To note and approve all matters in the report.
Richard Gill, Advisor to the Trust, presented the report.
HS2 Bill Alternative Ecological Mitigation
Richard Gill noted that there was a legal agreement between the Council and HS2 which sets out the Alternative Ecological Mitigation (AEM) works agreed as an alternative to the original plans set out by HS2. It was recommended that the Trust Committee approved an option for the AEM master plan as set out in paragraph 2.13 of the Manager’s report. It was highlighted that the Friends of the Scrubs were not happy with some of the items included within the masterplan.
The Chair asked if members had any views on which of the 3 options, they felt were preferable.
Stephen Waley-Cohen, Co-opted Member requested that a subgroup meeting be arranged so that a revised masterplan could be brought to the Trust Committee for immediate approval. Stephen Waley-Cohen was also happy to attend the subgroup meeting as a representative of Friends of the Scrubs.
Members agreed with this suggestion and noted that certain key aspects needed to be reviewed via a subgroup meeting before the final plan could be approved.
The Chair agreed that option 3 - to request a revised masterplan, with the need of an urgent subgroup meeting would be the most appropriate way to proceed.
Action: Richard Gill
HS2 – Compensation Code Temporary access to Trust Land
Richard Gill explained that the planned re-route of the Stamford Brook sewer through the northern section of Wormwood Scrubs had now been confirmed and possession of some of the land was required. Some of the land would also need to be cleared for construction works. It was noted that the Trust was recommended to request H&F officers to appoint a specialist surveyor and legal advice to submit claims for disturbance and compensation for the proposed HS2 works on the Trust land. The specialist advice would be responsible for negotiation of the final terms of compensation and disturbance and advice on reinstatement works.
Stephen Waley-Cohen asked whether it would be possible to remove some of the over grown bramble, along the route as part of the works. Richard Gill said that this could be put forward to HS2. He explained that some of the large trees would also be removed as part of the works and the Trust needed to be made aware that this could lead to public complaints.
Stephen Waley-Cohen requested that the website be updated, and good signage be placed along the route explaining the reasons why these works were being carried out.
Action: Richard Gill
Councillor Belinda Donovan asked if the trees that were being removed could be replaced after the works were carried out. Richard Gill said that damages, caused by installing the sewer route would be replaced, by HS2 and this had been agreed in principle.
The Committee agreed for H&F officers to appoint a specialist surveyor and legal advice for temporary HS2 access onto Trust land.
Kensington Aldridge Academy
Richard Gill noted that the Trust was asked to recommend that H&F officers were approved to revise the walkway between KAA and Burlington Danes School and ensure that the appropriate licence was in place.
The Chair noted that the access road was currently in a very poor condition and asked whether repair works could be carried out to improve the state of the road. Richard Gill explained that there was an agreement with the school to repair the road after the temporary school was taken down. The Chair requested, Richard Gill to ask the school when they were planning on vacating the site and if there was any potential to share the costs at an earlier stage, due to the current condition of the access road.
Councillor Helen Rowbottom said that it would be useful to have a breakdown on what monies were available to the Trust and under which parameters they could be spent.
The Chair noted that she had received some concerns around anti-social behaviour taking place at Woodman’s Mews Estate associated with the two schools. She said that it would be very helpful to arrange a meeting with the Headteacher’s of the two schools to discuss these issues in detail.
Action – Richard Gill
The Committee agreed the recommendation.
Community Safety Update
Richard Gill explained that patrols had been in place since April from the Community safety team to help manage the social distancing requirements in public parks. Patrols were carried out on at least a daily basis.20 incidents were recorded at the Scrubs from 1st Jan to June 18th, 2020.
Councillor Helen Rowbottom asked if there were any other data sources that could be integrated in addition to the current data for recording incidents. Richard Gill explained that data received from parks patrols could also be shared at future meetings.
Stephen Hollingworth explained that last week Thursday a gathering took place at the Scrubs, involving 500 people. The Police were informed, and they moved people on around 9pm. The Police also prevented another event from taking place on Sunday at 7pm. Car parks were sealed, and sound equipment was ceased. This was a London wide issue and the Police were keen to receive any intelligence from Members around unauthorised future events of a similar nature.
Stephen Waley-Cohen, said that whilst he was in favour of people enjoying the open space at the Scrubs, what measures were being put into place to ensure people were complying with the rules.
Stephen Hollingworth said resources were deployed from across the Council and a private security company to ensure social distancing measures were being adhered to, however this was not sustainable as a longer-term approach. It was noted that more signs, which set out the bylaws could be put up around the Scrubs to help mitigate some of these concerns. However, this was a growing concern which was challenging to resolve at this stage. Richard Gill noted interpretation panels that outlined the intention of the space and contact information for Parks Police could be put up at the opening of each entrance point.
Miriam Shea, Co-opted Member noted that it was also important not to discourage people from using the Scrubs, but it would be useful to put up signage outlining the rules.
The Chair requested advisors to explore funding options so that additional bins could be put up around the Scrubs to ensure the litter issues were being mitigated.
Action: Richard Gill
Grounds Maintenance and site management update
Richard Gill explained that the Linford Christie Stadium, playgrounds and outdoor gyms had been closed. We would be looking to open these on 4th July when it was safe to do so.
Management of Giant hogweed had been necessary this year again. This could cause severe burns if the plant was in contact with skin. This had been controlled next to pathways which looked unsightly and had caused some concern but the risk of injuring people using these paths, especially children, needed to be addressed.
A structural survey had been received for Park Lodge. This showed considerable work would have to be carried out. There would also be a need to address some of the potholes on the access road from Scrubs Lane at least as an interim measure.
Consideration was being given to the introduction of honey bees at Woodman’s Mews Community garden as part of a community project. The Chair requested that notices were provided to to all members who used the Community gardens.
Action – Richard Gill
Richard Gill explained that no events have been held at the Scrubs during the COVID-19 pandemic.
Kensington Dragons Football Club (KDFC) Proposal
The Chair explained that Kensington Dragons Football Club had sent her documents containing financial projections relating to their proposals around improved grass pitches adjacent to Linford Christie Stadium (LCS). These would be circulated to Committee members after the meeting.
The Chair explained that discussions around the proposals would be held at the next available meeting date.
Action: Amrita Gill
Finance - Update on the 2018/19 Accounts
Carmen Lomotey, Advisor to the Trust introduced the Finance items.
Carmen Lomotey noted that the 2018/19 accounts were presented to the January Committee and remained subject to audit; audit work was substantially complete; however, the finalisation of accounts depended on the final agreement of the 2020/21 budget (to satisfy technical going concern requirements).
Financial Outturn 2019/20
Carmen Lomotey explained that the budget for 2019/20 was set with an anticipated surplus of £15,890 to be added to the Trust’s reserves. The outturn against this was a surplus of £136,825, which was £120,935 better than budget.
Stephen Waley-Cohen asked for further clarification to be provided around the governance costs to the Council. Carmen Lomotey said that these were outlined in the report. Governance costs were £27,340, including £20,130 audit fees (£5,115 backdated 2018/19), £2999 legal fees, and £4,301 finance support costs. These costs had been apportioned to the expenditure items based on value.
Pay and Display and Cashless Parking income was budgeted at £345,428. However, actual income, at £324,945, was £20.483 lower than budget. Half of this shortfall, £10,008, occurred in March 2020, which was likely to be a result of the Covid-19 lockdown. It was likely that the effects of the lockdown would impact on the income for the first quarter of 2020/21.
Financial Budget 2020/21
Carmen Lomotey explained that the proposal was for a 2020/21 net income budget of £103,865. This was set lower than the 2019/20 outturn (net income of £136,825) as impact of Covid-19 and higher costs were anticipated.
The proposed 2020/21 income budget was £975,164. This was £18,849 less than the 2019/20 outturn, but significantly more than 2016-17, before occupation of the Kensington Aldridge Academy (KAA).
The proposed 2020/21 expenditure budget was £871,299. Expenditure was planned as far as possible, with priority being given to essential works. All costs were estimated, including Grounds Maintenance uplift and audit fees.
The Chair requested that a report around the Parks Lodge tenancy be brought to a future Committee.
Action: Richard Gill
Wormwood Scrubs Charitable Trust Funds
Carmen Lomotey noted that the cash reserves had significantly increased since the end of 2016/17 and were expected to increase further by the end of 2021/22 as additional income from KAA was received.
The 2020/21 budget anticipated net income of £103,865. The Trust’s forecasted opening unrestricted funds balance for 2020/21 was £879,012. The 2020/21 budget, therefore, increased these funds to £982,877 and the Trust’s closing funds for 20201/21 to £5,982,878 when £5,000,001 restricted funds were added. There were significant uncertainties around possible future income from July 2022. Possible streams include securing a significant event and generating income from commercial activities.
The Committee agreed to approve the budget for 2020/21.
- The Committee approved the budget for 2020/21
- The Committee approved an option 3 for the AEM masterplan
- The Committee agreed to request H&F officers to appoint a specialist surveyor and legal advicefor temporary HS2 access onto Trust land.
- The Committee agreed that H&F officers were approved to revise the walkway between KAA and Burlington Danes School and ensure the appropriate licence is in place
- The Committee agreed to approve an option for the KDFC proposal at the next available meeting date.
- The Committee noted all matters in the report.