More news is coming out about the Council’s proposed Hitlist for Hackney – the list of facilities due to be sold off or have their funding slashed as part of the Council’s cost-cutting measures. We will print the full list in the next week , but already the Hackney Gazette has run a story on some of the targeted sites and services. Among those at risk are the Apples and Pears play area on Pearson Street, and Hoxton Hall – more details below:
HACKNEY COUNCIL have finally made decisions about the funding of groups like Hoxton Hall and they have proposed a cut of £16,065 to our grant for the current year. In a full year it would amount to £32,130.
They have said they will not provide funding for our Lifelong Learning programme – the classes and courses which 500 people a week attend. The Council has serious financial problems, but centres like Hoxton Hall are valuable resources for the borough, providing creative activities and services for all. The Council’s short-term financial solution will cause long term damage. Once lost, centres like Hoxton Hall cannot be replaced. This decision is to be ratified at a Council Regeneration Committee meeting at 7.30pm on Thursday 13th September.
Who are keyworkers? The Hoxton Square development “in London’s most talked about arts and media village” advertises this week in the Hackney Gazette with one and two bedroom apartments priced from £239,950. Some of the development is supposed to be available to keyworkers in the borough on a shared ownership basis, but what local person is going to be able to afford even a 30 or 40 % share in a flat at that price?
The definition of keyworkers is a fairly narrow one too – teachers, nurses and police – is it really likely that a nurse or teacher would be able to afford to live there, let alone someone on a lower wage who drives a bus, cleans the streets or works as a classroom assistant?
As with many of the new developments in Hackney, they are not designed for the working class majority who are being priced out of the area, but for the trendy rich who can afford such ridiculous prices and are attracted to the “arts and media village” that developers want Hoxton to become.