Venue: Parliament Hill Conference Room, Parliament Hill Staff Yard, Parliament Hill Fields, Hampstead Heath, NW5 1QR
Contact: Leanne Murphy Email: email@example.com
The Chairman began the meeting with a number of notices for the Committee.
The Chairman informed Members of the recent fatality of a man at the Highgate Men’s Bathing Pond and sent condolences to the family and friends of the deceased. She confirmed support had been offered to the Lifeguards and Team on duty and that a serious incident report had been submitted to the HSC and Charity Commission.
The Chairman thanked Members for attending the 30th Anniversary visit which was well attended and received great feedback from attendees.
The Chairman congratulated the Events Manager and the Team on the success of the Night of the 10K PBs on Saturday and the efficient clean-up operation that followed.
The Chairman thanked Dermott and the Team for the informative Heath walk at the weekend which included the activity at the Sandy and West Heath.
Apologies were received from Cindy Galvin, Ray Booth, John Weston, Mathew Frith, Harunur Rashid and Sharlene McGee.
Declarations by Members of Any Personal and Prejudicial Interests in Respect of Items on This Agenda
There were none.
To agree the public minutes and summary of the meeting held on 29 April 2019.
The public minutes of the meeting held on 11 February 2019 were approved as a correct record subject to an additional comment concerning the Humanitarian Aid Workers Memorial and a change of wording concerning the resurfacing of the Athletics Track.
Report of the Town Clerk.
Members noted the various outstanding actions and the update provided thereon.
With regards to action 1, Members were advised that local schools would be approached again after the summer holidays.
To receive the public minutes of the Hampstead Heath, Highgate Wood and Queen's Park Committee meeting held on 5 June 2019.
The public minutes of the Hampstead Heath, Highgate Wood and Queen’s Park Committee (HHHWQPC) meeting held on 5 June 2019 were received.
A Member (Hampstead Garden Suburb Residents' Association) requested an update on the Corporation’s new Sport and Physical Activity Strategy for 2019-23. Members were advised by the Chairman and Deputy Chairman that the Strategy had received significant push back from Members at a recent breakfast briefing chaired by the Policy & Resources Committee Chair. A request has been made for a formal working group to be set up to discuss the Strategy and for the new Strategy to be brought back to all relevant Committees for approval.
To receive the draft public minutes of the Hampstead Heath Sports Advisory Forum meeting held on 10 June 2019.
The draft public minutes of the Hampstead Heath Sports Advisory Forum meeting held on 10 June 2019 were received.
Members were advised that the Fundamental Review was considered a concern to the Forum who felt that the Corporation needed to be convinced of the value of its Open Spaces to ensure that important capital works and projects were supported and funded. Members agreed that Open Spaces contributed to a flourishing society and health and wellbeing for all of London which needed to be prioritised.
Report of the Superintendent of Hampstead Heath.
Members considered an update report of the Superintendent and the following
points were made:
Green Flag Judging
· Members were advised that the Heath had been assesses against the Green Flag standards and the results would be published in July 2019.
East Heath Car Park (A DP5)
· Members were advised that the capital project was had nearly completed gateway 5 and would be progressed on the basis of health and safety implications.
· Jack Straws Castle, 2017/2064/P, 2017/2211/L, 2017/2171/P. The Superintendent advised that an appeal would be heard on 23 July 2019 and that a planning representation had been made by the Corporation against the developer.
· North Fairground Site, 2017/4346/P. It was noted that this Public Inquiry had been postponed until 3 October 2019.
· South Fairground Site. It was noted that this Public Inquiry had been postponed until 20 August 2019.
· 55 Fitzroy Park, 2018/3672/P. Members were advised that more information had been submitted to the London Borough of Camden by the Applicant but that it still did not provide enough detail about the project.
· The Water House, Millfield Lane. 2017/3692/P. The Superintendent advised that a representation had been submitted concerning the construction of a boundary fence.
· Parliament Hill William Ellis School, 2018/1270/P. The Superintendent advised that the Operation Services Manger was continuing to participate in the Community Working Group and the project was going well.
· Jack Straws Castle – change of use application. The Superintendent advised that a decision would be made on the application in late summer.
· Athlone House. The Superintendent advised that a representation had been made against the proposed gate and Officers were working with architects on a scaled down gate.
Oak Processionary Moth (OPM)
· Members were advised that the Team had identified 641 nests in 230 trees and work would begin tomorrow to remove
Members considered the Annual Impact Report 2018-2019 and the following comments were made:
· A Member (London Council for Recreation and Sport) stated that the Outcomes were not clear and were more inputs of processes rather than outcomes. He recommended changing the wording to describe what steps were needed to quantify what was trying to be achieved.
· With regards to “A - The Heath is maintained as a flourishing green space and historic landscape”, a Member (Hampstead Garden Suburb Residents' Association) felt that this did not go far enough, and that emphasis needed to be on the natural environment. He felt that it would be helpful for the document to provide a high-level explanation of what is happening to manage the Heath and monitor this to demonstrate what is being achieved.
· Members felt that the survey was old fashioned looking with intrusive questions (particularly questions 4-6) and recommended more subtle and friendly questioning. The Superintendent confirmed that the survey was an early draft but stressed the need for good data to regularly test that the Heath remains inclusive for all users. It was hoped that all data would be obtained by March 2020 to deliver on the Outcomes.
· A Member disagreed with the reference to the Heath’s thriving aquatic planting and wildflower meadows noting that in recent years since the Ponds Project aquatic planting had become very patchy and that wildflowers were minimal in the grassland. The Superintendent advised that he had reviewed the developing meadows with an ecologist and the soils were gradually improving. He confirmed that targeted work was happening at the Heath, e.g. haymaking, to encourage wildflowers. It was agreed the word “improving” would be a more accurate description than “thriving”.
· A Member (Hampstead Garden Suburb Residents' Association) felt that Annual Report was trying to be too scientific.
Members considered the Hampstead Heath Measurement Framework and the following comments were made:
· A Member (Highgate Society) noted that some people visit the Heath to get away from people with 81% of the public stating that they want peace and tranquillity.
· With regards to the outcome measure collective care of the Heath and the responsibility of individuals on the Heath, a Member (Highgate Society) stressed the importance of a visitor centre which was essential to providing public education.
· A Member (Highgate Society) noted that there was no mention of the ongoing work with Local Authorities. The Superintendent stated that the Heath’s planning context would be covered and that the Corporation’s comments on all licensing and planning applications were being tracked to provide data to measure impact.
Members noted the map showing the proposed locations for grazing.
Report of the Director of Open Spaces.
Members considered a report of the Director of Open Spaces providing Members with an update on the Fundamental Review. The following points were made:
· A Member (London Council for Recreation and Sport) voiced concern over the way the report was written which he did not feel reflected a balance between the City and the Corporation’s spaces outside of the City. It was felt that the focus on the Square Mile could negatively impact Open Spaces and Members queried how this would be managed. This view was endorsed by the Heath and Hampstead Society who were concerned that the Review would negatively affect the heath’s budget.
· A Member (Friends of Kenwood) highlighted the importance of health and wellbeing and regarded it as short-sighted to not include Open Spaces in delivering this.
· A Member (Hampstead Garden Suburb Residents' Association) found the language in the report worrying and felt that substantial savings would need to be made to cover the cost of other big projects.
· It was noted that the report stated that the “importance of meaningful input from the Hampstead Heath Consultative Committee in the process is recognised” and a Member (Hampstead Garden Suburb Residents' Association) queried how meaningful this input would be into the Review. The Member drew attention to the Corporate Plan stating that the basic vision and aims gave importance to contributing to a flourishing society, health and wellbeing, and shaping outstanding environments, all of which were supported heavily by the Corporation’s Open Spaces and contributed to London as a whole. Members agreed this was important and needed to be considered within the Review including meaningful input from the Committee and other relevant Committees.
· The Chairman and Deputy Chair confirmed that they had both become Members of the Policy & Resources Committee and Projects Sub Committee and would ensure the
Report of the City Surveyor.
Members considered a report of the City Surveyor setting out a provisional list of cyclical projects being considered for the Hampstead Heath, Highgate Wood and Queen’s Park Division in 2020/21 under the umbrella of the “Cyclical Works Programme” (CWP).
Members were advised that the cyclical works were all in line with the AWP and that the projects on the main list had funding and the other projects did not have funding.
A Member (Hampstead Garden Suburb Residents' Association) felt that the design of the report was helpful; however, he noted that it was difficult to know if reserve projects were more or less important to those on the main list.
Members felt that inspections and surveys were vital as a continued need and therefore needed to be on the main list. Members were advised that this need would be escalated up.
A Member (London Council for Recreation and Sport) was concerned that there was a build-up of projects and maintenance running behind schedule which all needed prioritising and worried that there was not sufficient capital to carry out this necessary work.
A Member noted that the Men’s Toilets desperately required work and were regularly complained about by the public. The Superintendent confirmed that work to the toilets would go ahead this year.
RESOLVED – That:-
· Members of the Hampstead Heath Consultative Committee, the Highgate Wood Consultative Group and the Queen’s Park Consultative Group note the report and provide feedback on the provisional list of cyclical projects being considered for the Hampstead Heath, Highgate Wood and Queen’s Park Division in 2020/21;
· The views of the Hampstead Heath Consultative Committee, the Highgate Wood Consultative Group and the Queen’s Park Consultative Group be conveyed to the Hampstead Heath, Highgate Wood & Queen’s Park Committee.
Report of the Town Clerk and Chief Executive.
Members received a report of the Town Clerk and Chief Executive concerning the
City of London Corporation’s Policy on Gender Identity, and the findings from
independent analysis of an online survey conducted in 2018. The following
comments were made:
· Members were advised that the aim of the Policy was to provide a high-level Corporation-wide strategy with the flexibility to allow individual Departments to incorporate their own specific considerations. It was noted that this Policy had recently been discussed by the Grand Committee with particular reference to the single-sex Ponds.
· A Member (London Council for Recreation and Sport) felt that the Policy was the right approach but that there was nothing regarding how this would be monitored.
· In response to a query regarding what was meant by the statement of someone who “consistently identifies with a different gender should be accepted by society in that gender”, it was stated that there were no hard rules but that the Corporation were following advice and Equalities law. Members were advised that the Team had received gender identity training which taught that people were to be treated equally and with respect and dignity.
· The Heath’s Business Manager confirmed they were leading on developing values for the Ponds to support the Strategy. She confirmed there was ongoing dialogue and meetings to discuss trans issues at the Ponds and that guidelines were being drafted to provide to the public and assist staff including training and posters.
· With regards to the occasional media impact on the Ponds regarding gender identity, the Superintendent confirmed that the Team was working with the Media Team and Members were advised that any queries from the media must be directed straight to the Media Team for a response.
RESOLVED – That Members:-
· Consider the survey findings;
· Note the Gender Identity Policy and
Oral update from Heath Hands.
Members were shown a video from _ regarding _.
The Deputy Chair advised Members that the Central Grants Programme had a category around enjoying green spaces and the natural environment and was a potential opportunity of funding for local groups. It was noted that the deadline to submit proposals was 21 October 2019 and the Town Clerk agreed to circulate a link to Members.
There were no questions.
Any Other Business That the Chairman Considers Urgent
The Chairman reminded Members that the Give It A Go event would take place on Sunday and encouraged everyone to attend.
It was noted that the Heath and Hampstead Society party would take place on 11 September 2019 at 5-8pm and an invitation would be sent to Members shortly.
Date of Next Meeting
The date of the next meeting is 14 October at 7.00 pm.
The date of the next meeting on 14 October 2019 at 7.00pm was noted.