PCA Newsletter 91 - October 2015

In This Issue

Pitshanger Traders' MacMillan fundraisingWhen our last full newsletter went out, the Pitshanger traders were waiting to hear whether the Lane would be selected as a finalist in this year’s Great British High Street competition.  Since then, Pitshanger Lane has emerged as one of three finalists in the London category, and public voting is now open.  You can vote online and, importantly, you can vote once per day per e-mail address.

John Martin, Chairman of the Pitshanger Village Traders’ Association said “The traders are delighted to have reached the final and grateful to the community for their support in the daily voting. We ask them to continue this for the next four weeks to help us achieve our ambition to win the London category”.

Also on the Lane, the traders held a Macmillan Cancer Day on Friday 25th September with many providing the traditional cakes in return for donations and others donating money on the sale of certain products. Harrison’s neatly subverted the cake theme to good effect (pictured).  Well done to the traders for raising an incredible £2,485.61 for Macmillan.

Pitshanger Pictures, our own community cinema based in the St Barnabas millennium hall, has been awarded a distinction for the best community event at the 2015 Film Society of the Year annual awards held in Sheffield on 4th October.  The event singled out for recognition was the WW1 commemoration held at St Barnabas in August, which included a screening of Lewis Milestone’s Oscar-winning 1930 American epic All Quiet on the Western Front.

Ian Hamerton said “We are proud of this award because it reflects the quality and sincerity with which we operate. There are over 650 film clubs and societies who are members of Cinema for All so we had plenty of competition”.  Details of screenings are available here, and don’t forget that Ian will be showing the RWC 2015 final live on Saturday 31st October.

Drivers may have noticed the recent appearance of traffic loops in Argyle Road and wondered why vehicle movements are being measured.  The answer is that it’s part of a traffic survey being undertaken at 450 locations by the operator of Heathrow Airport “…to update our transport models which are used for forward planning purposes and for local traffic assessments…”  At least they’re not sizing up Argyle Road for use as a runway!  The survey will also include roadside interviews, so you may find yourself being pulled over for one of those, but you can refuse to participate.  Our thanks to Cllr Lynne Murray for unearthing this information.

At 7.30pm on Saturday 7th November, the fuse will be lit and the Pitshanger sky will erupt to mark the start of the legendary Brentham Club fireworks display.  The gates will open at 5pm to give you plenty of time to enjoy attractions including sparklers, candy floss, beer and food tents, mulled wine, activities for children and a kids’ disco.  Admission is £5.00 for adults and £3.00 for children, and there’s a special family price of £15.00 for two adults and up to three children.  There’s more information on this and other events at www.brenthamclub.co.uk.

It’s only a couple of years since the Council’s proposal for a CPZ in Pitshanger was decisively rejected in a public consultation.  But we always knew the tide was lapping at our shore and now we’ve heard that the Cleveland ward councillors will be sponsoring a new consultation for a CPZ centred on the block formed by Kent Gardens, Cleveland Road, Kent Avenue and Scotch Common.  We understand this has been triggered by requests from residents who have experienced overspill from the St Stephens CPZ.

Just to be completely clear about this, the PCA committee will not be campaigning for or against this proposal.  However, we will be publishing the facts as they become clear, and some myth-busting information to help residents make an informed choice.

As in the past, we expect that the consultation will be strongly biased towards a Yes vote: the usual procedure is that residents in the core area will be able to vote yes or no, but residents in the streets that would inherit the parking problem will not be able to vote against the proposal.  Some surrounding streets (in this case Castlebar Park, Victoria Road, Sovereign Close and a further section of Cleveland Road) would be able to opt in to the CPZ if the core area vote is in favour.  As with the 2013 consultation, while your committee sympathises with those affected by commuter parking we are also concerned about the potential effect of displaced parking on the viability of Pitshanger Lane as a thriving local shopping centre.  Consultees will need to make up their own minds about that.  We’ll bring you further information when we have it.

River Brent flood, August 2015Our friends at the environmental charity Thames21 have announced a photo competition concentrating on the waterways that make up the River Brent Catchment – and that obviously includes the stretch of the River Brent running through Pitshanger Park.

The brief is pretty wide, and is summed up simply as  “There are some magical places teeming with signs of life. Photographs should show what you think makes them special and what you love about them”.
The first prize is £100 and two London Eye tickets and there are two second prizes of a meal for two at the River Café or £50 Marks and Sparks vouchers.  Details here, and we’re sure you can do better than your editor’s effort opposite.  The closing date is Sunday 15th November.

Autumn specialities at the Duke of Kent include guest ale Red Fox, said to “feature a little yeast and forest fruit on the nose and a taste of biscuit and caramel, with the tang of blackberry, toast and marmalade on the finish”.No lemonade top in that, then [Ed].  Looking further ahead, head chef Adrian has prepared a fantastic Christmas menu for you to enjoy. Adrian will be using ingredients such as salmon from the Severn and Wye valley smoker and barn reared turkeys from the beautiful Usk valley in Monmouthshire.  Further details here.

A resident of Selby Road has reported on a strange and disturbing incident when she spotted intruders in her back garden: “...they threw a rock into our house, drew with chalk on our shed and path and pulled down our rose bush. They may have done more (and possibly tried to enter the property through the open French doors) if I hadn't disturbed them.  They seemed to have entered and left the property via the shared alleyway which runs between the properties on Selby Road and Harrow View Road”.  Please be on the lookout and report any similar incidents to the Police – 999 in an emergency or email Cleveland [dot] snt [at] met [dot] police [dot] uk ( Cleveland [dot] snt [at] met [dot] police [dot] uk) or HangerHill [dot] snt [at] met [dot] police [dot] uk ( HangerHill [dot] snt [at] met [dot] police [dot] uk), depending on Council Ward.

The year is 1957 and Mabel Keane, agony aunt and well-known columnist, shares her quintessentially English home with four lodgers, Daniel, Binkie, Thomas and the mysterious Horace Badger. When budding playwright, Edward, turns up at Mabel’s door urgently seeking a room to rent, he is blissfully unaware of these extraordinary people who will soon become characters in his own "play". Events take an unexpected turn….  We wouldn’t want to give too much away, but the title might give a clue.  “A Rather English Murder” is playing at Questor’s Studio Theatre from 5th to 7th November.  The play is produced by Pitshanger resident Gill Vymeris from a script written by a friend who died a couple of years ago.  Further details at www.questors.org.uk.

After only a short spell at the helm, our chairman John Bird has decided to step down.  John said “After 15 years on the PCA committee in various supporting roles, I had some reservations about becoming chairman.  Although starting optimistically, I found that things simply weren’t working for me.  Rather than let this drag on in an unsatisfactory way, I decided it would be better for me and the PCA if I stepped down now.  My affection and regard for the PCA is undimmed, and I will try to help out in some capacity in the future”.  We’ll bring you more details of our reshuffle in the next edition of the PCA newsletter.

First a couple of PCA dates for you: Light Up The Lane will take place this year on Sunday 29th November, and our famous Street Wars quiz will take place on Saturday 6th February 2016.

A nice quiet-ish precursor to bonfire night, the St Barnabas Bangers and Sparklers Party will take place from 5.30pm to 7pm on Thursday 5th November.  This will feature bangers to eat but no bangs, sparklers, a bonfire and mulled wine for adults.  Admission is £5.00 for adults and £2.50 for children.

Ealing Choral Society’s next concert will take place on Saturday 14th November at St Barnabas Church, starting at 7.45pm, featuring Haydn's Nelson Mass, Handel's Nisi Dominus and Rameau's In Convertendo Dominus. Tickets are £17 each (concessions available) from 020 8993 6465 or here, and there are further details on the ECS web site here.

Ealing Half MarathonThe fourth Ealing Half Marathon took place on Sunday 27th September, and once again the course included Pitshanger Lane and Pitshanger Park.  Thousands of entrants swept through the Lane and the Park like a colourful river – a magnificent spectacle.  Pitshanger comes at the end of a nice long downhill section, which might explain the many smiling faces, but we’d like to think the runners’ enjoyment is also bolstered by the cheers of Pitshanger residents lining the course.  The event has quickly become a favourite among runners, and was voted the number one half marathon in the UK in the Running Awards for the last two years.  Fingers crossed for further recognition this year, which would be thoroughly deserved.