Sydenham Councillors Chris Best, Rachel Onikosi and Liam Curran

Range of discussions and Labour priorities

Our monthly meetings have a discussion topic with a range of guest speakers.

We start January 2017 with a discussion on the Strategic Direction of Education in Lewisham led by Cllr Paul Maslin, Cabinet Member for Children and Young People.

We have a social programme as well as regular discussion on Labour Party policy.

Diane Abbott MP - discussing the housing crisis in London

Diane talked about the London housing crisis and the importance of affordable housing. We don't want a return to rogue landlords and rip off lettings agencies. There is a need to tackle land banking and ensure we create jobs and apprenticeships in the building industry.

The Labour Party are committed to building more genuinely affordable homes as building levels are at the lowest since the 1920's.

I am a member of the Labour Housing Group and you can find out more at www.londonhousingcrisis.com

Christmas social

Old friends come together for festive cheer - and recognise the need to engage young people in active participation in the Labour Party.

We have Young Labour for residents aged 18 to 25 - http://www.younglabour.org.uk/. Being part of Young Labour is a great way to get involved in politics and meet like minded people who share your values. We are planning to work with the Sydenham Film Club to show some short films targeted at young people.

Margaret Hodge MP Chair of the Public Accounts Committee

Margaret talked to Sydenham Labour Party about the success of the Public Accounts Committee in drawing attention to the tax avoidance of some international companies. Her view was that HMRC should be doing more to collect tax revenues.

In taking questions Margaret was delighted to be the first woman to do the job having been elected in 2010 and recognised that you need the support of the Committee in recommending change.

Annual dinner with Ed Balls

Tribute to Sean Vernals

Ed Balls MP gave a robust talk on the failings of the British economy at the West Lewisham and Penge annual dinner in May.

Ed presented Sean with a long service award.

Rachel Reeves MP

It was a great turnout at the Sydenham Labour Party meeting to welcome Rachel Reeves MP, Shadow Chief Secretary to the Treasury.

Rachel spoke about the Tory-led government and their radical agenda to cut public services far deeper and far faster than is needed to tackle the deficit caused by the banking crisis.

Their reckless cuts are unnecessary and risk preventing our economic recovery. Beyond their plans to slash spending, this government is trying to alter radically the way our state works – including dangerous overhauls of our health service and schools, and destructive changes to social housing and welfar system.

We are all concerned that the Government is cutting public services to a point where we are having to make hard working public service providers redundant.

We need to be investing in creating more jobs not cutting benefits to people who cannot find a job because of the depth of the recession. Many of our young people leaving school have not been able to start their working life because there is a shortage of suitable opportunities.

Len Duvall presents the Labour Party Merit Award

Len Duvall, the GLA member for Greenwich and Lewisham and Leader of the Labour Group joined us to present Ann Fahey with the Merit Award for her services to the Labour Party.

Ann has lived in Sydenham for many years and has done much to the support the Labour Party. Amongst her many hours of voluntary Ann has coordinated appointments to School Governing Bodies and teken on the responsibility of property officer.

Ann is Chair of Eliot Bank school.