Agenda and draft minutes

Grounds & Environmental Committee - Monday, 6th June, 2022 7.30 pm

Venue: Council Chamber, The White House, Hockliffe Street, Leighton Buzzard, Bedfordshire, LU7 1HD

Contact: Committee Officer  01525 631920 & Email: info@leightonlinslade-tc.gov.uk

Items
No. Item

175/GE

APOLOGIES FOR ABSENCE

Minutes:

Apologies for absence were received from Councillor B Spurr and Councillor R Yates.

 

176/GE

DECLARATIONS OF INTEREST

(i) Under the Localism Act 2011 (sections 26-37 and Schedule 4) and in accordance with the Council’s Code of Conduct, Members are required to declare any interests which are not currently entered in the Member’s Register of Interests or if he/she has not notified the Monitoring Officer of it.

 

(ii) Should any Member have a Disclosable Pecuniary Interest in an item on the agenda, the Member may not participate in consideration of that item unless a Dispensation has first been requested (in writing) and granted by the Council (see Dispensation Procedure).

Minutes:

Councillor V Harvey declared a personal interest as a member of South Bedfordshire Friends of the Earth.

 

Councillor C Palmer declared a personal interest as a member of the Friends of Leighton-Linslade in Bloom.

 

No pecuniary interests were declared.

 

177/GE

QUESTIONS FROM THE PUBLIC

To receive questions and statements from members of the public in respect of any item of business included in the agenda, as provided for in Standing Order No.s 3(f) and 3(h).

Minutes:

A member of the public spoke regarding item 9 on the agenda (Climate Emergency Update).  It was felt that action was needed before the effects of climate change became unstoppable and that Leighton-Linslade Town Council should invest money to address this crisis, and the Committee should endorse the recommendation to seek tenders for a carbon assessment of the Town Council operations.

 

Another member of the public spoke to support Leighton-Linslade Town Council in obtaining a baseline carbon assessment.  A suggestion was also made for the Council to hold a public meeting with residents of the town and signpost what the Council were doing to keep environmental needs at the top of the agenda.

 

A third member of the public and representative of Buzzcycles spoke to request Town Council support for several cycling initiatives.   He was advised this was due to be discussed in more detail by the Planning and Transport Committee on 8 June.

 

All members of the public were thanked for attending the meeting.

 

 

178/GE

ELECTION OF VICE CHAIR FOR 2022-2023

Minutes:

It was proposed and seconded that Councillor S Jones be appointed Vice Chair of the Committee for 2022-2023.  There were no further nominations.

 

RESOLVED to appoint Councillor S Jones, Vice Chair of the Grounds & Environmental Services  Committee, for the municipal year 2022-2023.

 

 

179/GE

MINUTES OF PREVIOUS MEETING pdf icon PDF 456 KB

(a)        To receive and approve as a correct record the minutes of the Committee meeting held on 7th March 2022 (attached) in accordance with Standing Order 12.

 

(b)        To receive information updates on matters arising from the previous meeting (if appropriate).

 

Minutes:

(a)      The Committee received the draft minutes of the Grounds and Environmental Services Committee meeting held on 7 March 2022.

 

RESOLVED that the minutes of the Grounds and Environmental Services Committee meeting held on 7 March 2022 be approved as a correct record and were signed accordingly.

 

(b)      Minute reference 161/GE (Minutes of the Previous Meeting): it was confirmed the Coronation Shelter had been installed.

 

Minute reference 162/GE (The White House Roundabout):  there had been some maintenance carried out on the roundabout by Central Bedfordshire Council, but Members agreed there was still room for improvement in this area, and further dialogue was needed between the two councils regarding how this could be improved. 

 

Minute reference 165/GE (Facilities and Bookings):  a question was raised regarding bookings of pavilions and what could be done to encourage and fill gaps in bookings.  Venue hire bookings were generally high, and gaps were mainly in less popular time slots such as weekday afternoons and Sundays.  Some specific publicity would be done to highlight available time slots and the discount available for off-peak and not-for-profit bookings.

 

Minute reference 168/GE (HM Queen Elizabeth II Platinum Jubilee Celebrations): the Committee agreed the whole weekend had been a huge success and well received by the public.

 

Minute reference 174/GE (Parson’s Close Recreation Ground Concessions): Members were informed that a temporary solution was in place and operational for Summer 2022 and was well received by members of the public.

 

 

 

180/GE

COMMITTEE OBJECTIVES AND WORK PLAN pdf icon PDF 457 KB

To receive and consider the Committee Work Plan for 2022-2023 (attached).

Minutes:

The Committee received and considered the Committee Work Plan for 2022-2023.  The work plan now showed the next update and last action date for each objective as requested.

 

RESOLVED to note the Committee Objectives and Work Plan.

           

 

181/GE

THE OFFICIAL CONTROLS (PLANT PROTECTION PRODUCTS) REGULATIONS 2020 pdf icon PDF 90 KB

To receive a report regarding the requirements to comply with the Official Controls (Plant Protection Products) Regulations 2020 and to consider the recommendation/s contained therein (Attached).

 

Additional documents:

Minutes:

The Committee received a report with an overview of the Official Controls (Plant Protection Products) Regulations 2020, which the Council was required to comply with.   

 

RESOLVED:

 

(a)      To note the report.

(b)      To endorse compliance with the requirements of the Official Controls (Plant Protection Products) Regulations 2020 by the 22 June 2022 deadline.

 

182/GE

i-TREE ECOSYSTEM ANALYSIS pdf icon PDF 1 MB

To receive a copy of the i-Tree Ecosystem analysis of Town Council owned tree stock (Attached).

 

Minutes:

The Committee received and considered a copy of the i-Tree Ecosystem

analysis of Town Council-owned tree stock.  Data from 1,476 trees was analysed using the i-Tree Eco model covering 10.16 hectares.  Oxygen production was 106.9 metric tons per year, and the replacement value of the trees would be  £4.24 million.  The analysis would be redone every two years.

 

RESOLVED to note the information.

 

183/GE

CLIMATE EMERGENCY UPDATE pdf icon PDF 210 KB

To receive a report regarding the procurement of a carbon assessment of Town Council operations and to consider the recommendation/s contained therein (Attached).

Minutes:

The Committee received a report to consider the next steps following

 the Council’s resolution made on 27 September 2022 in respect of a climate emergency and the ambition to become net carbon neutral by 2030.  The Committee agreed there was an urgent need for a carbon assessment of Town Council operations to provide baseline evidence on how to move forward, but that in the meantime, the council should take whatever action it could, for example, in supporting cycling.  It was noted that the wider community, particularly the business community, also needed to become more environmentally aware to have a town-wide impact.

 

The question was asked whether the baseline carbon assessment would include how impact and success could be measured and whether the Town Council would be able to measure this itself or would need a further evaluation to be undertaken in future years to measure the impact of measures taken.

 

RESOLVED:

 

(a)   To note the report.

(b)   To endorse that tenders are to be received for a carbon assessment of Town Council operations to provide baseline evidence on which to take forward the move towards being net carbon neutral by 2030.                      

 

It was hoped that tenders might be able to be presented to Policy & Finance Committee in July rather than waiting for the next meeting of this committee.

 

184/GE

PARSON'S CLOSE RECREATION GROUND - INCLUSIVE PLAY AREA PROJECT UPDATE

To receive a verbal update on the play area refurbishment project.

Minutes:

The Committee received a verbal update on the inclusive adventure play area refurbishment project.  The refurbishment was on schedule, and an official opening would occur once completed.  Members agreed the whole project was progressing well and of high quality and specification.

 

RESOLVED to note the update.

 

185/GE

HENRY FINCH MEMORIAL FOUNTAIN pdf icon PDF 948 KB

To receive a copy of the condition survey of the Henry Finch Memorial Fountain and consider next steps (Attached).

 

Minutes:

The Committee received a copy of the condition survey of the Henry Finch Memorial Fountain and considered the next steps in the process.  Some reported costs were higher than anticipated, and alternative quotations would be sought for further consideration.  It was hoped it might be possible to bring revised quotes to the Policy and Finance Committee in July to avoid delay.

 

RESOLVED to note the information and for alternative quotations to be sought for proposed works.

 

186/GE

LEIGHTON TOWN BOXING CLUB UPDATE

To receive a verbal update and review the hire arrangements and the progression with sourcing a more suitable permanent venue for the club.

Minutes:

In accordance with the previous resolution, the Committee was asked to review the continuation of venue hire by the Leighton Town Boxing Club.  The Committee received a verbal update and heard that there were no concerns regarding this tenant and that the boxing equipment had not caused any damage at Pages Park Pavilion as had been feared.

 

The Committee noted that no progress appeared to have been made in sourcing a suitable permanent venue for the club.  A suggestion was made to propose to Central Bedfordshire Council that Tiddenfoot Leisure Centre, land south of the High Street or the new leisure centre be considered permanent premises.  It was agreed that the Town Clerk could submit a formal request to Central Bedfordshire Council to consider one of these sites.

 

RESOLVED: 

 

(i)           To note the update and endorse the continued venue hire of Pages Park Pavilion by Leighton Town Boxing Club.

(ii)         To raise awareness with Central Bedfordshire Council, consider either Tiddenfoot Leisure Centre, land south of the High Street, or the new leisure centre as a permanent venue for the Boxing Club.

 

187/GE

RoSPA ANNUAL PLAY AREA INSPECTION REPORT pdf icon PDF 161 KB

To receive the annual play area inspection report recommendations (attached).

 

Minutes:

The Committee received an update and findings from this year’s annual independent playground and equipment inspections.  A programme of works would be created to complete all necessary recommendations within the report.

           

RESOLVED to note the report.

 

188/GE

DRINKING WATER FOUNTAINS pdf icon PDF 135 KB

To receive a report regarding the installation of drinking water fountains in larger Town Council owned parks and to consider the recommendation/s contained therein (Attached).

Minutes:

The Committee received a report to request permission to invite quotations to supply and install external drinking water fountains in our larger parks. 

 

RESOLVED:

 

(a)      To note the report.

(b)      To endorse that, quotations would be invited to supply and install external drinking water fountains in the larger parks.

 

189/GE

CEMETERY UPDATE INCLUDING HEADSTONE SAFETY SURVEY pdf icon PDF 148 KB

To receive a report regarding the cemetery service and to consider the recommendation/s contained therein (to follow).

 

Minutes:

The Committee received an update regarding the cemetery service and considered the recommendations therein.  After the memorial testing in Old Linslade Cemetery and Vandyke Road Cemetery, it was found that several old memorials needed repair.  In preference to laying them down, costs to undertake repair work would be obtained and returned to the committee for consideration. 

 

RESOLVED to note the information.

 

190/GE

OUZEL VALLEY PARK STEERING GROUP UPDATE

To receive a verbal update of the meeting held 25 May 2022.

Minutes:

The Committee received a verbal update from the last meeting of the

Ouzel Valley Park Steering Group was held on 25 May 2022.  The date of the next meeting was 5 September 2022 at 10.30 am.

 

Two items were highlighted:

 

(a)         Concerns were raised regarding the lack of connective footpaths and cycle routes on the East of Leighton Buzzard development.  An officer from Central Bedfordshire Council had been asked to attend the next Ouzel Valley Park Steering Group meeting on 5 September to discuss this.

(b)         The build costs for the proposed development of a visitor centre at Tiddenfoot Waterside Park by Central Bedfordshire Council had potentially increased by 15%, which might jeopardise the development.

 

RESOLVED to note the information.