A website dedicated to the protection of hundreds of
private homes in Gosport - threatened by developers
under the guise of 'Regeneration'
Get it in WRITING - do not make
2018: The council-owned (public-owned) garden
nursery was sold-off, and the public told it was
planned to open a garden centre in its place.
Surprise, surprise, it is now fenced-off by Taylor
Wimpey for yet more houses. The Gosport population
grows by the day, and we don't even have a police
station. No, that was sold off as well. Gosport
council - working for you.
20th August 2014: Have a look at the Gosport Architecture page - and see what can be achieved.
17th February 2014: This is the COURT CASE that highlighted the state of the pre-fabs under discussion. It's no good covering them with polystyrene - the method of construction stays the same.
21st January 2014: We now have the pleasure of dealing with contractors in the north of Rowner, as they appear at residents' front doors, asking for a signature to enable them to cover houses with polystyrene blocks, regardless of the condition of what they are covering up, or whether the residents even want the work carried out. Like the rest of the Rowner Destruction Scheme, this has all been planned in secret, then sprung on homeowners with no prior warning or consultation. Don't let them browbeat you into having the work done if YOU do not want it. This is NOT regeneration, it is covering up faults with Elastoplast. This type of insulation is designed for solid-wall construction that is fixed and stable. The type of pre-fabs in this part of Rowner need constant attention to their fabric, and this cannot take place if they are covered with blocks of foam, sealing-in any damp or rot. The soundness of the fixings of the timber frames to the concrete panels needs to be confirmed from time to time. It will be interesting to see who was responsible for this debacle, as the Managing Agents and Directors of the Residents' Comittee have distanced themselves totally from the work being done.......
13th March 2013: The Daily Telegraph has confirmed what we have all thought for a long time - Council 'Planning' departments are a joke.
Those Councillors you will be exhorted to vote for in the near future are exposed for what they really are. Those little coloured notices posted
near proposed developments, giving you information on how and when to object, mean absolutely NOTHING. It has all gone through on the
nod, in the background.
4th March 2013: It is still happening - people having their homes taken from them. See HERE
17th October 2012: Two year-old flats, with scaffolding going back up. Not very reassuring, is it?
22nd January 2012: So, you can now have part-ownership (one quarter) of a scrappy little flat (with conditions) for £98 per week, instead of £125 per week. The reduction due, no doubt, because people have become wise to what is going on, and will not give up their homes just to line the pockets of the developers etc.
There are many people still refusing to move from their homes. Would YOU give up YOUR home? Meanwhile, the tarting-up continues in other parts of Rowner,
in an effort to retain the confidence of other residents.
12th January 2012: THIS is how Taylor Wimpey treat other people's property. It doesn't instil much confidence in the company, does it?
2nd January 2012: Well, the start of a new year, and THIS is what people face. To all those who are refusing to move from their homes in Rowner: 'Don't let the bastards grind you down'.
21st November 2011: The whole system is bent.
27th September 2011: Confirmation that our 'planners' are nothing of the sort. TESCO ETC RULE (at the moment)
10th September 2011: Property Developers donate millions to Tory Party Now, does that really surprise you?
10th May 2011: This item on new-build houses makes interesting reading. It includes Gosport. Typical of the grab-it-and-run attitude of
property developers. The unfortunate buyer is left to carry the can.
24th February 2011: Another
propaganda sheet has just arrived, containing
material of which any North African dictator would
2010: The latest propaganda sheets put out
attempt to allay residents' fears of losing their
homes in other parts of Rowner, but how can ANYONE
trust the word of people who planned the present
destruction IN SECRET? There are more figures quoted
relating to how many homes have been seized, again
an attempt to intimidate those homeowners refusing
to move. The 'good news' of a 'home of your own' for
£123 a week is a joke. That's £500 PER MONTH, for
ONE QUARTER of a tiny flat or, £2000 PER MONTH if
you were to own it. This, like the situation in
Ireland, is all about banks and property developers,
and NOTHING to do with improving the lot of
residents. The constant refrain of 'Each case will
be judged on its merits' means they will try to buy
each homeowner off in secret deals, with some
homeowners receiving more than others, instead of
coming out and saying, 'We will provide you with a
replacement home, as WE have decided to take yours'.
More trees gone in Magennis Close, and Magennis Hall
soon to be demolished, to make way for MORE housing.
Who says the rest of the estate is safe?
Developers first - residents last. (Seen any new
trees planted ANYWHERE in Gosport, in the last ten
2010: All the candidates for the Local and
National elections have come out of the woodwork,
and they ALL seem to support this scheme. Caroline
Dinenage says she wants to protect our green spaces,
yet supports this scheme and the Stubbington
by-pass! The by-pass would entail the destruction of
acres of green spaces, while the 'in-filling' which
would take place afterwards would finish off what
was left. There must be some big construction
companies lobbying for THAT to go ahead. Remember -
2010: I was recently told by a builder, (a
proper builder, not a property developer) that a
house CAN be built for £40,000. This means that
those homeowners being offered £40,000 for their
homes, and being pushed into rented accomodation,
ARE having their homes stolen from them. There is NO
excuse for not giving a new house to those
threatened with eviction. Remember, this scheme WILL
continue until it reaches those homes near St
Nicholas Avenue, in the north of the estate.
Everything done so far was planned in secret - don't
expect that to change. Just expect a lot of flannel,
as we approach a General Election...... Vote Nobody!
20th October 2009: Average house price in England and Wales now £230,000!! and here we have people being offered £40,000 for their homes...
2009: An extract from the letters page in
"I see that in today's Guardian, South Hampshire are advertising for a PUSH Project Director.
Here's the job description, which I think might be in a language loosely based on English, but it's hard to be sure.
The price of this pushing?
A mere £100,000 a year." And WE (Our homes) are part of this 'Regeneration Initiative'!
2009: Today, we received a leaflet. It is
dated merely 'Issue 2 Sept 09, '. Where did Issue 1
go? This informs us of a meeting for the public, to
be held on the 28th of Sept, (a working day), from 3
to 7pm. During this time, those few people able to
attend are expected to read and digest plans for the
proposed destruction of hundreds of homes, plus the
destruction of large areas of green spaces and
trees. This is a meeting with seven days
notice, although the meeting and printing
arrangements must have taken place some
considerable time ago. We are then told the plans
are to be approved by GBC just a few days
afterwards. This has been the pattern of this whole
scheme, right from when it was disclosed in 2007, at
least three years after it really began.
There are attempts in the leaflet to convince us
that this 'consultation' has been full and open.
What a joke! A perfect example of just how sneakily
this whole thing is being conducted can be seen in
the section concerning 18 extra houses. A 'number'
of these homes are for private sale. Unfortunately,
the number is not revealed. Are we to expect the
same lack of information at this forthcoming
meeting? At the first meeting I attended, I was
told, 'Don't bother complaining, it's all going
ahead'. Do not lose sight of the fact that
nobody was consulted about this disaster for the (at
least) three years before it became public in 2007.
This whole thing is an organised land grab to make
certain people rich, and it's NOT the residents. As
far as replacing trees that have been cut down, you
can take this with a pinch of salt. There have been
dozens of trees cut down around Gosport, over the
last year, but NO evidence of replanting. My
question about this, to GBC, was answered by the
reply: 'That's nothing to do with me, I'm in charge
3rd July 2009: The cost now increased to £145 million. 100% of the 'affordable' homes destroyed, to make 30% available. And this is supposed to benefit residents? Affordable by whom? Who buys the unaffordable homes?
3rd June 2009: More leaflets handed out, but nothing new. Half of properties in affected area now owned by PHA. (Are these shown on Land Registry? - Mr Viggers declined to comment). This means the other half is NOT owned by PHA. This is because the owners either do not want to move, or have not been offered a proper price for their homes. This explains the constant 'bulldozer' headlines in the local press, in an attempt to intimidate those owners who are holding out. 'Approximately' 65 visitors came to view the plans. Visitors or residents? Out of how many affected residents? 'This approval comes after extensive consultation with the residents'. But not during the three years it was all being planned in secret. 'Gosport's Jewel in the Crown', said one councillor - but which councillor, and which bloody crown???
5th May 2009: Who were the six or seven suits with clipboards and high-vis waistcoats, wandering around the northern part of the estate, today? (Cornwell Close etc). Remember, this is the part we have been assured is 'safe from demolition'.
21st April 2009: Leaflets purporting to be a response to residents' concerns about this disaster, were handed out six hours before the 'planning' meeting at GBC. Why were they not made available on the 9th April, when selected residents were made aware of the date of this meeting?
15th April 2009: The Star Chamber meets at Gosport Town Hall, to pass its plans for the destruction of green spaces and hundreds of homes. It seems the public is 'allowed' to go and witness this democracy in action. This is due to happen on the 21st of April, at 6pm. The promise to make this information available on the 'Community Noticeboards' has not been kept. What did you expect?
27th January 2009: This was in a local newspaper. Makes sense to me. Send your objections HERE. (Feel free to add anything else, like the secrecy of this scheme etc.)
I wish to oppose the planning
permission at Rowner Village, most particularly any
of the private owned flats in Lawrence Walk
1. Everyone has the right to respect for his private and family life, his home and his correspondence.
2. There shall be no interference by a public authority with the exercise of this right except such as is in accordance with the law and is necessary in a democratic society in the interests of national security, public safety or the economic well-being of the country, for the prevention of disorder or crime, for the protection of health or morals, or for the protection of the rights and freedoms of others.
23rd January 2009: Well, it would seem three weeks is all we, the public/homeowners get, to inspect these plans and submit any objections. I was wrong about the thirteen weeks. After four years of planning, with three in secret, we get three weeks. Not easy for working people trying to earn enough money to pay the mortgage on a house they might lose to developers at half price. Don't be intimidated - keep your home. You may note that many stories put out by The News have very little substance, but seem to be aimed at trying to frighten residents into selling-up. It is what these stories DON'T say that is so illuminating.
22nd January 2009: We were told on the 9th January that the plans had been submitted to GBH, and that there were thirteen weeks to inspect them and submit objections/comments. They were actually available to see on the 20th January, and objections could be submitted up to 11th February! This is three, NOT thirteen weeks. Who is responsible for trying to flout the law? Who is going to bite the bullet and make them REALLY available for thirteen weeks? Can we exercise the same cavalier attitude to paying our council tax? NO councillor has made it clear why this has happened. These plans cannot be actioned if the proper legal procedures are not followed. How many more 'adjustments' to the system have been made, in an effort to push this disaster through?
14th January 2009: Well, from the bumph handed out, it seems the 'masterplan' has been submitted to GBH, with thirteen weeks to wait until we know if the 'planning' department will pass it.... Unfortunately, it has not been made public just when the plans were submitted, or from which date the thirteen weeks start. There is no trace of anything on the council website, which would enable the public to put their views forward, or any links on the Rowner 'Renewal' site to lead us to the plans. This seems to be the way this whole scheme has been run, right from when it was being hatched four years ago - keep the public in the dark and feed them on b******t.
3rd January 2009: Can you trust any promises? Check HERE to see what can happen. Check the comments on the Rowner Destruction video to see what is happening to local people who have paid their way for years.
5th November 2008: You can try emailing 'The Consortium', and asking when the plans for this one-sided scheme are being submitted to GBC. You will be lucky to get an answer. I certainly did not.
8th October 2008: It's about a year now, this website has been available, which means the plans to take people's homes were being laid about FOUR years ago, at least. So you can ignore the statement on the 'Rowner Renewal' website (if you can navigate it) of 'engaging with the residents for eight months'. So, as far as consulting with the residents is concerned, NOTHING has changed. WE WERE NEVER ASKED.
15th September 2008: Nothing seems to have been made available to the public, as of today. Note that the planning application is supposed to be submitted in 'late summer', while 'detailed architectural drawings of the first phase' will be available in the autumn. If everything was open and above board, this would take place the opposite way round, so that we, the public, could see what is REALLY being proposed.
30th July 2008: After twenty years, extensive refurbishment of properties, car parks etc is taking place in the regeneration, sorry, 'consultation' area north of Nimrod Drive. This is being done, no doubt, in an effort to divert residents' attention from what is planned for their homes. Who knows where the money is coming from? This is taking place despite what was found when the buildings were surveyed a while ago.
25th June 2008: Just in case you were starting to believe the propaganda being put out about the future of your home, here in Gosport, have a look at what is happening to people's homes in Middlesbrough.
12th April 2008: Repeated requests to PHA to provide an email notification system to residents affected by these plans, have been refused. The reasons given being 'adequate info sources already available', and 'not enough people with access to a computer'. The real reason for this refusal can only be guessed at. So, be prepared to run to the nearest notice board, and hope you can remember what you have read, or it MIGHT be in a local newspaper. The RR website might have been updated, but how can you tell? While millions of people across the UK are kept informed by joining an email list, (See Mr Viggers' website), that service is not to be extended to the residents threatened with losing their homes, courtesy of what is laughingly called 'Rowner Renewal'. When do we go from seeing an 'illustrative master plan' to CLEAR plans of what is proposed for the area shown on the map? Will they show EVERYTHING? Will they be made available to residents BEFORE they are put in for planning approval?
18th February 2008: So, a meeting at Siskin School has been arranged, on the 21st of this month, to discuss...... what? How the destruction of over 1000 homes was organised behind closed doors, without ANY regard for the wishes and feelings of the OWNERS? Will the fact that the 'consultation' was started, with all the decisions already made? This is NOT public consultation. The whole thing must be started again, with proper regard for the wishes of homeowners. Study the MAP and you will see there are far more than 500 homes under threat. Like a true conjuror, the 'consortium' is doing all it can to direct your attention elsewhere. Discussion of streetlighting to illuminate their expensive little boxes, totally avoids the fact that we were NEVER consulted on this scheme, prior to its launch. Also, try contacting your local councillor, and ask: 'When are the plans for this fiasco being submitted for approval to GBC?' Ask yourself also, 'Who were the prime movers for selling these properties to the public in the late eighties? Who are the prime movers now to have them all demolished and destroy the evidence of the mistakes made?'
14th January 2008. To all those who consider this website as just mischief-making, and 'It cannot happen to me', I suggest you have a good read of the Hands off Our Homes website. There, you will see people in exactly the same situation as we have been put by Gosport Council. I would also suggest you write to Mr John Butler, of the 'Renewal' consortium, and ask him to confirm, in writing, that your home will NOT be demolished. He certainly would not confirm it for me. You stand to lose your home, be paid a paltry sum for it, and unable to afford another home. Not because your home NEEDS to be destroyed, but just to satisfy the GREED of a few people.
17th December - Well, I received a reply from my MP, and it seems ALL our homes (Approx 1000) have to be sacrificed to make the scheme 'viable'. To sum up, the sub-standard homes sold to unsuspecting purchasers now need to be replaced. (Whether it was known by the sellers at the time of selling, that the homes were sub-standard, has still to be decided). To pay for this replacement, ALL the estate has to be demolished to enable the developers to make enough profit to make it worth their while. This means homeowners lose their homes and any chance of owning another one, as the new houses will be priced out of everyone's reach. THE ROWNER RENEWAL PARTNERSHIP HAS NEVER MADE IT CLEAR THAT THE WHOLE ESTATE WOULD BE DEMOLISHED. THEY REFUSE TO ANSWER QUESTIONS RELATING TO THIS.This means that the 'Public Consultation' must start again, with ALL the facts made available to the residents. Remember, this destruction does not HAVE to happen - it is a proposal only. Don't lose your home. Don't be intimidated by talk of compulsory purchase, and the suggestion that those residents who don't co-operate (those who stand up for themselves) will ruin the chances for 301 families in The Precinct. If the people who sold the property in the first place were made responsible for re-housing, the remainder of the residents would not be subjected to all this aggravation/stress.
LOSS PAYMENTS relate to the value of your HOME, not
the house you live in. ie. If you own 50% of your
house, the HLP relates to your COMPLETE home, as it
is your home you are losing. This is
according to the RICS. However, before
you even think of this, fight for your home - this
does not have to happen! You do not HAVE to lose
your home. House prices have nose-dived, but it's
the LAND they are after. Don't be intimidated - keep
This is a copy of a letter sent to Mr John Butler, PHA. No reply received as of 18th November 2007. 21st November, reply received BUT...... it does not say our home will not be demolished, which was the question asked. When will we be told the truth? How can you trust these people?
31st October 2007
FAO: Mr John Butler – Portsmouth Housing Association.
Dear Mr Butler,
With regard to the Rowner ‘Renewal’ Project, I need to know the following:
1) Who took it upon themselves to decide that homes in the ‘defined area’ of Rowner, Gosport could not be refurbished, before ‘Public Consultation’ took place, and what information did they use to come to that decision?
2) Where is the ‘defined area’, as you did not supply the map I asked for when I wrote to you in June this year?
Please would you supply a map of the area where it is planned to demolish homes, clearly marked so residents can understand it and make reasoned decisions. You cannot say you have carried out proper public consultation unless you have supplied the public with all the information they need. This has not happened so far.
Also, would you please confirm in writing, what you appeared to say on Meridian TV recently, that our homes here in Magennis Close are not to be demolished in the Rowner Renewal Project that is planned to take place from 2008 to 2015.
At the time of writing this letter, there is NO information relating to the above, available on the Rowner Renewal website.
This is part of a reply received 14th November 2007, from John Thompson and Partners. I asked how people, who could not attend meetings, could make their views known and how could they see what was being planned.
23rd October -
some info on the website, at last. It seems that 'rundown
buildings in a defined area' are to be destroyed.
Unfortunately for us, there is no map of the
'defined area' on the website. It seems they think
that 'refurbishment is not an option'. If our homes
are really so dilapidated, who sold them originally?
Who did the surveys? Who gave the mortgages and sold
the endowment policies to cover the mortgages? In
our case, it was the largest building society in the
UK, at the time. According to the FAQ section,
'It is the intention of the Partnership
to ensure that nobody is at a financial disadvantage
as a result of the redevelopment'. Well, if they take
my home and expect me to take on a huge mortgage to
pay for a new one, then I call that a financial
disadvantage. Also, note the term 'redevelopment',
not regeneration. We are constantly told there are
'no plans yet', but with only a few hours in a local
hall allowed for 'public consultation, the plans '
will be available at the beginning of next year'.
That is two months to draw up plans to destroy 500
homes and build 840 unknown buldings. (exactly the
same ratio that came about when homes in Bridgemary
were destroyed). The 'consultation' process is
supposed to 'allay our fears.' Unfortunately, the
lack of information available does nothing to allay
MY fears. It merely confirms that these people
cannot be trusted. There is plenty of information on
how your home may be taken, but NOTHING that
indicates what is to be built. That is because it
would be made clear just how much profit is to be
made by this redevelopment, while the (former)
homeowners would be deep in debt or without a home
of their own. Note, also, that 'the open spaces will
be built on first'. Now there's a surprise.
Well, the meeting for the public, held in Gosport on the 11th October, was a joke.
Q: Where are all the plans, things we can take away and study?
PHA: There have not been any plans made yet.
Q: But you've had three years planning this. How can you expect people to make a decision with no information?
PHA: You don't need to make a decision - it's all been decided - it's going ahead.
Q: So why bother with 'Public Consultation'?
PHA: Shrug. You just have to make an appointment for an interview to find out what you will get for your house.
And this is a scheme to improve the lives of local residents - how to throw people out of their homes and make property developers even richer...... no information on the website, no maps, no indication AT ALL of what is going to happen yet, we are told there is to be £140 million spent on this scheme, just so hundreds of people can lose their homes. If the figures of 841 new properties to be built are correct, there must be a plan, unless a pin is to be used to decide where they go... and GBC intend to start felling trees by the road in Magennis Close. Why should this be, if they 'have no plans'? Meanwhile, we have a sudden flurry of estate agents touring the houses with their 'buyers waiting' leaflets. We can only assume the buyers are Housing Associations. No private buyer would come forward now.