Decision maker: Litherland and Ford Area Committee
Decision status: Recommendations Approved
Is Key decision?: No
Is subject to call in?: Yes
During the Public Forum the following questions were submitted:
(a) Mr.D.Flynn asked why the Council was allowing the felling of beautiful mature trees in Wilsons Lane without any consultation with the other residents of Wilsons Lane and without replacing the removed trees. The felling process left ugly and dangerous stumps which were unsightly and potential trip hazards.
RESOLVED: That the Neighbourhood Coordinator be requested to arrange for a formal response to be sent to Mr.Flynn.
(b) Ms.B.Hogan complained about her treatment when she was recently evicted, she indicated that: she that she was not informed about the eviction; that she was promised a house for a house but received a bungalow. She went on to ask why she was not offered a house.
RESOLVED: That Ms.Hogan’s question be forwarded to the Director of Built Environment for a response.
(c) Mr.E.Hollandrasied his concerns regarding land along Hawthorne Road Canal Corridor between 495-509 Hawthorne Road (split between Derby and Litherland Wards). He stated that this was designated as housing land in the UDP and asked what actions the Council were positively taking to bring forward this land in the short-term for housing. A planning application had recently been refused to move Arriva bus depot to 495 Hawthorne Road. He asked the Council to adopt a more visionary and proactive approach to ensure that this land was brought forward for housing and builds on over £200 million of HMRI investment. This could be achieved by exploring with all of the owners and developers a better outcome through a range of options such as land swaps. He urged the Council to set up a working party to explore all the options and report the conclusions back to this Area Committee.
RESOLVED: That Mr.Holland’s question be forwarded to the Director of Built Environment for a response.
(d) Mrs.M.Owens asked why some residents had not been allocated a property on the Penpoll site or anywhere else; she claimed that these residents were either elderly or disabled or had relatives who were elderly and/or disabled.
Mrs.Owens supplied the names and addresses of five families and stated that she could supply many more. She went on to ask what Councillors were going to do to investigate this discrimination and houses not built for these most vulnerable residents of the Klondyke.
She went on to ask if residents were going to have to stay for another 2 years or more on the Klondyke, how could the Council ensure their health and safety.
RESOLVED: That Mrs.Owens’s question be forwarded to the Director of Built Environment for a response.
(e) Ms.J.Lunt commented that there was open access to the Canal by Penny Bridge. This open access was a huge risk to children using the Penny Bridge and children who lived on the three new build estates. She urged Councillors to ensure that this access is fenced off immediately.
RESOLVED: That Ms.Lunt’s question be forwarded to the Director of Built Environment for a response.
(f) Mr.S.O’Driscoll commented that all residents on the new build sites (511, Tannery and Toprain – Elizabeth I, II and III) were paying a service charge of around £3 per week. When residents enquired with their housing association, Adactus regarding what the service charge was for, they were not given an answer.
As residents living on these new estates (whether tenants or private owners), they demanded to know exactly what this service charge was for and request that our Councillors get a very clear answer on exactly what this approx £3 per week (£156 per year) pays for. Jointly 10 households x £156 per year = £23,700 per year. The grass was not cut, windows were not cleaned, and there were no communal play areas.
RESOLVED: That Ms.Lunt’s question be forwarded to the Director of Built Environment and Aductus Housing for a response.
(g) Mr.H.Clinton said that he had been offered re-housing by Riverside on the Penpoll site, but as yet have not been informed of the level of rent and/or service charge.
The other few residents who had moved to the Penpoll site only discovered rent levels when they signed the tenancy, which in some cases were almost double their current rent.
Mr.Clinton asked the Councillors to assist him to ensure that rent levels and service charges were formally put in writing by Riverside Housing Association and that the difference in rent levels was fully explained.
RESOLVED: That Mr.Clinton’s question be forwarded to the Director of Built Environment and Riverside Housing for a response.
(h) Ms.A.Whiting said her household, including her disabled son and husband in ill-health had not yet been offered any re-housing on the new sites. She was told everyone would be re-housed by 2012, but she understood her new home would not be built until 2014.
She would be one of a handful of residents left to live in an almost empty area of the Klondyke of what was once around 480 families. She would be left to live in fear of arson, break-ins, damage to her property and fear for her safety.
Her circumstances had been known by the Council (who were responsible for deciding what housing was built to meet all of her family’s needs) for many, many years.
She could not wait another two years. She demanded that a property was built to meet her needs urgently. She asked for definite plans and details of when her home would be built and ready for occupation. She asked her Councillors for urgent support in this matter.
RESOLVED: That Mrs.Whiting’s question be forwarded to the Director of Built Environment for a response.
(i) Ms.J.Edgar stated that as residents had been decanted from the Klondyke, they were entitled to statutory Home Loss and Disturbance compensation payments. She said that Home Loss payment had not increased since 01/09/08 – when was this due to increase?
Additionally she would like to request Councillors clarify that there should have been an inflation increase of the Disturbance Payment on the 01/04/2011 and 01/04/2012, which had not been implemented. The disturbance lump sum payment at the moment was as follows:- 2 bedroomed - £2,400, 3 bedroomed - £3,000, 4 bedroomed - £3,600. When would the inflation increase be implemented?
RESOLVED: That Ms.Edgar’s question be forwarded to the Director of Built Environment for a response.
(j) Mrs.H.Almond commented that since the re-design of the Junction Hawthorne Road/Linacre Lane junction there had been a number of near accidents.
She asked Councillors to investigate if a safer design for this junction could be implemented.
RESOLVED: That the Neighbourhood Co-ordinator be requested to forward this question to Linacre and Derby Area Committee for consideration as it fell within that Committee’s Ward boundaries.
(k) Mr.J.Baglow commented that he had been allocated a property on the Penpoll Site and could not get a clear idea of the date of the intended move.
He asked why was it not possible for Riverside Housing Association to give him a clear date of when he would move. He had to arrange disconnection/ reconnections/holidays from work, flooring.
He did not want to be faced with the same situation as residents who had moved to the Tannery site just before Christmas who were told at the last minute that their date had to be changed, which meant lots of stress and upset for these residents.
He asked whether Councillors could instruct Riverside to better plan and manage their schedule?
RESOLVED: That the Neighbourhood Co-ordinator be requested to pursue a reply to Mr.Baglow’s question from Riverside Housing.
(l) Mr.R.Jones commented that he was due to move into his new bungalow on 28 March 2012, on the Penpoll Site. He was only told recently during a telephone conversation that the move would be delayed for about 4 weeks. His wife had already cancelled their phone line and television subscription as we were given 4 weeks’ notice of their move. Many other residents would be in a similar position to theirs.
Why was Riverside not able to organise our move more efficiently? You may say what this had got to do with the Council. Riverside and Adactus were both partners of the Council.
How can our Councillors ensure Riverside are able to better manage our move. We have also not been informed of the level of rent or if there was a service charge.
RESOLVED: That the Neighbourhood Co-ordinator be requested to pursue a reply to Mr.Jones’s question from Riverside Housing.
Further to questions f,g,k and i the Committee notes the concerns of residents in relation to accurate information and community engagement from both Adactus and Riverside Housing.
RESOLVED: That both Adactus and Riverside Housing be requested to attend the next meeting of this Committee to provide a full update regarding their role of landlord in the area.
(m) Mr.P.Fairclough asked whether the Council was returning to weekly refuse collections as widely reported in the media last year. The Government announced that they had released funds so that this can happen and that Councils had no excuse for not making weekly collections. If Sefton refused to implement this could they give something back to the Community by implementing the return of Community Skips.
Mr.G.Berwick, Cleansing Services Manager responded, in writing, that at this time the Council was still considering its options whether to agree to submit an ‘expression of Interest’ (EOI) to Department for Communities & Local Government (DCLG).
The guidance and criteria were quite specific and at this juncture, it would be for elected Members to decide whether they deemed the various types of schemes and funding streams are appropriate to Sefton. When this decision was known he would write to Mr.Fairclough again to update him of the position.
In relation to ‘Community’ skips, residents maybe aware that all community skips were discontinued due Council efficiencies and savings (£ 44 million) for the current financial year. However, work was being done to try and secure funding for a limited skip scheme, but with no guarantees.
(n) Mr.G.McNeight asked whether the Area Committee could contribute to the Friends of Hatton Hill Park Association Family Fun Day in celebration of the forthcoming Queen’s Diamond Jubilee Celebrations.
RESOLVED: That Mr.McNeight’s request be forwarded to the Neighbourhood Co-ordinator for consideration by Ford Ward Councillors.
Publication date: 03/04/2012
Date of decision: 21/03/2012
Decided at meeting: 21/03/2012 - Litherland and Ford Area Committee
Effective from: 13/04/2012