Winter 2010 The quarterly magazine for First Wessex residents Formerly Housing News in Aldershot and Talking Tenants in Eastleigh News from our Aldershot office Job clubs supporting return to work 24 News from our Eastleigh office New homes in Southampton take shape 30 News from our Portsmouth and Gosport offices Linvoy Primus visits the Foyer 36 Win ‘Love to Shop’ vouchers in our fantastic Did you kno We have div ? w competitions! ide See page 23 your magaz d in into four colo e ured sections, he lpin you find new g s fo your own are r a! www.firstwessex.org General news General news Welcome to the Winter Government announces seasonal recipes and fun-packed competition pages. There are also details of how you can get edition of Open Door! involved with us and how we can support you cuts in social housing with finding work. This edition of Open Door is packed full of As always, we are keen to hear your news and information and news on all the activities views and we’d be delighted to receive any that have been happening over the last few letters or contributions you’d like to make to months in your areas. It contains news local future editions of Open Door. to our Aldershot, Eastleigh, Portsmouth Peter Walters, Chief Executive of will be able to build near to the same number and Gosport offices, as well as general First Wessex explains the likely of new homes we have built each year for the Finally, on behalf of everyone at First First Wessex news which we hope you find effects of the government’s cuts past three years. Housing need is high in the Wessex we’d like to wish you all a useful and enlightening! in social housing as part of the South East however and we are pleased with the wonderful festive season and send you all our best wishes for 2011. Comprehensive Spending Review. announcement that the government expects the With the expensive party season and build up sector to provide up to 150,000 affordable new to Christmas well underway there are plenty of “Firstly, we would like to reassure homes in England, with the majority being in the The PR & Communications team hints and tips including money advice, ensuring all our residents that the quality South and South East. Tel: 023 9289 6761 your homes stay free of fire hazards, as well as of service they receive from us will not suffer as a Email: PR&Communications@firstwessex.org Future funding Get in touch Contents result of the recent government announcement on the cuts in social housing. “We are constantly working to come up with innovative ways of bridging any gaps in funding, 6 Working in partnership particularly to develop new homes and provide Aldershot office This year’s “Our residents are at the heart of everything we Care and Support services as these areas are of Call us Freephone Report repairs review of do and we plan to continue working even more such importance. 01252 338800 0800 0191 470* 0800 0217115* the rent closely together with them and with our partner Eastleigh office and service agencies, local authorities and service providers to “We are very proud of our Care and Support Call us Freephone Report repairs charges you minimise the impact of the spending cuts. We are division and we are particularly concerned about 023 8068 4300 0800 0191 469* 0800 214806* pay in a strong position as an organisation, and we will the impact the cuts in the Supporting People Portsmouth office support our partners as best we can as they decide budgets will have on the vulnerable residents, Call us Freephone Report repairs 24 how to apply the cuts over the coming months. both older and younger, who we support across 023 9289 6750 0800 8402 813* 0800 9882440* Job Clubs Hampshire. We continue to work hard with our Gosport office support more “We recognise that the impact of the cuts in local authority funders as they Call us people return benefits, such as Housing Benefit and Disability plan the most effective ways 08450 553322 to work in Living Allowance, will be severe for many to deal with the inevitable * Please note when calling 0800 Freephone Aldershot and residents. We already invest substantial resources changes to the service, numbers from a mobile phone, you will be Farnborough in providing support such as Welfare Benefit and and are committed to charged by your provider. Look out for the Debt Advice. We shall be looking at increasing finding ways to evolve asterisk symbol (*) to remind you. these services over the coming months. our service so that 30 We hope you enjoy reading New homes at we can continue to If you would your copy of Open Door. You the Mayflower Your tenancy support those who Gantry start to “All current residents still have the right to a need it most.” like this will find it has been split into four areas of interest: General, take shape tenancy for life, so they can feel secure in the magazine knowledge that their tenancy will not be at risk Aldershot, Eastleigh and made Portsmouth/Gosport. To help provided they continue to meet the conditions of available in you find your way around the their tenancy agreement. New tenants will have more flexible tenancies which will be reviewed 36 large print or magazine, we have used the following tabs down the side Young people periodically under the new rules to be set by the audio format, of each page: from the Foyer government. please call General news inspired by us using News from our Aldershot office Linvoy Primus “Our building programme of new affordable homes has agreed funding in place for the next the contact News from our Eastleigh office year and a half, so we are confident that we details above. News from our Portsmouth and Gosport office General news 3 General community news General community news General news General news First Wessex supports residents who Building sites as good neighbours want to create home businesses First Wessex has recently been accepted as a Client Partner of the Considerate Constructors Scheme. Working from home can be very flexible and can fit in The scheme was set up with government support to promote the image of the construction industry around your lifestyle, needs and responsibilities. If you by improving relationships with neighbours, the have a phone and an internet connection, there are general public and the environment. The first site registered for First Wessex was in 2002, any number of potential business opportunities which since when it has been a requirement for all our you could create from your own home. contractors to register with the scheme. John Macklin, Regional Development Manager, accepted the Certificate of Client Partnership The scheme requires the sites to be clean and safe, from the Chairman of the scheme, Robert The new government has expressed a strong and to be considerate and respectful to neighbours Biggs, and said: “The work of the Considerate commitment to supporting tenants set up and site workers alike. Poor performance is Constructors Scheme in improving the image home based businesses, and as your landlord highlighted and required to be improved, and of our construction sites and the impact on our we would like to support you in any way we any complaints are investigated and resolved; neighbours is an integral part of our approach to can through these challenging financial times. good performance is recognised and exceptional development, and we are delighted to have been We know that many residents would like performance rewarded – the First Wessex site at accepted as a Client Partner. We will continue to get back into work following periods of May Crescent, Ash recently received a national to work with our partner contractors to ensure redundancy or caring for a loved one, having Bronze Award. high standards are achieved in all our construction children or after an illness. We’d like to make activities.” it as easy as possible for residents including home owners to work and fulfil their potential If you have a concern regarding any of our in a way which suits them, so we’d like to construction sites please contact your local encourage suitable phone and internet based First Wessex office. Alternatively, if you have businesses. a complaint you can contact the Considerate It is important to note that there are some Constructors Scheme using their freephone types of businesses which would not be number displayed on the site hoardings. appropriate to be run from your home, such as activities which cause noise disturbance to neighbours or are illegal. We will consider every request on an individual basis, taking your Parking on new development. The planners and developers work together to make sure that the buildings, public development sites individual circumstances and accommodation and private open spaces, gardens, communal into consideration. areas, parking and storage create a balanced environment in which people would be happy to If you would like to start a business you must live. obtain written permission from us and any We are often asked how we decide on the size other relevant agencies. The business must not of car parks when we build new homes, and Through planning policy the Government is become the main use of your home or damage whether it is possible to increase the number of working to encourage wider use of public the property in any way. spaces we provide. transport and to reduce our reliance on using If you want to know more about becoming cars, so parking in new developments has The issue of parking is looked at as part of a self employed, getting back to work or training reduced in recent years. thorough review of each development project opportunities why not contact Naomi Barnett, at the planning stage. The review considers the our Training and Employment Advisor. Naomi First Wessex always carries out extensive public number and types of homes which are being can offer all First Wessex residents free initial consultations during the planning stages of built, their location, local transport networks and advice and support. Contact 07867 538214 all our development projects, and we seek to traffic analysis. This information is used alongside or email firstname.lastname@example.org. consider the views, needs and aspirations of the local authority’s policy on parking to decide Home owners should contact their Home everyone involved. on an appropriate size of car park for the new Ownership Manager. 4 General news General news 5 General money news General money news General news General news Are you returning to work? You could be entitled to In Work Credit! If you are a single parent going back to work, you Furthermore, you may be able to claim an We are working hard may be able to claim In Work Credit of up to £40 a week tax free, for up to a year after you start additional four week run-on of Housing Benefit and Council Tax benefit once you start work, working at least 16 hours each week. subject to meeting the criteria. Talk to the to control our costs JobCentre Plus who can refer your circumstances You must start your claim before you begin your to the Housing Benefit office. and make efficiencies new job, so contact your nearest JobCentre Plus today to find out if you are eligible! For further information on what you may be entitled to, pick up our ‘Tell me about Housing Benefits’ leaflet from any of our offices. Rent and service charges set to In arrears with your If you are behind on your payments, Rahena will contact you to talk about your situation, working service charge or with you to set up a realistic and affordable rise from April 2011 payment plan to reduce your arrears. The most important thing is that you don’t ignore the Each year we review the rent and service charges Many properties, such as shared ownership and rent payments? problem – it won’t go away. We can reassure you that we will look at your circumstances with residents must pay us, which comes into effect in market rental homes, are not subject to the April. For most of our rented homes the rent set is government guidelines but are also affected by the Are you a shared owner or understanding, and there are plenty of things we can do to help. Rahena has access to many based on government guidelines, which require us RPI and other published indicies. leaseholder resident? Specialist confidential financial support services like the to set a target rent for each home and then each year adjust that rent by the Retail Price Index (RPI) We are working hard to control our costs and advice and assistance is Citizen’s Advice Bureau, and she can also put you in touch with our Benefit and Debt Advice team as at September plus 0.5%. If the current rent is make efficiencies so that we can pass these savings now available from our new who can check you are receiving all the benefits below the target rent, a further amount of up to on to residents who pay service charges, but in £2 a week will also be added. some areas (in particular electricity and gas) we dedicated Income Coordinator you are entitled to. are experiencing cost pressures. We will also be Need further confidential advice? For September 2009, the index was -1.4% which affected by the rise in VAT in January 2011, from We’d like to introduce Rahena Begum, the new Worried about your payments or are in meant prices were falling. Many residents’ rent 17.5% to 20%. Income Coordinator for First Wessex shared arrears? Please contact Rahena as soon was reduced as a result. owners and leaseholders. We know these are as possible on 023 8068 4437 or email In February next year all residents will receive tough times and that many people are struggling email@example.com so we For September 2010 the RPI is +4.6%. Your rent a letter containing details of your new rent to make their payments, so this new dedicated can work together to resolve the issue. will be adjusted by 4.6% plus a further 0.5%, and services charges which will apply from service is here to help you. which means that the average increase for April 2011 to March 2012. Please contact Are you a family those homes on target rent is expected to be your local First Wessex office if you have any claimed Housing and Council Tax Benefit and +5.1% from April 2011. For those homes below queries. Contact details can be found on the were not entitled in the past, may now be able target a further amount of up to £2 a week will be back cover. to receive extra financial help towards their rent added (if you have rent free weeks, the further amount added will be up to £2.17 per week). with young and Council Tax charges. children? Contact your local benefits office to find out Did you You can pay your rent online. whether you are eligible and get an application form. If you’d like some help completing the know? If you have an Allpay card, simply visit www.firstwessex.org and follow form or have any queries please contact the the link, or go to www.allpayments.net and follow the instructions. Child Benefit is no longer counted as income Welfare Benefit and Debt Advice Team at your when an assessment is made for Housing and local First Wessex office. Contact details can be If you do not have an Allpay card but would like to be able to pay your Council Tax Benefit. Many families who have found on the back cover. rent online, contact your local First Wessex office to order one today! 6 General news General news 7 General community news General community news General news General news A day in the No time to life of an Tracy Buck Charlotte Cooper Helen Crush hang on the phone? We’ll interventions such as Injunctions and in very Anti-Social serious cases Possession Proceedings or Closure Orders. We work closely with your call you back Neighbourhoods Team, police and solicitors to Behaviour find the appropriate legal intervention to stop the behaviour. Part of our role includes attending joint visits to victims, witnesses and perpetrators, preparing legal paperwork and warning residents straight away Coordinator about the consequences of breaching their tenancy agreement.” As part of our commitment to giving you the best possible experience when you contact us, we have Working with you recently installed a new phone system. “The role of the ASB Co-ordinator is extremely “Not every case is about taking enforcement varied and no two days are the same. This is both action. Removing a tenant from their home or We will always do our best to answer a great asset and a challenge as it means we never taking out an injunction against somebody is not your call as quickly as possible. However have a chance to get bored!” This is the view of Tracy Buck and Charlotte Cooper, both Anti- action that is taken lightly. This is part of our if your call hasn’t been answered or you are no longer able to wait, the new Social Behaviour Coordinators from Aldershot and Eastleigh, respectively. “It is often believed that housing associations or councils can just ‘evict people’. This is definitely commitment to giving system gives you the option to ask for someone to call you back. “We work alongside the local neighbourhood not the case. To evict a tenant or take legal proceedings we are required to have a substantial you the best possible When you request a call back, a message case including strong supporting evidence. A wardens and managers who have day to day responsibility for dealing with neighbourhood and judge will ultimately take the decision and our role experience when you flashes up on the screen of the first available Customer Services Coordinator, letting them ASB cases. When a case becomes more complex, involves ensuring they have the best possible case know that they need to call you back. If they problematic or enforcement action is required the put before them. contact us don’t make the call to you within ten seconds, Neighbourhoods Team will liaise with us so we the message goes to the next available Advisor, can offer our specialist knowledge, support and “We enjoy the varied aspect of our role although and so on. This message will not go away until guidance,” says Tracy. the demands can be very challenging. Working the call back is made, so it is impossible to miss. alongside excellent colleagues and partner We’d like to reassure you that this facility is there “Half of what we do involves enforcement work agencies with whom we have good relationships for your convenience and that someone will and the rest is pro-active work.” allows us to deal with issues in a collaborative definitely get back to you as soon as they can. manner and ultimately provide the best results.” Working in partnership “Our proactive work includes maintaining good Our Portsmouth office welcomes new Do you have relationships with the other agencies in the local Anti-Social Behaviour Liaison Officer Helen Lots of local families are waiting for a home of area and meeting with them on a regular basis to Crush (above right) to the team. Helen the appropriate size to become available, so if see what we can do to prevent ASB. An example will be working closely with Neighbourhood your current home is bigger than your family, more bedrooms of this Early Intervention work could include Managers in Portsmouth acting as a vital link you have a spare bedroom or would like to move putting on activities for young people in the school between First Wessex and external agencies to to a smaller home we’d like to hear from you! successfully resolve ASB cases. Prior to joining than you need? holidays or asking a person to sign an Acceptable Please note that this applies only to houses and Behaviour Contract (ABC) agreeing not to act in First Wessex, Helen worked for the Roberts not to flats. a certain way. This may be not to throw stones or Centre as a Family Intervention Project Worker. not to stay out after 8pm. In this role she supported families who were at If you would like to discuss your options for risk of losing their tenancies due to anti-social First Wessex offers incentives to families who downsizing please contact your local office. “Our enforcement work is about finding a remedy behaviour. Helen also worked for the Citizen’s volunteer to downsize and move to a smaller to stop ASB. This can require legal Advice Bureau for five years. home. 8 General news 9 General community news General community news General news General news Handy hints for Report any changes in your circumstances as soon as possible Update from Adrienne Harper, Housing claiming Housing and If you inform one department or organisation of a change in your circumstances, don’t assume they Services Manager in Aldershot Council Tax Benefit will pass the information on. It is your responsibility to inform all of the departments and organisations you receive benefits from. In some cases this can I am delighted to now be This sophisticated new phone system also means Get your forms in as soon as possible! be done over the phone, but it is best to do it responsible for Customer Services we can find out very easily how many calls we Benefits are paid from the Monday following the in writing. Always make a note of the name of across First Wessex. Our new phone system is receive, how quickly we answer them and what date of your claim (or following the date from the person you spoke to, the date and what was up and running and we’ve been working hard the calls are about. In time this will give us very which you are claiming if your claim is backdated). agreed so you can refer back to it later. to make sure it’s set up correctly so you can get detailed information about residents’ calls, which through to us quickly. To help us treat your calls will help us change our services to better meet Non-dependant deductions Child tax credits and child benefit as our priority we have set up separate numbers your needs. When you receive your housing or council tax If your child is continuing in education after leaving for customers, internal calls and staff so that your award and you have non-dependants (a person school (even if they take a year out) then you could calls are answered first. We are also able to find out whether the over the age of 18 who is not in full time still claim child benefit and child tax credits if they Customer Services Coordinator you spoke to education) living with you, an amount of money return to education. Many parents fail to claim. One major benefit of the new system is that all was able to resolve your issue without needing is deducted from your benefit to reflect their Customer Services teams are now connected and to pass you to another team. This information income. If you haven’t given enough information If you would like further information, please working together. This means we can share calls will help us make sure we have the right number about their earnings, the highest amount will be contact your local First Wessex office. Contact at peak times or in emergencies, so your calls of staff with the right skills to deal with your deducted from your benefit claim leaving you to details can be found on the back cover. will always be answered as quickly as possible by enquiries, so you can be satisfied with the service pay the difference to your rent account. Check one of our team. This could mean that you get you receive. your award – you may be losing out! through to an advisor in another office. If your call isn’t answered within 15 seconds, you can request a call back. Update from Emily Burdfield, Housing Services Manager Update from Sheila Jessett, in Eastleigh Housing Services Manager I joined the Eastleigh team on 6th September Tackling anti-social behaviour remains a high in Portsmouth as the Housing Services Manager. I am priority for the team and we continue to work responsible for the Lettings team across the with the police and other local agencies to It has been a busy period in Portsmouth and the Elaine Brewer joined us on the 6 September business in Aldershot, Eastleigh and Portsmouth. resolve cases. We are also working very closely Neighbourhoods team has been focusing on as the Interim Neighbourhood Services Prior to joining the Eastleigh team I was the with community payback to improve our estates the new neighbourhood plans for the Millpond Manager and will be taking charge of the Neighbourhood Services Manager at Portsmouth and they have increased their hours from 140 Estate in Gosport, Collins Place in Portsmouth and Neighbourhood team until March 2011. for two and a half years. hours per week to 280 hours per week which Lindisfarne Close in Cosham. will have huge benefits. Sam Simon Norris is now the interim Income The Neighbourhood team continues to be very We have also been busy reviewing our estate Manager at Aldershot, joining us on 6 September. busy and completed neighbourhood plans on The Lettings teams have been very busy walkabout process with both staff and residents Income teams have been working hard with The Meadows, Pilands Wood, All Saints Close, with many new homes being handed over and have devised a new form to help the process. residents to reduce their arrears in this difficult Millbrook and Wildern Court. They are currently in Portsmouth and Eastleigh. Performance is We would like to encourage as many residents climate. We have also been reviewing what working on three new plans – North End Copse, improving all the time and we are working as possible to get involved in joining us on payment methods we can offer residents and it is Netley Abbey and Camborne Close. We are using very closely with our colleagues at First Wessex our walkabouts. You will see an insert in this hoped that over the coming months that there will new forms for our estate walkabouts and would Property Services to improve the turnaround of magazine with the dates for your areas. Please be more options. like to encourage as many residents as possible our empty homes to ensure that these are let as come along and give us your views. to join us and provide feedback on their areas. quickly as possible to people in housing need. In December and January we will be carrying The teams also continue to work hard with the The team has also been busy with a number of out a campaign where we are hoping to talk to Charlotte Cooper is a welcome addition to the local authorities to ensure that we get people community payback projects and Neighbourhood residents rather than sending letters with the aim neighbourhood team as she takes up the role as nominated to our properties swiftly. Improvement Fund bids and these have covered to offer more support in reducing their arrears. The Anti-Social Behaviour Co-ordinator in Eastleigh. everything from gardening improvements to Welfare teams will also be on hand to help with painting projects. any claims for benefits. 10 General news General news 11 General health and safety news General health and safety news General news General news Fire safety in your home: Using candles, decorative lights and • Get everyone out as quickly as possible. decorations safely • Don’t try to pick up any personal belongings. Candles and lights are often used in celebrations • Make your way out as safely as you can and try A top priority at First Wessex for Christmas, Diwali and other festivals. They not to panic. If you have a fire alarm call point really add to the festive spirit, but are a growing ensure you press the button on your way out. cause of fires. Here are some handy hints to make • Think about the time of year and having enough sure you stay safe. warm clothing on when you evacuate the • Never put candles near a tree, fresh or dried building. flowers. • Telephone the fire brigade on 999 from a Promoting fire safety • Keep cards and decorations away from candles. neighbours house, telephone box or mobile • Put candles on a heat-resistant surface and in a phone. These calls are free. in the homes of First holder so they don’t fall over. • Keep them out of the reach of children and pets. If you are cut off by fire Wessex residents is a • Keep them away from curtains or other fabrics • Try to remain calm. which could catch fire. • Close the door and use towels or similar to block top priority for us. Fires any gaps to help stop smoke spreading into the Fairy lights and Christmas tree lights don’t get at home, in houses and room. used very often. • Try to make your way to a window. blocks of flats are a • Check the fuse in the plug is the right size – see • If the room becomes smoky, crawl along the the box for the maximum size of fuse to use. floor as smoke rises. major cause of injuries • Replace any blown or broken bulbs. • Open the window. This will allow smoke to • Turn the lights off when you leave the house or escape and provide you with fresh air. and deaths, and every go to bed. • Keep the bulbs away from materials which could How to make a 999 call year the fire brigade burn easily. • As soon as you know there is a fire evacuate the building and call 999. These calls are free. is called out to over Top tips to protect your home from fire • Always keep a working battery in your smoke • Try to remain calm. Speak clearly and slowly, giving your full address. 60,000 fires. Hampshire detector. Keep them dust-free and test them once a week to check they still work. • Say what is on fire: E.g. A two storey house or a flat in a block. Fire Service estimates • Think about how you could escape quickly and safely from your home if there is a fire and keep • Let them know if anyone is trapped and what room they are in. that around 400 people all exit routes clear. • Do not overload electrical sockets. Only use one • To help the fire service to easily locate your home, have people waiting outside if possible. die and 14,000 people plug per socket. • Take extra care when cooking with hot oil. • Never go back into your home for personal belongings. Stay out of your home until the fire are injured each year in Consider buying a deep-fat fryer which is controlled by a thermostat. and rescue services tell you it is safe to return. house fires. • Make sure cigarettes are stubbed out properly and are disposed of carefully. Never smoke in bed. As your landlord we have a duty to assess the fire risks in our homes and make improvements through the Housing Health and Safety Rating System (HHSRS). We also have a comprehensive • Keep matches and lighters away from children. Fire safety useful links • Take special care when you are tired or when programme of fire risk assessments which are carried out in the communal areas of blocks of you have been drinking. http://www.hantsfire.gov.uk flats. Both of these processes seek to address fire hazards that may cause harm and look at • Do not leave electrical appliances on standby. http://firekills.direct.gov.uk solutions to reduce this harm. Always switch them off and unplug them when not in use. Need information in other languages? Vulnerable people Click on the following link: Hampshire Fire and Rescue Service offers support to the most vulnerable individuals and can visit you What to do if a fire starts http://www.direct.gov.uk/en/ in your home. They will informally assess the potential fire hazards in your home and offer advice • If possible close the door of the room where the HomeAndCommunity/InYourHome/ on how to reduce risks and keep your home safe. For more information contact Hampshire fire fire is and all doors behind you as you leave. This FireSafety/DG_180886 and rescue service on 023 8064 4000 or visit: www.hantsfire.gov.uk/yoursafety/athome/hfsv/ will help delay the spread of fire and smoke. homesafetyvisits.htm 12 General news General news 13 General repairs and maintenance news General resident involvement news General news General news Volunteering Gas Servicing A new improved approach opportunities Your responsibility at First Wessex Property First Wessex has a statutory duty to ensure that all gas appliances, flues and gas pipework installed in to neighbourhood walkabouts your home are serviced annually. We appreciate Services! that most customers co-operate with the servicing programme, allowing the inspection to be undertaken quickly and efficiently. Allowing FWPS FWPS has a group of resident volunteers reasonable access to your home forms part of your The Neighbourhood Walkabout Working Group who conduct surveys over the phone to get tenancy agreement. met in October to look at ways of improving how feedback on our repairs service from residents. This has proved to be a really good way of Agreeing your appointment we manage and monitor our estates effectively finding out which areas of the service need Before an inspection is due, you will receive a to ensure that the services you pay for are most improvement, so we’d like to do more letter confirming your appointment time. If it is not meeting the standards required. surveys. We need more volunteers to help us convenient you can easily contact us to rearrange with this! it. Once your gas appliances have been serviced We have been busy creating a new procedure neighbourhood is cleaner and safer for all the you will receive a Gas Safety certificate which for walkabouts including a new form which residents.” You could commit anything from half a day confirms your appliances are safe to use until the is designed to be an easy guide for staff once or twice a year, or every month if you’d date of the next inspection. and residents to use whilst conducting the Leonard Amos from Farnborough said: like to! Full training and information including walkabouts. A new IT system has also been If gas servicing appointments are not kept by “Neighbourhood walkabouts are a very a script is provided, and we can pay your travel set up so that we are able to look at the results residents and we are unable to gain access to the important part of being an involved resident. I costs. and feedback in more detail and analyse trends. property, warning tape can be applied to the front get to look at how well First Wessex is looking door along with a note advising the resident that This will help us to make sure that our resources after my estate and perhaps help spot areas We caught up with James, a resident volunteer are used wisely, that we prioritise actions and they need to contact us urgently to re-book the that may need some more attention. I’ve been for a chat about his experiences: that we are achieving value for money from the service. If this fails to happen, the Neighbourhood involved in walkabouts for three years now and Management team will take legal action to obtain service charges. it has definitely helped to improve problems Why did you decide to become a telephone survey volunteer? an injunction to gain access to the property so that such as anti-social behaviour, graffiti and fly- the service can be completed. If successful, the Tony Herridge, a resident from Farnborough tipping. On a recent walkabout we spotted the “I wanted to experience tenants’ thoughts on a who is part of the working group said: “The wider scale and improve my personal skills.” tenant can be ordered to pay Court costs in excess paving slabs to the rear of the flats had been of £800. idea of a regular neighbourhood walkabout is pinched! This was reported and First Wessex Did you have any concerns about excellent! I’ve been doing it for five years and volunteering before applying? Property Services came out the next day to Tom Antrobus, Technical Director at First Wessex the improvements I have seen to my estate have replace them all. It really is worth while and, “I did wonder whether I would be any good said: “It’s vital that all appliances are serviced been quite remarkable. Graffiti and fly-tipping at the job, and whether I would be able to whilst it helps to improve where I live, I get to regularly, as around 35 people die nationally used to be a big problem where I live. This meet lots of different people and we all have a provide the necessary important information to each year from carbon monoxide poisoning as a now gets spotted and dealt with very quickly. the company.” laugh too!” result of faulty appliances. This is why FWPS takes Neighbourhood walkabouts basically ensure the What do you feel you have gained from missed services very seriously by pursuing access to volunteering so far? properties through the courts. “I have gained confidence in listening to peoples opinions whilst extracting important “Naturally we’d like to avoid such action, but information that was required.” the health and safety of our residents is our What advice you would give to anybody top priority. Something as simple as having gas Did you know? thinking of volunteering? appliances regularly serviced really can save “Give it a go! Just one morning once a month. lives. FWPS is working hard to communicate this You get to talk to a wide range of people with important message, and we hope that taking legal differing needs and expectations.” action will demonstrate just how committed we You too get make a difference to your are to keeping a very high standard of service and neighbourhood by getting involved in your To find out more about becoming a safety throughout all of our homes.” neighbourhood walkabout. To find out more volunteer contact Louise Nimmo-Scott contact your Resident Involvement Manager or on 023 8068 8893. Have a question on gas servicing? Contact your email firstname.lastname@example.org local office (contact details are on the back cover). 14 General news General news 15 General resident involvement news General resident involvement news General news General news Open Door and the annual report: What did you think? A group of resident We received some great “It was enjoyable “It all went very well volunteers recently feedback which will and great to meet and I thoroughly telephoned 250 First help us next year when other residents; we enjoyed it. We received Wessex residents to we produce our next worked together as a great feedback.” ask them what they annual report. 65% real team! Listening Mr Sullivan, thought of the new of residents said they to their opinions was Eastleigh volunteer magazine, Open Door thought it was easy to interesting, and they which was combined understand, and that were grateful their Thank you to all with our first resident it was an open and views were registered residents who Involvement Resident inspectors play an important part in shaping the future of First Wessex. We need volunteers to help us compare our performance annual report and sent out in September. honest account of how First Wessex is doing. and valued.” Jan Knott, Aldershot volunteer volunteered their time to conduct the surveys. opportunities against the Tenant Services Authority (TSA) Service Standards, against other housing associations and Feedback was overwhelmingly The autumn issue was the first time we had “I think it was very for First Wessex to measure how effective and efficient our services positive, with 82% of produced one resident good, I really enjoyed are. those who received magazine for all First talking to fellow a copy saying they Wessex residents. We residents. Feedback was It was residents Voice Survey panel liked the way the will be conducting very positive. Residents This involvement option takes up very little time. Panel members complete between four to six two magazines were presented as one. This some further surveys to find out what residents were surprised it catered for all ages, enjoyable! Residents are at the heart of everything we do, surveys each year from various teams across First helped us save money think about the new young and old.” so we have designed a varied programme of Wessex and return them to us so that we can use on printing costs, so layout in the new year. Helen Carter, involvement activities which caters for a very their views to help us improve our services. we’re glad you liked it! Portsmouth volunteer broad range of interests, lifestyles and aspirations. Resident Interview Panel Residents’ forum launches new website We always provide full training and reasonable expenses including travel and childcare so that If you’d like to help us recruit new staff, why everyone who wants to take part in shaping our not join our Resident Interview Panel? You’ll services can do so. play a key part in selecting people with excellent Hampshire and Districts’ Residents’ Forum of social housing sees there is a clear role for customer care skills who can engage effectively has reached a milestone with the launch of tenants taking a bigger part in regulation” says At the moment we are on the lookout for more… with residents and improve our service to you. its website www.hampshire-residents.org. Tim. “The Forum would like to reflect this with You’ll receive full interview training and skills uk and the completion of its first programme its scrutiny. Not only delivering a judgement on Mystery shoppers development to make sure you’re fully supported which was to draw up nine standards of tenant our landlords service but as a desirable means of We are looking for mystery shoppers to act as and obtain the right skills to be on the panel. participation and empowerment. consumer protection.” regular customers by calling and visiting our offices to monitor the quality of the customer The Forum, which represents 100,000 social He added: “It would reinforce the relationship services they receive. We also want to monitor housing tenants, is chaired by Tim Glover with between landlord and tenant and meet the our caretaking and grounds maintenance services Sandi Naylor as Secretary. Both are First Wessex Coalition’s localism agenda.” so the mystery shoppers could also visit our residents. neighbourhoods. Each mystery shopper will be To find out more about any of the The Forum meets six times a year. It will be rewarded with up to £10 each session, and their opportunities contact your local Resident Made up of nine housing providers – both holding its first annual meeting in September identity will never be revealed! Involvement Manager: association and local authority and including First 2011 when it is hoped general invitations can be Aldershot - Sandra Feenan on 01252 368737 Wessex – the Forum is now looking to a future issued to any interested resident. Resident inspectors Eastleigh - Nicola Mason on 023 8068 4337 where it will not only reflect tenants views across We are developing a set of Service Standards, Portsmouth - Vicki Turnbull on 023 9289 6708 the sector but position itself for a scrutiny role. Meanwhile, the website will keep everybody up which reflect the needs of the local communities or email email@example.com “A Communities and Local Government to date on the Forum’s activities. we serve, and we need our residents’ help. Department discussion paper on the future 16 General news General news 17 General resident involvement news General resident involvement news General news General news Would you like Local Management Boards The Local Management Boards monitor our services and performance in the local areas. They Election result Residents in the Aldershot area may remember receiving a ballot paper with their copies of What to do next If you are interested in becoming a member to influence meet about six times a year, usually at 6pm. There are nine members of whom four are residents. Open Door in September. Leonard Amos was the only candidate for a vacant place on the Service of a Local Management Board or the Service Development Board please contact the Resident the services Development Board. When there is only one Involvement team for more information The Boards in Portsmouth and Aldershot candidate our voting rules say that they must and a nomination form. Call the team on each have a vacant place for a resident receive more votes in favour than against in order 01252 368737 or email gettinginvolved@ you and your representative. Are you interested in putting to be elected. In fact Leonard received 92% of the firstwessex.org. The completed form must be yourself forward to represent your fellow vote with 366 in favour and 31 against. So he is returned by 30 January 2011. residents? See ‘What to do next’ on page 19. now successfully elected to the SDB. Well done fellow residents Service Development Board Leonard! Board member The Service Development Board (SDB) is receive? The meeting was lead by Tim Glover, Chair of responsible for overseeing policy, strategy and the Hampshire and District Forum, and chaired service development from a resident perspective networking event by an independent chair to allow all residents to for the whole of First Wessex. speak freely and honestly. Become a First Wessex Board member! First Wessex is highly committed to involving The Board has nine elected resident members and The meeting was a great success and residents On the 15th September Resident Board members residents at every level of decision making. There three members from the First Wessex main board. have expressed an interest to meet again to from First Wessex met with other resident Board are residents on all our principle boards, overseeing It holds about six evening meetings a year, rotating allow further discussion and in particular to members from housing associations across the our work, monitoring staff performance and venues around the three offices. consider the national picture, and ‘hot topics’. South. The aim of the meeting was for residents deciding on our policies. This support and free discussion with others will to be able to compare their roles, influence and The Board enables resident representatives to: assist residents in their role as resident Board support nomination processes. As well as attending the regular board meetings, • review and improve the policies which guide our members, who are a vital part of any social resident Board members can become involved services landlords governing boards. with First Wessex in many other ways, including • influence the prioritisation, planning and delivery The life of an involved resident scheme visits, assisting with interviewing staff and of services contractors, attending conferences and training • comment on our plans for reinvestment in our and joining committees or working groups. Full homes support and training is given by our Resident • monitor our services for fairness across all our By Sandi Naylor Involvement team to equip you with the right skills customers “I became a First Wessex resident in develop new skills and knowledge to maximise my to get involved. • regularly review how we consult with and 2008. Through my Neighbourhood ability to participate in all areas. involve our residents Manager I was invited to attend a While many resident Board members have • make suggestions for improvements Earlier this year I had the opportunity to be forum where I was introduced to the Resident previously been involved with us or have been • approve new or changed policies involved in telephone surveys talking to residents Involvement Officers. They were very friendly members of community groups, trade unions, about what they thought was important to and explained some of the groups and training faith groups or other committees, no experience is The Service Development Board currently has them as a First Wessex resident, and the majority available to me. necessary. one vacancy for each of the three local areas. of them didn’t realise that they could become Are you interested in putting yourself forward “I started by being elected as a Block involved and help make important changes. Any resident can stand, including any who are to represent your fellow residents? See ‘What Representative, which involves monitoring the area already co-opted Board members although it to do next’ on page 19. where I live and acting on behalf of local residents “This amount of resident involvement was my is also important to note that there are some to drive service improvements and change. I also choice, but you can do as much or as little as qualifying criteria. Ballot papers including the details of all candidates joined Tenants’ Together, a group of residents that your time or family commitment permits and all will be sent to all residents with the next issue of meets every two months. the courses I have attended are free. Your travel The agenda and papers are sent to all members Open Door in March. expenses are covered, they will even provide taxis around one week before a meeting to give “Having been registered disabled and unable to if you don’t have a car and reasonable child care them enough time to prepare themselves for the We are keen to encourage Board member and work, First Wessex has given me the opportunity costs are covered. meeting. All transport, childcare costs and out of other involvement applications from residents of all to refocus my life. I have attended an extensive list ages. We also particularly want to make sure that of training courses including equality and diversity, “So whether you are single, married, old or pocket expenses will be covered. our younger residents are better represented. anti-social behaviour, IT, secretarial skills, proof young, why not speak to the Resident Involvement reading and an intensive three month course in team and ask the question ‘What can I do to get community consultation. These have helped me involved and help make a difference?” 18 General news General news 19 General performance news General performance news General news General news Complaints Performance How are we doing? July to September 2010 Report from July – September 2010 The information below shows how we are performing and responding to complaints We hope we have improved the way we report on how we are performing so that it is more meaningful to you. Here is a summary of some of the key areas of our performance between 1st July and 30th Overall performance Aldershot Eastleigh Portsmouth Total Year to date September 2010. 37 32 27 96 204 Jargon buster! No. of compliments received • Emergency repair: Something which could not have No. of complaints received 86 72 81 239 420 been foreseen and which could cause danger to health, residents’ safety, or serious damage and destruction % upheld 24% 68% 46% 44% 47% • Void: Empty property to property, eg, dangerous structures, total failure • YTD: Year to date of electrical supply, flooding or a security risk to the % not upheld 76% 32% 54% 56% 53% • Supported (directly managed): These schemes are property managed by First Wessex and operated by specialist • Urgent repair: A fault which materially affect residents’ % cases closed after initial support workers who provide support to vulnerable comfort and may cause damage to the building fabric. investigation in 10 working residents In certain circumstances these repairs could be treated days (target 85%) 88% 77% 75% 80% 75% • Arrears: Being behind with rent payments as emergencies, eg, minor leaks or repairs to a fuse box Satisfaction with the way the • Supporting People: A government funded programme • Routine repair: Non-urgent, minor problems, complaint handled (target 90%) 59% 85% 60% 68% 69% which provides housing related support to vulnerable eg, broken kitchen units, adjustments to doors or people replacement of fixings Number of cases referred to the Housing Ombudsman Service 0 0 0 0 3 What were the complaints about? Our vital statistics Nature of complaints received (5) this quarter Number Housing Conduct and attitude 25 10% Portsmouth At-a- Eastleigh At-a- Aldershot At-a- Information/communication/consultation 53 22% glance glance glance General Needs: 2010 2009 2010 2009 2010 2009 Quality of work 55 23% Average days to re-let an 15.22 17 20.54 28.24 20.12* 17.41 Performance against service standard 74 31% empty property this year (YTD) Application of policy/procedure/process 22 9% % of rent in arrears this 3.85 3.76 2.16 2.1 1.88 2.5 Category not yet entered 10 4% year (YTD) (YTD) (YTD) Total 239 100% % of Customer Services 83.4 93.13 68.5 91.4 77.7 N/A calls answered in 20 (YTD) seconds Learning from complaints are recruiting a floating estates person who will cover for staff absences. * Figure as of August 2010 First Wessex welcomes feedback from residents. First Wessex Property Services It is the best way we can identify areas where we Customer B complained that he was Portsmouth Eastleigh Aldershot need to make changes to our services or improve being asked to pay a debt relating to a At-a- At-a- At-a- the way we deliver them. Here is an example rechargeable repair that he believed had % of response repairs 2010 2009 2010 2009 2010 2009 glance glance glance of something we have changed as a result of been sorted out. completed on time residents’ feedback recently: We investigated and established that due to 100 N/A 100 N/A 100 N/A Immediate (4 hours) a breakdown in communication between First Customer A complained that the level of Wessex and the customer, the situation had not 99.7 99.6 100 100 100 99.6 caretaking within the communal area of the been sorted out appropriately and closed. We Emergency (24 hours) flats they live in was decreasing. have now written a Recharge Policy that is due We investigated and found that due to staff Urgent (5 days) 98 98.8 98.3 99.4 99.5 97.4 for approval in January 2011. This will give clear absence the caretaker hadn’t been able to clean guidance on the process that must be followed to the service level agreement standard. To in these situations. 97.9 98.6 97.9 97.9 99.3 96.1 Routine (22 days) make sure we can meet the agreed standard we 20 General news General news 21 General performance news General competitions and recipes General news General news Care and Support Win Competitions • Working with commissioners and residents to We have seen a number of critical challenges transform the culture of Portsmouth Foyer and introduce more customer focused services. £20! Christmas and changes for the Care and Support division between July and September 2010. Notably: • Developing new extra care services in Andover, following a successful bid for funding to Fill in the empty cells, one number in each, so that each column, row, and region contains the gingerbread men Hampshire County Council. numbers 1–9 exactly once. Ingredients • The Comprehensive Spending Review – with • Working with our customers to gather • 350g plain flour threats to services in budget reductions but also information about their priorities and develop plans to deliver services in the forthcoming year. 6 4 9 • 1-2 teaspoon ground ginger opportunities from new ways of working. The Care and Support division has been preparing for 1 8 9 2 3 5 • 1 teaspoon bicarbonate of soda • 100g butter or margarine There has been some excellent feedback from some of these changes, planning for how we can respond effectively to the needs of our customers customers on the quality of the support services, 7 9 8 • 175g soft light brown sugar • 1 egg and playing a central role in supporting localism and a great deal of positive publicity focused on activities that customers have been involved in. 5 2 4 1 9 • 4 tablespoons golden syrup and the strategies of the local authorities. Staff have continued to demonstrate passion and 2 6 7 (Makes about 20 biscuits) commitment with some remarkable outcomes. 4 8 9 6 1. Put the flour, ginger and soda into a bowl Regeneration and Resident Involvement 7 5 and rub in the butter. 2. Add sugar and stir in the syrup and egg to Resident involvement (July to September) 9 7 8 1 6 make a firm dough. 3. Roll out to about 5mm thick and cut out Level of activity Low Medium High 2 6 1 4 8 your gingerbread men. If you don’t have a (e.g. Voice Survey) (e.g. Recruitment Panel) (e.g. Board Members) gingerbread man cutter then use whatever In our word search, words are placed Win you have - stars and hearts are just as tasty. Number of involved 527 181 47 horizontally, vertically and diagonally, both £20! 4. Bake at 190° C /Gas 5 on greased baking residents forwards and back-to-front. You will need a trays (spaced out, as they will spread) for 10 Our highlights keen eye to find the words and solve the puzzle! to 15 mins until golden brown. Leave to firm up for a couple of minutes before placing on W N X F T A T T G A a wire rack to cook. Commercial Services Community Regeneration D O R E E D N I E R 5. Once cooled, decorate with icing. • Opening of Heronwood Community Base (homeowners and leaseholders) • Six further places gained from Future Jobs Fund E S L E I G H S B S • Continued improvement in turning around • Recruitment of resident inspectors and mystery empty properties shoppers S C A R F G R E O A Colour in our Winter picture. The best For • Continued level of resident involvement • Good level of participation from resident R O I E E T C V L R entry will win a prize! kids! volunteers with telephone survey on annual F R E E Z E N O R R Housing report and Open Door • New Housing Services Coordinators mean S N A I W I I L L O greater productivity across the team • Excellent turnaround of empty properties Care and Support A A A E B W R G N D • Many successful supported Housing Month E S N O W T D E D W • Good results by Anti-Social Behaviour events Coordinator in Eastleigh R W R G E P H S C N • Work began on new neighbourhood plans • Continued production of new customer leaflets Cold Scarf Robin Sleigh Gloves Snow Freeze Reindeer Ice First Wessex Property Services • Improved ‘right first time’ results for repairs work Complete and return any of our competitions. • Good level of gas servicing One winner from each area will be chosen to • Customer satisfaction continually improving on win ‘Love to Shop’ vouchers. last year Send your entries to: Competitions, PR and • Newly appointed General Managers for Eastleigh Communications, First Wessex, Peninsular depot (Lakhvinder Sagoo) and Portsmouth depot House, Wharf Road, Portsmouth PO2 8HB. (Steve Austin) 22 23 Community news from our Aldershot office Community news from our Aldershot office News from our Aldershot office News from our Aldershot office Your local contacts Job Clubs grow Family fun in Farnborough! Aldershot Customer More local people than ever can now join a Job Club for free, as another club Services opened its doors at the new Heron Wood Community Base in September! 01252 338800 or 0800 0191 470* Anyone in Aldershot and Farnborough looking to learn new skills, boost their confidence and work towards finding a job can join one of the three clubs at Repairs these local venues: 0800 0217 115* • Mayfield Community Centre, Totland Close: Tues 10am-12pm • Heron Wood Base, Andover Way, Heron Wood: Weds 10am-12pm Write to or visit • North Town Base, North Lane: Thurs 10am-12pm Gordon House, Gordon Road, M B Learning and First Wessex have teamed up to offer this support service. Gill White from M B Learning is pleased with how word has spread: “It’s so Adults and children alike had a fun- and an afternoon of activities including football Aldershot, Hampshire coaching from Aldershot Town Football Club! GU11 1LD important that local people have access to support with looking and applying filled day at a family fun event at for jobs, updating their skills, writing CVs and letters and preparing for Water Lane play area in Farnborough. Other useful interviews – especially when competition for every job is so fierce. MCP was formed over ten years ago to promote cohesion in the Mayfield area of Farnborough, and contacts “At the club they can use the internet and scour the latest papers, and there Organised by Mayfield Community Partnership (MCP), the event was opened by the Mayor who many local community agencies are members. The Partnership aims to provide new opportunities for Emergency services are two experienced support workers at every session. So far we’ve helped watched a display of Nepalese dancing. Visitors 999 young people and organise events throughout the over 45 local people look for work and we’ve got lots of regular members enjoyed a barbeque provided by the Rotary Club, year to bring the community together. Police who have told us that they feel they’re becoming better prepared for work (non-emergency) thanks to the support they’ve received so far. We’re hoping to welcome more 0845 0454545 or 101 people to the new club at the Heron Wood Base so we can help them get their confidence back, set some goals and get back to work.” St John’s Court residents Update for shared Domestic Violence Unit John, a regular face at the Job Club has found the support invaluable. get musical owners and leaseholders 01256 405349 Rushmoor “The sessions are so useful – they’ve helped me to get back into a working environment!” Thirteen residents of St John’s Court in in Aldershot Environmental Farnborough gathered in their communal lounge From Kim Jones and Holly Armstrong, Health in the autumn to enjoy a musical morning when Home Ownership Managers 01252 398 398 Music for Health came to visit. Guildford Are you interested in becoming a Block Environmental Music for Health is an interactive therapeutic Representative? Health musical session with instruments and music Reps act as the first point of contact in making 01483 50 50 50 which is designed to stimulate the mind and information available to local residents, take part in Waverley improve wellbeing. The organisation specialises estate inspections and help in assisting your Home Environmental in workshops for older people, and it was plain Ownership Team’s services. If you are interested Health to see that all the residents’ spirits were lifted. 01483 523 333 in becoming a Rep or are interested in starting up Ranging from timeless classical pieces to popular a Residents Group please call 01252 368621 for If you’d like support Victim Support upbeat music from the forties and fifties, everyone 01256 346406 This has definitely made my with looking for or enjoyed a good sing-along and some even jousted more information. preparing for work, Relate 01252 324679 job seeking more varied. I you’re guaranteed with their maracas! Home Contents Insurance a warm welcome A new insurance scheme, My Home, is now CAB Aldershot now look through a wider at your local Job Erica Grimes, Support Team Leader, hopes the available to all residents. The policy is designed to enthusiasm continues. “You could feel the be affordable, has no excess to pay and premiums 0845 1203765 range of newspapers and Club. Just come atmosphere changing as the workshop went can be paid in a variety of different ways making it CAB Farnborough along or contact Gill 08451203752 know about lots more White on 07765 on and once they’d settled into it everyone was singing along!” accessible to all. If you don’t have home contents 283087 for more insurance or would like to compare the cost Children’s Services websites than I did before. information. contact the insurance provider, JLT direct on 0845 0845 6035620 337 2463. 24 Aldershot office 25 Community news from our Aldershot office Neighbourhood news from our Aldershot office News from our Aldershot office News from our Aldershot office Aldershot Update on Update from Vicky Higgins Update from Tim Rouse Credit Union Aldershot Tel: 01252 368660 Tel: 01252 368772 branches out Neighbourhood The Neighbourhood Plans for I’m delighted to report that the St Christophers were delivered Bungalow continues to grow in the autumn, so we’re now busy getting some from strength to strength and is attracting new to Farnborough Plans of the actions ticked off! Steve Dunford, the users all the time. We have recently welcomed Neighbourhood Warden and I are working on GEMS, a new group for girls over 14, which has establishing allocations and ownership of the sheds been an instant hit with over 40 girls coming The Neighbourhoods Team at Aldershot has at Brookhouse Road. This is quite a big challenge, along! More people living in the Rushmoor area now completed the first six of our Neighbourhood and we’re reliant upon your cooperation and have easier access to the Credit Union, since a new Plans response when we ask for information. We were very pleased to welcome our local MP branch opened its doors in August at Rushmoor Jeremy Hunt to celebrate the official opening of Borough Council’s offices. These Neighbourhood Plans have now been Unfortunately we still have a problem with dogs the Hale Children’s Centre in October. For more distributed to residents in Sandy Hill, Totland, across the St Christophers community. I met information about this important local service drop The local Credit Union now operates from two Tices, Ash, Minley and St. Christophers. recently with the local police and the Community in to the centre next to the Bungalow. locations: First Wessex offices in Gordon Road, Patrol Officers from Rushmoor Borough Council to Aldershot and Rushmoor Borough Council offices We will be keeping a close eye on the discuss how we are going to tackle the issue and Some younger members of the Sandy Hill in Farnborough. outstanding actions to ensure they are I hope we are able to reach a positive solution for community have also been making good use of • 1st and 3rd Thursday of every month at First delivered on time. 47 of the 80 actions and everyone involved very soon. the large space and kitchen facilities for their Wessex offices 1-4pm improvements that were identified in the plans birthday celebrations, and we are hoping that • 2nd and 4th Thursday of every month at RBC are either already completed or are in progress. On a lighter note, in spite of the rain the summer Julie, our new Community Facilities Coordinator offices 1-4pm bike clinic at Montgomery Road was a roaring will be able to attract more function bookings The team has recently begun the consultations success and we were really pleased to see so many which will support the Bungalow. The Credit Union offers secure and ethical banking for the next phase of Neighbourhood Plans local people come along for free bike repairs and and loans on a not-for-profit basis for local people. which will cover West End, Beaumont and the advice. Look out for posters confirming the date Finally, as shown in the Neighbourhood Plan the It is controlled by its members and offers a genuine surrounding areas of North Town. and location of the next clinics! new community maps are to be installed over the alternative to high interest credit, loan sharks and winter. These will be positioned at the two main doorstep lenders. entrances to the Sandy Hill estate and we hope that it will make it easier for visitors to navigate This joint venture between Rushmoor Borough elsewhere – and this really is a genuine alternative. their way around! Council and First Wessex is an important part We hope that having the Credit Union based in of tackling financial exclusion in Rushmoor and both these offices will mean we can catch lots providing local people with safe options for saving and borrowing. of people’s attention and raise awareness of this Update from • • Disputes with neighbours Queries about your tenancy James crucial facility.” • Anti-social behaviour or fear of crime Nicky Barham, Manager of the Aldershot Credit • Breaches of tenancy Devonshire Councillor Paul Taylor, Rushmoor Borough Union explains: “One member was paying £30 a • Neighbourhood inspections Council’s Cabinet member for Corporate Services, week to doorstep lenders – which barely covered • Housing options queries said: “The Credit Union offers a valuable service Tel: 01252 368747 • Information about The Base and other the interest. A loan from the Credit Union has in providing residents with a safe way to save and helped reduce her weekly repayments by half. activities in the area borrow money. We are extremely pleased to be I am working hard at the moment to promote We’ve now set up an Xmas Savings Account for able to offer an additional base at the Council the housing surgeries which are held at the We look forward to welcoming you to a her, and she’s paying into it weekly to save for Offices so the service can expand into Farnborough North Town Community Base every Thursday surgery soon! Christmas.” and I’m sure local people will appreciate the easier from 4–6pm. access.” Want to get involved? Matt Smith, Community Regeneration Manager A new Neighbourhood Warden will be Would you like to get involved with any of our at First Wessex hopes more local people will join thanks to the expansion: “We’re working really Want to For more details please contact 01420 488977 appointed shortly, but in the mean time you can drop in to raise any queries or talk to me about walkabouts? Contact Sandra Feenan, Resident Involvement Manager, on 01252 368737 or hard to deter people from turning to loan sharks know more? or www.usal.org.uk any of the following issues: email firstname.lastname@example.org when they find it hard to get credit or loans 26 Aldershot office Aldershot office 27 Neighbourhood news from our Aldershot office Neighbourhood news from our Aldershot office News from our Aldershot office News from our Aldershot office Update from Update from Update from Update from Claire Gleed Chris Teal Lynette Steve Tel: 01252 368731 Tel: 01252 368657 Lawson-Tyers Dunford I am very pleased to have taken I am excited to report that in Tel: 01252 368688 Tel: 01252 368680 on the role of Neighbourhood recent months Totland has been Manager for Tices, Beaumont and Heronwood, a hive of activity with lots of improvements being I was really pleased that our funding bid for public Since starting my new role I’ve become involved having previously been the Neighbourhood made to the fencing which has been treated with notice boards for the main entrances at Queens with a number of really exciting projects. In Warden for the area. wood preserver, the paint work on external parts Court was approved by the Neighbourhood October half term Chris Teal, the Totland of the buildings, surveys of the drainage and Improvement Fund (NIF) panel. The boards will be Neighbourhood Manager and I consulted with Following the very successful opening and launch sewage system and pigeon deterrent to tackle the vandal resistant and will mean we can advertise local residents to agree some mural designs to of the brilliant new facilities at the Heron Wood problem of those pesky birds! New door entry useful community information, events and brighten up the courtyard area at Totland. Lots of Community Base, I would like to invite residents to panels and barriers to the car park have also been involvement opportunities, and also that we can local children and the Gaming Zone Youth Club come along to the new housing surgeries which fitted which, I hope you will agree, have made a update residents regularly on community issues came along to join Tina Wilkinson, a local artist to will be held every Thursday between 2-4pm. big difference. such as Neighbourhood Watch. If you’d like to paint the mural. We all think they did a great job – advertise on the notice boards please contact me it will really add some colour to the courtyards and Finally, the Safer Neighbourhoods team and I Now that the Neighbourhood Plan has been or your local street representative. we hope you’ll enjoy the finished art! are working hard to raise awareness of a recent distributed I am preparing to consult with residents distraction burglary in the area, and to help soon on work to upgrade the entrance lobbies I also received some NIF funding to revamp the Now that I have established a regular cycle of residents to avoid falling victim to doorstep which we hope will bring further improvements to garden border to the rear of Bader Court flats, monthly Neighbourhood Walkabouts in Minley, criminals. the blocks. next to the wonderful wildlife area created by West Heath and Prospect I’m pleased to report residents. The area has become a haven for wild that I’ve begun to notice small improvements Always remember: We are also looking into opportunities to change birds, and I am sure you will agree that the first in those areas. It’s vital that we work together • Are you expecting anyone? Don’t be misled by the way rubbish is handled by investigating part of the improvements, the shrub beds, look to make the changes you’d like to see to the false reasons for a visitor to drop in! changes to the rubbish chutes and recycling in the great. In the spring of next year we hope to area where you live, so if you’d like to join me • Do you know the caller? If not, make sure you area. complete the second phase of the improvement on a walkabout please just get in touch! We check their identity and only let them in if you project when we aim to put a seating and table don’t currently have many street and estate are happy that they are who they say they are. I hope that all this activity will demonstrate to area so more residents can make use of this lovely representatives around Prospect, so if you would Genuine callers should be happy to wait while everyone at Totland that we are really committed space. like to act on behalf of other residents in your you check their details. It’s a good idea to check to bringing changes and making things better for community and work closely with us to improve the details they give you match up with those all who live there. We know there is still a great The youth centre and I have been working to come things in your area, we’d love to hear from you! online or in the phone book if you can. deal of work to be done, but we are making up with ideas for youth projects in Ash and Ash • Fit a chain or spy hole on your front door so you steady progress and it is great to see things taking Hill. I am sure you will all have lots of great ideas As Vicky says in her update, we’re working can check who is calling without opening the shape! for us to consider, so if you have any please let us together to tidy up the shed areas at Brookhouse door. know – we’d love to hear them! Road. We’re going to re-allocate their numbers Beware of and we need your help to work out the current During the festive period please be mindful of situation with who owns what! We would be your neighbours, especially if you are having any very grateful for your help during the consultation parties. Please take advantage of the extra rubbish process of this project which we hope will really rogue traders! collections that are put on by Rushmoor Council to give the area’s appearance a boost. help keep your area clean and tidy. If you suspect that a rogue trader is on Recycled scrap metal from our homes raises money for hospice care your doorstep, call 999 immediately, Hampshire Constabulary on 0845 045 45 45, Crimestoppers on 0800 555111 or Hampshire County Council Trading Ever wondered what happens to the old boilers, radiators, pipework and other parts which come out of our properties? Some items can be re-used, but the remaining scrap metal is recycled to raise Standards Quick Response Team (QRT) money for charity. Last year we raised over £3,000 for the Phyllis Tuckwell Hospice. on 01962 833666. 28 Aldershot office Aldershot office 29 Community news from our Eastleigh office News from our Eastleigh office News from our Eastleigh office Your local Residents serve Thornhill church site contacts up a spooky treat to make way for new affordable homes Eastleigh Customer Services for children at The 023 8068 4300 Meadows estate The former St. Colmans church on Warburton Road is now being regenerated, creating 18 flats Freephone and 13 homes for affordable rent. One evening in October children and parents 0800 0191 469* gathered on the green near ‘The Hollows’ for Development Manager John Crapper, said: “The an evening of fun, food and spooky surprises! New homes at the Repairs funding for this exciting development is already in 0800 214 806* place and we have now started construction of the Local Resident Representatives, Tina Astley, new homes.” Lorna Robinson and Robin Davis organised Mayflower Gantry start Write to or visit a barbeque for over thirty local adults and Funded by First Wessex and the Homes and Charlotte Yonge children to celebrate Halloween, bringing the Communities Agency, the project will also House, Tollgate, community together for the third time this provide a number of apprenticeship and to take shape Chandler’s Ford, year. training opportunities and open up employment Eastleigh SO53 3YP opportunities in the local community. PMC Those who attended the event were treated Construction and Development Services, the ASB helpline to a fantastic barbecue. Children who dressed principal building contractor has already employed 023 8068 4468 It was with a sense of eager anticipation that guests gathered at the in spooky costumes or brought along a scary one local young man from Thornhill as a labourer (Mon & Thur 6-8pm) Mayflower Gantry development in the centre of Southampton as the building pumpkin were given a ‘magic number ticket’ and fork lift truck driver, and through its partner work gathers momentum. Now well under way, the first floor of the 115 new on arrival. The tickets later made up a tombola- sub-contractors will offer further training Income Team homes built by First Wessex is almost complete. style give away for the children who received opportunities throughout the project. 0800 0191469* toys and games handed out by Rob and Lorna. Members of the First Wessex Development team joined Nick Murphy Welfare Benefits from Southampton City Council, Mark Glendenning from the Homes and Similar events over the last year have included Service Communities Agency, Stuart Munro from Drew Smith the development July’s litter ‘pick-nic’, where the children 023 8068 4347 contractor, Ben Stoneham Chair of First Wessex, Ivor Foreman a resident helped pick litter before enjoying some lunch board member and board members Paul Jenks and Ann Beeching on site to Other useful on the green and a games day in August. The see how work was progressing. Resident Reps have more events planned for contacts Hazel Warwick, Development Director at First Wessex said: “It is unusual to The Meadows estate in the future. To find out more please contact your Neighbourhood be able to provide much needed affordable housing in such a desirable and Eastleigh Area Manager. high value area such as Southampton city centre, and we are really pleased to Support have been able to work with our local partners to help tackle housing need Team (EAST) here. This development will largely be for affordable rent, which is good news 023 8068 4363 for local families who are currently on the housing register. Now more than Eastleigh Borough ever it is important that we carry on as much as possible with our planned developments and support the council in their quest to help those in housing New developments The first, Hinkler Parade, is a regeneration which will bring 99 new homes – 43 of which will be lead the way Council need.” affordable – as well as a new community centre 023 8068 8000 and shops to the area. The second site is St. Colmans Church, which will be transformed into for greener First Councillor Royston Smith, Leader of Southampton City Council said: “Jobs Eastleigh and homes are very important to the city and the Gantry development is 18 new flats and 13 houses for rent. Community providing both of these. Southampton City Council is investing positively Services 023 8090 2400 to improve the lives of its residents by working closely with First Wessex to provide quality homes for low cost sale and rent - that meet the housing Wessex homes The new homes will be some of the first of our developments built to achieve Code for needs and aspirations of local residents. Sustainable Homes level 4. They will be highly Elder Abuse In July we appointed a building contractor for energy and water efficient and will be fitted Helpline “We are continuously attracting investment to Southampton and have £800 two exciting new development sites in Thornhill, with panels which will mean they can generate 023 8068 4357 or million worth of new developments underway or about to start in the city. “ Southampton. electricity from sunlight. 080 8808 8148 30 Eastleigh office 31 Neighbourhood news from our Eastleigh office Neighbourhood news from our Eastleigh office News from our Eastleigh office News from our Eastleigh office Update from have sent compliments in and well done to the Update from Update from James Light Balbinder Rai Neighbourhoods Team! Stephen The Neighbourhood Managers are changing Tel: 023 8068 4344 Tel: 023 8068 4418 Hardman some of the patches around so please read the following pages for further information. You will Community Payback has been Hello everyone! Just a quick Tel: 023 8068 4352 receive a flyer with your new Neighbourhood visiting and tidying up our neighbourhoods in Stag update on what’s happening on Manager’s contact details soon. Close, Lynx Close and Fox Close, Hobbs Court, Pyle my patch and your neighbourhood. Over the past few months the Neighbourhood Hill House, Kilford Court and Camborne Close. Management Team has been busy preparing In October the Eastleigh Neighbourhood This work consisted of tidying leaves, picking litter, Hamble-le-Rice for neighbourhood plan consultation days Management Team attended Eastleigh Multi- trimming path edges and clearing gutters. Some of the issues I have recently been involved in Netley, North End Copse and Camborne Agency Working days. Twelve agencies with in Hamble are untidy gardens, noisy Close, Bishopstoke. In addition to this, the were required to present what their role was Neighbourhood Improvement Fund projects for neighbours and dogs barking and causing a team is launching the plans for All Saints Close, in relation to neighbourhood safety. It was repainting parking bays and renewing fencing at nuisance to other residents. Please be aware all Millbrook and Pilands Wood. fantastic to meet all the front line staff. It was Kilford Court, and installing a bin store area at 10- these are breaches of your tenancy. also good to hear about the close multi-agency 11a Burnetts Fields, are approved and underway. Together with the above work, neighbourhood working between the Neighbourhoods Team Monksbrook and Lakeside improvements are also underway in 12 locations and partner agencies such as the police and local We are in the process of producing a I have already met many of you either through through the Community Payback scheme, so the council. Examples of good partnership working Neighbourhood Plan for the Camborne Close viewings and sign ups at the new developments at team is really playing an active role with local included the team’s use of Community Payback, neighbourhood and consultation with residents Lakeside - Somers Way, Islander Walk and Dakota residents to improve local neighbourhoods. providing sound recording equipment to the and local agencies for this has taken place – the Way. The new build properties are now nearing local council and joint working to address key plan will be produced and distributed in the New completion and the last properties in Dakota The team has received 13 compliments in the anti-social behaviour hot spots. Year. Way were completed at the end of November last three months for their hard work and 2010. We have had a successful Neighbourhood dedication. Thank you to all the residents who Update from Improvement Fund application at a block in Cheriton Road to fund a greenhouse and to enable Update from Loren Cooke the residents to keep up the good work with Update from growing their own vegetables. Tel: 023 8068 4378 Vanessa Smith Peter Elsey Meadows estate Loren Cooke will now be responsible for the Tel: 023 8068 4410 Neighbourhood Management of Monksbrook and The Hollows and The Croft’s Tel: 023 8068 4354 Lakeside. internal communal areas have I have been consulting on a been redecorated. number of Neighbourhood I am looking forward to New Forest Improvement Fund applications for Velmore, and launching the All Saints Close Alum Close, Holbury brought together thirteen Neighbourhood Plan with local residents in Well done to the resident reps at the Meadows Chandler’s Ford. families who all moved into brand new three and December. estate who organised a successful Halloween party four bedroom houses at the same time in May this which was enjoyed by all those who attended. Further to this I have also been working with year. All the residents joined in with neighbourly local agencies in Velmore and North End Copse The residents of the Neighbourhood events and created a real community atmosphere! Improvement Panel have recently approved Pirelli to improve neighbourhood safety. Community This is a key example of First Wessex ‘developing funding for a toy storage cupboard to be Community Payback have carried out work to Payback have been clearing back overgrown areas communities to be proud of’. installed at Arcadia Place, and clothes dryers, improve the external communal areas at 124-146 Did you know? and providing general improvement work to the Loveridge Way including a litter pick, cutting back neighbourhoods. Neighbourhood Plans have been and benches at Laundry Road, Southampton. brambles and removing moss in the drying area. sent to residents for the Aviary, following the We have replaced estate inspections with consultation in June, and I am looking forward to We recently welcomed new residents to James Weld Close in Southampton. This new block Twyford Road neighbourhood walkabouts. Neighbourhood the forthcoming North End Copse consultation I carried out a street meet at Drummond Court Managers conduct regular walkabouts event in early December. of 14 apartments consists of one and two bed general needs properties. and door knocked with the police, which proved looking at communal areas, and/or local to be a useful exercise. neighbourhoods to identify local issues. We Given this is my last update for this patch I would would like to encourage more residents to like to say a big thank you to all residents I have join us, please contact your Neighbourhood had the pleasure to work with over the last five Manager for information to join a walkabout. years. 32 Eastleigh office Eastleigh office 33 Community news from our Eastleigh office Community news from our Eastleigh office News from our Eastleigh office News from our Eastleigh office Run down courtyard Update for shared Fernhill Court filled owners and becomes beautiful suntrap at Stella Maris with Harvest fun as leaseholders in House pupils visit Eastleigh from Laura Scott, Home The seven self-contained flats at Stella Maris Children from Scantabout Primary School filled Fernhill Court with smiles and laughter as they House in Southampton are home to residents with Ownership Manager learning disabilities. Assistance from Dimensions, a sang Harvest songs for the residents. The songs support organisation, allows them to live the life of included “I mustn’t forget”, “Harvest song” It has given me great pleasure to welcome their choice and maintain their tenancies. and “The fair trade song”. many new shared owners as they have moved into their new homes at Camborne Close, The flats are owned by the Catholic Parish Church The group of 25 children aged between eight Somers Way, Islander Walk and Sapphire and managed by First Wessex, so our Supported and eleven have been fundraising throughout Court. I hope they will all be very happy in their Housing team joined forces with the Church and the year to raise money for Fernhill Court, an new homes! residents to transform the messy and cluttered extra care scheme for older people with 24/7 communal courtyard into an outdoor picnic area. care and support on site. They donated a I’ve been working closely with FWPS recently beautiful wooden garden bench, 27 large bags to go through the repairs reports which are It was out with the old furniture, rubbish and of food for each residents and £350; which will sent to all leaseholders and shared owners be used towards Christmas celebrations. Older residents take debris, and in with new flower beds, pot plants, each quarter, and we are now in the final hanging baskets and picnic tables thanks to money stages of the consultation for the current donated by First Wessex. Now the residents will Fernhill Court Manager Agnes Turner said: “It financial year. take care of the courtyard as part of their support plan. in the magic of the was simply lovely. The smiles on the residents faces said it all - it was all perfect!” Finally, I’d like to encourage more residents to volunteer as resident Karminder Singh, Partnerships’ Assistant, says: New Forest House Val Hayes who volunteers as the Chair of representatives for the blocks or schemes “Residents are so excited. Spending more time ‘Friends of Fernhill’ and organises events where they live. Please contact me on 023 outside enjoying the sun will make a big difference Nearly 50 older residents went on the annual throughout the year has been overwhelmed 8068 4377 for more information! to their lives!” summer trip organised by the Support team in by the generosity of the school and its pupils. August. Last year was a day out in Southsea, and “What they’ve done for us is fabulous. The this year the destination of choice was Burley in school has been super, and without them we Update from Neal Johnston, Park the beautiful New Forest. would struggle. We are so grateful to everyone involved.” Homes Manager in Hedge End The journey was eventful as the coach carefully navigated through the inevitable ponies and cows, Fernhill Court residents presented the school before arriving at the Old Farmhouse to indulge in with a plaque for their continued support I manage the mobile home site in Hedge End which is owned by Eastleigh Borough Council and consists a traditional cream tea or spot of lunch. The group over the last year. Teacher Veronica Shaw of 160 owner occupied homes. When old dilapidated homes come up for sale, First Wessex negotiates enjoyed an afternoon stroll around Burley, and of was delighted with the day’s outcome. “The to buy them back for redevelopment. On average two or three homes are replaced each year. I am course, it was only right to sample the local ice residents enjoyed it so much! It’s lovely for the also actively seeking out development opportunities with other local authorities, and we have recently cream! young and the old to come together.” celebrated the completion of our first development at Stokes Bay in Gosport on behalf of Gosport Borough Council. These trips rely upon colleagues volunteering In the Grange Park office I deal with sales, arrears and tenancy issues as well as the site maintenance. to come along and help the Support Advisors with the residents, many of whom have mobility I thoroughly enjoyed Early next year we will be embarking on a tree and shrub planting programme, in part to replace trees that have had to be removed. I have also been working closely with the council to resolve a problem with issues. Jim Carter-White from First Wessex went along armed with his camera, and had a great it. What a fantastic the tar on the roads following the resurfacing in 2008. time. “Everyone thoroughly enjoyed the day. One resident explained that they don’t have any family time! The children The other aspect of my role is inspecting our shared ownership schemes in Fareham and Gosport and close by, so they really look forward to these trips. liaising with FWPS with regard to grounds maintenance and cleaning issues. I’m really pleased to report significant improvements in the standard of cleaning since FWPS took over the blocks I inspect. It’s unusual for them to get out like this, and they met lots of new people.” were delightful. 34 Eastleigh office Eastleigh office 35 Community news from our Portsmouth and Gosport offices News from our Portsmouth and Gosport offices News from our Portsmouth and Gosport offices Your local More great work with contacts Portsmouth Community Payback Customer Services These are the before and after photographs of one of our properties in 023 9289 6750 Havant, the semi-detached home of a tenant with mental health problems. Gosport office Community Payback has done a fantastic job clearing the front and back 08450 553322 gardens that were completely overgrown. Repairs 0800 988 2440* The tenant is absolutely delighted with the result. Working with the resident and Adult Services at Hampshire County Council, we are now New homes unveiled in Fareham Visit us aiming to put in place a plan to maintain the gardens. Chris Gore, Peninsular House, Wharf Road, Neighbourhood Manager Portsmouth PO2 8HB Reception opening A new development of 24 affordable homes in Fareham town centre was unveiled earlier this month. times From To 8.30am to 5pm (Monday to Thursday) this... this!... Mark Hoban, MP for Fareham, councillor Sean Woodward, executive leader of Fareham Borough Council and John Kenny, chair of First Wessex board in Portsmouth, performed the opening 8.30am to 4.30pm ceremony for the six houses and 18 apartments at Osborn Road South in Fareham. (Friday) John Kenny said: "This development is unusually special. Not only have we been able to provide Other useful much needed new homes in the high value, sought after area of the centre of Fareham, but it is also contacts great use of a previously under-used site to meet local housing need." Police (non-emergency) Young people to speak about their lives at the Foyer, and the struggles they have Update for shared Southsea home ownership blocks, and much of the work has already been done. from the Foyer owners and 0845 0454545 or experienced. 101 We’d like to thank the resident reps across the Gary Clark, Training Coordinator at Portsmouth schemes for their invaluable support inspired by leaseholders in Domestic Violence the Portsmouth Foyer, said: “It was and input as they act as the eyes, ears and voice Unit 023 9289 1524 wonderful to spend time with Linvoy. of all the residents. Working together with them Linvoy Primus Portsmouth Portsmouth The session had a really profound helps us to improve communication with residents Environmental effect on everyone who came along and provide a better service with regular feedback Health 023 9283 4092 – it was a very special opportunity for for the benefit of everyone who lives in the area. A group of ten excited young people them and it has really opened their From Claire Thomson and Julie Collins, Home We’re always on the look out for more volunteers, Havant from the Portsmouth Foyer and Foyer minds. We all left feeling inspired and Ownership Managers so if you’d like to act on behalf of your fellow Environmental Health for the Island had the privilege of we’re all really grateful to everyone residents please get in touch on 023 9289 023 9244 6017 going along to a Question who made it happen.” We’re pleased to report that the Neighbourhood 6727. and Answer session with Improvement Fund (NIF) bid for funding for the Gosport residents’ gap planting at the St Mary’s estate Environmental Portsmouth Football Club’s Health Linvoy Primus at the Pompey was approved. A team of Community Payback 023 9254 5506 Study Centre. volunteers has spruced up the benches and painted new lines in the car park, which has made Fareham it look much fresher. Environmental Linvoy spoke in great detail Health about his childhood, life 01329 236100 The over 55’s trip to Exbury Gardens which we and career and the positive influences that have shaped organised in partnership with SEHCO was a great Victim Support 023 9265 3111 his life. The young people success, and many residents came along. We hope were delighted when Linvoy we’ll be able to go back again next year! Women’s Aid (24 hr helpline) then turned his attentions 023 9229 1034 to them and their stories, The consultations are now complete for this year’s giving them the opportunity planned cyclical work on some of Portsmouth and Broken Rainbow 36 08452 604460 Portsmouth and Gosport offices 37 Community news from our our Portsmouth Gosport offices Neighbourhood news fromPortsmouth andand Gosport offices Community news from our Portsmouth and Gosport offices News from our Portsmouth and Gosport offices News from our Portsmouth and Gosport offices Residents at Cumberland Gate ‘face’ Apple crumbles of all ages in developing and maintaining the allotment, bringing younger and older the future together at the Create people together. Over the last month groups of residents have picked apples from the well established fruit trees, and then gone back to The Cumberland Gate Residents’ Association has launched a Facebook group specifically allotment! their community room to make apple crumbles. for residents of Cumberland Gate to join. This Goizeder Cotano, Community Development innovative solution to improving communication It has taken a couple of years to transform Manager said: “Although this might seem like a between all residents living at Cumberland Gate the Portsmouth Create team’s dream of a simple idea, the allotment represents a real spirit is the idea of the residents’ association. Chair of community allotment into reality, but this season of community involvement. We’re so pleased the association, Steve Inglis, said: “As a team we it is thriving! with the way it’s developing and the way the needed to open up involvement opportunities for local adults and children have got on board to all residents to hear about what’s going on and to Thanks to support from the Portsmouth City support us.” shape our future here.” Council’s Healthy Towns programme the team has been able to involve local residents Steve went on to say: “We already have a regular newsletter and committee meetings, but obviously the newsletter is only once a quarter and not Shack van warmed everyone on what was a sunny but chilly afternoon. PCSO Karl Keegan was there Rowner Renewal Partnership Want celebrates phase two approval to get everyone can attend the committee meetings. for the day providing residents with free cycle Facebook is a great way for us to keep people marking for their bikes. up to date about what’s going on and is a tool we hope to use to canvas opinions from our community.” Karl said: “Sometimes it only takes a few seconds to steal a bike, so having your bike coded in this In October the Gosport Borough Council planning committee unanimously approved the detailed planning application for phase two of the multi-million involved? way could help us recover it for you.” pound Rowner Renewal project. Would you like To launch the new Facebook group a Fun Day was to get involved organised on Saturday 25th September. Over 50 Cumberland Gate is jointly managed by three The plans include 101 new flats, a 10-storey residential tower, a Tesco and help make a residents and children came along to the event housing associations, First Wessex, Radian and supermarket, three smaller retail units and an area of open space with a difference? which took place in the central play area. Buttons Affinity Sutton and the Residents’ Association is children’s play area. the Clown entertained children and adults alike open to everyone who lives there. First Wessex has lots with balloon creations and hot food from the Pasta Hazel Warwick, Development Director and spokesperson for the Rowner of opportunities for Renewal Partnership said: “We were delighted with how favourably residents involvement and Courts Zone family picnic which she is encouraging young people to use - they cause much less damage than traditional responded when they saw the plans (below). It is hoped that demolition will start next year and our completion target for phase two is between 2012 and training. You can do as little or as much balls if any accidents occur. 2013.” as you like and all A grant of £500 from the Gosport Partnership’s Community Cohesion Fund meant that Courts your travelling, taxi Charlie the Clown provided a couple of hours Juliette Bishop, Tesco Corporate Affairs Manager added: “The new store and reasonable child Zone Residents’ Group were able to put on of magic, music and balloon making and will create many new jobs for the local community. We’ll be working with care expenses are an afternoon of sports games for First Wessex the afternoon finished with a free picnic for organisations such as Job Centre Plus and Gosport Borough Council so we covered. residents, and pay for a children’s entertainer and everybody there. can allow these jobs to benefit local people.” a picnic. There are many The group held their event on Alver Meadow, next to the new BMX track and adventure It was good to see other involvement opportunities so playground in Rowner, Gosport, with a marquee borrowed from the Rowner Access Point. so many people contact us on 023 9289 6708 Sports coaches from Rising Ballers organised an coming together or email gettinginvolved@ athletics tournament with foam javelins, mini golf and lots of different races. Laura Bolton, as a community, all firstwessex.org the First Wessex Neighbourhood Manager for Rowner, brought along some soft footballs enjoying themselves 38 Portsmouth and Gosport offices Portsmouth and Gosport offices 39 Neighbourhood news from our Portsmouth and Gosport offices Resident Involvement news from our Portsmouth and Gosportoffices Neighbourhood news from our Portsmouth and Gosport offices News from our Portsmouth and Gosport offices News from our Portsmouth and Gosport offices Update from Update from Update from Neighbourhood Manager if unable to access our offices in Peninsular House or the Nimrod Centre Laura Boyns Christine Gore Laura Bolton and would like a face to face discussion? All you need to do is contact Customer Services at your Tel: 023 9289 6721 Tel: 023 9289 6710 (nee Garvey) local office to make an appointment. Through a successful application I’d like to introduce myself as the Tel: 023 9289 6739 to the Neighbourhood newly appointed Neighbourhood Improvement Fund, First Wessex has been able Manager for Gosport covering PO12, Fareham Work has started on the next round of to support the local police by sponsoring a bike covering PO14 and Park Gate. Neighbourhood Plans. (below). The children on the estate helped me officially handover the bike to PCSO Dan Carlin. I’d like to welcome our new tenants at Huntspond On 3 December we held a consultation event Dan is now the proud owner of a smart new bike Road. Hopefully you are all settled in and happy in for residents at Lindisfarne Close in Cosham to and uses it to patrol the local areas in and around your new homes. There have been some teething find out the issues and improvements needed Oak Park helping to reduce anti-social behaviour problems, such as low level neighbour nuisance, Update from Sally to the neighbourhood. on our estates. but we are working with residents to resolve these as quickly as possible. Residents enjoyed a Hackney and Vickie The main issues relate to the general Back in August a housing event organised by Christmas tea party earlier this month which gave appearance of the estate and anti-social Portsmouth City Council was held in Leigh Park neighbours the chance to meet each other over a behaviour. In addition to this I am continuing to work closely with other neighbourhoods Community Centre. Various housing providers, cup of tea and a mince pie. Meyer through monthly estate walkabouts. local authorities, councillors and support agencies Tel: 023 9289 6718 attended to provide information to local residents There will be more new faces once more new regarding housing, social and community matters. homes are released in Huntspond Road in the New Thank you to all residents of Collins Place Update from Unfortunately the weather was dreadful and only a few residents attended. However the aim is to run Year along with Lee Road and Broadacre Place. who attended the event on 1 December to provide input into the neighbourhood plan. Amanda Buist the event annually and I will advertise details in a future edition of Open Door. We are in the process of completing the neighbourhood plan for the Millpond area and It is great to get your ideas on the issues and improvements needed in your area. Tel: 023 9289 6731 completed a door knocking exercise last month. As always please do let me know of any anti-social Residents came up with great feedback regarding At Portland Terrace the scaffolding is now Wesley Court in Fratton Road is grounds maintenance and proposals for the use down and the external redecoration to this behaviour around your neighbourhoods. It’s only to have a makeover with internal of the community room. Everyone seemed to be stunning grade II listed block of flats is now by you telling us and continuing to work with us redecoration of all the communal areas including in favour of having a monthly coffee morning visible for all to see. that we can successfully resolve any issues. We new flooring and repainting of the front door to held in the community room where staff members really appreciate it when you let us know of any residents’ flats. Work began earlier this month. from First Wessex would be present to answer Work has started on replacing paving slabs problems and it’s vital that we can maintain an ongoing dialogue with you to resolve these cases. questions and listen to your views. So watch this on the pedestrian walkway at St Mary’s which There has been good news for residents who live space for further news on that and the completed were very cracked and hazardous. Work will in a small block of flats alongside a resident who neighbourhood plan. continue early into the new year. Finally, a plea from Havant Borough Council! for a significant amount of time had kept 80 cats Please make sure you put all your rubbish into the in a one-bedroom basement flat. The resident has I will be working with our Asset and Planned Finally, we’d just like to politely remind you recycling bins loose, rather than in bags. If your now been evicted which has transformed the lives Maintenance Manager to identify areas of to make sure you keep the doors secured to recyclables are in bags the council will have to of everyone else in the block. improvement for 6 Stoke Road and our Grounds the front of your blocks and not to let people treat the rubbish as contaminated and it won’t be recycled or emptied. Maintenance Manager to look at the entrance in who you don’t know. With the cold, dark Helen Crush, our new Anti-Social Behaviour Liaison porches to Jervis Drive flats. Bids will then be made evenings security is important and keeping Officer and I are attending a Neighbourhood to the Neighbourhood Improvement Fund to doors open could affect the validity of your Agreement Working Group which is being run progress the work and residents will be consulted. insurance in the event of any incident. by Portsmouth City Council to represent tenants views. This involves working with the council on In addition, I’ve been working with our colleagues issues and schemes to improve neighbourhoods including looking at services that directly and in the Police Safer Neighbourhoods team attending the Gosport Community Tasking Group on a Want to Neighbourhood walkabouts a are your opportunity to make indirectly affect residents; service targets; and monthly basis. I work closely with them on anti- know difference in your neighbourhood. listening to residents’ issues. more? information, or to get involved email social behaviour cases. See the enclosed timetable for more Did you know you can have a home visit from your email@example.com 40 Portsmouth and Gosport offices Portsmouth and Gosport offices 41 Repairs & maintenance news from our Portsmouth and Gosport offices Community news from our Portsmouth and Gosport offices News from our Portsmouth and Gosport offices News from our Portsmouth and Gosport offices FWPS in Local events January 2011 Portsmouth welcomes Free computer new tasters How to organise your photo apprentices The Library Service is offering free computer courses in partnership with collection Highbury College. These tasters are suitable for the absolute beginner who 12 January, 2pm would like to learn how to use a computer and develop their IT skills. The first 3 courses in January will take place at The Learning Place, 6 Derby Road, North End. Thereafter all courses will take place in the IT Suite on the Third Floor of Central Library on Wednesday afternoons Places are strictly limited and last three hours. so please book early to Three new apprentices have joined FWPS at Farlington. Edward Hellier is our new Plumbing avoid disappointment. Apprentice, Adam Stevens is the new Electrical Create a For further information, or Apprentice and Samual Peel is the new Gas to reserve a place, ask at Apprentice. They all hail from Portsmouth and website were selected following a competitive recruitment your local library or email 5 January, 2pm process which started with hundreds of the following: libraries@ applications. portsmouthcc.gov.uk How to share Justin Crittall, Apprentice Mentor, said: “It’s a real privilege to be able to offer these young photos with people the opportunity to learn through an family and apprenticeship, especially as they are so hard to come by at the moment. We now have 13 friends online apprentices across the company and I’m proud 26 January, 2pm that we can support the new recruits as they learn the trades and begin their careers.” Introduction to word processing Did you First Wessex employs a total of 251 repairs and maintenance operatives. 19 January, 2pm know? From January 2009 - September 2010 we carried out a total of 13,312 gas safety inspections, 58,192 repairs, 18,553 repairs on properties served by our Portsmouth office and 807 minor (under £1,500) aids and adaptations. 42 Portsmouth and Gosport offices Portsmouth and Gosport offices 43 Alternative formats We are able to accommodate a wide range of requests for alternative formats of your resident magazine. If you or someone you know needs a summary of the content and key articles in large print, Braille, audio or translated, please contact us. Contact us Arabic Aldershot office Gordon House, Gordon Road, Aldershot, Hampshire GU11 1LD 01252 338800 Bengali 0800 0191 470* firstname.lastname@example.org Eastleigh office Charlotte Yonge House, Tollgate, Chandler’s Ford, Eastleigh SO53 3YP Chinese (traditional) 023 8068 4300 0800 0191 469* Farsi email@example.com Portsmouth office French Peninsular House, Wharf Road, Prière de nous contacter si vous avez besoin Portsmouth PO2 8HB de ce document dans une langue autre que 023 9289 6750 l'anglais, en gros caractères, ou sur CD 0800 8402 813* firstname.lastname@example.org Kurdish Gosport office Nimrod Centre, Nimrod Drive, Nepali Gosport PO13 8BE 08450 553322 www.firstwessex.org Polish Skontaktuj się z nami, jeśli chcesz otrzymać ten dokument w języku innym, niż angielski, dużym appro ed drukiem lub na płycie CD Portuguese by First Wessex residents Se precisar deste documento escrito em uma língua que não seja o inglês , em letras grandes ou em CD, por favor entre em contato conosco Printed on post consumer waste fibre December 2010.