29th May 2018 – Public Meeting

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PUBLIC MEETING
29 May 2018
SPRINGWELL SOCIAL CLUB

Annual General Meeting
Read the full Annual Report here.

MINUTES
Present:
Chair Liz Reid
Secretary P .Cooper
Treasurer G. Martin

Other committee members
L.Pickup
S. Thomas
H. Fife
C. Brown
M. Lambton

Apologies:
A. Templeman
M. Johnson
D. Lambton
Cllr. H. Trueman
Cllr. D. Trueman
Cllr. B. Scaplehorn

Guests:
Robert Dash (Chair of Governors Primary School)
Taryn Al-Mashgari (Environment Agency)

Approx 70 Members of the Public Attended

1.The minutes of the previous meeting were moved, seconded and agreed.

2. Annual Report:
Full report on website. Main points as follows:
a. Flood scheme. Design completed and work under way.
b. Village planting done in Seldom Seen and flower beds.
c. Thompsons – no progress on planning application. Decision by Council not expected until late this year.
d. 20 mph zone. Council have proposed extensive zone. Currently under consultation with residents – ends 30 May.
e. Green Belt. Northumbrian water has purchased part of the Hellens site and is planning for the reservoir. Many objections about the Councils Core Plan were received by the Council following work by SRVA with over 1600 petition signatures and over 1350 letters of objections sent in by residents.
f. Finance – £1783 in bank. Aspire grant of £500 for hanging baskets etc. received, also Community Chest Grant £473 for a new litter bin to replace the one at the bus stop opposite the old Co-op building, also plants and tools.
The report was moved and seconded

3.Election of committee
a. Chair reported one committee member – Steve Thomas -was retiring from the Committee. He was thanked for all his work in the past.
b. Rest of committee was re-elected unanimously by residents.
c. A resident thanked all committee members for their hard work in the last year.

4. Chairman of Governors – Springwell Village Primary School
Robert Dash introduced himself to the meeting. He thanked SRVA for work that had helped the school including progressing the 20 mph zone and planting with the pupils. He hoped that we could all work together more in the future. The school, like all schools, is experiencing budget difficulties in the light of government cuts and is looking for ideas which will raise money for the school without impinging on the Village Community Venue or SRVA resources and funding streams. Any ideas welcome. The school is hoping the school buildings and field can be used more by residents, thereby also raising funds for the school. The chairperson thanked Robert for attending.

5. Environment Agency
Taryn Al-Mashgari updated the meeting on progress she had made working in the school. The children had done work on planning for flooding and what to do in these circumstances. She had also facilitated the building of a Rain Garden Planter in the school grounds. Taryn offered to work with residents on developing a Village Flood Plan if required. The chairperson thanked her for her report.

6. Bowes Railway.
Information was given to residents regarding the Mining Heritage Day on 2nd June and the 40’s Weekend on 29th, 30th June and 1st July

7.Open Garden Day
The chairperson gave information on the Open Garden event also on the 30 June and 5st July at eastern end Peareth Hall Road.

8. Police Report
The police were unable to attend tonight’s meeting. Their report is on the website. Main point is theft from vehicles. The Police are asking residents to contact them if they have information on off road bikes in the village eg ownership, name or address of riders because they are legally unable to chase them.

9. Village Update
Groundwork has been working in the Village with local children, planting in Seldom Seen etc. More volunteers are urgently needed!

10. Greenbelt
a. An extraordinary council meeting was being held tonight to discuss the outcome of the consultation held on this issue. The report to Council was considered to be very concerning by the SRVA Committee. It appears that Springwell Village residents have not been listened to despite the very high number of objections submitted. The Council is proposing to remove just one (the Peareth Hall site) of the proposed Green Belt deletions from the Core Plan, leaving 3 sites in the Village to have their Green Belt Status removed. These are the Hellens site off Mount Lane, the Stoney Lane site and the George Washington putting green site. The SRVA Committee believes that the removed site had been left in the plan in order that the Council could then remove it and local residents would feel they had been listened to. The number of houses in the 3 sites totalled 142 houses but if the housebuilders kept to their usual density for new house building there would be room for over 570 housed on these 3 sites. Previous experience with the Bowes estate showed that once building for a small number of houses commences, the developers return to the Council for permission to extend their building programme. The Committee expects this strategy would also be used on these 3 sites. A resident pointed out that the proposed reservoir also was effectively deleting land from the greenbelt.

b. The Committee has written to the Planning Inspectorate on behalf of residents highlighting the many failings in the Consultation Process. No reply has been received. There was unanimous endorsement of SRVA’s request that Ward Councillors press for a public Planning Inquiry rather than just written representations. There was a discussion from the floor as to the process involved in the Council’s decision-making and what influence our Ward Councillors can be expected to have against the other 70+ Councillors in Sunderland. It was agreed that the 3 Ward Councillors be asked to attend a meeting with SRVA as soon as possible to report back to residents. It was noted that Gateshead MBC has objected to the proposals.
c. The involvement of our local MP – Sharon Hodgson – was raised. It was reported that in the past SRVA has been unable to get her support or involvement. The meeting agreed this was unacceptable. Following a discussion it was agreed that SRVA would invite her to attend a meeting and that individual residents should email or telephone her to put pressure on her to become involved. Attending her Surgery was suggested but she will not see constituents unless they have a prearranged appointment.

d. A consultation event for the next round of consultation by the Council will not be held in Springwell Village although our Councillors have requested that one be arranged here so this may change. If not, residents were urged to attend one of the other consultation meetings, ensuring their attendance is registered and their views left with Council Officers in writing.

11. AOB
Rubbish Tip Opening Times.
There were numerous complaints about the changed times which has led to residents queuing for long periods – over an hour was reported by more than one resident. Residents have also observed people in the queue stopping their car, throwing rubbish on the roadside and leaving the site because of the length of wait. It was also noted that people who work now have very little opportunity to use the Tip. Traffic has also been affected with lorries having to wait on Springwell Road because of being unable to get onto the site. It was agreed that Maureen and Den would bring this issue up with the SITA Liaison Committee

12.Date and Time of Next Meeting
This will be 10th July at 7 pm.
If an earlier meeting is deemed necessary, residents will be notified.

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