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DECEMBER ESTATE NEWSLETTER
Dear Residents

From an Estate point of view, 2019 has certainly been a year of great progress especially in terms of our overall strategy of "thinking and acting as one." At the top of the list is security with numerous upgrades and mergers between security facilities on both estates.  The merging of the two Estate control rooms being a prime example.  I would like to take this opportunity to thank Michelle Kramer for all her hard work.

Rieva McMurtrie joined us in April this year as the Head of Estates and has made great strides to ensure the efficient running of Estate issues. Rieva not only has the experience and skills required but she has also proven to be exceptionally approachable which has helped tremendously to strengthen the relationship between management and Residents.

Ayanda Duma took over from Warren Horsley as the Land and Environment Manager earlier this year and we are very pleased with her efforts to engage with Residents and offer valuable gardening advice.  Ayanda is also running our Little Green Fingers Garden for children and is especially passionate about teaching children how to plant a sustainable garden. Every Thursday afternoon from 14h30 is gardening day with Ayanda and we encourage all the children to come and have some fun and learn about how plants grow.   Please book with her on landenviroman@mountedgecombe.com  I would like to take this opportunity to thank Engen Mount Edgecombe for their generous sponsorship of the Little Green Fingers Garden. 


Last but not least we wish you a very Merry Christmas and all the best for 2020.  Please stay in touch desiree@mountedgecombe.com

Kind regards
Desiree Stone
CEO
SECURITY
NEW SPEED CAMERAS
We have installed new speed cameras which will operate independently day and night. These cameras not only record your speed but can take a  photograph of speeding offenders. We are in the process of testing a new system of moveable cameras, which will be placed around the Estate to help us reduce speeding.
CONTRACTOR SHUTDOWN
Please take note, our annual Contractor shutdown will be from 13th Dec 2019 to 6th January 2020. All building contractors’ access is suspended and the new application processes will apply in the new year.
 
Only emergency maintenance contractors / service providers are granted access via Reference Code, issued by the Resident and the nature of the Emergency Work will be ascertained from the Resident.
 
All other garden services and swimming pool services etc will only be able to gain access via reference code supplied by the Resident.
 
Please arrange the necessary access required over the festive period in advance.
 
Any Functions being held by residents need to be applied for 24 hours prior to the event. Please email Rieva on Rieva@mountedgecombe.com.
HOUSEHOLD STAFF
Household staff are required to renew their access annually and we now have the facilities to email Residents prior to the cut-off date. Furthermore should we notice inactivity on your household staff profiles, we will email you. We urge you to please respond to these emails to ensure that we do not suspend your staff’s access unnecessarily. If we do not get confirmation from you this is a security risk and your staff's access will be suspended.  Often household staff are terminated and security is not informed.  A disgruntled former household employee is a risk to the Resident and the Estate as a whole. 
 
Furthermore, should any household staff be staying over, the Control Room needs to be informed as this affects our Zone Occupancy reports and places a larger workload on the staff to contact every resident whose staff have not exited the Estate.
Please email the control room on controlroom@mountedgecombe.com

 
HOUSE UNDER SURVEILLANCE
With our new NFC patrol tags, we can monitor and manage our patrols, inspections and HUS visits with more efficiency.
 
So, if you are planning to go away please send me your details on michelle@mountedgecombe.com (please include HUS in the subject title) and include the dates that you will be away and we can load a tag to be placed at your premises, ensuring patrols are conducted while you are away.
 
 IMPORTANT
Please note that we do need 3 days’ notice prior to your vacation date in order to programme and implement the tag system.
PEDESTRIAN BRIDGE 
The new pedestrian bridge built over the freeway was a concern for security, with thousands of new eyes looking into our Estate. Due to this risk, we have installed five thermal cameras along the fence line that runs parallel to the bridge so that we are able to detect any potential crime on the Estate.
Below is an image that shows the value of having thermal protection in an area such as this:
SOIL EROSION UPDATE
Due to the heavy rains experienced in April 2019, we had three wash aways on the fence line.
Initially, after the damage, we implemented 24/7 guards with patrol dogs to guard these areas. Unbeknown to us the timelines for the Engineers/SMEC/Tongaat to inspect and resolve the issue that caused the wash aways was extremely long. In the interim and to reduce guarding costs, we have implemented a secondary fence. 
 STAFF ASSESSMENTS, TRAINING AND AMBASSADOR OF THE MONTH.
With the appointment of Welcome we now regularly assess all staff on-site with an on-line assessment form that rates and highlights areas of concern. We base all our training on the outcome of these assessments with ongoing proactive training.

We now have a staff compliment of 87 Guards and it is a large process to train up all of our on-site staff. We ask for your patience in this regard. We have further implemented Ambassador of the Month which encourages the staff to “go the extra mile” and in turn, they are then rewarded. So, if you come across a Super Star who really shines, please send me an email on michelle@mountedgecombe.com so we can reward their efforts.

 
ESTATE MANAGEMENT AND VISITOR MANAGEMENT SOFTWARE UPDATE. 
This has been a very long process trying to source the best software for the Estates so all entities can merge and make use of one software for all our needs. Some of which are golfers' access, uber, deliveries etc. 
 
Part of this process is the merging of numerous databases and systems into one, which is a lengthy and arduous process.
 
Please be patient with this implementation, there is a lot to consider and plan prior to implementation.

 
ESTATE 1 – GATE 2 MOVING TO BIOMETRIC ACCESS
On Monday we started building the new enclosures for the biometric scanners to be installed at Gate 2.  The weather has caused a few delays but we will be up and running as soon as possible. This will ensure MECCEMA 1 moves with the times and industry standards in reducing card access and moving towards biometric access. Pics above were taken on Monday with the start of the building
ESTATE MATTERS
DURBAN SOLID WASTE (DSW) REMOVAL
We are pleased to advise that Durban Solid Waste will most definitely be collecting refuse throughout the festive season.  This includes Christmas and New Year’s Day.  We would like to thank DSW for their commitment to serving the community of Mount Edgecombe Country Club Estate.
 
Owners are to ensure that they have placed their wheelie bins on the pavements timeously to ensure that waste is removed off the Estate.
 
MERRICK HILLS COMMUNITY CENTRE
Waterslides SA has kindly agreed to loan Mount Edgecombe Country Club a slide for the holiday season which will be placed at the Crystal Downs (Merrick Hills) Community Centre from the 13th of December.  The slide is on loan to the Estate. The actual colour permitted will be green should it be installed permanently.  We would love you and your children’s feedback on the slide. Please email Rieva on rieva@mountedgecombe.com. 
 

The ruling for the Estate is that children, under the age of 16, can use the community centre and its amenities only under parents’ supervision.
DAVID’S CIRCLE – MOVING OF FLAGPOLE
The foundations of the flagpole at David's Circle eroded to the extent they could no longer support the flagpole.  As a result, the flagpole had to be removed. The flagpole was to be cut it into four parts so that it can be rewelded, should we decide to reinstate it once the foundations have been assessed/reconstructed.

The operation was carried out successfully on Friday, 22 November 2019 by Lovemore Bros, taking 5 hours instead of the entire day.  We would like to thank Lovemore Bros for the professionalism with which this operation was handled.
RUNNING BUSINESSES ON THE ESTATE
Running of businesses on the Estate is strictly prohibited.
 
Estate 1 rule 2.1 states: “The use of a unit shall be governed by the Mount Edgecombe Town Planning Scheme in force at any time or any other approved scheme applicable to the Estate from time to time.  A UNIT MAY BE USED FOR RESIDENTIAL PURPOSES ONLY."

"Other uses, even for a  very short duration and whether of commercial, sporting, social, religious, political or any other nature will be permitted only with the prior written consent of the Association. Such consent is unlikely to be given should the use in question involve persons not resident on the Estate. Such consent will be refused if the Association in its sole discretion is of the opinion that such use may affect the security of the Estate or cause nuisance or irritation to others. The Association is entitled to grant its consent conditionally and to summarily withdraw the same.”
 
Estate 2 rule 3.1.2 states that “A dwelling may be used primarily for residential purposes (i.e. no business operations which necessitate clients visiting the unit or accessing Estate 2 to the detriment of Security and parking and/or causing a nuisance or disturbance to nearby or other residents).  All units are zoned single residential by eThekwini Municipality and no sub-letting is permitted. (This includes loft rooms, garages and garden cottages).”
GATE OPENING AND CLOSING TIMES
Please note the following closing times:
Gates 1 and 3 close at 18h00, and re-open at 06h00.  Household staff will not be able to exit through these gates after 18h00, nor can visitors enter or exit through these gates after 18h00.  However, residents can still enter and exit between 18h00 - 20h00.
Gate 2 is open 24/7.
Gates 4 – 6 close at 19h00 but will open for residents with access to the Estates.
REPORTING OF ELECTRICITY OUTAGES AND WATER LEAKS
Residents can phone the Control Room to report electricity outages and water leaks.   The control room will report to eThekwini Electricity and Water departments respectively, obtaining a reference number.  Gate 5’s physical address is given so that when eThekwini arrive, the patrol officers can escort them directly to the problem.
 
Residents can report their:
  •  Monthly water meter readings to eThekwini’s Engineering Services WhatsApp group – 073 148 3477.
  • Monthly electricity meter readings can be SMS'ed to 30909.
In both cases, please don’t forget to quote your account number.
THE ADMINISTRATION OFFICE
Our office remains open over this Festive Season. We look forward to assisting you with any challenges you may be experiencing.
ESTATE 1:  ILLEGAL CONNECTIONS
Residents are advised that connecting stormwater into sewer pipes is causing the overflow of Sewer onto the Estate and Golf Course during heavy rains.
 
Such connections are illegal, and owners are asked to correct these.
ESTATE 1 - LEITCH CONTRACT
We trust that as the new "Tornado System" has settled in, Residents are noticing the efficiency with which their garden maintenance is being carried out.

Please remember that the Leitch Contract is task orientated and not time orientated.  The SLA (Service Level Agreement) has been circulated to all Residents detailing the maintenance to be carried out.  Any task in access of this scope of work is to be quoted on prior to being actioned. 
ESTATE 1 - RYDER DRIVE
eThekwini Coastal Stormwater and Catchment Management Services are in the process of repairing the stormwater pipes along Ryder Drive.  They should be completed by early next week.
ENVIRONMENTAL MATTERS
Tip of the Month …..HERE COMES THE RAIN…COMPOST AND FERTILZER TO LAWNS IS VITAL
LITTLE GREEN FINGERS GARDEN
Mount Edgecombe Country Club Estate, in partnership with Engen Mount Edgecombe last week launched our first-ever Children’s Community Garden called Little Green Fingers Garden. We have received a lot of very positive feedback from Residents around this initiative and hope you will get your children involved. We will have a gardening club every Thursday with our Land and Environment Manager Ayanda Duma.  Please book with her on landenviroman@mountedgecombe.com.  We are also running a holiday programme.
ALIEN WEED OF THE MONTH
Common name:               Bloodberry
                                         
Latin name:                      Rivina humilis
 
This plant is classified as a NEMBA Category 1b. Category 1b weeds must be combated and eradicated. Any form of trade, planting or allowing to grow is strictly prohibited.

A perennial herb / groundcover native to North, Central and South America, growing to 30-80cm high with woody stems at the base and spreading branches that are softly downy when young. This plant has light green, thin leaves and white or greenish to rosy small flowers on slender racemes from October to June, or even all year and produces bright red berries. Rivina humilis is fast-growing, shade-tolerant and competes with indigenous vegetation. It invades mostly forests, riverbanks and urban open spaces. It has been seen in numerous parts of the Estate. The leaves, roots and fruit are poisonous!
Copyright © 2019 Mount Edgecombe Country Club Estate, All rights reserved.


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