Agenda and draft minutes

Venue: Council Chamber, Town Hall, Saturday Market Place, King's Lynn PE30 5DQ. View directions

Contact: Rebecca Parker 01553 616632 

No. Item


Apologies for absence

To receive any apologies for absence.


Apologies for absence were received from Councillors Hipperson and Taylor.


Minutes pdf icon PDF 65 KB

To approve the minutes of the previous meeting.


RESOLVED: The Minutes from the previous meeting were agreed as a correct record and signed by the Chairman.


Declarations of interest

Please indicate if there are any interests which should be declared.  A declaration of an interest should indicate the nature of the interest (if not already declared on the Register of Interests) and the agenda item to which it relates.  If a disclosable pecuniary interest is declared, the Member should withdraw from the room whilst the matter is discussed.


Those declarations apply to all Members present, whether the Member is part of the meeting, attending to speak as a local Member on an item or simply observing the meeting from the public seating area.


Councillor Devereux declared and interest as the Council appointed representative on the Alive Leisure Trust.


Urgent Business

To consider any business which, by reason of special circumstances, the Chairman proposed to accept as urgent under Section 100(b)(4)(b) of the Local Government Act, 1972.


There was none.


Members Present Pursuant to Standing Order 34

Members wishing to speak pursuant to Standing Order 34 should inform the Chairman of their intention to do so and on what items they wish to be heard before the meeting commences.  Any Member attending the meeting under Standing Order 34 will only be permitted to speak on those items which have been previously notified to the Chairman.


Councillor Mrs Squire – EC98: Report from the Single Use Plastics Informal Working Group.


Chairman's Correspondence

If any.


The Chairman explained that he had received correspondence from The Portfolio Holder for Environment, Councillor Devereux who was present at the meeting and explained the nature of the correspondence.


The Portfolio Holder reminded those present that at the last full Council meeting he had provided information on forthcoming DEFRA consultations relating to waste and recycling.  He explained that there were four elements to the consultation, as set out below:


·        Waste and recycling collection consistency.

·        Deposit returns schemes.

·        Extended producer packaging responsibility.

·        General requirement for plastic packaging tax.


He explained that he would be discussing the way forward with officers and would inform the Chairman when it would be appropriate to provide an update to the Environment and Community Panel.


The Chairman thanked Councillor Devereux for the information.


Alive Leisure Annual Report pdf icon PDF 2 MB

Additional documents:


Representatives from Alive Leisure were present at the meeting and presented the 2017-2018 Alive Leisure Annual Report to the Panel.  A copy of the presentation is attached which provided information on their performance and performance monitoring.


Simon McKenna also referred to the two proposals set out in the presentation.  Alive Leisure requested that the Panel confirm acceptance of the proposed increase in fees and charges and if they wished to continue with subsidised summer holiday programmes.


Peter Lemon thanked the Panel for the opportunity to present their Annual Report.  He also expressed his thanks to the Alive Leisure Senior Management Team for their hard work, and the hard work which was to come with the transition arrangements.  He explained that the transition process was ongoing and there was a lot of work from both sides to be done.  He referred to conflicting VAT advice received and he wished the Council the best for the future when they take back the running of the facilities. 


The Chairman thanked the representatives from Alive Leisure for their presentation.  He also thanked Alive Leisure for their hard work over the years.  The Chairman advised the Panel that the proposals from Alive Leisure relating to the fees and charges and the summer holiday activities were not decisions that could be made by the Panel as it was not within their remit as a non-decision making body.  He therefore suggested that the proposals be forwarded onto the relevant Portfolio Holder for consideration down the most appropriate route.


The Chairman invited questions and comments from the Panel, as summarised below.


In response to a question from Councillor Mrs Collop it was explained that any increases to fees and charges would take effect from 1st May 2019.


The Vice Chairman, Councillor Bambridge referred to Environment and Community Panel meeting which Alive Leisure attended last year to provide an update.  She commented that she had asked for information about school and club swimming price increases, but she had not yet received the information.  Tommy Goode informed the Panel that he would send the information through to the Democratic Services Officer by the end of the week so that it could be forwarded round to the Panel.


In response to a question from the Vice Chairman, Councillor Bambridge, it was confirmed that following the fitness review a Head of Wellness had been appointed who would work on the referrals scheme.  Tommy Goode confirmed that, to date, seven health professionals were engaged and utilised the referrals scheme.  He explained that work to track participation and progression was ongoing.


The Vice Chairman, Councillor Bambridge asked about the summer holiday programme and if statistics were available on the take up from deprived areas.  Tommy Goode explained that over 4,500 children took advantage of the summer holiday programme, however data was unavailable on those that came from deprived areas.  He explained that Alive Leisure had a subscription to a data hub which could analyse members, but this had not yet been progressed.  The  ...  view the full minutes text for item EC96:


Grounds Maintenance Update

To receive an update from the Grounds Maintenance Team, following the request from the Panel at their meeting in December 2018.

Additional documents:


The Operations Manager reminded the Panel that in December 2018 they had received a review of service requests relating to Grounds Maintenance.  The Panel had asked for further information on land types and ownerships.  The Operations Manager now presented the Panel with information on how different types of land were dealt with and land ownership procedures.  A copy of the presentation is attached.


The Chairman thanked the Operations Manager for her presentation and invited questions and comments from the Panel, as summarised below.


Councillor Fraser commented that the information provided in the presentation would be useful for Parish Councils and the Public Open Space Manager agreed to send the information to Parish Councils.


In response to a question from Councillor Westrop it was explained that there was criteria in place for what areas would be adopted by the Borough Council.  It also depended on the maintenance involved and if water features or lakes were part of the area as the Council was unlikely to have the resource available to maintain these. 


In response to a question from Councillor Parish it was confirmed that the Borough Council used Land Registry and their GIS system to confirm land ownership.


The Portfolio Holder for Environment, Councillor Devereux explained that maintenance of attenuation ponds and lakes had been mentioned at a recent conference he had attended.  He explained that Water Resources East would be investigating areas with water and what happened to them after developer responsibility ended.


The Chairman asked the Panel to consider making a recommendation which could be passed onto the organisations involved in grounds maintenance in the Borough, to request that they initiate a discussion about pieces of land where complaints had been received and where ownership was unknown and how these could possibly be maintained.  The Public Open Space Manager explained that he would pass on the Panel’s request to the relevant Director so that it could be cascaded down as appropriate.


The Chairman asked if Parishes were aware that they had the option to take on their own grass cutting.  The Public Open Space informed those present that Parishes were aware, and they could be reminded when the contents of the presentation was sent to them as requested earlier.  He explained that one Parish had decided to carry out their own maintenance and some Parishes had investigated the possibility of doing it themselves, but had not taken this up.


RESOLVED: (i) The Panel endorsed the current procedures and processes carried out by the Grounds Maintenance Team.

(ii) The Panel request that discussions be held with the relevant organisation regarding pieces of land where land ownership was unknown and how these areas could be maintained going forward.

(iii) Information to be sent to Parish Councils and published in the Members Bulletin.

(iv) The Panel to be kept up to date on progress as required.


Report from the Single Use Plastics Informal Working Group pdf icon PDF 102 KB

Additional documents:


The Chairman invited Councillor Parish, who had chaired the Single Use Plastics Informal Working Group to present the final report of the Informal Working Group.  A copy of his presentation is attached.


The Chairman thanked Informal Working Group for their report, and the work they had carried out, and invited questions and comments from the Panel, as summarised below.


At the request of the Chairman, Councillor Mrs Squire addressed the Panel under Standing Order 34.  She explained Norfolk County Council were also looking at Single Use Plastics and had drafted a comprehensive policy which would be passed through their decision making process shortly.  She explained that at Norfolk County Council the use of single use plastics would be minimised where possible and this included the coffee shop and restaurant, which had already made changes by using cans and glass instead of plastic, which had the added benefit of giving a greater return on recycling.  Single use coffee cups would also not be used at County Hall.  Norfolk County Council would also be creating a Charter which organisations and District Councils could sign up to.


Councillor Hopkins referred to the detrimental effect that plastics could have on the environment and how he often saw lots of litter in verges and dykes.  He stated that he supported the recommendations from the Informal Working Group and any other plans for reducing the amount of plastic waste.


In response to a question from the Vice Chairman, the Portfolio Holder for Environment, Councillor Devereux explained the Green Points Scheme had now ended.  It had been a nationally funded three year scheme and had been centrally administered. 


Councillor Mrs Westrop stated that there were some quick wins which could be achieved, such as changes to what was provided in vending machines in Council owned buildings.  She also expressed concerns with problems with community food banks, which had helped reduced waste, but regulations and risks meant that they were difficult to run, even though they were popular.  She hoped that the recommendation to appoint a Member Champion was taken forward so that they could look at issues such as community food banks.


Councillor Mrs Nockolds, the Portfolio Holder for Culture, Heritage and Health introduced an Ambassador for Keep Britain Tidy, who was present at the meeting and was involved in the Refill project and litter picking.  She explained that she worked very hard and congratulated her on her success.


RESOLVED: The Panel supported the recommendations put forward by the Informal Working Group, as set out below:


1. An Officer Focus Group be established, as detailed in the report, to promote internal best practice, make improvements where necessary and to address the issues below.  The group to provide updates to the Environment and Community Panel on an annual basis, or more frequently if required.

a) How to limit the use of single use plastics in buildings under its control and encourage employees and Members to reduce the amount of single use plastics used on council premises. 

            b) In  ...  view the full minutes text for item EC98:


Work Programme and Forward Decision List pdf icon PDF 66 KB

Additional documents:


Members of the Panel were reminded that an eform was available on the Intranet which could be completed and submitted if Members had items which they would like to be considered for addition to the Work Programme.


Councillor Mrs Collop referred to Grounds Maintenance.  She thought that an Informal Working Group was going to be set up to look at the amount of cuts in specific areas.  She explained that the King’s Lynn Consultative Committee had expressed interest in appointing a Member to the Informal Working Group.


The Assistant Director advised that this would be discussed that the next Sifting Meeting, to which Councillor Mrs Collop would be invited to attend to discuss the purpose of an Informal Working Group.


Councillor Mrs Collop also asked if it was possible for officers to send through their presentations as soon as possible so that they could be published to Members and read in advance of the meeting.  Officers agreed to programme deadline dates into their schedules to encourage officers to provide presentations in advance.


RESOLVED: The Panel’s Work Programme was noted.


Date of the next meeting

To note that the next meeting of the Environment and Community Panel is scheduled to take place on Tuesday 2nd April 2019 at 6.00pm in the Council Chamber, Town Hall, Saturday Market Place, King’s Lynn.


The next meeting of the Environment and Community Panel would be held on Tuesday 2nd April 2019 at 6.00pm in the Council Chamber, Town Hall, Saturday Market Place, King’s Lynn.