Author Topic: Notes Minutes of the last meeting  (Read 61114 times)

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Offline Mick Jones

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Re: Notes Minutes of the last meeting
« Reply #90 on: March 04, 2017, 10:36:11 AM »
Stirchley Neighbourhood Forum
Minutes of the meeting held on 13th February 2017, Stirchley Community Church

Present:   47: Chair, Vice Chair, Secretary and Members of the Forum’s management committee, Councillor Huxtable and Councillor Locke
Apologies:   6
Peter Walker took the chair and welcomed everyone to the meeting. The minutes of the meeting held on 9th January 2017 were circulated and agreed as a true record.
Matters arising
Tesco: it was noted that there has been no further activity on the site
CT Furniture   
Marianne Delaney outlined the activities of CT Furniture and Community Transport: the organisation collects unwanted furniture for resale and hires minibuses to community groups, with or without a driver. Any furniture donations must meet current standards for fire safety; they are unable to collect any furniture that does not meet these. There are many opportunities for volunteering and training is available for drivers who do not hold the relevant licence; Marianne was unable to say whether there was an upper age limit for volunteer drivers. In response to a question, Marianne explained that the organisation funds itself through furniture sales and by running passenger service contracts.   
Planning update   
Sandra Cooper, Forum Planning Officer, updated the meeting on a number of outstanding planning applications.
Maj Raj, corner of Pershore and Twyning Rd: application for hot food takeaway; SC submitted an objection on behalf of the Forum
Unit 5 Avery Dell, Lifford Lane: application to create a training facility for a gymnastics club relocating from Birmingham University
Aldi/Magnet site: no further news. The Forum made a submission requesting a contribution towards community facilities; this is not required as the site already has retail use
Stirchley Library   
Theresa Summerfield and Sandra Cooper shared the fantastic news that the library service is to remain in place for at least the next 12 months, although with opening hours reduced from 25 to 21 hours per week. The campaign to keep the Library open is building momentum, and a meeting on Saturday 11th February was well-attended with Cllr Ian Ward taking part in the discussion. Volunteer support will be essential to the library’s future and a Friends group is planned which will work with BCC and library staff. Anyone interested in getting involved can join up through the Save Stirchley Library facebook page. The next meeting is on March 11th, 10.30 am in Stirchley Community Church, all are welcome. The group are also putting together a survey to gauge community interest in the library: potential for volunteering, sharing skills and suggestions for new uses and activities.
The library building needs a new boiler and work to the roof which would allow use of the two upstairs rooms. Cllr Ward confirmed that BCC were unable to fully fund these repairs; he will pass on details of the costs. BCC is currently tied into Acivico for any building works but this may be open to change. A local resident questioned the nature of the relationship between any Friends group and BCC and suggested the city council would struggle to obtain funding. Sgt Andy Holder suggested the library may be able to benefit from the West Midlands Police and Crime Commissioner’s Active Citizens Fund.
Lidl update   
Martin from PSL Bowling thanked the community for their support in opposing the application from Lidl. PSL are looking to secure a new site, but will also continue to fight the planning committee’s decision, which Martin felt was a U-turn on the outcome of the previous meeting. PSL were particularly frustrated with the lack of communication from BCC. Mick Jones thanked Kerry Leslie for organising the protest outside PSL/Fitness First and showed photos of the event taken by local resident Fiona Cullinan.
Andy Foster, former Labour councillor and member of the planning committee, offered his perspective on what had taken place. He expressed his horror at the actions of the committee, and suggested planning officers had manipulated members to get the decision they wanted. Planning officers had recommended approval, and were motivated by a belief that Lidl would overturn a negative outcome on appeal. Andy was particularly appalled by the attitude of the transportation team, which did not challenge the creation of a supermarket entrance so close to an already awkward junction.   
Andy contacted a retired planning officer who confirmed the decision of a planning committee can only be overturned through judicial review, which is extremely expensive. A more affordable alternative would be to send the planning department a letter of intent to go to judicial review as “a shot across the bows” which may have some effect on the application. A solicitor would be required to do this, and PSL suggested this was a cost they would be willing to bear. It was noted that intent to lodge a judicial review must be registered within 6 weeks of the decision (9th February 2017). The Environmental Law Group has been assisting local opposition and has offered the services of a junior barrister pro-bono. There was general support for issuing a letter of intent.
Lidl has agreed £50,000 of 106 monies and it was suggested these could go towards library repairs although SC suspected BCC would already have plans for these.           
Policing update   
New police sergeant Andy Holder introduced himself and congratulated the Forum on holding such a well turned out community meeting.
Although burglary has fallen there has been an increase in vehicle crime: Sgt Holder reminded residents to remove all valuables from cars and to check doors were locked manually. With spring coming he recommended fixing broken fence panels and planting along boundaries to protect against opportunistic burglary. Following reports of ASB by youths playing “knock door run” police will visit local schools. Sgt Holder advised against giving money to apparently homeless people as many were professional beggars; instead he recommended giving to food banks or other charities.
WMP have introduced a new two way communications system, West Midlands Now, which imparts information and enables users to report crime anonymously. PW noted a problem with the system: it is not possible to forward information without sharing personal email addresses. Sgt Holder acknowledged the issue and explained the system was still being developed following a soft launch. Sgt Holder confirmed crimes should be reported via 101, or 999 if the crime is in action or a person is at risk; he is aware of the issues with 101 but added 60 officers have been transferred to the West Midlands which should reduce crime and therefore pressure on the system. In response to a question about the recent spate of graffiti in the area, Sgt Holder explained WMP had to prioritise resources but would work to identify landowners to remove graffiti and with schools to reduce the incidence. He reminded residents that fear of crime was generally far worse than the actuality.           
AOB   
Forum funding: PW thanked local councillors for the Forum’s annual grant of £700
Stirchley Hour on twitter: this was a regular Wednesday night slot from 8 until 9 pm; it is hoped this can be relaunched as #StirchleyHour to eliminate the need for a host
River Rea route: following a successful funding application, Su Jones announced plans to work with the park ranger and Wildlife Trust to improve this open space. She also expressed her concern that with so many community groups in Stirchley, without better communication they may end up bidding against one other for grants. 
Christmas Lights funding: £73 has been raised so far; the target is £1000
Upcoming events
Litter pick: 19th February in Hazelwell Park
Half term holiday club: Stirchley Community Church
Stirchley History Group: 7th March in Stirchley Baths
Big Bake in aid of Christmas Shelter: 18th March in Stirchley Baths, 50p entry
Stirchley Late Summer Bash: Saturday September 2nd in Stirchley Park
Date of the next mesuggestedeting
Monday 13th March, 7.30 pm in Stirchley Community Church
Disclaimer notice on behalf of the Stirchley Neighbourhood Forum Management Committee
1. The Management Committee does not normally have prior knowledge of items which will be raised as Any Other Business, but the Management Committee will help facilitate such items where it does have prior knowledge and which are in the interests of Stirchley.
2. The Forum is not aligned to any political party or one group and hence will hold a neutral stance in all political items which are raised at the meetings; the Forum may take a stance (positive/negative) on planning applications discussed at the meeting or on changes to community/neighbourhood services which affect the Forum area
3. The Forum’s Management Committee will not allow a person or organisation to use the Forum’s meeting as a means to any political end.
4. All residents and businesses within the Forum’s area have the right to attend and speak at the meeting.  Business owners, not resident within the forum area, have a right to attend and speak at SNF meetings, but they cannot make up quorum.
5. The Forum or its Management Committee will not be held responsible for leaflets or other media which is handed out by third parties either at or following the Forum’s meeting.  The views of any such leaflets or other communication are those of the distributor/publisher and not necessarily those of the Neighbourhood Forum.
www.stirchley.co.uk

Offline Mick Jones

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Re: Notes Minutes of the last meeting
« Reply #91 on: March 30, 2017, 09:52:59 AM »
Stirchley Neighbourhood Forum
Minutes of the meeting held on 13th March 2017, Stirchley Community Church

Present:   63: Chair, Vice Chair, Secretary and Members of the Forum’s management committee, Councillor Huxtable, Councillor Locke and Councillor Sealey
Apologies:   06
Due to the large number of people wishing to attend, the meeting was moved into the main hall. Peter Walker took the chair and welcomed everyone to the meeting. The minutes of the meeting held on 13th February 2017 were circulated and agreed as a true record.
Stirchley Baths Memory Café    
Louise Deakin announced the launch of a monthly “memory café” in Stirchley Baths for people living with dementia, and their families or carers. Each month will have a different theme, and participants will explore the history of the Baths and reminisce, prompted by objects and craft activities. The sessions are free to attend and begin on April 24th with a “swimming” theme. The project will be funded through the Heritage Lottery grant for the first 5 sessions, after this the project will be reviewed and a decision made about its continuation. LD invited volunteers to take part; training in dementia awareness will be provided.
Cllr Locke expressed her support for the project.
Policing update   
Sgt Andy Holder reported an ongoing issue of ASB involving a group of teenagers; WMP will work with partner agencies to encourage more constructive activities.
Following 7 break-ins at the park keeper’s hut in Bournville Park, police have caught the group of youths that were using it for drugs. 
Vehicle crime continues to rise; theft of number plates is a particular problem. The mobile police station may be dispatched to distribute anti-theft screws and anti-burglary packs.
Police are often involved in locating missing people with dementia; Sgt Holder suggested PCSOs should attend the Memory Café and talk to families as people with dementia often return to a familiar place from their past. LD welcomed the proposal.
Travellers: BCC have served notice on the travellers on the Arvin Meritor site; a local resident reported ¾ have already left. Concerns were expressed that travellers will simply return to sites unless security is improved. Sgt Holder explained landowners are responsible for the security of their own sites; police will contact them when travellers move onto their land, but their presence is not a police matter. In response to a local resident’s question about criminal damage when accessing sites, Sgt Holder explained it was not practical to identify the culprit when a number of caravans were involved.
Graffiti: a local resident questioned progress on tackling the recent spate of graffiti: Sgt Holder responded that police must prioritise resources and currently the ASB involving teenagers is a high priority as one of them is reported to be carrying a knife. Police will however continue to work with schools to identify perpetrators. 
ASB: Sgt Holder recommended residents report ASB via 101 or the ASB hotline run by BCC; there may be no immediate response but all information is logged. More staff are being recruited to improve the 101 service. Cllr Sealey suggested people were failing to report crimes because of their frustration with delays; Sgt Holder accepted there was an issue but reiterated the need for all incidents to be logged for intelligence-led policing to be effective. Trail bikes were reported in the Newlands Rd area.    
Planning update   
Sandra Cooper, Forum Planning Officer, updated the meeting on current planning issues.
Maj Raj: application for hot food takeaway has been refused again.
1397 Pershore Rd: application by a local resident to open a café in a retail unit with opening hours of 7.30 am to 5.00 pm, closed on Sundays. SC commented on the lack of information on the application and suggested it was an unfortunate choice of unit as it required a change of use from A1 to A3 which the Forum generally opposes. SC will carry out further research. Comments must be submitted by April 1st.   
Pcafé: an application has been submitted for a premises licence. SC noted the café is still operating on a temporary permission and will have to submit an application for change of use in due course.
In response to the suggestion there were too many shops offering the same service on the high street, SC explained BCC have no control over what type of shop opens up in a unit with permission for retail use.
Tesco site options   
Tesco’s withdrawal from Stirchley presents the local community with an opportunity to make representations to BCC with their ambitions for the site. Cllr Sealey is holding a public meeting on Monday 20th March, 7.30 pm in Stirchley Community Church to discuss future options for the site with BCC Planning and Regeneration. It was reported that an offer of £50,000 to bring the site into community ownership had already been declined. Cllr Sealey suggested a single developer was most likely to acquire the site for a mixed use development.
SC advised some retail use would be required as the site is in the retail core. The floor was then opened up to suggestions from local residents:
?   A smaller retail complex with units such as Poundland and more car parking
?   Affordable housing; it was noted that additional homes would increase pressure on local services
?   A more aspirational retail offer such as Waitrose
?   A full community consultation was proposed which would address wider issues such as east west connections across the site and the creation of a new public space. The possibility of carrying out a “Planning for Real” exercise was discussed.
A lot of frustration and anger was expressed towards Tesco, with some residents suggesting they should be held to account for the mess that Stirchley has been left in: there was widespread support for improvements to the hoardings and site security to prevent further fly tipping. 
Several people wanted to see Hazelwell Road reopened, at least as a public footpath.
106 contributions: £170,000 remain to be spent on public realm improvements within sight of the Tesco site. A public meeting is being held on Tuesday 21st March at 7.15 pm in Stirchley United Working Men’s Club to discuss the setting up of a Stirchley Town Team which will oversee the spending of the 106 monies.     
Friends of Stirchley Library   
Theresa Summerfield explained this replaces the Save Stirchley Library campaign group and invited local residents to sign up: volunteers will be essential if the Library is to remain open beyond the next 12 months.
AOB   
Stirchley Baths café: a local resident noted the Forum is still awaiting a response from Jacqui Kennedy (BCC) about the tenure of Change Kitchen; this was raised in the June 2016 meeting.
Stirchley Baths book club: some disquiet was expressed at the opening of a book club in the Baths rather than the library; a Stirchley Baths volunteer suggested this was due to a lack of availability of a room in the Library or elsewhere in the local area on a Wednesday
Upcoming events
Big Bake: 18th March in Stirchley Baths, raising funds for the Christmas Shelter
Hazelwell Park: litter pick 19th March, meet at 10.00 am
Stirchley Late Summer Bash: Saturday September 2nd in Stirchley Park, £20 early bird offer for stalls booked before June 30th
Date of the next meeting
Monday 10th April, 7.30 pm in Stirchley Community Church
?
Disclaimer notice on behalf of the Stirchley Neighbourhood Forum Management Committee
1. The Management Committee does not normally have prior knowledge of items which will be raised as Any Other Business, but the Management Committee will help facilitate such items where it does have prior knowledge and which are in the interests of Stirchley.
2. The Forum is not aligned to any political party or one group and hence will hold a neutral stance in all political items which are raised at the meetings; the Forum may take a stance (positive/negative) on planning applications discussed at the meeting or on changes to community/neighbourhood services which affect the Forum area
3. The Forum’s Management Committee will not allow a person or organisation to use the Forum’s meeting as a means to any political end.
4. All residents and businesses within the Forum’s area have the right to attend and speak at the meeting.  Business owners, not resident within the forum area, have a right to attend and speak at SNF meetings, but they cannot make up quorum.
5. The Forum or its Management Committee will not be held responsible for leaflets or other media which is handed out by third parties either at or following the Forum’s meeting.  The views of any such leaflets or other communication are those of the distributor/publisher and not necessarily those of the Neighbourhood Forum.
www.stirchley.co.uk