MINUTES OF RIVERSIDE RESIDENTS ASSOCIATION AGM – 6 DECEMBER 2020 18.00 ON ZOOM DUE TO COVID RESTRICTIONS
ATTENDEES (taken from ZOOM list with everyone’s permission):
Sue and Chris Belshaw
Maire and Alec Bounds
Diane and Julian Cheek
Korinna and Martin Farrell
Lindsay and John Forbes
Loveday and Ed Newton
Jean and Tony Lancaster
Carol and Michael Statham-Fletcher
Susan and Peter Wright
Roy and Janet Balcomb
Michael and Machiko McAlister
Julius and Ela Zadora
Mary Webb, as previous Vice Chair of the Riverside Residents Association (RRA), opened and introduced the meeting.
The RRA has been around for a long time but hasn’t met recently because there hadn’t been so much to be involved with, but now there is.
Mary asked Peter Wright as the Treasurer to give a report of the accounts. RRA AGM minutes 6.12.20
There is £1,953.51 in the bank account. This has been there for 3 years. Peter explained we had fought a couple of planning battles in the past and won them, and do not ask for money unless it is needed for a specific cause.
Mary added we will have an independent auditor going forward and we had an idea who to ask for that if the association is happy for it to be followed up. All attendees agreed.
The account is with Metro Bank.
No further questions were asked about the finances.
Mary explained that existing Committee Members needed to stand down and a new committee would be formed. All nominated candidates were approved by the meeting.
The new committee is as detailed below:
Chair: Mary Webb
VIce Chair: Robin Catlin
Treasurer: Peter Wright
Communications Officer: Tony Lancaster
Other Committee Members: Stuart Lee, Lee Hyde (minutes), Tony Sharples
A slightly amended constitution has been sent out. The reason for this is that experts are required in certain areas e.g. planning. It has therefore been written in the constitution that Sub-Groups could be formed where needed for certain elements of business.
Rather than having 4 meetings per year, meetings will be held when required.
All attendees were in agreement with the amended constitution.
Mary explained the reason for the formality was so that the Association would be properly recognised by the Council.
COVID TEST SITE
After initial issues were sorted out, it has been very quiet. The Borough contact person has been very responsive.
County Hall are now moving out in March, otherwise we would have requested the site to be moved to the front of County Hall.
Tony Sharples asked if it would be a vaccination centre. Mary said she had asked this question and was told they won’t use it for that, they are looking at other sites in the Borough, some of which may be indoors.
Julian Cheek asked about numbers tested as it seems very quiet. At one time it was 50 a day, but we don’t have more recent figures.
LOCAL ANTI-SOCIAL BEHAVIOUR
South Lane, East Lane and the Portsmouth Road have been particularly affected with nuisances including nightime noise, litter, urinating and drug use. Mary has written several letters to the licensing authority on behalf of residents but to no avail as applications to extended the licenses were granted.
Chris Brookes also raised the issue of the sofas dumped outside the Scout Hut. Because they are on Scout land the Council can’t remove them. If they were on the street it would be a different matter. Chris has mentioned to the workmen opposite if they would have room in their skip. The matter continues. RRA AGM minutes 6.12.20
Mary commented on the increase of litter in the area, perhaps because of the testing site and Lee thought also because of the increase in takeaway food due to bars and restaurants having been closed. The situation will be monitored.
SURREY COUNTY COUNCIL REDEVELOPMENT
Robin has prepared replies and feedback after the first consultation, as they have particular areas of expertise.
A Development and Planning sub group was proposed, where residents’ expertise in such matters can be utilised. Attendees agreed. Robin will lead. Attendees who volunteered to be part of the subgroup: Tony Lancaster, Loveday Newton, Tony Sharples, Stuart Lee. Other residents not present at the AGM are welcome to join.
Robin explained there was an intense period coming up with applications. It is concerning for everyone what might happen in our neighbourhood but great that we have a lot of people who are passionate about what happens.
More detail won’t be likely to come until after the Planning Application (which can’t be done without a Public Consultation), probably in March.
Robin said there was a strong co-ordinated response from all areas of the local community and other local resident associations who he was looking forward to working with.
- Robin encouraged everyone to respond to the Consultation and emphasised how important it is. He explained that he is working on a collective RRA response and would like comments, these should be sent to Mary who will then forward them on. The deadline for submission on the consultation is Tues 15th December. They will respond by 14th December.
- By the end of the week Robin will circulate suggested headings for people to submit their own responses. It was emphasised how important it is to reply individually and not copy and paste from other feedback.
ANY OTHER BUSINESS
- Alec stated that during the TOPO (Old Post Office) process, referring to specific things, ie the Local Plan , density units per hectare, building near Grade 2 listed buildings and showing how these were being contravened, helped the case.
- Suggestions were made to get the local and national press involved. Mary said a neighbour had volunteered to make a short film for social media, but suggested the Sub-Group could pick up on these suggestions.
- Concerns were raised over the apathy and lack of involvement by our Local Councillors.
- Liaising with Historic England to increase the listing of County Hall, and liaising with the University could also be dealt with by the Sub-Group.
- Korinna Hedinger-Farrell asked about the Kingston Society being involved and Robin explained that various Residents groups are getting together, including the Kingston Society, and are keen to get involved.
- Membership of the Sub-Group will be offered to the wider community of local streets.
- Mary checked there were no further issues from residents from Kensington Gardens, Avante Court and Portsmouth Road. Steven from Portsmouth Road said the Order for anti-social behaviour didn’t make much difference and Mary said we will have a think to see if there is anything else that could be done.
The meeting was formally closed.