Agenda and minutes

Venue: Community Space, Keynsham - Market Walk, Keynsham. View directions

Contact: Sean O'Neill  01225 395090

No. Item




The Chairman welcomed everyone to the meeting.



The Chair will draw attention to the emergency evacuation procedure as follows:

If the continuous alarm sounds, you must evacuate the building by one of the designated exits and proceed to one of the named assembly points. The designated exits are sign-posted. Arrangements are in place for the safe evacuation of disabled people. The assembly points are: the front and rear of Riverside, Temple Street.



The Chair advised the meeting of the procedure.




Apologies were received from Cllr Martin Veal (Cabinet Member), Bathford PC, Batheaston PC, Donald MacIntyre (Chair of St Catherine’s Parish Meeting) and Richard Ireland (Chair of West Harptree PC).


MINUTES OF 12 OCTOBER 2016 pdf icon PDF 765 KB


These were approved as a correct record and signed by the Chair.



The Chair will announce any items of urgent business accepted since the agenda was prepared


There was none.




[This item was taken immediately after item 9.]


Councillor Warren gave his report.


East of Bath Park and Ride


The Cabinet had chosen its preferred site at its meeting on 25th January this year. The decision had been called in and would be considered by the Communities, Transport and Environment Policy Development and Scrutiny Panel on Thursday 23rd February. The call-in could either be rejected or upheld. If the call-in was upheld, the decision would be referred back to the Cabinet or Council. If it was referred to Council, it would then have to be referred by Council to the Cabinet with a recommendation. If the call-in was rejected, the next stage would be the preparation of a full business case and a planning application.




There are proposals to change the way the libraries operate. There had been a great deal of misinformation and misunderstanding about what was proposed. It was not true that Bath library was going to be closed. The Council is facing tough times and £49m has to be saved over the next 4 years.


Joint Spatial Plan


Replying to the statement made by Duncan Hounsell (Minute 67) he said that the sequencing of projects would be a matter for the West of England Mayor to decide. The JSP would only get approval if it was clear that the infrastructure to support it was going to be delivered.


The extension of rural broadband would be included in the JSP. He had pushed hard for this; he had low internet speeds at home and understood the frustration this caused.  


Mayoral Combined Authority


This now existed in shadow form until the Mayor was elected on 4th May. The Mayor would have massive input into the Joint Spatial Plan.


Council Budget


This had been approved by Council the previous evening. Most front-line services had been preserved, which was an achievement, given the size of the savings that had had to be made. He thanked the Council’s officers and fellow Cabinet Members for the hard work that had made this possible.





Cllr Warren described how he had met by chance a woman who had come to this country as a refugee some years ago and now had children of her own. B&NES had recently agreed to take 23 unaccompanied refugee children, 13 of whom had arrived. They had all been placed, and seem to be faring well.



To include:



Cost of Parish elections

Dawn Drury (Compton Dando PC) to lead for the parishes

5 mins






Dog Warden Service

Kathy Thomas (Peasedown St John PC) to lead for the parishes

5 mins






Adult Social Care funding

Judith Chubb-Whittle (Stanton Drew PC) to lead for the parishes

5 mins






Community Empowerment Fund

Councillor Paul Myers, Cabinet Member for Policy, Localism and Partnerships, to update

5 mins




Cllr Gerrish made the following statement:


This has been most challenging budget that this authority has ever faced. The situation will continue to be difficult in future years, as there is a move towards a new funding model for local government. Bath and North East Somerset has to find £49m of savings by 2020, of which £12m was identified in this year’s budget and is on course to be delivered. In next year’s budget a further £15m of savings has to be identified, the largest amount of savings that has ever had to be found in a single year. A comprehensive review of all Council spending was undertaken over the past year or so, with the aim of maximising efficiency and income generation and finding innovative ways to deliver services. I wish to thank my Cabinet Assistant, Cllr Paul May, for his invaluable help with this review. Those of you who know Paul will realise that his background enabled him to dig and explore what we might call “the drains”, to identify every possible area we look for further savings.


As a result of the review a budget has been drawn up that protects front-line services to a greater degree than any other council, and keeps Council Tax well below that of neighbouring councils and comparators. Despite the challenges the Council faces, the budget continues to invest in the future, supporting job creation and economic growth, delivering new homes for young people, improving transport infrastructure and generating additional income in the years ahead.


The vast majority of the savings we need to make are to be achieved either through increased efficiency or new income. In total the figures breakdown as follows. Firstly, £6.6m from increased efficiency and refinancing. This includes improving ways of improving the delivery of services, taking advantage of lower interest rates, and rationalising back-office services such as Harptree depot. Secondly, £1.3m from avoiding growth in the Adult Care sector. This means working with our partners to reduce long-term dependency. My colleague, Vic Pritchard, will speak more about the impact of the budget on Adult Care. Thirdly, £5.3m of new income. This includes our new housing company, which is not only providing more homes for residents, but is also generating greater income than budgeted. There is £2.5m from the business rate retention pilot, which was part of the devolution deal. This has given us £2.5m towards our revenue budget in the current year. Expanding our commercial portfolio budget has given us an additional £1.5m. On a smaller scale, we are generating additional income from the Film Office, weddings and the sale of spring water. This means that of the £15m required, only £1.3m will need to be delivered by changes to the way we provide local services.


I don’t pretend these changes are easy, but I would rather we sought to reform services, rather than make arbitrary cuts or to cease providing some services altogether. For instance, I am aware of the concern expressed by some residents about  ...  view the full minutes text for item 65.



The Council Solicitor and Monitoring Officer will present to the meeting.


Please note there will be a dedicated session for the Local Government Boundary Commission for England to brief parish councils on this topic on 20th February, 6-7pm in the Brunswick Room, Guildhall. The session is aimed at Parish Chairs and Clerks. Calendar invites have been issued.


Maria Lucas, Council Solicitor, made a presentation. A copy of her PowerPoint slides is attached as Appendix 2.


She drew attention to the briefing session by the Local Government Boundary Commission for England to be held at the Guildhall on 20th February, as advertised on the agenda.


She informed the meeting that there were two boundary reviews taking place, one of the parliamentary constituencies by the Boundary Commission for England and another of B&NES by the Local Government Boundary Commission for England.


Review of Parliamentary Constituencies


Information about this can be found at An initial consultation ended before Christmas after which proposals were published. There will be a consultation on these proposals between 28 February and 27 March this year.


Local Government Boundary Commission Review


Ø  B&NES last had a local government boundary review in 1997. They are usually done every 5 years, so this one is overdue. The first aim is to determine how many councillors B&NES should have. The second is have the same number of electors in each Ward within +/- 5%. The overall boundary of B&NES would not be changed and there would be no impact on parish council boundaries. However, if parish councils wished to revise their boundaries, they should let her know. The Council would decide in May 2017 the number of Councillors needed. The timetable for subsequent stages of the process is shown on slide 5. Further information is available from the Local Government Boundary Commission for England’s website at



Boundary Reviews 2017 pdf icon PDF 44 KB



Simon de Beer (Group Manager – Policy & Environment) will give a presentation.


To include:




West of England – future planning consultations, processes and public participation

Duncan Hounsell (Saltford PC), to lead for the parishes





Joint Spatial Plan

New Local Plan for Bath






Call for Sites






SHLAA process




[The Chair agreed that this should be taken as the first item of business.]


Simon de Beer, Group Manager - Policy & Environment, updated the meeting. A copy of his presentation is attached as Appendix 1 to these minutes.


Simon said that the Joint Spatial Plan (JSP) is a high-level plan produced by the four West of England authorities which will set out the requirements for housing, the economy and employment up to 2036. It was now at a crucial stage. Following two initial consultations a draft plan is being prepared, which will go out to consultation this summer. The JSP will set the context for the next local plan and neighbourhood plans, so the JSP will carry significant weight in the planning system. Standing alongside the JSP is the Joint Transport Plan, which focuses on the linkage between transport and new development, to ensure that development is properly aligned with transport infrastructure. In addition a new Local Plan for B&NES is being prepared.


B&NES had significantly improved housing delivery, but overall capacity is down, largely because brownfield sites in the city no longer have the necessary capacity. Brownfield sites are the most difficult, but most new housing is on brownfield sites. Unless some greenfield sites are released, there will be insufficient capacity.The delivery of affordable housing is erratic, but on average accounts for 27% of new housing. The target is for 105,000 new homes in the West of England by 2036. The orange circles on slide 11 show the target areas for new housing. In B&NES there would potentially 3,500 new homes in Whitchurch and 1,100 north of Keynsham. Significant new transport infrastructure is required to support these new homes as shown on slide 12. A statistical summary for B&NES is shown in the table on slide 13.


There is continuing pressure from the Government to deliver housing targets, because of the housing crisis.


It was proposed to have a workshop on the Local Plan, to which parishes would be invited.


In reply to questions from delegates Simon said


·  B&NES has no need of additional sites and so is in a strong position to resist inappropriate development


·  funding sources include regional funding under the devolution deal, strong council tax receipts from some locations, and dedicated funding for the Joint Transport Strategy


·  Paragraph 216 of the National Planning Policy Framework lays down that decisions makers may give weight to relevant policies in emerging plans unless other material considerations indicate otherwise; there is no immediate danger that new JSP will suddenly having greater weight than the existing Local Plan


·  the Joint Transport Strategy was underpinned by a number of studies; further information could be found at


Duncan Hounsell (Saltford PC) made the following statement on behalf of the parishes:


We all want there to be maximum public engagement in the WEP Joint Spatial Plan and Transport Vision in the consultation on the final draft due this summer.

Will B&NES Council and the West of England  ...  view the full minutes text for item 67.

PLM 15-02-17 pdf icon PDF 2 MB



Councillor Paul Myers and Rosemary Naish (Clutton PC) to lead.


Rosemary Naish (Clutton PC) said that the working group was making good progress without any ‘them and us’ attitude. It was a very representative group with ALCA and non-ALCA members, clerks, councillors, people from town councils and small, medium and large parishes and a good geographical spread of members. Senior officers and Cabinet Members had attended meetings.


Cllr Myers said that he had been pleased that Cabinet Members had attended with their officers. Discussions had been general at first, but then the group had focussed on specific areas like planning, transport and place. The process was fundamentally about achieving a different understanding between the Council and the parishes. The working group had considered what the obstacles were and how could things be done differently, and had understood that there were sometimes legal reasons for why things could not be done in a way that seemed easier. He thought that the new Charter should not just be published, but that it should be something that parishes could sign up to. He said that the focus and had been on processes rather than documents. Rosemary said that when the document was ready it would be put out to parishes for their comment.




Ian Savigar, Divisional Director (Customer Services) updated the meeting.


He said that at as part of the strategic review of services the library service had had to look at how it could contribute towards the Council’s savings and efficiency targets. When what is happening in the rest of the country is considered, the library service in B&NES has got off fairly lightly. B&NES had also been quite forward thinking in the way it delivers customer services. Libraries had been brought into customer services last Easter. The way that customers used the one-stop shop and libraries was changing. What was happening in the community had to be looked at in the strategic review. B&NES is one of the first councils to operate under full Universal Credit, which had to be taken account into account in the operation of the one-stop shop. How could the strategic objectives be achieved without closing libraries? The answer was to bring library staff and front-line customer staff together in the three main population centres and to share facilities with other groups at the 5 satellite libraries. Discussions had taken place with parish councils; there were, for example, discussions in Radstock about establishing a healthy living centre in the library. He had attended 5 Community Forums to explain what was happening and he would give an update at future Forums. Suggestions from parishes about what they might wish to do were welcome. A capital bid would be made as part of the Modernising Libraries Programme, and within that he hoped he would have money to assist parishes take ideas forward. In response to a question from a delegate he said that involvement of parishes in mobile libraries would be considered.


The Chair said that anyone who was concerned about what was being proposed for Bath Library should take a look at Keynsham Library. Some people had expressed concerns about this at first, but its facilities, including the children’s corner and the IT suite were extremely well used.


Ashley Ayre said that he had attended the Bath City Forum and had been dismayed by the number of people who had formed an opinion based on what could only be described as misinformation and misrepresentation. There seemed to have been a lot of mischief making. The Council had formally written to one agency objecting to the misinformation that had gone out in their name.



Councillor Paul Myers, Cabinet Member for Policy, Localism and Partnerships, will update the meeting.


Cllr Myers said that he had provided all the information he had intended to under previous items.



(a)  Parish Sweeper Scheme


Update from Environmental Services:


As reported to the previous Parishes Liaison, this review has taken longer than we anticipated. This is a complex scheme and each parish taking part undertakes differing roles with considerable variation in arrangements. We are therefore not proposing to make any changes to the resources available for the Parish Sweeper scheme at the present time, and will concentrate on working with existing parish members of the scheme to review the way we work together. However, we still wish to be able to help more parishes improve their local areas and we will explore ideas for this through the Parish Charter review.


(b)  Transport issues


Update from Transport and Parking Services:


The Council was successful in a bid to DfT for funding under its ‘Total Transport Pilot Fund’ initiative. This funding was for the review and development of better strategies for the alignment of all forms of passenger transport within the Chew Valley including public transport, community transport, home-to-school transport and non-emergency patient transport.


We have received the Total Transport Pilot Fund report and are considering it. Input from the health transport sector was disappointing and that is reflected in the report’s conclusions. The funding received from the Department for Transport was just for the report and it did not cover implementation of any proposals.


Under the devolution arrangements, responsibility for supported bus services will be a joint function of the new West of England Combined Authority (WECA) and B&NES. Responsibility for funding community transport will pass to WECA, so it will have a key role in the provision of non-commercial passenger transport.


The principal supported bus service in the Chew Valley (672) is currently running under a short-term contract and will need to be reviewed during 2017/18 by B&NES and WECA. Therefore, it is likely that we will cover the TTPF report in that review.




The meeting noted the updates.



The following items have been suggested for future agendas:


Waste collection changes

Dark Skies

Adult Social Care


The meeting noted the suggested items.



22 June 2017

26 October 2017


The meeting noted that the remaining meetings for 2017 were scheduled to be held on:


22 June 2017


26 October 2017





Delegates are invited to note the following items.


1.  Emergency Planning Procedures


An online introduction to emergency planning can be found on the Council’s Learning Pool at:


The latest version of the Community Resilience Manual can be found on the Council’s website at:




2.  Future Dates of Area Forums


Bath City Forum (all 5.15-8pm)

21 March 2017

23 May 2017

24 July 2017

20 September 2017

27 November 2017


Bathavon Forum

Dates to be set in March 2017


Chew Valley Forum (all 6pm starts)

27 February 2017

03 July 2017

27 September 2017


Keynsham Area Forum (all 6pm starts)

06 March 2017

20 July 2017

25 September 2017

30 November 2017


Somer Valley Forum (all 6pm starts)

09 March 2017

11 July 2017

19 September 2017

29 November 2017

04 December 2017



The meeting dates for each Forum are listed under “Strategy and Performance” on the Council website at:



The meeting noted the information provided on the agenda.