Agenda and minutes

Venue: The Jeffrey Room, The Guildhall, St. Giles Square, Northampton, NN1 1DE. View directions

Contact: Partnerships and Communities Team  0300 330 700 e-mail:

No. Item


Welcomes, introductions and apologies pdf icon PDF 185 KB

Additional documents:


Attendance: Cllr Brian Oldham (BO, Co-Chair), Roger Rumsey (RR, Co-Chair), Tony Mallard (TM, ERA & NFRA), Christiana Owusu-Akuffo (CO, Individual), Chris Carvell (CC, NBC), Brian Nichols (BN, Individual), Veronica Male (VM, Tollers & Dementia Action Alliance), Tony Birch (TB, Individual), Cllr Stephen Hibbert (SH, NBC), Stewart Quelch (SQ, Individual), Norman Sharp (NS, Individual).


Apologies: Geoff Simms, John Rawlings, Mike Hallam, Mike Hill, Jeanette Pidgen, Dave Hewitt, Ann Timson.


Minutes and Matters Arising

Please use the link below to view the Minutes of the previous meeting.


Actions and mins – PCC and Ruth Austen requested for future forums.


Andy Leighton hasn’t been to talk about rerouting in the town centre, Derrick Simpson would be good to have him joining too.


Jeanette Pidgen is a must for the next Forum.


Chris Carvell - Environmental Contract


Chris Carvell – Environmental Service Contract Manager


Role to be link from members of the public to Veolia. Has previously been a neighbourhood manager.


Role is to make sure they are doing what they need to on time and to the correct standard.


Been at NBC since Easter so a little while before June changeover. Well aware of the work in the previous contact and the standard of their work.


Some changes include green high vis to orange, new vehicles, new cards and new branding.


“Pride” is the remit behind the branding campaign.


Hopefully noticed some changes, the grass has had multiple cuts now, was left for a while before the handover and was really overgrown.


New management team but old staff, management are trying to change old behaviours. People get into work habits but we are working towards changing those to help with productivity.



Refuse and recycling – blue lid wheelie bins should be out to everyone now. Boxes have changed to the wheel bin now for 70,000 houses.


Day change has happened to, this changes the collection days for around 65-70% of the population.


It’s generally going well, some people haven’t put their bins out on the right day, or they haven’t read the letter or the crew have not gone down the right street. It is going to take a while to be back to a normal service, hoping it will be there at around 6 weeks but these things take some time.


There are resources here at the council to deal with issues.



Previous contracting was a reactive service. Veolia works on a scheduled basis and there will be a small team to work on those fly tips. Everywhere will be visited and cleaned on an 8 weekly basis instead of just reactions from complaints.



Working through the borough on the places that haven’t been treated over the past 8 years or so.


First 3 months team has picked up around 60 tonnes of dirt/litter.

Working through a schedule, teams are then being tasked to then maintain the standard that the STT has set.



Now into 5th cut, first 2 cuts took a while as the grass was so long and sometimes it had to be gone over multiple times.


Once the season changes, the mowing schedule will turn into winter maintenance and shrubbery will then be worked on.


There will be changes to the shrubbery and it may seem quite drastic compared to how much they have been allowed to grow.


Transformation team has worked in Southfields and similar areas quite a lot.



Trees have started to have the growth moved, especially the ones close to paths and roads which helps peoples visibility.



Working well, been talking to the Northampton Allotment Network. Working with them to help manage these areas property better than previously, especially the ones which are still being paid but are massively overgrown.



Not much has changed.



Not many  ...  view the full minutes text for item 3.


Cllr Hibbert - NPH


Northampton Partnership Homes


NPH Set up to manage housing stock – still belongs to the borough but NPH have been established to manage it.


Quarterly meetings to discuss service reports RAG.


The recent NPH house building project is the biggest in 30 years. NPH have presented the government with a programme in hopes to extend a loan cap. There are new houses over the borough and planning permission has been approved for more.


Q: Building houses for sale and rent. Shouldn’t they be building houses for sale and not just for rent?

A: It is an investment which means a longer steady income.


Q: How do you see unitary effecting this?

A: A wholly NBC contract, the agreement should be transferred over to the unitary but it is their choice what they do with it.


TM: Residents association, going to be questions about garages being knocked down for flats/houses/bungalows. Problem is for car parking, what can be done?

SH: When these processes go forward, there has to be a public consultation. Some aren’t currently needed or fit to have a car in, some will be knocked down for housing or even open parking.


BO: You have to weigh up the car parking vs housing issue, it is a difficult choice.


NPH looking to have ground level sheltered housing only, other associations do not have the same rules.


SH: The planning applications that are going in, they have to consider the parking for the property.


Unitary Update


BO: Voted for acceptance at the end of August about 2 unitary council. North and West Unitary, we would be part of west.


District leaders are now meeting regularly to discuss the format and the proposals can be managed.


There is a consultation that will be going out about the parish/town council.


It does not look like there will be 2019 local elections.


What happens to things like the forum and committees? Planning and licensing committees etc. will more than likely carry on.


Benefits of unitary will stop the back and forth between NBC and NCC and the question of who’s responsible for certain things.


Q: 2020 is not far away, will there be false promises?

A: Cannot answer for that.


SH: This is going to happen because this is what the government wants.

BO: We did ask for a 3 unitary system and that we would be a town wide one, but this was not accepted. We did not get what we wanted but we have accepted the 2 unitary because we get a seat at the table and we can contribute shaping the future of Northampton.


Q: Do the MP’s boundaries change?

A: No.


TM: Community Governance Consultation will take place in November – this is regarding parishes and a possible town council. Process will have to happen very quickly.




Community News Exchange


TM: Brookside Residents – community gardening club – 15th Nov 5pm-7pm – seed sharing gardening event.


CO: Birchfield Road – many people are driving through the no entry.

Are there any computer courses going on to learn more about paying council tax etc.


Forum members discussed how NPH may be running one. Also the Doddridge centre at St James. They may also be something at the Abington Library once a week or so, they may be able to help.


Unity Dem project has moved from the Deco to the Abington Library.


TB: There has been a spike in lead theft, a group is going round taking lead from the roof of buildings and selling it for scrap.

NCC have adopted a road or part of a road but it is a NBC property.


BO: Baskets in town – Northampton got Gold in East Midlands in Bloom. Britain in Bloom is being judged now.


Northampton in Bloom Awards is next week.


Any Other Business


Items for Future Meetings


Jeanette Pidgen for next.


Ruth Austen for future.


Andy Leighton and Derrick Simpson for next.




Date of Next Meeting


29th November, next meeting.