7th January 2015
Minutes of a Council Meeting held on Wednesday, 7th January 2015 at 7:00 p.m. in the Council Chambers, Holsworthy
Chairman: Cllr. P. Johns
Councillors: Cllrs. M. Prentice, B. Harris, M. Stanton, L. Piper, K. Watson, H. Parker and P. Smith
In attendance: Assistant Town Clerk (ATC)
County Cllr. Barry Parsons
Sofia Francis and Dan Piper – Connect Devon and Somerset
3095 | APOLOGIES FOR ABSENCE.
Cllrs. Allen, Willetts and Hutchings, the Town Clerk and District Cllr. Ratledge had sent apologies
3096 | DECLARATION OF INTERESTS
Cllr. Johns asked Councillors to declare any relevant interests as they arose.
Cllr. Johns suspended Standing Orders
3097 | PUBLIC OPEN QUESTION TIME
There were no members of the public present.
3098 | TO RECEIVE A PRESENTATION FROM SOFIE FRANCIS AND DAN PIPER, CONNECT DEVON & SOMERSET BROADBAND
Cllr. Johns welcomed Ms. Francis and Mr. Piper. Ms. Francis circulated information (Appendix 1) which formed the content of the presentation. She asked for any comments or questions. Cllr. Prentice congratulated Ms. Francis and Mr. Piper on achieving delivery of such an extensive programme. Ms. Francis confirmed that 8 cabinets in total have been upgraded from the Holsworthy Exchange; that Connect Devon and Somerset consider 24 Mbps to be Superfast (2Mbps being the guarantee from the Government). Mr. Piper confirmed that cabinets in Devon feed Devon properties, but exchanges will cross county boundaries.
Cllr. Prentice asked if all businesses on the Industrial Estate are aware of the programme. Ms. Francis asked that she and Cllr. Prentice meet to discuss ways of publicising the service. Ms. Francis gave details of how local residents benefit from superfast broadband i.e. working from home, shopping and banking on-line and the benefits to schools/education; the financial benefits to internet providers and the fact that some of the funding may be recouped. Mr. Piper explained that BT, itself, will not make a profit for the first 17 years and any profit above 20% will be shared with DCC/SCC.
Cllr. Parsons expressed his thanks to both Ms. Francis and Mr. Piper and Cllr. Prentice for the massive amount of work that has been undertaken, pointing out the massive benefits to not only businesses but also to education. He pointed out that this is the largest project in the UK and has been undertaken in Holsworthy.
Ms. Francis asked the Council’s permission to use Holsworthy as a showcase i.e. articles and publicity and this was met with enthusiasm. Cllr. Johns thanked Ms. Francis and Mr. Piper for attending.
Ms. Francis and Mr. Piper left the Meeting at 7.20 p.m.
3099 | POLICE REPORT
There was no Police presence at the Meeting. The following written report, prepared by PCSO Tomkies, had been circulated to Cllrs. prior to the Meeting:
‘Crime figures December 2014 – 8 crimes compared to 25 last year
1 – Theft in dwelling
3 – Common Assault
1 – Theft (including theft by finding)
1 – Assault (ABH)
1 – Criminal Damage to vehicle
1 – Use threatening / abusive / insulting words / behaviour to cause harassment / alarm / distress
As well as a reduction in crime in the town from last year we are also pleased that we know the identity of the suspect for 5 of the 8 incidents, with investigations ongoing in relation to the other incidents
1 adult female offender dealt with by way of Restorative Justice in relation to the Theft in dwelling
1 adult male offender arrested, but no further action taken in relation to a common assault at the request of the victim (domestic)
1 adult male offender dealt with by way of Restorative Justice in relation to a common assault
1 adult male arrested and bailed in relation to an Assault ABH – investigations are ongoing.
1 male suspect identified in relation to the Use threatening / abusive / insulting words / behaviour to cause harassment / alarm / distress offence – enquiries are currently ongoing
The following incident is not being progressed due to the victims and witnesses not wanting to make a complaint or give statements, therefore no further action is being taken;
1 Common assault’
Cllr. Piper congratulated the Police on the drop in crime figures.
3100 | DISTRICT COUNCILLORS’ REPORTS
Cllr. Ratledge had provided the following written report which had been circulated to Cllrs.:
‘1) Public Toilets. Externalise need to be in a very busy situation to be attractive to an external company. Difficulty in converting existing. Funding of existing referred back to Community & Resources for all toilets to be funded to an equal level. 2) Affordable Housing No full time officer Provision 30% in Local Plan.
3) Holsworthy Agri-Business Centre Post project review. Development of business land.
4) Council Tax Support. Exceptional Hardship Fund’.
5) No decision taken on Budget recommendation.’
Cllr. Piper queried item 1 – public toilets. As Cllr. Ratledge was not present, Cllr. Parsons explained that he had made representation to TDC fully supporting HTC’s views, which had been expressed in a letter sent to Members of the Overview & Scrutiny Committee by the TC. Cllr. Prentice confirmed that the decision of the Committee had been to go out to consultation with parish and town councils. The timing of this is unknown.
Cllr. Johns queried item 3 – agri-business. Cllr. Parsons said he was not aware of what had taken place.
3101 | COUNTY COUNCILLOR’S REPORT
Cllr. Parsons expressed his pleasure that an award of £10K had been made by DCC after receiving an expression of interest document, from the Holsworthy Community Property Trust regarding the Youth Centre. He expressed his thanks for the work Cllr. Piper and the working group of the Holsworthy Area Board (HAB) had undertaken to achieve this and also to the Property Trust and Primary School. He commented that the next step will be to look for further, alternative funding, in stages. He explained that Peter Quincey will be looking at the rationalisation of assets in the area and he will continue to invite Andrew Waite, TDC, to future HAB Meetings; if not successful he will suggest meeting with Mr. Waite at TDC’s offices.
Cllr. Parsons explained the funding from Central Government re. repairs to Highways – £6 Billion between 2015 and 2021 – which equates to £1 Billion per year. DCC’s share will be in excess of £200 Million, however the approximate figure of repairs at the moment stands at £700 Million. He also reminded Cllrs. that an election takes place in May and nothing is set in stone.
Cllr. Parsons confirmed that DCC will be meeting to determine its 2015/2016 budget shortly.
He brought to Cllrs’. attention to TDC’s HATOC (Highways) and Locality Meetings, explaining that all Cllrs. are welcome to attend. The next HATOC Meeting takes place on 9th March at 11.00 a.m. and a Locality Meeting will take place on the same date at 2.00 p.m. at Riverbank House. He expressed his concerns re. highways and has suggested that this be an item at the next MCTi Meeting.
Cllr. Parsons also brought, to Cllrs’ attention, a course to be held at Sutcombe Village Hall on 29th January in the use of defibrillators.
Cllr. Parson, after a query from Cllr. Watson, explained the role of the DCC Locality Leads – Peter Quincey being the Officer for Holsworthy. Cllr. Watson also asked if there was anything the Council could actively do regarding the Tesco site. Cllr. Parsons pointed out that, obviously, what a landowner (Tesco) intends to do with land is a private decision. Cllr. Prentice reminded HTC that the TC will be writing to Tesco’s agent, and believed she had just received contact details. Cllr. Piper suggested that individuals could express their thoughts to Tesco.
Cllr. Piper asked Cllr. Parsons how, as a town, Holsworthy could promote itself as a ‘hub’, such as Bideford, and how the town could benefit from cuts from DCC/TDC. Cllr. Parsons said he felt that Holsworthy had already started the process, with the HAB and being the first rural superfast broadband location. He feels there is real momentum about Holsworthy.
Cllr. Johns returned to Standing Orders.
3102 | COUNCIL MEETING MINUTES
Minutes of the Council Meeting held on 3rd December, 2014 had been circulated with the Agenda.
Cllr. Johns proposed that the Minutes of the Meeting held on 3rd December 2014 be approved. Cllr. Stanton seconded the proposal which was carried. (Vote 6 For. 0 Against. 2 Abstentions).
3103 | MATTERS ARISING
Item 3086 – Manor Offices – Cllr. Prentice confirmed that, after a request from Simon Toon TDC, he and the TC had met with Mr. Toon. Mr. Toon explained that, at the time of the meeting, he had no plans or proposals re. Manor Offices, however would be willing to talk about any suggestions from HTC. It was agreed to wait until TDC let HTC know of any concrete plans.
Cllr. Parsons left the Meeting at 7.50 p.m.
3104 | MAYOR’S ANNOUNCEMENTS
Cllr. Allen had sent apologies for the Meeting and had verbally confirmed to the ATC that he had no announcements.
3105 | ACCOUNTS DUE FOR PAYMENT AND BUDGET REVIEW
The Finance and Budget Sheets had been circulated prior to the Meeting. The ATC asked for any queries on the finance sheet; there being none Cllr. Prentice proposed that the payments be approved. This was seconded by Cllr. Watson and unanimously agreed. (Vote 8 For. 0 Against. 0 Abstentions).
Cllr. Prentice went through the Budget Sheet. There were no questions.
3106 \ TO RECEIVE, AND TO NOTE THE MINUTES OF THE FOLLOWING COMMITTEE MEETINGS:
a) Planning Committee 16th December 2014
b) Parks’ Committee 17th December 2014
c) F&GP Committee 18th December 2014
The Minutes of the Committees had been circulated with the Agenda.
Planning Committee – No queries
Parks’ Committee – Item 520 – 477g – Cllr. Watson said the TC would be able to update at the next Parks’ Meeting.
Item 520 – 514 – The TC and Cllr. Piper had met and the TC had accepted the quotation received. She is awaiting confirmation that the quote is still valid and when work can commence.
F&GP Committee – no queries
3107 | TO RECEIVE AN UPDATE, FROM CLLR. PIPER, REGARDING THE PAVILION PROJECT
Cllr. Piper gave a brief update, stating that feedback had been received from existing groups using the Pavilion; that the TC is undertaking work on writing to existing and potential stakeholders, asking for confirmation on what they would require. The TC and Cllr. Piper are to meet with Chris French, FA rep. and Matt Theedon, ECB (English Cricket Board) rep. on 15th January, to discuss how things should progress. Feedback has been obtained from the Cricket Club and the ECB appears to be happy in supporting the Club in obtaining funding. Cllr. Piper believes the next stage would be to hold a stakeholders’ consultation, which the TC will lead on, to formulate all options.
Cllr. Piper explained that the process, from HTC giving authorisation for the PID (Project Initiation Document), had slowed down, mainly due to Mrs. Bowman leaving the role of TC. However, he is confident that with Mrs. Saunders’ (TC) expertise matters will now progress. Cllr. Watson asked if there is a timescale, and Cllr. Piper confirmed that he will meet with the TC for formulate this.
3108 | TO RECEIVE EXTERNAL COMMITTEE UPDATES
Notes regarding the Holsworthy Business Group had been prepared by Cllr. Watson, who is HTC’s rep.,
Minutes of a Meeting of the Bude Canal Trust Partnership held on 5th December (rep. Cllr. Watson), notes taken by Cllr. Willetts, who has been representing HTC at meetings of ‘Destination Okehampton’ and draft Minutes of the Joint Council Meeting (HTC/HHPC/PPC) held on 9th December, (reps. Cllrs. Watson and Prentice) had been circulated to all Cllrs.
3109 | TO RECEIVE CORRESPONDENCE
Correspondence Received – December
1. TDC – Footpath diversion Order – (on file & copied to Cllr. Watson)
2. Western Power – road closures Jan/Feb 2015 (circulated to Councillors)
3. TDC – Community & Resources Cttee Agenda – 15 December (circulated to Cllrs)
4. D. Garnett – acknowledgement of receipt of Market Charter document
5. Hls. Motor Club – Chairman’s Trophy Classic – 22nd February starting new cattle market
6. Grants Alert DCF – Webinar sessions
7. Cllr. Parsons – copy of e-mail to Cllr. Redwood re. Toilets
8. Rural Vulnerability Service – newsletter (circulated to Cllrs)
9. NHS Blood Donor Service – awareness of sessions (circulated to Cllrs)
10. CCG – further update (circulated to Cllrs)
11. Kivells – rental valuation re. Penroses Terrace
12. TDC – Draft Housing Renewal Policy 2014-2017 (circulated to Cllrs)
13. Paul Finn Solicitors – request for copies of Agendas/Minutes Full Council 2002 (see reply Sent Item 8)
14. D. Green TDC – Focus Group TDC Transformation Task & Finish Group – invite to attend
15. Bond Oxborough – re. meeting re. Penroses (now arranged for 12th January)
The ATC brought the highlighted item to the attention of Councillors and gave an explanation where necessary.
Correspondence Sent – December
1. Hls. Post – press release re. North Rd. Toilets/Road Closures/J. Hart DCC Mtg
2. Bond Oxborough Phillips – Further letter re. 5 Penroses Terrace
3. Cllr. Redwood TDC, Chair of Overview & Scrutiny Cttee (Internal) re. Public Conveniences Review 2014
4. S. Church, Bude Canal Trust P’ship – endorsement of draft maintenance plan
5. TDC Planning – observations on applications discussed by Planning Cttee 16th Dec.
6. Awards for All – Regen of Stanhope Park – amendments to grant request re. Trim Trail
7. D. Prouse – thank you re. help with Xmas lights.
8. Paul Finn – request for Minutes etc. (see Received Item 13)
9. A. Rogers – placing ad. in Spring newsletter
10. D. Green – accepting invite to attend Focus Group (item 14 Received)
11. S. Evans, Coodes – instructing to act on behalf of HTC re. Market Charter/Rights
The ATC brought the highlighted items to the attention of Councillors and gave an explanation where necessary.
3110 | TOWN CLERK’S REPORT
The Town Clerk was not present but asked the ATC to remind Councillors that an F&GP Meeting will take place on 14th January, specifically to discuss the draft Budget & Precept for 2015/2016. This will be held in a closed session. The Extra-Ordinary Meeting, to ratify the Budget and Precept, will take place on 20th January. She had requested that all Cllrs. make an effort to attend both meetings.
The ATC had also been asked to inform the Meeting, by Cllr. Harris, that due to the rescheduling of the Planning Committee Meetings i.e. Meetings will now take place at 9.30 a.m., Cllr. Harris will be unable to attend any Planning Meetings.
3111 | EXCHANGE OF INFORMATION
Cllr. Prentice wished to place on record his thanks to all Cllrs., and substitute Cllrs., who had helped with the Christmas Lights, and a particular vote of thanks to Cllr. Hutchings for organising the Switch On Event. He pointed out that HTC are also indebted to Mr. Prouse for the use of the cherry picker. Cllr. Prentice confirmed that the organisation of the erecting and dismantling of the Christmas Lights in future years will now be considerably easier, as everything is labelled and boxed up, and that he will be meeting with the TC, within the next 2/3 months, to formulate a timetable for 2015. He also said the lights and event have been very successful, with positive comments from the public.
Cllr. Piper reiterated Cllr. Parsons thanks to the Holsworthy Property Trust for its support of the bid re. the Youth Centre. He asked that Cllrs. spread the word that volunteers are required to help run the facility and that the meeting of the next HAB working group will be on 22nd January, in Council Chambers at 7.30 p.m. Representatives from CATS/Police/youth organisations/sports clubs will be in attendance.
3112 | CLOSE
Cllr. Johns formally closed the Meeting at 8.20 p.m.
Signature …………………………………. Date ………………………………….