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Harringay, Haringey - So Good they Spelt it Twice!

Following my consideration on the origins of West Green's Black Boy name back in the summer, Haringey Council has decided to rename Black Boy Lane in West Green.

The Council have called the exercise  a 'renaming consultation', but the online questionnaire offers only the ability to choose from a shortlist of two new names. So it appears that the decision to rename has already been taken with only the choice of name left to be decided.

They have issued the following press release.

The council has launched a renaming consultation with residents and businesses located on Black Boy Lane, as part of the wider Review on Monuments, Buildings, Place and Street Names in Haringey – which was launched on 12 June 2020, in response to the Black Lives Matter movement.

The council believes that the names of our monuments, buildings, places and streets must reflect the values and diversity that we are so proud of in the borough. One of the street names that has been identified as not being reflective of this is Black Boy Lane.

Meanings change over time, and the term “Black Boy” is now most commonly used as a derogatory name for African heritage men.

As part of the consultation, the council is asking residents to consider new alternative names that celebrate some of the borough’s most notable influencers, and truly reflect the borough’s rich heritage.

The two names that have been shortlisted for residents to consider are, ‘Jocelyn Barrow Lane’ and ‘La Rose Lane’. The consultation will launch today, Monday 28 September and will run for a period of 4 weeks to Monday 26 October 2020.

Letters will be arriving on Black Boy Lane residents' doorsteps this week, who can respond to the consultation using one of the following methods:

If Haringey residents have concerns or queries about place, street or building names in the borough, please get in touch. Send your views to Leader@haringey.gov.uk.


Dame Jocelyn Anita Barrow (15 April 1929 – 9 April 2020) was a Barbadian/Trinidadian British educator, community activist and politician, who was the Director for UK Development at Focus Consultancy Ltd. She was the first Black woman to be a governor of the British Broadcasting Corporation (BBC) and was founder and Deputy Chair of the Broadcasting Standards Council.

John La Rose was a publisher, poet and essayist. He founded the Caribbean Artists’ Movement and publishing company New Beacon Books which has a bookshop in Stroud Green. In 1975, he co-founded the Black Parents Movement from the core of the parents involved in the George Padmore Supplementary School incident in which a young Black schoolboy was beaten up by the police outside his school in Haringey.

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Tags for Forum Posts: blackboy lane name change, review on monuments, building place and street names

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There was a public consultation on the issue and the majority of those responding did not want an elected Mayor.  If they said they did there would have been a case to hold a referendum on the issue

Can this be applied to street names too?

In medieval times there were many streets called Gropecunt Lane in England. All are gone now, though some have been bowdlerised to names such as Grape Lane.

I did a local history walk a few years ago where I was told there used to be many Black Boy Lanes in London. Only one remains.

I believe most of those GC Lanes are now renamed Donald Trump Thoro'fare.

" institutionally Marxist" 

You just done it again :(

Again reading all these post from people who obviously have political agendas and use a lot of language that everyday people don't understand. I don't care about the differences between tory, labour, left or right. I care about wasting money on a name change, treating different races differently. I care that one man has the power to make these changes without consulting all the residents who pay his wages, one man who discriminates  in the name of fairness by siding with one group (his) and ignores the other. 

Lovely response received from David Lammy MP:

Thank you very much for writing to me about the proposed name change of Black Boy Lane.
While I understand the Council’s view that the name should be changed, it is clear that the consultation has been rushed, and they have not done all they could to properly engage with residents such as yourself.
Since you wrote to me, I have spoken to the Leader of the Council, Joe Ejiofor, who reassures me that the two-option online consultation is not the final opportunity residents will have to express their opinions. He says that there will be a further consultation toward the end of this year which will seek to understand whether the residents wish the name to be changed. He has apologised for the confusion the two-stage consultation has caused. 
I understand that other residents have reported that they did not receive the initial letters about the consultation from the Council. I have also raised this issue with Mr Ejiofor, who has also apologised for this, and assures me that residents will be sent further correspondence following the closure of the first consultation.
For your information, Mr Ejiofor also wishes to make clear that in the event of any name change:

  • The Council will inform the key stakeholders, including (but not limited to), Council Tax, Waste Collection (Veolia), London Fire Brigade, TfL, Thames Water of the road name change on residents behalf.
  • The current postcode will not change. 
  • The new street name will be updated, by the Council, on the national Address Database. Most companies use this database and it will show the new street name promptly after the change is made.   
  • Should residents have issues with individual providers or companies they will be able to show a copy of the final Street Naming and Numbering Order document that will be provided to them. 
  • We will provide practical help and support during the name change process including a named person that residents can speak to if they are facing any difficulties or need any particular support.

Finally, I would also urge you to take up any concerns you have with your local councillors in your ward.
Many thanks again for writing in. Please do write to me if you have any other issues in the future.
All the best,

Rt Hon. David Lammy MP
Member of Parliament for Tottenham

So Joe Ejiofor thought it was a good idea to ask people to pick a name, out of two options, BEFORE asking them, if they wanted the road name changed in the first place.

REALLY?  - What a load of rubbish.  He aint that thick.  He is just trying to pull the wool over our eyes.

It really does come down to how strongly the residents of the steet itself and in the immediate vicinity feel about the name change and to what extent they are willing to lobby for whatever the majority of them want.

Of course this doesn't nmean the Council will listen.

I live towards Tottenham Green, I'd like the name to remain and the historical context be widely publicised especially since, as someone one wrote, most of the otehr BBLs up and down the land have been changed.

That is why I won't be signing any petition on it.

David Lammy MP has put his finger on some key mistakes made by whoever is driving this scheme.

He observes accurately that the scheme has been rushed, and engagement has not been as good as it should. (Hard for anyone to disagree. Though personally, I use less diplomatic descriptions such as 'hopeless muddle' and 'self-inflicted damage'.)

David Lammy says that Joe Ejiofor is apologetic. That at least is a teaspoon of good news. But what has Cllr Ejiofor learned? Here are some learning points.

✖  The worst way to begin a public "consultation" was by announcing the outcome in advance.

✖  The next misstep was to set out a timetable with a sequence of steps and then ignore it. 

✖  They did the most simple task - delivery of letters along one street - with prize sloppiness. Apparently with letters not going to every property - or possibly on different dates. Letters undated and apparently lacking provision for non-readers of English. And so on.

✔  Don't just apologise. Fix errors and start doing things right.
✔  Try to take residents with you.
✔  Don't be like Donald Trump surrounding himself with cheering fans. Listen to thoughtful critics as well.
✔  Timing is vital. These are not 'normal' times. Right now, as we know from the news, in addition to Covid-19, job losses, and meeting bills, many people may be worrying about feeding their kids.

I won't hold my breath waiting for the Council to learn to improve the way they do stuff.

We had a consultation on parking CPZ changes and most respondees in my CPZ asked for 'no change'. So they said they listened and then decided they would just integrate us into the newer BG CPZ which has Event Day Parking.

This is a huge change as we now need to look every time that b$%£@&*^@^(*@&^@ football club has, not just has a match, but an event, before we can daer take the tube/train or host our own 'event' at home where some invitees may choose to come by car. TTHFC has many, many events - concerts, other sports....

It will be hell on the High Street once Covid is over. Only Fast food outlets will be happy. (Normal) people stay away from the shops when a match is on in Tottenham. And we have the police helicopter creating havoc overhead before and after the matches. Hell on earth! In a way COVID is bliss.
I do not own a car myself!

David Lammy should have let THFC GO TO STARFORD!

Ah..So you're a Gooner then? 

What happened to councillor Kober? She resigned her position of leader due to accusations made by her of various insults and pressure by Momentum Labour and replaced by Ejifor. Did any of the boroughs residents have any say in that? And why really happened to make her resign. Was it because she had a vision of a Haringey that dared to smash down the holiest of Momentum holies and try to create a more economically diverse population via the HDV? 



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