Present:

As identified on the Attendance List

Alma Road

  • Peter Wirgman
  • Richard Soper

Avenue Road

  • Lynn Murphy
  • Des Hayward
  • Liz Hazlam
  • Harald Raykowski

Earls/Rose Road

  • Richard Long
  • Jane Mitchell

Gordon Avenue

  • Barbara Deacon

Other attendees

  • Jerry Gillen, Highfield RA
  • PCSO Holly Knight

OARA Committee

  • John Hayward (Chair)
  • Hillary Jackson (Committee Member)
  • Sue Swallow (Planning Officer)
  • Rosy Maguire (Committee Member)
  • Barbara Matcham (Committee Member)
  • Chris Jackson (Committee Member)
  • Gordon Gillies (Committee Member)
  • Barbro Fitzjohn (Committee Member)

Apologies:

  • T Jacobs, Phine Dahle, Andrew Hazlehurst, Maggie O’Connor, Mary Hockey

1. Welcome

John opened the meeting by welcoming all of the attendees. He explained that this was his first full meeting and that he wanted to spend the first part of the meeting reviewing what OARA had done over the last 3 years and to ensure that we were still clear as to what our priorities are for the coming year. For that purpose, he had asked Lynn to guide us through a session to determine these.

2. OARA Review and Priority Setting

Lynn guided the meeting through a number of exercises to determine what residents thought of the work of OARA over the last 3 years. In particular, the sub-groups were asked to answer the following:

  • What achievements are we proud of?
  • What disappointments do we have
  • What are our priorities for the coming period

There ensued a lively discussion which will now be typed up by Gordon and Lynn and presented to the Committee for further action. The meeting thought that it would be good to see an overview sent to all members in a punch style that would help to generate even more involvement from residents.

Action: Lynn and Gordon to type up the outcome of the session
Action: Lynn/Gordon to produce an overview to send to the membership
Action: Committee to discuss how to action the outcome of the session

3. Planning

Sue Swallow presented her written report on the many activities that are currently on going in this area. The report will be posted on the web site along with these minutes.

3.1 Planning Applications

OARA is currently involved in challenging a proposed conversion to an HMO in Alma Road. This is now at appeal stage with the Council.

Planning permission has been requested for the site on the corner of Lodge Road and Rose Road for a 6 storey building with 97 studio flats. This has been opposed by over 40 residents by letter.

Further planning permission applications in Gordon Avenue and Avenue Road are currently being assessed to see if we would have objections.

3.2 Changes in Law

Two items were reported on here. Firstly, the Council are stating that they will be getting tougher on illegal parking crossing of the verge/footpath by vehicles. This may cause issue in Avenue Road, for example, where this practice has been used for many years.

Secondly, further to the government change of law to permit building extensions to existing properties with light touch planning permission, it is expected that we will start to see some HMOs (which were previously thought not to be covered by this law) being extended.

3.3 Letting Boards

Four members of OARA were present at a meeting convened by SUSU to try and get action on reducing or removing letting boards. The Council are looking at ways to either make these illegal or reduce the amount of time that they can be displayed.

4. Street Cleaning

There is now a sub group looking at street cleaning and attempting to be more pro-active in changing habits regarding litter and bins.

It was reported that attendance at recent street cleans had not been very high. A request to membership will be made to try and increase the number of people who are prepared to give up some of their time to help in this area.

The sub group had met with John Dyer-Slade, who is Head of City Services on the Council. John is very keen to work with OARA to improve the bin emptying cycle. Action on this will start in Gordon Avenue in May or June, where a thorough audit of what bins are present will be undertaken and corrected, along with numbering the bins with door numbers.

5. Newsletter

It was agreed to continue producing our newsletter in e-format, using students from Southampton Solent university, under the guidance of Rosy Maguire. There was a request that we should look at printing some copies for those who prefer this format. The next newsletter will be produced in the autumn, when Rosy can find new students to work on it for us.

6. History Group

The History Group has seen a lot of activity recently. They are planning a history walk in June; a history talk in September and are planning a 2015 calendar using images from our area from the past.

As well as this, there is a web site being developed to accompany the already active Facebook page.

7. Any Other Business

7.1 Street Party

We will be holding our usual street party on June 1st. If anyone is interested in helping to organise this, then please contact John Hayward.

7.2 NORA Affiliation

There was a request for us to affiliate to the National Organisation of Residents Association. This costs £25. This will be decided at our next Committee meeting.

7.3 Livingston Road/Gordon Avenue Corner

Planning work continues on the artwork idea for the corner of Livingston Road/Gordon Avenue. Barbro will send around artwork ideas by email to those who have shown an interest in receiving this information.

7.4 Noise Abatement

Hillary reported that a recent noisy party had been held near her in Gordon Avenue and she had complained to the authorities. A Noise Abatement Order had been placed on the offending house.

7.5 Reporting to the Police

Residents are reminded to report all crimes to the police on 101.

8 Conclusion

The Chairman concluded the meeting by thanking everyone for their attendance and contributions and in particular Lynn for helping us to review our priorities.

9 Dates for 2014 Meetings

OARA General Meetings

  • 7th July 14
  • 7th October 14
  • AGM: 19th January 15

OARA Committee Meetings

  • 29th April 14
  • 3rd June 14
  • 15th September 14
  • 16th December 14