Venue: BRITE Centre, Braunstone Avenue, Leicester, LE3 1LE
Contact: Anita Clarke, Community Engagement Officer (tel: 0116 454 6576) (e-mail: email@example.com) Ed Brown, Democratic Support Officer (tel: 0116 454 3833) (e-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org)
INTRODUCTIONS AND APOLOGIES FOR ABSENCE
Councillors will elect a Chair for the meeting.
The Chair will introduce those present and make any necessary announcements.
The Chair and any other Councillors who are present will make any declarations of interest as required by the Councillors’ Code of Conduct.
Apologies for absence will be noted.
Councillor Dr Barton as Chair welcomed everybody to the meeting and all present introduced themselves.
No declarations of interest were made.
Apologies for absence were received from Sgt Nicholas Golden of Leicestershire Police and City Warden Matt Davinson.
The Action Log for the last meeting, held on 14 August 2019, is attached for information and discussion.
The Action Log of the previous meeting held 14 August 2019 was agreed as a correct record.
WARD COUNCILLORS' FEEDBACK
Ward Councillors will provide an update on local ward issues
Councillor Singh Johal reported that he had spoken at the Economic Development, Transport and Tourism Scrutiny Commission on the Evesham Road link and there had been a consensus that the road was unnecessary.
There was uncertainty as to whether the proposal was on the Local Plan or the ‘Emerging Options’ document. It was hoped that the issue would come to Full Council on 23 January 2020 and details would be provided of how to get the proposal removed.
Neighbourhood Housing Team Leader Sally Morris was present at the meeting and Councillor Barton asked for an update. Points included:
· Housing officers were working with Police and residents to tackle Anti-Social behaviour (ASB) on Gaddesby Avenue. CCTV was to be installed to gather evidence and questionnaires circulated to residents. Once evidence was collated, options would be considered and an action plan formulated.
· Ideas were being formulated for environmental schemes in the ward looking to tidy up the area and improve living conditions.
A resident enquired about the number of void properties in the ward. Action: Sally Morris to look up figures.
An enquiry was made about privately owned houses that were unoccupied and in a state of disrepair. Councillor Dr Barton suggested options including working with owners to make them fit to live in and go on the rental market, alternatively if owners were reluctant to engage, a Compulsory Purchase Order could be made and the house repaired and let out.
Councillor Halford added that the Empty Homes Team could help to identify such owners if addresses were reported to them.
A resident asked about a scheme to insulate homes that was no longer continuing. Councillor Dr Barton explained that this scheme, along with the buy-back scheme for solar panels, had been discontinued due to a withdrawal of government funding.
In response to a query about improvements to residents’ living environment, it was reported that this involved: Soft landscaping, parking schemes, cutting back overgrowth, the installation of boilers and kitchens in void properties and schemes to convert three bedroom properties to two bedroom properties with an upstairs bathroom in order to fit in with demand.
Councillor Dr Barton welcomed any suggestions for environmental improvements.
LEICESTER'S CLIMATE EMERGENCY CONVERSATION
Information will be given on Leicester’s Climate Emergency Conversation.
No representative of the Climate Emergency Conversation was present at the meeting as the meeting coincided with the launch of the initiative.
Councillor Dr Barton explained that the scheme was aimed at addressing the Climate Emergency declared by the Council and was a way of gathering suggestions of what can be done to avert climate disaster. Ideas at this point had included:
· Councillors were moving to a paperless system and no longer had a courier in a van.
· Ways to make council estates and houses more environmentally friendly were being explored.
· Cycling and use of public transport was being encouraged.
Councillor Singh Johal suggested learning from industries which had aimed to become carbon neutral through carbon off-setting, using more bio-degradable material and cutting use of single-use plastic.
A resident recommended the use of an air source heat pump instead of a conventional boiler.
Actions as a council have included introducing charging-points for electric cars, and it was hoped that prioritising environmentally-friendly vehicles could increase their use. The possibility of making busses more environmentally friendly was being explored.
A resident enquired how much recycling collected under the council scheme ended up in landfill. Action: Councillor Dr Barton to submit question to Full Council.
LOCAL POLICING UPDATE
Leicestershire Police will be at the meeting to provide an update on police issues in the Ward.
Apologies were received from Sgt Golden of Leicestershire Police.
Councillor Singh Johal read out a written update. Points included:
· Two priority areas for tackling ASB have been Webster Road and Gaddesby Avenue.
· The Braunstone Park problem plan has been closed following consultation with the Council Parks Team. Further points on Braunstone Park included:
o There were multiple areas to gain access to the park.
o Measures had been put in place to avoid grass cuttings being set on fire.
o The sleepers were to be replaced but would be like-for-like due to accessibility issues.
o Permission had not been gained from Waterways to reshape mounds and ditches.
o The Council was looking to reduce the thickness of the spinney to deter bikes being dumped there.
o Consideration would be given to lighting these areas if feasible.
o Upon reports of bikes on the park, operators were instructed to monitor CCTV for as long as possible in order to pick up persons of interest.
o CCTV operators were asked to highlight incidents monitored in the log book.
o The local beat team were to make contact with CCTV operators monthly.
Police had the following Beat Surgeries:
19 November 2019 10am-12noon
Narborough Road Co-Op:
20 November 2019 9am-10am
6 December 2019 5pm- 6pm
19 December 2019 9am-10pm
Hallam Crescent Co-Op:
29 November 2019 9am-10am
12 December 2019 5pm- 6pm
18 December 2019 7pm- 8pm
CITY WARDEN UPDATE
The City Warden will give an update on issues in the Ward.
Apologies were received from City Warden Matthew Davinson.
Councillor Dr Barton read out a written update. Points included:
· 29 complaints from the public had been received, 24 of which came through the Love Leicester App.
· Most of these complaints were situated in the Narborough Road corridor and concerned waste items such as bed bases and sofas. It was unknown who was responsible, but leaflets were distributed to local residents.
· There had been three reports of untidy land near the Collingham Road area.
· A warning letter had been sent to an address on Heyworth Road, however, the property was empty, and the City Warden was unable to locate the landlord.
· Fly tipping had been reported on Narborough Road and Collingham Road, there was no evidence as to who was responsible.
· An accumulation of litter was reported on Valence Road. This was passed on to Cleansing Services. The area was to be monitored when possible.
Reports were made of rubbish in gardens and bins on streets around Narborough Road and Evesham Road that had been reported previously but not actioned. Action: Councillors to feed back to City Warden.
Houses of Multiple Occupation were raised as an issue as they often created a lot of waste and were often not well looked after due to the transient nature of their occupiers.
Councillor Dr Barton explained that whilst they could not discuss individual cases in the meeting she encouraged residents to inform the City Warden and Councillors of issues.
Highways officers will give an update on highways issues in the ward.
Highways Officer Mark Govan gave an update of highways issues in the ward. Points included:
· Surface dressing and lean patching works had taken place on Hamelin Road and Gooding Avenue.
· Bollards and knee-rails had been installed on Compton Road and Hand Avenue.
· Highways officers have met with Councillor Singh Johal about the possibility of pedestrian refuges and Vehicle Activated Signs on Braunstone Avenue.
· Keep clear signs around the school on Hamelin Road were now enforceable.
A resident enquired as to the purpose of a traffic radar on Evesham Road. Action: Mark Govan to find out from Highways team.
A resident reported that street lights on Narborough Road were failing on a regular basis. Action: Highways officers to review.
A resident reported that the road surface of Meredith Road was shedding chippings following resurfacing and that the ‘turn left’ road marking had not been replaced following the scheme. Action: Highways officers to review.
A resident reported that gullies on Narborough Road were blocked. Action: Highways officers to review.
Councillor Singh Johal reported that bus stop poles and raised kerbs remained in place on Rowley Fields and Dumbleton Avenue despite there no longer being a bus service on those roads. Action: Highways officers to review whether to remove or not.
Councillor Singh Johal and residents remarked on the poor surface of Dubleton Avenue and asked whether it was proposed for resurfacing. Action: Highways officers to review.
WARD COMMUNITY BUDGET
Councillors are reminded that under the Council’s Code of Conduct they should declare any interest they may have in budget applications.
An update will be given on the Ward Community Budget.
Since the last Ward Meeting a total number of six applications had been supported by Councillors, applications totalling £5,400.00. There were several applications still to be assessed.
Applications supported included:
Leicester Dance Academy - Mirror Mirror Project - £1,000
Judith Kemp - Company at Christmas - £500.00
Braunstone History Group - Exhibition - £500.00
Drum and Brass - Mini Music at Manor House - £300.00
Angels & Monsters - Sensory items - £1,500
Braunstone Adventure Playground - Security - £1,600
Drop in sessions would be held for Community Engagement Officers to help residents fill in funding applications, including a session at the BRITE Centre from 3-5pm on Wednesday 20 November.
The ‘Vote Leicester’ leaflet was circulated and those present were made aware of different ways to vote (i.e. by proxy or by post as well as in person).
Those present were made aware of Christmas events at the BRITE centre. (See attached).
Those present were made aware of the Community Advice and Law Service offering free initial advice on immigration law. (See attached).
Those present were made aware of the ‘Women Talking City Listening’ initiative aimed at collecting information from women around the city to help the Council better understand how to support women. (See attached).
A resident enquired about the possibility of re-installing children’s play equipment on the ground by Manor House Lodge. There was discussion about the feasibility of this and who owned the land. Action: Councillors to find out who owns the land. Action: Councillors and Community Engagement officer to consider adding issue to the next Ward Meeting Agenda.
There being no other business, the meeting closed at 7.45pm