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First grand public meeting to tackle all Haverhill's ills

Wednesday, 31st August 2011.

Haverhill residents are being urged to attend the first of a new kind of grand public meeting to air all issues affecting life in the town.

Efforts to bring together all the agencies which provide services in Haverhill to one forum replacing the former Haverhill Partnership have produced an organisation called One Haverhill.

Its board will meet four times a year and set up task-and-finish groups to try to solve issues which are raised.

Two of the meetings will be public forums, and the first takes place on Monday, as part of the regular quarterly Safer Neighbourhood Team public meeting.

The SNT meetings have been police-led but involve all agencies although, since they were moved to evenings, many providers such as the councils, Havebury Housing and health organisations have been unable to send representatives.

All these will be represented within the One Haverhill board, which is made up of people from the county, borough and town councils, Havebury, West Suffolk College, the voluntary sector, the faith communities, the health providers, the chamber of commerce, children and young people's services and the police.

The One Haverhill Board is currently chaired by Cllr Anne Gower, of both Suffolk County and St Edmundsbury Borough Councils, but Monday's meeting will be chaired by Cllr Tim Marks, who is a member of Suffolk Police Authority.

"This is all about what the public want us to tackle as a One Haverhill Board," said Cllr Gower.

She said the board would probably set three priorities, in the same way as the SNT does, chosen as a result of what the public brings to the meetings.

"It's all down to people's pride in Haverhill, in coming to meetings with issues to raise," she said.

The last SNT meeting saw the public united in calling for police action to stop illegal parking in High Street and Queen Street.

Three months of targeting, first on an educational basis with warning leaflets and more recently with enforcement in the form of fixed penalty notices has had a limited effect, except to make police unpopular with motorists, so the priority will be up for discussion again on Monday.

This time, however, representatives of the local authorities will be on hand to answer vital questions about the pedestrianisation scheme in High Street, the impending public inquiry, and even the possibility of handing the policing of the issue over to a local authority,in the way that car parks are managed.

The other current SNT priorities concern anti-social behaviour along the railway walk and across the Chalkstone estate, and anti-social behaviour on the recreation ground.

One Haverhill's current task-and-finish groups are dealing with creating the One Haverhill structure, promoting Havrehill economically and a five-year 'young persons plan' to deal with anti-social behaviour.

Anyone who has views on these or any other issues concerning life in Haverhill can attend the meeting which starts at 7pm at Burton End Primary School.

Haverhill Online News

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