Well, 2020, what a year it has been for us all! I do hope this letter finds you and your family safe and well on the leadup to the festive holidays.
We’ve all had to adjust to the new normal such as working and learning from home, which has meant more residents being on the estate at any one time. I’m pleased that incidents of noise nuisance throughout the year has been relatively low and I thank you all for your ongoing consideration of your neighbours.
While our estate office has been restricted in physically opening our doors as per Government guidance, I’m happy to say that throughout the year staff have been handling queries remotely via phone and email Monday to Friday 9am to 5pm and will continue to do so during all Tier restrictions including of course our current Tier 4. We’re here to help you so please do not hesitate in getting in touch and we’ll be happy to assist. I’d also like to mention that weekly estate health & safety and communal repair inspections have and will continue to be carried out by staff.
The Board has throughout the year conducted monthly virtual committee meetings to ensure the estate is managed as normal. As a result of these meetings, the Board are very excited to announce new projects in 2021 and beyond to improve the look and services on the estate. There will be new recycling bin enclosures placed on the greens, this is phase one of a two-phase project for all the recycling bins. We’ll also be entering into a four-year contract to have all windows, which are not accessible from balconies, exterior cleaned every Spring. This window cleaning service would not happen if the estate was directly managed by the Council and it’s therefore another benefit of being an RMO. I’m happy to say that following cost/efficiently savings in the estate office and other areas of expenditure that these projects will come at NO additional service charge to tenants or leaseholders.
I know there’s been a number of concerns from residents about vehicles being parked in each of the four turn-around points on the estate (at the end of each of the streets). We have installed no parking signs but it continues to be an issue as some of the double yellow lines have faded. As these areas form part of the public highway, Wandsworth Council are responsible for repainting these lines. We have been actively pursuing the Council throughout the year to have the road markings repainted but unfortunately due to the pandemic there has been delays. I hope this work will be done as soon as possible. In the meantime, I ask that these areas are left clear at all times as emergency service vehicles need these clear in order to serve the estate.
Due to the time of the year, there is likely to be a significant increase in recycling material to be disposed of. Please can I asked that all cardboard boxes are flattened and placed in the recycling bins, this will free up space and will help prevent the bins from overflowing which creates extra work for our cleaners to attend to. There are multiple recycling bins on the estate so if a bin is full, using a bin nearby that might be less full would be appreciated.
I’d also like to highlight issues about blocked rubbish chutes in each of the 5 taller blocks on the estate. We’re still getting blockages caused by a small minority of residents forcing bulk items down the chutes such as toilet seats, building rubble, larges cardboard boxes, carpet and duvet’s etc. These blockages are not easily cleared and can often result in bad smells in your communal areas. The costs of having a specialist contractor clearing the blockages is costing residents a significant amount of money, which would better be spent on other areas on the estate. Only small rubbish bags which are tied up must be placed in the chutes and should easily fit in the chute hatch.
The estate office is also receiving complaints about residents feeding pigeons. You will have no doubt noticed that there’s quite a number of pigeons on the estate waiting for their next meal whilst also creating a ‘mess’ on balconies and windows. Please do not throw food such as bread out your windows and onto the ground, by doing this it not only attracts more pigeons but also other vermin such as rats.
With regards to rents, if you are struggling to pay your rent as a result of the pandemic, please do contact Citizens Advice service ‘Help to Claim’ line as they can advise on what financial assistance the Government might be able to provide you. Their number is 0808 223 1133.
Finally, the estate office will be closed for phone and email enquires on the bank holidays of 25th & 28th December and 1st January plus the weekends. If you have an emergency on these days please contact Wandsworth Emergency Control on 0208 871 7490 (the estate office phone will also divert to this number).
Wishing you all continued good health, stay safe, have a Happy Christmas and a great 2021.
Mr Chris Clutterbuck