Gazette letters: Remembrance, visitor permits and a thanks for help

Remembrance Day on Islington Green. Picture: ISLINGTON VETERANS' ASSOCIATION

Remembrance Day on Islington Green. Picture: ISLINGTON VETERANS' ASSOCIATION - Credit: Archant

I attended the Remembrance Day Service at Islington Green which is always well organised and supported, writes D Salmon, Upper Street, Islington.

In this, the centenary anniversary of the end of the First World War, I thought it was fitting that a second verse was added to the National Anthem. This verse was first sung on Remembrance Day in 1919 at St Paul’s Cathedral.

It is a poignant reminder of why we don’t forget the sacrifices made and what our hopes are for the future.

I hope this verse will be incorporated in every remembrance service in future:

Kinsfolk in love and birth


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From utmost ends of earth

God save us all!

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Bid strife and hatred cease,

Bid hope and joy increase,

Spread universal peace,

God save us all!

Take care, Islington residents, if you are using the new online RingGo system to buy and manage residents visitor permits – much ado about “nothing” could cost you £130, writes Nigel Billen, Highbury, full address supplied.

Residents now enter their visitor’s car registration details on line, and woe betide you if you get the number plate wrong. I entered a zero instead of an O in the number plate field, and my visitor promptly received a £130 parking fine.

On appeal by me – as I had bought the permit – the Islington Parking Office accepted that the permit had been paid for, the vehicle correctly parked and that an “honest and understandable error” had been made, but wouldn’t budge on the fine. To appeal it further would mean (if the appeal was declined) losing the chance to save 50 per cent by paying early. What’s more, it would it appear be the vehicle owner who would eventually have to foot the bill and make their case, which didn’t seem to me fair at all.

I declined the double or quits option and paid the £65 (on top of the original cost of the permit) but suggested they look into the case for themselves and if they thought they had been too harsh, donate the fee to charity. The service declined, missing the chance to investigate what happened and, as I suggested, consider how to upgrade the service to recognise incorrectly formatted plates.

On reflection, perhaps I’m lucky. I described my visitor’s vehicle as grey rather than “silver” as he insists it is – a mistake, I wouldn’t be surprised, worth the vehicle’s weight in gold.

I wonder if I was the only one to wince when reading your description of the Remembrance Day “celebrations” at Islington Green, writes Mr O’Connell, Hilldrop Road, Islington.

Celebrations? What kind of education have your reporters received?

Elderly critic of road improvements knocked off bike at Highbury Corner, writes Tim Sayer MBE, Battledean Road, Highbury!

No one could have been more surprised than I was to find myself lying face down in the road at Highbury Corner on Friday afternoon, dripping blood into the tarmac. I think I’d been sideswiped by a van – my memory of what happened is a bit hazy. Certainly a small van was involved.

My greatest concern was my front teeth and I was pleased to find they were all in place, including the recent expensive implants.

I realised I couldn’t get up but was comforted to find two policemen standing over me. And what turned out to be the van driver was calling an ambulance. I’m not sure who was more shaken – him or me.

From that moment my treatment was extraordinary. I was taken to the side of the road, made to lie down, and checked over until the ambulance arrived. A gent from Gavigan (the contractors working on the roundabout) took my bike away to be stored safely. The police rang my wife and she soon arrived.

After further tests, we were whisked to the Homerton, where I was cleaned up, and then took a minicab to the Royal London Hospital for a few sutures in my left ear. And this morning I was contacted to say that my bike was being stored only minutes away from Battledean Road and would be returned later.

And the lessons to be learned? For me: don’t cycle quite so quickly when there’s a lot of traffic around, and be prepared to be ridiculed by friends who know my views on the “improvements” at Highbury Corner. For the van driver: please check your mirrors more often. Generally: never underestimate the efficiency of the NHS and the emergency services, and the kindness of the general public.

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