Welcome to the June AQ NewsletterAdmiralty Quarter Portsmouth - The Tower

What’s been happening at Admiralty Quarter, Portsmouth….

If you have any observations, comments or want us to cover anything else in future newsletters, please do get in touch with Chris Kent at manager@aqportsmouth.co.uk or the Board of Directors via their new e-mail address, board@aqportsmouth.co.uk, which has replaced their previous chair@aqportsmouth.co.uk e-mail address.

Regards

The AQ Board and Managing Agents

General News

Board of Directors

Following a recent restructure of the AQ Board of Directors, the newsletter will now be sent out on a quarterly basis, making it more newsworthy for Leaseholders and residents on the work being done to maintain AQ’s upkeep and appearance. Each Director has been delegated specific roles: Chairman, Vice Chairman, Hon Secretary, Communications, FMR/Valuations & Maintenance, which is already proving successful via more efficient communication and quicker decision making between the busy Directors.

Facebook

For those not already aware, we have a private residents’ Facebook group, Admiralty Quarter Leaseholders & Residents, so please request to join if you would like to- this is for communication with other residents regarding car park bays, bike cages, selling furniture etc. Please note, this group is not to be used for raising issues and complaints, which should still be logged via the website to manager@aqportsmouth.co.uk

 

Service Charge Budget/10 Year Maintenance Plan

The Managing Agent receives many comments from Leaseholders suggesting the Service Charge is high, with an expectation of more maintenance. Whereas these comments are understood, the budget sent to Leaseholders outlines all the costs in detail but as a reminder, the Service Charges include building insurance, all water on site (supply and waste), lighting & cleaning of communal areas, 24/7 Concierge, management, podium gardening/water features, all legislative requirements to ensure compliance and minimalise risk for residents (incl testing/repairs of emergency lighting, smoke vents, dry risers and water quality control etc.) and certification/maintenance of all major plant, most of which are not visible to the eye but taken for granted.  Contracts are reviewed regularly to ensure value for money and of course, the continual breakages and damage caused by a minority of mindless residents also has to be paid for; in short, the Service Charge budget pays for the daily running of AQ and leaves little left over for major works and is why a 10 Year Maintenance Plan has been put into effect.

 

Enforcement of “Single Household” occupancy clause in the registered leases

All Leaseholders received formal Notice 31 March that the AQ Board of Directors have instructed this clause to be enforced in respect of new tenancy agreements with immediate effect, and all tenancies as of 1 October 2017.  This clause states “Not to use or suffer to be used the Demised Premises for any purpose whatsoever other than as a private residence for occupation by a single household….”. This means that 2 or more friends will not be allowed to share a property, and neither will short-term or holiday/air B&B letting be tolerated, as these are STRICTLY PROHIBITED within the lease. This enforcement will hopefully, stop the constant anti-social behaviour and disrespect to the buildings’ fabric, which has a definite impact on the Service Charge budget for all Leaseholders due to cleaning and repairs required following mindless behaviour.

 

Maintenance

Main Car Park Gates/Access

The gates have not been working for many months now, however, the MA and Board of Directors are in talks with the Freeholders to determine whose liability (and associated cost) they are under the terms of the head lease. This is part of the reason why access for residents has proved difficult at busy times but with many options being discussed and explored, a finite solution should soon be reached between both parties.

 

Residents’ First Floor Car Park

The car park management system has been reassigned to an associated company, One Parking Solution (a member of the British Parking Association) and new notices have replaced the existing.  For clarity, a resident can only park in the bay allocated to their property within their lease, so if an unauthorised vehicle is parked in your bay, please contact the Concierge desk directly, who will report it to One Parking Solution and arrange a warden to visit and ticket the offending car.  Anyone enquiring after a space or additional parking may be able to make arrangements on the ground floor with the car park manager, or with other residents/Leaseholders via the Facebook group.

 

Block Front Doors

The main front doors have been redecorated, however, the Gloucester/Brunswick House front door is beyond repair and a new door is currently being fitted. At the same time, a number of external fire escape doors around site, also beyond repair, are being replaced.

 

Social Responsibility

Health & Safety in Podium Garden & Water Features

Please take note of the signage in and around the garden:

  • Children under the age of 10 MUST be accompanied by an adult at all times;
  • Bathing, paddling and playing in the water features is NOT allowed due to the risk of drowning;
  • NO BBQs, gas heaters, ball games or music are permitted in the garden whatsoever;

The garden is for the quiet enjoyment of residents and this must be respected.  Anyone found to be disregarding these rules will be retributed accordingly.

 

Bin Stores & Drains

The bin stores are solely for disposal of household waste and recycling into the relevant wheelie bins. However, and despite requesting otherwise, the very constant clearance of dumped furniture and household items left in the bin stores by some residents is an unnecessary additional cost to all Leaseholders.  Similarly, only sewage waste and toilet roll should be disposed of down the toilets; we have yet again had to unblock drains due to a build-up of wet wipes, sanitary towels and condoms, which is another unnecessary additional cost to all Leaseholders.  Therefore, please help us try and stop this disregard for the rules, and report (in complete confidentiality) any culprits spotted.

 

Washing, Noise & Animals

The MA has received numerous reports of washing hung out on balconies/terraces, repeated loud noise/parties from residents in the early hours and animals brought onto the development, leaving a trail of dirt and mess, all of which are STRICTLY PROHIBITED under the terms of the lease.  Some residents have also been spotted feeding pigeons, making unwanted mess on neighbouring balconies. Again, please help us try and stop this disregard for the rules, and report any culprits spotted.

 

Heat & Smoke Detectors

Please ensure batteries are replaced in heat and smoke detectors when they are running low, as not only is their constant beeping a nuisance to nearby residents but this is also a potential Health & Safety hazard if not in full working order.