14 May 2019 – Minutes
THAME TOWN COUNCIL
Minutes of the Meeting of Thame Town Council held on 14 May 2019 at 6.30pm in the Upper Chamber, Thame Town Hall
Present: Cllrs B Austin, D Bretherton, N Champken-Woods, P Cowell, M Deacock, A Dite, M Dyer, L Emery,
H Fickling, S Francis, C Jones, A Midwinter (Town Mayor), J Tipping and T Wyse
G Hunt, Town Clerk
A Oughton, Committee Services Officer
A. Outgoing Mayor Announcements
Cllr Midwinter welcomed the newly elected Councillors and also the twelve Councillors who had successfully been re-elected. After delivering so many election leaflets on the run up to the elections, Cllr Midwinter appreciated the work that the local postmen and women do and thanked them their hard work.
Cllr Midwinter also extended thanks, on behalf of the Town Council, to PCSO Diane Jackson who had retired from the police force after 15 years of service.
On behalf of the Town Council, Cllr Midwinter extended condolences to the family of Jean Manders who died last week. Jean was awarded The High Sheriff of Oxfordshire Award for Outstanding Service to the Community for helping with the Visually Impaired Club for 40 years. Jean also received the Life Time Achievement Town Award in March and will be sadly missed by everyone who knew her.
It had been a privilege to represent the town during the last year. Cllr Midwinter picked out a few of the many events she had attended, particularly the Service of Remembrance at the Memorial Gardens, the events to commemorate the centenary of the end of the First World War, the Thame Remembers Project and the production of ‘Ten Tommies from Thame’. The Thame Town Music Festival which included for the first time last year a classical concert at St Mary’s church, the Queen’s Colour being paraded at the Civic Service and the opening of the new Cricket Pavilion which will serve the community, especially the Day Centre.
Finally, my thanks for the support received during the year; to Graham Hunt, Town Clerk and his very well qualified members of staff, to Deputy Mayor Cllr Linda Emery, the two Mayor’s Cadets – Sophie and Annabel and to ‘Love Thame’ social media for the production of the Thame Calendar, the money from which was donated to the Mayor’s charities. To Rosie Collins, the Mayor’s PA, for keeping me on track, to the residents and businesses who have supported and helped raise money for the Mayor’s two charities and finally to my husband for all his support and for getting me to events and places on time.
Cllr Midwinter then presented two cheques, each for £5,388 to representatives from her two chosen charities, Sharing Life Trust and Thame Youth Projects Group.
The Town Clerk presented Cllr Midwinter with a photobook of her Mayoral year on behalf of the Town Council.
1. Election of Town Mayor
Town Mayor, Cllr Midwinter called for nominations for the position of Town Mayor. It was moved and duly seconded that Cllr Midwinter be elected as Town Mayor.
i) Cllr Midwinter be elected Town Mayor for the ensuing year.
2. Declaration of Acceptance of Office by Town Mayor
Cllr Midwinter signed the Declaration of Acceptance of Office of Town Mayor and thanked fellow Councillors for electing her. Cllr Midwinter took the chair.
3. Election of Deputy Town Mayor
Town Mayor, Cllr Midwinter called for nominations for the position of Deputy Town Mayor. It was moved and duly seconded that Cllr Cowell be elected as Deputy Town Mayor.
i) Cllr Cowell be elected Deputy Town Mayor for the ensuing year.
4. Declaration of Acceptance of Office by Deputy Town Mayor
Cllr Cowell signed the Declaration of Acceptance of Office of Deputy Town Mayor.
5. Apologies for Absence
Apologies for absence were received from Cllrs Dodds (Personal) and Gregory (Personal).
6. Declarations of Interest and Dispensations
There were no declarations of interest.
7. Declarations of Acceptance of Office
The Town Clerk reported that following the elections he had so far executed 15 out of the 16 Declarations of Acceptance of Office. Cllr Gregory had not signed the Declaration of Acceptance of Office due her being away since the result of the election was declared. The Town Clerk asked Members to agree that Cllr Gregory signs the Declaration of Acceptance of Office at a later date.
i) Cllr Gregory signs the Declaration of Acceptance of Office at a later date.
8. Public Participation and Public Questions
There were no applications to address the Council.
There were no public questions put to the Council.
The Committee Structure, Committee Responsibilities, Terms of Reference and Delegations were presented for approval. The Committee Responsibilities and Terms of Reference remain up to date with no proposed changes. Minor changes had been made to the Committee / Working Group Structure to reflect new Working Groups / Working Parties created during 2018/19 and one minor change to Delegations to remove no longer serving named Councillors.
The Committee Structure, Committee Responsibilities, Terms of Reference and Delegations be approved.
10. Appointment of Standing Committees
i) Cllrs B Austin, M Deacock, A Dite, D Dodds, L Emery, H Fickling, S Francis,
K Gregory and T Wyse be appointed to the Planning and Environment Committee.
ii) Cllrs D Bretherton, N Champken-Woods, M Deacock, A Dite, M Dyer,
K Gregrory, C Jones, J Tipping and T Wyse be appointed to the Community, Leisure and Recreation Committee.
iii) Cllrs B Austin, D Bretherton, N Champken-Woods, D Dodds, M Dyer,
L Emery, H Fickling, S Francis, C Jones and J Tipping be appointed to the Policy and Resources Committee.
iv) Cllrs B Austin, D Bretherton, M Deacock, M Dyer, L Emery, H Fickling,
S Francis, C Jones, and J Tipping be appointed to the Neighbourhood Plan Continuity Committee.
v) Cllrs P Cowell (Deputy Mayor), A Midwinter (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 – M Deacock, D Dodds & Town Clerk
b) Chinnor Rugby Football Club – D Bretherton
c) Citizens’ Advice – B Austin
d) Cricket Club – N Champken-Woods
e) Cuttle Brook Management Committee – C Jones
f) Friends of Elms Park – N Champken-Woods
g) Health Hub (including Community Hub Pilot) – N Champken-Woods
h) Music in the Park – C Jones
i) National Association of Local Councils – Chair, Policy & Resources
j) Red Kite Family Centre – L Emery
k) Sinaia Friendship Association – D Bretherton
l) Thame Carnival Committee – L Emery
m) Thame Business Forum – M Dyer
n) Thame & District Day Centre – A Midwinter
o) Thame & District Housing Association – Linda Emery
p) Thame Football Partnership – M Dyer
q) Thame Good Neighbour Scheme – A Midwinter
r) Thame Museum Trust – P Cowell & L Emery
s) Thame Town Music Festival – T Wyse
t) Thame Shed – T Wyse
u) Thame Sports Club – C Jones
v) Thame Youth Memorial Trust – J Tipping
w) Thame Youth Projects Group – J Tipping
x) Towersey Festival – J Tipping
y) Transport Representative – M Stiles (Deputy S Francis)
z) Twinning Association – S Francis
aa) 21st Century Thame – H Fickling & S Francis
bb) Welfare Trust – N Champken-Woods
i) The Members as listed above be appointed as representatives to the named External Organisations.
ii) Friends of Elms Park be added to the list of External Organisations and report to the Community, Leisure & Recreation Committee.
12. Standing Orders and Financial Regulations
Standing Orders were last re-adopted in May 2018 and presented now with the following proposed changes:
a) Change at 1.3 (strike out “on the second Tuesday”) to allow the Annual Meeting of the Council to be held at any time in May, in line with the law, rather than being restricted to the second Tuesday in May.
b) Change as discussed at Induction Training, to remove “as a correct record” from minute approval at 7.2 (f) and 12.0, so that minutes are simply approved. This allows those not present at the original meeting to also approve the legal record of the meeting.
Financial Regulations were last updated in May 2018 and presented now without change for re-adoption.
i) The revised Standing Orders and Financial Regulations be adopted.
13. Code of Conduct
Good practice dictates that the Code of Conduct is reviewed at the start of a new administration. This has been done and the document presented, without change, for re-adoption.
i) The Code of Conduct be re-adopted.
The Dispensations Policy includes a list of agreed ‘General Dispensations’ that the Town Council has granted. The document best reflects the needs of the Town Council. It is a legal requirement that dispensations must be reviewed at the start of a new administration.
The Town Clerk reviewed the Dispensations Policy and the following changes are proposed:
a) Some cosmetic changes to formatting throughout.
b) Some minor cosmetic changes around the fact that is not just pecuniary interests for which dispensations may be required.
c) Removal of the general dispensation relating to setting the precept, as latest Government Guidance states it is not required.
d) Addition of the Thame Community Land Trust as a general dispensation.
i) The updated Dispensations document be adopted.
15. General Power of Competence
The Localism Act 2011 introduced the General Power of Competence (GPC) for Town and Parish Councils subject to certain criteria being met. GPC is the Power of first resort giving Town and Parish Councils the power to do anything that an individual may do as long there is no legislation which prevents it. The Town Council met the criteria and was therefore qualified to take up the General Power of Competence.
i) The Council meets the criteria for eligibility for the General Power of Competence relating to the electoral mandate and relevant training of the Town Clerk.
16. Mayor’s Report
Following the report given by Cllr Midwinter at the beginning of the meeting there was nothing further to report.
17. Members Questions (under Standing Order 11)
The Town Mayor was asked if she had given any thought as to her chosen charity for this year? Cllr Midwinter replied that she had and she will be supporting Young Carers at Lord Williams’s School.
The minutes of the meeting held on 16 April 2019 were approved and signed by the Mayor.
19. Planning & Environment Committee
The minutes of the meetings held on 30 April 2019 were noted.
20. Thame Football Partnership Permission Request
The Town Council had received a request from Thame Football Partnership (TFP) to extend the scope of the planning application for a new Artificial Pitch to include turf pitch proposals. The turf pitch project will be entirely under TFP management and funding and separate from the Artificial Pitch project.
i) Approval is given to Thame Football Partnership to extend the scope of the planning application for a new artificial pitch to also include significant improvements to the adjacent full size turf pitch.
The meeting concluded at 7.29pm
Chairman, 18 June 2019