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Latest from the Chamber – 12th June 2024

On the agenda at Frome Town Council’s June meeting were a discussion about buying strategically important land at Adderwell, a review of the council’s work programme for 2023/24, questions and comments from public and councillors and an opportunity to hear from young people.

Cllr Fiona Barrows, lead FTC councillor for climate and the ecological emergency, introduced some of Frome College’s Earth House ambassadors. Cllr Barrows has been working with college students in recent months, describing them as ‘extraordinary, articulate and with so much to say’. She invited Niamh, Tallis, Jack, Belle, Bella and Esme to address the meeting. Niamh, a year 10 student, spoke of the climate anxiety experienced by her generation – ’a looming feeling, like a storm on the horizon of my generation’s future’ and urged the council to ‘walk towards a future with as much investment into the environment as possible’.

Tallis and Esme both spoke about the stigma sometimes experienced by young people, and the unfair presumption that they might shoplift or engage in anti-social behaviour. Clubs, activities and things for young people to do were cited as potential solutions. Jack, a member of Frome canoe club, echoed their thought and the issue with smaller clubs gaining the funding they needed to provide activities. Belle spoke about the need for increased biodiversity and green space, and Bella shared disappointment at the amount of single use plastic on the Frome College site and a littering problem made worse by a lack of recycling bins.

The assembled councillors shared their thanks with the students for speaking and sharing their ideas. Plans will be made to continue the conversation and work with the students and some of their peers to ensure the voices of young people are heard at FTC.

Sue Palmer of FutureShed assured the ambassadors that many people from older generations do share their concerns, care deeply about the environment and the impact on young people, and are working to effect positive change.

Cllr Steve Tanner and Environment Manager Rob Holden spoke next, asking councillors to consider the purchase of some land behind The Retreat in Frome. The parcel of land is the only remaining stretch along the riverbank that doesn’t have guaranteed public access. Cllr Tanner reported that it also has high value for local biodiversity according to Natural England and links up with existing footpaths providing access from near the Edmund Park estate to Blatchbridge. Additionally, although owning the land doesn’t solve the complex issue of creating a footbridge to link Edmund Park to the Knights Maltings area, it does increase the viability of this project. The motion was passed unanimously, and the purchase will proceed.

Cllr Nick Dove presented a proposed town centre style guide to council, with an agreed visual style for any changes and additions. It passed by majority vote and Cllr Dove will work with FTC staff to progress the plans.

Deputy leader Cllr Lisa Merryweather thanked the council for a good year as leader and spoke about successes and highlights. This was followed by a short film detailing FTC’s work programme in 2023/24.

Watch the full council meeting at https://bit.ly/ftc-meeting-june-24.The next Frome Town Council meeting takes place on Wednesday 10th July at 7pm.

17 June 2024
Last Updated
17 June 2024
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