Fiona and Beatrix

Fiona and Beatrix

Time for a break

Time for a break

Francois Wasselin

Hoe, Hoe, Hoe Francois Wasselin




Are you struggling to cope at the moment, or concerned about a friend or neighbour? If you or someone you know needs support, help is available from We are Islington. Click https://www.islington.gov.uk/social-care-and-health/coronavirus-covid-19/need-help or call the helpline on 020 7527 8222 or email weareislington@islington.gov.uk.

Impact on Canonbury of People Friendly Streets

Dear Members

It seems a long time since our AGM via zoom in July in which we and Councillor Nick Wayne discussed Highbury Corner and the intended 'People Friendly Streets' scheme. As intended, we set up a small traffic sub-committee. This email is to keep you informed of the Society's interactions with the council regarding the design of the traffic scheme for Canonbury West. (We have attached the texts of two emails that were sent to all members on 19 July and 31 August 2020 for easy reference.) At the outset of the proposals announced by Islington Council to implement the 'people-friendly streets' project, we communicated with our three ward Councillors in an effort to influence the design of the Scheme in Canonbury West. Similar schemes are being rolled out in many London boroughs and elsewhere. They make use of emergency powers in legislation to deal with the coronavirus and are being actively encouraged by the government who have provided the funds required.

In the meantime we sent the email of 19 July in which we outlined our understanding of the rationale for and likely scope of the scheme as then disclosed and its basis. We urged members to post their views on Islington's 'Commonplace' site (see details below).We had a zoom meeting with our three councillors including Nick Wayne on 5 August 2020. The meeting was conditional on our agreement not to disclose the draft plans, which had been disclosed to us, at that stage. This meant that we were unable to consult our members until the plans were formally rolled out. We discussed our perceptions as to where the problems lie. We suggested that potential problems for residents might be ameliorated by measures which calmed the traffic while allowing better access to our homes than the scheme allowed. These were peak-hour restrictions only, number plate recognition (ANPR) and resident exemptions and, as a last resort, the main filters to operate at the St Paul's Road/Canonbury Park North/Grange Grove junctions, allowing Canonbury residents to travel westwards without hindrance. Although our ideas were received withsympathy at the meeting, we are told that they were rejected by the traffic planners/modelling team.

We wrote to our members regarding the scheme on 31 August when the final details were released by the council. There have been further tweaks to the scheme in that different siting for the Alwyne Road filter is proposed.  The traffic sub-committee has continued to monitor the proposals and to make representations to our councillors, our main contact being Nick Wayne. We are told that the works in the ward will commence after 5 October.

We have had many team meetings and other communications but feel that we have reached the limit, for the time being, of what we can achieve;  which we accept, sadly, has been very little, in spite of our considerable efforts. Many members of the Society are aghast at the proposals and way they have been introduced and progressed. Others favour particular traffic calming measures. We represent a body of members with divergences of view. This may, at least to some extent, depend on where our members live and whether it is on a rat-run or a quiet street. We have endeavoured to take account of the effect on all residents and to focus on the achievable and the practical in the context that we were told that core proposals for road closure were, pending review after implementation, immutable. The lack of consultation under current legislation seems to be lawful. We are aware of the petition which has been circulated calling for the use of ANPR to allow residents unrestricted access to Canonbury. As set out above we have proposed ANPR and are likely to continue to do so. We have received repeated reassurance that this is a trial scheme only. We understand that the full consultation will begin 12 months after the scheme starts, to decide whether the scheme should be made permanent when the experimental order ends in 18 months' time, or modified, or cancelled. Within the first 6 months residents can tell the council about any problems/concerns and the details could be adjusted at that stage.

We repeat our strong request for members to communicate their concerns to us, and to post on the commonplace site
https://islingtonpeoplefriendlystreets.commonplace.is/comments/.  The site can be frustrating, but please persevere – it may make a difference, and we remain concerned that lack of response may be construed as acceptance of the scheme. Please see the 19 July email for further details on how to do this. It is vital that we monitor the effect on traffic in our area – not just in our ward but the knock-on effect on other roads and access points, and we continue to need your help whether you support the scheme, or aspects of it, or whether you oppose. We will be asking members to assist us with our traffic surveys once the new scheme is up and running. We would also like information about specific observations and concerns. Short contemporaneous notes on conditions, recording dates, time and location, with selected photographs of notable incidents, would be very helpful. A brief daily diary, made at the same time or times of day, about your own street would be invaluable.  Reporting what you are told by others, for instance cab and bus drivers, pedestrians and shopkeepers, also has some value so long as it is recorded at the time and dated and put into context.

We apologise for sending such a lengthy email but we wanted to share with you the work that the traffic sub-committee has been doing.  We are disappointed not to have been able to sway the traffic planners, but we will be monitoring the scheme and continuing to liaise closely with Nick Wayne, our local councillor. If you have any feedback for us please email contact@canonburysociety.co.uk.

Kind regards

Philip Walker



The Friends of Canonbury Square,  have launched their website:   http://www.friendsofcanonburysquare.org.uk and Facebook page
(search@friendsofcanonburysquare). We are working together to put the sparkle back into our community square. Please like and share the Facebook page and feel free to send ideas and updates for the website. info@friendsofcanonburysquare.org.uk

Report anything that looks suspicious!

Islington's Greenspace team have provided contact numbers to ring if you see anything in the Canonbury Square parks that worries you, call Parks Patrol on 07970 893588. This is a two-person team with dogs that work during day-light hours and after-dark. They work closely with the police.You can also call the Anti-social Behaviour team on 0207 527 7272. This team works with Parks Patrol and typically deals with threatening and drunken behaviour.


The Canonbury Society is monitoring developments at the Highbury Corner roundabout. You are encouraged to share your views and experiences with Canonbury Ward Councillors:

Councillor Clare Jeapes clare.jeapes@islington.gov.uk

Councillor John Woolf John.Woolf@islington.gov.uk

Councillor Nick Wayne nick.wayne@islington.gov.uk


Our annual newsletter is coming out at a most unusual time. You will not be receiving a printed copy through your front door but you can download it. Some hard copies have been printed and can be delivered if you would prefer this. To request the latter, please contact info@canonburysociety.org.uk. Also. please let us know if you know of someone who does not have access to the internet that would like a hard copy,

You can also download past newsletters:












Canonbury heritage under siege by stone thieves

Read the tribute to Diane Brace in The Islington Tribune ISLINGTON LOCAL PLAN
You can also read the Guardian's obituary -

Islington Council has recently undertaken a consultation on its Local Plan Review. The Local Plan is the basis for all of Islington’s planning policies and decisions and usually covers a five year period.
Following the consultation, the council will submit in January 2018 an amended draft Local Plan and supporting documents for independent examination which takes place in May 2018. The Inspector’s report is received in October/November 2018 and it is anticipated that the Local Plan will be adopted by the full council within a couple of months from then.

The Society thanks Petra Laidlaw for her photos of the birds on the New River.

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