Agenda and draft minutes

Community Safety and Environment Policy and Accountability Committee
Tuesday, 18th June, 2019 7.00 pm

Venue: Small Hall - Hammersmith Town Hall. View directions

Contact: Amrita Gill  Tel: 020 8753 2094

Items
No. Item

1.

Minutes pdf icon PDF 131 KB

To approve the minutes of the meeting held on 27 March 2019.

 

Minutes:

RESOLVED:

THAT the minutes of the meeting held on 27 March 2019 were approved as a correct record and signed by the Chair.

 

2.

Apologies for absence

Minutes:

Apologies for absence were received from Councillor Sue Fennimore.

 

3.

Declarations of interest

If a Councillor has a disclosable pecuniary interest in a particular item, whether or not it is entered in the Authority’s register of interests, or any other significant interest which they consider should be declared in the public interest, they should declare the existence and, unless it is a sensitive interest as defined in the Member Code of Conduct, the nature of the interest at the commencement of the consideration of that item or as soon as it becomes apparent.

 

At meetings where members of the public are allowed to be in attendance and speak, any Councillor with a disclosable pecuniary interest or other significant interest may also make representations, give evidence or answer questions about the matter. The Councillor must then withdraw immediately from the meeting before the matter is discussed and any vote taken.

 

Where Members of the public are not allowed to be in attendance and speak, then the Councillor with a disclosable pecuniary interest should withdraw from the meeting whilst the matter is under consideration. Councillors who have declared other significant interests should also withdraw from the meeting if they consider their continued participation in the matter would not be reasonable in the circumstances and may give rise to a perception of a conflict of interest.

 

Councillors are not obliged to withdraw from the meeting where a dispensation to that effect has been obtained from the Audit, Pensions and Standards Committee.

 

Minutes:

There were no declarations of interest.

 

4.

Hammersmith Bridge

This item will be a discussion between members and officers around the direction of travel for Hammersmith Bridge.

Minutes:

Chris Bainbridge, Head of Transport Policy and Network Management, provided a presentation of the Councils plans to fully restore Hammersmith Bridge. He showed slides that provided a brief history of the bridge, including a sketch of the original drawings and plans. The bridge was originally designed to move and flex to absorb shock and vibration. In the post war period, weather and vibration damaged the suspension system, Preventing it from flexing. As a result, this stressed the iron, creating small cracks in the casings surrounding the bridge’s pedestals.

 

In 2012, the Council spent £250,000 on decking however, no plan to fully test the structural integrity or fully refurbish the bridge existed until 2015. It was noted that between 2015 to the current date the Council and Transport for London (TfL) had undertaken £5.35 million of works so far, including weekly safety checks. Furthermore, state of the art sensors had also been installed. Detailed safety checks had revealed 5 micro-fractures so far. World-class, specialist engineers were monitoring the bridge on a daily basis and dismantling the casings around the micro-fractures to identify the repairs needed.

 

The Council was working in collaboration with TfL to re-open the bridge and restoring it to its former Victorian splendour as soon as possible. It was noted that a full diagnostic would be carried out by mid-August and a more precise timescale would be available, however this might be as long as three years.

 

Councillor Victoria Brocklebank-Fowler said that the condition of the bridge was previously discussed at the Community Safety and Environment PAC in December 2018. However, she felt that immediate action was not taken by the Council which had led to an emergency closure. Therefore, she queried why funding negotiations with TfL had not progressed sooner.

 

Councillor Stephen Cowan (the Leader of the Council) explained that the Council needed to review the overall detail to determine a suitable solution to refurbish the 132-year-old suspension bridge. In 2015, the Council commissioned a full structural integrity assessment to check all aspects of the bridge’s structure. The safety checks revealed that works needed to be carried out to repair the decking and refit the bolts. TfL had committed £25 million towards the repair of the bridge; however, the work was delayed.

 

In April 2019 the bridge was closed to motor vehicles until major safety critical strengthening work was completed. The Council’s engineers discovered hairline micro-fractures which had started to appear in the iron casings around the pedestals of the bridge. To date, 5 micro-fractures had been discovered and a thorough evaluation was being carried out to establish the extent of the damage.

 

Councillor Victoria Brocklebank-Fowler asked whether the Council had established who would be funding the repair works. In response, the Leader explained that funding structures were in place. However, engineers were still in the process of establishing what works needed to be carried out to restore the bridge. Therefore, funding had not yet been finalised. In the meantime, the Council was proactively working with TfL to  ...  view the full minutes text for item 4.

5.

An Overview of the Work of the Prevent Team pdf icon PDF 145 KB

The report provides an overview of the work undertaken by Prevent during the 2018/19 financial year, including details about the performance of the team and the outcome of the Prevent Peer Review.

 

Additional documents:

Minutes:

David Chapot, Prevent Manager, presented the report which provided an overview of the work undertaken by Prevent during the 2018/19 financial year. The report set out details about the performance of the team and the outcome of the Prevent Peer Review. David Chapot gave a presentation and outlined the following key points:

-        The Counter-Terrorism and Security Act 2015 had made it a legal requirement for local authorities to have due regard to the need to prevent people from being drawn into terrorism (known as the Prevent Duty).

-        The objectives of the Prevent strategy were outlined, including the local reporting and accountability processes.

-        A steering group had been set up to scrutinise the work of the Prevent team.

-        Community engagement played a vital role for the service - The team undertook 237 instances of community outreach in the borough, in addition, the team was in the process assisting in the creation of a local Faith Forum.

-        The team had a commitment to offer safeguarding support to individuals vulnerable to radicalisation.

-        Training was crucial as it allowed the team to address concerns in line with the Prevent strategy.

-        Training in the education and non-education sector was delivered and positive feedback was received.

-        The teams peer review took place from 20 to 23 November 2018. A range of external practitioners worked together to assess the work carried out by the Council.

-        The peer review found that local delivery was of a very high standard and generally excellent. In addition, a range of recommendations were identified for the continued improvement of local delivery.

 

Councillor Iain Cassidy asked whether any additional measures had been implemented to improve local delivery, outside of the key recommendations identified as a result of the peer review. David Chapot explained that officers were consistently exploring different ways to improve all areas of the service. In particular the Council was focusing on strengthening its communication and partnership work in collaboration with relevant Council stakeholders and boards to ensure that the best outcome was achieved.

 

Councillor Victoria Brocklebank-Fowler queried whether the Council had identified any areas of improvement to the service that could be valuable for the future following recent attacks in London. In response David Chapot said that a review was carried out following the Parsons Green terror attack to ensure any lessons learned identified in the Home Affairs Select Committee letter were implemented.

 

In addition, a Channel Panel was set up with representation from relevant sectors. This acted as an early intervention service to safeguard vulnerable individuals from radicalisation. Monthly community meetings took place to determine areas of risk and any community concerns. Whilst these measures were in place there would always be areas of unknowns that were more challenging to detect at the early stages.

 

Councillor David Morton asked how success was monitored within the Prevent team. David Chapot explained that the team evaluates various elements of its work. The Prevent team also arranged focus groups and engaged  ...  view the full minutes text for item 5.

6.

Work Programme and Dates of Future Meetings pdf icon PDF 52 KB

Minutes:

RESOLVED:

THAT the Committee noted the work programme.

 

7.

Exclusion of Press and Public

The Committee is invited to resolve, under Section 100A (4) of the Local Government Act 1972, that the public and press be excluded from the meeting during the consideration of the following items of business, on the grounds that they contain the likely disclosure of exempt information, as defined in paragraph 3 of Schedule 12A of the said Act, and that the public interest in maintaining the exemption currently outweighs the public interest in disclosing the information.

Minutes:

RESOLVED:

THAT under Section 100A(4) of the Local Government Act 1972, that the public and press be excluded from the meeting during the consideration of the following items of business, on the grounds that they contain the likely disclosure of exempt information, as defined in paragraph 3 of Schedule 12A of the said Act, and that the public interest in maintaining the exemption currently outweighs the public interest in disclosing the information.

8.

An Overview of the Work of the Prevent Team (Exempt Elements)

This report contains the exempt elements of Item 4.

Minutes:

The exempt elements of the report were noted.