Councillors Seek Answers For Miss Naysmith

Still trying to find out reasons for destruction of her garden last year


"Dreadful Mistake" Deprives Car Lady of Shelter

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Chiswick Councillors say they are still trying to get answers from Hounslow Council why the 'car park garden' of Miss Anne Naysmith, was torn down by TfL last year ( August 2012).

The small plot, in a car park behind Stamford Brook Station, housed a small garden in which Miss Naysmith (sometimes referred to as the 'Bag Lady of Chiswick' ) grew vegetables and other plants, some of which she cooked for sustenance, others simply for pleasure.

chiswick ann naysmith

Picture: @janeyjones1

Councillor Gerald McGregor said that Miss Naysmith had recently written to him on a number of matters, including the pollarding of plane trees in Prebend Gardens.

He said he was one of the nine councillors in Chiswick who regarded the maintenance of the safety of Miss Naysmith as a primary duty of care. He added that Councillor Barwood was still trying to get a state pension for her, and the reasons behind the destruction of her facility in the car park were still being pursued by both himself and Councillor John Todd.

"We still have only partial information as to who cut these trees down and we want to know who authorised them to trespass on Council property," he said.

For years, Miss Naysmith lived in a car in Prebend Gardens, before it was removed by the Council. For a number of years, her “spiritual” home has been beneath some shrubby trees on the Vaughan Avenue side of the Stamford Brook car park.

She spends much of her day here where she can barely be seen, calling out to passers-by occasionally to ask the time. In 2002, Hounslow Council accidentally cut these trees down, but they were later replaced and an apology was issued.

Last August (2012) contractors working for Transport for London (TfL) cut these trees down whilst Miss Naysmith was not around. Upon her return, she was reported to be absolutely distraught by the destruction of her own patch of shrubbery. At the time it raise an outcry by locals concerned for her welfare.

A TfL spokesperson said at the time contractors working on their behalf had removed some overgrown vegetation to replace a section of damaged fencing. The damage was a risk to the security of the railway. TfL apologised at the time for causing any distress and said the contractors were not aware of the special significance the land had for Miss Naysmith.

Cllr Mc Gregor said he had recently received a letter from Miss Naysmith on a number of issues, including this and he was still pursuing the matter as it had caused her considerable distress.

January 30, 2013