Historic first for Merton

House by house, ward by ward survey to hear from residents

In a historic move Merton Council is contacting every resident in the borough to find out exactly what residents like and dislike about their area and their Council services.

It is believed that it is the first time any council in the United Kingdom has so methodically contacted every resident and every home within its area.

The full survey, throughout the Borough, is likely to take six months to complete, with two to three wards being surveyed each month starting this month with Trinity and Phipps Bridge.

At the end of each ward survey, ward councillors and senior council officers will report back the results of the survey to residents in a public meeting within each area.

It is hoped that after hearing from and talking with residents in all 20 wards, the council will have a clearer view of how the views and needs of residents might change in different parts of the Borough. It is already clear that environmental issues that really matter to residents, the survey will enable the Council to clearly identify the problems areas within each part of the Borough and allow it to see if its current work is addressing them.

Although Merton has its own monitoring methods, the information gathered in the surveys will be used:

· To assess resident satisfaction with sports facilities and open spaces.
· To take immediate action where possible and fix, for example, a faulty street light or clear a flytip.
· To plan future policy and programmes.

Councillor Andrew Judge, Leader of the Council, said: “We know how important the environment is to everyone in Merton and we have already introduced changes on a borough-wide basis, like cleaning all streets once a week and launching a new anti-graffiti scheme.

“However, using the ward surveys and meetings, we can find out what the burning issues are at an even more local level. This will allow us to pull our energy and resources into sharp focus and, where possible, make the improvements people want quickly and efficiently.”

“The surveys will be hand delivered by local ward councillors where possible and residents will have a Freepost address to return them. I hope we have a good response from residents and look forward to hearing what they have to say.”