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Hurstpierpoint & Sayers Common
Parish Council

Dear Councillor,

Members are summoned to attend the Community Engagement Committee meeting to be held on Thursday 9 March 2023 at 7.30pm in the Conference room in the Village Centre. Members of the public have a right to and are invited to attend the meeting.

Sarah Groom Clerk to the Council                                                                                                           Friday 3 March 2023

Committee Membership: Cllr Claire Majsai (Chair), Cllr Bob Sampson (vice-Chair), Cllr Mike Avery, Cllr Helen Bedford, Cllr Tony Lank and Cllr Duncan Ranger (plus two vacancies).


1.        Apologies for Absence: To receive and accept apologies for absence.

2.        Declarations of interest: To receive and record any declarations of interest.

3.        Minutes of the Previous Meeting of the Community Engagement Committee: To receive and adopt the minutes of the 12January 2023 Community Engagement Committee meeting.

4.        Adjournment for Questions from the Public: To consider adjourning the meeting to receive questions from members of the public in accordance with Standing Orders.

5.        Sussex Community Transport: The Committee will be updated on the development of an integrated Community transport network across West Sussex by Matt Roberts, Chief Officer and Jacqui Cooke, Development Officer.

6.        Parish Council Grant Applications:

6.1      New Grant Applications to be considered 2022/23: To consider four grant applications:

Grant Budget 2022/23: £4,000.  Budget Remaining £1,807.50.

OrganisationGrant Request ForAmount Requested
St Lawrence FairFinancial support towards the planning and provision of activities over the St Lawrence weekend.£500
Sayers Common Village SocietyCoronation Brunch and children competition on Sunday 7 May 2023.£500
Hurstpierpoint Cricket ClubTo assist with the cost of re-roofing the pavilion at Fairfield Recreation Ground.  The total cost is £17,800.£500
Hurst Hedgehogs HavenTo hand rear orphaned hoglets between May and September.£500

6.2      Health & Wellbeing Grants Budget 2022/2023 £1,000. Budget remaining £0.

6.3      Health & Wellbeing Projects Budget 2022/2023 £1,000.  Budget remaining £500.  No applications received.

7.        Community Initiatives and projects:

7.1      Budget Monitoring: To review the budget monitoring report for the Committee including a) the Nominal Ledger (year to Date) and b) detailed Income & Expenditure at 28 February 2023.

7.2      Review of Action Plan: To review version 5 of the action plan and discuss projects and priorities for the new financial year 2023/2024.

7.3      Christmas Lights 2023: To receive an update on a meeting held on 21 February 2023 with Merlin Lighting to discuss the service that was received in 2022 and agree the plans for 2023/4:


(1) The Committee AGREES to proceed with organising the structural tests on fifteen columns in Sayers Common with Merlin Lighting and their contractors KIWA from the 1 April 2023 at an estimated cost of £695+ VAT for 15 columns, from the 2023/24 Tourism and Attractiveness code.

(2) The Committee AGREES to proceed with the application process with SSE and West Sussex County Council from the 1 April 2023 (there are no direct costs associated with this work).

7.4      St Lawrence Fair: To discuss whether the Parish Council would like a stall at the St Lawrence Fair on Saturday 1 July (for a fee) in the same format as 2022, with a name the cuddly toy competition:


(1) The committee AGREES to have a stall at the St Lawrence Fair on Saturday 1 July 2023 for a fee of approximately £50.

(2) The committee AGREES that the Events Working Group will organise the stall based on last year’s event with a ‘free to enter’ name a cuddly toy competition.

7.5      Projector Stand: To consider a briefing note proposing the purchase of a new projector stand and extension lead.

RECOMMENDATION: The committee AGREES to purchase a new projector stand and extension lead up to the value of £100 from the Tourism and Attractiveness budget code.

8.        Information Items, Correspondence Received and Requests:

8.1      High Street Update: To receive averbal update from Cllr Bedford and Cllr Ranger.

8.2      Community Forum: To review the Community Forum held on 26 January 2023.  The Community Forum was held in partnership with Mid Sussex Voluntary Action. The event was a huge success with 35 people attending from local groups and charities.The focus of the event was where funding could be found with time for networking between all the different organisations. There was positive feedback about this forum including comments such as: “It was very useful, and I was pleasantly surprised by the other attendees”. “It is clear from the reaction of my rotary colleagues that the recent Hurst forum meeting was very successful”. “We received an email from Mid Sussex Health Care who was at the forum last week. She’s keen to direct mothers to our group which is fantastic, so thank you so much”.

8.3      Annual Parish Meeting: To receive a verbal update on the Events Working Group plans for the Annual Parish Meeting (APM).  The Events Working Group is currently planning the next APM on Monday 22 May. The theme of the evening is volunteering and what is available in our parish. A free minibus will kindly be provided by Hurst College, to transport Sayers Common residents on the evening. The Sayers Common Village Shop will help promote the APM and the bus service.The Committee is asked to start thinking about groups/organisations/residents who may be interested in attending with details passed to the Clerk.

8.4      Events Equipment: To receive a verbal update on the equipment purchased for events. The new gazebo, ‘What we do’ banner and events equipment list have all been purchased. This equipment will be stored together and ready for any events that the Parish Council attend.

8.5      Foodbank Update: To receive a verbal update on the Hurstpierpoint Food Bank.  A meeting was held on 23 February with the Hurst Foodbank representatives. There are now more volunteers in place to help at the Court Bushes drop-in sessions when the Melting Pot Cafe is on. The Melting Pot Cafe is becoming busier each week so the footfall through the door may increase the demand on the foodbank. It was noted that there is no advertising during the café to make residents aware the foodbank is present so it has been agreed that a poster and leaflets would be put up around the café. The foodbank had not been aware that the café closes over the school holidays due to volunteer issues. The representative from MSVA agreed to support the café in finding more volunteers so they could open in the Easter holidays. If the Melting Pot is unable to open during this holiday, then it is likely that the foodbank trial will finish on the 30 March 2023. It was highlighted at this meeting that the demand for the foodbanks in Burgess Hill and Hassocks are extremely high and that the Social Prescribers are suggesting the need will be higher in the next few months. Gibson Greengrocers are kindly donating free fresh fruit and vegetables which is being managed on a voucher system while the trial takes place at the Melting Pot Cafe. 

8.6      Communication: To receive a verbal update on communication.  The Community Forum has encouraged a lot more communication with local groups and organisations and the Parish Council is building up a good relationship with all these residents. The Hurst Life articles, Facebook, the Parish Council website and the noticeboards are being used daily, weekly and monthly to ensure that the residents are kept up to date on all relevant news within the Parish Council. The Committee continues to consider whether there is more that could be done to engage with the residents, especially in Sayers Common. 

8.7      Website: The website is continually updated to ensure that all the charges, policies, grants information are correct for the next financial year.

8.8      Social Media: The Facebook page continues to grow and is regularly updated with news and advice. The page currently has 807 followers.