Agenda and minutes

Crewe Town Board
Friday, 18th September, 2020 9.30 am

Venue: Virtual Meeting

Contact: Sarah Baxter  Email:

Note: Please note that this meeting whilst advertised on the Cheshire East Council website is not a public meeting . 

No. Item


Apologies for Absence

To receive any apologies for absence.


Apologies for absence were received from Mark Hills and Dr Tyrer.  It was noted that Rod Thompson would act as a substitute for Dr Tyrer.  In addition it was noted that Sally Hepton and Martin Wood would join the virtual meeting slightly later.


Declarations of Interest

To receive any declarations of interest.


There were no declarations of interest.


Minutes of the Previous Meeting including actions

To approve as a correct record the minutes of the previous meeting held on 21 August 2020 and to consider and note the actions from the meeting.


(To be circulated separately).


That the minutes of the virtual meeting held on 21 August 2020 be approved as a correct record.


The Chairman, Doug Kinsman went through the list of actions from the previous meeting.  The following actions were still ongoing:-


Cheshire East Council Delegations to enable delivery of the town strategy and investment plan were being considered in a draft paper for Cheshire East Council Cabinet in November.


In respect of Board membership, it was necessary to ensure retail involvement in the development of the TIP and in the regeneration of the town centre.  It was reported that a number of retailers had been contacted.


In respect of the master spreadsheet of Crewe projects, the Chairman confirmed he had included the information sent to him by Peter Skates and had amended the spreadsheet however it was yet to be circulated.



Once the amendments had been made the spreadsheet would be distributed to the Board.  It was agreed that CEC would maintain the spreadsheet.


In respect of the accelerated funding submission it was confirmed that no response had been received to date and that this was expected for the end September.


In respect of the interim bus station options and timescales it was reported that discussions were ongoing with Arriva and officers tabled a number of proposals to incentivise Arriva to do some of the repairs.  An update would continue to be provided to the Board.


At the previous meeting, the Chairman was asked to contact ARUP to see if they were able to provide examples of good use of data analysis and intelligence to inform town investment plans.  He confirmed he had contacted ARUP in the last few days, and it was anticipated that examples would be provided in the next few weeks.


In terms of the Transport, Highways and infrastructure briefing this was being arranged and dates would be confirmed for Board members.



Hatch had been asked to put forward a representative to sit on the meeting once the date had been agreed.



In terms of the master planning list it was reported that Chris Jackson had produced a document for the shadow board listing all of the key strategies.  A number of documents had been identified which was thought might be useful to include.  It was agreed that these would be circulated to the Board as background information.



The Board was asked to think of a list of key stakeholders to engage with for interviews, which could be given to the consultants once appointed. 



Final Draft Terms of Reference pdf icon PDF 68 KB

To receive the draft terms of reference based on best practice.


Consideration was given to the revised draft Terms of Reference.




That the draft terms of reference be approved.


Support Services

To receive a verbal update on support services.


Frank Jordan, the Executive Director-Place confirmed that secretariat support for the Board had been agreed and that Sarah Baxter, Democratic Services Officer at Cheshire East Council would provide this for future meetings of the Board.  In addition all information relating to the Board including future agendas would be published on the Council’s website.


Further to this he informed the Board that Carol Young, the Senior Investment & Interim Programme Manager at Cheshire East Council would provide the policy and communication support to the Board.



To receive a verbal overview of the relevant sub-groups.




The Chairman explained that there was some urgency in creating two specific sub-groups which had not been discussed at the previous meeting but raised in subsequent meetings with Hatch.  Several towns had created Towns Investment Plan Development Groups (TIPDG).  It was suggested that something similar should be established to work in conjunction with Hatch.  It was proposed and agreed that Simon Yates would chair this sub-group.


Information on the membership, its term of reference, its purpose, how often it would sit etc would need to be considered.  It was reported that a meeting on Monday was taking place and this matter could be considered further as to how the TIP would potentially work and how it would report back into the main Board.


The second sub-group which needed to be set up urgently was a Communication and Engagement Sub-Group which would work hand in hand with Hatch.  Discussions had been ongoing with colleagues and Lindsay Lewis and Carol Young, Senior Investment & Interim Programme Manager at Cheshire East had agreed to assist with this and a further update would be provided later on in the meeting.  Work on formalising how the sub-group would report back to the main Board would also need to commence as soon as possible.


It was felt important to ensure engagement with the wider community if possible and careful thought needed to be given as to how this could be achieved. In addition it was important to obtain the views of young people and engage them in all of the different sub-groups.  This was equally true of the voluntary and the faith sectors.


The Chairman welcomed the Town Board’s thoughts on how this could be moved forward.  It was also agreed that further sub-groups would need to be established in particular to focus on the town centre.


The Chairman advised that he needed to engage with Hatch and ask for feedback on what the membership of the sub-groups from the other towns was like and what reporting structures were in place.  Once this information was provided, he explained he would write out to everyone to confirm how many people would sit on the sub-groups, who from the Board may wish to sit on them and so forth.  Outside of the Board, work would commence on the establishment of a town centre regeneration working group.  How this would work and how it would be represented needed to be discussed outside of the Board.



Town Investment Plan Programme Update

To receive a verbal update on the Town Investment Plan Programme.


Jez Goodman, the Development & Regeneration Delivery Manager attended the virtual meeting and gave an update in respect of the Town Investment Plan. 


Within the update he explained that three tenders had been received with the Hatch consortium supported by Hemmingway Design being unanimously supported by the Board.  It was felt by the Board that Hatch had considerable experience particularly as they were already working on other town investment plans in the UK, including Barrow and Preston.  Whilst it was acknowledged the fee for their services was higher than their competitors, and higher than what was originally budgeted for, their methodology processes were significantly better.


The first stage was to submit the Town Investment Plan by the end of January 2021.  Following on from this the second stage would be engagement with Government around the town deal.  There was an option to break at the end of the first stage if that was the decision.  The second stage would be more open ended.


Strategic Update from Cheshire East Council

To receive a presentation from the Executive Director-Place, Cheshire East Council.


Frank Jordan, the Executive Director-Place and Peter Skates, Director of Growth & Enterprise attended the virtual meeting and gave a presentation to the Board.


The presentation was split into three sections, infrastructure including  information on the HS2 and the A500, Crewe town centre with specific reference to the Royal Arcade and bus station, the Crewe markets, the proposed Accelerated Towns Fund Project and the history centre.


The final part of the presentation related to the Communications Plan and 3d mapping.


In relation to the Royal Arcade Scheme, there had been detailed engagement with the Crewe Town Board (CTB) on the scheme and this had led to some key changes to the programme and the nature of the proposed development agreement which was currently being renegotiated with the provider. The key benefit of the changes would be that it enables confidence regarding the delivery of key components of the scheme such as the bus station, car parking and public realm. 


CEC provided assurance that the CTB would continue be engaged as the programme develops. 


Further questions were asked in respect of the position of the High Street Fund and if the bid was successful how would this impact on the town centre and whether discussions to close the Police station in Crewe had progressed and further.


It was confirmed that engagement with the Police was ongoing and the situation was being closely monitored.  As soon as any further information became available it would be reported to the Board.


It was anticipated that an announcement from the MHCLG would be due in November in relation to the FHSF.


The Chairman asked if a detailed timetable could be presented to the Board as it might assist the members instead of the generalised timetable put forward.  Given the time constraints officers were asked to give consideration to the provision of a detailed timetable.  The Chairman took confidence in the comments made by the Director that the Council was pushing hard to move forward with the signing of the development agreement.  He also felt that in the last nine weeks considerable progress had been made and this should not be overlooked.



Communications and Public Relations

To receive a verbal update on the website and communication planning.


Due to time constraints it was agreed that this update would be circulated by Carol Young to members of the Board after the virtual meeting.



Forward Planning

To give consideration to items of business for future meetings.


Due to time constraints it was agreed that any items for the forward plan would be circulated separately after the virtual meeting.



Date of Next Meeting

To confirm the date of the next meeting as 16 October 2020 commencing at 9.30am.




That the date of the next meeting be held on Friday 16 October 2020 commencing at 9.30am.