One year on and we’re delighted to see people using their Membership Cards. Now it’s time to renew them.

They encourage a sense of belonging in the community.

  • It raises money for OARA residents who work towards trying to create a better sense of community in the area.
  • You may have seen cherry trees planted in the area to brighten it up – they were made possible with the funds from OARA, including the membership fees.
  • We can continue to run events like the Street Party, and plant more trees in the area with the money that we raise from membership fees.
  • For those who already have a membership card, please check whether it’s time to RENEW it. If it is, you can do so at the link below:
  • Haven’t got one? That’s no problem – just click here.
  • Take a look at other membership discounts here.

Resident of the month… Mandy

Why do we love her?

Mandy was born in Richmond Gardens, Southampton in 1960 and since 1976 has lived at number 2 Rose Road.

What’s she like?

Mandy has a strong love for plants and the outdoors, claiming that: “you can’t beat British Countryside or RHS Wisley Gardens on a lovely day!” Her other love is for Cocker Spaniels which was sparked when her dad brought her one in South Africa to rid her fear of dogs.

Meet the Family

Between the years of 1965 and 1973, Mandy moved back to South Africa. Their house overlooked the mountains where she used to play with her two younger sisters, Deborah and Tracey. Thanks to Mandy’s father, her family were well known within their town. Still to this day, when visiting, her when members of the community shout “Chef Lee” at her mother.

Mandy at work

Mandy has worked for many conservationist departments in many councils. After gaining experience at BTCV in Winchester, Mandy began work at Portsmouth Conservation Practice. Mandy’s team consisted of those who were in long-term unemployment and they would receive a supplement on top of their benefits for helping Mandy. The projects also allowed them to take courses in handling chainsaws and now one of her old team members is a tree surgeon!

Mandy’s life now

In 1992 Mandy began working in Copthorne Nursery Fawley, where local adults with learning disabilities receive training in horticulture. She took on the role, which allows those who come from day care centres to socialise and even learn RHS Horticultural Classes.

Why She’s a Good Neighbour to Have…?

If you need any advice on horticulture or a friendly chat in her lovely garden, Mandy is definitely your neighbour to go to!

Last Season update:

Party in Portswood!

By Rachel Lily

This year’s street party was bigger and better than ever. On 2 June, people from all over Portswood gathered at Alma enjoy this year’s Street Party – and what a success it was. With competitions hosted by various members of OARA and music conducted all day by John Hayward and his band, it was a social occasion for all ages.

One of the main events was the Vegetable Sculpting competition which was filled with a variety of fruity designs. But there was no beating the bulky, veggie, bird built with potatoes, parsnips and… sleeping pills! The winner, Peter Wirgm his winning vegetable sculpture and put his success down to “finding anything in the fridge that was past its sell by date.”

Other competitions included the Guess the Sweets in the Sweet jar, which was won by both Chris Johnson and Peter Clarke, who ended up sharing the mighty 143 sweets.

And it wasn’t just adults soaking up the social atmosphere. were in and out of the hand-made ‘Musical Playground’ and glamming up at the face painting area.

From all the neighbours in Portswood, a huge was involved in setting up this wonderful event.

The Mayor’s Visit

At the end of April, the OARA Committee were invited to Southampton then Mayor, Cllr Derek Burke. The Mayor wanted to show his appreciation to the Residents Association for the good work they have done in the past 3 years by giving us a special

The Mayor gave us a tour of the and the Council chamber and then pressing issues that OARA is tackling. The Mayor pledged the continuing support himself to our endeavours and hoped that the good example we have been setting rubs off on other areas of the city to organise themselves effective residents associations

The new BIG project

  • Do you ever wonder who lives just down the street from you?
  • Do you ever think, I wonder who lived in my house before me?

OARA’S exciting new venture is to EXPLORE our community. Many people suggested during the OARA annual general meeting that people in the area could create a ‘scrapbook’ of information about the people who live in the area and the history of their homes…

What would be collected?

  • Historical information about the area such as mapping sites of long-gone shops, businesses and pubs etc.
  • House histories and old photos
  • Your stories!
  • Local archives at the City Library

What do we need to get started?

  • A small project group to drive this project forward
  • People who wish to contribute their knowledge and experience of living in the OARA area
  • An IT whizz who can help produce an imaginative and accessible online scrapbook
  • Copies of historical documents and photographs
  • People who would like to do local history research
  • Funding ideas to pay for hiring a room for the launch event and any extra materials including copies of documents and photographs

Can you help us?

If you wanted to get involved, please contact OARA and let’s start talking!