Aberystwyth Council

CYNGOR TREF ABERYSTWYTH TOWN COUNCIL

MINUTES OF A MEETING OF FULL COUNCIL HELD IN THE MEETING ROOM, 11 BAKER STREET, ABERYSTWYTH ON MONDAY 26th JANUARY 2015.

Present:

Cllr Brenda Haines

Cllr Mererid Jones

Cllr Ceredig Davies

Cllr Mark A. Strong

Cllr Wendy Morris

Cllr Brendan Somers

Cllr Alun Williams

Cllr Steve Davies

Cllr J. Aled Davies

Cllr Endaf Edwards

Cllr Sue Jones-Davies

Cllr Jeff Smith

Cllr Brian Davies

Cllr Kevin Roy Price

Cllr Lucy Huws

Apologies:

Cllr Mair Benjamin

Cllr Martin W. Shewring.

In Attendance:

Mr Bryn Jones (Penparcau Forum)

Mr Dylan Jones (Penparcau Forum)

Mr George Barrett (Penparcau Forum)

Dr. Rhodri Llwyd Morgan (Aberystwyth University)

Ms Gwenno Edwards (Aberystwyth University).

Minute 135.

Declaration of Interest on matters arising from the agenda.

Cllr Mererid Jones indicated that she was a member of staff at Aberystwyth University.

Minute 136.

The Mayor thanked members for their attendance and presence at the TrawsLink Cymru meeting on 15th January 2015 and the RNLI Thanksgiving Service on 25th January 2015.

Minute 137.

Presentation by Penparcau Forum.

The Mayor welcomed representatives from Penparcau Forum and Mr Bryn Jones presented their request for £5,032 towards the cost of renovating the forum building, and a further £6,880 revenue cost for 2015 – 16. It was noted that the building is leased from the local authority. Members unanimously RESOLVED to pay the capital cost of

£5,032 to renovate the building.

Minute 138.

Presentation on the future of Neuadd Pantycelyn by Aberystwyth University.

The Mayor welcomed both Dr. Rhodri Llwyd Morgan (Deputy Vice-Chancellor) and Ms Gwenno Edwards (Centre for Welsh Language Services) to the meeting. Dr. Morgan explained that the University are consulting with local organisations on the possibility of concentrating Welsh Language Services in Pantycelyn, with the possibility of significant community involvement. It was clarified that this could include the University’s Welsh Language Services, cultural activities and Welsh for adults. Councillors were then asked for their observations as part of the consultation. Members indicated that investment by the university in the Welsh language in the community would be welcomed. It was further noted that such a centre should be open and accessible with the possibilities of using the Old College or Queens Road Stables as part of the Town-and-Gown relationship. Concerns were expressed about the proposed reduction in bedrooms from approximately 230 to 170 and the effect that this could have on the cohesion and continuation of the Welsh-speaking student community. Dr Morgan thanked members present for their input and indicated that the Council may be consulted on the plans in the future. The Mayor thanked Dr Morgan and Ms Edwards for their attendance. It was RESOLVED to distribute Dr Morgan’s e-mail address to all councillors in order that they may respond to the consultation. (This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.)

 

Minute 139.

Mayoral Activity Report.

A report of the Mayor’s engagements between the last full meeting of council and the current date was circulated to members.

 

Minute 140

Minutes of a meeting of Full Council on Monday 22nd December 2014.

Minute 133.  The Mayor thanked those members who had volunteered to provide office cover in the absence of the current office personnel.

It was RESOLVED to adopt the minutes subject to the above addition.

Minute 141.

Matters arising from minute 140.

None

Minute 142.

CYNGOR TREF ABERYSTWYTH TOWN COUNCIL

Minutes of a Planning Committee held in the Meeting Room, 11 Baker Street, Aberystwyth on Monday 5th January 2015.

Present:

Cllr Endaf Edwards

Cllr Brenda Haines

Cllr Alun Williams

Cllr Martin Shewring

Cllr Jeff Smith

Cllr Brian Davies

Cllr Wendy Morris

 Cllr Sue Jones-Davies

Cllr Lucy Huws

Apologies:

Cllr Ceredig Davies

Cllr Mererid Jones

Cllr Dylan Lewis

Cllr Mark Strong

 Correspondence:

1  Councillors were reminded that details of Planning Applications and Decisions are available electronically on Ceredigion County Council’s website.

A120725:  Newlands, Penglais Road : Widening of entrance and parking bay: Approved subject to conditions.

A140600:  28 Pier Street: Alterations to internal walls to make 3 dwellings: Approved subject to conditions.

A140437:  3 Northgate Street:  Demolition and rebuilding of extension to create 3 flats: Approved subject to conditions.

A140970:  Wallich Clifford, Chalybeate Street: Change of use to upper floors from office to residential use: Approved subject to conditions, including provision for bats.

A140803:  National library:  Change of window into door for staff access: Approved.

 2  To consider Planning Applications:

A140973:  Salt, Terrace Road: Display of down lit signage and illuminated signs with external brackets.

Regarding external signage, Aberystwyth Town Council welcomes the style and use of materials used; however, we are very disappointed with the lack of bilingualism in a naturally bilingual town such as Aberystwyth. We would like to see the use of Coffi #1 and bilingual window vinyls throughout. We would also expect that the parquetry displaying Central Hotel be retained due to its historical value.

Cllr Endaf Edwards again reminded Councillors that planning applications and decision notices are now available electronically on Ceredigion County Council’s website.

It was RESOLVED to adopt the minutes.

Minute 143.

CYNGOR TREF ABERYSTWYTH TOWN COUNCIL.

Minutes of a General Management Committee Meeting held in the Meeting Room, 11 Baker Street, Aberystwyth on Monday 12th January 2015 at 6.30pm.

Present:

Cllr Martin Shewring

Cllr Mair Benjamin

Cllr Alun Williams

Cllr Endaf Edwards

Cllr Wendy Morris

Cllr Jeff Smith

Cllr Mererid Jones

Cllr Steve Davies

Cllr Kevin Roy Price

Cllr Mark A. Strong

Apologies:

Cllr Ceredig Davies

Cllr Brenda Haines

 

In the absence of the Chair Cllr Ceredig Davies, Cllr Martin Shewring the Deputy was moved to the chair for this meeting.

 

1   Declaration of Interest:

None

2   Correspondence:

*No correspondence had been received from the property landlord and council is awaiting the outcome re the 2013 – 14 rent.

*A letter from the “Morlan” re the Hermann Ethé plaque was read to members who recommended to proceed with the project since the Morlan had resolved to support the request subject to:-

Details of the exact location of the plaque.

Confirmation that this is an Aberystwyth Town Council Project.

Agreeing the wording of the plaque

Cllr Mererid Jones and Cllr Mark Strong to obtain quotes and the plaque to be unveiled in time for the performances of “The Trial of Hermann Ethé” which will be held in the Morlan between 17 – 19 April 2015.

3   Office Lease

No correspondence received from the solicitors or the lessor.

4   Great Town UK Award.

Following Aberystwyth’s success in the Great Town Awards, it was resolved to appoint a sub-committee to organise publicity to celebrate the award, with Cllrs Sue Jones-Davies, Brenda Haines, Kevin Price, Jeff Smith and Wendy Morris representing the Council. It was agreed that prominent individuals in the town who were not councillors would also be invited to join the sub-committee. It was noted that Wendy and Kevin are currently working on a banner to celebrate the town’s success in the Great Town Awards.

5 Additional Projects

a) Flower beds – negotiations had been ongoing with Ceredigion County Council for Aberystwyth Town Council to contribute financially to the retention of flower provision in the town. It was noted that ATC would have an option to change the position of the flowers and spread them more widely around the ATC area, for instance in Penparcau and Trefechan.

Cllr Mark Strong asked if we could install a more automated watering system and move towards longer-lived plants which require less water, however this would be a long term project.

Cllr Jeff Smith asked about the feasibility of planting flowers in the planters outside Wetherspoons, and also whether it would be possible to have wild flowers, and it was agreed that Paul Arnold would be asked about this.

It was RESOLVED to proceed with the project as planned.

 

b) Playgrounds – Councillors felt that it was necessary to search for a better deal for the maintenance of all three playgrounds including the Castle playground. It was agreed to discuss the details of a 12-month lease with CCC. It was agreed to contact RAY Ceredigion to investigate funding possibilities. It was RESOLVED to proceed on this basis.

 

8 Outstanding Matters

a) Heol Plashelyg bus stop – Cllr Steve Davies has contacted Deio from the Trunk Road Agency, who has asked what funding will be available towards purchasing the bus stop. The project is still awaiting permission from the Trunk Road Agency. Cllr Steve Davies to obtain a price for removal and installation in the new location.

 

b) Frondeg Allotments – Aberystwyth University have withdrawn the offer of using the land on Clarach Road for allotments. A further meeting is to be held on 13/01/2015 to investigate any further options for the allotments project.

 

c) Min Y Ddôl allotments – Natural Resources Wales are considering widening the River Rheidol which may lead to the loss of some allotments in Min y Ddôl.

d) Skatable Park – There will be a meeting with the Big Lottery Fund on 4th February 2015, and the outcome of the council’s funding bid will be known after this date.

e) Christmas lights – Cllr Jeff Smith mentioned the possibility of non-electrical Christmas decorations and Cllr Mair Benjamin suggested that shops were called on to do more. It was resolved that Cllrs Smith and Benjamin should bring their ideas forward to future committee meetings in paper format with more details.

f) Penparcau Forum – Cllr Mererid Jones fed back on a meeting held with Penparcau Forum on 07/01/2015. The meeting had asked whether the £6500 matched funding could be used as labour if valued at £6500. It was RESOLVED to ask for an application to be completed for funding of urgent works, and to ask that PF give a presentation of what the money will be spent on, subject to the representatives of PF in the meeting being quorate.

g) TrawsLink Cymru Meeting – Members were reminded of the public meeting to discuss the potential for a railway to Carmarthen, to be held in the Morlan at 7pm on 15/01/2015, and were encouraged to attend and promote the event.

Matters arising.

(a) Discussion is required on whether the proposed new development on Boulevard Sant Brieuc is to be referred to as a “skatepark” or a “Skate-able Park” in council minutes.

(b) It was felt the Menter Aberystwyth should be invited to the next “Great Town” steering group meeting.

(c) No response had been received from the landlord regarding the outstanding invoice.

It was noted that items of council property needed to be removed from the second floor as soon as possible.

It was RESOLVED to adopt the minutes subject to the above matters arising.

Minute 144.

Minutes of a Finance Committee held on Monday 19th January 2015 at 6:30pm

Present:
Cllr Mererid Jones
Cllr Ceredig Davies
Cllr Wendy Morris
Cllr Brendan Somers
Cllr J Aled Davies
Cllr Mark Strong
Cllr Endaf Edwards
Cllr Jeff Smith
Cllr Brenda Haines
Cllr Sue Jones-Davies
Cllr Brian Davies
Cllr Alun Williams

Apologies: none

1) Presentation by Natural Resources Wales: Ben Richards, Operations Manager and Richard Wicks spoke about flood defence strategy. The presentation referenced the severe rainfall which led to flooding in June 2012, and talked about the modelling of flood defences for the flood plain. It was explained that several embankments were trapping large quantities of water; however detailed plans for works to reduce the problems are not yet available.

2) Declarations of interest: none

3) Correspondence:
a) Walkers are Welcome: It was noted that the subscription had increased to £55. It was RESOLVED to invite Menter Aberystwyth and/or Aberystwyth Ramblers to take responsibility and to find out what value is given to Aberystwyth through membership.
b) Tour Series 2015: A letter was received asking ATC to donate £12,000 to help host the event. It was RESOLVED to contribute £10,000.

4) Questions relating to financial matters: None

5) Review of accounts for December 2014: It was noted that ATC still awaits a response from the landlords regarding rent, that payment is made for the storage of Christmas lights and that 2 payments to a member of staff had been made on the same cheque. It was RESOLVED to accept the accounts.

6) Christmas Decorations at the request of Cllr Jeff Smith: Cllr Jeff Smith presented a motion for the installation of non-electrical Christmas decorations on catenary wires in the town. It was agreed to allocate £12000 for this for the financial year 2015-16 and to establish a sub-committee to consider the details of the scheme. It was agreed that Cllr Jeff Smith would chair the sub-committee and that Cllr Ceredig Davies and Cllr Mair Benjamin would also be members. It was agreed that other councillors could choose to join the committee at a later date and that the committee could co-opt members of the public.

7) Tesco Mural at the request of Cllr Sue Jones-Davies: Cllr Jones-Davies had submitted a proposal for murals on the large hoardings around the Mill Street Car Park/Tesco site. It was agreed to progress this project in principle subject to approval by the site manager. It was agreed to pay £350 for 1 unit in the name of ATC.

8) Heol Plashelyg Bus Stop – update on cost: Discussions are ongoing.

9) Discussion on 2015-16 budget:
a) Hermann Ethé plaque: It was RESOLVED to proceed with the plaque and not the mural. After much discussion about the location of the plaque, it was RESOLVED to hold a site meeting to consider the location of the plaque at 5:45pm on Monday 26th January 2015. Cllr Mark Strong to send his final wording to the Morlan Centre with additional text to show that the plaque is being placed by ATC.
b)  Twinning: It was agreed to combine the three twinning budgets into one single budget of £7,500 to which all interested parties could make a suitable application for funding.
c) Penparcau Police Station: It was RESOLVED to write to Dyfed-Powys police to investigate whether the expenditure can be justified.
d) Allotments: It was noted that Aberystwyth University have withdrawn their earlier offer of allotment provision on Clarach Road. Other possibilities for allotment provision by ATC are under investigation. To be discussed further in the General Management committee. It was agreed that this year’s budget for allotments would be £5000.
e) Mayoral Allowance: It was RESOLVED not to increase the mayoral allowance.

At 21:00 standing orders were suspended.

A quotation had been received from Penparcau Forum asking for a reduced amount of £4400 which would include £2000 for insurance and £2300 for materials. It was noted that in kind labour and materials totalled £2670.
It was RESOLVED to ask Penparcau Forum to make a brief presentation to the Council to explain their application for the funding.

The meeting was adjourned at 21:06

Matters arising.

(a) Cllr Alun Williams reported that he had spoken to the Ramblers Association who were interested in getting involved in the Walkers are Welcome initiative

(b) Cllr Ceredig Davies noted that the Bandstand would not be available for Summer Entertainment this year and therefore alternative venues were being sought. Council would need to discuss events for when the new bandstand opens.

It was RESOLVED to adopt the minutes.

Minute 145.

Planning Applications (Time Sensitive)

Minute 146.

(a) Martin Stevens:  A letter of apology was sent to council for damage caused to the Christmas Tree.

(b) PC Gareth Watkins:  A letter from PC Watkins stated that all 3 people involved in damaging the Christmas Tree would have monies collected via the court.

(c) Cambrian News: The Cambrian News requested a copy of the forensic report obtained from Mr Griffith’s hard drive. Following legal advice from Peninsula it was stated that this report was not a public document under the Freedom of Information. Council had responded by indicating that Mr Griffith’s had a copy should he be willing to release the contents to the Cambrian News.

(d) Ceredigion:  A letter indicated that funds totalling £500. were available for the development of a website.

Cllrs Mererid Jones and Kevin Roy Price would ensure that an application was made for the funding.

(e) Skateboard Park: Complaints had been received about the current condition of the skateboard park and council will need to close the park for a short time until the remedial work has been undertaken. The park should be closed as soon as possible.

Cllr Kevin Roy Price would create signs to indicate the closure and Cllr Steve Davies would review what work needs to be undertaken.

(f) Ceredigion HPW: A letter stated that work on the lights in Southgate would commence on 26/1/15.

(g) British Weights & Measures Association: A letter from the association regarding allotments was noted.

(h) Scarlets: The Scarlets (Llanelli Rugby Club) wish to visit Aberystwyth during the forthcoming half-term period. Cllr Brenda Haines would liaise and inform the Scarlets that they should consult Ceredigion County Council HPW Dept.

(i) An anonymous poem was received.

(j) Tree Cutting: A letter from Dr. Fred Long requested that trees in North Road behind Cambridge Terrace be cut back. Cllr Alun Williams noted the need to contact HPW of Ceredigion County Council and the Care Society for a quotation.

(k) Southgate Signs: Cllr Steve Davies has a meeting with Ceredigion County Council HPW in three weeks time.

(l) Jonathan Baird: An e-mail from Mr Baird expressed concern at the lack of wheelchairs to hire following the closure of Shopmobilty. An appeal should be made to the Red Cross to revise their policy to provide a wheelchair in the Tourist Office.

(m) Ceredigion County Council HPW Dept: A letter indicated new lights on the Buarth.

(n) NALC: An e-mail from NALC indicated that their agendas can now be accessed electronically.

(o) Hywel Dda Health Board: Members were informed that a meeting would take place on 23/2/15 between the hours of 3 – 5pm in the Morlan.

(p) Dyfed – Powys Police Authority: A questionnaire had been received from the police and it was resolved that the Mayor (Cllr Brenda Haines) complete the questionnaire on behalf of the council.

(q) One Voice Wales: A letter indicated that a Data Protection and Freedom of Information training session would take place in Llety Parc on 5/2/15 between 6 – 8pm.

Cllr Wendy Morris and members of the Staffing Panel to attend.

Minute 147.

Questions relating only to matters in this councils remit.

Minute 148.

Finance – To consider expenditure.

  • It was noted that Cllr Ceredig Davies had raised £275.00 from the selling of office furniture.

Accounts for January 2015.

Marine Hotel (Senior Citizens Christmas Dinner) £2084.85

Viking Direct (Stationary) £17.72

Purchase Power (Franking Machine) £77.47

Aber Removal & Storage Ltd (Hire of rental unit) £404.80

Delyth Davies (Translation costs) £76.00

Vaughan Radios Ltd (Purchase of Vacuum Cleaner) £149.99

Neuadd Goffa Penparcau (Rental of Police space) £2,500

Vaughan Radios Ltd (Repair of old vacuum cleaner) £36.00

Catalina Architects & Designers (Penparcau Forum architects fees) £12,355.30

Carl Williams (Wages 9/12/14 – 15/1/15) £480.00

Konica Minolta (Photocopying charges) £444.02

Y Morlan (Hire of venue for Trawslink public meeting) £80.00

Konica Minolta (Photocopying charges) £83.68

Sgarmes (Entertainment at Senior Citizens Dinner) £ 250.00

Cyngor Sir Caerfyrddin (Underpayment December 2014) £100.00

Guto Jones (Translation – Trawslink Cymru) £70.00

 The accounts were agreed and approved.

Minute 149.

Verbal reports from Ceredigion County Councillors on matters only pertaining to this council.

Cllr Alun Williams reported on Dyfi Bio-Sphere and it was agreed to invite them to address council.

Cllr Alun Willims reported that Ceredigion County Council were to present a motion in support of the Trawslink Cymru campaign.

Minute 150.

Written reports from representatives to outside bodies.

None

Minute 151.

To appoint a member to the Staffing Committee.

Members RESOLVED to approve Cllr Steve Davies as a member of the Staffing Committee.

Minute 152.

Gerddi Cymunedol Frondeg.

It was noted that the University would not be able to develop the site discussed and that other venues were being sought.

Minute 153.

Staffing Matters.

The disclosure was read out to members and it was resolved to go into committee when the press and members of the public were requested to leave.

After a full discussion relating to Mr Jim Griffiths Pension, it was unanimously decided that Aberystwyth Town Council would not finance the early release of his pension. Aberystwyth Town Council concluded that the release of Mr Griffith’s pension was now a matter for Mr Griffiths and Carmarthen County Council.