HTHAS Write to Jeremy Corbyn In Response to His Remarks on Tax Havens and Public Assets

HTHAS have written to Jeremy Corbyn (ex Haringey Councillor, MP for our neighbouring North Islington constituency and Labour leader) to ask him to try and get Haringey to suspend the sale of HTH and have a re-think (our letter below).

Earlier this week, in a speech about the public sector’s relationship with overseas companies registered in a tax-haven (like the Caymans) Jeremy announced that if Labour are elected, “No company will receive taxpayer-funded contracts if it or its parent company is headquartered in a tax haven. “

If you agree and want him to intervene in HTH, you might want to drop him a line with copies to Claire Kober, Jason Arthur…and us!

Dear Jeremy

I am writing on behalf of the Hornsey Town Hall Appreciation Society.

We are a group of Hornsey residents who, with the excellent support of Catherine West, have been struggling for eighteen months to try and stop Haringey disposing of Hornsey Town Hall to a Hong Kong based developer who is registered in the Cayman Islands.

HTHAS was particularly interested to learn of your policy that would prevent local authorities entering into large contracts with companies based in tax havens to “ to ensure that profits earned on taxpayer-funded services were ‘retained and circulated within the UK economy “.

We fully support this initiative and are writing to ask that you contact Haringey to ask them to urgently reconsider their imminent signing of a lease which will result in …
the conversion of much of this wonderful Grade II listed building into a “boutique hotel”,
the development of the land at the rear into 120 luxury flats (with only four affordable)
the vaguest of plans for community access or a promised Arts Centre.
the eviction of 74 small businesses trading from HTH.
Haringey’s disposal flies in the face on many of the Mayor’s major polices on social housing, work spaces for small businesses and encouraging the arts.

As a north Londoner who is familiar with the building, you might be aware that HTHAS have been asking Haringey to consider an asset transfer to a trust. This would allow for the renovation to be funded by the sale of the car park at the rear. We believe a community based solution, working with a local housing association and a developer, could not only assure the future of the building but also provide significant affordable and social housing. You can learn more about our campaign and ideas from www.hthas.org.uk/ .

Sadly, a market-obsessed Haringey have refused to discuss the plan: instead they are about to hand the keys over to a commercial developer who is likely to make many millions of pounds from the deal.

We find it totally unacceptable that a borough with high levels of deprivation and homelessness feels that this is an appropriate way to dispose of a much loved community asset: nearly seven thousand residents have signed a petition and many majority group back benchers supported an Overview and Scrutiny Call in on the matter.

HTHAS hopes that you will be able to intervene and we urge you to write to Cllr Kober and Cllr Strickland as soon as possible.

If you can find a minute in a very busy schedule, we would be delighted to welcome you or a colleague to HTH to better understand the fabulous potential of this wonderful asset.

With (belated) best wishes for the New Year

David Winskill

3 Replies to “HTHAS Write to Jeremy Corbyn In Response to His Remarks on Tax Havens and Public Assets”

  1. Good luck! I wrote to him regarding Haringey Council’s closures of day care centres for those suffering from autism and altazheimers in April last year: I have copied my email and the reply below: –

    Dear Mr. Corbyn,
    You said yesterday: “”Electing a Labour council is the best protection for your community against the onslaught from this Conservative Government. Even in the toughest of times it is Labour councils that are making better choices.This Conservative Government is making the wrong choices and has the wrong priorities.”

    I am not sure how this equates with Haringey Council’s closure of day care centres across the borough for those suffering from autism and altzheimers and yet spending £86,000 on a re-branding exercise (in addition to the £20,000 spent on a 3 day trip to Cannes for a business trade fair.)

    Would you say that this Labour run council has its priorities right?

    Yours

    Brian Bowles

    Reply: –

    Dear Brian,

    Thanks so much for writing to Jeremy in his capacity as Leader of the Opposition. At this point in time his mailbag is full that he has asked me to reply on his behalf. Firstly I would like to apologise to you for the delay in this reply.

    Unfortunately, due to parliamentary protocol, Jeremy Corbyn is unable to take up the individual cases of those who do not live in his constituency of Islington North. I must refer you to your local MP as they are best placed to assist you. For your MP’s details, please go to http://www.parliament.uk/mps-lords-and-offices/mps/ and enter your postcode. Alternatively you can contact the House of Commons public information office on 0207 219 4272.

    I am sorry that I am unable to assist you further and hope that receive the help you need locally.

    Best wishes,

    Katy Leighton
    Correspondence Unit
    The Labour Party

    Sent by email from the Labour Party and promoted by Iain McNicol on behalf of The Labour Party, both at Southside, 105 Victoria Street, London SW1E 6QT.
    Website: labour.org.uk. To join or renew call 0345 092 2299.

    Sent by email from the Labour Party, promoted by Iain McNicol on behalf of The Labour Party, both at Southside, 105 Victoria Street, London, SW1E 6QT Website: http://www.labour.org.uk to join or renew call 0345 092 2299.

    I think I might have stood more of a chance of getting a reply if I had said what a great job he is doing and inviting him to a trade union event.

    Don’t hold your breath for any meaningful response.

    BB

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