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21/11/19 comment from the website owner.

Another Milestone -  it's been 2 years and 3 months since the website was launched back in Aug 2017 and it's now passed the 65,000 hit mark, it's survived all the trials and tribulations the powers that be have throw at it and it's all down to the support shown by your goodselves - the visitors.   So I would like to thank you all for visiting and showing such interest in it's content. Please don't forget - you are all welcome to contribute and share your views whether positive or negative and they will get included. 

21/10/19 comment from the website owner. Has anyone noticed:

It's almost 3 weeks since the AGM was held on 1/10/19 and there has been no Minutes issued to the residents and wonder why, perhaps the managing agent or her staff had forgotten about them completely, if thats the case then they need to rectify the situation!

29/3/19 A resident in Swalebrook Avenue commented on the 'New Feature' on the estate because they now have to look at it on a daily basis saying it was an 'eyesore', and 'what are they playing at on the estate!'

It's something when folks outside the estate are commenting on whats going on isn't it!!!

29/3/19 a comment from the site owner.

Did anyone notice that the hits on the website passed the 50,000 mark last week - I want to thank you once again for your support by continuing to visit the website.  Once again special thanks must go to the director and committee who continue to be a source of inspiration with all of their antics, bad decision, incidents breaking the lease, construction of new feaures and removal of others - where would the website be without you.  I  know you will continue to entertain all of us over the coming year by just being yourselves.

8/3/19 The site owner had an encounter with a committee member.

Good Morning, Good Afternoon and Good Evening are all useful and polite ways to acknowledge and greet people even if only passing by, why on earth would anyone object? 

I think the 'Strange' bug has returned and appears to be once again targeting members of the committee, in case anyone is not up to speed on the previous episode you can catch up here.  It's a little early in the year for this particular bug to strike again, last year it was in May, still lets blame it on global warning like everything else these days.

Anyway back to the most recent rather disturbing 'happening', this morning I was walking towards the undercroft on my way over to the other side of the estate and noticed one of our committee members messing around with the bins.  As I approached I said 'Good Morning D...', this is the way I usually treat anyone I meet on the estate if I happen to see them, he responded with a lot of arm and hand gestures stating:

'I have nothing to say to you', 'I don't want to talk to you', He mumbled something about 'pleasantries' which I didn't quite catch, and 'I know what you are doing'

Unfortunately I am a little hard of hearing and missed out on most of what he said but I got the impression that because I had said good morning to him, it gave him the opportunity to have vent and a bit of a rant, he must have been feeling pretty fraustrated about something.

I have no idea why he would take offence to being greeted this way but hope he can find a friend on the committee to seek support for his problem, because he does have problem for sure as this is not rational behaviour!   I put it down to the 'Strange' Bug which, as mentioned earlier, another committee member suffered from last year - perhaps she and D... could get together to talk through whatever is bothering him and support him through this obviously very trying time.

11/8/18 message from the site owner.

The Website - 1 year on

Who knew when the website was first launched  just a year ago this month that it would prove so successful and dare I say - popular.  There are a number of people who deserve a mention and thanks - the regular resident contributors who have done a wonderful job in voicing their opinions on matters which either affect them or on which they hold strong views, and to all the regular visitors to the site - my thanks to you all.

Your continued support is very much appreciated and hope you continue to visit the website on a regular basis and perhaps even contribute at some point - all views will be published whether they be positive or negative.

29/6/18 - the last 2 paragraphs of this item has been amended.

26/6/18 comment from the site owner regarding the solicitors letters.

 

Yet another solicitors letter received 25/6/18 - the following should be noted:

It's a bit disconcerting that the company solicitor had not carried out some basic research into who he was addressing his letters to - all correspondence - letters and emails, have been addressed to a Ms not Mrs - perhaps this makes all of them invalid - these details are important!

None of the letters are actually signed by the solicitor - rather someone has signed the company's name instead - this is not usual practice for a business letter - does this mean he wasn't responsible for authoring the letter or is he distancing himself from them?

The heading to these letters states AGM - The Sycamores - what does that mean or refer to?

There is a reason why the letter dated 12/6/18 was not acknowledged - after his letter in December 2017 I asked him to clarify the grounds on which the director and committee were considering taking legal action and he ignored the message, see here.

The account for the solicitors services is mounting and the residents will have to pay for it in the 2018/19 Annual Accounts, this could come sooner than that given the Service Charge may be increased at the upcoming AGM to cover the extra expense - perhaps they should have been consulted to see if they agree with having their money spent in this way!

21/6/18 message from the site owner.

 

Another milestone passed on the website yesterday, after only 10 months since it's launch it has reached an amazing 30,000 hits and it's still in it's infancy. Who knew it would prove so popular but sadly the original reason for it's existence still remains.

Thank you all for the support you've shown by visiting the site on a regular basis - it couldn't have gotten this far without you, and a special thanks to our director and committee who continue to be a source of inspiration for it's content.

21/5/18 email from Mike Sherwood

Hi to all Sycamores residents and website watchers.

Following my strange interaction with a committee member the other week, I’ve watched with interest as the behaviour of some folks on the estate appears to have become even less civilised, and I must admit, my concern is growing about what appears to be a culture of bullying (which includes ostracizing) on the estate by those in positions of responsibility who should know better. This all sounds very serious I know – and it is – but in an effort to draw the public’s attention to some of the craziness I’m now aware of, as well as, I hope – to make a few folks laugh at the absurdity and sheer wrongness of it all, I’ve made a short video parody which I hope will be entertaining.  Click here for further information prior to viewing.

Whoever you are on the estate, please don’t take offence as really, none is intended: but if this little piece of comedy helps folks reflect on whether they really are behaving well to each or not, then it may do some good.

Finally, despite the sometimes offensive behaviour doled out to my mother because of the website (to those who’ve done this – how dare you!) – I remain astonished that in this day and age, all intelligent people don’t question unfair practices such as lack of accounting transparency, nepotism and abuse – and I hope that as time goes on, more residents will realize that things would be so much better if there was a zero tolerance approach to bullying, and if the estate was run transparently, with goodwill for everyone. 

Best Regards,

Mike (Lucy’s son)

8/5/18 - message from the site owner.

To the committee member mentioned below - Yep - I was waving at you,

I am always polite and cheerful towards all my neighbours when I see them!

5/5/18 - email received from the site owner's son Mike.

“Very Strange People Round Here….”

Thursday, around 2pm I was just leaving my mother’s house on the Sycamores Estate, we stood for a moment in the sun outside her front door, and she waved at a couple of her neighbours who were stood chatting in the car park at the time.  The female neighbour who facing towards us, and saw my mother’s greeting – did not respond at all until my mother went back inside, and I started walking towards my car, which was in the car park…

“ She wasn’t  waving at me” said the neighbour as I approached the car park. “She wasn’t waving at me”,  the neighbour repeated as I got closer.

I said - “ I think she was waving at you”.

The woman, who was standing as if rooted to the spot and staring straight ahead – repeated “No, she wasn’t waving at me” and as I approached to get to my car, I said again – “I think she was waving at you”…

“She wasn’t waving at me…” the woman said – and then said, rather loudly – “I’m on the committee”

I said – “er…and what’s that got to do with anything?”

She said – “ because of the website”

By this time I felt like I’d stepped into some psychological horror film, or a parallel universe, and it seemed that I was conversing with someone with considerable anger management, as well as logic issues – where a simple wave from someone could elicit a completely illogical and disturbing response. All I could think of to say was…

“….right…..hmmm. some very strange people around here…’

To which she responded – “ very strange people round here”

I said “ very strange” as she continued to stare straight ahead of her, still rooted to the spot – upon which she turned and walked away, repeating the mantra “very strange”.

I couldn’t help myself – I simply said ‘Wow!” and, feeling genuinely disturbed by this interaction – got into my car and drove off.

19/4/18 - message from the site owner.

Another Milestone for the Website

The website passed the 25,000 mark this morning and it's all down to you our stalwart visitors, it's amazing when you think about it - the site has only been up and running since August 2017.  Thank you all so much for your continued support and look forward to the next milestone in the not too distant future.

 

17/4/18 - comment from the site owner.

Minutes of the 'Quarterly' Meeting 10/4/18 delivered to residents 17/4/18

1) The actual quarterly committee meeting was held on on Monday 5/3/18 and minutes issued.

2) Re the formal notice from the Hartlepool Property Manage Ltd - informing the residents that there is no change with regard to bank details for the Service Charge payments.

  • Residents informed of this on 17/4/18, HPM Ltd or the committee should have notified the residents prior to the handover.
  • Invoice dated 6/4/18 was not delivered to the residents until15/4/19 - no mention of bank details staying the same - this has caused confusion and distress to some residents.

3) Drains

  • The actual drain problem is that the fall of the drains are inadequate and the committee were advised some time ago when experts were called in to investigate the problem. They were informed that the drains would continue to get blocked until such time as the fall was sorted out. The work was not carried out.
16/5/18 - email sent to Mrs. D Clark - director of the SRA from Mrs. Patricia Brown.

To the director

Once again our director has really dropped another bollock.  Why she let Vicky Maddison take over the running of our accounts?  People on this estate are old and poorly and what did they get in their letter box?  A letter asking how they are going pay a maintenance lump sum, this is a large amount and people think the full amount is due.  Why couldn’t this be sorted before they (the agent) took over, is it too simple for people who don’t know how to treat old people?  I cannot believe this director is still doing her job, I think we should have a residents meeting to talk this over with the residents.

31/2/18 - a follow up email from Mrs. Patricia Brown.

Following on from the topic below - my grandson has been on phone today to see if the clothes line is still intact, I said yes it was up till now, .I also told him it would be a very stupid person to try something like that again.  Why don’t they all get over themselves and leave my property alone. These people must have very sad lives to worry about a clothes post - they need to get a life and are pathetic cowards who haven't got the guts to talk directly to me instead they sneak around when no one is looking and do their stupid deeds.

Mrs. Patricia Brown.

31/3/18 - email from Mrs. Patricia Brown.

To All Residents & Committee

I just want to keep you all up to date with clothes line saga, it was definitely a deliberate act of vandalism what they done to my clothes line.  My grandson has now put a new one up - touch this one and see what happens.  Here is a photo of the bracket of old one, whoever is responsible man (or mouse)  twisted it anti clock wise to bend it - why don’t you man up and come to me, we could talk about it and sort the problem out - someone must have a major problem to stoop to these tactics. 

Mrs. Patricia Brown

22/3/18 - email sent to the director of the SRA from a resident.

Just a few things to point out regards the theft of the lead, I hope the police have been informed about this as it’s a bit worrying as there are an awful lot of sick and infirm people here.  Also my line was vandalised and I can buy another one, but theft as far as I’m concerned the people responsible should have their fingers chopped off.  

I hope when Vicki takes over I get a better deal from her regards my repairs, the water is still running off my porch, the person who did the tile pulled something off the front of the porch and it drips all over since then. 

f we are still keeping a director do we really need committee members now or are they the ones still going round looking at the estate. Thanks Pat Brown

21/3/18 - ponderings on the management 'takeover' of the estate - L Sherwood.

As financial control is being handed over to the new agent, has the Director  and Committee committed an illegal act given the residents (who own the SRA) were not consulted prior to this decision being made?  It's also interesting that the Hartlepool Property Management Ltd calls it a 'take-over' rather than them being newly appointed as estate agent - do any of these participants actually know the difference?

The new agent specialised in Lettings, Sales and Refurbishments – how does this relate to the Sycamores as we are a private estate, run by a private company where all of the owners of the properties actually own the private company, the properties are never let, and all properties are sold privately?  Perhaps HPM believe that obtaining this kind of appointment would enhance their profile and their reputation.

Will the new agent have complete autonomy over the running of the estate, handling all financial matters, and making all decisions?

What role will the committee now play as it would appear they no longer have any function and it is questionable if the SRA actually need a committee at all?

Are all account, records/paperwork for the past 6 years going to be handed over to the new agent by the previous accountant?

Will HPM be transparent and accountable with regard to their handling of the SRA accounts, and furnish the residents with any and all information they request as to how the their monies are spent? 

Given that HPM has never had their accounts audited - as clearly stated on Companies House filing information on them - do we the residents really want this company looking after our interests?

18/3/18 - Messages and questions from a very concerned resident.

Message 1:

Your updates make very interesting reading.

Has there been no solicitor involved in this take over? How have they done bank account? Just told bank to change names etc? I now definitely think someone on the committee knows this company personally for them to be chosen do you think this?  As committee had a meeting with someone else before meeting Vicky Maddison.   I know she advertises on Facebook as I have seen her page.

Do you know 4 properties here have had lead strips stolen from above our porch roofs? Will this be insurance claim? Will it be dealt with by our present management? I am waiting to see what happens as one of the committee is dealing with it as a neighbour of mine said she phoned her about it.

Message 2: A further email received from the same resident today asking more questions:

Is this change over legal? Has Sycamores solicitor been involved ? Did the committee have the right to do this without consulting All residents ? ARE the new agents going to give us residents newsletters frequently about their dealings with community AND bank account balances as we usually receive after committee meetings ? 

Message 3 from the same concerned resident:

How did the committee decide on this company ?  Did they get recommended to them ?

A response has been sent from the Sycamores-estate.uk stating that these questions should be addressed to the Director Mrs. Doris Clark and the Committee of the SRA for answers.

 

12/3/18 - Message from a concerned resident.

Hi,

I have had my papers out again. It was discussed in previous years about getting management company in to run this estate but they turned them down due to them wanting to have our bank account putting in their name. I do not see any mention of bank account in this change over so how are they going to pay for repairs etc?

I had a chat to fireman who were going round estate yesterday afternoon checking smoke alarms but they don't seem to know much about survey work.  It comes under building dept.  I have found a committee meeting notes dated Monday 17th August 2015  under Bank Account it says the Accountant confirmed that the letter had been sent I wonder what this was for to change account???  I don't have a previous one to tell me but a person who was on committee then maybe he could help?

I am going to email committee as it says on minutes from last week's meeting lights have been sorted well mine not coming on at night that 1 near another resident is still not working properly.

 

4/3/18 - a BIG Thankyou!

It’s so encouraging to see that our committee are taking such a lively interest in the website and would like to thank them for their ongoing unfailing support by visiting the website on such a regular basis. They must be enjoying the content and no doubt it helps to keep up to date with ongoing issues, the majority of which they have generated themselves which in itself is quite an achievement – they may even be basking in their own notoriety, whatever the reason – thank you all so much. 

27/2/18 - Message from the website owner.

A Milestone for the Website

The website has reached a milestone in its short existence – it has passed the 20,000 mark which far exceeds the expectation when first launched in August 2017 and it is all down to you - the visitors to the site. 

I would like to take this opportunity to thank everyone for their continued support, the site will continue to inform, raise issues, and challenge practices which are not in the interest of all Residents who are looking for more accountability and transparency on how the estate is run, how their monies are spent, and fairness when it comes to obtaining permissions for their own personal projects.

 

21/2/18 - Message received from a Committee Member in response to the article entitled 'Criminal Vandalism Perhaps?' WASHING LINE VANDALISM

The resident involved re the  damage to her washing line casing firstly needs to report this matter to the Police, given damage to her property is a criminal offence. 

The resident should then inform the Committee.

14/2/18 - Message received from a resident

Hawking and Spitting in the street!

Will the offender please take note (you know who you are) – this is an absoluitely disgusting habit and would have thought even old men have a sense of decorum, you do yourself no favours and show your self up no end - so give your head a shake and think on before you repeat this behaviour– there are such things of tissues!

10/12/17 - an open letter from the website owner. Dear Residents and Visitors to the website,

It has become necessary to reorganise some of the website pages to consolidate information and generally make the site more user friendly.

All of the original content is still there and available, however in some cases where there has been multiple entries for a particular subject, these have been summarised. Should any viewer wish to see all of the correspondence pretaining to a particular item them please don't hesitate to email the website and the relevant correspondence will be forwarded to you.  The Pages most affected by these changes are:

Outstanding Queries - this page has been merged with Requests and now falls under the heading in the navigation bar Estate Issues.   All items have been summarised, however as stated at the top of the page, a transcript of any relevant correspondence can be made available by request, this not only tidies up the page and makes it much more readable.

The Painting Contract Queries, can now be found under Estate Issues, all original information has been summarised, once again a transcript of relevant correspondence is available by request.

The original Estate Issues  navigation tab has been changed to  Estate Issues Content Page with links to Estate Issues and other matters which don't fall into any existing category.  All original information has been summarised to make the pages more readable and less cumbersome, however as stated at the top of the page, all relevant correspondence is available on request.

A new page Company Solicitor has been created to accomodate letters received on behalf of the SRA, you will find this as a sub category under Estate Issues.

It is sincerely hoped that these changes proves helpful in navigating the site and is a more logical approach to the content. Please get in touch if you can think of any further improvements which would be beneficial to our viewers.

Regards

22/11/17 AGM Minutes Update

One of our residents telephoned the managing agents office yesterday to ask what was happening with regard to the AGM Minutes and when they would be issued due to the fact that they were well overdue and normally were issued within a few days of the AGM meeting itself.  

She spoke to the managing agent who said that he was very busy at the moment due to pressure of work  and that he was still going through the minutes, he was unable to say when they would be issued.

21/11/17 WHY

WHY

WHY have the minutes of the AGM not been issued?

WHY has the full details of the ‘petition’ to bring down the website not been published?

WHY has the promised report on the Painting Contract not been done?

WHY has the accountant not given an adequate explanation regarding the discrepancy in 2012 Account?

WHY is there such a reluctance from the SRA, it’s officers and committee’s part to be open, and transparent on estate matters?

Can anyone answer the above ?

20/11/17 Info only

There has been a record number of hits and visitors to the website this week and is an indication of the interest the website is generating.

Weekly Stats Report: Nov 13 - Nov 19 2017
Summary

 

Mon

Tues

Wed

Thur

Fri

Sat

Sun

Total

Avg

Pageloads

100

71

310

122

95

109

73

880

126

Unique Visits

23

27

29

21

28

30

11

169

24

First Time Visits

1

2

1

1

1

0

0

6

1

Returning Visits

22

25

28

20

27

30

11

163

23

3/11/17 from the site owner. Due to the increased level of visitors to the site, a mailing/distribution list is planned for the future.  If you would like to be included and notified when the site is updated, then please send your name and email address to the site and you will be added to the list.

I would like to take this opportunity to thank you all for your support to date and hope you find the information contained within useful and informative and at times amusing.

16/10/17 - letter from a resident - unsigned.

This is the year 2017.  The internet plays an increasing part in peoples lives  today where one can access information about  almost everything.

The Sycamores website is a necessity for people to obtain information on everything that goes on here on the estate.  I wish this had been available to me when I took up residence as the information given to me before I bought my property did not cover much.

Where is the community spirit - the coffee morning is on a Wednesday morning for one hour a week which is the only time new residents get to meet their neighbours.  The quiz is on once a month but that is not suitable for everyone.  Why no other activities?   I’ve been told that in the ‘good old days’ all sorts were organised – why did they stop?

The committee who have been voted in by residents  should deal with everyone the same and especially where repairs are concerned,  after all the Service Charges is is paid by all of us.

As I reside on the far side of the estate I am treated quite differently to people who live on the other side, this has also been told to me by other residents when problems arise.

Friday 15/9/17 - message received from a resident who felt there was no need to put her name to it as the other participant knew who was being referred to. 

 Altercation on the estate

A small number of residents were sitting in the sun enjoying the weather minding their own business and chatting when resident 'A' came along to have a few words and was invited to sit and join the company - the invitation was rejected as resident 'A' said she was on her way to visit another neighbour.   During this conversation resident 'A' offered some words of wisdom - not crossing ones legs was one bit of advice, keeping ones joints warm was another, this was taken as helpful information although one resident in question (we'll call her resident 'B) was already well wrapped up in a blanket and a warm coat.   Anyway resident 'A' eventually walked off to visit another resident.  

A little while later resident 'A' decided to come back to continue where she left off stating how she wished that things on the estate were like they used to be because in her opinion, things had changed, this statement was obviously her sole purpose to her stopping and chatting and she appeared determined to get her point across.   Resident 'B' asked resident 'A' to elaborate on her statement about how things had changed and what she meant as all of the group were really interested, this unfortunately did not go down too well with resident 'A' and ended up as a heated argument accompanied by a lot of finger pointing, hand gestures and raised voices.

An event to celebrate.

 Diamond Wedding Anniversary for one of our residents.

Congratulations Ron and Marion, You've set the bar high for todays generation and what a wonderful achievement.

 

February 17, 2020

Copyright  L Sherwood,  All Rights Reserved, 2017-2020