Minutes of the Projects Committee held on Monday 17 February 2014 in the Council Chamber, Town Hall, Abergavenny at 7pm.

Present: Cllr Mrs S Woodhouse, (Mayor)

Cllrs C Woodhouse, M Hickman, Mrs M Powell, D Edwards, J L Prosser, N Tatam and Mrs M Harris

In attendance: The Town Clerk, Mr C Evans (Carnival Organiser) and Mr C Armiger (Performing Abergavenny Project)

1. Apologies for absence were received from Cllrs P Wadsworth, Ms S Dodd, R Harris, R Harries, P Jordan and Miss M Toombs.

2. Declarations of interest would be made as and when necessary.

3. Carnival Issues

The Mayor welcomed Mr Evans who had come to discuss this year`s Carnival Arrangements with members. Last year the prohibitive cost of closing the A40 trunk road, due to Welsh Government requirements for larger bilingual signs, had meant that much of the Council`s support for the Carnival had been used paying for the signs. This was not an acceptable use of funds, so an alternative route had to be considered. Mr Evans suggested that the parade should form up in Baker Street and turn right into Frogmore Street. When it reaches the junction with Lion Street, the procession would go left along Lion Street to Brewery Yard Car Park.  After judging the entries, the parade would disperse and the participants would make their own way to Bailey Park for the rest of the proceedings.

Members then discussed this proposal. Cllr Mrs Powell suggested that the walking entries should not go along Lion Street but should turn right into High Street and ten left into Market Street to join the floats in Brewery Yard. This was agreed as a good idea.

It was agreed that the procession should still start at midday.

A number of suggestions were made that the Carnival should follow the same route as it always did and the money for the signs should be found (this was not agreed) we could ask the Police Commissioner for funds we should give cash prizes for best entries we should make a determined effort to attract the schools back into the procession we should contact our Assembly Member about the increased cost of signage and the impact it has.

It was agreed to adopt Mr Evans` suggested route for this year, and to get arrangements under way.

Mr Evans be invited to make a bid for funding for this year`s Carnival.

The Mayor thanked him for attending.

4. Performing Abergavenny.

The Mayor welcomed Mr C Armiger to the meeting and invited him to explain what he had come for.

Mr Armiger outlined various parts of the current project. The Forgotten Abergavenny website is one, the Swimming Pool event is another, and the third major part is an event in the Borough Theatre on 14 May. At 8pm. At this event which would be musical and question and answer, he hoped that councillors would wish to participate in both the musical and the Q and A parts. Questions would be known beforehand and were not meant to catch anyone out; performers in the show would hopefully include people from different age-groups and backgrounds in an attempt to bring together a very disparate audience and group of performers to include social cohesiveness in the town. Interaction with Councillors would provide a useful element of that. It was noted that the Council`s regular monthly meeting falls on that night, and it was agreed that to accommodate this show the meeting would start either at 6 or 6:30pm.

The Mayor thanked Mr Armiger and Councillors were supportive of the event. Several indicated their willingness to take part.

5. Public Services Commission.

Members discussed the situation regarding this report. It was agreed that a timetable of how it is likely to proceed would be very helpful. It may be that proposals in the report will be introduced on a piecemeal basis. There is a rationale that Abergavenny should be recognised as one larger conurbation, but we will need to wait to see what comes from Welsh Government.

6. Managing Public Highways

Members considered the paper from MCC on the control of A-Boards and the use of highway verges and roundabouts for advertising. Members were very clear that if a system is  being introduced it will need to be properly policed for compliance. It was suggested that any signs permitted should carry the licence number. Concern was noted that if the pricing of roundabout displays was too high it might prevent any interest which would leave the roundabouts looking untidy. It was agreed to ask an officer to attend, but to indicate that we agree with the proposals in principle.

There being no other business, the meeting ended at 7:45pm