HORNCHURCH RESIDENTS’ ASSOCIATION
7th March 2019 – 7.30 pm (minutes from the meeting)
WELCOME: Chairman welcomed everyone and thanked them for attending the AGM.
APOLOGIES: Cllr Barry Mugglestone, Cllr Ray Morgon, Jody Ganly, Cllr Sally Miller.
MINUTES 2018 AGM: Were distributed. It was agreed that the minutes were a true and accurate record, proposed by Barbara Matthews, seconded by Del Ganly.
MATTERS ARISING: None.
The Chairman expressed deepest sympathies to the families of Jodie Chesney a 17 year old young woman who was a victim of knife crime and Councillor Clarence Barrett from Upminster and Cranham Residents’ Group who died from a heart attack.
Good evening everyone, welcome and thank you for attending the meeting this evening. I’d like to give you an update on what’s been happening since March 2018.
Our first major challenge was of course the local election in May, where we had success, but also some disappointment. We were very pleased to retain our 6 seats in Elm Park and Hacton Wards. However, we were very sorry that Jody Ganly was not reselected in Hylands Ward or her colleagues; it was not for their lack of hard work on behalf of residents, but more because of a ruthless campaign by the Conservatives.
We also had two councillors elected in St Andrews Ward, with our third candidate, Bryan Vincent missing out by only 25 votes. So many people told us when they voted they did not realise John Mylod had joined the Conservatives and unfortunately the names Middleton, Mylod and O’Sullivan were in a group with Vincent at the bottom.
As ever we have been out talking to residents at the Family Day and Charity Dog Walk at Hornchurch Country Park, Fun Day at St Andrews Park, Elm Park Horticultural Guild shows, Hylands Fun Days, Tesco’s Roneo Corner and Airfield and we’ve popped up in Hornchurch High Street, Station Lane and Elm Park Town Centre.
On behalf of the Association I have written to Sadiq Khan the Mayor of London and Cressida Dick the Police Commissioner expressing our concerns over policing. Our St Andrews team delivered a petition to County Hall also concerning policing and Nic Dodin has been to 10 Downing Street on our behalf to campaign for better healthcare.
Most recently we have campaigned with Barry Major a local businessman against the removal of the 30 minutes’ free parking in our town centres, the introduction of a charge on Sundays and proposals for Controlled Parking Zones within one kilometre of our stations. At the Budget Setting Council Meeting last week, the Leader of the Council stated that the residents had been consulted and their priority was to have good roads and pavements. Actually only 1,000 responses were received to the consultation. To say the consultation was not user friendly is rather an understatement. We had over 10,000 signatures in total with the online and paper petitions against the parking charges, but the Conservatives are not listening to these residents and businesses and we will fight on to challenge this imposition of charges. Local Government is facing many challenges, not least the aim of Central Government to stop all direct funding by 2020, but there are alternative ways of dealing with this.
We don’t need to tell you we are a committed and hard working group for residents, as we are residents ourselves. Nor do we need to tell you that we spread the word through our monthly FOCUS magazine. A big thank you to all who deliver for us.
Once again we have increased our membership which now stands at over 8,000 and we ask you the residents to pass the word on and encourage friends, family and neighbours to sign up and get the monthly magazine.
We currently have four very active teams in Elm Park, Hacton, Hylands and St Andrews Wards and eight out of eleven members are councillors. You may have noted from Focus that Dave Cabezas has stepped down from the Hylands team due to family and work pressures and we thank him for all his work on our behalf. I would also personally like to thank the whole team for their support and hard work over the last year; we are working very well together as a team.
Apart from our team members, we have a number of other people on the Executive Committee who give their time freely, and I would like to thank them all, in particular Adrian Bates Focus Advertising Manager, Barbara Matthews Membership Secretary, Terry Matthews Focus Editor and of course Brian Peters our Treasurer. These members work very hard for us on a voluntary basis and we are extremely grateful to them.
In conclusion I would like to say thank you to all of you who support us, we will continue to do our very best for residents in the future.
Proposed by: Terry Matthews
Seconded by: Bryan Vincent
Auditors to remain the same and this was agreed:
Proposed by: Cllr Reg Whitney
Seconded by: Cllr Paul Middleton
ELECTION OF OFFICERS
Councillor Nic Dodin chaired the meeting at this point to announce candidates for the following association officer positions.
Chairman: Cllr Stephanie Nunn
Deputy Chairman: Cllr Barry Mugglestone
General Secretary: Gerry O’Sullivan
Treasurer: Brian Peters
All officers were unanimously elected for another year.
Mark Halls – CEO of First Step.
Mark provided a very moving and interesting video outlining the great work First Steps do for families who have children with special needs and other life changing conditions. Mark also highlighted that since funding was cut by the Conservative Led Administration in Havering Council, First Steps were unsure what the future would hold for this important organisation.
ANY OTHER BUSINESS
Councillor Nic Dodin gave a presentation outlining what the future would likely be for King George’s Hospital Accident and Emergency Department. He also informed the meeting that there would be a meeting and march from Ilford Town Hall starting at 2.30.pm on the 30 April to raise residents’ awareness and concerns.
CLOSE OF MEETING
With all matters concluded the Chairman thanked everyone who attended and closed the meeting at 8.54pm.