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Twyncarmel News

December 2013

Here’s what YOU think... So far we have received 71 responses to our consultation about what Twyncarmel is like to live on and how we can improve things. If you haven’t already told us what you think, let us know by filling in the comments section at the end of this newsletter.

You said ... 53 out of 71 said you feel safe in your home

40 of you said the estate is well kept

43 of you said you feel safe on the estate

34 of you said you would go on walkabouts with staff/other residents to identify issues

You said ... 37 people said there was a lack of play facilities for children

We are doing... Thank you to everyone who gave their views to us on the Council’s Community Open Spaces Strategy consultation. This consultation adds to our understanding of how you want to use the open spaces on Twyncarmel. Common themes that came up included: the need for more play areas for younger children; additional car parking; requests for allotments/community garden maintenance; and to put back play areas by nos. 70 80 and near 69 - 65.

28 people complained about children / youth behaviour

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There are links between lack of activities for children and young people and complaints of children / youth anti social behaviour. Working with Hedfan, we will be consulting children and young people about their needs at the local primary schools shortly. In the meantime, we have gone along to the Youth Club at The Fact Shop and asked the young people what they would like to see on the estate.

Your views have been sent to the council for consideration alongside other responses in the Ward/County Borough.

25/11/2013 13:01:18

Twyncarmel Newsletter | December 2013

You said

We are doing...

34 people said that litter

Working with Keep Wales Tidy, Youth Workers and local children/young people, we organised a litter pick on the afternoon of 30th October. A skip amnesty was also organised at the same time. Let us know if you think it made a difference to the area and if you would like us to do something similar again.

and rubbish was an issue

18 people said that grounds

Dog waste in the field was identified as an issue. Help us to tackle this issue by letting us know if you see anyone walking their dog on the field or estate and not picking up after it. You can also report it to the Council on 01685 725000 or

maintenance, including residents looking after their own gardens, was an issue.

It’s great that you want to improve your back gardens, but if you are planning to make any changes remember you need our permission first. Over the coming months we will be inspecting the condition of back gardens.

You said ...

We are doing...

12 people said that ASB was an issue

We have shared our findings with the Neighbourhood Policing Team and are working with them to try to meet your concerns. They have already held two Police street briefing around numbers 1 to 69 and 70 to 80 and will be patrolling more often. Your concerns about drug issues are taken seriously. Police visited one property and arrests were made. The more information you are able to give us, the more we can do.

12 said they wanted to see

more Police/WWH staff on the estate

We will be renting a room at the Fact Shop to help you visit WWH staff there. Times and days will be published in the next edition of this newsletter, once details have been finalised.

You said ...

We are doing...

23 people have concerns

If you report a repair and don’t get the service you expect, please tell us how we can get better. Use the comments section on the back page to tell us what you think, or ring us. We try and ring residents who’ve received a repair to find out what they thought of the service. If you have something to say about how we organised or carried out a repair you’ve had, log on to our website and the Contact Us section to give us your comments.

about repairs

4 people said parking was an issue and more spaces were needed 3 people wanted a better

explanation of what you get for your Service Charges

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25/11/2013 13:01:19

Twyncarmel Newsletter | December 2013

You said ...

We are doing...

15 people said there was a

We are supporting the 50+ social group which meets in The Fact Shop every Thursday afternoon between 2pm and 4pm. Free refreshments are provided.

lack of community spirit

We have provided funding to help put on some fish and chip events with guest speakers.

Huw Williams at the 50+ social group entertaining them with songs and clog dancing

14 people raised the issue

of other nationalities moving onto the estate with different cultures/not understanding your ways.

Trips and activities are arranged to suit those attending, including a trip to Coed-y-Dderwen school fete, a talk from EE about making the most of mobile phones and the internet and a music and clog dancing session with Huw Williams (pictured left). For more information ring Rhonda Braithwaite on 01685 383929. So often during the survey we were told ‘it’s down to the people living here’. Let us know how we can help you recreate the community spirit you miss, and help you to welcome newcomers into the community. It comes down to what you are prepared to do and how we can help you to do it.

Weekly activities in The Fact Shop AM Monday


9 - 11am Free computer training

Evening 5-8pm Youth Club

11am - 12noon Free help with finances Tuesday

9.30-11.30am Parent & Toddler group

Thursday 10-10.30am Food Co-op

2-4pm 50+ Social Group

5-6pm Community weight management classes 6-7pm New Zumba classes with Sarah

Other activities at the Fact Shop: • Labour Councillor Surgeries - 2nd Thursday monthly 4 - 4.45pm • PCSO Surgeries - Fortnightly from 3pm to 4pm - check for information • PACT meetings - once every 4 months - details displayed in Castle View Stores Page 3| | 0800 052 2526 | Twitter: @wwha

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25/11/2013 13:01:20

Twyncarmel Newsletter | December 2013

Mobile Library Service - dates for your diary

You can’t afford to miss this...

The Council advise us that the mobile library service visits Twyncarmel once a fortnight between 10 - 10.30am (two locations). Dates for the visits over the next few months are: November 29th December 13th December 27th

We all know that food bills have increased faster than income which is putting a strain on everyone’s budgets. Via the Grocery Box initiative you pay just £6 and get £15 worth of food. Each grocery box contains tea bags, coffee, 2 tins of soup, 2 tins of baked beans, tinned meat, a carton of fruit juice, a bag of pasta and a bag of rice, tinned veg, cooking sauce, porridge, tinned fish -

plus whatever is delivered that week from the supermarkets. Fresh fruit, veg and salad bags contain a mixture of items available from the wholesale market and vary weekly. They are available in family and small bags, as are the potatoes. For more details ring 01685 383929 and ask for Helen McShea or Rhonda Braithwaite.

Introducing Your

Neighbourhood Policing Team PC Carolyn Lewis

Team Leader 07584 770510

PCSO Peter Jacques

07805 301014 peter.jacques@south-wales.pnn.

PCSO Jason Davies 07805 301010

To report a crime

PCSO Owain Dando 07825 262483

• Ring 101 if it HAS happened but the culprits aren’t around.

• Ring 999 and ask for the Police if it is happening NOW!

• Ensure you ask for and receive a crime log number. Once you have this, let us know.

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25/11/2013 13:01:23

Twyncarmel Newsletter | December 2013

Who’s who ... meet our local staff Below are the contact details of other WWH staff who have responsibility for and work in and around the Twyncarmel area, along with their telephone numbers so that you can contact them easily.

Bridget Garrod

Alex Morris

Ian Williams

Alison Chaplin

Sion Phillips

Phil Howell

Neighbourhood Initiatives Manager 02920 414075

Asset Management Officer 07929 201429

Housing Officer 07929 201423

Asset Management Officer 07929 201359

Asset Management Officer 02920 414064

Site Superintendent

Alternatively, you can contact them by ringing our freephone number

0800 052 2526 Sylvia Rogers Cleaner

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25/11/2013 13:01:30

Twyncarmel Newsletter | December 2013

Introducing ....

Sharon Jones By now some of you will have already met me. I’m Sharon Jones, Tenancy Support Officer for Wales & West Housing. I’ve been working in this role since March this year. My job is to provide financial assistance and general support to all tenants affected by the under occupancy regulations - or ‘the Bedroom Tax’ - which have been in force since 1st April. Unfortunately for some residents with a very low income (those on Job Seekers Allowance or Income Support, for example) they cannot afford to pay the shortfall between their housing benefit payment and the rent due and have no alternative but to move to homes that meet their household size. I am able to help find suitable accommodation via Tai Dewis, the common housing register in Merthyr and also seek help to fund the move.

For those residents whose income is enough to manage paying their rent and who want to stay in their homes, I can help you to manage your household budgets more effectively. To date I have visited everyone affected by the bedroom tax in Twyncarmel and have looked at your household budgets. By doing this I have been able to make successful applications for: • Discretionary Housing Payments (to make up the shortfall) • Bedroom Tax exemptions • Water debt write-offs • Water Assist - lowered water rate charges • Water Direct - water rates payment direct from state benefits • Improved energy tariffs • Housing Benefit and backdates • Discretionary Assistance funding - a Department of Works & Pensions payment for essential household needs • Reduction in rate of repayment of Social Fund loans • Personal Independence Payments

I have also promoted: • Credit Union loans - low interest • Grocery packs (food items worth £15 for just £6) • Warm Homes Discount (£135 of electricity credited to the accounts of qualifying tenants) • Save the Children scheme - Eat, Sleep, Learn, Play! claiming white goods and essential household items, including educational toys and books for qualifying families. Some residents have been fortunate in being provided with good quality furnishings that have been donated to Wales & West Housing. I am constantly seeking ways and projects which will help you pay your rent and make your income go further, linking up with other organisations to provide the financial assistance and support that you may need. If you think you can benefit from my advice I will be happy to hear from you. You will find me on regular site visits to Twyncarmel or contact me on 07826 526511.

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25/11/2013 13:01:37

Twyncarmel Newsletter | December 2013

And finally... Asked to rate the following, where 1 = poor and 10 = excellent, you said: Overall condition of the houses


How we look after the scheme


How you feel about the estate as a place to live


Community - are other residents generally friendly?


When asked how you would prefer to be contacted, you said:








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Face to face



That’s why we have produced this newsletter. It will just be the start...

Christmas Competition WIN AN M&S CHRISTMAS HAMPER! Every year we send out a corporate Christmas e-card and this year we’d again like you to provide us with a super seasonal picture for us to use on the card.

Please email your entries to sarah. or post them to Editor – Christmas Card Comp, In Touch, Wales & West Housing, Ffordd Pengam, Tremorfa, Cardiff CF24 2UD.

You can send us a photograph, drawing, painting or even a collage or computer graphic – but whatever it is it must be your own original work and must reflect the spirit of Christmas.

Tell us your views We hope you have found this newsletter useful! If there is anything in particular you’d like us to look at in the next edition - which will be due out early in January 2014 - please let us know! Contact Alison Chaplin, Community Development Project Officer 07929 201429 Follow us on Twitter @wwha

Our Chief Executive Anne Hinchey and Chair of the Board Kathy Smart will judge the entries and the winner will receive an M&S Christmas Hamper worth over £50.

Check out our website: Prosimy skontaktować się z nami, jeśli chce Pan(i) uzyskać ten biuletyn w języku polskim.

The competition is open to WWH residents of all ages (children included), and the closing date is 13th December.

Usual competition rules apply and the Chief Executive’s decision will be final.

Se desejar aceder a esta newsletter em português, contacte-nos.

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25/11/2013 13:01:39

Twyncarmel Newsletter | December 2013

Tell us what you think... Please use this space to give us your comments - you can then drop them off at The Fact Shop - or email your comments to And don’t forget - if you want us to feed back to you directly you will need to enter your name and contact details.

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Thanks for your comments.

25/11/2013 13:01:40

Twyncarmel newsletter december 2013  
Twyncarmel newsletter december 2013