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Estate Archive

Avant Consultation – Mon 18 July 2016 – copy papers

Those who managed to attend the Social Club to view the revised Avant proposals will likely have been disappointed and/or upset.

Chris Billington, Chair of HRRA wrote to wyg to make some preliminary objections to the manner and substance of the consultation.  A copy of Chris’s email is below.

As a result:

  • wyg have agreed to leave the display boards in the Social Club for another week to allow those who could not make the consultation a chance to view them.  Unfortunately representatives of Avant and wyg will not be available to avoid answering any questions.
  • HRRA have separately received a pdf copy of the display boards, which are posted below
  • wyg are making provision for on-line feedback, at www.wyg.com/chevin-park (which wasn’t live at the time of this post but do keep trying!)

From comments made at the consultation HRRA understand that Avant will be submitting their planning application in approximately three weeks time.  Some may suggest that is more than adequate time to allow feedback, consider and make changes to their proposals.  Most would likely disagree.

A copy of the pdf display boards is here (click to link).  [Edit – we’ve asked the consultant to let us have lower res copies to help with download. Copies will we added as soon as we can sort out the max size permissions!]

Chris’s email read as follows:

—–Original Message—–

From: On Behalf Of chairman@highroydsresidentsassociation.com

Sent: 12 July 2016 08:46

To: john.wyatt@wyg.com

Subject: High Royds Consultation – 18 July

 

Dear John,

Like may residents at High Royds (Chevin Park) I have received your notification of the public consultation to take place on 18 July, 2-6.30pm.

Like many residents I will be unable to attend due to the selected timing of the consultation event.

As I am not permitted to have any information on the current proposal I must limit my comments at this time to the following points.

In relation to the manner of consultation:

  • I wish to make clear to you my personal objection, and as Chair of the High Royds Residents’ Association (‘HRRA’) an objection on behalf of residents about the deliberate attempts to effect the outcome of the consultation through denying residents access to a meaningful consultation process.
  • You may be aware that Avant, HRRA and Leeds City Council planning officers meet regularly as a liaison committee, as provided under existing planning conditions relating to the development.
    • No notification has been made through the liaison committee of this intended consultation.
    • No separate notification has been made to HRRA, despite our repeated attempts to engage Avant in dialogue on estate matters.
  • Avant has been made aware that the condition of the local roads and paths, and in particular the access to the Social Club, prevents those with restricted mobility from gaining access such that the method of consultation further denies affected residents the opportunity to participate.
  • it would be an easy matter to extend the consultation day to 8pm, to allow those returning home from work to participate.
  •  information boards can be left in the Social Club for residents to access over a period of days.
  • email and on-line feedback can be sought.

In relation to the proposal:

  •  previous consultation have sought to make clear the wish of residents and others that the developer satisfy its existing obligations prior to any further development being permitted.
  • all areas of High Royds are considered to be green belt and no distinction should be made between the previous enabling area (South of the Glades) and the current proposed enabling area (North of Norwood Avenue).
  •  the historic boundaries between Menston and Guiseley and between Leeds and Bradford must be maintained.
  •  inadequate information on the need for an enabling area has been presented and the issue of ‘compensatory development’ continues to be used to mask the inefficient and ineffective business management of the developer group of companies (which includes previous levels of asset distribution) since Avant took ownership of this site.
  • No information is provided or referenced in relation to:
    • additional local infrastructure required to support the proposed development, including drainage where the fields down slope from the development have suffered severe flooding in recent months.
    • additional traffic pressure, with concerns repeatedly identified in relation to existing on-site parking and access restrictions.

By their nature the above are generic but none the less relevant concerns which Avant have failed to address to date. I trust by raising these points with you now, in advance of the day, immediate measures can be taken to address the participation concerns.

Kind regards

Chris Billington

Chair of High Royds Residents’ Association

 

Update on estate matters

Dear Resident,

The HRRA Committee are aware that many residents have recently received payment requests from Avant, many for the first time.

First, an Estate Charge Payment Request seeks to make a retrospective charge, for landscaping work undertaken on the Estate between 1 August 2014 and 31 July 2015. The sum requested is for £22.21 which is represented as a proportionate allocation to residents, of the total sum charge of £13,729.20.

The Estate Charge Payment Request appears to have been made to most residents, regardless whether they are David Wilson or Ben Bailey, new build, conversions, leasehold or freehold, flats or houses.

However, not all properties will have received the Estate Charge Payment Request.  Missing are those properties under management of Trinity.  Some properties may have been missed in error.

Secondly, a number of properties have also received a separate Service Charge Payment Request from Avant again seeking to make a retrospective charge for the period 1 August 2014 – 31 July 2015.  This charge covers:

  • an external block charge, covering external common parts (walls, roof, gutters, drives and pathways) of individual blocks
  • an internal block charge, covering internal common parts (including cleaning, lighting and heat)
  • insurance cost, not including contents
  • contributions to internal and external block ‘sinking funds’ on account of future obligations

It would seem the Service Charge Payment Request has been issued to leasehold properties who are not yet in management with Trinity, in effect as confirmation that Avant has responsibility for the management of those properties.

Those properties in management with Trinity will be all too familiar with service charge demands.  Trinity recently released the Estate Budget for Nov 2015 – Oct 2016 indicating another increase in service charge payments due.  However, it seems that those properties in management with Trinity have not received the latest estate charge demand.

Where do things go from here?

HRRA, working through its Estates Committee has made clear to Avant, and to Trinity, the need to properly evidence payment requests and has challenged the requests made.  A copy of the letter dated 28 January 2016 from HRRA’s Estates Committee to Avant has already been posted to the website (see http://www.highroydsresidentsassociation.com/wp-content/uploads/2016/02/Estate-Committee-to-Avant-Eml-28.01.16.pdf).

A meeting with Trinity to discuss charges for properties in management recently took place and will be followed up.  It is hoped that a revised budget, and reduced charges, will be forthcoming.

HRRA are continuing with efforts to discuss charges with Avant and ensure transparency and consistency.

There are a number of ongoing issues, including:

  • the effect of estate and service charges differ across the Estate, there are different forms of contract used and some residents have previously reached agreement with Avant or Trinity on past charges.  For example:
    • some freehold contracts don’t include obligations to pay towards communal charges, and
    • some of the early properties which went into management with Trinity had incorrectly levied estate charge demands repaid;
  • properties continue to suffer from defects which they are struggling to have remedied, with Avant seeking to push works into future maintenance obligations;
  • properties in management face demands for significant additional funding to cover cyclical redecoration work. The works have had to be abandoned due to bad weather, but full payments were still taken by direct debit.

One of the issues raised with us, is the perception that the estate charge is not due until the Estate is complete.  You will need to check your property documents, or seek legal advice.  This may apply for you, but for most the estate charge became due when you bought your property and is payable each year.  That it hasn’t been collected doesn’t necessarily mean that it wont be collected in the future (hence the retrospective charges now being made).

In terms of the current payment requests, in all likelihood something is due.  How much and whether payment should be to David Wilson, Avant or Trinity is part of HRRA’s ongoing discussions.

We encourage all residents to raise concerns direct with Avant.  You can write to Avant Homes Legal Department, at the address given in the Payment Request.  However, you may have noticed that the Payment Request is not specifically addressed and in addition to making the payment you are asked to confirm your name, address and other matters.  Please take a view whether you are willing to provide this information.

However, let the Estates Committee know how your property is affected.  Please get involved and support the work of the Estates Committee.

Please join us at the AGM, Thursday 25 Feb starting at 8.15pm at the Social Club

HRRA

Please Read – Avant Homes recent invoice for Estates Fees

There are various ongoing issues being taken up by residents. Recently the Estate Committee have challenged service charge and other payment demands from Trinity, for those properties in management, and now from Avant (formerly Ben Bailey Homes, the site developer) who have made a retrospective demand dating back to Aug 2014. See the letter from the Estate Committee. If these affect you, then let the Estate Committee know and get involved – estates@highroydsresidentsassociation.com

Estate Committee to Avant 28.01.16

As ever, please let us know your thoughts and comments, either by replying to to them address above, or commenting below…

May Update on the New Sports/Social Club

We’ve got some new visuals to show you. They’re fresh from the architects, so take a look below and please please use the comments section below to tell us what you think. We’re relying on people to tell us what they think, what they want from the new club, so that everyone gets something from the new building.

Onto the visuals.

This one is the design description. It shows the building from both sides and also a floor plan.

BB.207712.009C – Plans & Elevations

Cross sections and a useful diagram showing how it’ll sit between the cricket pitch and the lower football pitch.

BB.207712.010B – Sections & Views

Some occupancy options, showing how the building will be laid out inside.

BB.207712.011B – Occupancy Options

A Top down look at where the building will sit on the estate.

BB.207712.001D – Indicative Masterplan

Finally some artistic impressions of the building and surrounds in use.
Look how happy the guy in the first picture looks.

BB.207712.000C – 003 to 008 Concept Impressions

So as mentioned above, we really do need to get some feedback, so please use the form below to tell us your thoughts, or even suggestions for the new place. It is going to take some input and some graft from all over the estate to get it running, please let us know if you want to help.

Ben Bailey Planning Application Update

As some of you will know there is a planning application from Ben Bailey in with Leeds City council right now. Its a departure from the original 10 year old application, since it means changes to the way the old Administration Block will be dealt with and also changes to the green spaces at the back of the estate.

Read more on this here. Consultation Site

There is also a suggestion that this planning application will include handing back the Administration Block to the residents. There isn’t much info on this, especially with regard to how it would be funded and who would be repsonisble for that. An action group consisting of residents and some members of the Committee are organising a petition to try and block this. Feel free to download and pass this round. Here

Ben Bailey Planning Application Update

High Royds Residents Association recently wrote to Martin White of Ben Bailey Homes requesting an insight into the residents feedback arising from the Public Consultation in relation to the Administrative Building , The Ballroom, the proposed new builds at the Glade and Norwood Avenue, plus the proposed change of use of the commercial buildings. We have not, as yet ,received a reply.

However, a planning application has been submitted, for what appears to be all those matters put forward by BBH at the consultation. The deadline for submitting any objections was November 07th 2014 and has now passed.

The planning application includes the Clock Tower Building. Change of use of the Administration Buildings to the rear of the Clock Tower Building from Commercial to Residential. Change of use of the former Workshops to Residential. Change of use of the old Police Station to Residential.

IMPORTANT UPDATE

We have contacted Leeds City Council regarding the deadline for submission of comments for objection / support of application 14/05511/LI (Listed Building application for conversion of former hospital buildings including administration block and isolation block to 51 dwellings. ).

This is the application originally referred to on 24/10/2014 in the email to residents “URGENT RESPONSE REQUIRED – Ben Bailey/Avant Homes Planning Application“.

The deadline for submission was the 13th November but apparently you CAN still send in comments; it just means that they are able to make a decision from 13/11/2014. A LCC rep. toldus that the date by which they hope to make a decision (Target Determination Date) is listed as 26/11/2014.

A second application that has been posted recently, 14/5510/FU (Erection of 24 detached and two semi-detached dwellings and conversion of former hospital buildings including the administration block and isolation block to 51 dwellings) and apparently that is the FULL application. Because the application involves a listed building it is normal to have two applications: the listed building application (14/05511/LI) and the full application (14/05510/FU).

Looking on the planning portal website for the new application 14/05510/FU You can see that the deadline for submission of comments is Thursday 4th December

 https://publicaccess.leeds.gov.uk/online-applications/applicationDetails.do?activeTab=dates&keyVal=NC57TXJB17S00

with a Target Determination Date of 20th January 2015.

Also Ben Bailey Homes distributed a ‘Chevin Park Proposals Brochure’around High Royds. However we are aware that many homes did not receive this publication.

You can download a copy of this brochure by clicking on the link below.

‘Chevin Park Proposals Brochure’