Minutes of NHW meetings

The meeting opened with a brief introduction from PR thanking everyone who turned up despite the weather. Unfortunately, the police were unable to attend due to operational commitments and holidays. Lisa Barnett from Birmingham University sent her apologies. Councillors Brigit Jones, Karen McCarty and David Radcliffe declined to attend.

The meeting then turned to an overview of GS's meeting with Sergeant Mike Dunbar that took place on 27th October 2012 as mentioned in the most recent newsletter. There was evidence of under-age drinking in the park behind St. Mary's Hospice, excessive car speeds, vehicle damage, graffiti to the no. 76 bus stop at the junction with Raddlebarn Road and some flower petals pulled from front gardens and sprinkled on the owner's pathways.

PR then began a summary of the recorded crime statistics along our street and during the past six weeks there had been a further pedal cycle stolen, another five car wing mirrors or paintwork scratching incidents and two burglaries. It was re-emphasised that all incidents should be reported by the individual(s) witness or victim to ensure the policing levels are reflected in the events our street suffers! The leaflet issued with the last NHW newsletter explains the rationale quite clearly. KEEP THIS IN SAFE PLACE PLEASE.

GS then summarised the continued work to repair the now closed Dogpool Lane bridge, which has had an impact on the spaces available to residents, with the introduction of the double yellow lines. These yellow lines carry the same penalty for persons who park their vehicles across them, temporary, or not. The closure of Dogpoo Lane has created more traffic through Stirchley, as some drivers follow the diversion signs via Cartland Road, to reach places such as Kings Heath and Moseley, when they could as easily use Edgbaston Park Road, by the cricket ground! Incidentally, several no. 76 buses have been seen travelling down St. Stephens road and making the 'impossible right hand turn' back onto the Perhore Road when drivers instincts kick in. Perhaps passengers on these buses should claim back their fare for this transgression....

PR mentioned the selfishness of some residents and their visitors in their parking habits, although in fairness, when parking along a stretch of the street, it can be cars who park afterwards that are the guilty ones as they leave far too large a gap. Watch this space....

There has been a rise in graffiti and anti-social behaviour near to the no. 76 bus route and a PCSO will be travelling intermittently along this route to prevent this occurring regularly. GS asked that we please advise us and Centro of any re-occurrences please.

PR then outlined a brief reminder to all residents with regard to the additional vigilance required over the Xmas period when households take delivery of theft attractive electronic equipment and then leave packaging outside for all opportunist burglars to see. Such packaging should be turned inside out, and preferably, ripped into smaller pieces and covered over by other paper to obscure this information. Failing that, larger packaging should be taken to Lifford Lane, to avoid the same issue.

GS mentioned that we had had an offer to create a functional Warwards Lane website with a view to providing regular information in a more consistent way. This would include links to useful information as well as a a 'back catalogue' of NHW newsletters and other police based information. Additionally, it could also carry links to sister organisations and details of local businesses in the area in a similar vein to those on the Selly Park South and Stirchley Forum websites, as we might be able to get advertising monies to offset the cost. This would entail a one-off domain name registration fee (£20.00) plus an annual maintenance fee (£30.00) and a set up cost of around £175.00. Members could still e-mail us with points of concern as previously.

PR highlighted that we should all 'look out' for neighbours we know live on their own, particularly over the winter period, and helping to clear snow from their doors is useful way of showing neighbourliness, as well as delivering any groceries they may struggle to obtain in consequence of potentially more serious weather.

GS concluded by mentioning the next 'Big Clean Up' date of Saturday 15th December 2012 beginning at 10.30am outside Park Autos at the top end of Warwards Lane. There were six new people last time so let's try to do our street a favour and get rid of as much unsightly litter as we can!

The meeting concluded and Bagpus went back to sleep....