Operations and Improvements Committee
Minutes of the meeting held on Monday 6th July 2020
Councillors: Jamie Messent, Joe Cosby, Benn Minshall, Alan Coiley, Hazel Faddes, Janos Toth
Councillor Jill Rhodes, Pete Turner, Town Clerk and Lindsay Lewis, Town Centre Projects Officer.
20/02/01 To receive apologies for absence
Apologies were received from Councillor L. Hogben and Councillor N. Walton
20/02/02 To note declarations of Members’ interests
No declarations were received.
20/02/03 To confirm and sign the minutes of the Operations and Improvements Committee Meeting held on 20th January 2020.
The Chair reminded members that this was the last official meeting held due to the cancellation of the 24th March meeting and the meeting of 4th May not being quorate.
The minutes were agreed and signed.
20/02/04 Public Participation
A period not exceeding 15 minutes for members of the public to ask questions or submit comments.
A question was raised by Mr Ben Wye, representing Active Travel with respect to the re-development of the town centre. He had experienced difficulty in receiving a response from Cheshire East Council to his questions about accessibility for cyclists within the plans. The Chair pointed out that as there had not yet been a planning application, it was not possible for the Town Council to provide any assistance at this time, but that this would be raised. Councillor Faddes offered to discuss the matter with relevant officers in Cheshire East Council.
20/02/05 To review the year to date expenditure for the Operations and Improvements Committee.
Members noted the year to date expenditure.
Members noted that the request had been made by the Town Centre Projects Officer for future reports to state 307 4180 external contractors as CCTV as a more accurate description of expenditure.
20/02/06 To receive a presentation for the Street Scene Improvement Officers and an update on their work, and to consider future requirements of the service.
The Chair proposed that the presentation was received, but that as the future requirements of the service related to discussion of matters relating to individuals, that this item should be discussed in closed session at the end of the meeting.
Members resolved to discuss the matter of future service provision in closed session.
Members noted the presentation made by the Street Scene Improvement Officers and progress made in dealing with issues of poor waste management in Crewe.
20/02/07 To receive an update and consider matters relating to the recent grant offer from the Architectural Heritage Fund for employment of a Heritage Officer and associated costs related to establishment of a Development Trust for Christ Church.
The Town Centre Projects Officer referred to the report provided which explained the recent success in obtaining a grant offer from the Architectural Heritage Fund, to cover the costs of part of the time of a Heritage Officer for 24 months and associated legal and professional costs of setting up a development trust and acquisition of the Christ Church building. The Town Centre Projects Officer reminded members of previous decisions:
At the meeting held on the 19th August 2019
To consider Matters related to the draft Heritage Strategy produced by the Heritage Working Group:
Members noted that in order to deliver the Strategy, additional officer time would be required and resolved that this should be considered during the 2020/21 budget process.
Members resolved to support an application to the Architectural Heritage Fund to develop the next stage of the project including employment of a project support officer, and requested that the Town Centre Project Officers liaise with the Christ Church project team to produce this.
At the meeting held on 20th January 2020
Members resolved to continue with the application to the Architectural Heritage Fund to provide a part-time officer, to support the Christ Church Project.
Members considered the report and resolved
• To recommend town council approval to accept the grant from the Architectural Heritage fund, and use of the associated town council match funding for 2020/21 as budgeted.
• To make provision for continued match funding in 2021/22 and 22/23
• Approval of Job Description and Person Specification to be delegated to the Town Clerk in consultation with members of the Personnel Committee.
• To ensure that financial regulations are followed with regard to grants income, partnerships and reporting.
20/02/08 To receive a report on recent Ranger activity.
The town centre projects officer gave a verbal update on recent ranger activity.
Members noted the update and expressed their thanks to both Rangers for their hard work and best wishes to the departing Ranger for his secondment.
20/02/09 To consider a report on Covid 19 impact on Crewe town centre and actions to support recovery including use of place brand and cultural activity.
The Chair gave a verbal report on recent impact of Covid 19 on the town centre and proposed that members might like to consider allocation of funds from the Operations and Improvements Committee Animation and Promotion budgets to develop activities for the town centre during this period.
Members resolved to commit a maximum of (£3000) from The Town Animation and (£3000) from the Town Promotion and £3000 from the Public Realm budgets to town recovery schemes in to the Autumn period, with responsibility delegated to the Town Centre Projects officer in agreement with the Town Clerk and Chair of Committee to agree on items of expenditure.
20/02/10 To consider a proposal to support for the inclusion of heritage information as part of the refurbishment and relaunch of Crewe Market Hall
The Town Centre Projects Officer presented slides to illustrate ideas for areas of the Market Hall for which the Town Council might wish to consider sponsoring the design of images and the production and installation of display and information panels. This would enhance the hall’s image and provide the opportunity to engage the community in the history of the building and the town.
• Wall below the plaque dedicated to the founder, William Hill, close to what will be an entrance door. The space below would accommodate some large display boards to feature changing exhibitions.
• Brick external archway at northeast corner – back lit laser cut panel and graphic design.
• Bricked up doorway on Hill St – Potential site for additional laser cut panel or art work.
• Panels on walls by entrance to toilets – To be installed and funded under the contract, images to be provided by CTC. An example of a large image in use in the library is below:
Members requested that that further investigation is made in to the suggested Market Hall improvements and associated costs, and that a proposal be developed in association with the Heritage Working Group, Chair of Committee and Town Clerk to be taken back to the Operations and Improvements Committee.
Orders were suspended to continue the meeting after 9.00pm. The meeting was continued in closed session and members of the public asked to leave the meeting.
20/02/11 Members resolved to:
• Recommend to Town Council that the funds be found to retain the SIOs between the end of contract to the 31st March, using funds from existing budgets.
• To recommend that the budget for a further period, taking in to account proposals put forward by Cheshire East Council.
To consider and agree the date of the next meeting.
Members resolved to hold the next meeting on:
Monday 28th September at 7.00pm
The meeting ended at 21.26pm
Chair Cllr J. Messent
Clerk to Committee L. Lewis