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Your wishes for Croydon in 2013

WHAT are your hopes for Croydon in 2013? We asked shoppers in North End what improvements they wanted to see over the coming 12 months... PETER Dicker, 25, East Croydon: "I think there should be more street lights on the road, not so much in the centre, but around where I live there is definitely a shortage. When I walk home from work it is always so dark and it encourages crime. Last week I saw a man hassling a women and I had to run over and shout him off – I don't know what would have happened if I wasn't there."

Tony Hilton, 48, South Croydon: "I think there should be more trams and more tram routes. We were promised tram extensions but they never happened. Croydon is so inaccessible by road and people find it hard to get in and out of the city centre. I think this is why big corporations like Nestlé left Croydon."

Melissa Littlemore, 16, who works in Croydon: "I think the trains in Croydon need improving. There is no station that is harder to get to than West Croydon. It is such an inconvenience and there are so many cancellations and delays which means that I don't always get to work on time and makes me late going home."

Ian D'Mello, 35, Purley: There are so many clothes shops in Croydon; I think some of them need to go. I'd like to see them replaced with smaller business start-ups. When you look at areas like Kensington and Chelsea, a lot of their shops are independent, I'm sure there are a lot of people in Croydon with good ideas, but there is just nowhere to put them."

Cheryl Wadey, 45, Croydon: "I was working as a PA and have just been made redundant. My Christmas wish would be for a new job and more jobs for people in Croydon. I have applied for five jobs since my redundancy and am hoping to find a new position sometime in the new year."

Robert Wright, 48, Addiscombe: "I am a keen cyclist and I come into Croydon quite a lot to go shopping and to the gym. It is so expensive to park everywhere and so that's why I ride my bike. The cycling facilities are pretty good, but the parking costs are ridiculous.

"I like to ride my bike everywhere, but there needs to be more parking spaces, and it needs to be cheaper."

Zaza Curran, 37, Crystal Palace: "I regularly come into Croydon to do my shopping and I wish Croydon had a nicer place to shop. If there were some more cafes, it would be easier to stop. I would wish for more places in the town centre where it is greener and looked a bit less industrial."

Rebecca MacDonald, 25, Addiscombe: "I wish for people to be more approachable in Croydon. Having a little baby around, I worry for when she grows up. There's a lot of crime, a lot of problems among young people in Croydon and a lot of issues involving gangs. I think if people were generally approachable, and less aggressive, it would improve the area."

"I just would like to make the area nicer for people to live in."

Jessica Keningale, 24, New Addington: "I would like to see more trees, more grass and more plants in Croydon. The area definitely looks a bit grey. Croydon would be more attractive if there was more colour in the town centre. I think some plants would be a lot nicer than the council just painting the buildings."

"I think some more colour in Croydon would make it a much nicer area to live in."

Stephen Curran, 55, West Norwood: "I come into Croydon on the occasion to do my shopping. I wish people would be happier. People look down when they walk and sometimes look very aggressive. I have had some people rudely walk up to me, saying, 'You got a fag, mate?' and I say no. There's definitely a lack of common courtesy in the area."

Stephen Baron, 66, South Croydon: "My Christmas wish for Croydon would be for less traffic. I want to complain bitterly about the situation of the traffic.

"The road over the underpass into Croydon has been changed into one lane, instead of three. It has been changed from three lanes so that people can cross the road. I think the old system of going from three lanes to two was much better."

"I think the new system is dangerous and I would imagine it's got the potential for causing accidents."

Sarah Ghaziri, 17, Croydon: "I wish Croydon would have some more restaurants. The restaurants here, at the moment, are packed all the time. There isn't enough space for me and my friends to go out. I like going to restaurants and like to go out from time to time, but I would like more selection in the town centre and new places to eat."

Beth Hicks, 17, South Croydon: "I wish for better Christmas lights. Croydon, they're really slacking this year. The lights are not as good as London. The town centre is looking a bit drab and more lights, I think, would make it more festive. The shops are looking all right, but I'd like to see some more lights on the trees.

"I have just been to New York and I really liked the Christmas lights there."

Marlowe Brown, 20, Croydon: "I think there should be more youth clubs. There's not enough for kids to do in Croydon, so they all go and hang around on street corners. I think the youth clubs should have a music studio, football, things that people would look forward to doing when they come home from school.

"Kids will be kids at the end of the day, but there should be more education which helps them learn how to survive and to stop people hanging about on the streets."

Marcus Mills, 21, Croydon: "I think there should be more opportunities for young children so they don't get into bad cycles. Teachers need to break all the things down and explain more about keeping good credit, so that people don't get into debt problems and make mistakes when they're older.

"Teachers need to do more to show them that staying in school is a good thing. I trained as an electrical engineer, but am finding it hard to find a job."

Blaine Field, 19, Croydon: "I would like a big water fountain on the High Street. It would make the area look more presentable and a bit nicer. The water fountain could be surrounded by benches and would make the town centre more presentable.

"I think the town centre is drab and looks boring and I think the fountain would make the High Street look nicer."

Emily Dean, 21, Sanderstead: "My new year wish for Croydon would be for some nicer bars and clubs. There are some OK ones in South Croydon. I would like to see a nice cocktail bar, selling half-price cocktails, for me and my girlfriends to enjoy on a night out.

"A new club would improve the area and bring in more students."

Rob Johansen, South Croydon: "I wish for more music tuition and community groups in Croydon. I think there should be more workshops for young people with musicians.

"I have been a drummer for 13 years and now have three drum kits. I think music always brings people together and drumming has given me some opportunities. It certainly breaks the ice in certain situations."

Marlene Williams, 72, Addiscombe: "I wish for more Christmas characters for children. I used to come here every Christmas eve when I was younger as a ritual with my sister, Nina. We used to love coming here, in the evening, in the dark to see the characters in the shop windows. There used to be lights in every shop, animated characters, the lot. I think it is sad there's nothing for the children now.

"I would like to see donkeys and reindeer giving children a ride down the High Street. It would be something for people to look forward to. I think the council should get away from how much it costs and make the area feel more special and Christmassy."

Your wishes for Croydon in 2013

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