Venue: Syke Community Base, Syke Methodist Chapel, Syke Road, Rochdale. View directions
Contact: Gary Finch - Tel: 01706 924817
The Chair welcomed everyone to the meeting and reminded the Forum of the need to adhere to the Code of Conduct for the duration of the meeting.
Apologies had been received from Councillor O’Neill and five residents.
Greater Manchester Police including PACT meeting
PC Harvard and PCSO Vohra attended the meeting for this item.
The Forum was informed of the following. The following comments relate to the period 11 January 2019 until 14 March 2019.
- There has been a decrease in burglaries across the Ward.
The Forum was informed that a prolific offender has recently been convicted. Back of properties are being targeted. GMP advised that residents leave lights on and/or use timers.
- Theft from motor vehicles have decreased.
- Motor vehicle theft has decreased.
- Incidents of criminal damage has increased. GMP are currently dealing with a list of potential offenders.
- Incidents of anti-social behaviour have decreased
- Incidents connected with drug dealing are low and do not demonstrate significant problems. Residents were encouraged to report incidents via 101, the live chat facility on the GMP website or email with as much information as possible. It was also commented that Syke Common is a priority and GMP make daily visits – proactive policing is happening in the Ward.
A resident acknowledged that he had noticed a decrease in activity however cars are still visiting the area. Another problem identified is that vehicles are now being parked side by side across the road.
- A new inspector has been appointed – Inspector Fern
Residents raised the following concerns:
- It was stated that speeding in the Ward continues to be a problem. Syke Road and Dewhirst Road were identified as hotspots.
It was commented that a speed survey was recently undertaken on the roads mentioned above with findings demonstrating that average vehicle speeds are in line with those expected in a 30mph residential area.
In response to the above residents commented that the previous speed survey on Dewhirst Road was carried out at incorrect locations.
Following discussion it was agreed to undertake another survey on Dewhirst Road and defer the speed survey on Fieldhouse Road, which had been agreed at the previous Area Forum meeting.
- Residents commented that off-road bikes were continuing to cause a problem in the area
In response GMP commented that from their point of view this was not a particular issue in the Ward, other Wards suffer significantly worse from this issue. It was also commented that Traffic Officer numbers have been significantly reduced which hinders GMP’s ability to react.
The role of the Community Coordinator at Neighbourhood Services
Carlo Schroder, Community Co-ordinator attended the meeting for this item.
It was explained to the Forum that the Community Co-ordinators role supports delivery at a local level of the Government’s Counter-Extremism (CE) Strategy. The role centres on countering all forms of extremist narratives which undermine our shared values of democracy, the rule of law, individual liberty and respect for different faiths and beliefs.
The CE Strategy is distinct and complimentary to the Prevent Strategy as it seeks to challenge the broader causes and symptoms of extremism which are not limited to radicalisation and terrorism.
It was further explained that the Co-ordinators’s objectives are to:
- Develop understanding of the drivers, prevalence and wider harms of extremism in the local authority area.
- Identify and build relationships with individuals and groups in the local authority area who are credible and doing important work to build stronger communities and/or counter extremism.
- Support those individuals and groups in identifying what help they require to consolidate and expand their reach.
- Identify and support groups into other funding streams which meet counter-extremism objectives.
- Develop and support local initiatives that help to counter extremism challenges and/or promote our shared values within the local authority area.
In response to concerns raised by residents in relation to gang culture and knife crime and a recent article in the Manchester Evening News it was acknowledged that this is a problem throughout Greater Manchester and further afield.
It was reported that GMP and partner agencies are doing a great deal of work to combat this serious problem.
It was also commented that a great deal of work goes on within schools and communities to deal with radicalisation by raising understanding, knowledge and education. A project facilitated by the Foundation for Peace was cited as an example of positive working.
Open Forum - An opportunity for local residents to comment on issues in the Ward
The following issues were raised:
1. What has happened to the bollards that are due to be installed near to the Talbots Head.
In response the Township and Engagement Officer acknowledged he was aware of the significant delay in the installation of these bollards. He had attempted to clarify with Highways a date when they would be installed, without any success. However he would try again.
Councillor Heakin also agreed to progress this item.
2. Land South of Gandy Lane needs cleaning.
This will be reported.
3. Mountside alleyway needs attention from the Clean and Green Team.
This will be reported.
4. A flagstone on Common Land at the junction of Mizzy Road/Whitworth Road needs removing.
The Public Realm Inspector confirmed this had already happened.
It was explained that all Members/Ward Funds for 2018/19 had been allocated. It would possibly be June 2019 before the allocations for 2019/20 are known.
Updates on issues raised at previous meetings
No updates were provided.
The minutes of Healey Area Forum held on Thursday 10 January 2019 were approved as a correct record.
Matters arising from those minutes not listed as agenda items
The Township & Engagement Officer reported that the following issues reported at the previous meeting had been resolved:
- The statutory notice on Dell Lane had been removed.
- The two signs that had been discarded on the Common had been removed.
- Lighting column number 24 on Whitehall Street has been fixed.
- Lighting column number 2 on Shawclough Road and lighting column number 26 on Falinge Road have been repaired however number 2 is constantly on.
All other issues remain outstanding – The steps at Waingap Rise, The steps and path from the end of Shawclough Road to Paton Street needs cleaning, Shawclough Road traffic calming, the outcome of Whitworth Road traffic survey, bus stop clearway on Falinge Road and Bentley Street traffic calming.
It was also reported that Environmental Management had not responded to the query regarding the removal of the bins outside Shawclough shops.
Because the above issues had been outstanding for some time they will now be transferred on to the update / action sheet.
The Forum was also informed that there had been no progress on the Syke Pond project. This was due to a number of internal issues which have now been resolved. It is understood that financial support for the project is in place and the project is on the 2019/20 work plan. It was also understood that there is a meeting of the Common and Pond Working Group on Wednesday 20 March where this item can be discussed in more detail.
A number of residents expressed their dissatisfaction with the current situation and raised further concerns about drainage problems at the pond which had resulted in adjacent land collapsing.
Residents where informed of the following issues:
- Development work in the Town Centre continues.
- The ‘Dippy’ exhibition will be held in Number 1 Riverside - February to June 2020.
- The Riverside development will open in Summer 2020.
- A new special school will be built in the Borough, located at Heywood Sports Village.
Good News from people in the area and Syke Community Base
It was reported that the Chapel had been successful in acquiring most of the funding required for the redevelopment of the site. This decision was influenced by the number of people attending events.
Although Syke Base, like all Council supported community centres in the Borough had received reductions in their budget allocation, Syke Base has been successful in receiving funding from the Council’s Transition Fund. The Forum was informed that budget reductions will have a major impact upon some community centres. The results of three other funding bids are still unknown.
Syke Community Base will hold its AGM on the 12 April, commencing 1pm at the Base.
The Chair informed the Forum that Superintendent Umer Khan who started his career in Rochdale has recently been awarded an OBE for his services to policing.
The Chair also thanked Andrew Evans, who has recently moved out of the area for his contribution, over many years to the Area Forum. This was endorsed by Forum members.
Date and time of the next meetings
30 May 2019, commencing 6.30pm
22 August 2019, commencing 6.30pm
17 October 2019, commencing 6.30pm
6 February 2019, commencing.6.30pm
All meeting will be held at Syke Base, Syke Road unless otherwise notified.
It should be understood that it might be necessary to use Thrum Hall Church for a couple of Area Forum meetings due to building work at the Base.