Carnival Against Cuts
Lewisham's third Carnival Against Cuts
has been moved back to September 2013.
It will based on the idea of "Stations of the Cuts" starting at Catford Town Hall
from where we will wend our way to Eros House to highlight the housing crisis, continuing to Rushey Green Early Years centre to protest about the erosion of Lewisham's provision for under 5s and the threat to close the remaining seven playclubs.
Next is the Job Centre where we will protest about the workfare scheme and raise the demand for more long-term, skilled employment opportunities in Lewisham through bringing public services back into direct council control, a large scale programme of social housebuilding and council support for manufacturing here in Lewisham.
A couple of hundred yards/metres further north brings us to Lewisham Hospital, threatened with downgrading and privatisation. Tens of thousands of people have been involved in the campaign to save the hospital and in the broader campaign to stop the privatisation of the NHS. There will be a London-wide demonstration on Saturday 18th May, with hundreds or thousands of Lewisham residents participating. There have also been various direct action stunts about the Private Finance Initiative - more info at SaveLondonNHS.org.uk
Next stop will be outside Ladywell Leisure Centre - Lewisham's largest swimming pool with public viewing gallery and deep enough for diving. Steve Bullock called it "... a 1960s monstrosity that should be bulldozed" and his current plan is to close it on 30th April 2013 and sell the site for housing. He alleges that the new pool being built at the Glass Mill Leisure Centre is an adequate replacement. We think that it will be full with the people living in the thousands of overpriced flats being built there and that Ladywell should be refurbished and the diving boards brought back. All staff at Lewisham's leisure facilities should be employed directly by the council on permanent contracts, not by outsourcing companies like Fusion as at present.
Two of Lewisham's fire stations are under threat from Boris Johnson - at Downham and at New Cross. We will be showing support for the Fire Brigades Union and the public campaign against the cuts as we pass Ladywell Fire Station.
From there we will make our next focus Lewisham's Libraries - five of which were planned for closure in 2011 and are running a severely reduced service with volunteers under a variety of managements. Only vigorous campaigning two years ago prevented these libraries from being closed altogether and the Labour Council and Conservative government have acted jointly to cut the service by over a third in Lewisham. We will also commemorate Connexions - one of the first services to be totally axed by the council in 2011. It used to give advice to school leavers and others on finding training courses.
The carnival procession will then continue to The Grassy Knoll, in the shadow of the empty Citibank tower, a reminder of the dominance of banking and the alleged reason for all these cuts. We will hear about the folly of the Lewisham Gateway proposal to transform that part of Lewisham into a mass of tower blocks and retail outlets to benefit developers.
Finally we will converge on Cornmill Gardens for music, stalls, a few speeches and carnival activities such as throwing wet sponges at pictures of Cameron, Clegg, Osborne and Bullock and other similar activities.
The Carnival Against Cuts will be what WE all make it. Dress up in outlandish costume, bring home-made banners and placards, if you have an idea for a float or static exhibition about one of these highighted areas just email us and let us know.
Spread the word among your friends, colleagues and neighbours.
A better Lewisham is possible....
Last Updated (Wednesday, 24 April 2013 07:42)