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Haringey Council magazine blunder

PUBLISHED: 12:30 18 February 2010 | UPDATED: 16:47 07 September 2010

HARINGEY Council has been slammed for delivering thousands of magazines – designed to inform people about their local area – to the wrong wards. Critics are concerned over how much the mistake will cost taxpayers and whether it will affect

Rhiannon Evans

HARINGEY Council has been slammed for delivering thousands of magazines - designed to inform people about their local area - to the wrong wards.

Critics are concerned over how much the mistake will cost taxpayers and whether it will affect attendance at forthcoming area assembly meetings.

Residents were dismayed to find the wrong four-page local section inside the council magazine, Haringey People.

The Crouch End area received Muswell Hill news, while the latter area's homeowners were left to read about Northumberland Park and White Hart Lane.

Alexandra ward residents were given editions meant for St Ann's and Seven Sisters.

Haringey People costs the council £350,000 a year to produce 100,000 copies, 10 times a year, while the council's overall resources for communication has an annual budget of £3million.

Lib Dem spokesman, Cllr Ed Butcher, said: "This is another nail in the coffin of Haringey People.

"For years, local Liberal Democrats have said that this publication is not worth the paper it is written on and the council should think of more innovative and up-to-date ways of contacting local residents.

"Now, after this latest mess, the council has to come clean on how much this will cost local taxpayers."

MP Lynne Featherstone added: "Residents will be appalled that their money continues to be wasted in this way."

The four-page supplement updates residents on local news. It tells people where and when their next area assembly meeting is taking place and informs them about the previous meeting.

The meetings take place on a regular basis and are designed to be the best way for residents to raise concerns with the council.

Crouch End councillor Dave Winskill said: "As a former magazine publisher myself, I know it's not that difficult to organise these things to happen as you want them to happen.

"It really is a shambles that all the effort made by everyone involved, particularly residents, in making neighbourhood assemblies happen is not reflected in their local editions of Haringey People."

Haringey's community cohesion and involvement boss Cllr Kaushika Amin said that the problem was down to an error by the council's contractor.

"We appreciate how highly residents value the magazine and apologise for any inconvenience this has caused," he said.

"We will arrange for a number of copies to be made available to residents at the next area assembly meetings, which begin this week.

"Residents who have not received a copy of the magazine with the local news for their area can contact us on 020 8489 2997 or email damian.russell@ haringey.gov.uk and we will send them the appropriate pages.

"Alternatively, the magazine can be viewed at www.haringey.gov.uk/haringey people by following the 'local pages' link.


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