Amble’s Community Forum now meets quarterly. Any resident who has views on Amble and the area and ideas for the future is very welcome to join. If you wish to be included on the emailing list, please send your email address to Anna[at]ambledevelopmenttrust[dot]org[dot]uk
Amble Area Community Forum
6pm, Monday 20th June 2011
Fourways 2, Amble
Notes of the meeting
Les Bilboe – Amble Town Council (Chair), Julia Aston – Amble Development Trust, Andy Sim – Social History Group, Iain Hitchcock – Amble Resident, Velda Nicholson – Amble Town Council, Helen Lewis – Amble Town Council, Robert Arckless – Northumberland County Council, Paul Allen – Warkworth Harbour Commission, Craig Weir – Amble Town Council, Anna Williams – Amble Development Trust (Minutes)
1a. Welcome and Introductions
Les Bilboe welcomed everyone to the meeting.
1b. Apologies received
Vic Brown -Shorebase Trust, Lynne Riddell – Amble Library, Simon Johnston – Togston Parish Council, Angela Manktelow – Coquet Youth Team, Sara Jenson-Boon – Coquet Extended Partnership, John Young Snr – Rotary Club
2. Minutes and Matters Arising
Previous Minutes accepted.
Angela Manktelow had left a message to say that everything was on track for the young people’s music event. The date for the event was now Monday 22nd August. Some bands had been contacted and Amble Business Club had offered help if the young people want a hog roast.
Julia Aston was asked to check whether the insurance would cover the young people serving hot/bbq food.
Members asked if Sara Jenson-Boon could give an update on any progress.
Helen Lewis said she would look into street closure licences if it should be necessary to close Lawson St during the event.
Julia Aston said that she had put in a funding bid for the skatepark opening and if successful, a marquee would be available.
It was decided that more information was needed on the event from Angela and Sara. A meeting could be arranged if necessary.
3. Forum Matters
Les Bilboe asked if anyone else would like to be chair. No-one volunteered. Members introduced themselves and it was agreed to keep the meetings fairly informal and not set up a constitution. The meetings would continue on a quarterly basis based on meetings held between Amble Development Trust and Amble Town Council. It was stressed that information and general communication would only be done via email now, so it was important to provide an email address. An invitation to join the forum was extended to anyone else from the area who was interested and particularly to local businesses.
Julia Aston gave a quick run down of ongoing Public Realm projects in the town, which included work at the Welfare, tidying up parts of the town, mending pavements, signage, picnic tables and hanging baskets/planting. These projects are being carried out with funding from (ex) Alnwick District Council.
A discussion ensued about planting and hanging baskets in the town. Craig Weir had provided some businesses with baskets, with the agreement that they would water them. There were many hangers in situ in the town he said but very few baskets.
The state of various parts of the town with regard to planting and weeds was discussed, with much of the concern centred on the Town Square and whether volunteers would want or be able to maintain the area.
Julia Aston said she was looking for prices for raising the flower beds in the Town Square. Members felt that this would prevent people cycling and trampling over the existing flower beds.
It was felt that someone needed to do the heavy weeding and maintenance work before any volunteer groups could be asked to take over. General disappointment was expressed regarding the involvement of the prisons/Community Payback scheme who had simply not turned up in the past. It was suggested that the planting areas around the town be broken down into more manageable sections for community groups and volunteers.
Julia Aston was asked to look at any potential grants so that a project could be got underway.
It was suggested to ask Angela Manktelow whether the Duke Of Edinburgh’s scheme might be involved, although it was recognised this would not be possible until next Spring.
Robert Arckless offered to see if any funding might be possible for wall building or gate provision in the Town Square through the NCC Members Small Grants Scheme.
The discussion developed into whether more attention should be given to the Harbour and Little Shore as they were arguably of more importance to the town, especially to tourists. The state of the area with regard to dog fouling on the pier, and the reason for the planting of marram and lime grass on the Little Shore was discussed, as was the collapse of the Quay wall in 2008.
Julia Aston said that 6 picnic tables would soon be placed on the Little Shore. Town Councillors cautioned that as of next year, when stewardship of items such as litter bins and seats was passed from the County to the Town Council, then if/when such things fell into disrepair in the future, they would not be able to be replaced. This included the litter bins on the Little Shore.
It was agreed that this area was very important and it was suggested to discuss it at a future meeting.
Julia Aston said the Development Trust is waiting for technical information on new lighting for the pier as the existing lights keep shorting. A cost of £22,000 – £25,000 had been budgeted to replace them. The money would come from the Public Realm scheme. In addition, the Harbour Commissioners had submitted a funding application to the EFF Innovation Fund for rebuilding the Quayside.
It was said that things were improving at the pier but irresponsible dog owners were to blame for letting their dogs foul the area. Helen Lewis explained that the dog warden could issue fines, and people could report irresponsible dog owners to the warden.
It was suggested The Ambler explain to readers how to contact the local dog warden and report offending dog owners.
Anna offered to put Craig Weir’s upcoming Amble in bloom volunteer tidy-up on the Ambler’s website
5. Date/time of next meeting
Monday 26th September 6pm Fourways2