Mayor's Report 2020-21

The following report was presented to the Annual Town Meeting held on Monday 26th April 2021

I would like to begin by thanking our County Councillor Judith Twigg, Peak Park member Kath Potter, our District Councillors Alyson Hill, Alasdair Sutton and Mark Wakeman for all their work on behalf of Bakewell.

This May election sees the "end of an era" with Cllr Twigg not standing for re-election, we wish her the very best for her retirement. We will always think of her as a person with Bakewell at heart.

I also thank fellow Town Council members for all their work over the last 12 months as we have come to terms with the rapid changes necessitated by the COVID-19 pandemic. Cllr Philippa Tilbrook stood down; I would like to thank her for her contributions in 10 years as a Town Councillor. Cllr Adele Eyre was co-opted to the Town Council in September – welcome, Adele.

The Town Council met 16 times during 2020-21 with all meetings being held remotely. Members of the public have been welcome to join the meetings and make representations in Public Speaking.

We have commented on a total of 63 planning applications. Major applications have included the proposed Health Hub/Ambulance Station at Newholme and work to the Rutland Hotel. An application that attracted significant public interest was one submitted by DDDC for a Café in The Recreation Ground. 28 members of the public attended the remote meeting and were able to put questions and comments to senior officers of the District Council. The application was subsequently withdrawn.

Despite the difficulties posed by the pandemic a great deal has been achieved over the last year with projects including:

  • Tree and Woodland Management
  • The Neighbourhood Plan
  • Repairs and renewals of the walls at Parsonage Field, along with plans for a community planting of young trees (if regulations allow) in September 2021
  • Bids for funding for a major project to reinstate the riverbank at Scot's Garden and downstream of Bakewell Bridge (a joint project with DDDC and Haddon Estate)
  • Repairs to the path in Scot's Garden following flood damage
  • The repainting of our street furniture and benches
  • The establishment of a Town Council Facebook page
  • Working to establish cycle parking at Water Street
  • Working with the National Park Authority to ameliorate the effect of empty buildings and the District Council to support the Welcome Back Fund

In addition to our project work, we have raised concerns or made representations on a wide range of issues including:

  • Proposals for streetscene interventions to improve social distancing
  • Supporting a ban on the use of disposable barbeques
  • The control of banners and informal advertising
  • Representations to DCC regarding speeding on Baslow Road
  • Love locks on Weir Bridge
  • Travellers
  • Requested additional signage to deter the feeding of birds at Riverside

We have provided responses to consultations and surveys on:

  • Locations of DDDC litter bins
  • Verges for biodiversity planting
  • Reform of the Planning System
  • Electoral boundaries
  • DDDC's Statement of Community Involvement
  • PDNPA's Residential Annexes Supplementary Planning Document
  • DCC's lifting of restrictive covenant at Haig House and replacement of covenant on the Memorial Garden
  • PDNPA "Listening to Young People in the National Park"

The Town Council has participated (remotely) in Peak Park Parishes Day, DDDC "Closer Working with Town and Parish Councils" meetings and briefing sessions for Chairs and Clerks organised by the Derbyshire Association of Local Councils

Our website, the "public face" of the Town Council for many, continues to provide access to a great deal of information. Page views over the last twelve months have exceeded 85,500.

We continued to offer Christmas trees to traders in the town and provided the public Christmas tree at Bath Gardens.

With so much of life "on hold" grant applications have been few. We have, however supported the work of Bakewell in Bloom with funding of £650.

We continue to support the Fairtrade Campaign and are working to renew Bakewell's Fairtrade Town status in the coming months.

After such an intensely difficult twelve months I sincerely hope that the coming year will see a more recognisable way of life return, one which will allow us to again enjoy the activities and events that make life worth living and which helps the Bakewell community prosper.

Cllr Paul Morgans
Outgoing Mayor

Posted: Tue, 27 Apr 2021 13:59 by John Rowe

Tags: Annual Town Meeting, Mayor