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Time for a divorce: Haringey's east-west marriage isn't working

PUBLISHED: 13:49 23 May 2007 | UPDATED: 14:32 07 September 2010

The Borough of Haringey is quite distinct, for its differences rather than similarities. From the poor multi cultural mixed communities of the east to the largely white well off middle classes of the west. And there is a clear line of division between th

The Borough of Haringey is quite distinct, for its differences rather than similarities. From the poor multi cultural mixed communities of the east to the largely white well off middle classes of the west.

And there is a clear line of division between the two, geographically and politically. The wards of Bounds Green, Noel Park, Harringay, and all wards to the East are Labour.

The wards of Alexandra, Hornsey and Stroud Green, and all wards to the West are Lib Dem. The railway track marks the line in the sand, beyond which neither party shall pass, though the Lib Dems have thrown down the gauntlet and have crossed that line, securing places for councillors in Bounds Greens, Noel Park and Harringay.

The borough of Haringey was formed in 1965 from the former areas of the Municipal Borough of Hornsey, the Municipal Borough of Wood Green and the Municipal Borough of Tottenham.

There are 12 wards to the east and seven to the west. Each ward has three councillors. Labour in the east has held on to power since 1970, and Barbara Roche was its Labour MP. But times do change, and the last local elections made for the closest fought battle in years, with the Lib Dems taking 27 of the seats to Labour's 30.

And therein lies the problem.

The council are like parents having to deal with two very different twin children in a family.

The man of the house (symbolically represented by David Lammy, Labour MP in the East for Tottenham) has his favourite child. He shouldn't. The (new) mum, represented by Lynne Featherstone, Lib Dem MP for Hornsey & Wood Green, probably has hers. She shouldn't.

Overall, money is tight in the house, and the children are encouraged to work and fend for themselves as much as possible.

Lynne's child does quite well and with the pocket money earned over the years has accumulated a number of nice toys - house, car, green spaces, hospital and care centre and town hall.

But David's child hasn't fared as well and hasn't got the same amount of pocket money. So David, being the alpha male he is, keeps taking the toys and the money away from Lynne's child, to give to his child or use for housekeeping, and on top of that is intent on imposing lots of unnecessary rules and regulations on Lynne's child.

Now my suggestion to deal with this is not new, but it seems as if the situation between the parents is just getting worse. These two have tried living together for 40 years, and it's not working. It's sad to say, but for the good of the children, they should now divorce.

Submitted by

Stephen Morpurgo

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