Minutes – Community Affairs Committee – 2 September 2019
The minutes of this meeting are presented below.
You can also download a PDF copy of the minutes here: Minutes – Community Affairs Committee – 2 September 2019
MINUTES OF THE COMMUNITY AFFAIRS COMMITTEE MEETING HELD ON MONDAY 2 SEPTEMBER 2019 AT 5.30PM
- Councillor Apel (Chairman)
- Councillor C Hughes (Vice-Chairman)
- Councillor Carter
- Councillor Gershater
- Councillor Lishman
- Councillor Sharp
- The Mayor (Councillor Plowman)
- The Deputy Mayor (Councillor J Hughes)
- Councillor K Hughes
- Julia Sander – Friends of Chartres
- Liz Turner – Friends of Ravenna
- Graham Pound – Friends of Valletta
- Two representatives of St Wilfrids Hospice
- Councillor Scicluna
- Pam Bushby – Divisional Manager – Communities and Wellbeing, Chichester District Council
- Paula Chatfield – Acting Chair – Chichester Tree Wardens
- Councillor Joy
- Town Clerk
- Member Services Support Officer
17. APOLOGIES FOR ABSENCE
As recorded above
18. MINUTES OF THE COMMUNITY AFFAIRS COMMITTEE MEETING HELD ON 03 JUNE 2019
RESOLVED that the Minutes of the Meeting held on 03 June 2019, having been circulated, were signed as a correct record.
19. DECLARATIONS OF INTEREST BY MEMBERS OF THE COMMITTEE IN MATTERS ON THE AGENDA FOR THIS MEETING
There were no Declarations of Interest.
20. UPDATE FROM THE PREVIOUS MINUTES
Minute 9 – Climate Change
The Committee noted the extensive discussions on Climate Change that had been recorded in the Task and Finish Group (Climate Change) Minutes for their meeting held on 30 July 2019.
Councillor Sharp raised a question regarding Minute 2(e) and whether there had been discussion about introducing more recycling facilities in the Council House reception area.
RESOLVED that the Member Services Support Officer review the audio recording of the Task and Finish Group Meeting and report back.
POST MEETING UPDATE – The recording confirms that the Group discussed the various recycling streams at length with particular reference to the less extensively recycled materials. It was felt that organisations should be encouraged to accept recycling appropriate to their business (for example, Dentists accepting dental product recycling). The Town Clerk and Property Manager agreed to accept suggestions for limited additional and appropriate recycling facilities situated in The Council House reception area subject to space and hygiene considerations.
Minute 10 – Presentation by Chichester BID
The Committee noted the date and time of the presentation by the Chairman of Chichester BID on Monday 14 October at 5.30pm. It was generally agreed that this would be a valuable opportunity to learn more about the BID’s activities and how they connect with the City Council’s activities.
The Mayor encouraged all present to attend and emphasised how important it was that as many Councillors attended as possible.
The Chairman supported this view and asked the Town Clerk to send a further reminder to all Councillors about the presentation. The Town Clerk confirmed this would be done.
Minute 15 – Membership of Outside Bodies
The Chairman noted the list of Outside Bodies representatives that had been circulated to all Members prior to the meeting.
The Chairman further noted that there were a couple of omissions on that list. Notably:
- Friends of Valetta – Councillor Cherry Hughes to be added
- Chichester in Partnership – Councillor Clare Apel to be the City Council representative
RESOLVED that the Member Services Support Officer update the list accordingly and recirculate.
21. PRESENTATION BY REPRESENTATIVES OF ST WILFRID’S HOSPICE
Two representatives from St Wilfrid’s Hospice gave an interesting presentation about the transition from the old Hospice in Donnington to the new Hospice in Bosham and the improvements this new building would allow them to make to the services and care that they are able to offer.
They also told the Committee about the work of the St Wilfrid’s charity and nurses in the wider community as well as the importance of their outreach work and fund raising efforts.
The Chairman thanked the representatives for their presentation and also for the very important work that St Wilfrid’s undertakes in and around Chichester.
22. POLICING AND SECURITY IN THE CITY
(a) Community Warden Update
The Committee noted the summary Report from Pam Bushby (Divisional Manager, Communities and Wellbeing, Chichester District Council) which had been circulated to all Members prior to the Meeting
(b) Community Warden Reports
The Committee noted the Community Warden Reports for the City Centre, South, East and West Wards which had been circulated to all members prior to the Meeting.
The Mayor, on behalf of the Committee, thanked the Wardens for their continued hard work in the City.
The Mayor raised the matter of the lack of a Community Warden for the North of the City and noted that there had not originally been a need for one but with the increasing population and new building work taking place he thought the case for a new North Chichester Community Warden was a strong one.
It was RESOLVED that the Town Clerk would contact Pam Bushby (Divisional Manager, Communities and Wellbeing, Chichester District Council) regarding the business case for an additional Community Warden for the North Ward and discuss costs and related issues.
23. REPORTS FROM REPRESENTATIVES OF THE FRIENDS OF CHARTRES, RAVENNA AND VALLETTA
The Chairman welcomed the representatives of the Friends Associations.
(a) Friends of Chartres
The Friends of Chartres report had been circulated to all Members and noted.
The Mayor congratulated the Friends of Chartres on a very successful program of events to celebrate the 60th anniversary of the relationship with Chartres.
(b) Friends of Ravenna
The Friends of Ravenna report had been circulation to all Members and noted.
(c) Friends of Valletta
The Friends of Valletta report had been circulated to all Members and noted.
The Mayor asked whether there were intentions to move from the Friendship relationship to a more formal Twinning arrangement. The Committee was informed that this was actively being discussed and that, due to recent political changes in Valletta this possibility existed.
24. CHICHESTER TREE WARDENS
The Chairman noted the apologies from Paula Chatfield (Chichester Tree Wardens).
The Town Clerk advised the Committee that, while a report had not been submitted, the Tree Wardens were continuing to undertake their work in support of the care of the trees in Chichester.
25. FLORAL DISPLAYS
The Town Clerk updated the Committee about his discussions with the existing Contractors (Ferring Nurseries) with regard to changes to the planting schemes currently undertaken throughout the City centre. It was noted that the present planting schemes attracted many compliments from members of the public.
The Town Clerk also advised that the current contract was due to be market tested so it was seen as appropriate that the overall planting scheme be reviewed at the same time.
In view of the declared Climate Emergency and the remit of the Task and Finish Group (Climate Change), the possibility of providing a mix of formal planting with less formal planting of perennial plants aimed at encouraging pollinators and other beneficial wildlife; was discussed.
The Contractor had advised the Town Clerk that this type of planting was generally more expensive to undertake and would require ongoing maintenance to ensure the planting looked presentable all year round. The Town Clerk advised the Committee that there was currently no resource within the Property Team to undertake additional maintenance of this kind.
The Committee discussed the importance of providing more natural habitats whilst balancing the need to maintain the quality and attractiveness of the planting schemes as well using sustainable and eco-friendly methods in line with the declared Climate Emergency.
It was noted that Chichester District Council had undertaken more perennial planting in Jubilee Gardens but due to cost savings it appeared that they had been unable to maintain it as often as necessary.
The Committee agreed that the planted areas maintained by the City Council should be maintained to the highest standards.
Councillor Carter noted the work undertaken by volunteers with particular reference to the Bishop’s Palace Gardens as well as getting external experts, interested parties and members of the public involved.
The Member Services Support Officer was asked to confirm when the current contract expired with a view to initiating a tender process for the City Centre planting.
26. CHICHESTER CITY COUNCIL BUSINESS PLAN 2019-2023 (REVIEWING 2015-2019 PLAN)
The Town Clerk proposed that an all party Task and Finish Group be set up to undertake the Business Plan review. It was further proposed that the Chairmen of all the Committees would form the basis of the Task and Finish Group along with the Mayor and Deputy Mayor.
The Town Clerk suggested that the process should be contained within a limited number of meetings and it would need to address out of date items which should be removed from the Plan as well as items that need to be added, such as the Neighbourhood Plan, updated costs and priorities.
The Committee discussed the merits of the Away Day format to allow discussions to take place away from the usual working environment
Councillor Gershater advised the Committee it was very important that the Business Plan is objective and should include targets and specify measurable criteria for success.
The Committee’s membership of the Task and Finish Group (Business Plan) would be Councillor’s Apel and Carter. Two representatives would be appointed at the Finance Committee on 4th September. The Mayor and Deputy Mayor would also be members. It was noted that the Planning and Conservation Committee had appointed Councillors Joy and Bell.
27. PROPOSAL TO PARTICIPATE IN ADOPT-A-STATION SCHEME FOR CHICHESTER STATION
The Town Clerk advised that this proposal had been carried forward from the previous Administration.
The Member Services Support Officer then outlined the scheme to the Committee. In it’s basic form it involved the creation of a group who would then approach the Manager at Chichester Station with a request to “Adopt” the station and proposals for what they would plan to do to improve the appearance of the station and the user experience. If the proposal was accepted then Southern Railways would provide seed funding of up to £500 to enable the group to start its work.
After a brief discussion it was agreed that this would not be a suitable use of the City Council’s resources and it was further agreed that this is something that Network Rail and Southern Rail should be undertaking from their own resources.
28. CAR FREE DAY – UPDATE
Councillor Sharp informed the Committee that Chichester District Council had granted permission for a car free period in South Street on Sunday 22 September 2019 from 12.30pm to 3.30pm. This has left less than a month to organise the events.
The Committee was informed about the organisations and individuals volunteering their time, expertise and resources involved and the events planned.
Councillor Sharp advised that the event was based on Bristol City Council’s Playing Out street orders which, while not a street closure; do allow for limiting the traffic in the street during the event.
The Committee were informed that the focus has been to include the businesses in South Street in the events by encouraging them to come out on the streets. It was felt that it was important that no external traders or food suppliers had been invited to enable the existing businesses to promote themselves.
29. ST PANCRAS SPEEDING
The Town Clerk reminded the Committee of past discussions in this matter and an informative and helpful account of the management of Community Speedwatch in Boxgrove had been circulated.
Community Speedwatch required a formal ‘sign off’ by the Police about the location chosen for the monitoring to take place. In this case, the Police requirement was for the Community Speedwatch team to operate from a location opposite the Judith Adams Centre, whereas local residents pointed out that the main problem area was between Tozer Way and Alexandra Road, so the ‘approved’ Police location would not realise their aspirations.
It was RESOLVED that the Town Clerk would pursue with both the Police and West Sussex County Council the possibility of speed recording devices or cameras being located to address the concerns of residents.
Councillor K Hughes left the meeting.
30. PROPOSAL FOR A FRIENDSHIP LINK WITH SPEYER, GERMANY
The Mayor advised the Committee that representations had been received from the existing Friends of Chartres and Friends of Ravenna who have Friends relationships with Speyer; with a suggestion that Chichester forms a Friendship with Speyer. Speyer was twinned with, among others, Ravenna and Chartres.
The Mayor informed the Committee that, while this had been a longstanding suggestion, it had not progressed due to an existing Twinning between Speyer and Spalding (UK). This formal Twinning is now no longer supported, although a strong friendship between Spalding and Speyer existed, which meant that the link can be reinvestigated, especially in light of the lack of a Friendship link between Chichester and a German town.
After discussion, it was felt that this would be a very positive relationship to develop and therefore is was RECOMMENDED to Full Council that a Friendship link with Speyer, Germany be progressed.
31. PROPOSAL FROM WESTGATE RESIDENTS ASSOCIATION TO ADOPT THE DISUSED RED BT PHONE BOX ON THE CORNER OF WESTGATE AND PARKLANDS ROAD
The Town Clerk notified Councillors that a request had been received from Westgate Residents Association (WRA) that the City Council adopt the old BT phone box on the corner of Westgate and Parklands Road on behalf of the WRA.
Members discussed the positive outcomes that can be achieved by providing facilities in the old BT phone boxes such as book swaps. The Chairman advised Members of problems involving drugs in a local BT box while Councillor Sharp reminded Members of an arson attack in the BT box on Whyke Road.
The Town Clerk further advised Members that the WRA were meeting on the same evening to decide what they would like to do with the BT box if the adoption went through.
The Committee agreed that, given the uncertainty, the matter would be deferred until the next Community Affairs Committee meeting.
The Town Clerk was asked to report back with any updates from the WRA.
32 ITEMS FOR INCLUSION ON THE NEXT AGENDA
- Provision of an electric/community bus
- Floral displays
- St Pancras speeding
- Proposal from Westgate Residents Association to adopt the disused red BT phone box on the corner of Westgate and Parklands Road
- Provision of Community Warden for North Chichester
- Chichester City Council Business Plan 2019-2023
DATE OF NEXT MEETING
Monday 7 October 2019
The meeting closed at 6.54pm