Wanstead news roundup, 09.10.10; Flats, lollipops, and fingerprints

• The angst and anger about the Met’s plans for Wanstead Flats has not gone away. A public meeting this week with the police and the City of London, which owns the flats, was heated; there is more debate about the cost of the consultation process, and the rent that will be paid for the duration of the Olympic operations.

• Wanstead woman Penny Bickerstaff was going to Trafalgar Square in a black cab which had a crash. She was hurt and had to go to hospital. The cab charged her the full fare plus waiting time. Story here at the Daily Telegraph.

• Parents of children at the Wanstead Church School have launched a petition to “save” Derek the lollipop man who helps children cross the high street outside the Cuckfield pub. Redbridge Borough Council is attempting to save money, and in August a spokesman told the Wanstead Guardian:

“(Lollipop people) provide a valuable service and will be appreciated by people but they are mainly at existing crossings, and a large number of primary school children are accompanied anyway. We have to ask the question whether it is value for money.”

• A sermon by the Rev Robert Hampson at Holy Trinity church on Hermon Hill has angered Guides leaders. His message, he says, was against the sexualisation of children, including the sentiment that it was “better to wait until they were married before having sex with boyfriends and girlfriends although I made sure I did not use the word sex”. Some parents have told the Guardian that because there were young children there, they felt it was inappropriate. Wansteadium hopes to be able to bring you the transcript of the sermon.

• Fingerprinting is being introduced at Wanstead High School, as part of making proceedings cashless. Observer columnist and civil liberties campaigner Henry Porter has highlighted the news on his blog.