Thursday 31 March 2016

Right Now at the Bush Theatre is "Unmissable" - Says Time Out

"Right Now" at the Bush Theatre
"Right Now" is playing - right now - at the Bush Theatre, and has been described by Time Out as "unmissable".

The Bush Theatre will be closing soon for a full renovation, and won't re-open until 2017 at the earliest.  So anyone wanting to soak up some culture in the Bush this year better move fast. Prices start at just £15.

Saturday 26 March 2016

Humans of Shepherd's Bush No 9

"I'm an English teacher at a secondary school in Shepherd's Bush. Or at least I was - until recently.  It is the best job in world. The challenging end of the state education sector has been my home for sixteen and a half years. The camaraderie, comedy and quiet conscience it breeds are priceless. And the 'kidz' are great. 

Yet, I have decided to take a six month career break. I was due a rest, but the real trouble is the current government's education reforms. The issues are: pace, people and pounds - the change is too fast.  The best teachers and leaders are bowing out due to the growing pressure. And now, silly sums of money are about to be spent "academising" all schools.  I hope to find my way back to an English classroom again, but right now I am seriously concerned about our schools."

Friday 25 March 2016

Walking Tour of Shepherd's Bush on Saturday 16th April at 10am

West London Walks - just £5!
Until the late 19th century Shepherd's Bush was just a collection of fields, but that doesn't mean we lack history.  For those who want to explore the rich history of our neighbourhood and the neighbourhoods around us, Caroline MacMillan of West London Walks offers a series of personally led walking tours.  Her walks are "informal, and full of interesting and unusual facts".  Her walking tour of Shepherd's Bush takes place on Saturday 16th April at 10am.

Thursday 24 March 2016

Muslims and Christians in Shepherd's Bush Come Together to Help The Homeless

Homelessness has been a problem in Shepherd's Bush for many years. As long ago as the turn of the 20th Century, Hammersmith MP Sir William Bull was appalled to see Shepherd's Bush Green become "home to destitute unemployed sleeping rough".

Homeless suffer from a life expectancy that is "30 years less than the general population", according to Bob Mayo, vicar of St Stephen's church on the Uxbridge Rd.

And things are not improving. Numbers of homeless people "have increased by 30% over the past 20 years". However, our local communities are coming together to try to help out, with inter-faith co-operation from Christians and Muslims.

In a new joint project, St Stephen's and an Islamic charity, the Al-Khair Foundation, have come together to provide sleeping bags as part of their "Keep Britain Warm" campaign.

Wednesday 23 March 2016

Reginald D Hunter at Bush Hall on Friday 8 April

Bush Hall
Reginald D Hunter is an American-born stand-up comic, based in the UK - and he's coming to Shepherd's Bush.

Hunter is the lead act at Bush Hall Presents With… a regular monthly comedy night at Bush Hall on the Uxbridge Road. The show takes place on Friday 8th April, and is titled Bush Hall Presents with Reginald D Hunter. 

Hunter was raised the the US state of Georgia, lives in London and is a regular guest on Have I Got News For You?. He was described by the Sunday Times as "one of the most brilliantly unpredictable comics in the country". 

Monday 21 March 2016

Market Traders Win in Court of Appeal - Market Development Stalls Again

Shepherd's Bush Market
The Court of Appeal has overturned the decision of minister Eric Pickles to uphold a Compulsory Purchase Order (CPO) on a row of shops on Goldhawk Rd, adjoining Shepherd's Bush Market (see photo below).

Market traders are now celebrating the ruling, which overturns the High Court ruling made in August 2015 by Mr Justice Dove, and effectively blocks the development from going ahead.

Wednesday 16 March 2016

What Does a Councillor Do, Exactly?

Harry Phibbs is one of the Conservative councillors for Ravenscourt Park Ward in the London Borough of Hammersmith & Fulham. He was described by Chris Underwood, author of the original Shepherd's Bush blog (and no fan of our former Conservative Council) as "genuinely good....Top Tory".

Harry writes the Hammersmith and Fulham Forum blog, where he posts regularly about the latest issues and seeks, as he puts it to 'hold the Council to account".

We asked Harry to talk about being a Councillor in Shepherd's Bush, what Councillors do, what life is like in opposition, and what are some of the challenges and opportunities in our neighbourhood.

Tuesday 15 March 2016

Play Football Opens In Hammersmith Park

Play Football has opened its new football pitches in Hammersmith Park, after a long battle with local residents over the future of the park.

The event was not widely publicised, but you can see what you missed in the flyer to the left.

The new Five-a-side facilities include a cafe, and toilets which are open to all park users.

Hammersmith Park has been the subject of a long dispute over its future, after the last Council administration granted Play Football a long lease to operate a number of paid-for football pitches, at the same time removing the existing sports facilities.

Monday 14 March 2016

Friday 11 March 2016

Charity Book Sale at the Defector's Weld on Monday 18th April

Shepherd's Bush educator Toni Sharpe is hosting a charity booksale upstairs at the Defector's Weld pub on Shepherd's Bush Green on Monday 18th April at 6pm.

Come along and recycle the books you no longer want, and buy some new (-ish) ones too.

Books will be sold on at 20% of list price, or 15% for students. All proceeds are going to good causes.

Wednesday 9 March 2016

Mayoral Candidates Support The Hammersmith Flyunder - But Will It Actually Happen?

Hammersmith Flyover. Photo: Wikipedia
Both of the two main candidates for London's Mayoral Election  (the election is to be held on 5 May 2016are supporters of the proposed Hammersmith Flyunder - the new tunnel which may in time replace the current Hammersmith flyover.

The Flyunder is a hugely ambitious scheme that, if it goes ahead, has the potential to alter permanently the face of Hammersmith. But will it actually ever happen?

Tuesday 8 March 2016

Buffet Auction on 21st April for St Stephen's Church Roof

St Stephen's
St Stephen's church on the Uxbridge Road is hosting a Buffet Auction on 21st April to continue their efforts to restore the leaky roof of their Victorian home.

The church is welcoming donations from the public. These might include an object of value, such as a painting, but it can also include service of some kind, such as a meal in a restaurant, a haircut, a weekend at a country cottage - anything that has value and can be auctioned off.

Why contribute to St Stephen's?  St Stephen's is a church that welcomes people from many different backgrounds, and is one of relatively few places in Shepherd's Bush where our many disparate communities come together.

Monday 7 March 2016

Woody Grill Fined £30k

Woody Grill - fined £30k
Woody Grill, the 24 hour halal diner at No 1 Uxbridge Road, has been fined £30,000 after an investigation by Hammersmith & Fulham Council.

The owners of Woody Grill pleaded guilty in court to a total of eight offences relating to food hygiene.

H&F Council’s environmental health team brought a prosecution following complaints from customers who had become ill after eating at the restaurant.

Friday 4 March 2016

What's Happening With the Westfield Extension?

Westfield expands northwards
Construction work on the extension to Westfield Shopping Centre is under way, but apparently a bit behind schedule.

Demolition work began in 2015, with the brownfield land north of Westfield (mainly warehouses and semi-industrial buildings) turned to rubble.

Ariel way (the route through Westfield) has been closed off, leading to huge traffic congestion on Wood Lane, as anyone driving in our neighbourhood already knows.  Construction was originally scheduled to continue until October 2017, but the latest estimate of completion is now sometime in 2018.

Thursday 3 March 2016

Don't Bring Back The Goaloids - Says Virginia Ironside

Goaloids in 2013
An application has been made by our Council to re-install the Goaloids, the football-inspired sculpture that came to Shepherd's Bush Green in 2013, and was taken down in 2015.

Local author, journalist and campaigner Virginia Ironside is urging residents to oppose their re-instatement by LBHF.

In the guest post below, Virginia makes the case why the return of the Goaloids would not enhance our neighbourhood, and why they should not be re-instated on Shepherd's Bush Green.

Wednesday 2 March 2016

Funfair Returns To Shepherd's Bush - But At What Cost?

The funfair is coming back to Shepherd's Bush Green from 24 March until April 10.  Good news then for young children and their families.

Trouble is, these funfairs seem inevitably to cause huge damage to the Green, which even at the best of times could use a bit of love and attention.

What with a daily distribution of litter, a generous helping of winos, and now ash dieback killing the trees, the last thing Shepherd's Bush Green needs is huge lorries to smash up the pathways and the turf even more.

Tuesday 1 March 2016

20 mph Speed Limit for Shepherd's Bush Getting Closer

Plans to extend a 20mph speed limit across almost all roads in Hammersmith & Fulham are set to be agreed at a council Cabinet meeting on 7 March, according to our Council.

LBHF began a consultation in June 2015 on plans for a 20mph speed limit throughout our borough.  The results were - according to the Council - that a "staggering" 71% voting for a reduced speed limit on "most roads".

However, the 71% majority is nor quite what it seems, and not everyone is happy. Many residents, especially drivers, are strongly opposed. And how you interpret the poll results depends on your point of view.