Agenda and minutes

Housing, Environment and Healthier Communities Overview and Scrutiny Committee
Monday, 16th September, 2019 1.30 pm

Venue: Bridges Room - Civic Centre

Contact: Helen Conway Email - 

No. Item


Minutes of the last meeting pdf icon PDF 88 KB



(i)            The minutes of the last meeting held on 24 June 2019 were agreed as a correct record.


Holiday Activities and Food - Summer Programme pdf icon PDF 212 KB

Report of the Strategic Director of Communities and Environment.


The Committee received a report and presentation providing a summary of initial feedback on the Gateshead Holiday Activities and Food programme which ran from 22 July 2019 to 5 September 2019.


It was noted that the Neighbourhood Management and Volunteering Team successfully secured £204, 403 to provide free summer holiday activities and healthy food for disadvantaged children. It was also stated that the funding from the Department for Education was only allocated to only eleven organisations across England as part of a government pilot.


A summary of the application process was outlined within the report. It was also highlighted that Gateshead’s chances of success were limited based on the figure of 15.9% for children eligible for free school meals. However, it was stated that the application that was submitted for Gateshead presented the data at a neighbourhood level which demonstrated a case for intervention.


An overview of programme delivery was presented. It was noted that 39 venues took part in the programme with a range of activities provided from performing arts to mountain biking. The Committee were further advised that the venues used were located in a mix of community settings as well as schools.


The Committee noted that some venues prepared a packed lunch or hot meal on site. It was also stated that those venues without on-site facilities received packed lunches from the Council’s Catering service.


It was noted from the report that monitoring returns and surveys are still being compiled but that initial feedback has been positive. A breakdown of some initial data already receive was also summarised within the report.


It was highlighted that the most significant challenge when developing the programme was ensuring that the children and families who needed the support were able to have access to it. It was noted that a mapping exercise took place which identified the need for provision in the rural west and the densely populated east of the borough. The Committee were also advised that additional challenges included ensuring that places available were filled by those who really needed them so the team worked hard to ensure that venues were no further than two miles from each of the neighbourhoods identified.


It was asked how long it took for the provision to be organised from the funding being allocated; the Committee were advised that the timescales were extremely tight but that feedback on this has been provided to DfE. It was stated that a timescale of around 6 months would have been preferred.


The Committee noted that they were impressed that a project of this scale had been put in place with so little notice. A comment was also made that it was positive to see that catering was provided at each venue to ensure that the children attending were well fed.


An additional question was asked about food waste, it was noted that there was little to no food waste across the project. It was stated that attendance was monitored throughout, and that catering were updates as  ...  view the full minutes text for item CPL46


OSC Review of the Council's and Partner's Approach to Roads and Highways - Monitory Report pdf icon PDF 169 KB

Report of the Strategic Director of Communities and Environment.



The Committee received a report to provide an update on the current position on highway maintenance as per the recommendations of the review of highways report presented to the Committee in June 2018.


It was highlighted from the report that the number of defects in the second quarter of 2019 remains below that of 2018. It was also noted that the number of defects identified in any one year depends on a number of factors, including the underlying condition of the highway and the prevailing weather,


It was stated that looking at the longer-term trends for carriageways (roads) and footways (pavements) suggests that there is an upward trend in the number of carriageway defects and that the previous decline in the number of footway defects has been reversed.


The Committee were advised that a review of maintenance policy in November 2019 saw a change in repair times, particularly for low risk defects. It was also stated that the previous target for low risk defects has been extended from 40 weeks to 1 year.


It was noted that a new risk-based policy for identification of highway defects has now been implemented. It was further noted that the Council is also trialling a new approach to improving the condition of more minor roads using micro asphalt.


The Committee were also provided with a summary of additional highway asset including concrete structures and street lighting. It was noted that the main risk relating to highway maintenance is the continued pressure on budgets.


It was asked whether records were kept on the number of accidents reported on the highway. It was noted that records of defects are recorded if they are reported; it was also noted that the insurance team deal with any personal injury matters.



(i)            The Committee noted the contents of the report and agreed to receive additional updates at a future meeting.







Work Programme pdf icon PDF 52 KB

Joint report of the Chief Executive and the Strategic Director of Corporate Services and Governance.

Additional documents:


The Committee received the report setting out the provisional work programme for the municipal year 2019/20.



(i)            The Committee noted the contents of the Work Programme.

(ii)           The Committee agreed that the Work Programme be brought to the Committee to identify any additional policy issues, which the Committee may be asked to consider.