Agenda and minutes

Castle Community Meeting - Tuesday, 13 February 2018 6:00 pm

Venue: St John the Baptist Parish Centre, Clarendon Park Road, Leicester, LE2 3AD

Contact: Angela Martin, Community Engagement Officer (Tel: 0116 454 6571) (Email: Angela  Jason Tyler, Democratic Support Officer, (Tel: 0116 454 6359) (Email:

No. Item



The Chair will introduce those present and make any necessary announcements.


The Chair and any other Councillors who are present will make any declarations as required by the Councillors’ Code of Conduct.


Councillor Myers, Chair for the meeting led introductions and welcomed everyone to the meeting.


There were no declarations of interest.





There were no apologies.



ACTION LOG pdf icon PDF 105 KB

The Action Log of the meeting held on 21 November 2017 is attached for information and discussion.


The action log of the previous meeting on 21 November 2017 was agreed as an accurate record.




There will be an update on the suggested highways scheme at Putney Road


Martin Fletcher (Head of Highways) and Stuart Maxwell (City Transport Director) were welcomed to the meeting


It was reported that a scheme at Putney Road West was being considered and a formal process of consultation would be commenced.


A presentation was given, which outlined the objectives of the scheme and provided background context of the proposals.


Concerns were expressed by residents, including representations from the Friends of Clarendon Park.  The concerns were particularly raised in respect of the effect of potential increased through traffic in the area, including Victoria Park Road, and the links to the larger scheme at Evesham Road, where a potential road link had previously been cited.


The University’s plans for changes to the Freemen’s Common campus had also caused concern and the combined effect of these schemes was questioned.  It was not felt by residents that each set of proposals could be considered individually or independently.


Having regard to the content of the presentation, concern was also expressed that the words used implied that the scheme would progress, regardless of the results of the formal consultation process.


Officers confirmed that if fundamental evidence was provided in opposition to the proposals, the scheme could be withdrawn.  The process of bidding for Dept of Transport (DfT) finances was explained, which provided context concerning the original promotion and suggestion of the scheme.  It was noted that the Council were encouraged to bid for funds that would support economic development, national productivity, and regeneration.  Examples of other schemes that had been successful in receiving DfT funding were reported.


In terms of wider transport proposals, it was confirmed that each scheme would be considered on individual merits and that the success or failure of any one scheme would not affect the likely progress of another.


Councillor Kitterick disputed this comment and referred to the submission sent to the DfT, as drafted by officers, which stated that the Putney Road scheme would enhance the viability of the Evesham Road scheme.  Officers explained their reasoning for the inclusion of the statement in the submission.  Concerns were reiterated that the schemes could not be considered independently.  Councillor Kitterick also referred to the omission of key documents in a recent Freedom of Information Act enquiry.


It was noted that the Evesham Road scheme had been included in the initial draft of the new Local Plan in its early consultation stages.  It was reported that significant opposition to this inclusion had also been submitted as part of that separate consultation process.


Further concerns were expressed at the likely increase in traffic should the scheme progress, particularly in Victoria Park Road and in the vicinity of the Mayfield Road roundabout.  It was suggested by residents that contradictory principles were apparent, having regard to other transport proposals in the area, such as the improved cycle routes on London Road. 


It was considered by residents that this demonstrated that the overall sustainable transport policies and ambitions were flawed.


Officers accepted that the statement in the DfT submission could be  ...  view the full minutes text for item 14.



There will be an update on the Leicester University Campus development proposals.


Councillor Myers read a statement from the University, which informed the meeting of progress on the pre-application consultation on the proposals for Freemen’s Common and on refinements that had been taken on board.


The planning application documents were being finalised and would be submitted in due course.  Any further comments on the proposals could be made by residents as part of the planning application process.


In respect of the Percy Gee Building (Students’ Union), it was reported that construction was due to begin in early March following recent planning approval.  It was confirmed that the University would be working to ensure minimal disruption during the construction period.


An update on the Victoria Park CCTV system was also provided and it was noted that the University had recently submitted a planning application for the installation of additional cameras.


In response to a question, it was clarified that any proposals to remove trees would be identified in the planning applications submitted to the Council


The update was noted.




There will be an update on Clarendon Park Gardens.



Councillor Myers read a statement, which provided an update on the security and management of Clarendon Park Gardens.  It was noted that changes to the ‘lock-up’ schedule and improvements to current practices were expected.


In terms of ASB, it was noted that few reports were submitted formally, although anecdotal evidence was significant.  Residents were therefore encouraged to report any problems.


Suggestions for enhanced landscaping were being considered and the previous survey information from ‘Heartbeat’ would be passed on.


The update was noted.




The Police will give an update on activities in the Ward.



Inspector Manjit Atwal (Neighbourhood Policing Area Commander for Central Leicester) and Sergeant Stu Parker were welcomed to the meeting.


Inspector Atwal outlined her main priorities and advised of current staffing levels for the Central Leicester area, which included 4 principal areas; the City Centre, the Cultural Quarter, Riverside, and Clarendon Park.


It was reported that 12 officers were based at Mansfield House, together with 25 PCSOs.  


It was also reported that since November 2017, the ‘24/7’ team were also based at Mansfield house, providing continuous cover at the station.


Current priorities included:


  • ASB issues in Clarendon Park
  • School patrols, including parking problems
  • College and University patrols, including liaison with a local supermarket where low level incidents were becoming more frequent.


As an update from the previous meeting, it was confirmed that police assistance had been provided to residents at Midland House, following the concerns submitted in respect of ASB.


The meeting was informed of ongoing operational issues including:


  • Reduced knife crime and confiscation of weapons
  • Improved social media links with community groups and Councillors
  • Problems of ‘purse-dipping’ in the city centre
  • Improved links to the Council’s City Wardens service with more frequent meetings resulting in an agreed allocation of tasks to avoid duplication.


Inspector Atwal advised that the Leicestershire Police website could be accessed for a range of information including local crime reports and statistics.


The update was noted.




The City Warden will provide an update on environmental and enforcement issues in the Ward.


Harvey Roberts (City Warden) provided an update on environmental and enforcement activities in the Ward.  He reiterated the points made by the Police (above) concerning the enhanced liaison and improvements to service delivery.


Current activities included increased efforts to reduce alley waste and fly tips, where notices and fines had been issued. 


The use of the Council’s ‘MyAccount’ system for reporting incidents and problems was promoted.  It was confirmed that use of the LoveLeicester app would continue.


In response to questions, the City Warden and Police responded to reports of distraction thefts, where maps and requests for directions were being used to steal mobile devices.


Residents also expressed concern at the numbers of bins on streets and on increased ASB problems.


It was also noted that the numbers of street-beggars had increased dramatically, with ‘competition’ for some locations being witnessed.


The need to report incidents was reiterated and it was confirmed that if residents did not want to ring the 101 number (as concerns were expressed regarding its effectiveness); the emailing of information to relevant officers was also acceptable, for ‘low-level’ reporting. 


The City Warden was thanked for his update.




Councillors are reminded that they will need to declare any interest they may have in budget applications.


An update will be given on the Ward Community budget.



Councillor Myers reminded those present that the purpose of the Community Ward Budget was to support projects/events that would specifically benefit the residents of Castle ward.


The meeting was informed that Councillors had considered applications for funding from the community budget since the beginning of the financial year and approximately £10,000 remained to support suitable applications in the next cycle of bids.


Potential applicants were reminded that all applications must be made online and the Community Engagement Officer could be contacted for assistance with completing forms.





a) Councillors Surgeries


Residents were informed and reminded that Councillors Surgeries were held on the first and third Saturdays of each month from 11.00 am – 12 noon.  Venues were alternated between the Clarendon Park Road area and the City Centre.


b)  To-Let Boards


In response to a question, it was confirmed that progress on the initiative to allow the Council greater powers to control To-Let boards could be submitted to a future meeting.  It was suggested that the likely timeframes for implementation of the initiative should be identified, as problems were continuing.





The meeting closed at 8.00pm.