News in brief

Pic: Mattha Busby

Pic: Mattha Busby

Lewisham environmental activist charged after Heathrow protest

A 25-year-old Lewisham woman has been charged with wilful obstruction of the highway, after protesting over the proposed third runway at Heathrow on Saturday.

Alexis Delage, 25, and 14 other climate activists chained themselves together on a road leading to the airport, disrupting the airport’s proceedings in an attempt to highlight the environmental impact of a third runway.

A spokesman from the group responsible for the action, RisingUp!, said: “Only 15% of the British public is responsible for 70% of international flights taken in the UK and Heathrow largely serves international passengers who have a mean income of £57,000 per year. The expansion is being driven by the very rich at the expense of some of the poorest people in the world.”

 

East London schoolboy faces terrorism charges

A schoolboy from east London charged with “encouraging terrorism” will appear in court next week.

The 15-year old, who cannot be identified for legal reasons, was arrested at his home address early in the morning on June 16.

A spokesman for the Metropolitan Police said: “He was released on bail and charged with encouraging the commission, preparation or instigation of acts of terrorism under Section One of the Terrorism Act 2006”.

If found guilty, he could face imprisonment for up to 12 months, or a large fine.

He is due to appear at Westminster Magistrates’ Court on Monday, November 28.

 

Inquest begins into Croydon tram deaths

An inquest has been opened into the deaths of the seven victims of the Croydon tram crash.

Dane Chinnery, 19, Donald Collett, 62, Robert Huxley, 63, Philip Logan, 52, Dorota Rynkiewicz, 35, Philip Seary, 57 and Mark Smith, 35, all died in the crash on November 9.

An initial report by the Rail Accident Investigation Board (RAIB) found the tram had been travelling at 43.5mph on a part of the track where it should have been going 12.5mph.

Selena Lynch, the senior coroner in the inquest announced today: “I very much hope families can get the answers they need as soon as possible.”

 

Tower Hamlets council look to cut discount for poorest in borough

Tower Hamlets Council are considering cutting council tax discounts for its poorest residents.

In a statement on its website the council asked for the opinion of its residents on the potential measure, after government cuts forced the council to look for £58m in savings by 2020. This is on top of the £138.3m saved since 2010.

Council discounts help people who would otherwise struggle to pay the council tax they owe.

 

Additional reporting by Magdalena Canedo.