Southill Community 

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Proposals for Marchesi House Site
For the past few months charitable housing association BCHA has been working towards developing a planning application for the redevelopment of the Marchesi House site in Weymouth.  As part of this process we encouraged community feedback because it is important to get as many views as possible and we thank those who took part.    

We received a number of community observations and suggestions on the proposed design, the construction process and how best a new development could fit within the local community. This has helped influence our work and the direction of the development.    
With a planning application now imminent, we wanted to share the revised plans, give more details about the proposal and offer answers to concerns raised during the consultation process.     
A selection of the site designs outlining the plans will shortly be available to view on the Opening Doors website: www.openingdoorsdorset.co.uk    
Design The redevelopment will provide a total of 31 new properties for Weymouth and Portland residents. These 31 properties will comprise 13 x 1 bed flats, 12 x 2 bed houses and 6 x 3 bed houses. Recognising the housing needs of the area, the properties will be a blend of shared ownership and affordable rented.   
Although the proposals represent an increase in the number of homes compared to the existing Marchesi House structure, we sincerely believe the design does not represent over development.  In developing this proposal we have been conscious of the need to balance the housing need of the wider area, the financial viability of the scheme and the need to provide a development that fits in well with the local area.  
Concerns have been raised about the scale of the blocks of flats. Whilst it is acknowledged that they are more pronounced that the existing structure we believe that given the topography of the site, the height will be equivalent of neighbouring properties.  
Site Plan We have amended the design to ensure a greater balance of internal parking. We have also taken into consideration requests regarding the location of the bin store and have moved this to a different location.  
Flooding Residents have highlighted past issues of flooding in the area and their concerns that this issue is exacerbated by the development.  Please be aware that a full and detailed drainage survey has been undertaken as part of the planning process and, indeed, is a requirement.  Wessex Water has been, and will be, continued to be consulted in any development.   
 
Construction We will ensure that the developer appointed for this scheme is part of the Considerate Constructor scheme.  Our construction process will include -but not be limited to- maintaining a point of contact for residents, reasonable start/end times on site and washing down of surrounding roads.  
We will be endeavouring to develop a positive relationship with the local community (including talks to local schools and school site visits etc.).    
Community Safety Safety is our number one priority. The proximity of the local primary school and the safety of children and parents going to/from there is something of which we are very conscious.  We understand community concerns regarding increased traffic, particular with the heavier vehicles necessary to bring in materials during construction.  Although a contractor has not been appointed yet, as part of any future construction management plan we will ask the contractors to commit to working times and access and parking arrangements which are sensitive to the school.  
Alternative road access routes for the site design were investigated but due to land ownership and overarching site design were deemed to be unfeasible.   
Residents The proposed properties will be a mixture of one bedroom flats and two and three bedroom houses. They will be both affordable rented and shared ownership.  This mix was arrived at following consultation with the local authority Weymouth and Portland Borough Council as to the wider area’s housing needs.  
A robust letting policy will be placed on all properties to ensure that the new residents will be a positive addition to the community.    
What next?  
A planning application will be submitted to Weymouth and Portland Borough Council shortly.  You will be able to view this plans on the Weymouth and Portland Borough Council website and let them know your views – visit www.dorsetforyou.gov.uk    
If the council approves the plans BCHA would be seeking to start on site next summer, once suitable new homes have been found for the current Marchesi House residents.     
We recognise that inevitably this document will not reach every local resident who would wish to receive it.  We encourage you to notify your neighbours of the Opening Doors website and advise anyone who wishes to receive future updates to get in touch with Felix Dyer, Project Development Officer at BCHA ([email protected] or 01202 410500) so as to be added to a mailing list.  

The poems in this section were written for Halloween by pupile at Southill School and were read out at the start of the Lantern Walk which was a great success with over 120 people taking part. Well done to Helen and Sarah who organised it all.

JOKES

Why are ghosts bad at telling lies? Because you can see right through them!

What do you call a ghost with a broken leg? Hoblin Goblin!

What do zombies like for pudding? I-scream!

What room can’t ghosts go in? The living room

Why wasn’t there any food left at the Halloween party? Because everyone was goblin!

What is a witch’s favourite subject at school? Spelling!

How did the vampire race finish? Neck and neck!

Poem winners

Year 1-  Albert Jones

Halloween

Trick or treat

Yummy sweets

Vampire fangs

Scary pumpkins

Hairy spiders

Sticky cobwebs

Creepy witches

Frightening bats

Year 2- Oliver Harris

Trick or treat

Trick or treat

The kids are getting sweets to eat

It’s Halloween

We’re all dressed up

The pumpkins scary faces

Are all lit up

Trick or treat

For Halloween

Watch out!

I’ll make you scream

Year 3- Molly Foster

Happy Halloween

Happy Halloween we shout

Avoiding werewolves, out and about

Looking round, scared of ghosts

Listening for things that scare us most

On Halloween we dress up

Walking around to trick or treat

Eating lots and lots of sweets

Every monster gives a cheer

Night night” they say until next year

Year 4- Izzy Stockley

Look to your left, look to your right

Come out if you dare

Come out into the night

But if you do beware

Because it’s Halloween tonight

Children better take care.

Take your lantern, do not talk

For there are ghosts about

See the spooky houses, do a spooky walk

And hope witches are not out

Trick or treat, trick or treat

Help rebuild the park

Tonight you’ll hear your heart beat

SPARK IN THE DARK!

Year 5-Matilda and Martha Roberts

Halloween

Halloween! Halloween!

Said the evil spider queen

The evil spider queen was a witch,

Who lived right next to a dirty ditch,

Next to the ditch was a gloomy lair,

BOO!

Which was full of jumps and frights and scares,

Then two boys came, Jack and Ben,

They said “look, a little den!”

They knocked and then the witch said “BOO!”

“Come in, come in, come in you two”

“I have a surprise not trying to boast,

But you two are my Sunday roast!”

Ma ha ha ha

Year 6- Evie Thorne

Read if you dare, but you’re in for a scare!

Purple, orange, black and green,

These are the colours that will be seen,

Ferocious bats,

And mean black cats,

Witch’s brew,

Green slimy goo.

It’s Halloween night in Weymouth town,

Some scary stuff is going down,

The monsters gather on Weymouth beach,

Ready to scare whoever they meet,

Hubble bubble toil an trouble,

The cauldrons bubbling hot,

With eye of newt and wing of bat and of course green frog snot,

It’s October 31st

Apple bobbing,

Lots of sobbing as the monsters do their thing,

You run to the door with a bowl of sweets as the doorbell goes DING

The ghosts are ready

The skeletons are out,

Think you’re in for a treat!

New play equipment on its way
We are delighted that your councillors have made a case to the Borough Council which has led the council to allocate £45000 towards some new play equipment for Southill. Pressure from SPARK has also ensured that at the same time work is carried out to try and ensure that drainage on the site is improved. This is great news and means that SPARK can use their funds towards some new equipment, particularly for some of the older children. Councillors and SPARK are also working together to try and remove the KidsRus building to tidy up this site and start developing it for young people as well.

Update on Land development next to Southill (see below)

 The local plan has now beenb published and you can find out the proposals on the following website and make your comments on the consultation document, under Chickerell!!

www.dorsetforyou.com/planning-policy-consultation

 Consultation commenced on Preferred Options review of the adopted Local Plan Friday (13th August) and runs until 8th October.

There are some critical points that people might like to note and make comment on:
  • The proposed timeline for any development is 2026 at the earliest
  • Access is planned from Radipole Lane and behind the police station
  • Various safeguards have been noted for approximately 350 houses and this would provide development funding.
Please make whatever comments you wish to make, either outright opposition or how it might be modified if you feel it is likely to go ahead. This plan still works with the old boundaries between Borough and District and so although it is officially in Chickerell both access points are through Southill (Radipole Lane and Wessex roundabout). I would urge everyone to stress that this development will have the greates impact on Southill, with children going to Southill School and using Southill shops and that therefore any development funds should be used here, such as improved bus services, an improved play area especially for older children, maybe a part time surgery...

 

Gardening Group
A couple of members of this group are no longer able to help us so we would welcome new volunteers. You just have to give Ann Chard a ring on 785333 and then if the group is meeting to work on the garden in front of the shops she will let you know and you can say yes or no. We usually try and work on it 5 times a year and many peop[le have commented on how it has improved the area.Unfortunately the dry summer has had an impact this year but we have recently started to prepare ift for next Spring.

Possible Development of land between the police station and Southill

The landowners are interested in developing this site, a small part of which already has planning permission, and they have asked a company to draft some plans for its development which involve building around 350 houses, but this cannot happen unless the councils agree to changes to the Local Plan in a review now taking place.


The owners will be holding a local consultation if they are likely to go ahead with an application but feel they would like to know first whether the site is or is not recommended by officers as a Preferred Option in the Councils’ Local Plan Review. Whether it is or is not could determine the timing of a planning application and any community engagement associated with it. We should know the answer when the agenda of the first committee is published on or around 4 June. In the meantime the recent public notices were to establish what  Environmental Impact Action might be needed if they were to go ahead with an application.

 

An officer of the Council has informed us of the following timetable for Preferred Options consideration at the two Councils. You will note there is a consultation on the Preferred Options proposed Mid-August – Mid-October. This is another factor we will have to take into account

 

WD Overview & Scrutiny Committee 12 June

W&P Policy Development Committee 18 June

W&P Management Committee 10 July

WD Strategy Committee 17 July

W&P Full Council 26 July

WD Full Council 31 July

Public consultation – mid Aug to mid Oct 2018


Consequently nothing is going to happen very quickly and residents will be able to first comment on any changes proposed for the local plans in the summer and if these move the site from reserved development to prefered development then normal planning rules will apply and so plans of this size would be brought to the public before submission and then residents can make representations to planning committees. This latter step is unlikely before late Autumn, even if it happens.

The Southill Horticultural Society had its annual flower and craft show at the weekend before Easter and as you can see there were some fantastic displays with various competitions to be won. The society meets monthly and is always open to new members, meeting regularly throughout the year. As well as flowers and plants, there were opportunities to display cakes, photos, paintings and other crafts, with tea and cakes available throughout the afternoon.
Shop crisis and Pub growth and Community Bus
Residents were rather alarmed when they found the new Central Store closed until further notice one morning but fortunately it re-opened later in the morning after what is hoped to be a one-off incident. If you have not walked past the John Gregory recently please note that they are now serving food again, gradually expanding the menu and the times of serving. Those using the community bus are very pleased with the way it is working so please remember it is there for you and is flexible in the way it goes to town depending on need.
TUMBLEDOWN FARM -- Jan 2018
Since the deal with Groundworks has fallen down through the length of time it took for leases to be sorted, the Borough has been talking to the county about an alternative scheme. David Harris has ensured that he has now been included in any talks to represent the community and has met with the county Farms manager to discuss ideas. Although in its early stagess the proposals are not far from those originally drawn up with GroundWorks and we will keep you in touch if they look to be progressing.
Community Bus update --September
The article below gives the format of the Community Bus service being offered in Southill. Several residents are now using this new service regularly and there is a bus available at 1000, 1200 and 1430 to go into town, but the service is flexible and sometimes drops people off at Morrisons and the Weymouth hospital on the way so please let the operator know what you need when you ring up and they will oblige if they can.  It is also able to run on Saturdays if there is demand! There is then a return bus at 1030, 1230 and 1500 and again it is flexible in where it will drop you off. Dawn, who manages this service for us all says " Everyone is very friendly and it is a great atmosphere on the bus. I shall be happy to keep it going for the next twelve months" Although these are the regular times if five or six of you want a special trip please get in touch at the numbers below and I am sure Dawn will try her hardest to sort something out for you at different times. Keep on using it and tell your friends! We have not had to use up much of the support grant we were given so if we run through a bad patch we can keep it going.
 
Community Bus Service started in May
Introduction

At the recent meeting of about 100 residents David explained that no commercial company was interested in running a service to Southill despite all three local companies being approached on many occasions and various options suggested. The present bus subsidised by DCC would cease trading in July as it too failed to meet its costs even though these were much lower than a commercial operation, and the County has cut £1.85m of its bus budget.

However all the completed forms about the buses provided us with evidence of a desire to have a more regular service when more people might use it. The time to wait for a lift home was too long and so many people thought it was better to pay the car park charges or taxi fares. With this in mind the meeting looked at the option of us managing a community bus on our own, as many villages are having to do. We are fortunate in that Dawn Walker, the owner of the P D Contract buses you may have seen parked on the estate, and who lives in Southill, was very happy to explore how she could help us set up such a service. Most community bus developments have to find a way of raising funds for a bus in the first place, and then look for drivers, Dawn can help us with both of these. The Southill charity, SPARK, has agreed to act as banker and overseer.

What does a community bus service mean for us?

  1. Clearly any community bus scheme has to cover its costs and so we will have to pay to use the service.
  2. A community bus scheme means we have to “reserve” our seat on our bus in advance and cannot be randomly picked up like a commercial service.
  3. A community bus scheme can pick up from someone’s home when walking is difficult, but more important, can drop you off nearer your home on the return trip as it is not tied to bus stops, although we anticipate these will be used as the main pick up points, especially those with shelters.
  4. SPARK has applied for a grant to help us provide support for the service as it builds up a routine so that individual charges can be guaranteed.
  5. The grant will also be used to support a booking system so that this can work effectively
  6. Regular users will provide a backbone but other people can use the bus on an occasional basis as long as they have “booked”.
  7. Dawn has enough flexibility to get two groups to town at more or less the same time and most of her buses can take wheelchair users.
  8. If it works we may be able to organise a Saturday service and it should continue in the school holidays

How will it operate?

We are  starting with buses being planned at around 1000 and 1200  to go into town, with the 1100 bus still running until July in between. We would assume that this would lead to something coming home at 1030, 1130 and 1230. The afternoon bus will still run at 2.00pm and come back at about 2.30pm until July. If several of you wish to go into town on the 2.00pm bus and wish to come home at about 4/4.30pm then please contact P&D contracts and we hope this will be possible and become a regular pick-up.

If you are looking to make a trip into town it would be helpful if you could ring the day before to book your times and indicate where you wished to be picked up. Users will be given a form to complete when they use the bus for the first time asking for details of your usual pick-up point and contact details.  We anticipate using the bus stops initially but this can change. If you suddenly decide to go into town you can still call the number provided and hope there is a space. If enough people ask for a lift at or near a particular time then a second bus may be provided. As people start using it and get to know who else often travels then a group might decide on different times and as long as we are between 6 and 8 people this should pay for itself, but we will monitor this as we will only have so much seed funding.

Starting –up details

To start the service off we will  charge £1.50 from Southill and £1.00 from Goldcroft. At the start we will operate at this price even if only one or two people wish to catch a particular bus, but if enough people regularly use the service we may be able to reduce these charges.

The numbers you should ring are 01305 779157 or 07970 016851 and you will need to say when you wish to travel and where you wish to be collected from. This line will be open from May 12th. If you fill in a form with your details on  (Address, pick up point and contact details) all you would have to say is the time and your name as all other details will be “in the system”. If there is not someone available to answer your call you will be able to leave a message and a confirmation will be made to you in good time. One way journeys are fine for those who wish to walk one way, as long as they are booked. The prices above are estimates based on the bus being full one way so if it is full both ways so much the better! If a group of you wish to go to the cinema or other entertainment then other times can be considered at this price as long as there are around 6 in the group.

Initially the main drop off  points in town will be at the back of M&S, the back of Debenhams and ASDA. To come home we will initially use M&S, Town Bridge and ASDA. In Goldcroft Road pick-ups will be at either end or at Thornhill Road.

The Service started on 15th May

Update on Youth Club Building July 26th
The meeting on July 16th went very well with around 50 people attending. The meeting became the AGM of SPARK so that we can move this organisation into a Charitable incorporated organisation so that it can caryy out functions and be the holder of the lease for the centre. A committee was set up which will meet every other Sunday for the first couple of months to help establish this new Southill Centre and if you would like to join the committee please let Pete Barrow know on 07741 252302.  James Symonds will be overseeing some flooring works and a little bit of painting through the first two weeks in August to help prepare the building for the autumn. If anyone wishes to volunteer for repairs and maintenance teams please contact Pete and we can then let you know when things are happening . We are hoping to fit some new kitchen units later if anyone has any plumbing skills. We have a long term booking from September with Evolution Dance using the premises from 3.30pm until 7.00pm most evenings. This will please some of the southill parents who presently have to take their children all over the place and it will also provide us with a regular income as we set the building upfor the community to use. Another skill we are on the look out for is marketing the building both for use, or helping us persuade local businesses to advertise in the kitchen social area. We are looking for a new name as although we hope to restart the Youth Club this will clearly only be a small part of the activity we hope the centre will be used for.

Orchard Manager wanted

The environment team would like a volunteer to help us manage the orchard -- the land between the car park and the road. All it requires is a knowledge of when to prune fruit trees and to keep an eye on the trees which Transition Towns planted for us so that we do not let them die in a drought and prune them at the right times. If you are interested in talking about this please contact Ann on 785333 or David on 781660.

Our first daffodil is in flower and clearly there are some more on their way. This first year has been quite testing weather wise and those on the bank next to the car park entrance are clearly struggling a little. However daffodils are quite hardy so hopefully there will be a better display next year. Once the weather improves we shall be tackling the flower bed again. Volunteers welcome!

Planting daffodils

Watch out for these in the next two months. They are just appearing despite the long grass.

We were delighted to have been joined by Class 2 of Southill Primary school who helped us plant around 500 daffodil bulbs in front of the shops and on the entrance to the car park. These should give us a feast of colour in March and we would like to thank Goulds and Wilkinsons for donating most of the bulbs alongside one or two residents. We have added some pictures below but if you want to see more and what the children said about the activity please go to  http://www.southill.dorset.sch.uk/planting-daffodils-with-class-two/

Southill Flower Bed renovation

 The group has been set up to try and return Southill to the Garden Estate it was planned as.  Anyone who would like to get involved on an occasional basis, or help us plan, please get in touch. The first task the Environment group decided to tackle, was the flower bed outside of the shops.

As you can see from this picture we finally managed to remove the tree stump, the weeds and many stones and planted flowers from many donations around the Estate. One or two members of the team lugged water from across the road during the dry Spring and this autumn view shows the effort was worth while. We will be asking for help on occasional days to re-weed, or to plant next Spring. If you would like to get involved in the maintenance of the garden with an occasional flurry with a trowel, please let Ann Chard know on 785333. The team would like to thanks Caviar Place for the free fish and chips they provided us for sustenance on one of the hot early summer days.


A longer project is to make the cycleway/footpath through the estate an attractive element of the route from Dorchester to Portland, as well as for those of us on the estate who walk around it, with or without dogs. We had a day in July when we started work on making the metre either side of the track more under control so that we can plant wild flowers along side without them being swamped. We were helped by about twenty young people from Budmouth college who were involved in a community day and the mayor, Councillor Christine James, came and cheered them on. We also hope to plant some bluebell and snowdrop bulbs in some of the wooded areas along the path and possibly some flowering trees with the help of the transition town team. If you would like to get involved in this project on an occasional basis please let us know so we can keep you in touch with what is happening.


Another of the plans that we have is to plant over 500 daffodils on the banks facing the car park and shops. The Budmouth helpers in July dug several holes in readiness for this and a class from Southill Primary School  should help us plant them in October. This should bring the Southill Garden Estate alive next Spring. We'll add a picture showing the bulbs in full bloom but in the meantime the picture shows where they are to be planted.

The area above this bank (which will have its daffodils planted on 19th October) on the entrance to the car park  has been planted with fruit trees by the Transition Town project in Weymouth. Once the trees are old enough to bear fruit it is there for the community to eat along with the fabulous blackberries that grow above the car-parking area. Transition Town project encourages using open spaces to generate food as well as look attractive, and they will be working with us as we progress our ideas.

Work on the edges of the cycle way Part 2

We are experimenting with planting wild flowers along the cycleway/footpaths to see whether these will take at this time of the year and how we need to plan for next spring. We also hope to plant a few English Bluebells and snowdrops among the trees and have planted some new trees on the road side of the track. Through the winter we may make the occasional flurry to remove some of the larger weeds so that we can plant a larger area in the Spring. Residents can help in many ways; providing plants and bulbs; helping snip at overhanging brambles; brushing the path afterwards, as well as tackling the preparation of the ground.