Agenda and minutes

Community Governance Review Sub-Committee - Tuesday, 13th March, 2012 2.30 pm

Venue: Council Chamber, Municipal Buildings, Earle Street, Crewe CW1 2BJ. View directions

Contact: Paul Mountford  Democratic Services Officer

No. Item


Declarations of Interest

To provide an opportunity for Members and Officers to declare any personal and/or prejudicial interests in any item on the agenda.


There were no interests declared.


Public Speaking Time/Open Session

In accordance with Procedure Rules Nos.11 and 35 a period of 10 minutes is allocated for members of the public to address the meeting on any matter relevant to the work of the meeting. Individual members of the public may speak for up to 5 minutes but the Chairman or person presiding will decide how the period of time allocated for public speaking will be apportioned where there are a number of speakers. Members of the public are not required to give notice to use this facility. However, as a matter of courtesy, a period of 24 hours’ notice is encouraged.


Members of the public wishing to ask a question at the meeting should provide at least three clear working days’ notice in writing and should include the question with that notice. This will enable an informed answer to be given.




Honorary Alderman Peter Kent expressed his thanks for the way in which the ballot of Crewe electors had been conducted. He went on to say that he had written to the Registration Service and Business Manager with suggestions for the warding of a new Crewe Parish in the event that this was created. His suggestion was that the existing Borough wards be used for the parish wards, with two parish councillors for each Borough councillor, but that the unparished area of Leighton comprise a separate parish ward with one parish councillor. This would result in a parish council of 21 members, which was broadly in line with official guidance. He also suggested that elections to the parish council could be held in November, 2012 at the same time as the election of Police Commissioners. Finally, he urged Cheshire East Council to arrange a seminar for prospective parish councillors for Crewe and asked that the Council consider what support it could give to the parish council in the initial stages.


Minutes of Previous meeting pdf icon PDF 52 KB

To approve the minutes of the meeting held on 20 December 2012





That the minutes of the meeting held on 20th December 2012 be approved as a correct record.


Crewe Community Governance Review - Formulating the Council's Draft Recommendation pdf icon PDF 83 KB

To consider a briefing paper on the points which the Council needs to take into consideration in formulating the Council’s draft recommendation


The Sub-Committee considered a briefing paper based on the statutory guidance issued by the Department for Communities and Local Government which set out the process to be followed in conducting the Community Governance Review and the matters to be taken into consideration by the Council in formulating a draft recommendation.




That the procedures to be followed in conducting the Community Governance Review, and the matters to be taken into consideration in formulating a draft recommendation, be noted.



Crewe Community Governance Review - First Stage Consultation pdf icon PDF 462 KB

The initial consultation with stakeholders and the public took place between 14 November and 16 December 2011 and the feedback received was considered by the Sub Committee on 20 December 2011.  At that meeting it was agreed to extend the general period of consultation to 29 February 2012, along with a postal ballot of electors for the unparished area of Crewe which took place from 1 – 29 February.  The wording for the ballot paper was agreed by the Sub Committee based on the feedback received, which indicated a level of support only for the option of a single Town Council for Crewe.


Members are asked to take into account the following feedback received and to consider and determine its recommendation to the Constitution Committee on 22 March 2012.  The Constitution Committee will subsequently make a recommendation to Council for the draft outcome of the review.  A further period of consultation will then take place on the draft.


a) Results of the consultation with electors

b) Additional representations received since 16 December

Additional documents:


Members considered the outcome of the Stage 1 consultation which had concluded on 29th February 2012. The Sub-Committee now had to determine its advice to the Constitution Committee on the formulation of the Council’s draft recommendation. The Constitution Committee would be meeting on 22nd March 2012 and would consider the Sub-Committee’s advice at that meeting.


In addition to the briefing paper considered earlier in the meeting, Members had before them the outcome of the ballot of local electors and other representations received from the public and stakeholders during the first round of consultation.


The initial phase of consultation had included written representations received in response to public notices, specific invitations, a website tool and information leaflets.  Two public meetings had been held in September to give members of the public the opportunity to learn more about the review and to express their views in a public forum. Further opportunities had subsequently been provided to provide information at various community events during November and December 2011. The Council’s website had also been used as a source of information and as a tool for people to use to record their views. Finally, a voting paper had been sent to electors in Crewe to be returned by 29th February.


The ballot of local electors had taken place throughout the month of February 2012 and the result was as follows:



No of voting papers received













Leighton (unparished)












There was therefore a clear majority in favour of a single town council for Crewe, both within the unparished area as a whole and in the unparished area of Leighton taken separately.


The vote represented a 32% turnout and Members of the Sub-Committee were satisfied that this was sufficient to represent the views of the electors of Crewe.


Members also had before them a summary of other public and stakeholder responses to the initial stage of consultation. These also showed a clear preference for a single town council.


Members then considered whether the potential cost implications of setting up and running a town council had been adequately highlighted and addressed in the consultation publicity and were satisfied that they had been.


Finally, reference was made to a potential mechanism under the Localism Act 2011 which would allow the introduction of a form of community governance known as a community trust. Members considered whether it was appropriate to include this option in the current review. It was noted that there was insufficient information on community trusts at present and that guidance was awaited. Indeed, the option of a community trust was neither contemplated nor available when the community governance process began and it could be considered inappropriate to include it as an option at a point when the review was well advanced. Given this, and the fact that the consultation response so far had not favoured any form of governance  ...  view the full minutes text for item 35.


Next Steps and Arrangements for Stage 2 Consultation pdf icon PDF 86 KB

To note the project plan in respect of the remainder of the Review process and to discuss the format of the next stage of the consultation


Members gave further consideration to the project plan which set out the remaining stages of the review. Members noted in particular the timetable for conducting the Stage 2 consultation which would take place over a three week period in May.




That the project plan be noted and updated further as appropriate.



Macclesfield Community Governance Review

To consider the timing of the commencement of the Community Governance Review for Macclesfield


Members gave preliminary consideration to the timing of the next community governance review, which would relate to the unparished area of Macclesfield.




That a draft project plan be submitted to the next meeting for consideration.


Date of Next Meeting

To agree the date of the next meeting


To be agreed with the Chairman following consultation with Members.