Minutes of the Annual Town Meeting by dfhercbml


									                    NEWPORT PAGNELL TOWN COUNCIL

                     Minutes of the Annual Town Meeting
                      held on Monday 7th April 2008 at
           Cedars School Hall, Bury Street, Newport Pagnell at 7.30pm

Chairman:      Cllr Simon Baines (Town Mayor)

Present:       Cllrs Ian Carman, Wendy Egan, Joan Sidebottom, John Smith and
               Nick Warton of Newport Pagnell Town Council.
               Cllrs Mike Barry, Euan Henderson and Alan Richards of Newport
               Pagnell Town Council and Milton Keynes Council.
               Cllrs Irene Henderson and Douglas McCall of Milton Keynes
               Brian Hunt, Ron Bowles, David M-Mundy, Peter Stanton, Newport
               Pagnell Partnership.
               Insp. Helen Corbett, Thames Valley Police.
               35 members of the public.
               Lesley Welch, Town Clerk

Apologies for absence were received from Cllrs Derek Eastman, Roger Hornblow
and Michael Rowell.

1.    Welcome and Overview of the year by the Town Mayor

      The Town Mayor welcomed everyone to the meeting and introduced the
      guest speakers.

      2007 was an eventful year in Newport Pagnell. It was a pleasure to see
      the opening of the new care home, Castlemead Court and plans are in
      place for the refurbishment of Westbury Homes. It was sad to see the
      departure of Aston Martin from the town, but it is good to see plans for the
      development of the old Shell garage into a heritage garage and 1950’s
      style café.

      2007 saw the opening of the new footbridge across the river and plans in
      place for the closure of Tongwell Lane to traffic. Work on Ousebank
      Gardens came to fruition and more recently the completion of
      refurbishment of Station Road Car Park.

      There are interesting times ahead: the redevelopment of the Brooklands
      Centre, plans for the development of Middleton Pool and we await the
      impact on the town of the new Red House Park housing estate.

      The bad weather in the summer affected both the Carnival and Park Life.
      We remember the loss of Bill Billings and his contribution to the life of
      Newport Pagnell and Milton Keynes.

      Cllr Baines concluded by saying that in May he will be stepping down as
      Town Mayor. He has really enjoyed his term of office over the past two
      years and expressed his thanks for the support he received.

2.    To agree the minutes of the last Annual Town Meeting

     The minutes of the last Annual Town Meeting held on 26th April 2007 were
     agreed as a true record and signed by the Chairman.

3.   Town Award

     Now in its fourth year, the Town Award is presented to a resident of the
     town who has contributed to the life of the town in an exceptional way.
     There were many strong candidates for the Award this year, and it was
     with great pleasure that the Town Mayor presented the Award to Mrs Sue

     The Town Mayor thanked Julia Booden for nominating Sue. As her letter
     of nomination said, “Mrs Osgood not only works full time caring for the
     communities children at Tickford Park Primary School but also finds time
     to teach them to swim at our local swimming pool. She also works at
     Pagnell Grange caring for needy adults. In her spare time!!!!!
     Mrs Osgood runs the local Scout group which this year has unfortunately
     lost a couple of leaders .Mrs Osgood kept the group going whilst
     replacements were found.”

     The Town Mayor was delighted to present the certificate and gift voucher
     to Sue.

4.   Presentation from Ousedale School Students

     Cllr Mike Barry welcomed three students from Ousedale School who had
     contacted him with some ideas for bridging the gap between the older and
     younger generations and working together to introduce facilities for the
     younger people of the town.

     The students said that they had been looking at ways of improving the
     town to provide things for younger people to do. One idea had been a
     gym for the 14 to 17 year olds at Ousedale. The Ousdale Sixth Form
     students studying A’level Business Studies could, with guidance, run such
     a facility. They would like to raise money through a programme which
     would break down the barriers between the old and young generations for
     example a sports scheme, or dancing, something which brought fun into
     the project.

     The meeting voiced its support of this initiative and encouraged the
     students to move forward to make the project happen. If they were
     positive about the project they would find support and funding as they

5.   Newport Pagnell Neighbourhood Action Group

     The Town Mayor welcomed Inspector Helen Corbett of Thames Valley

     The Neighbourhood Action Group (NAG) consists of a group of people:
     Councillors, Police Officers, teachers, people in the business community,
     residents etc, who meet monthly to discuss issues in the town and deal

     with the problems as a partnership.

     In 2004 the Government published a white paper which stated that every
     neighbourhood should have a NAG. The biggest difference with this
     initiative is the consultation with the public. Consultation took place in
     Newport last summer, for example the Police had a stand on Carnival day.
     Three main issues were identified and became the focus for the NAG. In
     Newport Pagnell these issues were identified as 1. Youth issues. 2.
     Traffic. 3. Rubbish.

     The Police Community Support Officers (PCSO’s) are the eyes and ears
     of the NAG and they report specific issues to the Inspectors and
     Sergeants, who then plan and put together resources to resolve the
     problems. The fortnightly Joint Action Tasking and Co-ordination (JATAC)
     meetings also bring together people from Environmental Health, Probation
     Services, Licensing, Housing, Police etc all of whom have a vital role in
     resolving problems in the community.

     There was a query about the visibility of the Police in the town centre. For
     some people there was a perceived decrease in police presence, for
     others it had increased. Inspector Corbett commented that everyday
     someone from the Police, often the PCSO’s walked up and down the

6.   Regeneration of the town

     The Town Mayor welcomed Brian Hunt, Chairman of the Newport Pagnell
     Partnership. The Partnership has started to plan the extension of the
     regeneration from Market Hill to Marsh End Road (phase 5). This would
     incorporate new pavements, street lighting, seating and an extension of
     the 20mph area. Hopefully plans will be ready for a public exhibition in the
     summer with work starting next spring.

     When Phase 4 of the regeneration programme was completed two years
     ago every shop in the High St and St John St was occupied. There are
     now four vacant shops in the town centre. Whilst the Partnership cannot
     choose the type of business which comes into the town, they did invite a
     market town consultant to give a presentation with solutions found by
     other similar size market towns.

     There are three working groups in the Partnership: Parking and Transport
     which regularly monitors parking levels and have placed street maps in all
     car parks. The Parks and Amenities Group meets weekly at Ousebank
     Gardens and the Old Cemetery planting bulbs, pruning and cleaning the
     river. The Town Centre Group is overseeing the planning of phase 5.

     Two more groups are being set up one to support our Heritage and the
     second a Futures Group to plan for Newport in 10 and 15 years hence.

     The Partnership is an independent voluntary group which has good
     working relationships with Newport Pagnell Town Council and Milton
     Keynes Council.

   7. Question and Answer Session

      Heritage Museum: Support was expressed for the Heritage Museum
      which would be a landmark in the town and attract people in. When Aston
      Martin leaves the town completely in a few years time the opportunity to
      involve them in this initiative would be lost. It would be a shame to lose
      sight of the fact that Newport Pagnell was the birthplace of one of the most
      important cars in the world. The Partnership was therefore strongly
      supported in the move to get the Museum up and running. The meeting
      appreciated the fact that there is an active Historical Society in Newport
      Pagnell. It was reported too that Mick Pacey is now discussing the
      possibility of acquiring one of the former Aston Martin buildings for a
      museum. This would provide a joint attraction to people drawn into the
      town by the Heritage Garage.

      Riverside Path: There was a query as to when the long awaited
      Riverside Path would be finished. Cllr McCall reported that the final
      section was the responsibility of the developers of the Iron Bridge Flats
      and MKC was pursuing legal channels to ensure they completed the

      Litter: There was a big thank you to Steve who collects the litter in Green
      Park and who has transformed this area. Cllr McCall would pass on the
      town’s thanks.

      Tongwell Lane: This was due to be closed to traffic on Wednesday.
      Molly Bonner was getting together a group of people to clean the ditch and
      stream and asked that any volunteers talk to her.

      Pathway from the Caravan Park to the Swimming Pool: When cycling
      up this lane people have to drop their bikes under the barrier to get
      through. This issue was being looked at by the Town Council.

      Redway to Willen Road Travellers Site: There was a discussion on the
      red routes within and out of Newport Pagnell. A Milton Keynes Cycling
      Officer was to attend a Partnership meeting, where the matter was being

      Car Park at Willen Road Sports Ground: There was a query as to when
      this would be built. The Town Council was still considering this matter.

The Town Mayor thanked the speakers for their presentations and to everyone
for turning out and for their input in this meeting.

The meeting closed at 8.45pm

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