Every quarter there is a Neighbourhood Forum meeting open to all residents of St George to bring local issues to council officers and police. A list of the issues raised at the previous meeting and what has been done about them is circulated at the meeting.
Different speakers are invited to the meeting to talk about issues that are of interest to the neighbourhood.
For this meeting on Tuesday 11th November, 2014, we had the following speakers who briefly introduced themselves and their subject and then were available during the breakout session for people to approach individually and find out more.
i) Stacy Yelland – Green Capital update
Stacy works for Up Our Street which runs Neighbourhood Forums in Easton and Lawrence Hill. She started by describing two organisations involved in the Bristol Green Capital initiative. Bristol 2015 as a company set up to raise money and put on events during 2015. The Bristol Green Capital Partnership has existed for many years and is a partnership of businesses, universities and other organisations interested in the city of Bristol.
Small grants and strategic grants are available. Examples were given of projects carried out in Easton and Lawrence that included a project where children made sculptures out of litter, bike lessons were provided so families could cycle together, energy advisors were trained, beehives set up and plants grown.
A project promoted on Twitter as #tidyBS5 is not, in fact, a project involving St George but is solely for resident of the Lawrence Hill and Easton area.
ii) Fiona Russell and Viv Brinsdon– Meadow Vale Community
Fiona is Chair of Meadow Vale Community Association. Viv is a member of Meadow Vale Community Association.
A 3 dimensional model of the proposals for Meadow Vale community centre was brought to the meeting for comment. The process of making a planning application has started and Lottery funding will be sought. The layout showed the adjacent nursery park having a wild flower area, permanent outdoor table tennis table, exercise machines, ramps for scooters and bicycles and a multi-use games area. The proposals for the new building include showers and changing rooms and a large hall with a room high enough for games such as badminton. Some of the existing park area would be taken up by the new building.
iii) Lynn Davis and Andrew Yelland – New Crofts End Church & Community Hub Project
Crofts End Church is on the boundary of 3 neighbourhood partnership areas. In recent years 260 houses have been built within the vicinity of the church and no additional infrastructure has been provided. There are structural issues with 50% of the current church building rendering it unfit for purpose.
Crofts End Church runs George’s Coffee House 3 days a week, provides internet access for those who wish to job search and create CVs and has a long record of organising community events.
A community survey was carried out last year and a planning application submitted and approved to demolish the defective church building and rebuild providing a church, conference facilities, office space and a community cafe. The original mission hall can then be released to provide full-time community provision. The estimated cost is £1.15 million with £475,000 coming from the church. The intention is to carry out the work in 2016, opening in 2017.
A video walkthrough of how the new church will look can be seen on www.youtube.com/watch?v=z9QJqeribNI
Updates about the project will be posted on www.facebook.com/cecbuilding
iv) Denise James – Well Aware Health & Wellbeing
Denise James works for Well Aware which is funded by the Clinical Commissioning Group. Well Aware is based at the Vassall Centre at Fishponds.
The organisation provides the following services
- a signposting service to organisation promoting health and wellbeing. There are over 5,000 organisations on Well Aware’s database which anyone can access via www.wellaware.org.uk searching by location or service. Organisation range from Walking for Health groups to counselling services.
- an advocacy service with the NHS, for example, if someone wants support making a complaint.
- Healthwatch – a means of giving feedback on good and bad experiences with health and social care services
- Provide complaint procedure support for families having problems with adult care and children’s social care.
- Provide support for those who want support via a drugs and alcohol advocacy service.
Denise had numerous helpful leaflets with her to hand out.
v) Janet Bremner – Libraries for the Future
Janet Bremner is service development manager of libraries at Bristol City Council.
Bristol City Council aim to save £1.1 million but not necessarily from the library budget. There are current 28 libraries in Bristol, some are old an some would not be easy to update. 15% of people living in Bristol use libraries at least once a year.
A consultation on libraries for the future will run until 2nd February, 2015. A report will be prepared for the Council Cabinet for 3rd March, 2015. Consultation on specific proposal will run between March and May 2015.
As part of the consultation a meeting will be held at St George Library on Thursday 27th November from noon-2pm.
More about the consultation can be seen here.
Here is what was done about neighbourhood issues raised in August:
There has also been action from the Neighbourhood Working team on flytipping, flyposting, clearing rear lanes and waste in land. Details can be read in
Issues raised at the forum meeting of Tuesday 11th November will be added here soon.
Please do not wait for a forum to report simple issues that can be reported online or by phone. Please do make use of “Report It!”, the tab at the top right of this page. The best way we can use Neighbourhood Forum time is raising more difficult issues.
Details of the grants awarded at the last St George Neighbourhood Partnership meeting were not circulated on this occasion but these can be seen on www.stgeorgenp.org.uk/grants/funded/
The police were represented by Sgt Darren Warr and PC Pete Crawford.. Their update included:
- Anti-social behaviour reports over Hallowe’en were very low. Police were pleased with the level of good behaviour.
- There were also very few calls about fireworks. One fireworks incident was attended at the carpark in the Kingsway.
- If you are interesting in setting up your own Neighbourhood Watch group please contact Pete or Darren, either by phoning 101 or using the form on www.avonandsomerset.police.uk/your-area/st-george-south-east
- The local neighbourhood team continue to focus on drugs. There was a fire at a cannabis factory in Sherbourne St last month. An arrest has been made.
- 3 arrests have been made for possession with intent to supply class A drugs.
- The contents on 2 cannabis factories have been seized. Both cases will be going to crown court soon.
- Please ring 101 if you think you know the location of a cannabis factory. A helicopter using heat source imaging equipment can quickly check any suspicions.
- They were pleased to announce a Community Speedwatch team of 5 local volunteers were being given the equipment that evening to start monitoring 3 locations in Crews Hole, Troopers Hill Rd and Nags Head Hill. All 3 locations have been risk assessed and allthe volunteers have received training. Please contact the webteam if you would like to join that group of volunteers or start a Community Speedwatch team in another part of St George.
Questions were asked about the roll out of the 20mph speed limit and the enforcement of that limit. Once the speed limit signs are in place and the Road Traffic Orders in place, enforcement will be carried out.
An appeal was made for volunteers from Susan Acton-Campbell, St George Neighbourhood Partnership volunteer, to:
- help put up posters about Forums and issues of community interest on at least 3 community noticeboards. A full list of noticeboards and where they are can be found on the Contacts page.
- provide local knowledge and common sense to help assess grant applications made to the St George Neighbourhood Partnership Wellbeing fund. There are currently 3 vacancies in the Wellbeing sub-group. More about the sub-group, who they are and what they do on www.stgeorgenp.org.uk/subgroups/wellbeing
- take turns at summarising what happens at Forum meetings. This report that you are reading is currently written by Susan and she also writes a single side of A4 as a summary to put up in local noticeboards.
- become a Community Speedwatch volunteer to help the 5 existing volunteers mentioned in the police report above.
Susan can be contacted via email@example.com
If you have an idea for a subject to be spoken about that is of local interest contact our Neighbourhood Partnership Co-ordinator,
Abdulrazak Dahir, firstname.lastname@example.org, telephone 0117 903 6409. First will be invited to attend the next meeting to talk about local bus services.