Brick Lane book, the Urban Forest, Linkage Plus, Price Walking

Urban Tree Festival May 2018. Explore the Urban Forest: Peckham

Brick Lane Book Launch in Brick Lane – Weds 9th Oct

Once Upon a Time in Brick Lane is a book of photos by Paul Trevor. He spent the 1970s and 80s documenting the famous East End street. You can glimpse some of Paul Trevor’s photos here, or attend the launch party.

Once Upon a Time in Brick Lane book cover

Book launch and signing: Weds 9th October, 6-8pm at the Living Room, 91 Brick Lane, E1 6QL. Head south under, then over the railway, and it’s on the right halfway between Quaker and Hanbury Streets.

Publishers Hoxton Mini Press say: “We will provide a limited run of free wine – first come, first served!”

Explore the Urban Forest in Walthamstow

This guided walk takes place on Sun 27th Oct from starting from10.30 am at Walthamstow Central Station.

I can tell you from personal experience that Paul Wood really knows what he’s talking about. I took the top photo here of Paul running a similar walk in Peckham. He’s the author of two books “London Street Trees”and “London is a Forest”.

Buy tickets in advance for the reduced price of £15 before 20 Oct. 

A Win for Age UK

For the past two years Age UK have been campaigning for better transport for older people to and from hospital. Thousands of elderly people told Age UK about the long and stressful journeys they had – just to get to appointments.

After a long campaign Age UK have succeeded in finally getting through! Simon Stevens, the CEO of the NHS, has just announced that NHS England will  immediately begin a review of the patient transport system.

Linkage Plus

Linkage Plus is an innovative project for people over 50 living in Tower Hamlets. It operates out of five hubs. The hub for Bow, Age UK East London, is based at Caxton Community Centre, Caxton Grove, E3 2EE, at the far eastern end of Malmesbury Road.

Linkage Plus logo

Linkage Plus outreach workers visit sheltered schemes, Ideas Stores and other places to offer help, advice, and offer social activities.

If you know of an older person in Tower Hamlets who might benefit from extending their social network, or maybe needs help filling in forms, point them in the direction of Linkage Plus.

Watch out for “price walking”

The Financial Conduct Authority recently published a report called General Insurance Pricing Practices. The phrase “price walking” appears 14 times in it.  What happens is that after gaining customers paying by direct debit, the insurance company ramps up the premium each time it is renewed. According to The Daily Telegraph the average premium rises by £200 after 12 months.

That certainly happened in my house. Our car was happily insured through Saga, but after a couple of years we noticed that the price seemed to going up by big leaps. In the end we moved to a different company and paid £250 for identical cover, instead of the £450 which Saga wanted. That breach of trust has also lost Saga our household insurance and travel insurance. The FCA say they are looking at how they can stop these sharp practices.

Separately Ofcom recently said that 40% of broadband customers are paying a “loyalty penalty” by allowing their contracts to auto-renew. They reckon that many people are paying £8-9 a month more than they need to.

I would add one warning to people changing providers. Make sure that you are switching to a known, reputable company. Citizens Advice say that 13 energy firms went bust last year affecting 300,000 people.

Speedy Typing

A study of 37,000 volunteers at Cambridge University found that top smartphone typists could achieve 100 words a minute just using their thumbs.  QUERTY is so yesterday! Speedy typing on a phone is achieved by having predictive text turned on – type a few letters and whole words and phrases are suggested for you to tap on.

Autocorrection, however, is a different beast. With this you type in the correct text and the system secretly changes it. It’s like having your own personal Enigma Machine.

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