09 May 2017 – Minutes
THAME TOWN COUNCIL
Minutes of the Meeting of Thame Town Council held on 9 May 2017 at 6.30pm in the Upper Chamber, Thame Town Hall
Present: Cllrs B Austin, D Bretherton, D Butler (left at 6.50pm), N Champken-Woods, M Deacock, N Dixon (Deputy Mayor), D Dodds, M Dyer, L Emery (Town Mayor), H Fickling, A Midwinter, M Stiles and T Wyse.
G Hunt, Town Clerk
G Markland, Neighbourhood Plan Continuity Officer
A Oughton, Committee Services Officer
A. Councillor David Dodds
On 17 May 1967, Councillor David Dodds signed his Declaration of Acceptance of Office at Thame Urban District Council and has served the town as a Councillor ever since. Councillors, Officers and those present in the public gallery congratulated Cllr David Dodds on 50 years of exemplary service to the community with a standing ovation.
Cllr Dodds responded and stated that 50 years ago the election was on the same day as this year’s County Council elections and he had been honoured to top the poll on the day at the tender age of 23.
Cllr Dodds had received two surprises in the last week; one at the Town Awards evening last Thursday when the Town recognised his achievement and the Mayor presented him with a gift and a framed edition of the front page of the Thame Gazette, dated 17 May 1967, announcing the winners of the election. The second was on receiving the agenda for tonight’s meeting and reading the formal acknowledgement of his 50 years’ service. Cllr Dodds thanked everyone for their good wishes and congratulations.
B. Outgoing Mayor Announcements
Cllr Emery reported that being Mayor had been a life changing experience and she had enjoyed every minute of the last twelve months. She had attended so many town and local events and gained a much greater knowledge of the town and the people who lived in it. There was an amazing community spirit that provided support to those in need.
Cllr Emery thanked all the Councillors and especially Deputy Mayor Cllr Dixon for their support during the year. Also Council Officers and the Town Clerk who had given support and advice.
Finally Cllr Emery was pleased to present representatives of her two chosen charities, The Red Kite Family Centre and Thame Youth Projects with a cheque each in excess of £7,000.
1. Election of Town Mayor
Town Mayor, Cllr Emery called for nominations for the position of Town Mayor. It was moved and duly seconded that Cllr Dodds be appointed Town Mayor. It was then moved and duly seconded that Cllr Wyse be appointed Town Mayor. On being put to the vote it was:
i) Cllr Wyse be elected Town Mayor for the ensuing year.
2. Declaration of Acceptance of Office by Town Mayor
Cllr Wyse signed the Declaration of Acceptance of Office of Town Mayor and thanked fellow Councillors for electing him. Cllr Wyse took the chair. His first duty was to present a gift to the outgoing Town Mayor.
3. Election of Deputy Town Mayor
Town Mayor Cllr Wyse called for nominations for the position of Deputy Town Mayor. It was moved and duly seconded that Cllr Emery be elected as Deputy Town Mayor:
i) Cllr Emery be elected Deputy Town Mayor for the ensuing year.
4. Declaration of Acceptance of Office by Deputy Town Mayor
Cllr Emery signed the Declaration of Acceptance of Office of Deputy Town Mayor.
Cllr Butler left the meeting after this item.
5. Apologies for Absence
Apologies for absence were received from Cllrs Butler (Personal), Cowell (Business), Jones (Business) and Lambert (Business).
6. Declarations of Interest and Dispensations
There were no declarations of interest.
7. Public Participation and Public Questions
There were no applications for public participation.
There were no public questions.
8. P17/S1069/FUL – The Elms, 32 Upper High Street
Jolande Bowater spoke on behalf of the applicant in favour of planning application P17/S1069/FUL and stated that the proposal for extra care housing represented an alternative to the already approved residential scheme.
The proposal was not for a care home, nursing home or an institution but a specialist type of housing to buy and sell on the open market. Apartments would only be available to purchase to those over 65 years and in need of some form of care. The care would be provided by an onsite team and include help with shopping, cleaning, cooking or more personal help. This determined the development as C2 care, housing that did not provide extra care being C3.
The already approved scheme provided 37 dwellings with public open space and pedestrian and cycle routes. This proposal was for 81 apartments and 4 small cottages with more open space and the same pedestrian and cycle routes.
Jolande Bowater tabled a document to Councillors which showed a comparison of the already approved site with that now being proposed. The new scheme would deliver more homes on a smaller footprint and represent a 9% reduction in the overall footprint.
The positive benefits would be a reduction in scale and massing, more public open space, fewer overall traffic movements, a basement car park and job creation. It was expected to create 23 new permanent full and time employment opportunities.
The s106 contribution of £300k towards the redevelopment of Elms Park agreed on the previously approved scheme would be honoured together with ‘a without prejudice’ payment of £1.28m based on contributions made by developers to similar schemes throughout the district.
Jolande then answered a number of questions from Members.
The Neighbourhood Plan Continuity Officer presented his report. In declaring the proposal as a C2 development the applicant had been very careful. It was a form of residential development but not a C3 dwelling house. To benefit from this allocation site, as identified in the 2012 Core Strategy, the applicant would have to provide an exemplary amount of evidence that the site should be given up for another purpose. There was a need for this type of elderly care but Government guidelines dictated that the market should not lead on this type of development but through the Local and Neighbourhood Plan led system with a robust evidence base.
The benefits of the proposed scheme are similar to those of the approved scheme; provision of open space and a link between the Southern Road area and the Upper High Street. However, the existing approved scheme provided all these benefits and fulfilled the Thame Neighbourhood Plan and for this reason it was recommended to refuse the application.
After a further debate by Members it was
i) A recommendation of refusal be submitted to the District Planning Department on the grounds that the proposal is contrary to the Thame Neighbourhood Plan together with the points raised in the Officer’s report.
The Committee Structure, Committee Responsibilities, Terms of Reference and Delegations were presented for approval.
i) The Committee Structure, Committee Responsibilities Terms of Reference and Delegations be approved.
10. Appointment of Standing Committees
i) Cllrs B Austin, D Bretherton, P Cowell, M Deacock, D Dodds, H Fickling,
C Jones, A Midwinter and M Stiles and be appointed to the Planning and Environment Committee.
ii) Cllrs D Butler, N Champken-Woods, P Cowell, M Deacock, N Dixon, M Dyer, C Jones, P Lambert and M Stiles be appointed to the Community, Leisure and Recreation Committee.
iii) Cllrs B Austin, D Bretherton, D Butler, N Champken-Woods, N Dixon, D Dodds, M Dyer, H Fickling, C Jones and P Lambert be appointed to the Policy and Resources Committee.
iv) Cllrs B Austin, D Bretherton, P Cowell, D Dodds, M Dyer, H Fickling, P Lambert, A Midwinter and M Stiles be appointed to the Neighbourhood Plan Continuity Committee.
v) Cllrs L Emery (Deputy Mayor), T Wyse (Town Mayor) and Chairmen of the Policy and Resources Committee, Community, Leisure and Recreation Committee, Planning and Environment Committee and Neighbourhood Plan Continuity Committee be appointed to the Personnel Committee.
11. External Organisations
a) Barns Centre – D Butler, D Dodds & Town Clerk
b) Chinnor Rugby Football Club – D Bretherton & N Dixon
c) Citizens’ Advice – B Austin
d) Cricket Club – N Champken-Woods
e) Cuttle Brook Management Committee – C Jones & M Stiles
f) Health Hub – N Champken-Woods
g) Music in the Park – M Stiles
h) National Association of Local Councils – Chair, Policy & Resources
i) Red Kite Family Centre – L Emery & T Wyse
j) Sinaia Friendship Association – D Bretherton
k) Thame Carnival Committee – L Emery
l) Thame Business Forum – Chair, Policy & Resources
m) Thame & District Day Centre – A Midwinter
n) Thame & District Housing Association – D Butler
o) Thame Football Partnership – M Dyer
p) Thame Good Neighbour Scheme – A Midwinter
q) Thame Museum Trust – D Butler & L Emery
r) Thame Music Festival – T Wyse
s) Thame Remembers – D Bretherton & M Dyer
t) Thame Shed – T Wyse
u) Thame Youth Memorial Trust – P Lambert
v) Towersey Festival – D Bretherton & P Lambert
w) Transport Representative – M Stiles
x) Twinning Association – D Butler
y) 21st Century Thame – L Emery & H Fickling
z) Welfare Trust – N Champken-Woods
i) The Members as listed above be appointed as representatives to the named External Organisations.
ii) That Thame Shed be added to the list of External Organisations and report to the Community, Leisure & Recreation Committee.
iii) That The Red Kite Family Centre and Thame & District Day Centre be moved to report to the Policy & Resources Committee.
12. Standing Orders and Financial Regulations
It was a requirement that Standing Orders and Financial Regulations were reviewed annually. The Town Clerk had undertaken the review and proposed seven changes to Standing Orders and one to the Financial Regulations as set out in the report.
i) The revised Standing Orders and Financial Regulations be adopted.
13. Mayor’s Report
Cllr Wyse thanked everyone for their support and stated that it was a great honour to be elected Town Mayor. He could not have imagined as a small boy of 13yrs whilst attending Rycote Wood College that one day he would be sat at the table, donated by the College to the Town Council, as Town Mayor. Cllr Wyse hoped to bring new ideas to the town during his year.
14. Notices of Motion
There were no Notices of Motion.
15. Members Questions (under Standing Order 11)
Cllr Fickling asked if the Town Mayor had decided who his chosen charity would be? Cllr Wyse replied that he intended to support two charities, one of which would be the Red Kite Family Centre.
The minutes of the Council meeting held on 25 April 2017 were approved as a correct record and signed by the Mayor.
17. Planning & Environment Committee
The minutes of the meeting held on 25 April 2017 were noted.
18. Town Flag Design
The town flag competition had been well received with thirty three different designs being submitted. Entrants ranged from young, old, families and professional designers based in the Town. Following the request for Councillors to ‘rank’ the designs, using the marking criteria provided, a shortlist of four flags had been produced.
Councillors agreed that there was very little to choose between the final four designs but on balance preferred design no. 30.
i) Flag design no. 30 be adopted as the Town Flag.
The meeting concluded at 7.37pm
Chairman, 20 June 2017