Minutes of the Projects Committee held on Wednesday 26th September 2018 at 7pm in the Council Chamber, Town Hall, Abergavenny
Chairman – Cllr T Davies (Chair/Mayor)
Cllr N Tatam
Cllr M Harris
Cllr R Harris
Cllr T Thomas
Cllr G Jones
J Lee (Town Clerk)
Apologies for absence were received from Cllrs S Dodd, F Morgan, P Simcock, D Simcock, M Groucutt, Van de Vyver, M Hickman, F Morgan
|Declarations of Interest
|Presentation by Hugh Evans, Transport for Wales Rail Services
Hugh Evans is employed by the new franchise operator Keolis Amey which takes over the franchise from Arriva Trains Wales on 14th October.
Improvements to Abergavenny station is planned at sometime in the future, there will not be changes on day 1.
The changes include:
New bridge and lifts – an application is being submitted to Dept for Transport Access for All fund in November 2018 with spend to be incurred in 2019-2024. Abergavenny is one of the priority stations in this bid. Currently the improvements to Abergavenny are scheduled for 2023.
A question was asked if this date could be brought forward. Welsh Government is leading the Access for All bid so the timetabling would be a WG decision.
Within the Keolis Amey franchise bid is an allocation of £1.78 million for Abergavenny station improvements. This would include improvements to the station to encourage use as a community hub, car parking, planting. This investment would be programmed at the same time that the bridge and lift works are carried out.
New posts will be created to improve engagement, such as regional stakeholder managers, community ambassadors, accessibility manager.
Hugh Evans reported that Transport for Wales is considering an interim solution to the current accessibility problems. A number of suggestions were made by councillors regarding increasing hours of staff at the station, having a group of trained volunteers to assist with crossing the line and an electronically activated barrier which indicate whether it was safe to cross the line.
The Chair thanked Hugh Evans for his presentation.
|Presentation by Rachael Rogers, MCC Museum Service
Rachael Rogers provided more detail on the plans for a construction of an Events Pavilion in the Castle Grounds. This will be in the area to the left of the entrance gates. The pavilion will be a timber structure 18.2m x 9m x 6.4m high and is likely to have removable sides which will deter anti-social behaviour and will enable the building to be secured if an event has been set up in the pavilion.
The funding profile of the project is complex. £128,000 has been secured from RCDF with a number of funding applications are pending. The project has been revised to incorporate costs for developing and managing a programme of events which would include working in partnership with different community groups in the town.
An application for planning consent is to be made shortly with the aiming of the application being considered at either the December or January MCC Planning Committee.
Prior to works starting, a new lease between MCC and landowner Nevill Estates will be signed.
The Chair thanked Rachael Rogers for her presentation
| Matters arising from the Action Table
Three additional dog bins have been received. Locations for the Lower Byefield Lane car park and footpath between Old Hereford Road and Old Barn Way discussed with MCC. Location of the dog bin in the Hatherleigh Road/Union Road West to be proposed by Grofield Ward Councillors. Refill Scheme – Awaiting the Memorandum of Understanding between the Town Council and Refill Scheme to be sent
LDP training – the initial Steering group meeting to be convened in October
| To consider the report on funding for the Events Pavilion at the Castle
Following the presentation by Rachael Rogers and consideration of the report, Cllr Jones proposed that the recommendation ‘to make a firm commitment to contribute £30,000 in 2019/20 towards the overall Events Pavilion Project and for this to be incorporated into the 2019/20 budget’, this was seconded by Cllr M Harris. Vote was carried with one abstention.
Projects Committee recommend that Council:
makes a firm commitment to contribute £30,000 in 2019/20 towards the overall Events Pavilion Project and for this to be incorporated into the 2019/20 budget
|To consider a report on future public toilet provision
A report setting out the results of the public toilet survey, site inspection and potential options was circulated prior to the meeting.
The top three options from the survey were:
Keep all toilets open and increase the precept to fund improvements to the toilets
Close on of the toilet blocks and invest the money saved to improve the remaining toilets
Charge for using the toilets and invest this money in improvements.
The Town Clerk requested a steer from councillors as to which option should be worked up in more detail. The decision will be in effect an ‘in principle’ decision subject to a more detailed report on whether the Town Council would like all four toilet blocks to stay open, close one or introduce charges to invest in all four. There was little support for charging. It was noted that this report does not cover Bailey Park toilet and it was accepted that this should be considered separately.
The discussion focused on the costs of continuing with keeping all four open.
The MCC decision to keep one block open remains so the Town Council would be paying to keep open two or three remaining blocks and to invest in these blocks. How the toilets are managed in the future would be incorporated in to the further report. Cllr Thomas proposed Option 2, seconded by Cllr Jones, vote 5 in favour 1 against, vote carried.
Following discussion, Projects Committee recommend that in principle one toilet block is closed and that should be the block in White Horse Lane and that the Town Clerk is tasked with preparing a further report setting out how this action could be taken forward.
It was noted that with six councillors present, it would be preferable that further discussion on this matter should take place at Council. Cllr Tatam circulated a one page summary of this interpretation of the report prepared by the Town Clerk and requested that this is circulated with the Council papers.
|To agree presentation at the October meeting
Councillors agreed to presentations from Aine Morris from the Food Festival and representatives from the Abergavenny Community Centre.
|Any Other Business None
Meeting closed at 8.45pm
|Location of the dog bin in the Hatherleigh Road/Union Road West to be proposed by Grofield Ward Councillors.
|Cllrs Tatam, Jones and P Simcock
|To agree to contribute £30,000 in 2019/20 towards the overall Events Pavilion Project and for this to be incorporated into the 2019/20 budget
|To agree the principle that one toilet block is closed and that is White Horse Lane toilets and that the Town Clerk is tasked with preparing a further report setting out how this action could be taken forward.