Full Council Minutes 20th July 2011
MINUTES of the Meeting of HARWICH TOWN COUNCIL held at The 1912 Centre,
Cow Lane, Harwich on Wednesday 20th July 2011 commencing at 7 pm
Present: Councillors C Callender, Calver, Day, Double, Flavell, Gibbins, I Henderson,
J Henderson, King, McLeod, O’Neill, Thompson and Todd
In the Chair: Councillor B Brown
Clerk: Mrs L Ballard
Also present: 6 members of the public and 2 members of the press
Mrs B Holbrook thanked Councillors Flavell and I. Henderson for cleaning up Bathside.
This was a joint effort, with Tendring District Council to assist residents to clean up the
area where they live. Mrs Holbrook suggested they might encourage other Councillors
to do the same in their wards. Cllr Henderson confirmed that discussions had already
taken place with residents, who has shown a willingness to keep this going, and look
towards making it a permanent thing.
Mrs Holbrook also raised concerns about the pavement in Albemarle Street having not
yet been made up following the construction of flats in the street, and suggested this be
Mr Stanford raised concerns over the haphazard parking witnessed by some motorists
in Old Harwich, including near to the Electric Palace and the 1912 Centre, and in
particular some parking too close to the entrance of Wellington Road car park, which
causes other motorists to overtake on the apex of the road and potentially into oncoming
traffic. He said that the poor parking had prevented a Fire Service exercise because
they couldn’t manoeuvre around the cars. He also mentioned having seen cars park too
close to junctions, including in Cow Lane, and not within the minimum limits imposed
by the Highway Code. Councillor Flavell said he spoke with the Essex Parking
Partnership who deny responsibility for this and claim it’s a Police matter, but who are
claiming to be showing leniency. Councillor I Henderson said that due to outsourcing, it
was difficult to find who is responsible. Councillor Brown expressed concern that
introducing double yellow lines would only serve to further reduce the available parking
in Harwich. Councillor Double said that the Police should simply enforce the law and
move on those motorists who are parking dangerously.
Mrs Holbrook raised a further concern over motorists parking on the quay in that there
are no barriers to prevent cars driving up too far and potentially crushing someone’s
legs who might be sitting on the benches. Councillor I Henderson said he’d spoken with
Beverley Gould who said ECC didn’t want to install bollards. A risk assessment is
expected but has yet to be carried out.
Prayers were said by Reverend Peter Mann.
The Chairman announced that 2 emergency items would be included in the agenda; 1 re:
Minute 48/11 and one of which would be after moving to exclude the press and public on the
grounds that publicity would be prejudicial to the public interest by reason of the confidential
nature of that business.
37/11 APOLOGIES FOR ABSENCE
Apologies for absence were received from Councillors R Callender and Thurlow.
38//11 DECLARATIONS OF MEMBERS’ INTERESTS
39/11 MAYOR’S ANNOUCEMENTS
The Mayor announced that he had attended 34 events since the last meeting,
and gave a brief account of a few including the Children’s Carnival Parade,
various events as part of the Harwich Festival of the Arts, and the opening of
Oxley’s of Dovercourt and the LV18. It was RESOLVED: to write a letter of
appreciation to Anna Rendell-Knights for her efforts with the Festival.
40/11 MINUTES OF THE LAST MEETING
RESOLVED: that the minutes of the meeting of the Town Council held on 8th
June 2011 (previously circulated) be approved by the Chairman and signed as
a true record, following an amendment to the number of press present, a
correction to the Chairman and correction to one of the members present.
41/11 MATTERS ARISING FROM THE MINUTES
Members noted a letter of confirmation from Anglian Water that the Flood
Pumping Station in, Fernlea Road, which is part of the Anglian Water
sewerage network, was in working order, is operational 24 hrs a day and
monitored by their Operational Management Centre via telemetry.
The Chairman read a reply from Tendring District Council confirming that the
Lidl S106 money was held by them, on deposit and accrues interest annually,
until such time as it’s spent. A further confirmation was read regarding the
status of the Dovercourt Town Centre Study had been completed by the
consultants and Tendring Regeneration Ltd will be submitting it to the Council
(Planning) for use as a material consideration in planning matters. Completing
this formal process will make the document publically available and enable the
s106 monies to be expended.
A member asked if a meeting of the Working Party for the ‘Polling Stations’
has yet been arranged. The Chairman confirmed that he will move quickly
42/11 ADOPT A KIOSK
Members discussed an invitation from BT to adopt the Telephone Kiosk on the
junction of St Helen’s Green on Main Road, as well as the potential uses,
implications and concerns. It was RESOLVED: to request an extension to the
deadline for applications whilst further consideration could be given to the best
use if HTC were to adopt the kiosk.
43/11 COMMUNITY RAIL
Members discussed an invitation, from Essex County Council’s Passenger
Transport Rail Manager, to attend a meeting with community groups and other
parties interested in looking into improvements to the Mayflower Line. It was
RESOLVED to appoint Councillor Dave McLeod as HTC representative.
44/11 TICKET OFFICE CLOSURE
Members discussed concerns over the potential closure of Dovercourt and
Harwich International rail ticket offices, especially in the run up to the
Olympics next year when Harwich will become an international gateway for
visitors to the events. It was noted that staffing the ticket offices enabled more
than just ticket sales, but also route-planning and travel information, and
customer assistance. It was RESOLVED: to write to the Secretary of State
for Transport, the Rt Hon. Philip Hammond, to express the concerns of HTC
and that the ticket offices should remain open.
45/11 QUEEN’S DIAMOND JUBILEE
Members discussed how best to commemorate the Queen’s Diamond Jubilee
in 2012 and it was RESOLVED: to form a working party consisting of the
Mayor, Deputy-Mayor, and Chairs of both the Guildhall Committee and
Finance & General Purposes Committee, and for the Clerk to research
46/11 HARWICH POLICE STATION
A member brought to the Council’s attention a newspaper report regarding the
closure of Harwich Police Station. He further mentioned that a recent meeting
of the Police Authority, held to discuss closures and a reduction on police
numbers, had been held behind closed doors and without consulting residents.
It was RESOLVED: to write to the Clerk of the Police Authority to ask under
what criteria of the Local Government Act permitted the meeting to be moved
into confidential business and to confirm that Harwich Police Station will not
be closing or police numbers affected.
47/11 ELECTRIC PALACE GRANT
Councillor Double informed members of a request from Chris Strachan to
broaden the terms of the original grant from HTC, to include all equipment as
opposed to just the projector as originally agreed (Minute Ref:71/10).
RESOLVED: To re-profile the grant to ‘Support the digitisation project’.
48/11 RECYCLING CENTRES FOR HOUSEHOLD WASTE
Councillor Calver briefly discussed an email received from ECC regarding
proposals to close or reduce the opening times/days of recycling centres
throughout Essex, which included that of Dovercourt amenity centre.
RESOLVED: to write to Essex County Council to request all the survey data
on which they made their proposal and agenda for discussion at the next
meeting of the Town Council.
49/11 STANDING ORDERS
Notice was given to members that the amendments to the Council’s Standing
Orders was in progress and would be presented for adoption at the next
meeting of the Town Council.
50/11 MINUTES OF THE FINANCE AND GENERAL PURPOSES COMMITTEE MEETING
RESOLVED: that the minutes of the meeting of the Finance and General Purpose
Committee held on 16th June 2011 (previously circulated) be accepted.
51/11 MINUTES OF THE ENVIRONMENT AND HIGHWAYS COMMITTEE MEETING
RESOLVED: that the minutes of the meeting of the Environment and Highways
Committee held on 21st June 2011 (previously circulated) be accepted. It was
FURTHER RESOLVED: to proceed with making the payment to Harwich
Community Primary School for the garden surrounding the flood victims’ memorial,
as all arrangements were in place and the money had previously been budgeted.
52/11 MINUTES OF THE ALLOTMETS COMMITTEE MEETIGS
RESOLVED: that the minutes of the meeting of the Allotments Committee
held on 27th June 2011 (previously circulated) be accepted.
53/11 MINUTES OF THE SPECIAL MEETING OF THE TOWN COUNCIL
RESOLVED: that the minutes of the Special meeting of Harwich Town Council held
on 29th June 2011 (previously circulated) be approved by the Chairman and signed as
a true record.
Payments and receipts, current balances, financial activity against budgets and
earmarked funds were noted.
RESOLVED: to authorise payments as listed Appendix A.
55/11 BRIEF REPORTS FROM MEMBERS
Councillor Flavell informed members of his attendance at the AGM of the Harwich
Conservation Panel, and following the recent rescue on Harwich Quay it was noted
that, although there were lifebelts on the Ha’Penny Pier, there were none on the Quay,
and a request was to be made to TDC to provide these.
Councillor Todd informed members of his attendance at a meeting of the Merchant
Navy Seaboard and made Council aware that currently between 700 and 1000
merchant seamen are being held by Somali pirates, and have been for months, even
years, however this appeared to go unnoticed. He said it was only a matter of time
before a cruise ship was taken and then it would make headline news.
Councillor O’Neill said her meeting with Teen Talk had been re-scheduled to 11th
Councillor Brown informed members that further to minute ref: 23/11 he and the
Clerk had attended an initial informal meeting with other local parish councils in order
to find out how, if at all, HTC could benefit from further meetings. It was deemed to
be useful and not thought to overlap the work of the TDALC. The item will be
agendered for the next meeting of the Town Council.
56/11 CORRESPONDENCE RECEIVED BY POST OR RAISED BY MEMBERS
Members noted a number of pieces of correspondence including an email from
ECC regarding the 2011 Love Where you Love Campaign, The RNLI Wellie
Walk Fundraising event and a letter of thanks from Ann Evander organiser of
the Blackeberg Students’ visits.
A Letter from Bernard Jenkin MP, regarding car parking, was discussed and it
was RESOLVED: to write to Harwich Police to raise concerns over motorists
parking on the apex of narrow roads in Old Harwich and the effect this could
have on emergency vehicles and write to Bernard Jenkin to take up his offer of
a meeting regarding ownership of the property surrounding Harwich Train
Station. It was also discussed that no response had been received, from TDC,
to a letter of 5th July and it was RESOLVED: to write to TDC asking for an
urgent response and to consider a proposal to immediately withdraw the
charges for use of the Wellington road car park to alleviate the problem in the
short term, with a copy to Bernard Jenkin MP.
57/11 DATE OF NEXT MEETING
The next meeting of Harwich Town Council will be held on Wednesday 31st
August 2011 at The 1912 Centre, Cow Lane, Harwich at 7.00pm, or at the rise of
the Town Planning Committee, whichever is the later.
58/10 EXCLUSION OF PUBLIC AND PRESS
RESOLVED: that pursuant to Sub-section (2) of section (1) of
the Public Bodies (Admission to Meetings) Act 1960 the meeting is closed to
the press and public on the grounds that publicity would be prejudicial to the
public interest by reason of the confidential nature of that business.
The Chairman closed the meeting at 9.02pm.