Agenda and minutes
Venue: Committee Room 1 - Wallasey Town Hall. View directions
Contact: Andrew Mossop 0151 691 8501
Members' Code of Conduct - Declarations of Interest
Members are asked to consider whether they have any disclosable pecuniary interests and / or any other relevant interest in connection with any item(s) on this agenda and, if so, to declare them and state the nature of the interest.
Members were asked to consider whether they had any disclosable pecuniary interests and/or any other relevant interest in connection with any item(s) on this agenda and, if so, to declare them and state the nature of the interest.
Councillor Anita Leech declared a personal interest, by virtue of her being Chair of the Planning Committee, in any discussion that might arise with regard to questions on a proposed golf resort in Hoylake, agenda item 4, ‘Public Question Time’.
Councillors Pat Hackett and Tony Jones declared prejudicial interests by virtue of them being a member and a deputy, respectively, on the Planning Committee, if there was any discussion with regard to questions on a proposed golf resort in Hoylake, agenda item 4, ‘Public Question Time’.
Councillor Ian Lewis declared a personal interest in agenda item 7, ‘Wirral Pedestrians’ Association Request: Nomination of a Road Affected by Pavement Parking’, by virtue of his membership of the Wirral Pedestrians’ Association’.
Apologies for Absence
Apologies had been received from Councillors Ron Abbey, Chris Blakeley, Paul Hayes, Treena Johnson, Adrian Jones and Chris Spriggs, and also community representative, Sarah Spoor.
To approve the accuracy of the minutes of the meeting held on 27 September, 2017.
Resolved – That the minutes of the Wallasey Constituency Committee meeting held on 27 September, 2017, be approved.
Public Question Time
The Chair informed the meeting that before opening the floor to questions, Susan Brown, Chair of the Wirral Society of Arts would address the Committee on the Wirral Libraries Troll Trail.
The objective of the ‘Troll Trail’ was to increase usage of the Borough’s libraries. The need for an increase in income was acknowledged, and an increase in usage of and footfall at libraries was needed. The Society had undertaken a survey into library usage and it had found that many people did not know their library opening times and that, in some areas where many people did not have computers, many did not know that they could access IT at libraries.
With the ‘Troll Trail’ young people would be encouraged to make their own troll with salt dough and take it to their local library up to 1 June, 2018; the trolls would be judged and small prizes awarded. The ‘Troll Trail’ was supported by leaflets providing links to library opening times and details of facilities available, and samples of leaflets and the salt dough were circulated at the meeting. The approach had been supported by and would be promoted through the Wirral Festival of Firsts.
The Chair then thanked Susan Brown for her presentation.
The Chair then asked for questions from Rev. Father Leon Ostaszewski, and he asked about the proposed artwork for the Liscard ‘gateways’. He also raised the matter of bus stop markings at the Belvidere Road / Wallasey Road junction and the road surface at Leander Road.
In response, Caroline Laing, Constituency Manager, stated that the artwork would be funded by the Wirral Chamber of Commerce and would be replaced very shortly.
Caroline Laing then informed the meeting that a number of questions had been received in advance of the meeting and each of these together with the responses were read out to the meeting; the questions and responses were also appended to the minutes. Those people who had submitted questions in advance and had indicated that they would be present at the meeting were asked if they would like to personally ask their question, Mr Simpson of Greasby asked his question in respect of affordable housing.
A number of questions had also been received in respect of the proposed Golf Resort in Hoylake and she read out each of these in turn.
The Chair informed the meeting that a list of frequently asked questions and responses in respect of the proposed Hoylake Golf Resort were provided and copies were available at the meeting. They could also be viewed here. She also informed the meeting that there were no officers present at the meeting to answer any of these questions but that the proposed resort had not yet been agreed and feasibility studies were still to be considered.
The Chair then invited any further questions from members of the audience.
Questions were raised regarding the condition of the highway and pavements at the junction of Atherton Street and St George’s Mount, New Brighton and also ... view the full minutes text for item 24.
Community Representatives' Update
Jenni Jones gave an update to the Committee and informed the meeting of real positive shifts in local communities getting involved.
Wirral Together - Working with our Local Communities
Presentation by Rachael Musgrave, Consultant in Public Health.
The Committee received a presentation from Rachael Musgrave, Consultant in Public Health on matters relating to the future of neighbourhood working.
A review considering the effectiveness of current neighbourhood working arrangements had been undertaken. The Constituency Committees were part of the current approach, the Committees being formed several years ago to replace Area Forums to provide an opportunity for residents to hear updates on local services and to raise issues. Reference was made to a study indicating that 97% of people felt that local communities would improve if people had an input, but that around 51% of Wirral residents felt they had no influence; this suggested that things had to change if the Council wished to increase participation. This was important as 75% of the actions related to the 2020 Vision and Pledges required local working and resident involvement.
The review into Constituency Committee effectiveness had considered what other models there were for neighbourhood working in use elsewhere; what value could be placed on investment to date; and what were the views of partners, residents and councillors.
Rachael Musgrave advised that a review of approaches elsewhere revealed a variety of approaches but none that had been formally evaluated. While there were some success factors, such as in differing ways of engagement and in ensuring ownership and transparency, there was no particular answer but to find the best way forward for Wirral. Looking at social value and return on the Committees’ budget expenditure since 2013, while acknowledging that individual Committee’s adopted their own priorities and approaches the review had shown an average £2.68 return for every £1 Committee grant. In seeking the views of others, there was a consensus that work with partners and the community had both to be done and be valued, and that community action made a difference.
It was concluded that one size would not fit all, and that existing networks should be used to engage with agencies and with communities, as opposed to expecting them to come to the Council. It was felt that a Committee meeting was not necessarily the best way to approach this. Other considerations from consultation were that small grants and seed funding was really useful; that the dedicated officer support for Councillors benefited the process in tackling issues and making connections; there was a need for a ‘community builder’ to better connect local groups; but there was a feeling of apathy with the political system.
A Member expressed the view that he felt that this was just tinkering at the edges and that what was needed was not just an evaluation but more funds to support community groups. Another Member expressed the wish to see the development of stronger ties with local communities.
The Chair thanked Rachael Musgrave for her presentation and it was then –
Resolved – That the presentation be noted.
Wirral Pedestrians' Association Request: Nomination of a Road Affected by Pavement Parking
Councillor Ian Lewis informed the meeting that the Wirral Pedestrians’ Association was asking each Constituency Committee to nominate a road affected by pavement parking which would then be monitored.
Councillors then suggested the following four roads:
· Grosvenor Road, New Brighton
· Digg Lane , Moreton
· Maldwyn Road, Liscard
· Gardenside, Leasowe
Councillor Lewis stated that the Association would be grateful to receive all four suggestions and then decide which would be selected.