Saturday saw the first ‘Summer in the Square’ event organised by the Friends of Battersea Square.
I popped along with Jess and MiniMe and managed to stay the entire day, from the opening by Nigella Lawson to the end – I even managed to avoid participation in the mass events, especially the line dancing (which coincided with a longish lunch)!
It was a fabulously well-attended, organised and fun event – and it’s been great seeing events like this spring up across the borough over the past few years (not least the Lavender Festival in my own ward). They really show the strength and cohesion of our community and show how much can be achieved when we all work together.
As I have mentioned summer is a quieter time on the council than the rest of the year. While last week saw no trips to the Town Hall this week saw only one for my regular briefing and policy meeting with officers.
Much of the rest of the week has been, not to put to fine a point on it, slightly geeky.
The week started meeting a couple of guys who are developing a product that (and I can’t think of a better way to put this) manages and centralises conversations. So, for example, the debate about CCTV or councillor surgeries took place over a number of blog posts and on Twitter, making it difficult to follow unless you were watching both – this would mean there would be a central place to see them all. It’s quite an exciting idea and I’m hoping to try it out in the near-ish future.
Another meeting was about a scheme called ‘Battersea Poems’ which will be part of the SW11 Literary Festival. Poetry itself isn’t geeky, of course, but Battersea Poems is a scheme whereby individuals can text their poetry in. The poems will be visible on a website and later this year the best will be chosen for publication in an anthology.
And today I’m at Google’s London offices for their ‘Localgov’ event. It has, so far, been interesting – but the afternoon promises to be much better, looking at some of the creative options Google offer. I’m hoping to pick up some things to bore visitors to this blog with!
As I mentioned last week, things do start getting quieter during late July and August and my council work this week really showed that – I’ve managed to go the whole week without a single trip to the Town Hall. While that doesn’t mean I’ve done nothing (I’m sadly all too available on the phone and via email) it’s quite nice to think that I’ve managed a whole week without a visit to Wandsworth High Street.
More meetings with the police
Following on from last week I had another session with the local police on Thursday, this time with Nick Cuff, who is now the chairman of the Regeneration and Community Safety Overview and Scrutiny Committee. It was a useful session and concluded with a short patrol with one a constable from the Tooting town centre team. I hope to do a fuller post about it next week.
SW11 Literary Festival
If there has been one theme it’s been planning for what happens after summer. While there are a number of events planned one of the bigger ones (in terms of time and venues) is the SW11 Literary Festival. This morning saw the launch of the festival’s recipe contest – which will ultimately result in an SW11 recipe book.
The reason I mention this is not my love of food (which I clearly love too much, along with alcohol and not exercising enough), but because it meant I stood on St John’s Road for a good while this morning and was amazed at the number and persistance of ‘chuggers’ – those professional fund-raisers who try and stop you in the street and sign a direct debit.
Again, I want to post on this next week – mainly so I can consider and mull over my thoughts – but I’d be very interested to know other people’s views on chuggers.