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Minutes of the Market Management Committee Meeting held in the Council Chamber of the Town Hall, Bideford, on Thursday 25 October 2018 at 6.30 pm

PRESENT:

North Ward

Councillor D Bushby
Councillor T Johns

East Ward

Councillor Mrs R Craigie
Councillor J McKenzie

South Ward

Councillor D Brenton (Chairman)
Councillor B Wootton

Market Hall:  Ms B de Noranha, Mr B Sidwell

Butchers Row:  Mr M Dendle

Market Place:  Mr P Lawrence

IN ATTENDANCE:

Mr R Coombes (Deputy Town Clerk)
1 x Butchers Row Tenant

84.     APOLOGIES FOR ABSENCE

There were no absentees.

85.     DECLARATIONS OF INTEREST ON ITEMS ON THE AGENDA

There were no declarations of interest.

86.     PUBLIC PARTICIPATION PERIOD

There was no participation from the public member.

87.     MINUTES

The Minutes of the Meeting held on 13 September 2018 were approved and signed as a correct record.

(Vote – For: 6, Against: 0)

88.     MATTERS ARISING

Minute 71.b. Market Opening Dates during the Christmas / New Year Period. Mr Lawrence had been in discussion with the Café Tenant about organising a table top / sale day (one or two days) during the period when the Hall has been cleared, 23 – 29 December 2018.
The benefits would see the Café open, a revenue stream, introduce the Market experience to sellers – potential new Market traders, open to those traders who wished to trade and opportunity to raise monies for the Mayor’s Charity Fund.

Mr Sidwell advised that he had spoken to Mrs Fisher during the canvassing of traders about remaining open or not during what was the quiet period last year. He also confirmed that no traders wished to trade during the stated period.

Discussion followed on the availability of the Market Officer, Mrs Fisher’s willingness to open and secure the building, potential interest. The Chairman concluded that the Committee were mindful to support, however, there should be further discussion (including organisation and amongst traders) and a proposition be brought to the next Meeting.

89.     ACCOUNTS

It was proposed by Councillor Bushby, seconded and

RESOLVED: That the list of payments be approved.

(Vote – For: 6, Against: 0)

CHAIRMAN’S / MARKET ADMINISTRATORS REPORT

The Market Administrator stated that he would be asking the Butchers Row and Market Place Tenants to submit copies of their insurance details. Earlier in the year a request for a signed confirmation had to be aborted given advice from the Council’s insurer that it was not sufficient.

90.     MARKET HALL RENT WAIVER

a.       The Market Administrator advised Members of an historical goodwill incentive that enabled market hall traders to enjoy a free trading month (January).

Mr Lawrence asked why the offer was not extended to Butchers Row and Market Place tenants. The Chairman spoke on the historical context and the difference in the trading dynamic. The Market Administrator reminded Members that he had produced a breakdown of the cost of extending the bounty, but the Committee had resolved against.

Proposed by Councillor Brenton, seconded and

RESOLVED: That the rent for the month of January 2019 is waived for those Bideford Pannier Market Hall Traders. That each tenant / trader is advised accordingly.

(Vote – For: 6, Against: 0)

b.     Extension of waiver of rent to include the Market Hall Tenants. The Market Administrator reminded Members that Members had reduced the rent by half last year.

The Chairman saw merit in repeating the offer from 2019 where the Market Hall Tenants had their rent reduced by half; the Work Shop enabled them to create still, when not selling.

Proposed by Councillor Brenton, seconded and

RESOLVED: That the rent for the month of January 2019 is reduced by half for those Bideford Pannier Market Hall Studio workshop tenants. That each tenant is advised accordingly.

(Vote – For: 6, Against: 0)

91.    RENT REVIEW

The Market Administrator provided Members with variations on the current rental payments.

Councillor Bushby noted the variances as a result of the percentage increase introduced in the previous financial year. He advocated changes in monetary terms, resulting in whole numbers over percentage figures; it removes the incidence of “odd” numbers e.g. raising of the Casual rent from £5.00 to £5.10 – not worth the increase.

Mr Sidwell speculated on increasing the casual (table) rent to £10.00 and the introduction of an incentive commitment.

Councillor Bushby warned against not putting up rent, albeit with modest increments, on a regular basis.

Discussion followed where the Chairman directed an increase for the Casual rent to £6.00. Councillor Bushby volunteered a simple rounding up and rounding down to the nearest pound.

Proposed by Councillor Bushby, seconded and

RECOMMENDED: That Casual rent tariff is increased to £6.00 per day and that all other rental payment are either rounded up, or down, to the nearest pound effective 1 April 2019. That each tenant / trader is advised accordingly.

(Vote – For: 6, Against: 0)

92.    CAR PARK ADVERTISEMENTS

Members had been advised of the opportunity to advertise again with the Local Map Company Ltd for a further two years at £300.00 per annum for an “8 x 4” advert on fourteen (Torridge car park) site locations.

Mr Sidwell stated that the signs in the car parks do work. Visitors have stated that on making payment they had seen said advertisement.

Councillor Bushby spoke on a Tourism Committee initiative to advertise on hoardings from trailers that can be strategically parked.

Proposed by Councillor Bushby, seconded and

RESOLVED: That the offer of £300.00 per annum, for two years is accepted for a 8 x 4 advertisement.

(Vote – For: 6, Against: 0)

93.   STAIR LIFT

Mr Dendle had been in contact with Heritage Ability who through their Living Options drive look to support better access to Heritage Buildings.

94.   BIDEFORD PHOENIX MORRIS – DANCE: 5 OCTOBER 2019 REQUEST

The Market Administrator advised that an approach had been made to dance on 5 October 2019 following the recent Bideford Wide Event that included the Pannier Market on 6 October 2018. Given the weather and the Art and Crafts traders, space was a premium and not all responses were favourable.

A further request was made that in the event that 5 October 2019 was agreed Arts and Crafts traders would not be occupying the Hall.

Mr Sidwell had recently spoken to a representative who indicated that 12 October 2019 was now the preferred date.

Proposed by Councillor Brenton, seconded and

RESOLVED: That the Bideford Phoenix Morris are invited to dance at the Market Complex on Saturday 12 October 2019.

(Vote – For: 6, Against: 0)

95.   POSTER FOR NYMPHEN AND THE MAST

Members had sight of a draft poster giving detail on the Nymphen, (the) Hospital Ship’s Mast. Mr Sidwell indicated that a 1180 x 840 mm poster, on 10 mm thick corex would be sited to the left of the door to the Ladies toilet at a cost of £55.00.

A further Pannier Market History Board would be created once the Mast is ready (for display), also at a cost of £55.00.

Proposed by Councillor Bushby, seconded and

RESOLVED: That Mr Sidwell progresses the Project at a cost of £55.00 each.

(Vote – For: 6, Against: 0)

The Chairman suggested a decoration of Signalling Flags be considered; he would seek advice.

96.    SOCIAL MEDIA: FACEBOOK / TWITTER

Mr Lawrence informed Members that there are three Facebook accounts / pages that relate to the Market:

• Bideford Pannier Market
• Market Craft Group
• Market Hall

Given the seven or eight “administrators” responsible for “posting” and updating information he felt that it was not consistent, not working to the best advantage of, and no focus on, the building or the Market.

He noted that while the Council administered the Market Complex the Market Management Committee had no involvement / authority regarding the Social Media about the very item it managed.

He believed the number of Administrators should be reduced to one with a supporting person, a task he was happy to fill.

The Chairman indicated that the parameters should be clearly defined. He advocated that Mr Lawrence should speak to others and establish how a cohesive media message would be run.

Mr Lawrence will circulate a letter. He would “post” on a regular basis, the feel and look (were important). Mr Sidwell added that all items should be relevant to the Bideford Pannier Market.

The Chairman reiterated that Mr Lawrence and Mr Sidwell should work together and provide an update for the next Meeting.

Mr Dendle agreed that it was a step in the right direction.

Councillor Bushby spoke of a Town Centre Partnership initiative that will see a new website for the Town. Mr Sidwell said he had been working with Mr Ford on the Market pages (including gathering and uploading trader / tenant copy / information); the Site will be fantastic!

97.    TRADERS / TENANTS

a.      Mr Sidwell said the Market will introduce the inaugural annual Teddy Bears’ Picnic on Saturday 27 October 2018 with stories beginning at 11.00 am through to 1.00 pm; there will be Face Painting between 12.00 noon and 2.00 pm.

He had been approached by the Phoenix Morris to dance on the day but will seek to avoid any conflict.

b.      Notices had been posted on the Trees outside the Market under the banner of Save our Street Trees. There has been no update from the County Councillor on DCC action / interest in the area.

c.      Mrs de Noranha led discussion on transient storage. The room next to the Café facility is not appropriate. It was suggested that Market Hall Studio Units One and Two are relocated beneath the Market Office area and replaced with a shed. Mrs de Noranha provided detail of possible units. Councillor Bushby expressed support believing that the Market should “future proof” (and pre-empt the need for additional storage space).

Mr Lawrence suggested a permanent “lock up” trading facility. The Chairman believed a site visit would be in order. Councillor McKenzie highlighted the installation of any further fittings would limit the use of the Hall as a community facility. Mr Sidwell speculated that the repositioned Studio Units One and Two need not necessarily be geared towards Arts and Crafts given the lack of take up of the two vacant units.

The item will be placed on the next Meeting Agenda.

98.   DEVELOPMENT WORKING GROUP

Michael Dendle was mindful that a conversation needed to take place to establish the future use of the Market.

He referred to correspondence with the Town Clerk regarding recruitment and the remuneration of a market manager and referenced the Tavistock Butchers’ Hall Project Manager’s terms of reference (that had previously been circulated). He asked if the Committee were minded to resolve upon the engagement of a market officer. Members indicated that defining the market / future would need to be addressed along with a job description first.

Mr Dendle advised that he had a meeting scheduled with a TDC local development officer (can provide advice on grant funding) on 6 November 2018; the Chairman confirmed his (own) attendance.

Mr Dendle suggested a name change given that visitors questioned whether the Market represented their idea of a market i.e. no fruit and vegetables, clothing etc. A survey was suggested.

Discussion followed largely indicating that the Pannier Market will always be so to the Bidefordians; the Chairman suggested that advice be sought from the Editor of the Local Paper.

99.    INNER MARKET DOORS

The Chairman confirmed that the Conservation Officer had briefed a potential architect on her requirements for the plans to support the LBC application, including detail outside the Committee’s specific desire for Inner Doors within the Market Hall.

He indicated that another specific architect should be approached, the Chairman will make first contact.

100.  NABMA CONFERENCE

Councillor Bushby briefed Members from the notes he had taken at the Conference. He provided statistics on the relationship between Cities / Towns and Markets, the number of stores closing in the south west and the real benefit to a Town with a well-run Market.

The Committee’s support for the twice weekly Shuttle Bus was borne out by the advantage to Markets that have coach stops outside. While noting the £15 million investment in Barnsley he stated that Markets do attract tourists; coach drivers receive much benevolence. Coach friendly status has proved advantageous. Trip Advisor can be used to promote, amongst other things, “dog friendly.”

Traders are encouraged to sell on line. Incentives to encourage new traders (free pitch).

Other points included:

• Fruit and vegetables – “heart of every market.”

• Changing facilities for (disabled) adults.

• Devoted spaces to micro-breweries.

• VAT - wait out.

He concluded that the Conference was indeed very interesting.

101.    ‘DRAFT’ BUDGET 2019/2020

The Market Administrator presented a ‘Draft’ Budget for consideration by the Committee. He advised Members that the Council effectively run a balanced budget adding that incrementally the reserved funds had increased from £32,773 (31 Mar 2015) to £51,000 (25 October 2018). Part of the increase had been as a result of the Council investment into the Market Hall Studio Units, effective April 2016.

Given the cost of the Inner Doors could exceed £35,000 Members had to be mindful of projects requiring capital outlay. £10,000 had been allocated to Special Projects, effectively for the Doors; the Town Clerk had advised that reserves should be held at £30,000. The Town Council could be approached to help support the funding.

The Chairman noted the Draft Budget adding that the Market was the jewel in the Council’s portfolio and should the need arise provide fiscal support.

Proposed by Councillor Bushby, seconded and

RECOMMENDED: That the Draft Market Budget 2019/2020 be supported by the Council. That the Reserves will be drawn upon to fund the Inner Door Project. That where necessary the Council extend support to the Market Project.

(Vote: – For: 6, Against: 0)

Councillor Bushby advised Members that it was important to impose annual rent increases to keep pace with inflation; the policy would have enabled the Market to easily afford capital items such as the Inner Doors.

102.    CONFIDENTIAL ITEMS TO BE TAKEN IN PART II

Proposed by Councillor McKenzie, seconded and

RESOLVED: That in view of the confidential nature of the business about to be discussed, it is advisable, in the public interest, that the public be excluded for the remainder of the meeting; the tenants / traders were instructed to withdraw.

(Vote – For: 6, Against: 0)

103.    PART II (CLOSED SESSION)

104.     CHAIRMAN’S REPORT – CONFIDENTIAL MATTERS

There is a confidential minute associated with this item.

105.     TERMINATIONS OF LEASES /APPLICATIONS RECEIVED FOR TENANCIES OF PREMISES

The Market Administrator advised that the tenant of Butchers Row Unit 24 had given three months’ Notice effective 4 Oct 18.

106.     UPDATE ON RENT

There is a confidential minute associated with this item.

The Chairman, having established that there was no further business to discuss, thanked the Members for their attendance and concluded the Meeting at 8.12 pm.

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