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Tuesday, 8 June 2010

Up-Coming Community Meetings

Tonight at 8pm there will be a meeting at the Church of Christ on Main Road Darnall to discuss proposals to site a permanent car park for Travellers in Darnall.

The next general community meeting will be held on Thursday 24 June at 10am. The venue is to be confirmed. The main item for discussion will be planning issues, including the future of Darnall Centre.

Notes of the Community Meeting on 15 April

Notes of the Darnall Community Meeting held on Thursday 15 April at the Darnall Forum offices and chaired by Cllr Mazher Iqbal with Cllr Mary Lea and Sylvia Hamilton (Chair of Darnall Forum) in attendance

Simon Kirk from Sheffield Primary Care Trust gave a short presentation about two current issues:

1) The York road Surgery has made a business decision to more to the former Wellington Public House. There is no basis in the contract they have with the NHS to compel them to use the new health centre. They successfully appealed against the Council’s decision to refuse planning permission. Their plans for the new building must be approved by the PCT so they will have to refurbish to a high standard. The service must be the same as they currently provide or improved. They are also entitled to reclaim the cost of their premises from the NHS as long as they can agree a reasonable figure with the PCT.

2) The ground for the LIFT Project has been cleared and site investigation is on going. The LIFT Company will build the health centre and rent it to the PCT for 25 years, after which there will be an option to buy. The District Valuer has to confirm that the cost of the deal is value for money. The difference which the facilities make to the health of local people is part of the calculation which the PCT must also make if the DV has any reservations. The Strategic Health Authority must also approve the PCT’s decision.

There will be a stakeholder group to help drive the project forward. Local people will be involved. It will be convened when the project reaches ‘financial close’, ie. the price is agreed with the Company and the DV and the Strategic Health authority accepts that it is value for money.

New international accountancy rules did look as if they might potentially derail the scheme, but that threat has gone away. National government could also change the rules but there is no indication of that. The project is in the PCT’s five year plan.


1) Drs Mehrohtra and Swinden have told patients that they will have 18 parking spaces but this was in a draft consultation document which is now being revised. Patients will have to walk or go by public transport unless they are disabled.

2) They have got planning permission to redevelop their existing surgery.

3) The Council has cut almost £100,000 from its budget for public health promotion (the APHC Project). In Darnall’s case it is losing £10,000 from a £51,000 budget.

4) The stakeholder group will include Darnall Well Being, The Forum, councillors, the LIFT Co., The GPs’ practice, the public health team etc.

Jenny McPhail gave a presentation about the Council’s Insulation Scheme which provides free loft and cavity wall insulation for residents of Darnall Ward and also special categories of people throughout the city (eg. over 70s). EAGA Insulation is the only approved contractor for the scheme. If minor pointing needs doing or scaffolding needs erecting, EAGA will do this. Clients of the scheme will have a personal password which only the official contractors know. Cowboy insulators won’t be able to quote this password.

The team can also provides other green energy and fire safety advice. They link in with the Green Doctors. Email: or phone 0800 9159096


1) If you have less than 8” of insulation the Council can top it up to 12”. The survey is free. It includes insulation of the hot water tanks and associated piping; and cold water tanks if they are in the loft.

2) Report cowboy firms who are trying to capitalise on the programme

3) The funding comes from the CERT (Carbon Emissions Reduction Project)

Councillor Iqbal and Neil Bishop gave an update on the negotiations to reopen the post office. The Forum is submitting an application for a loan to pay for the set up costs for reopening the post office. The Community Assembly are looking at ways to help by making a grant for Social Enterprise. The main benefit of this would be to encourage the lender – the Yorkshire Key Fund – to invest in the project. Commercial banks are now reluctant to fund Post Offices. Sylvia Hamilton explained that the Forum is a voluntary organisation and exists to promote the regeneration of Darnall.

High Hazels Park

The Café has now opened in High Hazels House.

30 young lads have been playing cricket as part of a Cricket Tournament funded by South Yorkshire Police and supported by advice from Darnall Forum, which is funded through the Community Assembly. Residents said how nice it is to see children in the park again.