Category Archives: politics

Cuts to police and youth ‘linked to rising crime rates’

London’s crime rate continues to rise as the Metropolitan police struggles with numbers.

The total number of murder victims in the capital reached 63 on 6 May, overtaking New York’s murder rate, following a surge of 44% in homicides.

Harrow MP Gareth Thomas said his area has seen 173 officers taken off the streets since 2010, putting a strain on the police resources.

This follows a cut of £600m from the Met Police’s annual budget and a decline in police numbers, according to a Home Office report.

Thomas said: “The recent spike in crime can only be evidence that the Met’s capacity is greatly reduced.”

In a similar way, the Association of Police and Crime Commissioners has said falling police numbers were a concern in the rise of crime rates.

The figures, released in January, show cuts to youth initiatives and a historic low of police numbers with reductions of more than 20,000 police officers across the country.

The Serious Violence Strategy launched by the government last month doesn’t make mention of that and instead puts the focus on social media activity and the role of local communities to prevent crime.

A series of shootings over the Bank Holiday weekend put a spotlight on the rising crime rates. The latest fatal victim is Rhyiem Ainsworth Barton, a 17-year-old who died of gunshot wounds in Southwark on the evening of 5 May. He was shot while playing football and died at the scene shortly after he was found.

Another incident followed the next day in Harrow, where a 15-year-old and a 13-year-old were shot in Wealdstone High Street in Harrow within minutes of each other. The two are now recovering from their injuries.

Moped crime has also seen record numbers in the capital. According to a BBC investigation, it has increased 30 times in five years with 40% of incidents happening in Camden and Islington. Transport hubs are considered hotspots for crime as people are usually distracted around these areas.

Mayor of London Sadiq Khan has recently announced a city hall investment of an extra £110m for the Met and a £45m youth fund to prevent more violent crimes.


Featured image by Paul Townsend on Flickr.

Local Election 2018: A country divided

“The country remains to be as divided as its ever been” says Peter Catterall, professor of History and Policy and political expert.

After the 2018 local elections left many people wondering who was the clear winner, Peter Catterall puts the lacklustre attitude down to political parties who “failed to capture people’s imagination or attention.”

All parties have seemingly got something to celebrate, and equally to be disappointed in, with this election’s results.

Here’s what he shared with WNOL about the election:

It seems the election can be defined in one sentence from the political expert: “there’s a sense of disengagement that is palpable.”

Labour victory in Redbridge

Labour keep control of Redbridge, with a massive increase from 36 to 51 seats in the 2018 local election. Their closest competition was the Conservatives, who lost 14 seats which brings their total number of seats to 12.

The Liberal Democrats lost all three of their seats in the borough.

Despite Labour’s obvious success in Redbridge, there was a few close calls

The count at Redbridge Sports Hall lasted 11 hours, taking place from 9:30pm to 8:30am.



Redbridge remains a Labour borough of London.

The result is one of Labour’s largest victories in London, after they made few gains but failed to claim London targets Westminster and Wandsworth.

Also against Labour was the loss of Barnet after the Conservatives claimed control. This comes after months of alleged anti-Semitism within the Labour Party, which is widely believed to have impacted the vote of the borough due to the large Jewish population.

Redbridge Labour Party are holding a celebratory party in Ilford on Sunday to thank all the activists, candidates and party members.

Leader of the Redbridge Conservative Group, Paul Canal congratulated Labour on their success.

View the full list of results for Redbridge here.