Agenda item


The following Members gave updates in respect of their portfolio activity:


Councillor Daniel Williamson – Portfolio Holder for Corporate Communications, Governance and Cross Portfolio Support


·       appreciation for the Scrutiny and Democratic Services Team who continued to facilitate meetings and support Members;

·       the busy Scrutiny Work Programme and the recent work of the Covid-19 Response and Recovery Panel;

·       acknowledgement of the excellent response rate to the 2020 Electoral Canvass and the commitment of the Elections Team;

·       excellent cross-party working by the Polling Places Review Working Group;

·       the continued efficient and business-like approach of the Legal Team;

·       the unstinting effort from the Risk and Emergency Planning Team in supporting the Council and its employees through the pandemic.


Councillor Rachel Madden – Portfolio Holder for Finance


·       acknowledgement that the Council’s commercial investment income is still on track notwithstanding the challenges of the pandemic;

·       Local Enterprise Funding (LEP) and Sports England funding being secured for the new leisure centre in Kirkby;

·       the forthcoming award of the new contract for leisure centre provision across Ashfield and its potential for saving money;

·       excellent work by the Performance Team to recently secure a refund from Virgin in relation to telephony services.


Councillor Matthew Relf – Portfolio Holder for Place, Planning and Regeneration


·       a Future High Street Fund announcement in Autumn 2020 with the potential for £12.4 million investment in town centres;

·       the Discover Ashfield Group working tirelessly on the feasibility study for the Towns Fund bid including a programme of projects with a focus on employment and education (to be submitted in January 2021);

·       £1.5 million already received from the Towns Fund this year to spend on capital projects;

·       development of project for a small indoor market in Kirkby to encourage start-up businesses;

·       ongoing work to purchases properties on Low Street at Sutton to develops and enhance retail opportunities;

·       information regarding the Discover Ashfield Ambassador Programme;

·       the Planning Team continuing to hit target notwithstanding the difficulties resulting from the Covid-19 outbreak;

·       the new Regeneration Team are up and running and have received around 100 enquiries this last month from business with an interest in Ashfield;

·       acknowledgement that work on the Local Plan has stored due to recent changes in planning legislation;

·       the continued optimism and commitment of staff within the directorate was welcomed.


Councillor David Martin – Portfolio Holder for Streets, Parks and Town Centres


·       the Council’s continued efforts to support local high street businesses through the pandemic both financially and with Covid safety measures;

·       the offer of 2 hours free parking and access to the pay by phone app to stimulate the local economy in town centres;

·       submission of entry for the green flag awards for six parks with celebratory events on 15 October 2020 (Ada Lovelace House in Kirkby to be lit green to support the achievements);

·       progress with upgrades to park facilities across the District;

·       acknowledgment of the staff working within the Cemeteries Team for adapting swiftly to changing circumstances as a result of the outbreak;

·       Environmental Charter to be consulted upon with a full roll out of the document in early 2021;

·       Plans for scheduling the Spring Clean, Bag It and Skip into Summer campaigns for 2021.


Councillor Helen-Ann Smith – Deputy Leader and Portfolio Holder for Community Safety


·       high volume of calls being experienced by the Anti-Social Behaviour Team and triage officers, with 1014 new case reports since August;

·       enforcement action is continuing at pace;

·       Community Protection Officers (CPOs) continuing to work hard dealing with unauthorised encampments, town patrols and responding to public open space incidences;

·       the recent recruitment of 3 new CPOs and a Team Leader who were due to commence imminently following completion of standard police vetting procedures.


Councillor Samantha Deakin – Portfolio Holder for Customer Services and IT


·       introduction of the Council’s new improved website and an invitation to take a look at its enhanced and easily accessed features;

·       confirmation that the Digital Transformation programme is continuing with multiple projects for improvement.


Councillor John Wilmott – Portfolio Holder for Regulatory Services


·       the Environmental Health Team has assisted and provided advice to over 2,000 businesses during the Covid-19 outbreak;

·       over 60 new registrations have been processed for food premises which has been remarkable considering the current climate;

·       strict Covid secure measures are being implemented by food outlets including wearing masks, enhance cleaning routines and keeping customer details for the minimum 21 days;

·       the Licensing Team have continued to administer rising numbers of licensing applications over the past few months;

·       the exciting arrival of taxi firm Ola to the District, locating a new central hub at the Sherwood Business Park to operate an extensive taxi service for the East Midlands area.


Councillor Tom Hollis – Deputy Leader and Portfolio Holder for Housing (also including update for the Health and Leisure portfolio)


·       recent award of major new contract for the installation of new heating systems in Council-owned properties at a cost of around £25 million;

·       the Council’s leisure centres continue to operate in a Covid-secure manner and feedback from customers has been very positive;

·       progress regarding the new changing village at Hucknall leisure centre;

·       design works for the new leisure centre at Kirkby are now completed and contractors should be commencing on site with hoardings etc. in the near future;

·       Remembrance services and parades are all set to go ahead in November 2020 in accordance with social distancing safety measures.


Councillor Jason Zadrozny – Leader of the Council


·       continued appreciation for all the Cabinet Members and their unstinting commitment to the District of Ashfield throughout the pandemic and lockdown restrictions;

·       special thanks to the Corporate Communications Team for keeping Ashfield and its residents abreast of all issues throughout the pandemic and for managing to produce the quarterly publication of ‘Ashfield Matters’ during the summer.














Councillor Tom Hollis - Deputy Leader and Portfolio Holder for Housing


 The Davis Avenue social housing development initiative;

 Council accolade for entry into national top 50 housing landlord list;

 The Council’s exemplary repairs and maintenance programme;

 Recent Chartered Institute of Housing nomination for the Council’s

Housing Maintenance Team.

Councillor Matthew Relf - Portfolio