At the invitation of the Chairman, Richard Sumray made some comments on the draft minutes of the recent Sports Advisory Forum meeting.
Places, People and Play
Mr Sumray drew the committee’s attention to the issue of the funding position that was affecting refurbishment works on the athletics track and the cricket pavilion upgrade. He noted that the Ponds Project was resulting in a lack of staff resources, impacting on the ability to seek external funding for such works.
British Military Fitness (BMF)
Mr Sumray noted that BMF was keen to engage with wider activities on the Heath, such as the staging of classes at a recent ‘Give it a Go’ event. He argued that such willingness should be encouraged and put to good effect.
Charging Policy – Athletics and Cricket
Mr Sumray noted that the principles behind the planned charging policy were sound, but that he would be meeting with the Superintendent to discuss the best way to make progress.
Bowls and Croquet – New Lease
Mr Sumray noted that he would be meeting with the Superintendent shortly to discuss the new lease of the Parliament Hill Bowling Green. The Chairman noted that this would take place around 26/27 November.
Changing Facilities – Athletics Track
Mr Sumray stated that the lack of showers at the changing facilities currently on offer at the Parliament Hill athletics track was unacceptable. The Superintendent agreed, and noted the Director had been liaising with the Chamberlain’s and City Surveyor’s Departments to identify and implement a long term solution. In the meantime he informed the committee that portable showers would be arriving later in the week, on 17 November.
The Director of Open Spaces noted that she had been given an assurance from the Chamberlain that funding for a longer term solution had been identified and at present the timetable was for these funds to be approved in January 2014 and for works to commence in April/May 2014. There remained a possibility that the timetable for works could be brought forward but nevertheless she noted that greater clarity over dates was needed before the committee was briefed further. She confirmed that the short term solution of temporary showers would be kept in place until the works had been carried out.
In response to an observation from Mr Sumray that the problem over the delay in the procurement and installation of portable showers as a temporary solution may be due to centralised decision-making within the City of London Corporation, the Director of Open Spaces replied that new Key Performance Indicators (KPIs) were being developed which would focus on the completion dates of projects, rather than their start-dates, in order to more accurately measure effective performance.