Times letters: Local air pollution and help Brent’s homeless

Concerns have been raised about air quality in Brent. Picture: PA

Concerns have been raised about air quality in Brent. Picture: PA - Credit: PA ARCHIVE IMAGES

Letters, contributions and comments sent in from Times’ readers this week.

Not enough is done to tackle pollution

Trevor Ellis, Chalkhill Road, writes:

I would like to know if anyone else can relate to the following experience.

For the past five months, I have noticed that when I travel on foot from Salmon Street to Roe Green in Kingsbury around mid-afternoon and by the time I arrive back home just after 4pm I tend to feel disorientated.

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I don’t smoke, drink alcohol, or use illegal substances, neither do I take medication for medicinal purposes. So the only logical explanation for this feeling is that I am experiencing symptoms associated with air pollution.

In fact, two of the “short-term symptoms” are nausea and headaches and I experienced both yesterday and I still feel unwell now after making the aforementioned journey yesterday afternoon.

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I sent an email to the lead member for the environment, Cllr, Eleanor Southwood on December 5 2017 to express my concerns about this and I am still waiting for a reply. I have also written to my local MP Barry Gardiner on two occasions about this because I believe that this is a matter of concern and deserves to be addressed by the local authority.

I acknowledge and support the effort being made by local schools to discourage “idling” mainly for the benefit of the health of school children. But the fact is I am an adult and I am struggling to see what is being done to protect me from air pollution. I am appalled by the lax attitude towards protecting public health in Brent North.

Judging by the endless trail of cigarette stubs on the pavements and the air which is often thick with the smell of diesel fumes from morning till night I think that Brent would win first prize for being one of the most polluted boroughs in London with a terribly depressing lax attitude towards health. When will Brent Council start to address this unhealthy situation?

It would be heartening for me if Cllr Southwood would take the time to respond to my email.

After all isn’t public health an issue of great importance in Brent?

Help homeless people in Brent

George Clarke, Shelter ambassador

As a Shelter supporter, I was devastated to discover that there are more than 2,000 homeless families in Brent.

Unable to keep up with high housing costs and a shrinking supply of affordable homes, people’s lives are being turned upside down.

In Brent, homeless families face living in cramped hostels and emergency B&B’s, with no idea how long they’ll be there for.

That’s why I’m supporting the 10th anniversary of Vertical Rush – Shelter’s tower-running challenge at London’s iconic Tower 42, on 15 March 2018.

The charity aims to raise an incredible £300,000 to help anyone facing homelessness.

Sign-up at shelter.org.uk/verticalrush.

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