Council Update – Agenda No. 09
Council Meeting 18th June 2020
Mayor’s Announcements (Councillor Steady)
Activity during the past month has included discussions with the Cllr Barry, Town Clerk and our auditor regarding The Lido accounts, Chairman of the planning and finance committees with an eye on moving things forward when the lockdown is eased and also with specific problems being discussed with staff members and Chair of the Staff committee. Communication with our solicitors has been on-going regarding several issues progress is being made. Taking part in a consultation regarding Bradwell Power Station with Cllrs Smith ,Carr, Barry, Howard ,Chasney to help formalise our response. The challenge for us all is to formalise all planned initiatives and projects, so as we can provide new and improved services and facilities for our residents, and present new ideas to ensure this is an on-going process.
To this end I would like advise members that I have been looking at The Legacy Grazing Scheme, which is managed by Essex County Council. The objectives of the scheme are to conserve scarce wildlife and landscapes to help local authorities and other organisations demonstrate a positive commitment to England’s Biodiversity Strategy, to explain and promote the role played by grazing animals in shaping the natural and historic environment promote animal husbandry skills among younger generations through an apprenticeship programme. To provide volunteering opportunities to local communities. To achieve the highest standards of animal welfare.
Myself and Cllr J Chapman have been discussing the possibility of having a space, in Victoria gardens, commemorating the 75th anniversary of VE day and the front line workers and volunteers who have served to keep our community safe during the current pandemic. Details to be brought to a future full council meeting.
Amenity Space (Councillor Steady)
Green Lung Areas
As we move to some semblance of normality improvements are being planned for these areas, because of the lockdown more residents have taken the opportunity to explore our wonderful open spaces and footpaths we have to be creative to maintain their interest. Using recycled and reclaimed material, a name plaque sculptured by Mark Canham, one of our grounds maintenance team, along with a perch type seat has been sited at Gravel Field. This area has been the subject of much discussion on social media regarding its history. Water supply for the Lozenge is in the process of being improved . As reported to all members there was an issue at the Bayard Rec which was suitably dealt with by our Grounds Manager and the police.
Tendring District Council (Councillor Steady)
29/5 Substituted for Cllr J Chapman at the remote cabinet meeting
8/6 Observed the Local Plan Committee Meeting
On-going communication to get the beach huts affected by the tidal surge replaced.
Covid-19 Update (Councillor Chapman)
We have ceased to delivery prescriptions except in real emergency cases but anyone who has a shielding letter, Boots Chemist will take on the delivery free of charge for a while. (Residents need to contact Boots to arrange this). People can get prescriptions delivered by paying £5 per delivery or £55 a year.
In total over 3700 items have been delivered.
We now have approx. 45 volunteers still working with residents. Many residents have decided to start going out and volunteers have returned to work.
£160 has been received in donations and after asking volunteers if we owe anyone any expenses and asking residents who have donated, it has been agreed to put the money towards a new seat in the town centre, where we are still aiming to upgrade this area.
Western Promenade (Councillor Howard)
The Beach huts are still in disarray from the recent surge, some have been privately re sited but the remaining Beach huts are scheduled to be repositioned by Tendring District Council starting 22nd June. This could possibly be delayed as the pile of sleepers, which are used to position the huts, were sited on the hard standing car park have all but disappeared.
We tried to shut down the Skatepark during Covid 19 lockdown but youths were still using it by moving the cones and netting, it was an impossible task so we decided to let it be used putting up social distancing signs and attempting to warn users of the infection danger especially from metal. There has been some graffiti to the equipment but as it was quite artistic we are leaving it for the time being.
The Grass Car Park is now open again from 8am to 9pm, Terry Hamilton (Head Groundsman) is temporarily `Locksman’ at the moment we are looking into contracting this job out to a security company.
The Western Prom toilets are now open from 10am to 4pm every day except Wednesday when they have a deep clean, we will update our website with any changes to this.
Our Head Groundsman has now managed to raise the water in the Boating Lake so the Model Boat Club can now resume, of course with social distancing.
The Western Prom Play Area is still out of use since the recent surge, we are still in discussions with our insurance company. We are also looking into the possibility of moving the whole play area to a higher site in case of further surges.
I would like to thank Terry Hamilton and his Team for working all through the Covid 19 Lockdown, and keeping the town neat and tidy although the Prom was in disarray from the flood they managed to keep it litter free and the cut grass where possible. Also clearing away drugs paraphernalia left in public area as well as enforcing the government guidelines. Which wasn’t always met with courtesy, all of this whilst trying to social distance and keep themselves safe at this very difficult time.
Youth (Councillor Howard)
Primary School Update
The Brightlingsea Primary School has been open all through the pandemic lockdown, looking after the children of Key Workers. Julia Hunt, Head Teacher has told me that it was all very carefully controlled with extreme hygiene measures. They made groups into bubbles so that if one child or adult became ill, that bubble went into isolation followed by a deep clean. They have had between 30-40 children each day. Some of the parents were working in Intensive Care. I can only admire what Julia and her Colleagues have achieved during this Lockdown and they have a challenging time ahead to get the children back to school safely.
High School Crossing
I attended a virtual meeting with County Councillor Alan Goggin, Sigma Trust and ECC transport to discuss the potential Zebra crossing on Church Road. This is particularly imperative due to the possible future expansion of Colne Academy. Discussions ongoing.