Ruach Church Meeting with Residents 17 January

These are Ruach Church’s minutes of the meeting they held for residents living around the site of the former Nat West sports ground. The delay is making them available was due to its belief that they had been circulated a few days after the meeting.

In an email sent today in response to a query as to why the minutes had not been made available Jacqui Heslop, Ruach’s Head of HR & Administration, says:

‘Please accept our apologies for the delay in sending out the attached minutes from the meeting held on 17th January 2017. It was thought that these had been sent out as they were completed shortly after the meeting.

Please forward to any Norbury Resident or Norbury Residents group as appropriate.’


Ruach City Church, 122 Brixton Hill, London  SW2 1RS. 020 8678 6888

The layout and formatting have been taken off to enable the minutes to be loaded here.

MINUTES / ACTION NOTES Date of meeting .17th January 2017

In attendance .- Norbury Residents (16) [R]

– Ruach representatives: Paul Brightly-Jones (Trustee) [PBJ], Sarah Herbert (Trustee) [SH], Andrea Johnson (Head of Property & Facilities) [AJ], Jacqui Heslop (Head of HR & Administration) [JH]

– Conroy Wilson, Facilities Officer; Pastor Gilzeane (Hope Ministries – who use Norbury weekly)

Apologies. N/A

Welcome and introductions

Some residents represented:

Norbury Residents society

Norbury villagers association

Bowls club

Turle road residents

AJ explained the focus of the meeting and provided a brief update that included: steps forward at Norbury; building relationships between Ruach and is neighbours; current plans; update on ongoing works; reinstatement of the halls on site; a church is now using the building from 1st Jan 2017; Ruach vision is in the pipeline but all will not be realised without consultation, compliance requirements and in stages.

AJ Apologised for Ruach not communicating to the residents as they had agreed at the previous meeting.

  1. Minutes of the last meeting. N/A
  2. Actions and matters arising. .N/A

Additional item(s). N/A

  1. Minutes/Actions of meeting


Resident Question: Are there any plans for the School?

PBJ: some discussions have taken place but no concrete plans have been agreed. Free school/Academy – have to liaise with local authority.

Resident Question: Have conversations been held at a strategic level regarding the school?

PBJ: No need in Croydon or Lambeth. Strategic discussions have been held with Merton who have links to the other boroughs.

Ruach Vision

R: Vision has been already been set with no dialogue with residents. We need assurance of openness and transparency and to see all documentation so we are partners in this.

R: Planning application will have statutory documentation that comes with it, however organisations do not share all documentation as there is not the need or the requirement to do so.

R: it was noted that resident made suggestion that Ruach should rethink on how the presentation on the Ruach website is communicated regarding the vision at Norbury.

PBJ stated that consultations takes a view. Ruach would like to offer more than that and look at good ideas and build relationships.

R: The Vision (the different buildings within the vision), residents expressed their concerns that all these buildings, traffic and foot traffic would affect the community…AJ: the vision may not be all at Norbury plus all plans would have to go through compliance and be done in stages.


Communication going forward: What information will we be sharing? Frequency? What type of communication?

It was agreed that communication would take place when Ruach has something significant to report. There is to be as transparency as possible and for residents to be kept in the loop. It was also agreed that a communication will be sent every 3 months, even if there is nothing to report and this would take the form of an email, and a leaflet drop if something is being reported.

It was agreed that meetings would take place in 6 months or sooner if there is anything significant to meet and discuss.


Residents were asked to give feedback on any suggestions they would like to make on how the site was used for Ruach to consider:

Suggestions were – Allotments, community gardens, access to a green space, disability access, loop systems and microphones at meetings and in the building, removing the boarded up windows, sports, football, an update on the website that can be accessed by the residents, e.g. under Properties, residents volunteering to help with projects that benefit the site/area.

Thank You

PBJ: Good response from the residents at the last travellers incident on 10th January 2017 and Ruach would like to thank the residents for all their help and support.


AJ: Fence/Security – AJ met with Croydon Police and looked at security and improvements and the reasonableness of what can be done as we are a charity.

Resident informed meeting on an issue they were experiencing around the area of fencing. AJ took the resident’s details and agreed to call them.

PBJ: Explained that Ruach is made up of volunteers and 35 staff, and the internal expertise has been built up over the years and we are always learning. As a charity Ruach still recovering from the £200K that had to be spent after the travellers were on site in 2015.

24 hour Phone

AJ: ACTION – Feedback on a 24 hour number that can be used by residents to call Ruach: 07506 736932


R: What are Ruach’s priorities?

PBJ: Getting the building compliant, building to be used and the community to be involved.

R: What are the current plans?

AJ: Church services weekly, reinstate the hall and kitchen, continue with rewiring, continue with roof works, proceed with hire of halls, consider a gym, consider ways to benefit the community.

Mailing list

Some residents provided their contact details to be added to the mailing list Ruach has.

Bowls Club

AJ has met with the Bowls club regarding some changes – the bowls club currently use the site from April to September.

Thanks and close

Note: As I was one of those attending I do not find these minutes to adequately reflect many of the points and the discussion that were made at the meeting.



About seancreighton1947

Since moving to Norbury in July 2011 I have been active on local economy issues with Croydon TUC and Croydon Assembly, and am a member of the latter's Environment Forum. I am a member of the 5 Norbury Residents Associations Joint Planning Committee, and a Governor of Norbury Manor Primary School. I write for Croydon Citizen at I co-ordinate the Samuel Coleridge-Taylor and Croydon Radical History Networks and advise the North East People's History Project.. I give history talks and lead history walks. I retired in 2012 having worked in the community/voluntary sector and on heritage projects. My history interests include labour movement, mutuality, Black British, slavery & abolition, Edwardian roller skating and the social and political use of music and song. I have a particular interest in the histories of Battersea and Wandsworth, Croydon and Lambeth. I have a publishing imprint History & Social Action Publications.
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