Agenda and minutes

Petition Hearing - Cabinet Member for Finance, Property and Business Services
Tuesday, 8th October, 2019 7.00 pm

Venue: Committee Room 5 - Civic Centre, High Street, Uxbridge UB8 1UW. View directions

Link: Watch a LIVE or archived recording of this meeting here

Items
No. Item

8.

Declarations of Interest in matters coming before this meeting

Minutes:

None.

9.

To confirm that the business of the meeting will take place in public.

Minutes:

It was confirmed that all items would be considered in public.

10.

Petition For Lighting At Eastcote Bowling Club pdf icon PDF 63 KB

Minutes:

The Cabinet Member considered a petition from residents requesting lighting at Eastcote Bowling Club. The petitioners spoke of their concerns and suggestions, and key points highlighted included:

 

·         The club has approximately 100 members, many of whom are elderly.

·         Many activities are run at the club over the winter months, including short mat bowls, crib, committee meetings, and other events. Short mat bowls is run twice a week, with committee meetings and functions held approximately once a month.

·         Events often run from 6pm to 10pm, though in winter dark sets in at around 4pm.

·         Bowls is held in the evening as many club members work during the day.

·         The club relies on membership fees and one-off event fees to cover maintenance and running costs.

·         During the dark winter months, many members find it difficult to walk the path to the club in safety.

·         The path is also used by dog walkers and other members of the public.

·         The path is uneven and in a state of disrepair, while the lack of light discourages many members from attending events.

·         Elderly members have previously fallen on the path when walking the uneven surface in the dark.

·         Members have torches, and the building has a small sensor light, but this is ineffective.

·         Some form of lighting is requested. This could include 1 or more lights, low level lights, ground level lights, and on/off sensor lights.

·         Nearby residents would be unaffected by lighting as their homes and gardens are located far from the path.

·         It is not foreseen that wildlife would be affected by new lighting.

 

Councillor Edward Lavery addressed the Cabinet Member as Ward Councillor for Cavendish. Councillor Lavery’s main points included:

 

·         The Council has installed lighting at other parks and green spaces in the Borough, so a precedent has been set.

·         New lighting at Eastcote Bowling club would be unlikely to affect residents in their homes or gardens due to their location away from the path.

·         The bowling club was a valuable community asset, especially for older residents.

·         The introduction of lighting would be beneficial.

 

The Cabinet Member listened to the petitioner’s and Ward Councillor’s points, and acknowledged that lighting was an issue. However, it was the Council’s position that, as a rule, lighting was not installed in the Borough’s green spaces due to concerns over its impact on resident homes and gardens, its impact on wildlife, and its potential for exacerbating antisocial behaviour and vandalism.

 

Eastcote Hockey Club was cited as an example of the Council consulting residents on a potential second pitch with floodlights, following which a large number of complaints were received from nearby residents, predominantly regarding the impact of the proposed lighting.

 

Sensor lights or low-level lighting could be explored, though concerns remained over the potential for vandalism and antisocial behaviour. Regarding the path, officers could be instructed to review the potential for repairs, in order to reduce trips and falls.

 

The Cabinet Member advised that he would defer his decision to allow officers time to explore the potential for the introduction of low level lighting that would meet the petitioner’s needs, but that would not impact on neighbouring residents and that would be robust enough to withstand potential vandalism. Officers would also be instructed to review whether the path was in need of repair.

 

RESOLVED:

 

Meeting with the Petitioners, the Cabinet Member:

 

  1. Listened to their request for lighting to be introduced in Cavendish Park;

 

  1. Noted that the Council, in common with most similar authorities, does not as a general rule introduce artificial lighting into its parks and open spaces, but it is prepared to consider individual cases on their merits;

 

  1. Noted that any measures introduced into one of the Council's green spaces must be acceptable in type, form and layout;

 

4.    Instructed officers to review the potential for the introduction of low-level lighting, and to review whether the path was in need of repair.

 

Reasons for recommendations

 

To allow the Cabinet Member to discuss with petitioners their concerns and, if appropriate, add aspects of their request for further investigation.

 

Alternative options considered / risk management

 

Options were discussed with the petitioners.