Dings community AGM

The Dings AGM minutes ’24


The Dings Annual General Meeting and Community Meeting – 25/05/2024 AGM

Chairs Report

This is Sal’s last report as Chair. This will be my final AGM report for the Dings as its chair, after 17 years I have decided it is time for someone else to carry on the work on behalf of the Dings.

New buildings are being erected all around us, Avon Street – the old Chanson food site on Avon street, has now been demolished – Gas Lane building works started – Albert road and the university campus. All of these sites are earmarked for student accommodation. The Calor gas site on Kingsland road has yet to gain planning approval, this is going to planning committee in June.

Many thanks to Serrie for keeping our website updated www.thedings.co.uk  – Facebook members are still growing in popularity we now have 672 members – crime – news – events lost & found items are posted each week.

Youth – due to council cuts, the Thursday youth club had to close, but good news is Wellspring settlement has taken over the running of the club, thanks to Luis.

Funding from Wates ran out at Christmas, but we managed to get a further Grant that should take us to the end of the school year and we are actively seeking new funding.

The Safe ‘Ouse container is currently closed to everyone, due to a refurbishment – new kitchen, hob, oven, painted throughout, new chairs kitchen worktop and cupboards, radiators covered and disabled access ramp to be fitted. This is all courtesy of BCC – in exchange they would like the use of the container, for consultations and meetings.

We have managed to rent out the container to 3 closed groups – 3 times a week. 

We held our annual fun day in September, lovely weather enjoyed by all.

After school clubs have been running during the past year for maths and English.

The Dings streets had many advent windows at Christmas, which made all the streets look brighter and more festive, thanks to Helen for coordinating.

14 Christmas parcels were delivered to longstanding residents, all well received.

Recipe bags containing a recipe and ingredients were given out to the youth of the area, every couple of months, many thanks to Deliveroohop, for helping supply some of the ingredients.

Community gardening still carried out the first Sunday of the month, planting bulbs, pruning and cutting back overgrown plants, also litter picking. If you are unable to make the Sunday adopt a planter in the street.

Unfortunately crime in the Dings has not been good this past year, we have had numerous drug dealing, prostitution – thefts of parcels on doorsteps/lobbies bike thefts. It seems a lot of these crimes are not being reported to the police – unless we report them, they will keep happening.

Many thanks to our resident cleaner of the container, who has done a wonderful job throughout the year.

Treasurer’s Report:

The cost of keeping the Safe Ouse open and operational is a minimum of £1,500 per year.  This covers costs like rates, insurance, internet.

If we want to continue with other community activities such as the Youth Club, Fun Day and recipe bags we need a minimum of an additional £6,000.  

Last year we funded all of this through grants (from Wates and Sir Robert McAlpine (Sal)), donations (thank you to the Pasty Emporium, Motion and Deliveroo Hop), raffles and the last of our rent from the previous Youth Club provider CYN.

We had £4,647 in the bank at the beginning of the year.  Providing we have no unexpected costs this will cover:

  • 5 months of Youth Club for Primary age youth (secondary youth services now run through the Wellspring)
  • the Fun Day this year, and 
  • running costs of the Safe Ouse until the end of year

We currently have no source of income.  Finding ways to raise funds and find some revenue streams will need to be a priority for the community this year.  A small fundraising group will be set up in the next month to focus on this.  Please let Nola Hersey know if you would be interested in joining this or if you have any potential funding contacts or skills in Grant submissions and would be happy to help with either of these.

Minutes agreed from last meeting

Nominations for office

All post holders stood down

ChairNola HerseySal CaseleyAli Hender
Vice ChairSerrie ChapmanSal CaseleySarah Booth
TreasurerFrancis ListerNola HerseyAlice Evans
SecretaryHelen LeckieSal CaseleyNola Hersey
Directors:Alice EvansNola HerseyHelen Leckie

All positions elected unopposed.

Dings Community Business Meeting

Welcome to all

Welcome to our guests, Luke Scadding – PCSO6688;  Dorcas Casey – local  artist), Harry Simpson – Old Market Community Association

  1. Bus Service for the Dings – Harry Simpson (Old market community association) – campaigning to get bus service back in. First do not want to reinstate the bus service as it is their worst performing route. Harry is campaigning to get West of England Funding to cover places not serviced currently. The proposed route (61) would start and end at Avonmeads Retail Park, include a stop on Kingsland Road and Old Market and the City Centre which would enable people to connect with other routes. Currently our less mobile residents are limited to high priced goods in the Sainsbury’s local, or reliant on lifts or taxis to go to the bigger supermarkets. Hundreds of new students will be coming into the area and there is no planning for them to have a car so good public transport is essential.  The new Oasis Temple Quarter secondary school (the largest secondary in the city) will need transport for staff and students. Trying to focus on First so that the bus ticket will connect to wider network. First may be looking at putting a bus to Temple Quarter along Avon Street. A massive thank you to Harry who has spent so much of his own time on this. He will keep us informed on progress.
  2. Ina Ali – is a social worker in the area who is happy to share options to help people get around. Many thanks. Let Helen or Nola know if you would be interested in speaking to her.
  3. Treasurer’s Report: to keep Safe Ouse open and run, need £1500 per year. Current activities need about £6000 or more. Last year this was funded through grants, donations, raffle, some rent. However none of this is currently in place for this year . £4637 in bank. Will cover 5 months Youth Club, fun day and running costs. Need to focus on sustainable sources of cash. The youth club funding from council is going to Barton Hill. Wellspring Settlement funding a group on a Thursday for secondary-age youth. We need to find funding for the primary age kids. Other people who use the Safe Ouse are volunteers. Will set up a group for people interested in getting funding.
  4. Crime – PCSO Luke Scadding – PC6688.

KEEP REPORTING CRIMES – 999 FOR IMMEDIATE DANGER, 101 FOR OTHER CRIME, OR VIA https://www.avonandsomerset.police.uk/report. These will be shared on the Facebook group as well.  Unfortunately the police don’t have resources to follow up everything, but when there are a lot of reports in one area, this gives justification to get more funding to tackle the problems.

Drug dealing:  hopefully soon to make some arrests and find the line. Found 45 wraps of heroin from a dealer in the park the other month. Shaftesbury Crusade are hearing dealers outside. Also concerns about the path between New Kingsley House and Hannah More School, and by the flats near Manor Scrap and The Plaza. Less dealing observed by Dings Park but a ‘spotter’ visible, there has been dealing behind the Safe Ouse. Some people have been given Criminal Behaviour orders to stay out of Broadmead, will come here instead until moved on again. Our location by the station is also convenient for drugs coming into Bristol by train.

Car break ins – one broken into this morning. Lock picked this morning. Police can put bait car out with tags they can trace but need people to report crimes so they have the data to request resources. Someone was trying car doors yesterday. A few at Shaftesbury Crusade. Cars broken into on Barton Road near the Barley Mow.

People going through bins – you can report this (101 or via https://www.avonandsomerset.police.uk/report)

Difficulties with getting contact with police. One resident rang 101 3 times in one week, got no response. Another resident was on the phone for hours waiting to report. Other residents said that when they reported a crime, the police only knocked on their door, putting their anonymity at risk, have asked police to knock on more doors.  Luke will let 101 know that police are not getting timely updates from 101.

Police Patrols: Police do patrol it, but can only do something if someone is there. There are only two staff on the beat, one PCSO and one police officer, there should be 6 – indicative of a UK wide shortage. Residents gave suggestions of times and locations to patrol

People breaking into bin sheds and bike sheds in flats, setting up tents, leaving crack pipes and drug paraphernalia. Residents feel unsafe putting their rubbish out.

Dings Walk – at night homeless people are making fires and taking drugs on the lane. Concerned about flammable fences, as well as Electrical station and Calor gas nearby. Luke to inform fire and patrol more often.

Help for people who are using drugs, sleeping rough etc – police are working with Bristol Drugs Project (BDP), Bristol Outreach Services for the Homeless (BOSH), Streetwise team, St Mungos and other organisations. Police will pass details over to partner agencies as well as signpost people. A lot of homeless people saying there are no beds, unless they have particular issues.

CCTV Cameras – what is the criteria? Luke applying for cameras currently. If anyone has private cameras – we can send footage to police. Luke will check if we can send livestream. Do not need a face shot, people can be identified by clothing or the way they move. Alice to see if Shaftesbury can upgrade their cameras. Zone residents to campaign for Hillcrest to install cameras as well.

5. Dorcas and Kerry Public art project – Dorcas is an Artist, used to live on Kingsland Road, Kerry from Bricks, Dorcas has been commissioned to make some artwork for the new ‘Welcome’ building on Anvil street by the trainline. A huge crocodile being built for outside the door, based on the legend of the Bristol Crocodile. Dorcas invites the community to participate in making textured skin for crocodile. You can cast hands or different textures to make ‘crocodile skin’ on clay to decorate ‘baby crocodiles’ that will be on the ground floor, open to the public. Any age can take part – kids, adults. The artwork will have a 15 year guarantee, there’s a maintenance plan within it. Contacts given for youth club.

Residents asked if there was any chance of them fixing wooden S seat? not currently.

Clay was passed around for attendees to make a mark. Stay tuned for more events in mid-July.

6. Neighbourly – advertised for garden companies to do corporate days. One organisation, Stantec, will be doing some gardening by the ball court.

7. Planters:  If you want to adopt a planter or patch of ground – feel free! If there’s a planter near your place that is not being tended, don’t be shy if you want to plant or look after one.

8. Youth Funding – please pass finding streams on, or let us know.

9. Funding for Fun Day – we have funding for September. Date TBA

10. Evening Post article about the Dings came out recently. Watch out for followup article when Youth Club finished (new kitchen donated from Wren).

11. Old cooker and microwave will need to be sold. Will be advertised on BS2 Booty. Any money will go to Dings Youth.

12. Massive thanks Sal for all your incredible 17 (plus!) years of hard work heading up the Dings Community Association. Your tireless efforts have made a huge difference to the Dings Community.  Some of the many things Sal has done include establishing relationships with our Councillors and the Police, meeting with developers, running the Fun Day, diminishing many a bush on community gardening !, being available to residents with problems and raising funds to run events and groups.   We acknowledge and appreciate it all and more importantly, you. Flowers presented as a thank you.

13. The Dings Needs You.  There are a lot of people who care about the area and would like to be involved. The more people we have doing small amounts the better. Many thanks to all who have already expressed an interest and have great ideas. If you want to be involved in any way, big or small, talk to Nola Hersey, our new chair – there will be something you can do.   We will arrange a get together when the Safe Ouse is re opened to meet each other, set up groups and agree the best way to work together.  Date TBC but would propose a few hours on a weekend when people can bring children if they need to.

Note: the picture was AI generated and I have no idea why it added the extra YOUD – at the very least its triggered my apostrophe fixation. I guess its a work in progress


Date of next meeting – TBC