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Magazine for tenants and leaseholders Winter 2018/19

Transforming our estates See page 3


At The Heart Winter 2018/19

Contact us

You can report, apply and pay for a variety of housing services online. For all enquiries please visit askhousing Send your comments about At the Heart or ideas for future issues to: At the Heart is written, designed and published by Communications, Havering Council, Town Hall, Main Road, Romford, RM1 3BD. Reproduction in whole or in part is strictly forbidden without the prior written permission of Havering Council.

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Town Hall, Main Road, Romford, RM1 3BD 9am to 5pm Monday to Friday You can follow us on Twitter @LBHHousing Sign up for the regular email updates from Havering Council Your sign up to Council email updates @

Dear residents Welcome to the Winter 2018/19 edition of At the Heart. I hope you had a very happy festive season and like me are looking forward to an exciting year ahead. 2019 will be the first year of our ambitious project to regenerate 12 of our housing estates across the borough. The Waterloo Road Estate in Romford, Napier and New Plymouth Houses in Rainham, and Solar, Serena, Sunrise Courts in South Hornchurch will be the first estates to see the benefit of high-quality regeneration. We are very keen to make this a truly local regeneration project and plan to give local businesses a chance to bid for packages of work, and for young people to find apprenticeship opportunities. In recent months we have put a lot of effort into tackling rough sleeping. I went out on the streets in November to take part in a count of rough sleepers in our borough. You can read why there is no need for anyone to be out sleeping in the streets of Havering on page 6. Also, just before Christmas I was pleased to join Gerri Scott, our Director of Housing Services, and Housing department colleagues to serve a special three-course for 40 volunteers who give up their time to assist those who are homeless or sleeping rough. The Council is working hard with our partners to provide essential help and support to rough sleepers and events like this are a fantastic opportunity for us to be able to say thank you to the volunteers who work hard all year round to support some of the most vulnerable members of our community. Elsewhere in this edition, you can read about how we are transforming the way our housing team works to provide a better, more efficient service (page 5), and how we are adopting a zero tolerance approach to items left in communal areas that put the lives of residents in danger (page 13). With thanks and best wishes


Havering Council will consider requests for documents to be translated or converted into other formats. More info:

Cllr Joshua Chapman Cabinet Member for Housing

Budget update We had a great response to our budget consultation last August and September with more than a thousand responses. Those responses helped shape the budget proposals that were then approved by an Extraordinary Cabinet meeting on 29 November. For example, an earlier plan suggestion that street lights could be dimmed overnight to save money was dropped after a strong response from many residents rejecting the idea as one that would make the streets less safe. Published by Havering Council | Job no. 5558 Winter 2018/19

The revised proposals for next year’s council budget, which includes plans to spend £30 million over the next three years improving roads and pavements in Havering, will now go to the Full Council budget setting meeting on Wednesday 20 February with some specific proposals subject to consultation before any final decisions are made.


Building quality

Last March Havering Council announced that Wates Residential would be its partner for an ambitious project designed to overhaul our existing Council accommodation and, ultimately, increase the amount of council rented housing and create more opportunities for affordable home ownership for people on local income levels.

Build on our heritage Critical to the plans was to create new developments that build on our heritage and meet the needs of the people that live here. This year the project is starting to take shape with the transformation of a number of our sites in Hornchurch and Rainham. See below. By being jointly responsible for the delivery of the scheme, Havering Council is working together with residents to influence the look and feel of the development. The key to this process is extensive community consultation. Over the last eighteen months, Council officers have spoken to more than 1,400 people across the 12 redevelopment sites, sent more than 60 newsletters

and organised more than 600 one-to-one meetings with tenants. Every resident has also been offered the right to return on the same rent as before – a crucial step towards ensuring that the plans work for the whole community. The physical transformation of a number of areas around the borough will be accompanied by a transformation in the way in which the Council’s Housing department works and a significant investment in the people living on the estates earmarked for redevelopment.

Investing in communities We have a long-standing commitment to investing in communities and the first phase of regeneration alone will generate nearly £7 million in social value. That means increasing opportunities for local residents through investment in education, training and skills, from the creation of more than 160 apprenticeships to business mentoring and courses for unemployed adults to help them get back onto the career ladder.

Work in progress in 2019 January/February/March • A series of ‘meet the buyer’ events held giving local

businesses ranging from painter and decorators, to landscape gardeners, an understanding of the work opportunities that the regeneration of the Council’s 12 estates will create. The final event will be on 7 March and held at The Space at Havering College. If you, or someone you know, wants to be considered for work then make sure you register by going to and searching for supply chain initiative. • A series of engagement events and business drop-in sessions held with businesses in the Chippenham Road, Farnham Road and Hilldene Avenue (parts of Harold Hill). Although this area is not one of the 12 estates set

for regeneration the Council and Wates are taking the opportunity to look at how areas adjoining the redevelopment sites could also benefit from new investment. • Residents across all of the 12 regeneration sites are updated as to progress on the project with public meetings and letters to the affected residents. • Plans submitted to begin the regeneration of the Solar, Serena , Sunrise developments in Hornchurch and the Napier and New Plymouth blocks in Rainham.

April/May/June • Work begins on the Napier and New Plymouth estates. Look out for the scaffolding that will be going up to indicate work will soon begin.


At The Heart Winter 2018/19

Would you like to be a homeowner? Coming Soon! Havering’s Tenant Incentive Scheme Tenant incentive scheme starting in April 2019 You could be eligible for a grant of up to £33,000 If you: • have been a council tenant for at least 5 years • would like to buy a property on the open market and hand back your current council property • are able to obtain a mortgage • have a household with income of less than £60,000 Register your expression of interest now at (terms and conditions apply)

Christmas with the housing team On 20 December the Housing Engagement Team put on a Christmas party for the children within our borough. This year the party was designed for children living in our hostels, children within low income families and foster families. Over 50 parents and around 100 children attended. The team worked in partnership with a lot of other companies and Council departments and as a result were able to put on a great party for the children, all free of charge.

The Housing team also worked closely with ‘We Are FSTVL’ and they arranged a bus to collect the parents and children from all three hostels and take them to and from the event. Working with the Peabody Trust and Time FM, every child was provided with a toy from Father Christmas. Hostel staff made a grotto and Hostel officer Andrew dressed up as Santa. A craft table was set up where the children could use icing and sprinkles to decorate a gingerbread person, alongside

a ‘selfie’ station where the children could dress up in silly Christmas hats and scarves. The Council’s ‘Love food, hate waste’ team provided a facepainting session and they educated both parents and children on food and waste. Each child received a free plastic refillable water bottle. The Youth Arts Team set up a table where the children could make a Christmas card or Christmas bauble for the tree.

One of the highlights saw Mark Gadsden, the Youth Services Manager, doing magic – the children loved it. Thanks to Havering College each child and adult received a packed lunch including Christmas chocolate coins and candy canes. Last, but by no means least, our housing maintenance contractor the Breyer group donated over 100 selection boxes, which were given to each child when they left. Each parent was asked to complete a feedback form when they were leaving and the response to this was very positive. Thanks to everyone who supported the event.


You said, we listened

Gerri Scott, Havering Council’s Interim Director of Housing writes for At the Heart on the findings of the last residents’ survey: “I joined Havering in August 2018 to work with the senior management team to improve the quality of the services provided to Havering Council’s tenants and leaseholders. Although lots of good work has already been done, it is still disappointing that nearly a quarter of residents in the last survey were dissatisfied with the overall quality of housing services. The Council is looking overall at how it transforms its services, and it has been decided that Housing should be front of the queue. We want to be an excellent landlord that builds and maintains good relationships with tenants and leaseholders, supports the needs of our most vulnerable residents and promotes the health, well-being and safety of Council homes. As part of its commitment to putting Housing services front and centre of the Council’s improvement drive, it has been decided to give Housing the focus it deserves by creating a new department, led by a Director and senior management team. We’re planning to shape services in a way that delivers the best possible outcomes for residents and allows staff to focus on the things that really matter to you. A new computer system is already in place which will enable us to do much more work out and about and deal with problems as and when they arise but we also need to ensure that all staff take responsibility for responding to your queries politely, helpfully and quickly. We believe that changing the way in which we work will help to improve the service we provide to you but, of course, good

customer service is not about structural change. Dealing with complaints promptly, carrying out repairs right first time, and taking the time to listen so that we can deal with your queries properly, are the important areas of focus over the next six months.”

Our priorities:

1. improving the quality of the repairs service 2. ensuring that there is timely investment in the maintenance of homes 3. tackling and preventing homelessness 4. ensuring that we deal properly with the things that you tell us really matter, such as anti-social behaviour and parking.

Put simply - getting the basics right


At The Heart Winter 2018/19

Havering is tackling rough sleeping so that no-one needs to be on the streets this winter. Council teams have been working with a number of organisations, charities and services to provide essential help and support over the winter months. Partners such as The Salvation Army have provided food, showers and sleeping bags, while Hope 4 Havering run a night shelter with free meals. In November, Havering took part in a national annual count to get a snapshot of the number of rough sleepers on the borough’s streets at any one time. Thirty-eight volunteers including Cabinet members Cllr Joshua Chapman, who heads up Housing, and Cllr Viddy Persaud who looks after Public Protection and Safety, council staff, charity workers, police, local residents and other volunteers targeted hotspots around the borough, such as town centres, railway stations and the local hospital. They logged two rough sleepers, down from 22 at the count last year. Cllr Chapman said: “The number of rough sleepers we saw during the count is a good sign that the Council are on top of what has become a growing issue all over the country. However, this was just one night and the Council know of at least 12 people sleeping rough. The people we see in the day may not necessarily be there in the evening, as some sofa-surf or go elsewhere. It’s also important to note that

not everyone chooses to accept the help or accommodation offered by the Council. We have actively sought out rough sleepers to make them aware that help is available but unfortunately in some instances they have turned down offers of support.” Last year 23 people were helped off the streets in Havering and have been housed, while a further 20 have been housed by Hope 4 Havering in self-contained move-on properties. Both services received funding from the Government’s Rough Sleeping Initiative. Others are receiving help from the night shelter run by Hope 4 Havering. • I f you see someone sleeping rough on the streets call Havering Council on 01708 432824 or 01708 431180 Monday to Friday 9am-5pm. Outside these hours please call 01708 433999. We can then offer support and help them to access the services they need. The rough sleeper will be assessed and helped to be reconnected to their local area, if they wish. •P  lease don’t give cash to people begging on the street as they may already have accommodation and be receiving support. If you want to help homeless people please give directly to the charities and organisations who provide shelter, food, toiletries and haircuts.

Cllrs Joshua Chapman and Viddy Persaud with the team of volunteers who took part in the rough sleepers count in the early hours of a November morning

New help for local people

The Havering Works team

Havering Council has launched a new service set to help local people find jobs and develop key employment skills, while providing local businesses with essential new talent.

•g  uidance from a qualified personal mentor to help develop an Action Plan with steps towards achieving work/training/further or higher education aims

Havering Works was launched in December. At the launch event Cllr Damian White, Leader of Havering Council, said: “Havering Works is part of a wider Council commitment to support our residents, businesses and communities to succeed. This service offers coaching and employment opportunities, and provides direct links to local employers.”

•m  atching transferable skills and experience to job vacancies

The service will provide residents with: • c onfidential one-to-one assessment of individual skills and training development needs

Court backs

Council to force entry

to keep

• job coaching and mentoring

• job search support (CV review, help with job applications and interview preparation) • s upport once in work. For more information visit: or call the team on 01708 432567 or 01708 434456.

lives of themselves, their family and visitors at risk but also those of their neighbours as a gas explosion can have devastating effects. That is why we require annual certificates and why we will take strong action against anyone who doesn’t let contractors into the property to undertake these vital safety checks.”


Since the last edition of At the Heart, Havering Council have continued to receive backing from Barkingside Magistrates Court when requesting forced entry to properties where it has not been possible to gain access for the required gas safety certificates.

When a leaseholder in Cross Road, Romford, arranged their annual appliance check for a Gas Safety Certificate it could well have saved their life.

Should Havering Council and their appointed gas contractors not receive a response or access to the property to carry out the legally required gas safety check, then the tenants concerned will be taken to court and a warrant gained for access.


In this particular case, the registered Gas Safety contractor found that two out of the three appliances passed the checks with no problems but a thermostat on the cooker was found to be leaking gas. The cooker was quickly made safe and advice given on what needed to be done before it could be used again. Havering Council Housing Service’s Home Ownership Manager, Jane Shaw, said: “The annual gas safety check can find potential problems so they can be repaired before anyone gets hurt.” Cllr Joshua Chapman, Havering Council’s Cabinet Member for Housing added: “Leaseholders who fail to have the annual safety checks are not only putting the


Since October 2018 a total of 41 tenants have been taken to court and warrants obtained to gain access to the properties. However, following court action, only seven forced entries have been made as the remaining tenants have ultimately allowed access to their properties following receipt of the warrant. The cost for the warrant will be passed on to the tenant even if entry is gained to the property prior to a forced entry. An additional cost will be charged to the tenant should a forced entry be required. For more information visit


At The Heart Winter 2018/19

• • • Sheltered Times • • • Sheltered Times • • • Sheltere

How to contact your

scheme officer Sharon is the Sheltered Housing Manager and is in charge of the scheme officers. Email Ashley looks after Cottons and Fambridge Court. Email Carol looks after Brunswick Court and Holsworthy House. Email Stephanie looks after Delderfield House, Poplar Street and Royal Jubilee Court. Email Kristie looks after Bards Court and Cole Court. Email Kelly looks after Thomas Sims Court and Cockabourne Court. Email Nadine looks after Beehive Court and Charlbury Crescent. Email Andra looks after Dell Court and Garrick House. Email Lade looks after Cottons Court, Fambridge Court, Ravenscourt Grove and William Tansley Smith House. Email Abigail is the Sheltered Housing Support Administrator Email

SHOUT for your representative Each sheltered housing scheme can have up to two representatives attend the SHOUT (Sheltered Housing Users Team) forum. If you have a question or issue you wish them to raise please contact your representative. The current representatives are:

Bards Court Bards Court Beehive Court Beehive Court Brunswick Court Brunswick Court Charlbury Crescent Charlbury Crescent Cole Court Cole Court Cottons Court Dell Court Fambridge Court Garrick House Holsworthy House Holsworthy House Poplar Street Poplar Street Ravenscourt Grove Ravenscourt Grove Royal Jubilee Court Royal Jubilee Court Thomas Sims Court Thomas Sims Court William Tansley Smith House William Tansley Smith House

John Ashwell John Hunter Graham Broad Joyce Rafis Ann Christian Paul Clark Rose George Derek Dench William Russell Patricia Pain Valerie Harper Gary Narborough Jean Freeman Malcolm Hales Stan Tackley Margaret Boyd John Clifford John Wilson Christobel Gibson Jean Garbett Elizabeth Paterson Carlene Robertson Peter Cox Mick Droy Lucy Proctor Adrienne Bell

SHOUT meetings are only open to your elected SHOUT Forum Representatives. Forthcoming meeting dates are 29 January, 30 April, 30 July and 29 October. If you have something you wish to be raised at one of these meetings please let your representative know.


ed Times • • • Sheltered Times • • • Sheltered Times • • • Poetry please As we start a new year Donna Wilkes, a tenant living in Ravenscourt Grove in Hornchurch, has submitted one of her poems:


'Hope' is possibly the most powerful word I have heard, it covers a multitude of events in our world. From the wishes we give saying we 'hope' you enjoy your Birthday, to catastrophic events we 'hope' do not spoil your day.

Beehive Court in Harold Wood recently witnessed a 70th anniversary celebration as Dick and Betty Gadeke marked their wedding in 1948. Sadly Dick passed away on Friday 14 December 2018 and this article is published in loving memory of him. Dick was born in Bow and Betty in Clapton. Both were in the RAF during the War, with Dick an Aircraft Frame Fitter working on Spitfires and Betty a Balloon Operator. They met and started courting after they were demobbed from the RAF in a pub in Hackney where ex-RAF members got together. Betty suggested they go dancing and as Dick said “everything clicked”. Betty was an excellent dancer and helped Dick improve his techniques. Their love of dancing took them to dance halls all over London. Their favourite dance was the foxtrot. They were also keen cyclists and could often be seen cycling down to the coast for the weekend. After courting for two years they got married on 2 October 1948 in Hackney. Dick worked as a bus driver and postman and Betty as a machinist making children’s shoes. They had two children, Jan and Carol, and moved to Amersham Road in Harold Wood when Jan was little. They moved into Beehive Court in 2014. On Saturday 6 October Betty and Dick celebrated their 70th wedding anniversary with family and friends in the Beehive Communal Lounge.

A terrorist event that happens in our capital, we 'hope' our police and armed forces will catch those responsible. When we all watched Grenfell Tower with clear reality, we 'hoped' the fire services would lead tenants to safety. Then there's the 'hope' we wish for family and friends, will be enough for all their suffering to end. We 'hope' the people we love with all our heart, will find a way to repair and make a new start. When people we love, lose those they have given life, we 'hope' beyond measure they can get over their grief. And when our friends and family are diagnosed with incurable diseases, we pray and 'hope' with our help their pain eases. When cancer affects a family member, our 'hope' is all we can offer. The outcome is with current science, but we 'hope' it’s enough to ease our conscience. 'Hope' is the most powerful feeling we have, together with prayer for those we have loved. Fear of the unknown we do not want to visit, so keep hold of 'hope' as the only requisite. Without 'hope' our life would be meaningless, Nothing but pain and duress. Keep 'hope' in your heart to cope day to day, be kind to each other and try to pray.


At The Heart Winter 2018/19

• • • Sheltered Times • • • Sheltered Times • • • Sheltere

Pulling the plug on scammers Havering Council’s Housing team have been working in partnership with NatWest and Age UK to deliver scam awareness talks to our residents in sheltered housing. Since June the presentation by NatWest has been delivered at nine complexes and 60 residents have attended. The talks cover topics such as: • Online bank scams • Postal scams • Romance scams • Doorstep scams • Postal scams • Lottery scams • Tips to avoid fraud • Who to report scams to • How your bank can help you protect yourself Kim Crisp from Age UK also attends all of the presentations to inform residents about Di’s Diamonds, a free subscription service that helps you find out about events and activities run across Havering, Barking and Dagenham and Redbridge. Di’s Diamonds encourages residents to get out and about to help reduce isolation and loneliness, and meet new friends.

Lots of useful information is always available at ‘scam awareness’ talks.

Sheltered Housing events Christmas themed safety roadshows were held last month at the Dell Court, Holsworthy House and Cottons and Fambridge sheltered housing complexes. The aim of the roadshows was to promote safety at home as well as educating residents how to use their Christmas food leftovers to make tasty meals. Chef Mark Borrell (pictured) showed residents how to make a broccoli and cauliflower soup, homemade sausage rolls and a strawberry Eton Mess.

Upcoming dates for your diary: 22 February 2019: Sheltered Housing Quiz Tournament at William Tansley Smith House, Hornchurch 5 April 2019: DVD afternoon at William Tansley Smith House, Hornchurch


ed Times • • • Sheltered Times • • • Sheltered Times • • •

Keeping in contact

Contact the Elderly is a registered charity that has a number of groups operating across Havering. Operating for more than 50 years, it organises volunteers who offer companionship one Sunday afternoon a month for people over 75 who live alone, are unable to get out and about without help, and have lost touch with family and friends. Each group of volunteer drivers and their older guests visit a volunteer’s home each month. Different homes are visited throughout the year and hosts usually provide an afternoon tea. Contact groups are kept small, typically with six to ten members, so that everyone can chat to everyone else. If you join one of the local Havering groups a regular volunteer driver will come to your door, walk with you to their car and drive you to the place where you all spend the afternoon together. The get-togethers usually start at 3pm and end at 5.30pm. You will be collected in time to have a pleasurable drive to the host’s home and at the end of the afternoon the driver will take you home safely. There are no charges for those taking part. Each group is run by a group coordinator. They make the arrangements for each month’s visit to a volunteer host and will let your volunteer driver know where you are going.

If you would like to join your local group please call Contact the Elderly on Freephone 0800 716 543

Easter & Spring Bank Holiday Rubbish & Recycling

Collection Dates 2019 Collection times are likely to change. It is important that all sacks are presented by 7am on your revised collection day. Please note that all revised collection arrangements also apply to the garden, clinical and bulky waste services.

For further information visit

Normal Collection Date

Revised Collection Date

Collections will go ahead as normal on Good Friday 19 April April

Friday 19 April

Friday 19 April

Monday 22 April

Tuesday 23 April

Tuesday 23 April

Wednesday 24 April

Wednesday 24 April

Thursday 25 April

Thursday 25 April

Friday 26 April

Friday 26 April

Saturday 27 April

Collections return to normal on Monday 29 April May

Monday 6 May

Tuesday 7 May

Tuesday 7 May

Wednesday 8 May

Wednesday 8 May

Thursday 9 May

Thursday 9 May

Friday 10 May

Friday 10 May

Saturday 11 May

Collections return to normal on Monday 13 May Monday 27 May

Tuesday 28 May

Tuesday 28 May

Wednesday 29 May

Wednesday 29 May

Thursday 30 May

Thursday 30 May

Friday 31 May

Friday 31 May

Saturday 1 June

Collections return to normal on Monday 3 June


At The Heart Winter 2018/19

Lots of ways to get


Havering Council is keen that residents get involved with the services we provide in the borough. Here are some of the ways you could help provide us with feedback, or help your neighbours:

Involvement option


Participation Panels

• Monitor performance within the Housing Service •A  ttend a minimum of 4 meetings annually per panel • Attend walkabouts in your local area • F eedback area repair information •A  ttend quarterly meetings • Discuss Leaseholder services • Havering borough events •H  elp to set up and run events • IT Buddy – helping others on line •G  arden Buddy – helping others with gardening

Community Representative Leaseholder Forum Activity Event Helper Buddy Scheme

If you would like to find out more about getting involved please email and let us know your name, address, email and telephone number, or call 01708 431767.

Condensation in homes can cause all sorts of problems ranging from mould to ill-health. Here are some timely tips to help avoid condensation problems in your home this winter.

open. If you use a tumble dryer, make sure that the ventilation pipe runs to the outside of your home.

The most important tip is whenever there is cold weather to try and maintain a constant temperature of above 18 degrees Celsius in your home. If you do find an area of mould, treat it with a fungicidal wash. Mould does not grow on dry surfaces, so it is really important that you wipe off any condensation from your windows or surfaces every morning to stop mould growing.

Finally, keep your home well ventilated by opening windows or using extractor fans and trickle vents (if your home has them). If you spot condensation on your window, it’s likely that it will be elsewhere in your property too.

Keep doors closed while cooking, or when taking a bath or shower, so that the extra moisture in the air doesn’t spread to the rest of your home. If you can keep bathroom windows open and extractor fans turned on during these activities or immediately afterwards that will also help.

Havering Council is responsible where condensation problems are caused by water leaks from windows, the roof, overflow pipes, gutters or drainpipes. It is also responsible for maintaining the damp proof course, loft insulation (if the property has it), and for any works that are high above the ground level. If you know of issues at your property that are the Council’s responsibility and may cause problems with condensation please report it.

If you can, dry wet clothes outdoors, rather than indoors, that will reduce moisture in your home. If you can’t, put them in a closed room and keep the window

Safety in your home is our top priority


up enforcement action against the small minority of tenants and leaseholders who put their neighbours at risk. Enforcement action though is just one way that the Council keeps you safe. 1. There is an ongoing programme of regular surveys of all housing blocks. Over the last year, 923 fire risk assessments have been carried out on housing blocks, flats above shops, sheltered housing complexes, hostels and halls. Where any issues are identified then remedial work is completed promptly to ensure that the highest fire safety standards are maintained. 2. Regular inspections are carried out on at least a weekly basis by caretakers in each Council housing location. The caretakers will inspect the cleanliness of communal areas, plus the lighting, bins and exit doors. If they notice any items left in communal areas that could be a risk in an emergency situation they will report this to the enforcement team.

Last March Havering Council established a dedicated team tasked with making sure that keeping communal areas in Council housing buildings clear of things that could be hazardous in the event of a fire or emergency always remains a top priority. Thanks to huge efforts from many residents numerous items that could prove dangerous in emergency situations have been removed but it’s important that everyone stays vigilant. To make sure that fire safety remains the top priority the Council will be stepping

3. The enforcement team will initially visit premises to discuss with the resident the risks their items left in communal area may cause and request that the items are removed. A follow-up visit will be made and if the problem still hasn’t been sorted the resident will be given seven days to comply. Should the problem remain unresolved then a Community Protection Warning (CPW) will be issued. Failure to comply with the CPW will lead to a Fixed Penalty Notice with a £100 charge. Further non-payment and compliance can lead to prosecution and eviction. To help residents understand the dangers of fire and to provide helpful tips and safety advice a series of “Safety in your home” sessions will be organised by the Housing Engagement Team.

Tell Joshua what Cllr Joshua Chapman, the Havering Council Cabinet you think... member for Housing writes: “Every month I will hold a surgery so that you can discuss any housing issues with me. The surgeries are on a first-come first-served basis and any tenants are welcome to come along to any of the venues listed below. Alternatively you can book an appointment online at, call 01708 431767 or email: If you prefer,you can always write to me at: Cllr Joshua Chapman, Cabinet Member for Housing, Town Hall, Main Road, Romford, RM1 3BB.” Cllr Chapman Surgery Date



​Monday 25 February 2019

12noon – 1pm

Large meeting room at Myplace, 343 Dagnam Park Drive, Harold Hill, RM3 9EN

Monday 18 March 2019

2 – 3pm

HASWA Hall, Kilmartin Way, Elm Park, RM12 5NB

Monday 29 April 2019

2 – 3pm

Committee Rooms 1 and 2, Town Hall, Main Road, Romford, RM1 3BB


At The Heart Winter 2018/19

Handyperson Scheme Havering Council provides its handyperson service through its repairs contractor, Breyer Group. Members of the team are DBS checked and provide a reliable and courteous service and can undertake any of these small jobs around the home: Plumbing • Investigating and repairing minor leaks • Bleeding/venting radiators • Minor repairs to taps • Washing machine and other appliance installation Electrical • Changing light bulbs • Replacing fuses and plugs • Changing or installing batteries to smoke detectors Fixing • Extra locks, security chains, spyholes on your front door • Fixing or replacing doorbells • Fixing or replacing toilet seats • Putting up pictures or hanging mirrors • Putting up shelves • Fitting blinds/curtain rails • Hanging curtains • Furniture assembly • Towel rails and other fixtures • Shower curtains/screens • Repair garden gates • Fixing or overhauling doors or windows • Urgent board ups of broken windows or door Decoration • Minor plaster / concrete repairs • Basic painting and decorating • Wall/floor tiling small areas • Regrouting small areas • Resealing bathroom/kitchens General Assistance • Moving small items of furniture • Securing carpets/refixing loose carpets • Remove floor coverings • General clean up after an emergency


Why we do what we do Resident Louise wrote to us recently with her thoughts on Green waste collections and recycling. She raised concerns over rises in the cost of garden waste bins over the last few years and wondered why Havering doesn’t supply a number of bins for waste and recycling free of charge, as is the case in many other boroughs. She also queried why all households receive the same number of orange recycling bags.

Jacki Ager, Havering Council’s Waste and External Contracts Manager, responds to the issues Louise raised: Collecting and composting Garden Waste is unfortunately neither free, nor cheap. Garden waste isn’t produced by every householder in the borough therefore the charge enables us to provide this service to the residents that want it. For some residents taking their garden waste to our recycling centre at Gerpins Lane or using a home composter may be cheaper alternatives. For more information on home composting and our subsidised compost bin offer visit: compostdoctor

Keeping it simple

Havering residents collect good quality material in their orange sacks. There is no need for us to ensure that things are separated, unlike other councils who use a number of different boxes and bins and we aim to ensure that the service is as easy to use as possible. Research suggests that the easier a recycling scheme is, the more people use it, and this is true of Havering. From an environmental perspective, our collection service is pretty efficient.

O  ver 90% of our waste is either recycled or used for energy recovery. We recently carried out a monitoring exercise counting the number of sacks, both orange and black, being put out for collection. The results indicated that we were, on average giving residents the correct number of orange sacks. If a resident has too many sacks then we would suggest sharing them with neighbours who may be using more, or simply returning them to us at any library, the PASC in the Liberty Shopping Centre, or the Town Hall. Conversely, residents who need more sacks can pick up a roll, free of charge, from the same locations. Our orange sack distribution method is considered the most efficient way to do it. Providing bespoke quantities of sacks to each household would be difficult to manage and execute, as well as costly. Our main focus is on reducing waste overall including recycling - this is the message we are pushing every day, through initiatives such as Love Food Hate Waste, real nappies, reuse and home composting. Our waste disposal bill is £16million per year, and rising. To really impact the money we spend on waste, we believe we need to reduce the overall volume of waste that residents generate in Havering.


At The Heart Winter 2018/19

In 2017 across the UK 520,000 abandoned shopping trolleys were collected and returned to supermarkets. If you are fed up with seeing abandoned shopping trollies on your street or in your local shopping centre there’s now an app that will help get them collected. A new, free to download, app has been developed to make reporting abandoned shopping trolleys quick and easy. Available on most smartphones via the Google Play store or Apple store the trolleywise app enables you to take a picture of the offending trolley Are you looking for clubs, groups or local and report it in just a few seconds. community activities? The app then automatically alerts the nearest Trolleywise collection team, who Help find will then collect the clubs,groups trolley and return it to and activities its rightful home. You will get an immediate that interest message confirming you if the trolley can be collected and then a second message when the trolley has Put you Support been returned to the in touch with you to local store. Typically in services and attend an Havering trolleys are Be Beback backto toschool school ready ready and and purchase purchas groups that event, group collected within just Sub-brand Sub-brand logo logo can support aat day or two of being or activity school schoollunch lunchat www.haveringcate www.haveringcat you reported.

Solution to a wheely big problem

Downlo Downlo

Community Navigation Service


Bringing people together

We can...

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Find the right transport to get you where you need to go

Want to find out more? Call 01708 432000 Or ask online about the Community Navigation Service:

To get the app go to your app store and look for “trolleywise”. Havering Havering education education servicesservices



Listings Youth Diversionary project dates

More info 9.30 – 11am Card Making Workshop for adults – £7 t 434933

Havering Branch Essex Wildlife Trust Family Mosaic runs weekly drop-in sessions at: Collier Row Children’s Centre, Clockhouse Lane, Collier Row​, RM5 3Q​J Every Tuesday, Noon – 2pm

Youth Bus

Central Park, Gooshays Drive, Harold Hill, RM3 9LB Every Thursday, 6–8pm

Youth Bus

1st floor meeting room, Hornchurch Library. Second Monday of each month, 8 – 9.45pm t 440297

Collier Row Library – Fridays 10.30am – noon and 1.30 – 3pm

Diamond Geezers

Join a friendly knitting and sewing group (small charge for refreshments)


Every Wednesday 5–7pm

Elm Park Library – Thursday 2 – 4pm (term time only)

For other Centre-based projects call:

Gidea Park Library – Thursday 2 – 3.30pm

Myplace on 01708 376004

Harold Hill Library – Monday 1.30 – 2.30pm / Thursday 10am – noon

Presentations are being held at Havering Town Hall from 6 – 7.30pm on: Thursday 7 February Thursday 7 March Thursday 4 April


Fairkytes Arts Centre, 51 Billet Lane, Hornchurch, RM11 1AX Tickets can be purchased through Seetickets, or from the Fairkytes Box Office on 01708 456308.

Brookside Theatre

21a Eastern Road, Romford, RM1 3NH. For ticket details email: or call 01708 755775

Queen's Theatre

Billet Lane, Hornchurch, RM11 1QT For ticket details visit: or call 01708 443333

Royals Centre on 01708 525601 Check social media for where we will be this week: Twitter @LBHHousing Please visit: www.havering.


Adult Craft Workshop

Upminster Library – Craft workshop on the third Tuesday of the month 9.30 – 11am. (Booking required – chargeable event).

Afternoon Tea Group Harold Hill Library Wednesday 2 – 3pm Small charge for refreshments.

Family History

Help with researching your family history. Upminster Library – Thursday 2 – 4pm

Card Making Workshop Upminster Library – every third Tuesday,

Bravo Café, 4 High Street, Romford, RM1 1HR Coffee/tea and cake for £2.95 for Di's Diamonds members Fourth Thursday of every month, 10am – Noon

In Stitches Groups

Oldchurch Estate, Romford Every Thursday, 5–8pm

Information events for training, rewards and benefits of becoming a foster carer.

month, 10am –Noon

Age UK Redbridge, Barking and Havering

Chippenham Road Children's Centre​, 85-89 Chippenham Road, Harold Hill, RM3 8HP Every Wednesday, Noon – 2pm

Street Football in Central Park


Harold Wood Library – Friday 10am – noon Hornchurch Library – Tuesday 2.30 – 4pm Rainham Library – Tuesday 2 – 4pm Second Wednesday of each month 6 – 7.45pm Romford Library – Wednesday 10am – noon

Bowling first Tuesday of every month, 10.15am Namco, The Brewery, Waterloo Road, Romford, RM1 1AU

Mens' Club, free to join, free to attend and free refreshments. Come along and enjoy monthly trips to the dog track, play cards, draughts etc. Tesco Roneo Corner, Romford, RM11 1PY Every other Monday, 3.30 – 5.30pm

LGBT Group

At Tapestry, Stanton Gate, Mawney Road, Romford RM7 7HL Meeting first Tuesday of each month, 3 – 5pm


Tapestry services are shaped to meet the needs of frail old people who live Upminster Library – in Havering. Wednesday 10am They offer a wide range of services from health and Coffee Mornings wellbeing to coach trips and Ingrebourne Community financial services. Housing Group at Hitchin For more information Close Hall, Hitchin Close, please call 01708 796600 Harold Hill, RM3 7EG or email Every Tuesday, 10am – Noon The Queen's Theatre, Billet Lane, London RM11 1QT Details of other events Coffee, chat and knitting. can be seen online at 10% discount for Di's Diamonds members. events Third Monday of every South Hornchurch Library– Wednesday 1.30 – 3.30pm


At The Heart Winter 2018/19

Miles is helping to raise awareness on air quality Havering Council’s popular Miles the Mole is once again helping to raise awareness of air quality as part of the Council’s five-year Air Quality Action Plan (AQAP). The mascot recently visited Gidea Park Primary School, meeting pupils who are encouraged to cycle or walk to school and are learning about how clean air improves the environment in which they live and go to school. Havering is one of the leading London boroughs in promoting active and sustainable travel with high numbers of Havering schools participated in the TfL STARS scheme that aims to inspire youngsters to travel to school sustainably, actively, responsibly and safely by championing walking, scooting and cycling. The scheme also supports pupils’ wellbeing by looking to reduce traffic congestion at the school gates and improve road safety and air quality. There are currently 55 accredited schools in Havering with 16 at Bronze level, 5 schools at Silver level and 34 schools at Gold level. Miles will be visiting more schools this year as part of the Air Quality Education programme, which is part of the plan to improve air quality in the borough. The AQAP encourages residents to do things differently to help enhance the quality of air around them. This includes: •W  alking or cycling to improve health and the environment •S  witching off vehicle engines as much as possible to reduce pollution

•P  lanting more trees and flowers that naturally enhance air quality • I ncreasing the use and provision of activities in local parks and open spaces • Signing up for regular alerts on air quality The plan outlines how poor air quality has a negative impact on health; what individuals can do to improve the quality of the air locally, and how they can reduce their exposure to it through some simple preventative steps. It is especially aimed at highlighting the risks to most vulnerable groups, such as the very young and older people, and those with pre-existing health problems, like heart conditions or lung diseases – including chronic obstructive pulmonary disease and asthma. Cllr Viddy Persaud, Cabinet Member for Public Protection, who is pictured with Miles the Mole at Gidea Park school said: “Residents can help us to improve the quality of air in our borough by thinking about the journeys they make and if they can do anything differently. Do they have to use their car or can they go by public transport or walk instead? Can they walk their children to school? “Switching off their engines whenever possible and not keeping their engines running while stationary is another way to help us have cleaner air. Educating our children and young people about what they can do to help us breathe in cleaner air is a key priority of our plan. Miles the Mole continues to play a part in taking our messages into local schools and communities.”

It's easy to do it online

Many of the Council’s services are now available online, so you can access them day or night when it suits you, and we can provide them more cost-effectively. On average an online transaction is 20 times cheaper than using the phone, 30 times cheaper than the post and 50 times cheaper than a face-to-face meeting. Sign up to Havering Council’s ‘My Account’ service at and you can then access a wide range of services 24 hours a day, seven days a week through the website.

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6543 2109 8765 4321


Tenant/Leaseholder Repairs

Find your local job club Contact the Job Club Team on 07923 054727 or just come along with some ID to any of these job clubs: Mardyke Community Centre - Mondays 9am to noon Mardyke Community Centre, South Street, Rainham, RM13 8PJ

You can apply to move house, for energy efficiency advice, to rent a garage and much more at

North Romford Community Association - Tuesdays 10am to 1pm Room 6, North Romford Community Association, Clockhouse Lane, Collier Row, RM5 3QJ

You can also pay your housing or garage rent and Council Tax by Direct Debit by completing and returning the online form, or you can pay online using credit or debit cards through

Betty Strathern Centre - Wednesdays 10am to 1pm Betty Strathern Centre, 41 Myrtle Road, Harold Hill, Romford, RM3 8XS

The Report It service is available to let the Council know about community and neighbourhood issues, housing issues and a lot more at

Hornchurch Library - Thursdays 10am to 1pm Hornchurch Library, 44 North Street, Hornchurch, RM11 1TB

Council tenants and leaseholders can get secure access to all their housing information online through

ICT support at libraries


Havering Citizens Advice Bureau - Fridays 10am to 1pm Havering Citizens Advice Bureau, Central Library, St Edward's Way, Romford, RM1 3AR

More info:

Libraries in Havering have computers available and offer support for people needing help to set up email accounts or access the internet. This free support is only available at certain times at each library as shown in the table, as these sessions are often run by volunteers. Please contact the library to confirm details and book your place. Library Collier Row

ICT Session date Saturday 1.30 – 3.30pm.

Contact T 434936 T 434919 T 434978 T 434973 T 434975 T 434903

Elm Park

Alternate Fridays 10.30 – 11.30am.

Gidea Park

Wednesday 10 – 11am. Beginners' course over five weeks. Saturday 10 – 11am. Techy Buddy session.

Harold Hill

Contact library for details

Harold Wood

Wednesday 10.30am – 12.30pm pre-booking essential. Thursday 2.30 – 4.30pm. Pre-booking essential.


First Tuesday of month, 2 – 4pm. Techy Teas.


Thursday. Four week course. 10am – 12 noon Booking required.

Romford Central

Wednesday 10am – noon. ICT Support drop-in sessions. Friday 10am – noon. Beginners' four-week course, T 432389 pre-booking essential.

South Hornchurch

First Wednesday of the month. 10.30 – 11.30am. T 434921


Thursday 10.15am – 12.30pm. Help relative to iPhones, iPads, tablets and smartphones. Booking essential. T 434933 T 434970

More info - all telephone numbers are 01708


At The Heart Winter 2018/19

Shared Ownership houses available now at ROSEHIP CLOSE off Briar Road, HAROLD HILL A new development of two and three bed houses, excellently Our located with good transport show homes links to Romford and are now surrounding areas. available for viewing

Property key features:

minimum share purchase available • 25% starting from £87,500 for the • Prices minimum 25% share room sizes • Generous WC • Downstairs Zone Heating • Dual • Allocated parking

Please contact the Shared Ownership Team for more information at: or call 01708 434182

Profile for Havering Council

At the Heart Winter 2018/19  

The Winter 2018/19 edition of At the Heart is packed full of information for Havering Council’s tenants and leaseholders ranging from housi...

At the Heart Winter 2018/19  

The Winter 2018/19 edition of At the Heart is packed full of information for Havering Council’s tenants and leaseholders ranging from housi...