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Clandestine Council Angers Residents

July 25, 2013

Residents not consulted about plans to relocate Motorcycle club to Town Centre


The Cranbury Centre, soon to be a new home for the Southampton & District Motorcycle Club

Residents in Cranbury Rd Eastleigh are disturbed at the Council’s lack of consultation over plans to park a motorcycle nuisance on their doorstep…

The Southampton & District Motorcycle Club currently has a clubhouse in Woodside Avenue, but are set to move to the little used Cranbury Centre. Negotiations with Eastleigh Borough Council are said to be at an advanced stage, with the new lease very close to being signed.

One resident from Cranbury Rd explained to Eastleigh News how they found out about this move by accident, saying;

“We went to book the Cranbury Centre for a kids party, but were told that bookings were no longer being taken because the Southampton Motorcycle Club were taking over the lease. That was the first we’d heard of it…”

She went on to explain how Cranbury Rd and the surrounding area has a mixture of privately owned houses, sheltered housing, social housing and privately owned flats, all tightly packed around the old school, which is now used by Eastleigh College, and the Cranbury Centre, adding;

Parking around here is bad enough as it is, already very difficult for residents to park in the evening,  despite us having to pay £60 for the privilege of doing so.  Also, there are often problems late at night, with damage to parked cars and rowdiness.

The noise from the motorcycles is a big concern. We’ve been fobbed-off with the argument that the bikes are all road legal, but when you get lots of them all arriving and departing at the same time, in a pack, the noise is multiplied.

Eastleigh News has seen a letter from the Council, a reply to our MP Mike Thornton, which gives further insight.

In that letter, the Council claim that there are plans for the Motorcycle club to hold an open event, to which the local residents will be invited, so that they can find out more about the clubs plans for the Cranbury Centre. However this event will only be held once the lease has been signed.

The Council also say, in that letter, that;

“The Council would not normally consult local residents about the change of tenant in one of our community buildings, unless we felt there was going to be a significant change or impact. We do not think that is the case in this instance… “

The residents of Cranbury Rd disagree, concerned not just about the noise and the parking, but the plans to include a licensed bar at the Cranbury Centre. They think this is a significant change of use of the building and that there will be a substantial impact on Cranbury Rd and the surrounding area.

The Council also say, in their letter, that;

“The Club is a long-established and well-respected one, having been at their current home on Woodside Avenue since 1948. In that time, neither the Police nor the Council have had any complaints about noise or rowdy behaviour.”

The currently clubhouse is situated in Woodhouse Avenue, in an area of Eastleigh which is primarily industrial & retail, well outside of the Town Centre and very close to the Motorway.

Cranbury Road Eastleigh is a densely populated residential area a short walk from the Town Centre, with restricted parking and many access routes blocked-off, well to cars at least…

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