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Agenda and minutes

Venue: Online Meeting

Contact: Tara Shannon  Senior Democratic Services Officer


Note No. Item




To welcome those present to the meeting.


The Chairman welcomed those present to the meeting, ran through the procedures for remote meetings and invited Members to introduce themselves.



Apologies for Absence

To receive any apologies for absence.


Apologies for absence had been received from:


·       Inspector Allen Lumley, Devizes Police

·       Ralph Plummer, Headteacher, Lavington School

·       Georgina Keily-Theobald, Headteacher, Downlands School

·       Keith Brindle, St James’s Church




To approve and sign as a correct record the minutes of the meetings held on 15 March 2021 and 18 May 2021.


Supporting documents:


The minutes of the last meeting were considered. It was




To approve as a correct record the minutes of the meeting held on 15 March 2021 and 18 May 2021.



Declarations of Interest

To receive any declarations of disclosable interests or dispensations granted by the Standards Committee.



Cllr Iain Wallis declared 2 interests as follows:


·       One for transparencies sake in agenda item 6, Partner Updates, as he was a trustee of Devizes Opendoors. This item was an update and there was no vote on the item.

·       A non-pecuniary interest in agenda item 14, the two Health and Wellbeing grants received from Devizes Rotary, as he was a member of Devizes Rotary.





Chairman's Announcements

To receive the following announcements through the Chairman:


·       Area Board Operational Model 2021 onwards.

A new model with 4 business meetings a year and informal engagement events or activities when required.


·       Procedural Note

All decisions (such as grant awards) at this meeting will be ratified by the Leader of Wiltshire Council following the meeting. This is to comply with legal requirements as the meeting is being held online.


·       Devizes Seagulls

Cllr Laura Mayes to update. 


·       Could you volunteer as a Co-Ordinator for Devizes Link Scheme?

Are you outgoing and friendly with a warm telephone manner and great organisation skills? Are you a good listener and communicator?

If you have some spare time and would like to get involved in volunteering, then this could be for you.

Co-Ordinators will typically operate from home receiving requests from clients or other services.

For more information, please contact Peter Evans on 01380 722499 or email peter4devizes@hotmail.co.uk.


Supporting documents:


The Chairman made the announcements as detailed in the agenda pack.


Cllr Laura Mayes gave an update on Devizes urban gulls. Cllr Mayes stated that urban gulls had been a problem in Devizes around 8 years ago. The Area Board and Wiltshire Council had worked together to obtain a licence to remove eggs. Devizes Town Council then took this responsibility on and the process had worked well in reducing the gull population. National policy had now changed and the application for a licence to remove eggs had been refused in 2020 and 2021, so the gull population had been increasing and causing issues. Cllrs Nash and Wallis were planning to lead a working group on the issue. It was clear that central government would need to be lobbied in order to change policies so that the problem could be addressed. It was hoped that the public would get in touch in order to support the work. 






Partner Updates

To receive updates from the following partners:


·       Wiltshire Police

·       Dorset and Wiltshire Fire and Rescue Service

·       Schools updates

·       Healthwatch Wiltshire

·       CCG B&ANES, Swindon and Wiltshire

·       Town and Parish Councils

·       Devizes indies

Supporting documents:


In addition to the partner updates in the agenda the following verbal updates were given:


·       Schools updates


Mark Lascelles, Headteacher, Dauntsey’s, gave a brief update stating that the school was COVID free and things were going well although unfortunately some events such as the end of year ball, prize giving and speech day had been cancelled. They were hoping for good teacher assessed grades in the summer.


Ralph Plummer, Headteacher, Lavington School, had submitted a late written report which was read by the Democratic Services Officer summarised as follows:

o   The school had just submitted teacher assessed grades to exam boards

o   They had postponed some transition activities for Year 6 into 7 but continued to deliver some remote elements

o   A large proportion of their Year 6 to 7 pupils had signed up for our summer school – running form 9th August

o   they were not running Year 5 taster days were not running in the summer, but instead there would be an open evening in September

o   They had to delay Year 11 celebration events and a number of show case events (performing arts) but were hopeful some of these things could happen in the last week of term.

o   Students were continuing to test at home twice a week, there were still a few students each day isolating

o   Mock exams were underway with Year 10 and there would be end of Year assessments for all pupils, they continued to complete parents evenings remotely which had received positive feedback.


·       Town and Parish Councils


Devizes Town Council (DTC) gave a brief update, they were into a new Council and were looking at priorities, such as how to manage open spaces with a more bio-diverse way of working. DTC continued to work with the NHS to deliver vaccines up to the end of July and possibly in August as well. 


·       Devizes Indies


Jemma Brown of Devizes Indies gave an update. Retailers had been very hard hit by the pandemic and lock downs, so another Indie Day had been held. The event was well advertised and seen and the brand was gaining momentum. Some of the independent retailers had done very well although footfall had been mixed for others. As well as locals, people had attended the event from out of town which was positive. Possible future projects included taking the high street green, which was being supported by the Town Council. Maps of independent retailers could now be found on the InDevizes website. There had been positive feedback from Pewsey who wanted to emulate what the Devizes Indies had achieved and the hope was that similar schemes could be rolled out across the county. The project was run by volunteers, who all run their own independent businesses, so was a lot of work and the indie day had been exhausting but was a good result.


·       Devizes Opendoors


Noel Woolrych gave an update on Devizes Opendoors who helped homeless and vulnerable adults towards safe, settled homes. People interested  ...  view the full minutes text for item 9.



National Grid VIP Project

To receive an update from the National Grid Visual Impact Provision team on their project in the Devizes Community Area.



Matt Wooldridge and Ben Smith gave an update on the National Grid VIP project. In Devizes up to 13 pylons and 4.5km of overhead line would be replaced with underground cables. This would be a 2 year major civil engineering project which was stakeholder led. Slides were shown detailing the potential cable route and how the cable sealing end, placed where the cable went from overhead to underground could look. Ground investigation works were underway, with archaeological, geophysical and unexploded ordinance surveys taking place. The data would be used to help plan the optimum route for the cable. The cable would be laid approximately 1 metre below ground so that normal farming could continue. The crossing of the A361 was an issue, it was hoped that they could go under the road without having an impact by using horizontal directional drilling. The positive impact on the AONB and the town of Devizes by the removal of the overhead cables was the reason that the project was chosen to be implemented. An indicative timeline was discussed, with consulting, surveys, agreements and design taking place in 2021. During 2022-23 site preparation, construction and reinstatement would take place and in 2024 the pylons would be removed. Briefings and events would continue in order to keep people informed. The website Going underground: improving the landscape in Devizes – North Wessex Downs (nationalgrid.co.uk) would also be kept up to date with information.


During questions Cllr Laura Mayes, stated that she was excited by the project as it fell within her division and thanked the team for works already undertaken and minimising congestion in Conscientious Lane. Cllr Mayes hoped that this high standard could be maintained and every effort made to make the project easier for those living there.




Community Engagement Manager (CEM) Delegated Decision

To agree a revised CEM Delegated Authority to award funding in between meetings.


Supporting documents:


The Chairman introduced a report on page 49 of the agenda which detailed a proposal that the delegated authority of the CEM be updated to enable urgent grant applications to be determined in between meetings.


The Chairman proposed the motion as detailed in the report, which was seconded by Cllr Simon Jacobs, it was:




That in order to expedite the work of the Area Board and to deal with urgent matters that may arise between meetings, the Community Engagement Manager, following consultation with the Chairman (or in their absence, the Vice Chairman) of the Area Board, may authorise expenditure to support community projects (including youth, health and wellbeing and community area transport) from the delegated budget of up to £5,000 per application between meetings of the Area Board. The Community Engagement Manager should seek the views of all Area Board members to obtain a majority in support, prior to the expenditure being agreed.


Decisions taken between meetings will be reported in the funding report to the next meeting of the Area Board explaining why the matter was considered urgent or necessary to expedite the work of the Board. Where a significant number of urgent matters arise between meetings, a special meeting may be called, following consultation with the Chairman to determine such matters.



Community Area Status Report and Area Board priority setting.

Area Board discussion on the findings, recommendations and next steps detailed in the Community Status Report.


Supporting documents:


Andrew Jack, Community Engagement Manager, gave an update to the meeting on the Community Area Status Report. The report was a way to identify local priorities and came about as a replacement of the Joint Strategic Needs assessment process, which identified priorities prior to the pandemic. The CEM had consulted with many community groups in the area and considered lots of data in order to produce the report.


The top 10 emerging issues and themes so far were identified as:


1.    We are a very rural population with a slightly higher than average older population

2.    A key issue was therefore around isolation – access to services, loneliness

3.    Support and positive activities for young people was difficult due to rural area, distance into town and three separate secondary schools

4.    Unemployment rates, those claiming universal benefit and debt had increased during COVID.

5.    We have a high number of independent businesses. Support was needed to keep town centre vibrant.

6.    Average house prices may be lower than average but still exclude younger and local buyers – demand for affordable housing was high.

7.    The internet opens some doors but also can exclude other people.

8.    There was a lot of support for protecting the environment and to promote eco-friendly living.

9.    We know we need to do more to facilitate sustainable modes of travel.

10.Communities would need support to get back up and running when it was safer to do so.


Next steps would be for the Area Board to look at which issues it can make the most difference to and create a rolling programme (a bit like the CATG process) focusing upon a maximum of 5 issues at any one time.


All local organisations and partners will be encouraged to consider where they are best placed to make a difference and then take action. A whole community response was required.


This item would come back to the next Area Board meeting for the top 5 priorities to be confirmed and an action plan to be presented.





Appointments of Lead Members to Outside Bodies and Working Groups

To agree the appointments of Lead Councillors for 2021/22 to:


·       Outside Bodies

·       Working groups and

·       Any focus areas


Supporting documents:


The Chairman announced the intention of the Area Board to appoint lead members to outside bodies, working groups and focus areas in line with the proposals set out on pages 69 – 88 of the agenda pack.


After the discussion it was




a)    That the Area Board Appoint Members as Lead representatives to the Outside Bodies listed in Appendix A as follows:


·       Devizes Leisure Centre – Cllr Tamara Reay and Cllr Philip Whitehead


·       Devizes & District Association of the Disabled Executive Committee (Nursteed Centre) – Cllr Kelvin Nash


·       Devizes Development Partnership – Cllr Iain Wallis


b)    That the Area Board reconstitute and appoint Lead representatives to AB Themed Areas and the Working Group(s) listed in Appendix B as follows:


·       Highways and Transport inc. CATG – Cllr Dominic Muns


·       Air Quality and Sustainable Transport – Tamara Reay


·       Children& Young People – Cllr Dominic Muns


·       HWB inc the HWBG – Cllr Simon Jacobs


·       Economy and Employment – Cllr Iain Wallis


·       Environment – Cllr Tamara Reay


·       Older People – Cllr Simon Jacobs


·       Arts, Culture and Leisure – Cllr Kelvin Nash


·       Community Safety – Cllr Kelvin Nash


·       Housing and Development – Cllr Tamara Reay


c)    That the Area Board note the Terms of Reference for the Working Group(s), as set out in Appendix C




Open Floor

Residents are invited to ask questions of their local councillors.


There were no questions for the Board from meeting attendees.




Community Area Transport Group (CATG)

To consider the update and any recommendations arising from the Community Area Transport Group (CATG).

Supporting documents:


Cllr Dominic Muns gave an update on the CATG meeting held on 25 May 2021. Eight high priority schemes were identified as follows;


·       Speed limit review, A342 Lydeway: Speed reduction to 50mph confirmed. Contribution from PC now agreed so implementation could begin.

·       No through road, Rotherstone, Devizes: TRO advertised and signed off. Work on the ground was set to begin.

·       New footway linking Tanis, Conscience Lane, Rowde: Project being developed and costs were increasing. A bid for Substantive Funding would be made summer ‘21.

·       Signage for amenities, A342, Bromham: Signage had been agreed; PC confirmed their contribution so installation could begin.

·       Speed limit review, A342, Bromham: PC contribution now agreed by CATG. Review had been programmed with contractor.

·       New 20mph limits, various roads, Devizes: Plan of roads to be included agreed; contribution from TC agreed; assessment had been programmed with contractor


New priorities were identified as;


·       Pedestrian warning signage, A342, Bromham. CATG accepted scheme; PC confirmed contribution.

·       New dropped kerbs, Market Lavington: Plan of locations agreed with Highways. Contribution from PC agreed. Work could progress.


The following success was completed:


·       No HGV signage at Little Cheverell – Work was now complete and this had been signed off list.


After a proposal from Cllr Dominic Muns, seconded by Cllr Kelvin Nash it was




·       That Devizes Area Board to note the discussions from the CATG meeting of 25 May

·       To confirm the eight high priority schemes agreed by CATG (listed above)

·       To confirm the following allocations of CATG funding:

o   £5,500 towards implementing new 50mph limit at A342, Lydeway

o   £4,500 towards implementing no through road at Rotherstone

o   £1,275 towards new amenity signage, A342 at Bromham

o   £1,850 towards speed limit review at A342 at Bromham

o   £1,850 towards 20mph assessments throughout Devizes

o   £2,000 towards installing new dropped kerbs at Market Lavington

o   £450 (circa) towards new pedestrian warning sign in Bromham


The date of the next CATG meeting was announced as 27 July 2021.




Youth updates and grants

To receive any updates on local youth work and consider the following application for youth grant funding:


·       Youth Adventure Trust, £2987.73 towards supportig disadvantaged young people through the pandemic and beyond.




Steve Dewar of Wiltshire YFC gave an update to the meeting. Mr Dewar had been running youth work in the Devizes Area for around 10 years. The WYFC team was small but had continued to work throughout the pandemic, engaging and supporting young people, going into schools, undertaking mentoring sessions, undertaking detached work and running the pop-up youth café. The team also supported local youth clubs. Unfortunately, many had closed during the pandemic and it was hoped that some of them could reopen as demand for support was higher due to the pandemic. Mr Dewar welcomed any support that could be given for these initiatives.


In response to a question Mr Dewar gave some details regarding the pop-up youth café which involved a bespoke van which had all sorts of equipment to help engaging with young people. This pop-up café would set up on the green in Devizes and year on year attendance increased. It was free for young people and they would like to use it more, however staffing was limited so if anyone was interested in supporting them or work with them, Mr Dewar encouraged them to get in touch. WYFC would be submitting a grant application to the Board to request funds to help running the pop-up café this year.


Cllr Dominic Muns agreed that putting young children at the heart of what we do was really important and thanked Mr Dewar and his team for their work.


The board then considered a youth grant application. A representative of the Youth Adventure Trust spoke in support of their application and it was




·       To grant the Youth Adventure Trust, £2987.73 towards supporting disadvantaged young people through the pandemic and beyond.




Health and Wellbeing Group

To receive an update on the Devizes Health and Wellbeing Group and consider the following applications for Health and Wellbeing funding:


·       Devizes Rotary, £150.00 towards their Be Active Tea Dance.

·       Wiltshire Museum, £900.00 towards their Common Ground project.

·       Devizes Rotary, £1579.56 towards their Devizes Be Active Event 2021.




Cliff Evans, Chairman of the HWBG gave an update to the meeting. The group had in previous years run Health and Wellbeing Days and were planning for another on 4 September 2021 on the green in Devizes. The aim was to give community groups a chance to come together to network and also to showcase what they do, showing what services and activities were available.


The group also wanted to encourage people to be active and so the HWB day would be branded the Be Active Event and the group wanted to encourage activities throughout the week prior so there would and also be a Be Active Tea Dance which would take place on 2 September 2021, partners had applied for grants to help support these events.


The Board then considered the applications for HWB funding as detailed in the agenda pack. Cllr Simon Jacobs spoke in support of the Be Active Rotary applications and a representatives of Wiltshire Museum and The Devizes Men’s Shed spoke in support of their applications. It was




·       To grant Devizes Rotary, £150.00 towards their Be Active Tea Dance

·       To grant Wiltshire Museum, £900.00 towards their Common Ground project.

·       To grant Devizes Rotary, £1,579.56 towards their Devizes Be Active Event 2021.

·       To grant the Devizes Men’s Shed, 150.00 towards reopening the shed. It was noted that this had been incorrectly labelled in the agenda pack as an Area Board Initiative, when it was in fact a Health and Wellbeing grant.





Area Board Funding

To consider the following applications to the Community Area Grants Scheme:


·       Area Board Initiative – Devizes mens Shed, £150.00 towards reopening the shed.

·       Seend Parish Council, £1000.00 towards repair of a bus shelter.

·       Wharf Theatre, £1260.00 towards a new bolier.

·       Bromham Parish Council, £5000.00 towards resurfacing Bromham Bike Track with tarmac.

·       Erlestoke Parish Council, £1500.00 towards a SID for Erlestoke.





Supporting documents:


The Chairman introduced the grants as detailed in the agenda. Representatives of the organisations applying for grants spoke in support of their applications. It was,




·       To grant Seend Parish Council, £1000.00 towards repair of a bus shelter.


·       To grant the Wharf Theatre, £1260.00 towards a new boiler.


·       To grant Bromham Parish Council, £5000.00 towards upgrading Bromham Bike Track with tarmac.


·       To defer the application from Erlestoke Parish Council for £1500.00 towards a SID for Erlestoke, in order for the parish to get more evidence to support the proposal.




Urgent items

Any other items of business which the Chairman agrees to consider as a matter of urgency.


There were no urgent items.





The next ordinary meeting of the Area Board will be held on 6 September 2021.



The Chairman thanked everyone for attending and announced that the next meeting of the Devizes Area Board would take place on 6 September 2021, at 6.30pm.





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