Agenda and minutes

Thursday, 14th January, 2021 7.30 pm

Venue: VIRTUAL - Live on the Council's YouTube channel: Hillingdon London. View directions

Contact: Lloyd White, Head of Democratic Services 

Link: Watch the Council meeting here

No. Item


Apologies for Absence


Apologies for absence had been received from Councillor Lindsay Bliss.


Minutes pdf icon PDF 160 KB

To receive the minutes of the meeting held on 19 November 2020.


Councillor Sweeting moved, and Councillor Duncan seconded, the following amendment to the minutes of the last meeting to be included at the bottom of page 5 of the agenda, item 6.1:


“…so that parents living in the South of the Borough will no longer need to seek places at schools in the North of the Borough or at out Borough schools due to lack of places and choice as is currently the situation.”


On being put to the vote, the amendment was agreed and it was:


RESOLVED: That the amended minutes of the meeting held on 19 November 2020 be agreed as a correct record.


Roll Call and Declarations of Interest

The Head of Democratic Services will ask each Member in alphabetical order to declare that they are present and whether they have any declarations of interest in any matter before the Council.


Please wait to be called then:

a)    unmute your microphone on your PC / tablet etc (if you are joining the meeting by telephone only, then please either locate the mute button or remain as quiet as possible until called upon to speak);

b)    state your name and if you have any declarations of interest to make,

c)    then please remember to, once again, mute your microphone or telephone.



The Head of Democratic Services asked each Member in alphabetical order to declare that they were present and whether they had any declarations of interest in any matter before Council. There were no declarations of interest.


Report of the Head of Democratic Services pdf icon PDF 99 KB


i)          Temporary Suspension of Council Procedure Rules for the Virtual Council Meeting Only


Councillor Sir Ray Puddifoot moved, and Councillor Bianco seconded, the recommendation as set out in the Order of Business and it was:


RESOLVED: That, under Standing Order 26.1, the specific Standing Orders set out in the report be temporarily suspended for the purposes of holding this virtual Full Council meeting only, with immediate effect.


ii)         Urgent Implementation of Decisions


The recent urgent decisions taken were noted.


iii)     Statement from the Leader of the Council


Councillor Sir Ray Puddifoot advised that he would be resigning as Leader of the Council, effective from after the vote to elect a new Leader of the Council.  In his twenty years as Leader of the Council, there had never been a challenge as great as COVID-19. 


The Leader noted that Hillingdon was one of the best councils in the country which was thanks to an ambitious direction of travel. He paid tribute to and thanked those who had helped Hillingdon to become the success that it was today. The Council had some of the best staff in local government including Democratic Services, Green Spaces, Finance, housing, transport, ICT and Legal. 


Councillor Sir Ray Puddifoot thanked his colleagues in the Conservative Group for their contribution. Whilst they all had individual skills, they were also able to work effectively as a team.


The opposition had also played its part in the success of the Council. The Leader had seen nine changes in the leadership of the opposition during his 20 years as Leader of the Council. He thanked Councillor Peter Curling for his understanding and common-sense approach which had helped see the Council through the pandemic over the last ten months.


The Leader thanked the residents, residents’ groups and charities that worked with the Council to help make Hillingdon a good place to live. He would be stepping down as Leader in the knowledge that Hillingdon had the administration, resources and staff to see the Council through the current pandemic and beyond.


iv)     Appointment of The Leader of the Council.


Councillor Sir Ray Puddifoot moved, and Councillor O’Brien seconded, the recommendation as set out in the Order of Business. Following debate (Councillor Curling), it was:


RESOLVED: That Councillor Ian Edwards be appointed as Leader of the Council until the Annual Meeting immediately following the ordinary election of Councillors in May 2022.


v)      Vote of Thanks


Councillor Edwards moved, and Councillor Bianco seconded, the vote of thanks to the outgoing Leader, Councillor Sir Ray Puddifoot. Following debate (Councillors Curling, Hensley and Simmonds), it was:


RESOLVED: That the vote of thanks to the outgoing Leader, Councillor Sir Ray Puddifoot, be approved.


vi)      Statement from the Leader of the Council and Appointment of Cabinet


Although there had been a change to the leadership, the new Leader of the Council, Councillor Edwards, advised that there would be no changes to the services delivered to residents and that the Council would continue to put residents first. Issues such as the third runway at Heathrow and HS2 would continue to remain important but the Council would also look to introduce innovative uses of technology to speed up processes and reduce costs.


Currently, focus needed to remain on beating the pandemic. Residents had already showed their capacity to come together during these difficult times. It was noted that the voluntary sector had played a core role helping the Borough through this period. Further work was still needed to find new ways to help young people to meet their potential, to increase the amount of affordable housing available to residents in the Borough and to work even more closely with the police to ensure that Hillingdon remained amongst the most desirable places to live in London.


The following appointments made by the Leader of the Council were noted:




Deputy Leader and Property & Infrastructure

Councillor Jonathan Bianco


Councillor Martin Goddard

Environment, Housing & Regeneration

Councillor Eddie Lavery

Corporate Services & Transformation

Councillor Douglas Mills

Families, Education & Wellbeing

Councillor Susan O’Brien

Health & Social Care

Councillor Jane Palmer

Public Safety & Transport

Councillor John Riley


vii)    Changes to Committee Memberships


Councillor Edwards moved, and Councillor Bianco seconded, the recommendation as set out in the Order of Business and it was:


RESOLVED: That the following changes to committee memberships for 2020/2021 as proposed by the Conservative Group, be approved:

·           Executive Scrutiny Committee – Councillors Burrows and Corthorne to replace Councillors Higgins and Riley.

·           External Services Select Committee – Councillor Graham to replace Councillor Riley.

·           Corporate Services, Commerce & Communities Policy Overview Committee – Councillor Choubedar to replace Councillor Goddard.

·           Social Care, Housing and Public Health Policy Overview Committee – Councillor Corthorne to replace Councillor Edwards.

·           North Planning Committee - Councillor Yarrow to replace Councillor Lavery.

·           Major Applications Planning Committee – Councillor Chapman to replace Councillor Lavery.

·           Major Applications Planning Sub-Committee – Councillor Higgins to replace Councillor Lavery.

·           Appointments Committee – Councillors Edwards, O’Brien and Lavery to replace Councillors Burrows, Corthorne and Sir Ray Puddifoot as members of the Committee.

·           Appointments Sub-Committee - Councillor Edwards to replace Councillor Sir Ray Puddifoot as a member of the Committee and substitute members to comprise the remaining members of the Cabinet.

·           Registration and Appeals Committee – Councillor Arnold to replace Councillor Goddard as a member of the Committee.

·           Audit Committee – Councillors Graham and R.Mills to replace Councillors Goddard and Lavery. Councillor Morgan to be a substitute.

·           Licensing Committee - Councillors Graham and Hensley to replace Councillors Goddard and Lavery.  Councillor Morgan to be a substitute.

·           Investigating and Disciplinary Sub-Committee – Councillor Edwards to replace Councillor Sir Ray Puddifoot as a member of the Committee and substitute members to comprise the remaining members of the Cabinet.

·          Health and Wellbeing Board – Councillors Edwards, Goddard, Lavery and Riley to replace Councillors Burrows, Corthorne, Lewis and Sir Ray Puddifoot as members of the Board. NB: The Chairman to remain the same but the Vice-Chairman to become the Cabinet Member for Families, Education & Wellbeing.


viii)    Committee Chairmanships:


The Head of Democratic Services asked the Members of each of the following Committees to agree the proposed changes to their Chairmanship / Vice-Chairmanship:

·      Executive Scrutiny Committee - Chairman - Councillor Burrows & Vice-Chairman - Councillor Bridges.

·      External Services Select Committee - Chairman - Councillor Denys and Vice-Chairman – Councillor Radia.

·      Social Care, Housing and Public Health Policy Overview Committee – Chairman Councillor Corthorne.

·      North Planning Committee – Chairman - Councillor Higgins and Vice-Chairman – Councillor Morgan.

·      Major Applications Planning Committee – Chairman – Councillor Higgins.

·      Major Applications Planning Sub-Committee – Vice- Chairman - Councillor Higgins.

·      Appointments Committee – Chairman – Councillor Edwards.

·      Licensing Committee –Chairman - Councillor Arnold and Vice-Chairman – Councillor Chapman.


ix)        Appointment of Council Champion


This item had been included as a late item with the approval of the Mayor.In accordance with Article 4 of the Constitution, Council was asked to consider the appointment of a Member as a Council Champion under the generic Terms of Reference approved by full Council on 29 June 2006, (revised February 2009) with additional guidance approved by the Leader of the Council to reflect specific responsibilities associated with the portfolio as shown.


Councillor Edwards moved, and Councillor Bianco seconded, the recommendation as set out on the Order of Business and it was:


RESOLVED: That Councillor Sir Ray Puddifoot be appointed as Council Champion for the Armed Forces.


Mayor's Announcements

1.    To receive the Mayoral Announcements


2.    The Mayor will call upon the Leader of the Council to make a statement in order to update all Members of the Council regarding the Council’s ongoing response to the Covid19 pandemic.


The Mayor thanked the outgoing Leader of the Council, Councillor Sir Ray Puddifoot, for his long and successful time at the helm of the Council and hoped that he would enjoy his new freedom. She congratulated Councillor Edwards on his election as the new Leader of the Council and noted that he would have big boots to fill.


It was noted that the clap for heroes had restarted in January 2021. The Mayor thanked the many services, volunteers, charities and individuals that worked hard to make residents’ lives better. She thanked the Fassnidge Memorial Trust, Yiewsley and West Drayton Foodbank, Bell Farm Christian Centre, Addiya Maya Chakra Temple and all of the foodbanks that had supplied food to hungry residents. 


The Mayor also thanked Hillingdon Samaritans, Age UK, Hillingdon 4 All and the Centre for ADHD and Autism Support for their continuous communication with all age groups that had been suffering emotionally or feeling isolated. She thanked Halo and Bereavement Care for taking the time to make calls and listen to those who had lost a loved one during the pandemic, to the pandemic. She thanked the Council’s waste team, social care team, dementia team and children’s care service team. She noted the hard work of charities, societies and care home staff around the Borough which deserved recognition. Individuals such as “the neighbour” and “the friend” who had checked on others who might have been struggling should also be recognised and she commended the committed teaching staff and parents around the Borough as well as NHS staff.


The Mayor acknowledged that she had not included the many individuals and groups of people who should be commended but noted that they were all recognised in this message. She gave a heartfelt thank you to all of these heroes who were very much appreciated.


Statement from the Leader of the Council

The resurgence of the pandemic had required the Council to adapt but it continued to provide services to residents other than those services required to be closed under the lockdown restrictions. Investment in mobile technology had enabled those staff who did not need to go to the Civic Centre to be able to work remotely and all meetings were now being held virtually.


Since November 2020, there had been no significant change in the Council’s financial position with a net in-year underspend of £3.3m up to November 2020. Unallocated reserves were project to be £31.2m at the end of the year. In addition, there were earmarked reserves of £9.1m that had been set aside to manage unfunded COVID-related expenditure. This was estimated to be sufficient to prevent any calls on general reserves.


The increasing seriousness of the spread of the new variant of the COVID virus had been national news for some weeks; the rise in hospitalisations and deaths was of great concern and the situation locally was no different. The infection rate, which was a seven-day moving average per 100,000 residents, had been 799 yesterday which was double the rate at the last Council meeting. The positivity rate, which was the percentage of residents tested that were found to have COVID, had risen from 9.8% to 22.3% over the same period. This was thought to be an important measure as the higher the positivity rate, the more prevalent the infection amongst the community.  The rate had been above 20% since the turn of the year and it was too early to see any emerging trend that this might be lowering locally.


It was sombre to note that, since Council last met, a further 81 Hillingdon residents had died having had a Coronavirus diagnosis within the previous 28 days. This took the total number of such deaths to 417. Health services had been under enormous pressure with full occupancy of all intensive care and acute respiratory beds in Hillingdon Hospital. To help reduce the pressure on nurses and doctors, it would be important that everyone follow Government guidelines and obey the regulations. A great deal of residents and businesses had fully complied, but the Council needed to be tough with those that had not. To this end, the Leader had requested that the Council work even more closely with the police to identify and tackle residents and businesses that were putting lives at risk by ignoring the rules. Officers would now immediately issue fixed penalty notices for the most flagrant breaches and, in all other cases, after a single warning had been given and ignored.


The temporary mortuary at Breakspear Crematorium, which was run by Westminster City Council, had been re-established and would become operational the following week. On a more positive note, the Council had been providing and staffing testing centres at the Civic Centre and Beck Theatre for use by asymptomatic staff and residents. Council staff that were required to attend work were being encouraged to be tested every 3-5 days.


Statement of Licensing Policy pdf icon PDF 57 KB

To consider the adoption of the Policy

Additional documents:


Councillor Riley moved, and Councillor Arnold seconded, the recommendation as set out on the Order of Business and it was:


RESOLVED: That the Statement of Licensing Policy be adopted with effect from 14 January 2021 to 14 January 2026


Council Tax Base and Business Rates Forecast 2021/2022 pdf icon PDF 82 KB

To consider the report of the Corporate Director of Finance (attached)

Additional documents:


Councillor Goddard moved, and Councillor Edwards seconded, the recommendations as set out on the Order of Business andit was:



a)    the report of the Corporate Director of Finance for the calculation of the Council Tax base and the Business Rates Forecast be approved;

b)   in accordance with the Local Authorities (Calculation of Council Tax base) (England) Regulations 2012 the amount calculated by the London Borough of Hillingdon as its Council Tax base for 2021/22 shall be 102,071.

c)    authority be delegated to the Corporate Director of Finance to submit the 2021/22 NNDR1 return to the Ministry of Housing, Communities & Local Government (MHCLG) and the Greater London Authority (GLA).

d)   the continuation of the Council’s policy of passporting Government discounts and reliefs applied to Business Rates to the ratepayer be approved.


Members' Questions pdf icon PDF 54 KB

To take questions submitted by Members in accordance with Council Procedure Rule 11


8.1       Question submitted by councillor SWEETING TO THE CABINET MEMBER fOR finance - COUNCILLOR goddard:


“Please could the Cabinet Member provide an audit of capital funds spent on footway repairs in Hillingdon for financial years 2018/19, 2019/20 and the current financial year, 2020/21 including the tranche of monies as reported in the Capital Release report of November 2020 broken down into wards currently served by:

1.      Conservative Councillors

2.      Labour Councillors.”


Councillor Goddard advised that carrying out an audit of the capital funds spent for each of the specified financial years and broken down as requested would be both time consuming and costly. Given the amount of detail that would need to be provided, he proposed that an extract from the financial records be provided to Councillor Sweeting via email.


By way of a supplementary question, Councillor Sweeting asked why there was such a significant difference between the amount of money spent by the Council in the last three years on pavement repairs in the wards served by Conservative Councillors compared to wards served by Labour Councillors, as highlighted in the capital release report on 5 November 2020. The report had showed that only 4 out of 42 footpaths earmarked for repair had been in Labour wards, resulting in some 91% (over £4.7million) of the capital monies being spent in Conservative wards compared to 9% (less than £400k) allocated to Labour wards. This followed the same pattern of the preceding two years when 90% and 88% of funds were spent in Conservative wards compared to just 10% and 12% respectively spent in Labour wards. Councillor Sweeting questioned whether residents in Conservative wards happened to crack their pavements more easily than residents in Labour wards, or whether there was some more obvious reason as Labour Councillors reported pavement dilapidation regularly and thoroughly but often to no avail. She requested a written response to her supplementary question as well as her initial question.


Councillor Goddard stated that he did not want to second guess the answers that might be provided in his response to the initial question. However, he believed that the work had been carried out as the result of direct requests from Ward Councillors and residents and was not aware of a track record of Labour Members requests being refused. It was likely that Conservative Members had been more proactive than Labour Members.


[WRITTEN RESPONSE: I have provided an analysis of footways expenditure allocated by Ward for the last two full financial years (in Minute Annex A to these minutes) and as reflected in the capital release decision taken in November 2020 in respect of the current financial year.


As it is clearly a related subject and that it would be an inconsistency to consider one without the other, I have also included an analysis of expenditure across the three years on carriageways, similarly allocated by ward.


I offer you the following observations about this: 


1. An argument is frequently made by the opposition that this administration invests far greater funds North of the A40 (which are all Conservative wards) as opposed to South of the A40 (where all the Labour wards are situated). However, if you take a look at the total expenditure across the three financial years, £6,066,966 has been spent on footways North of the A40, whilst £8,425,038 has been spent in the South. 


Similarly, on carriageways, £4,348,244 has been spent in the North in the three years, whilst £9,602,698 has been invested in the South.


In summary, out of total expenditure in the three years of £28.4 million in the Borough on footways and carriageways together, over £18 million has been spent in the South. 


2. There are 525 Street Champions registered in the Borough. 358 are situated in Conservative wards, whilst only 167 are in Labour wards. Over the three-year period, 141 defects have been reported and all rectified. There is no record of any of these rectification requests being refused by the Leader of the Council. Furthermore, a review of Members’ Enquiries has also not revealed any evidence of refusals of requests for rectification work.


This supports the provisional response that I gave you at Council, when I said that the ward by ward expenditure analysis is far more a function of greater pro activity on the part of local residents and their elected representatives, than it is about political bias, as you attempted to suggest.]


8.2      Question submitted by councillor DUNCAN TO THE Cabinet Member for Environment, Housing & Planning – COUNCILLOR LAVERY:


“The Community Infrastructure Levy (CIL) has been collected for some years now. Despite repeated requests by individual councillors and Planning and REESPOC Committees for this information to be released on a ward basis, the same as for Section 106 reporting, this has not happened. The information is available by ward. Could the Cabinet Member please arrange for its release, by ward, to all councillors by the end of this month?”


Councillor Lavery advised that Section 106 and Section 278 legal agreements related to the planning need that arose from developments and covered a range of matters including highway improvement schemes, affordable housing and improvements to parks. The money would be spent in or close to the ward where the development occurred.


Community Infrastructure Levy (CIL) was a general levy paid by developers based on the size of the development towards improvements to community infrastructure.  These contributions were used by the Council to make capital improvements to facilities but, given the nature of these facilities, they might not be in the ward where the development occurred.


The Council had met its statutory requirement to publish an annual CIL Statement on its website for each of the last five financial years. These statements set out details of the types of community infrastructure that had been funded across the Borough using Hillingdon CIL receipts on projects identified within the capital finance and Chrysalis programmes.


The annual CIL report for 2019/20, which would include a comprehensive breakdown of the collection of CIL funding for the year, had already been scheduled for presentation to the Residents, Education and Environmental Services Policy Overview Committee (REESPOC) in February 2021.


By way of a supplementary question, Councillor Duncan advised that she understood the basis of CIL and that money spent in one ward could be spent on infrastructure elsewhere. Councillor Duncan did not want aggregate figures or total numbers and asked that the information provided to REESPOC be broken down by ward (as she had been advised that this was possible) and made available to all Councillors at the same time.


Councillor Lavery stated that he had already answered the question and given his reply.


8.3      Question submitted by councillor MORSE TO THE leader of the council – councillor edwards:


“The Sub National Population Projections (SNPP) dated 2019 confirms that the borough had approximately 42,000 people who are in the current highest vaccination priorities of 1 to 5.


“Is the Council able to confirm the number of vaccination sites and transport arrangements needed to minimise the time for this process to be completed and be able to provide weekly reports on the number of people vaccinated?”


Councillor Edwards advised that the vaccination rollout was a health led programme but that the Council had been working in partnership with health colleagues to find suitable sites for the vaccination centres. The vaccination programme was under central NHS command and control, was expanding daily and had been broadly organised into two streams:

1.      mass vaccination centres had been set up across the country organised centrally with no local involvement. The open units had not been ideally located for Hillingdon residents with the closest centres being in Stevenage, Epsom and the Docklands. Of the ten being set up in North West London, three would be in Hillingdon providing a high degree of accessibility for residents (Winston Churchill Hall in Ruislip, Compass Centre near Heathrow and a site to be confirmed in the Hayes area). The first two would be operational by 1 February 2021 and residents were asked not to attend these centres unless called to do so by the NHS. It was anticipated that, when up to speed, these three centres would have a maximum capacity of 10,000 vaccinations per day.

2.      community sites were being coordinated by North West London Health and Care Partnership, covering Hillingdon, Brent, Harrow, Hounslow, Ealing, Hammersmith & Fulham, Kensington & Chelsea and Westminster, but were being managed locally by Primary Care Networks. There were currently two community sites in Hillingdon based at Ruislip Young People’s Centre which opened on 16 December 2020, and the Navnat Centre in Hayes which opened on 14 January 2021. These two sites had a capacity of 1,375 vaccinations per day. Roving vaccination teams had been operating from these community sites to reach care home residents and, in due course, would visit house-bound residents. 


In addition, Hillingdon Hospital had been providing a vaccination service for health and social care staff from across the NHS, Council, private providers and charities.  The Council’s social care programme started on 13 January 2021 with the intention of vaccinating all 6,000 front line staff (including those from private provision) by 14 February 2021.


Some community pharmacies would also be incorporated into the community stream and the first pharmacy to open for vaccinations would be in Stockley Park. The priority order for vaccinations had been determined nationally and the first tranche from the priority list would be vaccinated by 14 February 2021. This tranche of 41,255 individuals consisted of residents in care homes for older adults, front line health and care staff, residents over 80, residents over 75 and residents over 70. Community health colleagues had advised that 10 of the Borough’s 36 care homes had been completed and 23% of the over 80s had been vaccinated. 


The infrastructure and staff had been coming on stream to markedly increase the rate of vaccination and steps were being taken to expand capacity even further. Health colleagues had been confident that, subject to a reliable supply of the vaccine, Hillingdon would meet the 14 February 2021 target. 


The Council would be advised of subsequent vaccination targets and delivery cohorts and would monitor performance against those targets.  Officers would be monitoring the situation closely but did not yet have any details around the reporting regime or how frequently updates would be provided by the NHS or to what detail.  The Leader had been given assurance that the performance of the local community sites would be reported to the Council on at least a weekly basis. 


An emerging issue was the potential number of people not accepting the vaccine when offered. Although there were very few people who had not turned up to their appointment locally, there had been anecdotal reports of up to 30% of some groups not making a booking. The Council had been working with the NHS and other partners to promote the take up of the vaccine and to myth-bust some of the misinformation that had been circulated.


Being vaccinated would be the best way to protect yourself, friends, family and others within your community and all Members were asked to use their influence to spread this message amongst their communities.


By way of a supplementary question, Councillor Morse advised that the Daily Telegraph had announced a leaked Government policy of discharging people to care homes without being tested. Care home providers had been deeply concerned about the proposal. Councillor Morse asked if the Leader of the Council could refer these policy changes to the Director of Public Health and report back to the Council on any potentially dangerous consequences.


The Leader of the Council advised that Hillingdon had been held up as a model of how to support discharge from hospital with an effective step down scheme for patients who were well enough to leave hospital who had tested positive for COVID-19. These patients were not returned to care homes nor to homes where there was a person shielding. Separate arrangements had been made for their safe supported accommodation within the Borough. This model had been extended across West London.


Motions pdf icon PDF 46 KB

To consider Motions submitted by Members in accordance with Council Procedure Rule 12




Councillor Lakhmana moved, and Councillor Dhot seconded, the following motion:


“Fireworks are used by people throughout the year to mark / celebrate different events. While they can bring much enjoyment to some people, they can cause significant problems and fear for other people and animals. They can be a source of fear and distress for many animals (including pet animals, farm livestock and wildlife). Animals affected not only suffer psychological distress but can also cause themselves injuries – sometimes very serious ones – as they attempt to run away or hide from the noise. The unpredictable and high intensity noises that many fireworks make can cause fear.


“Therefore, this Council resolves:

·           To ask officers to explore how all public firework displays within the local authority boundaries could be advertised in advance of the event, allowing residents to take precautions for their animals and vulnerable people

·           To actively promote a public awareness campaign about the impact of fireworks on animal welfare and vulnerable people – including the precautions that can be taken to mitigate risks.

·           To write to the UK Government urging them to introduce legislation to limit the maximum noise level of fireworks to 90dB for those sold to the public for private displays.

·           To encourage local suppliers of fireworks to stock ‘quieter’ fireworks for public displays.


“This motion is also supported by organisations such as the RSPCA.”


Following debate (Councillors Allen, Prince and Riley), the motion was put to the vote. 


The motion was lost.

Member Question 8.1 pdf icon PDF 143 KB