Meetings – News & Notes

Notes from the meeting held on Tuesday 14 September 2021


Maggie Ash, Julie Byron, Dilip Chauhan, Roo Peake, Guy Simmons, Andrew Thirlby and Neil Evans.

Jane Russell, of ERNA, attended as a guest as did MD Alef Uddin, of Leicester Welfare Society.


Kate Sullivan, Alan Fox, Hilary Browne and Brian Stevenson.


Maggie Ash

Future meetings:

Now that South Highfields Neighbours is meeting in person again, it was felt the monthly gatherings should return to a more formal structure and moves will be made to contact the police, councillors and neighbourhood warden for regular updates on the area.

Leicester Welfare Society:

MD Alef Uddin extended an invitation to join Leicester Welfare Society’s celebration of International Mother Language Day on Monday, September 27. This will be held at St Peter’s Church Hall at 1.30pm.

SHN publicity:

Andrew has updated SHN’s leaflets and brought along an example with less wording and an eye-catching new design, which everyone liked. This could be put in the notice boards, left at venues and handed out at events. Andrew will investigate costs and, if funds allow, he will have these printed up.

Facebook page:

Roo has taken steps to improve SHN’s Facebook presence and welcomed contributions to the Facebook page.

Friends groups for local parks:

Andrew has looked into the formalities of setting up a Friends of Prebend Gardens and a Friends of Onslow Park. These have to have a constitution, bank account and a structured committee. It was felt not to be a viable proposition at the present time and it would be better for SHN to continue organizing events at these parks.

Bees, Trees and Sunshine at Onslow Park:

Guy has contacted Leicestershire and Rutland Wildlife Trust to see if it can join this event. As summer closes, it will most likely be held next spring.

Gathering in memory of Penny Walker:

This event, at Onslow Park on Saturday, August 21, went well with a good turn-out enjoyed by all who attended.

Any other business:

1: Next month’s meeting will be the AGM and Andrew suggested we should all think beforehand about people willing to take on the role of chairman, secretary and treasurer (the last role already ably filled), and then elect them at the AGM.

2: Dilip pointed out that not everyone is comfortable with emails or social media and asked if people could make contact by phone or directly. He personally is busily involved with Leicester Nirvana Football Club and its work with young people.

3: Guy noted the visual nature of the neighbourhood was changing with some properties having external insulation installed. This was likely to continue as money was still available for poorly insulated homes and households on low income. There was a short discussion about the benefits of this work set against its visual impact.

4: Dilip discussed the two recent deaths – in Melbourne Street and Lincoln Street – and expressed concern that official knife crime strategies were not effective. He has been on Radio Leicester discussing the issue.

5: A couple of SHN members supported Climate Action Leicester and Leicestershire (CALL) for a silent vigil next to the city’s clocktower on Monday, September 13. This was to draw attention to the climate emergency.

6: Members were happy for Neil to continue to be the link member between SHN and CALL.

7: Jane asked if there was any news about the return of ward meetings feeling they were a good opportunity to put questions to councillors. Investigations will be made.

The meeting finished at 8.00pm.

Date of Next Meeting:

Tuesday 12 October 2021 at 7pm at the African Caribbean Centre, Maidstone Road, Leicester. As usual, it is requested that those attending arrive on time.


Notes from the meeting held on Tuesday 10 August 2021


Margaret Ash, Hilary Browne, Julie Byron, Kate Sullivan, Alan Fox, Andrew Thirlby, Neil Evans. Jane Russell of ERNA attended as a guest.


Guy Simmons, Brian Stevenson, Stephen Shenton.


Alan Fox

Gathering to remember Penny Walker at Onslow Park:

A date has been fixed for Saturday, August 21 starting at 2pm. Volunteers will meet at noon to pick up litter and to set up a gazebo and table. Fruit juices will be served and some food, though people can also bring along food to share.

Rob Gee has agreed to compere the informal gathering and there will be chance for others to speak. People who have known and campaigned with Penny have been invited and it is hoped they will share details of the event through their own networks.

If anyone has photographs of Penny, these could be displayed and there will be articles to read about Penny from newspapers such as The Guardian.

Jane has played a large part in getting Leicester City Council to put a plaque on a bench at Onslow Park in memory of Penny and it is hoped this will be ready by August 21.

Bench in memory of Woody:

Leicester City Council has agreed to put a plaque on a bench in memory of Bruce Arthur Wood, known to many in the area as ‘Woody’ Wood. This will go in Prebend Gardens where one of several new trees to be planted in the park will also be dedicated to his memory. A certificate marking the dedication will be sent to Woody’s daughter, Hertha, who is delighted her father is remembered with such affection.

Of the trees planned for the park, members thought the magnolia would be a fitting tribute and decided on the wording: “ ‘Woody’ Wood, a stalwart of the local community” to go on the bench plaque.

Onslow Park:

Funding has been extended for a project at Onslow Park called Bees, Trees and Sunshine involving wildlife talks, wildflower seed planting and putting up washing lines. Guy and Dilip will co-ordinate this project.

Prebend Gardens:

Funding from the People’s Health Trust has also been extended for an ambitious project at Prebend Gardens, which it is hoped will include the involvement of organisations such as the Dawn Centre, Sparkenhoe School and Leicestershire Wildlife Trust. Once SHN knows when current work on the park has been completed, a steering group will need to be set up to co-ordinate the project and encourage involvement of our neighbours.

Alan has been invited to join a Zoom meeting with the People’s Health Trust on Tuesday, August 17.

Any other business:

1: Andrew suggested it might be a good time to revive a Friends of Prebend Gardens group to ensure the well being of the new-look park. This could be separate from SHN but he thought the group would have to be registered with the city council. He will investigate and report back at the next meeting.

Kate thought a Friends of Onslow Park would also be a good idea.

2: Details of a series of vigils highlighting climate change were shared. These will start at Leicester Clock Tower on August 21st and then run every second Monday and every fourth Friday of the month from September. These have been organised by Climate Action Leicester and Leicestershire, a coalition of organisations highlighting and campaigning against climate change. South Highfields Neighbours is a coalition member.

3: Andrew had been contacted by a team thanking SHN for its help in assisting with gathering information for the Census in March. No-one present was aware SHN had offered assistance.

4: A brief discussion was held on improving publicity about SHN. This will be talked about more fully next month, but better use of notice boards, Facebook and printing leaflets were mentioned. Andrew agreed to update SHN’s leaflets.

The meeting finished at 8.05pm.

Date of Next Meeting:

Tuesday 14 September 2021 at 7pm at the African Caribbean Centre, Maidstone Road, Leicester. As usual, it is requested that those attending arrive on time.


Notes from the Zoom meeting held on Thursday 15 July 2021


Kate Sullivan, Alan Fox, Neil Evans, Maggie Ash, Hilary Brown, Julie Byron, Guy Simmons, Jane Russell [ERNA]


Andrew Thirlby

Prebend Gardens:

Alan has not committed us to a start date with the funding organisation. We will wait and see what it is like when the Council works are completed, especially the performance area. Work not progressing well and Council not expected to meet its end of July deadline.

Will seek to involve Sparkenhoe Primary School and the Dawn Centre in the launch event.

Alan will contact Adrian Edge at the Council about SHN having a noticeboard in the Park.

Neil will continue to progress request for a plaque to commemorate Woody Wood.

Penny Walker:

A commemoration event will be planned for Saturday 21 August in Onslow Park for South Highfields Neighbours members and others who know Penny [such as Jane, Lucy Chaplin, Rob Gee and mural artists, Linda and Dave]. The organising team is Kate, Hilary, Maggie and Neil.

Kate will contact Penny’s daughter, Mel, about the date and Penny’s request that a third of her ashes be appropriately buried in the Park. This could be in front of the mural.

The Parks Department is prepared to add a plaque to a bench. It is opposed to other forms of plaque, because of vandalism. The wording agreed for the plaque is: PENNY WALKER litter picker extraordinaire who cared for this park and community.

Jane will continue to explore with the Parks Department the planting of another tree [variety of our choosing based on advice from the Parks Department]. The earliest this can happen is November.


Alan and Neil hold the keys for the SHN noticeboards.

African-Caribbean Centre:

Julie will contact Marcie to find out when meetings can be held there again and tell Alan, who can hopefully book the next meeting there in a bigger room to make social distancing easier. Neil offered his home if an alternative is needed.

Date of Next Meeting:

Thursday 10 August 2021 at 7pm at the African Caribbean Centre, Maidstone Road, Leicester.  As usual, it is requested that those attending arrive on time.


Notes from the Zoom meeting held on Thursday 10 June 2021


Alan Fox, Kate Sullivan, Julie Byron, Hilary Browne, Maggie Ash, Roo Peake, Dilip Chauhan, Guy Simmons


Andrew Thirlby, John O’Driscoll, Chris Mitchell

Maggie’s Birthday:

We all wished Maggie a Happy Birthday.

Prebend Gardens:

Leicester City Council has begun its work, which it aims to finish by 31 July. Alan has contacted The Peoples Health Trust, which has agreed to re-activate the £5,000 grant that had been obtained by Penny. It is currently planned to be used between 1 September 2021 and 31 August 2022. Alan has become the first contact with the Peoples Health Trust and Roo the deputy. It is thought that starting in September may be too early.

Onslow Park:

The £420 grant from the City Council has been extended. Guy and Dilip agreed to lead on this project. It is themed Bees, Trees and Sunshine. It should involve Medway Primary School. Roo alerted us to a BBC Radio 2 schools competition that involves designing a wildflower garden.

African Caribbean Centre:

Alan will contact the Centre to find out when we can start meeting there again. We may hire a bigger room so we can be better socially-distanced.

Penny Walker:

Penny’s daughter, Mel, has proposed that a memorial event is held in the summer to celebrate Penny. Alan will contact Mel to get more information about her thinking about the event and to make sure she knows SHN are keen to support the event and help organise it.

Woody’ Wood:

Woody’s daughter, Hertha, is planning a memorial celebration of Woody on Saturday 23 October at the Secular Hall.

Facebook Page:

Roo and Maggie will activate the page, which has not been used for over a year. Later we may pay Facebook so our page gets brought to the attention of everyone using Facebook in Highfields.

Date of Next Meeting:

Thursday 15 July at the African-Caribbean Centre or on Zoom. It will be promoted through Facebook. The meeting Chair will be Maggie.


Notes from the meeting held on Tuesday 10 March 2020


Roo Peake, Alison Cottam, Guy Simmons, Alan Fox, Kate Sullivan, Julie Byron, Dilip Chauhan, PC Charlotte Barber


Penny Walker, Maggie Ash, Neil Evans, Andrew Thirlby, Jo Webb

Police Report:

In the past month there has been one burglary from a shop and nine from dwellings, three robberies, six thefts from motor vehicles and one theft of a vehicle. Members were advised not to leave items on display in cars. Overall the area has been quiet over the past few weeks.

The police are promoting a new Police Community Messaging Service to provide news, updates and events information. People can register for this at

Feedback from recent meetings:

Fairtrade event:

This was attended by five people and raised £60. Roo spoke about her recent trip to Palestine.

Ward meeting:

  • The City Council is launching a Personalised Travel Planning initiative to encourage people to use more environmentally friendly forms of transport such as cycling. Workers will be going door-to-door to collect information and give advice.
  • Work is to start “imminently” to improve Prebend Gardens.The Leicester Local Plan will be discussed at the next ward meeting.
  • £420 has been awarded to SHN for Trees, Bees and Sunshine and the Washing Line Project. Trees, Bees and Sunshine is an event in Onslow Park involving Leicester Wildlife Trust. It will be held on Sunday 19 April and Alan will coordinate the organisation of this. Dilip and Guy are already working on it. The Washing Line Project will provide some local residents with washing lines so that the use of tumble dryers can be reduced.

Climate Emergency:

  • Climate Action is having a launch event from 12.30 – 3.30pm on Saturday 4 April at the St Matthews Centre on Malabar Road. It will feature food tasting, talks and activity and information stalls.
  • The More Trees Please group is encouraging people to involve their local councillors in requesting more trees to be planted within the city.
  • Dilip represented SHN at a protest concerning the building of the HS2 rail network and the resultant environmental damage.

Date of next meeting:

Due to the Coronovirus pandemic there will be no meeting in April. The date of the next meeting will be advised when circumstances permit.


Notes from the meeting held on Tuesday 11 February 2020


Andrew Thirlby, Hilary Browne, Guy Simmons, Penny Walker, Alan Fox, Dilip Chauhan, Neil Evans, Kate Sullivan


Brian Stevenson, Julie Byron, Anita O’Reilly, Maggie Ash, Alison Cottam, Aminur Thalukdar

Police report:

The police did not attend, but sent a written summary of recent reported crimes. The new station commander at Spinney Hills is Inspector Kam Mistry.

Midwinter celebration:

This was a successful Chinese New Year/Burns Night event at St. Peters. It was attended by about 25 people, including some ERNA members. Cathryn Parsons from St. Peter’s is working on a ‘Let’s Eat’ project including cookery sessions, stories and recipes from people who have moved to the area. Anyone who is interested can contact her on 07806 684 620.


Alan gave feedback from a meeting at the architects’ office for the Leicester Hebrew Congregation. They are setting up a user group for a visitors’ centre, due to open after Easter. It will include a room for hire. The centre will be free to enter. The official opening takes place in the autumn.

Comedy Festival:

Seven SHN members went to shows at the Cookie. The Festival runs until Sunday 23 February.

Highfields Library relaunch:

The library looks much brighter and lighter following refurbishment. Kate and Alan attended, also local councillors and mayor. Well supported by members of the public.

Climate Emergency:

Penny and Neil returned to Caribbean Court, A lively discussion led to some good suggestions, which were passed on to the Council.

There is a climate strike on Friday 14 February at 1.30 pm in Jubilee Square. Dilip, Neil, Guy and Penny will attend with the banner.

SHN will have a stall at the CALL (Climate Action Leicester and Leicestershire) launch at St. Matthew’s Community Centre on 4 April, 12.30 – 3.30

Guy gave information on, which is recognised by the UN. It was agreed to have a mini-discussion at the next meeting.

Fair Trade Event:

There will be a meeting on Saturday 29 February at 7.00pm at 59 St Albans Road to celebrate Fair Trade Fortnight. Please bring Fair Trade food and/or drink. A contribution to the raffle would also be appreciated. Proceeds of the raffle will go to Friends of Bethlehem, which supports the Ghirass Children’s Centre in Palestine. Roo recently visited Palestine and Penny will ask if she can give a talk.

Stoneygate Ward meeting:

To be held on Thursday 5 March. Venue and time to be advised. Dilip and Alan will attend. Penny has put in an application for under £420 for environmental activities.

Any other business:

There is no news about Prebend Gardens. Members will ask at the Ward meeting.

Anti-social behaviour, including under-age drinking, has been reported in the Upper Tichborne Street / St Stephens Road area.

Skill-Based First Aid are offering a free refresher course in Desford.

Public Liability Insurance is due and will shortly be renewed.

Date of next meeting:

Tuesday 10 March 2020  at 7pm at the African Caribbean Centre, Maidstone Road, Leicester.  As usual, it is requested that those attending arrive on time.


Notes from the meeting held on Tuesday 14 January 2020


Penny Walker, Alison Cottam, Guy Simmons, Alan Fox, Julie Byron, Hilary Browne, Maggie Ash, Dilip Chauhan, PC Charlotte Barber, Anita O’Reilly, Neil Evans, Brian Stevenson


Kate Sullivan, Chris Mitchell

Police Report:

In the past month there have been eight burglaries (with one arrest of a suspect), three robberies (with one arrest), seven thefts from motor vehicles and three thefts of vehicles. Members were advised not to leave items on display in cars. Problem Management Plans to deal with antisocial behaviour on Upper Tichborne Street and in Evington Road were closed as the situations there have improved.

Leicester University Community Liaison Meeting:

  • The proposed development on Freeman’s Common is going ahead.
  • SHN can request student volunteers for specific projects.
  • The issue of students leaving bins on the street was raised. This can be reported to the university if necessary.

Proposals for activities in the parks:

  • Penny will put in a funding application for an event to be held in Onslow Park on 19 April. Leicestershire Wildlife Trust will organise children’s activities about wildlife and the trees in the park. Guy and Dilip will provide an activity related to bees.
  • An event will be held at Prebend Gardens on Thursday 23 April at 2pm to commemorate the cutting down of trees in the park in April 2018. A date for redeveloping the park is still awaited.

Big Lunch:

It was decided not to hold a Big Lunch event as this would coincide with the Riverside Festival.

Climate Emergency:

  • Neil has written a letter on behalf of SHN re the Council Consultation on Climate Change. The letter was read and approved. Members were also encouraged to respond to the Council’s questionnaire individually. The deadline is 9 February.
  • The More Trees Please group is encouraging people to involve their local councillors in requesting more trees to be planted within the city. Suitable sites for tree planting in South Highfields were discussed. Suggestions included next to the railway and on St Stephens Road near Onlsow Park.
  • The Leicester Climate Change Coalition continues to encourage more local groups to join.
  • The SHN Environment group has met. It was suggested that Street Friends could be revived, encouraging members to take responsibility for their street in terms of reporting fly tipping and putting rubbish bags left on the pavement into an adjacent bin to ensure it is removed.
  • Kate will consult with Darren Evans and, if appropriate, will write to the City Council requesting South Highfields has its own City Warden, rather than sharing Darren with two other wards.
  • Kate will write to Dominos Headquarters concerning the ongoing situation with rubbish and bins around the premises in St Albans Road.

Midwinter Social:

This will be held on Saturday 25 January at St Peter’s Community Centre. Rob Gee will attend, Neil will supply a poem and there will also be a quiz. Members were asked to bring food. The event will be funded by money left in memory of Brian Kernan. People from other organisations with which Brian was involved, such as ERNA, will be invited.

Sparkenhoe School:

The school has vacancies for governors and would welcome applications. Sparkenhoe has come top in Leicester/Leicestershire in the Real Schools Guide and is among the top 100 primary schools in England. Medway was placed at number 30 in Leicester/Leicestershire.

Cycle lanes and Bus Stops on London Road:

  • Cycle lanes: There are still some issues with parked cars and also with pedestrians not recognising the cycle lanes.
  • Bus stops: Some of the temporary signs at bus stops have not yet been replaced by permanent signage. Bus shelters have now been erected outside the station but there is no seating.

Any Other Business:

Dilip attended a meeting about knife crime. The City Council and the police are setting up a task force and steering group with local organisations. Dilip was concerned that there needs to be more effective long term provision and adequate finance for strategies to reduce knife crime.

Date of next meeting:

Tuesday 11 February 2020  at 7pm at the African Caribbean Centre, Maidstone Road, Leicester.  As usual, it is requested that those attending arrive on time.


Notes from the meeting held on Tuesday 10 December 2019


Penny Walker, Alison Cottam, Guy Simmons, Alan Fox, Kate Sullivan, Julie Byron, Hilary Browne, Maggie Ash, Dilip Chauhan, Andrew Thirlby,


John Lyttle (Priestroyd Construction), Anita O’Reilly, Woody, Neil Evans

Police Report:

There was no one available from the police to give a report.


No one was available from Eurovia.

Ward Meeting:

  • Cycle lanes on London Road: There have been complaints on social media about uneven surfaces and about the cycle lanes being obstructed by parked cars.
  • Bus shelters: The bus shelters removed during the London Road improvement scheme have not been replaced and there is a dispute as to which contractor will be providing them. The stops still have temporary signs which do not clearly indicate which buses stop there. Penny will email Adam Clarke, the Councillor responsible for Highways, requesting urgent action to resolve the issues.
  • Prebend Gardens: Work will start sometime after Christmas.
  • Upper Tichborne Street: Plans to open up the road to through traffic have been shelved. Trees will be trimmed back to improve the sight lines of the CCTV cameras.
  • Drug dealing: The police have worked hard to reduce drug dealing on Upper Tichborne Street. A concern was raised however that the problem has moved to St Albans Road.
  • Funeral: Dilip was thanked for his involvement in organising the funeral for Suvekshya Burathoki (Fatima) of Bartholomew Street who died in October.
  • Council grants: Concern was raised that information about groups and events receiving Council grants is no longer being given at Ward Meetings. Around £7,400 is still available for allocation.

Street Party:

No progress has been made on bringing together local organisations to plan a Street Party for 2020.

A report on this year’s Street Party needs to be submitted to the City Council before further funding can be applied for.

It was suggested that SHN organise a smaller event next year, possibly a Picnic in the Park (Onslow or Prebend) with bring and share food. Maggie will get more information about a national event called The Big Lunch, which encourages communities to come together over the summer for a shared meal. Ideas will be discussed at the next meeting.

Climate Emergency:

  • It was proposed that SHN support Moat Community College in their bid to improve air quality around the school. The college is sending home children with asthma problems when pollution is particularly severe and is considering extending this to staff. The railway company managing a diesel engine testing area near the school has agreed to suspend testing during school hours. It was suggested we ask Councillor Sharmen Rahman to get involved as many of the children at Moat come from South Highfields.
  • Other local organisations are to be encouraged to give feedback on the City Council’s proposed climate strategy. SHN members can complete a climate consultation form.
  • It was suggested that reports of SHN action on climate change be made available to other interested groups via the SHN website.

Facebook Update:

Maggie and Roo have been working on the SHN Facebook page and have added lots of photos.

Midwinter Social:

This will be held on Saturday 25 January 2020 at St Peter’s Community Centre. It was suggested that Rob Gee be invited to perform and the event will also feature a short quiz, sketches and refreshments. [Edit: Rob Gee has since confirmed that he will attend].

Any Other Business:

The quality of street lighting on St Peter’s Road, near the junction with Welland Street is poor. The Highways department needs to be contacted.

Date of next meeting:

Tuesday 14 January 2020  at 7pm at the African Caribbean Centre, Maidstone Road, Leicester.  As usual, it is requested that those attending arrive on time.


Notes from the meeting held on Tuesday 12 November 2019


Penny Walker, Alison Cottam, Guy Simmons, Alan Fox, Kate Sullivan, Julie Byron, Neil Evans, Hilary Browne, Maggie Ash, Roo Peake, John O’Driscoll, Dilip Chauhan, Stephen Shenton


Amanda Cooke, Andrew Thirlby, Brian Stevenson, John Lyttle (Priestroyd Construction), Anita O’Reilly, Korin Grant, PCSO Owen Lenton

Police Report:

In the past month in Stoneygate Ward there have been eight burglaries from houses, three occurring at the same address. There were three robberies. Items including catalytic converters have been stolen from eight vehicles. Vehicles parked at the end of Evington Road and adjacent side streets were targeted. Three thefts of vehicles were reported but two involved family members. Arrests were made in Roslyn Street, where a sophisticated cannabis factory was discovered. A large amount of equipment and plants were recovered. A warrant was executed with limited success on Upper Tichborne Street.

Priestroyd Construction:

It is expected that work on the former Lloyds Bank will be completed shortly. The company has done a good job in restoring the original facade.

London Road Improvement Works:

Concerns were raised that vehicles are parking on double yellow lines and in the cycle lanes on London Road. The police are leaving it to the City Council wardens to take action. The City Council is waiting for Eurovia to complete signage of the cycle lanes! It was suggested that SHN could take action if the Council fail to act. A possibility would be to place stickers on car windscreens advising owners that they are causing a hazard to cyclists. Concern was also raised that bus shelters have not been replaced along London Road. Penny will ask for both issues to be raised at the December Ward Meeting with representatives from Eurovia and the Highways Department.

Patch Walk:

Feedback has been received from the recent Patch Walk on Upper Tichborne Street.

  • Trees will be trimmed back to improve the sight line of the CCTV camera.
  • Fly-tipping continues to be an issue.
  • Residents should continue to report to the police incidents of anti social behaviour occurring on Upper Tichborne Street.
  • The lack of provision for youth in the area was noted but and it was suggested the MKA Dashwood Road Centre could be a venue for youth activities.
  • A gate on the corner of Skipworth Street needs repair – the Council will undertake this.
  • In response to the concerns of residents the plan to remove bollards has been abandoned.

Ward Meeting:

This will be held on Thursday 5 December at a venue to be announced. Alan, Penny and Steven will attend. The following concerns will be raised: the enforcement of parking restrictions in the London Road cycle lanes, the replacement of bus shelters and a request for more trees in Prebend Gardens.

Climate Emergency:

  • Subgroup progress: The raising awareness subgroup has been very active but other subgroups have not. Reasons include a lack of time and energy.
  • City Council Conversation: This will be held on 18 November, when various organisations and interested individuals will be meeting with the City Council to discuss action on climate change. Several SHN members will attend. The Cliimate Action Coalition education subgroup is aiming to submit ideas for discussion prior to the meeting.
  • Hilary has attended a “Trees Please” meeting as part of the Climate Action Coalition. The group is encouraging the Council to plant more trees. A request for more trees in Highfields was briefly discussed.
  • The Climate Action Coalition is requesting candidates for the forthcoming General Election to sign an environmental action pledge. Penny, Dilip, Hilary and Guy will be meeting with parliamentary candidates on behalf of SHN and the Climate Action Coalition.
  • Guy asked SHN members to sign a petition requesting a televised election debate on climate issues.
  • Washing lines in College Avenue: Ward funding will be needed for this. Guy is willing to undertake the “handyman” work that will be required to erect the washing lines.

Facebook Update and website:

Alan has sent out Facebook invitations to join the SHN group. Maggie has corrected spelling errors and would like some technical help to develop the SHN Facebook page. It was noted that parts of the website need updating. Reports and pictures of SHN activities need to be sent to Andrew to enable him to keep the site up to date.

Street Party:

Penny will email Cllr Kirk Master concerning his offer to help with bringing local groups together to organise the next Street Party. A funding bid needs to go in by the end of January.

Midwinter Social:

It was decided to plan this for Saturday 25 January 2020 at the African Caribbean Centre. It was suggested that Rob Gee be invited to perform. The event could be funded using money left in memory of Brian Kernan.

Any Other Business:

  • Peace on the Streets: There will be a public meeting at the African Caribbean Centre from 6pm to 8pm on 28 November to discuss knife crime.
  • The funeral has taken place of Suvekshya Burathoki (Fatima), who died in Bartholomew Street in October. Our local City Councillors arranged fundraising to pay for the funeral. Dilip highlighted the importance of caring actions within the community.

Date of next meeting:

Tuesday 10 December 2019  at 7pm at the African Caribbean Centre, Maidstone Road, Leicester.  As usual, it is requested that those attending arrive on time.


Notes from the meeting held on Tuesday 8 October 2019


Penny Walker, Alison Cottam, Guy Simmons, Alan Fox, Kate Sullivan, Julie Byron, Neil Evans, Andrew Thirlby, Brian Stevenson, Hilary Browne, Anita O’Reilly, Maggie Ash


Amanda Cooke, Chris Mitchell, Aminur Thalukdar, PCSO Phil Wandless, Dilip Chauhan

Annual General Meeting

Minutes of the 2018 AGM:

These were read and approved as correct.

Annual Report:

This provided an accurate summary of the year’s events.

Treasurer’s Report:

Accounts were presented and agreed to provide an accurate record. Julie was thanked for her hard work as treasurer.

Election of officers:

It was agreed that rotating the chairing of meetings between members had worked well and that this should continue. Penny will co-ordinate a rota. For administration purposes there will continue to be a nominal chairperson.

  • Nominal chairperson: ALAN FOX

Proposed by Guy Simmons, seconded by Anita O’Reilly

  • Vice chair: ANDREW THIRLBY

Proposed by Kate Sullivan, seconded by Penny Walker

  • Secretary: PENNY WALKER

Proposed by Alison Cottam, seconded by Kate Sullivan

  • Treasurer: JULIE BYRON

Proposed by Kate Sullivan, seconded by Anita O’Reilly

Membership fees:

It was agreed that these should remain at £5 per year, with a concession of £2.50 for those not earning.

The AGM was followed by the regular monthly meeting.

Police Report:

In the past month in the Stoneygate Ward there have been ten burglaries, eight thefts from vehicles, one vehicle stolen, one attempted theft of a motorbike, four incidents of anti social behaviour and four robberies. Several suspects have been arrested in connection with the robberies. Police are continuing to work on the problem of drug dealing in and around Upper Tichborne Street. Street drinking at a bus stop in Evington Road is another ongoing issue which is receiving attention.

Climate Strike:

SHN was represented by 5 members at this event in the city centre. Our local MP, John Ashworth, was one of the speakers.

Other climate change actions:

  • Penny has emailed members to remind them which of the SHN climate change groups they signed up to.
  • Some SHN members attended a meeting at the Secular Hall. A Coalition on Climate Change is being set up by Friends of the Earth to encourage the City Council to take action on matters that are within their powers to address – for example public transport and climate education in schools. It was agreed that SHN should sign up to the coalition.
  • Air pollution is a significant problem at Moat Community College due to its proximity to the railway. The college would like help and advice with addressing the problem.
  • Amanda Cooke has been working with Street Warden Darren Evans to tackle problems with bins and rubbish in College Avenue. A suggestion has been made that residents could be helped to erect washing lines to decrease dependence on tumble dryers.

Everybody’s Reading Event:

This enjoyable event was facilitated by Rob Gee. 35 people attended, including three teachers and three students from Medway School and Moat Community College. Two members from the student strike also came.

Leicester University Community Liaison Meeting:

This focused on issues around the Freemans Park campus. The next meeting in May 2020 will address the annual problem of students moving out of accommodation and rubbish being left in the streets.

Leicester University Volunteers’ Fair:

This provided an opportunity to engage with students but most were freshers who were living in university accommodation rather than our local area.

Upper Tichborne Street Patch Walk:

This was attended by our three local councillors, three police officers and members of SHN. Most were not in favour of opening up the street to through traffic. A request was made for more provision for young people in the area as an alternative way of addressing the drugs problem. The trees may be trimmed back to improve the sight lines of the CCTV camera.

Street Party update:

This will be discussed at the next meeting.

Advertising ourselves:

A South Highfields Neighbours banner has been bought. It was suggested that SHN needs to be on Facebook. A page was set up some time ago but has been unused. Maggie will investigate linking it to the website. Leafleting the area to promote SHN and give information about the website was discussed briefly.

Any Other Business:

  • St Peter’s Community Centre is applying to Near Neighbours for funding for a recipe book. This will feature recipes from different cultures contributed by local people. Penny will supply more information if the project goes ahead.
  • A planning application to raise the roof on a property at 21 Andover Street has been refused. An appeal will however be lodged.
  • Prebend Gardens: The council is keen to put another CCTV camera in Prebend Gardens to monitor antisocial behaviour in a secluded area of the gardens. It is anticipated that work on refurbishing the area will begin soon.

Date of next meeting:

Tuesday 12 November 2019  at 7pm at the African Caribbean Centre, Maidstone Road, Leicester.  As usual, it is requested that those attending arrive on time.


Notes from the meeting held on Tuesday 10 September 2019


Penny Walker, Alison Cottam, Guy Simmons, PCSO Phil Wandless, Dilip Chauhan, Alan Fox, Kate Sullivan, Roo Peake, John O’Driscoll, Julie Byron, Neil Evans, John Lyttle (Priestroyd Construction) Haroon Shaikh, Mohamed Shaikh, Hamza Bodhaniya, (Obsidian Strategies) Cllr Kirk Master, Cllr Sharmen Rahman


Maggie Ash, Hilary Browne, Andrew Thirlby, Brian Stevenson, Anita O’Reilly,

Thanks were extended to Priestroyd Construction/Obsidian Strategies (the development company) for hosting the meeting at The Bank on St Albans Road and providing refreshments as well as a tour of the building.

Reports from other agencies

  • Police Report: In the past month in the Stoneygate area there have been eight burglaries, eight thefts from vehicles, one vehicle stolen and four robberies. Police are taking action over antisocial behaviour involving a man begging aggressively on Evington Road. The Problem Management Plan to tackle drug dealing on and around Upper Tichborne Street has been effective and the arrest of an individual travelling from Birmingham has resulted in a reduction in local drug dealing. Following consultation with local people it has been decided not to make Upper Tichborne Street a through road. Trees will be trimmed back however, to improve the sight lines of the CCTV camera. A Problem Management Plan remains in place to address the problems of street drinking on Evington Road. A bus shelter with seating may be removed to discourage drinkers from congregating there. Local off licences have been visited by police officers and owners reminded that it is an offence to sell alcohol to people who are drunk.

It was reported that drug dealing and prostitution are a problem on the area of Mere Road leading from Evington Road.

An abandoned car on Gotham Street will eventually be removed by the DVLA if untaxed.

  • Priestroyd Construction/Obsidian Strategies: Interior building work is being finished this week and the first student residents will move in at the weekend. The facade is being restored and work on this will continue for two to three weeks. Priestroyd Construction and Obsidian Strategies were thanked for their good working relationship with local residents, their support for the Street Party and the erection of swift boxes on the building. Obsidian is keen to provide future support for the Street Party.

London Road improvement scheme:

Representatives from Eurovia did not attend the meeting.

A concern was raised that the bus shelters do not provide adequate seating.

Work is continuing to complete the cycle paths. On the upper part of London Road, the path is obstructed by parked cars.

Street Party:

The need for more involvement from local residents and organisations was discussed. Additional volunteers are vital if the Street Party is to continue, with an emphasis on working with the local community rather than simply providing an event for them. Councillors Kirk Master and Sharmen Rahman are keen to offer support. It was suggested that Medway and Sparkenhoe Schools could be approached again and parents could be involved. The use of Medway School premises could provide additional space for activities if available. PCSO Wandless suggested police cadets could volunteer at the event. Other local organisations such as cultural and faith groups could be approached for support. Councillor Kirk Master offered to arrange an initial meeting before Christmas to meet with interested parties and draw up a timetabled plan.

Leicester University Community Liaison Meeting: SHN is registered with the Students’ Union and can advertise for volunteers on the university portal. There is a Volunteering and Fundraising Opportunities Fair on Thursday 3 October. SHN will have a table at the event.

Everybody’s Reading:

Penny and Neil have been in touch with Medway School and Moat Community College to encourage participation in the Stuff and the Planet event. Posters and poems are going up on SHN noticeboards. Penny and Neil will be leading a discussion at Caribbean Court in preparation for the event on 5 October.

Climate Change Groups:

SHN will be represented at the next Student Strike for the Climate on Friday 20 September.

Website funding:

It was decided to pay a £48 fee to prevent advertising appearing on the SHN website. Currently the site is not receiving many hits. It was suggested that SHN also needs to use Facebook etc to increase awareness and facilitate online communication.

Any Other Business:

  • Alan is to make an SHN sign for the guerrilla garden in St Albans Road. Priestroyd Construction will fix it to the wall.
  • Anti-littering notices in Onslow Park have been deliberately damaged and will not be replaced at present. There has also been damage to the gate.

Notice of AGM:

This will be held at our next meeting on Tuesday 8 October. It will be advertised on the SHN noticeboards and website.

Date of next meeting:

Tuesday 8 October 2019  at 7pm at the African Caribbean Centre, Maidstone Road, Leicester.  As usual, it is requested that those attending arrive on time.


Notes from the meeting held on Tuesday 9 July 2019


Penny Walker, Alison Cottam, Guy Simmons, Jonathan Catt (Assistant Project Manager Priestroyd Construction),Stephen Shenton, Hilary Browne, Andrew Thirlby, PCSO Phil Wandless, PCSO Patecka, Dilip Chauhan, Jane Russell, Alan Fox, Grace Fox, Kate Sullivan, Roo Peake


Maggie Ash, Neil Evans

Reports from other agencies:

  • Police Report: In the past month there have been 5 burglaries from private properties and 2 from businesses, 10 thefts from vehicles, 2 vehicles stolen and 1 robbery. Thieves have been taking the catalytic converters from parked cars and selling the metal for scrap. Police are taking action over two issues of antisocial behaviour involving households and a third concerning drug dealing on Upper Tichborne Street. A Problem Management Plan is in place to tackle the drug dealing, with individuals being stopped and searched. This is proving effective in catching some of the dealers/users. Police are concerned that trees are reducing the line of sight of the CCTV camera at the top of Upper Tichborne Street. It has been suggested that the trees be trimmed back. Also under consideration is the removal of bollards so that Upper Tichborne Street becomes a through road again. The police consider that this would reduce drug dealing in the area and also make it easier to catch offenders. People living in the streets off Upper Tichborne Street will be invited to join a Patch Walk with local councillors and the police and give their views. Penny will send a letter to our ward councillors outlining concerns expressed by SHN members about the proposals.Knife crime operations are continuing, with an increased police presence in the area. A Problem Management Plan is in place to address the problems of antisocial behaviour and street drinking on Evington Road. The police will be meeting with ward councillors shortly.
  • Priestroyd Construction: The builders are on target to finish work on The Bank by September. Scaffolding and the crane will be removed in early August and work will be commencing to restore the front of the building. Students will be moving in by mid-September.

Street Party Feedback:

Roo was thanked for her work in organising the Street Party, as were the other committee members. Several hundred people attended and enjoyed the event. An improved queuing system was successfully implemented for several of the activities. Concerns were raised however, that more volunteer support was needed to ensure everyone’s safety and wellbeing. A more collaborative approach with the local community was also seen to be important for future Street Parties.

A letter of appreciation from Councillor Kirk Master has been received expressing an interest in expanding the event. Penny will contact Kirk to set up a meeting at which this can be discussed.

Everybody’s Reading:

This being run by De Montfort University this year. SHN has a grant of £200. £100 will be used to fund an event run by Rob Gee at the African Caribbean Centre. In addition, local schools and organisations will be contacted and invited to submit posters and short pieces of writing about climate change. The aim is to highlight the small changes that individuals can make to offset climate change. Workshops will be offered and posters and writing will be displayed on the SHN noticeboards. Awareness raising will extend beyond the events.

Garden Walls:

The City Council has recently rebuilt a number of front garden walls to improve the appearance of parts of Evington Road and St Stephens Road. Concern was expressed by some members at the cost of this – £6,500 per wall, with owners being charged just £1 to have the work carried out.

August Meeting:

It was agreed that there would not be an SHN meeting in August.

Any Other Business:

  • It was confirmed that not all the money allocated for the Street Party has been spent.
  • There is concern that part of Mere Road is being closed next week. Roo was advised to contact the Highways Department to ascertain the reason for the closure.
  • Giant hogweed, which can cause an unpleasant skin reaction if touched, has been spotted growing in Prebend Gardens. The Council have responded quickly to remove it.

Date of next meeting:

Tuesday 10 September 2019  at 7pm at the African Caribbean Centre, Maidstone Road, Leicester.  As usual, it is requested that those attending arrive on time.


Notes from the meeting held on Tuesday 11 June 2019


Alan Fox, Andrew Thirlby, Julie Byron, Maggie Ash, Guy Simmons, Stephen Shenton, Kate Sullivan, Neil Evans, Dilip Chauhan, Anita O’Reilly, Joanne Plews (Customer Relationship Coordinator, Eurovia),


Brian Stevenson, Roo Peake, Alison Cottam, Penny Walker, John Lyttle (Project Manager Priestroyd Construction), Jonathan Catt (Assistant Project Manager, Priestroyd Construction).

Reports from other agencies:

Police Report: There was no report from the police.

1, St Albans Rd: There was no report from Priestroyd.

London Rd development: Joanne Plews (Eurovia) reported that there will be some night- time closures in July for the main surfacing. This will take three weeks, plus a further week for contingencies. Joanne will attend the street party and will bring other volunteers at 10am to litter pick.

Climate Change group feedback:

The ‘raising awareness’ group will take part in the Everybody’s Reading Festival, including an event with Rob Gee on 5 October and designing a poster to be used in schools and residential homes. Penny has applied for funding.

Street Party:

Leaflets are being printed and will be given to schools for children to take home. Other publicity includes a banner for railings and laminated posters for windows, lamp posts, etc. Trinity Life Church is providing volunteers. Alan contacted the Students’ Union who will try to help with volunteers, although it is near the end of term. Activities include art and craft, archery, face painting, Gladiators, climbing tower, henna and glitter tattoos. There will also be a global warming ‘listening stall’. The Council’s Waste Management team would like a stall. Penny is buying more plastic plates to avoid single use items.

Hanging baskets:

A few have been installed, and more will be promoted at the street party.

First Aid course:

9 people attended the course, which was very successful.

Community Liaison meeting with University of Leicester:

Dilip and Alan attended. The Friends of Clarendon Park gave a presentation. There was an update on the Freemens Common development, which has received planning permission. End-of-term logistics for waste disposal was also discussed. A container for recycling clothes, etc has been put in Evington Place near One Stop.

Meeting with People’s Health Trust re Prebend Gardens:

Penny and Alan attended. The Trust has agreed to delay the project for a year, as the Council has not yet started the work.

Any Other Business:

Dilip announced that the annual club presentation of Leicester Nirvana football club will take place on Sunday 16 June, from 10.30 – 4.00 at Hamilton Park, Sandhills Avenue, LE5 1LU.

Guy reported on a major climate change lobby in Parliament Square to be held on Wednesday 26 June. It will be possible to meet MPs. Guy is trying to get an appointment with John Ashworth. Let Guy know if you are interested in going.

Anita reported that work on the synagogue is prolonged and causing disruption. Stephen said he would raise it informally with a member of the synagogue community.

Evington Footpath Conservation Area Society has produced a postcard with a pictorial map of their area. Andrew said he would try to design something similar for the Neighbours area.

Date of next meeting:

Tuesday 9 July 2019  at 7pm at the African Caribbean Centre, Maidstone Road, Leicester.  As usual, it is requested that those attending arrive on time.


Notes from the meeting held on Tuesday 14 May 2019


Alan Fox, Penny Walker, Alison Cottam, Julie Byron, Guy Simmons, Jonathan Catt (Assistant Project Manager Priestroyd Construction),Stephen Shenton, Hilary Browne, Neil Evans, Andrew Thirlby, Brian Stevenson, Heather Kwiatkiewicz, PCSO Jordan Brown, Dilip Chauhan, Jo Plews (Customer Relationship Coordinator, Eurovia), Hamza Boomaniya


Maggie Ash, Kate Sullivan, John Lyttle (Project Manager Priestroyd Construction)

Reports from other agencies:

  • Police Report: In the past month there have been 9 burglaries, 10 thefts from vehicles, 4 vehicles stolen and 5 robberies. There have been several incidents in which traffic wardens have been threatened. A recent incident in St Albans Road involved a knife. Concern was expressed that the Council was not supporting the prosecution of offenders.

         The police are carrying out knife crime operations at present and are monitoring people known to carry knives.    

         The police will be represented at the Street Party.

  • Eurovia: Eurovia employees have been visiting Sparkenhoe School to read with the children and distribute books with safety messages about construction sites, roads and railways. They are also running a “Name the Digger” competition.

         Eurovia will provide some volunteer help for the Street Party.

         Regent Street will be closed off for two weeks as part of the London Road improvement work. Saxby Street will be closed at the junction with London Road for six weeks.

  • Priestroyd Construction: Expensive equipment was recently stolen overnight from the site on St Albans Road. Disruption caused by the installation of utilities is coming to an end.

Climate Change Bubbles:

Working groups are to be developed to respond to climate change issues. SHN members were given the opportunity to sign up to groups. Penny will circulate email addresses so that members of each group can contact one another.

Feedback from events:

  • Lucy’s Farewell Party: This was well attended and was very much appreciated by Lucy.
  • Games in Onslow Park: This was a successful event featuring skipping, books to enjoy, musical instruments, refreshments and an activity encouraging the children to think about issues around single-use plastic.

Onslow Park:

There is graffiti on the play equipment. Penny will contact the Council for advice on how this can best be removed.

The new bench purchased for the park will be installed when specialist equipment to lift it in over the railings is available.

Future Events:

  • Prebend Gardens: Work has not yet commenced on refurbishing the park. Penny is investigating whether the deadline for using grant money for activities on the park can be extended.
  • First Aid Course: This will take place on Friday 17 May. Places are still available.
  • Leicester University Community Liaison Meeting: This takes place on 20 May. Alan and Dilip will attend. Volunteers to help with Street Party will be requested.
  • Street Party: Plenty of volunteers will be needed. Penny will advertise for volunteers using the SHN noticeboards.

Any Other Business:

  • The issue of planning applications for more developments in the area around the station and Prebend Gardens was raised. SHN can support members in raising concerns where appropriate.

Date of next meeting:

Tuesday 11 June 2019  at 7pm at the African Caribbean Centre, Maidstone Road, Leicester.  As usual, it is requested that those attending arrive on time.


Notes from the meeting held on Tuesday 9 April 2019


Alan Fox, Penny Walker, Alison Cottam, Roo Peake, John O’Driscoll, Julie Byron, Kate Sullivan, Guy Simmons, John Lyttle (Project Manager Priestroyd Construction), Jonathan Catt (Assistant Project Manager Priestroyd Construction),Stephen Shenton, Hilary Browne, Neil Evans, Andrew Thirlby, Anita O’Riley


Woody, Maggie Ash, Iona Thomas, Chris Mitchell

Police Report:

Burglaries have increased from seven to 13 in the past month but the number of robberies has fallen to five from eight. 17 vehicle crimes were reported but most of these were minor.

1 St Albans Road:

Four swift boxes will be put on the new building and one on another property. The building work is progressing well and is now up to roof level.

Street Party:

Posters have been designed and schools will be contacted to see if the Street Party can be advertised in newsletters. Bubble football, a climbing tower, skateboard park and music have all been booked. More face painters are needed. Ideas to ensure a fair queuing system were discussed.

Hanging baskets:

Plants for hanging baskets will be purchased when they go on sale over Easter weekend. The 12 or so people interested in having a basket will be contacted.


  • Onslow Park: Another bench will be installed in the park soon. There will be a games event in the park on Sunday 28 April from 3pm to 5pm. Volunteers were requested.
  • Prebend Gardens: Funding has been approved from The People’s Health Trust using money raised by Health Lottery East Midlands for activities in the park. The planned improvement work in Prebend Gardens has not yet started. It was decided to organise events anyway.

Climate Change:

  • The Leicester Car Sharing Club is open to new members. It is locally based and has five vehicles.
  • There will be a meeting for SHN members to discuss climate change and our response on Tuesday 23 April, from 7pm to 9pm at the African Caribbean Centre.

Lucy Chaplin:

There will be an event to thank Lucy for her work as a local councillor. This will be at 6 Degrees Coffee Shop on London Road on Saturday 13 April from 1.30pm to 4.30pm. A tribute and photograph will be sent to the Leicester Mercury.

Any Other Business:

It was suggested that SHN should have better connections with local organisations as an opportunity was missed to show solidarity with the local Muslim community following the shootings in New Zealand. The use of social media to publicise SHN and develop links was discussed.

Date of next meeting:

Tuesday 14 May 2019  at 7pm at the African Caribbean Centre, Maidstone Road, Leicester.  As usual, it is requested that those attending arrive on time.


Notes from the meeting held on Tuesday 19 March 2019


Alan Fox, Penny Walker, Dilip Chauhan, Alison Cottam, Roo Peake, Kate Sullivan, Guy Simmons, John Lyttle (Project Manager Priestroyd Construction), Jonathan Catt (Assistant Project Manager Priestroyd Construction),Stephen Shenton, Maggie Ash, Neil Evans, Tyler Grant, Joseph Faire, Sharmen Rahman, Iona Thomas


Hilary Browne, Korin Grant, Woody

1 St Albans Road:

John Lyttle reported that high winds delayed some of the construction work last week. It was confirmed that the builders will put up swift boxes in the area when they are delivered and will also put some boxes on the new building at 1 St Albans Road. Priestroyd Construction will be donating £1000 for the Street Party and may be able to offer other support for the event.

Ward meeting:

A grant of £2,500 has been given for the Street Party and for events in Prebend Gardens.

First Aid Course:

A grant was given at the ward meeting for a first aid course for SHN members. The course will be from 10.30-14.30 on Friday 17 May at the African Caribbean Centre.

Climate Change:

Tyler and Joseph reported on the climate change strikes they had organised in their school for the 15 February and 15 March as part of a world-wide initiative led by school children. They requested adults to support them as they campaign for politicians to take more action on climate change.

Guy outlined three other important areas in which action is needed if climate change is to be brought under control: using alternatives to fossil fuels, reducing meat production in the agricultural sector and addressing issues of global poverty and inequality.

The following were suggested as ways in which SHN could begin to respond to the climate change crisis:

  • putting pressure on the council to address transport issues such as the need to reduce car usage and improve public transport
  • developing a website to promote green issues/incorporating the topic on the current SHN website
  • organising community petitions to campaign for measures that will reduce climate change
  • action to reduce car ownership
  • a climate change focus at SHN events such as the Street Party
  • work with other local organisations on reducing climate change
  • working with local schools on climate change education
  • requesting action to deal with diesel fumes pollution in the area
  • contacting Eurovia, the contractors currently working on the London Road cycle paths, to request funds for initiatives to promote cycling. (Roo will do this.)
  • having an SHN policy statement on climate change
  • arranging an extra/longer SHN meeting one Tuesday evening to discuss our response to climate change and develop ideas

Sparkenhoe Primary School:

Sharmen Rahman, a parent governor at Sparkenhoe school reported on plans to make the school into an academy. It was felt that the initial consultation did not give parents adequate information and following an appeal a further consultation was held, with more information available in local community languages. Sharmen is concerned that many parents still remain unaware of the implications of the school becoming an academy. The change to academy status is going ahead however.

Any Other Business:

  • There will be an event in Onslow Park on Sunday 28th April to celebrate the erection of the anti-litter notices designed with the help of local children.
  • There will be a Kites not Drones event on Sunday March 24th 12 noon -2pm Leicester, Victoria Park near Queens Road to celebrate the Persian New Year (Nao Roz) with the local Afghan Community. Penny has further details.

Date of next meeting:

Tuesday 9 April 2019  at 7pm at the African Caribbean Centre, Maidstone Road, Leicester.  As usual, it is requested that those attending arrive on time.


Notes from the meeting held on Tuesday 12 February 2019


Alan Fox, Andrew Thirlby, Penny Walker, Dilip Chauhan, Alison Cottam, Woody, Roo Peake, John O’Driscoll, Kate Sullivan, Hilary Browne, Guy Simmons, John Lyttle (Project Manager Priestroyd Construction), Jonathan Catt (Assistant Project Manager Priestroyd Construction),Stephen Shenton, Jo Plews (Customer Relationship Coordinator, Eurovia)


Maggie Ash, Julie Byron, Jo Webb

1 St Albans Road:

John Lyttle apologised for the disruption caused by the building work recently. This was due to extra work being necessary when laying the foundations. Swift boxes will be placed on the building when it is completed.

London Road Improvement Works:

Joanne Plews gave details of the work that has taken place at the junction of Prebend Street in connection with the London Road Highway Improvement Scheme. The temporary closure of Highfield Street and roads further up the hill has been delayed. Weekly updates are available on the progress of the scheme.

The company carrying out the work, Eurovia, is keen to help with community events through providing funding, equipment, volunteers etc. Joanne can be contacted for further information.


Roo can arrange DBS checks for SHN members. (See minutes for January 2019). Penny has applied for Ward funding for first aid training. She is considering arranging a 4-hour course for up to 12 people.

News and updates:

  • There was a power cut in St Albans Road and part of Churchill Street on Wednesday night.
  • The lamp post that had been removed in Welland Street has been replaced by a new light.
  • University Community Liaison Meeting: Penny and Alan attended and gave a presentation about SHN. Students are trying to set up a landlord accreditation scheme.
  • Foundations for the new bench and bins have been laid in Onslow Park
  • Commencement of work on Prebend Gardens has been delayed until March and is not expected to be completed until May.
  • Comedy Festival: Roo will get in touch with members to organise a social evening attending a Comedy Festival event.


The liaison group (consisting of representatives from MKA, SHN and ERNA) is applying for Ward funding to improve the toilet facilities at the Dashwood Road building. The extent to which SHN should be actively involved in supporting this was discussed and it was decided by a show of hands that SHN would not be further involved in fund raising for MKA.

Forthcoming Ward meeting:

Alan, Penny and Dilip will attend the meeting on Wednesday 6 March. If was decided that if the Council would like to make more money available to SHN, it could be used for environmental concerns and/or the events in Prebend Gardens.

Climate Change:

Opportunity was given for people to express their feelings about climate change and begin to suggest a local response. This will be discussed in more depth at a future meeting.

Any Other Business:

A workshop will take place on the topic of Identity and Mental Health on Sunday 17 February between 11am and 1.30pm at Tesco Community Space, Beaumont Leys.

Date of next meeting:

Tuesday 12 March 2019  at 7pm at the African Caribbean Centre, Maidstone Road, Leicester.  As usual, it is requested that those attending arrive on time.


Notes from the meeting held on Tuesday 8 January 2019


Alan Fox, Andrew Thirlby, Penny Walker, Julie Byron, Dilip Chauhan, Alison Cottam, Woody, Maggie Ash, Roo Peake, John O’Driscoll, Kate Sullivan, Hilary Browne, Guy Simmons, Anita O’Riley, John Lyttle (Project Manager Priestroyd Construction), Jonathan Catt (Assistant Project Manager Priestroyd Construction)


Brian Stevenson, Chris Mitchell, Stephen Shenton

1 St Albans Road:

John Lyttle and Jonathan Catt attended the meeting to provide information and answer questions about the building work at 1 St Albans Road. Foundations are currently being laid and work is expected to be completed in October/November. The facade of the building will be removed and then restored to its original Victorian design. Developers are conscious of the inconvenience building work may cause to neighbours and as a goodwill gesture are happy to help SHN with projects such as placing the swift boxes (see December 2018 minutes) and provision of skips for rubbish collection.

Update on Labour Councillors:

Kirk Master and Aminur Thalukdar will stand as councillors for Stoneygate Ward in the May elections. Lucy Chaplin will continue until May but the female labour candidate for the May election will be Sharmin Rahman, who lives in Stoneygate. Lucy was very grateful for the card and flowers sent by SHN to express our appreciation for her.

National HMO Lobby:

Woody suggested SHN support this group, which proposes sustainable communities and opposes concentrations of houses in multiple occupation. It was decided to consider this in more detail at a future SHN meeting.

Update on Onslow Park:

A meeting was held with Jane Ashwell and decisions have been made concerning the siting of the new benches and bins. A request was made for grass seed to be put down on bare areas of soil. Litter pickers are needed for the week commencing 20th January.

Prebend Gardens:

Work to refurbish the park will take place from January to April. The park will be closed during that time. Funding has been applied for from the Active Communities Grant. If successful, this will amount to over £5000 to be spent over the year. Friends of Prebend Gardens are proposing:

  • a monthly tidy up of the area, including care of the plants and rubbish removal
  • a quarterly Family Nature Watch with Leicestershire Wildlife Trust
  • monitoring of the regeneration of the area with regard to wildlife. Information will be posted on the website.
  • Information boards about wildlife to be placed in the park.
  • the performance area to be used for an opening ceremony for the refurbished park as well as poetry, drama, yoga and music events. It could also be the starting point for local history tours.
  • to involve local organisations such as the Dawn Centre, Sound Cafe, Friends of the Earth, Leicestershire Wildlife Trust and the African Caribbean Centre.

Urban Wildlife Page:

It was suggested that an urban wildlife page could feature on the SHN website covering the whole of our area. All members will be invited to contribute articles to this.

Safeguarding policy and DBS checks:

Our current safeguarding policy was considered to be satisfactory. It was proposed that it should be reviewed, along with other SHN policies, at our AGM each year. It would be good practice to have several members who are DBS checked. Roo will investigate this. It would also be helpful to have trained first aiders at SHN events. Penny will make enquiries about first aid/resuscitation courses and also check the contents of our first aid box.

Forthcoming meetings:

Alan and Penny will attend the Leicester University Community Liaison Meeting on 14 January. They will describe the role of SHN in the community.

Proposed Social Events:

  • Treasure hunts: Andrew will organise a treasure hunt using photos of local features and will place them on the website. It was suggested QR codes could be used to open the treasure hunt to a wider audience.
  • Hilary plans to organise a more traditional treasure hunt around the area when the weather gets warmer.

Prizes will be offered to the winners of each of these events, subject to funds being available.

  • Roo may organise an evening at the Leicester Comedy Festival in February.

Applications for Ward Funding:

There is over £9000 of ward funding available. Applications for money to finance events in Prebend Gardens and the 2019 street party will be submitted. The next Ward meeting is on Wednesday March 6th at St.Philips.

Tidier Streets:

  • SHN is now registered with Keep Britain Tidy. In conjunction with this Andrew plans to revitalise the Love Where We Live initiative.
  • The tiny garden in St Albans Road has been weeded recently. It was suggested a plaque could be placed there identifying it as a SHN project. Money given in memory of Brian Kernan could be used.
  • Roo has applied for a £2000 grant from Everards Brewery for Tidier Streets.

Any Other Business:

  • Lighting in Welland and Avon Street: 2 lamp posts have been removed recently, reducing the lighting in these streets. Alan will contact the Highways Dept to query this.
  • Climate change: Guy suggested a discussion about how SHN can be involved with tackling climate change. It was agreed that this should be a topic for a future meeting.
  • Badges: Dilip suggested that children who get involved in helping keep streets tidy should be rewarded with a badge.
  • 20 mile per hour speed limit: Notices about the consultation process have appeared on lamp posts in the streets where it will be introduced.

Date of next meeting:

Tuesday 12 February 2019  at 7pm at the African Caribbean Centre, Maidstone Road, Leicester.  As usual, it is requested that those attending arrive on time.


Notes from the meeting held on Tuesday 11 December 2018


Alan Fox, Andrew Thirlby, Penny Walker, Julie Byron, Dilip Chauhan, Alison Cottam, Woody, Maggie Ash


Kate Sullivan, Anita O’Riley, police

Police Report and crime issues:

  • Crime statistics for Stoneygate Ward for the period 9/11/18 – 9/12/18 were as follows: 8 burglaries, 2 robberies and 20 vehicle-related crimes. The reduction in burglaries and robberies reflects the effectiveness of recent police operations. The number of vehicle crimes is high and will be a focus of further work.
  • Thieves are now able to break into cars by intercepting the signals from car key fobs.
  • A request was made for pairs of trainers hanging from telephone wires to be removed. The police have passed this issue on to the City Council.
  • Penny contacted the Community Safety team concerning alley gates that need to be secured. Funding is no longer available for this. (It costs around £700 to fit a new gate.) It may be possible to get ward funding but individuals in the properties concerned would need to contact the council themselves.

Swift Boxes

Friends of the Earth is concerned about the decline in the swift population and is promoting the installation of swift nesting boxes. The boxes need to be placed high up under the eaves of houses. Several people have expressed an interest in having a box but fitting them would be a problem as it would require a tower scaffold or cherry picker. Penny will investigate the possibility of hiring a cherry picker.

Appreciating Lucy:

A card was signed and a collection for flowers was taken to express our appreciation for Councillor Lucy Chaplin. Lucy has been excellent at keeping us informed on local issues and supporting SHN and the local community.


Onslow Park

  • The gate that was vandalised has been replaced.
  • Jane Ashwell and Penny will be meeting in the park on 20th December at 10.00 to discuss placement of another bench, extra bins and the signs designed by local children and Linda Harding encouraging users to keep the park tidy. Anyone who would like to join Penny and Jane at the meeting would be welcome.

Prebend Gardens:

  • Plans for refurbishment were on display at the meeting and met with approval. New facilities will include a performance space, exercise equipment and children’s balance bar.
  • Work begins in January 2019 and should be completed by April.

Cedar Road Park

  • Money may be available for the refurbishment of Cedar Road Park. This could

include incorporating the former “Sacred Space” area into the park.

Events Feedback:

  • SHN Quiz Night:
    • This was enjoyed and appreciated by those who attended. It was suggested that changing the date to a post-Christmas month and using a different venue (The African Caribbean Centre or MKA) might encourage more people to come along.
  • Stoneygate Ward Meeting:
    • Attendance by local residents at the meeting was low.
    • Darren Evans, the City Warden for the area has been visiting local takeaways to monitor compliance with regulations concerning waste disposal. Where premises have not had adequate facilities they have been ordered to take action. Work to encourage people to keep their bins off the streets has continued.
    • The police will take down remaining notices concerning a serious assault in Cedar Road Park which occurred some months ago.
    • Some of the front walls of properties on Evington Road will be repaired.

Tidier Streets:

Registering as Litter Heroes with Keep Britain Tidy can give access to advice and assistance with promoting tidier streets. Andrew will investigate this. Further discussion on how we can encourage people to keep the area clean and tidy will be planned for March/April.

Any Other Business:

  • Room Hire: SHN has committed to using the African Caribbean Centre for meetings over the next 6 months.
  • 1 St Albans Road: Further revisions have been made to the plans for student accommodation. This includes the addition of a common room. Work has already begun on the building.
  • Multi Occupancy Housing: Concern was expressed at the amount of multi occupancy housing being developed in Highfields at the expense of family housing. Policy changes within the Local Area Plan would need to be made if this issue is to be addressed effectively.

Date of next meeting:

Tuesday 8 January 2019  at 7pm at the African Caribbean Centre, Maidstone Road, Leicester.  As usual, it is requested that those attending arrive on time.


Notes from the meeting held on Tuesday 13 November 2018


Alan Fox, Kate Sullivan, Roo Peake, John, Andrew Thirlby, Penny Walker, Julie Byron, Dilip Chauhan, Alison Cottam, Woody, Anita O’Reilly


Maggie Ash, Cllr Aminur Thalukdar, Cllr Kirk Master, Police

Police Report:

  • Crime statistics for Stoneygate Ward for the period 12/10/18-12/11/18 were as follows: 23 burglaries, 8 robberies and 17 vehicle-related crimes. The majority of offences took place in Stoneygate and Evington rather than in Highfields. An increased number of incidents are expected at this time of year. The police are responding with Operation Cape, involving patrols and proactive work.
  • A request was made for pairs of trainers hanging from telephone wires to be removed. They are a sign of gang activity in the area. Penny will pass on this request to the police.


  • Onslow Park: The gates separating two areas of the park have been vandalised and the council has removed them. Help with litter picking was requested for a period when Penny will be unable to do it. Alan and Alison are able to help.

A resident of Evington Road has been having problems with people climbing over the wall in the park where a section of fence is missing and stealing garden equipment. He has also requested a secure entry gate between 60 and 62 Skipworth Street. Penny will contact the Council, Cllr Lucy Chaplin and the police about this. Alison will write to the individual concerned and request him to report thefts to the police.

  • Prebend Gardens: Adrian Edge has informed Penny that plans for refurbishing Prebend Gardens have been drawn up. It is not known when they will be available for members of the public to see.

Future Events:

  • SHN Quiz Night: This will be on Saturday December 1st at 7pm at St Peter’s Community Centre. Light refreshments will be available at a small charge. Contributions for a raffle would be welcomed.
  • Stoneygate Ward Meeting: This will be at Sparkenhoe School. Woody and Alan will attend.

Our Local Councillors:

Roo attended a recent Labour Party meeting at which councillors were shortlisted for re-election. Kirk Master and Aminur Thakuldar have been shortlisted. Lucy was not shortlisted at this meeting but there will be a further meeting in January 2019. Roo expressed her appreciation for Lucy’s work at the Labour Party meeting. It was agreed that South Highfields Neighbours would want to support Lucy should she wish to continue as a councillor for Stoneygate Ward.


  • Leicester in Bloom: Dilip attended the award ceremony on behalf of SHN and was presented with a certificate recognising SHN’s contribution to Leicester in Bloom. A copy of the certificate has now been posted on our website.
  • Hanging baskets: Several people are on the waiting list for hanging baskets. Roo will be arranging for the baskets to be given out in the spring. An application for Ward funding may be made to cover ongoing costs of the scheme.
  • Tidier Streets: Andrew suggested we focus on a specific street to encourage people to take pride in their area, put their wheelie bins away and avoid dropping litter and fly tipping. Leafleting and speaking to residents has previously resulted in a temporary improvement in St Albans Road. It was suggested that Ward funds could be used for publicity and education leaflets and that Bartholomew Street might be a good road to target. Alan will liaise with City Warden Darren Evans. Andrew will investigate the advantages of our joining the Keep Britain Tidy organisation. Tidier streets will be discussed in more detail at the next SHN meeting.

Any Other Business:

  • Andrew was thanked for the local history information he has been contributing to the SHN website.
  • It was suggested by Andrew and agreed by those present that we continue to meet at the African Caribbean Centre and confirm our booking for the next 6 meetings.

Date of next meeting:

Tuesday 11 December 2018  at 7pm at the African Caribbean Centre, Maidstone Road, Leicester.  As usual, it is requested that those attending arrive on time.


Notes from the meeting held on Tuesday 9 October 2018


Alan Fox, Kate Sullivan, Roo Peake, Andrew Thirlby, Penny Walker, Julie Byron, Dilip Chauhan, Alison Cottam, Naomi Ebulubu, Chelsea


Brian Stevenson, Woody, Maggie Ash

Annual General Meeting

Minutes of AGM 2017:

These were read and approved.

Annual Report:

Thanks were extended to Penny for producing the report, which detailed a busy year for SHN. Members were thanked for their contribution, enabling events, projects, partnerships and participation in local matters to take place.

Treasurer’s Report:

Details of SHN accounts were read and approved. Julie was thanked for her hard work as treasurer. It was noted that money given in memory of Brian Kernan has not yet been spent. The refurbishment of Prebend Gardens and Cedar Road Park may provide opportunities for this.

Election of Officers:

Chair: The responsibility for chairing meetings will continue to be shared among members. Alan Fox will continue to act as nominal chair for administration purposes. Penny will organise the rota of members to chair over the next 6 months.

Deputy Chair: Andrew Thirlby (proposed by Dilip, seconded by Kate)

Secretary/Membership Secretary: Penny Walker (proposed by Roo, seconded by Alison)

Treasurer: Julie Byron (proposed by Penny, seconded by Kate)

Alison will continue as Minutes Secretary and Andrew will continue to maintain and develop the website.

Membership Fees:

Various options were discussed. It was decided to keep the membership fee at £5 per year (£2.50 for unwaged etc)

The AGM was followed by the regular monthly meeting.

Feedback on events and meetings:

Dashwood Street Party:

Around 150 people attended this event. Support from SHN was appreciated.

Everybody’s Reading:

This poetry-writing event was appreciated by the homeless community. A variety of people attended the event. Penny was thanked for organising it.

University Fairs:
Alan, Penny and Maggie attended two of these to publicise SHN and two students (Naomi and Chelsea – see note below) attended this evening’s meeting as a result.


Leicester University students Naomi and Chelsea were welcomed to the meeting. Working with SHN to organise events and community participation opportunities for the local student population was discussed. They will bring ideas to the next meeting.

1 St Albans Road:

Work will commence later this month on the conversion of the old Lloyds Bank site into student accommodation. An archaeological survey has already been carried out. It was acknowledged that the work is likely to cause some disruption. The developers and builders would be happy to meet with local people to discuss concerns. It is anticipated that the building will be completed for the new academic year in October 2019.

Quiz Night:

Penny and Maggie will organise the Annual SHN Quiz Night. It will be held at St Peter’s Community Centre on Saturday 1 December.

Ideas for Tidier Streets:

Andrew suggested we focus on an area of 5 or 6 streets to encourage a culture of keeping the area tidy. This has apparently been successful in other cities. The topic will be discussed further at the next meeting.


  • We have been invited to the awards ceremony for Leicester in Bloom on Friday 26 October. Dilip will attend.
  • Alan and Alison will litter pick in Onslow Park during half term week.
  • Caribbean Court Day Care Centre is holding a series of events this week (8 – 12 October) which are open to the public.

Date of next meeting:

Tuesday 13 November 2018  at 7pm at the African Caribbean Centre, Maidstone Road, Leicester.  As usual, it is requested that those attending arrive on time.


Notes from meeting held on Tuesday 11 September 2018


Maggie Ash, Kate Sullivan, Alan Fox, Andrew Thirlby, Stephen Shenton, Penny Walker, Alison Cottam, Woody, Julie Byron, PCSO Jordan Brown, PCSO Sam Trantom


Roo Peake, Brian Stevenson, Hilary Browne

Police Report:

  • Between 11 August and 11 September there have been 8 burglaries, 2 robberies and 7 crimes involving vehicles.
  • Police patrols in the area have been increased because of Jewish New Year.
  • Following a serious assault in Cedar Road Park in August, arrests have been made and a suspect charged. There was a request at the Ward Meeting for notices relating to the incident to be taken down now. This is awaiting a decision from the Major Crime Unit.

Feedback on Events and Meetings:

  • Drayton Manor Trip: This was an enjoyable day out.
  • Street Party: This was another successful event, attended by several hundred people. The new venue was felt to be an improvement. Vouchers issued by Casba Cafe for volunteers to have lunch were appreciated.
  • Onslow Park Art Workshop: This was well attended by children using the park. Linda Harding has been able to use their efforts to produce artwork for signs encouraging people to look after the area. The youth club budget will pay for the art workshop with the litter signs, a new bench and 2 extra litter bins hopefully coming from a ward grant.

Andrew requested reports from the above events for the SHN website.

  • Stoneygate Ward Meeting: Reports were given by senior police officers working in the area. Results from the air monitoring carried out on Conduit Street by SHN suggested that levels of Nitrogen Oxide (NOx) were surprisingly low. Matthew Mace from the City Council reported that throughout the city there are currently only 3 areas where NOx pollution exceeds legal limits. London Road has low levels of NOx because wind tends to disperse the air pollutants. (Woody also reported that the number of taxi drivers around the station who leave their engines idling when stationary has reduced significantly.) The City Council has been working to reduce emissions from buses and aims for all buses in the city to have low emissions by 2020.

It is anticipated that work will be planned to improve the area around Cedar Road Park.

  • University Liaison Meeting: There will be a Returners Event organised by the university on 3 October for students returning to Leicester for a second or subsequent year. This is aimed at helping students to be considerate members of the community and may help to reduce problems such as wheelie bins being left on the streets.

There will be a Volunteers Fair on 25 September to encourage students to volunteer in the local community.

At the University Liaison Meeting in January 2019 there will be an opportunity for community groups from the area to make presentations. SHN plans to attend each of these meetings/events to promote our organisation and encourage student involvement.

  • Friends of Clarendon Park: FCP organised a meeting of local community groups to share information and ideas. It was suggested that in future some joint meetings on common issues would be useful. Friends of Clarendon Park will set up a closed Facebook page to facilitate communication between groups. SHN will be able to advertise at events such as Art House.
  • Planning Committee: Following modifications to the original design, planning permission has been granted for the former Lloyds Bank Building at 1 St Albans Road to be developed into student accommodation.
  • Eid Celebration: This was organised by the Muslim Welfare Association at St Peter’s Community Centre. Woody attended.

Highfields in Bloom and tidier streets:

Judging for this year’s Britain in Bloom has taken place and the outcome will be known soon. Some winter hanging baskets are being purchased for residents who requested them. Discussion of ideas for tidier streets around Highfields was postponed due to lack of time.

Future Events:

  • Dashwood Road Fun Day: Saturday 29 October. This is a joint venture between MKA, ERNA and SHN. Volunteers were requested. SHN Street Party equipment will be made available.
  • Everybody’s Reading: A poetry workshop will take place on 6 October at the African Caribbean Centre. It will be led by Lydia Towsey. Homeless people and sofa-surfers will be particularly welcome.

Academy Plans for Local Primary Schools:

Public meetings will be held at Sparkenhoe Primary School on Friday 21 September at 8.30am and at Medway Community Primary School on Friday 28 September at 2.30 pm.

End of the Road Campaign:

A demonstration is planned for Thursday 4 October. It was decided that SHN will not support the campaign as an organisation but that individuals are welcome to do so if they wish.

Venue for future meetings:

It was decided to hold future SHN meetings at the African Caribbean Centre (corner of Maidstone Road and Sparkenhoe Street). Appreciation will be expressed to MKA for their offer to help fund meetings at the former MKA building on Connaught Street. Gary Freestone will be thanked for the use of the Dawn Centre over the past few months.

Notice of AGM:

This will be held at our next meeting on Tuesday 9 October. It will be advertised on the SHN noticeboards and website.

Date of next meeting:

Tuesday 9 October 2018  at 7pm at the African Caribbean Centre, Maidstone Road, Leicester.  As usual, it is requested that those attending arrive on time.


Notes from meeting held on Tuesday 10 July 2018


Penny Walker, Sam Raddy, Roo Peake, Alison Cottam, Julie Byron, Zina Zelter, James Peel, PCSO Jordan Brown


Woody, Andrew Thirlby, Kate Sullivan, Alan Fox, Serge Mozota, Maggie Ash, Hilary Browne, Cllr Lucy Chaplin, Dilip Chauhan

Police Report:

Crime statistics for the ward for the past 28 days show a marked reduction from the previous month:

Burglaries                   7 June/July                  14 May/June

Robberies                   4 June/July                    8 May/June

Vehicle Crime              2 June/July                  11 May/June

There has been a recent successful drugs raid on a house in Stoughton Street South and some issues on St Peter’s Road have been addressed.

New Road:

Zina Zelta outlined the proposals for the new road scheme which will link the Aylestone and Welford Roads with the aim of improving traffic flow across the city. However it is likely to increase congestion at the Mayfield Road roundabout as well as air pollution and environmental damage to Aylestone Meadows. She stated that building new roads has not been shown to be effective in improving traffic flow, but rather encourages more people to drive. SHN has been invited to join a coalition opposing the building of the road. This would involve responding to the planning proposal when it is put forward and requesting local councillors to object to the scheme at the meeting on 4th October when the Local Plan will be discussed.

As attendance at the July meeting was low, it was decided to postpone a decision on SHN’s involvement until a future meeting.

Feedback :

  • Onslow Park Games Event on Sunday 8th July. This was very successful. Local children enjoyed skipping games, refreshments and opportunities for reading, drawing and colouring. Books and individual skipping ropes were given away at the end of the afternoon. Penny has submitted funding applications for an extra bench and the mounting of the signs (to be made by the children) requesting park users to keep the area tidy. Linda Harding will be leading a workshop in the park on Wednesday 15th August to design the signs. More litter bins are needed in Onslow Park. Penny will apply for funding for these.
  • Highfields in Bloom. Several hanging baskets are up in local streets and are looking attractive. Penny will contact Gary at the Dawn Centre to see if they need all of the funds they have been allocated – if not, the money can be used for baskets as Roo has received further requests.
  • Leicester City Council meeting with voluntary organisations: The Council has appointed a new member of staff to work with the voluntary sector and a series of meetings are being held to develop strategies for working together. Roo and Alan attended on behalf of SHN.

Forthcoming events:

  • Planning Committee: Alan will attend this meeting on 18th July when the planning application for 1 St Albans Road will be discussed
  • Trip to Drayton Manor on 21st July: Around 30 people have currently booked to go on the trip.
  • Eid Celebration on 29th July: Leicester Muslim Welfare Association has invited us to attend an event at St Peter’s Community Centre.
  • Highfields Street Party on Saturday 11th August: Volunteers will be needed to deliver flyers. Posters will be going up soon on SHN notice boards. £300 has been obtained from Leicester City Council for some bike-focused activities – smoothies etc. Alison will host a “bunting party” to start work on refurbishing the bunting.
  • Dashwood Street Party on 25th August: Plans for this have not been finalised.
  • Ward Meeting on 30th August: Penny will email details to members when available.
  • Leicester University Community Liaison Meeting: This will take place on 24th September.
  • Winter Children’s Party: This has been cancelled.

Any other business:

  • It was decided not to hold an SHN meeting in August.
  • Roo would like to find a new home for the tubs of holly bushes, which are not thriving in Biddulph Avenue.
  • SHN will be asked to comment on the Homelessness Charter at some point.
  • People will be asked to bring ideas to the next meeting about making our streets tidier

Date of next meeting:

Tuesday 14 September 2018  at 7pm at the Dawn Centre, Conduit Street, Leicester.  As usual, it is requested that those attending arrive on time.



Notes from meeting held on Tuesday 12 June 2018


Andrew Thirlby, Penny Walker, Alison Cottam, Woody, Maggie Ash, Alan Fox, Jim Tolton, Julie Byron, Gary Freestone, Dilip Chauhan, Lucy Chaplin


Anita O’Reilly, Cllr Aminur Thalukdar, Brian Stevenson, Kate Sullivan, Hilary Browne

Air Pollution:

  • A monitor has been installed outside the Dawn Centre to measure the level of air pollution in the area where the taxis park.
  • Sir Peter Soulsby has outlined a proposal to move the entrance to the railway station to Station Street. The Dawn Centre would support this as it would mean that the taxis would no longer park in Conduit Street.
  • The City Council is continuing to licence older taxis, despite the higher levels of toxic emissions from these vehicles.
  • Alan will be writing to the Chair of Licensing, Railtrack and the City Council to express our concern over air pollution in the area of the station and the Dawn Centre.

Prebend Gardens:

  • There has been a good response to the setting up of Friends of Prebend Gardens. Two productive meetings have already been held and volunteers are litter picking regularly. Meetings will be held at the Dawn Centre so that residents can be included. Adrian Edge is drawing up plans for the development of the park and will also be invited.
  • Alan will ask a question at a Council meeting on 14th June concerning the lack of consultation before trees were felled in the park. Lucy will be questioning the lack of response to her concerns.

Everybody’s Reading:

Funding has been provided for this. The event will be held from 2-4pm on 6th Oct at the African Caribbean Centre. Residents from the Dawn Centre will be involved.

Highfields in Bloom:

  • 10 hanging baskets have been requested by local residents and will be going up in the next few days.
  • Two 40m hosepipes have been bought to water the plants in Biddulph Avenue.
  • A small plot in St Albans Road has been cleared and planted with flowers and shrubs.
  • Gary has received £400 for tools and planting around the Dawn Centre. Residents of the centre will be involved in this.

20 mph speed limit:

This is being proposed by the City Council and would be supported by SHN. If enforced it will apply to St Stephens Road and all side roads in the SHN area.

New Road Scheme:

There are proposals for a road widening scheme along Putney Road to improve travel between Aylestone Road and Welford Road. There are concerns that this will bring more traffic along Victoria Park Road and possibly through Highfields via the Mayfield Road roundabout. Environmentalist Zena Zelter will be invited to the next SHN meeting to give further details.

MKA/ERNA/SHN Street Party:

This will be held in Dashwood Road on Saturday 25th August. We will be lending equipment such as the buzzer game and possibly gazebos.

Street Party:

The SHN street party will be held at the St Stephens Road end of Upper Tichborne Street this year. Alison has offered to refurbish the bunting and would welcome some help with this.

Onslow Park:

  • There is about £200 of ward funding remaining for events in the park. Penny is organising a games event from 3-5pm on Sunday 8th July. Some skipping ropes will be bought for this.
  • It has been suggested that the large planters be removed as anything planted there is trampled. A football area may make better use of the space. There have been requests for more benches in the park. Penny will apply for ward funding. It was suggested that boards requesting people not to drop litter could be designed by the children. Money from ward funds could be used to mount the images and display them in the park.
  • Litter picking volunteers are needed for the times Penny is away over the summer. She will email details to those willing to help.

Coach Trip to Drayton Manor:

This will take place on Saturday 21st July. Posters advertising the trip were distributed.

Local Primary Schools Academy Trust:

This will be going to public consultation in the near future.

University Community Liaison Meeting:

Alan attended this on behalf of SHN. The next meeting is in September.

Revised plans for 1 St Albans Road:

Developers have submitted revised plans for the former Lloyds Bank building to be converted into 5-storey student accommodation. Alan will submit an objection from SHN. Members were encouraged to send individual objections as well.

Date of next meeting:

Tuesday 10 July 2018  at 7pm at the Dawn Centre, Conduit Street, Leicester.  As usual, it is requested that those attending arrive on time.


Notes from meeting held on Tuesday 8 May 2018


Andrew Thirlby, Penny Walker, Alison Cottam, Woody, Maggie Ash, Piotr Kuhiwczak, Alan Fox, Jim Tolton, Roo Peake, Julie Byron, Pat Pitman, Lesley Finch, Serge Mozota, Brian Stevenson


Dilip Chauhan, Kate Sullivan, Gary Freestone, Hilary Browne

Honoured Citizen Award:

Maggie, Woody and Roo attended a meeting with the Lord Mayor and Councillor Kirk Master to receive an Honoured Citizen Award on behalf of SHN. Dilip Chauhan and ERNA also received an award.

Strategic Growth Review:

Concerns were raised over proposals in the review, particularly relating to new housing being built on the outskirts of Leicester rather than on brownfield sites within the city. Members were encouraged to sign letters outlining objections and these will be delivered to the City Council before the closing date (10th May).

Data Protection:

In line with new data protection laws, Penny is contacting members for their permission to hold personal information such as addresses in SHN records.

Street Party:

This will be held on Saturday 11th August. A coach trip to Drayton Manor has been booked for Saturday 28th July. This will be advertised on a flyer along with the street party.

Street Party for the Royal Wedding:

St Peter’s Community Centre will be holding a street party to celebrate the royal wedding on Saturday 19th May. SHN will lend them the buzzer game.

SHN website:

Andrew was thanked for his work on the website, which now includes a local history feature. Everyone is encouraged to sign up to the website to receive automatic notifications of updates and new postings.

Details of the website will be added to the street party/trip flyer.

Taxi fumes update:

  • Alan will be writing to Network Rail and the City Council concerning pollution from taxi fumes around Conduit Street and the station. He will also send a letter to the RMT.
  • Penny has contacted the police re warning notices to discourage drivers from leaving engines idling. The police have advised her to contact the Highways Dept. Robert Bateman from Highways has suggested a meeting with Gary Freestone from the Dawn Centre. It was noted that in Liverpool and parts of London, traffic wardens are now fining people who leave their engines running while stationary.
  • Maggie has ordered an air pollution monitoring kit via Friends of the Earth. It was suggested that this should be placed at the Dawn Centre.

Environment £1000 Update:

A hosepipe has been purchased and the baskets in Biddulph Avenue have been replanted. Alan and Maggie will clear and plant a small area in St Albans Road. Penny will contact Gary re some planting around the Dawn Centre to be carried out by residents. Flyers advertising hanging baskets will be available shortly and will be distributed in Gotham Street and Bartholomew Street.

Prebend Gardens:

Many people have complained to the Council about the felling of a substantial number of trees in Prebend Gardens. The trees were cut down without consulting local people. A meeting will be held on 16th May and SHN members are encouraged to attend. Development of the park was discussed as there is money available for this. Suggestions included the provision of gym equipment, wi-fi and an art space. At the consultation meeting there will be the opportunity to sign up for a Friends of Prebend Gardens group.

The group would help with ongoing maintenance of the park.

Everybody’s Reading:

This will take place on 6th October and is being planned with the Dawn Centre. Poet and performer Lydia Towsey has been asked to lead a workshop to write uplifting poetry. It is hoped that homeless and vulnerably housed individuals will be made particularly welcome at the event. There will be free refreshments, notebooks and pens.

Local Primary Schools Academy Trust:

There are proposals to form a Multi Schools Academy Trust comprising Medway, Sparkenhoe, Shenton and Highfields Primary schools as well as Uplands Infant School. Penny will see if Jo Webb or Lee Jowett, are able to come to the next SHN meeting to give more details.

Any Other Business:

Alan has been investigating the hole that was drilled in St Albans Road on 15th April and subsequently abandoned. With great difficulty he has eventually been able to contact the Highways Department. The hole has been drilled by gas workers carrying out repairs but the sink hole beneath was thought to be the responsibility of Severn Trent Water. Severn Trent Water has disputed this. The hole will be filled in by the City Council tomorrow!

Date of next meeting:

Tuesday 12 June 2018  at 7pm at the Dawn Centre, Conduit Street, Leicester.  As usual, it is requested that those attending arrive on time.


Notes from meeting held on Tuesday 10 April 2018


Maggie Ash, Alan Fox, Andrew Thirlby, Roo Peake, Julie Byron, Piotr Kuhiwczak, Jim Tolton, Alison Cottam, Penny Walker, Korin Grant, Chris Williams (Green Party/Friends of the Earth), Gary Freestone (Dawn Centre Manager)


Kate Sullivan, Woody, Hilary Browne

Pollution from diesel vehicles:

Concerns have been raised about local air pollution caused by diesel vehicles, particularly when vehicles are left standing with engines running.

Gary Freestone reported that the issue has been a concern at the Dawn Centre for several years due to taxis parking on Conduit Street. The council, which licenses the taxis, agreed to find alternative parking for them in 2014 and double yellow lines were put down. However up to 20 cabs at any one time continue to park on Conduit Street and engines are frequently left running. Gary has spoken to the drivers but has found them uncooperative.

The problem in Conduit Street is exacerbated by the proximity to the railway and the use of diesel locomotives. Some residents of the Dawn Centre are in poor general health and have respiratory conditions. Gary is concerned that service users are expected to cope with a level of air pollution that would not be tolerated in a residential area. Requests for the City Council to monitor air pollution in Conduit Street have not been acted upon.

Chris Williams said that the Green Party supports the introduction of vehicles which run on LPG, (liquefied petroleum gas) which is a cleaner fuel. He also mentioned a report stating that Moat Community College, which is near to the Dawn Centre, is one of the most air-polluted school sites in the country.

Jim Tolton circulated a paper describing how cars contribute to air pollution, exacerbating climate change and damaging health. He noted that the problem with taxis and other diesel vehicles is an issue for residents throughout the Highfields area.

The police were unable to attend the meeting but confirmed that it is an offence to leave an engine running while the vehicle is stationary. They do not have the time or resources to enforce this by issuing fixed penalty fines. They can however contact local taxi firms to request that drivers are made aware of the law and do not leave engines idling.

In discussion it was noted that student flats are being built on two sites in Conduit Street. The problem of air pollution in the area could therefore be raised with the universities. The City Council licenses Leicester taxis and so is in a position to take action through the regulation of taxi emissions. East Midlands Trains/Network Rail could also help to resolve the situation by reducing the number of taxis permitted to pick up passengers from the station and finding better alternatives to diesel locomotives.


  • Penny will write to our councillors and ask them to put air pollution on the agenda for the next Stoneygate Ward Meeting. She will also request the Council to monitor air pollution in Conduit Street and the police to put up notices warning that leaving engines idling is illegal.
  • Alan will write to the RMT union, the City Council, Environmental Health, Network Rail and the police to highlight the problem and request action on reducing air pollution
  • It was also suggested that the Police and Crime Commissioners office could be contacted and that Leicester University could be asked to monitor air pollution in Conduit Street.

Leicester University Liaison Meeting:

Concern was raised that many properties in the area that could be used to house families are rented out for student accommodation. The university is building new blocks of student accommodation, which eases the pressure on family housing, but is also closing down some of its student flats.

Contact details were obtained for the Students Union Office. It is hoped that students might be willing to volunteer for events such as the Street Party.

Environment – hanging baskets, tubs and parks:

Leaflets and posters to advertise the hanging baskets will be available soon. Gary is keen to involve the Dawn Centre in some planting to improve the surrounding area.

Onslow Park: Penny suggested a summer event to ask the children which plants they would like to have in the park.

Prebend Gardens: The Council is making money available for improvements to Prebend Park. It is hoped this will encourage more people to use the park.


A Big Commonwealth Lunch was held at MKA, to which SHN members were invited. Woody attended.

Street Party:

News on funding is awaited. (12th April update: funding has been granted.)

Any other Business:

  • Roo requested that we have a SHN pay-as-you-go mobile so that personal contact numbers do not need to be put on the advertisements for hanging baskets, trips etc.
  • It is not known whether the application for 1 St Albans Road to be developed into student accommodation will be discussed at the next Planning Committee Meeting on April 23rd as the agenda is not yet available.

Date of next meeting:

Tuesday 8 May 2018  at 7pm at the African Caribbean Centre, Maidstone Road. As usual, it is requested that those attending arrive on time.


Notes from meeting held on Tuesday 13 March 2018


Julie Byron, Penny Walker, Dilip Chauhan, Sam Raddie, Roo Peake, PCSO Ranjit Sonegra, Jim Tolton, Alan Fox, Alison Cottam, Inis Santos, Kate Sullivan, Piotr Kuhiwczak, Hilary Browne, Anita O’Riley, Maggie Ash,


Cllrs Aminur Thakar and Lucy Chaplin, Andrew Thirlby, Woody


Following the recent deaths of two rough sleepers in the area, Piotr Kuhiwczak attended the meeting to talk about the problem of homelessness. Piotr works for the Red Cross Refugee Service in Leicester and is a trustee of One Roof. This charity uses 3 houses to provide accommodation for homeless people, works with faith groups to run a winter night shelter and also links people with families who can offer a room in their home.

Numbers of homeless people are greatly underestimated in official statistics. With about 4,000 people in Leicester whose immigration status is not stable, there are many who avoid coming to the attention of the authorities.

Piotr outlined the principal causes of homelessness:

  • Loss of income through redundancy leading to rent arrears and eviction
  • Family breakdown resulting in eviction
  • For E.U. nationals, loss of vital documents such as passports and ID cards
  • Addiction – a particularly difficult issue to address
  • Poor mental health, with inadequate support from mental health services
  • Lack of access to benefits etc (e.g. people who have overstayed their visas for reasons beyond their control)
  • People whose asylum application has failed yet do not have the documents to leave the UK
  • People “liberated” from gang masters in the agricultural sector, but for whom no alternative long term accommodation or work is provided
  • People unable to access public housing because they cannot pay rent or provide references
  • People unable to live on the amounts paid under the current benefits system

Addressing homelessness

Many individuals and organisations are working to alleviate homelessness, although there is a tendency to tackle the effects rather than the root causes of the problem.

It was suggested that SHN members could:

  • Volunteer with existing organisations supporting homeless people
  • Talk with the homeless people they meet to learn more about their situations
  • Write to the Council planning department to request more family housing in the area
  • Support a request for more Council staff to oversee Prebend Gardens, where previously Council staff have worked with people from the Dawn Centre
  • Approach NACCOM, the national association for organisations working with homeless people, for advice and information
  • Campaign for more housing, improved tenant security and better regulation of private landlords

Tesco money:

Leaflets will be distributed offering hanging baskets to local people. There will be a £5 charge to cover the initial set up cost. It was suggested the geraniums in Gotham Street could be replaced with hardy fuchsias. Further discussion is needed concerning a request for plants from students at Moat Community College.

Police Report:

There has been a significant reduction in burglaries in the ward over the past few weeks. A Neighbourhood Watch scheme set up recently in the ERNA area is bringing the local community together.

Diesel fumes:

Concern was raised over the number of drivers with diesel vehicles who leave their engines running whilst stationary. This is a particular problem with taxis in Conduit Street and Cedar Road. There will be further discussion of this health issue at the next meeting.

The building has been taken over by Leicester College and the cost of hiring a room for SHN meetings has greatly increased. It was decided to continue with the African Caribbean Centre as an alternative venue for at least the next 3 meetings.

Any Other Business:

Penny thanked everyone who visited the recent Art of Protest exhibition at the Adult Education College in Wellington Street.

Fly Kites Not Drones is an event to be held in Victoria Park (the area near the junction with Queens Road) on Saturday 24th March from 11.00 – 13.00.

It will be an opportunity to join in celebrations of the Afghan New Year, make and fly kites and also draw attention to the problems of using drones in war zones.

Date of next meeting:

Tuesday 10 April 2018  at 7pm at the African Caribbean Centre, Maidstone Road. As usual, it is requested that those attending arrive on time.


Notes from meeting held on Tuesday 13 February 2018 (meeting was held at St Peter’s Church Hall and not the MKA Centre)


Alan Bootle, Aasiya Bora, Denzil Brookes, Julie Byron, Cllr Lucy Chaplin, Harkesh Farma, Alan Fox, Serge Mozota, Anita O’Riley, Roo Peake, Kate Sullivan (in the Chair), Andrew Thirlby, PCSO Phillip Wandless, Woody Wood.


Maggie Ash, Hilary Browne, Alison Cottam, Penny Walker, Jo Webb.

Joint work with MKA and ERNA:

Roo and Woody reported back. There have been two meetings of the working group in the past month. Roo had helped MKA with two funding applications. Roo will continue on the group. Woody would like a replacement, so we need to find a willing volunteer. There have been problems with our regular booking at MKA Connaught Street. Leicester College have taken over the building. Possible venues for our regular meetings include St. Peter’s (£10 an hour), African Caribbean Centre (£4.10 an hour) and Trinity Life Church (Alan B to investigate). Alan F will organise a venue for the next meeting.

Police report:

The police reported that there were 7 burglaries and 6 thefts from vehicles in Stoneygate Ward in the past month. Areas of ongoing concern include Prebend Gardens, Gotham Street and Roslyn Street. Alan B reported on the two burglaries in Woodbine Avenue where the community is working together. It was asked if the alley gates could be made more secure. Lucy suggested that it could be possible to get a mobile CCTV camera. Anita raised the problems of the alley in Severn Street. Lucy said she would follow this up. PCSO Wandless said that there had been two successful police operations in St. Albans Road.

Planning application – 1 St. Albans Road:

Alan F has put in an objection in which our opposition was confirmed. Lucy said that, even at this stage, objections could be made through her. The Planning Committee is meeting on 20 February. There is a University Community Liaison meeting planned for 26 February, although this is likely to be rescheduled.

Highfields in Bloom:

Roo asked how we should spend the £1,000 from Tesco. Penny had written to suggest we start with replanting Gotham Street and Biddulph Avenue. Roo suggested bulbs in Onslow Park. Harkesh and Aasiya from Moat Community College said that they would like to deal with the overgrown area facing Sparkenhoe Street.

Street Festival and Trips:

Roo has put in a funding application to Stoneygate Ward. The Community Ward meeting is on 12 March. Roo is looking for more volunteers for the Street Party group. The excessive volume of the sound system was raised.


This is the suggested topic of our next meeting on 13 March. Lucy proposed that the Ward meeting also focus on homelessness. Some of the key people might be more likely to come to a Council-run meeting rather than a SHN meeting.

Date of next meeting:

Tuesday 13 March 2018 at 7pm, venue to be advised later.


Meeting Held On Tuesday 9th January 2018

Instead of the January SHN meeting, members attended an event organised by the Management Committee of the MKA Centre for All in Dashwood Road. Members of Evington Road Neighbourhood Association (ERNA) were also invited. Following a meal together there was a discussion about the use of the centre. Around £90,000 has been spent recently on improvements to the building and the committee are keen to see it more widely used by the local community. Suggestions included better advertising of the facilities (including a notice board outside) and Open Days so that local people can visit the centre, see what is available and offer their ideas for activities and events. It was also suggested that rooms could be hired to organisations such as Home-Start for playgroups etc. MKA would like to hold events twice yearly at which help could be given to homeless people.

A working group consisting of 2 members from MKA, SHN and ERNA will be set up to discuss ideas in more detail. The first meeting of the group will be on Monday 15th January.

Date of next meeting:

Our next regular monthly meeting will be held on Tuesday 13 February 2018  at 7pm at the MKA Centre.  As usual, it is requested that those attending arrive on time.


Notes from meeting held on Tuesday 12th December 2017


Maggie Ash, Kate Sullivan, Alan Fox, Alison Cottam, Julie Byron, , Cllr Lucy Chaplin, Roo Peake, Woody, Penny Walker, PCSO Phillip Wandless, Hilary Browne


Pravina Joshi, Andrew Thirlby, Serge Motoza

Police Report:

Over the last 28 days there have been 28 burglaries in the Stoneygate ward, 16 thefts of or from motor vehicles and 2 robberies. A recent focus on dealing with anti social behaviour in Upper Tichborne Street, St James Road and Evington Footway has reduced the number of incidents from 20 to 3.

Police have been checking off licences in the area to discourage proprietors from serving alcohol to people who are already drunk. They will also be working to identify shops which sell alcohol to underage drinkers.

People drinking on the streets have had their alcohol confiscated.

Feedback from recent meetings:

  • St James Road Patchwalk:

This was worthwhile, although only three local residents and the police attended. The problem of antisocial behaviour in the area is being addressed effectively. A CCTV camera has proved useful, although it will be removed at some point.

  • Local Plan meeting:

Contributions were made by Lucy and several residents suggesting:

  • a focus on developing family housing rather than allowing multiple occupancy tenancies
  • a moratorium on the number of takeaways and betting shops in the area
  • the development of a Good Neighbour scheme for shops encouraging owners to deal with issues such as the litter generated by their businesses
  • A similar scheme to encourage landlords to take responsibility for maintaining the area around their properties

It was noted that conservation policies were not being enforced unless issues were reported.

There will be a Consultation Meeting on 17th December to discuss the Local Plan in more detail.

  • Ward Meeting:
  • Fire safety in both council properties and privately rented accommodation has been a concern following the Grenfell Tower disaster. Properties above 8 storeys have been a priority but more needs to be done to check safety standards in lower rise housing. Lucy has met with the City Mayor and the Assistant Mayor with responsibility for housing to discuss concerns. The Chief Fire Officer will be contacted concerning the provision of fire safety information for residents.
  • Bids for ward funds are invited. It was suggested that funding for the Street Party should have priority status as a regular event and that we should bid for a larger amount of money for 2018.

Social Events:

  • Quiz Night on 2nd December

This was enjoyed by those who attended. Unfortunately numbers were small due to illness, other engagements etc.

  • SHN/ERNA/MKA Social:

Mumtaz Suleman, Vice chair of MKA, is keen to hold a social event to develop a good working relationship between the three organisations. It was suggested we hold a short meeting at the start of the event to discuss ways of moving forward, particularly with regard to the use of the Dashwood Road Centre. The possibility of employing a facilitator on a short term basis using ward funding could be considered. The meeting may be followed by a Bring and Share meal. ERNA and MKA will be contacted to discuss dates and the event may replace the January SHN meeting.

Street Party 2018:

Roo will organise the funding bid for this.

Tesco award:

Some of the money will be used to maintain the baskets and tubs in Biddulph Avenue. Discussion is ongoing concerning the use of the rest of the money and how best to get people committed to maintaining any planting that takes place.

Any Other Business:

  • Lucy has requested the development of the Cedar Road play area with better facilities for teenagers.
  • the former Mayfield Children’s Centre may be designated a Community Asset.
  • Lucy has requested a specific facility for homeless people with mental health problems as current provision is inadequate.
  • Lucy’s surgeries in 2018 will be held at the MKA Dashwood Road Centre and St Phillip’s Church.
  • The former Charles Frears campus on Holmfield Road may be developed by Leicester University as a facility for Postgraduate Business Studies. Lucy is pressing for the opportunity to include community use as part of the development plans. The university is keen to work with the local community and suggestions for volunteer work that could involve local students would be appreciated.
  • Mehmet at the Turkish cafe on Highfields Street will be providing a free lunch from 12.30-16.30 on Christmas Day for people who are homeless or on their own.

Date of next meeting:

Tuesday 9 January 2018. PLEASE NOTE: This may be a social event at the MKA Dashwood Road Centre. Details to be confirmed later.


Notes from meeting held on Tuesday 14th November 2017


Penny Walker, Woody, Dilip Chauhan, Jim Tolton, Julie Byron, Pravina and Tyreece Joshi, Alison Cottam, Steve Carr, Nataliya Smith


Cllr Lucy Chaplin, Andrew Thirlby, PCSO Phillip Wandless, Maggie Ash, Roo Peake, Kate Sullivan, Alan Fox

Police Report:

PCSO Philip Wandless sent a report in his absence. There will be a new officer to replace Sarah who is leaving the beat. Crime figures for whole of Stoneygate area : Burglary houses 14 (but not all had items stolen), burglary business 1, theft from vehicles 4, theft of vehicle 5 (3 cycles, 2 cars), robbery 4. Regarding anti-social behaviour in our area he wrote “Upper Tichborne Street, there have been a few calls coming in about Eastern European youths from the area causing ASB and also minor damage to some property. CCTV footage has been collected and the parents will be having a stern talking to about kids behaviour. “

Environmental Issues:

Britain in Bloom: We achieved a Level 3 – Advancing certificate for our Britain in Bloom entry. The work in Onlsow Park and Biddulph Avenue was particularly commended. We were awarded marks for community participation, environmental responsibility and gardening achievement.

Tesco award: Use of the £1000 award from Tesco was discussed. £160 will be used to replenish the planters in Biddulph Avenue. Using the remaining money for hanging baskets was discussed. It was suggested that people who request a hanging basket pay a £5 deposit to encourage a commitment to maintaining the basket. Several people at the meeting expressed an interest in having a basket themselves and encouraging others in their street. Penny will promote further uptake via an email.

Diesel cars: Concern was raised about the number of diesel vehicles, particularly taxis, using local streets. These vehicles produce large amounts of pollutants. It was suggested that SHN could lobby the Council to encourage the use of hybrid vehicles and introduce pollution charges for diesel vehicles. Friends of the Earth are already doing this. Woody will raise the issue at meetings he will be attending with Council members.

Quiz Night:

This popular event will be on Saturday 2nd December at 7pm at St Peter’s Community Centre. There will be a £2 charge to participate and refreshments will be available for a donation. Members were requested to bring items that could be used as raffle prizes. The event is being advertised on the SHN notice boards.

Victim First:

This organisation, which has offices at Mansfield House police station, supports people who have been affected by crime either as victims, witnesses or in other ways. The crime does not need to have been reported for people to access the service. Victim First provides confidential support via a case worker. The free contact phone number is 08009539595.

Evington Road Neighbourhood Association (ERNA):

ERNA is struggling with a small membership and number of issues including the changing demographic of Evington Road – an increase in takeaway outlets, betting shops etc, parking problems and the amount of housing given over to short term tenancies. The Council consultation on introducing a Residents’ Parking Scheme produced an apathetic response overall. However residents in some streets off Evington Road are very keen to see a scheme introduced. One street has opted into the scheme already in operation in South Highfields. ERNA is encouraging other streets to petition residents in favour of opting in.

Any Other Business:

  • Two residents of Upper Tichborne Street have taken action over anti social behaviour in their area. Residents of Hamilton Street, Avon Street and the east end of Upper Tichborne Street signed a petition which has united the community and highlighted the problems. The police have been active in dealing with anti-social behaviour and drug dealing and are encouraging local people to report issues. A family whose children have been causing problems is to be evicted. Residents are requesting improved signage in the area and road humps to deter speeding.
  • Rubbish bins in Onslow Park are not being emptied frequently enough. The Council has been made aware of this.
  • SHN members were encouraged to join a Patch Walk taking place on Monday 4th December at the junction of Evington Road and St James Road. The aim is to highlight problems with anti-social behaviour and street drinking in the area.
  • Members were asked to look out for a resident who occasionally attends SHN meetings and is suffering the effects of a recent bereavement.

Date of next meeting:

Tuesday 12 December 2017  at 7pm at the MKA Centre.  As usual, it is requested that those attending arrive on time.


Notes from the Annual General Meeting held on Tuesday 10 October 2017


Roo Peake, Maggie Ash, Woody, Penny Walker, Alan Fox, Kate Sullivan, Alison Cottam, PCSO Phillip Wandless, Serge Motoza, Mumtaz Suleman, Razak Ghumara


Julie Byron, Cllr Lucy Chaplin, Dilip Chauhan, Hilary Browne, Andrew Thirlby,

Razak Ghumara and Mumtaz Suleman, who have recently returned as Chairman and Vice Chair of MKA were welcomed to the meeting. They are hoping to see the Dashwood Road Centre more widely used by the local community.

Annual General Meeting:

  • Minutes of the Oct 2016 AGM were read and accepted.
  • An annual report compiled by Penny reflected a busy year with many successful events. Roo was thanked for her work in organising the street party, entering us for Britain in Bloom and obtaining funding from Tescos for an environmental project. Penny was thanked for her work in Onslow Park.

Those helping with the events were also thanked.

  • SHN accounts for the past year were read and accepted.
  • Election of officers:

Chair: the responsibility for chairing meetings will continue to be shared among members, this arrangement having worked well over the past two years

Vice-Chair: Andrew Thirlby (Proposed by Alan, seconded by Kate)

Secretary/Membership Secretary: Penny Walker (proposed by Alison, seconded by Roo)

Treasurer: Julie Byron (proposed by Penny, seconded by Woody)

Andrew will continue to maintain the website and Alison will continue as Minutes Secretary.

The AGM was followed by the regular monthly meeting.

Police Report:

The number of crimes committed in the SHN area has been low over the past month.

  • Anti social behaviour has been a problem however, particularly around St James Road and Upper Tichborne Street. There have been extra police patrols in these areas and a new CCTV camera is in use. Police are using their powers to remove bottles of alcohol from street drinkers. A warning has been issued to an off-licence in Evington Road which has sold alcohol to people who are already drunk.
  • The arrest of 3 teenagers and the eviction of a family from Avon Street is helping to reduce anti social behaviour around Upper TIchborne Street.
  • Concern was expressed that a number of children are smoking. A team from the police will be checking local shops for evidence of selling cigarettes to those who are under age.
  • The police have been alerted concerning premises in St Albans Road which are possibly being used for drug dealing.

Recent/future events:

  • A very successful Everybody’s Reading event was held in Onslow Park on 1st October. Local children enjoyed watching a puppet show, making their own puppets and using them to tell stories. Photos of the event will be displayed on the SHN noticeboards.
  • Kate, Penny and Maggie will organise a Quiz Night, to take place on Saturday 2nd December at St Peter’s Community Centre.
  • It was decided that we will hold another street party in 2018.

Environmental Issues:

  • SHN has been awarded £1000 by Tescos for an environmental project. Use of this funding will be discussed at the next meeting.
  • Our Britain in Bloom award and £100 cheque will be presented on 31st October. Penny will attend the award ceremony.
  • Penny’s tubs of geraniums, which were stolen from Gotham Street, have been recovered from Churchill Street.
  • It was noted that there is a lot of rubbish around the junction of Evington Road and St James Road.
  • There are proposals to create cycle lanes along London Road. Consultation events will be held on 19th, 24th and 25th October.

Any Other Business:

Increasing SHN membership by visiting neighbours and acquaintances and inviting them to join was encouraged. Advertising SHN at events such as the quiz night was also proposed.

Date of next Meeting:

Tuesday 14 November 2017  at 7pm at the MKA Centre.  As usual, it is requested that those attending arrive on time.


Notes from meeting held on Tuesday 12 September 2017


Kate Sullivan, Alan Fox, Andrew Thirlby, Alison Cottam, Maggie Ash, Julie Byron


Penny Walker, Pravina Joshi, Hilary Browne, Cllr Lucy Chaplin,

Police Report:

The police were not present at the meeting but sent a flyer concerning a missing person. Chander Bhan is a young Asian man, missing from the Green Lane Road area and anyone seeing him is encouraged to contact the police.

Feedback from the Street Party:

The Street Party, held on 12th August was very successful. 100+ plates of food were given out, the craft activities and games went well. The contributions made by a lady who teaches laughter yoga and dance, face painters and the police was appreciated, as was the visit from Filbert Fox. The event was well attended.

Indonesian Day:

An event to celebrate Indonesian Independence Day was held in Onslow Park on 20th August. It was organised by Indonesian students living locally, with games and traditional food and was appreciated by the Indonesian community and other park users.

Events around the mural:

A story event was held on 27th August in Onslow Park. The mural and books about animals featured in the mural were used to encourage writing and drawings from children who use the park. Their work was on display at a second event on 10th September. This was a celebration of the mural, attended by adults involved in funding, designing and/or painting the mural and local children. Rob Gee read a poem inspired by the mural. Free ice cream from Candy Corner and a special iced cake made by Penny were much appreciated.

Planning Application:

The planning application to turn the old Lloyds Bank building at the end of St Albans Road into student accommodation has been turned down.

Members were alerted to an application by the Bradgate Hotel in Prebend Street to extend their premises.

The planning application number is 20171066 – alterations and partial demolition of the existing hotel and construction of single and two storey extensions to create 23 additional bedrooms.

Krafty Women’s Group:

This is continuing this term but the group is smaller and the venue is not ideal. It was suggested that charges to for the sessions could be increased to enable professionals such as Linda Harding to lead more of the activities, but there is a reluctance to raise costs for participants. Lucy Chaplin may be able to help with funding.

Everybody’s Reading:

An event will be held in the park on Sunday 1st October involving SHN and members of the creative writing group Mezzanine. The event will feature story telling using puppets and the opportunity for children to make their own puppets and contribute to a big story book.

Notice of AGM:

This will be held on Tuesday 10th October. It will be advertised on the SHN noticeboards and website.

Any Other Business:

  • The City Council is planning to replace one of the bus lanes in London Road with a cycle path. There will be a public consultation on this.
  • Future of East Midlands Rail franchise

There will be a meeting to discuss this at the African Caribbean Centre on 21st September 11.00 – 13.00.

  • Synagogue in Highfields Street:

The synagogue is requesting planning permission for a glass-fronted addition to the building.

Date of next Meeting:

Tuesday 10 October 2017  at 7pm at the MKA Centre.  As usual, it is requested that those attending arrive on time.


Notes from meeting held on Tuesday 11 July 2017


Woody, Alison Cottam, Penny Walker, Kate Sullivan, Alan Fox, Maggie Ash , Julie Byron, Roo Peake, Dilip Patel, Jane Kerwen, Burkhart Weinmer, Anita O’Riley, Colin Hyde, Jo Webb, Cllr Lucy Chaplin


Andrew Thirlby, Pravina Joshi, Andrew Deacon

Street Party:

Members were encouraged to volunteer for leaflet distribution and also for the event itself. The poster/leaflet for the event was approved. It was suggested that the A4 format be used for the leaflets as well as the posters and that general information about SHN be added to the back of the leaflet. Organisations with which Woody has links may be able to help with the costs of printing.

Love Where We Live group:

  • SHN is now featured in local Tesco stores as one of 3 charities for whom customers can vote during July and August. Shoppers need to ask for tokens to vote as store staff do not automatically give them out!
  • Roo has entered us for Britain in Bloom and will be visited by one of the judges on Monday 31st July at 10.00. Community involvement is one aspect on which we will be judged. As well as seeing the baskets in Biddulph Avenue and letters written by local children, the judge will visit Onslow Park.
  • The Open Gardens tour took place on Sunday 9th and was enjoyed by everyone involved. Pictures will be placed on the SHN website.

Planning Application for 1 St Albans Road:

Developers have submitted a planning application to develop the former Lloyds Bank building on the corner of St Albans Road and London Road. The proposal is to alter the building to create a coffee shop at the front and accommodation for 75 students at the back in a 6-storey extension. Alan will send a letter and photographs of the original building on behalf of SHN, but it is important that the City Council also receives communications from individuals expressing their concerns. The closing date for this is 1st August. Objections to the proposed development voiced by the meeting included the following:

  • The unattractive design of the extension and the coffee shop frontage is totally out of keeping with the original Victorian building.
  • 1 St Albans Road was designed by famous local architect Stockdale Harrison.
  • It is in a conservation area with other attractive and important Victorian buildings nearby.
  • The proposed 6 storey extension is higher than surrounding buildings, making it particularly intrusive.
  • Although more student accommodation could help to free up houses for families, the tiny rooms in the proposed development may not attract students.
  • The only available parking for students and their visitors is on Victoria Park, across a busy main road. This will be a particular problem when students are moving in or out of the accommodation.
  • St Albans road is a residential area and not a suitable location for this type of development.

Alan has already contacted the Victorian Society and the Civic Society to alert them to the planning application. It was suggested that Mr Leicester (Leicester Mercury) should also be informed. Members could also write to City Mayor Sir Peter Soulsby to voice their concerns. Lucy will request a site meeting in the hope that council officials will recognise that the development is unsuitable for the area.

St Peter’s Community Centre AGM:

Woody attended on behalf of SHN and confirmed our continued support for the centre. Julie will continue as SHN representative for the coming year.

Onslow Park Mural:

The wall has been prepared ready for the workshop with the children on Sunday, when the mural will be designed. A vote of thanks was proposed for Dave Green, who has worked on the plastering and also for Penny, who has worked to develop the project.

Date of next meeting:

Tuesday 08 August 2017  at 7pm at the MKA Centre.  As usual, it is requested that those attending arrive on time.


Notes from meeting held on Tuesday 13th July  2017


Woody, Alison Cottam, Penny Walker, Andrew Thirlby, Julie Byron, Pravina and Tye Joshi, Denzil Brookes, Hilary Browne, Roo Peake, Dilip Patel, PCSOs Sarah Gutteridge and Lewis Sparling


Kate Sullivan, Alan Fox, Maggie Ash

St Peter’s Community Centre affiliation:

It was agreed that SHN will continue to affiliate with St Peter’s Community Centre. This costs £15/year. Woody will attend the Community Centre AGM on July 4th.

Police Report:

Crime statistics for the ward for May 2016 and 17 were discussed. The overall level of crime is fairly low and apparent increases in crimes such as ABH may be due to increased reporting by victims. Concern was raised over a homeless person who is always outside the Co-op supermarket on Evington Road. The police have been involved in trying to help him. He has not however been open to assistance from the Dawn Centre Outreach team and may eventually be banned from the area. The police are also aware of people begging outside One Stop and are working with these individuals and the Dawn Centre.

Street Party:

Face painters are needed as well as plenty of volunteers to help at the event. CND will lend their gazebos and Woody will organise sandbags for securing them. Transport will be needed to bring the gazebos and other equipment to the site.

Onslow Park Mural:

Near Neighbours is funding the project. There will be 2 days of preparation prior to the school holidays to get the surface ready. On Sunday 16th July there will be a workshop in the park for children to design the mural. Gazebos will be needed if it rains. The mural will be painted by the children and professional artists from July 19th. Volunteers are needed for both the preparation and the painting days. The event will be advertised on the SHN notice boards.

Penny has applied for Ward funding for two events in the park following completion of the mural. One will feature stories inspired by the mural and the other games.

Safeguarding Policy:

A safeguarding policy is required for ward funding and also Near Neighbours applications. Roo will act as Safeguarding Officer. A draft policy was discussed, amended and approved.

Tesco Bags of Help grants:

Money from the sale of 5p carrier bags is donated to local organisations. SHN will be one of three organisations for which customers can vote in local stores during July and August. SHN stands to receive £4000, £2000 or £1000 which will be used for a project to benefit the area– possibly buying hanging baskets etc.

Garden Tour:

This will involve visiting gardens of SHN members to see the creative use of small back and front gardens. It will be on the afternoon of Sunday 9th July. Everyone is welcome to attend, but please inform Penny if you plan to do so.

Any other business:

  • New membership forms are now available.
  • Dilip will be borrowing the SHN gazebo on July 1st for a charity event in Oadby.
  • Denzil will be running some leather work classes at the Adhar Centre and may be organising further classes there in future.
  • Police and support services are aware of a vulnerable adult in Skipworth Street whose welfare has been a concern to residents.

Date of next meeting:

Tuesday 11 July  at 7pm at the MKA Centre.  As usual, it is requested that those attending arrive on time.


Notes from meeting held on Tuesday 9th May 2017


Woody Wood,, Penny Walker, Roo Peake, Polly Bootle, Alison Cottam, Andrew Thirlby, Yevgeny Salisbury, Denzil Brookes, Kate Sullivan, Alan Fox


Julie Byron, Maggie Ash, Hilary Browne, Jo Webb

Notice Boards:

These have been placed in Onslow Park and on the wall of Fourways and notices are on display. Penny will keep it up to date. She suggested working with the Eco Squad at Medway School. Pupils could design posters for display, which could be changed weekly. A workshop at the school could be held to help the children develop ideas.

Penny, local councillors and Kate have keys to the notice boards.

Speaker for Uplands School:

Uplands Infant school has requested a speaker to talk to Year 2 about their experience of living in Highfields years ago. Doug Plimbley was suggested, as was Roo’s father. Denzil is willing to be involved. Roo will co-ordinate.

Street Party Update:

Julie is dealing with the necessary paperwork. Progress is being made in organising crafts for the event. Gazebos from CND should be available to borrow. However, Alan is replacing his car for something smaller so we will need to consider how the gazebos and other heavy items can be transported. Flyers were discussed and it was decided these should just contain advertising for the street party and the address of the SHN website.

Gardeners of South Highfields:

The next meeting takes place this Sunday, 14th May, at Onslow Park from 3-4pm. Gardeners will have the chance to exchange books, tools, seeds, plants etc. It may also provide an opportunity to request volunteers for the Street Party. It was decided to hold an Open Gardens Event one Sunday afternoon. SHN members will have the opportunity to visit each other’s gardens and see how small spaces can be put to good use. Sarah Kirby will also be invited. The event will probably be held in June.

It’s Your Neighbourhood:

Roo has entered South Highfields into this year’s Britain in Bloom.

She has also applied for Tesco community funding.

Near Neighbours:

We have been invited to a celebratory event at St Phillip’s Church on Tue 23rd May 17.30-19.00. Denzil and Penny will attend. More Near Neighbours funding is available and Penny will put in a bid for materials etc to create a mural in Onslow Park. Other suggestions for bids would be welcome.

Any Other Business:

  • Rubbish is being dumped in Mill Hill Avenue on a piece of privately owned ground and it is proving hard to get anyone to take responsibility for getting it cleared. It was suggested that the matter should be reported again to the City Council and local councillors until there is a response.
  • A house in Woodbine Avenue is probably being used as a brothel. It was recommended that this be reported to the police and local councillors.
  • A child was seriously injured in a car accident on St Peter’s Road on Sunday evening. There is a concern that parking on St Peter’s road may have been a contributory factor. Parking regulations are not being enforced on many local streets e.g. on Highfields Street. A letter from SHN will be sent to the council.
  • An application has been submitted to hold another Everybody’s Reading Event. It will involve puppet making and stories.
  • Local artist Ian Mitchell has been commissioned to paint a mural for Sparkenhoe School Ark Theatre

Date of next meeting:

Tuesday 13 June  at 7pm at the MKA Centre, but venue is subject to change nearer the date.  As usual, it is requested that those attending arrive on time


Notes from meeting held on Tuesday 11th April 2017


Kate Sullivan, Alan Fox, Harkesh Farma, Dilip Patel , Julie Byron, Alison Cottam, Cllr Lucy Chaplin, Penny Walker, Andrew Thirlby


Woody, Maggie Ash, Jo Webb, Pravina Joshi, Roo Peake Cllrs Kirk Masters and Aminur Thalukdar,

SHN Website:

This is undergoing a makeover and will go live within the next few days.

Feedback on Ward Meeting/ report from Cllr Lucy Chaplin:

  • Darren, our hard-pressed City Warden, is endeavouring to prioritise Stoneygate Ward.
  • Highfields Blues: This organisation, run by the emergency services, provides advice and services such as smoke alarm and security checks. Members are also available to give talks. Funding for Highfields Blues will run out next year.
  • Dilip raised concerns about an increase in knife crime and requested a commitment from the City Council to help tackle the issue. (Harkesh Farma, who is a member of the Health and Welfare Committee at Moat Community College said that the school is keen to prevent knife crime. The new headteacher has reduced the amount of time children can spend off site at lunchtime and improved corridor behaviour.)
  • Cllr Chaplin suggested a petition to request more City Council resources for the area. She highlighted problems such as overcrowded housing, poor transition arrangements from child to adult social care and a lack of council outreach workers, contributing to anti social behaviour such as knife crime. She also suggested we work towards the rejuvenation of Cedar Road Park to improve facilities for young people in the area. A patch walk was requested as a means of highlighting needs and exploring possibilities. Plans to redevelop the Sacred Space area also need to move forward.
  • Lucy is trying to ensure that council officers responsible for the Evington Road area are working closely with local people and sharing information.
  • She has requested a timetable for the Leicester Local Plan.
  • The consultation meeting with local residents concerning the proposed expansion of the Residents’ Parking Scheme showed that about 50% of those attending the meeting were in favour and 50% were opposed.
  • She is keen to develop links with Leicester University to encourage students to get involved with local community projects. This could be similar to the scheme run by De Montfort University. It was mentioned that Leicester University used to have community liaison meetings and that it might be worth trying to revive them.
  • Antisocial behaviour has been a particular problem in St James’ Road in recent weeks. The police are working with local residents to try to resolve issues.

Book Launch:

A successful event was held in Onslow Street Park on 1st April to Launch Shared Spaces-People at Play.


These are being delivered on 17th April and will be sited in Onslow Park and on the wall of Fourways shop.

Street Party Update:

The group will be meeting on May 4th to continue discussing plans.

Gardeners of South Highfields:

The first meeting was held on 9th April in Onslow Park and attracted some interested children. Plans are to meet on the second Sunday of each month to swap ideas, books, seeds, tools, plants etc. An Open Gardens event has been proposed.

To let signs:

This week Sky Blue Homes have taken down boards in St Albans Road and Gotham Street. Lucy suggested we send to the planning department details of properties in other streets that have To Let signs.

Any other business:

  • SHN was represented with a stall at the recent Moat Community College Fun day. This was felt to be worthwhile.
  • Untaxed cars in the area have been clamped. Lucy would like to be informed of vehicles which are not then being removed.

Date of next meeting:

Tuesday 09 May  at 7pm prompt at MKA Centre. As usual, it is requested that those attending arrive on time


Notes from meeting held on Tuesday 14th March 2017


Penny Walker, Andrew Deacon, Nabila Akter, Woody, Dilip Patel, Hilary Browne, Kate Sullivan, Alan Fox, Alison Cottam, PCSO Sarah Gutteridge, Sgt Yusuf Nagdi


Roo Peake, Julie Byron, Maggie Ash, Andrew Thirlby

Police Report:

Crime figures for the SHN and Stoneygate area for February were available. Police officers, local residents and business owners held a patch walk in Prebend Gardens in January. Following partnership work and increased police patrols the incidence of drinking and antisocial behaviour has diminished. Police will continue to patrol the area frequently. There have been incidents of aggressive begging outside One Stop. Police are aware and the issue has been discussed with One Stop Management and Shobhana Patel (Community Safety Officer). The phone box outside One Stop will probably be removed to reduce antisocial behaviour and prank phone calls.

SHN/Love Where We Live Leaflets:

2,000 have been printed. These are now available for use at events and some will be placed in local shops.

Family Fun and Lifestyle Festival at Moat Community College:

SHN will be represented at this event which takes place on Saturday 18th March. Roo and John, Maggie and Woody will run the stall.

Street Party:

Roo, Maggie, Alison and Julie met to begin planning the street party which will be held on August 12th. PCSO Gutteridge and Sgt Nagdi offered support for the event.

Book Launch:

This will take place on Saturday 1st April 12.00-1.00 at Onslow Park. Food and drinks will be provided. Members of the City Council team who have been involved with the regeneration of the park, as well as SHN members and those involved in the production of the book are being invited.


SHN noticeboards will be sited in Onslow Park and on the wall of Fourways. Penny is hoping to get a key so that SHN notices can also go on the noticeboard in Prebend Gardens. Penny is willing to update the notices as necessary.

Residents’ Parking:

ERNA held a meeting to discuss extension of the parking scheme. This was well attended.

Ward Meeting:

The next Stoneygate Ward meeting will be held on Thur 30th March at 6pm (6.30 start) at Medway School. Dilip and Nabila will attend.

Environmental Grants:

Greggs Bakery is using money from the 5p carrier bag charge to fund community environmental projects. SHN may be eligible for funding if we have a suitable project.

Date of next meeting:

Tuesday 11 April  at 7pm prompt at MKA Centre. As usual, it is requested that those attending arrive on time



Notes from meeting held on Tuesday 14 February 2017


Maggie Ash, Penny Walker, Andrew Thirlby, Kate Sullivan, Alan Fox, Alison Cottam, PCSO Sarah Gutteridge, Julie Byron, Yev Salisbury, Munira Girach, Roo Peake


Hilary Browne, Cllr Lucy Chaplin, Pravina Joshi

Street Party:

As co-ordinator, Roo is starting to collect information re insurance, street closure etc. It was decided to hold the party on Saturday 12th August. A meeting will be arranged for those interested in being involved.

Police Report:

Assaults, thefts and robberies showed an increase in January from the previous two months. Evington Road, Conduit Street and St James Road have been identified as areas with a higher incidence of crime than surrounding streets. A PSP (Problem Solving Plan) has been in place for Prebend Gardens due to an increase in drinking and anti-social behaviour. Police have been patrolling more frequently and this seems to have been effective in reducing the number of incidents.

Cycling Project:

The funding bid submitted by SHN was not successful. A cycle maintenance/training programme in Highfields will however be taking place later this year. SHN will support this.


Penny and Andrew have produced a leaflet with details of SHN and Love Where We Live to be available at events etc. A few minor modifications to font and layout were suggested.

Community Warden:

Darren has been issuing Community Protection Notices to tenants in Gotham Street who are leaving rubbish in front gardens. Fines will be issued unless the rubbish is cleared. He has also been working to deal with the accumulations of rubbish behind the Islamic Bank on Saxby Street. Properties in the Onslow Street area have been leafleted with information to deter fly tipping.

Notice Boards:

An SHN notice board will be sited in Onslow Park. The Highways Department will not permit a board to be erected near Fourways. Other possibilities were discussed – the wall of Christopher Scotney’s shop on Highfields Street, near Open Hands, One Stop, or at the end of Bartholomew Street, at MKA or within the boundaries of Medway School. Penny will ask Michael Davis for a quote for erecting a board.


Our Public Liability Insurance needs to be renewed at the end of Feb.

Focus Group re Local Community Centres:

There will be a meeting tomorrow evening at the African Caribbean Centre to discuss community buildings such as Highfields Library, the African Caribbean Centre and St Matthews Community Centre. In view of spending cuts etc the council is keen to make the best possible use of these buildings. Highfields Library is already very well used and not at risk of closure.

Onslow Park:

The Midwinter Fun Event attracted about 30 children and went well despite the rain and cold.The next event will be the launch of the book on Saturday 25th March. Daffodils planted by the children last autumn are coming up!

Residents’ Parking:

The City Council is considering extending the scheme to include streets off St Peter’s Road (from Laurel Road to Sutherland Street) and others in the ERNA area. Residents have not yet been consulted.

Date of next meeting

Tuesday 14 March  at 7pm prompt at MKA Centre. As usual, it is requested that those attending arrive on time


Notes from meeting held on Tuesday 10 January 2017

Present :

Penny Walker, Julie Byron, Alan Fox, Andrew Thirlby, Kate Sullivan, Hilary Browne, Woody Wood, Dilip Chauhan, Roo Peake


Pravina Joshi, Alison Cottam, Councillors Chaplin, Master, Thalukhdar.

Love Where We Live Action Day Sunday 8 January:

This was a successful event. We knocked on doors where bins had been left outside and received a good response everywhere. A personalised letter was given, and information booklet about council bulky collections. Kate will deliver letters where nobody was in.

Midwinter Fun Day, 29 January in Onslow Park:

Near Neighbours are funding this event. Penny has produced a poster to put up in the park and in front room windows. She will put one on the ‘6 Degrees’ café noticeboard. Volunteers are needed on the day to put up and take down gazebos and bunting, serve soup and supervise games. Rob Gee is taking part.

Report of Ward meeting:

Major items included speeding cars on Highway Rd and the sprucing up of Evington Rd. Both our grants – £1356 for two noticeboards and £1,000 for events – were given. Laura will order the noticeboards and arrange for them to be sent directly to Parks and Highways. An on-site meeting followed this Neighbours meeting, to decide on the exact location.

Funding is available for a street party, but a new leader is needed for the organising group. More group members are needed. Penny will send round an email, asking for expressions of interest, and to say we have funding.

Residents parking;

Planning are going to consult on extending the existing scheme to include all of the Neighbours’ streets not in the scheme now and a large part of the ERNA area. ERNA have funding to run consultations on the scheme and want advice from us. Alan and Woody are both willing to help.

Quiz Night:

There was a discussion on whether to hold more regular quiz nights, but no decision was reached.

Women’s group:

Krafty Women now meet every Wednesday in term time. Group members have taken part in preparing for an exhibition – ‘At Home in Highfields’ – which will be launched on Monday 13 February at 12.00 noon in Highfields Library.

Neighbours leaflet update:

Andrew and Penny will look at this, and report back at the next meeting.

Other Business:

Roo will speak to Lucy Chaplin about the Council’s website, which has no mention of South Highfields Neighbours. Roo expects to hear soon on the outcome of the cycling project application. The Neighbourhood Services consultation is on the Council’s website.

Date of next meeting

Tuesday 14 February  at 7pm prompt at MKA Centre. As usual, it is requested that those attending arrive on time


Notes from Meeting held on Tuesday 13 December 2016


Woody Wood, Guy Simmons, Penny Walker, Andrew Thirlby, Razif Abas, Nor Shamsul, Lee Jowett, Alan Fox, Roo Pearce, Kate Sullivan, Dilip Chauhan, Maggie Ash, Cllr Lucy Chaplin (first part)


Julie Byron, Cllr Aminur Thalukdar, Cllr Kirk Master

Council news from Cllr Lucy Chaplin

Ward meeting this Thursday 15th Dec 6pm at St. Philips will include Highways briefing regarding accidents around St. Philip’s Rd, Stoughton Drive North area plus also the extension of the residents parking scheme. Lucy encouraged members from SHN to feedback on residents parking scheme in this area. Also there will be briefing on early stages of Sacred Spaces art work and options.

Parks. Lucy has received complaints of anti- social behaviour at both Prebend Gardens and Cedar Park and is working with the police on the issues. Has had one site meeting at Cedar Park and hopes to arrange another to include Cllr Kirk Masters as extra policing needed in our area.

Bulky collection consultation closes today. Lucy put in representations that it needs to remain free. Hopes to have report at ward meeting but may not be possible and if so Lucy will send afterwards so we can circulate to SHN members.

There is to be a consultation on the Sustainability and Transformation Plan for Leicester, Leicestershire and Rutland. Lucy will ask if someone can come to a SHN meeting to discuss this health plan.

Channel Shift is a new council initiative to encourage people to communicate with the city council on line rather than by phone. Channels refers to channels of communication. Can set up ‘my account’ on line which will record all communications and will provide useful evidence for issues like fly tipping. Can report without setting up account but will not record contacts. It includes a portal for adult social care.

Adventure Playgrounds – Cllrs Patrick Kitterick and Ross Wilmott have put together alternative package. Lucy will get information for us.

Lee Jowett and Sparkenhoe School

Lee is chair of governors at Sparkenhoe School and also the Environment Education Officer for Leicester City Council. He is also a Medway school governor until the end of December and used to be a secondary school teacher. Sparkenhoe has a strong governing body with 7 members including 2 parent governors and there is still space for associate governors. At its last Ofsted inspection 6 years ago it was judged outstanding and is a great school with a good curriculum and a positive atmosphere. Rianne Jones, who is now the Head, as opposed to the Acting Head, is keen to develop new initiatives and is happy to come to one of our SHN meetings. The challenges it faces include funding issues and traffic on Sparkehoe Street. There is no expectation that it will become an academy. In response to a question Lee explained that now the Acting Heads of both Medway and Sparkenhoe have been appointed as Heads following defederation the tensions which had existed between the schools has lessened and they are working more closely together. There is the intention to make the acting deputy heads permanent deputy heads and this consolidation will be good for both schools. Sparkenhoe send out a newsletter to parents every half term and also communicate with many parents by email. They will be very happy to include information about our events or projects. Both Rianne and Lee are keen that Sparkenhoe and SHN can work together.

Active Communities

Roo explained that there is funding available for sports activities with Highfields being one of the target areas. With children already having full days with school, homework and for many madrassa too, it would be better to change the culture of the things people already do and suggested a cycling project to encourage more children and families to cycle. This would include cycling training and maintenance and involve working with other partners – for example by getting a bike park in Sparkenhoe School. It would be aimed at year 6 and young teenagers and their families. The project is funded by Sport England via VAL (Voluntary Action Leicester) and aimed at organisations like ourselves which aren’t sports bodies. VAL would offer support. The pilot would run from after Easter until the summer with evaluation in the autumn which might lead to further funding. Roo had already spoken to many partners who might be involved with the project and had drafted a funding application for £7,500 which would enable 90 participants to engage with the project. Must be submitted by Friday, will share with others for comments. Everyone was very supportive of the initiative.

Mid Winter Fun Day

From 2pm – 3.30pm in Onslow Park on Sunday 29th January there will be a fun day which includes hot soup, tying messages onto trees, games, stories with Rob Gee and hot chocolate. Notices will be put up in the park.

Love Where We Live

Our first of the quarterly environment days when we will be out on the streets is on Sunday 8th January at 11am There is a planning meeting on December 28th with more information to follow for those who would like to get involved.

Women’s Craft Group

The last session this year is tomorrow, 14th December. The group have also been to Newarke Houses Museum and helped to put together a museum case of old household items in Highfields Library. In the 2017 it will be held weekly in term time – same time 10 – 12 on Wednesdays at the MKA Venue on the corner of Dashwood Road and Evington Road. All women welcome.

Quiz Night

This was very well attended and a good evening was had by all with approximately £100 surplus for funds (awaiting invoice from St. Peter’s). A suggestion was made that these should happen more often. Will be discussed at a subsequent meeting.

Ward meeting and grant applications

Alan, Woody, Razif and Sam will be going to the ward meeting on Thursday. Penny had submitted an application for 2 free standing noticeboards – one in Onslow Park and one in Fourways but is unable to go to the meeting. She will send details to Alan who will answer any questions at the meeting. Roo had submitted an application for £1,000 for community activities. Alan will get more details from Roo who is also unable to go to the meeting.


Roo will follow up our lack of profile with the City Council – you can’t find us on their website or if you ring and enquire. Andrew circulated 2 versions of posters he had designed. A suggestion was made of including the Love Where We Live logo. It was agreed that we would also have a leaflet for SHN. Penny and Andrew to work on this. If we want to engage outside designer Quiz Night money could be made available.

Other Business

Woody said that he had managed to get an Investment Partnership to pay the £500 SHN would be liable in the event of an accident in a city council mini bus used for a trip. Thus SHN would not be prevented from using a mini bus for financial reasons regarding insurance. However it was acknowledged that there were also concerns around mini bus trips not being open enough to the whole community unlike a coach.

Date of next meeting

Tuesday 10 January  at 7pm prompt at MKA Centre. As usual, it is requested that those attending arrive on time


Notes from Meeting held on Tuesday 8 November 2016


Hilary Browne, Maggie Ash, Penny Walker, Alan Fox, Sam Raddy, Roo Peake, Andrew Thirlby, Dilip Chauhan, Woody Wood, Julie Byron, Kate Sullivan


Pravina Joshi

Love Where We Live:

The group decided to replace the monthly meeting with quarterly action days, starting in January, aimed at targeting streets with particular problems, such as food outlets and multiple occupancy. There will be a planning meeting in advance of each action day. The dates are 8th January, 9th April, 9th July and 8th October: all Sunday mornings at 11.00 for a couple of hours.

The Sky Blue Homes banners have been taken down, apart from one in Gotham Street. Kate will email the conservation officer again about this. There are four Article 4 areas in the city, where ‘To Let’ boards are subject to time limits. South Highfields is not one of these, but we could apply to be included in future.

People were urged to respond to the bulky waste consultation document, available online.

Boat Trip:

This has been delayed until better weather in the spring.

Women’s Craft Group:

The group meets every second and fourth Wednesday at the MKA venue in Dashwood Road from 10.00 – 12.00, with Linda Harding. All women are welcome.


It was agreed to hold a Pointless-inspired quiz night at St Peter’s Community Centre, St. Peter’s Road on Saturday 10th December at 7pm. Refreshments will include wine, mince pies and samosas. There will be a raffle, and donations to it will be very welcome.

Sparkenhoe School:

Lee Jarrett, Chair of Governors, will come to our next meeting.

Council cuts to Highfields and other adventure playgrounds:

A petition (now closed) received 1,000 signatures. On 24th November there will be a demonstration in Town Hall Square to lobby the council from 4.30pm onwards, before the council meeting at 5pm.

Prebend Gardens:

There are no street drinkers in the park at present, probably due to the weather.

Need for new members:

Andrew will design a recruitment poster, and another for the quiz. Roo found that South Highfields Neighbours is not included in the council’s info on local community groups on their website, and was told that no group exists in this area. She will contact Lucy and ask for Neighbours to be included.

December Ward meeting:

Applications are needed for the street party, trips and promotional materials for Neighbours. Roo will put in a bid.

Anti – social behaviour:

Young people have been running along the back garden wall of Skipworth Street from Onlsow Street to Guilford Street. Pravina was advised to contact police.

Date of next meeting:

Tuesday 13 December  at 7pm prompt at MKA Centre. As usual, it is requested that those attending arrive on time



Notes from Meeting held on Tuesday 11 October 2016


Andrew Thirlby, Piotr Kuhivchak, Penny Walker, Alan Bootle, Pravina and Tye Joshi, Julie Byron, Dilip Patel, Hilary Browne, Jo Webb, Alan Fox, Woody, Roo Peake, Alison Cottam


Kate Sullivan, Maggie Ash, Anita O’Riley, Razif Abas, Cllr Lucy Chaplin,


Minutes of the AGM held in October 2015 were accepted.

Penny Walker gave a report on SHN activities for the past year.

Treasurer’s Report:

This was accepted as an accurate record.

Election of Officers:

As no one was keen to take on the role of chairperson, it was agree that SHN would continue to have a rotating chairperson. This has worked well over the past year. Roo will chair the next meeting and Woody the December meeting.

Deputy Chair:

Andrew Thirlby was nominated and has agreed to take on the role.


Penny was willing to take on this role.

Minutes Secretary:

Alison is unable to continue due to work commitments. It was decided that this would be a revolving post.


Julie Byron is willing to continue as treasurer.

Any Other Business:

Penny, Julie and Alison were thanked for their work for SHN over the past year.

The AGM was followed by the regular monthly meeting.

Evington Road:

Evington Road will be closed Eastbound from the junction with London Road from 15th until 18th October. This is so that work can be carried out on power cables.

Medway and Sparkenhoe Schools:

Jo Webb, Vice-chair of Governors reported that the schools had de-federated on 1st September. New governing bodies and new headteachers are being appointed. Sparkenhoe School is seeking Associate Members for the governing body and there may also be vacancies at Medway. There are Parent Governor vacancies at both schools. The Chair of Governors should be contacted for further enquiries. Medway has been rated good with outstanding features by Ofsted and Sparkenhoe is outstanding. The number of pupils at Medway has recently increased by 90.

SHN Membership:

New members and those who introduce them will in future receive a free copy of How Saxby Street Got Its Name.

Woody said that there are quite a number of local people who cannot get to SHN meetings but would be happy to pay the subscription. Whether it would be worthwhile to contact them will be discussed at the next meeting.

Narrow Boat Trip:

Names of members present were drawn from a hat. Jo Webb, Woody, Alan Bootle and Roo will be able to enjoy a narrow boat trip provided by a friend of Woody. Each will be able to take along another person.

Love Where We Live:

From 19th September for a week, volunteers endeavoured to promptly report all fly tipping in the area. This was helpful in reducing the amount of rubbish on the streets but didn’t eliminate it. Darren, the City Warden found it useful to be contacted about incidents of fly tipping and members were encouraged to keep reporting it.

Onslow Park:

A successful Everybody’s Reading event was held on 2nd October. Around 40 children and 25 adults took part.

Penny recently met with Jess Boyden who is running the “Story of Parks” project in Leicester. Money may be available for a project in Onslow Park if there is a heritage connection.

Jess will request volunteers to research when and why the houses that stood on the site of Onslow Park were demolished. Andrew also offered to carry out some research.

Prebend Gardens:

Lucy is meeting with the police to discuss problems with street drinkers.

SHN noticeboards:

Possible sites for these were discussed, including St Stephen’s Road and Highfield Street. Lucy will obtain costings.

Any Other Business:

Leaflets advertising the Women’s Craft Group were given out.

An elderly lady in Skipworth Street has suffered verbal abuse from people parking on the pavement. It was suggested that she should contact the parking wardens.

Date of next meeting:

Tuesday 8 November  at 7pm prompt at MKA Centre. As usual, it is requested that those attending arrive on time


Notes from Meeting held on Tuesday 13 September 2016


Andrew Thirlby, Penny Walker, Kate Sullivan, Alan Fox, Woody, Alison Cottam


Dilip Patel, Cllr Lucy Chaplin, Jo Webb, Hilary Browne, Corin Grant

Help Desk:

The Help Desk at Sparkenhoe School is not currently running although there is a need for it. The school says it is trying to get funding. Woody has proposed submitting a bid for funding to the Ward. Alan suggested Glenda Terry from CALS could put in a bid rather than submitting it via SHN.

Ward Meeting:

Advice is wanted on developing a Community Plan for the area. A tick sheet was completed by SHN members highlighting areas considered a priority. A police consultation document will be circulated by email. SHN was well represented at the meeting and reported on how recent funding had been used.


Penny suggested giving away copies of How Saxby Street Got its Name to encourage attendance. Leafleting to advertise the AGM was also considered. A friend of Woody’s has offered a free narrowboat trip for 8 people. Names will be drawn from a hat at the AGM. The issue of whether to continue running SHN meetings with a revolving chairperson will be discussed.

Womens’ Group:

This will take place from 10.00-12.00 on the second and fourth Wednesday of each month, starting on September 14th at the MKA Venue on the corner of Dashwood Road and Evington Rd.


There is no money for insurance left in the general account. Projects with grants will each contribute.

Love Where We Live:

SHN volunteers will report all fly tipping in the area during the week commencing 19th September.

Street Party:

This was a successful event. Andrew was thanked for organising it. A full report and pictures are available on the SHN website.

Art In the Park:

Attendance was small on Friday due to wet weather. On Monday however over 40 children and mums participated.

Malaysia Day:

Celebrations will take place in Onslow Street Park on Saturday 17th September. Attendance was encouraged.

Everybody’s Reading:

Penny has been trying to involve local schools. Medway has not responded but Moat Community College will get involved and the event will be advertised at their Open Day.


SHN will be able to have a noticeboard in the area. A suitable site for it was discussed. Penny will contact Lucy Chaplin to take it further.

Prebend Gardens:

The park is being used by drinkers. Penny has been in contact with the City Council Parks Department following complaints from local residents. Kevin from the department is liaising with the police. With funding cuts the City Council has fewer personnel to visit the park regularly.

Cedar Park:

A local resident is concerned that homeless drinkers are sleeping in the park. The problem may be compounded by One Stop being able to sell alcohol 24hrs a day. The police could ask for the licence to be revoked. Lucy Chaplin is aware of the problem.

Date of next meeting:

Tuesday 11 October, 7pm prompt at MKA Centre. As usual, it is requested that those attending arrive on time


Notes from Meeting held on Tuesday 9 August 2016


Penny Walker, Cllr Lucy Chaplin, Andrew Thirlby, Maggie Ash, Alan Fox, Kate Sullivan, Dilip Patel, Roo Peake, Alan and Polly Bootle, Norshamsul Mohammed Isa, Razif Abas, Alison Cottam


Julie Byron, Hilary Browne, Woody, Korin Grant, Pravina Joshi, Cllr Aminur Thalukdar, Cllr Kirk Masters

Trip Feedback:

The trip to West Midlands Safari Park was successful. There was a full coach of 53 people.

Woodbine Avenue Street Party:

Ward funding was obtained for this party, which was enjoyed by residents. A children’s entertainer attended. Since the party residents have worked together to clear their alleyway of rubbish and plant geraniums.

Hate Crime Meeting:

Penny attended the meeting at St Phillips and has met with Darren Goddard, the police officer responsible for dealing with hate crime. She reported that the increase in hate crime incidents following Brexit has subsided but there is still concern. There is a scheme for people to wear a safety pin identifying them as someone who would support anyone being threatened. Penny is willing to be a contact person for South Highfields Neighbours should people wish to report hate crime. It was agreed that leaflets about hate crime will be displayed at the SHN stall at the Street Party.

Love Where We Live:

The Conservation Officer responsible for South Highfields will arrange for the Sky Blue Homes banners to be removed. Lucy is making enquiries within the City Council concerning action to have letting boards removed.

We plan to have a week during which volunteers will walk the streets and report all flytipping. Alan, Kate, Alison, Polly, Roo, Maggie, Penny and Dilip are all willing to take part.

Onslow Park:

The park continues to be very well used by local children. Penny has been litter picking each morning.

  • A police surgery was held there on Sunday. The police are working with the Community Safety Team to erect a barrier on the back wall. Children have been climbing over into residents’ gardens to retrieve balls and thefts have been reported.
  • Art in The Park with Linda Harding takes place on the 19th And 22nd August. Children will be able to make mobiles, a tree of humanity, door plaques and designs for a mural.
  • Malaysian Event: Malaysian Independence Day is 16th September. Razif and Norshamul spoke about an event in the park on Sunday 17th September organised by the Malaysian Association to share traditional food and games. They were encouraged to apply for ward funding for the event.

Street Party:

Set up for this event will begin at 10.30 on Saturday.

Ward Meeting:

Alan, Kate, Norshamul and Polly plan to attend.

Any Other Business:

  • Blaby District Council is discontinuing its Repaint scheme. They will be giving away their remaining stocks of donated paint on 20th August.
  • Age UK is holding a Loving Later Life event on 1st September at the Rawlings Centre for Lifelong Learning.
  • Twiddle Muffs are needed for dementia sufferers. Knitting patterns are available from Lucy.
  • Lucy will be holding a councillor’s surgery on 27th August at the Venue on Dashwood Road.
  • The City Council is considering stopping the publication of the Leicester Link due to funding cutbacks. Residents are invited to give their views by emailing
  • Consultation leaflets are available concerning proposed changes in the Council Tax Reduction Scheme. These will also be available on the SHN stall at the Street Party.
  • Big Lottery Funding: £5m “Celebrate” funding is available. Alan and Roo would help to submit bids.

Date of next meeting:

Tuesday 13 September, 7pm prompt at MKA Centre. As usual, it is requested that those attending arrive on time


Notes from Meeting held on Tuesday 12 July 2016


Andrew Thirlby, Alan Fox, Kate Sullivan, Anita O’Reilly, Pravina and Tye Joshi, Julie Byron, Penny Walker, Alison Cottam


Maggie Ash, Hilary Browne, Cllr Lucy Chaplin, Adam Khonat, Jo Webb

Minutes of the previous meeting:

These were accepted as an accurate record.


25 tickets have been sold for the trip to West Midlands Safari Park on Saturday 23rd July. A smaller coach will be booked unless more tickets are sold by Wednesday.

Love Where We Live:

The manager at Domino’s Pizza outlet has taken a LWWL poster requesting customers to bin their rubbish. Penny has contacted Sky Blue Lettings Agency requesting them to remove advertising banners on let properties. They have not yet responded. The City Council offered leaflets and litter picking equipment but was unable to give further support with the proposed item swap event and fly tip reporting week.

Onslow Park:

Natalie and Penny have met with Penny Brown (Leicester City Council Parks Officer) and will sign up as park volunteers. Penny has applied to Near Neighbours for funding to run events in the park. Sparkenhoe School and Moat Community College will be involved in the Everybody’s Reading event on Sunday 2nd October.

Women’s group:

More than 20 women attended a craft meeting before Ramadan. Another event is being planned for September. £500 for the group has been obtained from ward funding. Penny is also applying for a grant from Near Neighbours.

Celebrating Communities Fund:

This has been set up by the Big Lottery organisation for events that bring communities together. Grants of £300-£10,000 are available. Penny will contact women from the baking group and craft group for ideas.

WW1 Exhibition:

The exhibition was used by Moat Community College. Penny spoke to eight groups of Year 7 students as part of their commemoration event. Moat Community College has offered to store the exhibition as well as the SHN gazebos.

Street Party:

A variety of activities have been planned including bubble making, face painting, games and a magician. Full details are on the Street Party page. Volunteers were requested for leaflet delivery advertising the Street Party. Leaflets will be delivered after 25th July. Volunteers are STILL required to assist on the day of the party.

Any Other Business:

  • Penny was given permission to circulate an online petition to members. The petition opposes the closing of the children’s heart unit at Glenfield Hospital.
  • It was decided to hold a SHN meeting in August so that street party arrangements can be finalised. Penny will facilitate the meeting.

Date of next meeting:

Tuesday 9 August, 7pm prompt at MKA Centre. As usual, it is requested that those attending arrive on time


Notes from Meeting held on Tuesday 14 June 2016


Andrew Thirlby, Roo Peake, Cllr Lucy Chaplin, Julie Byron, Pravina and Tye Joshi, Penny Walker, Alan and Polly Bootle, Alan Fox, Dilip Patel, Alison Cottam, PC Lenton


Cllr Aminur Thalukdar, Cllr Kirk Masters, Kate Sullivan, Maggie Ash

Police report:

Crime figures for the Spinney Hills area have been average over the past month: 12 burglaries, 5 robberies, 1 theft of a vehicle and 6 thefts from vehicles. The incidence of anti-social behaviour has risen slightly as the beat area has expanded to include Lincoln and Conduit Street. Drug dealing has been noted around St Albans Road, Abingdon Road, Evington Road and around Chandos Street. Two prostitutes are working in the Prebend Street area. Members were encouraged to keep reporting incidents. The recent arrests and sentencing of 2 families causing a lot of problems in the area should bring crime figures down.

Police surgeries will be held in Onslow Park on July 2nd and August 7th.

Onslow Park:

The opening celebration on May 29th was a great success. Children and families are using the park. The only adults in the designated play areas should be parents and carers of children using the area. The police can ask other adults/teenagers to leave. It was suggested that there should be more signs to make it obvious that the play area is for children and parents/carers. The police have powers to remove alcohol if drinking is accompanied by anti social behaviour anywhere in the city. It was suggested that the sign explaining the street drinking order should be two sided. Penny Brown is organising a meeting for anyone interested in becoming a park volunteer. The meeting will be in the park on Tuesday 28th June at 11.00.

Everybody’s Reading:

A grant has been awarded for a story telling event in Onslow Park on Sunday 2nd October 2-4 pm. Rob G. will be the MC. The gazebos will be used –cushions, rugs and groundsheets are needed. Some of the grant money will be used to buy books. Parents and children will be encouraged to read and tell stories to each other. It is hoped that some of the stories will be in community languages. Contact Penny if you would like to get involved on 07414 465695

Love Where We Live:

Darren is working to get the rubbish removed from the back of the former Lloyds Bank building. He will also be working in streets surrounding St Albans Road to encourage people to take bins off the street etc.

Blocked drains in St Albans Road and Woodbine Avenue have been reported to the Highways Dept.

The Recycling Team have offered more help to our area – Andrew has contact details.

Posters have been designed to discourage littering and fly tipping.

The next Love Where We Live meeting will be at Alison’s house on 27th June at 7pm.


The company from whom we bought our gazebos has replaced them. We now have 2 useable, 1 unusable and 1 damaged but usable gazebo urgently needing permanent storage. Various solutions were discussed. Enquiries will be made to see whether they could be stored at Moat Community College or the African Caribbean Centre.

Street Party:

Volunteers are needed to help on the day and also to distribute advertising leaflets beforehand. The street party will include a couple of surprises – all will be revealed at our next meeting, at which time volunteers will be allocated their various duties. Anyone who has not yet volunteered but wishes to do so should contact Andrew before our next meeting.


There will be a trip to West Midlands Safari Park on Saturday 23rd July. Tye has produced advertising posters.

The booking form includes an option to find out more about SHN.

Women’s Craft Group at Dashwood Road:

The jewellery making event was very successful. Penny has successfully bid for £500 of ward funding for future events. Regular sessions will be starting twice a month on Wednesdays from September.



Moat Community College:

The How Saxby Street Got its Name exhibition is being loaned to the school. They are having a special focus on WW1 to commemorate the centenary of the battle of the Somme.

Minutes of the previous meeting:

These were accepted as a true record.

Any other business:

Roo would like to nominate a council employee for a commendation. Lucy will enquire about the procedure.

A street party is being planned for Woodbine Avenue. Polly was encouraged to bid for ward funding.

It was agreed that we would continue our affiliation with St Peters Community Centre. A £15 subscription will be paid.

The EU referendum is approaching. Members were encouraged to use their vote.

Date of next meeting:

Tuesday 12 July 2016, 7pm at MKA Centre. Please arrive on time.


Notes from Meeting held on Tuesday 10 May 2016


Kate Sullivan, Alan Fox, Roo Peake, Alison Cottam, Woody, Chris Mitchell, Penny Walker, Cllr Lucy Chaplin, Andrew Thirlby


Julie Byron, Maggie Ash, Hilary Browne, Alan and Polly Bootle, Korin Grant, Jo Webb, Pravina Joshi

Street Party:

Plans are progressing well. Sure Start will be running a stall/activity. South Highfields Neighbours will also have a stall and activity.

Love Where We Live:

The headed paper has been printed. Penny has approached Medway School and will be working with children in the school’s Eco Squad to develop an assembly. A governor at the school is the Council’s Liaison Officer for environmental work within schools. Darren, the City Warden for the area, will also be involved.


The trips group is investigating the cost of coach trips to Drayton Manor or Blackpool. The trip would be after Ramadan – probably the end of July.

Onslow Park:

Plans are progressing for the event on Sunday 29th May to mark the opening of the park. There will be an ice cream van and a face painter. Satsumas, cake and juice will be available. The event will be publicised using Love Where We Live headed paper. The possibility of publicising a gardening club for children was discussed. Sue, who lives opposite the park is interested in running this.


This will be loaned to Roo for the Riverside Festival where there will be a stall promoting Leicester’s twinning link with Nicaragua.

Ward Funding Workshop:

Penny attended this. In future funding decisions will be made prior to ward meetings. There will be 3 deadline dates for funding applications of £500 or more.

Moat Community College:

The school is holding a World War 1 Day on July 1st and will be using resources from How Saxby Street Got its Name. There may be an opportunity to run a workshop for students.


Chris has sketched the design for this. Content is now needed.

Any Other Business:

Report from Biddulph Avenue: The planters are being maintained with strawberry plants and the holly trees are doing well. Roo’s gate has recently been painted by a grateful neighbour.
Leicester City FC Celebration: This will impact the area in terms of the closure of London Road, pressure on parking and the likelihood of increased litter and noise. Lucy is working to reduce negative impact by asking the council to ensure Residents Parking scheme is enforced. She is also requesting extra provision for street cleaning after the event. Chris requested bunting for the ball park area and also materials to make bunting for local streets.

Date of next meeting:

Tuesday 14 June 2016, 7pm at MKA Centre. Please arrive on time.


Notes from Meeting held on Tuesday 12 April 2016


Andrew Thirlby, Julie Byron, Maggie Ash, Kate Sullivan, Alan Fox, Penny Walker, Hilary Browne, Cllr Lucy Chaplin, Roo Peake, John O’Driscoll, Alison Cottam, Dilip Patel


Pravina Joshi, Woody, Andrew Deacon, Cllr Aminur Thalukdar, Cllr Kirk Masters,

Street Party:

This will be held on Saturday 13 August 2016 in Upper Tichborne Street. Lucy offered support for the day and in liaising with the City Council.

Love Where You Live:

Sarah Kirby will be designing the logo for this. Various projects were discussed including the possibility of having hanging baskets in Bartholomew Street. Dilip is working on this. Penny will contact Medway School regarding involving the children in taking pride in the area and reducing littering. Kate and Hilary will visit Dominos Pizza outlet at the end of St Albans Road to enlist their help in keeping the surrounding area clean. Alison will draft a leaflet to go through doors of homes where rubbish is being left on the pavement. Sarah and Penny will talk with residents in Gotham Street about refreshing the containers and Roo and John are refreshing Biddulph Avenue. There is some money left in the Geraniums R Us budget for this. The City Council is cutting back on street cleaners. Lucy reported that the “Sacred Space” art installation near One Stop is to be removed and area turned into a garden.

Onslow Park:

Work is progressing well. The time capsule has been buried. There will be an event on Sunday 29 May from 3-5pm to celebrate the refurbishment of the park. This may involve food and face painting. Lucy was asked to formally open the park. Use of the money left in Brian Kernan’s memory was discussed. Funding for a gardening club was suggested. Alan will contact Brian’s relatives to discuss this.


The Trips Group has not met recently. There is about £400 in the budget. A meeting will be organised to discuss running a trip. Wickstead Park, Skegness or Bradgate Park were suggested as possible venues.

Dashwood Road Women’s Group:

Coffee mornings have not been well attended. Introduction of some arts and crafts activities is planned, with a jewellery making session arranged for Friday 27 May.

Roma Dance Project:

This has now finished but may be run again at a later date. Attendance was small (only 5 girls) but the classes were appreciated by the participants. There is a small amount of funding left in the youth club budget.

Bid writing sessions:

Ward funding applications now have to be completed online. There are workshops in libraries, one of which Penny will attend.

SHN Bank Account:

Julie is working with Penny on updating bank account details and the constitution following the change of name from HART to South HIghfields Neighbours.

Date of next meeting:

Tuesday 10 May 2016, 7pm at MKA Centre. Please arrive on time.


Notes from Meeting held on Tuesday 08 March 2016


Woody, Penny Walker, Louise Chance (Midland Heart HA), PCSO Karen Reed and colleague, , Maggie Ash, Anita O’Riley, Roo Peake, John O’Driscoll, Sam Raddie, Dilip, Hilary Browne, Cllr Lucy Chaplin, Alison Cottam


Chris Mitchell, Julie Byron, Andrew Thirlby, Kate Sullivan, Alan Fox, Ticks Patel, Cllr Aminur Thalukdar, Cllr Kirk Masters,

Minutes of Last Meeting:

No matters arising from these minutes.

Feedback from Ward Meeting:

The following funding applications were approved:

£1,000 for the SHN Street Party, £300 for events in Onslow Park over the coming year, £100 for the Love Where You Live initiative

Dilip has been given a grant to develop a sports programme to engage teenage boys at risk of becoming gang members. He is aiming to help them become positive role models. The programme will involve football and other sports. Dilip is also hoping to start a sports programme for girls.

A grant was given for the advice sessions at Sparkenhoe School to continue. Lucy warned that in future ongoing projects may be expected to fund themselves.

Hanging baskets for Bartholomew Street: Dilip will ask Alan to submit a bid at a future ward meeting.

Highways: There has been a request for Abingdon Road to become one-way. There will be a consultation concerning the extension of the residents’ parking scheme down Evington Road and Abingdon Road.

Police Report:

In the past 2 months there have been 15 burglaries, 4 robberies, 7 thefts from individuals and 17 thefts from vehicles. Police are currently carrying out operations to reduce the number of burglaries, robberies and thefts from vehicles.

Onslow Street Park and Abingdon Walk are priority areas for tackling anti-social behaviour.

The police were recently involved in a patch walk with Jon Ashworth that included Evington Road. Issues included fly tipping, parking and unlicensed sales of alcohol.

Onslow Park:

Work is progressing. An extra piece of play equipment is being provided by the City Council. There is still no date for the burying of the time capsule. A request was made to the police for extra patrols in the area to discourage crime and antisocial behaviour once the park is open. Penny will encourage local families to take an interest in maintaining the park. A large conifer in a corner of the park has become a focus for litter and anti social behaviour. A petition from residents to have the tree cut down may persuade the council to allocate money. (The tree is on private land.)

Love Where You Live:

Some ideas are in the last minutes. Dilip suggested we ask Medway and Sparkenhoe Schools to do assemblies on not dropping litter and keeping the environment clean and tidy. He also suggested local community leaders could be approached to encourage their members to look after the area. Dilip would like to incorporate the hanging baskets scheme in Love Where You Live. A sub group will be set up for Love Where You Live, to report back at the April or May SHN meeting. Kate, Dilip, Hilary, Penny and Alison are willing to be involved. Lucy and Kirk would like to be informed of developments.

Street Party:

The subgroup will be meeting soon. The party will be in August, probably the 13 or 20 August. People were encouraged to sign up to the SHN website for updates.

International Women’s Day coffee morning:

This was held today. 10 women attended and enjoyed excellent cake, coffee and a chat. Thanks to Penny for organising the event. Women who had taken part in SHN trips or the baking project were invited. One came along.

Any Other Business:
Woody is raising money for Cuba Solidarity selling raffle tickets for a trip to Cuba or £1,000 prize.

Date of next meeting:

Tuesday 12 April 7pm at MKA Centre. Please arrive on time.


Notes from Meeting held on 09 February 2016


Penny Walker, Kate Sullivan, Alan Fox, Alison Cottam, Louise Chance (Midland Heart HA), Adam Khonat, Andrew Thirlby


Cllr Aminur Thalukdar, Cllr Kirk Masters, Cllr Lucy Chaplin, Maggie Ash, Hilary Browne, Julie Byron, Chris Mitchell

Minutes of the last meeting:

These were approved.

Reports from Sub Groups:

Newsletter: Chris, Alison and Kate met to discuss this. Chris is working on the layout. Kate is happy to do some of the writing. The group will meet again in March.

Street Party: Andrew has submitted a funding application to the City Council for £1,000.

Onslow Park: Penny has submitted a bid to the City Council for £300 to fund events in the park over the coming year. Play equipment is currently being installed in the park. Penny is planning to encourage local families to visit the park when more equipment is available and to get involved in organising events.

Time capsule: It seems likely that this will be buried around the end of February.

Ward Meeting:

This will be on 3rd March. Penny, Alan and Andrew are planning to attend.

Soup and cake event:

Penny is hoping to organise this event at St Peters Community Centre on March 8th. It will be an opportunity for women who have been on our coach trips and who have been part of the Baking Group to get together. Many of those who became members with the trip to Skegness find evening meetings difficult to get to. It will coincide with International Women’s Day. It was suggested that members of an ESOL class meeting at the Centre that morning might also like to attend.

Fly tipping:

Members identified the following problems with fly-tipping and litter in the area:

  • large domestic items left on pavements (eg a bath left outside a house that is being renovated)
  • rubbish left in front gardens
  • bin men taking excess rubbish out of bins and leaving it on the pavement
  • inadequate provision of bins
  • poor co-ordination of street cleaning
  • inadequate street cleaning
  • rubbish from takeaways
  • dumping of commercial rubbish eg from local shops
  • large numbers of letting boards
  • boards not being taken down once a property is let
  • difficulties in obtaining orange bags and recycling information for new residents

Suggested action was as follows:

  • request Lucy Chaplin to find out the outcome of the City Council consultation on letting boards
  • Penny will request our councillors to arrange a patch walk so that local problems with litter and fly tipping can be brought to the attention of the City Council.
  • Lobby the City Council to put more resources into dealing with the problem.
  • Promote recycling and give information on how to dispose of rubbish – e.g. using the Council’s Bulky Refuse Collection service.
  • Develop a LOVE WHERE WE LIVE campaign to encourage people to take more pride in the area and stop dumping their rubbish on pavements and in front gardens. It was suggested that at our next meeting we convene a sub-group entitled:

    Love Where We Live logo 1

  • leafleting homes that have rubbish dumped outside to encourage the use of Council services
  • SHN members to be more pro-active in reporting fly tipping – maybe doing a monthly walk to log and report to the Council rubbish dumped in nearby streets.
  • Ask Ward Meeting for £100 funding to promote rubbish disposal and recycling – maybe an event involving a bin lorry?
  • Andrew will put these proposals on the our website.

Any Other Business:

Our bank account is still in the name of HART and references to HART remain on the constitution. Penny will work with another member on amending the constitution to remove references to HART and will then talk to Julie about changing the bank details.

Date of next meeting:

Tuesday 8 March at MKA centre, Connaught Street. Woody will be chairperson. The meeting will start at 7pm, so please arrive on time.


Notes from Meeting held on 12 January 2016

Reports from sub groups:

Trips group: Funds will need to be raised for trips this year. The group would like to plan a trip to London but there is not enough money for this at the moment. The possibility of a trip to Twin Lakes was also mentioned. Use of the City Council minibuses for transport was discussed. It was decided by a vote of 6 to 3 to use coaches instead. Reasons included the £500 charge that could be incurred if a minibus is damaged. (This would not be covered by SHN’s public liability insurance.) It was also felt that trips could be more inclusive and safer if a coach is used.

Website: The new SHN website is up and running. To include material on the website Andrew should be contacted ( Minutes of meetings will be added to the website. As they will not have been formally approved by the meeting, Andrew and Penny will check them before including them.

Onslow Park and the Time Capsule: Work has begun on Onslow Park. Adrian will contact Penny with a date for burying the time capsule. Penny will invite some Medway children to witness the burial of the capsule and contact all SHN members. Items can still be added.

Street party: Andrew is keen for the venue to be the same as last year. Holding the event in Onslow Park was discussed but there were concerns that it would be muddy if wet. A Big Lunch (Bring and Share meal) was considered as an alternative way of celebrating the refurbishment of the park but we need to check Ramadan dates as they may conflict this year. Penny is keen to see a positive focus on the park when it reopens. A bid for funding for the street party and an event at Onslow Park may well be considered favourably if an application is made to the next Ward Meeting(April).

Fire station: Chris obtained 875 signatures locally for the petition opposing the proposed closure of the Central Fire Station. These were gratefully received by Fire Service staff. Chris may be contacted by the Leicester Mercury concerning local support for the campaign to keep the fire station open.

Ward Meeting: Funding bids were not discussed at the recent meeting, so no decision has been made concerning funds for the advice sessions at Sparkenhoe School. Funding applications for consideration at the April meeting need to be submitted soon. No decision has been made on refurbishing the area next to the One Stop supermarket. The issue of parking was raised at the meeting. Residents of Bartholomew Street, Myrtle Road and Cedar road are feeling unfairly targeted by traffic wardens. Woody, who has been representing the area at Ward Meetings as a Community Partner, has requested clarification from the Council as to whether the Community Partners Scheme has been scrapped.

Newsletter: The sub group has not yet met.

Dashwood Road Centre: Jane from ERNA and Penny and Kate have supported the Coffee Mornings at the centre and the Keep Fit sessions are now on the same morning (Mondays). They are hoping that improved advertising will increase numbers. A short course of dance classes will be held for young people from 8th Feb. Penny is involved with this.

Social Events group: This group has not yet met.

Fly Tipping: Chris has returned 2 stray trolleys to Morrisons. Options for reporting fly tipping are to use the City Council app or to email/phone Darren Evans the City Warden ( 07772 578487) Some of the street cleaners will also notify the Council re large items of rubbish that need to be removed. ( a householder can have up to 5 items removed every 2 months by ringing 0116 454 1002 or via website

It was suggested that trying to change people’s behaviour would be the most effective way of keeping the streets tidy. Providing information on how to dispose of rubbish could be included in the newsletter. Better access to orange recycling bags was also mentioned, as was holding an event to encourage people to take pride in their area. It was suggested that we lobby the planning department to reduce multi-occupancy letting in the area as landlords with a frequent turnover of tenants were identified as part of the fly tipping problem. Contacting the Public Health Department was also discussed. It was agreed to continue the discussion at the next SHN meeting and invite local councillors.

Bus Users Group: Andrew Deacon is part of this group and offered to report on it at the next meeting.

Date of next meeting: Tuesday 9 February 7.00 pm at MKA Centre

Please contact us at if you have any questions regarding issues raised at this meeting.