Minutes of the Harefield Tenants & Residents Association Meeting held on
Monday 11th September 2023, Park Lane, Village Centre, Harefield
Chair Janet Brown
Vice-Chair Jenny Shave
Secretary Wendy Rice-Morley
Treasurer Helen Conchar
Current Committee Members
Cllr Jane Palmer
A total of 29 members signed in the book.
Thanks to JS for signing in members at the door.
JB welcomed everyone and thanked them for attending. She introduced PC Nathan Martin, one of the Police Officers for Harefield Village ward, who had been invited to relate the different roles and powers of police officers that are assigned to Harefield Village.
Minutes of Last Meeting
Agreed as a true copy and approved; members had all received a copy; proposed by JM seconded by CW.
Matters Arising from the Minutes
JB reported that the HTRA website was up and running and the Minutes of the meetings can be found on there in the future. JS added the minutes of the last meeting to the website and will do so each month. HS2 funded the website, however, it may take a few months to receive the funding -it is still pending.
A member brought up the issue of noise/music from the Roundhouse but JB advised it was not a matter from the minutes and should be under AOB to be agreed before the meeting. However, if time allowed we would include it.
HC met JB on 6th Sept to review the bank statements. The latest statement is dated 24th July and the balance is £2,922.79. There is a cheque for £720 for website costs, raised after this date, to be deducted from this balance.
HC has received the form to apply for the grant of £700 from Hillingdon Council. There are restrictions on the spending of the grant.
A member raised the question, do we pay for the rent of the room at the library?
Yes we do and we pay an additional £1 so that we are covered by their public liability insurance. The LBH grant money can be used for this expenditure.
JB commented that we continue to use the library as it is a very reasonable rate and we need to show the facility is used, as evidence to retain it.
The police had been invited to this meeting to talk about the Roles and responsibilities they have as the Safer Neighbourhood team for the Harefield Village.
PC Nathan Martin began by stating he works with another police officer PC Ed Lawrence and PCSO Richard Mascarenhas. PC Martin stated that they try to walk about the village as much as they could to give a visible presence, paperwork however was overwhelming, and this took up a major part of their time. They were however, trying to get out and about more. Everything Harefield Village related was the responsibility of all PCs.
Motorbikes were still causing considerable problems, however the police are restricted in what they can do. He was asked if video footage is helpful and stated yes, vehicle numbers etc when reported and can be followed up.
A member raised the issue of a drone flying over residences - Drone crime was very difficult to act upon and is a relatively new crime. Drones move on, difficulty identifying them, bringing them down!
Generally the police team work just within Harefield Village, however they could be instructed to attend other areas such as the Notting Hill Carnival. PC Martin was questioned about policing for South Harefield and he advised that area came under Ickenham and South Harefield. He advised members living in that ward to go onto the website to see the names of officers and numbers to ring if needed.
A question was asked as to whether the Hujjat had their own police force allocated to them, he replied no they do not.
The discussion then took place as to how long it took police to get to the injured stabbing victim near the village Green/Common as the police were only down at Widewater Place. PC Martin advised that the police presence at Widewater Place was due to the control centre and senior officers requesting police presence due to a demonstration there and criminal damage had been done and it was viewed as a current threat. A member again questioned as to why the police were there in numbers in the first place 10 plus in total as the reason appeared to be secret. PC Martin assured the members he had seen the damage caused from an outside source and the damage was caused by a heavy object. He once again reiterated that it was a decision made by Senior Leadership.
PC Martin explained the roles each officer has. PCSOs cannot arrest anyone, but they can warn, retain and make a citizens arrest. They are equipped with Walkie Talkie radios and can call in and report incidents and if considered a priority then they can get Officers to attend. A key role is to be the eyes and ears of the police, liaising with and gaining the trust of residents and collecting information. The Speed Guns are operated by the Police Officers.
The Coffee with a Copper may have to be scrapped as it is not always possible to get a police representative on site and the premises are not confidential. A member requested that more notice be given to the public about the meetings that take place. The meetings could possibly be put on the website and also the Notice Boards. Paul D related that a number of dates had been posted in advance on the OWL system and these had been sent out.
A member then reported that the speed of cars down Hillend Road is very dangerous especially near Springwell Lane. They suggested that the majority of the speeding was done by residents of Springwell Lane. He stated there was a major accident waiting to happen. Parking is dangerous, especially when Taylors Meadow is being used as there was parking on both sides of the road.
Members reported speeding on most of the roads in Harefield (particularly the main routes), Harvil Road, Rickmansworth Road, Northwood Road and Breakspear Road North. Speeding continues to be a major problem.
The Police Officer stated Harefield has restricted speed limits more than many parts of the Borough and it would be up to the local Council to address these problems.
The police officers are based in Uxbridge Police Station, which is not open to public. It’s long term use has still not been decided.
A member reported that, in her opinion the traffic island on Rickmansworth Road was quite dangerous. J.B. stated that a Vehicle Activated Sign was going to be erected, hopefully quite soon, with warning of speed. She also reported that it was considered by engineers that the traffic island in this position was safer than a Zebra Crossing. A member reported parking close to the refuge was an issue - a possibility that Zig Zag lines may need to be considered to prevent people parking too near therefore hindering the flow of traffic.
The Policeman was then again questioned by members how many police attended Widewater, Why they attended? He once again explained their presence there.
The police then concluded with information on the Police Ward Panel meeting, held every 3 months in the Cricket Club to review and set ward priorities - this was open to others to attend and notification would be put on the website.
JB at 8.30 p.m. then proceeded to continue with the meeting. PC Martin then handed out his contact details for reporting.
Only seven ULEZ cameras were operational due to vandalism. This was met with clapping and cheering. JB stated that HTRA were not advocating criminal damage. It was reported that the camera control box outside the Cricket Club appears to have been installed on private land. It is being looked into.
Map of ULEZ cameras GB to complete.
Everyone who either lives or works in Hillingdon are all affected by ULEZ.
JB advised the members that they could write regarding ULEZ and the effect it is having on our village. Cllrs have no influence as this is NOT under LBH control, or central government.
Query re potholes - HS2? Potholes on or near the bridge on Harvil Rd are the responsibility of Hillingdon Council. JB to contact the LBH to check the roads as they are considered dangerous . Also needs cleaning on a regular basis.
The speed sign outside the undertakers in the High Street has been turned round. It has not been reported.
A member asked what proportion of staff from the London Borough of Hillingdon work from home. JB suggested the member ask the Council for this information. The call centre phone should always be answered.
A 412 will be closed for overnight work 4th September to 1st October. Between 10pm to 5 p.m. Monday to Saturday.
Harvil Road, four week of works 9th October -> 5th November, one week is lane closure followed by three week full closure (only access for businesses at Skip Lane and Depot).
Diversions appear to affect the Bus Timetables and JB stated she would make enquiries.
Working hours on Sustainable Placement Areas have been extended for September and October to 7am and 7pm.
The next PPG meeting is to be held on the 3rd October at the surgery. Invites have been sent to those eligible for the flu vaccination this season. They will be on the 30th September and 7th October at the surgery. Some PPG members will be assisting on the day. The Practice has posted a very useful Practice leaflet on their Facebook page.
How to register
Meet the team
Key practice aims and Patient responsibilities
Roles of the nursing staff
Plus lots more including how to join the PPG
Nothing to report.
The Garages in Ash Grove owned by the Council, two houses to be built on site.
Info 200 applications for planning in two years for Harefield which seems high 32 of refused 25 approved 43 undecided. This shows there is a lot of development going on in Harefield. One member commented that in the present climate people could not afford to move therefore building extensions etc.
Oil depot, Skip Lorries. Road deteriorating. Selling land with Planning Permission for five properties. Not able to get planning permission until October it is known as Weybeards farm. Road deteriorating - The road is not able to take all the weight and work taking place with a lot of hard core being transported etc. The planning is still undecided, however, previous planning only last for three years. It appears planning was still current as it was applied for in 2022. JB suggested the member contact the Planning Department regarding the application and ask what the current situation is. Member stated the constant vehicle movement is causing concern. J.B. also suggested the member keeps a record of disturbance and contact the anti-social behaviour team.
The Chair reported she and JS attended a meeting with Cllrs Goddard and Palmer and representatives of the KSIMC Hujjat Organisation. The meeting was at the Civic Centre, with the
purpose of obtaining any updated information, answers to rumours and request engagement with the Harefield Community.
In response to the rumour re purchase of the recreation park and the Community Centre. – they were NOT buying the park area or the Community Centre and had not met with LBH officer to discuss doing so. They were unaware of the rumour. They requested that we let them know of any others so that they can address them quickly.
It was believed by Cllrs that the lack of information had led to the creation of these, and other, rumours. KSIMC reps were asked what their vision was for Widewater Place – It was stated that their vision, although not set, was close to their current website. It would include Residential senior living, community centre, sports facility/gym, medical facility, nursery, serviced offices.
They have employed companies for planning and PR but have yet to engage architects. They have no architectural plans yet.
They stated that they are volunteers, and they are still needing to raise funding, so things are taking longer. It is likely to be 2-3 years before we are applying for planning permission.
Large offices no longer desirable so they are in the process of developing small office spaces to let to raise funds. These would be available to local residents as well as the wider population.
It was queried whether internal works were to develop a school – No it was the development of the small office spaces.
It was stated that Community Cohesion was needed, and the lack of information had been interpreted by some as secrecy. – The reps said that they wanted to engage with residents, and the invitation to some residents to attend Iftar had been an attempt to do so. They said that they had been advised to go softly, softly due to opposition. Following a question JB explained Iftar as meal that breaks fast during Ramadan and confirmed that she had been invited. She had declined as it was going to be held at Widewater and thought it may be outside planning permissions.
They will give further consideration to possible events for local people to attend.
A member asked if they owned Widewater and JB confirmed that they had completed on the purchased in October 2022.
It was stated that Musgrave House (building on the right) has been leased to the World Federation (the parent/global organisation). A member suggested that this was a way to channel money. They hope to have a small gym in this block which local residents could subscribe to.
It was stated that they need to consider when events could be perceived as provocative. They related that they had held their AGM in Stanmore for this reason (live streamed). The event at Widewater had been held by the World Federation. Some HTRA members expressed the view that there was little difference as it was basically the same organisation/ owner.
They had not intended to be secret and had nothing to report due to the fact they needed further funding. They were advised to reconsider their strategies for engagement. They wanted to be available to the community.
The meeting was considered by all present to be helpful and it was proposed that meetings continue on a quarterly basis, to be able to provide and share information to the community.
The same small group would meet every three months, providing continuity.
At this point a person tried to play a video of the Hujjat organisation and JB asked her to share the link so everyone could view it if they wanted to. It was not the situation to watch it; the meeting in the hall on a small screen that only a few could see. It was suggested that people could listen, but JB asked for the link.
A member then accused JB of shutting down the conversation and stated that Widewater Place was always last on the Agenda and then not allowed to be discussed by the residents - JB responded that Widewater had been discussed earlier during the Police element of the meeting and that we were regularly repeating the same things.
Another member then asked why other members were not invited to the meeting and why there were no questions set from the Association at the meeting.
JB replied they did raise some of the questions which had been asked.
A member stated that by having these meetings it looked as if they have engaged with the Harefield community which they have not.
JB Asked the members what was it that they wanted her/the HTRA to do? This was met with:-
Represent them at the meetings ask them difficult questions, put the opinions of the local community to them. To ask them questions we wanted answered - JB stated she raised questions from the HTRA community.
Another member stated the traffic would be terrible in Harefield if they come from Harrow, Stanmore, etc. They would come in their thousands.
A member asked why Harefield First was not invited to the meeting. It was arranged by the Councillor and it was his choice who to invite along.
Another member stated the meeting had taken place and nothing can be done about it now and why not compile questions for the next meeting.
A member stated the Association must not accept what Hujjat said. All explanations and answers to the questions stated were not true according to this member of the HTRA committee. He suggested that before the next meeting another member of the Committee attend. J.B. stated this had already been agreed with KSIMC and related at the last Committee meeting.
The member then once again stated they are not to be trusted the Group has stated there will be a Mosque with 10,000 members. - JB responded by saying they had told her there would NOT be a Mosque.
JB stated once again they did question the reps in the meeting.
JB - I would like to categorically state they advised they would not be building a mosque.
JB informed some of those present that she knew that they had a petition signed by over 3,000 but did not know what the petition said. She also said that not all residents shared their views and the HTRA have to represent the residents as a whole not just the Harefield First Group.
JB Stated the KSIMC did not disrespect any of the women that attended the meeting, in any way.
Another member stated she has heard that the group were looking to buy the Bear and the Barge public house to build the mosque. - JB. stated that this would have to once again be subject to planning permission and that they would have to apply for a change of use, from Restaurant to a place of worship.
A member then stated without planning application being submitted nothing as yet can be done. When the planning comes in that will be the time to object.
A Committee member GB (also of Harefield First Group) then stated that the HTRA should not be going to these “cosy” meetings which looks as if the HTRA are assisting them with their plans and using it as Community Engagement. The member wanted a vote on whether or not the village wanted a Mosque. - J.B. said no vote would take place.
JB. asked this member What do you wanting us to do that we are not already doing? It was responded by “ We want the H.T.R.A. to relay our opposition to our local Councillors and Members of Parliament to Harefield having a Mosque. Also to advise them not to engage in the meetings and to have photo opportunities as it appears they are assisting them in the plans for the development.
A member objected to the way the meetings were conducted at the HTRA and that the objections were not being heard from the members who objected to the Widewater place. It was pointed out that it was important that all members of the community had a right to share their opinions and it was not just members of Harefield First Group. JB informed the meeting that some long- standing attendees had informed her that they no longer attended as they did not like the tone of the meeting now.
A member stood and stated that she felt she was not wanted at the meeting – JB contested this.
A number of attendees started to leave as they voiced their views were not being heard.
A member of the community reported loud music at all hours plus noise from the Roundhouse. This property is next to the Academy and it appears the Academy had allowed parking there for the function which lasted days. It was reported to be a wedding.
It was voiced they possibly should have had a licence for the event. Also if the noise is causing a nuisance it would be the anti-social behaviour team at the Civic Centre or the out of hours Noise Team.
However, LBH officers would possibly ask for a diary to be kept about the noise dates and times to enable them to act.