Brighton & Hove City Council


Housing Management Panel: North Area


7.00pm15 December 2021


Virtual - Zoom






Councillors: Fowler (Chair) and Osborne.


Residents: Ian Beck, Des Jones, Brighdelynne Stewart, Catherine Lawrence, Heather Hayes, Tony Griffin, Carmel Stevenson, Peter O’Connor.


Officers: Rebecca Mann, Keely McDonald, Grant Ritchie, Martin Reid, Michael Raywood, Janet Dowdell, Thomas Bald, Pien Kuipers.



1             Welcome, Apologies & Introductions


Apologies from Jane Hunter.





2             Actions and Minutes from Previous Meeting


2.1 Ian Beck raised that point 6.2 of the previous minutes should read Thompson Road, not Tavistock Down.





3             Estate Development Budget


There was no discussion.





4             Responses to Resident’s Questions


Overgrown Brambles at the Bottom of Davey Drive


4.1 Councillor Fowler was informed that the machinery required to undertake the works would require a planning permit on the pavement, and that Robert Woodbridge was doing work to ensure that the brambles can be removed.


Tackling Anti-Social Behaviour in High Rise Blocks


4.2 Michael Raywood confirmed he would get in touch with a resident concerning drug paraphernalia.


Hollingdean Window Replacements


4.3 Heather Hayes was informed that the window replacement programs have been postponed due to COVID-19. Martin Reid confirmed that an update would be given to Housing Committee with updates regarding the progress.




4.4 Heather Hayes was informed that:


·         There are currently around 8,000 repairs which are backlogged, and that a report was given to Housing Committee last month stating it would take around 12 months to get up to date with repairs.

·         Emergency repairs are aimed to be fixed within the day where possible.

·         Urgent but not emergency repairs are aimed to be fixed within 20 days.

·         General advice where there has been inaction regarding a repair is to call the repairs hotline to ensure the complaint has been logged.


4.5 Grant Ritchie confirmed he would chase the complaint from a resident raised by Heather Hayes after the meeting.


Empty Council Properties


4.6 Martin Reid confirmed that improving the turnaround on empty properties is a priority for the Council, and more staff and contractors are being brought in to assist this.


Communications between Council and Residents


4.7 Catherine Lawrence was informed that voicemails can be left on the repairs hotline and staff will get back as soon as they can.


Estate Development Budget


4.8 Heather Hayes was informed that the Task and Finish Groups are looking to simplify the EDB forms at the request of residents.


4.9 Catherine Lawrence was informed that the forms have only changed in the way that the cap has been lifted on the number of words to describe the bid.


4.10 Brighdelynne Stewart was informed that the new version of the form would be provided in the new year to Area Panels and further comments would be taken on board.




·         Michael Raywood to get in contact with the specific resident regarding drug paraphernalia.

·         Grant Ritchie to chase the complaint regarding repairs raised by Heather Hayes.





5             Housing Performance Report


5.1 Martin Reid introduced the report starting on page 27 of the Agenda.


5.2 Brighdelynne Stewart was informed that:


·         A stage 2 complaint is only where the response to a stage 1 complaint is escalated where someone is unsatisfied.

·         Victims of domestic abuse are offered to move to give respite instead of perpetrators due to several reasons including not being able to evict perpetrators without sufficient evidence.

·         Low levels of evictions from perpetrators can be explained due to it taking a number of times in court to secure an eviction.

·         An ASB review is ongoing, and the Council would welcome input from residents.


5.3 Catherine Lawrence was informed that whilst anti-social behaviour does breach tenancy contracts, the burden of proof lies with the Council which can create difficulties in providing evidence.





6             Positive community news


6.1 Catherine Lawrence and Heather Hayes raised that their local churches are providing Christmas dinners for anyone who might be alone at Christmas.





7             Future Format of Area Panels


7.1 Keely McDonald raised that work was taken to try and have in-person meetings but the latest government guidance advising all staff to work from home where possible means that this work will be postponed, and meetings will be virtual for the foreseeable future.





8             Budget Update


8.1 Martin Reid gave a presentation on the budget update.


8.2 Brighdelynne Stewart was informed that solar panels don’t necessarily have to be on south facing roofs, and other sustainable energy options are being considered such as ground source heat pumps.





9             Any Other Business


9.1 Catherine Lawrence was informed that double yellow lines at the bottom of Davey Drive are hopefully being looked at in January 2022 to stop cars parking on the verge. Michael Raywood added that he would get in touch with Peter Maddox to provide more comprehensive responses to Catherine Lawrence and Councillor Fowler regarding works on Davey Drive.


9.2 Heather Hayes was informed that a stock condition survey was recently carried out which set the plan out on how to go forward, and tenants would be consulted on the asset management strategy.


9.3 Martin Reid informed Heather Hayes that he would get in contact with Heather Hayes outside of the meeting regarding asbestos tiles. Grant Ritchie confirmed that any issues with asbestos should be reported to the Repairs team through the helpline.


9.4 Brighdelynne Stewart raised that a railway bridge on Ashurst Road is dangerous for pedestrians and asked if a barrier could be put up to protect pedestrians from the road, and potentially lowering the speed limit. Martin Reid confirmed he would take this away and look at the issue outside of the meeting.




·         Michael Raywood to get in touch with Peter Maddox to provide responses to Councillor Fowler and Catherine Lawrence regarding works on Davey Drive.

·         Martin Reid to get in contact with Heather Hayes regarding asbestos tiles.

·         Martin Reid to look into installing a barrier and lowering the speed limit on Ashurst Road next to the railway bridge.





The meeting concluded at 8:24pm.




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