Residents survey shows people are happy in Fareham

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A RANDOM survey of Fareham residents has shown that in general people are happy with where they live, although they don’t think much of allotments and dog mess.

The survey was sent to 4,020 households in the borough of Fareham, of which 1,291 responses were received.

A presentation of the key findings was given at the council’s executive meeting last night. It showed that the majority, 97 per cent, said they were happy with their local area as a place to live and that 89 per cent thought the council provided value for money, while 91 per cent were happy with the way the council runs things.

A key question was one about Welborne. It asked for a response to the statement; ‘A decision has been taken to plan for Welborne, a new community north of the M27, with businesses, schools, open spaces and local services. It will help meet Fareham’s future housing needs and help stop piecemeal development taking place in the countryside that separates the different communities in the borough.’

People were asked if this was the right decision to take, 74 per cent responded in favour.

Residents were also asked to list their priorities, which will help the council make £800,000 of savings by April 2015.

Things that appeared as the least important were the Tourist Information Centre, allotments and Westbury Manor Museum.

The most important were waste collection, reducing crime and cleaning the streets.

The survey also showed that around a third (30 per cent) were unhappy with dog mess, and 57 per cent wanted a balance between increasing charges to service users and small increases in council tax.

Council leader Cllr Sean Woodward said: ‘We have been told what are the high and low priorities and we now need to respond to these.

‘Due to government cutbacks, half of our income has gone, so we are not going to invest in low priorities. We need to prioritise.

‘It is easy for a politician to say everything is important, here we have the proof.’

The survey also found that only 10 per cent of people had been to a Community Action Team (CAT) meeting, and these will now be reviewed.