Town hall announces drive in carol service for Christmas

Cllr Darren Rodwell announces a drive in carol service at a full council meeting. Picture: LBBD

Cllr Darren Rodwell announces a drive in carol service at a full council meeting. Picture: LBBD - Credit: Archant

The town hall could put on a drive in carol service this Christmas.

The idea was made public by leader of Barking and Dagenham Council, Cllr Darren Rodwell, in a meeting on Wednesday, November 25.

Cllr Rodwell, during his speech to councillors, said: “We are looking to do a drive in carol service. There’s something about a Christmas carol that makes you feel warm inside and it doesn’t matter what religion you are.

“Because actually all of us believe in good will in men and women. And let’s together bring in 2021 as a new beginning.”

He added the event would allow the borough to show where it wants to go as a community.

“Where we want to go is going to be so incredible because everyone deserves it. This borough is the borough of opportunity,” he said.

He pointed to the building of homes, job creation, investment and school infrastructure improvement.

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However, Cllr Rodwell revealed that the local authority has yet to find out if the government will invest in plans to replace a section of the A13 with a tunnel, allowing for the construction of 12,000 homes in the Castle Green area. A link to high speed rail also forms part of the plans.

“It will make sure we actually improve our connection to the rest of the world. This is not just an investment for Barking and Dagenham.

“Barking and Dagenham has been the engine, the powerhouse of production for a hundred years. You could say the country’s powerhouse because London powers the country.

“Barking and Dagenham powered London. So let’s make it happen again,” Cllr Rodwell added.

READ MORE: New tunnel could replace part of A13 in Dagenham and create space for thousands of homesThe local authority leader was speaking after chancellor Rishi Sunak delivered the government’s spending review.

The spending plan includes plans to give local authorities extra flexibility over council tax and the adult social care precept.

Cllr Rodwell described the move as a “billion pound council tax bombshell” which would hurt working class communities across the country.

“I hope and pray that people will remember this. That when we were in our darkest times, rather than getting the support that they claimed they would give when we went all out to support our most vulnerable, they actually sidestepped it,” he said.