Health Campaign update

Archive for January, 2015

Health Campaign update

Friday, January 30th, 2015

Margaret Hodge MP outside Queen's Hospital 8 February 2013Since my election 20 years ago I have been on a crusade to improve health services in the Borough. This month I made one of my unannounced visits to Queen’s Hospital to check up on their progress. I visited their overstretched A&E department and their Cancer unit to ensure that patients were receiving the best quality care.
I was incredibly impressed by the commitment of the doctors and nurses, but they are under huge pressure from a combination of cuts and more people needing their services. The following week I raised this with health chiefs when the Committee I chair in Parliament held a hearing on Cancer services. I will continue to monitor the situation locally and nationally.

Crowning my first Community Champion of 2015

Wednesday, January 21st, 2015

014__1426092115_194.60.62.33 (2)It was a real honour to crown Kenneth Gleeson, a road sweeper in Thames Ward, as my first community champion of 2015. He was nominated by local Councillor Cameron Geddes after so many residents contacted him about Kenneth’s fantastic work. I started my Community Awards scheme a number of years ago to celebrate the people who have made a special contribution to the local community. Kenneth has worked tirelessly to improve the environment for Barking and Dagenham residents for a number of years and is a real pillar of the community.  I have never heard so many people speak so highly about one Council worker. This award is a real testament to his hard work and positive attitude.

Thames Walkabout

Monday, January 19th, 2015

016__1426091857_194.60.62.33I have heard from a lot of residents in Thames who are concerned about the state of their neighbourhood. During a recent door knocking session I was shocked to see the sheer number of eyesore gardens in the area. Residents should feel proud of their local area and shouldn’t have to put up with such surroundings. I immediately organised a full inspection of the area with myself, your local Councillors and Council Directors. Following our inspection the overgrown brambles in the corner gardens on Bastable Avenue will be chopped down in the coming weeks.

I have now launched a campaign to ensure that the gardens on and around Bastable Avenue are cleared and properly maintained.

Traffic on Kemp Road

Saturday, January 17th, 2015

Meeting with residents of Kemp Road


Residents of Kemp Road have been blighted by large numbers of industrial vehicles driving very quickly down their road. Following my street meeting a few years ago the Council installed chicanes to limit the speed of these cars. Unfortunately this has not been completely effective so I called the Council back to meet with residents to find a further solution. The Council assured residents that the vehicles are not over the weight limit for the road but they will be installing CCTV to catch dangerous drivers.

Sorting out residents’ concerns in Axe Street

Friday, January 16th, 2015


Last year I met with East Thames tenants living in Axe Street to address some local issues. Security in and around their blocks was a major concern for residents. Gates were not properly secured, allowing troublemakers to gain access to the buildings and create a nuisance. Although East Thames promised to conduct a security review to secure the site, I was outraged to hear from residents that no changes had been made and a homeless man was actually living in a cupboard in a corridor. I immediately contacted East Thames demanding that action was taken straight away to sort this out.

The person has now been removed and the locks to the cupboard have now been changed. Security are now patrolling the site between 10pm and 5am. And I have ensured that they patrol inside the blocks and cupboards.

East Thames have assured me that they are in the process of obtaining robust gates as well as additional security lights within the courtyard next to Chandler Court.

The lack of available and affordable parking was another key issue. I have been pushing the Council to ensure that Axe Street residents have access to affordable parking. They are now exploring the introduction of a special evening and overnight affordable permit for residents.