On 20th March, Conservative environment spokesperson Cllr Phil Thomas wrote to Labour's Cllr Stuart Collins to ask him why a branch of the Labour Party was being allowed to fly-poster all 'around Croydon' and what action was being taken by him to stop it:
"Dear Cllr Collins,
I am writing to you in your capacity as the Cabinet Member in charge of ‘Clean Green Croydon’.
On Sunday 19th March at 21.20 the below status was posted on the Facebook page of ‘Croydon Momentum’: [LINK]
As you will no doubt be aware, Momentum is an organisation set up to support Jeremy Corbyn’s continued leadership of the Labour Party and so is therefore an official branch of the Labour Party – the political party you represent on Croydon Council.
The Croydon Momentum post includes a short video of a piece of advertising for an event on a traffic light post opposite the Fairfield Halls development in central Croydon which includes the text ‘spot these as you’re wandering around Croydon’.
I would like answers to the following questions:
- Did you or the Council department under your control give permission for these stickers to be posted ‘around Croydon’?
- If you did not, do you accept that this advertising is illegal fly-postering and is therefore subject to Council enforcement?
- Will you condemn the actions of this group of Labour Party supporters who are illegally fly-postering all ‘around Croydon’?
- Will you investigate and publish all the locations where these stickers have been posted and announce the total number littering our town centre?
- Will you use the full authority of your office to issue penalty notices to those responsible for this fly-postering and issue a public statement condemning them for breaking the law?
You will also be aware that Croydon Momentum has used Ruskin House on Coombe Road as their base of operations at least 11 times since January 2016 – most recently on 19th January and 11th February. Ruskin House is also the headquarters of your Croydon Labour Party.
Ruskin House has been the subject of some controversy recently as they too have been caught fly-postering all across Croydon. Despite a formal complaint being raised with your enforcement team on 27th June 2016, no action has been recorded against Ruskin House (see right).
On 22nd February 2017 a number of ‘Buddy Holly tribute band’ posters were fly-postered around the town and formally reported to the Council.
The most recent event for St Patrick’s Day involved posters being stapled to trees and other street furniture.
- Could you please explain why no enforcement action was taken when your enforcement team was made aware of the fly-postering last year?
- Does money raised as a result of Ruskin House events contribute to the Croydon Labour Party?
- Do you feel that your department should use its enforcement powers on any and all individuals who break clear rules in Croydon, regardless of whether they are directly affiliated to your political party or not?
In the interests of openness and transparency I would appreciate answers to all of the above as soon as possible.
Cllr Phil Thomas
Shadow Cabinet Member for Clean Green Croydon
Conservative member for Selsdon and Ballards"
If and when Cllr Collins replies, we will post it online.