Following the return to physical meetings, the Annual Council Meeting was welcomed back to the Council Chamber at the Town Hall where a selection of Cllrs, staff and public met in person. Remaining Cllrs and other attendees joined virtually.
Current Mayor Anita Collier started the meeting by saying how much she had enjoyed the role of Mayor, even under the strange circumstances of the past year and thanked the Cllrs and staff for all their support. It was then time to elect the new Mayor, Andy Wrintmore, who thanked Anita for all she’s done as Mayor and welcomed Sara Butler as Deputy Mayor.
Cllr Andy Palmer read a statement on behalf of Frome Town Council in relation to the proposed development work to the Market Place and Boyle Cross area. It has been agreed to pause the current project in order to revisit the designs and to meet with further various stakeholders and the community to hear their views. Andy confirmed the project will still go ahead in some form during this coming Council year.
Cllr Rob Collet presented his report recommending that Frome Town Council (FTC) supports the Climate and Ecological (CEE) Bill Alliance. The CEE Bill is designed specifically to urgently address the need to reverse the climate and ecological crisis we face. The Bill ensures the UK takes responsibility for its fair share of greenhouse gas emissions, actively restores UK biodiverse habitats, and stops damage to the environment through the production, transportation and disposal of the goods we consume. It ensures regular monitoring of promised targets, as well as the strategies and solutions resolved upon to meet these challenges are arrived at through binding National Citizens’ Assemblies. Cllrs unanimously agreed to support the bill. You can read Robs full report here.
Next Nikki Brain, FTC’s Resilience Officer discussed the ongoing project of decarbonising the Town Hall. Cllrs ratified the decision to take a loan from Salix to enable the installation of solar photovoltaic (PV) panels and LED lighting. Not only will this reduce carbon but will save money in the future once installed. You can read Nikki’s report here.
Peter Wheelhouse, Deputy Town Clerk presented the FTC Management Group’s end of year review. Peter went through the summary of the work undertaken in the 2020-21 Work Programme. Peter highlighted that where there were challenges in terms of delivery (for example, because of the impact of the covid pandemic, dependence on others to deliver, budget constraint or staff capacity and also gave a brief summary of the many areas where there was positive progress. You can read Peter’s report here.
Next, Town Clerk Paul Wynne asked Cllrs to support a petition asking the Government to permit virtual council meetings. Cllrs unanimously agreed to support the Buckfastleigh Town Council petition asking for the Government to find a way of allowing council meetings to be conducted virtually and respond to the Government’s consultation on this subject in the same way. You can read Paul’s report here.
Following, in quick succession, the Cllrs then approved the adoptions of the Council’s Standing Orders, Cllr’s Code of Conduct and the Power of General Competence. A report on these can be found here. This was followed by the appointment of Co-Leaders (Maxine Crawley & Andy Palmer) and Deputy Leader (Anita Collier) of the Council. Followed by the membership, chair and deputy chair of the Town Matters, Council Matters, and Planning Committees and Grants Advisory Panel. Full details on all appointments can be found here.
Next, Sarah Williams, Frome Town Council’s Business Manager, presented the Annual Governance and Accountability Return for 2020/21 and the reserves earmarked for specific projects were approved. Details can be found here. Alongside this, the Council’s Financial Regulations were adopted.
The agenda and details of everything mentioned above can be found at on the Council Annual Meeting page. Dates of future Council and committee meetings can be found on the Council Committees, Meetings & Minutes page. Follow us on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram to keep updated on everything we’re up to.