16th November 2020 Town Improvements Minutes

Minutes of the meeting held on Monday 16th November 2020 at 7pm via video conferencing.

Present: Cllr Andy Hodge (Chairman), Cllrs Janet Keen, Chris Allen, Sue Barber, Dawn Carey, Peter Clayton, Phil Harvey, Mike Murphy, Nick Tolley, Mike Facey with Sam Winter (Town Clerk), Lorna Williams (Deputy Clerk) and Sally Jones (RFO) in attendance.

One representative of the press and two members of public were present.

Public Participation

There were no public speakers.

72/20/TIMP   Apologies

None

It was noted that Cllr Tolley will leave the meeting early due to a prior engagement

73/20/TIMP   Declarations of Interest in items on this agenda & dispensations granted

It was noted that a dispensation to participate in discussions, but not to vote, was granted to Cllr Dawn Carey in relation to the youth awards (item 85/20).

74/20/TIMP   Approval of Minutes

The minutes of the Town Improvements Committee meeting held on Monday 28th September 2020 were approved as a correct record and signed by the Chairman.

75/20/TIMP   Action List

The Action List was noted.

Motions for note/resolution

76/20/TIMP   To resolve the council’s position with regards organising and funding commemorative events and parades (specifically Armed Forces Day and Remembrance day 2021)            

The meeting considered a written report from the town clerk and discussions acknowledged disappointment that the Royal British Legion has stated it is no longer able to organise parades. It was agreed that the annual Remembrance Sunday parade in Burnham is an important part of the local events calendar. It was resolved that the Town Council will organise a parade on Remembrance Sunday 2021 and will mark other significant days with an appropriate ceremony only.

77/20/TIMP   To receive and consider a proposal from Cllr Keen that she will organise a garden competition in 2021 with prizes funded by the town council at a cost of £100 to be paid from the event budget.

Cllr Keen updated the meeting on the 2020 competition and described her plans for a renewed residential garden competition in June 2021. Discussion considered the format and potential sponsorship opportunities. It was resolved that Cllrs Keen & Barber should proceed with organising the competition using £100 allocated from the events budget towards the events

78/20/TIMP   To receive an update from Mike Murphy, chair of trustees, on the activities & progress of the Crosses Penn Community Sports Trust

The meeting received an update on the trust’s plans to regenerate the tennis courts with a (MUGA) multi-use games area. The meeting heard that Coronavirus restrictions have meant the trust’s public consultation is taking place via an online Smart survey. The trust’s constitution is complete and awaiting charity commission approval for CIO. Support is required from Sedgemoor DC executive and the trust has applied for RLT3 funding.  

79/20/TIMP   To receive an update from Cllr Clayton on the Christmas lights virtual switch-on

Cllr Clayton updated the meeting to state that the community lantern project managed by Seed had proved successful and all lantern packs had been claimed. The switch-on film was going well with film and photograph submissions received from the community. The Mayor’s Christmas message with special guest had been recorded. It was noted that, due to the lockdown restrictions, the chamber of trade was unable to proceed with the element for Advent films promoting shops, but intends to undertake some promotional filming of shops in December.

80/20/TIMP   To resolve whether to proceed with a Christmas lights competition and agree any process

The meeting resolved, for Coronavirus safety reasons, not to go ahead this year with the judging of residential Christmas lights, but Cllrs Carey & Clayton will proceed with judging shop window displays. Prizes will be awarded in line with those awarded on 2019.

81/20/TIMP   To note that the deputy clerk is representing the council and working with Litter Free Coast to combat dog fouling; press updates will be periodically issued.

The meeting noted the ongoing work being undertaken to try to combat dog fouling in the towns.

82/20/TIMP   To consider and agree the draft committee budget for 2021-2022

 The meeting heard that councillors had spoken with the RFO for clarification on specific costs. Further clarification was given to the meeting that the town centre planters have this year been planted and maintained by others without cost to the council. It was noted that the council’s grounds staff will be in a stronger positon to improve on planting schemes in 2021 and therefore the unspent funds should move the earmarked reserves. The proposed increase in vehicle insurance costs was to prepare for the eventuality of purchasing an additional grounds vehicle. It was resolved to agree the committee budget for 2021-2022.

83/20/TIMP   To note that the Wildlife Trust has acknowledged the council’s agreement to support an application to the SCC Climate Fund and has stated it will proceed with an application for the full £75k, with West Monkton PC being named the lead council.

 The meeting noted the position.

 The council chairman addressed the meeting to share his expectation that the council will plan ahead for future grant opportunities so that it is prepared to take advantage of available funding at short notice. It was acknowledged that the aims of the corporate plan should be expanded upon and project plans prepared in more detail.

84/20/TIMP   To note the Springboard vacancy report for Burnham-on-Sea.

 The meeting noted that the report showed this last quarter was the first since 2017 where there had been a decrease in the vacancy rate. The meeting heard that while a large town centre store was closing, two new shops were scheduled to open in December.

                        Cllr Tolley left the meeting

85/20/TIMP   To resolve what amount of money should be moved to EMR from the events budget for the celebration of the Youth Awards scheduled for April 2021

The meeting heard from Cllr Carey to update the committee on plans to hold an Oscars style awards ceremony at The King Alfred’s School in April 2021. Sponsorship was still being explored with local companies & it was proposed that £2,000 should be moved from the current year’s events budget into a new earmarked reserve for Youth Awards.

It was resolved that, at the end of this financial year, £2000 will be moved from the events budget (4329 301) into an earmarked reserve for the youth awards 2021.

86/20/TIMP   To consider and approve the updated plans submitted by Wicksteed for the seafront play area and to approve that funds from other aspects of the CIM seafront works (seafront signage, bins, benches and shelter) are required to be used within the play area.

The meeting considered the revised plans of the play area, as approved by departments within Sedgemoor DC, and resolved to approve the designs for progression by the Project Coordinator, along with approval that funds from other seafront works budget heads will be used to provide those elements required in the play area.

87/20/TIMP   Date of Next meeting

It was noted that the next meeting of this committee will be held on Monday 11th January 2021 at 7pm.

The Chairman closed the meeting at 20.01

The Mayor Councillor Mike Facey said “It was with sadness that Burnham-on-Sea and Highbridge Town Council learnt of the death of Prince Philip, Duke of Edinburgh.”

The flags in the towns of Burnham and Highbridge will be flown at half-mast during this time of national mourning.

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