Palace player’s anti-violence song

Neil Danns in posing music star mode

Neil Danns, the highly-rated Crystal Palace midfielder, has a sideline in writing and performing songs.
As well as being able to hold the ball on the football pitch pretty well, Danns can also hold a tune.
One of his songs is a collaboration with a former Palace player, Ryan Smith, who does the rapping in between Danns’ more soulful chorus warbling.
It’s not exactly lovecroydon’s cup of tea, but you can’t argue with the sentiment.
Danns, 27, has a number of songs – including a cover version of an Oasis song, on the YouTube website. Check him out.

The anti-violence song with Ryan Smith can be found

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Nick Clegg in town tomorrow

Deputy PM Nick Clegg is coming to Croydon for one of his ‘public engagement’ events.
Cleggy’s visit comes less than a week after he launched a social mobility campaign at a centre for deprived children.
What’s wrong with that?, I hear Croydon’s sandal-wearers ask.
Nothing much, just that the centre is due to shut because of funding cuts.
He appeared to be unaware that the Sure Start playgroup in West London was doomed until he arrived there and was confronted by angry parents.
Local Labour MP Andy Slaughter attempted to tackle him about it but says he was told: ‘Sorry, it’s not a matter for me.’
The venue for tomorrow’s visit is yet to be confirmed.

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Two new stores open in Croydon today

The new Lidl store in Church Street

Two retail companies at opposite ends of the what is now referred to as the ‘shopping offer’ opened new stores in Croydon today.
John Lewis’ much-anticipate At Home store finally opened the doors of its Purley Way branch, which is only the second such store in the country to open.
And discount supermarket chain Lidl opened a large store in Church Street, an area of the town centre where there is plenty of budget chain competition for the German outfit. It now has two stores in Croydon, the other being in London Road, West Croydon.
Lovecroydon had a quick breeze around the new Lidl store today and was impressed by what we saw.
Where else can you buy 12-year-old malt whiskey at £7.99 a bottle and a Yamaha keyboard at the same time?
Not many places, I’ll wager.
There will no doubt be some who will whinge about another discount store in the town centre, but there were plenty of people happy to spend their money today.
In Germany people are not so sniffy about Lidl, where it enjoys a reputation for quality and value.
Besides, the money saved by doing the weekly shop there could go towards some of those lovely cushions and tea sets being sold by the workers cooperative in Purley Way. Makes sense all round, doesn’t it?
John Lewis said there were crowds of people waiting to get into their new store this morning.
Branch manager Glynis Gunning-Stevenson got the ball rolling with a speech to her team before children from the nearby Parish Church Primary School cut the ribbon at 10am.
Happy shopping Croydon!

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Wrong type of rain?

As usual the rail and ‘Tube’ links to and from Croydon have been hampered by a light shower of rain overnight.
Whenever the platforms are soggy you can be sure that the trains in and out of our fair borough are more than likely to be affected.
Southern’s website carries no immediate information about what is causing delays to some of its services, although an announcement heard earlier today said that one train had been delayed because of member of its crew was late.
The reason for the crew member’s tardy timekeeping? His train to work was delayed. You couldn’t make it up.
A quick shufty at the TfL website, which has more up-to-date travel information, shows that there are also severe delays on services between Dalston Junction and West Croydon, New Cross and Crystal Palace due to a signal failure at Sydenham.
TfL say valid tickets will be accepted on London Buses, London Underground and Southern services for alternative journeys by all reasonable routes.
If you’re still trying to get into work, good luck.

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GCSE pass rates increase

Reflecting the national picture, GCSE pass rates in Croydon are up again – congratulations to everyone who passed theirs. Below is the council’s press release on the subject…

Pass rates for GCSEs have risen in Croydon for the seventh year in a row – and the borough’s pupils are now a class above the average for the whole of England.

Figures released on the day that children picked up their results showed that in Croydon 80.8 per cent of pupils picked up five A* to C grades.

The news has been welcomed by Croydon Council, who said it was further proof that work being done to improve the borough’s schools was paying off.

The pass rate increase for 2009 to 2010 follows on from a nine per cent jump for the previous academic year, when 74 per cent of pupils gained five GCSEs at grades A* to C.

There are now 20 per cent more children passing the exams than in 2007.

The results build on the very good results at Key Stage 2 in primary schools and at A Level in secondary schools announced earlier in the summer for Croydon.

Those good results were matched by those studying through Croydon’s Adult Education Service, where many outstanding results were also achieved.

Councillor Tim Pollard, the council’s cabinet member for children, young people and learners, said: “It is of vital importance that our young people are given the best possible start in life and that includes education.

“More children in Croydon schools are now passing their GCSEs than ever before. We are not complacent and realise there is still work to be done in our schools but our teachers, educationalists and young people should be congratulated for an excellent effort.

“We were criticised for our secondary school review which was done to make every school a good school. It is particularly pleasing to see that a number of what were underperforming schools saw increases in their pass rates.”

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MP’s first public meeting

The new(ish) MP for Croydon Central Gavin Barwell is keeping his pre-election promise to hold public meetings in his constituency.
During the run-up to the general election in May the former councillor promised that if elected he would hold regular public meetings at which residents could come and ask him anything they like.
The first is due to be held in Woodside’s Conservative Club at 8pm tonight.
The club is at 36 Elmore Road.

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While my guitar gently reaps

Cobb needs your bread for guitar school

We’ve been promising something on the flame-haired guitar impresario whose accomplished playing has caught the ear of many in the town centre recently and today we finally managed to snare him for a chat.
Dylan Harley Cobb has been noodling in North End for the past few weekends to pay for a course at the respected Guitar Institute.
Incredibly, the 17-year-old from South Norwood has only been playing his axe for two and a half years but he managed to land a place on a one-year course at the north London music college.
Unluckily for Dylan, he was just a fraction too old to qualify for a grant for the near £5,000 cost of the course.
Undeterred, he took it upon himself to get a busking licence from the council and set about raising the dosh for himself.
All credit to Dylan, whose musical heroes include Mark Knopfler, for his playing ability and his gumption.
He’s already raised £1,300 and is “blown away” by the generosity of Croydonians who have taken him to his heart.
Good luck to you Dylan, just don’t forget Croydon when you’re playing at Wembley.

You can check out his skills on YouTube, of course and contribute to his fundraising by emailing him at

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