March update

Action Greater Bedminster Annual General Meeting
The AGM will be on Wednesday 27th March at 7pm at acta,  Gladstone St, Bristol BS3 3AY.

The current committee includes the four local councillors, representatives from member organisations and local residents. We are an enthusiastic group of volunteers who are working together to improve or neighbourhood by listening to local residents, working with local organisations and businesses and sharing information about issues that affect our area. We meet regularly, run events, support local groups and projects. We’d welcome new members to take AGB forward during what will be a time of change and opportunity for our neighbourhood. If you would like to be on the committee, please do get in touch. 

We hope to see you at the meeting. We will be consulting members on a slight change to our structure to have an executive group that meets regularly, perhaps once a month, ad steering group that meets less often. We will also be looking at our draft community vision and manifesto.  

Recycling and waste – myth busting and information sharing
This is a free meeting, on Thursday 14th March at Windmill HIll City Farm cafe, with Ed Troughton from Bristol Waste and Stacey and Lidia from Zero Green. We will be looking at how much rubbish we collect, benefits of recycling, what happens to it all, and busting some recycling myths as well as exploring how we can reduce our use of plastic, and our waste in general. 

The cafe will be open, serving hot and cold drinks and snacks. You can book here .

Clean Air
We had a very interesting meeting about what we could do in our own neighbourhood and what else is happening across the city. Initial thoughts were around school streets, improving monitoring, ways of sharing information and possible funding. We hope this group will continue to meet and take things forward. if you would like to be involved, please sign up to the mailing list here.

Friends of Bedminster Libary
The inaugural meeting of this group is on Thursday 21st March at 7pm at Bedminster Library. If you can’t come but are interested in being involved, please get in touch. If you have any thoughts or ideas about what a friends group could do, please let us know. 

Friends of Bedminster Libary
The inaugural meeting of this group is on Thursday 21st March at 7pm at Bedminster Library. If you can’t come but are interested in being involved, please get in touch. If you have any thoughts or ideas about what a friends group could do, please let us know. 

AGM

Action Greater Bedminster Annual General Meeting
The AGM will be on Wednesday 27th March at 7pm at acta, Gladstone Street, BS3 3AY.

It is a public meeting but only members will be able to vote. If you are part of an organisation that isn’t yet a member but would like to become one, you can fill in the form here. 

The draft agenda is:

  1. Welcome and apologies
  2. New Constitution 
  3. Current Board stand down
  4. Executive Committee elected 
  5. Discussion of CIL ‘long list’
  6. Formal meeting closes, time for informal networking

If you are interested in any of the positions on the committee, please read the roles and fill in the nomination form here by Friday 15th March and email it to greaterbedminster@gmail.com. If you have any questions or would like a chat with a current committee member, please let us know.  We are proposing a revised constitution that will allow for a smaller, working group of committee members to make decisions day-to-day and meet at least monthly, with a wider committee meeting less frequently.

Action Greater Bedminster Community Vision
Our survey will close on Sunday 17th February 2019. It is incredibly useful for us to see what is important to you. This gives us some direction for our next phase of work and will feed into processes such as CIL. The survey takes less than five minutes to complete and is here . Please do complete it if you haven’t already. We are hoping to draft a high level community vision for discussion at the AGM.

Planning
There are a lot of development happening in our area and it is hard to keep up with them all. We will be discussing this more but if you want to find out more about planning, you can join the BS3 Planning group on facebook or email bs3planninggroup@gmail.com to join the mailing list. The group meets once a month on a Tuesday evening. AGB are hoping to present a draft ‘manifesto’ for the area at our AGM that will highlight the thoughts that came out of the Bedminster Green meeting about what residents would like to see in terms of development. We are also in discussion with the council about how to improve awareness and dialogue around planning. 

January update

Community Infrastructure Levy (CIL) 2019/20
AGB is the community space organisation for our area for 2019 CIL and section 106 funding. We are hosting a meeting on Monday 11th February at 7.30pm, the Jasper Room, the Chessel Centre to discuss initial projects that could potentially be funded with CIL money. This meeting is open to anyone who is interested in how this funding could be used or has an idea for a project. There is more information about this process here  and we will be sending out updates. This is a key opportunity to make changes in our neighbourhood.

What is CIL?
The Community Infrastructure Levy is a planning charge made by local authorities in England and Wales to help deliver infrastructure to support the development of their area.  Most new development which creates net additional floor space of 100 square metres or more, or creates a new dwelling, is potentially liable for the levy. The charging authority is required to devolve a meaningful proportion of CIL to local communities. The two wards of Bedminster and Southville will receive 15% of the funds resulting from development in their neighbourhood.

What is S106?
S106 enables local authorities to require developers to set aside monies to mitigate the impact of their development.  Unspecified local S106 schemes, where the details of the mitigation and/or the specific location is not determined in the S106 agreement – although the general sort of work is – e.g. ‘park improvements’ or ‘improvements to public transport facilities’ – require Area Committee to come to a decision following public  consultation.

What can CIL and S106 pay for?
CIL can only be used to support the development of the local area by funding the provision, improvement, replacement, operation or maintenance of infrastructure; or anything else that is concerned with addressing the demands that development places on an area.  Local devolved S106 money can only be used as set out in the S106 legal agreement between BCC and the developer.

Library conversations 
The Councils are consulting about how we use libraries. More information about that here. There are two meetings looking at our local libraries on 26th February and 2nd March. You can book here .

Local groups needing volunteers
BS3 Community is looking at how to make our area an all age friendly neighbourhood. As part of this project, Ben Barker is looking for volunteers to join:
– BS3 Street Wardens
– Bedminster Access Group (BAG) This is a group composed of people experienced in moving around the BS3 area with a disability that can act as advisors to projects.  
– Friendly Neighbourhood Social Media Group. A small group using social media to promote the idea of an age friendly community during 2019.

If you are interested in finding out more, please email Ben benbarker@blueyonder.co.uk 

Bedminster Green

Bedminster Green is a six hectare site covering an area which includes St Catherine’s Place and the train station, and  from Malago road/St John’s Lane to Clarke Street with between 1,000 and 1,500 new homes. The framework document for Bedminster Green has been commissioned by the developers and has been drafted by Nash Consulting.The framework consultation can be found here: responses need to be received by midnight on Sunday 13th January. We encourage residents, organisations and businesses to respond to the framework which will have a role in the planning process for this large and complex development. Bedminster Green will have an impact on the whole area, and is just one of many new developments due to be built in our neighbourhood. AGB’s Community Conversation on 8th January brought together community groups and local residents with council officers to look at the draft framework in depth to help everyone make an informed and considered response.

We hope the meeting gave attendees a chance to understand the nature of the development and the framework document, the role the council and planning committee play in the planning process and to consider the fears and hopes they have for the development. 

The session was chaired by Paul Hassan from Locality and hosted by Windmill Hill City Farm. There was a question and answer session with Councillor Nicola Beech, Cabinet Member with responsibility for Spatial Planning and City Design, Councillor Stephen Clarke who sits on one of the planning committees, Neil Sellers from BS3 Planning, Nick Townsend from Windmill Hill and Malago Community Planning Group and Stef Brammar from AGB who sits on the Bedminster Business Improvement District Board. The discussion brought out a number of questions and concerns, many of which were around the timing and nature of the framework and its consultation, the height, density and make up of the blocks on the development (one site will be primarily student flats, another rental properties and the majority are one or two bedroom apartments). Detailed notes from this discussion have been passed on to Cllr Nicola Beech and will be sent to Nash Consulting as part of the response to the consultation.

The workshop session asked attendees to look at priorities for four different aspects of the framework: the nature of the new housing (capacity, affordability, fit, public spaces); community infrastructure needs; accessibility, navigation and transport; leisure and business opportunities. These notes are here. Again, concern was raised over the proposed heights and density of the builds, and the nature of the development as a whole. There was hope that the developers would look at how to create an environment that generated a sense of community, had good green and public spaces and opportunities for local businesses. The impact on local infrastructure, traffic flow and East Street is not yet clear, both during the build and in the longer term.

AGB is not forming its own opinion of the development but will continue to work with local councillors, council officers, community organisations and residents to share information and give opportunities for your voice to be heard. We aim to draft a manifesto for Bedminster Green that will reflect the community’s priorities for it, and develop that into a wider document that can be used in future discussions with developers and the council. 

December update

St Paul’s Churchyard
The church hosted a discussion about the issues around the churchyard. The church is looking at preventative measures such as lighting and CCTV but is also keen to explore ways of making the churchyard more of a community space. If you are interested in finding out more or getting involved, there is a meeting on 12th January at 10am at St Paul’s church. You can also email stpsouthville@gmail.com.

Bedminster Business Improvement District
We held a joint meeting with the BBID team looking at the future of our shops. There was a lot of discussion about the challenges in keeping high streets relevant and sustainable. We hope to do more joint working and will let you know of developments.

Library
The Bristol Libraries Forum was created on 15th November. The Forum’s principal aim is to protect and enhance the Library Service across Bristol and the Forum wants to play a full part in any review of the future of Bristol’s libraries. AGB would like to support the creation of a Friends of Bedminster Library group, which would be part of the Forum. If you are interested in finding out more please email us at greaterbedminster@gmail.com or Lloyd on bristollibrariesforum@gmail.com.

Walking in our neighbourhood

Let’s Walk Bedminster aims to make it safe, easy and pleasant for everyone walking around the area including those using aids such as wheelchairs and mobility scooters. We know footways are often in poor repair and blocked by recycling bins, cars and other obstacles.The project is looking at practical solutions with BS3 Street Wardens, the Bedminster Access Group and Bedminster Patchwork Group. For more information and how you can help email greaterbedminster@gmail.com and head your message ‘Let’s Walk Bedminster’.

Other projects
We are getting a group together looking at how we can improve our recycling, reduce plastic use and better manage our waste and litter. This may involve working with schools, businesses and other organisations. We are hoping to do an information sharing campaign in the Spring, with an evening event, a family friendly workshop and some infographics to share. Again, please let us know if you are interested in getting involved.

AGB is bringing together local organisations to look at creating more youth club sessions locally.

Surveys
The AGB community consultation is here
Local councillors’ parking survey is here
Bristol City Council surveys on childcare, the 19/20 budget and licences for HMOs are here

Planning

AGB has been involved in discussions around the Bedminster Green development and the expansion of Ashton Gate Stadium. Bedminster Green has four developers across five sites. A framework plan is being drafted, which is available on the consultants’ website from 10th December to 13th January as part of the formal consultation.  You can see the latest state of applications on the Windmill Hill and Malago Community Planning Group website. AGB will be hosting Developing a “Bedminster Green” Manifesto, with people, place and prosperity at its heart on 8th January, 6pm-9pmat Windmill Hill City Farm. You can book your space here.

The agenda for this event is here .

Ashton Gate Stadium’s plans include a Sports & Convention Centre, a multi-storey carpark, housing, offices and two hotels. They are exploring the possibility of having a MetroBus stop closer to the stadium, a train station and a bus layby area. The proposals also include plans for housing on a second site between Ashton Vale and the Long Ashton Park & Ride. You can see more detail here.  AGB, BS3 Community, BS3 Planning and Friends of Ashton Gate Station have discussed the plans with Ashton Gate and we encourage residents to comment.  

Air Pollution

We have held three events on this subject now and have learnt so much about what happens in the air around us in the city including:

  • The legal limit of NO2 in the air is 40 μg/m3 as an annual mean (i.e. measured across a year).
  • Currently, some sites in Bristol experience NO2 levels up to 90µg/m3.
  • There are two sites with very high levels in Bristol – on St Augustines parade in the cetnre and Parson Street in BS3.
  • More than 5 deaths a week in Bristol linked to air pollution
  • Diesel vehicles are responsible for 96% of NO2 emissions in Bristol
  • Air pollution costs the UK £54 billion a year in illness and deaths.

Here is Dr Corra Boushel’s presentation in case you missed it, which has more details about air pollution in Bristol.

The Council are developing a Clean Air Plan which aims to bring the city’s pollution down to legal limits by 2021 (the target set by National government following the Client Earth action). Part of that plan involves the introduction of a Clean Air Zone, which may or may not include our neighbourhood. You can see the danger spots on the Clair city website and the options for making reductions (mainly relating to the Clean Air Zone) in the FAQ section of the Councils Clean Air website here.

There is more information out there, and other groups who are looking at this too, such as the Bristol Clean Air Alliance, Bristol Breathing Better and St George Breathing Better. There are other maps, like the one here showing the air pollution around GP surgeries and hospitals. Client Earth have created a Parents network and Bristol university is a partner in an interesting project called Life of Breath. More info on their website. 

We are keen to raise awareness of this topic even more, and to look at practical solutions in our area. This could mean working with the Council, the Bedminster Business Improvement District, Parks groups and other local organisations. It would be brilliant to talk to schools, GP surgeries, groups like Brownies and more. We are hoping to focus on this in the Spring but can’t do it on our own – ideally we’d like to create a group to take it forward. If you are interested in getting involved, please let us know by emailing greaterbedminster@gmail.com.

Community conversations

Bristol City Council is conducting consultations in two areas of local life that affect us all:  High Streets, and Air Quality. Come and find out what’s being done – and what can be done – in our own neighbourhood.

Bedminster’s shops in 2030: will they still be here?
22nd November 2018 6.30pm (for 7pm sharp) until 9pm
Hen & Chicken, North Street
Action Greater Bedminster in partnership with Bedminster Business Improvement District (BBID)

Will our shops survive? Or will it just be Amazon and  faceless corporations?

We need you! Bedminster’s residents are invited to help us shape the next five years for supporting Bedminster’s businesses. What do you want from your high streets? Does it matter? Do you care? Do you know what the BBID does and can do?

We do. If you do too, join us for a couple of hours to hear and offer opinions about how businesses, residents, community groups and public authorities can work together to ensure the future of Bedminster’s retail and leisure streets at the heart of this great community.

Every breath we take: The shocking facts
29th November 2018 7pm until 9pm
Bedminster Library
Action Greater Bedminster in partnership with Way Out West, the West Street Neighbourhood Group (WOW)

Research findings presented at our recent workshop on Air Quality were so shocking that we agreed we have to learn more for the sake of our own health – and that of our children. For this follow-up event, we’ve invited Mark Leach, who’s leading the Council’s Clean Air for Bristol engagement programme which aims to inform people about pollution, its causes and health impacts; and to give factual advice on what can be done by individuals, families, communities, businesses, local and national government. Mark and his team are working with www.claircity.eu, Public Health and Transport colleagues.

We’ll hear what other UK cities have done, what options are realistic – i.e. will be paid for within the Government’s framework – and the Council’s concerns for the impacts of a Clean Air Zone re social justice and how this could be resolved. We hope to also cover the proposed engagement plan including how the Council plan to reach out beyond the “usual suspects” and talk to people who often don’t engage on issues like transport, health or environmental issues, along with the nature of the process and timescales.

There will be plenty of time for Q&A and discussion.

Why is this important?

In Bristol air quality is currently breaching long term standards and regularly breaks legal standards for Nitrogen Dioxide. More than five deaths a week in the city are linked to air pollution. We can see from the Clair city map that Bedminster has many red – and dark red – dots. These dots mean that pollution at that site is breaking national and EU limits – specifically, for the average measurement of Nitrogen Dioxide.

Evidence shows that spending time in areas with high levels of air pollution can worsen asthma symptoms, damage lung function and harm cardio–vascular health. Other known health effects from before birth to old age include:

  • low birth weight of babies
  • impaired lung development in small children, smaller lungs
  • a contributing factor in the onset of heart disease
  • premature death
  • cognitive function in children
  • the latest research on potential links to dementia and Alzheimer’s

Join us to learn more, and to help us decide what can be done locally. Space is limited so please book here.

Open Meeting about St Paul’s Churchyard
St Paul’s Church on 17 November at 10am
Organised by South Bristol Deanery, the meeting will attempt to address the following issues:

  • rough sleeping in the graveyard
  • the amount of needles in the graveyard
  • human excrement in the graveyard
  • people being scared to walk through the graveyard, particularly following a recent sexual assault
  • removal of rubbish (the church is not allowed to take it to the tip)
  • lack of maintance of the graveyard by the City Council

The local councillors and police have been invited. We hope that many local residents and those who walk through the graveyard regularly will come along.

Be a BS3 Street Warden
Our pavements are often cluttered with recycling bins, discarded mattresses, overhanging hedges and cars parked on the footway. Annoying enough if you are young and able, a real problem for those with sight-loss, mobility issues and pushing a buggy.

The Let’s Walk Bedminster project aims to make walking safe, easy and pleasant and is trying to persuade people to keep footways clear. We already have over 20 BS3 Street Wardens who do two main things:

  • talk to their neighbours and friends about the importance of keeping pavements friendly rather than hostile;
  • report obstructions to the council, so that the obstruction can be removed.

Some BS3 Streeet Wardens just do their road or, perhaps, a regular route from home to the shops. For more information contact Ben on benbarker@blueyonder.co.uk

Please get in touch with any ideas, thoughts, feedback – we’d love to hear from you!

email greaterbedminster@gmail.com

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OCTOBER UPDATE

Community toilets

We have been helping the council with the Community Toilet scheme. 70 venues have signed up across the city, including a handful in BS3. If you know anyone who has a business and who would like to join the scheme please send them this link. The team is working on a printed map but in the meantime, the full list of signed up venues and digital map can be found here

Alongside the Bristol scheme, there is a national campaign called Use Our Loos campaign created by British Toilet Association, working in partnership with Domestos who are offering to provide free Domestos products to businesses who sign up to the Great British Toilet Map. Businesses who have already signed up to the Bristol Community Toilet scheme are automatically added to the map.

The public can use the map to discover loos near them and help improve the service by adding new locations or flagging loos that have closed. Business owners can sign up for the scheme by adding themselves to the Great British Public Toilet Map and then following the registration link.

Libraries
There is a lot going on in our libraries – as well as hosting regular events, they are celebrating the centenary of the end of World War One.  Bedminster is hosting a puppet show about the resistance on 25th October at 7.30pm. Book tickets here  You can find information about events here, on our facebook page and on the BS3 Library Community Facebook page

Although the threat of closures has been temporarily lifted, there is a further consultation out on the future of our libraries, being launched through meetings in early November. We will keep you updated.

Bins, waste and litter
We know this is a continuing problem for several areas in the neighbourhood. We have been working with the four councillors and Bristol Waste to get your messages across and try to resolve particular problems. We will also be talking to Bristol Waste about how to improve things more generally – what residents can do, what plans Bristol Waste have in place and what practical solutions are out there.

You can report an incident using the Council’s reporting site.

We are organising more events ; see our Meetings and Events for more information. 

COMMUNITY CONVERSATIONS

During October and November we’re inviting local people of all ages to come and make their voices heard: on Air Quality, Transport and Mobility, and Shopping Locally. We’re hoping to arm ourselves with some facts, find out what decisions are being taken on our behalf, and get ready to make informed input into those decisions. All events are free, friendly and informal.

EVERY BREATH YOU TAKE

In partnership with the City Farm, UWE and the claircity project

Thursday 18 October, 7.30-9pm, Windmill City Farm Cafe. Free Admission.

We’ll be getting the info and busting the myths on Air Quality in our neighbourhood. ​Areas within BS3, along with others in Bristol, are currently breaching long term standards and regularly break legal standards for Nitrogen Dioxide. Bad air quality affects the most vulnerable – children, older people and people with heart and lung conditions. You can see the spread of air pollution on this map.

Free admission, but limited numbers. Pay bar. Book here

BREATHE IN, BREATHE OUT

Children’s workshop In partnership with the City Farm, UWE and claircity.eu

Friday 2 November, 10am-12noon, Windmill Hill City Farm Cafe. Free Admission.

Using learning materials provided by the claircity project, we’ll​ c​onduct simple practical experiments using pipettes which will demonstrate how air quality from a local road or park can be tested. The children will then brainstorm some ideas about how air quality can be improved, and following a snack break will be given paper and pens to produce posters to get the messages across.

Admission free, soft drinks and biscuits provided (up to 25 children). Best suited to 4-11 yr olds. Children must be accompanied by a parent or carer. Book here

GETTING FROM A TO B

In partnership with BS3 Community

Wednesday 24 October, 7.30-9pm, Chessel Centre, Chessel Street BS3 3DN, Admission free

The City Council Transport Strategy consultation is running until 2 November. It addresses the challenges that Bristol faces as a city and uses the hashtag #2036 as a target year. How can we influence the decision-makers to take our local needs into account? We’ll look at getting around – and in/out of – Greater Bedminster, now and in the future: whether it be on foot, bike, mobility scooter, car, bus or train – and who knows, even underground….

BEDMINSTER’S SHOPS IN 2030 – WILL THEY STILL BE HERE?

In partnership with Bedminster Business Improvement District

Thursday 22nd November, 6.30pm (for 7pm sharp start) until 9pm, Hen & Chicken, 210 North Street

Do you know what the Bedminster Business Improvement team does? Does it matter? Do you care? We do. If you do too, join us for a couple of hours to hear and offer opinions about how businesses, residents, community groups and public authorities can work together to ensure the future of Bedminster’s retail and leisure streets at the heart of this great community.

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