Agenda and minutes

Venue: St Mary's (Balderstone) Church, Oldham Road, Rochdale OL11 2HB. View directions

Contact: Rachel Hudson - Tel: 01706 924343 

No. Item


Introductions and Apologies/Code of Conduct pdf icon PDF 15 KB


The chair welcomed all to the meeting.  Reference was made to the code of conduct and all were asked to abide by the code for the duration of the meeting.

A minute silence was observed in memory of Richard Farnell, former Ward Councillor.


Minutes of last meeting and matters arising pdf icon PDF 78 KB


The minutes of the previous meeting were agreed.

Updates from the previous meeting

Crompton Avenue Culvert
Councillor Meredith will request survey results and provide an update to the next meeting.

Hill Top Drive Trees
No progress has been made by Rochdale Boroughwide Housing.


PACT Meeting - Greater Manchester Police


PC Jones introduced herself as the new Neighbourhood Beat Officer (NBO).  The team now consists of two x NBOs and three x PCSOs for the ward.  Updates were given as follows:


·      Force priority is burglary.  Rochdale Division now has a burglary car staffed by a PC and a PCSO who will focus on burglary hot spot areas.

·      Operation Dark Nights has recently been completed.  This operation involved visiting properties that were in darkness offering advice about leaving lights on.

·      Local priorities are:

o   Speeding – operations are planned.

o   Anti-social behaviour - Police are aware of, and engaging with, specific groups.


·      Statistics were provided for the three months August – November against the three months May – August.  The figures are as follows:

o   Burglary           -           23%

o   Drug dealing    -           33%

o   Weapons         -           40%

o   ASB                 -           300% (possibly due to the easier online reporting process).


·      Operation Navigator targeted taking of and from motor vehicles.  54 vehicles have been returned to their owners and 19 arrests were made.

·      Officers are now receiving training with speed guns and on traffic related matters.

·      Operation Sceptre focusses on knife crime and it has seen amnesty bins introduced and increased sweeps taking place.

·      Community engagement, events and working with partner agencies is now on the increase and police surgeries have re-started.


St. Cuthbert’s School Pupils
It was reported that some pupils are using the back passage parallel to Oldham Road as a route home from school, and that they are engaging in ASB.  PC Jones will raise this matter with the dedicated PC for the school.  The Youth Service will also ask detached workers to visit the area at the end of the school day occasionally.

St. Mary’s Church
There is continued ASB in the church yard, particularly during the summer.  The importance of reporting each and every incident via the online tool was reiterated.


Ward Fund


The meeting was informed that Members have a £2,000 allowance that they can use to allocate to projects that benefit the ward and can also be granted to community groups.  There is also a Ward Fund of £8,000 of which £4,413 has been allocated to the Oldham Road Christmas tree.  Residents were encouraged to come up with ideas for projects – consideration will also be given to a war memorial bench, and a memorial bench and tree in memory of Richard Farnell.

A resident asked whether colourful flowers could be planted around the library from the Ward Fund and also the planter re-sited.
Action 1: Bring details of the Ward/Members Funds spend for the year 2020/21 (when this meeting was unable to take place) to the meeting in March (Rachel Hudson)
Action 2: Obtain cost of planting flowers and submit funding application (Rachel Hudson)


Open Forum


Queen Victoria Street Speeding & Drug Dealing
There were reports of excessive speeding and regular drug dealing by specific vehicles.  It was also stated that the same two vehicles regularly ‘deal’ on The Strand at tea times.  Councillor Meredith stated that this road is due to be re-surfaced and residents were concerned that the type of speed bumps currently installed are not sufficient and it should be re-considered.  Councillor Meredith explained how Highways processes would change in the future, becoming greener and more sustainable.
Action 3: Discuss speed humps with Highways Engineers (Councillor Meredith)
Action 4: Discuss possible speed operation with Inspector (PC Jones)

Crompton Avenue Drug Dealing
This issue has been raised in the past and continues.
Action 4: Agree joint work targeted in this area (GMP/Youth Service)

Young at Heart
The group has now closed down.  Funds and equipment have been given to Kirkholt Bowling Club and also a grant to Circle.  In discussion with St Thomas Church about a possible coffee morning.

Springhill Footpath
There has been no progress.
Action 5: Request update and bring to the next meeting (Councillor Meredith)

Action 6: Enquire about a statement that the Council will not renew the football club licence beyond 2024 (Councillor Meredith)


Councillor Update


Councillor Massey
Thanked the meeting for his welcome.  He has spent the pre-election period during lockdown getting to know the ward and residents.  Councillor Massey thanked the Police for their commitment, residents for continuing to report issues to GMP and thanked Council staff for the response to Covid-19 and their work on the vaccination programme.

In Bloom had great successes in the ward including a silver gilt award.  Balderstone Park received a level 4 award and Broadfield Woodlands a level 5 award.  Springhill Hospice won best hospital grounds in the North West.

Councillor Massey will continue to work with the Police on speeding matters and to follow up case work.  He has had a pleasant time during his first few months in the Council and acknowledged the time that Richard Farnell had spent with him during his campaign.

Councillor Meredith
He referred residents to the minutes of the last meeting, the issues they had raised, and the great success in addressing so many of their issues.  Now Cabinet Member for Highways and Housing, Councillor Meredith gave an overview of his role and responsibilities.  These include overseeing the bringing back ‘in house’ of the Highways service to ensure a more efficient service.  On housing matters this includes linking to housing providers, ensuring that affordable rented housing is being built and providing private rented sector support.

Councillor Meredith worked widely with local groups during lockdown – including the Pantry, the Food Bank, Scouts and Churches.  He also engaged hard to reach residents regarding the importance of having the vaccine.

Referring back to speeding, Councillor Meredith explained that there are three ‘E’s’ – Enforcement, Engineering and Education.  He stressed that the Education element had dropped off during recent years and the need to re-introduce road safety matters in our schools.

Surgeries take place at The Strand on Wednesdays at 12 noon and social media will continue to be used to share information.

Councillor Nickson
No update.




Kirkholt Million
A new report has now been written and the Chair gave details of the content.  The new community room is nearing completion and it will be there for Kirkholt Million to use for the next four years.

Rochdale Boroughwide Housing
The Christmas event is scheduled for 10 December 2021.  Residents were unhappy with this date, however, the delay was due to the risk of events due to Covid.  Rochdale Boroughwide Housing have given an assurance that the event next year will happen before 1 December.

The café operator has said they no longer wish to operate from The Strand, which is disappointing.  Currently looking at alternative models for delivering community activity at The Strand and for running the community café.

Continuing to work with local groups and organisations to generate more activity for the local community.  Current activity includes a theatre company on Mondays and a lunch club on Fridays.  There are plans for ongoing catering training in the community kitchen and more training courses in the New Year.

The job club takes place every Thursday from 11:00 to 12:30 with a session specifically for digital support immediately following from 12:30 – 13:30.

52 family homes are due to be completed by December 2022.  Lovell, the contractor, are offering a series of opportunities for local people to gain skills and qualifications on site during the development.  They have also made donations to the Kirkholt Pantry and other local community groups.

Distraction Burglaries
Residents were informed of a series of distraction burglaries in other parts of the Borough.  One where a new neighbour offered to do work, then entered the property and stole money, and the other where a debit card was taken and the PIN number obtained resulting in two withdrawals.  All were urged to be extra vigilant.


Date and time of next meeting


Wednesday 16 March 2022 at 6:30pm
Kirkholt Community Church, Daventry Road, Rochdale

Agendas and minutes of the meetings are available on the Council’s website under the heading of ‘Councillors and committees’ and then ‘Agendas, reports and minutes’