THCAT meeting minute 8/8/17

ON 8 AUGUST 2017, 7-8.30PM

1. Introductions
Rev Bill Calder welcomed us to St John's and indicated where Fire Exits and facilities were available.  26 people attended the meeting.
2. Policies for Approval
It is important that we have Health & Safety and Equalities policies in place, plus they are needed to apply for certain funding and so that people from other organisations can work with us.  Draft policies were distributed and approved on a show of hands.  Any comments for amendments can be submitted to the Committee.
3. Feedback on Recent Events:
a) Parade of Nations - Jamie thanked those who came to help on the THCAT stall. The aim of the event is to build Community collaboration.  Jonathan, the organiser from Dominion House Church, want an evaluation in September on how this collaboration can be continued.  THCAT was given an award for its contribution to the Community.  The National Citizenship Service for young people who have previously attended our meetings were also there.
b) Bus Garage - On Sun 30 July 5 THCAT volunteers and the Bus Garage Manager cleared an area for Peter to check prior to planting.  There were no bus garage staff (possibly due to change of duty rotas) but the Manager was very helpful and took the waste to the dump.  There was a general feeling that the Bus Garage needs to commit more strongly to the project, both to making a financial contribution and to help with the work as this is a very large area which will mainly benefit them.  A further meeting with them was suggested so that proper plans and funding can be put in place.  Numbers of volunteers might be increased using Good Gym or other organisations.
4. Stall at Thornton Heath Festival
Thornton Heath Festival takes place on Sunday 3rd September.  Andrea will provide a table and gazebo for the THCAT stall and will have a separate one for the Chronicle.  The following people volunteered to help on the day: Marley, Gaëtane, Hannah, Barbara, Anne-Marie.
5. Finances
The current balance stands at £7,400.  Most of this is People's Health Trust money for the Street Action Project (£5k).  The remainder is from Councillor grants.  No new money has come in in the past month and Pete and Andrea have been paid their costs.
6. Project Updates
a) Parks - aim is to connect the 3 local parks: The Rec, Trumble Gardens and Grangewood Park and hold the Council/Contractors to account through monitoring. Collaboration on activities can be done via the Chronicle. Reporting can be done via

  • Grass cut in Trumble Gardens
  • Improvements in the Rec
  • Work is being done to resolve the problems over the hedge in the Rec.

How can we come together with a Master Plan for parks from September?
Those interested in helping can contact Paul for the Rec, Andrea for Grangewood Park and Jamie/Mohammed for Trumble Gardens.
Problems Identified:

  • Poor and potentially dangerous state of children's playground at Trumble Gardens - if there was a Friends group for Trumble Gardens they could put in a bid to the Council for SIL money.
  • Is the Rec reaching Crisis Point? - Rubbish, anti-social behaviour, drinking control zone not enforced, grass cutting inadequate, open drug dealing, moped riding in the park and recent gathering of large number of young people necessitating large police presence.  Some members felt their reports (sometimes with photo evidence) were not acknowledged or acted upon.

Jamie emphasised the need to report and follow up if there is no reply.  The local lead for the police is or you can use the Met contact centre on Twitter.  Copy in your Councillors.
b) Streets
Street Action - People's Health Trust funded Project
The project is to work with 20 streets over 2 years.  The first 10 streets have been identified: Bnsham Manor Rd, Boswell, Brook, Cotford, Crowland, Gilsland and Gillett Roads, Kynaston Avenue, Lucerne, Melfort and Quadrant Roads. Street Leaders are forming teams for each street. The initial monthly meeting has taken place and the next one is tomorrow, 9th August.
Linda and Gaëtane met with Dermot Lineham, the N Area Neighbourhood Safety Officer to discuss the project plus bins, litter and other street issues.  He will provide a list of contacts which Gaëtane will circulate.
Pete's Planters
17 planters are now out on the streets and Pete is ensuring the Council are aware of all the locations.  He is awaiting information on funding to know how many more we can do.
Meeting with Stuart Collins - Cabinet Member
The Committee had a positive meeting with Stuart Collins and members of his team re the fly tipping crisis in our area.  There seems to have been some increase due to green waste being dumped, although some neighbours share green bins.  The alley-gator scheme to clear and gate alleyways where dumping occurs is in place.
Stuart proposed a joint letter with our logo and the Council's to be distributed to about 10 streets with a door knocking exercise by members of his team and THCAT members concerning fly tipping/recycling etc. Some training would be included but no date was yet available.  Ten streets have been identified - 5 in Bensham Manor ward: Marion, Richmond, Woodcote, Melfort and Winterbourne Roads; and 5 in Thornton Heath ward: Buller/Hunter Roads, Manchester Road (by the planter) Natal/Hunter Roads, Foulsham Road (near the Chapel and the Woodville Road/High Street junction.
c) High Street/Regeneration
Street Market - Funding and a Business Plan are now in place.  A Market Manager will be appointed.  The market will hopefully start in October 2017, initially with 10 stalls for a 12 month pilot.  Part of the Manager's remit will be to generate funding for the market to continue.
High Street - is looking better but there are more empty shops.  We would like the Regeneration Team to move forward in creating  a long term plan to fill the shops with a variety of businesses and the empty Thomas Farley up and running with a new suitable business.  HSBC has been divided into 2 units with one half up for sale.

  • We agreed to invite Mark Watson and someone from the Economic Development Dept to come to a meeting or walk-about to explore the issues below (Andrea to invite):
  • There is a problem with high rents.
  • Some developers are not interested in renting their properties.
  • Graffiti and fly posting are problems - can he Council contact landlords to remove it?
  • Some area are Business Improvement Centres (BID) but Alison Butler did not think this was possible for Thornton Heath because many of the businesses are too small.
  • There is a Business Forum.

A meeting between Jo Negrini and the Manager is being arranged.  Any issues to be raised should be forwarded to Alison.
There are no dates for council work on the fire exits to the flats above Tesco yet.
7/8. Dates for Future Actions and Christmas
As the meeting was running short of time, these dates were not arranged.  They will be set by the Committee and circulated by email and the Facebook Page and in the Chronicle.
9. Updates on HMO's, Traffic Issues etc.
HMO's - There has been another meeting re the Manchester Road development where new proposals were shown.  Residents were more optimistic as they were of a higher spec. The application has been submitted but needed some changes/corrections.  It would go live in a week or so.  The developer wants to begin before the permission is granted because of the winter coming on.
Alison Butler informed us that although Thornton Heath is an area of high concentration of HMO's it does not have roads with high concentration.  However, she is still going forward with Article 4 to control the spread of HMO's.
Speeding/Traffic - Alison suggested we might like to get involved in Speed Watch where members are trained to use hand held speed cameras on the streets to try to catch people who constantly speed.  The response was mixed.
Brigstock House Refugee Hostel  - Vân has offered to run an art and craft session for parents and children at the hostel and has been given permission to trial it for 3 weeks from 11th September on Mondays from 10-11am.  She requested art and craft materials and helpers.  Vân to post a list of what she needs on our Facebook page.
10. Date of Next Meeting
The next meeting will take place on Tuesday 19th September from 7-8.30pm - venue to be notified.