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Agenda and draft minutes

Venue: Melksham Community Campus Library

Contact: Kevin Fielding  (Democratic Services Officer)

Items
No. Item

87.

Chairman's Welcome, Introduction and Announcements

Chairman’s Announcements:

 

·         Annual Canvass

 

·         Post 16 Skills and Participation Officer

 

·         Engagement and Partnerships team structure

 

Supporting documents:

Minutes:

The Chairman welcomed everyone to the meeting of the Melksham Area Board.

 

The following Chairman’s Announcements contained in the agenda pack were

noted:

 

·       Annual Canvass

·       Post 16 Skills and Participation Officer

·       Engagement and Partnerships team structure

88.

Apologies for Absence

Minutes:

There were no apologies for absence.

89.

Minutes

To confirm the minutes of the meeting held on Wednesday 22 June 2022.

Supporting documents:

Minutes:

The minutes of the meeting held on 22 June 2022 were presented for consideration and it was;

 

Resolved

 

To approve and sign as a true and correct record of the minutes of the meeting held on 22 June 2022.

90.

Declarations of Interest

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

 

Minutes:

Cllr Nick Holder declared a non-pecuniary interest to Item 11, the Age Friendly Melksham grant application as a close relation was employed by the applicant.

91.

Introduction

Richard Rogers - Strategic Engagement and Partnerships Manager (Devizes, Melksham, Pewsey)

Minutes:

Richard Rogers (Strategic Engagement and Partnerships Manager) introduced the meeting and made the following points:

 

·       Richard Rogers introduced himself and provided an overview of his personal and professional backgrounds.

·       An overview of the Engagement Team restructure was provided with the role of Community Engagement Managers being removed and now replaced by Strategic Engagement Partnerships Managers and Area Board Delivery Officers.

·       Richard outlined there would be four parts to his role:

1)    Working with the Area Board to achieve priorities alongside the Wiltshire Council  business Plan.

2)    Working with the wider community to advise and enable them to do more within their local area.

3)    Dealing with corporate issues that may arise within the Council but may not sit within one service area or are unexpected.

4)    To recruit and manage a team of Area Board Delivery and Area Board Support Officers.

·       It was also stated that Area Boards would have closer links to the Extended Leadership Team, with Assistant Director of HR and OD, Tamsin Kielb having been assigned to Melksham Area Board.

92.

Police Update

Inspector Gill Hughes / Sergeant James Twyford

 

Minutes:

Inspector Andy Lemon gave an update on behalf of the Melksham Community

Policing Team. The update covered the following points:

 

·       A team update was provided, with it noted that Inspector Gill Hughes had been seconded to work on a project to rectify issues identified by the recent HMP Report.

·       In September, two successful drug warrants were issued as a result of community intelligence which was acted on, leading to several arrests.

·       The police have been active and were involved in positive community engagement at the Melksham Food and River Festival. On the day, public issues were surveyed, with members of the public stating that they were concerned about boy racers, congregating youths and anti-social behaviour.

·       It was noted that none of the top offenders recently were residents of Melksham and that there had been a decrease in burglaries with crime as a whole on a downward trend.

·       The force is looking to get additional resources in place to increase those on foot around the town.

 

Following the verbal update, there was time for the following points and questions to be raised:

 

·       It was suggested that though there seems to be heavy policing in the town, residents of villages feel let down and that they do not feel as though the police are servicing their area. Inspector Lemon stated that there is a strong belief that the police should be attending Parish Council meetings and that written reports should be provided, as well as being available to take questions and raise community concerns.

·       It was stated that currently the police currently has a young workforce with 60% of officers having less than 3 years of service. In addition there are a lot of sergeant vacancies, with a lot of recruitment issues down to pay. Many recruits are joining straight from university or school and therefore do not have as much life experience.

·       Feedback was provided that it was positive to hear that the police are aware of the boy racer problem. Inspector Lemon stated that further work will be conducted in the autumn months as these groups tend to congregate at Bowerhill on the old leisure centre site.

·       It was clarified that generally these are not the cars of residents but rather drivers who migrate in from Devizes and the surrounding area, with gatherings of over 200 cars having taken place in Swindon and Trowbridge industrial estates.

93.

Fire & Rescue Update

Station Manager Andrew Laskey

 

·         Dorset & Wiltshire Fire and Rescue Service presented the latest video update at their recent Authority meeting.  This edition summarised some of the notable incidents that the service had attended, and the good work being achieved across the Service in the last three months.

 

Public video: https://youtu.be/4AFZoVIszBQ 

 

Supporting documents:

Minutes:

The Area Board noted the extensive report which had been attached to the agenda pack.

94.

Update on investment at Melksham House

Minutes:

Cllr Phil Alford provided an update on the investment at Melksham House. The update covered the following points:

 

·       After a period of preparation work, construction started on the renovation of Melksham House two weeks ago, with an estimated completion date of Winter 2023.

·       A budget of £4.2m has been agreed by Cabinet.

·       Once complete, Melksham House will offer considerable office space, meeting rooms and a community hall.

·       The improvements to Melksham House will make it a zero-carbon facility, including modern sustainable technology.

·       During the presentation, an aerial and side profile views of the development were provided.

 

Following the verbal, update, there was time for the following points and questions to be raised:

 

·       Regarding the business case for the development, it was clarified that the building is Grade II listed with Wiltshire Council obliged to look after it. The Business case was to fit with planning recommendations and money would not be recouped for the development straight away.

95.

Cost of Living Crisis - An update on Wiltshire Council's Response

To receive an update from Stuart Honeyball, Assistant Director (Transformation & Business Change), on Wiltshire Council’s Response to the Cost-of-Living Crisis.

Minutes:

Stuart Honeyball, Assistant Director (Transformation & Business Change), provided an update on Wiltshire Council’s Response to the Cost-of-Living Crisis. The update covered the following points:

 

·       Though it is an early stage in the process, there has been lots of activity at officer level requested by the Leader, with a number of options being considered to support 1) staff, 2) residents and 3)  businesses.

·       Cost of living has been a key topic within Executive Leadership Team meetings, and assessments have been initiated across the three identified workstreams, which have all been allocated a director.

·       Eventually, the Leader will be presented with the options available and will then communicate what he would like the Council to do, also making a statement at a Cabinet meeting.

 

Following the verbal update, there was time for the following points and questions to be raised:

 

·       It was suggested that a 4th workstream be added that would cover the voluntary and community sector including community buildings. Stuart Honeyball agreed to feed this back.

96.

Area Board Work Programme

Any updates on priority areas of work for 2022/23:

 

·         Reducing Isolation and Loneliness

 

·         Promoting Youth Engagement and Positive Activities

 

·         Addressing Environmental Issues

 

·         Reducing Anti-Social Behaviour

 

·         Supporting Low Income Individuals and Families

Minutes:

Richard Rogers (Strategic Engagement and Partnerships Manager) stated that he would be looking at the priorities that Melksham Area Board has selected and will be speaking to Members to find actions that will support each priority. It was stated that it is likely that an action plan will be created and brought to the next meeting.

 

Cllr Jon Hubbard provided an update that work has taken place at the Youth Centre, with the continued growth of Teen Talk Counselling. This included a new partnership with Melksham Oak school for counsellor ran anger management sessions to take place, new group therapy sessions due to an increase in referrals as well as short term interventions for those who have previously received therapy.

 

The Area Board received updates on the following priority areas of work for 2022/2023:

 

Addressing Environmental Issues – Cllr Jonathon Seed

 

·       The Town Council have planned a Climate Fest, which will be taking place on 2 October 2022 with further details set to be announced.

·       Cllr Seed noted that a lot of positive work takes place within the community area towards climate and environmental issues, however these are not pulled together. It could therefore be beneficial to the community if something is produced to collate local climate and environmental projects to provide residents with confidence of what is taking place in the local area.

 

Reducing Anti-Social Behaviour – Cllr Mike Sankey

 

  • Work has been done with Melksham Town councillors in the East Ward to create an informal residents’ group. The group recently had a meeting at the rugby club, which was attended by 30 residents and Sergeant James Twyford, who provided a presentation on anti-social behaviour.
  • During the meeting, the importance of collecting intelligence for the police was reiterated, with it noted that when 101 calls take place a record is logged that can later be used to identify data hotspots.
  • At a recent meeting PCC Philip Wilkinson confirmed that funding is in place to recruit an additional 60+ officers, also hosting a robust Question and Answer session in which the main topic was anti-social behaviour.
  • Melksham Town Council is working on deployable CCTV cameras with work being done to identify potential locations for cameras.

97.

Sub Group Reports

Melksham Local Highways and Footpath Improvement Group

 

·         Recommendations from meeting held on 4 August

 

 

Melksham Health and Wellbeing Group

 

·         Young Carers event update

 

·         Next meeting October 2022

 

Supporting documents:

Minutes:

Melksham Local Highways and Footpath Improvement Group

 

Cllr Jonathon Seed introduced the minutes and recommendations from the LHFIG meeting held on 4 August 2022. The recommendations included the following:

 

To close the following Issue:

  • 9-21-8 Melksham Heather Avenue

 

To add the following Issues (with funding) to the Priority Schemes List:

  • 9-20-9 Melksham Maple Close Footway (£10,000)
  • 9-22-1 Melksham Hazelwood

 

To add the following Issues to the Priority Schemes List:

  • 9-22-5 Melksham Wharf Court Signs
  • 9-22-10 Berryfield Bus Shelters
  • 9-22-12 Bowerhill Halifax Road Drop Kerbs
  • 9-22-16 Berryfields signs to village hall

 

A new policy on submission of issues to the LHFIG was also agreed:

 

i) Each agenda item should be discussed and ratified by the relevant Full Council of each Town and Parish Council unless an alternative process is agreed and accepted by LFHIG

 

ii) Attendance at LHFIG should be by an authorised representative who is fully briefed, has visited the site and is authorised to act on behalf of the Council

 

iii) Each Council should be committed to part-fund each project: financial contributions will normally be expected at a rate of 50% for the larger councils (Melksham Town and Melksham Without) and 25% for the other smaller councils

 

iv) The Chairman of the LHFIG reserves the right to withdraw consideration of any agenda item not meeting these requirements

 

It was noted that as the minutes and recommendations of the LHFIG meeting on 4 August 2022 had not been attached to the agenda for advertisement, the Area Board could not formally sign off on the recommendations. It was noted that the public did not raise any issues with the recommendations and that a single item Area Board would be convened to formalise the passing of the recommendations.

 

Melksham Health and Wellbeing Group

 

Richard Rogers provided an update on behalf of the Melksham Health and Wellbeing Group. The update covered the following points:

 

  • The Area Board recognised that carers and in particular young carers, had been impacted and therefore wanted to organise a celebration for them to attend for their contributions they had made.
  • Youth Action Wiltshire proposed two separate events for Primary and Secondary Age carers and that dates are currently being investigated before a venue can be booked. It was also stated that transport would be provided to the events for those who would require it.
  • Regarding Young Adult Carers, it was proposed that on March 16 (Young Carers Action Day), local carers between ages 15 and 25 would be provided with a reward such as being taken for a meal or to an escape room. It was stated that the Area Board would like to provide these people with gifts and would welcome support from local businesses.
  • The next Health and Wellbeing Board meeting will take place on 26 October 2022.

 

Resolved:

 

1.     The Area Board noted and approved the running of the 2 young carers events.

2.     The Area Board agreed to the provision of an event for young adult carers.

98.

Grant Applications

 Community Grants

 

  • Bowerhill Village Hall requesting £5,000 for replacement doors

 

  • Melksham Goes Wild requesting £300 towards the “Blue Campaign” to make Melksham more insect and wildlife friendly

 

  • Berryfield Village Hall Committee requesting £2,233 for new table and chairs at the village hall

 

 

Youth Grant

 

  • Melksham Amateur Swimming Club (Melksham Swordfish) requesting £1,360 towards teacher and coach training

 

 

Health and Wellbeing Grants

 

·         Wiltshire Music Centre requesting £1,500 match funding for “Celebrating Age Wiltshire” arts and heritage events for isolated, older people in Melksham 

 

·         Age Friendly Melksham requesting £882 towards Phase 2 of the development of Melksham as an age-friendly community

 

·         Carer Support Wiltshire requesting £1,300 towards the new Carer Café in Melksham 

 

Supporting documents:

Minutes:

It was noted that a decision had been made through delegation to award £500 towards a memorial bench in memory of Councillor Roy While and that the Area Board were in the process of identifying a location.

 

The Area Board considered the following applications for funding:

 

Community Area Grants:

 

·       Bowerhill Village Hall requesting £5,000 for replacement doors.

 

Resolved:

 

Bowerhill Village Hall was awarded £5,000 towards replacement doors.

 

·       Melksham Goes Wild requesting £300 towards the “Blue Campaign” to make Melksham more insect and wildlife friendly.

 

Resolved:

 

Melksham Goes Wild was awarded £300 towards the “Blue Campaign” to make Melksham more insect and wildlife friendly.

 

·       Berryfield Village Hall Committee requesting £2,233 for new table and chairs at the village hall.

 

Resolved:

 

Berryfield Village Hall was awarded £2,233 towards new table and chairs at the village hall.

 

Youth Grants:

 

·       Melksham Amateur Swimming Club (Melksham Swordfish) requesting £1,360 towards teacher and coach training.

 

Resolved:

 

Melksham Amateur Swimming Club (Melksham Swordfish) was awarded £1,360 towards teacher and coach training.

 

Health and Wellbeing Grants:

 

·       Wiltshire Music Centre requesting £1,500 match funding for “Celebrating Age Wiltshire” arts and heritage events for isolated, older people in Melksham.

 

Resolved:

 

Wiltshire Music Centre was awarded £1,500 towards “Celebrating Age Wiltshire” arts and heritage events for isolated, older people in Melksham.

 

·       Age Friendly Melksham requesting £882 towards Phase 2 of the development of Melksham as an age-friendly community

 

The grant application from Age Friendly Melksham was withdrawn prior to the start of the Area Board meeting.

 

·       Carer Support Wiltshire requesting £1,300 towards the new Carer Café in Melksham.

 

Resolved:

 

Carer Support Wiltshire was awarded £500 towards the new Carer Café in Melksham, subject to the applicant being able to provide the project with the awarded £500.

99.

Partner Updates

To note written partner updates

 

·         Melksham Neighbourhood Plan

 

·         Update from BANES, Swindon and Wiltshire Integrated Care Board - August 2022

 

·         CCG & Healthwatch Wiltshire

 

·         Town and Parish Councils

 

Supporting documents:

Minutes:

The following written partner updates contained in the agenda pack were noted:

 

·       Melksham Neighbourhood Plan

·       Update from BANES, Swindon and Wiltshire Integrated Care Board - August 2022

·       CCG & Healthwatch Wiltshire

·       Town and Parish Councils

 

Cllr Mike Sankey provided an additional verbal update on the Melksham Neighbourhood Plan. The verbal update covered the following points:

 

·       Various task groups had taken place to contribute towards the Neighbourhood Plan, including a Housing Rask Group, which would shortlist sites for allocation before engaging with land owners.

·       A Housing Needs Assessment has also been completed by AECOM.

·       Attention was drawn to the recent planning appeal hearing which had been upheld for a site on Semington Road for 50 affordable dwellings.

·       AECOM have been appointed to look at the Town Centre Master Plan work.

·       Emphasis was also placed on protecting local heritage assets, climate issues and ensuring that local priorities are addressed as the proposed Bypass and Melksham Link Canal projects progress.

100.

Public Questions

Members of the public are invited to ask questions relating to Area Board business

 

Minutes:

The following questions were received from members of the public:

 

It was queried whether the Area Board would be discussing the Age Friendly  Melksham grant application, to which it was clarified that this application had been withdrawn by the applicant prior to the meeting.

101.

Close

Minutes:

 

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