Warwick Matters November 2016

Update on Flooding 23rd June 2016

Cllr Jacqui Wilkinson, Deputy Cabinet Member for City Management, has been in discussions with Westminster City Council and Thames Water on behalf of Pimlico Residents in dealing with the aftermath of the flooding on 23rd June. She had been pressing them to meet residents to hear their concerns directly and provide assurances on the action being taken to avoid similar flooding in the future. As a result, Thames Water will be holding a drop-in session on 8 December 2016 from 17:00 – 19:00 at the Queen Mother Sports Centre, Vauxhall Bridge Road. This will provide residents with the opportunity to speak to Thames Water's operational team about their concerns.

Warwick Ward Councillors Secure New Fines for Fly Tippers

The biggest issues our residents contact us about are fly tipping and dumped waste. Although the vast majority of residents and businesses dispose of their refuse properly and responsibly, for the small minority that don’t, this causes much distress for their neighbours.

So we are delighted that our lobbying has paid off and Westminster City Council has now introduced tougher sanctions for those who do not comply with the refuse code of conduct.

The increase in fines will mean:

  • For household waste, a £200 fine upon the first offence, rising to £400 for a second, followed by prosecution.
  • For trade or business waste, a £400 fine followed by prosecution for subsequent offences.
  • Warnings, valid for a year, will be issued for those that do not place household waste in appropriate receptacles and at specific times.

Jacqui Wilkinson explained: “Westminster has one of the best cleaning services in the country. We hope that these new fines send a strong message to the minority, who think it is acceptable to fly tip and ignore our bins and refuse collections, that this behaviour will not be tolerated. Our residents regularly complain about others who choose to dump illegally. The vast majority of our residents and businesses are determined to work with us to keep their streets and neighbourhoods clean.”

Westminster City Council has introduced a variety of ways old items can be safely and easily disposed of, ranging from our ‘Restart’ events for electronics to mobile recycling centres and big black bins that are visibly placed in neighbourhoods.

The Council offers bulk waste collection services for residents, who can also take their items to the waste recycling centre at Smuggler’s Way, Battersea. 

Security Gate Gets Go Ahead

After years of campaigning, the residents of Churton Place have secured planning permission for a security gate on Churton Yard, which has been a magnet for crime and anti-social behaviour.

Councillor Nickie Aiken commented: “I have been working with residents for nearly 10 years to find a solution to the endless drug dealing and taking, prostitution and rough sleeping that has occurred in this yard. Having exhausted many avenues including negotiations with the freeholder, discussions with police, environmental health and community protection, the residents chose to apply for their own planning permission, which was granted by a recent council committee.”

Councillor Aiken represented the residents at the Committee and was delighted that their application was successful. Hopefully in time once the gate is up, the residents will see a major improvement.

Warwick Ward Christmas Lights

The clocks have gone back and it's becoming dark earlier. So this means it won't be long until we have our popular Christmas Lights Ceremony at Tachbrook Market. This year, it will be happening on Friday 2nd December at 4.15. The Lord Mayor of Westminster Councillor Steve Summers will be lighting the Christmas Tree at Tachbrook Market and the lights along Warwick Way. There will be carols led by the South Westminster Community Choir and refreshments provided by Uno Restaurant. This event is generously sponsored by your Warwick Ward Councillors from our Ward Budget. It's a wonderful start to the Christmas season.

Warwick Ward Shopping and Business Directory

Three years ago Warwick Ward Councillors produced a shopping directory to give our residents information about the facilities on their doorsteps. We believe it is important to support our local shops and businesses. And of course the wonderful Tachbrook Market! We are now producing a new and greatly improved version, which we will be sending out before Christmas. We hope you will enjoy using the directory and experience the variety of shops and businesses that we have in this area. 

Update on Eccleston and Elizabeth Bridges Resurfacing

The work appears to be progressing well with the resurfacing of the Eccleston and Elizabeth Bridges.

The Contractors have informed us that they need to close the Elizabeth Bridge completely starting at 10pm on Friday 25th November and completing at 6am on Monday 28th November. They consider this is preferable to an extended period of night-time only closures and lane restrictions extending on to Buckingham Palace Road. There is a proposed diversion along Warwick Way and back along Hugh Street, while London Taxis will access the station car park via bridge place. To help facilitate local deliveries over this weekend, the Contractor has asked that they are notified of the times so they can agree an access route and make the necessary arrangements. If this applies to you, then please e-mail colin.maccombe@bamnuttall.co.uk.

New Investment for the Queen Mother Leisure Centre

Your Warwick Ward Councillors are pleased to report that the Queen Mother Leisure Centre is benefiting from £1.6m investment to improve the current building and sport and leisure facilities. Work is already underway on refurbishing the spa and building a new hot yoga studio, in addition to the refurbished changing rooms that are already in place.

New Litter Bin

We have mentioned in previous newsletters that Warwick Ward has been benefitting from some of the pilot schemes being carried out across Westminster by the City Council aimed to testing out new arrangements to improve our rubbish collections and recycling. One innovation is a bin specifically for blue bags. These new bins can be seen at recycling centre on Belgrave Road and at the junction of Cumberland and Sussex Streets. We hope this will encourage residents to place their blue recycling bags in these new bins rather than leaving them on the pavement. 

11th Annual Tea Dance- Another Success!

On Sunday 6th November, Councillor Christabel Flight organised her 11th Annual Tea Dance at the Grosvenor House Hotel on Park Lane. Residents from Warwick Ward were among the thousand 65s and over enjoying this fantastic event, which goes from strength to strength. The guests enjoyed dancing, making new friends as well as afternoon tea. There was also wonderful live entertainment from the Red Stripe band and performances from 1940’s trio The Three Belles and Music Hall favourite, Jan Hunt. Helping to overcome loneliness and social isolation amongst our older residents is so important and it's great to see how very much our residents enjoy this event. 

Caxton Youth Organisation Wins Garden Award

Many congratulations to the Caxton Youth Organisation based behind Tintern House, Abbots Manor for being awarded 'highly commended' in the Grow Wild Awards, supported by the Royal Botanic Gardens at Kew. Caxton is a youth club helping young people living in Westminster with disabilities develop their social, educational and life skills whilst having fun! They used limited resources to make a thriving vegetable garden and inspired local residents to put in a request from CityWest Homes for planters for growing flowers and vegetables. These have now been installed.

Councillor Christabel Flight, who is patron of the Caxton Youth Organisation says: "I was thrilled to hear of this award. The Caxton has been helping our young people for 50 years. It is always a delight to see the wonderful work they achieve. The staff, helpers and parents deserve great credit."

Warwick Ward Walkabout With Westminster's New Neighbourhood Problem Solving Co-Coordinator

On 14th October, Councillors Aiken, Flight and Wilkinson carried out a Ward Walkabout with Westminster's new Neighbourhood Problem Solving Coordinator (NSPC) to show him issues that they are concerned about. Peter Glover took over his new role at the beginning of the month. Peter can be contacted on pglover1@westminster.gov.uk.

Westminster's Neighbourhood Problem Solving Coordinators complement the work of the City Inspectors by addressing the more serious and complex problems in the borough. This involves liaising with relevant organisations to develop strategic and practical approaches to problem and working in direct partnership with the police's safer neighbourhood teams.

Handel's Messiah at St Gabriel's

Rehearsals have begun for the performance of Messiah on 13th December at St Gabriel’s Church, Warwick Square.  Warwick Ward Councillors are again participating in this event. Rehearsals are taking place every Monday from 7pm-9pm.  The performance will be on Tuesday 13th December. This is a joint initiative between two Westminster Charities, the Pimlico Musical Foundation, which gives primary school children within Pimlico the opportunity to learn an instrument and indeed to sing, and the Sir Simon Milton Foundation. If you would like more information about joining us in performing the Messiah or providing sponsorship, then please contact Councillor Flight oncllrflight@candhflight.com and she will be delighted to help.

Our Next Street Surgery

We are available to help whenever the needs arrives.  We don’t expect our residents to have to wait for a surgery date.  However, we also think it’s important to be proactive and get out and meet local people

We run our popular 'street surgeries' once a month between 10.30 and noon.  We visit specific streets in Warwick Ward to meet residents and discuss any issues they may have.  

We have been gradually working our way around the Ward.
This month, on Saturday 26th November, we'll be visiting Cumberland Street starting from the northern end.

Another way you can get your views heard is by filling out our survey:twociti.es/WarwickSurvey