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					                       MINUTES OF THE AREA FORUM EAST

                                      21 July 2005


The Area Forum East met at 6.30pm at The Friends Meeting House, Castle Road, Hartshill.



      Present:              Councillor Forwood in the Chair

                            Councillors Bassan, Beeson, Edgington, L Freer, R Freer,
                            Hall and Robinson.

      In Attendance:        John Bird, Judith Edwards-Sturley, Simon Powell, Alethea
                            Wilson and Jenny Price - North Warwickshire Borough Council
                            Alistair Rigby - Warwickshire County Council
                            John Randle – Hartshill Parish Council
                            Glenys Roberts - Hartshill & Nuneaton Recreation Committee
                            H Blackburn – Mancetter Parish Council
                            Howard Vero – The Chamber
                            Judy Vero – Atherstone Civic Society
                            Roy Gadsby – Hartshill Parish Council and Hartshill &
                            Nuneaton Recreation Committee
                            Chief Inspector Christopher Lewis – Warwickshire Police
                            Christopher Fossey – Warwickshire County Council
                            Rod Parker - NWCVS

Apologies for absence were received from Councillors Grant, Place and Tooth, Gill Davis
(Primary Care Trust), Amanda Macchi, Ruby Chambers, (Atherstone Town Council), Trevor
Hopkins, (Mancetter Parish Council), Christopher Foster, (Atherstone Town Council).


1.    Minutes

      The minutes of the meeting of Area Forum East held on 21 April 2005, were
      approved as a correct record and signed by the Chairman.

2.    Public Questions

      Howard Vero put the following question to the Forum;

      There is very strong support for the proposal by Atherstone Town Council to acquire
      the redundant Magistrates’ Court in Atherstone for its offices and a community centre.
      The town has a number of community groups which are in urgent need of a place to
      meet. The heritage centre and the dramatic society are also in need of a permanent
      place to meet. The Magistrates’ Court would satisfy these needs and would also offer
      ad hoc meeting rooms for other bodies such as the Borough and County Councils.
      This is an excellent opportunity for the Community Partnership to show that it is
      operating effectively and for the good of all of the community.

      Is the Borough Council prepared to back this proposal and if so how can it help the
      Town Council to acquire the buildings?



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     John Bird responded as follows;

     A report would be going to Executive Board on 25 July 2005 to seek authority to
     carryout a review of major non housing Council accommodation. The Council would
     need to consider what the best options are, which could include renovating existing
     premises, disposing of current assets and developing new ones, looking at joint
     facilities (e.g. multi-purpose public buildings) and in doing so look at opportunities to
     work in partnership with other agencies. The issue of the former Magistrates’ Court
     would form part of that review.

     The Borough Council were aware that Atherstone Town Council were in the process
     of reviewing their own accommodation needs and would be preparing a business
     plan/ feasibility study in relation to the Magistrates Court complex. The Borough
     Council were waiting for the results of the feasibility study.

     Questions were then raised about who would be taking the lead on the sale of both
     the Police station site and the Magistrates’ Court and who would be acting as agent.

     Alistair Rigby reported that the matter had been discussed at the North Warwickshire
     Area Committee the previous evening and suggested that the minutes of that meeting
     would provide the definitive answer.

     It was agreed that copies of the minutes of the Area Committee meeting would be
     forwarded to Atherstone Town Council members.

3.   Traffic Management – Chris Fossey (Warwickshire County Council)

     Chris Fossey gave a presentation on traffic safety measures which included
     engineering measures, funding for installation of such measures, priorities for work
     undertaken and meeting Government targets. Chris explained that the best way to
     reduce road casualties was a combination of education, engineering and
     enforcement.

     Questions were taken from the floor on local road traffic management issues in the
     Hartshill, Mancetter, Atherstone and Ansley areas which were addressed by Chris
     Fossey.

     Leaflets and contact details where made available at the meeting.

4.   The Rural Strategy – Judith Edwards-Sturley (North Warwickshire Borough
     Council)

     Judith Edwards-Sturley presented a report of the progress of the Rural Strategy and
     Action Plan.

     The North Warwickshire Community Partnership had produced the draft strategy.
     The strategy had gone out for consultation. Questionnaires had been sent to the
     People’s Panel and distributed to shops, offices, health providers, partnership theme
     groups, parish councillors and made available on the Council’s website. The Forum
     were encouraged to complete questionnaires, which were made available at the
     meeting. Completed questionnaires should be returned by Friday 29 July 2005. 300
     responses had already been received.

     Following the public consultation, the strategy would be finalised in August, with a
     view to all partners signing up to it in September 2005.

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5   Borough Play Areas – Alethea Wilson (North Warwickshire Borough Council)

    Alethea Wilson gave an update on the progress on Borough Council play areas.

    The timetable for this years programme, was that the Borough Council would invite
    expressions of interest from play companies with the intention that four companies
    would be invited to tender and present their proposals to members and officers. A
    decision would then be made as to which company would be awarded the contract. It
    was anticipated that this process would be completed by the end of November and
    work would begin soon after.

    At the last meeting of the Forum it had been decided that the best way forward was
    for a separate meeting to be arranged to take this matter forward. In the meantime
    some discussion had taken place with Parish Councils but a separate meeting had
    not taken place due to time constraints in taking the current year’s programme
    forward.

    It was agreed that an early meeting would be arranged with parish councils to
    progress the matter.

6   Area Forum Funds – Simon Powell (North Warwickshire Borough Council)

    Simon Powell, Assistant Director (Community Development) detailed an eligible
    application for financial assistance that had been made to the Area Forum East. The
    Forum had a total sum of £6,000 available for disbursement at this meeting.

    Hartshill and Nuneaton Joint Recreation Ground Committee requested financial
    assistance towards the installation of a safe footpath through Snow Hill Recreation
    Ground. The recreation ground was used daily by young people on their way to and
    from school, and by the general public. The lack of a safe route had been highlighted
    by a Royal Society for the Prevention of Accidents (ROSPA) Risk Assessment.
    Quotes for the pathway had been received and the Committee needed just over
    £6,800 to complete the project. The Committee had been offered financial support
    from Nuneaton and Bedworth Borough Council and £2,000 from Warwickshire
    County Council through the Safer Routes to School initiative. The Recreation Ground
    Committee would provide the balance needed.

    Resolved:

    That an award of £2,000 be made to the Hartshill and Nuneaton Joint Recreation
    Ground Committee.

7   Policing in North Warwickshire – Inspector Chris Lewis (Warwickshire Police)

    Chris Lewis, District Commander for North Warwickshire gave an update on the work
    of Warwickshire Police and detailed the Warwickshire Police Annual Policing Policy.

    He also introduced the new Crime and Disorder and Drugs Misuse Reduction
    Strategy. The strategy covered a three year period and was produced by the North
    Warwickshire Community Safety Partnership. The strategy was widely available from
    libraries and other public places.




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8     Community Development Fund – Alistair Rigby (Warwickshire County Council)

      Alistair told the Forum that there were funds of over £22,000 available from the
      Community Development Fund. Funding was open to new and existing groups with
      project ideas that would benefit the local community. Parish, Town Councils,
      community groups and residents associations etc were all eligible to apply. The
      closing date for applications was Monday, 22 August 2005. Application forms were
      available from libraries, on-line at www.warwickshire.gov.uk or by contacting Alistair
      Rigby on 01827 715646. All applications must be supported by a County Councillor.

9     Parish Issues

      None.

10    Suggested Agenda Items for Future Meetings

             Police call center presentation
             Presentation by Youth Offending Team to explain ASBO’s
             Presentation by the Ambulance Service.

11.   Any Other Business

      None.

12.   Date and Venue for Next Meeting

      The date of the next meeting is 27 October 2005 at Wesley Hall Community Centre,
      Arley.




                                        Chairman




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