Minutes 25 February 2020


Present: 9 tenants and leaseholders.  Joan Twelves in the chair.

In attendance:          Matt Hopkins, Hyde Property Manager for Kennington Park Estate,

Richard Caley, Community Liaison Officer, Berkeley Homes

  1. Apologies for absence

Apologies for absence were received from R Nash, S Reid, A Kisby, Cllr Hopkins and Cllr Normal, Cllr Holland

  1. Minutes of the last meetings of the Tenants’ Association held on 26 November 2019 and matters arising from the minutes

The minutes of the meetings of the Tenants’ Association held on 26 November 2019 were approved as a correct record of that meeting.  Matters arising from those minutes were covered in the agenda for this meeting.

  1. Richard Caley, Berkeley Homes: Briefing on construction activity on the gas holder site

Richard Caley introduced himself as the recently appointed Community Liaison Officer for Berkeley Homes.  He was responsible for keeping the local community informed on activities with reference to the gas holder and Tesco site.  He presented a briefing on his community liaison work and on construction activity on the Oval Village site.  Sixteen Berkeley Homes staff had helped with the creation of the new community garden on the Estate.  Berkeley Homes was keen to demonstrate its environmental and sustainability credentials.  The work to remediate the gas holders was explained including the many necessary precautions to be taken.  The frame of gas holder number one was to be refurbished it situ. The other gas holder frames were to be removed and recycled.  Demolition on the Tesco store site was complete and construction of the new building was to continue over the coming year.  Richard was to produce a regular email newsletter to keep residents informed.  He confirmed that financial support and help in kind was available to local community groups such as the Community Centre.  Richard was thanked for attending and for his commitment to community support.

  1. Housing Management and Estate Management Issues

Matt Hopkins reported on estate management issues as follows:

  • The creation of the community garden in the area surrounded by Alverstone House. was in progress. It was planned to include seating for community activities in due course.  June, a Lockwood House resident, was taking the lead and organising gardening work to complete the community garden.  The initial day of activity had included spring bulb planting in planters in the Blades, Alverstone, Lockwood area.  It was also intended to review the policy on the use of the area for ‘dog walking’.
  • Matt confirmed that plans for the refurbishment and use of 8a Harleyford Street were making good progress.
  • Work in Lockwood House on replacement of external electrical wiring and new LED balcony lights had started in January. Matt notified residents of imminent gas pipe replacement work by British Gas across the Estate

Matt was thanked for his report.

  1. Reports for Information

5.1      Scrutiny of service charges

Service charge statements with reference to 2018/2019 were issued to tenants and leaseholders by Hyde in September 2019.  In October 2019 the TA requested from Hyde service charge invoices for all blocks at Kennington Park Estate.  Following several reminders, invoice packs were received in early December 2019.  In early January 2020 questions arising from scrutiny of service charge invoices were sent to Hyde Contract Managers in relation to:

Communal Responsive Repairs including

Replacing light bulbs in balcony lights and drain jetting/clearance in communal areas (courtyard drains)

Communal Electricity Charges,

Invoices based on estimates and analysis of invoices requested

Cleaning and Grounds Maintenance

Query with reference to annual inflation increase and precise interpretation of contract specification

Fire Safety and Controlled Door Entry

Duplicate invoices.  Unjustified/unexplained invoices.  Contract specification not fulfilled

Legionella testing

Frequency of risk assessments, cleaning of cold water tanks, evidence of work undertaken (invoices refer to work not undertaken?)

Communal Heating Charges (Grace House)

Cost of gas supply, cost of monthly servicing,   Why 2015/16 invoices included in charges.  Not eligible for inclusion.  VAT/Climate Change Levy, estimated costs totally inaccurate leading to shock to residents of actual costs far in excess of estimated

5.2      Report from Community Centre Board of Trustees

The Chair reported that the Community Centre was operating successfully.  It was used for a wide range of activities including family events usually at weekends.  A summer holiday project for school children was planned and the necessary fund raising was in progress.

  1. Any Other business: None raised.
  2. Schedule of meetings of Kennington Park Estate Tenants’ Association in 2020

Next meeting, 1900, Tuesday, 28 April, then 7 July, 29 September (AGM), 24 November 2020.  (Note: Dates agreed before the pandemic crisis, hence, subject to change.)

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