Present: Couns. Maxfield, Hollings, Evans, Entwistle, Davies, Smith, East, Brookfield, Browne, Connor.
1.Welcome and introduction: .
2.Apologies: Couns Evans, Rothwell, Huggill and Taylor.
3.Declarations of Interest: Coun.Entwistle declared an interest on the credit union..
4 Minutes of the last meeting and matters arising
These were accepted.
4.1 Industrial Trail
Coun. Smith said volunteers from Darwen Vale are to work on Moss Bridge and the cadets on the roller. The other items are to be put out to tender if volunteers do not come forward. Coun. East said the Whitehall items will need tendering as there is more work involved.
4.2 Jubilee Tower Credit Union
Coun. Browne asked if the account had been opened. The clerk said the official paperwork had been completed, but there was a question over the legality of moving accounts, which the clerk is to check with BWD head of finance.
4.3 Darwen Tower
Coun. Smith said planning permission would be needed as the tower is a listed building. Coun. Davies said discussions re the tower will take place at the next Friends of Darwen Tower meeting.
Coun. Smith said the event had been very successful and the fireworks very impressive.
5 Mayor’s update
Coun. Maxfield attended various Remembrance Day services, disabled children’s Christmas tree party and the lights switch on.
- Deputy chairman’s report
“The first item I’d like to raise is the atrocities carried out in Paris last month and my attendance at a service outside Darwen Town Hall to coincide with a similar service outside Blackburn Town Hall.
This was a hastily organised event by BwDBC and although I was able to attend with a couple of fellow councillors, it was only by luck in that I was in the town hall at the time. Thanks go out to staff at Darwen Town Hall, stall-holders and shoppers who attended and our neighbourhood officer Nassima for her moving words.
I attended the Mayor’s Bonfire on November 6th. The organisation was first-class with safety obviously the priority. The fireworks were simply amazing and the many hundred people attending were thrilled.
I also attended Remembrance service and wreath laying at the town hall with many colleagues and members of the public, thanks go out to Royal British Legion for their many services.
I was asked by members of the public to see to it that the flower beds were tidied up at the Bold Venture Park war memorial prior to remembrance Sunday. For the sake of expediency, Four Seasons Garden Centre replanted the area for £476 from our parks budget and have submitted a quotation for it’s continued maintenance, which is between £140-150.
I was approached late in the day to authorise presents and breakfast for the disabled children decorating the market Christmas Tree and agreed the donation of £150 for presents and £73 for breakfast at the Bridgewater. I was delighted to attend the 12th year that this event has occurred. Great work by Tracy Jones, Market Staff and the Darwen Firefighters who attached the star to the top. The breakfast event was half funded by The Bridgewater.
I attended the Darwen Lights Switch on again this year but was unable to stay, feedback from councillors would be appreciated.’’
- Town centre Christmas decorations
Coun. Browne said people in Darwen had approached him to ask why the tree near the post office and chemists had not been lit up as in previous years. He said BwD said there was no money for the lights, but the lights had been on last year and a church in Blackburn was being lit up.
Coun. Smith explained that Darwen gets around £30,000 out of £80,000 spent on its lights and switch on and the extra for Blackburn, including the church lights, is paid for by BID – which is funded by businesses in Blackburn. Darwen businesses could pay for extras, but when approached in the past, no one had offered extra finance.
Coun. Davies asked if lights could be bought for the tree by the post office and this was agreed for future years.
Coun. East asked for a breakdown on what is spent in Darwen by the borough council.
£523.50 – food festival donations.
£90 was received in cash and this was given to the market staff for decorations.
Authorised payments were made to:
- Hay – £416.29 – clerk’s salary and expenses.
LCC pension scheme – £24.72 – clerk’s pension contribution.
Henry Christopher printers – £219.80 – food festival printing.
Tracy Jones- £150 – donation towards Christmas tree party for the disabled children.
Fireworks shop – £1,560 for Mayor’s bonfire display.
Ladybugs – £476.40 for Bold Venture park war memorial floral display.
Tatlow Signs – £324 – banners for food festival.
The Bridgewater – £72.73 – food for Christmas breakfast for children.
C/o T. Maxfield – £180 for transport to Christmas event for veterans.
C/o T. Maxfield – £14 – torches for bonfire.
Performing Rights – £457.87 for Darwen Live.
Royal British Legion – £75 for poppy appeal.
Ian Gillibrand – £150 –design for food festival posters.
BWD – £360 – for bus stop suspension for food festival.
The Bee – £60 for food festival publicity.
9 Budget setting
It was agreed to keep the precept at £122,000. Coun. Hollings prepared the attached budget. The clerk to check with BWD re afternoon shows at the library theatre.
Coun. Davies said the budget and tender re the floral displays needs looking at. Coun. East asked what contribution BwD makes for floral projects in Darwen. Coun Smith said no contribution is made. It was agreed that Couns. East and Brookfield look at the current projects and discuss new ideas and put together a tender document.
A letter outlining the work of Salute was received. Coun. Hollings said the charity is excellent at providing stewarding for events.
A parks meeting due after the main meeting.
12 Any other business
Coun. Browne asked what time the town crier was needed at the food festival. Coun. Maxfield to ask the crier to attend at 10 a.m.
Coun. Maxfield asked for a donation towards the transporting of veterans to the Salute Christmas ball and this was agreed.
Coun. Maxfield asked people to look at the plaques which Brent Stevenson has made free of charge in Bold Venture Park. He said a flagpole is to be put up also. It was agreed to hold a thank you event for Mr Stevenson and veterans and also to put aside a budget towards the upkeep of the war memorials.
Coun. East said the Commonwealth war graves are looked after by a proper body and also said there should be an event to mark the Battle of the Somme on July 1st.
13 Public Forum
Mr Mark Atkinson outlined details of the trip to Gambia by Football Gambia and said it will probably be his last. He has a charity allowance given by the airline and people with donations are asked to contact him.
Councillors were asked why the back streets of Darwen are regularly left littered, especially behind Hollins Grove and Blackburn Road. It was also said that Grafton Court has only been brushed once in 10 years. Coun. Entwistle said it was a major problem across the borough and people needed educating not to dump rubbish. Coun. Hollings said the BwD council work to clear the back streets, but often find they are re-littered quite quickly.
Coun. Brookfield agreed to ask for the areas mentioned to be looked at by BwD.
- Part 2
12 Date of next meeting.
February 2nd. Agenda items deadline is January 25th please.