TNRA has a new Chair
Tim Horsler has taken over from Edward Heckels for the year ending April 2020. Edward is now Vice-Chair and will continue to be the TNRA contact for most matters concerning Southwark Council services.
New AST leases
TNRA has been approached by many of its members with serious concerns regarding the new AST leases recently sent to them by the Knight Frank estate office. The principal issues they have raised concern:
- Annual rent reviews with guaranteed rises in rents linked to the Retail Price Index and 'cap-and-collared' between 3%-5%;
- The introduction of a two months' notice clause that permits the Landlord to prematurely terminate leases, thus undermining long-term stability of security of tenure;
- The despatch of new leases many months in advance of the expiration dates of existing leases with little to no opportunity to discuss the new terms.
- We therefore arranged a preliminary fact-finding meeting with Charlotte Last of Knight Frank and Graham Hockley of Trinity House on Monday 3 June, during which we asked them to explain their rationale for the new lease terms and their manner of introduction.
Following this meeting TNRA's newly formed sub-committee responsible for AST lease issues is now marshalling argumentation to present to Knight Frank and Trinity House with the aim of persuading them to revisit the matter by incorporating lease terms that are not only more reasonable and responsible but also match best current industry practice. We will highlight those aspects that we consider unreasonable and will also emphasise the point that the new lease terms are not consistent with current published advice from government, public bodies and industry experts. In particular, we will closely examine the provision for guaranteed rent increases at a time when rents in London are declining sharply.
We will also point out that by better recognising the wish of those - especially families with children - who wish to have tenancies with longer fixed periods, Knight Frank and Trinity House will not only help to foster and develop a sense of long-term continuity and well-being throughout the Trinity Village community, they themselves will also benefit from greater certainty of income and avoid all those costs and delays that are involved in seeking new tenants.
We will endeavour to keep those who have contacted us about their new leases informed of all significant developments in a timely fashion. In the meanwhile we invite anyone who may have particular experience or expertise in this field to contact us with any advice you may have on the matter.
Please write to the AST sub-committee on ASTLeases@tnra.net for all enquiries.
Structural and other damage caused during Swan Street construction work
TNRA raised this matter during our 3rd June meeting with Knight Frank and Trinity House, who said they were aware of one pending complaint awaiting resolution. They advise that if there are others who still have claims outstanding then they should revisit their last/most recent correspondence on the matter, copying relevant documentation to Shaun Roberts in the Estate office. Will any such residents please also copy these details to firstname.lastname@example.org so that we can help pursue matters if necessary on their behalf.
Meeting with Cllr Eastham
Our local councillor, Karl Eastham, kindly attended TNRA's Committee meeting on 4 June and updated us on the following.
- With litter picking in Trinity Village reduced to alternate days (see TNRA NEWS May 2019), we will be closely monitoring the visits of the picker to check that all roads are properly covered.
- The report on the fourth Dickens Square consultation will shortly be available. The project is expected to go to Planning Committee in July. There will then be a statutory consultation. Work should start in January 2020 with the new park open by the end of Summer 2020.
- Plans for the permanent Harper Road width restriction are progressing. The restriction will be 3.2m at one end and 2m at the other. It is also proposed that access to the Old Kent Road will be restricted between 3pm and 7pm. We are in touch with Council officers to get more details.
- There is still no date for the Kings Place development to go to Planning Committee. Karl will let us know as soon as a date is fixed so TNRA can attend to object to the height of the project. Cllr Johnson Situ, the Cabinet member responsible, is still unsatisfied with the current scheme and has asked the developer to revise their proposals.
- The redevelopment of the Harper Road GP practice is still at the pre-application stage. The Council is the freeholder but the Council's ability to get involved is limited by their granting of a very long leasehold.
- We repeated our concerns about cars travelling too fast at the Cole Street and Globe Street junction. The Council has agreed to add new road markings to further alert motorists to the Globe Street cycle route and to improve signage at the corner of Globe Street and Cole Street.
- We discussed improvements to Avon Place following the second sexual assault in the alleyway in five years. Funding has been made available under the Council's "Cleaner, Greener, Safer" budget for an upgrade to the existing and additional lighting.
Open Garden Squares Weekend
All the many people who attended our annual event on Sunday 9th June not only enjoyed a rare day of sunny weather, they also contributed to making it one of our best ever OGSW days. The free yoga lessons in Trinity Church Square were as popular as ever, whilst in Merrick Square the new team at the Royal Oak set up a BBQ and provided beer and cider for us to serve, all the stalls (clothes, bric-a-brac, face-painting, tombola and many others) did good business, and we had great music all afternoon, most notably three cracking good hour-long sets from the truly excellent three-piece band El Banda Burros. Those of you who couldn't attend really missed out - so make sure you come next year!
Launch preview of the new development in Swan Street
A full page advertisement placed by Galliard and Acorn Properties in the Standard on 5 June placed invites people to view the new SE1 Trilogy building on Thursday 20 June from 4 to 8 pm. Drinks in the penthouse and summer evening views on the roof terrace are promised. Anyone wishing to attend should contact Galliard at Trilogy@galliardhomes.com.
Long leaseholders meeting
Now that Mainstay have told all long leaseholders that the YE December Accounts are available on the Mainstay portal we have contacted them to organise the latest in our series of regular meetings. This will be attended by Mainstay's Jacob Saddington and will take place on Wednesday 10th July in the Upstairs Meeting Room of the Royal Oak (on the corner of Tabard Street and Nebraska Street) between 18:00-19:30.
If you are unable to attend but would like us to raise any particular matters on your behalf please send brief details to email@example.com.
Filming in Trinity Church Square
Scenes for a new drama series "The Nevers" will be filmed in TCS on Wednesday 17 July, from 9.30 am to 10.30 pm. Preparation will be on 15 and 16 July and re-instatement on 18 July. For those four days parking will be suspended in TCS, Swan Street, Brockham Street, Falmouth Road, Cole Street, Trinity Street and Harper Road. Residents should have received a letter about this already giving more details and another will be delivered closer to the time of filming.
There will be a meeting for residents at Henry Wood Hall on 19 June at 6.30 pm. Drop in if you have any questions or contact the Southwark Film office on 020 7620 0391. In addition, location managers will be coming around the estate. They need to talk to individual residents about window dressing in various windows (oil lamps and Victorian paraphernalia) also to answer any specific issues anyone may have.
TNRA has been consulted and the film company will make a donation to us.