Archive for June, 2013

More than 300 cyclists of all ages enjoyed Ealing’s sights by bicycle as they took part in guided rides to celebrate National Bike Week.

Ealing Council hosted free guided bike rides throughout Sunday, 23 June giving around 350 cyclists of all ages and levels of experience, the opportunity to join the 11 mile rides led by experienced marshals.

The rides started at Gunnersbury Park and Churchfield Recreation Ground and the route included roads, the canal towpath and through parks. Bicycles were checked for roadworthiness before they set off.

Ealing Council leader Julian Bell and cabinet member for environment and transport, Bassam Mahfouz – who are both keen cyclists – joined a ride from Hanwell.

Councillor Bell said: “I’m delighted that so many people took part in Ticket to Ride. We wanted to boost cyclists’ confidence on the road and show them what an easy and enjoyable way to get fit and travel safely around the borough, cycling can be.”

Bassam with his son Alexander ahead of the Ticket to RideCouncillor Mahfouz took his three-year-old son Alexander on his bike. He said: “It really was a great day out for families and an event we would like to hold again. My son, like lots of the other children taking part said he really enjoyed it. We received lots of positive feedback on the day with some parents telling me that they’d enjoyed it so much that they planned to go on more cycle rides as a family activity.”

For information on cycle training provided by Ealing Council, free bike health checks and our affordable cycle hire scheme visit Ealing Council’s cycling pages. Ealing Cycling Campaign offers guided rides for various experience levels on the third Sunday of every month until September. For more information visit its website 

Read Full Post »

Residents and visitors in west London are being reminded not to touch the nests which oak processionary caterpillars are building in oak trees.


They are also being advised to protect animals from the nests, and to report sightings to the Forestry Commission or Ealing Council.

This is because the nests can contain thousands of the caterpillars’ hairs, which have an irritating substance called thaumetopoein, which can cause painful skin rashes and, sometimes, eye and throat irritations in people and animals.

The caterpillars are the larval stages of the pest oak processionary moth (OPM), and June is the time of year when they build their distinctive white, silken, webbing nests on the trunks and branches of oak trees. They also make long, white trails of silken webbing on the trees. They retreat into the nests between feeding sessions, and, later in the summer, to pupate into adult moths.

They are also a tree pest because they eat oak leaves, and large populations can strip trees of their leaves, leaving them weakened and vulnerable to other threats.

Councillor Bassam Mahfouz, Ealing Council’s cabinet member for transport and environment, said: “Residents are encouraged to report sightings of nests or caterpillars in their garden or in a public area. We also urge residents not to attempt to remove the pests themselves as it requires a specially trained and equipped team to do it at the right time and to dispose of them correctly.” (more…)

Read Full Post »

A display of inspirational BMX bike stunts took place at St Gregory’s Primary School, Ealing as part of a series of events to celebrate National Bike Week (15-23 June).

Ealing Council’s cabinet member for environment and transport, Bassam Mahfouz joined pupils at the school on Woodfield Road on Wednesday 19 June, as they enjoyed a day of biking activities, including games and skills training. The school was one of 20 in the borough to welcome the BMX professionals who include messages about cycle safety in their performances.

Councillor Mahfouz took the opportunity to congratulate pupils and staff at the school where over 90 per cent of children have completed cycle training. He also encouraged everyone to take part in the highlight of Ealing’s Bike Week celebrations, the Ticket to Ride event on Sunday, 23 June.

More than 100 cyclists have already signed up to take part in a Ticket to Ride – a series of free guided rides open to all levels, including less confident riders and families. Ride marshals will lead groups on an 11 mile route along roads, the canal towpath and through parks, taking in the borough’s sights while building cyclists’ confidence.

Guided rides will leave Gunnersbury Park and the bandstand at Churchfields Recreation Ground (next to Brent Lodge Park) on the hour from 10am until 4pm. Each ride is expected to take two to three hours to complete with breaks along the way. Cyclists can choose to ride only part of the route if they prefer.

Cllr Bassam Mahfouz joins cycle-trained pupils at St. Gregory's school during Bike Week

Cllr Bassam Mahfouz joins cycle-trained pupils at St. Gregory’s school during Bike Week

Keen cyclist, councillor Mahfouz said: “St Gregory’s is a great example of what can be achieved by encouraging people to cycle more. Weekly cycling days are held for pupils to get their bikes fixed, buy new cycling equipment or simply enjoy riding their bikes.

“Ealing is leading the way in making it easier and safer for people to cycle and Ticket to Ride looks set to be a great day out, as well as a way to boost cyclists’ confidence by showing them how to feel safer when they’re on the road.”

A bike themed street party was also held on Wednesday, 19 June on Longfield Avenue, Ealing. The road beside the Town Hall, has recently undergone a series of improvements including repaving. Visitors to the event had the chance to get their bikes checked for roadworthiness by Dr Bike, learn about cycling activities in the borough, sign up for the council’s Brompton Dock cycle hire scheme and even make smoothies using pedal power.

Free Dr Bike cycle maintenance checks are also taking place throughout National Bike Week. Cyclists can have their bikes checked to see if they are roadworthy and get expert advice. Remaining sessions for the week include:

Thursday, 20 June:  Acton Market, 4-7pm

Friday, 21 June:  West Ealing (Melbourne Avenue), 4-7pm

Saturday, 22 June: Southall Park 2-5pm

Cyclists wishing to take part in Ticket to Ride are advised to contact Jean Mowbray at or call 020 7232 4387 or turn up on the day.

Read Full Post »

The next Northolt West End ward forum is on Thursday 20 June 2013 from 7-9pm in Northolt Grange Community Centre, Rushdene Crescent, Northolt, Middlesex UB5 6NF

See this link to the agenda:

Read Full Post »

Ealing’s flagship street tree initiative received national recognition last week when it took home a highly commended award from the RE:LEAF Tree and Woodland Awards at City Hall.

Tree wardens at city hall

Hosted by The Mayor of London, the awards celebrated the work of individuals and groups who protect, improve and expand the capital’s tree and woodland cover.

Ealing was the first borough in London to introduce a tree warden scheme in December 2011 and now has more than 35 local volunteers signed-up.

The award was given to the tree wardens for their work in sprucing-up local streets and planting trees. The scheme was also recognised for maintaining excellent relationships between local volunteers and the council, and for providing a new kind of volunteering opportunity for local people.

The tree warden initiative aims to equip people with skills and knowledge about trees and their local environment, as well as give residents a great way to meet other local people and to get amongst in their community. The volunteers play a key role in helping to maintain the trees they plant, including watering, weeding and pruning.

Ealing’s cabinet member for environment and transport, Councillor Bassam Mahfouz, said: “I am delighted our tree warden initiative has been formally recognised and I’m sure it will encourage even more people to get involved. The project only started up at the end of 2011, so it’s fantastic that it has already made such a difference in the community. The initiative would not be so successful without the enthusiasm and dedication of the wonderful local people who take part, and the support of Gristwood and Toms Ltd and the Tree Council. Thank you and well done to everyone involved.”

To sign-up for the scheme, please contact Susan Wyatt on 

Read Full Post »

An illegal street trader who repeatedly set up stall on a Southall pavement has been ordered to pay £290 by Ealing Magistrates Court.

Ealing Council and the police investigated Suryyai Tahir who regularly sold fabrics from a stall outside the health centre on Southall Broadway without a licence.

Ms Tahir ignored verbal and written warnings not to trade and was given a fixed penalty notice for £150 in March this year. However a week later, Ealing Council’s CCTV officers spotted Ms Tahir selling her wares again. Following contact by envirocrime officers, police seized all items on display.

Ms Tahir pleaded guilty at Ealing Magistrates Court on Thursday, 9 May and was fined £120 and ordered to pay £150 towards costs and a £20 victim surcharge. This brought the total to be paid by the end of the month to £290.

The court also ordered the goods to be forfeited.

Cabinet member for environment and transport, Bassam Mahfouz said: “Illegal street trading is unfair on businesses who abide by the law and it can also create a nuisance or block footpaths. 

Although Ms Tahir chose to ignore warnings and even set up her stall again just days after paying a fixed penalty notice, I hope she has finally learned her lesson.”

Illegal street trading can be reported online

Read Full Post »

%d bloggers like this: