Round-up of Council Matters Meeting – 1st November

The Council Matters Committee was chaired by Colin Cobb. Joining us were members of the public, a Cllr of Somerset County Council and a Cllr of Mendip District Council.

This is a brief summary of what was discussed at the meeting. If you would like to see more detail, you are welcome to view the agenda and reports, here.

FTC recently received a petition from members of the public requesting that we resurface the footpaths in Victoria Park. Chris Stringer, who looks after our parks and open spaces as well as the Ranger team said “we are lucky to have members of the community who were passionate enough to submit this petition.”

Chris noted that in the past three years FTC has laid new paths in The Dippy, the Old Showfield and Mary Baily Playing Field and it was time to consider what investment could be made in Victoria Park.  Chris explained that we have the funds to resurface some paths, we need to decide how much of the perimeter path should be re-laid. Cllrs were keen not to waste money by resurfacing parts that are still in good condition, while accepting there was a valid argument to resurface the whole path all at once.

There was much discussion, and balanced arguments for each option. It was decided that the entrances to the park need to be completed next Spring the pros and cons of resurfacing the whole of the path must be explored in more detail.

Chris Stringer went on to outline plans for the Dippy and New Road play area. Peter Macfadyen raised concerns about the dwindling global insect population and Chris replied that protecting and enhancing biodiversity was objective of all open spaces. Councillors agreed unanimously to the costs and project plans.

Cllrs then received a progress report on the annual work programme. They commended staff for being so ambitious, and for continually achieving such a great amount.

Next, a finance report from Jackie Wheeler, Responsible Finance Officer. We are on target and there is nothing that stands out as a concern.

To round the meeting up, Rachel Griffin, Communications and Marketing Manager updated councillors on how the Town Hall is developing as a community resource. Rachel noted that a new hot-desking space and meeting rooms have been created for community groups. A change of use application is in progress which will enable functions, including weddings and parties to be held at the Town Hall.

Thank you to all who attended. All council meetings are open to the public. Find upcoming meetings here.