Minutes of the Tourism Committee Meeting held via Zoom on Tuesday 9th March 2021 at 6.00 pm.
Councillor Mrs J Gubb (Chairman)
Councillor J McKenzie
Councillors Mrs S Langford
Councillor P Lawrence
Councillor D Bushby
Councillor Mrs K Corfe
Councillor C Hawkins
Mrs L Dixon-Chatfield, Town Clerk’s Assistant
105. APOLOGIES FOR ABSENCE
There were no apologies received.
106. DECLARATIONS OF INTEREST ON ITEMS ON THE AGENDA
Councillor Lawrence declared a non-pecuniary interest in Item 5 – he is a Trustee of Up Close Theatre.
107. PUBLIC PARTICIPATION SESSION
There were no members of the public present.
Proposed by Councillor Bushby and seconded by Councillor Lawrence, that the minutes of the meeting held on 26th January 2021 were approved and signed as a correct record.
(Vote – For: 7, Against: 0)
109. TO RECEIVE AN UPDATE ON UP CLOSE THEATRE
Councillor Mrs Langford had received an update email from Up Close and appraised members of its content. She advised that the group were increasing their broadcast hours with an expected 54 hours each week by the end of May. Their listening figures were increasing month-on-month with an anticipated figure of 2,000 for February. Presenters were from a wide age group (17yrs – 70yrs) with a fair split of gender. Up Close were now available through Alexa and would soon have Apple and Android apps, with their next aim to have a text system installed.
Councillor Mrs Langford continued with the Theatre side of the group who were anticipating outdoor productions and were still looking for a more permanent base for the theatre group. They were busy writing plays and producing radio productions to raise funds. They were hoping to attend the Edinburgh Fringe.
They continue to work on broadcasting and theatre projects.
Councillor Lawrence added that the organisation was extremely grateful for the Grant this Council had awarded them and would be able to pursue their outdoor broadcast rig project.
Councillor Lawrence asked the Chairman if there was any need to continue with the updates from Up Close in these meetings, he considered that this become an agenda item when the organisation were next looking at working with this Committee.
All members agreed and the Chairman advised the Clerk to remove the updates from the agenda for the time being.
110. TO RECEIVE AND UPDATE ON THE A CHRISTMAS “BAVARIAN STYLE” MARKET IDEA
Councillor McKenzie apologised but he had no update to give at this meeting.
111. TO REVIEW ORGANISING BIDEFORD FAIR THIS YEAR
The Chairman opened by advising members that the date for Bideford Fair is Saturday 14th August. She asked members what their thoughts were about going ahead with the event, given that restrictions were hoped to be lifted on 26th July, according to the Government Covid roadmap.
She further informed members that the Bude Lifeboat Weekend scheduled for August Bank Holiday had been cancelled, which she felt was a significant cancellation.
Members discussed the other events that were going ahead including the Bike Show, Mini Run, Ocean Fest and major national events ie Leeds and Reading Festivals.
Members were all enthusiastic that Bideford Fair should go ahead but agreed with the Chairman when she suggested postponing the decision until April after the pre-12th April Government review of the current restrictions.
The Chairman highlighted that the date of the next Tourism meeting was an item later on the agenda, Members discussed a provisional change of meeting date to 6th April.
112. TO REVIEW ORGANISING A SMALL FETE TO CELEBRATE CHUDLEIGH FORT LATER THIS YEAR
The Chairman asked that members set a date for this, bearing in mind that the weather would be starting to cool. The Clerk reminded members that the original date of the gifting of Chudleigh Memorial to the people of Bideford was end July early August 1921. As August Bank Holiday was already busy with the Bike Show and the Mini Run, Bideford Fair scheduled for 14th August and then Carnival in September, the Chairman suggested Saturday 4th September. All members agreed this date and Councillor Bushby suggested getting started on booking attractions.
Members discussed the various activities; music, face-painting, perhaps involve Up Close with their broadcast rig and to see if they could produce a short play centred around the reason for the celebration, a cream tea tent, bring your own picnic.
Members also discussed asking ETW in Bloom to look at perhaps creating a floral display/beds to brighten up the area.
It was suggested that Councillor Corfe’s event to celebrate the Community’s resilience and strength through the pandemic be included but it had previously been agreed that this would form part of Bideford Fair. Members agreed that the Chudleigh Fete was to be focused on the celebration of the gifting to Bideford of Chudleigh Memorial in 1921. Councillor Mrs Corfe was happy with these plans.
All agreed that this would be very much a family event and needed to be discussed more in depth at the next meeting.
Councillor Bushby suggested a site meeting prior to the event, to walk the area and map out how to accommodate the Fete.
Councillor Bushby suggested an increase in the budget for this event.as costs may be considerably higher, he was confident there were funds available for this, and added that the full amount may not be necessary but would ensure a good event for East the Water.
Proposed by: Councillor Bushby and seconded by Councillor Mrs Gubb
RECOMMENDATION TO SFGP: That the budget for Chudleigh Fete is increased from £500 to £2,000.
(Vote - For: 7, Against: 0)
113. TO DISCUSS BRINGING FORWARD THE DATE OF THE NEXT MEETING IN ORDER TO CONDUCT A FINAL REVIEW OF BIDEFORD FAIR AND CHUDLEIGH FORT FETE IN ACCORDANCE WITH RELAXED RESTRICTIONS.
The Chairman noted that the next scheduled meeting for Tourism was 27th April but this was felt to be too late to ensure booking attractions for Bideford Fair, although there were bookings in place, confirmation would be better sooner rather than later. It was also considered that an earlier meeting would be better for bookings for Chudleigh Fete.
Members discussed that they considered the Government would review the opening of non-essential shops and pubs prior to the roadmap date of 12th April. This would of course be subject to scientific data.
Members agreed to bring forward the meeting to Tuesday 6th April at 6pm to review the two main events.
The business of the meeting having been completed, the Chairman thanked the members for their attendance and the meeting concluded at 6.25 pm.