Agenda and minutes

Asset Management and Economic Development Cabinet Committee
Thursday, 16th January, 2020 7.00 pm

Venue: Council Chamber - Civic Offices. View directions

Contact: Gary Woodhall Tel: (01992) 564470  Email:


No. Item


Election of Chairman

Under the terms of reference for the Licensing Committee each Sub-Committee is required to elect a Chairman on an ad hoc basis for the duration of the meeting.

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In the absence of the Chairman, who had tended his apologies, the Senior Democratic Services Officer requested nominations for the role of Chairman for the meeting.




(1)        That Councillor N Bedford be elected Chairman for the duration of the Cabinet Committee meeting.


Webcasting Introduction

(Corporate Communications Manager) This meeting is to be webcast and Members are reminded of the need to activate their microphones before speaking. The Chairman will read the following announcement:


“I would like to remind everyone present that this meeting will be broadcast live to the Internet and will be capable of subsequent repeated viewing, with copies of the recording being made available for those that request it.


By being present at this meeting, it is likely that the recording cameras will capture your image and this will result in your image becoming part of the broadcast.


You should be aware that this may infringe your human and data protection rights. If you have any concerns then please speak to the Webcasting Officer.


Please could I also remind Members to activate their microphones before speaking.”

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The Senior Democratic Services Officer reminded everyone present that the meeting would be broadcast live to the Internet and that the Council had adopted a protocol for the webcasting of its meetings.



(Democratic Services Manager) To report the appointment of any substitute members for the meeting.

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The Cabinet Committee noted the following substitutions:


(a)        Councillor J Philip for Councillor S-A Stavrou; and


(b)        Councillor S Kane for Councillor A Patel.


Declarations of Interest

(Monitoring Officer) To declare interests in any items on the agenda.

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There were no declarations of interest pursuant to the Council’s Code of Member Conduct.



(Democratic Services Manager) To confirm the minutes of the meeting of the Cabinet Committee held on 10 October 2019.

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            (1)        That the minutes of the meeting held on 10 October 2019 be taken as       read and signed by the Chairman as a correct record.


Asset Management Development Projects - Progress Report pdf icon PDF 298 KB

(Service Director – Commercial & Regulatory) To consider the attached report (AMED-005-2019/20).

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The Service Director for Commercial & Regulatory Services presented a progress report on a number of major projects that the Council was managing which involved its property assets.


The Service Director highlighted the following points:


(a)        Roof leaks had been continuing at the Epping Forest Shopping Park, and an independent roof survey had stated that this was due to incorrect installation. The Section 278 highways works had been signed off by the County Council, and funding had been approved to undertake a study into the car park arrangements at the site.


(b)        A structural issue had arisen in one area of the Oakwood Hill Industrial Estate, which was being reviewed by the Facilities team.


(c)        Pyrles Lane Nursery was currently under offer to be sold to Durkan Developments, and the existing Nursery was due to relocate to the depot at Town Mead by the end of June 2020.


(d)        Initial design work had now been completed for the St John’s Road site in Epping, and Cabinet had agreed to transfer the site to Qualis Commercial, subject to a full business case being agreed by the Cabinet.


(e)        Work had commenced on the Master Plan for land at North Weald Airfield, and negotiations had resumed with the Essex & Herts Air Ambulance Trust. A meeting had been held with Saunders Market, who would be providing the Market in future, to discuss their additional requirements; Saunders was now reviewing the position.


(f)         For the Landmark Building in Loughton, leases had been agreed for six of the units, however there had been little interest up to now in the seventh unit. For the unit occupied by the Mediterranean Restaurant, Environmental Health Officers were liaising with the tenant to resolve noise and odour issues.


(g)        The site at Roundhills had been fenced off and access points blocked. The Cabinet had also decided to transfer this site to Qualis Commercial, subject to a full business case being agreed by the Cabinet.


Councillor S Kane highlighted that the car parking at the Epping Forest Shopping Park had been discussed at the recent meeting of the Local Highways Panel. The Service Director stated that the review was due to start in a few weeks, and would be examining how to prevent the use of the car park by non-shoppers, but the primary focus would be on the traffic flows within the car park as there was only one entrance and one exit. The reconfiguration of the car park would be examined and a report would be compiled in due course. Councillor S Kane suggested that the entrance should be as far away from the junction as possible to alleviate traffic congestion; the Service Director reassured the Cabinet Committee that a possible new entrance at the Seedbank Centre would be examined, which would be further away from Langston Road.


In response to other questions from the Cabinet Committee, the Service Director stated that it was intended to submit the Master Plan report for North Weald Airfield to the Cabinet in  ...  view the full minutes text for item 22.


Economic Development - Progress Report pdf icon PDF 313 KB

(Strategic Partnerships Specialist) To consider the attached report (AMED-006-2019/20).

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The Strategic Partnership Specialist presented an update report to the Cabinet Committee on a number of projects and issues being explored by the Economic Development Team.


The Strategic Partner Specialist informed the Cabinet Committee of the latest developments on the Economic Strategy. The draft Strategy had been a key theme of the Chairman of Council’s annual Business Networking event on 28 November 2019, as well as the Tourism Conference on 5 December 2019; it also had formed an element of the presentation to the Youth Council on 10 December 2019. The consultation period for the Economic Strategy had closed on 16 December 2019, and the responses were being collated for use in shaping the final Strategy, which would be presented to the Cabinet for approval in March 2020. A number of events had also been organised to support the discussion paper ‘Nurturing Growth’, including the Economic Stakeholder Conference on 13 November 2019.


The Strategic Partnership Specialist reported that work was continuing on the Digital Innovation Zone (DIZ) Local Full Fibre Network Project to progress it through the DCMS Assurance process; the project had reached the ‘Ready to Procure’ stage. A presentation had been delivered to the LGA Annual Digital Showcase on 4 November 2019, and further opportunities for the DIZ to work more closely with the Local Government Association and assist other Councils with their own digital innovation had been discussed. The DIZ was involved with the delivery of the ‘Be Part of the Next Generation of Digital Adoption’ conference at the BT Tower on 25 February 2020, which would cover technology, infrastructure, investment and skills. The Council had also had an application to the Digital Declaration Programme approved by the Ministry of Housing, Communities and Local Government, which had centred on two projects – the DIZ Common Asset Register project and the EFDC Citizens Online project. Finally, the ‘Digital First’ internal working group had been established to promote the use of technology within the Council and maximise the opportunity for shared developments.


The Strategic Partnership Specialist stated that the Annual Tourism Conference on 5 December 2019 had been successful, and a cross border team was being established to prepare a bid for the Government’s new Tourism Zone programme. The ‘Visit Epping Forest’ website continued to develop, and had recorded its busiest autumn day on 5 November 2019 promoting organised fireworks display events across the District.


In respect of the Green Arc initiative, the Cabinet Committee was reminded that Climate Emergency Champions had been appointed by the Council, and discussions with external organisations to resource a major new planting programme had been positive. In addition, a Green Arc stakeholder conference was planned for March 2020, to develop actionable priorities for the initiative in the future.


In response to questions from the Cabinet Committee, the Strategic Partnership Specialist announced that the DIZ Local Full Fibre Network Project, having passed the ‘Ready to Procure’ stage, was now ready to activate the work  ...  view the full minutes text for item 23.



(Democratic Services Manager) Section 100B(4)(b) of the Local Government Act 1972 requires that the permission of the Chairman be obtained, after prior notice to the Chief Executive, before urgent business not specified in the agenda (including a supplementary agenda of which the statutory period of notice has been given) may be transacted.

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The Cabinet Committee noted that there was no other urgent business for consideration.


Exclusion of Public and Press


To consider whether, under Section 100(A)(4) of the Local Government Act 1972, the public and press should be excluded from the meeting for the items of business set out below on grounds that they will involve the likely disclosure of exempt information as defined in the following paragraph(s) of Part 1 of Schedule 12A of the Act (as amended) or are confidential under Section 100(A)(2):


Agenda Item No


Exempt Information Paragraph Number








The Local Government (Access to Information) (Variation) Order 2006, which came into effect on 1 March 2006, requires the Council to consider whether maintaining the exemption listed above outweighs the potential public interest in disclosing the information. Any member who considers that this test should be applied to any currently exempted matter on this agenda should contact the proper officer at least 24 hours prior to the meeting.


Background Papers 

Article 17 - Access to Information, Procedure Rules of the Constitution define background papers as being documents relating to the subject matter of the report which in the Proper Officer's opinion:


(a)        disclose any facts or matters on which the report or an important part of the report is based;  and


(b)        have been relied on to a material extent in preparing the report and does not include published works or those which disclose exempt or confidential information and in respect of executive reports, the advice of any political advisor.


The Council will make available for public inspection for four years after the date of the meeting one copy of each of the documents on the list of background papers.

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The Cabinet Committee noted that there was no business which necessitated the exclusion of the public and press from the meeting.