Thursday 13th May 2004
Paul Gallagher, Margaret Ormonde, David Miles, Anne Ayres, Jill Verran, Mark
Hutchings, Diana Hartrup, Bill Harper, Tara Taylor
Brenda Deller, Brian Warren, Bob Cruickshank
Minutes of the last meeting (Thursday 12th February
2004) were approved.
3. Matters arising:
at Highdown School
A response had been received re the litter situation at Highdown School saying
particular areas of attention were around the re-cycling bins. Also the children
were being encouraged to take a more responsible attitude.
feelings had been expressed at the AGM about graffiti and vandalism
in general. There were signs that Andy Gillespie from the parks department
and his team were tackling it on park buildings, but evidence of
a co-ordinated overall Council policy was sorely lacking. Margaret
Ormonde had, during the afternoon, spoken to Andy Gillespie on the ‘phone
re the various costs and effectiveness of treatments, with a possibility
of including some volunteers in the clean-up process. Although it
was likely Caversham and other Residents’ Associations might
want to put forward ideas, it was thought initially to confine discussion
to Emmer Green. Paul Gallagher and Margaret Ormonde offered to meet
up with Andy Gillespie and David Wilks, who had voiced concerns and
possible solutions at the AGM, was to be contacted too, in the hope
he might become involved.
Barclay of Chalgrove Way was keeping a close eye on the development
behind 54-74 Kidmore End Road to ensure the developer complied with
application for the development of houses behind gardens in Highdown
Hill Road was rejected by the RBC Planning Committee, largely on
the grounds it would spoil the character of the area. Cllr Bob
Green had given an impassioned speech. It was likely, however,
that the developers would go to appeal, which may not necessary
have the desired end result.
proposal for Highdown School to sell off land for development had
been suspended because the LEA was not supporting such measures
until the government review on school building and maintenance
were expressed that the maintenance of the sign had lapsed rather,
with it being in need of a good oiling to preserve the wood and the
had been coming in at healthy rate, but a few remained from a long
while back and it was decided to curtail membership of these households.
is part of the Urban Parks Forum and had sent out a leaflet
inviting organisations to apply for grants to improve local open
spaces. One of the projects discussed had been a children’s
play area at Clayfield Copse, in a sympathetic style using logs etc.
Before things could proceed permission was needed from the Head of
the Planning Department. Paul Gallagher had written, but as yet had
It was over a year now since we had formally withdrawn from local
committees in the hope it may encourage the Council to re-think
their attitude on better
communications. The opinion was that they were keen for us to participate again.
As an initial step it was felt we should return in an observer capacity and
Bob Cruickshank’s name was put forward for the Caversham Safer Forum.
Another committee we would hope to return to was the North Reading Youth Project.
There were indications that efforts were being made in this area and initiatives
such as the new youth mobile unit and ideas for special ‘graffiti walls’.
Paul Gallagher was to look into this and Tara Taylor also expressed an interest
in attending a future meeting. These were held six times a year
association had a healthy balance of just over £5800, boosted
by the re-imbursement from the Council for payment of the village
sign. Thanks were given to Paul Gallagher for his tireless efforts
to secure this. Ideas of how to spend some of this money included
a new community notice board at the shopping precinct.
Community Notice Board
Mander from the Berkshire Woodcarvers had been approached and detailed
drawings had been supplied for him to pass on the Matthew Mander,
so both could supply quotes. Another avenue for the supply of the
materials was Brian Kendrick, who has contacts at Bouchier Limited,
and the same information had been passed to him as well. Nothing
could actually proceed until planning consent had been approved,
and although Paul Gallagher made an initial approach to the Council,
no acknowledgement had yet been received.
Sale of Land Guidance
recent years the Association was becoming involved in often controversial
issues over the selling of land for infilling. Its membership included
both parties selling and nearby upset residents. The advice was for
individuals to take up their own specific issues with the planning
authority, and that the Association would involve itself in the wider
issues, such as the impact on the area as a whole or effect on local
amenities and infrastructure. A set of guidelines had been prepared,
ready to include with the next newsletter, setting out some of the
pitfalls of accepting tempting offers from developers. Details of
useful websites were also to be included.
St Barnabas Garden Party
theme was an English country garden. EGRA would once again be taking
part on Saturday 10th July. Another Emmer Green walk route had been
prepared for sale. And an idea for a giant shuffle puzzle, with an
appropriate picture for young people, sounded promising too.
Any Other Business
More funds had been allocated for this north of the river. A
map was being prepared by the Council indicating the frequency it
is to be expected from now on. It is hoped that before long we will
all notice a difference and that they will include street signs (some
of which are hard to read now) in the work undertaken.
11th – 13th June the church has its 75th anniversary celebrations,
which will include a visit from the new Bishop of Reading on the
11th June. Also attending would be former vicars and priests-in-charge,
and over the weekend a lunch in the church. On the 13th a special
family barbeque would be held in the grounds of the school.
Planning applications were being submitted for a £350,000 church centre
behind and alongside the existing church building, plus a £22,000 refurbishment
of the church hall. The new building would include meeting rooms, parish offices,
a large entrance and toilets. Fundraising would be required to meet the costs
and was likely to take a few years.
Parking – junction St Barnabas Road /Grove Road
had again been raised at the AGM, particularly with reference to
the chaos at school finishing time. The Council had assured us it
was on the list of things to be considered in the future, but at
the moment there were insufficient funds for even a survey to take
of next meeting
8:00 pm Thursday 12th August 2004. Venue to be decided.