Nigel Hedges
Dialogue with residents around slades park - issues :

Dear All.

 One of the most valuabe recent ‘political’ initiatives “we” have been engaged in recently was our canvassing prior to the local elections where upon calling residents to their front door , we asked them if they had “any issues bothering them”.

This information which they readily shared with us , sometimes with passion if not anger , has proved invaluable as we continue to work with them on so many issues - many of which are , luckily , low-level and many already resolved.

 Discussions on many of these issues were initiated by letter to establish a less intrusive introduction and recognition of their issues raised.One absolutely vital plank to our ability to help is our ever growing and mutually responsive relationship with our NPT and Sgt Guy Nicholas ( I have a meeting with him on 4th July to discuss those issues that involve his team ) and the fact we have a Ward “Public Forum” which is seeing a growing attendance and resident engagement. This has been helped by the new Active Dorset Pavilion which has engendered a higher level of appreciation of this community asset of Slades Park and a surge in people wanting to volunteer to assist the park.

 Issues raised recently have been varied and through our BCP officers , again , many issues have been tackled , resolved or the process started on seeking resolutions to issues of which many of us were not aware….

 One such exchange is illustrated below and for all copied in , either for information or perhaps further advice or engagement , it is encouraging that residents not only know ‘we’ are here and responsive but that they do , still , have a Public Forum to attend to learn more or air their worries – again , most valuably , usually to a Police presence.

 I hope below is of interest ; I have not at this point disclosed the resident’s name.


“Thank you very much for your extensive reply which does answer my queries.  I would only suggest that perhaps signs should be posted at all main entrances to the park regarding both motorcycle use and the flying/driving of remote aircraft/cars so that people are fully aware of the permit issue and where on the park flying is allowed.  Our house fronts the park on the second field which runs alongside the allotments and this is where they fly their aircraft.  Because the Council have left the furthest part of the field near the woods natural for wildlife they fly on the cut grass area which is not far from our front gardens so probably closer than they should according to the plan you emailed to me.  As long as the aircraft are flown over the parkland I do not have an issue with it, so long as the aircraft don't stray over the houses and pose a danger issue or noise nuisance.  The petrol cars are more noisy and annoying.  Your officers state that this is difficult to enforce which is obvious as we no longer have park-keepers to monitor the parkland.

Only yesterday afternoon a motorbike rode in front of the house along the park footpath at speed in broad daylight.  This is happening more regularly now.

I realise that it was our choice to buy a house fronting the park and we understand that that comes with a certain amount of possible outcomes including football games etc which I don't have a problem with but it does reminds me that a couple of years' ago I noticed that adult players on the same second field in front of us would be urinating into the bushes directly in front of our dining room window.  I haven't seen it happen since so I'm not too bothered about it but at the time I was amazed at their disregard for local residents.  The area in question was the old cut through from the park to the parking area belonging to the block of flats at 3 Forsyth Gardens.  The Council have now fenced in the parking area thereby closing up the cut through but it has created a hideaway space in that corner of the park which may encourage this behaviour in the future.  I'm just hoping that the foliage grows tall enough so that I can no longer witness such behaviour!  I can well appreciate that it's quicker to run to there to relieve themselves rather than having to get over to the clubhouse facilities so I'm not going to make a fuss about it when we have numerous dogs doing the same all over the park in any case.  The lovely view (apart from the urinating footballers!) far outweighs the negatives of living beside a park.

I would definitely be interested in attending the next WWW Public Forum and would be grateful if you could send me the Agenda and notice of date/time/venue.”

As one of the local WWW Councillors , I find this engagement so valuable and trust by sharing such information it helps all of us to make our parks and open spaces safer places to be.

Regards ,

 Councillor Nigel P. Hedges

BCP Council

Wallisdown and Winton West Ward

Day : Bourne Engraving

1 Granville Place

off Yelverton Road

Bournemouth BH1 1DP

Tel : (mon-sat) 01202 555922

(Mobile) : 07941 562886