Hanover Takes to the Streets (1)

Not sure how long something needs to run for before it becomes a ‘tradition’, but perhaps Zocalo is starting to settle into that territory.

Simply put, it’s an evening at the close of summer for us to bring a sofa (chair.. whatever) onto the street and share a chat and a drink with neighbours. That’s it. Simple. See you there.

For more info see brightonzocalo.com

Sticker : Unstuck

Many thanks to all who came out for the Hanover Street Focus action day on Friday. Residents joined council staff litter picking, weeding and removing old posters, stickers and cable ties.

Of all of the tasks undertaken, stickers can be real bind. Easy to put on, hard to get off, they quickly degrade leaving lamp posts, and other items looking shabby and street signs illegible. Before the day we fretted a bit about the best way to tackle this, and were told that the magic ingredient was WD40 (or similar), so – armed with a tin of squirty stuff, a scraper and a scouring cloth we set forth down Southover. It is still a bit of a chore, and is hard to get perfect results, but this method is fairly easy and quick.

Here is a step by step Sticker Unsticker photo guide:

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Let Hanover Blossom

The idea for Let Hanover Blossom came from residents who would like to see the streets of Hanover looking more colourful and cared for. After talking with the Hanover Action VEG Group gardeners who are doing so much to transform the garden at the Community Centre, we have been collecting unwanted pallets and will show you how to put a backing on them, how to fill them with compost and plant them up with flowers and/or things to grow and eat.

On Tuesday 29th May there will be a ‘drop in’ session at the Community Centre Garden between 2pm and 7pm where you will be able to find out more and get help to make your own vertical planter. We will also be looking at how to plant up and care for window boxes. This will coincide with the regular weekly VEG Group gardening session, and will be good chance to find out what they are up to as well. Thanks to Hanover Action for Sustainable Living for their assistance in this. Blooming Splendid.

(P.S – Here is a pdf of the poster – if you were able to print it and put it in your window, we would be really grateful)

Hanover Street Focus

Following requests from Hanover residents via the Local Action Team, we are planning to hold a couple of events to improve the look of Hanover Streets. Most individual residents keep their flats and houses looking good. But – despite the best efforts of the council street cleansing team – the streets can let the area down. Graffiti; grass growing between paving slabs; stickers and cable ties on lamp posts; benches looking uninviting and unclean. So this is what we suggest: a low-cost makeover.

Step One: a group of residents meet up at the Hanover Community Association on Thursday March 1st at 2pm to 3pm and carry out street audits – simple things that could be done to improve each street such as new flowers in the planter in Ewart Street and a coat or two of wood preserver on the bench at the end of Beaumont Terrace.

Step Two: we contact the various services: Cityclean, the graffiti officer, highways enforcement etc and we get them all to concentrate their resources for a day on Hanover. And if residents want to help out on that day we shall provide litter-pickers and brooms and anything else we can muster which would be of use.  If anyone is interested, we could help you find ways to raise money to plant trees, create window boxes and add some street art. And you never know – the publicity which will come of this may convince some of the people who let the area down, to begin to respect their neighbours and their streets a little more.

Do let us know if you are interested in coming along on March 1st for an hour. Help make Hanover a better place to live.   

Tony Baker  – tony.baker@brighton-hove.gov.uk  01273 293926

Causing a Fence…

Action to improve the look of the piece of wasteland near the Greys and Geese on Southover Street has taken place. Promised a few months back by the council Planning Enforcement Team, this is hopefully the first step toward bringing this piece of land back into use.

September meeting in brief – pt 1 parking on Elm Grove

Pretty much everyone would agree that arrangements like this (left) are a problem. You get a lot of this on Elm Grove where pavement parking is common. Enforcement powers exist on those stretches covered by double yellow lines, but this has not been carried out in recent years and at the moment – in parking terms – anything goes. Following concerns around the level of accidents and complaints about restricted access for residents and pedestrians, the council recently came up with a plan; namely that from October 3rd, those parking on the pavement where double yelow lines were in place would be issued a fixed penalty notice.

A number of residents were unkeen on this solution, which made the September LAT meeting busier than usual as this chance was taken to raise the issue with ward councillors. Because of concerns identified via the Elm Grove Residents Action Group the ward councillors had come armed with a potential compromise; to delay any enforcement action for a three month period to give time for further discussions with the local community and hopefully to arrive at an alternative approach for challenging illegal, dangerous and antisocial parking.

This outcome seemed broadly supported, although one resident who regularly faces problems getting into her home because of badly parked vehicles was unhappy about the delay. A mix of views was expressed, with the majority seeming in agreement that the worst examples of bad parking and pavement driving should be tackled, but that some form of better managed pavement parking would be neccesary to meet local parking needs. This was not unanimous, with some residents feeling that all pavement parking should cease in line with the highway code and existing legal powers.

The next steps: after he has confirmed that it is OK to put back the enforcement date Cllr Follett will put together a working group comprised of local residents, with specialist input from councill officers, police etc… and including comment from special interest groups such as disability organisations, cycling groups, and the school.

A sign up sheet was circulated at the meeting and quite a few residents volunteered to take part in the working group. Anyone who wasn’t at the meeting who would like to be involved should contact Cllr Follett – matt.follett@brighton-hove.gov.uk to find out more.

As more information becomes available about this process, it will be posted on this site.

The remainder of the meeting included a discussion of Houses in Multiple Occupation (HMO’s) and a brief summary of this will be posted next. Both of these topics, and other issues covered at the meeting will be included in the full minutes, to be published in due course.

…and now for a bank that’s right up your street

At the last Local Action Team meeting, Damian Marmura from Cityclean was in attendence and we talked rubbish.

One topic touched on was the Hanover tendency to place unwanted items on the pavement in the hope that someone else might want them – a great local tradition, but sometimes misused or misunderstood leading to pavements littered with tat..

There is another way – enter Streetbank. Streetbank is a free and easy to use website which links neighbours who have got something to give, lend or share or who want something to borrow or have. Unlike other similar sites, items are listed by their distance to your home. Hanover already seems established here with over 50 local members.

The site is jolly and colourfull and easy to use, with a community noticeboard as well as ‘stuff’ listings. I have posted details of my giveaway but no punters so far… anyone else used it and want to comment?

It looks like a good thing, and might help to keep our streets clean, as well as giving a new way to meet neighbours. Here is what founder Sam has to say about it: