MINUTES of the meeting of the COMMUNITY ENGAGEMENT Committee on Thursday 6th February 2020 held at 8:00pm in the Village Centre, Trinity Road, Hurstpierpoint.
Committee Members Present
Claire Majsai (Chair)
Bob Sampson (Vice Chair)
Helen Olsen Bedford
Lorna Cooksey Assistant Clerk to the Council
John Lowman (part)
Matt Rosin – Christmas Street Fair Chair
Sarah Scanlan – Heritage Trial
Sue Deane – Heritage Trial
CE19/037. Apologies for absence and declarations of interest: the Committee received the following apologies for absence prior to the meeting which were accepted: Duncan Ranger. Declarations of interest were given from Seth Jee for the Sayers Common Society.
CE19/038. Minutes of the Community Engagement Committee Meeting held on 14th November 2019: the Committee received and accepted the minutes which were then signed by the chairman.
CE19/039. Matters arising from Community Engagement Meeting held on 14th November 2019: There were no other matters which were not covered elsewhere on the agenda.
CE19/040. Adjournment for questions from the public: The Committee was not required to consider whether to adjourn the Meeting in accordance with Standing Orders.
CE19/041. Christmas Festival: The committee received a brief presentation from Matt Rosin who is the chairman of the Christmas Street Fair. Matt Rosin discussed the success of the event in 2019 and the positive feedback from traders and the community. In 2019 new items were introduced such as the Santa bus, band, staging, lights and the huge increase of sponsorship. Matt Rosin informed the committee that the additional light string in the high street was not what was planned and quoted for so the Christmas Street Fair committee had been disappointed by this. The goal for 2020 is to find sponsorship to light the dark section by Nationwide in the high street. To be able to do this they would need sponsorship and support of the traders and owners of the building so understand this may not be easy. The councillors all commented that the extra lights were a great addition. A Councillor commented that it was great to see so many trader’s being involved with the night and the positive atmosphere of the evening. The Chair asked for comments regarding the Parish Council presence at this year’s event and suggested running a mulled wine stall. The Councillors feedback was that it is better for them to attend the event and be able to talk to people throughout the High Street rather than be positioned at a stall. Matt Rosin agreed that visibility of the Parish Council Councillors would be ideal but not necessarily running a stall. Matt Rosin asked to work with the Parish Council in the future to be able to grow the event. Discussion was had regarding outside traders being allowed to come into future events, the Chair of Full Council asked for the Christmas Street Fair committee to be cautious regarding this as the event is very much for the traders and the community. The Christmas Street Fair committee are due to meet in February to discuss future plans and the date for 2020.
CE19/042.Heritage Trail: The committee received a brief presentation from Sarah Scanlon and Sue Deane on behalf of the Hurstpierpoint Society regarding a proposed Heritage Trail. A briefing note was handed out to the committee which included the purpose of the walk, starting point, costs and the actual planned walk. The Hurstpierpoint representatives explained that the idea of the walk had begun due to a Horsham U3A group. They had contacted them asking whether they had planned walks they could use so they could bring their members to learn the history of Hurstpierpoint. The purpose of the proposed Heritage trial would be to inform visitors about the history of the village and attract people to the High Street. The guided walk could last between 50-90 minutes and have 10/12 stops included. The Hurstpierpoint Society would like to launch the trial by doing actual tours for the first few weeks. The Chair of Full Council showed the Councillors and the Hurstpierpoint representatives the Burgess Hill equivalent. Councillors feedback was very positive towards the idea and asked whether future plans could include an app-based walk, family friendly routes, a choice of different length walks allowing it to be user friendly and added contents of personal history and stories. The Chair suggested that we need to start with one thing and ideas can build as the project develops. The Chair of Full Council agreed that this is a scheme that should receive backing from the Council as it links closely to our tourism policy and suggested a meeting to discuss developing the strategy and to be able to look at costs. The Assistant Clerk was asked to organise a meeting between Hurstpierpoint Society and the Parish Council Councillors who would like to attend as soon as possible. A Councillor who has a lot of information, photos and history surrounding Hurstpierpoint was asked to make notes and ideas about what could be added to the walk and to bring this to the meeting.
John Lowman, Matt Rosin, Sarah Scanlan and Sue Deane left the meeting at 8.44pm.
CE19/043. Parish Council Grant Applications: The Committee was asked to consider and where appropriate approve
Council grants to local groups. In the current year 2019/2020, a budget of £4,000 is available for grants for local community groups.
Small Grants: Small Grants applications are considered at every Community Engagement Committee meeting.
Budget for Small Grants 2019/20: £4,000 Remaining: £1,220
Grants already gifted in 2019/2020
|Organisation||Grant Request for:||Grant Approved||Date|
|Know Dementia||Support with running the café||£500||30.5.19|
|Cancervive||Running costs of the office||£600||5.9.19|
|Older Peoples Tea Party||Annual Christmas party for the elderly||£180||14.11.19|
|Hurstpierpoint Players||Towards the costs of Hurstpierpoint Player Theatre, mainly new carpets||£500||14.11.19|
|Sayers Common Village Society||Fourth and final phase of tree planting along London Road||£1000||14.11.19|
The Committee noted that an email was received on the 15th December from the Community Midwife asking to remove the grant application that was submitted on the 14th November 2019 Community Engagement Meeting and that was granted. This is due to a business plan having to be submitted to the NHS for change of premises. We have been advised that any approval can take a minimum of six months. The Manager of the Community Midwife has confirmed the plan has been submitted and asked if they can potentially re-apply for a grant in the new financial year. The Assistant Clerk offered support with the business plan and advised she would stay in touch in early 2020 to see if there has been any progress.
The Chair discussed that the new Health and Wellbeing budget for 2020/21 will initially be used for new projects and not for any previous organisations that have been supported by the Parish Council. The Chair asked for the Know Dementia grant application to be deferred till the June 2020 meeting as the grant application is asking for support in the financial year April 2020-March 2021. The Chair asked for the Councillors comments regarding the grants due to the small remaining budget. Concerns were raised regarding the Melting Point Café grants due to the amount that had been asked for and what this would actually be spent on.
Questions were raised about whether the café was a commercial business and how this supports the aims of the grant scheme.
The Chair raised issues about the Youth service currently and lack of funding resulting in all youth clubs having to fund themselves.
The Chair highlighted that an action point for the Parish Council is to support the youth in our community.
The Assistant Clerk was asked to contact Knit ‘n’ natter to re-submit their application due to two members being named. The committee then discussed the Knit ‘n’ natter group including attendance, benefits and specific reasons why it should be considered for the grant.
|Organisation||Amount Requested||Grant Request for:||Grant approved|
|St Catherine’s Hospice||£500||Supporting the Community Team who care for local residents facing the end of life, within the comfort and familiar surroundings of their own home.||Approved full amount £500|
|Sussex Clubs for Young People||£500.00||To help cover some of the costs for running the Sussex Clubs for Young People youth club.||Approved full amount £500|
|The Melting Pot||£1,248.00||To help the Melting Pot café become financially viable and sustainable in the long term.||No grant given|
|The Melting Pot||£675.00||To train the Melting Pot volunteers to do first aid. This training is also being opened to other churches and the local community.||No grant given|
|Knit ‘N’ Natter||£250||To provide a taxi enabling two disabled people to attend our meetings.||Approved £220|
|Know Dementia||£500||To help cover the costs of part support for the Memory Moment Café for the year April 2020 – March 2021||Grant deferred for 2020/21 June Meeting.|
RESOLVED: The Committee approved a grant of £500 for St Catherine’s Hospice, £500 for Sussex
Clubs Young People and £220 for Knit ‘n’ Natter.
CE19/044. Community initiatives and projects:
CE19/044.1 Christmas Lights: The Committee discussed the success of the Christmas double tree cone light display in 2019. Several Councillors commented about the positive feedback they had from residents and shop owners. A Councillor commented that children could get to close to the lights and concerns were raised about the lights being damaged in the future. Questions were raised about life expectancy of the lights and a councillor confirmed that previously the lights had lasted ten years.
(Ref: Double Tree Light Quote – Merlin Lighting)
RESOLVED: (1) The Committee AGREED to purchase the double tree light structure as quoted by Merlin Lighting
(2) The committee AGREED to the installation and removal costs of the double tree light structure by Merlin Lighting
CE19/044.2 Proposed Events Working Group: The Councillors agreed that adopting an Events working group would help manage the St Lawrence Fair and Annual Parish Meeting. The Events Working Group committee will be Claire Majsai, Helen Olsen Bedford and Bob Sampson assisted by Lorna Cooksey.
CE19/044.3 St Lawrence Fair: The committee discussed the St Lawrence Fair and issues surrounding the councillors being part of other organisations so not in a position to help on the day. A Councillor suggested sharing a stall with other groups within Hurstpierpoint, but it was felt this wouldn’t work. The Chair of Full Council expressed his concerns with having a stall as previously it has only been used for people to come and complain. A Councillor, who was present last year, commented that residents were engaging in conversations and were interested in future plans. It was commented that a form of identification would help during events like this as not everyone knows who the councillors are. The Chair asked for the Events Working Group to have an initial meeting to discuss what improvements could be made this year before we decide to not have a stall.
CE19/044.4 Reeds Lane Play Area: A Councillor confirmed that a meeting took place between the Sayers Common Society and the developers. At the meeting the developers explained that their aim is to have first occupancy by August 2020. The Councillor expressed concerns regarding the ground in the playground and lack of drainage. It was expressed that if any drainage issue was to be resolved it would need to be completed in the summer ensuring that the play equipment was installed shortly after. The committee suggested applying for Operation Watershed funding to resolve the drainage. It was highlighted that potentially the Section 106 money could be used for the problem in conjunction with the purchase of the play equipment. The committee agreed that the Facilities Manager would contact Mid Sussex District Council and ask for advice regarding the section 106 money and possibility of it being used for the drainage issue. The Facility Manager would also scope out the work and organise three quotes to resolve the issue. The Sayers Common councillor would seek advice from an ex councillor who has experience of Operation Watershed and would feed this back to the Facilities Manager.
CE19/044.5 Operation Signature Talk: The Chair briefed the committee on the success of the Operation Signature Talk with
36 residents attending. The Chair informed the committee that the Police Officer had been asked to supply the Parish Office with more scam booklets as these were informative. A Councillor who does not use email asked for email reminders to be printed off and put in his tray as he was unaware of this talk.
CE19/044.6 Defibrillator Training at the Village Centre: The Chair briefed the committee that on the 21st January 2020 defibrillator training was due to be held at the Village Centre. This training was purchased with the defibrillator unit which is now positioned outside the Village Centre. The training unfortunately did not go ahead as planned due to the trainer not attending. The Assistant Clerk is now in the process of trying to re-organise in February.
CE19/044.7 VE Day 75th Anniversary 8-10 May 2020: The Committee discussed VE Day planned events within
Hurstpierpoint and Sayers Common. A Councillor commented that the Point Church were applying for a grant to hold a street party in Hurstpierpoint. A Sayers Common Councillor informed the committee that the Sayers Common Society was holding an event in the Village hall. The Chair wanted to offer both groups the full support of the Parish Council and encouraged them to send the Parish Office information about the events so we could help advertise on our notice boards, facebook and website.
CE19/044.8 Village Garden: The Chair briefed the committee on the briefing note and why the comments were important. It was agreed to send the information to Greenscene to ask for their thoughts, feedback and potentially changes that could be made.
The Chair asked for the Assistant Clerk to contact the resident who wrote in regarding the yellow legged mining bees to ask whether they would write a short piece for the next newsletter to celebrate them being in Hurstpierpoint.
RESOLVED: The committee AGREED to send the briefing note to Greenscene contractors
CE19/044.9 Mid-Sussex Health and Wellbeing Network: The Chair briefed the committee on the Health and Wellbeing network and the importance of attending these events. Connections have been made with Mid Sussex Wellbeing who have previously booked Court Bushes. The Chair commented that unfortunately the weight management course scheduled for this month was cancelled due to poor attendance. The Chair asked that all future events should be supported by the Parish Council through advertising and raising awareness. The Assistant Clerk confirmed that the West Sussex Adult Social Care team had been in touch with the Parish Office following this meeting. They are interested in booking Court Bushes Club Lounge twice a month for three months. The Chair invited all other councillors to attend this meeting in the future if they were available.
CE19/044.10 Safe Place Project: The committee were briefed by the Assistant Clerk on the Safe Place project. The
Councillors supported this scheme and asked whether the ‘Safe Places’ could keep a brief record of any situations when their training/sticker etc is utilised to support a vulnerable person. -. The Councillors asked to be informed regarding training dates as they would like to participate. A Councillor suggested introducing a bag tag scheme as a future development to the scheme. The tags would be given to anyone suffering with dementia and would be a recognisable sign for the community. The committee agreed the flow chart and sticker design but asked for the titles of shops to be checked.
(Ref: Safe Place Hurstpierpoint Flow Chart and Safe Place Sticker)
RESOLVED: (1) The committee AGREED to the designed flowchart and stickers (2) The committee AGREED to purchase the stickers using the General budget 2019/2020.
CE19/044.11 Annual Parish Meeting: The Chair asked for comments regarding the Annual Parish Meeting and how to raise the levels of attendance. A Councillor commented that it needed to be more fun and could include a quiz or drinks afterwards. A speaker was discussed and several names from the Hurst Meadows working group was suggested. The Chair agreed that an ecology theme would be current and may attract more residents. The location of the Annual Parish Meeting was discussed. Concerns were raised from a Councillor about most people walking to the meeting and therefore more likely to come to the Village Centre. A vote was taken, and the majority agreed that promoting Court Bushes as a facility was of high importance and the venue should be moved there this year. The Chair asked for a meeting to be arranged by the Assistant Clerk for the Events Working Group to discuss speakers and format for the evening.
CE19/044.12 Parish Action List 2016-2021: The committee agreed for the chair to draft an amalgamated version of the action plan as there are several duplicate points. The Chair raised a question regarding Councillor surgeries, and it was confirmed by the Chair of Full Council that we no longer run these. However, the Parish Council should participate in the West Sussex and Mid Sussex surgeries. The Chair of Full Council asked for Mid Sussex and West Sussex surgeries to be added to the agenda for Full Council.
CE19/045. Publicity: The Committee noted the following:
CE19/045.1 Newsletter –. A Councillor asked if there was a reason why a Burgess Hill printing firm was chosen. The Assistant Clerk confirmed the only reason was due to recommendation. The committee discussed the future of newsletters and the communication plan for Community Engagement. The Chair confirmed that once the new website was launched there would be a review on Hurst Life and Newsletters. A councillor suggested using mail chimp to email out the newsletters. The Assistant Clerk was asked to investigate distribution costs by potentially partnering with Hurst Life or finding a new distributor. The Parish Office was asked to keep a log of responses to all future Newsletters.
(Ref: Briefing Note – Printing Cost for the Newsletters 5.12.19)
RECOMMENDATION: (1) The Committee AGREED to use Lemonade Print Group to print future newsletters using the 170gsm stock.
CE19/045.2 Website – The Chair briefed the committee on the hold up with the website due to the Christmas period and changes to contracts. The Assistant Clerk explained that the Parish Office is now working on the contents for the new site and would be requesting the Councillors to be involved in this. A Councillor raised a concern regarding why they had been asked to write a brief summary about themselves. It was discussed by the committee and explained that it was a short summary to help break barriers between the Councillors and residents. No personal information needed to be contained but just reasons of why they became a councillor, what interests them or hopes for Hurstpierpoint and Sayers Common.
CE19/045.3 Social Media – The committee noted that the Parish Office regularly use facebook to update residents of relevant information.
CE19/046 Information Items and Correspondence Received:
The Chair updated the committee that the Emergency Plan is being reviewed and updated by the Clerk, an update will be bought to the next meeting.
The Chair encouraged all committee members to be involved with the agenda in future meetings and requested that any agenda points should be emailed to the Assistant Clerk at least four weeks before the meeting.
The Chairman closed the meeting at 10:18pm
Protocol for filming and recording at public meetings: The Council has a protocol for public filming, recording and photography at its meetings, which is available on the Council’s website or on request at the Parish Office.