Fury as Bexley council votes through £35.3 million cuts

09:47 10 March 2011

Carers protesting

Carers protesting

Archant

Police officers had to be brought in to mind the protesters as Bexley councillors voted through £35.3 million worth of cuts.

Protesters

Residents who attended the meeting last night had to have their bags searched and those with cameras were banned from entering.

There were shouts of ‘shame’, “cutting respite care is not right” and “good old democracy” from the residents in the public gallery who amounted to approximately 165.

Heckler Charan Athwal, 60, from Bexleyheath, had to be warned by the security guards repeatedly to be quiet and later the leader of the opposition Chris Ball tried to calm him.

The raft of cuts which will begin next month will see the closure of the Bexley Council for Equality and Diversity (BCED) which was founded 40 years ago.

Police were brought in to guard the civic offices

Cuts also include a reduction in the number of days adults with learning disabilities can use day centres and reducing transport to and from school for students with special educational needs.

The budget will see £35.3 million cuts over a three-year period to 2014. The council intends to save £15.3 million in the forthcoming financial year. This includes £1.6 million in children’s services and £1.2 million in health and adult care.

Protesters gathered around the back doors to chant “care, not cuts” as councillors entered the emotionally charged meeting.

Conservative councillors rejected the Labour amendments to their cuts package which was announced last October.

Protesters outside the civic office

Labour’s proposals included removing six months worth of cuts from the learning disabilities budget, as well as removing the cuts to the youth provision.

Outlining how this would be financed, councillor Ball stated scrutiny costs would be reduced and £375,000 removed from the Housing Stock. The rejected proposals also included reducing the contingency reserve from £10.7 million to £10.1 million which he said was a “pot for a rainy day - and it is now pouring.”

There were deafening boos as 51 councillors voted in favour of the budget while all 11 Labour councillors voted against. One member was absent.

How do these cuts affect you? Contact marina.soteriou@archant.co.uk or call 0208 269 7012

Latest Stories

Yesterday, 19:53
The brutal attack occurred on this quiet avenue in Mitcham [Photograph from Google StreetView]

Police are hunting for four thugs who stabbed a young man in the back in Mitcham.

Read more
Yesterday, 19:38
Karlton Burton and Javauntee Campbell were sentenced at the Old Bailey today

A teenager has been sentenced to life imprisonment for his role in the murder of Queen’s Market trader Rashid Naeem.

Read more
Yesterday, 17:32
The towering sea of foam floating down the River Lea  [photograph by Kriss Lee, CLiPiCs Photography and Art]

A 10 foot deep, mile-long mountain of foam invaded the tree-lined River Lea at the weekend in scenes reminiscent of spooky sci-fi drama the X Files.

Read more

TOP Stories

Yesterday, 19:53
The brutal attack occurred on this quiet avenue in Mitcham [Photograph from Google StreetView]

Police are hunting for four thugs who stabbed a young man in the back in Mitcham.

Yesterday, 19:38
Karlton Burton and Javauntee Campbell were sentenced at the Old Bailey today

A teenager has been sentenced to life imprisonment for his role in the murder of Queen’s Market trader Rashid Naeem.

Yesterday, 17:32
The towering sea of foam floating down the River Lea  [photograph by Kriss Lee, CLiPiCs Photography and Art]

A 10 foot deep, mile-long mountain of foam invaded the tree-lined River Lea at the weekend in scenes reminiscent of spooky sci-fi drama the X Files.

Promotions

Advanced running and training technology for beginners up to elite athletes

If you’re thinking of adding running treadmill to your fitness routine, you’re on the right track! There are several advantages to running on a treadmill versus running outdoors.

Renault-Zoe

The Renault ZOE follows on from the introduction of the electric Fluence ZE and Twizy, but unlike the former, the ZOE was designed from the ground up as an electric vehicle.

When no simple way to find Real Ale was at hand, 4 Ale enthusiasts got together to allow anyone with a smart phone to find Real Ale no matter where they happened to be, this was the birth of the Perfect Pint app.

London Bloggers

Monday, September 1, 2014
Do you really need an explanation for that?! (Pic by Serena Marinelli)

If you’ve ever seen an Italian movie, you would probably know how important body language is in the culture.

Tuesday, August 26, 2014
Don't waste any of your harvest

If you are now inundated with ripe tomatoes, juicy green beans, berries and herbs, don’t leave them to go stringy or mouldy because the freezer can go a long way to making your crops last well into winter.

Friday, August 22, 2014
It turns out painting is the perfect thing to do in bars

I’m somewhat of a casual, lazy and very much amateur painter and after a busy day at work, the prospect of getting all my brushes, acrylics, water and other faff out is far from appealing.

Quizzes

Do you fancy yourself as a football ground know-it-all? Try our devilishly difficult quiz!

How well do you know your football stadiums? This brand new quiz from London24 will seperate the men from the boys...

Read more
Do you know your Thames truths from the porkie pies? (Photo by Mike Hewitt/Getty Images)

So, you live (or work) in London, and you think you know the river well.

Read more
Diego Costa of Chelsea exchanges words with Cesc Fabregas (Photo by Chris Brunskill/Getty Images)

Chelsea have made several personnel changes over the course of the summer as they look to mount a squad that can challenge for the title.

Read more