Gazette letters: Higbury Corner, Angel Wings, vulnerable adults and N19 crime

An artist's impression of Highbury Corner. Picture: TfL

An artist's impression of Highbury Corner. Picture: TfL - Credit: Archant

TfL says it received 2,823 responses to the survey it carried out in 2016 about the proposed plans to pedestrianise the west side of Highbury Corner, writes Tim Sayer MBE, Battledean Road, Islington.

The large majority were in favour.

I can understand that, because the illustrations provided by TfL show an idyllic scene, with the sun shining, and a minimum of vehicles, cyclists and pedestrians. But I wonder if people feel the same after having to put up with more than three years of chaos during the bridge works under the Holloway Road?

I, for one, think we’ve had enough and call on TfL and Islington Council to cancel the scheme.

If they do, I also urge them to widen the road outside the station, so a decent sized refuge can be provided in the middle of the pedestrian crossing.

I was so glad when I saw 10-year-old Olivia Clark had started a petition against the removal of the beautiful Angel Wings sculpture at the Angel Central centre (“Little angel urges: Save our wings!”, Gazette, ), writesRolf Smith, Theseus Walk, Islington.

I couldn’t believe it when I read that it was the redevelopers’ intentions to remove it and store it until a suitable place could be found. It would need to be a very large storage space which I’m sure would cost thousands in rent and being made of steel it would probably rust up soon after, thus giving the council the excuse to send it to scrap metal merchants to top up the council’s expenses budget with any profits made.

I am so against this thoughtless proposal. The Angel Wings have become probably the most attractive and noteworthy attraction in Islington. Who says they are outdated? I’ve lived in Islington for 35 years and since 2003 when they were erected I have had dozens of friends and family visit the area and every one of them has wanted to see the wings sculpture. Most people really love to have a photo of themselves taken with the wings behind them so they can have their own set of Angel Wings.

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They are such a totally unique and wonderful landmark at the Angel Centre it would be like taking down Nelson’s Column at the “centre” of London in order to replace it with another plinth. Granted the wings haven’t been here as long as Nelson but I think to most Islington residents and thousands of others they mean just as much. A sculpture celebrating peace in my opinion is more important and so much nicer than a column celebrating war anyway.

Well done Olivia for starting this petition and please add my name to the list.

We want the best for residents – with and without learning disabilities, writes Gill Weston, Islington, full address supplied.

Well done to the supporters of the council’s plans in achieving planning permission to build a three-storey care residence for adults with learning disabilities on Windsor Street.

I do understand the urgent need to provide suitable accommodation for these vulnerable people close to home, so I’m disappointed to read claims that I don’t and, worse, accusations that I’ve made misleading statements (“Learning disability campaigners come out fighting in favour of Windsor Street development” and the letter “Gill’s wrong about learning disability”). My argument about the unsuitability of this accommodation is evidence-based. If anyone would like to see this, including materials from NHS England, the Care Quality Commission (CQC), the National Development Team for Inclusion, the Tizard Centre, the Centre for Welfare Reform, Paradigm, or the letter from the co-founder of Learning Disability England who objected to the scheme, please contact me. But please don’t vilify me for trying to stand up for the rights of vulnerable adults to have a better standard of accommodation and quality of life.

Please, too, don’t be hostile to the only independent expert who spoke at the planning meeting, Sally Warren. She is not a resident, but as the author of the REACH standards (advocated by the NHS and CQC) cares passionately about ensuring everyone with learning disabilities is able to live the life they choose with the same choices, rights and responsibilities as other citizens.

Our motivations may all differ, but ultimately we all want the same thing: the best outcomes for residents, with or without learning disabilities.

Following the public meeting last November, there are continuing problems with violent muggings and moped crime in Tufnell Park and Archway, writes Natasha Cox, Green Party candidate for St Georges ward.

Despite the efforts of local police, people are feeling intimidated and scared by almost daily reports of knifepoint muggings.

Insp Steven Murfin has communicated police actions and local youth initiatives via However, people are questioning the lack of targeted, visible policing given many of these crimes seem to be on the same streets at the same time.

I understand the police are very under-resourced due to cuts, but the current situation cannot continue.