Annual Meeting of Stapleford Town Council – 17th February 2017
Cllr Mrs C Bollen Cllr Mrs A J Hull Cllr R MacRae
Cllr Mrs J C Goold Cllr D Pearson Cllr C Rice
Cllr R Browne Cllr D Grindell Cllr Ms J Townend
Cllr R Darby Cllr J Longdon
118/2017 Apologies for absence
Apologies for absence were received from Councillors: A Britton, P Ensor, Mrs S Ensor, E B Hull and Mrs S Roome
119/2017 Declarations of interest
Councillors: R Darby, Mrs A J Hull, Mrs J C Goold and Ms J Townend declared a non-pecuniary interest regarding the Town Council Allotments.
Councillors: R Darby, Mrs J C Goold, J Longdon and R MacRae declared an interest regarding any matter relating to Broxtowe Borough Council by dint of their status as serving Councillors on Broxtowe Borough Council.
Councillor R MacRae declared a non-pecuniary interest regarding the Town Centre Team.
120/2017 Minutes of the Town Council Meeting held on 17TH February 2017.
The Minutes of the Town Council Meeting held on 17th February 2017 were approved and signed by the Town Mayor.
The Town Clerk drew Members attention to the item on Planning Applications and questions raised by Councillor R MacRae re the absence of comments from the Town Council in relation to the Aldi and Micro Brewery Planning Applications discussed by Broxtowe Borough Council at its Planning Meeting in January 2017.
Upon enquiry, from the Town Clerk, in the terms of a formal letter to Broxtowe Borough Council re this matter; Broxtowe Borough Council had replied that it had omitted the Town Council’s Comments, re both applications in error. Broxtowe Borough Council had apologised for these omission and any embarrassment caused to the Town Clerk/Town Council and was now investigating its process for dealing with such comments.
The Town Clerk had been assured that the Town Council’s comments would be placed on file for both applications and should either applicant appeal against the decisions made by Broxtowe Borough Council, the Town Council’s comments would be taken as part of the appeal proceedings.
121/2017 Request(s) made by any member of the public to address the Town Council
The Town Clerk had received no requests to address the Town Council.
122/2017 Mayor’s Engagements
The Town Mayors engagements were noted.
Members were asked to support the Village Ventures event featuring Zoe Gilbey being held on April. It was reported by the Town Clerk that this will be the last Village Ventures event for the foreseeable future.
Whilst the Town Council had voted to continue supporting this initiative at the Budget Meeting, the Town Clerk had been informed by Liberty Leisure, that Broxtowe Borough Council would no longer be supporting Village Ventures.
A number of Members expressed their sadness at this turn of events and the Town Clerk, who had been supporting this project for over 20 years, concurred with their regret. However, the Town Council did not possess the resources to fully fund the initiative and it would no longer be possible to bring Village Ventures to Stapleford.
On a more upbeat note the Town Clerk informed the Meeting that she would be organising a special musical event later in the year to celebrate the Town Council’s 30th anniversary since its reconstitution in1987and further details would be available early in the new Municipal year.
The Town Clerk was delighted to inform Members that together with Broxtowe Borough Council, Stapleford Town Council would be co-hosting this year’s Freedom Parade in June 2017. Due to the nature of the event the Town Clerk was not at liberty to discuss it in any great detail. However, details would be released nearer to the time. It was hoped that both Members and the general public would support this event.
Councillor R MacRae declared an interest in the following item.
123/2017 Town Centre Management Team (TCT)
The Town Clerk reported that she had attended a meeting of the TCT and that she was pleased to inform the Town Council of the following points:
- Broxtowe Borough Council had agreed to the delivery of free wifi in the Town and that details were now being finalised for this pilot programme.
- Re the proposed Town Centre Improvements, the general public had been invited to attend an Open Evening 23rd February to view these ideas and express opinions. Members were encouraged to attend this event.
124/2017 Neighbourhood Planning
The Town Clerk reported that the Neighbourhood Plan Steering Group had met and discussed the best way forward, utilising the services of the independent planning consultant who it had been agreed should assist with the formulation of the Neighbourhood Plan and was working on the principle of presenting a draft version of the plan for consultation spring/early summer 2017.
Following discussion it was agreed that the Town Council was satisfied with the progress to date and comfortable with the proposals as listed above and agreed that the Town Clerk should allocate time to complete the necessary administrative functions.
Further the Town Clerk asked the Town Council to thank the local residents and businesses; who as volunteers had committed time to this project. Particularly Members were asked to recognise the commitment of Ms Teresa Needam, who had committed who was a stalwart of the group.
Councillor Pearson echoed these sentiments and drew the Meetings attention to comments made by the Rt Hon Anna Soubry M.P. in December 2016, when she had criticised the Town Council for not working on a Neighbourhood Plan. Members of the Neighbourhood Plan Steering Group, the Town Council and the Town Clerk had been furious at these comments and the Town Clerk had written to the Rt Hon Anna Soubry M.P. refuting her comments and inviting her to meet with the Neighbourhood Plan Steering Group. To date the Town Clerk had received no reply to this letter.
The Steering Group would meet again in February and a full report would be made to the next Meeting of the Town Council.
125/2017 HS2 Information Events
This item had been placed on the Agenda following the decision at the last Meeting to discuss the Town Council’s response to the refinement consultation on the next round of HS2 Proposals and how such proposals will affect the Town. The Town Council’s primary concerns were with how the proposals would interact with the Town. As a result of full and frank discussion the following points were noted:
- Members and the general public had, had the opportunity to attend a number of consultation road shows, the nearest events being held in Trowell and Long Eaton. Councillors were disappointed that a consultation event had not been held in Stapleford. Councillors: Darby, Mrs J Goold, Longdon, McGrath MacRae, Pearson and the Town Clerk had attended the Trowell event and spoken with a number of the representatives of the HS2 Project Team. Additionally Councillors: Longdon and Pearson had attended a morning briefing for elected Members. (It was noted that this briefing had clashed with the Holocaust Memorial Service.)
- The Town Council was most concerned re the omission from the consultation study of any proposal to carry out improvement works to Bessell Lane, Stapleford to provide a through road to serve the new HS2 Hub/Station.
- Members appreciated the desirability of creating a new junction off the A52 to give an access to the proposed Hub/Station. However, it questioned the wisdom of creating only one main access/egress to the site.
- The Meeting continued to discuss this point at some length and felt it was important that those individuals making the decisions based on the consultation process should be aware of the issues relating to the A52 in this area in terms of congestion and the difficulties experienced when traffic came to a standstill on this road at Bardill’s Island and the flow of traffic to and from Nottingham/Derby.
- Derby Road Stapleford was currently the main relief road for the A52 in this area and common sense would dictate that should the Hub/Station be built as planned the need for a through road from Derby Road Stapleford via Bessell Lane would be essential to the proposals.
- Bessell Lane would need to be upgraded to provide proper access/egress to the proposed Hub/Station. However, this upgrading of Bessell Lane to create a through road, would allow for additional access/egress areas to serve the Hub/Station. One access/egress from the A52 would create problems for individuals attempting to access the station or quit it on those, frequent, occasions, when the A52 is closed due to road traffic accidents.
vii. Further it was felt by Members that the new Hub/Station would automatically increase the traffic flow due to individuals trying to access the facilities and that there was a need to build into the proposed development, additional access to the site, rather than only one new junction.
viii. It was also believed that the creation of the Hub/Station would open up opportunities for the creation of new jobs and major development in commercial/business opportunities. Thus it was essential that the idea of a through road from Derby Road was given serious consideration by the HS2 Project Team to ensure that new business was encouraged to embrace opportunities in the areas adjacent to the proposed Hub/Station site.
- Still concentrating on the area of Bessell Lane. Members further felt that upgrading would be required to facilitate the necessary construction works to create the Hub/Station and the actual HS2 rail lines.
- Concern was unanimously expressed re the condition of the road bridge, (over the current railway line), that links Stapleford and Sandiacre. A number of Councillors were aware that there were recognised integrity issues relating to this structure and felt that works would need to be carried out to make it safe for heavy construction traffic that would likely be required to utilise the bridge when carrying out works to the current site.
- Members were also aware of the disquiet of a number of local residents who felt discomforted by the relative nearness of their homes to the new HS2 development. The Town Council was taken aback that no compensation, (in ‘normal’ circumstances), was proposed within the consultation documents for those currently residing the urban areas of the proposed project; while those owning land in rural areas were included in a generous compensation scheme.
xii. Members felt that this proposed project was important for the Town and in principal was in favour of supporting it. However, it was concerned at the lack of forethought as to the inclusion of Stapleford within the plans for access and egress to the proposed Hub/Station and the failure to look at the aspirations of the Town with regard to the project needed addressing.
xiii. The Town Council was aware that the site of the Hub/Station had been altered, moving it towards Long Eaton and it was believed that this was to accommodate the geography of the area due to gradients etc.
xiv Further the Meeting felt it would be appropriate to request that a train stop be created as part of this development to serve Stapleford and enabling other train services to stop in the area; fully utilising the opportunities for train travel that the proposed HS2 project offers. Members cited the new station at Ilkeston as a precedent for creating passenger travel opportunities within the area.
The Town Clerk was instructed to ensure that these comments were communicated to the HS2 Project Team as part of the official consultation. Members were encouraged to also comment independently with regard to this project.
126/2017 Allotments Report
This report was noted.
It was further reported that plots were available for rent and that enquiries should be made to the Town Clerk regarding this matter.
127/2017 Cliffe Hill Community Centre
This item had been placed on the Agenda at the request of Councillor MacRae who expressed his concern re the treatment of the management group of Cliffe Hill Community Centre by Broxtowe Borough Council and the need for assistance to be given to the group to secure premises for the organisations that met there once its lease was concluded and the premises were demolished to make way for housing.
There was considerable history between Broxtowe Borough Council, who owned the land/premises and the management Group. The Town Council had no direct involvement with the organisations who met there or the management group.
Following discussion it was agreed that Councillor MacRae should invite the groups that met at the Cliffe Hill Community Centre to contact the Town Clerk, if they felt that space at the Carnegie Centre would be suitable for their purposes and the Town Clerk would endeavour to assist them. Further the Town Clerk was instructed to write to Broxtowe Borough Council requesting that it assist the management group to secure premises suitable to its needs.
No Correspondence was reported at this Meeting.
129/2017 Planning Applications
17/00037/FUL Construct Detached Dwelling- 221 Pasture Road
Following discussion the Town Council had no objections to this application.
This item was noted.
131/2013 Date of Next Meeting
The next meeting of the Town Council was scheduled to place on Friday, 31ST March 2017 commencing at 7.00p.m.
Meeting closed at 8.15p.m.