Agenda item


The Democratic Services Manager will announce any submissions received. The Council will be invited to decide what action it wishes to take, if any, on the matters raised in these submissions. As the questions received and the answers given will be circulated in written form there is no requirement for them to be read out at the meeting. The questions and answers will be published with the draft minutes.


Statements were made by the following members of the public;


Vishaka Robinson made a statement expressing concern about coaches parking in Royal Avenue and around Victoria Park.  Her concerns fell into 3 categories; pollution and traffic flow, residents’ parking and a 2020 consultation exercise.  Full details can be read in Vishaka’s statement which is attached to the online minutes.  In response to an offer from Councillor Joanna Wright, Vishaka responded that she would welcome the opportunity to meet the Cabinet Member and discuss her concerns.  Councillor Karen Walker asked Vishaka for her view of where coaches should park, Vishaka responded that the long stay car parking that was lost needs to be replaced.


Patrick Anketell-Jones made a statement about urban gulls in Bath, calling for gull-proofing measures on city centre roofs.  Full details can be read in Patrick’s statement which is attached to the online minutes.  In response to a query from Councillor Paul Crossley about Patrick’s view of effective roof proofing measures, Patrick responded that multiple methods would be beneficial including netting, spikes and blocking niches.  Councillor Vic Pritchard asked Patrick about measures taken in Scarborough including egg oiling and nest removal, to which he responded that measures needed to be pragmatic and licensing currently made oiling and nest removal difficult.  Councillor June Player asked Patrick if he considered anti gull measures should be incorporated at planning policy stage, to which he replied that he was not sure if the Authority were able to do this, but that it would certainly be more cost effective if this could be done at planning stage, rather than retrofitting.  Councillor Eleanor Jackson asked if Patrick had seen the Bath Gulls report showing that numbers had declined.  Patrick responded that numbers declined if nest removal was effective.  Proofing measures can stabilise while Government is lobbied to restore the general licence.


Tim Warren addressed the meeting about the paper at agenda item 8 regarding Somerset reorganisation plans.  Tim spoke about his involvement as previous Council Leader when the independent report had been commissioned on this issue in 2018.  He acknowledged that at that time, joining with Somerset had not been considered to be in the interests of this Council, but that the Council’s economic situation was now fundamentally altered and so collaboration with neighbouring Authorities would provide economies of scale and protection for a smaller Authority.  Councillor Dine Romero asked Tim if he disagreed with the advice that joining with Somerset would be a risk to the Council’s ability to deliver on its strategic priorities.  Tim responded that, at the time the advice was given, it was sound as the Council had had strong income streams from Tourism etc, but that as the Council’s economic situation was now so different from the effects of the pandemic, collaboration with neighbours was vital going forward.  Councillor Paul Myers asked Tim for his view on housing opportunities to which Tim responded that ADL needed to grasp the opportunity of empty shops remaining empty and convert them into housing.  Councillor Karen Walker asked Tim how important he felt it was that B&NES should have a good relationship with the County of Somerset and Bristol City Council.  Tim responded that he thought it was very important.  He added that, as a small Authority, B&NES did punch above its weight but that, in these difficult times, good relationships with neighbours were vital and hoped that the current relationship with Bristol could be improved.  Councillor Robin Moss asked if Tim agreed that, with regard to North Somerset joining WECA, the Government should provide proportionally more funding.  Tim replied that arrangements at the time should have included North Somerset which would have allowed certain projects like Portishead rail to have gone ahead.


Linda Gamlin made a statement to Council about urban gulls.  In so doing, she drew on her extensive research on this matter.  She explained her view that without further measures, Bath would lose its current grip on the urban gull problem.  Full details can be read in Linda’s statement which is attached to the online minutes.  Councillor Paul Crossley thanked Linda for her statement and research paper on this matter and sought her opinion on whether the public health angle was the best argument to take to MPs to call for policy change.  Linda agreed and explained a number of health concerns related to urban gulls.  Councillor June Player asked what other action could be taken.  Linda responded that the best course of action was to lobby our MPs and be persistent.


The Chairman thanked all contributors for their statements which would be passed to the relevant Cabinet Member.