in the street,breaking into cars (mine included). The police are there every day,but ask the council to close this misery making house down, they run the other way and wash their hands of it. COWARDS.[/p][/quote]Why would they, this is LBWF after all, as usual pick on the easy targets. HottRedMan
  • Score: 0

5:36pm Sun 24 Feb 13

James St James says...

I have frequently walked past the Christian Kitchen on Mission Grove, while they have been distributing food to the poor and the homeless. I have never felt threatened, nor seen any evidence of anti-social behaviour.

On the contrary, the whole operation appears to be very well-organised, and the people using the service well-behaved.

This is in contrast to the numerous bookmakers, fast-food joints and off-licences selling cheap alcohol in the area, many of which attract troublemakers.

I simply do not believe that the police have "significant detail about anti-social behaviour problems", not least because they are rarely to be seen. If they had more of a presence, they might make some effort to stop the casual and open drug-taking which takes place in the area.

As Techno3 says, if there is anti-social behaviour or criminal activity taking place, the police should deal with it, rather than it being simply exported to another part of the borough.

It is nothing short of disgusting that this reprehensible council should victimize some of the most vulnerable people in our society, and those that help them, simply in order to fulfill their bizarre vision of a sanitised Waltham Forest.

It is a deeply unpleasant and dangerous path to take, and one that should be strongly opposed.

As a Walthamstow resident I feel proud that there are people who live in the area who are prepared to give up their time to help others less fortunate than themselves. Rather than drive the Christian Kitchen away, the council should be helping and supporting them in their work.
I have frequently walked past the Christian Kitchen on Mission Grove, while they have been distributing food to the poor and the homeless. I have never felt threatened, nor seen any evidence of anti-social behaviour. On the contrary, the whole operation appears to be very well-organised, and the people using the service well-behaved. This is in contrast to the numerous bookmakers, fast-food joints and off-licences selling cheap alcohol in the area, many of which attract troublemakers. I simply do not believe that the police have "significant detail about anti-social behaviour problems", not least because they are rarely to be seen. If they had more of a presence, they might make some effort to stop the casual and open drug-taking which takes place in the area. As Techno3 says, if there is anti-social behaviour or criminal activity taking place, the police should deal with it, rather than it being simply exported to another part of the borough. It is nothing short of disgusting that this reprehensible council should victimize some of the most vulnerable people in our society, and those that help them, simply in order to fulfill their bizarre vision of a sanitised Waltham Forest. It is a deeply unpleasant and dangerous path to take, and one that should be strongly opposed. As a Walthamstow resident I feel proud that there are people who live in the area who are prepared to give up their time to help others less fortunate than themselves. Rather than drive the Christian Kitchen away, the council should be helping and supporting them in their work. James St James
  • Score: 0

5:45pm Sun 24 Feb 13

Cornbeefur says...

Trouble is, it is a 'victim' of its own success because not every Borough has one. people travel all across London for it, and meet people fore illicit substances and things as they are all in the same boat.

It was meant to be a stepping stone towards the YMCA accommodation, and support through Medical Health and Social Work support.

The Night Shelter Developed from this as well.

Unlike what SXH says, there has not been any increase under the Tories, in fact what did Bliar do in his many years in office? The CK had it's most demand through the Labour years.

It used to be at Bearmans site in Leytonstone but due to gentrification of E11 was consigned to the dingy location it now is, out of site and out of mind.

SXH, you cannot blame the Tories for everything like you always do.
Trouble is, it is a 'victim' of its own success because not every Borough has one. people travel all across London for it, and meet people fore illicit substances and things as they are all in the same boat. It was meant to be a stepping stone towards the YMCA accommodation, and support through Medical Health and Social Work support. The Night Shelter Developed from this as well. Unlike what SXH says, there has not been any increase under the Tories, in fact what did Bliar do in his many years in office? The CK had it's most demand through the Labour years. It used to be at Bearmans site in Leytonstone but due to gentrification of E11 was consigned to the dingy location it now is, out of site and out of mind. SXH, you cannot blame the Tories for everything like you always do. Cornbeefur
  • Score: 0

6:26pm Sun 24 Feb 13

Tom Thumb says...

Cornbeefur wrote:
Trouble is, it is a 'victim' of its own success because not every Borough has one. people travel all across London for it, and meet people fore illicit substances and things as they are all in the same boat.

It was meant to be a stepping stone towards the YMCA accommodation, and support through Medical Health and Social Work support.

The Night Shelter Developed from this as well.

Unlike what SXH says, there has not been any increase under the Tories, in fact what did Bliar do in his many years in office? The CK had it's most demand through the Labour years.

It used to be at Bearmans site in Leytonstone but due to gentrification of E11 was consigned to the dingy location it now is, out of site and out of mind.

SXH, you cannot blame the Tories for everything like you always do.
Where is your evidence that "people travel all across London for it"?
[quote][p][bold]Cornbeefur[/bold] wrote: Trouble is, it is a 'victim' of its own success because not every Borough has one. people travel all across London for it, and meet people fore illicit substances and things as they are all in the same boat. It was meant to be a stepping stone towards the YMCA accommodation, and support through Medical Health and Social Work support. The Night Shelter Developed from this as well. Unlike what SXH says, there has not been any increase under the Tories, in fact what did Bliar do in his many years in office? The CK had it's most demand through the Labour years. It used to be at Bearmans site in Leytonstone but due to gentrification of E11 was consigned to the dingy location it now is, out of site and out of mind. SXH, you cannot blame the Tories for everything like you always do.[/p][/quote]Where is your evidence that "people travel all across London for it"? Tom Thumb
  • Score: 0

6:26pm Sun 24 Feb 13

Stow1974 says...

A councillor first mentioned this to me last year, and at the time I was shocked. There was a complete lack of compassion and understanding as to the needs of some of these people. This obsession with #Awsomestow glosses over the real poverty in this Borough. And yet nothing is done about it. If all the effort that goes into campaigning to bring the cinema back (which no one ever went to when it was opened!) was put into something meaningful, something may even be achieved in dealing with some of the poverty and social issues in this Borough.

You only have to read the report to see how detached from reality these councillors are:

"that is why we have found them another site which is on a main bus route"

I didn't realise that the homeless were so socially mobile and able to top-up their Oysters to get down to the soup kitchen!
A councillor first mentioned this to me last year, and at the time I was shocked. There was a complete lack of compassion and understanding as to the needs of some of these people. This obsession with #Awsomestow glosses over the real poverty in this Borough. And yet nothing is done about it. If all the effort that goes into campaigning to bring the cinema back (which no one ever went to when it was opened!) was put into something meaningful, something may even be achieved in dealing with some of the poverty and social issues in this Borough. You only have to read the report to see how detached from reality these councillors are: "that is why we have found them another site which is on a main bus route" I didn't realise that the homeless were so socially mobile and able to top-up their Oysters to get down to the soup kitchen! Stow1974
  • Score: 0

6:29pm Sun 24 Feb 13

mdj says...

'... in a non-residential part of the borough ..', so it doesn't matter how far these poor saps have to trudge, who presumably can't afford the minimum £2.80 return bus fare it will cost them to get to this remote car park, and back to wherever they find somewhere to park their heads.

There's an air of sadism about the bullying language of this anonymous spokesman; does it remind readers of a councillor who's usually keen to get his name checked in articles most of the time? Why would he suddenly have lost his urge for publicity?
'... in a non-residential part of the borough ..', so it doesn't matter how far these poor saps have to trudge, who presumably can't afford the minimum £2.80 return bus fare it will cost them to get to this remote car park, and back to wherever they find somewhere to park their heads. There's an air of sadism about the bullying language of this anonymous spokesman; does it remind readers of a councillor who's usually keen to get his name checked in articles most of the time? Why would he suddenly have lost his urge for publicity? mdj
  • Score: 0

6:55pm Sun 24 Feb 13

SXH says...

Cornbeefur wrote:
Trouble is, it is a 'victim' of its own success because not every Borough has one. people travel all across London for it, and meet people fore illicit substances and things as they are all in the same boat. It was meant to be a stepping stone towards the YMCA accommodation, and support through Medical Health and Social Work support. The Night Shelter Developed from this as well. Unlike what SXH says, there has not been any increase under the Tories, in fact what did Bliar do in his many years in office? The CK had it's most demand through the Labour years. It used to be at Bearmans site in Leytonstone but due to gentrification of E11 was consigned to the dingy location it now is, out of site and out of mind. SXH, you cannot blame the Tories for everything like you always do.
Cornbeefur try reading the last sory to this you left comments about me
http://www.guardian-
series.co.uk/news/10
244461.Soup_kitchen_
threatened_with_evic
tion__to_make_way_fo
r_development_/
Cornbeefur said: As for blaming the Tories about increased Homeless SXH, are you kidding?
Firstly i did not even made a comment here? when did i blame the tories?
And now you continue to make these FALSE allegations about me.

I really do not know what your sick problem is but since you found out i am female all i get is insults and sexist remarks from you.
I do not understand why the Guardian still allow you to comment on anything as all you do it TROLL all story's, i kindly ask you to STOP making stories up that are not there.
[quote][p][bold]Cornbeefur[/bold] wrote: Trouble is, it is a 'victim' of its own success because not every Borough has one. people travel all across London for it, and meet people fore illicit substances and things as they are all in the same boat. It was meant to be a stepping stone towards the YMCA accommodation, and support through Medical Health and Social Work support. The Night Shelter Developed from this as well. Unlike what SXH says, there has not been any increase under the Tories, in fact what did Bliar do in his many years in office? The CK had it's most demand through the Labour years. It used to be at Bearmans site in Leytonstone but due to gentrification of E11 was consigned to the dingy location it now is, out of site and out of mind. SXH, you cannot blame the Tories for everything like you always do.[/p][/quote]Cornbeefur try reading the last sory to this you left comments about me http://www.guardian- series.co.uk/news/10 244461.Soup_kitchen_ threatened_with_evic tion__to_make_way_fo r_development_/ Cornbeefur said: As for blaming the Tories about increased Homeless SXH, are you kidding? Firstly i did not even made a comment here? when did i blame the tories? And now you continue to make these FALSE allegations about me. I really do not know what your sick problem is but since you found out i am female all i get is insults and sexist remarks from you. I do not understand why the Guardian still allow you to comment on anything as all you do it TROLL all story's, i kindly ask you to STOP making stories up that are not there. SXH
  • Score: 0

7:10pm Sun 24 Feb 13

Cornbeefur says...

SXH wrote:
Cornbeefur wrote:
Trouble is, it is a 'victim' of its own success because not every Borough has one. people travel all across London for it, and meet people fore illicit substances and things as they are all in the same boat. It was meant to be a stepping stone towards the YMCA accommodation, and support through Medical Health and Social Work support. The Night Shelter Developed from this as well. Unlike what SXH says, there has not been any increase under the Tories, in fact what did Bliar do in his many years in office? The CK had it's most demand through the Labour years. It used to be at Bearmans site in Leytonstone but due to gentrification of E11 was consigned to the dingy location it now is, out of site and out of mind. SXH, you cannot blame the Tories for everything like you always do.
Cornbeefur try reading the last sory to this you left comments about me
http://www.guardian-

series.co.uk/news/10

244461.Soup_kitchen_

threatened_with_evic

tion__to_make_way_fo

r_development_/
Cornbeefur said: As for blaming the Tories about increased Homeless SXH, are you kidding?
Firstly i did not even made a comment here? when did i blame the tories?
And now you continue to make these FALSE allegations about me.

I really do not know what your sick problem is but since you found out i am female all i get is insults and sexist remarks from you.
I do not understand why the Guardian still allow you to comment on anything as all you do it TROLL all story's, i kindly ask you to STOP making stories up that are not there.
Well if you did not, I apologise unreservedly.

I must have been mistaken as I thought it was you.

They were not sexist anyhow and I think you are being a little bit sensitive.
[quote][p][bold]SXH[/bold] wrote: [quote][p][bold]Cornbeefur[/bold] wrote: Trouble is, it is a 'victim' of its own success because not every Borough has one. people travel all across London for it, and meet people fore illicit substances and things as they are all in the same boat. It was meant to be a stepping stone towards the YMCA accommodation, and support through Medical Health and Social Work support. The Night Shelter Developed from this as well. Unlike what SXH says, there has not been any increase under the Tories, in fact what did Bliar do in his many years in office? The CK had it's most demand through the Labour years. It used to be at Bearmans site in Leytonstone but due to gentrification of E11 was consigned to the dingy location it now is, out of site and out of mind. SXH, you cannot blame the Tories for everything like you always do.[/p][/quote]Cornbeefur try reading the last sory to this you left comments about me http://www.guardian- series.co.uk/news/10 244461.Soup_kitchen_ threatened_with_evic tion__to_make_way_fo r_development_/ Cornbeefur said: As for blaming the Tories about increased Homeless SXH, are you kidding? Firstly i did not even made a comment here? when did i blame the tories? And now you continue to make these FALSE allegations about me. I really do not know what your sick problem is but since you found out i am female all i get is insults and sexist remarks from you. I do not understand why the Guardian still allow you to comment on anything as all you do it TROLL all story's, i kindly ask you to STOP making stories up that are not there.[/p][/quote]Well if you did not, I apologise unreservedly. I must have been mistaken as I thought it was you. They were not sexist anyhow and I think you are being a little bit sensitive. Cornbeefur
  • Score: 0

7:26pm Sun 24 Feb 13

SXH says...

Cornbeefur wrote:
SXH wrote:
Cornbeefur wrote: Trouble is, it is a 'victim' of its own success because not every Borough has one. people travel all across London for it, and meet people fore illicit substances and things as they are all in the same boat. It was meant to be a stepping stone towards the YMCA accommodation, and support through Medical Health and Social Work support. The Night Shelter Developed from this as well. Unlike what SXH says, there has not been any increase under the Tories, in fact what did Bliar do in his many years in office? The CK had it's most demand through the Labour years. It used to be at Bearmans site in Leytonstone but due to gentrification of E11 was consigned to the dingy location it now is, out of site and out of mind. SXH, you cannot blame the Tories for everything like you always do.
Cornbeefur try reading the last sory to this you left comments about me http://www.guardian- series.co.uk/news/10 244461.Soup_kitchen_ threatened_with_evic tion__to_make_way_fo r_development_/ Cornbeefur said: As for blaming the Tories about increased Homeless SXH, are you kidding? Firstly i did not even made a comment here? when did i blame the tories? And now you continue to make these FALSE allegations about me. I really do not know what your sick problem is but since you found out i am female all i get is insults and sexist remarks from you. I do not understand why the Guardian still allow you to comment on anything as all you do it TROLL all story's, i kindly ask you to STOP making stories up that are not there.
Well if you did not, I apologise unreservedly. I must have been mistaken as I thought it was you. They were not sexist anyhow and I think you are being a little bit sensitive.
Rubbish try reading the article again, you have made thse comments about me on many articles.

i am not being sensitive you nasty man, you insult me all the time like you do with many others and come up with the excuse i am sensitive, get a life you troll
[quote][p][bold]Cornbeefur[/bold] wrote: [quote][p][bold]SXH[/bold] wrote: [quote][p][bold]Cornbeefur[/bold] wrote: Trouble is, it is a 'victim' of its own success because not every Borough has one. people travel all across London for it, and meet people fore illicit substances and things as they are all in the same boat. It was meant to be a stepping stone towards the YMCA accommodation, and support through Medical Health and Social Work support. The Night Shelter Developed from this as well. Unlike what SXH says, there has not been any increase under the Tories, in fact what did Bliar do in his many years in office? The CK had it's most demand through the Labour years. It used to be at Bearmans site in Leytonstone but due to gentrification of E11 was consigned to the dingy location it now is, out of site and out of mind. SXH, you cannot blame the Tories for everything like you always do.[/p][/quote]Cornbeefur try reading the last sory to this you left comments about me http://www.guardian- series.co.uk/news/10 244461.Soup_kitchen_ threatened_with_evic tion__to_make_way_fo r_development_/ Cornbeefur said: As for blaming the Tories about increased Homeless SXH, are you kidding? Firstly i did not even made a comment here? when did i blame the tories? And now you continue to make these FALSE allegations about me. I really do not know what your sick problem is but since you found out i am female all i get is insults and sexist remarks from you. I do not understand why the Guardian still allow you to comment on anything as all you do it TROLL all story's, i kindly ask you to STOP making stories up that are not there.[/p][/quote]Well if you did not, I apologise unreservedly. I must have been mistaken as I thought it was you. They were not sexist anyhow and I think you are being a little bit sensitive.[/p][/quote]Rubbish try reading the article again, you have made thse comments about me on many articles. i am not being sensitive you nasty man, you insult me all the time like you do with many others and come up with the excuse i am sensitive, get a life you troll SXH
  • Score: 0

7:33pm Sun 24 Feb 13

smithystow says...

John moss, i remember you from your culture club days. how is boy george these days?
John moss, i remember you from your culture club days. how is boy george these days? smithystow
  • Score: 0

7:42pm Sun 24 Feb 13

arnie59 says...

SXH wrote:
Cornbeefur wrote:
SXH wrote:
Cornbeefur wrote: Trouble is, it is a 'victim' of its own success because not every Borough has one. people travel all across London for it, and meet people fore illicit substances and things as they are all in the same boat. It was meant to be a stepping stone towards the YMCA accommodation, and support through Medical Health and Social Work support. The Night Shelter Developed from this as well. Unlike what SXH says, there has not been any increase under the Tories, in fact what did Bliar do in his many years in office? The CK had it's most demand through the Labour years. It used to be at Bearmans site in Leytonstone but due to gentrification of E11 was consigned to the dingy location it now is, out of site and out of mind. SXH, you cannot blame the Tories for everything like you always do.
Cornbeefur try reading the last sory to this you left comments about me http://www.guardian- series.co.uk/news/10 244461.Soup_kitchen_ threatened_with_evic tion__to_make_way_fo r_development_/ Cornbeefur said: As for blaming the Tories about increased Homeless SXH, are you kidding? Firstly i did not even made a comment here? when did i blame the tories? And now you continue to make these FALSE allegations about me. I really do not know what your sick problem is but since you found out i am female all i get is insults and sexist remarks from you. I do not understand why the Guardian still allow you to comment on anything as all you do it TROLL all story's, i kindly ask you to STOP making stories up that are not there.
Well if you did not, I apologise unreservedly. I must have been mistaken as I thought it was you. They were not sexist anyhow and I think you are being a little bit sensitive.
Rubbish try reading the article again, you have made thse comments about me on many articles.

i am not being sensitive you nasty man, you insult me all the time like you do with many others and come up with the excuse i am sensitive, get a life you troll
Don't feed the troll !
[quote][p][bold]SXH[/bold] wrote: [quote][p][bold]Cornbeefur[/bold] wrote: [quote][p][bold]SXH[/bold] wrote: [quote][p][bold]Cornbeefur[/bold] wrote: Trouble is, it is a 'victim' of its own success because not every Borough has one. people travel all across London for it, and meet people fore illicit substances and things as they are all in the same boat. It was meant to be a stepping stone towards the YMCA accommodation, and support through Medical Health and Social Work support. The Night Shelter Developed from this as well. Unlike what SXH says, there has not been any increase under the Tories, in fact what did Bliar do in his many years in office? The CK had it's most demand through the Labour years. It used to be at Bearmans site in Leytonstone but due to gentrification of E11 was consigned to the dingy location it now is, out of site and out of mind. SXH, you cannot blame the Tories for everything like you always do.[/p][/quote]Cornbeefur try reading the last sory to this you left comments about me http://www.guardian- series.co.uk/news/10 244461.Soup_kitchen_ threatened_with_evic tion__to_make_way_fo r_development_/ Cornbeefur said: As for blaming the Tories about increased Homeless SXH, are you kidding? Firstly i did not even made a comment here? when did i blame the tories? And now you continue to make these FALSE allegations about me. I really do not know what your sick problem is but since you found out i am female all i get is insults and sexist remarks from you. I do not understand why the Guardian still allow you to comment on anything as all you do it TROLL all story's, i kindly ask you to STOP making stories up that are not there.[/p][/quote]Well if you did not, I apologise unreservedly. I must have been mistaken as I thought it was you. They were not sexist anyhow and I think you are being a little bit sensitive.[/p][/quote]Rubbish try reading the article again, you have made thse comments about me on many articles. i am not being sensitive you nasty man, you insult me all the time like you do with many others and come up with the excuse i am sensitive, get a life you troll[/p][/quote]Don't feed the troll ! arnie59
  • Score: 0

7:50pm Sun 24 Feb 13

SXH says...

The trolls gone too far with his lies and false accusations.
The trolls gone too far with his lies and false accusations. SXH
  • Score: 0

10:14pm Sun 24 Feb 13

SXH says...

Cornbeefur wrote:
SXH wrote: The trolls gone too far with his lies and false accusations.
By your very comment you prove to actually Troll have you any constructive comment to make regarding these poor people who are at the bottom of society who need feeding. Maybe volunteer? They should be tolerated and found another venue nearby I suggest. Cameron has policies in place to deal with homeless issues in any event.
Get a life troll, you try volunteering, you continue to make false accusations, i never even made any comments regarding this article.

Don't bother commenting back, go sleep it off.

I wish to know why the Guardian do not do anything about you, with your regular insults.
[quote][p][bold]Cornbeefur[/bold] wrote: [quote][p][bold]SXH[/bold] wrote: The trolls gone too far with his lies and false accusations.[/p][/quote]By your very comment you prove to actually Troll have you any constructive comment to make regarding these poor people who are at the bottom of society who need feeding. Maybe volunteer? They should be tolerated and found another venue nearby I suggest. Cameron has policies in place to deal with homeless issues in any event.[/p][/quote]Get a life troll, you try volunteering, you continue to make false accusations, i never even made any comments regarding this article. Don't bother commenting back, go sleep it off. I wish to know why the Guardian do not do anything about you, with your regular insults. SXH
  • Score: 0

10:42pm Sun 24 Feb 13

Southend woman says...

Who says that the Chingford Holiday Inn is in a non-residential part of the borough? It's on Chingford Road where there were plenty of houses on the main and side roads last time I looked.
But to the main point - this is a great service which helps out those who need it most and they don't need to be moved a few miles away from their service users.
Who says that the Chingford Holiday Inn is in a non-residential part of the borough? It's on Chingford Road where there were plenty of houses on the main and side roads last time I looked. But to the main point - this is a great service which helps out those who need it most and they don't need to be moved a few miles away from their service users. Southend woman
  • Score: 0

12:07am Mon 25 Feb 13

mdj says...

'Who says that the Chingford Holiday Inn is in a non-residential part of the borough?'
We're basically talking about the Sainsbury car park next to the North Circular, a long trudge from central Walthamstow where the market might provide a few opportunities for the destitute to get cheap food. It's a clear attempt to marginalise further some of the most vulnerable people who live here.
'Who says that the Chingford Holiday Inn is in a non-residential part of the borough?' We're basically talking about the Sainsbury car park next to the North Circular, a long trudge from central Walthamstow where the market might provide a few opportunities for the destitute to get cheap food. It's a clear attempt to marginalise further some of the most vulnerable people who live here. mdj
  • Score: 0

7:18am Mon 25 Feb 13

Cornbeefur says...

mdj wrote:
'Who says that the Chingford Holiday Inn is in a non-residential part of the borough?'
We're basically talking about the Sainsbury car park next to the North Circular, a long trudge from central Walthamstow where the market might provide a few opportunities for the destitute to get cheap food. It's a clear attempt to marginalise further some of the most vulnerable people who live here.
They want to ethnically cleanse the area for the hoped gentrification when the new flats and housing are built.
[quote][p][bold]mdj[/bold] wrote: 'Who says that the Chingford Holiday Inn is in a non-residential part of the borough?' We're basically talking about the Sainsbury car park next to the North Circular, a long trudge from central Walthamstow where the market might provide a few opportunities for the destitute to get cheap food. It's a clear attempt to marginalise further some of the most vulnerable people who live here.[/p][/quote]They want to ethnically cleanse the area for the hoped gentrification when the new flats and housing are built. Cornbeefur
  • Score: 0

12:29pm Tue 26 Feb 13

Sam Hain says...

"Organisers of the Christian Kitchen spoke of their outrage..." Is outrage a very Christian emotion? But then I never believed the organisers really 'got' Christ's teaching in the round. True, they fed the hungry but seemed to pay scant regard to any of their other needs. I would urge them to revisit Matthew 25:35-40 "For I was hungry and you gave me something to eat, I was thirsty and you gave me something to drink, I was a stranger and you invited me in, I needed clothes and you clothed me, I was sick and you looked after me, I was in prison and you came to visit me." The Christian Kitchen resisted all encouragement to include a range of services to alleviate the plight of their users but seemed to want to maintain dependency on them for food alone, ignoring that other Christian teaching "Man cannot live by bread alone". These 'Christians' really should know their Bible better than we atheists!
"Organisers of the Christian Kitchen spoke of their outrage..." Is outrage a very Christian emotion? But then I never believed the organisers really 'got' Christ's teaching in the round. True, they fed the hungry but seemed to pay scant regard to any of their other needs. I would urge them to revisit Matthew 25:35-40 "For I was hungry and you gave me something to eat, I was thirsty and you gave me something to drink, I was a stranger and you invited me in, I needed clothes and you clothed me, I was sick and you looked after me, I was in prison and you came to visit me." The Christian Kitchen resisted all encouragement to include a range of services to alleviate the plight of their users but seemed to want to maintain dependency on them for food alone, ignoring that other Christian teaching "Man cannot live by bread alone". These 'Christians' really should know their Bible better than we atheists! Sam Hain
  • Score: 0

12:30pm Tue 26 Feb 13

Sam Hain says...

"Organisers of the Christian Kitchen spoke of their outrage..." Is outrage a very Christian emotion? But then I never believed the organisers really 'got' Christ's teaching in the round. True, they fed the hungry but seemed to pay scant regard to any of their other needs. I would urge them to revisit Matthew 25:35-40 "For I was hungry and you gave me something to eat, I was thirsty and you gave me something to drink, I was a stranger and you invited me in, I needed clothes and you clothed me, I was sick and you looked after me, I was in prison and you came to visit me." The Christian Kitchen resisted all encouragement to include a range of services to alleviate the plight of their users but seemed to want to maintain dependency on them for food alone, ignoring that other Christian teaching "Man cannot live by bread alone". These 'Christians' really should know their Bible better than we atheists!
"Organisers of the Christian Kitchen spoke of their outrage..." Is outrage a very Christian emotion? But then I never believed the organisers really 'got' Christ's teaching in the round. True, they fed the hungry but seemed to pay scant regard to any of their other needs. I would urge them to revisit Matthew 25:35-40 "For I was hungry and you gave me something to eat, I was thirsty and you gave me something to drink, I was a stranger and you invited me in, I needed clothes and you clothed me, I was sick and you looked after me, I was in prison and you came to visit me." The Christian Kitchen resisted all encouragement to include a range of services to alleviate the plight of their users but seemed to want to maintain dependency on them for food alone, ignoring that other Christian teaching "Man cannot live by bread alone". These 'Christians' really should know their Bible better than we atheists! Sam Hain
  • Score: 0

1:00pm Tue 26 Feb 13

Cornbeefur says...

Sam Hain wrote:
"Organisers of the Christian Kitchen spoke of their outrage..." Is outrage a very Christian emotion? But then I never believed the organisers really 'got' Christ's teaching in the round. True, they fed the hungry but seemed to pay scant regard to any of their other needs. I would urge them to revisit Matthew 25:35-40 "For I was hungry and you gave me something to eat, I was thirsty and you gave me something to drink, I was a stranger and you invited me in, I needed clothes and you clothed me, I was sick and you looked after me, I was in prison and you came to visit me." The Christian Kitchen resisted all encouragement to include a range of services to alleviate the plight of their users but seemed to want to maintain dependency on them for food alone, ignoring that other Christian teaching "Man cannot live by bread alone". These 'Christians' really should know their Bible better than we atheists!
Very interesting points.

Trouble is that feeding is not the only answer.
[quote][p][bold]Sam Hain[/bold] wrote: "Organisers of the Christian Kitchen spoke of their outrage..." Is outrage a very Christian emotion? But then I never believed the organisers really 'got' Christ's teaching in the round. True, they fed the hungry but seemed to pay scant regard to any of their other needs. I would urge them to revisit Matthew 25:35-40 "For I was hungry and you gave me something to eat, I was thirsty and you gave me something to drink, I was a stranger and you invited me in, I needed clothes and you clothed me, I was sick and you looked after me, I was in prison and you came to visit me." The Christian Kitchen resisted all encouragement to include a range of services to alleviate the plight of their users but seemed to want to maintain dependency on them for food alone, ignoring that other Christian teaching "Man cannot live by bread alone". These 'Christians' really should know their Bible better than we atheists![/p][/quote]Very interesting points. Trouble is that feeding is not the only answer. Cornbeefur
  • Score: 0

2:49pm Tue 26 Feb 13

Isaythat says...

Sam, I agree with you.
It does concern me that moving these people on to an open area such as behind the Travelodge, is not the best place for these people to be left wandering around. Next they will offer them a place in the middle of Epping Forest.
Sam, I agree with you. It does concern me that moving these people on to an open area such as behind the Travelodge, is not the best place for these people to be left wandering around. Next they will offer them a place in the middle of Epping Forest. Isaythat
  • Score: 0

7:29pm Tue 26 Feb 13

Isaythat says...

the two reports on this are different. One says two alternative places are being offered and the other says only one. Guardian, can we have an update with an accurate report please?
the two reports on this are different. One says two alternative places are being offered and the other says only one. Guardian, can we have an update with an accurate report please? Isaythat
  • Score: 0

8:53pm Tue 26 Feb 13

BruceG says...

If the Council believes that this site is a magnet for trouble then doubtless it will (must) publish its evidence.

Doubtless our reporter will have lodged a FOI request to the appropriate authorities to obtain the evidence that must exist for such an assertion to be sustainable.

Anecdotes are one thing whilst evidence is everything so let's see the evidence in such a way that it is compared with other perceived trouble magnets in the borough.

In what is one of the poorest boroughs in the UK it would seem inhumane to deny its poorest residents the very basics required to sustain life and since we pay for professional policing and have recently acquired 119 extra police then surely any local problems can and should be policed to the satisfaction of us all.
If the Council believes that this site is a magnet for trouble then doubtless it will (must) publish its evidence. Doubtless our reporter will have lodged a FOI request to the appropriate authorities to obtain the evidence that must exist for such an assertion to be sustainable. Anecdotes are one thing whilst evidence is everything so let's see the evidence in such a way that it is compared with other perceived trouble magnets in the borough. In what is one of the poorest boroughs in the UK it would seem inhumane to deny its poorest residents the very basics required to sustain life and since we pay for professional policing and have recently acquired 119 extra police then surely any local problems can and should be policed to the satisfaction of us all. BruceG
  • Score: 0

10:02pm Tue 26 Feb 13

mdj says...

'The Christian Kitchen resisted all encouragement to include a range of services to alleviate the plight of their users'
Well, they might just have their hands full with the feeding bit, Sam: no doubt you stepped in with your own offer as regards whatever the next step should be?
You're lecturing them on their limited understanding of Christ's teaching, while offering... what, precisely ?

As Solzhenitsyn says,'How can a man who is warm understand a man who is cold?'
'The Christian Kitchen resisted all encouragement to include a range of services to alleviate the plight of their users' Well, they might just have their hands full with the feeding bit, Sam: no doubt you stepped in with your own offer as regards whatever the next step should be? You're lecturing them on their limited understanding of Christ's teaching, while offering... what, precisely ? As Solzhenitsyn says,'How can a man who is warm understand a man who is cold?' mdj
  • Score: 0

11:05pm Tue 26 Feb 13

Sam Hain says...

mdj wrote:
'The Christian Kitchen resisted all encouragement to include a range of services to alleviate the plight of their users'
Well, they might just have their hands full with the feeding bit, Sam: no doubt you stepped in with your own offer as regards whatever the next step should be?
You're lecturing them on their limited understanding of Christ's teaching, while offering... what, precisely ?

As Solzhenitsyn says,'How can a man who is warm understand a man who is cold?'
I know for a fact that Ward Councillors and Council officers have worked hard for some long time now to encourage the Christian Kitchen to promote a range of other services that are available to help alleviate more than just hunger, but homelessness, ill-health (including mental health) and signpost welfare benefits etc but such approaches for a multi-agency approach have been spurned. I'm simply suggesting that they open their minds to the other areas of welfare and charity mentioned by St Matthew. Is that too much to ask of a Christian?.
[quote][p][bold]mdj[/bold] wrote: 'The Christian Kitchen resisted all encouragement to include a range of services to alleviate the plight of their users' Well, they might just have their hands full with the feeding bit, Sam: no doubt you stepped in with your own offer as regards whatever the next step should be? You're lecturing them on their limited understanding of Christ's teaching, while offering... what, precisely ? As Solzhenitsyn says,'How can a man who is warm understand a man who is cold?'[/p][/quote]I know for a fact that Ward Councillors and Council officers have worked hard for some long time now to encourage the Christian Kitchen to promote a range of other services that are available to help alleviate more than just hunger, but homelessness, ill-health (including mental health) and signpost welfare benefits etc but such approaches for a multi-agency approach have been spurned. I'm simply suggesting that they open their minds to the other areas of welfare and charity mentioned by St Matthew. Is that too much to ask of a Christian?. Sam Hain
  • Score: 0

12:27am Wed 27 Feb 13

mdj says...

So councillors and officials
see good people with their hands full doing something useful, then criticise them for not doing more, while doing nothing themselves? That's a pretty good picture of the municipal mindset in Waltham Forest, though probably not what you intended to convey.
Do Christians lecture atheists on the social duties of atheism, by the way?
Will this service be replaced by an Atheist Kitchen and a Sam Hain Night Shelter and Medical Service when it gets ridden out of town?
Have these misguided people been thwarting your benevolent impulses all these years in some way?
So councillors and officials see good people with their hands full doing something useful, then criticise them for not doing more, while doing nothing themselves? That's a pretty good picture of the municipal mindset in Waltham Forest, though probably not what you intended to convey. Do Christians lecture atheists on the social duties of atheism, by the way? Will this service be replaced by an Atheist Kitchen and a Sam Hain Night Shelter and Medical Service when it gets ridden out of town? Have these misguided people been thwarting your benevolent impulses all these years in some way? mdj
  • Score: 0

7:33am Wed 27 Feb 13

Helen, Walthamstow says...

A few years ago, I went out with the Chrstian Kitchen, basically just to see how it worked.

It was interesting to note how the very small staff knew all their clients well, talked to them about their ongoing problems and referred them to other services when necessary and appropriate. They also provided them with a friendly listening ear as well as food.

These services then included the temporary winter night shelters, which hosted other services. Now that the Branches centre in Forest Road is fully up and running, there is plenty of support there for those who choose to seek - repeat, who CHOOSE to seek it.
A few years ago, I went out with the Chrstian Kitchen, basically just to see how it worked. It was interesting to note how the very small staff knew all their clients well, talked to them about their ongoing problems and referred them to other services when necessary and appropriate. They also provided them with a friendly listening ear as well as food. These services then included the temporary winter night shelters, which hosted other services. Now that the Branches centre in Forest Road is fully up and running, there is plenty of support there for those who choose to seek - repeat, who CHOOSE to seek it. Helen, Walthamstow
  • Score: 0

8:18am Wed 27 Feb 13

BruceG says...

But what of all the trouble that this facility attracts? It is the attraction of all the trouble that has signalled the proposed removal of this kitchen. If there is no trouble then there can be no argument against the kitchen.

IMHO the focus should be very firmly directed towards the details of the alleged trouble, how this kitchen is a magnet for it and why it cannot be policed rather than on the merits of the facility.

By way of comparison, when a public house is a constant centre of localised antisocial behaviour its licence is reviewed - but only when substantiated by evidence and only after it becomes a thorn in the side of local police.
But what of all the trouble that this facility attracts? It is the attraction of all the trouble that has signalled the proposed removal of this kitchen. If there is no trouble then there can be no argument against the kitchen. IMHO the focus should be very firmly directed towards the details of the alleged trouble, how this kitchen is a magnet for it and why it cannot be policed rather than on the merits of the facility. By way of comparison, when a public house is a constant centre of localised antisocial behaviour its licence is reviewed - but only when substantiated by evidence and only after it becomes a thorn in the side of local police. BruceG
  • Score: 0

1:13pm Wed 27 Feb 13

Sam Hain says...

mdj wrote:
So councillors and officials
see good people with their hands full doing something useful, then criticise them for not doing more, while doing nothing themselves? That's a pretty good picture of the municipal mindset in Waltham Forest, though probably not what you intended to convey.
Do Christians lecture atheists on the social duties of atheism, by the way?
Will this service be replaced by an Atheist Kitchen and a Sam Hain Night Shelter and Medical Service when it gets ridden out of town?
Have these misguided people been thwarting your benevolent impulses all these years in some way?
I'm not sure it's true the council has been doing nothing themselves but you raise a good point, to which I don't have the answer but will certainly ask. As it is a council-owned carpark one would imagine that a multi-agency initiative could be co-ordinated by the council to take place at the same time as the Christian Kitchen is there, with or without their buy-in. Christians don't need to lecture atheists on their social duties, most of us are well aware of them and act on them daily. However, once again, you raise an interesting point as to the derivation of that sense of social obligation. I'd be the first to acknowledge that my 'moral compass' was almost certainly set by being brought up in the Judaeo-Christian tradition, it's just that I dumped all the extraneous baggage at a very early age but retain, I hope, the imperative of 'doing unto others as you would have them do unto you', and a keen sense of social justice. As to your final point, I'm heartened to see that an atheist 'church' is proving extremely popular in Islington (well, it would, wouldn't it!) but it does serve to highlight that, in ditching religion, we atheists have possibly lost the sense of communion and fellowship that goes with organised religion. Maybe will will see an Atheist Kitchen come out of this but I suspect that most atheists, being rationalists, would rather see such support being offered by the 'state'. The concept of charity may well have come out of organised religion but I think its day is done - it is demeaning and shouldn't be necessary in the modern age. However, the relentless dismantling of the welfare state by this government is already putting more emphasis on charity, just as it is on a range of other 'Victorian Values' - like overcrowding, homelessness, the Undeserving Poor, rickets, TB etc etc. What next, Parish Workhouses?
[quote][p][bold]mdj[/bold] wrote: So councillors and officials see good people with their hands full doing something useful, then criticise them for not doing more, while doing nothing themselves? That's a pretty good picture of the municipal mindset in Waltham Forest, though probably not what you intended to convey. Do Christians lecture atheists on the social duties of atheism, by the way? Will this service be replaced by an Atheist Kitchen and a Sam Hain Night Shelter and Medical Service when it gets ridden out of town? Have these misguided people been thwarting your benevolent impulses all these years in some way?[/p][/quote]I'm not sure it's true the council has been doing nothing themselves but you raise a good point, to which I don't have the answer but will certainly ask. As it is a council-owned carpark one would imagine that a multi-agency initiative could be co-ordinated by the council to take place at the same time as the Christian Kitchen is there, with or without their buy-in. Christians don't need to lecture atheists on their social duties, most of us are well aware of them and act on them daily. However, once again, you raise an interesting point as to the derivation of that sense of social obligation. I'd be the first to acknowledge that my 'moral compass' was almost certainly set by being brought up in the Judaeo-Christian tradition, it's just that I dumped all the extraneous baggage at a very early age but retain, I hope, the imperative of 'doing unto others as you would have them do unto you', and a keen sense of social justice. As to your final point, I'm heartened to see that an atheist 'church' is proving extremely popular in Islington (well, it would, wouldn't it!) but it does serve to highlight that, in ditching religion, we atheists have possibly lost the sense of communion and fellowship that goes with organised religion. Maybe will will see an Atheist Kitchen come out of this but I suspect that most atheists, being rationalists, would rather see such support being offered by the 'state'. The concept of charity may well have come out of organised religion but I think its day is done - it is demeaning and shouldn't be necessary in the modern age. However, the relentless dismantling of the welfare state by this government is already putting more emphasis on charity, just as it is on a range of other 'Victorian Values' - like overcrowding, homelessness, the Undeserving Poor, rickets, TB etc etc. What next, Parish Workhouses? Sam Hain
  • Score: 0

2:53pm Wed 27 Feb 13

mdj says...

' I suspect that most atheists, being rationalists, would rather see such support being offered by the 'state'.

ie, somebody else;which is why this soup kitchen has been running for twenty years under a Christian aegis. QED.

'However, once again, you raise an interesting point as to the derivation of that sense of social obligation.'
I was commenting on the compassionless complacency of those who feel that saying that 'somebody else should do something' is the limit of their social obligation, as you must be aware.
' I suspect that most atheists, being rationalists, would rather see such support being offered by the 'state'. ie, somebody else;which is why this soup kitchen has been running for twenty years under a Christian aegis. QED. 'However, once again, you raise an interesting point as to the derivation of that sense of social obligation.' I was commenting on the compassionless complacency of those who feel that saying that 'somebody else should do something' is the limit of their social obligation, as you must be aware. mdj
  • Score: 0

5:32pm Wed 27 Feb 13

Sam Hain says...

mdj wrote:
' I suspect that most atheists, being rationalists, would rather see such support being offered by the 'state'.

ie, somebody else;which is why this soup kitchen has been running for twenty years under a Christian aegis. QED.

'However, once again, you raise an interesting point as to the derivation of that sense of social obligation.'
I was commenting on the compassionless complacency of those who feel that saying that 'somebody else should do something' is the limit of their social obligation, as you must be aware.
The state is emphatically NOT somebody else, mdj. In a mature democracy it is, or should be, all of us. If we vote and pay taxes we accede to the role of the state in the delivery of social welfare and have a right to expect the state to discharge its duties fully in this regard and not leave it to the charitable sector. Luckily your comment about social obligation does not in any way apply to me. I expend a great deal of my 'social capital' in the voluntary sector including, despite my severe reservations about the way it currently operates, the charitable sector.
[quote][p][bold]mdj[/bold] wrote: ' I suspect that most atheists, being rationalists, would rather see such support being offered by the 'state'. ie, somebody else;which is why this soup kitchen has been running for twenty years under a Christian aegis. QED. 'However, once again, you raise an interesting point as to the derivation of that sense of social obligation.' I was commenting on the compassionless complacency of those who feel that saying that 'somebody else should do something' is the limit of their social obligation, as you must be aware.[/p][/quote]The state is emphatically NOT somebody else, mdj. In a mature democracy it is, or should be, all of us. If we vote and pay taxes we accede to the role of the state in the delivery of social welfare and have a right to expect the state to discharge its duties fully in this regard and not leave it to the charitable sector. Luckily your comment about social obligation does not in any way apply to me. I expend a great deal of my 'social capital' in the voluntary sector including, despite my severe reservations about the way it currently operates, the charitable sector. Sam Hain
  • Score: 0

6:51pm Wed 27 Feb 13

mdj says...

'The state is emphatically NOT somebody else, mdj. In a mature democracy it is, or should be, all of us.'

I entirely agree! But you were criticising the Christian Kitchen for not taking on even extra voluntary tasks which the state was clearly not already providing. And you said that the agents of the state, councillors and officials, were similarly urging them to do this, while apparently proposing nothing for themselves to undertake. This doesn't add up.


But wouldn't you agree that in the issue of personal/ state action a sort of Tragedy of the Commons arises?
If we vote taxes for a state agency to carry out some social purpose, often after years of struggle, we sit back and consider the job done: if, as with the Borough Clean-up, we are then asked to chip in ourselves, we resent being asked to do (or pay for) the same job twice.If those services are poorly delivered, we moan, but do not engage. Requests for us to volunteer are suspected for the same reason; we also fear that we may be putting professionals out of work with our amateur involvement, that may well run out of energy once the structural damage is done, and the budget allocated elsewhere.
Yet, as with the St James St library, if the service is withdrawn altogether see what a powerful unleashing of community energy can result!

I'm not sure there is one answer. I suspect that each generation has an answer that will work for as long as sufficient of us believe that it IS the answer; when that conviction tires, another approach will work, again for as long as enough people give enough commitment to it to make it work.
A newly-minted professional agency may do marvels if staffed by the idealistic sort of people who voted it into being; if staffed by sulky careerists a generation on, it will fail, even if on paper the structure appears the same. I fear we are at this stage with a whole range of public provision - funding, however important, is only part of the issue.
'The state is emphatically NOT somebody else, mdj. In a mature democracy it is, or should be, all of us.' I entirely agree! But you were criticising the Christian Kitchen for not taking on even extra voluntary tasks which the state was clearly not already providing. And you said that the agents of the state, councillors and officials, were similarly urging them to do this, while apparently proposing nothing for themselves to undertake. This doesn't add up. But wouldn't you agree that in the issue of personal/ state action a sort of Tragedy of the Commons arises? If we vote taxes for a state agency to carry out some social purpose, often after years of struggle, we sit back and consider the job done: if, as with the Borough Clean-up, we are then asked to chip in ourselves, we resent being asked to do (or pay for) the same job twice.If those services are poorly delivered, we moan, but do not engage. Requests for us to volunteer are suspected for the same reason; we also fear that we may be putting professionals out of work with our amateur involvement, that may well run out of energy once the structural damage is done, and the budget allocated elsewhere. Yet, as with the St James St library, if the service is withdrawn altogether see what a powerful unleashing of community energy can result! I'm not sure there is one answer. I suspect that each generation has an answer that will work for as long as sufficient of us believe that it IS the answer; when that conviction tires, another approach will work, again for as long as enough people give enough commitment to it to make it work. A newly-minted professional agency may do marvels if staffed by the idealistic sort of people who voted it into being; if staffed by sulky careerists a generation on, it will fail, even if on paper the structure appears the same. I fear we are at this stage with a whole range of public provision - funding, however important, is only part of the issue. mdj
  • Score: 0

11:42am Thu 28 Feb 13

Sam Hain says...

You make so many good points, mdj, that I can't respond to them all but agree with most of them. I would just like to clarify that I either didn't make myself clear, or you misunderstood me, that the Christian Kitchen wasn't being asked to deliver these extra services but to participate in a multi-agency approach to their clients. It seems that they were very territorial and didn't want to participate in anything other than feeding their clients. Fair enough, you might say, as the word Kitchen implies this is their mission. However, I believe problems arose over their being in the carpark in the first place, and even more so when they positioned themselves on the High Street itself, just at the junction with Mission Grove, under the shop awnings. There were also issues over their clients drinking in an ARZ, and ASB. I have witnessed problems with the former and have had to help neighbours over problems with the latter, including squatting (in more than one sense of the word sadly!). I can't comment as to why the council wasn't more proactive in its response to these issues - maybe because they feared they would be accused of harrassing a vulnerable group on the community. Decisive action is often better than institutional drift. What's the saying? 'better to be hanged for a sheep than for a lamb'. Now decisive action has been taken it's seen as the wrong action, or too little, too late. And still, it would seem, clients go without much-needed extra support.
You make so many good points, mdj, that I can't respond to them all but agree with most of them. I would just like to clarify that I either didn't make myself clear, or you misunderstood me, that the Christian Kitchen wasn't being asked to deliver these extra services but to participate in a multi-agency approach to their clients. It seems that they were very territorial and didn't want to participate in anything other than feeding their clients. Fair enough, you might say, as the word Kitchen implies this is their mission. However, I believe problems arose over their being in the carpark in the first place, and even more so when they positioned themselves on the High Street itself, just at the junction with Mission Grove, under the shop awnings. There were also issues over their clients drinking in an ARZ, and ASB. I have witnessed problems with the former and have had to help neighbours over problems with the latter, including squatting (in more than one sense of the word sadly!). I can't comment as to why the council wasn't more proactive in its response to these issues - maybe because they feared they would be accused of harrassing a vulnerable group on the community. Decisive action is often better than institutional drift. What's the saying? 'better to be hanged for a sheep than for a lamb'. Now decisive action has been taken it's seen as the wrong action, or too little, too late. And still, it would seem, clients go without much-needed extra support. Sam Hain
  • Score: 0

12:11pm Thu 28 Feb 13

mdj says...

'.. maybe because they feared they would be accused of harrassing a vulnerable group on the community..'

Well, they don't seem to be covering themselves with glory with this proposal: there has to be a better solution than exile to a remote spot where it's easy to predict that fewer vulnerable people will be helped.

There's also the point that dispersal actually spreads problems of disorder, making them harder to police; while the market area is concentrated, with a high coverage of CCTV. Closing public facilities such as toilets seems a bit less smart in this context, too; but then it grabbed a few headlines for a short while, so perhaps that's all that mattered to those responsible.
'.. maybe because they feared they would be accused of harrassing a vulnerable group on the community..' Well, they don't seem to be covering themselves with glory with this proposal: there has to be a better solution than exile to a remote spot where it's easy to predict that fewer vulnerable people will be helped. There's also the point that dispersal actually spreads problems of disorder, making them harder to police; while the market area is concentrated, with a high coverage of CCTV. Closing public facilities such as toilets seems a bit less smart in this context, too; but then it grabbed a few headlines for a short while, so perhaps that's all that mattered to those responsible. mdj
  • Score: 0

3:23pm Sat 2 Mar 13

icareE17 says...

Walthamstow is rough enough without attracting more down and outs. The council is desperately trying to bring this area up. Lets support them.

Tourists aren't going to flock to the longest street market in Europe or come to our new cinema bringing much needed revenue to the area if they have to navigate a sea of drunks, deviantes and pit bulls the minute they step off the tube.

Walthamstow sorry to say doesn't need anymore poor people. It needs to attract young professionals and a wealthier crowd that will pay taxes in this borough, pay for the regeneration to take place, create jobs and patronize/give business to local shops, restaurants and service providers. These people too will be less likely too litter, leave dog **** on the sidewalks, spit and/or leave old mattresses on their front gardens.
Walthamstow is rough enough without attracting more down and outs. The council is desperately trying to bring this area up. Lets support them. Tourists aren't going to flock to the longest street market in Europe or come to our new cinema bringing much needed revenue to the area if they have to navigate a sea of drunks, deviantes and pit bulls the minute they step off the tube. Walthamstow sorry to say doesn't need anymore poor people. It needs to attract young professionals and a wealthier crowd that will pay taxes in this borough, pay for the regeneration to take place, create jobs and patronize/give business to local shops, restaurants and service providers. These people too will be less likely too litter, leave dog **** on the sidewalks, spit and/or leave old mattresses on their front gardens. icareE17
  • Score: 0

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