I compiled an overview of the top stories making the news in Ham & High for each month of the year. This was published in print as a 5-page spread on December 31st 2015.
Front page stories:
Camden Council leader Sarah Hayward announced that the borough is to welcome at least 20 families fleeing Syria. She dubbed Cameron’s expected acceptance of 20,000 over the next five years as a “disappointment” as there are millions of displaced Syrians floating around in refugee camps. Support group Camden for Refugees put together donations and compiled lists of households willing to put a roof over the refugees’ heads. They are pushing for long-term housing and aim to set up an Airbnb style-type housing system. (The original story can be viewed here)
Labour Camden councillor Angela Pober quits after accusing her party of lying to the public in believing that the Hampstead Library was closing, even though it wasn’t. She said the party campaigned for public support to save the library so that Labour party councillors could take credit for winning. Labour denied the allegations. (The original story can be viewed here)
Light-hearted: 70-year-old cancer survivor Margaret Banks skydives 10,000ft to raise funds for cancer charity Breast Cancer Now. She garnered £3,000 in donations. Margaret was diagnosed with breast cancer 12 years ago. Beating cancer is a cause close to her heart as other family members and friends have not survived the disease. There are hopes to eradicate the disease by 2050. She chose to skydive because “people would sit up and think, you’re making an effort.”
Controversy: MPs split over assisted suicide laws. Assisted suicide is currently still considered a criminal offence, which can lead to a maximum jail sentence of 14 years. Holborn and St Pancras MP Sir Keith Starmer showed his support for the change. The proposed bill seeks to grant the right to die for those suffering terminal illnesses and who are mentally competent, but not to those who are simply ”tired of life” or who fear growing old and infirm. This would reduce the number of people heading to Switzerland where assisted suicide is still legal.