Agenda and minutes

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Contact: Michael Garraway  4716

No. Item


Declarations of Interest pdf icon PDF 32 KB

    Members must indicate at this stage any items on the agenda in which they must declare an interest.  Members must verbally give notice of their interest at the meeting and complete the form attached with this agenda. 


    Members are also advised to take advice with regard to any matter where there is potential bias or predetermination in any business to be considered at the meeting and whether they should take part in decision making at the meeting.


    Members are reminded that, in accordance with the Localism Act 2011 and the Council's adopted Code of Conduct, they must declare the nature of any discloseable pecuniary interest; personal interest and/or prejudicial interest required of them and, in the case of any discloseable pecuniary interest or prejudicial interest, withdraw from the meeting during consideration of the item, unless permitted otherwise within the Code of Conduct.

    Additional documents:


    Further to the Council’s Code of Conduct, the Chair, Councillors Sultan Ali declared a personal and prejudicial interest in respect of agenda item 11 (“Land at Ann Street/Milkstone Road, Rochdale), and he left the room during the consideration of this agenda item, vacating the Chair, in favour of the Vice Chair, Councillor O’Neill.


Greater Manchester Police - Update


    Sergeant Canavan (Greater Manchester Police) and M. Reynolds (RMBC – Community Safety) updated the Township Committee on activities and initiatives that were currently being pursued and prioritised by Greater Manchester Police in the Rochdale Township Division. In particular their update focused on an operation to counter drugs related crime (Operation Trafalgar), work to counter nuisance and anti-social behaviour on Metrolink services in the Borough and at Metrolink stations, burglaries and the policing of community events.


    The Committee was updated on the Township’s crime figures for the third quarter 2014/2015 (October – December). The report highlighted some notable reductions in the overall volumes of reported crime, particularly in Balderstone and Kirkholt, Kingsway, Bamford and Healey Wards.


    DECIDED – That the report be noted and welcomed.


Open Forum

    Half an hour has been set aside for members of the public to raise any issues relevant to the business of the Committee and the Township.


    The following issues were raised in the Committee’s Open Forum session:


    a.    Swift Road, Bamford

    The Township Committee considered a presentation by Mrs M. Bastow and Mrs. J. Harden, regarding the proposed sale of land at Swift Road, Bamford, Rochdale, which had been approved by the Committee at a previous meeting on 5th November 2014 (Minute 58 refers).


     DECIDED – That no action be taken in respect of the development of the site at Swift Road, Rochdale (further to Minute no 58 of the Meeting of the Committee held 5th November 2014), pending the outcome of a site visit by the Chair and Vice Chair of Rochdale Township Committee, Norden Ward Councillors, appropriate officers of the Council and representatives of residents of Swift Road, Bamford.  


    b.    Land at Ann Street/Milkstone Road

    The Township Committee was addressed by Mr. Sohail Ahmed, who advised Members that land at Ann Street had not been developed despite many meetings and discussions at the Milkstone and Deeplish Area Forum, of which he was Chair. He added that local residents and traders had been complaining and had various car parking issues in respect of this area. Mr. Ahmed asked what the Council was proposing to do about this situation and when the issues were likely to be addressed. Mr Ahmed was advised that this matter was due to be considered at agenda item 11, later on in the meeting, after the press and public had been excluded, and Mr Ahmed was informed that the Committee would take heed of his comments when they came to consider this matter.


    c.    Drake Street, Rochdale – Public Hire Vehicles

    The Township Committee was addressed by Mr. Matloob Hussain, on behalf of the Borough’s licensed Public Hire (Hackney Carriage) trade, who requested that Hackney Carriage vehicles be permitted to have access to Drake Street, Rochdale. Mr. Hussain, reminded Members that he had addressed the Township on numerous occasions in respect of this matter during the last two years and he added that the previous Chair of this Committee had indicated a willingness to allow a trial period, whereby Hackney Carriage vehicles would be able to drive up Drake Street.


    Councillor Cecile Biant, in response to this noted that at the time that the offer of such a trial period was made the Council had not anticipated the objections that were later received from Transport for Greater Manchester, on safety grounds, to this proposal which meant that the offer could not be expedited.


    A Member suggested that the Director of Economy and Environment Services be requested to convene a meeting involving the Chair and Vice Chair of the Rochdale Township Committee, representatives of the Council’s Licensing and Highways teams, representatives of Transport for Greater Manchester and representatives of the Borough’s licensed public hire and private hire trades to discuss the issues raised by Mr Matloob Hussain.  


    DECIDED – That Director of Economy and Environment Services be requested to convene a meeting involving the Chair and Vice Chair  ...  view the full minutes text for item 83.


Disposal of Land at Cut Lane/Caldershaw Road, Rochdale pdf icon PDF 481 KB

    Additional documents:


    The Township Committee considered a report of the director of Economy and Environment Services that sought Members’ approval to release and dispose of surplus land at Cut Lane/Caldershaw Road, Rochdale.


    The Committee were reminded that at its meeting on 5th November 2014, Members had approved the release for disposal of land at Cut Lane/Caldershaw Road, Rochdale. The decision was subsequently Called-in, by Councillors and then considered by the Overview and Scrutiny Committee on 21st January. The Overview and Scrutiny Committee decided to refer the matter back to Township Committee as Overview and Scrutiny Committee Members felt that the Township had not fully considered all relevant matters when coming to its decision.


    The site was freehold and measures approximately 0.49 hectares in size. The site falls within a greenspace corridor but it is not allocated as protected recreational open space. The plot is a fairly level, well maintained area within residential properties with a few trees and running adjacent to Caldershaw Brook. The site is known to have difficult ground conditions which may limit development options. Residential development would be suitable along the frontage with Cut Lane, however maintaining and enhancing the greenspace corridor is essential. Dwellings would be limited to in the region of six in total.


    The Committee were addressed by Mr. M. Thompson and Mrs. J. Johnson, on behalf of the Friends of Heritage Green, who addressed the Committee to object to the proposals contained in the report, and a petition, containing over 100 signatures, objecting to the proposals was also handed in. The objectors highlighted three key issues as follows: that the land at Cut Lane/Caldershaw Road be retained as a recreational open space and not used for residential developments; that investigatory work be undertaken to allow the land in question to be awarded ‘village green’ status; and that community use of the land be actively sought.


    Norden Ward Councillors also addressed the Committee noting that since the Committee made its original decision, on 5th November 2014, new information had arisen that made it difficult for the Committee to make an informed decision at this time.


    DECIDED – That consideration of this report be deferred to a future meeting pending the outcome of a site visit by the Chair and Vice Chair of Rochdale Township Committee, Norden Ward Councillors, appropriate officers of the Council and representatives of the Friends of Heritage Green.

    Eligible for Call-in: No. This matter has already been called-in by Members of the Council, and subsequently considered by the Overview and Scrutiny Committee.   


Rochdale Flood Resilience Community Pathfinder

    Presentation by Francis Comyn (Economy and Environment Service)


    The Township Committee received a presentation from the Chief Executive of the National Flood Forum, detailing the aims and objectives of the Rochdale Borough Flood Resilience Community Pathfinder.


    Members were provided with an update in relation to the progress and work undertaken to date including strategies to engage with local communities and partnership working; to increase understanding of flood risk, to help those affected recover their lives when they have been flooded, to increase local awareness and preparedness for flooding, to provide advice on all flooding issues, and to develop community led initiatives such as the gully watch scheme and community hubs network in order to improve flood action and risk management services.


    The Committee were provided with a roadmap for potential service development, defining priorities including strengthening partnerships, rolling out good practice and advice locally and in the wider North West, delivering Regional and Coastal Committee priorities for Communities at risk, supporting future investment opportunities and delivery of better flood risk management in the Borough, and enabling communities to be more resilient as part of the process and not just a consultee.


    Members of the Committee discussed a number of issues relating to the management of flood risk areas within Rochdale Township


    DECIDED – the presentation be noted and welcomed.


Rochdale Town Centre East Development Proposals - Presentation

    Presentation by Gary Davies (Rochdale Development Agency)


    The Township Committee received a presentation from G. Davies of Rochdale Development Agency which advised of proposals regarding the emerging plans for Rochdale's town centre retail and leisure development. The presentation included details the initial proposals for the site following a public consultation period which had ended on 26th February 2015.


    The Committee was informed that the Cabinet would be requested to endorse the development framework at the meeting scheduled to be held on 23rd March 2015.


    DECIDED – That the presentation be noted and welcomed.


Minutes pdf icon PDF 80 KB


Naming of Rochdale Memorial Gardens Footpath in honour of RSM James Clarke VC pdf icon PDF 494 KB

    Additional documents:


    The Township considered a report of the Interim Head of Customers and Corporate Services which sought delegated authority to process an application to re-name the path around the Rochdale Memorial Gardens after Regimental Sergeant Major James Clarke VC. The proposed name of the path is to be ‘RSM James Clarke VC Walk”. No properties will be affected by the change.


    The Committee were informed that James Clark was born on 6th April 1894 in Winsford, Cheshire. He left school at the age of 14, where he worked as a day-labourer, before he enlisted into the Lancashire Fusiliers in October 1915. He moved to Rochdale in 1913 where he worked as a carter for Butterworth Brothers in Milnrow and then William Tatham and Sons engineers. He married in August 1915 and lived in Clyde Street, off Vavasour Street before, in October of that year; he enlisted into the 6th (Rochdale) Battalion, Lancashire Fusiliers. He was posted to the Western Front, where he rose to the rank of Regimental Sergeant Major. On 2 November 1918 his actions in saving the rest of his platoon, under heavy enemy fire, led to him being awarded the Victoria Cross.


    The Township was advised that the cost of signage, for the scheme was £1,000 and would be funded from the Rochdale Township Capital Armed Forces Fund.  The cost of the application, £100 will come from the Armed Forces Budget. Members were reminded that on 17th April 2013, the Council supported the implementation of a policy of offering families of fallen service personnel who have died in active duty from the Borough of Rochdale a chance to have a street or road named after their loved one. Such lasting recognition, if this was the wish of the family, would be a poignant way of demonstrating the communities’ admiration and appreciation for those who had served, and fallen in service of their country.


    Alternatives considered: Smith Street, Rochdale was initially considered, from Molesworth Street to Drake Street, however objections were received from some businesses that would have been financially penalised due to amendments to their stationery arrangements and registered addresses.


                            DECIDED – That the Committee agrees to the processing of this application.

    Eligible for Call-in: Yes.


Partnership House pdf icon PDF 481 KB

    Partnership House is surplus to operational requirements. Approval is sought from Township for its disposal

    Additional documents:


    The Township Committee considered a report of the Director of Economy and Environment Services that advised Members that Partnership House, Sparrow Hill, Rochdale was surplus to operational requirements and therefore recommended its disposal.


    The Director reported that Partnership House is a Grade 2 Listed Building dating from 1765, and had subsequently been acquired by the Council on behalf of the Local Strategic Partnership.  Substantial grant monies were expended on this property which then became home to the Rochdale Development Agency and most recently Council for Voluntary Services (CVS), Rochdale. CVS Rochdale had moved out of the property in June 2014. The property was then occupied by Guardians whilst alternative uses were explored. A condition survey had also been undertaken to establish the extent of maintenance needed.  The property was structurally sound but there was work that would be needed to bring the property up to useable standards.  It is felt that given the works needed and the ongoing costs of maintenance this was not a property that the Council should retain. I was therefore proposed that the property should be sold on the open market.


    Alternatives considered: Interest in the property has been expressed by different Council services.  These have been explored and found not to be a good fit either because of the implications for other properties in the portfolio or because of the costs of the works required to bring Partnership House up to the required standard. The Council’s various public sector partners had also been advised of the possible availability of the building, but no interest had been received from public sector bodies.


    Members of the Committee considered the report in detail and considered issues such as the proposed sale of the property for developmental purposes and its development as a hotel. In respect of this latter point Members considered the possibility of approaching the Church Commissioners, to see if they could lift the restriction of the sale of alcohol that currently existed in respect of Partnership House, due to its former use as a vicarage.


    DECIDED – That (1) the Director of Economy and Environment Services be requested to examine all options for the future use of Partnership House, Sparrow Hill, Rochdale, including:

    a.    investigating the feasibility of outline planning permission for the possible use as a residential development or as a hotel;

    b.     approaching the Church Commissioners to enquire if the restriction on the sale of alcohol, that currently applies, in respect of the property can be lifted,

    (2)  a comprehensive report on this matter be submitted to a future meeting of the Township Committee.

    Eligible for call-in: No.


Exclusion of Press and Public

    To consider excluding the press and public from the meeting during consideration of the following item of business in accordance with the provisions of Section 100A (4) of the Local Government Act 1972, as amended.


    DECIDED – That the public be excluded from the meeting during consideration of the following items of business since it is likely, that in view of the nature of the business to be transacted or the nature of the proceedings, that if members of the public were present there would be disclosure to them of exempt information, namely information relating to the business or financial affairs of any person (including the authority holding that information).


    N.B. Councillor O’Neill in the Chair.


Land at Ann Street/Milkstone Road, Rochdale


The Committee considered a report of the Director of Economy and Environment Services which advised Members of the outcome of an informal tender process seeking offers for the sale of land at Ann Street/Milkstone Road, Rochdale.


DECIDED – that Proposal 2, from United Forecourt, detailed at paragraph 4.26 of the report, be accepted in the sum of £100,000 on the condition that any development of the land in question is completed within 12 months, after planning permission is granted.

Eligible for call-in: Yes.