Memorandum submitted by the Association
of London Government
1. The Association of London Government
represents the 32 London boroughs and the Corporation of London.
The Association seeks to provide a single voice for London. Its
main policy committee is the Leaders' Committee, made up of the
leaders of the 32 London boroughs and the Corporation. The Association
also has several subject panels dealing with key policy areas.
These include a Culture and Tourism Panel and an Environment and
Transport Committee. These set Association policy in these areas.
The Panel and Committee are made up of members from the 32 London
boroughs and the Corporation.
2. The ALG is keen to promote the view that
London is "open for business". In a Chief Executives'
circular to member authorities it advised that, "Where it
is safe to do so, we would encourage boroughs to re-open footpaths,
which serve the local population and economy, or which lead to
or are in areas of recreational demand, such as footpaths, national
and other well used trails, circular paths and big tourist areas
and cycle routes". (ALG Chief Executives' circular, 18/01,
11 April 2001.)
3. The ALG surveyed 12 London boroughs believed
by MAFF to be most at risk from foot and mouth: Barnet, Bexley,
Bromley, Croydon, Enfield, Kingston-upon-Thames, Havering, Hillingdon,
Merton, Newham, Sutton and Richmond-upon-Thames, to assess the
impact of the disease, in particular what measures had been taken
to control the spread of the disease such as closing footpaths.
The Association also asked those boroughs most affected what information
they had provided to members of the public about the effect on
4. The survey identified a number of facilities,
such as footpaths, that had been closed. The decisions to close
these had been made during the early stages of the outbreak. Four
boroughs, Enfield, Havering, Sutton and Hillingdon, closed most
of their footpaths. Only one borough, Barnet, closed all land
and footpaths. The other seven boroughs surveyed had closed some
of their footpaths and facilities. Boroughs that wished to keep
their public footpaths and zoo areas closed intended to keep the
position under constant review.
5. London boroughs have reacted positively
to suggestions to re-open facilities wherever possible. At the
time of writing many footpaths and parks had been re-opened. However,
a number of tourist attractions remain closed. For example, Newham
City Farm and Plashet Zoo in Newham and a limited number of footpaths
located adjacent to restricted areas.
The most affected boroughs have also placed
information on their web sites. These include: Newham, Croydon,
Sutton, Richmond-upon-Thames, Kingston, Hillingdon and Barnet.
Their web sites provide up to date information on what facilities
are open and closed and what other precautionary measures have
been taken to control the spread of the disease in the boroughs.
The situation is changing daily and boroughs are continually updating
their web sites to keep the public informed.
6. The London Tourist Board, which the ALG
part funds through the London Boroughs Grants Committee (£241,000
in 2000-01), has been working closely with the boroughs and the
ALG to ascertain the extent of the problem and to identify measures
to overcome them. The additional resources paid to the Regional
Tourist Boards by the English Tourism Council will help this work.
7. The ALG has been working closely with
the Government Office for London, responding to requests for information
and keeping them updated on the position in the boroughs. The
Association has a good working relationship with GOL, which is
reflected in their request to the ALG for information about the
situation in the boroughs.