Link to this page: https://secure.socialistparty.org.uk/issue/979/26773
From The Socialist newspaper, 24 January 2018
Leeds playing fields rescued from Blairites
Playing fields are a vital community resource (Click to enlarge)
Tanis Belsham-Wray, Leeds Socialist Party
Labour-run Leeds City Council appears to have finally retreated in the face of mass community opposition to the plans to build on Fearnville playing fields previously reported in the Socialist.
This follows over 2,000 signatures on a petition, 4,000 leaflets delivered, and 69% opposition to the consultation.
Over 70 residents and local activists gathered in east Leeds on 19 January to plan opposition to building a 'free school' on the fields.
At this meeting, Richard Burgon, the local Corbynista Labour MP, announced a statement from Councillor Lisa Mulherin, the council executive member overseeing the development. She had recommended that "we do not progress the proposals consulted on recently to develop a school on Fearnville fields."
This victory is down to the resistance of local residents, organised by the Save Fearnville Fields campaign, which includes local Socialist Party members. Labour councillors present at the meeting attempted to rewrite history, claiming to have been against the proposals from the start.
However, the only councillor who publicly opposed the plans before this statement was ex-Labour councillor Catherine Dobson, now of the East Leeds Independents, who has been part of the campaign from the beginning. Richard Burgon also criticised the proposals from early in the campaign.
This shows that local residents, by building a campaign and putting pressure on councillors, can win.
However, the campaign will remain vigilant until this proposal has been voted down at the council executive meeting and no further proposals to build on the fields are put forward.
We will also be continuing to pressure the council to fund improvements to the nearby leisure centre which was consulted on alongside the school.
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In The Socialist 24 January 2018:
What we think
Turn Carillion crisis into movement against privatisation and capitalism
Socialist Party news and analysis
Welsh NHS crisis - we cannot go on like this
£2m to remove Grenfell-type cladding: residents to get bill
Private profit out of our NHS
Leeds playing fields rescued from Blairites
May's "war on plastic" still puts profits before the planet
News in brief
Vietnam War: 50 years since the Tet Offensive
Socialist Party workplace news
Lecturers vote for strikes against pension cuts
PCS executive agrees next steps in pay campaign
Brum care workers protest council attacks
Amy Murphy Usdaw campaign meeting
Ballots against Bromley privatisers
Ferrybridge: Workers down tools over unpaid wages
International socialist news and analysis
Punishment of Tamimi family awakens wave of international solidarity
Socialist Party reports and campaigns
Defend Louise Harrison - save Yorkshire women's services!
Victory against government's war on eastern European homeless
Women rally defiantly
Gentrification scourge hits Kent
Kirklees council opens consultation of library services
Southampton: Pay rise for uni boss, job losses for lecturers
Red Mary - a Force of Nature
Obituary: Maureen Mulhearn 1945-2018
Carillion and the construction industry
Carillion crisis exposes PFI chaos
Universal credit: set up to fail
The Socialist inbox
The Socialist 24 January 2018 |
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