Minutes of the Meeting of Kennington Park Estate Tenants’ Association held on
22 February 2017 at Kennington Park Estate Community Centre
Present: 17 tenants and leaseholders of Kennington Park Estate: Joan Twelves in the chair.
In attendance: Greg Terefenko, HSH Resident Services Manager and Christina Edoja, HSH Housing Officer.
- Apologies for absence
Apologies for absence were received from Cllr Jane Edbrooke, Cllr Jack Hopkins and Cllr Claire Holland, Alex Reuben, Bernard Jennings, Jennifer Gore.
- Minutes of last meeting of the Tenants’ Association held on 23 November 2016
The minutes of the 23 November 2016 meeting of the Tenants’ Association were approved as a correct record of that meeting. There were no matters arising from the minutes of the last meeting other than those on the agenda for discussion at this meeting.
- Housing Management and estate management issues. Reports from tenants and leaseholders for the attention of HSH management
Tenants and leaseholders reported housing management and estate management issues including very poor performance in relation to service charges, estate cleaning, communal lighting, internal damp and condensation. The issue of Northern Line Extension work was raised including to what extent Hyde Southbank Homes was in communication with TfL/NLE in relation to the potential effect on KPE properties of the tunnelling for the new line which is routed under part of Sherwin House and the edge of Lockwood House.
Greg Terefenko, Resident Services Manager, announced the introduction of a new Anti-Social Behaviour Team with the intention of a more consistent, centralised approach. The new Team was to be contacted through the Customer Service centre. HSH had two ASB officers at the Stockwell office covering all HSH including KPE.
Greg also confirmed the new parking enforcement contract had been in force since October 2016. HSH policy and the contract should ensure strict enforcement. He was aware that the legal enforcement process was not immediate as it had to go through the courts. However, it was now possible for the enforcement contractor to remove abandoned vehicles and to take legal action in the case of irresponsible parking and parking without a legitimate HSH permit.
4.Future of the Kennington Park Estate Community Centre
The Chair gave a progress report on the situation with reference to the threat to the KPE Community Centre. The TA website was up to date with the information on the decision of the Hyde Group to opt out of management of community centres, including the KPE Community Centre. TA Officers had undertaken meetings with Hyde officers. KPETA was working closely with residents in Stockwell. Hyde intended to outsource the management of and responsibility for the Stockwell Centre under a long lease. Kennington and Stockwell residents had presented a deputation to the meeting of full Council on 25 January.
Many tenants and leaseholders were involved in campaigning and lobbying and Oval Ward Councillors and our Member of Parliament were in full support and actively contributing to the campaign. The Chair offered special thanks to Joules from Sherwin House who had single handed collected hundreds of signatures for the petition.
Hyde did not yet have development plans ready to submit to the Council for planning permission. Hyde had indicated that it may be twelve months before Hyde was in a position to embark on the physical redevelopment of the site. The TA was, therefore, working on a plan for keeping the Community Centre open and functioning effectively in partnership with Hyde Plus until that time. It was critical to demonstrate the community value and financial viability of the Centre in order to respond to a planning application proposing a new development on the site with no replacement community centre.
The Chair sought approval to the establishment of a Friends Group, separate from the Tenants’ Association. The constitution of the Tenants’ Association did not allow for a specific remit focussed on working in partnership with other organisations with a view to maintaining and managing community facilities for the KPE community. The establishment of a Friends Group was approved.
- Report from the Executive Committee of the Tenants’ Association
5.1 Tenants’ Association work on scrutiny of Service Charges
The Chair reported that TA officers continued to challenge Hyde in terms of poor administration of service charges as whole and in relation to specific outstanding errors from previous years. Responses were slow or not forthcoming at all after a considerable period of time. It was very disappointing to note that Hyde was late (exceptionally late) advising residents of the actual service charges for 2015/16 on which the 2017/18 service charge estimates should be based. The TA had provided a detailed report in autumn 2016 on an analysis of service charge invoices for KPE including queries requiring explanation and/or correction.
5.2 Gas holder site: Proposed Master Plan
It was reported that the Berkeley Homes master plan for the development of the gas holder site had not received approval from the Council. Berkeley Homes remained in discussion with the Council.
5.3 Performance of Parking Enforcement Contractor
Residents were encouraged to report to the TA if lack of enforcement was encountered. As reported in the February TA news briefing, 24/7 patrolling and enforcement was introduced in January 2017 in response to pressure from the TA. The briefing also explained that it takes several months to take cases though the legal enforcement process and offending vehicles cannot be removed until the process is complete.
5.4 Report from recent Estate Inspections
Recent estate inspections revealed the new cleaning and grounds maintenance contractor was still to catch up with remedying the poor performance of the previous contractor. Estate inspections were conducted on a regular basis and appropriate action taken to improve and maintain standards. Residents were encouraged to report problems to the TA.
- Latest information about the Housing and Planning Act
As discussed at the last TA meeting the government appeared to be unclear about practical implementation of several aspects of the Housing and Planning act. Further details as they emerge would be available on the KPETA website
- Report on activities elsewhere in Hyde
As previously reported HSH residents in Stockwell regularly raised concerns similar to those raised by KPETA such as inaccurate service charges, parking enforcement, redevelopment of sites on the Stockwell estates, poor record on planned and cyclical maintenance. The major issue for HSH residents in Stockwell was Hyde’s proposal to outsource the management of the Stockwell Centre.
- Any Other Business
- Date of next meeting of Kennington Park Estate Tenants’ Association:
The next meeting was scheduled for 1900, 26 April 2017, thereafter, 12 July, 27 September (AGM),
29 November 2017.