(Report Reference WTF298)
The Strategic Director: Services introduced the report which provided a general update on progress to replace both pavilions. With regard to North Walls pavilion, the previously allocated funding was now insufficient and the report requested that the Forum agree one of two options proposed to enable the project to progress.
Mike Caldwell and Janet Berry spoke during public participation as summarised briefly below.
Mike Caldwell (Pavilions Project)
Emphasised the value of the project and that the Pavilion Project supported option (b) as set out under paragraph 11.3 of the report. Considered that as a district facility, the project should be eligible for district Community Infrastructure Levy (CIL) funding and would provide all round use of the area for sports other than cricket and wider community use. Highlighted the dangers of further delay in terms of rising construction costs. If there was no possibility of district CIL funding, the Pavilions Project would reluctantly support option (a) provided the new design fulfilled a number of key elements of the original, including meeting England Cricket Board standards.
Janet Berry (Highcliffe Community Forum for Action)
Requested clarification of the availability for general community use of the KGV pavilion. Asked a number of detailed questions, including whether the plans could include storage for groups that regularly use and an additional ground floor area for refreshments. She requested that the hiring rents be affordable and that the toilets be accessible at all times, not just when sporting events were being held. She requested clarification on the reference to a “bar” and the number of parking spaces. Emphasised the importance of biodiversity and requested that a further report be prepared into the relocation of the green waste bin to prioritise pedestrian and cycle movements in the area. She queried whether any more consultation meetings would take place before the planning application was submitted.
The Corporate Property Surveyor and Open Spaces Officer responded to the detailed questions raised by Mrs Berry regarding KGV pavilion including advising that it was intended to install a lift to allow full accessibility to the upstairs rooms, confirming there would not be a bar and would not be further parking spaces. In addition, more local consultation would be carried out before a planning application was submitted.
The Strategic Director and other officers responded to questions raised by Town Forum Members regarding mitigating the risk of further rising costs, professional fees incurred so far, future maintenance and operating costs, future rental charges and future potential revenue streams. It was noted that recommendations 1(a) and 1(b) in the report should be reversed to correspond with the order of the options set out in paragraph 11.3 of the report.
The Strategic Director advised that he had addressed Mr Caldwell’s comments in his response to Members’ questions regarding proposals to refine the design to reduce costs but still retain the key features for use as a cricket pavilion and also allow flexibility for community use.
Members requested that the issue of access to the toilets at the KGV pavilion be re-examined as there was a wish to allow disabled access and preferably wider access. This was noted but Officers expressed some concern regarding the risk of vandalism and other anti-social use.
Following debate, Members considered the two options set out in the report and, with the exception of one Councillor who abstained, voted in favour of the option as set out in resolution 1 below.
1. Agree to the Corporate Head of Estates and Asset Management seeking new tenders based on a revised design in accordance with the Public Contract Regulations 2015 and Councils Contract Procedure Rules and in consultation with the Cabinet Member for Housing and Asset Management and the Pavilion Project Board.
2. That to the Corporate Head of Estates and Asset Management seeking quotations in accordance with the Public Contract Regulations 2015 and Councils Contract Procedure Rules, for professional services associated with the preparation and submission of a revised planning application and procurement process, for the North Walls Pavilion.