Crossgate Community Partnership: Minutes

Minutes of the General Meeting 8th April 2013

1. Attendance:
Present: Roger Cornwell, PCSO Martin Haigh, Jonathan Elmer, Ann Evans, Liz Brown, Lesley Aers, Carole Reeves, Simon Squires, Ruth Chambers, David Ramsden, Councillor Nigel Martin and Jean Rogers.
2. Apologies for absence:
were received from Mike Costello, Councillor Grenville Holland, Dick Fong, Odile Fong, PCSO Steven Bell and Annie Brown.
3. PACT (Police And Communities Together) session
a) In the absence of PCSO Steven Bell, PCSO Martin Haigh from the licensing department attended. He was thanked for the part played by the police in the closure of Boxers pub in Crossgate, and the CCP's secretary was asked to write a formal letter of thanks to the police.
b) The meeting was briefly suspended to allow members to study the Police Report: it was noted that this seemed to indicate more burglaries than usual.
c) Other licensing issues: PCSO Martin Haigh reported that an application had been received from McColl's in the North Road for a license to resume the sale of alcohol. The police had asked for conditions (such as the separation of alcohol and confectionery).
The Council is still considering whether to impose a Late Night Levy, so the police are unable to comment on this. The meeting thought that this should be treated as a matter of urgency: Cllr Martin was asked to do what he could to this end, and Ann Evans would also write to the Council on behalf of the meeting.
The Coach and Eight has now reopened as the Bishop Langley Gastropub: Martin had invited the DPS (Designated Premises Supervisor) to attend the PACT meeting, but he had not done so. The management were aiming for an upmarket clientele, but the meeting felt that there could still be problems with people walking past the outdoor area. The management planned live music events, and the police had asked the DPS to contact local residents beforehand, but he felt this would simply stir up complaints. The license allows late opening, but there are no current plans to make use of this.
The police were planning an operation focused on student drinkers.
d) Priorities: antisocial behaviour at the back of St Margaret's Church had now ceased, but there was an emerging problem with fly-tipping.
e) Priorities: parking problems in Archery Rise - the police had not observed any particular pattern of offences, and the nuisance of casual parking was not enough to unite the residents in a call for parking restrictions.
f) Nigel had been receiving complaints from residents in Redhills Lane near the Johnston School, about problems arising from the new development there. There were complaints about obstruction caused by the workmen's cars, and about littering, and that the site manager was abusive when residents complained. A police presence in the area would be appreciated.
g) Ongoing priorities: flytipping in St Margaret's Court / Grape Lane; nuisance in Redhills Lane.
The meeting had appreciated the update on licensing issues provided by Martin Haigh, and asked if he could continue to attend PACT meetings every three or four months.
4. The minutes of the previous meeting
were agreed as a correct record.
5. Matters arising
a) The Council had declined to revise their decision on the development on the Fred Henderson / Ainsley Street site. The Colemans are now considering whether to seek judicial review. The CCP wrote to the Council in support, and has received a robust reply.
b) A small group from the CCP and Student Community Action had gone out in the rain and collected litter; it was remarked that there seemed to be as much litter on the streets - particularly on Crossgate Peth - as there was in Peskies Park.
c) To Let / Let By Boards persist, despite being reported to Pam Glaister. Nigel would follow this up with the Council.
6. University Liaison
No representative of the University was present. However, Nigel had talked to the University about Sheraton Park, and they confirmed that they were working with Alumno Developments on proposed student accommodation.
The University is also in negotiation to purchase the Three Tuns.
7. Green Belt Campaign
Ann Evans reported that the Campaign has prepared an alternative County Plan which has been submitted to the Council and can be read online at The site also invites people to join the 'Friends of Durham Green Belt'.
8. Possible hustings for local election candidates
Since the latest reorganisation, the CCP's area falls within two electoral divisions (map). Nominations had now closed, and there were 8 candidates for (two seats in) Neville's Cross and 9 for (two seats in) Elvet and Gilesgate.
Carole Reeves asked whether any hustings were planned, or whether the CCP should organise some, but it was felt that there was not now time before the elections to do this.
9. Byland Court
Ruth summarised her continuing correspondence with the Council about the possibility of imposing a use restriction.
10. Rubbish and recycling
The Council has a Strategic Waste Team which includes an Education Team, which is separate from the teams who do the actual collection. Roger will contact John Shannon, Strategic Waste Manager, about education at street level, given Crossgate's constantly changing (student) population. Another strategic issue is what the Council can do to ensure that landlords provide adequate bins, and replace lost or stolen bins.
Matt Deakin (University City Liaison officer) can act if rubbish is a health hazard.
11. 51 The Avenue
Ann Evans reported on continuing building work; Roger has queried activity with the Planning and Highways departments, and had been told a) that the owner intended to submit a planning application and b) that permission would not be given for a dropped kerb to facilitate parking in the front garden, and that there was no right to reserve the on-street parking.
12. Councillors' Reports
Nigel had no further news on the Allergate play area, but was confident it would go ahead, and would check the timescale.
13. Date of the next meeting
Tuesday 7th May 2013.