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what Haringey thinks is my local area

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One of the things that Haringey Council send us is the Haringey People “Local News” magazine for  Northumberland Park and White Hart Lane.

I largely disinterestedly flicked through the last one, none of the stories particularly catching my attention.

At the back was a nice little map of the area that shed light on my disinterest. This was clearly labelled “your local map” and helpfully explained “your local neighbourhood has been highlighted on the map of the borough”.

What Haringey thinks is my local area

But I don’t really go places in either of the two wards that Haringey has decided are my local area. My house is there (and my allotment!) but tube/rail stations, doctors, dentist, pubs, restaurants, shops, post office, parks, supermarkets and actual markets, vets, garden centres are all in other wards.  Even my bus stop isn’t technically in *my* ward.

Partly this tells us that these wards are pretty deprived, even by Haringey’s standards. Not just financially but culturally. There’s not a lot of reasons for me to venture deeper into my own ward.

Another part of the problem is the print medium. Online they could have defined local in a circle around my location rather than relying on political boundaries. A circle would have been better but would still have a included a lot of space to the north that I’m not particularly interested in.

Local for me is stretched in a particular shape. That shape is formed by the gravitational pull of transport links into London (i.e to the south), the facilities available in the wealthier west of the borough but also by the cheap shops and restaurants further south.

I actually wanted to read the newsletters from all the six other local areas and not my own. Thanks to the internet I can but the glossy magazine is going to be rather a waste.

Written by Karen

June 7th, 2010 at 6:34 am

Posted in cities,town planning

romanticism, environmentalism or just plain perverse?

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Also on the Thinking Allowed ‘Hoodies’ episode that I mentioned a while back was a piece on city planning.The piece covers ‘the traditional and futuristic notions of what makes a good city’ and decisions that we now perceive to have been destructive but at the time were motivated by a desire to get rid of Victoriana, to build better roads etc.

It seems that one generation’s modernisation is often the next’s wanton destruction. The romanticism that my generation has for things from my grandparents time horrifies my parents. They see it as a retrograde attitude. They have none of the nostalgia for period properties & antique fittings, they merely associate them with the hardships and limitations of their childhoods (cold & drafty houses, filled with dark wood and laboursome devices). Their values are of the 60s, warm, clean, light modern houses, scandanavian furniture and labour-saving, electronic devices.

My mother-in-law was amused to see we have a manual coffee-grinder and politely inquired if we knew there were electric versions available. We got it partly because we’ve been looking at our electricity consumption and also trying to buy devices that last longer. I’ve been increasing shocked at how many electronic devices I end up chucking. But there’s also a kind of motivation that I call the From Scratch Diet i.e. you can eat as much as you like of anything that you make from scratch. Sod Atkins…bread can’t make you fat if you had to knead the bloody dough yourself. Not that coffee makes you fat but you get the idea.

Mum just thinks we’re on some weird puritanical kick.

Written by Karen

May 31st, 2008 at 9:30 am