Pictures from Havant’s ‘locked down’ VE-Day celebrations

We’re collecting your pictures of the muted but lovely VE Day celebrations. If you’d like to make your own contributions, send your photo by email to this address and we’ll add them.

Emergency Service Contacts

Please only use the 999 service for cases of absolute emergency.

At this time, contacting the 111 service via the website by taking the link on the left will probably give speedier results given high call volumes.

At this time, contacting the 101 service via the website by taking the link on the left will probably give speedier results given high call volumes. Take the ‘Report’ option on the home page to report any incident.

Gazebo Garden – Still open for fresh air and gentle exercise!

We have set up a rota for opening the Gazebo Garden (located at the far end of East Pallant car park) every day 10am – 4pm so that anyone, particularly those without gardens, have a pleasant place to go to in the town centre to get some fresh air.

Children are welcome under supervision and can chase each other round the herb beds or run up and down the steps while you relax on one of the stone benches with a book.

With three widely spaced benches and a few chairs out, there’s enough space in the garden for a maximum of half a dozen to sit and relax and keep their social distance. Please respect that number and make way for somebody else if there are others looking for a time in this peaceful space.

‘Message in a Bottle’ – Help for the vulnerable

A few years ago, these green labels were a common sight in local residential properties occupied by older and more vulnerable folk. The idea was simple. A sticker similar to that above was placed within clear sight of the front door, guiding emergency services entering the property to the refrigerator in the kitchen of the property. Inside the door of the fridge they would find a bottle containing a paper giving all the relevant emergency contact details for the resident.

The scheme is well understood by Police, Ambulance and Fire Service staff, and in the past has proved a life saver giving speedy access to important emergency information in the event that a resident is unable to provide the information through incapacity.

Given the current emergency and the significant pressure on the emergency services, HCS have recreated the ‘Message in a bottle’ scheme with a simplified, but nonetheless effective form downloadable by clicking the image on the right.

This is a simple form in two parts. When printed, the top part should be completed by the resident and placed in a glass jar or tumbler inside the door of their refrigerator. The bottom part of the form should be placed in a prominent position within sight of the front door of their house.

If you are living on your own and worried about how the emergency services would know those small but important things should they have to come and assist you, you might decide to print a copy down, fill it in and find an empty jam jar.

More importantly, you might consider printing a few down and dropping them through the doors of your more vulnerable neighbours.

It’s an old idea but it could just be a life saver.


No face mask? Why not make one if you need one.

This comes with a message of caution since at the time of writing, the chief medical officer is advising the UK public not to wear facemasks unless they are currently infected with covid-19.

Skilled with a needle or wondering when you last used that sewing machine? Pondering what you could do with all those unused cotton tea towels you were given as gifts? Look no further! Make yourself a distinctive face mask following these instructions, which were published in the New York Times on March 31st.

If you download and print the instructions in that link, you should find it a straightforward task which might help pass some the time during your voluntary ‘house arrest’.

You’ll need the following:

  • Needle and thread (and a sewing machine, if you have one).
  • Scissors.
  • Pins or clips to hold fabrics in place (safety pins and paper clips will also work in a pinch).
  • At least 20 by 20 inches of 100 percent cotton fabric, such as a flat tea towel.
  • 4 strips of cotton fabric for ties, about 18” long and ¾” wide (or 4 flat, clean shoelaces or a few lengths of sewing elastic.
  • Magnifying glass for reading the instructions once you’ve printed them!

Going on a Bear Hunt?

Here’s something to keep the kids amused while you escort them round the streets of the town for their daily exercise in their brand new face masks. More particularly perhaps, for those of us older folk who see familes walking past our drives and remember just how difficult it could be keeping our own kids amused when small.

The idea appears to have originated in New Zealand and provides a bit of fun in these dark times. Get the kids to count all the bears they see staring longingly from bedroom windows during their self isolation. There are a few around already, even in our editor’s spare bedroom window.


‘Treat your Skin’ move to West Street

We note in the most recent planning application list that local business Treat Your Skin have applied for a Change of Use licence at the former YourMove estate agent office in West Street.

Let’s hope that the current state of the economy enables them to continue with this proposal.

Campdown – A development proposal that's wrong on so many levels…

The Campdown development application for the site east of College Road, west of the A3(M) and bordering Crookhorn, brings into focus many of the challenges that must be faced if the Havant Regeneration Programme is to succeed. Conservation of heritage sites, buildings and infrastructure provides a sense of identity and continuity in a fast changing world. Understanding how places change, and recognising the significance of their history, is the key to successful and sustainable regeneration.

Campdown is a green-field site of both ecological and archaeological significance, allocated in the currently adopted plan for ‘recreation or leisure’.  The pre-submission Local Plan 2036 changes this allocation to ‘mixed use, up to 560 homes, shops and sports facilities’, removing the protection currently afforded.  This change in allocation reflects the sad reality that planning policy is increasingly driven by the need to achieve questionable targets for ‘five year housing supply’ imposed by central government.

As a development plan relating to a land allocation that has not yet been passed by the Planning Inspector, this speculative planning application is like several others within the borough, including the Forty Acres site recently approved, and Havant Borough Council are duty bound to decide such applications within a statutory period. 

In our view, the Campdown development site should never have been included in the 2036 Local Plan and we have some confidence that the change of allocation for Campdown will eventually be overturned when the pre-submission Local Plan is reviewed by the Inspector later this year.

Given the summary of ‘Opportunities and Constraints’ relating to the Campdown site included in the pre-submission local plan, Havant Borough Council shouldn’t be surprised at the strength of objections received.

The application submitted by Persimmon Homes, is for a total of 780 homes, representing a 40% increase in the proposed allocation for a green-field site of archaeological significance. A buried Roman villa in the northern part of the site is already designated as a scheduled monument while to the south; a Neolithic long barrow and a mediaeval cemetery are known to exist.  The site is also an important grazing site for the Brent Geese and Curlew of the Chichester and Langstone Harbours Special Protection Area (SPA), an internationally important wetland. 

While our primary objection is that this application is contrary to the current adopted development plan we support the many important objections already raised by more august bodies, notably:

Havant Police, commenting as a mandatory consultee, note with resignation that:  “This development is opposite the Crookhorn Estate, an area with relatively high levels of acquisitive crime and anti-social behaviour. It is a challenging area to police.” We can’t help feeling that the extension of that estate by 780 homes, bounded by a motorway, a fenced golf course and a fenced college premises would be increasing that level of challenge to an unacceptable extent for an already overstretched force.

We are concerned that HBC will view the promise of 780 homes as ‘too good an opportunity to miss’, particularly if the greenfield status might be used to help to alleviate the issue of nitrate neutrality that would otherwise block any decision to develop on a brownfield site.

With the planning consultation period ending on Friday Feb 14th, we are registering our objections and urging Havant Borough Council to reject, or at the very least defer, this application.

If you agree with us and wish to register your objection to this application, please take this link and fill in the form.