Today one of our residents emailed to point out this story to her local councillors. She feels that this government scheme is a good one and was asking if Ealing was involved. She is right that this is a good scheme, as far as it goes, but I am afraid she is a victim of the governmentâ€™s summer communications strategy. This announcement is straight off Labourâ€™s communications grid. Lazy old Yahoo just regurgitated the press release without analysis.
You can see the original DCLG press release here. This shows how all of the money is already allocated in equal, tiny lumps of Â£52,632. All of the money is going to Labour or Labour marginal boroughs with the only cash in London going to Hackney. Most of the money is going to the north.
Ealing is doing town centre regeneration itself on a large scale. In Hanwell where we are buying up the lease and doing up 120 Uxbridge Road (my picture above grabbed off Google Street View) to stabilise and enhance Hanwell town centre. This disused bakery is a key site that is dragging the whole town centre down. See press release here. The report is here.
The governmentâ€™s announcement is a joke. Â£3 million for the whole country is being used for gerrymandering. Â£3 million into the re-elect Gordon Brown fund.
Check out the Councilâ€™s budget book here. On page 149 you will see that last year Ealing spent Â£1.8 on town centre regeneration schemes and is planning to spend Â£15.8 this year. The Hanwell project alone is about Â£1 million.
Donâ€™t believe the (government) hype.