Recorder letters: MSG Sphere, police plan, food for vulnerable and shop for charity

A computer-generated image of the proposed MSG Sphere. Picture: MSG

A computer-generated image of the proposed MSG Sphere. Picture: MSG - Credit: MSG

Letters sent in from Recorder readers this week.

Sphere pollution impact a concern

Ian Sinclair, McGrath Road, Stratford, writes:

“Always read the small print” is common, and usually useful, advice.

This is especially true for Newham and the proposed MSG Sphere in Stratford. It’s difficult to find, and not very exciting reading, but the report of the interim director of planning and development (chief planning officer) for Newham prepared for Newham Council’s Strategic Development Committee on November 17, 2020 contains important information for local residents (view report here).

I would like to draw Newham Recorder readers attention to just one important fact in the report: “The additional predicted pollution for MSG will push surrounding areas above the air quality health objective levels.”

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For some reason this worrying information never appears in MSG’s promotional material for the proposed Sphere. I wonder why?

Police plan set to be monitored

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Unmesh Desai, London Assembly member, City and East London, writes:

The mayor and the London Assembly is committed to tackling all forms of crime, and as Londoners, we all must play our part in this. Underpinning this is the fact that the police must have the trust and confidence of the communities they serve to protect.

A continuing key concern revolves around the disproportionate use of policing powers against BAME Londoners. Increasingly, where some powers have been used, it has been found that no crime had been committed.

Stop and search is an important tool in the fight against violent crime, but it needs to be carried out properly and appropriately if it’s to be effective.

Our police officers work extremely hard and put themselves in the face of danger every day to keep Londoners safe. Sometimes the police do things wrongly and need to be held to account when this happens.

It has been encouraging to see the mayor recently publish an Action Plan which seeks to comprehensively address these issues.

Central to the Plan is a new target to ensure 40 per cent of new recruits to the force are from BAME backgrounds by 2022, backed by increased investment in officer training.

Communities across London will also be given a more significant role in working alongside the Met in examining the use of police powers and tactics. Over the coming months, I will continue to monitor the Metropolitan Police’s progress on implementing this plan.

Food hamper will help vulnerable

James Burton, Feed London Miracles Project director, writes:

I wanted to let you know about an amazing project being launched in December by the children’s charity, Miracles. The project is called Feed London and aims to support hundreds of vulnerable families predicted to go without a meal on Christmas Day.

We will provide a nutritious and healthy Feed London Christmas Hamper to families in London

which will include all the ingredients needed for a sumptuous Christmas dinner, plus healthy recipes ideas, a box of Christmas crackers, supermarket voucher and some wonderful treats for the children.

By donating £25 people can give the gift of Christmas dinner. Businesses and corporations are

also invited to purchase a family hamper for £175 which they can donate to their clients as an alternative corporate Christmas


We desperately need the support of the London community – from local business and from local citizens in each borough.

To find out how to get involved and to donate please visit our website:

For more information about Feed London – how to donate or get involved please contact me, James Burton, on 07545174243 or

Shop online to support charities

Elkie Woodbridge, regional director for the South, British Heart Foundation, writes:

The UK’s leading heart charity, the British Heart Foundation (BHF) needs the support of the local community now more than ever.

Following the government’s announcement of a second lockdown, we were forced to close our shops in London until Thursday, December 3. We expect the current shop closures across England to cost us millions of pounds. This adds to the already devastating impact of the coronavirus on the charity’s income. Our funding for new research is expected to be halved by £50 million next year, which could limit future funding and delay important scientific breakthroughs that could help save lives.

Our charity shops run purely on the support of the public, which is why we are urging the local community to support us, either by shopping online or donating smaller items via post.

Our eBay store remains open for those looking for quality, unique preloved items and our online shop is the ideal place to find Christmas cards, accessories and festive gifts. You can also support the BHF by donating smaller, quality items to us by post - as part of essential shopping trips – such as branded clothing, jewellery, vinyl records and cameras.

For more details on how you can support the BHF please visit

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