As identified on the Attendance List

Alma Road

  • David Rounce
  • Heather Soper
  • Richard Soper
  • Peter Wirgman

Avenue Road

  • Judith Payling

Earls Road

  • Richard Long

Gordon Avenue

  • Dorothy Haslehurst
  • Hilary Jackson
  • Maggie O’Connor

Other attendees

  • Holly Knight (PCSO)
  • Amanda Steart (Governor, Bevois Town Primary School

OARA Committee

  • OARA Committee
  • Gordon Gillies (Chair)
  • Andy Haslehurst (Treasurer)
  • Sue Swallow (Planning Officer)
  • Barbara Matcham (Committee Member)
  • Chris Jackson (Committee Member)
  • Rosy Maguire (Committee Member)
  • John Hayward (Committee Member)
  • Phine Dahle (Committee Member)
  • Barbro Fitzjohn (Committee Member)


  • Jerry Gillen
  • Chris Hawthorne
  • Mary Hockey
  • T Jacobs
  • Lynn Murphy


Gordon opened the meeting by welcoming the attendees. The apologies were given. Gordon introduced Amanda Steart a governor of Bevois Town Primary School to the meeting. Amanda was in attendance to appeal for a volunteer to join the Board of Governors of Bevois Town Primary School and become a Community Governor. She would be speaking later during the meeting.

Greening Group


Phine spoke on behalf of the RA to thank Judith, who is moving to Lincolnshire, for all her hard work and enthusiasm in making the Greening Group so successful. Barbro presented her with a beautiful handmade basket in green to remind her of her time with us.

Judith thanked Barbro and everyone for the basket and for all the support of the other members of the Greening Group. She then went on to appeal for someone to take over CD Recycling, which is called Magpie as it is a good fund raiser. Barbro agree to take this on. She then announced the next table top sale would be 27th October from 11.30am to 1.30pm. Heather is taking bookings, it was agreed to increase the charge from £5.00 to £6.00 per table. It would again be held on Portswood Road, near Waitrose.

Current Projects

Sue Swallow took over to tell us about current projects – we have enough money to buy a few more signature cherry trees. They are available again from Hilliers and must be paid for two weeks in advance for planting at the end of November. The Greening Group cleared the cutaway between Gordon Avenue and Westwood Road and did some planting. A few of the neighbours came out to see what was going on and got involved with the work. The corner of Livingstone Road and Gordon Avenue is hoped to be a ‘Community Art Project’, hopefully with a bench and some greenery. Councillor Derek Burke is liaising with this project as it will be necessary to get permission to place objects of any kind on the pavement.

Action: Greening Group


Peter Wirgman reminded us about various aspects of recycling – details of which can be seen in the minutes of the meeting held 25 June 2013. Peter also reminded us that Bottle Boxes would soon be distributed and roadside collections would begin.

PC Holly Knight demonstrated the Smart Phone App the Council are encouraging people to use, particularly students so they have collection and recycling information at their fingertips. Gordon also reminded anyone who has a smart phone to use the app to photograph items and report them to the Council.

Street Cleaning

Barbara reminded everyone that the next street clean is at 11am on Sunday 3rd November, meeting at the planters at the junction of Alma Road and Gordon Avenue. Gordon then mentioned that Kingsley House were organising their own street clean at 1pm on Saturday 2nd November, starting at Kingsley House and ending at the Victory Centre on Portswood Road (the old Broadway Bingo Hall).

Action: Barbara to look at attending this event on behalf of OARA.

Police Liaison

PC Holly Knight reported that the police are knocking on doors to educate students re personal safety, burglaries, wing mirrors etc. Holly also mentioned that the next PACT meeting date had not been announced yet. As much notice as possible was requested, as the last meeting was very well attended due to plenty of notice. Holly also reminded us that we can follow what is happening in the area via twitter @portswoodpolice

Action: Holly to forward date of next PACT meeting to John in his role as Police Liaison for onward distribution.

Christmas Events

Christmas Party

John announced this year’s Christmas party would be held at The Bent Brief from 2.30pm until 5.30pm. John said his group will be able to entertain us. OARA will pass a hat around for donations to pay the group. Heather has kindly agreed to run a raffle – donations to Heather at 59 Alma Road or bring on the day.

Action: John/Heather

Carol Singing

Maggie has kindly agreed to organise carol singing around our area for an hour, meeting at the Planters at 7pm on 17th December.

Action: Maggie has arranged. Reminder to be sent out by Gordon closer to date.

History Project

John reminded everyone of the next meeting which is being held at the Sainsbury’s Community Room on 3rd November between 12 noon – 4pm. He informed us that the project is moving along at a good pace with lots of interesting facts and items which will be on display. The project is being called Bevois Mount History as this is the historical name of the area. Please visit the Facebook page at You do not have to sign up to Facebook to see this site. John hopes to eventually move the information gathered to a Web Page.

Action: John has already arranged meeting & organised Facebook site. He will arrange move of info gathered to Web Page.

Kingsley House

Gordon gave a short resume of the problems facing the immediate neighbours of KH. These included noise, abusive language and gestures and antisocial behaviour outside the building and the effect this has had on the neighbourhood over the past 25 years i.e. a considerable number of owner/occupiers selling up and leaving the area, and many disturbed and stressful evenings and nights. Meetings with the management of KH have been ongoing for many years – the last three with the support of OARA, but all to no effect. Gordon announced he has now arranged a meeting on 23rd October with our three councillors, the neighbours most closely involved and any members of the OARA Committee who wish to attend to decide on the way forward.

Action: Gordon has already arranged meeting.

Any other business

  • PCSO Holly Knight announced an Open Day at Portswood Police Station between 10.00 am and 3 pm on 7th December.
  • Hilary volunteered for the Greening Group
  • Richard expressed concern about trees being cut down by landlords
  • Maggie suggested window stickers to let people know we are OARA, plus small notices to give to students etc.
  • Hilary felt the issue of non payment of Community Tax by landlords of HMO’s should be raised with Alan Whitehead. Peter felt HMO fees and licences went some way to rectify this non payment.
  • Amanda Steart regarding recruitment of a Community Governor for Bevois Town Primary School, saying the Board of Governors were keen to be more involved with the community so would like a volunteer who would get actively involved and not just turn up at meetings. Barbro expressed interest. If anyone else is interested, then please contact Amanda (via the OARA web site if necessary).

Dates for 2013/14 Meetings

OARA General Meetings

  • Tuesday 21st January 14 AGM

OARA Committee Meetings

  • Tuesday 5th November 13
  • Monday 16th December 13