Gardens & wildlife

RHS Minutes 2015-10-27

Minutes of the RHS meeting of 27th October 2015 at 51 Upper Lewes Road

Present were Barbara Ted Sandy Kate Ray and Rob, plus Bonnie. The meeting was chaired by Sandy.

Apologies received from Annie, Jan and Carol.

Minutes of September 2015 RHS Committee Meeting were approved.

Approval of Minutes of September 2015 AGM and Matters Arising:

  • No planning decision has been made on either the Belton/Crescent Rd backland or the garden of 101 Round Hill Crescent.
  • Rob is to buy 2 noticeboards for 2 confirmed locations, perhaps a bit bigger than A3 if affordable.
  • Annie and Sandy presented Doggie-do pavement signs at a conference about Council and Vol Sector co-operation, they were the only body truly voluntary (no paid employees). The requestaed traffic exclusion box has appeared in Upper lewes Road at east end of RHC. Kate is now tweeting (daily!!) for the RHS.
  • Jane Power attended a nearby community garden event, and has been seeking views of our residents on the idea of one in the roadway at southern end of Crescent Road, linking it to making the crossing safer. Cllr West says we will need at least 250 signatures to have the idea presented to a special council committee which only meets annually, but we don't know when it next meets.

Next meeting will be at 8pm at 55 Princes Road (Ted and Jane"s) on Tuesday 24th November.

AGM feedback: the only necessary action following the AGM was the completion of distribution of Garden award prizes to winners. This has been done by Jan.

Student Hello Hub on the Level (10th and 11th October): Maureen of Triangle attended and said it was a good experience, many local community folk and students passed through. She saw a guide on living in the community produced by the campaign for distribution to students, and heard that students were given postcards to drop into their new neighbours letterboxes. RS will try to obtain copies of them from Valentina Gonzalez Demori at Brighton Uni students union, Grand Parade, and seek ways of helping this 5 year project designed to make life better for residents and students alike.

Community use of Richmond House: follows on from Peter Meakins' call for a table tennis table location, Ted wondered if Cranstouns might host it, for their clients and others, possibly afternoon and evening use by community?? The table may well be free, it folds so needs little space when not in use. Kieron Pelling of Table Tennis England has more info, he is on 07972 222068 or email kieron.pelling@tabletennisengland.co.uk. Would ANNIE be willing to contact Wendy to sound out level of interest? If it seems possible then we can explore possibility of establishing group of users. Bobby Farsides wonders if the Cranstoun space might host a drama about alcohol addiction being prepared by a drama group, we thought she might bring it up through teh liaison group which might be meeting soon.

HMO action at the Triangle: I circulated notes following meeting with Maureen Winder of Triangle. They were not clear, because Maureen was not clear how things work. Since then I met Cllr Emma Daniel and she threw a little more light on the matter.

A developer can apply for an HMO licence and be granted it, but it is up to the Planning people at the council to check if it is an area with too many HMOs. If that is the case then the house may not operate as an HMO.

This complexity is something to do with licencing and local rules on density of HMOs being in two different departments. Emma added that the enforcement can take a long time, staff numbers being low, and heading lower due to imposed central goverment cuts to city budget.

Ian Brown of Rose Hill Residents Association is interested in setting up a meeting with council officers and other groups to learn more of the processes. I shall answer positively for the RHS. Maureen will come back to us after her 25th Nov meeting with Private Sector Housing staff to further explore licencing and enforcement. Meanwhile I will seek out HM lists on Council website. We can all do this and then try to spot houses operating as HMOs and not on the list. At which point a conversation with Private Sector Housing staff is needed (suggests Matthew gest of Planning Enforcement). WE AGREED THAT THE HMO ISSUE SHOULD BE A BIG THING FOR THE SOCIETY.

December Reporter content: Dog excrement pavement signage pilot progress, and if you want a sign on the pavement outside your own home please contact either Sandy or Annie (photo). Seasonal singing event and route (see elsewhere), Possible Community Garden seeking thoughts, Fix My Street dot com to report council related problems, Advent windows again (Kate to give copy), Loss of Rowan, and a new Rowan will be planted (with help from Sylvan Hall RA) (photo). Music at Martha Gunn on Wednesdays (Rowena to provide copy and photo). Halloween Playsafe report. Crime report. Old style street lantern idea - with photo.

Seasonal singing: Thursday 17th December. Mulled wine at Ted and Jane's. Ray and hopefully Andrew Partington providing music. Can RAY ask Andrew please. ROB will get plastic glasses, mulled wine recipe (optional), usual shopping list, big stainless steel pot (if wanted) and a couple of lanterns to Ted. ROB will seek letter from BHT to confirm we are collecting from them, and to invite them to attend and sing, as they did once before. It will be front page news of the Reporter.

Halloween Playsafe: Tea and coffee and cakes will be served, donations requested, but less so if families have brought cake. New signs are up, and Barbara will distribute event specific letter to all homes on mayo Rd soonest. Kate will do car leaflets before the day. Develish do-nuts and gruesome lucky dip will be available, carved pumpkins sought. An e-mail group of helpers is growing. We have several folk for this event, and Kate has us on a timetable.

Broken Rowan tree: broken during early hours of 23rd October. Several notes been attached showing level of concern. Sylvan Hall have offered to buy us a new rowan. Council should be asked about us digging up broken one and replacing it - services?? Russ and Janet nearby have been caring for it and planting base around it. We agreed to replace it, ideally funded by Sylvan Hall RA. ROB will ask Council arboriculuralist about replacing it.

Crime report from Bonnie: a motor cycle was stolen from princes Rd on 10th Sept, found in Whitehawk and charges brought. A car taken from Upper Lewes Rd on 16th Sept, and the police found it after 3 weeks in a Brighton fringe estate. a door kicked in on Prin Cres on 24th Sept but no access gained, a bike stolen on 30th Sept from ULR, Burglary in RHC on 9th Oct, accessed via passage on D'Aubigny Rd. Between 10th and 11th October a car on prin Cres was keyed, and in teh early hours of 23rd Oct a young mountain ash (rowan) was vandalised on corner of Mayo and Rich roads.

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