England, Midlands & East: Committee decisions September 2019

Summary minutes of the meeting of the Committee for Midlands & East on 3 September 2019 at 11:00 a.m. in the Birmingham Office, Grosvenor House, 14 Bennetts Hill, Birmingham, B2 5RS.

Members:    

  • Sue Beardsmore (Chair)
  • Helen Wilson
  • Steve Miller
  • Sue Davies
  • Heather Broughton
  • John Everitt
  • Marion Blockley

Apologies:

  • Jim Harker
  • Phil Rothwell
  • Izzy Mohammad

Committee Business

1. Welcomes and Introduction

ME 19/20 (2) 1

The Chair welcomed everyone to the second meeting of the Committee for the Midlands & East. 

2. Minutes of the meeting held on 11 June 2019 and matters arising

ME 19/20 (2) 2

The Committee agreed the minutes represented a true record of the meeting.

3. Declarations of interest

ME 19/20 (2) 3

Steve Miller declared conflicts of interest with Common Ground as Norfolk Arts Service were a funder and SHARE Museums East were a partner; with the Brecks Fen Edge and Rivers Landscape Partnership; and with the £100 – 250k application Community Archives: Skills, Support and Sustainability as Steve was Assistant Director (Culture & Heritage), Norfolk County Council.

Helen Wilson declared a conflict of interest with Common Ground (item 9) as Chair of the New Anglia Cultural Board of which Norfolk and Norwich Festival was a member.

4. Chairs report

ME 19/20 (2) 4

The Chairs of the England committees had agreed to extend their posts for up to 12 months in line with the recommendations of the governance review. The Board would be discussing the review again in September and would consider possible extensions to members’ terms at that meeting.  Thanks were given for all visits that members had done over the last quarter with lots of project events benefiting from their attendance. The Chair would be attending the Board meeting in September asked members to send her any comments they wished her to raise. 

5. Corporate update

ME 19/20 (2) 5

Colin Bailey provided an overview of corporate activity and highlighted that the Governance review at the Board meeting in September was to rollover the current members during this transition period. They would also be considering recruitment, training and remuneration for Committee and Board members. 

Income was on track for around £315m for the year and key financial indicators were in a positive direction. The requirement to save 20% at second round remained unchanged. Current risks were mainly political and the renewal of the lottery licence. 

6. Director’s report

ME 19/20 (2) 6

Anne Jenkins, Area Director, provided an update on some key issues and projects in the Midlands & East. The Coventry City of Culture application was being assessed and would go to the September Board meeting for a decision.

The Heritage Horizon Awards deadline for the submission of Expressions of Interest was 11 October. The Midlands & East team were expecting a high number from across the area.  A wide range of project and organisation types were expected to apply. 

Robyn Llewellyn, Head of Engagement, summarised the work going on in Areas of Focus. The engagement team had had an introductory meeting with the consultants leading on evaluation of Areas of Focus across the UK.

7. Grant Budget Paper 2019-20

ME 19/20 (2) 7

The Committee noted that the budget for the meeting was £9.4m.

Three second round applications had been received for the meeting.  Members noted the requirement to save around 20% of the value of second round applications over a two year period.  

It was noted that Newark Castle would not be submitting a second round application so their award would be decommitted. 

Five single stage applications had been recommended for approval totalling just over £1m.

Six development round applications had been received totalling just over £9m.  The Committee did not have sufficient budget to support all applications and so were reminded of the need to focus on supporting projects of good quality.

8. SF4 Round 2 and SFF applications Overview paper

ME 19/20 (2) 8

The Committee noted the paper and commented on environmental sustainability which has been strengthened in our guidance.    

SF4 Second round applications for discussion

9. Common Ground: Inspiring and equipping young people to celebrate their cultural and natural heritage;

ME 19/20 (2) 9

Applicant: Norfolk and Norwich Festival

Request: £529,500 (85%)

Project: To provide 3,000 young people with various opportunities to direct change as heritage leaders, deliver projects as trainees and take part as digital volunteers and creative participants. Working with artists, young people would co-create new heritage experiences celebrating a broad range of local heritage

The Committee for East of England awarded a first round pass of £571,400 including a development grant of £41,900 (89% of eligible development costs) in March 2018.

The Committee for the Midlands & East agreed that the application represented a high priority for support.  However, the meeting was not quorate for this discussion and so a decision was deferred. The decision would be taken between meetings.

10. The Brecks Fen Edge & Rivers Landscape Partnership;

Me 19/20 (2) 10

Applicant: Suffolk County Council

Request: £1,970,400 (56%)                   

Project: To explore, restore and celebrate the Brecks edge of the fens to raise awareness of water resource issues, to restore river and habitat corridors, and discover the historic links between human settlement and water. Activities for schools, landowners, and communities would highlight the value and sensitivity of water resources in the area, creating a legacy of awareness and conservation.

The Board awarded a first round pass of £2,121,500 including a development grant of £151,100 (53% of eligible development costs) in October 2017.

The Committee for Midlands & East AWARDED a grant of £1,970,400 (56%).

11. Restoring the Historic Heart of Gainsborough

ME 19/20 (2) 11

Applicant: West Lindsey District Council

Request: £1,250,100 (64%)

Project: A five-year project to deliver a balanced scheme of restoration and repair across a well-defined and focused area within Gainsborough Town Centre Conservation Area (TCCA) in Lincolnshire.  Works would centre on Lord Street and the Market Place and would be accompanied by a programme of activities and training.

The Board awarded a first round pass of £1,304,100 including a development grant of £54,000 (76% of eligible development costs) in May 2018.

The Committee for Midlands & East AWARDED a grant of £1,250,100 (64%).

12. Prioritisation and feedback for second round items

ME 19/20 (2) 12

Two applications were considered a high priority and were supported.  The decision on one application had to be deferred as the Committee was not quorate for that discussion. 

SFF Single Stage £100,000 to £250,000 applications for decision

13. Single Stage £100,000 to £250,000 Overview

ME 19/20 (2) 13

Eight applications had been received. Three were rejected prior to the meeting.  Five awards were made by the Committee (as below). Committee queried the low percentage of partnership funding from some applicants.   

Saving our Windows

Applicant: All Saints’ Parochial Church Council Sudbury

Award: £153,000 (82%)

St Andrews Parish Church, Halton Holegate, Repairs and heritage community project

Applicant: St Andrews Church Halton Holegate

Award: £153,000 (81%)

Restoration of listed church to preserve heritage of national importance and improve access to it

Applicant: Breedon Priory Church PCC

Award: £249,600 (56%)

Community Archives: Skills, Support and Sustainability

Applicant: Norfolk Record Office       

Award: £217,400 (100%)

Unlocking the Power of Communities

Applicant: Heritage Trust Network       

Award: £248,900 (77%)

SFF applications for discussion and decision

14. The George Community Pub (Wickham Market) Ltd;

ME 19/20 (2) 14

Applicant: The George Community Pub (Wickham Market) Ltd

Request: Development Grant of £82,100 (47%) and potential Delivery grant of £989,300 (57%)                   

Project: To bring the fire-damaged George Inn, a Grade II listed building at risk, back into use as a pub. The addition of a community space to deliver activities would encourage social interaction and build cohesion amongst the community.

The Committee for the Midland & East agreed the application represented a high priority for support and AWARDED a development grant of £82,100 (47%) and a potential delivery grant of £989,300 (57%). 

15. Willow Court Farmhouse – Safe as Houses;

ME 19/20 (2) 15

Applicant: The Worcestershire Building Preservation Trust Ltd

Request: Development Grant of £151,900 (43%) and potential Delivery grant of £1,495,200 (53%)                     

Project: To repair and adapt the derelict Grade II Willow Court Farmhouse, located on the Westlands Estate, one mile from Droitwich Spa town centre into six modern affordable rentable homes. On completion the building would be leased to Platform Housing Group (social housing provider).

The Committee for Midlands & East agreed the application represented a Low priority for support and REJECTED the application.

16. Heritage that is Understood, Respected, Safeguarded and Treasured for Hurst;

ME 19/20 (2) 16

Applicant: Derbyshire Dales District Council

Request: Development Grant of £79,500 (73%) and potential Delivery grant of £944,200 (80%)                     

Project: Hurst Farm was a a 1950's housing estate located just outside of Matlock, in the lower Lumsdale Valley area of South Derbyshire.  The project would focus on the historic environment surrounding the Hurst Farm estate, and the creation of accessible greenspace linking a disadvantaged community with the wider heritage rich landscape of Lumsdale and the Derwent Valley World Heritage site.

The Committee for Midlands & East agreed the application represented a High priority for support and AWARDED a development grant of £79,500 (73%) and a potential delivery grant of £944,200 (80%).

17. History at the Heart of the Community;

ME 19/20 (2) 17

Applicant: Staffordshire and Stoke on Trent Archives

Request: Development Grant of £36,000 (86%) and potential Delivery grant of £3,964,000 (64%)

Project: To create the Staffordshire History Centre in Stafford Town Centre. The current Staffordshire Records Office would be extended and modified and the adjacent Grade II* William Salt Library repurposed to create 550m² of fully accessible public space.  A programme of themed exhibitions, activities and learning would be delivered to engage wider audiences.

The Committee for Midlands & East agreed the application represented a High priority for support and AWARDED a development grant of £36,000 (86%) and a potential delivery grant of £3,964,000 (64%). 

18. Saving Worcestershire’s Heathland;

ME 19/20 (2) 18

Applicant: Worcestershire Wildlife Trust

Request: Development Grant of £41,400 (93%) and potential Delivery grant of £523,600 (38%)                    

Project: A five year project, following a one year development phase, to acquire Dropping Well Farm and restore it as an area of lowland heathland. The acquisition would connect four surrounding Sites of Special Scientific Interest and Special Wildlife Sites to create the largest block of heathland habitat in Worcestershire.

The Committee for Midlands & East agreed the application represented a High priority for support and AWARDED a development grant of £41,400 (93%) and a potential delivery grant of £523,600 (38%).   

19. St Mark’s Shelton: All Together Under One Roof

ME 19/20 (2) 19

Applicant: The Parochial Church Council of the Ecclesiastical Parish of Hanley the Holy Evangelists

Request: Development Grant of £270,000 (89%) and potential Delivery grant of £982,600 (84%)

Project: To carry out capital repairs to a Grade II Listed church in Stoke-on-Trent and deliver a wide-ranging community activity programme in a very diverse and disadvantaged location.

The Committee for Midlands & East agreed the application represented a High priority for support and AWARDED a development grant of £270,000 (89%) and a potential delivery grant of £982,600 (84%).   

20. Prioritisation and feedback for SFF applications

ME 19/20 (2) 20

Willow Court was rejected in line with officers’ recommendations and the other five projects were considered a High priority and were supported within the available budget.

For Information

21. Communications Report

ME 19/20 (2) 21

The Committee noted the report.

22. Any other business

ME 19/20 (2) 22

The next meeting would be held at Peterborough Cathedral.

 

The next meeting would be held on Tuesday 26 November 2019.