Agenda and minutes
Venue: Council Chamber, Council Offices, Coalville
Contact: Democratic Services 01530 454512
Apologies for Absence
Apologies for absence was received from Councillors J G Coxon, G Jones and M B Wyatt.
Declarations of Interest
Under the Code of Conduct members are reminded that in declaring disclosable interests you should make clear the nature of that interest and whether it is ‘Pecuniary’ or ‘Non-Pecuniary’.
There were no declarations of interest.
To confirm and sign the minutes of the meeting held on 14 October 2015.
Consideration was given to the minutes of the meeting held on 14 October 2015.
The Chairman expressed his disappointment that there were no Members in attendance at the evening event in Ashby to monitor the night time economy with officers as referred to within the minutes. He believed that Members would learn a lot at these events and encouraged them to do their upmost to attend the one later in the year. Details would be circulated once it had been arranged.
In relation to the training on the IDOX public access software that Members received after the last meeting, Councillor T Eynon stated that she was happy with the training but unfortunately she still struggled to use the system. She thanked officers for agreeing to keep attaching the details of licences as part of the weekly Members Bulletin.
By affirmation of the meeting it was
The minutes of the meeting held on 14 October 2015 be approved and signed by the Chairman as a correct record.
Report of the Environmental Health Team Manager
The Environmental Health Team Manager presented the report to Members and introduced Catherine Ridgeway (Community Focus Officer) to the Committee who would be leading the application process.
Regarding the recommendation to elect a Member to represent the Licensing Committee at the Working Group, the Chairman asked Members to not put forward an Ashby Ward Member. Councillor J Cotterill proposed Councillor M Specht and it was seconded by Councillor D Harrison. It was put to the vote and agreed.
Councillor A C Saffell reported that Castle Donington Parish Council had been researching options such as the purple flag accreditation for the town and although he was not the Member representative on this occasion, he would like to be involved as much as possible. Officers took the comment on board.
Councillor S Sheahan asked how the process would work, would it be taking an honest approach or would it be concentrating more on selling the good points of Ashby. He also asked who the assessors were and how they fit into the scheme. The Community Focus Officer explained that assessors were from all across the country and from a variety of backgrounds involved in the night time economy. She explained that Purple Flag undertake an unbiased honest assessment that looked at all aspects including the dispersal of people, state of streets, antisocial behaviour and methods of people leaving the area such as taxis and buses. She added that she was an assessor for Purple Flag and that it was not an easy accreditation to obtain and towns did fail.
The Chairman asked if there was any data or comments that Purple Flag had given to other towns available for public viewing and also how the accreditation was publicised. The Community Focus Officer responded that the assessment was undertaken using criteria within specific areas; this was then reported back to towns so that it was clear where the positives and negatives were. She explained that Purple flag had a website and published material.
Councillor T Eynon asked if there was any evidence that obtaining the accreditation would bring any benefits to the town. She also asked if there was any way to measure the outcomes as it was important to see the current position and be clear what improvements were required. The Community Focus Officer responded that she would be using crime statistics, CCTV, consulting with people who regularly visit Ashby and business owners. The Chairman also added that it would be worthwhile talking to hotels and bed and breakfast establishments in the area as they would also benefit from the accreditation. He agreed that it was important to have some baseline figures to measure against.
The Environmental Health Team Manager reported that a self assessment was being undertaken on 12 March which would help identify areas of improvement and provide a matrix for comparisons at the end of the process.
Councillor K Merrie commented that the initiative was a good idea and hoped Ashby would be successful. He asked if there were ... view the full minutes text for item 8.