11 - 15 June
I hope everyone has been enjoying the recent lovely weather!
Although I was unable to attend myself, I have heard great reports of the ‘Night of Festival’ which took place over the weekend. Bell Square played host to a Carnival atmosphere, with a fantastic array of world music, dancing and impressive costumes. It looked like a great time was had by all.
I worked from home on Monday mainly dealing with emails and phone calls. I had an informal meeting with Cabinet colleagues in the evening which was very productive.
On Tuesday, I attended a staff briefing with our Chief Executive, Mary Harpley where we updated staff on the Council’s corporate plan and talked about the recent election results and then had a Q&A session. Always staff ask very good questions and I find these meetings very useful.
In the afternoon, I met with Chief Executive, Mary Harpley and Deputy Chief Executive Alan Adams, to discuss the interim management arrangements between Mary’s leaving in September and the new Chief Executive being appointed. Later, I met Director of Housing, Peter Matthew to discuss the delivery of our very challenging housing target which we must meet over the next four years.
My last meeting of the day was with Heston Central Ward Councillors; Harleen Atwal Hear, Shivraj Grewal and Surinder Purewal. The purpose of this meeting was to discuss the priorities they have in their ward to assist their residents, and how I can help them.
On Wednesday morning, I had my usual Leader’s meeting, which was followed by a series of meetings with Council officers. In the afternoon, I had a meeting with Channi Singh, Chair of the Hounslow Multicultural Centre, to discuss their move to the Wellington Day Centre.
My last meeting was with Paul Probert, the new Head of Policy, Scrutiny and Intelligence at Hounslow Council. We had a very productive meeting. This service function is very important as it allows challenge to decisions made by the Executive in a constructive way. I look forward to working with Paul and his team. At the end of the day I had a meeting with a resident in Feltham, to discuss his concerns regarding planning matters.
On Thursday, I met with Thomas Mann, Head of Capital Ambition board. I have recently been elected by London Councils to chair this Board. I will be chairing my first meeting in the next few weeks. In the afternoon, I held a second all staff briefing with Mary Harpley.
Those of you who have visited the Civic Centre will have noticed that we are flying the Pride flag in support of Pride Month. This will stay in place until the 7 July.
This will be my last blog for a week or so as I’m going into hospital for a hip replacement operation. I will be in hospital for a few days and will be back home early next week. While I’m away, the Deputy Leader, Cllr Lily Bath will be holding the fort. I’ll be back online as soon as I can as there’s only so much ‘Escape to the Country’ that I can stand! The cynics amongst you will think that I booked this operation at the same time as the World Cup on purpose. Nothing could be further from the truth! However, I am undoubtedly 100 per cent behind the Three Lions!