Harwich Town Council

The Guildhall,
Church Street,
Harwich. CO12 3DS

t: 01255 507211
e: info@harwichtowncouncil.co.uk
Hours: 9.30am – 1pm Monday, Wednesday & Friday

Full Council Minutes 28th March 2012

MINUTES of the Meeting of HARWICH TOWN COUNCIL held at The 1912 Centre, Cow Lane, Harwich on Wednesday 28th March 2012 commencing at pm

HARWICH TOWN COUNCIL
Guildhall, Church Street, Harwich, Essex CO12 3DS
Tel: 01255 507211

Present: Councillors Calver, Day, Double, Flavell, Gibbins, I Henderson,
J Henderson, King, McLeod, Thompson, Thurlow and Todd

In the Chair: Councillor B Brown

Clerk: Mrs Lucy Ballard

Also present: 5 members of the public and 1 member of the press

Prayers were said by Reverend P Mann.

153/11 APOLOGIES FOR ABSENCE
Apologies were received from Cllr C Callender.

154/11 DECLARATIONS OF MEMBERS’ INTERESTS
None.

155/11 PUBLIC QUESTIONS
Betty Holbrook raised the issue about the condition of the path in Albemarle street and said this had been raised several times previously and nothing seems to have been done about it. Cllr I Henderson confirmed that this had been followed up with Essex County Council and they are investigating.
Lesley Pollard, Chairman of the Harwich and Dovercourt Partnership referred to item 10 and said she was happy that HTC were going along with the Dovercourt Rediscovered document.

156/11 MAYOR’S ANNOUNCEMENTS
The Mayor gave an account of some of the 30 engagements attended since the last meeting including opening William Bleakley Mews, welcoming more Swedish students from Blackeberg Gymnasium, and attending the Harwich Society annual dinner. He thanked Cllr Double for giving his talk on Harwich street names and reminded all that there will be a charity dinner at the Cliff Hotel on 21 April to raise further funds for the Mayoral charities.

157/11 MINUTES OF THE LAST MEETING
RESOLVED: that the minutes of the meeting of the Town Council held on 15th February 2012 (previously circulated) be approved by the Chairman and signed as a true record.

158/11 MATTERS ARISING FROM THE MINUTES
Cllr Double asked the Chairman if members would receive official notification of the resignation of former Cllr Colleen O’Neill as this hadn’t been confirmed at the last meeting. Cllr Brown provided the official notification of Colleen’s resignation on 10 February.
The Clerk read aloud a letter from Tracy Chapman (ECC), which had been received after the Clerk’s report and agenda had been published. The Clerk confirmed that all correspondence in this regard had been forwarded to our MP. Cllr Calver said that continuous pressure is the only measure we can take and it was RESOLVED: to write to Bernard Jenkin and reinforce that HTC are relying on him to push forward with this issue on HTC’s behalf and he will have the support of the town council.
The Clerk confirmed that copy letters had been received today from the MP to both ECC and the Environment Agency in relation to a round table meeting request regarding the flood siren.

159/11 PERMISSION TO USE THE GUILDHALL
Councillors discussed a request from the Harwich Paranormal Investigations to use Guildhall for a charity Ghost Hunt in aid of MacMillan Cancer Support.
RESOLVED: not to grant permission on the basis that the Guildhall is also home to the resident caretaker and to permit would be inappropriate.

160/11 BT PHONE BOX
Cllr Flavell gave members an update to the works commissioned since the Phone Box Working Party met on 20 February. Cllr I Henderson thanked Cllr Flavell for pushing forward with this and making it all happen.
RESOLVED: to send a letter of appreciation to Colin Cheesman who carried out much of the refurbishment and for no cost for his time.

161/11 SPARKS WILL FLY
Cllr Brown gave members an update on the arrangements for the Tour de Tendring event and confirmed that the schools were hoping to provide contents for the bead.
RESOLVED: to contribute to the bead by way of donating one of the HTC commemorative Jubilee coins.

162/11 DOVERCOURT REDISCOVERED
Cllr Calver gave some background on the Dovercourt Rediscovered document and an overview of the content of the public meeting on 20 February, which discussed this document. The Clerk read aloud the following proposal:
“Harwich Town Council adopts TDC’s ‘Dovercourt Rediscovered’ as its chosen direction and calls upon TDC to use the S106 funding allocated to Dovercourt High Street accordingly.

Harwich Town Council, in doing so, wishes to make the following observations.

Information provided by Dovercourt’s ‘Town Team’ that the lamp standards can be provided at less cost should be investigated.

The fact that Essex County Council will benefit from the provision of the lamp standards should be reflected in the amount paid to ECC for future maintenance.

Harwich Town Council has not previously discussed the document and regrets the suggestion that the council has already endorsed it. An explanation as to why this was suggested would be appreciated.

Further propose that

Harwich Town Council advises TDC that, in order to facilitate TDC’s decision to accept further consultation submissions, Harwich Town Council will act as a conduit for any further public submissions received prior to 10th April on the understanding that:

a) The 115 submissions received by TDC during its original public consultation are given equal consideration to any new submissions received and

b) That TDC publishes its final decision as to how it intends to spend the money by 1st June 2012, thereby ensuring that sufficient time is available to complete all resulting works before the agreement lapses in January 2014.”
RESOLVED: to write to TDC to confirm HTC endorses the document with the specified conditions, and to forward any consultation submission received from the public until the date mentioned.

163/11 FLOOD SIREN
Cllr I Henderson gave an overview of the content of the public meeting with the Environment Agency on 7 March and raised his concern over statements made by ECC’s Cllr Tracy Chapman regarding the Police’s and Environment Agency’s views on the siren. Cllr Double said it was purely a budget consideration and we’ve been let down. Cllr Calver thanked the MP for all he’s been doing to assist HTC in the matter and said we are now better positioned to move forward.

164/11 DOVERCOURT SKATEPARK CONTRIBUTION
Cllr J Henderson put forward a motion for HTC to support the upgrading of the Skatepark by pledging an initial £5k towards the cost. Cllr Double confirmed that TDC’s Play Officer is assisting with finding grant funding on behalf of HTC.
The Chairman adjourned the meeting at 8.10pm to allow a comment from Dr Rogers to me made. Dr Rogers referred to earlier suggestions that all planning comments from HTC should come with certain conditions and hoped this could be the case with the upgrade of the skatepark and referred to incidences of young skaters coming down Donkey Hill at speed, which was dangerous.
The Chairman re-convened the meeting at 8.11pm.
RESOLVED: pursuant to the Local Government (Miscellaneous Provisions) Act 1976, to pledge the sum of £5k.

165/11 MINUTES OF THE LAST ALLOTMENTS COMMITTEE MEETING
RESOLVED: that the minutes of the meeting of the Allotments Committee held on 23rd March 2012 (previously circulated) be received.

166/11 MINUTES OF THE LAST ENVIRONMENT and HIGHWAYS COMMITTEE
MEETING
Cllr McLeod thanked Cllr Todd for his efforts in relation to the Welcome to historic Harwich sign on the sea wall and subsequent advertising consent, which is soon to be considered by TDC.
RESOLVED: that the minutes of the meeting of the Environment and Highways Committee held on 20th March 2012 (previously circulated) be received.

167/11 MINUTES OF THE LAST FINANCE and GENERAL PURPOSES COMMITTEE MEETING
RESOLVED: that the minutes of the meeting of the Finance and General Purposes Committee held on 6th March 2012 (previously circulated) be received and FURTHER RESOLVED: to grant s137 funding to Home-Start Harwich of £2679.04 (Check amount)

168/11 ACCOUNTS
Payments and receipts, current balances, financial activity against budgets and earmarked funds were noted. Cllr Double confirmed a revised amount in the reserves, due to the Electric Palace grant, which was about to be presented. He confirmed the amounts available would enable HTC to fund the cost of the disabled access based on the quotation received in November 2010.
RESOLVED: to authorise payments as listed Appendix A
FURTHER REOLVED: to renew the insurance with Zurich Municipal as per quote provided in the Financial Update.

169/11 BRIEF REPORTS FROM MEMBERS

  • Cllr McLeod commented on the hard work of the Town Team in putting together an application for the Portas Pilot scheme. He also thanked both Lesley Pollard and Oxley’s Delicatessen for their hard work and contributions.
  • Cllr Double referred to issues raised at a recent meeting of the Port Liaison Committee including changes to Stena’s sailings and an increase in DFDS sailings due to the Olympics, that there will be 35 cruise call this season, of which 10 are transit calls and next year will see 10 cruise calls from Fred Olsen.
  • Cllr Todd that he was unable to attend the last meeting of the Merchant Navy Welfare Board and that the last 3 TDALC meetings had coincided with HTC meetings and was therefore unable to attend.

170/11 CORRESPONDENCE RECEIVED IN POST OR RAISED BY MEMBERS

  • A letter of thanks from the Harwich Society was noted.
  • Letters of thanks from Mr C Townsend and Mr and Mrs Hamer, residents involved in the West Street fire, were received with parts read aloud for the benefit of the public.
    The Clerk confirmed that further donations had been received taking total donations to £19702.

171/11 DATE OF NEXT MEETING
The next meeting of Harwich Town Council will be held on Wednesday 9th
May 2012 at The 1912 Centre, Cow Lane, Harwich, at 7.00pm, or at the rise of
the Town Planning Committee, whichever is the later.

The Annual Parish Meeting will be held on Tuesday 17th April 2012 at Long Meadows Community Centre, Long Meadows, Dovercourt at 7pm or at the rise of the Town Planning Committee whichever is the later.

The Chairman closed the meeting at 8.30pm.