We Asked, You Said, We Did

Below are some of the issues we have recently consulted on and their outcomes.

We asked

Havering’s Local Heritage List helps our communities and the local planning authority to identify heritage assets (for example, buildings, monuments, sites and landscapes) that are much loved and a distinctive part of our local historic environment. It provides a comprehensive list of the location of assets and what is significant about them.  

During June - August 2023, we asked for your comments on the criteria.  Robust criteria ensure the local list is properly evidenced, which in turn allows each nomination to be given full consideration during planning decisions.  

You said

We received 21 responses.

  • You mentioned group value to be considered
  • You suggested views and townscapes to be included in the criteria
  • You suggested to put greater emphasis on pre-war buildings
  • You mentioned a number of buildings for consideration

We did

The Local Heritage List criteria have now been updated, taking on board comments we received during the consultation.  Changes include: 

  • Updating the text in the ‘Age’ criterion to reflect Havering’s development over time
  • We have assessed the proposition to include views in the local heritage list. Views can be identified and protected through planning policies or any specific framework- i.e. Conservation Area, Local Plan, Within designated park and gardens. However, views cannot be designated as heritage assets in the local list.  
  • We will consider Townscapes for future Conservation Area assessment in terms of how a character of a townscape contributes to the special interest the conservation area.
  • All buildings mentioned for consideration will be assessed for inclusion in the updated local list.

We asked

As part of Havering’s refresh of our Local Plan 2021, Havering Council carried out a consultation between March and May 2023 to ask people around the borough about their views on the characters of the areas where they live, work or study.

Led by Havering Planning team, with input from departments across the Council and an urbanisation practice, we delivered four pop-up events, a community workshop and an online survey to ensure we heard from a wide group of people.

You said

What we learned from 91 responses that were received to the online survey:

Positive feedback from the survey told us that:

  • There were 98 (108%) positive responses about the green spaces and parks in Havering.
  • 74 (81%) were based on transport which included trains, buses and the underground services.
  • 22 (24%) of respondents said that the community is the strength of Havering.
  • 14 (15%) said they valued the heritage and historic buildings of the borough
  • 7 (8%) praised Havering’s amenities and facilities
  • 5 (5%) commended Havering’s sense of safety
  • 3 (3%) said they valued the peace and tranquillity the borough gives

Negative feedback from the survey told us:

  • There were 22 (24%) negative responses about anti-social and safety issues in Havering.
  • 17 (19%) of respondents expressed dissatisfaction with the over-development of the borough, including building heights.
  • There were 17 (19%) negative responses about the litter in Havering and a lack of care and maintenance in the borough.
  • 14 (15%) of negative responses were based on issues with transport.
  • 10 (11%) said that the sense of community spirit that was once there is now lost.
  • 7 (8%) addressed issues with inadequate road surfaces in the borough.

What we learned from face-to-face engagement we did with local people:



Protect, preserve and improve green spaces in the area.  Protect wildlife.

Protect and preserve historic building with new buildings that reflect these.


Residents would like better road surfaces and bus services.


Importance of Queens Theatre as an asset in the local community.

Investment in public realm along the High Street.

More spaces for community gatherings and young people.

A concern that the town centre is losing its historic feel.


Value the convenience of city life with access to the countryside.

Better maintenance of the High Street and green spaces in the town centre.

New street furniture and signage needed.


Value the range of shops and accessibility.

Well maintained buildings including positive comments about the refurbishment of the Windmill.

Desire for new green space, improved footpaths and better public realm.


Accessibility and availability of public transport, shops and services.

Valued the heritage in the town centre but a need for better maintenance and reuse.

A concern about the height of new development.

Improvements to public realm and access to greenery.


Accessibility to the countryside – but some green spaces were highlighted as needing better maintenance.

An improvement to the shop fronts.



Value the attractive green and low-rise character.

The range of shops and services within a 10-minute walk.


Lack of cycle infrastructure.


Heritage assets are valued with a desire for careful refurbishment.

Happy to see new homes in the area alongside the delivery of new green spaces.


Concern about development without associated social infrastructure.


Access to natural green spaces and parks.


A concern about new development changing the character of the area in terms of the scale and type of buildings.


Better support for small and independent businesses in the town centre.


This was the only neighbourhood that we did not receive any comments about.


Value of network of local green spaces and play spaces.


Investment in public realm and planting alongside maintenance.


A need for better connections with other parts of the borough, particularly by bus.


Good quality shops, schools, play spaces and local parks.

A potential to reduce car parking around the shopping parade in order to improve public realm.


A desire for better walking and cycling infrastructure.

We did

The survey results are being reviewed and will help us to:

  • Understand the key issues and concerns about each place to help us shape the ideas and opportunities in the Character Study.
  • Understand how local people define the edges and reach of their local area to help us shape the neighbourhood character area plan in the Character Study.
  • Understand what local people value about the identity of their local area to help us shape the characteristics and qualities for future development defined in the Character Study.

We asked

Havering Council carried out a consultation activity from March to May 2023 seeking views on our proposed Draft Children and Young People Education Place Planning Plan.

We asked parents, carers, local residents, education providers and other people interested in education provision in Havering for their contribution towards the proposals that have been set out in order to meet demand and ensure that there is sufficient capacity for the future need for education provision in Havering.

You said

424 responses were received to the consultation.

Early Years

  • Just under a third (30%) of parents and stakeholders agreed that there are sufficient childcare places.  Over a third (38%) disagreed.
  • The majority of stakeholders (71%) agreed that an onsite nursery provision should be included when opening a new school
  • Half of parents (50%) and more than three-quarters of stakeholders (77%) stated that there are not enough places for SEND pupils.

Primary and Secondary

  • The majority of parents and stakeholders (71%) agree that that a new secondary school is needed in Havering from 2027/28
  • More than half of stakeholders (56%) agree that the Local Authority should formulate an action plan and accommodation strategy for those schools where we have permanently reduced the published admission number (PAN), in order to address surplus places.

Post 16

  • The majority of parents and stakeholders responded either no (45%) or don’t know (43%) when asked whether there are sufficient sixth form places available at Havering school sixth forms to meet the projected demand.  Only 10% of respondents replied yes to this question.
  • Nearly half of stakeholders (48%) said they didn’t know if there is sufficient capacity available at the Havering Colleges - just under a third (29%) said that there isn’t.

Special Education Needs and Disability (SEND)

  • The majority of parents and stakeholders (64%) agree that we need a new special school in Havering.
  • The majority of stakeholders (93%) agree that a lot of children with Education, Health and Care Plans (EHCPs) in mainstream school settings need to be placed in a SEND unit instead.  This was also frequently commented on by parents in the SEND comment section.
  • The majority of stakeholders (81%) agree that we need to revisit the capacity in our current local special schools to increase place numbers where possible.
  • The majority of stakeholders (86%) agree that we need to develop a community base in conjunction with a specialist provider and establish a coordinated ‘Education Other Than At School’ (EOTAS) provision for children with EHCPs to support children and families who are either out of school or who are struggling to attend mainstream school until more special school places are available.

Alternative Provision (AP)

  • More than half of parents and stakeholders (51%) agree that Havering would benefit from a new AP school.
  • Two-thirds of stakeholders (65%) think we should develop the ‘AP Out Reach Offer’ - to be utilised as an early intervention to address needs and avoid fixed term and permanent exclusions.
  • Just under half of stakeholders (47%) said no when asked if our mainstream schools are inclusive enough in supporting vulnerable children and young people.

We did

The survey results are being reviewed and will be included in a report to inform our new Children and Young People Education Place Planning Plan.

We asked

Havering Council planned to submit an application for a grant in late June to improve our Special Educational Needs and Disabilities (SEND) service and wanted to make sure we put children and young people at the heart of our plans. 

To help us with this, we carried out two consultation activities from March to April 2023 seeking the views of parents and carers of children and young people under the age of 25 with SEN, and in a separate survey we sought the views of SEN educational providers.

We asked parents and carers for their views and experiences to ensure we focused on the right areas and we asked SEN educational providers for their views to help identify and shape opportunities for us to do better.

You said

Parents and Carers Said:

389 responses were received to the consultation.


  • Over half (56%) had children in primary school, 25% were in secondary school, 12% early years, 6% post-16 and 1% post-25.
  • Of these children and young people, 211 (54%) are in a mainstream school, 187 (48%) have an Education, Health and Care Plan (EHCP) and 50% receive SEN support.
  • The top three services or support that respondents said their child can access to meet their needs, goals and aspirations with their EHCP were:  additional support in the classroom (56%), better skilled and trained staff in the classroom (38%) and learning materials that have been adapted for my child (35%).
  • The support and advice that young people accessed to help them plan for leaving school were CAD preparation for adulthood (4%), Prospects Careers Advice Plus (3%), existing school or college (14%), housing (2%) and other (1%).
  • 15 children or young people (4%) moved from their mainstream school to a special school or to an Additionally Resourced Provision (ARP) and when asked what needed to change in the mainstream school, respondents top three answers were:  Teachers and staff better understanding my child’s needs, Additional specialist support for my child and Additional Teacher support time.
  • 52% of parents and carers in mainstream schools disagreed with the statement “I believe that the SEND provision and services are high quality in my child’s school”, with parents and carers of children in special schools being happier about provision than those in mainstream schools.

Educational Providers Said:

101 responses were received to the consultation.


  • Responses were received from a variety of staff in educational settings including Head Teachers (10%), SENco (17%), SEND/specialist teachers (4%), Classroom Teachers (24%), Teaching Assistants (19%) and Senior Leaders (10%).
  • The majority of feedback came from staff in Mainstream Schools (80%).
  • Parents and staff have different levels of confidence in how well trained staff are to support children and young people with SEND, with just over half of parents strongly agreeing or agreeing that this is the case, compared to just over three quarters of Education providers who either strongly agreed or agreed.
  • The top three things that staff felt needed to change within their educational setting to increase their ability to support children or young people with SEN was Availability of extra support from Local Authority/SEN services (65%), Additional training for teaching staff (63%) and Ability to recruit additional/specialist support staff (e.g. teaching assistants) (59%).

We did

The survey results have been reviewed and recorded and have been included in an application for a grant to improve Havering’s Special Educational Needs and Disabilities (SEND) service.

We asked

As part of Havering’s upcoming All-Age Carers Strategy in partnership with North East London Integrated Care System, Havering Council carried out a consultation to ask Carers around the borough about their experience.

We also asked Carers whether they agreed on our proposed priorities that have emerged from other engagement activities.  These were:


  1.  Information and Advice
  2.  Identification and Assessments of Carers
  3.  Respite and a break from the caring role
  4.  Access to GP appointments
  5.  Hospital discharge pathways
  6.  Awareness of Carers (e.g. in the community, workplace and schools)

You said

125 Responses were received to the consultation.


  • Over 38% of respondents care for their partner, with a further 35% caring for their parent and most respondents live with the person they care for.


  • The three most popular proposed strategy priorities were:  Access to information and advice, Access to GP appointments and Respite/breaks from the caring role.  


  • The overall majority of respondents (100%) agreed with our proposed priorities.


  • 60% of respondents didn’t propose any additional priorities and some respondents suggested additional priorities such as Carers Allowance benefit increase and help applying for grants and benefits. 


  • 44% of respondents are registered on the Council’s Carers Register, with many others unaware this channel of support existed.


  • The majority of respondents (64%) are certain that their GP knew about their caring role.

We did

These results will now be included in a report to inform our new Carers Strategy.

We asked

Havering Council carried out a consultation activity from February to March 2023 seeking residents’ views on proposed changes to  Havering's Complaints Policy.

We asked residents and service users for their views on how we can improve the way we deal with complaints by proposing an update to our customer contact definitions. 

Alongside this we are proposing to merge all of our policies into one easy to understand process that reduces the number of stages, allowing us to focus on what matters most – getting it right first time.

Our proposed Six Aims to achieve this are:


  1. Start off right
  2. Fix it early
  3. Focus on what matters
  4. Be fair
  5. Be honest
  6. Learn from complaints and improve service delivery across the organisation

You said

31 responses were received to the consultation, of which 17 (55%) stated they had made a complaint to the Council.


  • The overwhelming majority (100%) of respondents agreed with our ‘Getting It Right First Time’ approach, and 90% felt our proposed Six Aims show a commitment to this approach.
  • 90% said they felt our proposed changes were fair and reasonable.
  • 71% said they felt our proposed customer contact definitions are easy to understand.
  • The majority of respondents (49%) would prefer an officer reviews and signs off their complaint, 16% would prefer the Lead Member for the topic of their complaint and 35% said they do not place any importance on this, as long as they receive a full response to their complaint.
  • Almost half of respondents (45%) expect to receive a response within 15 days, 16% within 20 days and 39% of respondents expect a response within 25 days.  Of the respondents who had previously made a complaint to the Council, 59% expect a response within 15 days, 6% within 20 days and 35% within 25 days.

We did

The survey results, along with feedback from authorising bodies and other local authorities, are being reviewed and will be included in a report to inform our new Complaints Policy.

We asked

The release of sky lanterns is causing a major impact on the environment and a danger to human and animal life due to wild fires.  Over 188 Councils have already banned the release of sky lanterns from their land, including neighbouring authorities such as Essex County Council and the London Borough of Redbridge.

There are similar risks associated with the outdoor release of helium balloons, and unauthorised fireworks displays.

Havering Council carried out a consultation activity from January 2023 to February 2023 to ask the public for their thoughts and comments on banning the following activities from Council owned and managed land:


  • the release and sale of sky lanterns
  • the release of helium balloons
  • unauthorised firework displays

You said

512 responses were received to the consultation.  The majority of responses were fully supportive of the Council’s proposals.

Sky Lanterns

  • 95% of respondents said they were aware that sky lanterns are harmful to the environment and wildlife.
  • 94% would like the Council to consider banning the release of sky lanterns from Council owned and managed land.
  • 94% would like the Council to consider refusing the sale of sky lanterns at any Council events.

Helium Balloons

  • 90% of respondents said they were aware that the release of helium balloons are a source of littering and can be harmful to wildlife.
  • 91% would like the Council to consider banning the release of helium balloons from Council owned and managed land.


  • 89% of respondents agree that Havering Council should prohibit unauthorised firework displays on council owned or managed land.

We did

Havering's Cabinet met on 8 March 2023 and agreed to adopt a policy on the Release of Sky Lanterns, the Release of Helium Balloons and the Unauthorised Use of Fireworks on Council Owned or Managed Land.  Please see more information Here which includes the policy.

We asked

Havering Council launched a consultation on our Budget 23-24 draft proposals, which set out how the Council propose to save money whilst still providing vital public services.  We asked for feedback on how these proposals would affect Havering’s residents.

You said

3188 responses were received to the consultation, plus an additional 11 paper copies that were not available to be included in the full Public Document Pack at the time of publishing.


  • The three most important issues that respondents feel that Havering is likely to face in the next year by weighted rank are: Cost of Living Crisis (49%), Crime/Community Safety (27%), National Health Service/ Healthcare (26%).
  • The three most important issues that respondents are personally most concerned about are: Paying Bills (29%), Cleanliness of Street and Local Area (23%), and Anti-Social Behaviour in My Community (22.44%) however, My Physical Health and Fitness was marginally less (22.35%).
  • Respondents were asked if they would support an increase in Council Tax and did not include any particular assumptions on a Council Tax increase but provided an illustration on how a 1.99% increase in Council Tax would mean an increase of 60p per week on an average Band D property in the borough:
    • 42% supported an increase of up to 2%,
    • 17% supported an increase of 2% or above
    • 38% did not support an increase.


We asked for feedback on our proposals which we grouped into themes:


  • Reducing or stopping some services: The top three proposals that respondents feel will have the most negative affect on them are Reduction of CCTV Monitoring Hours (34%), Reduced Grounds Maintenance (19%) and End of Grant Funding to Havering’s Citizens’ Advice (19%).
  • Changing how we fund and provide services: The top three proposals that respondents feel will have the most negative affect on them are: Alternative Weekly Collection/Containerisation of Waste/Recycling (59%), Review of Parking Services Delivery Model (27%) and Highway Procurement Savings (24%).
  • Increasing income: The top three proposals that respondents feel will have the most negative affect on them are: Increasing Garden Waste Charges (39%), Increase of Cremation Fee and Introduction of New Burial Products (21%) and Increase Bulky Waste Collection Charges (21%).
  • Improving our business efficiency: The top three proposals that respondents feel will have the most negative affect on them are: Reduction in Running Costs (7%), Restructure of Services to Drive out Inefficiencies (7%) and Review and Deletion of Vacant Posts (6%).

We did

Havering's Cabinet met on 8 February 2023 and agreed proposals for the Council's 2023/24 budget.  As a direct result of feedback:


The Council will continue to fund the Havering Citizens Advice Bureau for another year, as it is clear that they provide a vital role for residents.

The proposed closing of the Elm Park Children's Centre which is home to a children's nursery, will continue to stay open as it was clear that closing the site at this time would have put parents and their children at a disadvantage.

Public safety remains a large concern for residents and as part of the proposals, we have committed £3.5 million to push through the new CCTV upgrades, as well as pledged a further £260,000 to continue the Council-funded Section 92 police officers to help keep our streets safe. These officers are extremely successful in what they do and it is important they continue to help reduce crime in the borough.

Please see the full Public Document Pack Here which includes the 2023/24 Council Budget Setting Report.

We asked

We asked Havering pupils in academic year 6 upwards a series of questions based around the themes of our Starting Well Plan. The survey was delivered online, with our established engagement partner ‘Mind of My Own’, and the questions were co-produced with children and young people.

The themes covered were: Aspiration, Discrimination and Hate, the Cost of Living and how children and young people feel about the local area.

You said

More than 1,000 children responded to the consultation.

  • The top three types of support children felt they needed to reach their future goals were: supportive teachers (66.8%); volunteering opportunities (38.1%) and careers advice (32.8%).
  • 63.4% of children who reported they’d had hate directed at them said it was because of the way they look, followed by 25.8% for race and 18% for age.
  • 11.5% of children said that worrying about money affected their physical health or emotional wellbeing and a further 46.4% were not sure.
  • 56.7% of children who responded felt unsafe on the streets and 34.1% felt unsafe at bus stops and train stations. 25.3% reported feeling unsafe at local parks.

We did

The results from ‘SHOUT – we are listening’ have been shared with a wide range of colleagues internal to the Council, and external partners, including school governors, Transport for London (TFL), Community Safety and the Metropolitan Police. TfL and the Police have each provided a written response, addressing some of the concerns raised by children and young people relating to safety, crime and getting around the borough. We have published these on the main SHOUT survey page, as well as a child friendly version of this summary.

Children’s Services are using the results to inform the Starting Well Plan, ensuring that the needs and concerns of children and young people are addressed comprehensively. The results were also used to inform the topics covered by the recent Havering Youth Wellbeing Census which has helped us to better understand wellbeing in young people.

We continue to work closely with schools to support the Period Product Scheme, which aims to provide free period products to students who may otherwise not have access to them. This initiative ensures that young people are able to attend school without facing the challenges associated with period poverty. Many schools and colleges in Havering have signed up to the scheme and have been provided with funding each academic year.

In late 2022 Havering also launched a cost of living campaign to support residents with navigating the increasing expenses associated with daily life. This campaign provides resources and support to help individuals and families make informed decisions about their finances and access any available assistance. More recently we have launched the next phase of our partner-led campaign, By Your Side.

We remain committed to responding to the issues raised in ‘SHOUT – we are listening’ and to hearing from children and young people more generally. For this reason, in November 2023, we launched ‘SHOUT about the money’, our first ever children and young person’s budget consultation.

We asked

Havering Council carried out a consultation activity from September 2022 to November 2022 seeking residents’ views on our parks and open spaces.  These include Havering’s traditional parks, small open spaces, formal gardens, playing fields, country parks and allotments, which deliver a whole range of benefits for local communities; providing places to relax, exercise, hold events and to learn and to play.

We asked residents and park users to help us set out Havering’s priorities for its parks and open spaces over the next 10 years in order to meet the objectives set out in national, regional and corporate plans and policies. 

You said

1488 responses were received to the consultation.

  • The top three priorities were: 85% of respondents use them for health reasons, 80% would like to us to create more conservation areas to encourage more biodiversity and 79% would like us to provide play areas for children.
  • 90% said they felt very safe or safe in Havering’s Parks and Open Spaces.
  • The top three facilities respondents usually use when they visit are: benches and seating areas (56%), cafes and mobile catering (43%) and toilets (36%).
  • The top three reasons that respondents use our parks and open spaces are: to go for a walk (69%), to enjoy plants and trees (39%) and for peace and quiet (35%).


We did

The survey results have been reviewed and recorded and they will be included in a draft report to inform our new Parks Strategy.

We asked

The Government announced that from 2030, new petrol and diesel cars will be prohibited from sale within the United Kingdom.  Over the next decade the number of electric vehicles within the country and within the borough is expected to significantly increase.

In order to meet this challenge, Havering Council carried out a consultation activity from July 2021 to July 2022 seeking residents’ views on having Electric Vehicle Charging Points (EVCPs) publicly available and asking where residents would like to see them installed, if they owned an electric vehicle and if they planned to buy one.

You said

356 responses were received to the consultation:

  • 27% of respondents currently either own or hire an electric vehicle and a further 63% plan to purchase in the future.
  • 69% said they would purchase an electric vehicle sooner if there were more charging points.
  • 93% of respondents would like to see more charging points in bays marked for ‘EV Charging Only’ and 81% of respondents would like to see slow-charging points in lamp posts.
  • The top three priorities for charging point locations outside of residential areas were Supermarkets (91%), Shopping Centre Car Parks (89%) and Town Centre Parking (80%).

We did

The survey results have been reviewed and recorded and they will help with planning the future roll out of the EVCPs across the borough.

Since the survey went out Havering Council has received £346k of Government funding from the Office of Zero Emission Vehicles (OZEV) to deliver 68 Charge Points in Council operated car parks and up to 80 on street charging points across the borough in 2023. The Council will soon begin a procurement exercise to appoint a Charge Point Operator and the intention is to begin delivery of the charging infrastructure in the coming months.