11th September 2003
Paul Gallagher Mrs Margaret Ormonde Mr David Miles Mrs Anne Ayres
Mrs Jill Verran Mr Brian Warren Mr Bill Harper Mr Bob Cruickshank
of the last meeting (11th June 2003) were approved.
End Road Parking
Annette Hendry had said although the parking issue had been put
on hold, the Council were now ready to move forward and the first
step would be to consult
residents about parking permit proposals. It was noted that a similar undertaking
in Queen’s Road, Caversham had been a success, but this was partly because
it had deterred car users from parking there to use the town or the station.
It was noted recently that he double yellow lines had been repainted, covering
a different area than before. There was one anomaly whereby the line finished
halfway across a property, which was adjacent to a driveway. Room for a Smart
car if you are lucky. There had also been an increase in parking along Grove
Road making it more difficult for buses to navigate.
at Highdown School
There had been an exchange of letters between Trevor Keable and EGRA Chairman,
Paul Gallagher, but without any positive action. All agreed it was largely
children who were responsible for the litter. Although, the suggestion was
made that local residents might like to become involved in the clearance, the
committee advised they do so in a supervisory category, alongside teachers,
staff and parents, with the pupils in small groups undertaking the work. If
the Association could muster volunteers for such a task it was hoped the school
would co-operate. Initially a grand sweep would be needed, with monitoring
of the situation thereafter. David Miles was to contact the school.
Still nothing had been done to clean the pavilion of graffiti, but the nearby
tennis court buildings had had the offensive paintwork removed. The car park
remained in its usual state of neglect. Lack of action and response to our
requests was to be deplored.
Loud music coming from speakers on the outside wall frequently upset local
residents and, because it seemed to be an ongoing problem, the Council had
been informed. The situation worsened during the summer months when regular
live music belted out from the pub garden on a Sunday, drowning out any sounds
residents may want to utter in their own homes and being heard loud and clear
as far away as St Barnabas Church. This time the Council did respond to the
concerns of residents in general and staff from the Environmental Health Department
visited the White Horse on August 11th to discuss matters. A report on that
meeting is still awaited, but thankfully things have been quieter since. A
reminder next spring may be necessary to avoid the problem next summer.
The developers of the Heathcroft site had been successful in
their planning appeal to build 35 apartments, despite some very
valid objections. Despite
there being only a 30% success rate for appeals, it was felt because this was
an infill site in an existing built up area that was sufficient for it to be
passed. A full planning application had recently been made by Dave Tanner Partnership
(Elegant Homes Ltd) for the development of 13 dwellings on land between 54
and 74 Kidmore End Road. Notifications of new planning applications had been
offered and accepted via e-mail. Mysteriously other associations had been offered
the same with a threat of a £200 fee if they chose the to continue with
the paper option. Electronic means suited us as an efficient way of circulating
topical issues around the committee and if necessary to our members.
After a difficult re-adjustment period the refurbishment of the allotments
was deemed a great success with some of the new plot-holders living opposite
in Grove Road. There had been a few isolated incidents of vandalism, but
was hoped these would not be repeated, and it was a pleasure to see the
Report. The association had paid for the village sign
whilst awaiting reimbursement from promised Council funds. The
current balancein the Association’s funds was nearly £3000
and it was suggested the committee and members might like to
put forward ideas as to how some of this might be spent on future
from Committees: It had been collectively decided to
withdraw from representation on local committees as a way of
making clear our disappointment with lack of consultation from
Reading Youth Project.
Dr Simon Bradford had decided against contacting the Council directly, but
still hoped EGRA would return to meetings in the not too distant future. The
committee decided to have the desired effect it was still too soon for that,
but the situation would be monitored
It was regretted that EGRA were no longer to be represented as part of the
protest over lack of Council consultation. EGRA was still given feedback via
the minutes of the meetings, and whilst the long term future was to resume
and contribute, this was still early days. Committee member Vera Bodman had
been involved in the past, and although she was still keen to do so as an individual,
whilst she remained on the EGRA committee, this was deemed inappropriate, and
that for the time being all connections needed to be severed.
A large community gathering took place on the green by the pond
on September 6th when the new oak village sign, painstakingly
created by the Berkshire Wood
Carvers was unveiled by the Mayor Jeanette Skeats and resident Mrs Esme Ellingham
of the Fisher family. Dave Moore from the Council had been instrumental in
arranging the installation of the sign and the brick plinth. There had already
been positive feedback and even the visually impaired were able to sense the
carvings on the post. This is the third success of the Residents’ Association
in the last three years and there is no doubt the exhibition, the book and
the sign have served to foster the feeling of community spirit. Particular
thanks were given to Paul Gallagher for all his work with the sign.
Berkshire Wood Carvers were sadly being ejected from their workshop
at New Town School and were looking for new premises. Help and
suggestions would be warmly welcomed.
Committee Membership for 2003-04 Vacancies still remained
on the committee and although there were still some contenders,
new offers were most welcome.
Membership and Publicity
Whilst membership still remained healthy, it was sometimes an effort to persuade
people to rejoin after the membership had elapsed. It was learnt that CADRA
were embarking on a big recruitment drive to boost their membership and whilst
this was to be welcomed, the fact that their territory included Emmer Green
and we had not been consulted was an issue worth raising. Residents needed
to be aware of both associations and those on the EmmerGreen/Caversham borders
may opt for Caversham or both, but the choice should be open to all. It was
felt if house to house leafleting was being undertaken it could be shared with
details of both groups being dropped through letterboxes.
was also suggested we create a welcome pack for residents who have
recently moved into the area. The website needed more publicity
and laminated signs were to be made for the library and community
community website had also been set up to benefit members and an
idea for this was to add a recommended tradesman’s list.
It was felt if members could put forward their own personal recommendations
and contact details for the tradesperson it could be a very valuable
resource. There would have to be a general disclaimer, but it was
a step in the right direction. I there was a good response, at
some stage a printed list might be included in a future newsletter
Any Other Business
box near St Barnabas Church
Frequent requests to relocate this box away from traffic danger seem to have
fallen on deaf ears. Traffic management had the area on their pending list
for investigation, but everything was on hold for the time being.
recycling wheelie bins
been delivered to new areas in Emmer Green. Paper and plastic bottles
but not glass would be collected once a fortnight.
bins outside the shops
were constantly overflowing and needed the Council to empty them more often
A meeting was due to beheld at the Milestone Centre on Thursday 25th September
to discuss the site and its future. Friends of Clayfield Copse is an enthusiastic
band of local volunteers, mostly appreciated by the public, but occasionally
misunderstood. All are welcome to attend.
of next meeting:
8:00 pm Thursday 27th November 2003 at 18 St Barnabas Road.