Pictured: Mayor Perry with Andrew Brown, CEO of Croydon BME Forum, at the special Windrush 75 service at Croydon Minster on Thursday.
Tragic murder of Croydon grandmother
My thoughts and prayers are with the family and friends of church leader Nelly Akomah, tragically killed in her home in Thornton Heath. Police have arrested two people on suspicion of the murder of the much loved 76-year-old grandmother. Local residents will see an increased police presence and I would encourage anyone to speak to police if they have information to share or to raise any concerns they may have.
Man found guilty of popular sergeant’s murder
A man has been found guilty of the murder of Croydon police sergeant Matt Ratana. The popular officer was shot dead in September 2020 in a Croydon police station by Louis De Zoysa. His murder shocked the whole community here in Croydon, and indeed the nation. The loss of Sgt Ratana to his family, friends and the community is unimaginable, but today justice has been served. His lifelong commitment to Croydon policing will never be forgotten.
It was an honour to join Croydon BME Forum at Croydon Minster for a special Windrush Day service of thanks and celebration. This year was extra special, as we marked Windrush 75 – the 75th anniversary of the Empire Windrush passenger liner arriving in Great Britain. Croydon is proud to be home to one of the largest Black Caribbean communities in the UK, and Windrush Day is an opportunity for us all to celebrate the Windrush generation and their legacy. Our Caribbean Influencers exhibition at The Museum of Croydon honours our Caribbean residents’ past and present, and their rich contribution to every aspect of life in our borough. Do check out Caribbean Influencers if you haven’t already – part of our London Borough of Culture celebrations, it’s on at the museum until 21 July.
Salute our Forces
I was proud to join our Civic Mayor, veterans and current members of the Armed Forces as we raised the flag for Armed Forces Week at Croydon Town Hall. It’s an opportunity for us all to remember our regulars, reserves, veterans, cadets – past and present – for their incredible service to our country. Thank you to them and their families for the huge sacrifices they make for us all.
Preventing youth violence
We’ve launched a further £50,000 of funding for community groups to deliver projects which help to keep young people safe over the summer and as they head back to school. This round of funding is available to organisations working in Thornton Heath and Purley and is on top of the grants already distributed in New Addington, the town centre and Shrublands. By working with local grassroots organisations – who know and understand their communities best – we will do our best to divert and support young people at risk of becoming involved with violence, making Croydon safer for everyone.
It was good to see so many residents at Polaska’s exhibition where they shared proposals for a new swimming pool, gym and public square in Purley town centre. The developers are inviting the people of Croydon to comment on the designs, which will be on display at Christ Church, Purley on Friday 23 June, from 4-7pm, and at Purley fete on Saturday 24 June, from 12-4pm. All the proposals can be seen online, where your comments can also be recorded.
London Borough of Culture – Launch of Music Heritage Trail
It was a privilege to be at the launch of the new Music Heritage Trail as part of Croydon’s year as London Borough of Culture. I’d encourage residents to download an easy-to-use app which provides a trail guide taking you on a journey through Croydon – highlighting the borough’s top 25 artists and venues, as voted for by the community.
The launch event also saw the unveiling of a fantastic mural in The Queen’s Gardens by street artist ATMA – showcasing Croydon’s music legends from classical music composer Samuel Coleridge-Taylor to grime artist Stormzy.
Find out more about the trail on the This is Croydon website
Finally, I would like to wish peace and happiness to all those celebrating Eid Mubarak this coming week.
Executive Mayor of Croydon