Owzat! Council restores CLR name

Hackney council yesterday 7 Oct 2010 backed down on its decision to drop the name CLR James from the £4.4 million combined archive and library in the Dalston Square building at the corner of Roseberry Place (map).

The council says it will now put to “community groups” the suggestion that the new premises be named the Dalston CLR James Library.An online pro-James-name petition launched in August had attracted more than 2,500 signatures.One of its organisers, Ngoma Bishop, of the Dalston-based Black and Ethnic Minority Arts group, thanked this website “for taking the lead”.

Loving Dalston was the first news outlet to reveal council plans to drop the name, explaining in February that both the Trinidadian writer CLR James and Rose Lipman, a Hackney councillor, would lose their status as names on local buildings.Hackney council apologised to James’s widow, Selma, for not having consulted her about its plans to drop the legendary polemicist and cricket writer’s name.

The council has not apologised to any of Lipman’s descendants. However, nobody has expressed interest in keeping her name on the library.

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2 thoughts on “Owzat! Council restores CLR name

  1. If the name of Rose Lipman is heedlessly erased by LBH then Hackney and Dalston will be the less Hackney and Dalston, and Jewish London will be the less Jewish London.

    As far as I am aware CLR James had no local connection with Dalston and no matter how good a writer he may have been I suspect that the Library that bears his name was named for him in much the same way that 30 or 40 years ago Student Union branches used to name their buildings and bars after Winnie Mandela.

  2. The council has not apologised to any of Lipman’s descendants but they have to CLR James’ widow. Whats the difference? Rose Lipman was a Hackney councillor who helped found two local schools for Jewish girls and did a lot of work for the then new housing estate in De Beauvoir. Typical of LBH to change their mind just because of a bit of publicity. Or is it that Rose Lipman was a Zionist and New New Labour hate that?

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