Meeting Minutes August 2013

Meeting Minutes Hanover and Elm Grove LAT  5th August 2013

Actions are shown in bold.

Present (as recorded on attendance list): Chris Taylor (Chaired the meeting), Hannah Booth (Secretary), Emma Daniel (Labour Councillor), Simon Bannister (B&H Council), Bill Randall (Councillor), PCSOs Dawn Kitson & Janine Redman, Dani Ahrens, John & Sally Holmes and Chloe Firman (Hanover Terrace), Patricia Smith, Andrew Smith, Gill Perkins, Lisa Murray, Patrick Hennessey (Horse & Groom Landlord), David Gibson, Simon Elliott.

Apologies: Mark Woolford (Sussex Uni. Housing Assistant), Liz Wakefield (Councillor), Julia Pilgrim (Hanover Terrace), Lorinda Holness (Sussex Uni. Residents’ Services).

No other official absence apologies reported.

  1.  Minutes and matters arising:

Garden/Green waste collection: In reference to last month’s minutes, Chris (Chair) informed the meeting that he had been in touch with the council & CityClean regarding green waste collection but has received no follow-up as yet.

Bill Randal had also put in a formal request regarding similar collection matters, including the improvement and addition of special areas where garden waste could be placed by residents (in keeping with the areas allocated for Xmas trees at the end of each year) and this is being considered.  Bill will update the meeting as soon as possible.

Communal Bins: Bill opened discussion on this topic by reiterating his feeling (agreed by the meeting) that the ‘trial’ streets in Hanover which still have communal bins should be surveyed again; such a survey should include whether residents in favour of the bins in those streets would be prepared to have them positioned outside their own properties – moving them away from the public houses and end of streets, possibly deterring fly-tipping at least – and if so to then action the bins being moved and retained, or if not then to remove the bins altogether in keeping with the rest of the ward.  The local people of Hanover and Elm Grove will need to conduct this survey; suggestions were made to approach local resident Charlie Doidge (with her experience of conducting a previous survey of opinion in the area) and to do this as soon as possible (October 2013?) ensuring to also include any new residents (particularly students).

The meeting then discussed the state of the ‘trial’ communal bins and the continuation of fly-tipping, dumping household waste etc. as well as the issue of a continuing denial of responsibility for collection by services (for example refuse collectors from CityClean not sweeping up or collecting spilt refuse after the trucks have been round and numbers of workers not being increased at key times such as bank holidays).  Patrick Hennessey discussed issues with the bins directly outside his pub, the Horse & Groom (including no longer being able to open the pub doors due to the overflowing bins and smell, plus bins never having been cleaned out).

Gill Taylor reminded the meeting that Magpie’s services are only £1 per week for effective collection and that supporting small local services such as this is also very worthwhile (although Magpie did turn down a proposal from the council to perform a full and regular Hanover collection in the past).

David Gibson discussed the continued need for community spirit and ensuring that, particularly with the communal bins issue, we fully and positively include the residents of Washington and Coleman Streets.  Chloe mentioned that leaving a note with particular houses/neighbours if they persist in leaving refuse outside houses or on the wrong days can be effective.  It was decided by the meeting to be proactive and also to action the council/CityClean for more collections per week – especially for communal bins in all areas of the city (3 weekly collections as 2 is not enough).

Parking: Bill Randal began discussion by informing the meeting that 3 things had been actioned recently:

  • Double-yellow lines are being re-painted by Pizza Me at the bottom of Islingword Road & traffic wardens are being more vigilant in the area.
  • Discussion begun on double-yellow lines being painted at the bottom of Montreal Rd/Albion Hill.
  • A survey is to be conducted in Pankhurst Avenue regarding speeding & introducing ‘carving’ and a 20mph limit.

The proposal of having a car-sticker system for Hanover residents was still considered positive by the meeting; it was agreed that we should again approach Charlie Doidge in the hope that she may be involved in assisting with organising a parking survey across Hanover.

Points were raised by Dani Ahrens and Simon Bannister regarding the past census and Scotland St. surveys and the remaining problem of unknown quantities of cars owned by residents or where parked cars have come in from at any given time.  Any process will be problematic but we are making a positive step; need to encourage involvement, conduct street-by-street surveys, ask opinions and consider other solutions as well as a sticker system etc.

Bill Randall stated that the council is obliged to consider and debate any proposal with over 1250 signatures; Bill has requested that this figure be lowered.  More Hanover residents may now be in favour of a CPZ (especially if there was reassurance that permits were distributed more fairly for residents themselves).  Simon asked if we could agree a proposed alternative scheme which would perhaps have more ‘weight’ in council debate and also – noted by David Gibson – to satisfy any sceptics.  Simon will make further contact with Steve Reeves (consultant for transport planning) and invite him to talk at the next (or a near-future) HEGLAT with time specified in the agenda for devoted discussion on this topic.  Bill added that we should request that 10% of income from any proposed CPZ is effectively channelled back into the community.

Emma Daniel aired some concerns over conducting a survey on a CPZ too soon and added that there are still concerns in the Elm Grove area; this was echoed by David Gibson but he also added that a community approach would ensure a greater chance of success with any proposals put forward. The next official council consultation is planned for 2015, but it was suggested by Chris and agreed by the meeting that we put something together sooner than that.  It was also agreed that more residents of Elm Grove are canvassed and encouraged to come to the HEGLAT meetings and that areas may need to be surveyed separately to account for differing needs.

PCSO Dawn enquired after current parking proposals for parking in Elm Grove; Bill stated that the introduction of white lines in certain areas was just being debated and going to committee in September.  Bill will forward details of this to Chris (and Wilf) when the committee meets and proposals are made official.

2.    Accommodation Issues:

With no official representatives present, general discussion was held on dealing with HMO properties, reminding the meeting of the people who can be contacted when issues are raised and the attempts of HEGLAT and Dan Lyons/Brighton Lettings Agency (whom it is hoped will be able to attend a future meeting to give updates) to improve ways HMOs are managed and potentially increasing plaques with agent details on houses.  Points were raised by Bill, David, Chloe and Chris on legal matters (Article 4), Fire & Safety issues and ‘party houses’ amongst other discussion.

Bill agreed to send related documents on planning laws and HMO guidelines to Chris for further attention.  He also asked that if anyone notes ‘new party houses’ or has any problems with HMOs (especially unregistered) that he and the council should be contacted immediately.

Student liaison was also discussed and the meeting hopes to contact Beth Hancock, volunteer organiser for Brighton community (agreed to action by Bill Randall who will contact Mark Woolford on the matter), to speak at a future HEGLAT.

3.      Police report:

After briefly discussing issues and actions (including the ‘street surgery’ bus) at the Tenantry Downs allotments, ‘graffiti tagging’ was also mentioned and Dawn reiterated to the meeting that ‘tags’ are recorded at the council and offenders can be traced – photos must be sent along with an e-mail to the council and the PCSOs.  Bill agreed to pass on information of the latest person in charge of graffti-tagging at the council to Chris and the meeting.  If graffiti is offensive/racist/homophobic etc. it will be dealt with in max. 24hrs. Simon Bannister also agreed to follow up and inform the meeting of who has taken over from Sarah Leach as ‘graffiti officer’.

David Gibson also reminded the meeting that local residents had previously agreed to help paint over any local graffiti and it would be worth reinstating known people having ‘graffiti kits’ with local residents painting over graffiti more regularly and also using groups/schemes such as ‘Friends of the Pepperpot’, the ‘Dulux Community Fund’ and ‘Adopt a Box’ to help tackle graffiti.  The meeting agreed that ‘community resolution’ (as noted by Dawn) is beneficial for some offenders, alongside the ‘community payback’ scheme as mentioned by Bill.  Professional artists (graffiti or otherwise) can also be approached again depending on suggested sites for artwork.

Dawn then informed the meeting that there is a new rota for PCSOs attending The Level and the new Level play park/skate park etc. (08:00-22:00 hrs).  Emma Daniel raised some concerns in the Pankhurst Avenue area – young motorcyclists speeding, a certain amount of reported crime, graffiti on Hartington Rd./Saunders Park – and Janine agreed to enquire as to who is now the key person of contact for the area including Bear Road and beyond.  Simon also agreed to enquire after the person who has taken over from Don Franklin as the new Saunders Park ‘Ranger’.

4.      A.O.B.

Dani reminded the meeting that there was to be a meeting held by the ‘Action for Sustainable Living’ group at the Hanover Centre on Thursday at 20:00, discussing Fracking.

David requested that the HEGLAT meetings be publicised better by putting together a Newsletter and more widely distributed flyer encouraging more people to come to the meetings; this will be discussed in more detail with agreed points TBA at the next meeting.  The meeting also suggested creating a Facebook page for the area or certain streets, and possibly utilising Twitter or creating a specific local website.  It was suggested that the Hanover Centre Facebook page be used better and mailing lists increased.

5.      Date of next meeting:

It was agreed to hold the next meeting on Monday 30thSeptember 2013, 7:00pm at The Hanover. 

PCSO contact details:                        Janine.Redman@sussex.PNN.Police.uk

Dawn.Kitson@sussex.PNN.Police.uk

Mark Woolford:         M.A.Woolford@sussex.ac.uk

Richard Roalfe:         R.A.Roalfe@brighton.ac.uk

Phoenix Halls – 01273 230949

To report anti social driving go to:       http://www.operationcrackdown.org

To keep in touch with issues discussed at the HEGLAT please visit the website: https://heglat.wordpress.com/

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