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Hackney High Streets and Town Centres Fund launched to ensure fair recovery for small businesses

3rd December 2021
Championing small businesses in recovering from the coronavirus pandemic is the aim of a new £500,000 Hackney High Street and Town Centres Fund. The funding is aimed at supporting projects delivered by town centre and high street businesses or enterprises that aim to increase high street footfall and encourage spending in Hackney. Applications open tomorrow as part of Small Business Saturday (4 December), a grassroots UK campaign encouraging consumers to 'shop local' and support small businesses in their communities. Businesses can apply individually for up to £10,000, or in partnership with other businesses or high street partners (community groups, charities, voluntary and community sector organisations) for up to £50,000 for projects that will be delivered from April 2022 to December 2022.We are inviting applications for projects that will be delivered by town centre and high street businesses, or groups of businesses, under the following themes:Cultural and community engagementResilient and revitalised placesCelebrating nightlifeA connected local economySustainable and greener placesInclusive, accessible and safe streetsApplications must be made before the closing date of 9 January, with applicants notified of the outcome in February 2021. The full details and application criteria of the fund can be found on our website. Further information: Using Additional Restrictions Grant (ARG) funding that the Council received from the Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy, £500,000 has been made available for eligible businesses to deliver projects that increase engagement, encourage spending and bolster recovery in our high streets and town centres.Earlier this year the Council launched Hello again, Hackney - a £400,000 fund to help the borough’s cultural institutions welcome back customers safely with special offers, discounted tickets and pop-up events. This is part of the final tranche of funding currently allocated by the Government to support businesses as a result of the Covid-19 pandemic. Further business support funding will be made available in the coming months including support for small or micro businesseses in Hackney making changes or adaptations to their business to enable them to develop and thrive post-pandemic.Further information on grants issued by Hackney Council during the coronavirus pandemic can be found on our website. 

Rebuilding a greener Hackney: Homerton LTN set to be made permanent

2nd December 2021
Homerton’s trial low traffic neighbourhood (LTN) is set to be made permanent, following analysis of traffic data, air quality monitoring, comments from residents and a comprehensive equalities impact assessment. The scheme is part of Hackney Council plans to rebuild a greener Hackney in the wake of the pandemic - with 19 trial low traffic neighbourhoods and 40 School Streets introduced to support people to walk, shop and cycle locally and create cleaner, greener neighbourhoods. In Homerton, three traffic filters - planters in the road which permit only cyclists, emergency and waste vehicles to pass through - were installed in Barnabas Road, Ashenden Road and Meeson Street in June 2020, helping to create a low traffic neighbourhood in the area. Analysis of traffic, air quality and bus speeds data following the LTN’s introduction shows that:Traffic was down by 35% inside the LTN and by 5% on boundary roadsAir quality has improved at eight of nine monitored locations in the areaAverage bus speeds in the area have improved: from 6.9mph in 2019 to 7.2mph in 2021. Throughout the trial, the Council encouraged people to respond to its Commonplace page, which was used to identify issues with the LTN and make changes where appropriate. 1694 responses were received in total. 1,425 of these responses were unique. 46% of responses were from the local area, with people who use a car or van to get around overrepresented in the overall results (62% of responses were from motor vehicle users, compared to the 30% of households in the borough that own a car). Overall, 37% of Commonplace responses wanted all or some of the filters to be made permanent, with 62% saying none should be made permanent. In the local area (those who gave E9 or E5 postcodes), 45% of responses wanted all or some of the filters to be made permanent, with 54% saying none should be made permanent. Among people who do not use a car or van to get around, 63% wanted all or some of the LTN to be made permanent. The top two concerns raised in resident responses were increased traffic and air pollution, which is why the Council has completed comprehensive monitoring of the scheme before making a decision on whether or not to make it permanent. Following feedback from residents in Roding Road, the Council is also set to consult on new measures to reduce traffic there.Traffic in Hackney has risen by 40 million miles a year between 2013 and 2019, according to Department for Transport statistics, with most of these rises taking place on neighbourhood roads, due to the increased use of sat nav apps. 40% of the traffic in Hackney does not start or end in the borough, with no economic benefit to residents or businesses. Low traffic neighbourhoods are aimed at tackling these rises, protecting residents from through-traffic, and encouraging people to switch to walking, cycling and public transport use. The Department for Transport issued statutory guidance to local authorities that recommends the use of Low Traffic Neighbourhoods, among other standard traffic management tools, to meet their network management duties and encourage a green recovery from Covid-19: the full decision report for Homerton low traffic neighbourhood at: and air quality monitoring Traffic Change on Roads within Homerton LTN compared to pre-COVID BaselineRoadBaseline DateBaselineaverage daily traffic countNovember 2020 average daily traffic countChange from Baseline (%)May 2021 average daily traffic countChange from Baseline (%)Glyn RoadMar 2019603701+16748+24Daubeney Road (south of Ashenden Rd)Dec 20181066517-52565-47Daubeney Road (North of Ashenden Rd)Mar 20191000689-31740-26Meeson StreetMar 201975795-87109-86Meeson StreetMar 2019624100-84145-77Kingsmead WayFeb 201911301035-8943-17Kingsmead WayFeb 20191031102701531+48Durington RoadMar 2019244165-32161-34Ashenden RoadMar 20191259334-73344-73Roding Road (North of Ashenden Rd)Mar 2019363327-10341-6Roding Road (South of Ashenden Rd)Mar 2019735928+261013+38Coopersale RoadMar 20191058460-57768-27Ballance RoadDec 20191230467-62460-63Hassett RoadDec 201914361089-24927-35Barnabas Road (North of Daley Road)May 20181518754-501126-26Barnabas Road (south of Berger Rd)Dec 201932751296-601091-67Barnabas Road (South of Hassett Rd)Dec 20192477999-601359-45Berger RoadDec 20191607564-65528-67Oriel RoadDec 20191422301-79285-80   Average % Change- 42Average % Change-35 Traffic Change on Boundary Roads of Homerton LTN compared to pre-Covid BaselineRoadBaseline DateBaseline average daily traffic countNovember 2020 average daily traffic countChange from Baseline (%)May 2021 average daily traffic countChange from Baseline (%)Homerton Road (jw Lee Conservancy Road)Mar 20191214710293-1513503+11Homerton High Street jw Barnabas RoadMay 20192183320494-620848-5Wick Road east of jw Barnabas RoadDec 20191419412532-1213275-6Wick Road West of jw Barnabas RoadDec 20191461913091-1013748-6Kenworthy Road (south of jw Ballance Road)Nov 20191685414493-1413275-21   Average % Change-12Average % Change-5 Comparison of NO2 annual mean concentrations at monitoring locations within and on boundary roads in 2019 and 2020 RoadAir Quality Monitor (Diffusion Tube)Within or on the boundary of the LTNNO2 Annual Mean 2019 Concentration (ug/m3)NO2 Annual Mean 2020 Concentration (ug/m3)Homerton High StreetHomerton High StreetBoundary4836Kenworthy RoadKemey’s StreetBoundary3227Wick Road east of jw Barnabas RdSt Dominic's 4Boundary3929Wick Road west of jw Barnabas RdBerger Primary School 2Boundary3827Brooksby’s WalkHomerton University Hospital 3Boundary3737Barnabas Road (South of Hassett Rd)Barnabas Road 2Boundary3120Barnabas Road (North of Daley Rd)Barnabas Road 3Within3120Daubeney Road (south of Ashenden Rd)Daubeney Primary SchoolWithin3721Daubeney Road (North of Ashenden Rd)Daubeney Primary SchoolWithin3721Note: Any concentrations in bold are in exceedance of the annual mean NO2 air quality objective (AQO) 40μg/m3
Outcome of School Exclusions in Hackney: Deputy Mayor Bramble responds to Scrutiny report
The Children and Young People’s Scrutiny Commission has produced an in-depth review of the position for young people on the verge of permanent exclusion and provision for them following permanent exclusion.Maintained schools in Hackney collectively provide a high quality of education: 95.1% of children in Hackney attend ‘good’ or ‘outstanding’ schools, compared to 85.5% nationally. However, the Council needs to do further work to reduce exclusions and the disportionality of exclusions for some groups of children and young people. Cllr Anntoinette Bramble, Deputy Mayor and Cabinet Member for Education, said: “This is an incredibly important report - and a difficult read - especially some of the moving testimonies made by young people and their families affected by exclusion. “Exclusions remains one of the areas for improvement the Mayor and I want to see in our family of schools and so we welcome the clear and extensive set of recommendations made by the Commission, some of which we have already begun taking forward.“The Council has undertaken robust exclusion reduction work, with our relatively new Reducing Exclusions group working hard to reduce, both fixed-term and permanent exclusions, through a range of initiatives and interventions designed to develop whole-school approaches to behaviour and wellbeing, and provide support and intervention for individual pupils vulnerable to exclusion. “This work has included our guide to reviewing behaviour policies and practice, supporting school transition, providing mental health advice and our No Year 7 Permanent Exclusions pilot. We have provided a good practice checklist for schools with universal and targeted actions that have an impact on our children and young people's wellbeing. “However, let me be clear, it is unacceptable that exclusion rates at Hackney secondary schools are still significantly higher than national averages and similar London boroughs, and we must collectively do more. Our ethos is to ‘work for every child’, and our focus must be to ensure that we deliver and improve the support and outcomes for our most vulnerable young people. “The report shows that, while education in general in Hackney is one of the borough's greatest success stories, some of our most vulnerable children have a very difficult journey around the time of or after an exclusion. We need to do better.“Exclusions are a complex issue in which the needs of all children in the school setting must be considered and balanced. Permanent exclusions must always be a last resort for schools which make the decision. But with still relatively high exclusion rates at secondary level, it is clear collectively we are not doing enough to support children at risk of exclusion, nor to prevent permanent exclusions; and the Council, in particular, is not yet always ensuring the right support is in place once children are excluded, including further support for pupils to get back into mainstream education wherever possible. To tackle this will be a collegiate effort with schools and settings - and the Council is determined to get this right for our children, young people and their families. “What is also clear is that some pupils with SEND are affected by exclusions, at times because their behaviour and needs are not fully understood. The Council is developing a new SEND strategy, which will support provision in mainstream schools and provide significantly more specialist school places for children with learning needs, which we hope will play a part in addressing this. “We are also extremely concerned that Black Caribbean children are disproportionately represented amongst exclusions, which shows the need for the Council to work even more intensively to continue to tackle all forms of bias and we must be confident in speaking about this drive and in discussing race. We commit to further developing our Anti-Racist Action Plan, especially in education, in order to accelerate the scale and pace of our work, but also to thinking more progressively too.“We proudly opened the incredible new site for New Regent’s College earlier this year, it represents the largest single investment in alternative provision in the borough and we are working with them to expand their offer for some of our most vulnerable young people. It was rated ‘good’ by Ofsted in July 2021 and is an emerging example of how well pupils can do when given the dedicated support. While the Ofsted rating is good, we are determined to improve outcomes, and implement the more holistic support many of these young people need. “In addition, we have committed £350,000 over four years to providing resources to further schools’ work with parents and carers, particularly those who may not have found it easy to engage with schools.“What is also clear is that other alternative provision is inconsistent, with some rated ‘outstanding’ and other provision not good enough; and we have begun to implement stronger and better commissioning and quality assurance of provision and services to drive improvements for our children.”
1st December 2021
Hackney Council supports World Aids Day 2021
This World AIDS Day, Hackney Council has reinforced its commitment to ending HIV transmission by 2030 and is urging everyone in the borough to unite together in support of the fight against HIV and HIV-related stigma.Supporting the national campaign led by National AIDS Trust and Terrance Higgins Trust, the Mayor of Hackney, Philip Glanville has pledged to actively promote the uptake of PrEP (pre-exposure prophylaxis) treatment to every community and to ensure that those living with HIV are not marginalised, discriminated against or ignored.The council has worked with local partners including PositiveEast to improve services for those living with or being affected by HIV. In Hackney it is easier and faster to get HIV tested and reduce late diagnosis as it was one of the first areas to introduce HIV testing in accident & emergency departments as well as throughout our local hospital and primary care provisions.There are a wide range of local support services available to residents around HIV prevention, testing and treatment. For example, residents with mild or no symptoms can access free home kits to test for HIV and other STIs through the Sexual Health London portal or by contacting Positive East. A full list of support services available around HIV and sexual and reproductive health more generally can be found on the Hackney website. These services are available and have been delivered with the safety of service users and staff as a priority even during the coronavirus pandemic. Hackney residents can access online HIV and STI self-testing, as well as advice, peer support and counselling for people living HIV, through Positive East by telephone 020 7791 2855 or email (Monday to Friday, 9.30am to 5pm).For children, young people and families affected by HIV, Body & Soul offers an array of free support, including peer support groups, one-to-one counselling, information and advocacy on a range of issues, including welfare, human rights and immigration. To find out more, please call 020 7923 6880.
1st December 2021
Expanded air quality monitoring network launching in Hackney
The first of four new automatic air quality monitoring stations has been installed by Hackney Council on Queensbridge Road, in an expansion of its existing air quality monitoring network. Providing live monitoring of nitrogen dioxide and particulate matter pollution, the new stations join a 150-strong network of diffusion tube monitors already in place across the borough. Unlike the diffusion tubes, which take an average of nitrogen dioxide pollution over the year, the new monitoring stations allow pollution data to be viewed in real-time. They also measure particulate matter pollution - tiny particles emitted predominantly by motor vehicles and by burning wood and coal - which are known to exacerbate respiratory health conditions such as asthmas and increase the likelihood of cardiovascular problems.The monitors are being installed close to roads but in places where people spend time so that the potential health impacts from road traffic can be observed. Data from the borough’s extensive monitoring network shows that there was a reduction in air pollutant concentrations at almost all locations in 2020, with NO2 readings below air quality objectives at almost all sites in the borough. The automatic monitors will help to monitor trends in NO2 and particulate matter pollution in real-time, so the Council can check that reductions in NO2 concentrations in 2020 are being replicated. They will also provide data that the Council includes in its annual reports and will help the Council to assess progress with delivery of the borough’s Air Quality Action Plan.The Council has recently revised its Air Quality Action Plan which includes a commitment to work towards meeting the World Health Organisation’s recommended limits for each pollutant. Having automatic monitors allows data to be gathered on both short and long-term concentrations and allows variations over time to be plotted. Therefore, levels of air pollution that may impact on people’s health can be monitored more closely and progress towards meeting the targets can be measured.The data from the new automatic monitoring stations will be available to view from early 2022. Find out more about the Council’s work to tackle air pollution and view pollution monitoring at:
30th November 2021
Investment agreed for new East and South-East Asian Community Centre
A much-loved building which for more than 30 years was used to support Vietnamese families in Hackney is to be refurbished for use as a new East and South-East Asian (ESEA) Community Centre, after Council investment was agreed to bring it back into use. Vacant for the last few years, the building in De Beauvoir was at the heart of one of the UK’s largest and most-valued Vietnamese communities for generations, but had become underused and fallen into a state of disrepair. The Council approached Hackney Chinese Community Services in 2017 with a proposal to provide a community centre in the building, which would include use by the former occupier An Viet and develop and sustain its long-standing history and legacy, as well as support other local residents.A joint investment of £1.4 million has been agreed to safeguard and refurbish the building to an acceptable standard, with the Council helping HCCS secure Greater London Authority ‘Good Growth’ funding of more than £450,000 towards the project, alongside £950,000 direct investment from the Council. Services provided will include helping those from Hong Kong achieve ‘British National Overseas’ Visa status - as well as offering training, education, advocacy and advice, migrant support, health and wellbeing help and arts, culture and social activities. HCCS has appointed Hackney Central-based practice 00 Architecture to develop proposals for the project.From 1981 to 2017, the building was occupied by An Viet Foundation (AVF), which was set up in Hackney to support Vietnamese settlement in London after the Second Indochina War. It offered these families support with housing, health outreach, English language, and mother-tongue classes, as well as a well-known community led restaurant.The centre will include a commercial kitchen and a community cafe, as well as an outdoor space for summer events, meeting spaces, a large multi-functional hall for events and hot desking space for hire with high-speed broadband. More information on Hackney Chinese Community ServicesInformation on Hackney Archives joint work to safeguard the The An Viet Foundation archive
30th November 2021