Reports from Members with Special Responsibilities – Agenda No. 10

Council Meeting 19th June 2014

 

The following reports are submitted for Members information and discussion:

 

Councillor Janet Aldridge – MSR for Transport & Highways

Nothing to report.

 

Councillor Ian Block – MSR for Grants

We are looking at formulating a bid for additional grant funding for the Western Promenade by the Essex Community Initiatives Fund. At this stage it is communicating an interest..

The annual grants programme is underway – closing date for applications is Friday 11th July.

 

Councillor Jayne Chapman – MSR for Welfare and Services for the elderly

A lot of forms filled in this month for local residents to get help either by attendance allowance or carers allowance.  Also help with Pension credit forms. Two new hand rails and a grip rail have been fitted also plans and funding have been authorised for a new wet room.

A busy month for residents who have either moved from council houses in Brightlingsea to other areas and the 1st tenant has moved into the one of the new council houses that have been built in Hastings Place/Regent Road.

As most people are now aware two banks are set to close in the town.  Natwest will go in July and Barclays will go in September.  A meeting has been arranged with Barclays in July to meet with the Branch and Area managers who will discuss the possibility of a Personal Banker staying in the town for 2 Days a week.  People who have accounts at Natwest and Barclays will be able to pay in and withdraw cash from the Post Office.  Cheques can be paid in via an envelope scheme. There is no charge for this service.  But at the moment no Business accounts can use this scheme.

Lloyds Business manager will meet with Businesses on July 2nd to explain how they can help you change banks if you so wish and their policies and charges.  Although we are led to believe that they will give a minimum of 6 months free banking for people who change.  Charities can change accounts to Lloyds over the phone.

 

Councillor Vivien Chapman – MSR for the Western Promenade

Work has started on the new skate ramp, and hopefully this will be completed by the end of the week.  There will be a grand opening of this and the recently installed piece of play equipment in Pawsons Playground – date to be advised.  The new play and gym equipment is proving very popular with the public.

Boating Lake – We are still waiting for sufficient high tides to fill the lake.  We are waiting for repairs to one of the sluices.

The parent swans are back on the lake but sadly with no babies.

Following a tour of the Prom with Ian Taylor of Tendring when we looked at life belts among other things, he advised that new belts would be installed, which are encased in a square box.  Last week a safety officer from the RNLI together with a Tendring member of staff carried out an inspection and said that the new life belt rings were on order and would be installed shortly.

I have now met the new Seafront Warden who is known as ‘Gordon the Warden’.  He is on duty at weekends and will be on duty every day once the school holidays begin.

 

Councillor Elizabeth Edey – MSR for Open Spaces and Footpath

Nothing to report.

 

Councillor Alan Goggin – MSR for Regeneration and the Hard

Regeneration

  • The website was updated and modernised.  Any Councillor with ideas or suggestions please feel free to mention to me, Tracey or David Bridle.  New website launched at the meeting April 17.  David Bridle reports increased use.
  • See comments under Waterside report about local business’s taking the opportunity to promote their firms at the Regatta and Boat Show.
  • Barclays bank.  A big blow to the Town centre and I am sure will be discussed under several reports.  Whilst trying to minimize impact we also [as a Town Council] need to try and work with what we have to try and stem the slide.  We don’t want to end up like Wivenhoe and St.Osyth who have no Banks.

 

The Hard and Waterside

  • Town regatta and Boat Show.  May 31/June 1.  Good weather helped to produce a terrific event.  Considering it is a group of clubs/organisations brought together for 2 days it has been very well received.
  • Lots of involvement but the main participants are the Yacht, Sailing, & Rowing clubs as well as commercial groups led by Morgan Marine and the Marina development group.  Special mention should be made of many involvements over the last 12 months but special mention for Ric Morgan the Chairman and Danny the site manager.
  • Many local businesses took the opportunity to promote their wares for free as a primary function of the Town Councils Involvement.
  • This year saw the added attraction of the Freemans blessing of the waters.  Much fine promotion of our great Town.
  • The only black point was a complaint from a local businessman who wrote to Colchester Parking Partnership asking why they had not given out fines and tickets for cars parked illegally.  Rather ironically the businessman took the opportunity to promote his company for free at the Boat Show over 2 days.  He took the opportunity to leave his stand during the busiest part of the day to take photographs of cars and number plates.  I believe that he has sent them to the parking partnership demanding action.
  • He has further threatened to report me personally for a variety of reasons including not being able to supply him with the expenses of the other Council Mayors and Councillors invited by the Brightlingsea Liberty to their blessing of the waters.  Full details of his complaints are help at the Town Council together with something over 65 plus emails of correspondence.
  • I would be interested in Councillors opinions.  .Comments & suggestions welcome.
  • Please see my notes about 106 monies under my Tendring report.
  • My note at the last meeting regarding European funding has taken an interesting turn.  It appears that further meetings may be held later in the year with European representatives and the Harbour Authorities.  Not sure where this is going yet but at least it is not an outright no.  There are possibly 3 projects which may affect Brightlingsea.  As soon as I have any positive news I will advise.
  • I attended a Harbour user’s safety meeting May 30.  Main subject was prosecution of jet skiers who continually abuse rules.  Not all I might add.  Good co-operation with St Osyth Council and Caravan Site.   Any comments please advise.
  • Launch of another new boat from CTruk – May 21.  Their 19th I believe.  I believe we should support them wherever possible.  A great asset to employment and regeneration within the Town
  • Repainting of hard shelter finished and favourable comments. Many thanks Cllr Mann for arranging small piece of building work.

 

Councillor Graham Mann – MSR for the Swimming Pool

The water does not seem to be as clean as in the last few years, but hopefully the filters will come into their own and the situation will become better.  I would also like to point out that £9,000 or under has been spent on the open-air pool, but £900,000 has been spent in Dovercourt, which Brightlingsea’s share is approximately 1%.  Hopefully next season we will get a more positive response from Tendring.

 

Councillor Graham Steady – MSR for Allotments & Amenity Areas / Youth

Amenity Areas / Allotments

• To acquire more amenity land.

Allotments
The allotment waiting list currently has 40 people on it, and number 1 on the list put their name down in February 2011.

 

• Looking into the provision of water at the allotments taking its valuable nature into consideration.
• Looking at a scheme whereby people with their own garden areas which they are unable/unwilling to cultivate, where they could come to a sharing arrangement, whereby somebody would be able to turn it to vegetables, and the scheme would allow the owners to share the produce.
• Planning obtained for the Bore Hole.  This is to commence shortly.

Lower Park Recreation Ground
• Improve landscaping – looking at the feasibility of including a sensory garden
• Improve drainage
• Increase dialogue with user groups

Bayard Recreation Ground
• Form a management structure more fit for purpose
• Plans for the dressing rooms extensions have been submitted to TDC and permission has been granted.  Next stage is to obtain a specification drawing to be able to move to a tendering process.
• Provide better storage facilities
• Improve the children’s playground by incorporating equipment for older children

The plan is now to register the Recreation Ground with the Fields in Trust scheme and to apply for grants from the relevant bodies.

 

Maintenance Plan

  • Spraying and fertilizing – to be completed end of June
  • Top soil to prevent moss – delayed until the end of August
  • Bore hole – planning permission granted from TDC
  • Overseeding on main football pitch – to be completed asap
  • Hedge removal on playground boundary to be removed to enable new equipment to be site
  • CCTV to be sited in conjunction with the Playcentre
  • Quaser equipment to be booked within the next 12 months

 

Bye-Laws for Recreational Grounds
Existing bye-laws being reviewed with a view to updating and also an audit of usage being carried out.

 

Youth

Objectives:
• Enter into a dialogue with youth organisations to help them achieve their aims and aspirations.

Warrens Pond
Although I will stay as a Trustee, the total management will now be undertaken by a committee and members.

 

Councillor Karen Yallop – MSR for Tourism

The Town Show and Regatta was a huge success with many visitors to the Town over the two days and I’m sure Councillor Goggin will expand on the event.

With the weather being warm and sunny we again have had many people visiting the pool and the promenade. It seems there are a few issues with the pool which has been brought to my attention and I will speak to Councillor Mann about these.

This weekend the carnival will be taking place and over the next couple of months good to see many more events taking place.  All events can be found in the Town Guide.