Agenda and minutes

Council
Thursday 20th October, 2022 7.00 pm

The full agenda with individual reports can be viewed on this page below.

The full agenda with all reports can be downloaded from the Agenda reports pack.

Venue: Council Chamber - Farnham Town Hall. View directions

Contact: Email: Town.Clerk@farnham.gov.uk 

Items
No. Item

C53/22

Apologies

To receive apologies for absence.

Minutes:

Apologies were received from Cllrs Blishen, Dunsmore and Wicks.

C54/22

Disclosures of Interest

To receive from members, in respect of any items included on the agenda for this meeting, disclosure of any disclosable pecuniary or other interests, or of any gifts and hospitality, in line with the Town Council’s Code of Conduct.

 

NOTES:

 (i)        The following councillors have made a general non-pecuniary interest declaration in relation to being councillors of Waverley Borough Council: Cllrs Beaman, Blishen, Cockburn, Dickson, Edmonds, Gray, Hesse, Macleod, Martin, Merryweather, Mirylees, Neale, and Ward.

(ii)        The following councillors have made a general non-pecuniary interest declaration in relation to being councillors of Surrey County Council: Cllr Macleod and Cllr Martin; and

(iii)        Members are requested to make declarations of interest, on the form attached, to be returned to customer.services@farnham.gov.uk by 5pm on the day before the meeting.

 

Members are reminded that if they declare a pecuniary interest they must leave before any debate starts unless dispensation has been obtained.

Minutes:

There were no disclosures of interest other than those of double and triple-hatted councillors.

C55/22

Minutes pdf icon PDF 127 KB

To sign as a correct record the minutes of the Farnham Town Council meeting held on 4th August 2022 at Appendix A.

Minutes:

The minutes of the Farnham Town Council meeting held on 4th August 2022 at Appendix A where agreed.

 

The meeting scheduled for September had been cancelled in view of the mourning period following the death of the Monarch.

C56/22

Questions and Statements by the Public

In accordance with Standing Order 10.1, the Town Mayor will invite members of the public present to ask questions or make statements.

 

At the discretion of the Town Mayor, those members of the public, residing or working within the Council’s boundary, will be invited to make representations or ask questions in respect of the business on the agenda, or other matters not on the agenda, for a maximum of 3 minutes per person or 20 minutes overall.

Minutes:

There were no questions or statements from the public.

C57/22

Town Mayor's Announcements

To receive the Town Mayor’s announcements.

Minutes:

The Town Mayor was pleased to announce the success of Farnham in Bloom, where the Town Council had won Gold at the Britain in Bloom finals for the third successive entry. He said this was a testament to the hard work of the staff, volunteers, sponsors and councillors and congratulated everyone involved. He also noted that only four of the eight towns in the Large Town category had won gold and said he was incredibly proud.

 

The last month had been busy following the death of Her Majesty the Queen and the proclamation of the King. The Mayor advised that condolences had been sent to the Royal  Family from the Town Council and that the Books of Remembrance were being sent to the Surrey history Centre.

 

The Mayor advised that tickets were still available for the annual Venison Dinner on 10 November.

 

It was noted that Remembrance Sunday would be on 13 November; the procession would take place from Castle Street to Gostrey Meadow and there would be no civic church service with the whole Remembrance at the War Memorial

 

The Mayor said that he had commissioned Susie Lidstone to provide the artwork for his annual Christmas card and Susie joined him to present the drawing she had produced, which showed St Andrew’s Church and school with a family approaching the entrance, illustrating Farnham as a welcoming place for everyone.

 

C58/22

Questions by Members

To consider any questions from councillors in accordance with Standing Order 9.

Minutes:

There were no questions from Members.

 

C59/22

Working Group Notes pdf icon PDF 152 KB

1)      To receive the notes and any recommendations of the following Working Groups:

i)         Tourism and Events held on12th October 2022Appendix B

ii)        Strategy and Finance held on 14th October 2022Appendix C

 

2)      To receive a verbal update from:

i)         The informal Community Enhancement Working Group meeting on 7th September which was not quorate; and

ii)        The Cemeteries and Appeals visit to West Street Cemetery on 29th September .

Additional documents:

Minutes:

i)       Tourism and Events held on12th October 2022 Appendix B

Cllr Mirylees introduced the meetings of the Tourism and Events meeting that took place on 12th October at Appendix B to the agenda.

 

The Discover Farnham app commissioned through the Welcome Back fund was live and officers had met with Simon Aeppli of the University for the Creative Arts who designed a Ghost Trail for the app, which flags all the history in Farnham. This was being launched on 29 October and other trails already installed include trees, and craft.

  

Cllr Mirylees also mentioned that lots of arts and crafts information for Craft month and World Craft Town was available through the site www.farnhamcrafttown.com.

 

It was noted that the Literary Festival in 2023 was going ahead but the Gin Festival 2022 had been cancelled as it was due to take place during the period of National Mourning for the Queen.

 

Cllr Mirylees concluded by advising that in 2023, there were plans for a Festival of Light as part of Craft Month and Christmas events.

 

Cllr Merryweather spoke about Pierrepont Farm bewery, which is outside of Farnham but very close by and of interest to the town, and the cancelling of the lease by the Countryside Regeneration Trust in favour of another new brewery. He proposed a motion that the Town Council express concern and offer support to Frensham Parish Council to ensure a positive outcome for the existing brewery who had done so much to create a successful business on site. The proposal was SECONDED by Cllr Cockburn.

 

It was RESOLVED nem con to express concern and offer support to Frensham Parish Council to ensure a positive outcome for Craft Brews at Pierrepont Farm.

 

 

 ii) Strategy and Finance held on 14th October 2022

 

Cllr Evans introduced the notes of the Strategy and Finance Working Group notes from 14th October at Appendix C to the agenda.

 

a)     The Finance Report had been discussed in detail.  Cllr Evans recommended the unqualified external audit for 2021/22 for approval by Council.

 

            It was RESOLVED unanimously to welcome the External Auditor’s 2021/22 report.

 

b)     Council considered the detail of the latest Trial Balance and Budget Comparisons, the current reserves level, and the Income and Expenditure to 30th September by both account code and Committee which were on target for this time of year despite the cancellation of the Gin Festival as a result of the death of Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth.  Cllr Evans explained that the Strategy and Finance Working Group had agreed to review the Christmas Light contract in 2023 and an increased provision for energy costs would be made in the coming budget as a result of the challenges being faced.

  

The Statement of Investments was noted, as was the discussion at Strategy and Finance regarding the fact that HSBC was no longer offering a relationship manager and that a banking review would be undertaken.

 

The Aged Debtors list had been reviewed with potentially three invoices totalling £350 which  ...  view the full minutes text for item C59/22

C60/22

Planning and Licensing Applications pdf icon PDF 218 KB

To receive the minutes of the Planning & Licensing Consultative Group meetings held on 15th August, 5th and 26th September, and 3rd and 17th October at Appendices D, E, F, G, H.

Additional documents:

Minutes:

Cllr Fraser reported on the meetings held on 15th August, 5th and 26th September and 3rd and 17th October. He advised there had been a very high number of applications to review - a total of 166.

 

He raised the following as items of note from the various meetings:

  • Bells solicitors in the Town Centre - application to convert to 7 flats
  • Hookstyle residential application alongside the railway
  • Application to fell trees - which should be replaced with similar trees
  • Hawthorns residential development application which was not allocated in the Neighbourhood Plan

 

It was noted that there was a lack of information on appeals being sent to town and parish councils. which was important due to the amount of enquiries the parish and town councils received from the public. 

C61/22

Actions taken under the Scheme of Delegation

To receive details of any matters taken under the Scheme of Delegation not already reported.

Minutes:

There were no actions to report other than those noted elsewhere in the minutes.

 

C62/22

Reports from Other Councils

To receive from Councillors any updates on matters affecting Farnham from Waverley Borough Council and Surrey County Council.

 

Minutes:

i)               Cllr Fraser gave an update on matters relating to Waverley Borough Council air  quality actions. A meeting was held to discuss the Air Quality Management Plan and Cllr Fraser was concerned about the length of time it had taken to call the meeting and how poorly it was conducted in his opinion.  He expressed concern about the amount of time taken to take action on the matter. Cllr Beaman asked if the Cllr Fraser could encourage Waverley Borough Council to hold a meeting related to Farnham only.

 

ii)              Cllr MacLeod gave an update from Surrey County Council and the scheme introduced to support those on low incomes related to the cost of living crisis. It was noted that Surrey were setting up welfare hubs that people could visit to get support and advice. Cllr MacLeod also had two trees to donate and it was noted that these would be donated to the Town Council.  Cllr MacLeod also advised on the Surrey Healthy Streets initiative had also being launched and was related to Surrey Council being more involved in highway design.

 

iii)             Cllr Cockburn expressed disappointment, shared by other councillors, that the Surrey Local Committees had been disbanded, especially as it had had success around Rowledge and other areas, as a result of petitions to the committee. Cllr MacLeod agreed with Cllr Cockburn and advised that petitions could be submitted, but that they are sent to Select Committee that meets in Reigate. He added that he was looking at setting up a version of Local Committee with support from within Waverley, although recognised that this would not be a full substitute.

 

iv)            Cllr Neale added that a national group had been looking at banking hubs and that local initiatives should align with them.  The Town Clerk advised that local residents has taken an initiative to secure one in Farnham led by Mrs Mary Ambler who had been in touch with the local MP and local councils.

 

v)              Cllr Martin said that "Your Fund Surrey" had not been accessed by many groups in Surrey, but some large amounts of funding were going to areas such as Chobham. It was noted that a new funding stream as part of "Your Fund Surrey" was being launched, with £50k going to each of the SCC councillors, enabling them to support grass roots initiatives.

C63/22

Reports from Outside Bodies

To receive from Members any verbal reports on Outside Bodies where they represent Farnham Town Council.

 

Minutes:

i)               Cllr Cockburn updated Council on the Loneliness Task Group. The project, which was set up post-Covid, was looking at ways to improve loneliness and one way thought of was accessible walks. Cllr Cockburn thought there was an opportunity to link with the Discover Farnham app.

 

ii)              Cllr Neale gave an update on the following:

·       Public art trust - very active and had recently produced a new publication.

·       New Ashgate gallery - building was leased by Waverley and some roofing work was required which Cllr Neale was trying to assist with.

·       Farnham Maltings - had appointed a new CEO, Peter Glanville who would take up post in January.

C64/22

Date of Next Meeting

To agree the date of the next meeting which will be held on Thursday 15th December at 7.00pm.

Minutes:

The dated of the next meeting was agreed as Thursday 15th December at 7.00pm.

C65/22

Exclusion of the Press and Public

TO PASS A RESOLUTION to exclude members of the public and press from the meeting at Part 3 of the agenda (if required) in view of any confidential items under discussion relating to staffing or contractual matters.

Minutes:

The resolution to exclude the press and public was AGREED in view of the contractual matters under discussion which were commercially confidential.

 

C66/22

Hale Chapels Community Garden

i)                  Hale Chapels Community Garden Tenders.

Minutes:

The Town Clerk advised that the design for the garden had been tendered nationally and that three bids had been received.  The range of quotations was substantial. Officers had done an initial analysis of the bids.

 

It was RESOLVED unanimously

i) that the Town Council should interview the lowest two contractors to discuss their bids, their sub-contractors and their references.

ii) The Town Clerk in consultation with the Assets Task Group should determine the successful contractor in conjunction with the Assets Task Group after due diligence had taken place at a cost not exceeding the middle contractor’s quotation.