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Pawnbrokers and Pay Day Loans | by Alan Stanton
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Pawnbrokers and Pay Day Loans

19 May 2012. 515-519, High Road, Tottenham at the corner of Bruce Grove.


Before the Tottenham Riot in August 2012 this corner was occupied by Winkworth Estate Agents.


The slogan used by Haringey is "Building Back Better". Which has a nice alliteration and sounds upbeat. Unfortunately, it raises completely unrealistic expectations about how much control or even persuasive power local Councils actually have to influence decisions taken by developers, landlords, business owners, consultants, and Mayors of London.



Of course, the social problems suggested by the prominent signs are not unique to Tottenham or London. And almost everything the UK Coalition Government does is making it worse.


§ Article by Jill Insley : Payday loans: bishop hits out at 'sinful' interest rates.

§ Article by Deborah Orr. The rise of payday loans replaces one debt bubble with another, nastier one.

§ Video of David Graeber talking about his book Debt: The First Five Thousand Years.

§ Noam Chomsky The people always pay.

§ Photos by Clive Carter of similar developments in the Stroud Green/Finsbury Park area.

§ Aerial view of where I took this photo.



Meanwhile . . . Let them eat banners


----- Original Message -----

From : Haringey Environment Department

Sent : 18 May 2012 12:07

Subject : Olympic Decoration


We will be having Olympic lamp post banners all the way along the torch route - not on every lamppost, but enough to make an impact. There will also be Olympic lamp post banners all the way down Tottenham High Road (even though the southerly end is not on the route). Installation of the banners is starting on 6 June. I attach a picture of the banners. There will also be a flag at the Civic Centre.


We will also be using London 2012 Community Celebration packs to decorate Council venues (these include bunting and banners). We are doing site visits to confirm the locations, and we are looking at leisure centres, libraries and other public-facing sites like Apex House, 48 Station Road, Bruce Castle Park Pavillion and the Civic Centre.


----- Original Message -----

To : Cllr Alan Strickland

From : Alan Stanton

Sent : Sunday, May 20, 2012 05:33 PM

Cc : Labour councillors

Subject : Olympic decoration - bread & circuses


Hi Alan


Can I ask how much these extra lamppost banners and celebration packs are costing? And especially who's paying?


Bread and circuses. Though for everyone except the rich it seems to be cuts to the bread-and-butter services. While for some people it's food banks. And a few others rummage in waste bins.


----- Original Message -----

From : Cllr Claire Kober (Leader of the Council)

To : Cllr Alan Stanton

Cc : Labour Councillors

Sent : Sunday, May 20, 2012 7:54 PM

Subject : Olympic decoration - bread & circuses




The Mayor of London gave every borough £50k for Olympic decorations. This was announced some time ago.




----- Original Message -----

From : Alan Stanton

To : Cllr Claire Kober

Cc : Labour councillors

Sent : Sunday, May 20, 2012 10:49 PM

Subject : Olympic decoration - bread & circuses


Hi Claire,


Thanks for the information. Splendid news!

Let them eat banners. And repay loans in bunting.





§ The £50,000 which Boris Johnson, Mayor of London, "gave" every borough to pay for Olympic decorations, meant in effect that Boris returned some of our tax money.

§ "... this has been the year of the soup kitchen. The switch from "soup kitchen", which smacks of Victorian desperation, to the more neutral "food bank" is a semantic coup d'état. An economic crisis initiated by the immorality of the banks ends up with nice "banks" that offer food for free." From: '2012 has been the year of the food bank.' Article by Suzanne Moore in The Guardian 19 December 2012.

§ The Olympics were a celebration worthy of Nero – and as extravagant. Article by Simon Jenkins in The Guardian 27 December 2012.

§ 9 June 2014. Wonga: An Example Of How NOT To Deal With Criticism On Social Media.

§ Wonga Collapses Into Administration. BBC News report 30 August 2018.

§ 'It snowballed … I took out more and more' – a Wonga user speaks, Guardian newspaper 30 August 2018.

(I was glad to see the effective campaign by Stella Creasey MP was mentioned in this 2018 report.)

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Taken on May 19, 2012