St Albans Central News March 2020

Note to new subscribers

Note to new subscribersWe are councillors and campaigners in St Albans Central Division (Clarence and St Peter’s wards). In order to keep in touch more closely, we are sending you this e-newsletter, which now goes to over 1200 email addresses. If you want to unsubscribe then please go to the bottom of the page and follow the link.

Chris White (County Councillor for Clarence and St Peter’s and Clarence District Councillor)
Jacqui Taylor (St Peter’s District Councillor)
Josie Madoc (Clarence District Councillor)

Will Tucker (St Peter’s District Councillor)
Danny Clare (Clarence District Councillor)

If you would like to respond to anything in this newsletter then please contact us.

In this newsletter

  • Coronavirus
  • Changes to parking enforcement regime 
  • Council tax support
  • Helping each other
  • Scams
  • Household waste sites
  • Election postponement
  • Refuse collection
  • Market
  • Takeaways
  • Libraries
  • Daily updates
  • Crime and anti-social behaviour
  • Fleetville Infants road safety
  • Fleetville Community centre
  • Russell Avenue garages rat infestation
  • Planning for the future
  • Sundry highways matters 
  • Important links:
  • Police: report a concern
  • Highways fault reporting
  • Street name plates
  • Street cleansing
  • Planning applications

Privacy policy

In accordance with new data protect regulations, the relevant privacy statement can be found here.


Changes to parking enforcement regime 
Given the massive change in lifestyles plus the need not to minimise burdens to NHS and other workers, the council has radically changed the nature of the parking enforcement regime. See press notice.

Council tax support
The impact in residents’ income has been recognised and support can be obtained. See press notice

Helping each other
The council has an official partner to manage the increasing number of people who volunteer. People offering help are specifically asked to use Communities 1st rather than set up their own groups, because the latter can lead to significant safeguarding and data protection risks. More details here

Given the noticeable increase in attempts by criminals to exploit the current emergency, now is a good time to sign up to Herts Police OWL.

Household waste sites
These are run by the county council and have also been closed as part of the lock down. There are some troubling implications in terms of potential fly-tipping, with the remaining local collection sites (‘bring bank sites’) at supermarkets being over-run. While this is not an easy request, residents are for the duration asked to hang on to the waste that cannot be picked up the district council’s refuse collection service. 

The current plan is anyway for the bring bank sites to be decommissioned from 1 May, because they have a negligible impact on recycling but are responsible for a great deal of unsightly mess: doorstep collections have largely rendered them obsolete.

Election postponement
There will be no local elections this year, meaning that district council elections will take place in 2021 at the same time as the county council elections. The Police and Crime Commissioner elections will also take place at that time. Councillors (Chris in this division) whose terms of office were due to end in in May 2020 will have their term of office extended by a year.

Refuse collection
Chris had a meeting with Veolia this week and has been assured that there are robust contingency plans in place for bin collection, including redeploying other resources and if necessary cutting back on some types of doorstep collection. Veolia, however, hopes to maintain a full service.

Chris also raised the question of street cleanliness: he cited as examples Avenue Road and Hillside Roadwhere last autumn’s leaf mould had not been tackled. It was agreed that there needed to be better targeting: some streets have more leaf mould than others (depending rather obviously on the number and types of trees).

Chris and the council Chief Executive are writing to bin collection staff as a thank you for their continued commitment – and because, we are sorry to say, a motorist screamed abuse at them on Avenue Road this week because they were having to manoeuvre bins through parked cars. 
It is more important than ever that all public sector workers are treated with respect and are not abused physically or on line as they carry out their duties for us.

This will remain open for the time being as a food-only outlet with significant social distancing measures for the time being. This is in part because there has not and never has been any guidance that markets should close (any more than indoor supermarkets) but there is a need to keep the stressed food chains operating given the level of hoarding that has unfortunately taken place, to the detriment of people on lower incomes and key workers.

The Government is keen for takeaways to continue operating, as well as for restaurants, pubs and other businesses to convert to operating on a takeaway basis. Residents, however, are asked to place orders by phone or internet in advance and then collect rather than turn up, order and hang around. Some local businesses have already set up delivery services for the duration. For the latest details go to Enjoy St Albans.

Although libraries are physically closed, Hertfordshire Libraries are launching various online reading initiatives, for example, a virtual reading group is starting today via their Facebook page. Visit here to find out more.

Daily updates
Daisy Cooper is producing daily updates covering a raft of issues – both nationally and locally. If you want to sign up for future emails, just visit her website

Crime and anti-social behaviour

Danny has been dealing with the police and other agencies about anti-social behaviour in the Hall Place Close area. Residents will be consulted about any physical changes that might be advisable.

There appears to have been a resumption of drug-dealing in the Clifton Street area: as ever residents are urged to contact 101 so that it is on police radar: this allows more effective patrolling and other actions.

Fleetville Infants road safety

There has been a meeting between the school, parents and the county council. As a result, county council highways official reviewed the junction of Woodstock Road South and Eaton Road, where clearly there are large quantities of pedestrian traffic in conflict with cars. The county council will now have a closer look at what can be done here (this is something Chris has been requesting for some time).

Chris has also asked for more frequent warden patrols along Royal Road. Parents are also asked where possible not to enter Royal Road with cars because the lack of a turning circle means that cars are doing three point turns in a street with a large number of pedestrians.

Fleetville Community centre

Council officials are unconvinced that an asset transfer to the trust will at this stage safely deliver what the community wants and needs and so is intending to set up a joint steering committee to try and get fund-raising and project planning fully off the ground. This would have started this month but the Covid-19 pandemic has disrupted matters. It remains a key priority of your councillors.

Russell Avenue garages rat infestation

This issue seems now to have come under control, not least because of baiting and discovering that an empty garage contained a food source.

Parking consultation

Work on processing the ladder roads consultation continues despite the shutdown. There have been hundreds of responses and these are being worked through one by one. We remain of the view that changes should largely only take place where residents of the street want it.

District council corporate plan

This has at last been agreed. More here.

Planning for the future

What comes after the local plan? On the assumption that the government inspection system sees sense and resumes hearings in St Albans, it is time to look to the next phase: the years 2035 onwards.

Initial work is now being done and you can have your say. Follow this link for more information.

Sundry highways matters

  • The missing 20 mph signage at the entry to the Grange Street area 20 mph zone has now been rectified. Thanks to those who reported this.
  • Dangerous wall – Old London Road: Jacqui has worked with the district council to ensure that the dangerous wall does not collapse into the road.
  • Removal of stump and planting of new tree on Ridgmont Road: Chris has decided to fund this out of his county council highways locality budget.
  • Breach of one way driving on Townsend Avenue and Cecil Road: this has been happening again. In both cases, there is adequate signage so it has to be assumed that the incidents are deliberate and thus should be reported to the police (with photos/video).

Important links

  • Police: report a concern

If you have a concern go to this link 

Alternatively you can report incidents anonymously through Crimestoppers 

For up to date information about crime in your area sign up to: Herts Police OWL.

  • Highways fault reporting

Highways are a county council matter and the link for reporting faults is here.  

  • Street name plates 

These are for some reason a district rather than a county service and so can’t be reported as highways faults. If you spot a missing or damaged nameplate, please email to this address

  • Street cleansing

To report street cleansing issues 
ring 01727 819285 or 01727 819598
email to this address 
report on-line 

  • Planning applications

The easiest way to keep abreast of new planning applications is to follow this link.

Our mailing address is:

If you would like to respond to anything in this newsletter then please contact us.


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Published & promoted by J Taylor on behalf of Liberal Democrats, all at 9 Hatfield Rd, St Albans, Herts AL1 3RR

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