Leader statement: Review on monuments, building, place and street names in Haringey
Cllr Ejiofor, Leader of Haringey Council, said:
“I would like to thank the residents who have been in touch raising long-standing concerns about some street and building names in Haringey. A real discussion on the way in which we memorialise historical figures is long-overdue.
“If we are to truly demonstrate our commitment to and solidarity with the aims of the Black Lives Matter movement, we must seriously address these issues. If we were naming roads today, we would never choose Rhodes Avenue, which is named after Thomas Rhodes - Great Uncle to Cecil Rhodes, an imperialist, colonialist, and white supremacist.
“The Head of Rhodes Avenue School hopes to be guided by the Mayor’s Commission regarding the changing of the school’s name.
“Street names such as Black Boy Lane may have a more contested history, but we cannot ignore the fact that meanings change over time, and the term Black Boy is now used most commonly as a derogatory name for African heritage men.
“As a borough, everything we do must be a reflection of our values and to do this we must not shy away from correcting the mistakes of the past. This is why we will be working with our residents, BAME communities and organisations, and experts to understand the history of our street names and other memorials, to understand their true meaning and reflect on whether or not they are appropriate for our society today.
“If Haringey residents have concerns or queries about place, street or building names in the borough, please get in touch. Send your views to Leader@haringey.gov.uk and they will be considered as part of this review. In addition, if residents have suggestions about people from our borough’s rich and diverse history that we should be celebrating please feed your ideas into us. There will of course be public consultation on the outcome of the review.”
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