Agenda and minutes
Venue: Council Chamber, Civic Centre, Windmill Street, Gravesend DA12 1AU. View directions
Contact: Committee Section
Apologies for absence
No apologies for absence were received.
The minutes of Overview Scrutiny Committee held on Thursday, 21 September 2023 were agreed and signed by the Chair.
To declare any interests which members may have on the items contained on this agenda. When declaring an interest members must state what their interest is.
No declarations of interest were made.
Call Ins - Item 8: Market Procurement
Items ‘Called In’ from the Cabinet meeting of 02 October 2023.
The Chair of the Overview Scrutiny Committee has called in the following
item for the meeting on Thursday 12 October 2023, 7:30pm: -
Item 8: Market Procurement
· To ensure that the decision represents value for money and to assess if proper due diligence is in place.
· To ensure that the decision will not adversely impact our town centre offer.
· To consider the impacts of moving to an operational management operation.
· To evaluate how this decision is reflective of the public's feedback from previous consultations.
Officers: Jamie Izzard (Director of Community and Inclusive Growth)
Cabinet Member: Cllr Lauren Sullivan (Cabinet Member for Community and Leisure)
(Please bring the Cabinet agenda for 02 October 2023 previously circulated to Members).
The Head of Town Centre & Cultural Services presented Members with the Market Procurement report that was presented at Cabinet on Monday 02 October 2023. The report set out the background and current position of the Gravesend Borough Market and highlighted the visions and objectives set out in the strategy.
The report also detailed the outcomes delivered in the strategy from 2020 – 2023. Although considerable achievements had been made, the reality was that the Council had not been able to achieve what they had hoped – especially throughout the Covid-19 pandemic. There had been successes with market businesses moving into commercial units in the town centre, but equally changes such as the drop in the European Go Trade Fund had affected the Market and the Council struggled to achieve its full potential. In December 2022 the Council undertook an informal discussion with market operators, traders and organisations to run the Market more effectively.
The recommendations in the report included delegating authority to the Director (Communities and Inclusive Growth) to contract an appropriate organisation to deliver Operational Management of the Gravesend Borough Market. This did not include a change of ownership; the Market building would remain an asset of the Council. There was an anticipated saving of £100,000 in year one, rising to £126,000 per annum thereafter from this arrangement.
Cllr Lauren Sullivan (Cabinet Member for Community & Leisure) advised Members that this report had also been presented to the Community and Leisure Cabinet Committee where it was felt that there was good cross-party support on the actions being taken.
Following questions and comments from Members, Cllr Sullivan (Cabinet Member for Community and Leisure) and the Head of Town Centre and Cultural Services explained the following: