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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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It's unfair and unjust to put residents of Black Boy Lane through further anxiety and unnecessary arguments. People get consulted. They don't necessarily agree with what some councillors would like them to say and think.

James, it may be helpful to set the wider scene.

There are two unofficial Labour Party groups in Haringey. One, led by Cllr Peray Ahmet from May 2021 until now, replaced the previous team led by Cllr Joe Ejiofor which called the shots from the election in May 2018 to May 2021. Cllr Ahmet's team has the job of trying to fix the inherited problems and messes.

The largest and most worrying mess is nothing to do with street names. And of course nobody would cynically suggest that a streetname might be an easier topic to discuss. 

The main accumulated mess from the Ejiofor team comes from their time presiding over a haemorrhage of millions of pounds of public cash related to various property deals.  Cllr Ejiofor himself says he knows nothing about these losses. And as far as I know his colleague Cllr Adje. whose "cabinet" remit includes the Council's Finances and Property holdings, appears to have little or nothing to say.

We must of course believe that they are entirely unknowing about what has transpired.  And as keen as everyone else to insist that full and accurate facts emerge as soon as possible. If only they could help in this vital task. Meanwhile, as the saying goes, these events remain: "a riddle, wrapped in a mystery, inside an enigma".

If you follow the Ham & High newspaper and website and the award-winning journalist Charles Thomson, you'll have seen reports about most of these knotty finance and property issues. The largest loss was with the purchase of Alexandra House, where an over-payment of some £12 million "happened" somehow. That amount of the happening was estimated by the external auditors.

Another odd happening was the purchase of an empty factory at 3 Shaftesbury Road Enfield N18. The sum of £6 million was paid for no sensible reason I can see.  Although I imagine the previous  owner of the factory ,may have been pleased if it had been on the market for a significant length of time.

There are other dubious property lettings. The most dramatic was with a Council trading estate at 141 Station Road N22. The Ham & High newspaper reported on this and included a video with someone getting neaten-up.

The latest dubious deal has been the subject of a recent series of news stories also in the Ham and High newspaper about overpayment of more than £1 million on a house in Muswell Hill. Linked to a critical Ombudsman's report which named a councillor. Today's new episode reports on the beginning of a Police investigation.

Sorry. Let's talk instead about King Charles II Lane.

Is it time for us to 'forgive' the Liberal Democrats fro their past collusion and vote en masse for them in the up coming elections? Haringey seems blighted in so many ways! So many missed opportunities. So many misspent resources. Sigh!

I could never vote for the intellectually and morally corupt Tories even before the pathologically incapable cad took over the sad show that has become the UK government.

I don't think you have to frame it in party political terms. If residents were to simply not vote for those candidates who have been overtly racist in the recent past, who are shrouded in rumours of fraud and fiscal impropriety, or who have a track record of indolence, a successful council would form itself.

Will, of course your framing could work too.  But only if everyone had some reliable information about the candidates presented to us. At present we don't have a single confirmed list of Labour candidates officially approved  by the national and regional Party.
I may be wrong but I don't think the LibDems have yet chosen their candidate line-up for any ward.

Some years ago Hugh Flouch and Liz Ixer made short videos of many of the candidates from all parties and posted them on HoL.
I thought this a hugely successful experiment.

But perhaps needless to say, it didn't meet with Party approval. Far better it  seemed to supply residents with official and anodyne leaflets to line cat litter trays and bump up paper recycling figures.

In any case, how does anyone know if an existing councillor even opens their Council provided laptop, so they can communicate with residents? Or if they belong to the freemasons?  Or have their main home in another city?

Does anyone have a list of the names of the councillors who voted for this name change -- with their email addresses?

Bbc news is about to carry an item on the subject of Black Boy Lane.

Yes - is on local BBC news now. Ejiofor getting his smug mug on the telly again.

I thought this article in today's Standard was an excellent contribution to the wider discussion and the ridiculous stance that some are taking on this issue. Face up to Britain’s colonial past, don’t wipe it from London’s A t...

Excellent article!!  

Stupid, stupid, pious liberalism.  

And I will say it again, other than acknowledging that Slavery existed in C1590, which is the first documented date there was a ‘Black Boy’ inn (after the recently restored King Charles II, or God incarnate in those days) there is no link to slavery.

Admittedly Charles may have owned slaves (along with I would suggest all of the ancestors of this website’s members, from whatever ethnic background).

And of course, most of us are descended from Vassals, which predates the Black Boy by a couple of centuries to Feudalism following the invasion by the bloody Frenchies in 1066 (it was wrong, I want to erase it from history) during which time we were all slaves to the owner of the land on which we were born.

I should have said ‘the ancestors of all members of HOL’. Not all of them, obvs most were poor, working class people struggling with a hand-to mouth existence and did not own slaves!  I know mine were, in 1590!

It is indeed ludicrous. Slavery isn't a racial issue. Nearly every nation throughout history has owned slaves. The slaves brought by Europeans for transportation to the Americas were brought from other Africans. Barbary pirates raided our coasts for slaves, the Vikings took slaves from Britain, the Romans and Greeks had slaves from all different places and forms of slavery are still practiced in India, the Middle East and Africa. Russia had serfs. That's actual slavery. In addition there are people who are virtual slaves (eg. Philipino domestics, indentured labourers).

It was England that stopped slavery. We have much to be proud of. Yet, its our heritage which is being torn up and rewritten on the bonfire of wacky thinking.

Perhaps we should seek reparations from the Italians for the crimes of the Romans or from the Danish for taking British and Irish slaves? 

Black Boy Lane Matters!

It does indeed.



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