ACER: Social Evening Update

Summary Report on ACER’s recent Social held on 15th September 2019

The Social Evening was well attended and groups of residents who enjoyed being able to meet up and chat over a drink and nibbles both before and after formal proceedings.   Before the formal proceedings started, residents were invited to add items to the Agenda and six topics were added for discussion. Four of our local Councillors were able to attend and they were able to answer several of the questions raised by residents. Following the success of the evening, ACER will be having further social events in the future.

The main points raised at the meeting were as follows:

  • Apologies ACER committee member Graham May sent an apology which was due to convalescence.  Cllr Andy Croy sent his apologies due to a WBC committee meeting.  Cllr Sheena Mathews sent her apologies as she would be late due to an ETC committee meeting.
  • Welcome  Tim Marsh as Acting Chair welcomed everyoneand stated that the meeting was for the benefit of the residents who were invited to speak at any point during the proceedings.  The members of the Committee were introduced. The Chair thanked CouncillorsCarl Doran, Gurdeep Bhangra and Shirley Boyt for attending to answer resident’s questions. Cllr Sheena Mathews was able to attend after her ETC committee meeting.
  • The Treasurer reported a healthy   bank balance, although it was pointed out that annual membership fees (£2 per household) were still outstanding and were required  to cover normal running costs e.g. hall hire and newsletter printing costs.
  • The Chair of the Planning Sub- Committee reported that there had been 24 planning Applications in Whitegates since our AGM in March. Three of the Applications were referred to Wokingham Borough Council Planing Committee in July. Despite all three not complying with WBC’s planning policies (in the view of ACER), all three plans were approved.  Many ACER members were dismayed at the proceedings. ACER have requested an explanation from WBC over the proceedings following ongoing concern from members.     On a separate matter, it was reported that following a visit by a WBC Enforcement Officer, vehicles parked in the wooded area of London Road were removed.
  • Liaison reports were given from meetings with MERA, our neighbouring Residents Association, and  WANE,the Woodley and North Earley Community Forum which concerns Police liaison and security issues.  Reports were also given from meetings at Earley Town Council to which ACER were invited. These included the Youth and Community Committee and the Local Transport Plan, which included contingency planning for the sudden removal of a bus service, as happened with the 12C (since reinstated).
  • Next Door Whitegates.  The meeting was informed thatthe Next Door Whitegates organisation HAD NOTHING TO DO WITH ACER. Members were advised that a company called Next Door is behind this website which asks to access all your contacts. Some members have reported that letters received in the post with a neighbours name on it who had not knowingly authorised the use of their name.
  • Speeding Three ACER members are involved in the process to become part of the Speedwatch Initiative to monitor speeding in local roads in order to support a case for preventive measures before serious  accidents take place.  More volunteers would be welcome.

The chair thanked everyone for coming .Additional informal discussions took place by the bar after the formal proceedings closed.