Agenda and draft minutes

West Devon Overview and Scrutiny Committee
Tuesday, 2nd April, 2019 2.00 pm

Venue: Chamber - Kilworthy Park. View directions

Contact: Email: 

No. Item


Apologies for Absence


* O&S 109                 

Apologies for absence for this meeting were received from Cllrs R E Baldwin, J Evans, J R McInnes, J B Moody, P J Ridgers and D K A Sellis



Confirmation of Minutes pdf icon PDF 37 KB


* O&S 110     

The minutes of the Meeting of the Overview and Scrutiny Committee held on 26 March 2019 were confirmed and signed by the Chairman as a true and correct record.



Declarations of Interest

Members are invited to declare any personal or disclosable pecuniary interests, including the nature and extent of such interests they may have in any items to be considered at this meeting.


If Councillors have any questions relating to predetermination, bias or interests in items on this Agenda, then please contact the Monitoring Officer in advance of the meeting.






* O&S 111     

Members and officers were invited to declare any interests in the items of business to be considered during the course of this meeting, but there were none made.



Public Forum pdf icon PDF 10 KB

A period of up to 15 minutes is available to deal with issues raised by the public.   


* O&S 112     

There were no issues raised during the Public Forum session.




Hub Committee Forward Plan pdf icon PDF 95 KB

If any Member seeks further clarity, or wishes to raise issues regarding any future Hub Committee agenda item, please contact Member Services before 5.00pm on Thursday 28 March 2019 to ensure that the lead officer(s) are aware of this request in advance of the meeting.


* O&S 113     

Members considered the latest version of the Hub Committee Forward Plan and noted its contents without any further comment.




Leisure Contract -Fusion Annual Report 2018 pdf icon PDF 70 KB

Additional documents:


* O&S 114     

The Committee considered a report that provided Members with a performance review summary for last year from Fusion Lifestyle in the management of all six leisure centres across West Devon and South Hams.


As part of the presentation that was delivered to the Committee, reference was made to the following future priorities:


-        The aim for Parklands Intencity studio to attract new clientele from a wider catchment area;

-        To Improve links with existing clubs and organisations via Partnership Working with Okehampton Community Recreation Association (OCRA), particularly in Tavistock;

-        To Introduce a GP referral scheme at Meadowlands;

-        To improve links with schools to provide sporting facilities for their needs (including sports days, swimming galas and one-off events); and

-        That, in accordance with their Key Performance Indicators:

o  To increase total participation, membership and swim school figures by 10-15%;

o  To increase target group participation by 10-15% for: Under 16s, those aged over 60, disabled users and females;

o  To increase the customer satisfaction score by 3-5%; and

o  To maintain the Quest Accreditation at each Leisure Centre.


During the ensuing debate, reference was made to:-


(a)  the partnership working with OCRA.  When questioned, the representatives confirmed that they were wholly committed to continuing to work with OCRA and proceeded to pay tribute to the work undertaken by that organisation;


(b)  the future focus for Fusion.  In addition to increasing participation levels, the representatives informed that the future focus for Leisure was on rebuilding confidence and trust within the local communities within West Devon;


(c)  use of apprenticeships.  Having been informed that Fusion was particularly keen on the employment of apprentices, a number of Members welcomed the initiatives that were being used by the organisation;


(d)  the potential conflict between increasing outreach services and increasing leisure centre participation.  Whilst acknowledging the potential conflict, the representatives advised that the overriding mantra of Fusion was: ‘more people, more active, more often’.  In response to a specific query, the representatives confirmed that they were very happy to engage and develop an improved outreach service in Chagford;


(e)  the competitive nature of the leisure industry.  The representatives confirmed that they welcomed non-aggressive competition, as it led to a lack of complacency and an improvement in service standards;


(f)   the moveable floor at Parklands Leisure Centre.  The Committee received an update on the moveable floor and was assured that the organisation remained committed to developing the centre (and swimming pool) at Parklands Leisure Centre.  The representatives also acknowledged that it was now timely to re-open dialogue with Swim England.


In conclusion, the Committee thanked the representatives for their informative presentation and responses to Member questions and looked forward to seeing how the contract evolved in the next few years.


It was then:




That the content of the Annual Report for 2018 and the proposals for 2019 be noted.



Customer Satisfaction Action Progress pdf icon PDF 339 KB

Additional documents:


O&S 115   

The Committee considered a report that detailed the progress that had been made to date in improving customer satisfaction.


In discussion, the following points were raised:-


(a)  The Committee welcomed the ongoing downward trend of call volume numbers that were being received by the Contact Centre;


(b)  Members cited some examples of difficulties that they had experienced in accessing the Member direct dial hotline.  In response, the Committee was reminded that the localities email inbox was a very useful tool to use  as a first point of contact, but the issue of the hotline number would be looked into outside of this meeting;


(c)  With regard to reference in the presented agenda report to: ‘addressing avoidable customer contact’, the Committee felt that this was an unfortunate phrase and should be changed for future progress reports;


(d)  Officers confirmed that discussions were currently taking place with both Design colleagues and the Council’s external website provider in an attempt to improve the format and layout of the website to ensure that it was more reader and user friendly.


In conclusion, the Committee welcomed both the progress that was being made (and the corporate emphasis that was being given) to improving customer satisfaction and wished to thank the Commissioning Manager for her hard work in this regard.


It was then:




That the Hub Committee be RECOMMENDED to:


1.     note and comment on the progress made to date in improving customer satisfaction (as detailed in section 3 of the presented agenda report); and


2.     endorse the next steps (as outlined in section 5 of the presented agenda report).



Joint Local Plan: Standing Agenda Item


* O&S 116     

In discussion, the Committee recognised that the Joint Local Plan (JLP) had now been adopted by the three partner local authorities: Plymouth City Council; South Hams District Council; and West Devon Borough Council.  As a result, a debate ensued as to how frequently the Committee should receive updates in the future.  Whilst some Members were of the view that it would now be more appropriate for the Committee to receive updates on a quarterly basis, the majority view was that, at least for the foreseeable future, updates should be retained as a standing agenda item.


Following the adoption of the JLP, officers also highlighted that great focus was now being given to the creation of a Development Plan Document on Settlement Boundaries and a Supplementary Planning Document that included formal guidance on Conservation and Design.




Financial Stability Review Group Update: Standing Agenda Item pdf icon PDF 55 KB


* O&S 117     

The Committee received a report arising from the Group meeting held on 5 March 2019 that summarised that:


-        progress was being made;

-        there was no room for complacency;

-        there were no surpluses available; and

-        the financial environment continued to be challenging.


In discussion, reference was made to:-


(a)   the estimated figures.  By way of caution, the Committee noted that the figures that were referred to in the Group report were only projections at this time;


(b)   the importance of the Review Group.  In support of the work that had been undertaken to date, a number of Members emphasised the importance of the Review Group being retained following the local elections in May 2019.  In addition, the Committee paid tribute to the Group Members, who it was recognised had been instrumental in making strides to improve the financial position of the Council.





Task & Finish Group Updates (if any)


* O&S 118     

Since there were no active Task and Finish Groups at this time, there were no updates given to this Panel meeting.




Member Learning and Development Opportunities Arising from this Meeting

This document can be made available in large print, Braille, tape format, other languages or alternative format upon request. Please contact the Committee section on 01822 813662 or email





* O&S 119     

The Committee recognised that the key focus for Member Learning and Development in the short-term would be the Induction Programme following the upcoming local elections.



Chairman's Concluding Comments



* O&S 120     

As this was anticipated to be the last Committee meeting of the 2018/19 Municipal Year, the Chairman thanked all Members and the lead officers for their commitment and diligence during the last four years.


In reply, other Members wished to thank the Chairman for her hard work and commitment that had helped to improve the Council’s Overview and Scrutiny function.