| 1. Apologies Duggie Peck, A Senior
Attendance was 30 people
2. PCSO were due to attend tonight but they must be on operational business
As usual the message is any sightings or worries RING 101 with any concerns.
The community are the eyes and ears for the PCSO and the Police.
3. Anne Western Leader Derbyshire County Council
Cllr Western became Leader of the Derbyshire Council in May 2013 as Labour gained control after 7 years in opposition. She is the first woman in 126 years history of the Council and at a point when the worst cuts in local authority funding have been imposed- it is a challenging time for all public services. The financial crisis of 2007/8/9 has left a real national problem. The new Conservative Govt have targeted cuts on Local Government unfairly. Generally there has been an 8% cut in public services but the Local Govt cuts are roughly 30% And the further north you go the heavier the cuts are.
A four year programme of cuts has seen £94 million cut out of a £550 million annual budget- some £70 million of the £94 has already been cut.
By and large this has been through efficiency savings but now there is no route to do this and since 2010 the cuts have got worse and worse. Such that now £157m saving is needed on top of the £70 million already found.
The 2010 budget of £600m excluded the schools budget as this is transported straight through to education. It is now nearer £500m budget and 40% is Social Services budget for the elderly and disabled – over £200m. 20% goes on childrens services- child protection, fostering, childrens centres and youth work. So this is 2/3rd of the budget. The rest is highways, waste disposal and collection( for every 1 tonne sent to landfill the Council have to pay landfill tax), Libraries Trading Standards etc.
It is difficult now with the extra cuts needed as tough choices between services need to be made and frontline impact cannot be avoided somewhere.
So the Council need to trim back services and they need to get peoples views on priorities. Difficult choices must be made. We are the 7th richest nation on earth and yet cuts in peoples services are being forced. Affects District Council, Police, Fire Service as well - across the whole public sector. The Council will be £518 million lighter by 2018.
This has an impact on the local economy- there is less money to go round and less economic generation. Although the Chancellor says there is growth but people are not seeing it in their wage packets and the cost of living is more expensive.
The County Council have taken stock. Eric Pickles announced a further £30m in cuts last year after the budget was set.
The Council have reorganised the Senior Management team to make savings at the top.
Saving of £2m from better purchasing and contracting. They are looking at processes eg Social Services assessment process seems to go on forever – and so they are looking to slim it down.
Working better with partners is a target eg Social Services and the NHS with their own separate assessments. They have 5 separate clinical assessment groups as well as hospital trusts. If people aren’t well it doesn’t matter who provides the help. Working with other Councils on shared services. They are looking at private delivery and the voluntary sector. The Regional Development Agencies were abolished and their role was to grow regional economies and create jobs. The new organisations are not the same but are seeking to work with them eg on Markham Vale new jobs developments. They are working on young peoples’ training and employability skills- not the same old training schemes but industry based. The County have 500 Apprentices in the CC and 400 in private business. Influencing nationally is a target as the focus has been on cities and promoting their growth. But Cllr Western believes these are restricted and that the County has much to offer in terms of Growth potential- they have land and good transport links etc. We need a Govt that recognizes Derbyshires’ potential. Cllr Western believes that as Derbyshire was the birthplace of the Industrial Revolution and we are still capable, resourceful people given the chance. Ed Milliband group is looking at devolving to the regions. Work Programme has gone out to private sector and giving jobs to young people. The Council want to be ambitious and to change the way Derbyshire works. The Council has been very traditional and change is needed. More cost effective and more value for money. The ambition is for Derbyshire growth at the same time as protecting the vulnerable eg people who are disabled and who are dependent on social Services and who are being forced back to either parents or an institution.
Locally Anne represents Clowne, Barlborough and Stanfree. There is some investment locally in roads – with the budget they have the Council is going through a process of buying the Former Network Rail line and are aiming to develop a Greenway for walking, cycling and in part to get to jobs eg Markham Vale Poolsbrook Chesterfield link. Cllr Western is a Governor on all 3 schools in Clowne and is on the Gala Cttee and is available at Councillors Surgery on Saturdays.
Chair responded by thanking Cllr Western for her presentation and for the work on Station Hill just completed where the pot holes are being dealt with.
A Question and Answer Session followed
Q £270m road repairs money has been announced nationally, if DCC apply will it be ring fenced?
A. Yes it is ring fenced to roads.
Q. Transport and work with Stagecoach – any update?
A. This goes back to de-regulation during the Thatcher era so very few powers over bus companies exist. It is a commercial decision and Council can challenge it but can’t force routes to stay open. If a route is of community value then they can subsidise the service. But cuts are so severe it means they can’t continue to do this. Cllr Western has spoken with Stagecoach Manager and explained the change in circumstances eg Bolsover Council’s move to Clowne, and that Clowne is not well served. He has offered to develop with us a bus partnership. Hope to continue to work with them and influence them. New businesses on Markham Vale are adding pressure – would influence and could go as part of the hospital route.
Q. Aren’t we linked into Sheffield City region for help?
A. The Sheffield City Region is one of the Local Enterprise Partnerships- there is also D2N2
( Derby City, Nottingham City DCC and NCC) and we overlap between the two. These replaced the Reg Devlpt Agencies and they are both developing economic growth plans - Housing Transport and Jobs.
Q. What about transport to jobs links?
A. Councils favour development that has Bus Transport and local conditions favouring local employment targets.
Over a certain size of development businesses need a travel plan to look for funding for local jobs. Eg Sports Direct at Shirebrook have a travel plan and a subsidised bus route was put in place- Unfortunately this doesn’t reach as far as Clowne. It was based on high unemployment areas around the site. We are rural in this area and need a transport focus.
Q Congratulations on becoming the 1st female Leader and the amount of work being done.
Q. Plans on the Linear Park and the Greenway?
A. The Linear Park is owned by Bolsover DC and the other rail line is developing- currently Network Rail owned and Derbys CC are buying it. But it will take a long time to develop the route – and to get the funding needed to bring it up to standard.
Q One of the issues is the Mitchell St / Barton St bridge which is dangerous and Station Road path route is hazardous particularly for elderly and young. The Community Assoc want to get a lower level Barton St bridge – especially to link into the Walk to School routes. We want to work together to focus on this. It has been one since 2005?
A . While ever Network Rail own the line then the Council can only seek to negotiate improvements. Once the Council has bought the line we may be able to do something about it. It is simple geography- it makes sense to improve links.
Q. Station Road - is one way still under discussion?
A. New housing will stress and pressure the roads and major stores etc. They are talking to Bolsover planners. Feasibility next year money- start on the back of the Ben Bailey development S106 moneys.
Q Look at Crown Street and around the schools where the roads are dangerous for young children at school times.
Q. The Association are willing to work together on the Barton St bridge replacement project.
Q. Flooding issue on Station Road has this been looked at by DCC?
A. Flooding was extreme and stayed for some days. Council workers got it drained away and then did investigation work. A camera investigated the route of the pipe and they put on a new grate on the pipe entrance.
Q. Money to tidy Mill Close- problem of people accessing it?
A. Will visit and have a look at the problem.
Q A light here has been out for 3 weeks and has been reported?
A Will contact and investigate.
Q. Mr Blackwell-Education issue – are there plans in hand to increase Heritage in size and number of teachers to cope with extra students, and are we going to get a 6th Form back?
A.. No plans to extend the size of Heritage and the numbers are lower. There is capacity and the design of the new buildings are such that modules can be easily added. The 6th form decision is out of the Council’s hands. It rests with a Govt Agency and they are loath to do it. The idea was shared 6th forms with specialisms. The idea was it would give choice to students. But it never came to anything. Believes that the school is talking with others incl. Chesterfield College. It is about scale and capacity and the Schools Funding Agency (was Educ. Skills Council.)It is unlikely at present.
Q. The issue is that as kids are staying on longer to the age of 18 what provision will they get?
A Agrees that it is still an issue and largely outside of local authority control. It is down to Governors and Heads.
Q With todays announcement about money for roads how quick does it flow?
A Not entirely sure- Councils have to apply eg last year they got £4m which would go a long way – but it needs to be programmed and work planned to get it done as quickly as possible. The Tour de France route just touches Derbyshire on Woodhead and is likely to be prioritised.
Q Mr Hunter- general envt on Rose Avenue needs clearing?
A Suspect it is Bolsover DC - On Gapsick Lane also a word has been had about cut back.
Q Mr Betts-Shared footpath for cyclists on the A616 - can DCC consider shared footpaths eg Barlborough brand new footpath linking to Country Park but not made as a shared width path?
A Thinks there is good news - A scheme has money in next years’ budget. Believes they are having Cllr Western fighting our corner over more access.
Q A Tribute expressed to Tony Benn – a politician whose motto was - Say what you mean and mean what you say. Congratulations also expressed on the new bus shelters on Mastin Moor and Castle Nursing Home- these are boxed in and the right size. Our local bus shelters here are however inadequate?
Q. Gapsick Lane – Bondhay route hedgerows and litter are a problem Road has been patched up north of Gapsick Lane but Rotherham Road has subsided and is dangerous. Decision making needs looking at in terms of priority here?
Q. Trees are cut back in Chesterfield and yet the Coalite Road has not been done despite being raised again and again?
A Outside the boundary of Cllr Westerns area – but she has passed it on and asked them to look at it.
People need to share more of the decision processes and let local people know what is happening , what is planned and how decisions are made.
Q On the Greenway rail line– how long until it is purchased?
A Should be just about completed now – will check on this. The decision was made last summer by DCC Cabinet.
Q Complaints about fly tipping on the former line have been passed on. The Linear park was cleared in the past and Councils wouldn’t even collect the bags of waste collected- Bolsover DC.
A The issue at the moment on Linear park is that Chesterfield College want to sell off their land. Broken glass and rubbish is spread on the skate park. A Spring clean is planned for end of Easter week week-end- 25/26th- rubbish will be collected- DCC, Bolsover DC and Parish.. People also want to get on the rail line and clear it but not owned yet so wait until change of ownership.
Q Developments around Clowne – what more is available. New classroom on Infants and Juniors are wanting one. The numbers of pupils at Jun and Infants will be more than Heritage can cope with.
A All planning applications have a Section 106 public good payment requirement to pay towards education and other infrastructure costs.
Q Schools- Sept Infants School meals and nowhere to put them Kids are suffering with health bugs because of overcrowding?
Q There are a lot of voluntary organisations – let us know what is happening. Tap into the resources of the voluntary community available locally?
A Cllr Western agreed- there was a Nick Clegg announcement in Sept but no money yet. The council is struggling and working together is a need eg WI,WRVS, Volunteer work.eg Emergencies – response needs a broader support. As well as Trusted Trader trying to set up a Trusted Befriender scheme = needs some co-ordination. Eg neighbourhood watch example. Need Community Spirit bringing back.
Q. Use of young offenders to put in community hours?
A It is essentially just a question of asking them.
Q. Matlock Family Silver Sell Off? What about the offices cost at Matlock – will it be considered for sale?
A Derbys Council are looking at everything- the existing buildings can be used better- they can be shared etc.- the whole is up for review. It is a former John Smedley hydro and is a huge building built originally as a hotel and it is very old. It has £1.2m pa running costs. Trying to find a use for the building that give it a good future.
Q Parking and Speeding in Clowne
A They are meeting with the District Council . Parking Enforcement officers are only limited. Operate on car parks and on street – so limited hours available. Asking for the details- they are frequently up and down the main street. There is discussion of 20 mph zones.
Q Mill Street- why when Tesco was built wasn’t it made slower as the Mill Street route comes down from North Road?
Changed road priorities would slow the traffic down as they go uphill slower.
A A look at all the road system is needed.
Cllr Western was thanked for her presentation and the Association will look to work together with her on issues.
4. Main meeting
Minutes of the previous meeting were noted and accepted as correct :-
22 January 2014
No Matters Arising
5. Chairs Report
Old Miners Technical College demolition proposal Allan reported that the Planning Committee today considered the demolition proposal. The application was read through and several people spoke against the application including Greg Lindley on behalf of the Association. The Committee unanimously refused the application and Bellway did not attend the meeting.
Not sure what happens next- Bellway may appeal?
If the value of a building is stopping development then Govt. are now favouring allowing demolition. Bellway have not saved the property. Could a community use be possible? There may be lottery money available for community use? But we need to find out what Bellway want to do. At the stage of construction of 42 houses Bellway need to do something. There needs to be pressure on the Planning Dept at Bolsover to get this done. When they reach the trigger point of development progress Bellway need to be made to comply.
Skateboard Park Vandalism- this has occurred again last night with a large rock being used to damage a panel. The Parish Council are considering what action is needed and are meeting on 31st and they may consider closing it. Chesterfield College want to sell the site and have quoted an asking price of about £70,000. The Parish have valued the land at £19,000. The camera on site is working and the Police are to review footage. This is an infra-red camera and it is not known what is recorded on it.
Mobility Shop on Rectory Road The mobility company based there undertake sales and repair of mobility scooters etc. The owner has been invited to the next but one meeting to speak on services offered.
Cenotaph Memorial Garden -The Parish Council have plans for this. Aldi have donated their triangle of land south of their access- but will take it back if the land is not used as stated. Maintenance in future will be by the Parish. Trees have been instantly cut down by the Parish- couldn’t they have been saved?- Answer given by Parish was no. It will be completed hopefully before August and definitely by Nov. Seats are to be added to the area Planing aplic to submit.
State of former Davenports property
Chair of Parish Council has spoken to District and they will serve a notice to tidy up the site.
POD at Tesco- A key cutting, watch repair dry cleaning shoe repair unit is planned. Tesco have submitted Planning applic for this. This will significantly impact on the Fair Deal shop as it is in direct competition. It will take all his business. Why are Tesco trying to put the little shopkeeper out of business. Tesco already have enough. Please consider signing the petition the Fair Deal are raising.
Police put items out for circulation. Currently you can vote for the Policeman/woman who has achieved something for the local area.
Miners Welfare?- what is happening?
At this moment it is not bought .
Community Notice Board- not applied for PP yet – it will be done.
Simple Skills Save Lives on 27 June – now to be at Shirebrook where all the school are involved.
Clowne in Bloom
Dates for joint meetings are 20 March, 16 April, 15 May, 18 June, 24 July, 20 August- all at 7pm at the Community Centre.
6. Next Meetings - for 2014
21 May (speaker Dr Nissenbaum on health issues)
23 July 17 September
19 November and AGM.
The Tea/Coffee and Raffle raised £50.90 and everyone was thanked for their contributions.