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News - December 2019

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2020 periodic maintenance

Periodic external repair and redecoration is being specified and tendered to be carried out in 2020 (as chosen at the 2014 AGM). Section 20 consultation with flat owners required by law is taking place. Flat block communal areas will be decorated separately later, once costs and time required for wall and roof repairs are known.

Up to date information is being provided throughout the work on the Estate website at https://www.stbentooting.co.uk/periodic.

Before this, flat blocks were examined by the structural engineer following wall repairs in 2015. There were no issues with the corbel work, so the retention held from the building firm is being repaid. Some further minor wall cracks will be repaired during the periodic work, as in 2015.

Unfortunately, potentially more serious issues were found in two blocks. This was explained at the AGM, the Estate insurer is investigating after being put on notice, then the managing agent will write to the flat owners concerned.

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LED security lights

Many old Estate security lights were in poor condition and failing after long service. They are being replaced economically in three batches, changing those in an area together as some fail.

Bulkhead lights are being installed for footpaths, so fewer are needed for similar light.

In the second batch of work, some floodlights from the first work were adjusted to reduce glare while brightly lighting areas as a deterrent where youths loiter and there may be drug use.

When complete, the power used by Estate street and security lights will be reduced from 1,700W to 700W, reducing energy use and cost by 60%.

Snow and ice

If snow falls or is forecast or it is icy, grit / salt will be put in St Benedicts Close (by the bin), Abbey Drive and Limetree Walk for residents to use.

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Flat block TV aerials

Thank you to those who responded to the survey in September and reported issues following changes to Freeview television transmitters.

As a result, we are currently tendering for work to be carried out early in 2020 to identify the issues and upgrade the aerial systems as necessary at 21-26 Abbey Drive (poor reception); 1-11, 2-12 & 13-27 Limetree Walk and 1-11, 87-103 & 105-119 St Benedicts Close. Other blocks reported no issues.

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Maintenance

Work is updated monthly on the Estate website at https://www.stbentooting.co.uk/maintenance. Work underway and due soon includes:

  • Replacing old Estate security lights with new LED ones and flat block television aerial upgrades (see separate articles).
  • Further sewer repair work needed near 21-26 Abbey Drive needed following completion of the inspection after the first repairs.
  • Re-tendering work to reduce unevenness near St Benedicts Close parking spaces 87, 88 and 102 caused by nearby tree roots, because the original contractor withdrew.
  • Repairing uneven paving in St Benedicts Close (which the contractor has delayed).
  • Completing the year-long programme to improve safety signs after the Fire Brigade inspection with three more fire hydrant signs.
  • Fitting metal airbrick grilles to those flat blocks which voted to pay for this: 21-26 & 31-36 Abbey Drive and 18-28, 73-103 & 105 135 St Benedicts Close.

Holiday waste collection

Wandsworth Council waste collections are expected as usual on Mondays 23rd and 30th December. Christmas trees must be put out for collection for shredding, which is expected on Mondays 6th and 13th January, not any later.

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Annual meeting

The Annual General Meeting was held on 14th November in St Nicholas Church Hall.

The 2 Directors, 8 other shareholders from 5 properties, a proxy nominee and the Rendall and Rittner senior property manager attended. 2 proxy nominations to the chairman gave voting instructions and 2 gave discretion on voting.

More information and the documents for the meeting are available on the Estate website at https://www.stbentooting.co.uk/agm.

The following matters were considered:

  • Minutes of the 2018 meeting were approved.
  • The report of the Directors and Accounts for the year ended 30th June 2018 were adopted. A Statement of Service Charges was also presented for information, with one issue flagged on payments for electricity.
  • The Directors reported on contracts for services and maintenance including:
    • Following Council street light LED replacement, Estate street and security lights are being replaced with LED ones in stages. Remote areas with problems are being lit more brightly as a deterrent, fewer lights are needed and electricity use and costs will be reduced by 60%.
    • The oak trees on Rectory Lane had dead wood removed last year and the dying protected Indian bean tree was replaced while the lime trees on Limetree Walk will receive attention this year.
    • General maintenance was carried out, including Estate fences and metal security gates and flat block glazing, doors, latches, closers and lights.
    • Security cameras requested at the 2018 AGM were installed.
    • Sewer lining at 17-27 Carlisle Way and repairs at 21-26 Abbey Drive were carried out, with more needed after inspection of further areas now they are accessible.
    • Flat block roofs were repaired and more extensive repairs needed to that of 1-71 St Benedicts Close near the cupola will be done during the periodic maintenance.
    • Fire safety work following the inspection, including fire hydrant and flat door block address signs and updated notices.
    • Current work (see Maintenance article).
    • Owners raised the issue of waste as the signs requested last year were ineffective as expected. A new idea to enclose recycling areas will be investigated and an architect present offered sketches.
  • The Directors presented the approach to periodic maintenance due in 2020 (see separate article) and answered questions.
  • The Directors explained the issues affecting small contractors caused by Rendall and Rittner's onerous requirements to become approved contractors and the frequent loss and delays affecting posted invoices for other contractors. This has resulted in small local contractors refusing to work on the Estate, particularly electricians. The controls on the card, already used to save money on purchases, were explained. The proposal to allow contractor payment using the Estate prepaid credit card with prior agreement of another Director was approved.
  • Mr Ravi Joshi and Mr Kevin Herrmann were willing to continue serving as Directors, there were no objections and no other volunteers.
  • Owners raised other matters including:
    • Cars observed during the daytime that appeared to be used for drug dealing. These have been reported to the police and anyone seeing this type of activity is encouraged to call 999 and then follow up by calling the Safer Neighbourhood Team on 020 8721 2071 asking that CCTV be fitted again temporarily. The Directors will investigate options for a CCTV camera.
    • The need for Rendall and Rittner to issue paper statements to those who cannot access them electronically.
    • The gate bolt behind 31-36 Abbey Drive.
  • Owners thanked the Directors for their work.

Christmas and New Year

The Directors and Managing Agent wish all owners and residents a happy and peaceful Christmas and New Year.

Previous News

Previous newsletters can be found on the Documents page.

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© St Benedicts (Tooting) Management Company Limited - 26 November 2019