Posts Tagged ‘rally’

March to Defend the Welfare State and Public Services

April 8th, 2010 Comments off

This information is courtesy of Keep Our NHS Public (KONP):

Saturday 10th April, 12.00,  Embankment

Rally at 14.00 in Trafalgar Square

This demonstration is set to coincide with the calling of an election where all the main parties are threatening deep cuts in our public services. Called by the National Pensioners Convention and backed by most Trade Unions it is likely to be large. Join us on the NHS contingent:

Look out for the banner “Fight for the NHS”!

Meet at 12 noon at the corner of Embankment and Middle Temple Lane- (see map above)

Or those who find walking difficult can join us in Trafalgar Square.

There are more details at:

Day Of Action, More Press and another Video

April 5th, 2010 1 comment

Sorry that’s it’s been a while since the last update, things have been a bit hectic over the last few weeks.

We had a good couple of hours with the stall outside the Nag’s Head, Holloway on Saturday morning, collecting more signatures, distributing flyers and spreading the word about the Day of Action.  We’ve now got well over ten thousand petition signatures on paper and over 1500 online.

Day Of Action, 29th April

Things are coming along really well for the Day of Action with several different groups and individuals organising events for the day. Hopefully the campaign to save our A&E will be visible in offices, shops and on the streets right across north London. If you have, or need, any ideas for activities please contact us at Let us know if you’ve planned something so we can arrange some coverage.

There are more details about the day here and we’ve published a flyer for the day here.

Press Coverage

There’s been a lot of coverage of the meeting with Rachel Tyndall on Monday 29th.

I need to apologise to the Haringey Indepenedent. They have provided a lot of coverage but unfortunately slipped under my radar and haven’t appeared on the site. Sorry.

Hornsey Journal, 03/04/2010: Whittington Hospital: tough choices to be made, says health boss

Islington Tribune, 02/04/2010: Woman who has Whittington A&E fate in her hands

Haringey Independent, 29/03/2010: Senior doctors oppose Whittington Hospital A&E closure


Another excellent video about the march and rally.

The filmmakers who volunteered their time to make the film were:

  • Justine Gordon-Smith
  • Chris Hall
  • Grave Livingstone
  • Maggie Pallat.

Day of Action

April 5th, 2010 Comments off

We are going to have a day of action for the Whittington on Thursday 29th April and would like workplaces, surgeries, nurseries, housing associations etc. to organize events and hold photo opportunities during the day.  We can come round and take photos of the events you organise with a view to creating a montage for the website and distribution to the press.

Please let us know what you can do. We have posters and badges available so please let us know if you need some.

The focal point of the day will be a rally outside the Whittington from 12.00 until 14.00.  This is an opportunity to remind North Central London NHS that this is our hospital, not theirs, and to show our support for the workers and patients of the Whittington.

You can see a list of the events planned so far, and confirmed speakers for the rally, here:

Please come along if you can.

Videos and a reminder

March 21st, 2010 No comments

This is a brilliant video by Sarah Mills documenting the campaign up to the march on 27th February.

The BBC have footage of Lynne Featherstone’s Westminster Hall debate, ‘London Hospitals’, from 17th March 2010 (a transcription from TheyWorkForYou was posted here the other day.). It includes contributions from Jeremy Corbyn, Health Minister Mike O’Brien and MPs from around London. At 1hr 30mins there’s quite a lot to get through but it’s well worth a watch if you have the time.

It’s available on the BBC site here.

Please remember to get along to tomorrow’s meeting if you can, 19.00 at the Whittington Park Community Centre. There are more details here.

A message from Jeremy Corbyn and Islington Tribune’s report of tonight’s meeting.

March 5th, 2010 No comments

We received this message of thanks and support from Jeremy Corbyn on Monday.  We thank Jeremy and all the politicians, trade unions, pressure groups, community groups, local press and individuals who are actively involved in the Defend the Whittington Hospital Coalition and the Whittington A&E campaign in general. This battle needs our combined, unified voice to shout loud over the Whittington.

Congratulations to the Defend Whittington Hospital Coalition for the superb organization of a brilliant demonstration; thanks also to the local police for their cooperation and efficiency in making sure that the march passed off safely and effectively.

The 5,000 of us who marched on Saturday represented people from Hetty Bower, aged 104, down to parents with new born babies. We represented every age, outlook and ethnic community that our borough has to offer.

We did so, because we are passionate in defending a National Health Service free at the point of use, and our local hospital at the Whittington. The A&E alone deals with over 80,000 emergencies per year and the hospital as a whole of course handles many other consultations and elective surgery. Any closure of the A&E department would, literally, cut off the lifeblood of the hospital.

The regional NHS planning group (London North Central) appear to be unaccountable and unconcerned, as they try to centralise services on two major hospitals, thus leaving Haringey and Islington with no major A&E departments of their own.

I have raised the issue several times in parliament, and I will continue to pressurize ministers and the House to understand that health officials have no business making plans for reducing expenditure, and absolutely no business taking away crucial local services that are so obviously loved and valued by everybody.

As the MP for North Islington, I am very clear where my priorities lie, keep the Whittington A&E!

Lynn Featherstone (Liberal Democrat MP and instrumental in North Central London NHS’s plan leaving their smokeless smokey back rooms and reaching the Whittington’s public) organised a public meeting tonight with Rachel Tyndall in attendance. This is the Islington Tribune report of the meeting:

SAVE OUR WHITTINGTON: Health chiefs face fresh grilling but give no guarantee consultation will save A & E


PATIENTS celebrating the success of the Save The Whittington Hospital march were brought down to earth last night when key administrators warned that widespread opposition might not be enough to stop accident and emergency services being axed.

At a meeting organised by Liberal Democrat MP Lynne Featherstone in Hornsey, neither Rachel Tyndall, Chairwoman of the North Central London (NCL) review panel or Richard Sumray, chairman of the Haringey Primary Care Trusy, could offer any assurance that the facility would be protected should a negative public response be confirmed in official consultation survey.
Mr Sumray would not go stronger than saying the views gathered in the upcoming survey would be “hugely important”.
Members of the 300 strong audience in the Greig Academy school hall had wanted a pledge that if there was no support for an overhaul of hospitals in north London, the plans would be abandoned.
An annoyed grimace fell across Mr Sumray’s face on the main stage when it was suggested by a heckler that he did not understand the question. “In health, people are always very resistant to change, generally they like what they’ve got,” he said. “So any change we have to make needs to have a compelling case. I am not going to say – and noone would say – what will happen as a consequence of consultation. All of the comments will be taken into account but I can’t tell you what the final decision will be now.”
The accident and emergency department and the maternity unit face the act in a wave of £500 million cuts and a re-organisation which will see patients treated in new, smaller GP surgeries. The Defend Whittington Hospital coalition organised one of the biggest marches in recent memory in north London on Saturday afternoon, with help from unions and the New Journal. We have run a Save Our Whittington campaign since November.
Ms Tyndall, who has so far born much of the brunt of the anger surrounding the campaign against the cuts, told the meeting she was proud “to be a public servant” working for the NHS, but said it was her job to test the private market over health services.
“We have all read in the newspapers about the public sector deficit,” she said. “We have to get the best value for tax-payers money. It’s all of ours money and we have to make sure its spent in the wisest possible way.”
Back on the subject of the future of the Whittington specifically, she admitted there was a chance that ambulances in the future could drive “past the front door of the hospital and go to an alternative hospital instead”, if one set of suggested changes were introduced.
When the audience murmured that the Royal Free in Hampstead was already too busy and unable to cope with thousands more patients, Ms Tyndall said that if hospitals worked in a more “efficient and productive way, there would be greater capacity”.
She added: “I don’t know what will happen because we haven’t yet made a decision about the Whittington Hospital.”
Ms Featherstone, the Hornsey and Wood Green MP who was in the front line of marchers on Saturday when 5,000 protetsters stopped traffic in Holloway Road on their way to the hospital forecourt, said: “I don’t think my guests see things in the same way – and that’s putting things mildly. Nobody I have spoken to either in this room or out there, thinks these proposals are a good idea. Given that, why don’t they refocus on keeping it open and making it work.”

Please visit the Islington Tribune site to read more about their support for the campaign and comment on the story.

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