COUNCIL  MEETING – 18TH FEBRUARY 2010

Minute 174 – Questions from the Public.

Questions
Q1) Roy Birnie – My question concerns a Town facility.  An ‘open space’ which was given to the town 117 years ago by a man whose name it bears, the Bayard Recreation Ground.

Can the Council confirm or deny that there are plans by the Brightlingsea Cricket Club to erect a fence from their Club House across to the children’s play equipment area on the eastern perimeter and a further stretch of high fence running down the easterly side of the ground toward Bayard Avenue, to encompass a fair chunk of the recreation ground for use as triple astro turf practice pitch and is it correct that a local contractor was engaged to start the fence construction this week without the Councils knowledge.

If there is any truth in this concerning matter that is circling the town?  Can Council assure me that the Bayard Recreation Ground which was given to the Towns inhabitants by Bayard Brown as an ‘open space’ recreational area will be kept as intended by Mr Brown and not divided up to suit the needs of a club that have used this facility without any fence for as long as the Recreation Ground has existed?  After all it is the residents ‘open space’ to use and the only ‘open space’ in Brightlingsea for any major events such as Carnivals, or National Celebrations, offering secure boundaries and main services.  My grandchildren play cricket, football and fly kites on it and my family have played cricket there for generations, and the Essex 2nd eleven played there for several years, without a fence.  Please assure me our ‘open space’ Deed of Gift is in safe hands, your hands, the Trustees.

Q2) Mr Price – Can you tell me when this was discussed, under which Committee and whether it was discussed in closed session.

Answers
The Mayor replied to both questions stating that this project was originally discussed at a finance meeting, with the Minutes going to full council for agreement.  At the finance committee a plan was discussed, however members asked for further details including costing, drawings etc.  There is no planning permission – so nothing can happen until permission has been granted. 

The Mayor then read out a report from Cllr Steady on the situation.

It was then agreed that a meeting would be called next week, with Cllr Steady in attendance to discuss further.

Cllr Block added that he agreed a meeting should be called.  This does not just affect the Cricket Club, but also affects the Football Clubs, and others, and the people of Brightlingsea.