Minutes of a meeting of the Town Projects Advisory Committee held in the Council Chamber, Windmill Lane, Northam on Thursday 5th June 2008.

PRESENT: Chairman - Cllr R W A Miller

Members - Cllrs B M Edwards, P Hames, R J Johnson, R H Osborne

County Cllr Ford for item 3.

Apologies were recorded on behalf of Cllr Mrs M Cox

1. Appointment of Chairman

Cllr Miller was unanimously elected Chairman of the Committee.

2. Minutes of the Town Projects Advisory Committee held 18th March 2008 

The minutes of the Local Development Framework Advisory Committee held on 18 th March 2008 were approved and signed.

(Vote: Unanimous)

3. Road Safety

Cllr Edwards reported on some essential lining work in Appledore which he had taken up with the County Council and received a prompt response with the work being quickly carried out.

County Cllr Ford joined the meeting and there was a discussion on a medium to long-term plan in respect of the Traffic Regulation Orders that apply throughout the district. Cllr Ford suggested that Joe Deasey, the Area Engineer, be asked to visit the area with Members to view the various problem locations and that a special meeting be held specifically to deal with traffic issues. It was RESOLVED to recommend this to Council.

(Vote: Unanimous)

Cllr Hames joined the meeting at this juncture.

Cllr Ford explained that he had some funding left for this financial year which he could personally allocate and he had been considering putting some money towards decorative lighting for Appledore. He would be willing to financially support the Residents' Association but not a private individual.

The Town Clerk advised that he had received details of a scheme for a Hubbastone Memorial to be placed on the grassed seating area at Western Hill, Appledore opposite Hillcliff Terrace. The proposers of the scheme had been in discussion with Cllr Ford and he had financially supported the project. He also advised that he thought the Town Council had previously agreed the sum of up to £1,000. The project will require planning consent and the organisers would like the Town Council to make the planning application. Members considered the scheme and it was RESOLVED to recommend to the Council that a planning application be made.

(Vote: Unanimous)

County Cllr Ford left the meeting at this juncture.

4. Northam Joint Community Facilities Working Group

Cllr Miller questioned the Membership of this group which currently comprises Cllrs Mrs Collins, Braund, Hames and Osborne. It was agreed that other Members of the Council could attend and Cllrs Miller and Edwards were proposed. Cllrs Robinson and Johnson attend the meeting in their role as District Councillors. It was agreed to confirm this with District Council Officer Paul Winter. Results of the Working Group would be reported to this Advisory Committee.

5. Newsletter

Members thought it was vitally important that a newsletter be produced but realised there was a lot of work involved. It was agreed that Cllrs Edwards, Johnson and Miller would discuss and report back as to the best way of proceeding.

6. Dog Bins

Members identified various locations that needed a dog bin and it was realised that approximately 12 were required. It was known that the District Council have limited funds and it was RESOLVED to recommend that the Town Clerk ascertain from the District Council how much 12 additional bins would cost and whether there would be any difficulties having them emptied on a regular basis.

(Vote: Unanimous)

7. Festive Lighting

Members considered the possibility of having Christmas trees in each village. Sites would need to be identified and the whole project costed. It was envisaged there would be a real tree provided approximately 12 to 15 feet in height. It was also agreed to investigate the cost of using solar panel Christmas lights. Cllr Miller thought it would be appropriate to have the Church involved with possibly carol services involving local choirs. Cllr Miller and Cllr Johnson agreed to investigate further.

8. Notice Boards

Members were agreed that notice boards were required in the three villages of Northam, Appledore and Westward Ho! and possibly one at Orchard Hill. It would be necessary to identify suitable sites. Northam library is currently used. Westward Ho! village green was seen as a possibility as was the library at Appledore. It was agreed that the Town Clerk would report back at the next meeting on the cost of a closed case glazed notice board.

9. Future Projects

(1) Allotments

The Town Clerk reported that Cllr Mrs Cox and himself were to speak to Miss Jobson-Scott to see if she would be willing to sub-let some of the land at Tadworthy for use as allotments. Members thought that the land at Burrough Field should also be considered and that for various reasons this land should be in the ownership of the Town Council when it could be used for allotments, play area, open space etc. It was RESOLVED to recommend to Council that an offer of £25,000 be put to the District Council to purchase this land.

(Vote: Unanimous)

Members also commented that the various schemes being considered by the Council needed to be supported by appropriate business plans and it was recommended that the Business Plans sub-committee takes the appropriate action.

(2) Street cleaning

Members expressed the view that the service provided by the District Council was not adequate, particularly in the Northam village area and it was RESOLVED to recommend that the District Council be asked how much it would cost to sweep Northam on a regular basis of once a week.

(Vote: Unanimous)