IN the wake of a fatal stabbing in the town, an MP has suggested Thamesmead should get its own town or parish council.

John Austin, MP for Erith and Thamesmead has raised the idea with Communities and Local Government Secretary, John Denham.

He said: “It is time to think outside the box.”

At a public meeting following the murder of 22-year-old Moses Nteyoho, from Chalcombe Road, Abbey Wood, on October 30, it was suggested by residents Thamesmead had become a forgotten area.

Mr Austin said a plan to create a parish or town council could only be achieved if residents wanted it.

The complication caused by Thamesmead being divided between Bexley and Greenwich boroughs would mean there would have to be two such councils.

He added: “This would not be ideal, but as they would be resident-led I think there could be ways of the two working together for Thamesmead as a whole.”

There is also the possibility Mr Denham will look again at whether Thamesmead should be divided between two authorities.

Mr Austin said: “He is aware of the difficulties created by having a borough boundary dividing the town.

“Because Greenwich borough has higher levels of deprivation and need than Bexley, it has access to some funding streams which are not available to Bexley.

“But that makes no sense to the people of Thamesmead, who see themselves as one community.”

Mr Austin has also been in talks with ministers and Gallions Housing Association to try and find ways of revitalising the Tavy Bridge redevelopment scheme which has run into problems because of the credit crunch.

Plans are in the pipeline for a ministerial visit to Thamesmead in early January and Mr Austin has invited London Mayor Boris Johnson to tour the area.

Contact has also been made with the new minister for youth engagement, Dawn Butler, about tackling anti-social behaviour and Mr Austin is hoping to set up a meeting with Thamesmead youth workers and young people.