We Asked, You Said, We Did

Below are some of the issues we have recently consulted on and their outcomes.

We asked

In five seperate focus groups we asked attendees three main questions: What do you think are the most important crime and disorder issues for the Safer Kensington and Chelsea Partnership to tackle and why? What should the partnership do to tackle these issues? And how can communities and residents play their part?

You said

In total, 17 residents attended these focus groups and there were some common themes that came from these detailed discussions and the experiences of residents who attended. These included:

  • Exploitation of young people and knife crime or violence among young people
  • Antisocial behaviour and the impact of drug related crime in local neighbourhoods
  • Hate crime and other forms of violence including domestic abuse.

Attendees also shared how other forms of crime worried them including burglary and robbery. There was also a concern that crime rates will go up after the immediate impact of the pandemic.

We did

The Community Safety Survey has now been launched get more responses alongside the detailed feedback that was received at the focus groups. The results of both of these consultation phases will be reported to the Safer Kensington and Chelsea Partnership in April 2021. Alongside crime and disorder analysis the Safer Kensington and Chelsea Partnership will agree its priorities and the Community Safety Plan will be written. This will be a Key Decision Report and will be taken to the Council’s Leadership Team in Autumn 2021.

We asked

For your views on the proposed amendments to the Council's traffic orders.

You said

The traffic order change proposal did not receive any comments.

Comments were received to the draft key decision report and the Council’s responses to those can be found in the appendix to the Key Decision report

We did

The traffic order change proposal was adopted.

We asked

For your feedback and suggestions on the proposed budget for 2021/22.

You said

Five respondents completed the feedback survey.

  • Two were in support of the proposals, two opposed and one chose to ‘neither support nor oppose’
  • A number of suggestions and comments were put forward by respondents

We did

  • Lead Members welcomed the feedback from residents and considered the responses and suggestions
  • We provided responses to the suggestions/comments in the Key Decision Report 
  • Approved the budget on 3 March 2021 at Full Council

Feedback will be considered as part of shaping spending plans going forward

We asked

For your views on the RBKC Ceremonies Service, your expectations for your marriage or civil partnership ceremony and the associated fees, and how we could further develop our offer.

You said

Your reasons for having a ceremony with RBKC Registrars

  • The iconic location
  • The convenient booking process

What you valued most about your ceremony experience with RBKC Registrars

  • The customer service you received
  • The online booking process
  • The availability
  • The cost
  • The running of the day

What you felt could be improved

  • The communications leading up to the ceremony
  • The cost

When asked about a potential Premium Ceremony Offer, you thought this should include

  • The option to livestream your ceremony to guests
  • Meeting your registrar ahead of the day
  • A personalised ceremony

Your views on an independent celebrant ceremony

  • 44 per cent of respondents were not interested in using an independent celebrant
  • 21 per cent were interested in the idea of their registrar also performing an independent celebrant ceremony

Your views on ceremonies being delivered through a wholly owned trading company

  • 24 per cent of respondents were not supportive of the idea
  • 16 per cent of respondents would support this
  • 58 per cent of respondents did not know

We did

Resident and customer feedback and ideas have enabled us to create a forward plan of new service developments, to improve the customer journey and expand customer choice. This includes:

  • Developing a premium ceremony package for customers wishing to opt for a more tailored experience
  • Focusing on our customers’ pre-ceremony experience, including our communications
  • Further developing our own “celebrant” offer for customers wishing to have their ceremony outdoors or in alternative venues
  • Increasing the number of open day and walk-around events we host in Chelsea Old Town Hall, including virtual tours

We have also completed the prize draw that went alongside the survey, entering all those who submitted their contact details for that purpose. The lucky winner has been contacted and will receive a £100 discount for their upcoming ceremony planned for 2022!

We asked

We asked for your views on the proposals.

You said

Three local residents, organisations and businesses attended our two live chat sessions and seven completed the feedback survey.

Thoughts on the plans for new homes 

  • Four respondents supported the plans
  • Three respondents strongly objected to the plans

Thoughts on improvements you’d like to see on site

  • Enhanced street lighting
  • Pedestrian access from Treverton Street 
  • Enhancements to community garden

Thoughts on size of new homes

  • Three respondents would like to see properties with three or more bedrooms

 

We did

The feedback will be taken into account in the next phase of the consultation exercise.

We asked

We asked for your views on the proposals.

You said

Thoughts on the plans for new homes

  • Six of eight responding to the survey supported the principle of providing some new social rent homes on the site
  • However, one strongly objected

Thoughts on improvements you’d like to see on site

  • Five of eight would like to see better use of the site and provision of shared outdoor space
  • Half (four) would like to see creation of a safer environment

Thoughts on size of new homes

  • Half (four) would like to see two bed properties 
  • Three respondents would like to see three or more bedroom properties

Thoughts on most important aspects of the site

Comments covered topics including

  • the provision of new homes;
  • having a well-designed building on the street;
  • that people living nearby are treated with dignity and respect;
  • and that the garden business currently on the site is moved to a suitable site

We did

The feedback will be taken into account in the next phase of the consultation exercise.

We asked

We asked for your views on the Order, which would prohibit motor vehicles from entering the length of Spear Mews adjacent to 190 and 192 Earl’s Court Road (emergency service vehicles would be exempt from this restriction) and to revoke the existing one-way system in the length of Spear Mews, along with the associated prohibition of entry.

You said

This proposal received support from 15 of the 17 households in Spear Mews.

We did

We adopted the order.

We asked

Between 9 November 2020- 21 December 2020, we asked residents to tell us their views about new features for the wet play area and proposals for a new gym.

You said

On the wet play area:

  • 11 respondents rated the range of equipment as either ‘excellent’ or ‘good’.
  • Both ‘Under the sea’ and ‘pirates’ were the most popular choices for themes, with eight responses each.
  • 14 respondents were either very satisfied/satisfied with the current wet play area.

On the outdoor gym:

  • 19 respondents supported a new gym.
  • 14 respondents said they’d prefer to see an outdoor gym with a range of fitness equipment.
  • Six respondents spoke about the positive impact on mental and physical health a new gym would have.
     

We did

The results have been used to inform the tender and subsequent redesign of the water play facility. Feedback has been used to specify what equipment seating and theme local residents want to see.

We asked

In late 2020 we ran a consultation on the existing dog agility area and it’s relocation at Athlone Gardens. Residents and park users gave us their views on the existing area and on its relocation.

You said

  • Most people ‘agreed’ that the Dog Agility area benefits Athlone Gardens
  • Many people ‘disagreed’ that the park should become ‘dog on lead only’ if the Dog Agility area is improved
  • Most people would like to see a larger Dog Agility area located away from the playground.

We did

The results of this consultation will now be used as a basis for relocating the dog agility area within the park.

We asked

Between 11 September 2020 until 4 December 2020, we asked businesses and landlords for their views on the future of the High Street in Kensington. 19 people in total responded.

You said

  • Local residents (seven), local visitors (five) and international visitors (four) were seen as the top customer bases pre-Covid by respondents.
  • Nine repsondents felt their future clients would be different to pre-Covid19; though a further nine felt that their future clients would not be different.
  • Marketing strategy and improvements to traffic management/parking arrangements were all cited as ways the Council could improve its offer to businesses.
  • Respondents wanted to see a reduction of vehicular traffic (six), followed by initiatives to encourage walking/cycling (five) and encourage(ing) electric vehicles (four).

We did

The results have helped provide a useful insight into understanding how businesses along KHS are operating, and what their initial understanding of their situation might be post Covid. It has contributed towards Kensington High Street learning paper, which was presented to Lead Members and will continue to help inform Phase 2 of the Kensington High Street programme.

We asked

For your views on the proposals.

You said

Over a third of those responding to the survey supported the plans, although almost half objected. Concerns included a loss of recreation space or the loss of the graffiti wall.

Half or more of those responding would like to see improvements to street lighting, accessible green space and a feeling of safety.

We did

Residents and stakeholders' feedback has been taken into account in the proposals for the second phase of consultation which begins in February 2021. Including:

  • Providing improved public green spaces and streetscape
  • Improving connectivity and providing safe and secure public spaces with good street lighting
  • Providing improved space for ball sports
  • Incorporating permanent spaces for public art and graffiti
  • Respecting the heritage of Trellick Tower and the surrounding Estate in the designs
  •  Exploring opportunities for introducing new spaces for employment and local organisations to benefit the community.
  • Delivering new homes for rent to meet local need, focusing on social rent, keyworker and larger homes

We asked

The Council started the review of our new Local Plan last autumn with the publication of its Issues Paper.  This document set out what we thought the main planning issues to be addressed in our new Local Plan might be, and we asked residents and local people for their views on this.

You said

We are currently considering all the comments which we received, and using these to help us draft our Issues and Options paper.  This will set out what we now think the main issues are and will offer a number of realistic options to address them. 

We did

All of the comments received, and our response to them, will be published alongside this Issues and Options Paper.  This is expected to be in the Summer of 2021 with the draft plan published later in the Autumn. 

We asked

For your views on the cleaning services in Council housing estates, and sought the involvement of residents in helping to determine the future service provision for next year. 

You said

The Review involved over 780 residents who took part in our survey, and led by a Residents steering Group which endorsed our recommendation to return the service in-house from October 2021. 

We did

A decision has been made to return the service in-house and amalgamate caretaking & cleaning into one role.

We asked

For residents and stakeholders view on the proposed introduction of a banded income Council Tax Reduction Scheme.

You said

Over two thirds (68 per cent) of respondents felt that the Council should introduce the banded income scheme for Universal Credit recipients in April 2021 to address the issue of fluctuating Universal Credit on council tax payments.

We did

Residents and stakeholders’ feedback was fed into the decision making process of the Council’s Leadership Team. In October 2020 the Leadership Team took the decision to adopt the new Council Tax Reduction Scheme, which starts on 1 April 2021.

The report that went to Leadership Team.

We asked

We asked residents to have their say on the effect of Coronavirus on their lives.

You said

We recieved 623 responses to the survey

Your main Covid-19 concerns

  • Contracting the virus
  • Mental health and wellbeing
  • Financial situation

How you played your part

  • Supported friends, family or neighbours
  • Volunteered

Your employment priorities

  • Support finding opportunities

Your economic priorities

  • Want vulnerable residents and priority groups to receive extra support
  • Want support for businesses, shops and visitor attractions

Your environmental priorities

  • Improving air quality
  • Reducing waste and increasing recycling
  • Responding to climate emergency and becoming carbon neutral

We did

Residents' feedback has been very helpful in understanding residents' priorities and these are being used to inform the Council's response to Covid-19.

We asked

The Council wanted to seek the views of local residents and users of the open space at Dovehouse Green on their proposed improvements such as new planting, paving repairs and street furniture improvements.

You said

A total of 69 responses were received, the majority from regular visitors to Dovehouse Green:

  • Overall Support: Over three quarters (78 per cent) of respondents were in favour of the overall improvements to the outdoor space.
  • Style of planter:  Views were almost evenly split between the three options of planters with 33 per cent selecting the planter with seating attached, 32 per cent the wooden planter and 29 per cent the steel planter.
  • Theme for western border: The most popular choice was wildlife chosen by over half of respondents (54 per cent), followed by plant collectors and explorers (26 per cent) and then food for all (12 per cent).
  • Theme for raised planters: The most popular choice was again wildlife (42 per cent) but this was more closely followed by plant collectors and explorers (33 per cent) and then food for all (17 per cent).

We did

The consultation results were used to inform the improvement works, currently awaiting Faculty approval as the land is owned by the church but hope to complete the works in the next 6 months.

 

We asked

The contract to maintain the Council's parks and open spaces came to an end on 31 March 2021. The Council wanted to consult with residents and park users on the current contract and service, and what changes they would like to see. The results of this consultation helped inform the specification of the new contract.

You said

  • Satisfaction with current provision:  The highest levels of satisfaction with the current service were with the grass cutting in parks and the maintenance of the planted areas. There was less satisfaction with litter picking and bin emptying and hedge cutting. The highest level of dissatisfaction was with the cleaning of toilets and changing rooms.
  • Park keepers and staffing arrangements: The most popular option for future staffing arrangements was option one which was one gardener per park with a consistent Monday to Friday 7.30am to 4.30pm shift pattern. Evening locking up, and weekend litter collection carried out by a mobile team.
  • Your priorities:  The most important aspect of the new contract for respondents were cleansing and waste management followed by wildlife/biodiversity and recycling and green credentials. The least important were sports facilities and volunteer programmes and events.

We did

The results of the consultation were shared with bidders for the new contract so that they could understand how you feel about the service and propose ways they believe they can make it better. In addition to this:

  • The preferred park keeper model was included in the tender as per the consultation results but the winning bidder offered us an enhanced model which we have accepted so residents are getting more than what was specified in the consultation.
  • Some of you asked for the ability to make online bookings for sports facilities. This will be a requirement in the new contract.
  • 30 per cent of respondents would like to be involved in volunteering/ helping to maintain the park. The new contract includes increased community engagement and volunteer programmes and we will contact interested respondents to help develop these programmes further.  
  • Concerns have been raised about cleanliness of public toilets and litter collection. These areas have been highlighted as high priority in the new specification with stricter monitoring and enforcement included in the new contract.

Residents’ priorities will help us determine topics for negotiation and for the management of the new contract to ensure it is focussed on park user needs.

 

We asked

A survey was developed to seek residents’ views on the improvements to Redcliffe Square Gardens, in particular, the views on the redevelopment of the existing playground and how natural play features into other areas of the parks.

You said

A total of 72 responses were received, the majority of which were from regular users of the Redcliffe Square Gardens playground:

  • Seven per cent of respondents were very satisfied and 43 per cent satisfied with the current playground in Redcliffe Square Gardens.
  • The two favourite pieces of equipment in the current playground were the swing (69 per cent) and the small multi-play unit (55 per cent).
  • The most popular equipment for the playground in the future were climbing equipment (39 per cent), cradle swings (toddlers) (36 per cent) and standard swings (33 per cent).
  • Seventy nine per cent of respondents would like to see some natural play features in the wider gardens with large trunks (66 per cent) and stepping stone logs (55 per cent) the most popular choices.
  • Fifty five per cent of respondents would like to see the existing park benches replaced by standard park benches (as used in other parks) which can be engraved/memorialised.
  • Sixty seven per cent of respondents would like to see picnic benches installed on one of the grass areas.

We did

The results of the consultation have been used to redesign the playground – due to be installed in April 2021:

  • Informal play features of balance bean and stepping stones
  • New benches with arm rests
  • Wheelchair accessible picnic tables