Agenda and minutes

Thurncourt Community Meeting - Monday, 19 June 2017 6:30 pm

Venue: Thurnby Lodge Youth and Community Centre, Thurncourt Road, Leicester LE5 2NG

Contact: Laura Burt, Ward Community Engagement Officer (tel: 0116 454 1876) (email:  Ayleena Thomas, Democratic Support Officer (tel: (0116) 454 6369) (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 Aldred, Chair of the meeting, welcomed everyone and led introductions.


Apologies were received from David Hurst representing the 55th Community Centre (Ward Community funding applicant) and Pat Derby (Thurnby Rangers).


Later in the meeting during item 8: Ward Community Budget, Councillor Aldred declared an interest in Thurnby Lodge Community Association’s funding applications as she had worked on the events team of the Community Association (CA) and also would oversee the events manager.



The Action Log of the Meeting held on 13 February 2017 is attached at Appendix A and Members are asked to confirm it as an accurate record. Any update on actions taken since the last meeting will be reported at the meeting.


The action log of the meeting 13 February 2017 was agreed as an accurate record.



The Thurncourt Ward Councillors will provide an update on the issues they have been dealing with in the Thurncourt Ward.


Councillor Aldred read an update provided by Lee Warner – Head of Neighbourhood Services. The following information was provided:


·         A decision had recently been made to demolish the Ocean Road Community Centre.

·         It was noted that the council would work with groups to identify the best location for their needs.

·         Work was ongoing to help relocate groups who met at Ocean Road Community Centre. 

·         Thanks to close work with the Community Association, a number of groups had already moved into Thurnby Lodge Community Centre.  Officers would continue to work with the remaining groups.


A resident queried the land and future plans for where the Ocean Road Community Centre was currently located. Councillor Aldred noted that no further decision had yet been made with regards to the land, however, it was noted that it could be a communal area but there was no plan for another building to be established.



There will be an update on recent Transport and Highways works within the Ward.


Highways provided a written update which was read by Laura Burt – Ward Community Engagement Officer (WCEO). Some of the issues highlighted were:

·         In May Highways installed 152 metre lengths of metal railing and 10 bollards near the Thurnby Lodge community centre and car wash to prevent verge parking.

·         Several speed surveys had taken place on Scraptoft Lane and this was a work in progress.

·         An officer met with the head teacher of Willowbrook Primary School in April to discuss a number of proposals including an option for ‘Park and Stride’ from the Willowbrook activity centre. Plans were currently being drawn up in preparation for the work to commence which would most likely be in October/ November.


Residents’ concerns (to be taken back to Highways team with request for responses):

·         Scraptoft Lane – a resident had further concerns that this lane was being used as a racing track.

·         It was noted there was an issue with the grounds work, trees on the fence line and overgrown grass at the back of the Willowbrook Activity Centre. There were further queries if this area would be converted into a formal car park and if so would this require planning permission?

·         Traffic calming measures on Dakyn Road were requested.

·         A resident queried if there were any provisions or future plans to install further parking bays at Bowhill Grove. Councillor Aldred noted that this was being looked into.



Housing Officers will be present to give an update on housing matters in the Ward.


Andy East – Neighbourhood Housing Team Leader was present at the meeting.

In accordance with the update provided at the previous Thurncourt Ward Meeting, it was noted that the 2017-18 Environmental Improvement Budget Proposed Schemes had been started and were anticipated to be complete throughout the year.

As a result of reduced budgets, decisions were made in conjunction with Ward Councillors to focus on implementing knee rail fencing schemes to protect grass verges and greens rather than installing parking bays which were reported to be more expensive. These knee high railing schemes would take place at:

o   Sunbury Green

o   Corners of Homestone Gardens, Croyland Green, Milnroy/ Cowley Rail

o   Flamborough Road

o   Herthull Road

o   Fastnet Road


·         A resident had concerns that although the knee high fencing was good, there were still limited parking spaces in the ward and emergency services such as fire engines were reported to have had difficulties getting through the cars parked on certain roads.

·         Andy reinforced the current reduced budget situation but would also evaluate the funds after spends to decide if parking bays could be installed based on any remaining funds.

·         Councillor Aldred noted that knee high railing was chosen as many of her constituents especially the elderly and families were complaining due to limited space to walk on pavements or manoeuvre pushchairs due to cars being parked and were resulting in numerous injuries.

·         Andy East noted that every Ward had provided the Housing team with a list of priority issues to be completed.

·         Next year it was hoped that some kind of parking scheme would be funded but there was no confirmation as yet.

·         A resident queried whether yellow lines could be installed on bends and corners and if so how would this be enforced. This was a query which would be requested to Highways.

·         Sergeant (Sgt) Rob Merrall from Leicestershire Police noted that the Police may be getting back some powers later this year in regards to parking enforcement but it was currently in the remit of traffic wardens.

·         Residents enquired whether there were cheaper alternatives for parking bays rather than the £5-6,000 which Andy East had noted. Andy commented that there were previously cheaper alternatives which required regular upkeep and some of which became dangerous. Highways generally provided the recommendation.

·         Councillor Aldred confirmed that a meeting would be arranged with Highways, Andy East and herself to discuss concerns.

·         Andy spoke about the Housing Office at Rowlatts Hill where he was based which was currently going through the Transforming Neighbourhood Services (TNS) consultation and urged residents especially those that used the office to go online and put their views forward.

·         A resident asked about Council housing policies and the possibilities of being able to obtain properties in the Ward. Andy gave a brief explanation of the Housing bands and bidding system. Councillor Aldred noted that this area was in high demand.




(This item was in addition to the published agenda.)

The Chair provided the update in relation to issues which had been taking place in the Ward. The following was noted:

·         Travellers had recently located on the field near Gelert Avenue. It was reported that the Police were able to remove them from the land within two days using Section 61; therefore there was no need to obtain an eviction notice.

·         Councillor Aldred was in discussion with the Parks team in order to implement a measure to prevent the issue from re-occurring. Granite rocks, mounds or a gate were noted as some of the options explored. It was also noted that the grass on the site would be looked at in the next few weeks.

·         Residents at this meeting were reluctant for the use of mounds due to the untidy and overgrown look.

·         A community group/ residents at the meeting who had requested the use of part of the site near Gelert Avenue to install a full sized football pitch on the field, external funding would also be obtained for bollards and gates. Councillor Aldred commented that this request had been looked into previously but due to there being an existing number of football pitches in the Ward, Parks would not accept the proposal. Following the discussion, Councillor Aldred noted that the request could be re-addressed to Parks and also residents on Gelert Avenue would need to be consulted. The residents/ community group were willing to invite nearby residents to inform them of their plans.


Residents’ concerns:

·         Willowbrook Park - There were to be limited activities in the children’s play area for primary school aged children. Councillor Aldred noted that she was working with the Parks team and the City Mayor to address concerns in the park, funding was being looked into.

·         There was an issue with the block paving and weeds at the side of the Co-op shop (Thurncourt Road). It was noted that Councillor Aldred had voluntarily assisted with the issue. However, Andy noted that he had informed the Grounds Maintenance team who would include it in their work when next in the area.

·         Andy commented that bin chutes proposed for the Willowbrook flats were still due to go ahead, the delay was due to the design process and commissioning of the work. Within this work, it was noted that the area at the side Co-op shop would be looked into.

·         Concerns that children were still climbing up the side of and into the flats above the Thurncourt Road shops, some of which had been causing Anti-Social Behaviour (ASB). Councillor Aldred confirmed information provided at the previous meeting, that the child of a resident had been letting others inside. Laura Burt would inform the ASB team of the situation.



The City Warden will give an update on any projects as well as environmental and enforcement activities taking place in the Thurncourt Ward.


Nicole Powell –City Warden for the Ward attended the meeting and distributed leaflets on activities the City Wardens had been involved in, in the Ward.


·         Nicole requested residents to ask for stencils to be sprayed when reporting dog fouling.



Officers from Leicestershire Police will be at the meeting to provide an update on Police issues in the Thurncourt Ward.


Sergeant Rob Merrall from the Local Policing Team gave an update on the following issues in the ward:


Crime figures in the Ward since March 2017:

o   12 burglary dwellings

o   3 burglaries (non-dwellings)

o   9 vehicle crime

o   4 robberies

o   A few transit van entries


·         Current Police priorities in the Thurncourt Ward included ASB around flats on Bowhill Grove shops.

·         Councillor Aldred noted the stabbing which took place on Thurnby Lodge.

·         A resident requested that Police and Crime Commissioner – Willy Bach be invited to a future Ward meeting as there were concerns of incidents taking place on the estate.

·         Sgt Merrall requested residents to report issues to the Police.



Councillors are reminded that under the Council’s Code of Conduct they should declare any interest they may have in budget applications.


An update on the Ward Community Budget will be provided at the meeting.


Laura Burt noted the following update on the Ward Community Budget:

·         £524 was carried over from 2016-17 budgets.

·         The opening balance on 1st April 2017 was £18,524.

·         There were nine applications with a total spend of £7,830.

·         The remaining balance for 2017-18 was £10,694.


It was noted that Laura was available to assist residents with applications.




The Chair declared the meeting closed at 8.00pm.