Agenda and draft minutes

    Venue: Committee Room

    Contact: Christine Lewis 

    Items
    No. Item

    1.

    Apologies for Absence

    Minutes:

    Apologies were received from Councillors Baker and B. Yeates.

    2.

    Declarations of Interests

    Minutes:

    There were no declarations of interests.

    3.

    Minutes of the Previous Meeting pdf icon PDF 66 KB

    Minutes:

    The minutes of the previous meeting as circulated were signed by the Chairman as a correct record.

    4.

    Terms of Reference pdf icon PDF 84 KB

    Minutes:

    The terms of reference for the Committee were circulated for noting by members

     

    RESOLVED:  That the Terms of Reference as taken from the Lichfield District Council Constitution be noted.

     

     

    5.

    Work Programme pdf icon PDF 55 KB

    Minutes:

    The Committee received the work programme for the forthcoming year.  It was noted that Members could suggest further items at any time to the Chairman or Overview & Scrutiny Officer.

     

    RESOLVED:  That the work programme be noted.

    6.

    Exclusion of Press and Public

    RESOLVED: “That as publicity would be prejudicial to the public interest by reason of the confidential nature of the business to be transacted, the public and press be excluded from the meeting for the following items of business, which would involve the likely disclosure of exempt information as defined in Paragraph 3 and 4 of Part 1 of Schedule 12A of the Local Government Act 1972”

     

    IN PRIVATE

     

    Minutes:

    RESOLVED: That, as publicity would be prejudicial to public interest by reason of the confidential nature of the business to be transacted the public and press be excluded from the meeting for the following item of business which would involve the likely disclosure of exempt information as defined in Paragraph 4 of Part 1 of Schedule 12A of the Local Government Act 1972 as amended.

     

                                                    IN PRIVATE

     

    7.

    Friary Grange Leisure Centre

    Minutes:

    This item was originally heard in private however it has been agreed that it is in the public interest to publish the minutes

     

    The Committee received a report on the challenges regarding the Friary Grange Leisure Centre and to consider options to invest to continue operations over the next 5 years or to close the facility by 30 April 2020.

     

    It was reported that due to the academisation of the Friary School Staffordshire County Council (SCC) had issued Lichfield District Council (LDC) with a 12 month notice to the 1971 Joint User Agreement and in consequence, LDC had issued Freedom Leisure with notice for the same period in order to comply with its contractual requirements.  Members noted that it was the intention of the school to have use of the sports hall and all weather pitch from 1 May 2020.

     

    It was then reported that SCC had presented LDC with a draft Heads of Terms for a 10 year full repairs and maintenance lease for the remaining elements of the site including the swimming pool however this was not favourable especially as it removed the lucrative commercial elements of the facility. 

     

    It was noted that investment was required imminently to ensure the continued use of the facility. It was noted that the condition survey carried out was only a visual one and it was most likely that estimated costs would increase when work began.

     

    Members focused on a number of areas during their discussion and the first was clarity around the Sports England grant.  It was confirmed that the grant was awarded to SCC however they entered into a Passport Agreement that transferred the obligations it to LDC.  It was reported that it was hoped any clawback would be reduced but if not it had been factored into the financial implications.  It was noted that there was no end date to the obligations.

     

    Short term plans if closure was agreed were discussed and it was reported that Officers were already working on potential mitigation plans.  It was reported that swimming especially swimming clubs would be the most difficult to organise however neighbouring areas and private facilities could be utilised.  There were concerns that there was not the capacity for Burntwood Leisure Centre to take on any more school or child swimming. 

     

    There was discussion on the merits of trying to reopen negotiations with SCC and the school to reduce the burden of the cost of investment needed to keep the centre open even if shorter term whilst a longer term plan was being formulated.  It was felt that although not a statutory requirement, having leisure facilities was a desire from residents.  It was reported that LDC and SCC had already been in discussions and all avenues had been explored but the county council had no intention to invest or contribute to capital works. 

     

    Longer term plans were then discussed and it was reported that it was factored into the Local Plan to have provision however this could be private suppliers.  ...  view the full minutes text for item 7.

    7a

    Friary Grange Leisure Centre Report - Released for Publication pdf icon PDF 246 KB

     

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