Bexley Council leader shows ignorance of own borough – including beside Elizabeth line

For years now Bexley Council have been letting a multi-million pound upgrade around Abbey Wood station fall apart as neglect reached new heights.

The project to improve areas around  Felixstowe Road was funded by outside agencies before passing to Bexley Council “control” – who’ve done a risible job.

How not to maintain public space

We may have one answer as the council’s own leader Teresa O’Neill doesn’t appear to even know the name of areas and towns in her own borough.

She calls the area where a homeless camp sprung up outside the station as being Thamesmead in her latest report. You’d think it being outside Abbey Wood station would be a bit of a clue as to where it was, but no.

Here’s an extract:

You what? Basic mistakes from council leader

Shouldn’t someone who is the council leader and bringing in such a healthy salary at least know the basics of the borough they are in charge of?

She then congratulates the clean-up operation without mentioning it sprung up as a very result of gross neglect.

Landscaping never maintained. Litter rarely ever picked up. Lack of effort causes spiral effect


This ignorance by not knowing what town is which – even when there’s the help of a station next door – perhaps offers a hint of why her own council have been shambolic across this area.

Expensive paving and setts tarmacked over within months

From basic things like basic cleaning and litter to dumping down blocks of concrete on expensive new public space and problems such as a homeless camp being allowed to become established amidst already filthy and squalid conditions, Bexley Council and their leadership have shown incompetence in the extreme.

Expensive new materials were dug up within months of work completing then replaced with tarmac. Bexley don’t seem to care at all. Even if reported, perhaps staff are wandering around a mile away in Thamesmead trying to find the spot.

How Bexley Council maintain streets

It should also be noted that Greenwich Council’s borough boundary sits in the middle of this area and they’ve agreed to let Bexley “maintain” areas on either side. Shouldn’t they be asking questions of Bexley are why they’re doing such a crap job?

On a wider level neither borough seem to care much for Abbey Wood. On the other side of the tracks Greenwich Council thought they’d replicate Bexley and dumped tarmac down on another recently upgraded area.

Greenwich Council doing their best to make area ugly

Great work by the pair in ruining a rare chance to improve a long-neglected area.

Car park

Long neglected. Last week they moved concrete blocks – to other side of station

It was also amusing recently to also see councillors wonder why their new car park in Abbey Wood (a message to Bexley’s leader: that’s not Thamesmead) wasn’t raising the expected money. Aside from high costs it wouldn’t by any chance be because it was next to the camp which saw endemic problems with crime?

The same camp that got a foothold as the area was rapidly falling apart?

Again and again they keep showing – and demonstrating through inaction – little idea or clue over areas in their own boundary.

So called temporary fencing blocks access years after work complete

As part of the upgrade much money was spent on new cycle parking which Bexley then somehow appear to have forgotten to open for three years and left “temporary” fencing up the whole time.

This fencing closer to the station alongside various rubbish they’ve dumped down blocks a path.

The whole episode is a damning testament to how far Bexley Council have fallen in doing even the basics. That their own leader doesn’t even know which town one of the biggest regeneration areas in London – where millions was spent – is located follows her council and various department’s rotten record

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J Smith

I've lived in south east London most of my life growing up in Greenwich borough and working in the area for many years. The site has contributors on occasion and we cover many different topics. Living and working in the area offers an insight into what is happening locally.

2 thoughts on “Bexley Council leader shows ignorance of own borough – including beside Elizabeth line

  • What a colossal mess they’ve made out of a once in a lifetime opportunity to bolster that area.

  • We got more concrete blocks on Gayton road side, presumably to block cars stopping at pedestrian crossing, yay!


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