Agenda and minutes

Scrutiny Committee for Community, Customer Services and Service Delivery - Wednesday, 8th July, 2020 4.00 pm

As of May 2021, decision making of meetings of the Council have returned to in-person sessions. A number of meetings remain virtual, with appropriate Councillors attending via remote video link. Public access to these meetings is via a live stream video through the Council’s official YouTube channel

Venue: via Remote Video Link

Contact: Email: 

No. Item


Roll Call and Virtual Meeting Explanation.


The Chairman carried out a roll call to establish attendance at the meeting. The Solicitor to the Council provided information on the format of the virtual meeting.


To note Substitutes in Accordance with Council Procedure Rule 4 -Substitutes at Meetings of Committees etc.


Councillor Dabell substituted for Councillor Ellis. Councillor Knight substituted for Cllr Smith, Councillor A Bennett substituted for Councillor Dempsey.


To receive apologies for absence.


Apologies were received from Councillors Dempsey, Ellis, Knight and Mockford.


To receive Declaration of Interests from Members in respect of any matter on the Agenda.


Cllr Gibson declared a personal interest in Item 9: Mid Sussex Partnership Annual Report as had sat on the Mid Sussex Partnership Board by virtue of being Chairman of Mid Sussex Association of Local Councils at the start of 2019 until he gave the Chairmanship.


Cllr Sweatman declared a personal interest in Item 9: Mid Sussex Partnership Annual Report as had sat on the Mid Sussex Partnership Board as a representative of the Mid Sussex Association of Town Councils.


Cllr Liz Bennett declared that she is a member of West Sussex County Council whom feature briefly in all items on the agenda as well as declaring a personal interest in Item 9: Mid Sussex Partnership Annual Report as she is a member of East Grinstead Town Council.

Cllr Pulfer declared a personal interest in Item 7: Playing Pitch Study as he is the Mid Sussex District Council representative to St Francis Sports and Social Club which is mentioned several times in the study.


Cllr Dabell declared a personal interest in Item 9: Mid Sussex Partnership Annual Report as he is a member of East Grinstead Town Council.


To confirm the Minutes of the meeting of the Committee held on 5 February 2020. pdf icon PDF 207 KB


The minutes of the meeting held on 5 February 2020 were agreed as a correct record and electronically signed by the Chairman.


To consider any items that the Chairman agrees to take as urgent business.


The Chairman had no urgent business.


Playing Pitch Study. pdf icon PDF 87 KB

Additional documents:


Elaine Clarke, Community Facilities Project Officer, introduced the report which set out the Playing Pitch Study for the District and the associated indicative implementation plan. The study followed Sport England methodology in assessing current demand and supply of provision for football, tennis, hockey, bowls, rugby, cricket, athletics and identifying future development needs, priorities and options for each sport, to inform future development.


Councillor Webster, Cabinet Member for Community, welcomed the fact that many of these projects will be financed through Section 106 funding and noted that as new communities develop they need to be provided with outdoor recreation and sports facilities due to the positive impact on public health. He highlighted that the Government have included sports projects in their support schemes however with the focus turning to reviving the economy he expects that it may be down to local communities to support these organisations.


Councillor Belsey, Cabinet Member for Service Delivery, thanked the contributors to the report. He expressed that he was concerned most about the implementation and highlighted the work remaining to do on the study. He drew attention to Section 5.10 onwards which details information relating to funding of the projects. He valued the report but felt cautious about raising expectations of the deliverability of the projects.


A Member noted the change in behaviours that the public exhibit because of the impact of Covid-19 and questioned whether officers have anticipated the change in behaviour which would add pressure on the facilities as already seen with more people working from home and enjoying their local area.


The Community Facilities Project Officer confirmed that it was too early to say and noted the facilities have capacity for outdoor training during the week however there may not be capacity during the weekend.


A Member commented on the recreation ground at East Grinstead Recreation Ground on P.66 of the report. It notes that it is a potential hub site and is the only multi-pitch site however during the winter the pitch is unplayable due to the serious need of drainage and is consequently underused. He asked whether officers could consider prioritising that pitch for improvement in the short term, rather than the medium term as planned.


The Community Facilities Project Officer explained that the Council has asked the Football Association (FA) to review the football pitches which will help inform the Council as to which pitches to prioritise in terms of drainage. She noted that there are a number of sites within East Grinstead that require improvement and therefore all the pitches in East Grinstead will need to looked at as a whole.


A Member enquired whether there is a specific policy keeping pricing as low as possible, particularly for students and less well-off residents. He also enquired why adult 7-aside football wasn’t mentioned in the report and enquired the implications of tennis being run by the Parish Council and the implications of that relating to the funding. He noted that a resident proposed organising crowdfunding, and this could be done  ...  view the full minutes text for item 7.


Mid Sussex Wellbeing Service. pdf icon PDF 838 KB


Paul Turner, Community Services Manager, provided an update to Members on the activities and achievements of the Mid Sussex Wellbeing Service within the last financial year. The report reflects on the successes and challenges of the Wellbeing Service during 2019/20 and sets out the proposed approach for the delivery of services in Mid Sussex in 2020/21, including plans for service adaptations in response to the COVID-19 pandemic.


Councillor Webster, Cabinet Member for Community, highlighted the work that the Wellbeing department carries out with its customers and indeed other departments within the Council. He asked Councillors look at the report with a critical eye to ensure that the Council is meeting the public health objectives and delivering a service that has value.


A Member agreed that Wellbeing is a valued service and that General Practices (GPs) appreciate the offered service. She noted that it only offers a service to adults and questioned whether the service could be offered to the younger residents of Mid Sussex.


The Community Services Manager confirmed that the service is adults only currently as it is commissioned by Public Health England to meet certain objectives however it does not include services to those under the age of 18. Where possible, however, officers do try and focus on family and the bigger picture and add those values and sign-post to other organisations.


A Member felt impressed by the number of calls officers received relating to the fall prevention service. He also noted the weight management sessions taking place at Haywards Heath Town Football club and enquired whether it was under the remit of the team to utilise the Council’s leisure centres.


The Community Services Manager confirmed that the falls prevention service is commissioned by Active House Solutions in partnership with Place Leisure with a session being delivered in a leisure centre. In terms of the weight management for men, Place Leisure was involved in the session which was found to be positive and confirmed that further pilot sessions were planned.


A Member highlighted that the Burgess Hill Town Council (BHTC) HelpPoint gave a positive response to the service. She referenced P.90 of the report and queried the percentage of uptake of the service given the transition to virtual delivery of the sessions.


The Community Services Manager explained that transition to the virtual delivery of the service was initially thought to be prone to issues however those who use the service, especially the older generation seemed to be up-to-speed with the delivery. He confirmed that the team has worked with Environmental Health to develop PPE to try and get back out to the public to carry out preferred face-to-face interactions.


A Member appreciated the work that the officers had carried out. She referenced P.90 of the report and questioned how the Council anticipates demand for the service in light of the changing Covid-19 Pandemic. She felt that it would be prudent to anticipate those who have suffered from Covid-19 and the prolonged effects it has on some of those  ...  view the full minutes text for item 8.


Mid Sussex Partnership Annual Report. pdf icon PDF 118 KB

Additional documents:


Neal Barton, Policy, Performance and Partnerships Manager, presented the annual report on the work of the Mid Sussex Partnership (MSP), an overarching partnership of statutory and non-statutory organisations working to improve the quality of residents’ lives across the District. The report informed Members of work undertaken under the umbrella of the MSP in 2019/20, including Community Safety and Health. He noted that there had been a 6.8% increase in crime in Mid Sussex however this was in-line with statistics across the country.


Councillor Webster, Cabinet Member for Community, mentioned that the meeting of the Partnership is chaired by the Leader of the Council. He found it interesting that 31% of antisocial behaviour is reported as neighbour disputes which suggests that there is a common misconception that young people are the main cause of antisocial behaviour.


A Member commended the work of the new Inspector Darren Taylor who has had a great presence on social media and asked whether officers have noticed a difference due to the communications. She noted that the CCTV cameras will soon be installed around the District and enquired if there was a delay due to the Covid-19 Pandemic. She also drew attention to P.109 and the Safe Spaces scheme that started in East Grinstead and hoped that other Town Councils would take up the scheme.


The Policy, Performance and Partnerships Manager referred Member’s attention to Paragraph 14 that the Police have provided more police and community support officers. The Councils Antisocial Behaviour Officers also work closely with the Police. The Safe Spaces scheme piloted in East Grinstead and is now being taken up by Haywards Heath and Burgess Hill Town Councils.


Emma Sheriden, Business Unit Leader for Community Services, Partnerships and Performance, confirmed that the CCTV cameras will be operation by the end of the summer.


The Vice-Chairman drew attention to Paragraph 19, P.107 of the report which detailed the Juno Project. She asked whether it will be offered to any other secondary schools in the district.


The Business Unit Leader for Community Services, Partnerships and Performance explained that the project is currently on hold due to the Pandemic however the Council does intend to offer it next year when it is safe to do so.


A Member enquired which schools are offered the Juno project.


The Business Unit Leader for Community Services, Partnerships and Performance confirmed that it is partly self-selected depending on those who are referred by Positive Placements at YMCA.


A Member enquired about the task and finish groups referenced on P.106 and whether there is any Member representation on the groups or if it just comprises of public servants. She also enquired which schools receive the School Law Days and whether there are plans to roll this out more widely in the District.


The Business Unit Leader for Community Services, Partnerships and Performance outlined that there is Member representation on the board however the groups are largely comprised of partners delivering the scheme which is directed by the Board. There is also  ...  view the full minutes text for item 9.


Questions pursuant to Council Procedure Rule 10.2 due notice of which has been given.


No questions were received.