At the beginning of June, Jon Cruddas MP’s team had the pleasure of visiting Wellgate Community Farm. Wellgate Community Farm began its life in 1982, set up by local volunteers as a project which would encourage local participation in all aspects of the Farm’s activity. The name Wellgate is derived from the two local estates from which the first volunteers came: Chadwell Heath and Marks Gate.


Lightnin Drama group is a Rainham based performing arts group run by Sue Ospreay - a lady well and truly embedded into the local community for all her hard work over the years. Come September, Sue will have been running the school for 41 years!

This week, Jon Cruddas MP’s team had the pleasure of meeting with Dagenham resident, horticultural enthusiast and charity volunteer, John Seaman. John is part of the National Garden Scheme in Essex. The scheme gives visitors access to over 3500 exceptional private gardens in England and Wales. 100 of these gardens are in Essex. The scheme raises impressive amounts of money for nursing and health charities through admissions, teas, and cake. The scheme has been running for 90 years.

John’s Exotic Garden


‘Charity Begins at Home – Essex’ is a new Charity shop that has recently opened in Rainham Village making it the only charity shop for residents living in Rainham. For years, Joe Norman and his wife Ann have always been involved with supporting charities such as St. Francis Hospice, The British Heart Foundation, Royal National Lifeboat Institution, and the Air Ambulance.


Councillor Glenda Paddle

Last month, Jon Cruddas MP’s team had the pleasure of meeting with Glenda Paddle who is a Labour Councillor for Whalebone Ward for Barking and Dagenham and the Chair of Policy Task Group. Glenda is dedicated to helping the residents of Barking and Dagenham and has been a resident of the borough herself for 35 years. 

Glenda’s Dedication


Jon Cruddas MP’s team met with Jeff Stafford the secretary from the Havering Cyclists. Havering Cyclists represents one of thirty-three branches of the London Cycling Campaign. By joining this group, members are given third party insurance as a cyclist. Havering Cyclists work their hardest alongside Havering Council and Transport for London to make roads, traffic lights and highways safer for cyclists. This is greatly appreciated work given the increase of cyclists on the road since the start of the Covid-19 pandemic.


Last week, Jon Cruddas MP’s team met with Dan O’Sullivan the Honorary Secretary for Dagenham Boxing Club. Dagenham Boxing Club is a non-profit, voluntary organisation which is dedicated to young people in the local community. The club is made up of 24 coaches and has been running for 69 years. The club has had national champions at all levels and have trained big names such as Lawrence Okolie for the 2016 Olympic Games or Billy Adams who is a three-time national champion.

The Reverend Gayler and Marks Gate Community tell us about the work they do in our local area:

Big Society = Lots of Locals

The Church of England has been doing it for centuries.

The whole of England is divided into parishes with a person responsible for all the people living within the boundaries of that parish.  The average size is about 7000 people but with certain areas that can get stretched or increased.