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Minutes of the Town Council Meeting held in the Town Hall, Bideford on Thursday 15 December 2022 at 6.30 pm
 
PRESENT:
 
North Ward:
 
Councillor D Bushby
Councillor P S Christie 
Councillor T Johns
Councillor D McGeough
 
South Ward:
 
Councillor S Inch
Councillor Mrs S Langford
Councillor P Lawrence
 
West Ward:
 
Councillor C Hawkins
 
East Ward
 
Councillor J Craigie
Councillor Mrs R M Craigie
Councillor Mrs J Gubb (Town Mayor)
Councillor J A McKenzie
 
IN ATTENDANCE:
 
Mrs H Blackburn (Town Clerk)
Mr R Coombes (Deputy Town Clerk)
Mrs L Dixon-Chatfield (Town Clerk’s Assistant)
Revered C Rose-Casemore (St Mary’s Church)
Councillor J Wilton Love (DCC) 
 
94. APOLOGIES FOR ABSENCE
 
 Councillors D Ratcliff (West Ward – Personal) and Mrs L Hellyer (East Ward – illness).
 
95. DECLARATIONS OF INTEREST AND ANY REQUESTS FOR DISPENSATION ON ITEMS ON THE AGENDA
 
Councillor P Christie declared a non-pecuniary interest in Item 15 (Trustee, Bridge Trust).
 
96. PUBLIC PARTICIPATION SESSION OF 15 MINUTES DURATION
 
There were no members of the Public present.
 
97. MINUTES
 
The Minutes of the Meeting held on 3 November 2022 were approved as a correct record.
 
(Vote – For: 12, Against: 0)
 
98. ACCOUNTS
 
It was proposed by Councillor McKenzie, seconded and
 
RESOLVED:  That the List of Payments be approved.
 
(Vote – For: 12, Against: 0)
 
99. DEVON COUNTY COUNCIL (COUNCILLOR) REPORT
 
a. The Mayor welcomed Devon County Councillor Wilton-Love to the Meeting and invited him to address the Council.
 
Councillor Wilton-Love apologised for his reduced commitment in recent months citing ill heath and specifically a debilitating strain of COVID-19 from which he was only sixty per cent recovered.
 
He spoke of concerns raised against Bideford College on social media which had prompted a four hour visit.  He declared himself comfortable with their position albeit that there had been teething problems with some new initiatives.  He found the College very receptive and stressed that those requiring reassurance will find the authorities open.
 
Despite budgetary constraints DCC continue to support the gritting of Devon’s road network operation, including through County Councillors’ Locality Budget. 
 
He will be meeting the Devon Highways Officer on site outside the Bideford College to draw attention to a twenty to thirty yard stretch of poor road surfacing.
 
b. The Mayor invited Members to raise questions / points that included:
 
• Appreciation of the County Councillor’s attendance.
 
• The entire Clovelly Road is not safe, is very busy, there are a number of deep and bad potholes; there is a need for improvement.
 
• Successful recent improvement has been made to and eradicated a flooding issue at the top of Clovelly Road (Industrial Estate).
 
• A Clovelly Road School / Moreton Park Road “dent” although outside the “hole” criteria clearly needs attention.  The speed restriction should be extended, also.
 
• Despite repeated requests ruts in the road outside the Town Hall and leading to St Mary’s Church present hazards not least to the Parade personnel.  Request that the County Councillor support his fellow councillor in affecting improvement.
 
• Opportunity for Councils to submit 20 mph schemes to the County.
 
• Impact of parking on Raleigh Hill to the wider Bideford network.
 
o To be considered at the next Highway and Traffic Orders Committee.
 
Old Northam Road / Kenwith Valley opportunity for parking on the bend presents a very real hazard; double yellow lines need to be extended.
 
• Grit bins. 
o No restrictions to numbers Councillor Wilton-Love happy to support any new requests through his Locality Fund.  Will confirm lead in times.
 
The Mayor thanked Councillor Wilton-Love for his contribution to the Meeting.
 
100. COMMUNICATION BROUGHT FORWARD ON THE DIRECTION OF THE MAYOR / TOWN CLERK
 
The Town Clerk introduced her Assistant who advised that his Majesty’s Pageant Master, Bruno Peek, had expressed his very fond memories of Bideford and the enthusiastic response that was given towards marking the then Queen’s Ruby Jubilee.
 
There will not be a marking of the Coronation, next year, but there will be a celebration of eightieth year since D Day in 2024.
 
She concluded he will visit Bideford again.
 
101. STAFFING, FINANCE & GENERAL PURPOSES (SF&GP) COMMITTEE MEETING
 
The Minutes of the Meeting held on 1 December 2022 were approved and adopted.
 
(Vote – For: 12, Against: 0)
 
102. PLANNING COMMITTEE MEETING
 
The Minutes of the Meetings held on 16 November and 14 December 2022 were approved and adopted.
 
(Vote – For: 12, Against: 0)
 
103. MARKET MANAGEMENT COMMITTEE MEETING
 
Councillor Lawrence noted that the Working Group Minutes had not been circulated.
 
The Deputy Town Clerk advised that the Working Group provided information for the Market Management Committee to consider and develop, informing their decision making before any resolution or recommendation to Council. 
 
The Minutes of the Meetings held on 10 November and 8 December 2022 were approved and adopted.
 
(Vote – For: 11, Against: 0, Abstention: 1)
 
104. TOURISM COMMITTEE MEETING
 
The Minutes of the Meeting held on 7 December 2022 were approved and adopted.
 
(Vote – For: 12, Against: 0)
 
105. BIDEFORD – 450TH ANNIVERSARY 
 
Discussion included alerting the wider community and organisations of the significant anniversary with an opportunity for inclusion.
 
Councillor J Craigie indicated an approach to TTVS that could see them circulating information through their extensive database of contacts.
 
106. BIDEFORD TOWN CENTRE PARTNERSHIP (BTCP)
 
The Minutes of the Meeting held on 30 November 2022 were received.
 
107. TORRIDGE DISTRICT COUNCIL – UPDATE
 
Councillor Bushby advised that objections had been received from Huntshaw Cross residents regarding the proposed Electric Transformer project.  
 
Torridge District Council cannot make any decisions given that no planning application has been registered. 
 
The Council have purchased Sully House at Clovelly Road Industrial Estate with a view to converting it for the purposes of Emergency Accommodation.  There will be two family units and two further smaller units.  They will not be permanent accommodation opportunities, simply emergency.
 
A further area will be developed for the introduction of six one bedroomed “pods.”
 
Councillor J Craigie indicated that those who have lived in the area for six months qualify for emergency aid.
 
Councillor Christie noted that the cost of Emergency Housing provision had risen from £300,00 to £1.3 million (some housed afar as Bristol).
 
108. BRIDGE TRUST
 
Councillor Christie gave detail on income, Estate expenditure, Grants: individual, student and group.  
 
A TTVS led initiative that provides coffee shop vouchers to those registered with the Food Bank and TorrAGE has been supported by the Trust to the value of £6,000.
 
Councillor Inch exclaimed that Bideford is lucky to have the Trust in the Town.
 
The business of the meeting having been completed, the Mayor thanked the members for their attendance and the meeting concluded at 7.11 pm.
 
Table of accounts for approval at Town Council meeting 151222
 

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