Campaign launched to get tribute to former Islington councillor

Red pitch opening

Red pitch opening - Credit: Archant

A campaign has been launched to get a newly reopened playground and football pitch dedicated to a former councillor.

Red pitch opening

Red pitch opening - Credit: Archant

Trevor Mbatha, 52, wants to put up a plaque and rename the Red Pitch in the Mayville Estate, off Mildmay Road, Newington Green – which was reopened last week – in tribute to Pat Haynes, who served as an Islington Labour councillor for more than 30 years and was also mayor in the 1980s.

Mr Haynes, now 82, used to be a trustee of the Mildway Community Partnership – the group that helped to build the playground and football pitch.

David Vandivier of the Factory Community Project and Children’s Centre – of which Mr Haynes was a trustee – said: “Pat was a councillor for almost 30 years and never wanted to have accolades bestowed upon him.

“In this case however, I would think Pat would be proud to have a sporting field and play area named after him. I have spoken to his family and they would welcome the honour.”

Mr Mbatha sent his letter to Islington Council on December 14 petitioning for the cause but originally got no response.

But, Richard Watts, leader of the council, said last week: “Pat has done great work over the years and is a close friend of mine. We are looking into some way of commemorating Pat if that is something he is interested in, as well as it being discussed with the local community.”

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Mr Mbatha added: “He did amazing things. The organisation I worked for wouldn’t have been founded if it wasn’t for him.

“I hope that the council has the capacity to consider and support the memorialising of a man dedicated to the communities of Islington and particularly the ward of Mildway.”