Macclesfield Town Council Full Council
The minutes of the meeting held on the 24th July 2023 at 7pm at Macclesfield Town Hall.
- Cllr Chris Wilcock
- Cllr James Barber
- Cllr David Edwardes
- Cllr Mike Hutchison
- Cllr Sandy Livingstone
- Cllr Neil Puttick
- Cllr Ruth Thompson
- Cllr Mick Warren
- Cllr Fiona Wilson
1 Apologies for Absence
- Cllr Sarah Bennett-Wake
- Cllr Alift Harewood
- Cllr Emma Gilman
2 Declarations of Interest
- Cllr James Barber declared a non-pecuniary interest in agenda item 10, as he is an employee of Transport for the North.
- Cllr Fiona Wilson declared a non-pecuniary interest in agenda item 14, as she is the Cheshire East Council Shareholder Observer on the ANSA board.
The meeting was adjourned for public questions.
Emily Gunnion and Phil from ROAR (Reach Out And RECOVER) spoke on agenda item 15. Phil is a next step service user at ROAR and Emily is a manager. They have requested funding to support the project for 1 year to access the NLP therapy. When people have completed that programme, and then they go on to help others as they receive a diploma.
Phil explained NLP (Neuro Linguistic Programming), he says he has been doing it from 6 months and it has changed his life, helped him overcome his addiction, and help those in the youth justice system, and to give something back to society.
He has found it a real benefit and helped improve his life.
Cllr Chris Wilcock thanked ROAR and said they do fantastic things in the community and are involved in St. Michaels Church.
Cllr Neil Puttick said NLP helps him to focus more and he finds it of benefit. He asked about the youth justice system. Emily explained they have buddies, who are people who have lived experience of offending and are there to help those to prevent further offending.
Cllr Ruth Thompson said there was an awful lot not know on trauma, and that the medical system now use the term ‘expert’ rather than lived experience and she is impressed that this will help those who are currently living this experience.
Cllr Sandy Livingstone said they do great work and some of the benefits are not quantifiable and go beyond expectation.
Cllr Fiona Wilson said she thinks what ROAR does is phenomenal and their success rates are fantastic. She also thanked them for all the work their Volunteers do to help the community and the Town Council free events.
3 Minutes of the Full Council Meeting held 12th June 2023
Resolved: The minutes were approved.
4 Matters Arising from the Minutes
Resolved: Cllr Fiona Wilson raised a matter arising on agenda item 13, that Cllr Livingston will be the representative of the Town Centre Recovery Working Group and Cllr James Barber will be the substitute. This was approved.
Cllr Fiona Wilson also raised the issue that Inspector Watkins said he was meeting with the Football Club to look at the parking issues and that they would be given an update that has not happened. Clerk will contact Inspector Watkins on this matter.
Cllr David Edwardes also expressed he was disappointed that there was no representatives of the police in Tytherington ward. There are lots of issues with fly tipping at the moment and graffiti continues to be a problem. In the minutes the police said they had spoken to the person they thought was responsible for the graffiti and yet there were 31 instances that very week after. He has heard that they are coordinating on Instagram to publish pictures of their work. He has taken it up with the PCC, John Dwyer, who said he encourages people to keep reporting it so the police can build a picture and deal with it. Any instances can be emailed to the Assistant Town Clerk who will report them to the local police.
5 Services Committee Minutes
5.1 Services Committee Minutes 10th July 2023
The minutes were noted.
5.2 Matters arising from the minutes
There were no matters arising, however Cllr Fiona Wilson, Cllr Chris Wilcock and Cllr Sandy Livingstone all said how excellent the events were and that they were free events which helps those residents in the town to enjoy activities during this cost of living crisis.
6 Finance Committee Minutes
6.1 Finance Committee Minutes 3rd July 2023
The minutes were noted.
6.2 Matters arising from the minutes
The were no matters arising.
6.3 Spend to Date
Resolved: The spend to date (end of May 23) of £134,587 was approved for recommendation by the Finance Committee 3rd July 2023.
7 Planning Committee
Resolved: Cllr Sarah Bennett-Wake is approved as a planning committee member.
Cllr Mike Hutchison asked if we could have non Councillors on the committee as it says this is possible in Standing Order 5.2.The Clerk will explore this.
8 Community Delivery
8.1 Local Police Unit
Chief Inspector Christian Watkins sent his apologies.
The report was noted. Will McKellar, CO of the CAB, also attended the meeting and gave a verbal update.
Highlights from the report are:
- CAB deliver to clients through information, advice and advocacy.
- In recent years a lot of potential clients can find information out themselves and therefore they gave more advice and advocacy than ever and the issues are more and more complex.
- Money advice debt clients mainly have some mental health issues and they will never be able to repay those debts.
- They deal with a lot of employment issues.
- Last quarter 909, unique clients and there were 1788 issues, before covid they dealt with 793 clients so there is a big uptick in clients.
- They have lost a lot of volunteers since covid, so there is less open door sessions than there used to be but this is slowly improving.
- Benefits and debt are still the majority of issues. Cost of living issues are driving people to apply for disability benefits even though they will not qualify as they try to maximise their incomes as much as possible.
- More older people are applying for attendance allowance also, as lack of finances is driving them to look for other income. Many will qualify but also may have qualified for PIP.
- Issues around housing as more landlords are selling houses as they cannot afford the mortgage increases. This is affecting the already affected rental, sector as there are less houses to rent.
Cllr David Edwardes thanked Will and said as he understands that landlords are allowed to put the rent up by the rate of inflation, he said some clients must be suffering and having no finances to live.
Will replied that you strip down someone’s expenditure and then look to maximise their income to help them budget financially. Now domestic fuel is exceeding the amount of many people’s income. They work with creditors to show they cannot pay and they can write off debt or wait for repayments.
Cllr Sandy Livingstone also thanked Will and the CAB. He said he works in the social housing sector so he understands there is not enough social housing and at the same time the private rental sector is also getting squeezed,
Resolved: To purchase 2 cameras and Clerk and Mayor to liaise with CCTV as to determine where the home location will be.
9 Governance Review
9.1 Standing Orders
Resolved: The amendments in the above document were approved.
9.2 Terms of Reference for Full Council
Resolved: The above document was approved.
9.3 Events and Stall Contractor Allocation Policy
Resolved: The above policy was approved.
10 Cheshire East Council Bus Consultation
· Community Transport Committee Sub group to submit response.
- Clerk is also to invite D&G and FlexiLink to the Transport Subgroup.
11 Cheshire East Council Library Services Top Up Scheme
Resolved: The Councillors discussed the matter, and agreed library services are vital, however as over half of the Town Council income already goes toward services previously provided by CEC they do not wish to express interest in the top up scheme at this time.
12 South Park Pavilion
The report was noted.
13 Youth Engagement
Resolved: The proposal in the report was approved, plus the amendment that Cllr James Barber is approved as Youth Champion.
At this point in the meeting, in line with Standing Order 4.28 the Council voted to continue the meeting past the 2 hour deadline for 15 minutes in order to get through all of the agenda items.
14 Town Ranger SLA
Resolved: The proposal in the report was approved.
Resolved: The application for a grant of £8308.80 was approved.
16 Members Item
16.1 This item is deferred until a future meeting when Cllr Ruth Thompson has more information from the groups involved in the Citizens Assembly.
16.2 Cllr Fiona Wilson brought forward this member item to discuss the closure of ticket offices at train stations and proposes that this will affect those who are digitally excluded or have disabilities and stated that machines do not always give the best value tickets. Ticket Office staff provide help and advice and have a wealth of information.
Cllr Fiona Wilson is proposing MTC make a response as a Council and Cllr Fiona Wilson and the Clerk will make the response as discussed in the meeting.
17 Date/Time and Place of Next Meeting
The next meeting of the Full Council will be held on 16th October 2023 at the Town Hall.
Chair: Cllr Chris Wilcock
Clerk: Laura Smith
Meeting Closed: 9:06pm