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 The Coulsdon Town Blog
Cllr  Luke  Clancy
Cllr  Mario  Creatura
Cllr  Ian  Parker

Monday's shambles of a Council meeting
27/01/2016 07:49:00......Posted by Mario Creatura


On Monday evening Croydon's Councillors gathered for another Council meeting.

There has been quite a lot of press about the more than 400 Shirley residents who queued around the block to get in and participate in a debate about our Labour administration's de-designation of Metropolitan Open Land. You can read more about what happened here. 

The first item on the agenda was a rather confusing set of amendments to the Council Constitution. Whilst admittely not the sexiest of subjects, it was a very important matter that was rushed through without debate or with the unanimous support of councillors from both political parties. You can watch the exchange here (which includes a political intervention from the theoretically neutral Chief Executive of the Council). I had intended to speak in a debate against the changes, but the Mayor did not allow that to take place. Here are the amendments that restrict members of the public the freedom of speech that our democracy should enshrine. I intend to write about this in greater length at a later date.

The next item on the agenda was the debate on Shirley's loss of metropolitan open land. You can watch the full debate here.

Key moments include:

After the debate, Cllr Fisher moved that there was a 'suspension of standing orders' to allow a vote on the Shirley debate. It was seconded by Cllr Chatterjee. Now this bit may be a slightly confusing so bear with me. A 'suspension of standing orders' means that the usual procedure (in this case for the public petition) would be suspended. The councillors would have to vote on whether this should be allowed to happen. If that suspension had been agreed by a majority of the 70 councillors then the councillors could then vote on whether they agreed or disagreed with the premise of the petition. This vote would have no formal standing and no bearing on Council policy, but it would enable the public to know the mood of the Council. A reasonable request you'd think? Despite this, the Mayor ruled that it would not be allowed.

Cllr Fisher asked for a 'poll vote' on the suspension of standing orders. Normally when we vote it's by saying 'aye' or 'no' and it comes out as an undistinguishable wall of noise. A poll vote is where the name of each councillor is read out and we vocally and individually say how we are voting, revealing the individual intentions of each of us. The Chief Exec said this was not allowed, but confirmed that councillors could "have a vote on whether they wished to have a vote on the matter at hand, but that this would be taken in the usual way of a 'yay or nay', and if you want to take a show of hands we can take a show of hands, but you cannot have a poll vote and from then that decision we can decide whether a vote will take place." After a brief intervention from Cllr Newman, the Mayor of Croydon decided not to allow the vote to take place, saying: "We've now had a period of discussion on this, and we've spent a lot of time on this, and I think it's very clear what opinions are in the room, and it's now my decision that we move on. I need to move on." Understandably this was not appreciated by the public.

I politely asked the Mayor for a point of clarification: "If there has been a motion put forward by a councillor in the room, that has been seconded, are you allowed to overrule that?" She did not choose to answer, saying: "I will not discuss this further."

The Mayor was undestandably in a very difficult position and so she chose to suspended the meeting for 15 minutes.

The Mayor is the politically impartial guardian of free debate, guaranteeing our political processes are fair to all. The Chief Executive had explained our request was entirely justified and in line with the Council Constitution. The Mayor chose to rule against that justification, as is her right. It's only fair to ask: why?

Anyone in the public gallery watching, or the press reporting, who believes that councillors were particularly raucous on Monday evening needs to understand the many reasons why. We are the elected representatives of Croydon and we were denied our democratic voice. Residents were not allowed to see their representatives voting on their petition. The constitution was amended to restrict debate without so much as a debate.

Does that sound right to you?

Return to Coulsdon Town's main page
 Other Blog Posts

South London Downs National Nature Reserve
26/07/2019 10:47:00.......Posted by Ian Parker

I joined Natural England and The City of London Corporation in celebrating the declaration of The South London Downs National Nature Reserve.  It's the second largest NNR in London and will include Coulsdon, Kenley and Riddlesdown Commons, Farthing Downs, Happy Valley, Hawkhirst Wood and the Sanderstead to Whyteleafe Countryside area.  On the edge of a large urban area, the declaration represents and underlines the importance of these well loved places for wildlife and local people.

We should fight to protect these areas and treasure them for future generations. 



Purley & Coulsdon Clubs for the Elderly
24/07/2019 15:17:00.......Posted by Ian Parker

I was pleased to attend the Annual General Meeting of this local charity.  The object of the charity is to provide 'relief for older people within the immediate area in any manner which may be deemed by law to be charitable, in particualr by the provision of activities which meet their social health and educational needs such as luncheon care and recreational programmes'.

At the AGM we heard from Sarah Crane the Club's co-ordinator.  It was reassuring to hear that the Club is fulfilling its objectives with a wide range of activities aimed at the elderly.

Coulsdon Town councillors were in a position to provide funding to the organisation from our ward budgets and we wish the Club, its Committee and all its volunteers every success in the coming year. 



Coulsdon Comrades Club
30/06/2019 17:20:00.......Posted by Ian Parker

It was fantastic to join members of the Coulsdon Comrades Club at their centenary celebrations yesterday.  Those present learnt a lot about the huge contributions and sacrifices made by Coulsdon residents 

The Coulsdon branch of the Comrades of the Great War Club was formed on the present site in 1919. With 400 members, the Club continues to thrive and provides a friendly atmosphere for members and their family and friends.

It was a pleasure to meet key volunteers and recognise the valuable service they provide to the community.



Coulsdon Junior Snooker Programme - Summer 2019
26/06/2019 11:22:00.......Posted by Mario Creatura


Frames Snooker Academy (CR5 2NF) will be hosting a series of fun and engaging introductory snooker sessions for new players aged 10-16, as part of a national programme. These sessions are only £1 to attend.

The scheme will also develop a selection of ‘Young Leaders’ (aged 14-16), who will learn skills such as marketing, safe sport delivery, and in creating an engaging club experience for all.  They will become role models, encouraging other young people to take up our sport by joining their local club.

Email for more information!

Click here to download



Bus Routes 404 and 434
18/06/2019 11:36:00.......Posted by Ian Parker

Following the development of Cane Hill we have worked with the London Borough of Croydon to provide a bus service to the new area, some of which is currently more than five minutes walk from a bus route. TfL received over 600 responses to a recent consultation. The removal of the direct 434 link from Rickman Hill to Purley received much opposition. 

TfL now intend to change their proposals. They will hold a further local consultation later this year on revised proposals to leave route 434 unchanged and divert route 404 to Cane Hill as well as Tollers Estate.

Thank you to all who joined us in lobbying for the Cane Hill service.



Coulsdon Town Street Stall/Surgeries
18/06/2019 11:23:00.......Posted by Ian Parker

Coulsdon Town's councillors (Luke Clancy, Mario Creatura and Ian Parker) hold a regular street stall/surgery once a month outside Aldi in Coulsdon Town Centre between 11am and 12 noon.  The dates for the rest of the year are Saturday:

13th July

14th September

19th October

16th November and 

14th December

If you would rather meet us in a more private setting then please do email us at or phone: 020 8660 0491




Residents' Association meeting
17/06/2019 11:35:00.......Posted by Mario Creatura


Great to speak tonight at the Croydon-wide Residents’ Association meeting - from Norbury to Coulsdon and everywhere in between, all were concerned about Council policies including the latest emissions-based parking permit reforms:



Street surgery - plus new dates!
15/06/2019 11:36:00.......Posted by Mario Creatura


Great to be out with Chris Philp MP in Coulsdon Town this morning - and thanks to the team who went out talking to our local residents. Plenty of local issues came up with a healthy dose of Brexit chat!

We'll next be out:

  • 13th July
  • 14th September
  • 19th October
  • 16th November
  • 7th December - all day at Coulsdon Yulefest!

Each will be a 10.30am start - do come along!



Coulsdon Town Street Stall - and Cut It Out 2019!
25/05/2019 11:43:00.......Posted by Mario Creatura


Great morning with Cllr Parker talking to Coulsdon Town residents about planning, parking and pollution.

I then went on to the excellent Cut It Out celebration in Selhurst Park to talk about how our community can tackle the scourge of knife crime.



30k for local cancer charity!
05/05/2019 11:44:00.......Posted by Mario Creatura


A brilliant day out with the Croydon Conservative team walking 5k for the Chartwell Truat Lilypad Appeal - fundraising for a new children’s oncology department at Croydon University Hospital. There’s still time to donate if you can!



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 Older Blog Posts
A night(mare) at Planning Committee
Coulsdon Town Street Stall
Vaisakhi Celebration
Music Relief Foundation
A23 Brighton Road Improvements - Coulsdon Concerns
Public Transport Liaison panel
Bus Consultation - 404 and 434
Development at 76 Reddown Road
Memorial Service
Transport for London proposing changes to bus routes 404 and 434
Councillors' Street Stalls
Illegal discharge on Cane Hill
Damaged parking pole
Speed limit sign knocked down
Dust and mud on Cane Hill
Lights on Coulsdon Town footbridge repaired
Would Labour apologise to the vulnerable residents it's been letting down?
Superb scouting send-off for Steve
Coulsdon Town paint markings
Remembrance Sunday
Pay-to-use cash machines
The mystery of the missing fireworks banner...
Air pollution concern at Coulsdon South station
Evolving the suburbs
Response to local planning consultation SPD2
Labour threatens U-turn on free bulky waste collection
Petition on wheelie bins achieves partial win
Bid for funds from our Community Ward Budget
Shredded litter
Coptic Church - Coulsdon
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