Brentford West councillor Guy Lambert reports back on his week
Queen Elizabeth II
Whilst I was writing the blog last week, news of the Queen’s passing came through, which as well as giving me - and most of us I think - a jolt has dominated lives in the intervening week, and has a few days to run yet.
I’m not going to dwell on this – we all react and respond in our own way – other than to say, for me it prompts reflections on how our country has changed over 70 years and how Elizabeth II has been a point of stability throughout my life and someone who performed a very challenging role surefootedly and with a clear and admirable dedication. I salute her, and mourn her passing, and life goes on.
As I said last week, my Thursday evening party was cancelled, as were most of my plans for the weekend. We had Zooting© briefing from officers and the council leader about arrangements and restrictions on activities for the period until the royal funeral, which was very helpful. It was apparent that all this had been carefully planned – the arrangements have been developed under the soubriquet ‘Operation London Bridge’ - and there is a lot of activity behind the scenes to ensure arrangements in the borough run smoothly. It is a difficult balance, largely dictated by central government, as to what events/activities can go ahead and which should be avoided and people will have their own views about whether the balance was right.
Whatever, all my weekend activities were cancelled and my next work event was on Monday, when Lara and I met with the Layton Road residents about the various issues there. Progress has been made, if a lot slower than we would all prefer.
I had to break off before the end to attend a Zooting© with the leader and Hounslow Highways, pursuant to the visit we made to Hanworth last week. Good to see progress had been made in the meantime.
On Tuesday, my regular update with Exec Director was cancelled – she is very stretched this week with arrangements around Operation London Bridge – so my only meeting was in person at our Southall Lane Depot. All the cabinet members have been asked to make short videos to try and explain and bring to life the pledges we made in the manifesto – and which are now part of Hounslow’s Corporate Plan - for the areas we look after. I sometime describe myself as the lead member for mess, so it’s entirely appropriate that my video is shot in the less than salubrious environment of a Materials Handling Facility – less pompously, the place where the recycling lorries dump their rubbish for sorting and baling.
Monthly catch up with leader and cabinet assistant was also cancelled on Wednesday, so another meeting-free day.
Today, Thursday, I’m back to some kind of normal, starting with a Zooting© with the people who organise the Creative Mile, as they seek feedback on how it went, to learn lessons for next year. In the afternoon I have a Lampton Homes board meeting, then a member briefing to update on the London Bridge arrangements and finally, in the evening, a meeting with cabinet colleagues.
So that’s it – a very short blog this week and no pictures of work-related things. But as ever I’ve been getting some exercise on my bike, and was struck by this gorgeous vista, looking upriver from the Fulham Palace Park.
Councillor Guy Lambert
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September 9, 2022