Agenda and minutes

Fosse Community Meeting - Wednesday, 12 December 2012 6:00 pm

Venue: Woodgate Resources Centre, 36 Woodgate, Leicester, LE3 5GE

Contact: Jason Tyler, Democratic Services Officer - Tel 0116 229 8816 (Int ext 39 8816) 

No. Item




There were no apologies for absence.



The first main item on theagenda is Declarations of Interest where Councillors have to say if there is anything on the agenda they have a personal interest in. For example if a meeting was due to discuss a budget application put forward by a community group and one of the Councillors was a member of that group, they would not be able to take part in the decision on that budget application.


Councillors are asked to declare any interest they may have in the business on the agenda, and/or indicate that Section 106 of the Local Government Finance Act 1992 applies to them.



There were no Declarations of Interest made at this time.



The Minutes of the previous Fosse Community Meeting, held on 19 September 2012, are attached and Members are asked to confirm them as a correct record.





                        that the Minutes of the Fosse Community Meeting held on 19                      September 2012 be confirmed as a correct record.






To receive an update concerning Fosse Library since discussion at the previous meeting.


Councillor Waddington read a written statement prepared by Adrian Wills, Head of Libraries. 


It was reported that the first element of the budget decision made in February 2012 for Fosse library had been completed, which principally concerned the review of staffing. The second stage was to procure self-service equipment for Fosse Library and two others in the city, the procurement exercise for which was underway. The Libraries Service expected the two self-service units for Fosse to be installed in June 2013. Until that date, the library would continue to operate under the current arrangements. Once the self-service units were introduced, it was expected that the opening hours of the library would be extended. There would continue to be a member of library staff on duty for some 30 hours a week to help customers.


It was further reported that there were proposals to change the layout of the library and potentially change access to the centre, but the go ahead for this was dependent on it being included within the next capital investment plan which would be announced by the Council in due course.


The update was noted.



To receive a presentation on the regeneration work being undertaken in the Woodgate area of the Ward.


David Beale, Development Planner, Planning Transportation and Economic Development, presented an update concerning development in the Fosse ward. 


David displayed a plan of the development area and indicated sites which had been brought forward for development.  He commented on some high profile sites and development areas and explained the planning history to those sites and areas.  He asked the meeting to note that in many cases planning approval had been granted for sites but that the schemes remained unimplemented.  This was due to a large extent to the current recession and the resultant financial situation of developers and land owners.


In respect of the buildings and site at Friars Mill, David explained that the site had been purchased by the Council as an investment to allow that part of the city approach to be improved.  It was considered that the site would be attractive to developers and the marketing of the site would be aimed at encouraging a high standard of development.  The meeting welcomed the initiative to purchase the site.  Owners of other derelict and unused buildings in the ward had been approached with a view to them being reused, particularly those buildings along the riverside frontage where it was felt that high quality conversions to offices could be achieved.


The idea of implementing ‘greening projects’ was explained, whereby sites could be cleared where they had lay redundant for a significant period of time.  The importance to undertake this work and to maintain the redundant areas was highlighted and appreciated by the meeting.


In reply to a question David described the consultation process held with developers and potential developers concerning the height and scale and design of permissible developments.  The meeting discussed the importance of good design, particularly along the riverside and canal areas. The possibility of enhancing and improving the network of bridges was also discussed.  Comments were also raised concerning the need for adequate traffic infrastructure to serve developments.  It was noted in some areas that the existing streets would require greater access arrangements than was currently available.


At this point, David referred to item 8 of the Agenda ‘Derelict Buildings Update’ and advised of the current situation concerning the following sites and areas of concern:


·         Gaps in the cycleway between Rally Park/Waterside and Abbey Park

·         Poor highways signage at riverside entrance at Rally Park

·         Unsightly scaffolding surrounds vulnerable at risk heritage building (Fiveways House - Vernon Street)

·         Derelict Church adjacent to Empire pub

·         Empire pub boarded up and unsightly

·         Factories, Repton St/ Rugby St.

·         Potential beneficial use of blue cladding building on Balfour Street, adjacent to Fosse primary school

·         Planters by former  Premier Screw (A50) Woodgate, Premier Screw

·         Fire damaged factory, Frog Island (North Bridge Works)


In discussing the above sites it was considered that future major/high impact developments such as the Empire Pub and Premier Screw sites would require and deserve a high level of consultation concerning future use and design.  The suggestion that developers should consult with residents was raised and David explained that  ...  view the full minutes text for item 20.



To discuss a request for fencing at Rally Park



Councillor Waddington referred to a statement prepared by Ade Edge, Play & Youth Development Officer, Parks & Green Spaces in respect of the above.

It was noted that further to recent enquiries about the absence of a dog-proof fence around the new play area at Rally Park a review of the issue had been undertaken by parks Services and the following information was submitted:


Historically dog-proof fencing had been provided around all of the equipped play areas within Parks & Green Spaces, however this approach had been recently reviewed in the light of advice from leading health & safety professionals and as a reflection of changing practice within the play industry.


Advice had also been taken by the Royal Society for the Prevention of Accidents (RoSPA) and Play England and the latest view was that play areas should be fenced where there was an identifiable risk to the safety of the children using the play area, for example where there was a busy road or watercourse immediately adjacent to the play space.  It was reported that fencing off a play area could lead to an increase in associated risks. The self-closing gates required to ensure that the play area was kept dog-free could themselves pose a risk to small children and by fencing off a play area children could be at a greater risk of being bullied or intimidated by older children and have less potential escape routes from the play area when this occurred. In addition experience had shown that parents are more likely to play with and supervise their children whilst they play in an unfenced play space than in one that is fully enclosed.


Unfortunately experience had also shown that many dog owners also see these areas as an opportunity to let their dogs off the lead without the fear of them running off and as such they could become unofficial dog-exercise areas.


The Dog Exclusion Orders were currently being reviewed to update the schedule of sites covered and the Rally Park play area would be included within that review. Once this review had been completed the City Wardens would have greater powers to deal with the problems with dogs that were currently being experienced at the site.


In conclusion of the statement the cost of providing a dog-proof fence and gates around the play area were described together with the Section 106 contributions available for the enhancement of Rally Park.


The meeting discussed the statement and referred to the overwhelming desire of residents to have the play area fenced.  In this respect the petition containing over 200 signatures of local residents was highlighted and it was not considered appropriate to apply the policy as described above to the Rally Park play area, given that the fencing had been expressly requested by the residents themselves.  It was further discussed that the policy which covered the situation of play areas overall should not be applied with a blanket approach, and that each paly area should be evaluated separately, as each  ...  view the full minutes text for item 21.



De Montfort University will provide an update on the Square Mile Project.


Mark Charlton gave a presentation concerning the work undertaken by the De Montfort University in respect of the Square Mile Project.


It was reported that the details of the current work had been presented recently to the Chancellor of the University where it had been well received.  Inclusion in local gazettes and press attention, particularly from the Leicester Mercury, had led to the project achieving a high profile within the ward and community generally.


In reply to a question Mark advised that the project would continue indefinitely as part of the ongoing community work of the University and referred to the projects ‘model’ being researched by, and exported to, other Universities and organisations as a model of good practice.


The meeting thanked mark for his presentation and he was asked to express thanks and congratulations to the University’s Chancellor on the success of the project.  It was hoped that the work and success of the project would continue to be reported to future ward meetings.





To receive an update concerning derelict buildings and sites within the Ward.


This item had been discussed at item 5 of the Agenda ‘Development in Woodgate’. (Minute no. 20)



The Police and the Anti-Social Behaviour Co-ordinator will provide an update on Community Safety issues within the Ward.


PS Andy Goadby and PCSO Andrew Colton updated the meeting with the work carried by the Police in the ward.


In respect of comments raised recently concerning mosquito alarms, Andy referred to a written statement which gave the following background:


·         Issues related to ASB in the Fosse area were highlighted at the ASB Joint Management Group at its meeting in January 2011, a range of actions had been taken by partners who included the police and the council to resolve the situation, but none had been fruitful.

·         The police requested the installation of a Mosquito device as part of a multi-agency strategy to tackle the issues and since then further support and positive activities were launched in the area. This included a youth club, street intervention by youth services, parenting support, and some positive/direct Police actions including Acceptable Behaviour Contracts and evictions. 

·         The mosquito device emits a high pitched noise that only young people can hear; because of human rights concerns (as it is indiscriminate in whom it targets) there is a moratorium on its use within the sub-region.

·         After consulting the then Chair of Neighbourhood Working Delivery group, in 2011, and taking advice from and discussing the matter with the Head of Youth Offending, it was agreed that a mosquito device would be installed for a trial period.

·         In February/ March 2013 an assessment was made on the alarm, it was found that since the alarm had been installed calls relating to ASB had indeed decreased; police felt though that it would be beneficial for the mosquito device to remain over the summer period.  Cllr Russell agreed to this request as Assistant Mayor responsible for Neighbourhoods.

·         The Police had now re-assessed the situation and had found that the alarm was no longer needed and removed it; those longer term actions suggested above had proven to be successful.


Andy indicated that there has been some displacement of issues but will continue to deal with these through their “business as usual” approach.


Policing issues in the Ward were reported together with the current locations of ASB ‘hotspots’.  It was noted and welcomed that crime had fallen in comparison to the same period in the previous year.


In conclusion Andy asked community representative to be aware of a current issue concerning a proliferation of graffiti under two main ‘tags’.  The meeting discussed the problems of graffiti generally and Andy asked that locations affected and any new graffiti be reported to the Police or to the Council.


Andy was thanked for his attendance and update.



The City Warden will provide an update on environmental work within the Ward.


Jethro Swift provided an update on environmental enforcement issues in the Ward.


He made particular reference to the Graffiti team’s work in the Square Mile, the bins on streets initiative, dog fouling, and recent problems caused by the feeding of pigeons in Rally Park.


In concluding his update Jethro introduced Caroline Walsh to the meeting, announcing that Caroline would be providing future updates to the Ward Meetings, as he had been allocated a different area in a recent review and would be serving different Wards in the city in the future.


The meeting welcomed Caroline and expressed their regret that Jethro had been moved.  The meeting thanked Jethro for his commitment and particularly for the intelligent and dedicated manner in which he had undertaken his role and wished him well in his new Wards.



Councillors are reminded that they will need to declare any interest they may have in budget applications, and/or indicate that Section 106 of the Local Government Finance Act 1992 applies to them.


The Member Support Officer will present the latest position with regard to the Ward Community Budget.


The following applications have been received for consideration:



Application 1 (2241)


Applicant       Woodgate Adventure Playground


Amount          £754  


Proposal        Christmas Pantomime


Summary      Pantomime tickets and travel to Loughborough for 46 disadvantaged children to see ‘Mother Goose’ on 22 December 2012.



Application 2 (2242)


Applicant       City Warden Service


Amount          £1,100


Proposal        Alley gates, locks and keys


Summary      Repair and refit gates at Alma Street alley, and fit a third gate at the open entrance to the alley.



Application 3


Applicant       Woodgate Residents Association


Amount          £1,200


Proposal        Woodgate Hoarding


Summary      Hoarding on Woodgate depicting the history of Woodgate over the last 100/150 years.



Application 4


Applicant       Woodgate Residents Association


Amount          £1,000


Proposal        Replace Gas Cooker with Electric Cooker


Summary      To install an electric cooker and services at the Woodgate Resource Centre, following a recent service and safety check of the existing gas cooker.



Application 5


Applicant       City Warden and Police Fosse Beat


Amount          £2,000


Proposal        4 New Alley Gates


Summary      To fit alley gates to the four remaining alleys that do not currently have gates.







Surinder Singh, Member Support Officer, presented the latest position with regard to the Ward Community Budget.


Applications for funding from the Ward Community Budget had been received for consideration and funding was approved as follows:


·         Woodgate Adventure Playground


            Amount          £500  


            Proposal        Christmas Pantomime


This application was approved in the sum of £500 under the fast-track procedure.



·         City Warden Service


            Amount          £1,100


            Proposal        Alley gates, locks and keys


This application was approved.  It was reported that £500 had been initially approved under the fast-track procedure and therefore the £600 remaining was approved at the meeting.



·         Woodgate Residents Association


            Amount          £1,200


            Proposal        Woodgate Hoarding


This application was approved, subject to the receipt of Arts Council funding required to progress the initiative.



·         Woodgate Residents Association


            Amount          £1,000 (reduced at the meeting to £550)


            Proposal        Replace Gas Cooker with Electric Cooker


The applicant referred to previous funding received which remained unspent and reduced the amount of funding applied for from £1,000 to £550.


The application was approved.



·         City Warden and Police Fosse Beat


            Amount          £2,000


            Proposal        4 New Alley Gates


This application was approved.



The following bid, received following the publication of the Agenda was also submitted for consideration:


·         Maya Project


Amount          £4,725


Proposal        Maya Well-being Project


The application was deferred pending further clarification from the applicant concerning the priority of proposed funding particularly concerning the cost of premises hire.











Councillor Waddington referred to the above review and Community representatives and members of the public were handed questionnaires which asked for information concerning the use of the Council’s three major arts venues.  It was noted that the information gathered would support the review process. 





The meeting closed at 7.50 pm.