Agenda and minutes

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Contact: Mike Jones, Principal Democratic Services Officer  Tel: 0151 691 8363 Email:


No. Item



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The Chair welcomed attendees and viewers to the meeting and reminded everyone that the meeting was webcast and retained on the Council’s website.



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Apologies for absence had been received from Councillors Chris Spriggs,

Brian Kenny and Steve Williams.



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.

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Members were 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. No interests were declared.


MINUTES pdf icon PDF 91 KB

To approve the accuracy of the minutes of the meeting held on 17 November 2021.

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Resolved –

That the minutes of the meeting of the Tourism, Communities, Culture and Leisure Committee held on 17 November 2021 be approved and adopted as a correct record.


Public Questions

Notice of question to be given in writing or by email by 12 noon, Thursday 13 January 2022 to the Council’s Monitoring Officer ( and to be dealt with in accordance with Standing Order 10.

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Six public questions had been received:


Question from Jonathon white

Hi my name Jonathon white, I am a resident in Wirral, I live in Liscard and was brought up in Moreton. I work as a PE teacher at Claremount Specialist Sports College and I was in 2020 the National Special Educational Needs Teacher of the Year. I am the inclusion lead for the Youth Sports Trust in Merseyside and I sit on the National Inclusion Steering Group with Swim England and the Department for Education. And I also manage a 21 secondary schools sports partnership called Peninsula PE which has over £85,000 worth of Sports England funding.

My question will be about Woodchurch swimming baths. I work with all the school on the Woodchurch Estate, the special schools and the primary school. It might seem a small figure in the context of some of the figures you may have been asked to discuss tonight or during this week, I also have a £3,000 pot of funding to work with swimming pools, local providers, Edsential obviously with being the provider for the Council, to increase the confidence and competence of your swim educators here in Wirral, around how to include young people with autism. I would also like to remind everybody that Wirral Council is also a member of the Merseyside Water Safety Forum.

My question is this: Is the committee aware of how many special schools in Wirral use Woodchurch Swimming Pool for their swimming lessons and, does the committee know why special schools in Wirral especially value Woodchurch Swimming pool?

Answer: Arrangements for school swimming is predominantly agreed between the Council and Edsential, the Council’s education partner responsible for the management of this service. Edsential and the schools are responsible for ensuring that all statutory requirements relating to school swimming are fulfilled, irrespective of the designation of any particular school.  All schools that were previously utilising Woodchurch have been relocated to other Council facilities without issue.


Question from Ruth Molyneux

My name is Ruth Molyneux and I live in Eastham. I am here to speak on behalf of Bromborough Library. Bromborough Library is a much-loved community resource and hub. Hundreds of people have signed a petition against its closure and left these comments:

From Toni: Libraries are the gift of knowledge, entertainment and company that is still needed for young and old.

Linda: This is a much loved and used part of Bromborough Village Community and needs to stay in our village.

Carole: The library is the heart of our local community. The emotional, mental, and intellectual wellbeing of all, from tots to the elderly is helped and should not be undervalued. Future generations deserve local access to an improved not removed library facility.

From Maureen: This is such an important community resource in Bromborough. I have always found it a very helpful, friendly, efficient library to use. Personally I found Bromborough Library invaluable during a very difficult time in my life.

Angela: The Library is most important  ...  view the full minutes text for item 56.


Statements and Petitions

Notice of representations to be given in writing or by email by 12 noon, Thursday 13 January 2022 to the Council’s Monitoring Officer ( and to be dealt with in accordance with Standing Order 11.1.


Petitions may be presented to the Committee. The person presenting the petition will be allowed to address the meeting briefly (not exceeding one minute) to outline the aims of the petition. The Chair will refer the matter to another appropriate body of the Council within whose terms of reference it falls without discussion, unless a relevant item appears elsewhere on the Agenda. Please give notice of petitions to in advance of the meeting.

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No statements or petitions had been received.


Questions by Members

Questions by Members to be dealt with in accordance with Standing Orders 12.3 to 12.8.

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No questions from Members had been received by the required deadline.


Councillor Julie McManus asked a question without notice and the Chair had it answered by officers.


Question from Councillor Julie McManus:

Following on from public questions about swimming, can you confirm what has put into place that those children who travel further what provision will be made for them?

What will happen during Open golf championships as Hoylake golf course will be used during the Open?



Hoylake is instrumental at hosting the Open golf championship in 2023. The requirement however is more related to a practice piece of ground and car parking space so there is no material effect to the municipal golf course but we are exploring options.

We work with Edsenstial regarding swimming lessons. Arrangements have been made for all schools at alternative sites.


Councillor Julie McManus asked a supplementary question which was what were the transport arrangements to get people there.


Answer to supplementary question:


The following schools utilised Woodchurch pre-Covid, and have been relocated as per the second column


Primary School

Relocated To


West Kirby








West Kirby

St Peters


St Pauls






Woodchurch Rd


New Brighton

Guinea Gap

Bidston Avenue




Additional Information


1.  Edsential (CIC) are recognised as a key Wirral Council partner and the coordinator of primary school curriculum swimming in Wirral. As a result, we have always given Edsential priority booking/programming rights within swimming pools.


2.  Edsential will cost the charge to each primary school, based on the cost of hire of the swimming pool, the cost of hire for the transport (if required) and an administrative charge for the coordination of the programme and compliance with curriculum standards, risk assessments, insurances, safeguarding standards etc.


3.  Some primary schools (particularly those situated within walking distance of a Leisure Centre/swimming pool) choose to bypass Edsential and book directly with the Leisure Centre. This obviously means there is no transport charge or administrative Edsential charge.


4.  With regard to the proposed closure of Woodchurch Leisure Centre, any primary schools that walked to the Centre to swim, will now have to travel to an alternative facility which will undoubtedly cost more because of the additional travel cost. This can be arranged through Edsential.


A Sport and Physical Activity Strategy for Wirral (2021-2026) pdf icon PDF 132 KB

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The Assistant Director for Leisure, Libraries and Customer Engagement introduced the report of the Director of Neighbourhood Services which presented the 5- year strategy, “Creating an Active Wirral, A Sport and Physical Activity Strategy for Wirral”. It provided an overview of the collaborative process, needs analysis and strategic priorities required to increase sport and activity levels in the borough to deliver a reduction in health and social inequalities. The focus of the strategy was to set out the priorities for sport and leisure facilities, services and activities and sought to redress the balance between being a provider of facilities, both natural and built, and tackling inequality through preventative, outreach, and early intervention work. The strategy had input from over 1,000 people and organisations and was produced in collaboration with Sport England.


Members asked questions of officers and confirmed:

·  That a report on the future of golf was to be presented early in 2023

·  Details on finances, targets and timescales could be discussed at a Members workshop

·  The draft strategy was back with consultants for finalising details such as finance

·  The aspirations were to begin to tackle the 25% of people who are inactive, and to use assets such as open spaces that came at little cost

·  There were potential mutually beneficial links to other Committees and meetings as well as other bodies such as public health and the NHS


Resolved: That

(1)  the Sport and Physical Activity Strategy (2021-2026) / Creating an Active Wirral be approved.

(2)  the Director of Neighbourhoods be requested to develop the next stage of a delivery plan to be reported back to a future meeting of this Committee.



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The Assistant Director for Leisure, Libraries and Customer Engagement introduced the report of the Director of Neighbourhood Services which provided the outcomes of the Library Strategy consultation and emerging Library Strategy for approval, with three options for an operating model to take to consultation. The Strategy and preferred option strived to provide a balanced, modern, and fit for purpose Library Service in Wirral to ensure that all residents had access to a comprehensive and efficient service which was relevant, based on need, and financially sustainable. It was explained that maintaining 24 library sites was unsustainable and was a constraint on development.


Members discussed the report and noted that needs were changing, such as increasing digital content, although there remained a core of users who preferred physical material. It was also noted that other services and volunteers could assist in enabling services to be provided.


Resolved: That

(1)   the key outcomes, themes, and findings from the Library Strategy consultation as set out in paras 2.1 to 2.14 be noted;

(2)  the emerging Libraries Strategy in Appendix 1 be approved pending the determination of the Final Strategy following the consultation referred to in (3);

(3)  submitting Options 1 to 3 (preferred) be approved for public consultation and engagement with service users, staff, key stakeholders and their representatives during February and March with the outcome to be reported to the first meeting of this Committee in the new municipal year.


2022/23 Budget Update pdf icon PDF 91 KB

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The Director of Law and Governance introduced his report which provided for consideration the recommendations of the Policy and Resources Committee in respect of the 2022/23 Budget Update. He emphasised that the Council had a significant financial challenge and had to demonstrate financial viability, under the scrutiny of an independent Assurance Panel. The proposals outlined were part of a draft budget and were therefore not without prejudice, and it was for the Committee to focus on these specific proposals, any comments on which would be fed back to the Policy and Resources Committee


Members questioned details of some of the options in the report which established:

·  These were proposals and consultations on the proposals would take place with stakeholders

·  Some existing facilities could provide more varied usage to their local communities.

·  The justification and data for the proposals can be provided to Members at a workshop


Resolved: That -

(1) the 2022/23 draft budget proposals be noted.

(2) the relevant director with portfolio be authorised to take the necessary action to consult on any proposals that require additional consultation and take necessary action to deliver the resulting service changes in consultation with the Chair and Group Spokesperson or reporting to the Tourism, Communities, Culture & Leisure Committee as the Director considers appropriate.


Work Programme Update pdf icon PDF 94 KB

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The Tourism, Communities, Culture and Leisure Committee was responsible for proposing and delivering an annual committee work programme. This work programme was to align with the corporate priorities of the Council, in particular the delivery of the key decisions which were within the remit of the Committee.


The Chair referred to the need for the work programme to be limited to short term issues to focus on dealing with the budget options and prioritising savings over income opportunities.


The Director of Neighbourhood Services informed Members that a report on grassroots football would be brought to the next meeting of the Committee.


Resolved –

With the addition of a report on grassroots football being brought to the March meeting of the Committee, the content of the Tourism, Communities, Culture and Leisure Committee work programme which is proposed in this report for the remainder of the 2021/22 municipal year be agreed.