Issue - meetings

Variation of long stop date in respect of Community Asset Transfer at Tenterden Pavilion & Sports Ground, Preston Road HA3 0QQ

Meeting: 09/11/2020 - Cabinet (Item 10)

10 Variation of long stop date in respect of Community Asset Transfer at Tenterden Pavilion & Sports Ground, Preston Road HA3 0QQ pdf icon PDF 101 KB

This report seeks approval for the variation of the longstop date at Tenterden Pavillion and Sports Ground.

Additional documents:

Decision:

Cabinet noted:

1.         The comments made by Mr Scott Wade (representing Forest United Youth FC) who had requested to speak on the item.  Whilst not objecting to principle of the Community Asset Transfer in respect of Tenterden Pavilion and Sports Ground concerns were highlighted in relation to the delay in progressing the following issues, which the Club felt still made the feasibility of the proposal from their perspective uncertain:

·                Provision of commensurate car parking capacity;

·                Certainty and security of access to outdoor playing facilities.

2.         The progress made in terms of planning approval having been obtained for the scheme and proactive way forward identified by the Cabinet Member for Regeneration, Property & Planning in terms of resolution of the outstanding issues highlighted by Forest United Youth Football Club.  These included the lease arrangements, car parking and use of the outdoor facilities, with the drainage issues identified now also having been addressed with Sports England.

 

Having noted the comments raised, Cabinet RESOLVED:

 

(1)      To delegate authority to the Strategic Director of Regeneration and Environment to agree the terms and vary the longstop date to 3 years from the Wembley Education Charitable Trust (WECT) obtaining planning approval.  The condition being that the WECT would be required to obtain planning approval by September 2021, commence works, and secure funding shortly thereafter, therefore the longstop date for completion of the development would be September 2024.

 

(2)      To note that the WECT had met the 27 June 2016 community use caveat, with provisional terms agreed with Forest United Youth FC, allowing them to occupy an area within the new sports facility and to provide wider community access to the new sports facility when not operationally required by the WECT.

Minutes:

Councillor Butt, Leader of the Council, welcomed Mr Scott Wade to the meeting, who had requested to speak on the matter as a representative of Forest United Youth FC (the club).

 

Mr Wade thanked Cabinet for the opportunity to speak and drew Members’ attention to an accompanying written submission from Forest United Youth FC.   He reminded Cabinet that the Club had approached the Council back in 2013 with a view to collaborating on how the facilities at Tenterden and John Billam sports grounds could be enhanced for the benefit of all users.   These discussions along with the Expression of Interest submitted had led to development and subsequent approval of the Community Asset Transfer (CAT) proposal in 2016.  Whilst the transfer agreed had been to Wembley Education Charitable Trust (WECT) he advised that the Club had continued to work in collaboration with WECT, recognising their shared expertise in community relations and building management.  Concerns were however highlighted in relation to the delay in progressing what were felt to be critical aspects of the proposal.  These key items related to the provision of commensurate car parking capacity and certainty and security of access to outdoor playing facilities, with the absence of agreement on these issues making the feasibility of the current proposals uncertain from the Club’s perspective. In summing up Mr Wade advised he was therefore seeking clarity on the progress of a resolution to these items.

 

Councillor Butt thanked Mr Wade for taking the time to address the committee, emphasising the desire of the Cabinet to find a solution that worked for all parties.

 

The Lead Member for Regeneration, Property and Planning, Councillor Tatler, then introduced the report which she advised was seeking approval to vary the longstop date on the Community Asset Transfer of Tenterden Pavilion and Sports Ground to three years from the date of planning approval, which had been granted in October 2020.  Members were advised that the Council were continuing to work with the football club and WECT to find a solution to the issues raised, and the variation of the longstop date was required to enable negotiations to continue.

 

In terms of the progress made to date, Cabinet noted that planning approval had now been obtained for the scheme with a commitment to addressing the outstanding issues in relation to the lease arrangements, car parking and use of the outdoor facilities.  Capital funding has been set aside by the Council to progress the drainage improvement works at the Tenterden Sports Ground in accordance with the planning permission.

 

Noting the request for a three year extension of the longstop, bringing the completion date to 2024, and highlighting the length of time that the negotiations had already been ongoing, Members were keen to ensure the Council continued working constructively to reach a solution on the issues raised.  It was noted that the granting of planning permission had removed many obstacles to progression with the aim being to achieve final completion prior to 2024.

 

RESOLVED that Cabinet:

 

(1)      Delegate  ...  view the full minutes text for item 10