Haringey Council, in north London, was headline news recently after spending over £100,000 of local taxpayers money on renaming a street.

Why was this necessary? The street used to be called Black Boy Lane, likely after a pub that used to exist nearby. 

This name remained as a slightly odd but harmless relic, likely largely ignored by residents and council bureaucrats. Until recently. After the death of George Floyd, public and private organisations embarked on major campaigns to literally change our history. It gave right-on officials a blank cheque to embark on pet projects with little relevance to ordinary people.

The street has now been renamed La Rose Lane.

And, according to Haringey Council, Black Boy Lane needed to be changed in recognition of the negative impact the supposedly racist connotations have had on residents. 

But there’s one major problem. The council’s own consultations showed mass local opposition to the proposal. 78 percent of all respondents and 81 per cent of those who lived on the street itself were against the plan to rename the street. The council embarked on these consultations, hoping to use them to justify its plans. 

The reaction of this council to the views of its residents – the people whose taxes fund their salaries – was to simply ignore their views and spend a fortune.

Unsurprisingly, residents are furious and the whole thing has descended into farce. The street’s new sign, which ludicrously includes “formerly Black Boy Lane” in brackets, has already been vandalised. It is now overshadowed by a mural reminding people of the street’s original name.

When bureaucrats ignore the facts and the views of residents, it should come as no surprise when they have no sense of value for taxpayers’ money. It’s local taxpayers who will be picking up the six figure bill. 

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