Tony Colman MP for Putney writes

In this week's diary for our MP covers the local issues of Night Flights, affordable housing & Sure Start, and on the national Socially Responsible Investment, Prof. Sir Roy Meadows plus updates on International affairs.


Night Flight Ruling

I am appalled at the recent decision to overturn the 2001 ruling of the European Court of Human Rights. People in South West London have suffered enough - but we will not be giving up on the fight to reduce night time flight noise. Key campaigners are now looking at options to take the matter back to the British Courts. I fully support the campaign to reduce night flights and to halt the expansion of Heathrow

Affordable Housing

After lobbying both the Mayor of London and Wandsworth Council I am glad to say the new residential block at Wandsworth Shopping centre is to include 32% affordable housing. I was hoping for 50% but 32% is a good proportion for Wandsworth and I am glad the Mayor of London was able to get involved. Housing is an important issue in Putney, not least because it is quite rightly one of the most desirable parts of London. However, I want to see our key workers catered for and encourage the Council to reject applications for large scale developments which do not have a significant affordable housing component.

I have also asked that the Council insert conditions in their planning approval for building schemes in residential areas to avoid disturbance for residents.


The Department for Education and Skills has confirmed the first £2 million of funding for Roehampton SureStart. The SureStart programmes has been fine tuned for local needs with maximum inputs from Roehampton and West Putney parents and parents to be. The aim of the programme on a national level is to halve child poverty - I want to see this happen in Roehampton and commend all the hard work of parents and organisers in getting the programme up and running.

Local Events

The Wimbledon Championships are over for another year, I hope residents of Southfields and other areas close to the All England Club were not badly affected by the extra visitors but were able to take advantage of their proximity to one of the worlds' best sporting events.

The season of summer fetes and fairs continues with a number of local schools organising excellent fund raising events for all the family.

All Saints Church put on a wonderful performance of Iolanthe to welcome in their new vicar.

The Service of Thanksgiving for Liz Radcliffe was unsurprisingly packed out with people wishing to pay their respects to a well loved pillar of the Putney community, who will be greatly missed.


Professor Sir Roy Meadow

Many of you will have seen reports on the outcome of the Sally Clark appeal and the Trupti Patel murder trial, in which expert evidence was given by Professor Sir Roy Meadow. His evidence in these two cases has now been brought into doubt. Yet Professor Meadow has also given evidence in very many Family Court cases, where children have been taken away from their natural parents and put into foster care or adopted. In view of the discrediting of his evidence in the Clark and Patel cases, there must be a real possibility that injustice has been done in many of the Family Court cases in which Meadow gave evidence. I am campaigning for a review of all such Family Court cases, having become aware of a particularly sad case in Putney where four children were taken away from their parents as a result of Meadow's evidence.

Socially Responsible Investment

I was happy to chair a meeting on Community Development Finance. It is good to see that many of the recommendations made by the Social Investment Task Force in 2000 have been accepted by the Treasury and that real progress has been made on community development finance and on getting banks to report on their activities in deprived areas.


After being lobbied by numerous constituents on the importance of making trade fairer for developing countries I was happy to attend the Commonwealth Trade Forum in London, where I spoke with Minister for trade from Kenya, Tanzania and Ghana about the way forward for improving trade rules.

As chair of the United Nations All Party Group I was honoured to chair a meeting with Hans Correll - the UN Under-Secretary-General for Legal Affairs and the Legal Counsel of the UN. We discussed the future of international law and the importance of the United Nations.

Tony Colman MP

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July 10th, 2003

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