by Angela Cotton

Three Rivers Community Rail Partnership has set up a Free Shop at Swaythling Station. The aim is to reduce local food waste by providing surplus food to anyone who can make use of it. This can be out of ‘sell by’ date food that is still edible, donated by supermarkets, surplus produce from allotments and gardens or donations of fresh or packaged foods from private individuals. At present the shop offers fruit and vegetables and some canned or packaged food. All food is vegetarian with no dairy, alcohol or anything that needs refrigeration. The aim is to prevent food waste, so there are no restrictions on who can make use of the food. Left over fresh produce will be distributed to the Southampton Sunday Lunch Club project, St Albans Church and similar organisations. The shop currently runs from 10.30-12.00 on most Saturday mornings and 10.00-11.00am on occasional Tuesday mornings. More volunteers to help at the shop or to collect produce from supermarkets are welcome. For more information contact Mark at or mob 07900 103296.


The HCERA Group now has 160 members.
To join, you’ll need to be a member of Facebook. Log into Facebook, click ‘groups’, search for Herbert Collins Estates Residents Association and click ‘Join’. A message will be sent to you asking you to verify that you live or own a house in the Association’s area. You do need to answer the questions for the moderators to ‘approve’ you.

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by Debbie Smith, Bassett Green Road

Following my suggestion in the summer Newsletter last year regarding the planting of wildflowers on the verges in Bassett Green Road, the Committee contacted Swaythling Councillor Matthew Bunday to elicit his support. Matthew has taken this forward to the Council as it fits in with their Green City Plan. We will be working with Ian Bailey, Engagement Officer, Education, Environment and Ecology, to come up with a plan. This will be sent to the ward councillors of Swaythling and Bassett to see what they think.

We start small, so we are proposing that we begin with the area between No. 2 Leaside Way and No. 51 Bassett Green Road. This will very much be a community project with this first phase to be funded by HCERA. It will be up to us to make this happen. Going forward, if this phase is successful, we may be able to apply for grants for future planting from The Community Chest.
I am hoping that we can come together as a community to enhance Bassett Green Road. I’m sure that we all use this road, so to have it lined with wildflowers would be of visible benefit to everyone and enhance our local wildlife population.

We will be needing volunteers to help prepare the verge and planting of seeds, so if any of you would be willing to help please get in touch. There is a useful article on the RHS website which gives advice. Thank you in advance.

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by Peter Martin

Community really works around here. That is evidenced for me by the consistency of response to the Food Bank Appeal. In the emotional atmosphere of the early virus news, many were moved by the plight of others. But this community is weathering the long slog and is aware that need is still with us. By the time this newsletter is delivered there will have been 11 large consignments going from us and our neighbours to the “bank” in Swaythling. Thank you for looking outwards, for the lack of insularity of this locality. The need is, of course, still great. The economic downturn has serious repercussions for us all, but perhaps most for people sometimes described as “just managing”. The representative of Food Bank has written to us to say a big thank you, describing the “heartbreak” of some of the users needing a helping hand. Thank you to Andy and others for transport, and to several people for leafleting. Most of all, thank you to you the givers! Please continue to give if you can. Stay safe.

The box is outside 52 Ethelburt Avenue.

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The sunny weather on the 8th May brought out flags and bunting and people having picnics in their front gardens. The lockdown was still in full swing. The 75th anniversary of VE Day had not really been on the radar of HCERA, in contrast to the 50th Anniversary. See summer Newsletter 1995.

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by Lizzie Cox

It was a beautiful sunny weekend in May and although we couldn’t hold Open Gardens as usual, it was delightful and uplifting to see so many videos and photos of what we were getting up to in our gardens whilst ‘Lockdown’ was on. Big thanks to everyone taking part. In the end, there were nearly 30 gardens shared and I’m now left with more creative and inspiring ideas for my plot!

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Covid-19 has caused cancellation of our Summer Party and Open Gardens and it will also interfere with house calls to collect cash for the annual subscription. The Committee has therefore decided that the 2019 membership will continue through 2020. Wanting to have our cake and eat it, we will not refuse a voluntary online payment of £4. If you are a newcomer, please email HCERA to join the Association. Payment of £30 for the Ethelburt Avenue Repair Fund will continue as usual in 2020.

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It is unlikely that HCERA will be able to hold its AGM in the usual way. The Committee is exploring the possibility of holding a Zoom AGM. Notices will be sent out at least 2 weeks in advance. Do we have your email address?

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by Angela Cotton

If you’d like to know about:

• Safer routes around the city
• Repair shops
• Buying a second hand bike
• Keeping your bike safe
• Reporting problems on your route

contact Southampton Cycling Campaign at

Let us know your area and someone local will get back to you with free advice.

Or go to

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