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Agenda and minutes

The Former Cabinet Member for Cultural Services and Sport from May, 2009 to July, 2010
Tuesday, 15th December, 2009 10.00 a.m.

Venue: Town Hall, Moorgate Street, Rotherham.

Contact: Debbie Bacon, Senior Democratic Services Officer - Ext. 2054 

No. Item


Minutes of the previous meeting held on 2nd December, 2009 pdf icon PDF 48 KB


Resolved:-  That the minutes of the meeting of the Cabinet Member held on 2nd December, 2009 be signed as a true record.


Library Strategy Proposal pdf icon PDF 38 KB


-        Bernard Murphy to report.


Consideration was given to a report presented by Bernard Murphy, Manager of the Library and Information Services, which sought approval to develop a strategy for Rotherham’s Public Libraries.


A ten year strategy for Rotherham Libraries would be produced during 2010 and be a public document that would identify the services provided to the public via the library network.


This process would involve consultation with the public, Elected Members, stakeholders, partners, managers and staff.


Further information was provided on the background to the requirement of a Strategy, the current situation and the advice from the Audit Commission.


The recent DCMS Inquiry into the Library Service in the Wirral was noted where Wirral Borough Council was found to be in breach of its statutory duties.


Discussion ensued on the sensitivity of public consultation and how best this would be managed.


Resolved:-  (1)  That the important role played by libraries in helping to change lives and transform communities by provision of a service striving for excellence be recognised.


(2)  That a Strategy for libraries be developed to help embed the positive change and improved performance already being delivered by our public libraries. The Strategy would be based on a full assessment of local needs in order to ensure the Council fulfilled its statutory duties under the Public Libraries and Museums Act, 1964.


(3)  That this report be referred to the Regeneration Scrutiny Panel for information.


The National Archives Self-Assessment Performance Measurement Programme – Overall Score pdf icon PDF 29 KB


-        Lisa Broadest to report.


Consideration was given to a report presented by Lisa Broadest, Principal Officer for Archives and Local Studies, which set out in detail how the  Archives and Local Studies Service completed the self-assessment for local authorities last year and received a 3*** (out of 4) rating with the direction of travel identified as ‘Likely to Improve Further’. 


The programme was designed to provide a measure of overall service quality in the absence of any formal performance indicators for Archive Services in the Audit Commission's performance indicator set for local government and was designed to supplement the formal, on-site, inspections that TNA undertakes periodically.


The self-assessment programme was based on a comprehensive questionnaire that examined five areas of work:-


·              Governance and Staffing.

·              Documentation of Collections.

·              Access Services.

·              Preservation and Conservation.

·              Buildings, Security and Environment.


Scores for Rotherham Archives and Local Studies were set out in the report with a comparison drawn against 2007. Average scores have also been shown for the region, all Metropolitan districts and for England and Wales and for benchmarking purposes a comparison drawn against neighbouring authorities except Sheffield (which was recognised as a large Archive Service).


Each authority received a percentage score on each of the five areas and an overall percentage score. The scores on the five areas of activity were then performance banded, with the top ten per cent of services securing four stars; the bottom ten per cent scoring one star; and the remainder being divided equally into two-star and three-star categories.


Analysis of the 2008 results has shown that Rotherham is one of four 3*** services in the region, the others being two major, long-established County Record Offices and Sheffield Archives (a larger Archive Service). Four services scored lower than 3*** and one service, East Riding scored an impressive 4**** following the opening of the Treasure House.


Resolved:-  (1)  That everyone involved be thanked for their efforts and input and an appropriate press release be issued.


(2)  That the contents of the report be noted and received.


Exclusion of the Press and Public

The following item is likely to be considered in the absence of the press and public as being exempt under Paragraph 3 of Part 1 of Schedule 12A to the Local Government Act 1972 (as amended March 2006) (information relates to finance and business affairs):-


Resolved, that under Section 100A(4) of the Local Government Act, 1972, the press and public be excluded from the meeting for the following items of business on the grounds that they involve the likely disclosure of exempt information as defined in Paragraph 3 of Part 1 of Schedule 12A to the Local Government Act (information relates to finance and business affairs).


New Cultural Accommodation


-        Phil Rogers to report.


Consideration was given to a report presented by Ian Smith, Director of Asset Management, which summarised the position in respect to the provision of cultural accommodation within the town centre.


Specific information was provided on the current situation regarding Forge Island, envisaged to house the Cultural Centre, possibility of temporary cultural accommodation and the various options available.


Discussion ensued on the funding elements of the Cultural Centre and the request by the Regeneration Scrutiny Panel for an update on the situation.


Resolved:-  (1)  That the Director of Asset Management is authorised to negotiate the provision of Lot 2 Cultural Accommodation with TCN.


(2)  That the Director of Asset Management and the Director of Culture and Leisure Services be authorised to continue options appraisals for alternative Cultural Accommodation, both temporary and long term solutions.


(3)  That the financial position and the requirement to identify funding be noted.


(4)  That Cabinet Member receive regular updates regarding the provision and location of cultural services within the Town Centre.


(5)  That an update report be submitted to the Regeneration Scrutiny Panel in January, 2010.

(The Chairman authorised consideration of the following item in order to process the scheme referred to)


Rotherham Play Pathfinder - Lockwood Avenue Play Area and Rotherham Adventure Playground


Consideration was given to a report presented by Nick Barnes, Principal Project Development Officer, which set out two requests under the Play Pathfinder programme, which were to:-


·              Consider provisions for appointing a contractor to deliver a play area at Lockwood Avenue, South Anston following the withdrawal of Rosemary Road Play Area from the Play Pathfinder Programme.


·              Consider an opportunity to expand the proposed prefabricated building for the Rotherham Adventure Playground in order to make the facility suited to use by disabled children and to review the proposed appointment of contractors.


Approval was sought to waive Standing Order No. 48.1 which required between three to six tenders for contracts with an estimated value of £50,000 or more to be sought.  As the new site at Lockwood Avenue was the same as Rosemary Road it was hoped that the nominated contractor would be awarded the same contract as Lockwood Avenue.


Discussion ensued on the reasons for the Rosemary Road Play Area withdrawal and the identification of the new site at Lockwood Avenue, South Anston.


In terms of the Rotherham Adventure Playground the request to waive Standing Orders was on the basis to enable this building extension to be achieved within the time constraints with the cost of an extra bay for disabled use.


It was noted that the quoted price for the additional bay to provided disabled facilities for users of the Park was in line with the charges agreed for the already ordered three bay building.


It was also suggested that Ward Members for this area be informed accordingly.


The Assistant Chief Executive (Legal and Democratic Services) and the Strategic Director of Finance both supported the recommendations.


Resolved:- That Standing Order No. 48.1 (requirement to obtain between three to six tenders for contracts with an estimated value of £50,000 or more) be waived for:-


·              Grace Landscapes Ltd to be awarded the contract for Lockwood Avenue, South Anston.


·              Thurston Building Systems to be awarded the contract to carry out additional works for the Rotherham Adventure Playground building.