Nottingham City Homes report – August 2019

From Nottingham City Homes (NCH) –

Meadows News

Masson House market rent properties
The NCH Masson House development on Arkwright Walk is now completely finished and let to market rent tenants.

Clifton Miner’s Welfare site
There will be 20 homes on this site, owned by Nottingham City Council and managed by NCH. Work is now underway, and the site is a Considerate Constructors’ Ultrasite, showcasing the very best in site management.

Meadows police station site
NCH is creating a flagship scheme of 21 premium apartments for market rent. The scheme will be owned and managed by NCH. Start on site to be confirmed.

Painting upgrades
NCH are painting exterior panels and balconies to improve the streetscape and enhance the environment on Oxbow Close, Osier Road, Willowbrook Court, and Sandays Close, near Queens Walk. We have also painted communal areas, bin stores, woodwork and front entrance porches and outside stores in this area.

Fencing in the Meadows
The final planning stages of the major fencing programme for The Meadows is now being agreed in conjunction with ward councillors. When the finer details have been agreed, we will programme in the works and consult with residents.

Also

McKee mural for the Meadows

Artist Pete McKee is painting a mural on the side of Lothmore Court, next to The Meadows tram stop, to commemorate 100 years of social housing. The works are scheduled to take place in mid to late August and will take a couple of days to complete, after which there will be a celebration with the residents to allow them the opportunity to meet the artist himself. The mural is being created pro bono of part of McKee’s hugely popular recent pop-up at Rough Trade, and references the Old Meadows wash house, the last to close in the country, and a memory beloved to many of The Meadows’ older residents.

Across the city

Homes and Places book – new edition to mark 100 years of council housing
As part of the celebrations to mark 100 years of council housing this year, NCH have published a new edition of our book, Homes and Places, a History of Nottingham’s Council Houses.

100 years of council housing exhibition and trees
As part of the celebrations to mark 100 years of council housing this year, NCH have developed a pop-up exhibition based on our book, Homes and Places, a History of Nottingham’s Council Houses.

NCH are also going to be plating 100 trees, 10 each in 10 locations across the city.

Properties for homeless people
We’re buying and refurbishing properties across the city to provide temporary accommodation for homeless families and avoid them having to go into B&B accommodation. We’ve completed 10 properties this financial year, and a further five are due to be completed over the summer.

The Big Birthday Bash – NCH Fun Day 2019
This year’s Tenant Fun Day on 14 September at the Bulwell Academy is themed the Big Birthday Bash, and runs from 12 noon to 4pm. This year will be all about celebrating 100 years of council housing; contributors include Homelink, mutual exchanges, Just Grow and green initiatives, the Nottingham Playhouse, Read On Nottingham, a DJ, a Bouncy castle, glow in the dark sports and more. There’s a free lunch for all attendees, and we’re hoping to beat last year’s record attendance of almost 2,000 All are welcome – hope to see you there.

Homelink Housing Options surgeries
HomeLink is the system by which people can join the waiting list for housing, and bid on properties across the city. We run surgeries for people wanting to join the housing register; at the surgeries, people can access support with joining the waiting list, and advice on their housing options. There’s a surgery at Loxley House on Wednesday 11 September from 10am to 3pm; please encourage constituents to attend if they are seeking housing or if the have any questions about the allocations policy consultation.

Damp and mould works
Reports of damp and mould are at their lowest levels now summer has finally arrived. Appointments for site surveys continue to trickle through on a daily basis and it is expected that this low level of appointments will continue throughout the summer months. Proactive surveys are continuing, and we continue to give residents advice on ways to control condensation and mould within the home. Improvement works such as installing or upgrading extractor fans are identified and included for priority attention as required.

Maintaining Decency
NCH will spend £¼billion over the next five years on our Asset Management programme, including maintaining Decent Homes standards in all the homes we manage – the scope of works will include:

  • Replacement of or alterations to kitchens
  • Replacement of or alteration to bathrooms, including level access showers
  • Aids and adaptations as required
  • Whole or partial electrical upgrades
  • Whole or partial heating upgrades.

Garden tool loan scheme
Keeping gardens tidy over the summer is important. The NCH garden tool loan scheme continues to expand, with over 60 NCH residents now registered. Any residents who are interested in the scheme can contact their housing patch manager for more details – information about housing patch managers is available on the NCH website.




Advertisements

Children in the care of Nottinghamshire Councils

A report published by the Independent Inquiry into Child Sexual Abuse, with a lot to take in. “The primary purpose of this investigation was to examine the institutional responses to such allegations of Nottinghamshire County Council, Nottingham City Council, and other organisations such as Nottinghamshire Police and the Crown Prosecution Service, and to consider the adequacy of steps taken to protect children from abuse.

David Mellen has issued a statement on the report.

I know how in 1994/5, Notts. County Council showed vigour and resolve in reviewing the death of a child in Ashfield District.
The report on abuse is long and I will be interested to see what the report fully says. For now, the City Council’s Leader response is presented.

East Midlands Today
Coverage on East Midlands News (BBC tv) is worth looking up, especially for survivors saying that they now feel they have been listened to. Interviewed on the programme, David Mellen explained clearly that we are apologising for what happened and I’ve re-published his apology made on *our* behalf.
There are 161 pages in the report, with quite a section on Beechwood.  
May well say more when I’ve properly read it.

Audit committee – July 2019 (2)

Statement of accounts approved, but still issues to sort.

The Annual Governance Statement is generally a re-statement of previous practice, but is also an opportunity for some of us to say that that the strong leader model should go.
Feels like the importance of the gateway review for the initial stages of new projects may have been lost. A new presentation of the types of weaknesses that were found by audit reviews that went looking for weaknesses, brings out culture, which the AGS is omitted, whilst capacity and capability are recognised. Triggering investigations tend not to set out out the timing of the findings, or who amongst the elected will see what’s being found and when.

EnviroEnergy – July 2019

A reminder of how it all started. A district heating scheme to be powered by burning coal (cleaner air in the city needed the coal to be burned in a controlled way) and district heating would be relatively cheap to install when St.Anns was being re-built. (A separate scheme for The Meadows was not to be so successful.)
It was soon converted to burning waste – 100 kilo tonnes is incinerated, (a further 80 kilo tonnes recycled) providing steam at 800 degrees and 30 barrs. 10MW of electricity is supplied to a local private wire network (59 GWh per year) and the condensed steam providing 141 GWh of heat to the district network of 95km of pipes at 85 and 100 degrees at 10 Barrs to 4,800 customers in St.Anns. An infra-red survey of the neighbourhoods from a drone found cracks in the pipes that lost 120 metres cubed of water every day, and repairs triggered have reduced the loss to 10 to 20 metres cubed. All this is heavily regulated.
More could be done to re-use material (e.g. more maintenance that simply replace, use less plastics in the first place, re-process wood and fibre), reduce the amount to be disposed (e.g. the recycling of food waste was lost cos of revenue cuts), extract more materials for re-use (e.g. gasification can extract a greater range of metals; bio-digestion to create gas for burning and compost for soil) but these technologies need new investment and subsidy (most sensibly from taxing the creation of waste). Extracting energy from waste still beats the burial of waste and there will be plenty fo waste to be incinerated for a long time into the future.
Profits for the last year of £487k was reported.
ENGINEERING NUMBERS TO BE RE-CHECKED

Full Council – July 2019

A special meeting celebrated the service and commitments of 9 retiring and retired Councillors by appointing them as Alderman and expecting them in turn to represent the city and city council at events – and more particularly do tours of The Council House.
The 9 have 199 years of service on the council between them.
I moved Glyn Jenkins, my fellow civic in 2017/18 (see comment below).

Fuller res photos are available.

A motion on LGBT rights and solidarity was agreed after amendment by Labour, who had consulted LGBT groups. The Clifton Independent leader declared he would oppose the amendment, but after a storming speech by new Councillor, Angharad Roberts, he backed down.

The first questions from the Clifton Independents saw confusion as –
– they tabled a question condemning special allowances for Councillors; in effect calling for them to receive the same allowance as the Leader and all Portfolio Holder and chairs of committees; (this differing from Ashfield Independents who have recently increased Special Responsibility Allowances);
– then they forgot to ask the question;
– when they did ask the question, they followed up by announcing they were giving their personal allowances away for local spending in Clifton East; different again from the question tabled; but omitted to ask a question, so the leader was not called to reply.
Beyond the confusion about the asking of the question, the proposal challenges one of the core values of any kind of a free society – that elected representatives are compensated for time and effort given, because it’s right and so that people of less then independent means can consider standing at all. Financial support for elected representatives was a principle first advocated by the Chartists around 200 years, and Nottingham was the only city to elect a Chartist MP.
A DAY AFTER THE MEETING, THERE IS STILL CONFUSION OVER THE COMMITMENT MADE, SO THIS MAY BE REVISED – DIFFERENT WITNESSES TO THE MEETING HEARD DIFFERENT THINGS!

RSE day

Statement signed by the 50 Nottingham Labour city councillors.
Select to expand.

Pleased to support RSE day and to have signed the statement signed by the 50 Nottingham Labour city councillors.
Have been disappointed with the picket at the Birmingham school, organised by people who are mis-representing what RSE education does at Key Stage 1.
Pleased to see the school’s local MP Jess Phillips make a stand there, and standing for “everyone’s equalities”.
Lilian Greenwood MP has been active too, taking part in last night’s Parliamentary debate.
Assuming if school doesn’t teach things, kids won’t know anything else is a very bad assumption – cast your mind back to some of the nonsense your mates told you when you were kids.

Area 5 committee – June 2019

The first meeting of the Lenton and Wollaton East, Meadows and Wollaton West area committee.

Reports of crimes in The Meadows – relatively low – 8 burglaries and 16 auto crimes.
The Nottingham Post has highlighted concerns about the Robin Hood Way by Ryeland Gardens but reports and casework don’t back up the concerns.
Some dubiousness concerning previous claims about The Meadows being the safest neighbourhood in Nottingham – yes, we welcome good news, but concerns remain about residents reporting incidents sufficiently.
Cllr. Nicola Heaton asked about progress in the campaign against drug traders and there was news given about recent court cases and about possessions.
Concern about problems associated with the BY phone box on the junction of Meadows Way and Risley Drive.

Support was given to Nottingham City Homes to progress with a RINGGO schemes for the Bridgeway Shopping Centre car parks, with both the full scheme to run Mon. – Sat., 8am to 5pm; and an introductory phase to Ron Mon. – Fri., 8am to noon.