at the heart Summer 2019

Page 1

Magazine for tenants and leaseholders Summer 2019

“We want to make sure our tenants live in a place they feel safe, happy, and proud to call home” says the Leader of Havering Council.

Read about the £10 million investment programme See pages 10 – 11


at the heart – Summer 2019

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.

Visit our office

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 Summer 2019 edition of at the heart. One of the things I am most committed to in my job at the Council is to make sure that alongside our commitment to regenerate 12 of our estates across the borough that residents living in other Council-owned properties also see their lives improved with investment in their homes and communal areas. See pages 10 and 11 for news of our £10 million investment programme. As we enjoy better weather and lighter evenings many residents thoughts turn to home improvements or moving home. If you are planning some DIY work please do read the article on page 12 with some timely advice on getting your home contents insured. If you have been a Havering tenant for more than five years we have a scheme that could help you make a move on to the property ladder. Read how you could be eligible for a grant of up to £33,000 on the opposite page. As a Council, we are always working to reduce the number of households sleeping rough on the streets of Havering. I am very proud of the effort Havering Council and its community partners have put into tackling the problem of people living on the streets. You can read about how we cared for people over the cold winter months with our Severe Weather Emergency Protocol on page 4. I do hope you have a wonderful and relaxing summer and don’t forget that I hold regular surgeries where you can raise any housing issues with me directly. Details are on page 18. 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 Cover picture: Cllr Chapman outside Highfield Towers in Collier Row

Have Your Say on new Tenancy Policy If you are a Havering Council tenant, your tenancy policy explains what kind of tenancy you can expect to get and how we will manage your tenancy with us.

Havering Council is reviewing the policy and would like to hear your views on the proposed changes. I hope as many tenants as possible feel able to get involved. The consultation opens on the Thursday 13 June and closes on Friday 26 July. To complete the tenancy policy questionnaire, visit: If you require a paper copy of this consultation please contact the Community Engagement Team on 01708 431767. Published by Havering Council | Job no. 5658 Summer 2019

A great incentive

The beginning of April saw the launch of Havering Council’s new Tenant Incentive Scheme. This is a great opportunity for any council tenants who would like to purchase a property of their own, but need a little financial assistance to do so. A grant of up to £33,000 will be available for each eligible application. For anyone who has been a council tenant for a minimum of 5 years, the scheme offers the possibility to buy a property on the open market up to the prices listed below: 1 Bedroom property – up to £190,000 2 Bedroom property – up to £240,000 3 Bedroom property – up to £300,000

No restrictions There are no restrictions on where you can buy, it can be anywhere in the UK. However, the household income must be below £52,000 for a 1 or 2 bedroomed property or below £62,400 for a 3 bedroomed property. The scheme will run during the financial year 2019-2020 whilst funds are available. There has already been some interest and we are starting to look at applications now. Please note that you will require at least £3,000 in savings to cover any associated costs of buying a property and you must be unable to afford to buy a suitable home for your requirements without the grant assistance.

Check to see if you qualify If you would like further information, please email: or call 01708 433672. You will be asked to complete an interest return form to confirm that you meet the criteria. If you do qualify for the scheme, an application form will be sent to you.



at the heart – Summer 2019 “We connect with these agencies on a regular basis so that we can identify any gaps and work out a solution. “We’re still learning and building our relationships and have seen how working together has helped us to provide the much-needed support required for people who find themselves sleeping rough.” Last year Havering appointed its first housing rough sleepers lead officer whose role is to work closely with partners to help the rough sleepers off the streets.

Support and enforcement

Effective ways to tackle

rough sleeping We may have seen more of the sun lately, but many will recall the cold winter nights, which saw temperatures dipping below freezing. During the cold spell, Havering activated the Severe Weather Emergency Protocol, also known as SWEP. This is for days, or nights, when the temperature falls below zero degrees, and the Council has a responsibility to ensure that no one is sleeping rough on the borough’s streets. During the cold weather season, a dedicated team of Council workers, charities and other organisations had extra measures in place to ensure food, clothing, shelter and advice were readily available. Workers patrolled the borough’s streets to spot, count and support rough sleepers and during the annual count which all local authorities have to conduct each November. Overall, Havering has seen the number of rough sleepers fall, and now other boroughs are coming to us to seek advice on how we’ve done this to improve their own service.

Partnership working Cllr Joshua Chapman, Cabinet Member for Housing, said: “Other local authorities are curious about what we’re doing and they’ve approached us to find out more. “Partnership working has been the key factor for us. We don’t work in silos, but we were able to sit down with agencies such as the police, local charities, the Salvation Army, Peabody Housing Association, the drugs and alcohol service and other agencies, to agree our goals and find a collective way of working.

This officer develops tailored plans for each rough sleeper, so that those in need of support can be referred to specialist services to ensure they get the required help to get them from the streets into long-term accommodation. Each rough sleeper also receives ongoing practical help from a support worker once they have been placed in accommodation to ensure that they continue to live there. They get help with filling out housing benefit forms, registering with a GP, and making appointments. Cllr Chapman added: “Many of the people we meet have been rough sleeping for a long time and we support them to manage their affairs and we look at the support available before they go into stable accommodation.” During the winter months of November to the end of March, SWEP was activated on 27 days, and during that time, there were 55 rough sleeper referrals to our rough sleepers’ team who provided emergency accommodation. Some rough sleepers refuse help or are not willing to get involved with us, so our team assesses how best to support them.

A great acheivement Cllr Chapman said: “We are also supported by the government in the work we do, such as funding through its Rough Sleeping Initiative. This has been used to provide accommodation and support costs for rough sleepers locally. “We’ve also successfully housed 46 people in settled accommodation and every single person is still in their accommodation, which is a great achievement.”

Fran Gerlach: A tribute Jane Shaw, Home Ownership Manager, writes…

It was with great sadness that we received the news that Fran Gerlach, Vice-Chair of our Leasehold Focus Group, passed away last year after bravely battling a long illness. Fran was a lovely person who it was a pleasure to work alongside with the group. Fran was a very committed, positive member of the group who joined at the outset in July 2002 as Vice-Chair and continued to be nominated by leaseholders every year, which shows the high regard people had for her. Fran, along with other members of the group, worked alongside the Home Ownership Team on a regular basis to bring new ideas or raise concerns on how the services we provide could be improved upon. Examples of where changes have been made as a result of input from the Leasehold Focus Group include: • I nformation supplied to leaseholders about their estimated service charges and actual expenditure incurred •N ew payment options for major works bills •A new regulation added to the lease requesting gas safety certificates be provided on an annual basis •R epair notices issued on a regular basis •A review of the information provided in respect of Resale enquiries Fran played a very active role in assisting in the implementation of these changes and rarely failed to attend meetings. We are sure you would all agree that Fran was a valued member of the group who will be sorely missed.

Summer Bank Holiday Recycling & Rubbish Collection Dates 2019


Normal Collection Date

Revised Collection Date

Monday 26 August

Tuesday 27 August

Tuesday 27 August

Wednesday 28 August

Wednesday 28 August Thursday 29 August Thursday 29 August

Friday 30 August

Friday 30 August

Saturday 31 August

Collections return to normal on Monday 2 September

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 5663



at the heart – Summer 2019

• • • 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 Abigail is the Sheltered Housing Support Administrator Email Andra looks after Dell Court and Garrick House. Email Ashley looks after Cottons and Fambridge Court. Email Carol looks after Brunswick Court. Email Kelly looks after Thomas Sims Court and Cockabourne Court. Email Kristie looks after Bards Court and Cole Court. Email Lade looks after Ravenscourt Grove and William Tansley Smith House. Email Nadine looks after Beehive Court and Charlbury Crescent. Email Sarah looks after Holsworthy House. Email Stephanie looks after Poplar Street and Royal Jubilee Court. 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 Charlbury Crescent Charlbury Crescent Cole Court Cole Court Cottons & Fambridge Courts Cottons & Fambridge Courts Dell 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 Frank Morey Joyce Rafis Paul Clark Rose George Derek Dench William Russell Patricia Pain Sue Attfield Jean Freeman Gary Narborough 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

The new SHOUT committee members are: Chairman – Paul Clark Vice Chair – William Russell Treasurer – Frank Morey Secretary – Gary Narborough SHOUT meetings are only open to your elected SHOUT Forum Representatives. Forthcoming meeting dates are 30 July, 29 October and 21 January. 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 • • •

Getting quizzical

Mrs Hilda Tennyson from Harold Hill has written the poem for this edition. She was inspired to send in her poem after reading Donna Wilkes’ poem in the last edition of at the heart. 83 year-old Hilda used to be one of Havering Home Care team and says that one of the ladies she looked after said she got very lonely at night and that inspired her to originally write this poem in 2002.

Suddenly I wake, what was that sound? Is it my imagination, or is it someone else around? As I lie here in the dark I like to be woken gently Preferably by the lark.

Roughly 50 people attended the Sheltered Housing Quiz tournament held on 22 February at William Tansley Smith House in Hacton Lane, Hornchurch with the ‘winos’ winning the quiz with 54 points.

What will I do tomorrow?

The quiz had a general knowledge round, 1950s music round, a geography round and a crack the code round. Competitors also enjoyed a buffet lunch and raffle.

All these questions worry me, as I lie here on my own,

Another in the series of popular quiz events will be held at Beehive Court on 23 August. Get your thinking caps on for the quiz that will run from 1.30 – 4pm.

How will I fill my time? Who will I see to speak to? Will the weather be fine?

My memory is my only friend, when it seems my sleep is done The call of nature stirs me, and my aching bones respond Shall I pull the chain? And break the silent night, Or leave it till the morning and pull it at first light. I walk to my window, look out on silent streets I dare to put my TV on, to watch some old repeats I turn it off again, to hear the thundering quiet, My God! Am I the only wakeful one, in the silence of the night? Sleep engulfs me once again; I wake to an early tweet The morning comes, the day is here, and life again is sweet.


at the heart – Summer 2019

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

Birthday boy

Pop to the flicks

A DVD afternoon was held at Holsworthy House in Harold Hill on Friday 10 May. The residents chose from a selection of films/genres and selected the film In Love and War featuring Sandra Bullock and Chris O’Donnell. Residents attending the event and were supplied with popcorn, biscuits and teas and coffees.

Congratulations to Ken Hodges , a resident at Cole Court, Dorking Road in Romford who marked his 80th birthday three days early with a party on 22 February. He was joined for the celebrations by his friend Rita, his son Gary and his daughter-in-law Jenny. Ken’s motto is an appropriate one for someone in his 81st year: “Enjoy life”.

Eggsactly what was


Havering Council pulled together to donate Easter eggs for the Harold Hill foodbank. Teams from all over the council donated to ensure that no-one went without an egg this Easter. Over 100 Easter eggs were donated and gratefully received by the foodbank. The foodbank welcomes any non-perishable food donations. To find out more

Heroes remembered

This summer a new permanent exhibition will open at Romford Cemetery in Crow Lane telling the stories of some of those laid to rest including heroes, villains, entrepreneurs, sportsmen and artists. The heroes include PC Watt (pictured) who gave his life attempting to stop a runaway horse in Romford High Street in 1913 and received a Carnegie Hero Award. 78 years ago in May 1941 Acting Pilot Officer, Henry Charles Michell Pollard took off in an open cockpit Swordfish from HMS Victorious to take part in the attack on the German battleship, the Bismarck. Having returned safely, he joined the search once more for the elusive Bismarck but disappeared, declared lost at sea. He is remembered on his family’s grave in the Crow Lane cemetery If you are interested in sharing a story from your family Havering Bereavement Services would like to hear from you. Contact: Meryl Bindon 01708 434421 or email

Sheltered Housing events

A series of barbecues will be held during August. Pop these dates in your diary and keep your fingers crossed for great weather! 2 August: William Tansley Smith House, Hacton Lane, Hornchurch. 1.30 - 3pm 16 August: Cottons and Fambridge Court, Marks Road, Romford. 1.30 - 3pm 30 August: Holsworthy House, Neave Crescent, Harold Hill. 1.30 - 3pm


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

Surprise for resident A surprise 90th birthday party was arranged by residents at Bards Court for Mrs Winifred Howard. Winifred, known as Win to her friends and family, clocked up 90 years on Sunday 28 April.

Celebrating 90 years. From left to right: Win, her husband Jim, friend John Ashwell and fellow guest Coral.

Compost Bin Offer The London Borough of Havering has teamed up with to offer a limited number of discounted compost bins with a free kitchen caddy to its residents.

From only

This very special offer is available while stocks last on a first come first served basis and is limited to one compost bin with a caddy per household.

£9.99 Compost Converter – available in 2 sizes 220 Litre • Capacity: 900mm • Height • Diameter 740mm • Discounted Price

£9.99*(RRP £17.98)

330 Litre • Capacity: 1000mm • Height • Diameter 800mm • Discounted Price

£12.99*(RRP £19.98)

* Promotional price includes delivery charge and free caddy Made from 100% recycled plastic.

Order NOW online at or call 0844 571 4444 quoting reference HAV16A

Offer available to residents of the London Borough of Havering. Please allow 28 days for delivery. Terms and conditions apply, see website for details.

FREE Composting Workshops: To book a place, request advice or to order a guide to home composting visit


n o i l l i m £10

at the heart – Summer 2019


Havering’s housing estates are set for a major investment with the launch of the £10 million Estates Improvement Programme.

The extra funding will see a number of estate buildings and communal areas spruced up to make them safer and better places for our residents to live. This month at the heart brings you an exclusive first-look at how the £10 million will be prioritised and spent. Cllr Damian White, the Leader of Havering Council, said: “I’m thrilled to be able to launch the Estates Improvement Programme which will improve the lives of Council residents and communities. “Alongside our ongoing programme of works to renovate the insides of council homes, we are spending this extra £10 million to ensure our tenants are offered the highest quality accommodation and public realm.

Hillrise Road

Prioritising We know that you know your home better than anyone. That’s why we’ll be holding a series of consultation meetings on estates for residents to have their say on how and where they think the money should be best spent. Combined with reports from our housing officers

investment “The Council’s ambitious regeneration plans will transform large areas of the borough, with the estate improvement programme focusing specifically on the estates not earmarked for wider regeneration. “We want to make sure our existing tenants live in a place they feel safe, happy, and proud to call home.”


After – we’ll use your feedback to lay out the improvements programme. These will of course be tailored to the needs of specific areas, but the focus is expected to be on two key areas: safety and look and feel.


Bards Court



• Decoration of building exteriors • Repainting of internal communal areas



• Better external and communal lighting • Upgrades to door entry systems to help restrict unauthorised access to buildings • Installing new fencing and improving access to estates

Watch this space!

• Landscaping outside communal areas and estates surroundings, with upgrades to paths and walkways • Re-paving or re-arranging refuse disposal areas • Improving accessibility: installing ramps, widening entrances or repairing paving • Improving parking. This could include demolishing un-used garage blocks, extending parking on verges or introducing parking controls

A report will be presented to the Council’s Cabinet this summer setting out in more detail the types of work proposed, the estates which will be included, the likely timescales and the consultation which will take place with local residents.

Pictures of the recently renovated Highfield Towers in Collier Row where new CCTV has been installed along with landscaping, improvements to cycle and bin storage areas, improved door entry systems and fire safety precautions.


at the heart – Summer 2019

Covered in case of emergency With lighter and warmer summer nights this is a time of year when many of us get the DIY bug as we spruce up our homes. But, before you embark on any DIY projects, consider home insurance as a way to protect your home improvements in the event of disasters such as a fire or burst pipe. But that’s not the only risk. Three years ago two rivers in Havering burst their banks causing flash flooding of some homes. In 2016 two rivers in Havering burst their banks causing flooding of some homes, especially in Collier Row. The mess caused by such flooding is always difficult to clean up and having your home flooded, often with the loss of furniture and family mementoes, is never pleasant. But if you don’t have insurance cover there can often be a big financial cost too. The Council does not insure your furniture, belongings or decorations against theft, fire, vandalism and burst pipes. It is up to you to take out your own home contents insurance either by making your own arrangements or by

joining a special scheme exclusively for Havering's council tenants. From as little as 38p a week for those in sheltered accommodation you can cover the cost of replacing your belongings and Council tenants can pay weekly with their rent which helps spread the cost. More info

From £0.79 a week you could!* Having home contents insurance can’t prevent floods, thefts or fires from happening, but it can help you get back on your feet.

Find out more about protecting your furniture and personal possessions.

Call: 01708 434000

Connect: with your local housing officer *£0.79 a week for £9,000 standard cover. Terms and conditions apply, contact above. Price includes Insurance Premium Tax (IPT) charged at the appropriate rate. Lower sums insured ar lower rates are available for over 60’s. The policy is underwritten by Aviva Insurance Limited. Aviva Insurance Limited, Registered in Scotland Number 2116. Registered Office: Pitheavlis, Perth PH2 0NH. Authorised by the Prudential Regulation Authority and regulated by the Financial Conduct Authority and the Prudential Regulation Authority. FP.ENT.2204.RR.HAV

TCI Campaign - If you - FP.ENT.2204.RR - A5 Ad_Master3.indd 1

In association with

22/03/2018 10:06

Private Sector Leasing UPDATE A report on Havering Council’s review into Private Sector Leased Accommodation (PSL) was agreed at Havering Council’s Cabinet meeting last month. The PSL scheme was set up in Havering in 2004 to lease properties from private sector landlords as temporary accommodation to prevent homelessness for those with a housing need. A review was set up to look at the housing and support needs of those residents living in PSL properties.

The review found that: • the majority of PSL residents depend on benefits to meet their rental payments and that their housing solutions should be based on local housing allowance levels. • around one in five respondents to the survey households live in accommodation that is either too large, or too small, with either too many or too few bedrooms for their current need. The report recommended that officers work with these households to explore alternative accommodation more suited to their needs but nobody will be forced to move from their current home. • 27 per cent of households have significant support needs and their support should be taken into account should they need to move. • people who were assessed as homeless on or before 9 November 2012 and have lived in temporary accommodation for more than six years should be offered a social tenancy over a five year period.

Cllr Joshua Chapman, Cabinet Member for Housing said: “This review has helped us to have a firm understanding of what the future housing and support needs are for our residents accommodation. The most important thing is to reassure everyone that the PSL scheme will continue and we will make sure we offer the right accommodation and help households who would otherwise become homeless. This commitment remains unchanged.” You can read the full report online at:

This summer pay your rent before you spend it Summer is an expensive time of the year. Getting into rent arrears can be distressing and it is unwise to ignore the situation. This summer your rent is due on 1,8,15, 22 and 29 July; 5, 12 and 26 August; 2 and 9 September. Ways to pay your rent:

Direct Debit

nt Importa if tion informa r pay you t ’ n o d you Direct rent by Debit

If you are in arrears and struggling to pay, we will allow you to spread your payments using this method of payment. If you pay by direct debit we can take the money on the 1st, 7th, 14th or 21st of the month. We will let you know the monthly installment 10 working days in advance before we request your bank to pay us.

Online or by Telephone

Pay using your Debit Card online or by calling 01708 433993. This service is fully automated, available 24 hours. To make payments, you will need to know: • the amount you want to pay • your debit card details • your 14 digit rent reference number Reminder: Your Tenancy Agreement states that your rent should be paid each Monday in advance. You may lose your home if you do not pay your rent. Please contact us on 01708 434000 to discuss payment arrangements and Direct Debit.

Rent First


Pleas e



at the heart – Summer 2019

Home Ownership

Selling a Leasehold property

In this edition of at the heart we answer your questions regarding the sale of a Council leasehold property.

Q Do I need permission to sell my home?

Yes, if you are still within the first ten years from

Q Will I need to repay any of my Right to Buy Discount?

the commencement date of the Lease, you are required to offer the property back to the Council as it has the ‘Right of First Refusal’, even if you purchased it on the open market from a previous leaseholder. The Council will then decide whether they wish to exercise this right and will write to you with their decision.

If you purchased your property from the Council under the right to buy scheme on or after 18 January 2005 and wish to sell within the first five years of your purchase, you may need to repay all or some of the discount as below:

property if it is outside of the first ten years, but you have a responsibility to notify us of your intention to do so. This obligation is placed upon you under the terms of your Lease.

In addition, the amount of discount to be repaid if you sell within 5 years of purchase will be a percentage of the resale value of the property, disregarding the value of any improvements.

No, you do not need our permission to sell your

1 Year

2 Year

3 Year

4 Year

5 Year






Should you have any questions relating to selling your property or home ownership, please contact the Home Ownership team on 01708 433015 or email:


Havering Works

can work for you

Havering Works, the new service set up by Havering Council to help local people find jobs and develop key employment skills, marks its first anniversary this month. The service links with other Council services to help remove barriers to people returning to work and offers employment advice, guidance and practical support tailored to each individual. Not every person helped by Havering Works goes straight into work – although many have. In some cases residents are linked up with local training providers and the voluntary sector in order to identify opportunities that help a person gain useful skills and experience which they can then include in their CV or apply at work.

Case study: Richard Richard previously worked as a Security Officer but the company went into liquidation. He was not able to secure stable employment subsequently and his learning difficulties made it hard to find a new job. For more than 15 years he was a carer for his mother. After she passed away he started volunteering to help in trying to find a job. Richard also completed a catering course which was suggested by the job centre and after few months of trying to find something based locally he registered with Havering Works. Aggie was Richard’s advisor at Havering Works and after amending his CV they had meetings on a regular basis to support him with his job search and to boost his confidence and motivation. In January this year one of the partner organisations promoted an opportunity in a social enterprise called Brigade Bar and Kitchen based in Southwark. Participants learn how to cook nutritious food under supervision of Brigade’s chefs whilst gaining new experiences and making changes in their life in the process. Unfortunately in Richard’s case his functional skills test came too low to start a paid Apprenticeship so the next course of action was to update his CV highlighting the skills and knowledge he had gained with the Brigade team. Aggie then suggested going for an interview for a kitchen assistant post in one of the local pubs in Havering. At the time of writing we don’t know the result of the interview but Havering Works will continue to help him with his job search.

Case study: Abigail Abigail previously worked in various sectors, mostly customer services, retail, and health and social care. After maternity leave she wanted to go back to work almost immediately but didn’t find any interesting prospects based locally. She is a busy mum of five children, and after a few months of failing to find employment she registered with Havering Works looking for help. Abigail needed to work on her confidence and transferring her skills into possible job prospects. Abigail’s advisor was Aggie and since registration they have been meeting on a regular basis to support her with job searching and building her confidence. After a few weeks she found a temporary Christmas job in the local Post Office, continuing her study of Maths and English. Job opportunity Aggie spoke to Abigail again after a local care home contacted Havering Works about a job opportunity for a Care Coordinator role. Aggie knew Abigail was a perfect match for the role and helped her to submit the application form. Abigail was shortlisted for the interview. Aggie decided that it would be a great boost if Abigail attended an interview preparation and styling session with London based company called Dress for Success. It’s a global network of independent charities run in more than 150 countries whose aim is to empower women to achieve their career goals and regain financial independence. Some of the services they provide are interview preparation and free business attire for the interviewees. Abigail was slightly overwhelmed by the choices offered but eventually selected a few high quality pieces suitable for the role she was applying for. Abigail was a really strong candidate for the role, but the training and business dress support helped get her over the line. She was successful in her interview and has been working at Anytime Care 2020 for a few weeks now and is really enjoying the experience.

To get more information on how Havering Works could help you email: or call 01708 432567.


New beginnings at the heart – Summer 2019

As part of Havering Council’s ambitious 12 Estates regeneration programme, the Council has been working to ensure that residents are offered the highest level of support. Since January 2017 the Council has successfully moved 365 tenants from various sites and is continuing to locate suitable accommodation for residents who still need to move. at the heart spoke to three residents who have been part of the home moving process. Elizabeth Clements lived on Farnham Estate in Harold Hill in a second floor maisonette for 34 years. Recognising that the area needed many improvements, and experiencing quite significant health challenges, Elizabeth was very supportive of the regeneration plans for the area from the earliest stage. She said, “I can't say a bad word about the way it was handled. The housing officers were fantastic. I was already struggling to get up the two flights of stairs with shopping and then suffered a heart attack, which made tackling the stairs that much harder.” Elizabeth and her husband, Andy, were shown a house in Collier Row in a less than perfect state, and whilst Andy was apprehensive, Elizabeth could see the potential. She said, 'The house had been home to an elderly man and needed quite a lot of work done to it to make it suitable. The Council arranged everything - plastering, redecoration and a new bathroom. When we returned for a second viewing, we could see that it would be a lovely place to live.

Elizabeth Clements

We feel very

settled and grateful

The process took around six months in total and moving day was stressful and busy. After 34 years in one home, Elizabeth had acquired quite a lot of possessions that needed to be moved - but she said the removal company were so helpful and were in good spirits too, which helped. Elizabeth and Andy have been in the new property for nine months and have made it their own - it's pristine – which Elizabeth is particularly proud of. She said, “The Council take on the responsibility to house us, so it's only right that we look after the place! “Our neighbours are really lovely and it is so quiet here compared to Farnham. Although I loved where I lived, this is such a big improvement for us. We feel very settled and grateful.”


We are

so happy here

Josephine & Musa Mansaray

Josephine and Musa Mansaray lived on the Waterloo Estate in Romford in a first floor maisonette with their children. Waterloo Estate is in the first phase earmarked for development as part of the 12 Estates regeneration programme. They moved to Elm Park seven months ago and are very happy in their new home. “We originally lived in Elm Park before we moved to Waterloo Estate and now we're back. ” The moving process was flawless, Josephine, said. “From start to finish it went very smoothly. The Housing Team asked us to view an area initially, which we did, and then we got to see the property. We chose the first one we saw as we loved that we would gain a back garden and

The process

was brilliant

Helen Sharpe

Helen Sharpe and her two daughters lived in a flat above the shops in Hilldene Road, Harold Hill. After a particularly bad asthma attack, which saw her hospitalised for nine days, Helen asked the Council to consider bringing her move forward as she was struggling to get up the two flights of stairs every day. Helen said, “Hilldene was scheduled to be part of the 12 Estates regeneration programme but I contacted the Council after my asthma attack and they sent a Housing Officer round to my home. They looked at my medical details, how my circumstances had significantly changed and agreed that I be moved as a priority. A month later, they were back in touch to tell me that they had found me alternative accommodation. “The process was brilliant. They fully explained to me what I needed to do and provided all of the details, from the removal firm to the carpet supplier. It was a seamless process and I have recommended the removals company to friends and family as they were so good. “I’ve had absolutely no issues since I’ve moved. My new accommodation has a brand new kitchen, a driveway and garden. And it’s so much quieter than the flat on Hilldene! I can’t tell you how eternally grateful I am to the Council for providing me with a place I can call ‘home’.”

knew the area anyway. We especially liked that it meant my daughter didn't have to move schools and we have fantastic neighbours. “The removal company were really helpful and made the move seamless - we just got into our car and drove to our new home.” The family have settled well in their new home with many plans to make use of the garden space over the summer. Musa is handy at DIY and laid the polished wooden flooring in their new living room, which looks very stylish. They have a few smaller projects they want to tackle to make it feel their own. Josephine said, “The Council have done so much for us. We are so happy here.”

Try our real nappies for free Why not try cloth nappies, a natural, environmentally friendly alternative to disposable nappies and save up to £1000 over your baby’s nappy wearing life. Havering parents are being offered a free sample pack of Real Nappies and accessories worth £30 to see how easy and convenient these nappies really are.

Four good reasons to join the trend • Save money • Less chemicals on baby’s skin • Better for the environment • Lots of choice & easy to use

To apply for a free sample pack and for more information about using real nappies visit


at the heart – Summer 2019

Tell Joshua what you think... Cllr Joshua Chapman, the Havering Council Cabinet 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 24 June 2019

1.30 – 3pm

Sapphire Jubilee Community Centre, Bulberry Road, Collier Row, RM5 2FG

Monday 22 July 2019

1.30 – 3pm

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

Monday 19 August 2019

1.30 – 3pm

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

Techy Buddies

Libraries in Havering have computers available and offer support for people needing help to set up email accounts or access the internet. In addition, free techy buddy help is available in the locations and at the times shown in the table below. Library

ICT Session date


Collier Row

Saturday 1.30 – 3.30pm. T 434936

Elm Park

Thursday 5-6pm every week (booking required). T 434919

Gidea Park

Wednesday – 5 week beginners course 10-11am (booking required). T 434978

Harold Hill

Contact library for details T 434973

Harold Wood

Wednesday 10.30am – 12.30pm / Thursday 2.30-4.30pm (booking required). T 434975


First Tuesday of the month 2-4pm T 434903


Thursday – 4 week course 10-12noon (booking required). T 434970

Romford Central

Wednesday 10am-12noon / 4 week beginners course – further details available on request. T 432389

South Hornchurch

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


Thursday 10.30am-12.30pm (booking required) / other appointments by arrangement T 434933

More info - all telephone numbers are 01708



Havering Walking for Health Programme: April 2019 – March 2020 Health walks take place 6 days a week across 20 venues in Havering throughout the year. Walk leaders are there to assist and advise, as required, on all walks and to suggest where best to have a nice cup of tea afterwards. For more information on how to get involved please visit www.havering., email sportsdevelopment@ , or call 01708 431016.

More info Youth Diversionary project dates

For more information go to: www.peabodycareand


Information events for training, rewards and benefits of becoming a foster carer. Presentations are being held at Havering Town Hall from 6 – 7.30pm on: Thursday 4 July Thursday 1 August Thursday 5 September

Details of other events can be seen online at events

Armchair Exercise Class Harold Wood Library, Fridays, 11am (Chargeable event)

Havering Branch Essex Wildlife Trust

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

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

Oldchurch Estate, Romford Every Thursday, 5–8pm

Run by Citizens Advice Havering you must be a Havering resident to join.

Youth Bus

Street Football in Central Park Every Wednesday 5–7pm For other Centre-based projects call: Myplace on 01708 376004

Peabody (formerly Family Mosaic) run weekly drop-in sessions at locations across Havering including the PASC Housing Department between 1 and 4pm on Mondays and Wednesdays, and at Queen's Theatre in Hornchurch between 10am and 12.30pm on Wednesdays.


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

Job Club

Hornchurch Library, Thursday 10am - 1pm.

Over 50s Games Club Hornchurch Library, Friday 2 - 4pm, £1.50 for refreshments

Whist Club

Hornchurch Library, Thursday 2 - 4pm, £1.50 for refreshments

Young at Heart Groups Join one of these social groups – tea/coffee, chat and guest speakers.

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

Limitless Bring your friends and enjoy loads of fun, games and chill time whilst discovering your talents and dreams and putting them into action. 2A Newmarket Way, Hornchurch, RM12 6DS Every Friday night 7-9pm

Elm Park Library – last Wednesday of the month, 2 - 3.30pm Harold Hill Library – last Tuesday of the month, 11am - 12noon Harold Wood Library – second Wednesday of the month, 11am - 12noon Rainham Library – first Tuesday of the month, 2 - 4pm


Romford Library – Wednesday 10am – noon

Collier Row Library, first Thursday of the month, 2pm

Upminster Library – Wednesday 10am

Afternoon Tea Group

Harold Hill Library, Wednesday, 2-3pm

South Hornchurch Library– Wednesday 1.30 – 3.30pm

Coffee Mornings

Ingrebourne Community Housing Group at Hitchin

Close Hall, Hitchin Close, Harold Hill, RM3 7EG Every Tuesday, 10am – Noon  The Queen's Theatre, Billet Lane, London RM11 1QT Coffee, chat and knitting. 10% discount for Di's Diamonds members. Third Monday of every month, 10am –Noon Bravo Café, Moon and Stars, South Street, Romford. Coffee/tea and cake for £2.95 for Di's Diamonds members Fourth Thursday of every month, 10am – Noon

Age UK Redbridge, Barking and Havering Bowling first Tuesday of every month, 10.15am Namco, The Brewery, Waterloo Road, Romford, RM1 1AU

Diamond Geezers

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 in Havering. They offer a wide range of services from health and wellbeing to coach trips and financial services. Please call 01708 796600 or email


at the heart – Summer 2019