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Welcome to Highfield, a charming, leafy suburb of Southampton. Highfield is set in the middle of the University belt, steeped in academia, and flanked by Southampton Common on one side, and Portswood on the other.

The Highfield Residents’ Association is an active group of local residents and their families who seek to protect and preserve their environment and support their neighbours. We always welcome new members. You can join by clicking on the “Join us” leaf above and paying the annual subscription of £5.00.

If you wish to contact the HRA Secretary, you can email her on: jill.baston@btinternet.com. Alternatively, just click on the ‘Contact Us’ leaf above.

For HRA Newsletters, Committee Members, Agendas, Minutes, Blogs, the Constitution and other Local & National Residents Associations, see below.

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HRA Chair’s Blog of the HRA Committee Meeting of Monday 13th February 2017

The HRA Committee met on 13th February. This is a summary of the main points. The approved minutes will appear on the website in due course.

The Committee welcomed Tom Hickman and Barbara Cendrzak from the Hampshire Constabulary, and Jon Walsh from the University of Southampton.

The minutes of the meeting on 12th December were approved.

Under Matters Arising it was reported that in spite of prompting, no answers had yet been received from the City Council to the questions the Association had raised in its response on the Cycling Strategy consultation.

Under University Liaison Jon Walsh gave a review of current issues, including the failed planning application for the renewal of the steps between the Highfield Campus and Lovers Walk. In answer to a question, he said that the University was reflecting on the position and had not yet decided whether to appeal against the planning panel’s decision. He also reported on the fundraising appeal for a new Cancer Immunology Building which had so far raised £20.5m. Leaflets were circulated and it was agreed that the University would have a slot to talk about this at the AGM.

The two PCSOs from Portswood Police Station reported on burglaries in the area. Members asked that the following outstanding and unresolved matters in and around Portswood Broadway be reported back to a senior officer: the ‘Rat Man’, vagrants outside #Coffee, the secondhand washing machine shop parking on the pavement and double yellow lines, begging outside Waitrose and the Bank, and cycling on the pavements and without lights at night. The Council also had responsibilities here and Councillor Claisse agreed to report back. The police representatives were asked to provide the name of a senior officer who could be invited to talk about these matters at the AGM on 20th April.

The Committee discussed a number of items relating to the Common. The Chair reported that  the consultative forum for the Common had now been established with HRA as one of the founding members. The Chair was Professor Adam Wheeler. The Forum had identified three main strands of work: widening engagement, a new and up-to-date plan, and a possible new operating model. The Committee agreed that Professor Brown should be its voting member of the Forum. The Committee noted that following intense work with the Council by both HRA officers and local Councillors, the carriage drive south of Highfield Avenue had been properly cleared to grass, and Common Sense would now be planning to consolidate on this. Also, following high level exchanges, the Council had confirmed that the Little Common Action Plan would be adhered to, and the remaining Minor Projects be properly carried through. This suggested that relations with the Council in this area might now be more positive than in the recent past.

A number of planning issues were raised. It was noted that HRA had submitted an objection to an application in Crofton Close because of overdevelopment. It was reported that the Council would be withdrawing the Lawful Development Certificate for a property in Westridge Road. This was only happening because of pressure by the HRA Vice Chair and local Councillors. It was reported that HRA had been advised that we had a very good chance of reversing the Planning Panel’s decision on an application in Russell Place through a possible application for a judicial review. The Committee agreed that we should do so on the basis that the advice came from a highly credible source, that there would otherwise be no point in having an association to protect the area, and that there would be financial contributions (if needed) to our costs from the Residents Gardens area. There were a number of outstanding enforcements and Councillor Claisse agreed to follow up on 28 Brookvale. Finally, views were sought on the redevelopment of the Lloyds Bank site, and it was agreed that the crucial issues were (a) any variations in the height of the proposed development from neighbouring properties, and (b) parking.

Under Reports, Nadine Johnson and the Vice Chair were commended for their success in generating revenue through adverts on the website. Nicolla reported that current membership numbers were 508 (database), 374 (paid-up) and 21 (rolling).

The Committee discussed the AGM, what format it should take, whether to have an outside speaker and if so, who. Unfortunately our chief legal adviser, Michael Rudd, was unavailable. There were mixed views about an outside panel of speakers. In the end it was agreed to invite a senior police officer and a senior Council officer and to focus the discussion on the deterioration of the local environment.

Under AOB Jerry Gillen drew everyone’s attention to the forthcoming meeting of the North Southampton Community Forum at the Highfield House Hotel on 16th March at 7.30.

The meeting closed at 8.55 pm.

HRA Chair’s Blog of the HRA Committee Meeting of Monday 12th December 2016

The HRA Committee met on 12th December. This is a summary of the main points. The approved minutes will appear on the website in due course.

The Committee welcomed PCSO David Scott from the Hampshire Constabulary, and Jon Walsh from the University of Southampton.

The minutes of the meeting on 14th November were approved.

Under Matters Arising it was reported that the activities of the individual feeding rats and other vermin had extended beyond the immediate area. He was still subject to a Community Protection Order and any sightings should be reported on 101 and to the Council.

The Chair reported that following the previous meeting, the Vice Chair had written to the Police and to the Council about a number of issues in Portswood Broadway. David Scott said that the parking opposite the secondhand washing machine shop was a matter for the Council although the police were aware of it. The Police were aware of the nuisance caused by a small group outside Coffee#1 and action had been taken against them under the Public Spaces Protection legislation. In answer to a question, he confirmed that someone sitting while begging was still begging.

Jon Walsh reported on a number of University activities. The University was gearing itself up for the Winter Graduation. There were also a number of fireworks displays, details of which had been given to HRA. Planning restrictions in the form of Residents’ Parking would soon be introduced in Chamberlain Road. The Vice Chancellor would be inviting representatives of local residents’ associations to a lunch in the New Year. The Chair said that he had had a nice letter from the retiring Students Union Activities Coordinator for External Engagement, Emma Pruce, and said that he and the Secretary had thanked her for her efforts and had wished her well.

The Chair reported on a number of items concerning the Common. The new Forum would have its next meeting at Tauntons College on 17th January. The Association had objected to the University’s application to widen the steps onto the Common. This was on the basis of difficulties with the process but also with the substance, with aspects of the application clearly conflicting with local development policies. There was still no sign of the proposal to widen Lover’s Walk to create a cycle ‘super highway’. No response had been received to the Vice Chair’s request to the Council Chief Executive for an investigation of officers’ conduct in relation to the Little Common. Nor was the outcome of the Minor Projects bid yet known.

There was a vigorous discussion of the Council’s proposed Cycling Strategy. Some members thought that it should be supported and welcomed, others thought it a poor use of resources when there were so many problems with the existing cycle paths. The Chair undertook to send in a balanced response that would welcome the strategy in principle but point to a number of problems with its implementation.

It was reported that there were 508 members on the database, rolling membership and paid-up membership 387. There were no new planning applications but HRA had noted the handling of the application at 8 Westridge where a Lawful Development Certificate had been unaccountably issued and there was now a distinct prospect of an application for Judicial Review. Nadine Johnson and Jerry Gillen were commended on their efforts to attract and facilitate advertising on the website. Nadine reported that members could now obtain a 10% discount on food at the KohiNoor restaurant.

Under AOB the Chair said that content for the Spring Newsletter was still quite light. Committee members with potential copy should contact Caroline Knight. The question was raised as to what was happening with the former Blockbusters site and the Chair undertook to make inquiries.

The Chair wished everyone a happy Christmas and the meeting finished at 8.20 pm.

 


  • The Common Ornamental Lake, courtesy of Simon Hill, Southampton Common Forum, Jan 2017
  • Christmas on Campus. Courtesy of Nadine Johnson, 02/12/16
  • Autumn colours in Crofton Close. Courtesy of Nadine Johnson, 08/11/16
  • Courtesy of Nuha Alsaeed, 14/10/16
    Highfield Campus ducks. Autumn is officially here!
  • Photo by Faye Spencer
    mallard ducks lined up in the sun on the Common, July 2016.
  • Photo by Alison Shelly, Sept/Oct 2016
  • HRA Summer Paella Party July 1st 2016!
  • HRA Summer Paella Party July 1st 2016!
  • HRA Summer Paella Party July 1st 2016!
  • HRA Summer Paella Party July 1st 2016!
  • HRA Summer Paella Party July 1st 2016!
  • HRA Summer Paella Party July 1st 2016!
  • HRA Summer Paella Party July 1st 2016!
  • HRA Summer Paella Party July 1st 2016!
  • HRA Summer Paella Party July 1st 2016!
  • HRA Summer Paella Party July 1st 2016!
  • HRA Summer Paella Party July 1st 2016!
  • Gill Morse - photo competition winner (2015)
    Leaving the Residents’ Gardens after playgroup in the Pavilion in 1984.
  • Roger Van Dyck - runner up in photo competition (2015)
    Uplands Housing Estate
  • Clare Jackson - Highly commended in 2015 photo competition
    Highfield Church
  • Roret Blue - Highly commended in photo competition (2015)
    A garden retreat in Highfield
  • Roret Blue - Highly commended in photo competition (2015)
    Sunrise over Highfield
  • Roret Blue - Highly commended in photo competition (2015)
    Portswood rec on a foggy day
  • John Nightingale (2015)
    Highfield
  • Gill Morse (2015)
    Blenheim Avenue 1984: The Morse family having fun in the snow
  • John Nightingale (2015)
    Residents Gardens
  • John Nightingale (2015)
    Highfield
  • John Nightingale (2015)
    Found in Highfield
  • John Nightingale (2015)
    Found in Highfield
  • John Nightingale (2015)
    Found in Highfield
  • Photo by Dr Gil Dekel, 2015
    Found on Southampton Common
  • Photo by Dr Gil Dekel, 2015
    Southampton Common
  • Photo by Alison Leslie (2015)
    Rooftop view from Blenheim Gdns to Welbeck Ave - so green!
  • Photo by John Nightingale (2015)
    Residents Garden Pavilion
  • Photo by John Nightingale (2015)
  • Roret Blue - Highly commended in photo competition (2015)
    A community at work (Seven Roads Group)
  • Roret Blue - Highly commended in photo competition (2015)
    Sunset over Highfield (church spire on left)
  • Photos taken of Highfield from Highfield Church Spire, Autumn 2014
  • Photo by Simon Hill (2013/2014)
    Winter openness outside the University's Avenue Campus
  • Who needs the Serengeti?
    Heron on The Common, January 2014, Simon Hill
See all past photos in our Gallery page

 

 

 

Click to see Highfield Map

Click to see Highfield Map

 

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