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Oval Regeneration Questions


H.Wilson
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I have been reading all about the up and coming Oval regeneration starting in the next few months. Is it me or did they recently put all new windows and generally upgrade/revamp all the the flats? If this is the case why did they spend all this money if they are all being knocked down shortly?

 

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H.Wilson, you have got the information mixed up. The flats that were upgraded and received new windows are the two storey two bedroom flats and three bedroom cornish houses in the streets behind the Oval, which included the flats that were bought. The cost to these people who have bought their flats was nearly £7,000 each for the renovations, tenants of HHL had their rents increased, which is normal practise by HHL every year. If you live in a block of two storey flats and you have bought yours any renovations done is a quarter of the total price to those people.

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Social landlord plans to publish £500 expenditure

from 24DASH.COM - Friday 24th February 2012
 
Another housing association is planning to publish all expenditure over £500 – following in the footsteps of Home Group and Viridian.
 
West Midlands social landlord Herefordshire Housing – which manages around 5,500 homes – is planning to publish the details alongside its chief executive’s pay.
 
Chief executive Peter Brown said: “There’s a growing distrust in organisations like banks and in chief executives’ pay in general. It’s about how you keep your relevance in that environment. Because of that, I think you need to be more open. We’re preparing an openness statement which we’ll take to board in March.â€
 
Mr Brown said a lot of the information already existed in things like the Annual Report and other performance-related information the landlord publishes. 
 
However, he said the plan is to “put it in one place†so people can see “we’re very open compared to most organisationsâ€.
 
The move could see the landlord publish its £500 expenditure from April 1.
 
He said there was some "nervousness" about the move which could have “unintended consequences†– particularly around preserving the commerciality of its suppliers, for example, if it revealed the price it paid for specific materials or services.
 
The housing minister Grant Shapps has stepped up his bid for associations to become more transparent and has praised the likes of Home Group and Viridian who are publishing all expenditure over £500.
 
However, the NHF argues that housing associations have already put in place a "raft of measures to ensure they are transparent, accountable and open in their operations".
 
At yesterday’s NHF Communications and Marketing Conference, the move was dubbed unnecessary by one housing chief.
 
Diane Bellinger, chief executive of housing mutual Community Gateway Association said her tenants weren’t interested in the landlord publishing such details.
 
She said: “They can find it out anyway. Our tenants feel very well informed. However, if they asked – if there was a groundswell of opinion - we would do it."
 
Steve Smedley, associate consultant at Housemark, said publishing expenditure over £500 was a “poor tool†to judge a landlord’s value for money because tenants would have "nothing to compare it to".

 

This is nearly two years ago. Did they ever do this - can't see anything on their website?

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H.Wilson, you have got the information mixed up. The flats that were upgraded and received new windows are the two storey two bedroom flats and three bedroom cornish houses in the streets behind the Oval, which included the flats that were bought. The cost to these people who have bought their flats was nearly £7,000 each for the renovations, tenants of HHL had their rents increased, which is normal practise by HHL every year. If you live in a block of two storey flats and you have bought yours any renovations done is a quarter of the total price to those people.

 

Thank you CVP, you are right I am confusing the different flats. I was sure work had been recently done on these flats especially the ones around the shops, were they not painted or something?

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yes you are right the shop flats were painted in the summer of last year, when they did all the alterations to the other flats so that they match. In the redevelopment of the Oval the shops and flats above will not be demolished because I said the shop owners  would not come back, and they echo what I said, and lets face it we need the little shops. I remember about 30 years ago we had a little 'community of shops' butchers, chemist, greengrocer, post office,baby shop etc were all at the Oval which in my opinion we need back especially with 259 properties being built around there. For once HHL listened to what  the people said, the flats will be modernised to a high standard. As the local councillor living in the area of development I sit on the housing management group for the development to over see that the tenants moving out are disrupted as little as possible with a new development, they will be help to move where they want to go if they are not coming back to the new development, either way, I have made sure they will not be financially out of pocket, and HHL has agreed to this.

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yes you are right the shop flats were painted in the summer of last year, when they did all the alterations to the other flats so that they match. In the redevelopment of the Oval the shops and flats above will not be demolished because I said the shop owners  would not come back, and they echo what I said, and lets face it we need the little shops. I remember about 30 years ago we had a little 'community of shops' butchers, chemist, greengrocer, post office,baby shop etc were all at the Oval which in my opinion we need back especially with 259 properties being built around there. For once HHL listened to what  the people said, the flats will be modernised to a high standard. As the local councillor living in the area of development I sit on the housing management group for the development to over see that the tenants moving out are disrupted as little as possible with a new development, they will be help to move where they want to go if they are not coming back to the new development, either way, I have made sure they will not be financially out of pocket, and HHL has agreed to this.

 

They would look a lot better with some modern cladding and the shops could do with a face lift, especially the ones around the back. These flats above the sops look not a lot different from the flats that are being demolished.

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Hi John, hope you had a good Christmas!

If you go to the Planning Forum, the thread headed "Oval regeneration decision", Megilleland has posted some excellent information. Definitely worth a read through.

Megilleland has also provided some useful links on the "Vortex site going for houses - what a surprise" thread, which I think is in the Newton Farm Forum.

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Cheers Dippy, will have a look now. I had a good Xmas ta, Xmas Eve with some Polish friends (declined the carp though in favour of herring) and Xmas day with an alcoholic old family friend, who despite his problems (of which there are many) is actually a very good cook. We got to use what remained of his family's silver service, although I was told off for overfilling the silver cream jug (by overfilling I mean 3/4 full). This apparently, is incredibly common. Leaving your dentures in plain view by the sink of the tiny cottage kitchen we lunched in and farting every time you had to get up from the table apparently is not (as long as you mutter nonchalantly and almost inaudibly 'beg pardon' as you do it). He invited a pensioner along too, a virtual stranger whom he nods to on the bus (which he has to use thanks to a drink driving ban), as she had no family to go to, so it was quite an interesting day. Turns out she does have two adult kids but they were otherwise disposed this year. Spent most of the lunch trying to work out why she should have been discarded so at Xmas as she seemed fairly pleasant and quite humorous. I narrowed it down to two things. Firstly, as her late husband was a hop farmer from Kent originally, he insisted they took Christmas Day as his big day out (his only day off in the year apparently, although I would have thought there were a fair few days the hops could have got on with things themselves, especially after harvest). So they used to pack the kids into their car and drive round the countryside (Kent to Warwick Castle on one occasion), enjoying the lack of traffic and their packed sandwiches whilst gazing at the ruins of long lost castles in the drizzle and snow. I should imagine this practice has either filled the kids with such considerable bitterness, re-triggered every Xmas, that they avoid their mother during the season or they simply grew up thinking Xmas was no big deal themselves (and maybe spend their own 25th Dec trying to find free and open National Trust sites). The second issue is, as she insistently kept repeating to me in hushed tones whenever Robert left us and the table in another cloud of gas to arrange the next course, was that she is convinced someone has keys to her house and goes into the cottage when she's out on the bus shopping and 'moves things around' (some tradesman in the summer, a nurse who visited her, the people who put in her alarm bell were all blamed). With that in mind she needed to be home by 3 to batten down the hatches whilst their was still daylight.

I came away very grateful for my own, relatively straight forward problems!  

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John, The land and housing/flats that belong to Herefordshire Council became HHL through stock transfer in 2002, HHL paid nearly quarter of million to Herefordshire Council for the land/stock. Land that was given FREE to HHL as part of the development of the Oval was the Vortex open space land, much to the dismay of the residents living near by and myself, unfortunately the other two ward councilors living in Belmont really pushed it through. He even went with representatives of HHL to a meeting with the cabinet member for housing to make sure the land was given to them.

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Thank you Glenda. And thank god for people with your integrity. I wonder what would happen if I asked Herefordshire Council for some free land to develop. My mad uncle actually secured a loan off a investment bank, in principle, on the basis he would buy some property off HC at above the price they were asking from 'preferred bidders' which he would then develop himself. The investment bank he approached in London effectively said, that the land was chronically undervalued and that they would happily lend him the money in the knowledge that his profits would be huge and guaranteed. HC declined to discuss it with him. The Tesco bags and old coat may have put them off. I did tell him to wear a suit. He only wanted to prove a point. I believe the old tax office in Broad St was similarly sold to a 'preferred bidder' at approx. £400000 (Wye Valley Recycling family or consortium I believe). Now revamped, with a German bank in part of the building, a new block of flats on the car park at the back and more flats above the bank, I should imagine the value is roughly ten times the cost of buying the land, doing the refurb and building the block of flats. Nice work if you can get it. If any party promises to forensically examine all HC land transactions come a new cabinet in 2015 I would give them my vote and my last refresher!

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I have been reading all about the up and coming Oval regeneration starting in the next few months. Is it me or did they recently put all new windows and generally upgrade/revamp all the the flats? If this is the case why did they spend all this money if they are all being knocked down shortly?

 

I cycle around here every day and had noticed that new plastic window frames have been fitted into all the flats over the past years. When all these flats are demolished during the phased development plan let's hope the frames can be salvaged and used for the good of other people.

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I cycle around here every day and had noticed that new plastic window frames have been fitted into all the flats over the past years. When all these flats are demolished during the phased development plan let's hope the frames can be salvaged and used for the good of other people.

 

Like I said I am sure some upgrade had been done to these flats over the past few years and yes it could be the new windows but why? Surely this has bee non the agenda for sometime now?

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Thanks Colin, for making the links look so professional!

Much appreciated!

 

No problem, it is very easy to do, just type your sentence then highlight you word or words then while it is highlighted click on the link and either copy and paste of enter the web address then click post! 

 

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Having checked the Oval flats had new windows installed around 7 years ago, and other remedial work has been done to some properties to keep them in habital condition, remember the Oval redevelopment is a 6 year project, and unless anything has changed that I am not aware of the properties facing Belmont road are the first to go. when the properties are built on the old Vortex site.

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