The Prime Minister’s office has agreed to host an online petition from the East London Advertiser as part of its fight to save a historic East End Library, in what is thought to be the first local newspaper petition on the site.
After 22 days’ deliberation, the Number 10 Downing Street website, which hosts online petitions on a range of issues, yesterday approved one from the Archant title as it battles to save the Bancroft history library and archives in Bethnal Green, East London.
The petition calls on Gordon Brown to ‘promote and preserve the heritage of London’s East End by providing funding to refurbish the threatened local history library and archives in Bancroft Road”.
Tower Hamlets council has proposed selling the former Mile End Vestry Hall to Queen Mary University, which wants to lease the building to the Wiener Library and its Holocaust archives.
Advertiser deputy editor Ted Jeory, and winner of the Reporter of the Year, Weeklies, prize at this year’s Regional Press Awards, said: ‘I’m not sure there was any pressure from our side that made them crack, but it’s interesting they only took the decision after the PM went on holiday. If he does back us, it could save his career.”
Advertiser readers are being urged to sign the petition at www.eastlondonadvertiser.co.uk or http://petitions.pm.gov.uk/Bancroft-Road.
Adrian Sudbury, the Regional Press Awards Digital Journalist of the Year, who has contracted a rare form of leukemia and is campaigning to raise awareness of the disease, attracted more than 10,000 signatures to his Number 10 website petition this month.