Present:

As identified on the Attendance List

OARA Residents

Alma Road

  • Peter Wirgman
  • Dave Rounce
  • Heather Soper

Avenue Road

  • Will Penfold
  • Judith Payling

Highfield Avenue

  • Margaret Chiari

Gordon Avenue

  • Dorothy Haslehurst

Earls Road

  • Susan Silva

Cambridge Road

  • Sandra Comaish
  • Mary Beanli

OARA Committee

  • Gordon Gillies (Chair)
  • T Jacobs (Membership Secretary)
  • Andy Haslehurst (Treasurer)
  • Rosy Maguire (Committee Member)
  • Barbara Matcham (Committee Member)
  • Chris Jackson (Committee Member)
  • Sue Swallow (Planning Officer)

Other attendees

  • Cllr Jackie Rayment
  • PC Stephen Blandford

Apologies:

  • Cllr Derek Burke, Cllr Stephen Barnes-Andrews, Mary Hockey, Carolyn Page, Jerry Gillen, Phine Dahle, Lynn Murph

1. Welcome

Gordon opened the meeting by welcoming all of the attendees.  The apologies were given.

2. Police Report

Gordon invited PC Stephen Blandford to update the meeting with the local crime report.

2.1 Overall picture

  • Our new Police Community Support Officer (PCSO) is Holly Knight who replaces Jack Hayward.
  • Organised crime from London has moved into the Hampshire drug scene. In response, Operation Fortress, a team of 30 police officers, is targeting their activities.
  • Anti-social behaviour is likely to increase with the return of the students so the police are working with the University of Southampton (UoS) to manage it.  The UoS have Street Marshals, Safety Buses, and the Sh! Campaign to minimise anti-social behaviour by students.  The police are considering prosecuting students for anti-social behaviour, but with great reluctance.

2.2 Burglaries

Stephen reported that there is always a spike in burglaries when the students return, particularly of bikes. They still offer a post coding service through the use of stickers.

Action: Stephen to bring some along to the next Table Top Sale on 20th October.

Stephen also said that we can check the crime figures for our own areas by logging on to www.crimereports.co.uk

2.3 Anti-social behaviour

Peter Wirgman reported that there is a pilot scheme in the Polygon where an £80 instant fine can be levied for anti-social behaviour.

2.4 HMO Registration

At this point Cllr Rayment reiterated the council’s intention to have an HMO Registration Scheme, following a successful pilot in Oxford. Registered landlords would be required to regulate the behaviour of their tenants. She agreed to find a council contact to talk about the proposed scheme.
Action: Cllr Rayment to liaise with Gordon

3. Membership Cards

T Jacobs reported that about 60 people now have Membership Cards. It is also possible to apply for one online. Gordon asked attendees to promote the scheme to their neighbours as a way of raising more funds for our projects.

Judith Payling commented that it would be useful to have Membership publicity at all of our events.
Action: T to produce

Cllr Rayment commented that the council could also tweet our events using the Community account.
Action: T to investigate

4. Street Cleaning

Gordon announced that the next street cleaning dates are: Sunday 30th September and Sunday 7th October.
Action: Gordon to email the dates to the mailing list.

Cllr Rayment added that the council was exploring new ways of making the city a nicer place to live – the vision is “shabby to chic”. They will be reintroducing CREWS – Crime Reduction and Environment Weeks – where teams of people from the council, fire service and the police take an holistic approach to tackling problems in an area. Portswood and Bevois Valley are scheduled for two visits by March 2013.

A question was asked about how the council proposes to tackle the weeds in the gutters which make street cleaning difficult.
Action: Cllr Rayment to take back to the council.

5. Greening Group

Judith gave an update on what is happening in the greening group.

5.1 Projects

5.1.1 Signature trees

  • The trees will be planted over the weekend of 17th and 18th November
  • From 15th September, the group will identify potential sites and willing hosts
  • Publicity and an information table will be available at the OARA Social Event on 21st September, to take place at the St Barnabas Church Hall
  • Trees have to be ordered by the beginning of October

5.1.2 Planters

The planters at the junction of Alma Road and Gordon Avenue are to be planted with more bulbs.

5.1.3 Open Space

The proposed bench and planters on the corner of Alma Road and Livingstone Road is ambitious and will require careful planning.

5.2 Fund raising events

5.2.1 Social event at St Barnabas Church Hall on 21st September

An evening social event is planned for 21st September.  One hundred tickets have been printed and will be available beforehand or on the door.  The event will be publicised in the Daily Echo and on Radio Solent.  As well as a guest speaker, there will be a table selling cakes, a table to promote the Membership and another to sell surplus garden produce.

5.2.2 Other fund raising activities and ideas

A number of other fund raising events or initiatives are also in progress:

  • CDs and DVDs are being collected and turned into cash
  • A Table Top Sale is planned for Saturday 20th October 2012
  • One of the local residents has volunteered to collect scrap metal and obtain the best price for it. This is being promoted as “Any Old Iron”. Judith asked for any aluminium cans collected to be separated out so that they can be sold for the tree fund.
  • Ideas for a Christmas party are being developed
  • A bid for a token bin at Waitrose has been submitted but it is likely that we will be unsuccessful.

6 Newsletter

Gordon and Rosy between them reported on the newsletter. Rosy has approached the journalism department at Solent University and the services of a level 2 student are available. The student could produce an e-format newsletter at a regular frequency. They would also produce all of the articles. The meeting was asked whether we wanted to pursue this route and it was agreed that we would.
Action: Rosy to take forward.

It was commented that a small print run could also be considered so that hard copies would be available in local pubs and businesses.

7 Conclusion

Gordon concluded the meeting by thanking everyone for their attendance and contributions.

7.1 Dates of next meetings

OARA General Meetings

  • Tuesday 27th November 12
  • Tuesday 22nd January 13 AGM

OARA Committee Meetings

  • Tuesday 6th November 12
  • Thursday 13th December 12

Action: all to note