Selective Licensing: Make Sure You Have Your Say!

In an area where Selective Licensing operates, all landlords in that area MUST hold a licence. Benefits of the scheme:

  • health, safety and welfare of the community are protected
  • landlords maintain their property and correct any deficiencies that may exist
  • reduce anti-social behaviour
  • prevent neighbourhood blight and conditions that can result from lack of care
  • ensure that minimum housing standards are met
  • educate landlords and tenants of acceptable private rented standards

The council’s proposal is to operate Selective Licensing in the East Marsh and the West Marsh of Grimsby.

This will potentially have a very significant impact on our East Marsh – all of the things EMU have been trying to change will, in theory at least, be changed as a result of this scheme – disgusting housing conditions with dirt and damp, the furniture of tentnats left in houses when new tenants wish to move in, wheelie bins on the fronts, filthy and rubbish-strewn back gardens and back alleys. All of this could disappear, creativing a massive change in the environment in our neighbourhood!

That’s why East Marsh United are FULLY behind the council’s desire to make this a reality – and it could possibly happen as soon as October this year.

But…

It hasn’t been made law yet and there is a consultation period currently in process. Therefore, it is REALLY important that you have your say. There is an association of landlords that speaks for landlords’ interests – my best guess is that they are not especially happy at the prospect of landlords having to pay a fee for their licence (around £500 for five years, I think – and remember that there are good landlords around and they will benefit from such a scheme). So, the landlords are organised and may well wish to not see this happen – therefore, to make a real difference to the East Marsh and the West Marsh, make sure you HAVE YOUR SAY in the consultation – this is really important!

How to have your say on Selective Licensing

Drop-in sessions 

Drop-in sessions for tenants and the public will be held on:

  • Wednesday 29th January from 9am to 7.30pm at West Marsh Community Centre;
  • Thursday 30th January from 9am to 5pm at Grimsby Neighbourhood Centre;
  • Wednesday 5th February from 5pm to 7.30pm at Grimsby Neighbourhood Centre

Drop-in sessions for landlords will be held on:

  • Tuesday 21st January from 5.30pm to 7.30pm at Grimsby Town Hall;
  • Monday 27th January from 9am to 5pm at Grimsby Town Hall

Online

The consultation is available to complete on the Council’s website at https://residents.questionpro.eu/  (here’s the main website if the link doesn’t work – click on ‘Selective Licensing’ www.nelincs.gov.uk/have-your-say ).

Pick up paper copies from libraries and Council Access Points

Paper copies of the consultation can be completed in Lincs Inspire Libraries and the Council’s Customer Access Point in Grimsby and Immingham

The consultation opened on Thursday 16 January 2020 and will continue for 10 weeks, ending on Thursday 26 March 2020.

Celebrating A Walk in the Park

Here’s a great video celebrating the considerable achievements of our friends ‘A Walk in the Park’ – the name itself suggests that what they’ve done is something easy to do – it really isn’t and their achievement is nothing short of magnificent!

Hats off also to our other friends at The Equality Practice who laid much of the groundwork to make much of this possible.

We’re with you all the way, so just keep going!

 

EMU Visit HEART

Two weeks ago, we paid a visit to Headingley Development Trust – and their Community Arts Centre, HEART (Headingley Enterprise and Arts Centre) in Leeds. We were so very warmly welcomed by Mike and Richard there – and our lunch was fantastic. HEART is a community venture set up by the Headingley Development Trust in 2011. It occupies the former Headingley Primary School in the heart of Headingley. Here’s their (rather good!) website for more info: https://www.heartcentre.org.uk/

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HEART’s excellent cafe area

The trip was generously funded by Locality’s Knowledge and Skills Exchange, for which we are very grateful. And, indeed, Cass from Locality came along with us to support us – as did Jane from Sector Support – thanks to both of you!

Our main aims were to have a look at a really well-run ‘community centre’ (HEART is quite deliberately not called that, which is something we might think about…) – and it really is well-run. They have a very slick operation without it becoming terribly corporate and managerial as can happen. It really does have its own identity – warm, welcoming, and positive.

HEART Building
The HEART building

We also wanted to find out more about their community share issues which help pay for their projects – and Richard and Mike were so very generous with their own experience and knowledge and so informative and entertaining, I think we came away with a real sense of what’s possible for us.

And we feel we have made some new friends – thank you, HEART!

Here are some comments from our gang…

Cyril: The Leeds visit. Was a very informative and enjoyable experience. Our hosts were both pleasant and informative and more than willing to answer all our questions. All round a very enjoyable day.

Emma: It was very interesting learning how other programs get to where they are now and how much they are growing . Even though I sat quiet I was taking all info in and had a great time so thankyou.

Pete: Although their catchment area could not be more different I think they managed to give a very clear and straightforward blueprint for a community share issue. A very good visit, they made it a much less daunting project going forward for us.

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A view of the cafe 

East Marsh United and Shalom Youth Centre on BBC Sunday Politics

So, we were on the tellie today – on the BBC, no less. At a time when the hashtag #BBCBias has been trending on social media, the producer of Sunday Politics decided to present the views of our entire community group in a very brief segment front-ended by the views of a single man, ‘a lifelong conservative’, who spoke of ‘discipline’ and posited that social deprivation was ‘nothing to do with government spending’. This is a view he is of course entitled to express, but there didn’t seem to be anything practical or positive on offer to move things forward.

He did, however, say ‘I don’t think they can cure it just with money’ – I think we would agree on that point. Money is important when you think that poverty is not a lack of character, but a simple lack of cash; but what’s needed above all is for everybody to take responsibility for our society and say ‘this is our problem, these are our people, let’s look after each other’ – maybe from that simple single starting point of ownership, we can begin to build a home for everybody here on our East Marsh, in Grimsby, on these islands of ours and on our beautiful blue planet.

You can watch the clip here on iPlayer for a month: https://www.bbc.co.uk/iplayer/episode/m000bzx0/sunday-politics-yorkshire-and-lincolnshire-01122019

Or I’ve captured the clip in a video you can watch and download here: t.ly/RWMK5