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How to make money and change your world - Sentinel Housing

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Summer 2011
Community
The Sentinel Magazine with the Community at Heart
Win
ВЈ50 of
shoppin
g
voucher
s
see p21
p5
How to make money and
change your world
p6
What do you think of it so far?
p8
It just feels so much safer
Summer 2011
Community
nity at Heart
ine with the Commu
The Sentinel Magaz
WIN
ВЈ50 of
shopping
vouchers
see p21
p5
p6
p8
ney
How to make morld
change your wo
What do
and
far?
you think of it so
It just feels so much
safer
Contents
News............................... 3
Decoration Scheme.......... 4
Hints and Tips.................. 5
Set the agenda................ 6
Popley Islands Party.......... 8
Feature – At home
with Janet Chesterman.... 9
Benefit Changes............. 10
Viewpoint....................... 11
Up my Street
Oakridge Area................. 12
That’s the Spirit
Welcome to the summer edition of Spirit magazine. Thank you to
everyone who took the time to fill in our Reader Survey, see P6 for
the results, and to those of you who fancy joining the Editorial Panel,
we’ll be in touch shortly.
You’ll notice we’ve changed the layout slightly in this edition in
response to your feedback, so please let us know what you think.
If you’re over 70 or disabled see P4 to see if you qualify for our free
decorating scheme.
A big thank you to Janet Chesterman for letting us into her home for
our “At home with” feature on P9.
Get With – our summer activity scheme for young people - starts on
Monday 1 August 2011, if you haven’t already booked up, see Teen
Spirit for details of what’s on and where this year, or check out
www.sentinel.org.uk/getwith
Finally, have a great summer, why not get in touch and let us know
what you got up to and you could win ВЈ25. To keep up to date
with everything we’re doing over the summer you can join us at
facebook.com/sentinelha
Kim Drewery, Communications Coordinator.
Popley Area..................... 14
Winklebury Area.............. 16
Hart Area......................... 18
Competition.................... 21
In shape........................... 22
Soapbox – say what you see
We asked customers what they think of Spirit magazine.
Mrs Winter, Kingsclere – I would like more news and pictures
from rural areas.
Front Cover photo:
Tortuga Walk community
fun day
Mrs Hook, Camberley – I read the whole magazine and enjoy
seeing what is happening in other areas.
Mrs Tomkins, Basingstoke – The Sentinel mag is great, I love to
receive it.
Mrs Ellis, Fleet – How about more competitions like Sudoku or
Crosswords?
2
Spirit: The Sentinel Magazine with the Community at Heart
Great
neighbourhoods
Since you told us that you want
your local areas to be cleaner
and have problems fixed quicker
we’ve been busy making sure
our services measure up to your
needs. Newly trained resident
inspectors are hitting the streets
in a bid to help make our
neighbourhoods great places to
live. The volunteer inspectors will
check the standard of grounds
maintenance, the cleanliness
of communal areas and note
anything that needs repairing
or upgrading. “We want all
our estates to be clean and
well looked after,” explains
Neighbourhood Manager
Chantal Mitchell, “and who
better to point out what needs
improving than the people who
live there. The inspectors are all
fully trained, so they know what
to look out for and will keep an
eye on the work our contractors
do to make sure we get good
value for money too.”
Once the inspectors report back
to us, our team of caretakers will
blitz any areas that aren’t up to
scratch. They’ll remove dumped
rubbish, sweep communal areas,
clear away cobwebs, check the
communal lighting and make
sure all signs are in place and
undamaged. Any small repairs
such as fixing the odd fence
panel or securing a hand rail will
be done there and then, while
bigger repairs will be scheduled
for our repairs contractor.
Our caretakers should also be
easier to spot, as they’re in
more visible uniforms, so keep
a look out for them in your
neighbourhood.
If you’d like to become a resident
inspector or get involved in other
ways, contact Richard Pilbeam
(details on back cover).
Are you a switcher? Be on your guard
Energy bills are now ВЈ106 a month for the
average home, and with price rises of up to 15%
expected this summer, why not switch suppliers?
Energy companies reserve up to 20% discounts
for customers who switch, but don’t offer that
for you to stay loyal to them.
You can even switch if you have a small
outstanding debt to your energy supplier, you
can also protect against future rises by signing for
a fixed term, or you can simply get in touch with
your existing supplier, and see what other help
is available.
Hampshire Trading Standards reported that
residents are receiving phone calls stating that,
“as your payment records for Council Tax over
the past few years has been impeccable, the
Government will make an immediate refund.
Please provide bank details to enable a transfer
to be made.”. This is a scam to get your bank
and personal details, be on your guard and don’t
supply or confirm any personal, banking or card
details to anyone who contacts you about this.
Get these alerts and others at:
facebook.com/sentinelha
www.sentinelha.org.uk
3
3
Internal
Decoration
scheme
So what’s that then?
It’s simple, if you’re aged 70 or over and have a
room that needs decorating. You may be able to
have it decorated for free.
And anyone can apply?
Anyone aged 70 or over or with a disability living
in a specified area can apply. All we ask is that
your home is at least five years old, that you don’t
have anyone younger than 70, or able bodied
living with you, and that your rent is paid up to
date or you’re keeping to an agreement to clear
any rent arrears.
So what areas are you painting this year?
If you live in any of the following areas you can
apply this year: Oakridge, Old Basing, South View.
But I don’t live in any of those areas,
when can I apply?
We have a set budget for the scheme, and each
year we prioritise the spend for certain areas.
To make sure no one misses out we swap areas
every year. We’ve worked out which area we’ll be
decorating for the next five years, here’s the plan:
•2011 Oakridge, Old Basing, South View
•2012 Hook, Yateley, Eversley, Hartley Wintney,
Blackwater, Hound Green, Long Sutton,
Mattingley, North & South Warnborough,
Odiham and Pheonix Green.
•2013 Fleet, Church Crookham, Bagshot,
Camberley, Cove, Crondall, Dogmersfield,
Elvetham Heath, Farnborough, Farnham
and Winchfield.
4
•2014 Winklebury, Tadley, Kingsclere and
villages in between.
•2015 Bramley, Chineham, Hartley Wespall,
Popley, Sherborne St. John, Sherfield on
Lodden and Stratfield Saye.
Ok, so how do I apply?
Just give us a call on 0800 195 5515 from a
landline or 0300 666 5515 from your mobile and
we’ll pop an application form in the post.
Then you just fill it in and send back to us before
the deadline which is Friday 12 August 2011.
What happens then?
We’ll let you know if you qualify and tell you
when we’ll be coming to see you. All you need to
do then, is choose which colour you’d like from a
range of emulsion paint colours. When we come
to do the work, we’ll move or cover any furniture,
put everything back as it was and clean up
after ourselves.
If you think you
qualify give us a call
and we’ll send you
an application form.
Please be sure to
contact us early to
avoid disappointment.
Spirit: The Sentinel Magazine with the Community at Heart
Hints
and tips...
Do your bit for
the environment
It’s now much easier to recycle batteries.
Battery makers have been told they must pay for
the collection and recycling of a proportion of
all batteries sold. Look out for the bright red box
saying “Recycle your batteries here” in shops
or find your nearest recycling point at
www.erp-batteries.co.uk
Storage solution
We’ve got more
than 3400 garages
across most of our
neighbourhoods and
although some areas
are very popular
and we may have a
waiting list, it’s always worth checking with us as
we may be able to offer you an alternative nearby.
Prices start from just ВЈ7.78 per week if you rent
your home from us and ВЈ9.33 per week if you
don’t or if you rent a second garage. It’s worth
remembering that anything you store there is at
your own risk and it’s best to make sure all items
are covered by your own insurance policy. It’s also
important not to store anything hazardous such as
corrosive chemicals or flammable materials. If you
want to run a business from one of our garages
you must check with us first and get written
permission. You can rent a garage by applying
online, or calling our Customer Service Centre.
How to make money
and change your world
Looking for work? Like helping people?
Know something worth sharing?
If you’ve got a business idea, we want to
help you make it happen. You could end up
starting your own nursery, publishing your own
community magazine, or running a
community cafГ©.
We’ve teamed up with the School for Social
Entrepreneurs to offer FREE business coaching
sessions so you can turn your idea into
action, including:
How to create a business budget
How to pitch your idea to get funding
How to brand and market your business.
For more details and to book your free place, call
Cathryn Gee on 0800 195 5515 or email:
cathryn.gee@sentinelha.org.uk
When and where?
Everest Community College, Oxford Way, Popley,
Basingstoke. Every week day 15-19 August 2011,
10am til 1pm. Parking available.
Bus service Jazz 5 up to every 15 minutes from
Basingstoke bus station.
Childcare worries?
our �Get With’ summer activity project for 8-17
year olds is running at Everest on these days.
Places are limited though, so check out
www.getwith.co.uk
www.sentinelha.org.uk
5
5
Set the agenda
What do you think of it so far?
It’s been nearly two years since we revamped your magazine, and in the last edition
we asked you what you think of it so far? This is what you said...
84%
read every
edition
20%
Pass the magazine on to
friends,
3% pass it to
neighbours
77%
70%
16% sometimes read it
20% would prefer four
editions a year
5%
would prefer
monthly
5% every two
months
keep it for
5% never keep it
The top three
articles are:
The least
favourite are:
News
True life stories
Hints & Tips
Editorial
Competition
Soapbox
Ten people are interested in joining the editorial panel and we
had loads of great suggestions for new articles which we’ll
explore with the new editorial panel members.
Community cash
Do you have a forgotten corner in your
neighbourhood that could do with a facelift,
or belong to a community group that needs funds
for a project? Then why not pick up the phone and
ask for a Community Chest Grant Application form.
6
keep the magazine
for about a month
29% about a week
never pass it on
are happy with
Spirit being
published 3
times a year
66%
We can help you with the paperwork so it’s easy
to get started, and our Neighbourhood Panels are
always looking for new project ideas from residents.
For a form, or advice, contact Richard Pilbeam,
on 0800 195 5515 (landline) or 0300 666 5515
(mobile) or email Richard.pilbeam@sentinelha.
org.uk
Spirit: The Sentinel Magazine with the Community at Heart
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What’s on...
Tuesday 26 July
STARA meeting, Fleet office, 6pm
Tuesday 2 August
Hart and Districts Neighbourhood Panel Meeting,
Fleet office, 7pm
Wednesday 3 August
Sentinel Neighbourhood Area Panel meeting,
Basingstoke office, 7pm
Tuesday 23 August
STARA meeting, Basingstoke office, 6pm
An inspector
calls
Our ground-breaking resident
inspection project is going from
strength to strength.
We teamed up with Testway
Housing and Sovereign Kingfisher
last September and now 30
residents are involved in reviewing
and comparing our services.
We reported back on the
results of our repairs service
inspection in the last edition of
Spirit and we’ve recently had
our allocations and lettings and
estate services inspected. We’ll
let you know the outcome of
those in the next edition. It’s
not too late to get involved, we
offer free training and cover all
your expenses. Contact Richard
Pilbeam – see back page for
details – for more information.
Tuesday 6 September
Hart and Districts Neighbourhood Panel Annual General Meeting,
Fleet office, 7pm
Wednesday 7 September
Sentinel Neighbourhood Area Panel Annual General Meeting,
Basingstoke office, 7pm
Tuesday 27 September
STARA AGM, Fleet office, 6pm
Tuesday 4 October
Hart and Districts Neighbourhood Panel Meeting, Fleet office, 7pm
Wednesday 5 October
Sentinel Neighbourhood Area Panel meeting,
Basingstoke office, 7pm
Tuesday 25 October
STARA meeting, Basingstoke office, 6pm
Tuesday 1 November
Hart and Districts Neighbourhood Panel Meeting, Fleet office, 7pm
Wednesday 2 November
Sentinel Neighbourhood Area Panel meeting,
Basingstoke office, 7pm
Tuesday 22 November
STARA meeting, Fleet office, 6pm
www.sentinelha.org.uk
7
7
Feature Story
It just feels so
much safer.
Local families were treated to a Caribbean street
party to welcome them as the first new residents of
our Popley Islands redevelopment in Basingstoke.
New and old neighbours joined us for a barbecue – laid on by our
contractor Hill Partnerships – and to visit stalls, go on a treasure hunt,
try out the surf simulator, or chill out to music from the
Everest Community College Steel Band.
So far, we’ve handed over the keys to 73 of the 244 new homes to
people from Basingstoke, and the redevelopment – including two
new shops, new play equipment, well-lit footpaths and a large green
space in the middle – will be all finished in 2013.
This investment in your community is part of a long-term project to
replace 800 unpopular homes with a wider mix, and follows similar
work at Oakridge, Bishops Green, Pyestock and Popley Poets.
“We moved from a three
bedroom house in Popley.
I think it’s wonderful, we’re in
a three-storey house.
They’ve done the right thing.”
Tom McDowell, Sark Way
resident for 3 weeks.
“It’s a nice house and the
people seem nice and friendly.
We had four of us in a two
bedroom house, and this is
the first time we’ve had our
bedroom to ourselves for
two years.”
Robyn Leate, Tortuga Walk
(with son Dylan).
ell,
Tom McDow
dent
si
re
Sark Way
Ellen Matthew
Cayman Clo s,
se
Robyn Leate,
Tortuga Walk
8
Island Views
“I like the new roads and
buildings, it’s made the area
more attractive. My other half
is a carpet fitter and he’s fitted
some in the new houses, and
says they’re really nice.”
Ellen Matthews, Cayman
Close resident for 2 years.
Spirit: The Sentinel Magazine with the Community at Heart
More pics at:
facebook.com/sentinelha
At home with...
n
a
m
r
e
t
s
e
h
C
t
Jane
Janet Chesterman’s looking forward to lower bills after becoming our first customer
living in an older home to benefit from our ВЈ3.3m solar energy panel project.
Sat in glorious sunshine, Janet
Chesterman carefully stitches
a zip in to a ball gown as
contractors from Vital Energy
discuss plans for her Tadley
home. ”I only moved in on
18 April”, she says, explaining
how she moved back to her
hometown after living in
Reading with her husband
for 35 years.
“I feel it’s a real compliment
to be the first person to have
these new panels fitted.
This street gets loads of sun
on the back of the roof so I’m
hoping it will really help to save
money on my electricity bills.”
Janet’s husband died in a tragic
motorbike accident, “he was
the love of my life and things
were unbearable for a while.
I was in such a state I couldn’t
work and I couldn’t keep up
the payments on our home, so I
had to sell up. I’m very lucky to
have two wonderful daughters
and am about to become a
grandmother for the second
and third time”, she smiles.
”Both my girls are pregnant
and due any time now, so it’s all
been a bit hectic with the move
as well.”
we’re using less energy from
power stations, it reduces
the damage we cause to the
environment.
Her two bedroom bungalow
was advertised through the
Basingstoke and Deane Choice
Based Lettings website. “I was
renting privately which was
expensive, so I registered on
the housing waiting list. I bid
on about three places and was
over the moon when I found
out I was successful on this
one. It’s a real bonus to have
the solar panels as Carolyn*
explained not everyone can
have them if their roof doesn’t
face the right way.”
The snag is that solar panels
won’t work in all our homes,
as you need a south-facing roof
not overshadowed by trees and
of a certain pitch. So we’ve
started off by choosing those
homes that cost the most –
relatively – to run.
Janet’s bungalow is the first of
300 older homes to be fitted
with solar energy panels over
the summer, which we expect
to cut annual electricity bills by
around ВЈ150 per household
a year. They’re becoming a
more common feature across
local rooflines, as they generate
electricity during the day to be
used in the home. And because
ome
If your h
t the bill,
doesn’t fi ut
watch o
r green
for othe
ns
gy optio
lo
o
n
h
c
te
e
that we’r
into.
looking
*Carolyn Whistlecraft is Sentinel’s Climate
Change Officer
www.sentinelha.org.uk
9
9
What’s new?
Big changes
to benefits
More details have emerged of
important changes to the benefit
system, which we know will affect
many of you significantly.
w
Housing Benefit
If you receive Housing Benefit, this is reduced
for every other adult (non-dependent) living with
you, and by different amounts depending
on circumstances.
Sure Start Maternity Grant
Young parents receiving certain benefits were
once able to claim a ВЈ500 lump sum per
pregnancy, but this benefit was stopped in
January this year.
This deduction was from ВЈ7.40 to ВЈ47.75 per
week, but increased from April to between ВЈ9.40
and £60.60 a week. So if you haven’t already
increased your rent payment to cover, please get
in touch with us before things get out of hand.
Working Tax Credits
Eligibility for the over 60s has changed, so now
anyone above that age and working 16 hours
or more a week can claim Working Tax Credits.
What you have saved doesn’t affect this claim.
Incapacity Benefit/Employment
Support Allowance
Although Incapacity Benefit was replaced by the
Employment Support Allowance (ESA) in 2008,
anyone claiming either will now need to be
medically reassessed, by filling in a questionnaire
and being interviewed. If you refuse, you may
lose this benefit.
We’re aware of the impact many of these
spending cuts will have on our customers,
and offer a lot of help for anyone struggling
to pay their rent.
If you’re still entitled, you’ll be moved on to ESA,
but if you’re deemed fit for work, you’ll be moved
onto Jobseekers Allowance at the same time.
This way, your Housing Benefit payments to us
will not be disrupted.
Except for severe disabilities/health conditions,
successful ESA claimants will still be expected
to attend support sessions to prepare for
suitable work.
10
We can provide you with free basic money
management advice if you’re struggling to
stick to a budget. We also have an �in-house’
Citizens’ Advice Officer on hand with more
detailed advice on benefit changes. And of
course, you can try out our self-help debt
management pack – featuring TV consumer
champion Dom Littlewood. (Watch it on
our website)
Not sure who to speak to? See your local
pages later on in this issue to find out more.
Spirit: The Sentinel Magazine with the Community at Heart
Viewpoint
STAR LETTER
WINS
What you’re saying online
If you’re able to get online, our facebook pages are a great way to
keep in touch with what’s on or to tell us what you think. Join the
conversation by going to www.facebook.com/sentinelha.
ВЈ25
Avon calling at my door
What do they think
I want it for
Moisture cream for my face
Giving me that look of grace
Sentinel Community Spirit Hi Lee. Thanks for your
comment. Get With is definitely happening again this year.
I’ll post details on this page about how to get involved as
soon as the plans are finalised!! KC it :)
Lee Barnes fantastic news.... well worth it. I will have a
very happy daughter :)
Sentinel Community Spirit We look forward to seeing
her there! :-) KC
Fragrance body soft cream,
makes your body
feel like a dream.
w
Lee Barnes
Does anyone know if “Get With” is running this year?
My daughter hasn’t stopped talking about it! I would defo
que for another hours to get het in, it was so worth it :)
And some toilet spray keeps
me fresh all day
Perfume I can get
carried away.
Mascara for my eyes, what is
it doing for me?
It said it refreshes your mind,
there’s even a spray for
my feet.
Even a sexy bubble bath,
all this makes me laugh,
what good is it for me, I am
content as I am.
They say all this makes
our skin wrinkle free,
it’s just too late for me.
Gil Mathews Great to see this still going, just shows what
we can do when we work together with other agencies,
|like Safer Hart, HDC, and local Police..!
The years have taken their
toll, you see I am getting old.
Roma Skrzypczak, Hook
Please keep your comments coming in and remember you could win
ВЈ25 of shopping vouchers.
To be featured in the next edition please get in touch by Friday 26 August 2011. You can write
to us at the Basingstoke office, email communications@sentinelha.org.uk or contact us on
facebook.com/sentinelha
www.sentinelha.org.uk
11
Oakridge area
Up my Street
South View, Limes Park, Old Basing,
Crown Heights, Austen Court
Royals spotted
in Oakridge
w
Sentinel’s
Summer Fun
We joined Oakridge residents for loads of summer
fun last month. At the Oakridge West Community
Centre family fun day we supplied a bouncy castle
and face painters, and sponsored the bouncy
castle at the Oakridge school fete. Sentinel staff
chatted to neighbours about their homes and the
area they live in.
We’ll use this feedback to see where we can
improve the services we provide in the area and
to help make the neighbourhood a great place
to live. If you live in Oakridge and have any
comments about your home, your neighbourhood
or the services we provide do let us know.
See back cover for contact details or leave us
a message on facebook.com/sentinelha.
12
We teamed up with Oakridge Hall for All Youth
Club, and Basingstoke and Deane Borough
Council’s Community Development Officer to
put on a Royal wedding tea party during the
Easter holidays for local 7-12 year olds.
All the guests dressed in fancy dress with a Royal
Wedding theme and had a massive tea followed
by party games. You can see more photos from
this event on facebook.com/sentinelha
What’s going down at Rooksdown?
Residents on the Limes Park development at
Rooksdown are in for some summer fun on
Sunday 24 July. Organised by the Rooksdown
Community Group the event runs from 2-4pm
on the green by the new Community Centre.
We’re supplying a bouncy castle and Sentinel
staff will be joining in the fun and chatting
to local residents about what they like and
don’t like about their homes, community and
neighbourhood. It’s been around three years
since the first Sentinel residents moved into the
development and we’ve joined six other local
landlords; the police; Basingstoke and Deane
Borough Council and the local pastor to form
the Rooksdown Action Group.
We’ll use the feedback from local residents to
help identify the top three issues that the group
will tackle over the coming months. To find out
more about the Rooksdown Community Group
visit www.rooksdown.org.uk/community.
Spirit: The Sentinel Magazine with the Community at Heart
New Homes –
Chawton Park
Road, Alton
All part of the day job
Looking after your home is only part of what
we do. Your Neighbourhood Co-ordinator
(NCO) can help with everything to do with
your tenancy, from the moment you move into
your home, through changes in your family
circumstances to the time you may decide to
move. When it comes to paying your rent we
have staff who can make sure your account
stays in the black and offer advice and support
if you’re struggling with your finances.
You can contact your Neighbourhood
Co-ordinator or Arrears Officer through
our Customer Service Centre, by email
customer@sentinelha.org.uk or by
popping into one of our offices.
We’ve handed over the keys to residents in our
first new development in Alton. Situated next
to the famous Watercress Line in Alton town
centre, the land was home to a Hampshire County
Council day centre which closed in 2006. When
finished, this ВЈ9.5m development will provide
30 homes for rent and 24 for part-buy part-rent,
and we expect all homes to be ready by the
end of September this year. If you’re interested
in renting one of these new homes you should
register with East Hampshire District Council.
To find out more about part-buy part-rent contact
Sentinel Homescope on 01256 338800 or visit
www.sentinelha.org.uk/homescope. You can
see more photos on facebook.com/sentinelha
Ask the editor
Julie Williams
Neighbourhood Co-ordinator,
Rooksdown, Old Basing,
Alton, Oakridge Village
Shaun Parmer
Neighbourhood Co-ordinator,
Longbourne Place and Oakridge
Mary Curtis
Neighbourhood Co-ordinator,
Crown Heights and South View
Tammy Roux
Arrears Officer
Some of you have asked us what’s happening
with the fire-damaged house in Vivian Road,
Oakridge? This has taken quite some time to
resolve as we’ve been negotiating with the
insurance companies loss adjuster, but we’re
assured that repair work will start soon.
www.sentinelha.org.uk
13 13
Popley area
Bramley, Sherfield on Loddon, Chineham
Up my Street
Sherfield on Loddon Fete
Supporting
local talent
Our three-year sponsorship of
Marnel Football Club Popley
(MFC) has helped more than
100 local kids get access to
great football coaching.
The club is regularly visited by
Premiership talent scouts, and
they’re now looking to get adult
teams together too, so the
younger players can get used to
playing against adults. You can
contact MFC Popley by email
on mfcpopley@hotmail.co.uk
to find out more, or check out
facebook.com/sentinelha
As well as the usual stalls and traditional games, entertainment
included a falconry display, juggling, circus skills and live music.
Youngsters had a chance to win prizes by entering our colouring
competition and test their dexterity by hooking a duck.
Finally, for those of you who visited our stall and had a go at
guessing the number of wine gums we could cram into the empty
wine carafe… there were 149! Prizes are on the way to the
lucky winners.
Spirit: The Sentinel Magazine with the Community at Heart
w
14
Our staff joined hundreds of people who flocked to the Village
Green in Sherfield-on-Loddon on Saturday 11 June for the annual
village fete.
Popley pop in
All part of the day job
Residents in the Popley Poets area can now
pop into Pebbles Children’s Centre for a chat
with Sentinel staff. The informal community
drop in sessions run from 2pm till 4pm on the
third Tuesday of the month. You don’t need an
appointment, so, whether you’re popping into
Pebbles with your kids or making a special trip,
we’ll be there to chat about your home,
your neighbourhood, your rent account or
anything else that affects you as a
Sentinel customer.
Looking after your home is only part of what
we do. Your Neighbourhood Co-ordinator
(NCO) can help with everything to do with
your tenancy, from the moment you move into
your home, through changes in your family
circumstances to the time you may decide to
move. When it comes to paying your rent we
have staff who can make sure your account
stays in the black and offer advice and support
if you’re struggling with your finances.
Check out facebook.com/sentinelha for
more details.
How do you get about?
We’ve employed Upton McGougan Ltd, travel
plan co-ordinators to consult with residents of
the Popley Islands estate about how they travel
around locally. whether by foot, bicycle, bus, rail
or car-sharing the Travel Plan promotes different
ways of getting about.
With residents moving into their new homes in
the Faroe Close and Maldive Road area, work is
being done to help make local travel as cheap,
healthy, safe, enjoyable, open, and green as
possible for everyone. New residents are receiving
Travel Plan welcome packs and the first travel
surveys took place in June to find out residents’
local travel views.
You can find out more or raise views about local
travel, by getting in touch with: Upton McGougan
Ltd on: 01962 834 350 or email:
travelplan@uptonmcgougan.com
You can contact your Neighbourhood
Co-ordinator or Arrears Officer through
our Customer Service Centre, by email
customer@sentinelha.org.uk or by
popping into one of our offices.
Dawn Stanley
Neighbourhood Co-ordinator,
Popley Islands and Bramley
Peter Trafford
Neighbourhood Co-ordinator,
Popley Abbeys,
Sherborne St.John and Marnel Park
Sarah Palmer
Neighbourhood Co-ordinator,
Popley Poets,
Chineham and Sherfield on Loddon
Marcia Hamilton
Arrears Officer
Lynn van den Broek
Arrears Officer
www.sentinelha.org.uk
15 15
Winklebury area
Andover, Tadley, Basingstoke Villages,
Kempshott
Up my Street
Royal Wedding
Celebrations
Hampton Court residents were among the guests treated to a
traditional street party style event in honour of the Royal wedding.
Organised and supported by us, Basingstoke Voluntary Services,
Hampshire County Council, The Co-operative, Fort Hill Community
Centre, and Basingstoke and Deane Borough Council.
Students from Forthill School provided entertainment with juggling,
magic and songs. The event was also attended by The Mayor and
Mayoress of Basingstoke and Deane, who stayed to enjoy tea and
cakes as well as a spin around the dance floor.
16
Spirit: The Sentinel Magazine with the Community at Heart
Last orders
leads to new
apartments
Andover residents were able
to move off the housing
waiting list and into their newly
completed apartments in May.
The 15 apartments were built
on the site of the old Merrie
Monk pub, and together with
new homes in Augusta Park
we’ve been able to provide
more than 200 new affordable
homes in Andover in the last
18 months. We’re working
closely with Test Valley Borough
Council to help the new
communities settle in and will
be treating local families to a
choice of four fun days out
as part of this year’s Get With
activity programme. (see �Teen
Spirit’ centre pages for details).
New home for
youth project
Young people in Winklebury are benefitting from a
new youth club building thanks to the Winklebury
Community Association and Basingstoke and
Deane Borough Council. The Winklebury Youth
Project was set up nine years ago by local mum
Lea Jeff, “local kids needed somewhere they could
meet up that wasn’t too formal like most youth
clubs are”, explains Lea, “it’s taken a long time to
get this far but we’re really pleased to be getting
a proper base.” The drop-in style club provides a
range of free activities for local youngsters from
computer games to football as well as a place to
chill out with friends. Local newsagent Greenways
supplies sweets for the tuck shop and any profit
from sales is given back to the project in the form
of play equipment. The new building, next to
the cricket pavilion, off Winklebury Way, will also
throw open it’s doors on Tuesdays between 3 and
5pm to anyone who’d like to drop in to begin or
improve their computer skills.
Sessions are free but any donations are welcome
and will help to cover electricity and water
bills. For more information contact Winklebury
Community Association on 01256 330375.
All part of the day job
Looking after your home is only part of what
we do. Your Neighbourhood Co-ordinator
(NCO) can help with everything to do with
your tenancy, from the moment you move into
your home, through changes in your family
circumstances to the time you may decide to
move. When it comes to paying your rent we
have staff who can make sure your account stays
in the black and offer advice and support
if you’re struggling with your finances.
You can contact your Neighbourhood
Co-ordinator or Arrears Officer through
our Customer Service Centre, by email
customer@sentinelha.org.uk or by
popping into one of our offices.
Carys Baptist
Neighbourhood Co-ordinator,
Basingstoke rural areas
Lynn Baldwin
Neighbourhood Co-ordinator,
Winklebury and Kempshott
Stacey Stephens
Neighbourhood Co-ordinator,
Andover
Lorraine Scott
Arrears Officer
www.sentinelha.org.uk
17 17
Hart area
Up my Street
Fleet, Farnborough, Aldershot, Camberley,
and surrounding areas
Keeping a eye on Dukes Park
Your Community Safety Team hope to sign up as many residents
as possible to the local Neighbourhood Watch Scheme.
To find out more email: farnborough.snt@hampshire.pnn.police.
uk or call 0845 045 45 45 and speak to PC Christopher Thoday or
PCSO Jenni Lawrence. Work together with your neighbours and
help make your community a great place to live.
Remember you can use the 101 number for any non-emergency
contact with Hampshire Constabulary as well as to report
anti-social behaviour.
Supporting local talent
The Soccer at Six scheme is run in partnership
with Aldershot Town FC. Young footballers can
turn up and play at a variety of venues around the
Hart district on weeknights from 9 May through
to 2 September 2011.The sessions are open to
anyone aged 5 - 16 and are run by fully qualified
Aldershot Town FC staff. They run from 6pm 7.15pm and cost £2.50 a time. There’s no need
to book just turn up, pay and play. These are the
venues for this year’s programme:
Mondays – Crownfields, Odiham
Tuesdays – Jubilee Fields, Hartley Wintney
Wednesdays – Oakley Park, Fleet
Thursdays – Yateley Green, Yateley
Fridays – Basingbourne Park, Fleet
18
Spirit: The Sentinel Magazine with the Community at Heart
All part of the day job
Gig on the
green Yateley
Looking after your home is only part of what we do.
Your Neighbourhood Co-ordinator (NCO) can help with everything
to do with your tenancy, from the moment you move into your
home, through changes in your family circumstances to the time
you may decide to move. When it comes to paying your rent we
have staff who can make sure your account stays in the black and
offer advice and support if you’re struggling with your finances
You can contact your Neighbourhood Co-ordinator or Arrears
Officer through our Customer Service Centre, by email
customer@sentinelha.org.uk or by popping into one of our offices.
Anita Foster
Neighbourhood Co-ordinator,
Odiham, North and South Warnborough
and Fleet
Kate Ackland
Neighbourhood Co-ordinator,
Yateley, Blackwater, Surrey Heath, Aldershot
and Eversley
Hundreds of people turned
out for this year’s Music and
Comedy Festival in Yateley.
All profits from the event go
towards developing sports
facilities in the local area
and to Yateley Industries;
an organisation committed
to providing employment and
support for disabled members
of the community.
itor
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Terri McCombie
Neighbourhood Co-ordinator,
Farnborough, Cove and Hartley Wintney
Tina Widdison
Neighbourhood Co-ordinator,
Crondall, Hook, Church Crookham,
Crookham Village, Tongham and Waverley
Gill Adams
Arrears Officer
Kath Killick
Arrears Officer
www.sentinelha.org.uk
19
Introducing Threedom
Thousands of you are enjoying peace of mind and an independent life
thanks to our pendant alarms, smoke detectors, bogus caller buttons,
and other products. That’s a lot of help at the touch of a button!
Recent research suggests more older people worry
about losing their independence than have a fear
of dying. While most of us want to feel safe and
know there’s someone there for us to provide the
peace of mind.
Threedom is our newlook service to provide a
range of 20 products – from smoke alarms to fall
detectors – where help is just a touch away, and
you or a loved one can stay put for longer. Linked
to our round-the-clock alarm monitoring centre in
Basingstoke, we can call one of your pre-arranged
contact names to get the right help for you, such
as a neighbour, a doctor, or a relative.
Threedom makes a range of everyday tasks easier
too, with gadgets that remind you when to take
medication, or bogus caller buttons so we can
listen in and get help if there’s conmen about.
Basic alarms cost ВЈ3.98 a week, and as soon as
you call, we’ll visit you at home to go through
everything with you, then get you connected
within a couple of days.
So if you or someone you know isn’t coping as
well as they might – young or old – call one of
our Threedom ladies today on 0845 647 5515 or
visit www.threedom.org.uk to find out more.
How does it work?
1
2
3
Signal
React
Support
Buttons or sensors raise the
alarm and dedicated staff are
quickly alerted.
Staff assess the situation and
emergency help is called to
the home if needed.
Around the clock support
ensures that our customers
are safe, healthy and able to
live independently.
20
Spirit: The Sentinel Magazine with the Community at Heart
Competition: Spot the difference
Have a look at the photographs below and see if you can spot the six
differences, for your chance to win ВЈ50 of vouchers
Circle or highlight the six differences and
send your entry to:
Kim Drewery
Sentinel Housing Association
56 Kingsclere Road,
Basingstoke, Hants
RG21 6XG
Congratulations... to Linda Lewis of
Basingstoke, who wON ВЈ50 of vouchers,
for spotting all six differences in our
last competition.
Competition
winner
By Friday 26 August 2011. The winning entry
will be drawn by the magazine editorial panel.
(Employees of Sentinel and customers with rent arrears
may enter but are not eligible to win).
Name:
Address:
Daytime contact number:
www.sentinelha.org.uk
21 21
In shape...
how well have we performed?
We work hard to provide you with excellent
services. To reach our aim of being a great
landlord, we monitor our performance and
constantly look out for ways we can improve.
If we don’t meet our targets we change the way
we do things to make sure we get it right.
The table opposite shows you how we’re
performing against our targets up to March
2011. We set the targets by comparing ourselves
to the top 25% performing housing
associations nationally.
You’ll see that overall satisfaction with our
services is very high at 92%. This is a 5% increase
from the previous year end. However, there are
some areas where we need to do better and it’s
your feedback that will help us do that.
What are you doing to improve
estate services?
Estate services includes things like cleaning and
repair of communal areas, grass cutting and
rubbish collection. We’ve set up a new estate
inspection programme and changed the way our
caretakers work so they’ll blitz any areas that
aren’t up to scratch. See P3 for more details.
Why does it take 35 seconds for our
calls to be answered?
We did have problems with our telephone service
in early summer last year, since then we’ve taken
on more staff to help cover busy times and
installed a new telephone system. The good news
is that since August last year the response time
has been less than the 25 second target, giving
us an average call waiting time of 35 seconds.
22
What’s happening with your
complaints process?
Complaints are important to us as they highlight
where our services are failing, and help us to see
how we can do things in a better way. Although
we didn’t meet our complaints targets this time
our performance puts us among the top 25%
of landlords. We’re making improvements to the
way we deal with all of our customer contacts.
By installing a new customer relationship
management system this summer, we can deal
with all your enquiries more efficiently.
How are you tackling anti-social behaviour?
The fall in satisfaction with how we handle
anti-social behaviour (ASB) is coupled with
an increase in the number of recorded cases.
We have a number of ways to improve the
situation including:
•Use of the new customer relationship
management system
•Review of the service in May 2011 by the
national ASB Action Team
•Better information for customers including new
advice sheets and SMS text messaging.
How are you improving your repairs service?
The main reasons for not hitting our repairs
targets are because repairs aren’t being
completed on time, issues with the quality of the
work and appointments not being kept by work
men and occasionally tenants. We have regular
meetings with our repairs contractor MITIE and
your resident representatives to see how we can
improve on our repairs service, so you should see
an improvement over the coming months.
Spirit: The Sentinel Magazine with the Community at Heart
Actual to
March
2010/11
Target
92%
88%
24
22
Satisfaction with estate services
83%
90%
Current rent arrears
2.3%
2.7%
Telephone Response
Calls waiting lost
7%
9%
Average call waiting time in seconds
35
25
98.7%
100%
Number of complaints received
813
–
Number of compliments received
306
–
Satisfaction with complaints process
85%
90%
71%
Satisfaction with complaints outcome
82%
85%
69%
Satisfaction with ASB complaint process
77%
90%
87%
Satisfaction with ASB complaint outcome
75%
85%
85%
80%
83%
83%
Emergency repairs completed in target (1 day)
99.6%
99.3%
99.3%
Urgent repairs completed in target (7 days)
98.2%
98.5%
98.6%
Routine repairs completed in target (21 days)
97.7%
98.5%
98.5%
Properties with valid gas safety certificates
100%
100%
100%
Number of kitchens refurbished
144
122
Number of bathrooms refurbished
137
122
Customers satisfied with quality of work
98%
99%
Performance Indicators
At a
glance
Top 25%
Landlords
Neighbourhood
Satisfaction with overall landlord services
Average number of days to re-let an empty home
24
2.0%
Written Enquiries and Complaints
Letters responded to within 10 working days
�
Anti Social Behaviour
Repairs
Satisfaction with repairs and maintenance service
Refurbishment
More performance information is available on our website.
Are we measuring up?
What other information on our services would you like to see?
If you would like to have your say on the performance information we
publish, please contact Damien Ward, Performance Manager
on 01256 312878 or email damien.ward@sentinelha.org.uk
www.sentinelha.org.uk
23 23
Bank Holiday
Office Closure
If you would like this document in another
language or format, or if you require the
services of an interpreter, please contact us.
Our offices will be closed on:
Bank Holiday Monday
29 August 2011
Polish
We’ll be back to usual after
the Bank Holiday, on
Tuesday 30 August 2011.
Portuguese
If you have an emergency
repair to report, please ring
0800 195 5515 (from a
landline) or 0300 666 5515
(from a mobile).
Thai
Alternatively, for
non-emergency repairs,
please use our on-line repairs
reporting facility on:
www.sentinelha.org.uk
Bengali
Tamil
2011
Are you
getting your share?
SHARE is our free
programme of great
activities giving you a chance
to have a say on the way
we’re run and your share
of the fun. If you’ve signed
up to join us we’ll see you
between 27 and 29 July.
Basingstoke office: 56 Kingsclere Road Basingstoke Hampshire RG21 6XG
Fleet office: 11 Church Road, Fleet Hampshire, GU51 3RH
Telephone 0800 195 5515 from a landline or 0300 666 5515 from your mobile
Produced by Sentinel Communications team Email: communications@sentinelha.org.uk
Designed and printed by The Escape, Basingstoke. Distributed by Malvern Mailing, Basingstoke
Printed on recycled paper containing 100% post consumer waste
www.sentinelha.org.uk
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