Officials to spend £186,000 renaming Black Boy Lane in London

End of the road for Black Boy Lane: Officials are to spend £186,000 to rename London street

  • Labour-run council decided to change Black Boy Lane after last year’s protests
  • It will give a ‘voluntary’ £300 payment to 183 homes impacted by name change
  • It will also spend £50,000 on a salary to a support officer to help those affected 

Politically correct councillors are set to spend £186,000 of taxpayers’ cash renaming a 300-year-old road – despite no evidence it has racist connotations.

Labour-run Haringey Council decided to change the name of Black Boy Lane, in West Green, north London, last year after the Black Lives Matter protests but residents are firmly against it.

It will provide a ‘voluntary’ £300 payment to the 183 homes impacted by the proposal to call it La Rose Lane – after local poet John La Rose. 

Haringey Council decided to change the name of Black Boy Lane, in West Green, north London, last year after the Black Lives Matter protests but residents are firmly against it. The street sign is seen above

The authority will also spend £50,000 on a salary for a support and administration officer to help the residents affected. Alongside other costs, such as replacing signage, the project will cost an estimated £186,000.

Hundreds of streets in England and Wales are at risk of being renamed by councils over fears they have links to slavery and colonialism, according to a report from think-tank Policy Exchange.

Haringey Council is unsure about the context of the street’s name and historians say it is likely to have come from a former pub nearby called the Black Boy, which was the nickname for King Charles II.

Sharon David, 55, a black woman who has lived on Black Boy Lane for more than 40 years, said: ‘No one has said anything about the name before. Why all of a sudden now because of the Black Lives Matter movement? Changing a street name is not the answer.

Some 72 per cent of the residents who responded to a consultation last month are firmly against the name change. And 55 per cent of those in the St Ann’s ward, which Black Boy Lane is a part of, do not want the proposal to go ahead

‘The money could literally be donated to fight actual racism.’ Anne Taylor, 48, who has lived on the road for 14 years, said: ‘This ridiculous amount of money could be spent more wisely.’

Eldridge Culverwell, a Labour councillor who grew up in South Africa during apartheid, believes the decision to rename the road is ‘short-sighted’. 

The 70-year-old said: ‘They say Black Boy Lane has racist connotations, but I grew up in racist South Africa and this is rubbish.’ 

Some 72 per cent of the residents who responded to a consultation last month are firmly against the name change.

And 55 per cent of those in the St Ann’s ward, which Black Boy Lane is a part of, do not want the proposal to go ahead.

Councils can change the name of a road without consulting the residents who live on the street and their only method of redress is to appeal to a court.

Policy Exchange is calling on ministers to introduce a democratic right to let them have a say on proposed name changes.

Communities Secretary Robert Jenrick is believed to want local authorities to obtain the approval of a ‘super-majority’ of residents.

Councillor Joseph Ejiofor, leader of Haringey Council, said its proposal ‘seeks to ensure that our monuments, building, place and street names are reflective of our values, and the culture and diversity… in our borough’.

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