Minutes of the meeting on 03 May 2022


The residents’ association for Sopwell Lane, Albert Street, Pageant Road, Hart Road, The Ryder Seed Mews Estate, Saracens Head Yard, Pearce’s Walk and Keyfield Terrace



Notes of SAPHRA Meeting held on Tuesday 03 May 2022 at 8pm
at the White Hart Hotel, Holywell Hill


1.    Present:   Officers: Chair, Vice Chair, Secretary

Cllr Jacqui Taylor, Cllr Chris White

In addition :     1 resident of Albert Street

                        2 residents of Saracens Head Yard

4 residents of Sopwell Lane

                        1 resident of Hart Road
                 1 resident of Pageant Road

                        1 resident of Malthouse Court


2.    Apologies for absence: 5 residents


3.    Subjects discussed at the meeting were:


  • Finances and bank account:
    SAPHRA’s account with HSBC has been closed and their cheque for the balance is still awaited. When it is received a new account will be opened with Metro bank.
    Our available funds are £381.28.


  • The green oasis in Sopwell Lane:
    A small working party of SAPHRA residents have begun clearance work on the green oasis. A large amount of rubbish, dead wood and unwanted vegetation was removed from the site but there is still quite a bit left to do. SAPHRA has put forward a suggestion to Heidi Carruthers of H&MWT, that a commemorative tree be planted on the oasis site for the platinum jubilee. This will be raised at the next tree planting meeting on 28th June 2022. A meeting has been arranged between Heidi and the working party, at the oasis, on 1st July 2022 at 11am to discuss further action. The SAHAAS (St Albans & Hertfordshire Architectural & Archaeological Society) have been approached to assist SAPHRA in putting together an information board on the site.
  • On-street parking and the proposed pinch-point in Sopwell Lane:
    Cllr Jacqui Taylor is still waiting for council officers to develop the parking proposals for parking Zones M and N. As soon as their work on Zone A is completed work will commence on Zones M and N.
  • Herts County Council - High Street Recovery Trial:
    Trials of various combinations of closures of Market Place, High Street, George Street and Verulam Road will be taking place from June of this year. Traffic and pollution surveys will take place before and during the trials so that the impact of the closures can be assessed. If you wish to find out more information about the scheme and view maps please follow this link and click on St Albans:


  • Herts County Council trial - Active Travel Scheme - Safe Cycle Route:

A temporary roadblock will be placed at the junction of Sopwell Lane, Albert Street and Old London Road to enable a trial of a cyclist friendly route from the city station to the town centre. We still don’t know when this will happen. HCC will be seeking feedback once the trial has started. Concern was expressed that the trial would highlight the downside of the proposals (roadblocks) without showing the upside (safer crossings and improved routes for cyclists and pedestrians). The Chair will write to Cllr. White about this.
For more information, maps and drawings follow the link below:


  • St Albans District Council Community Governance Review:
    The review is to enable the District Council to consider what, if any, changes are needed to parish/town council arrangements following recent changes to Ward boundaries. There is also a possibility of creating a City Council to cover the unparished area in the centre of the District. We are expecting the draft recommendations of the review to be published on 1st July 2022.
    If you want to find out more about the review and view relevant maps detailing the different parishes across the district, please follow this link:
  • St Albans District Council proposals for the City Centre Opportunity Site North and Culture:
    A consultation has started about a proposal to build a new theatre with underground parking on the site of the present car park situated behind the Arena. A large communal garden space would be created on the site of the current theatre, the whole being funded through the creation of living accommodation. Some in the District are proposing that the Arena should be refurbished rather than replaced. SAPHRA’s Chair has recently been nominated as a member of the Steering Group.

If you would like to find out more about the proposals please follow this link:

  • Blue Plaques St Albans:
    Information about newly unveiled plaques, and others which will follow, can be found on the Civic Society website through this link:
  • The White Hart Tap Garden:
    A resident of Hart Road was concerned that the owners of the freehold of the White Hart Tap could be planning to build houses on the garden of the White Hart Tap. This would result in the loss of what is effectively a public open space in this crowded part of the City. It could also lead to the small rear yard and private garden behind the pub being used as replacement space for outdoor eating and drinking resulting in increased disturbance for those living close to the pub. It was agreed that an application should be submitted for the pub to be classified as an Asset of Community value and that SAPHRA would help with this.


  • Cycle stand for Malthouse Court:
    A resident of Malthouse Court asked if any progress had been made with a requested lockable cycle stand for Malthouse Court. Cllr. Taylor advised that the Housing Department was looking into a cycle parking strategy for all District Council owned properties.


  1. The next SAPHRA meeting will be held on Tuesday 19 July 2022 at 8pm in the first-floor meeting room (Residents' Lounge) in The White Hart Hotel, 23-25 Holywell Hill, St Albans AL1 1EZ.








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