Agenda and minutes

Wormwood Scrubs Charitable Trust Committee - Wednesday, 14th December, 2022 5.00 pm

Venue: Online - Virtual Meeting. View directions

Contact: Debbie Yau  Tel: 07901517470

Link: watch the meeting on YouTube

No. Item


Apologies for absence


There were no apologies for absence.



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 Standards Committee.


There were no declarations of interest.



Minutes of the last meeting pdf icon PDF 319 KB

To approve the minutes of the meeting held on 7 September 2022.



Referring to the second last paragraph under the OPDC Local Plan, Miriam Shea (Co-opted member) requested to change the wording to:


“Miriam Shea noted that a meeting between OPDC and the Committee might be arranged to discuss the proposals under the Local Plan.”




The minutes of the meeting held on 7 September 2022 were agreed as an accurate record, subject to the change above.



Wormwood Scrubs Charitable Trust Annual Report and Financial Statements for year ended 31 March 2022 pdf icon PDF 160 KB

This report presents the Wormwood Scrubs Charitable Trust Annual Trustee’s Report.

Additional documents:


Steve Hollingworth (Assistant Director, Leisure, Sports and Culture) briefed members on the Wormwood Scrubs Charitable Trust (the Trust) Annual Report and Financial Statements for the year ended 31 March 2022.  He highlighted the following significant developments:


  • Delivering a financial surplus of £92,592 as it continued to benefit from increased rental income, albeit not all of which was expected to recur in future years.
  • Continuing to provide the site for temporary buildings for the Kensington Aldridge Academy (KAA) school in the aftermath of the Grenfell Tower fire.
  • Engaging consultants to develop a £3.9m plan to improve biodiversity (funded by High Speed 2 (HS2)), consulting with the public and presenting masterplan proposals.
  • Engaging in the development of the Old Oak and Park Royal Development Corporation Local Plan, to ensure it did not impact adversely on the Scrubs.
  • Procuring a new grounds maintenance contract focussed on greater community involvement.
  • Continuing to work closely with the Friends of Wormwood Scrubs through the two Friends who were co-opted members of the governing committee.
  • Hiring a Trust Manager to help develop strategic direction and deliver on the charitable objectives of the Trust.       


Nicholas Falcone (Senior Corporate Accountant) outlined the financial review of the Trust. He said that the general unrestricted income fund for 2021/22 was £1,030,969. The main income sources were the short-term KAA occupation and carpark related incomes.


Stuart McKay (Audit Partner, MHA Macintyre Hudson) took members through the Audit Finding Report 2021/22 (Appendix B, pages 44 - 55) and the Letter of Representation 2021/22(Appendix C, pages 56 - 58), in particular the following:


  • The nature and the scope of audit work being undertaken.
  • Views about the qualitative aspects of the Trust’s accounting practices and financial reporting.
  • Unadjusted and adjusted misstatements.
  • Matters specifically required by Auditing Standards to be communicated to those charged with governance (such as fraud and error).
  • Expected modifications to the Auditors Report.
  • Material weaknesses in the accounting and internal control systems.
  • Any other relevant and material matters relating to the audit.


The Chair and Stephen Waley-Cohen (Co-opted member) appreciated the reports which were thorough, clean and straight-forward.




The Committee agreed to:

1.    Approve the Trustee’s Annual Report and the 2021/22 financial accounts for Wormwood Scrubs Charitable Trust incorporated therein (Appendix A).

2.    Note the contents of the risk assessment schedule 2021/22 (Appendix A - pages 28 & 29).

3.    Note the contents of the Audit Findings Report from MHA Macintyre Hudson (Appendix B).

4.    Approve the management Letter of Representation (Appendix C) and resolve to sign and return this to MHA Macintyre Hudson.

5.    Note that the accounts remain subject to change until the final audit opinion is issued and delegate authority to the Assistant Director, Leisure, Sport & Culture, Steve Hollingworth in consultation with the Chair of the Committee, to approve any changes to the 2021/22 Financial Accounts, Annual Report and the management representation letter required as part of the finalisation of the audit process.



Manager's Report pdf icon PDF 1 MB

Additional documents:


HS2 Update


Steve Hollingworth (Assistant Director, Leisure, Sports and Culture) gave an update on HS2. He said that the planting of seed at the Stamford Brook Site would be carried out under warmer weather, and that the UTX site would be returned upon the completion of the station by 2029.


Responding to the request of Stephen Waley-Cohen (Co-opted member), Steve Hollingworth agreed to put up sufficient number of signs explaining why the sites were blocked off and what measures had been planned to be taken to protect the sites.


ACTION: Steve Hollingworth


Green Flag Application Submission


Vicki Abel (Trust Development Manager) briefed members that a Green Flag Management Plan (Appendix 1) for the Wormwood Scrubs would be submitted in January 2023 for the Green Flag Award the judges of which would then visit the Scrubs on a day between May and July 2023.  The Green Flag spaces would be reviewed periodically to ensure they still met the standards of the Green Flag Award.


Expressing appreciation for the detailed Plan, Miriam Shea (Co-opted member) enquired about the involvement of idVerde in the process.  Vicki Abel said that idVerde had been in close interaction with the Council’s Park Manager in maintaining the site. In drawing up the Management Plan, the Parks Team had consulted and liaised with a range of other teams and departments including idVerde.


At the requests of Stephen Waley-Cohen, Steve Hollingworth undertook to circulate the Green Flag Application for the Friends of Wormwood Scrubs to comment, and to circulate the idVerde management plans for members’ reference.


ACTION: Osama El-Amin


Site Entrance Improvements


Osama El-Amin (Trust Manager) reported the progress of the site entrance improvements work.  He said that the work contract was awarded to a different supplier whose quote was significantly lower which negated the need for the Trust to match a contribution of £20,000. The work was expected to commence on 23 January 2023 and last for 4 to 6 weeks depending on the weather conditions.


Noting the new quote was 20% lower for the same specification of work, Councillor Dominic Stanton asked for the rationale behind.  Osama El-Amin noted that the main difference was the transport of soil off-site.  The original contractor planned to dispose the soil off-site while the new one would re-use the soil on-site. Moreover, the new contractor was a larger company which had more tools and equipment and hence could complete the same work quicker and cheaper.





Hedge Laying Programme


Osama El-Amin updated members on the hedge laying programme. He said that for the additional 325m of hedge that needed to be laid, about 200m would be laid at a cost of £19,200 between January and March 2023 to minimise disruptions to ground nesting birds.


Stephen Waley-Cohen considered the cost of hedge laying at a rate of about £96 per meter very expensive. Osama El-Amin noted that as the expenditure might bring an impact to the Trust’s budget, he planned to seek external funding to cover the cost.  Stephen Waley-Cohen remarked that while  ...  view the full minutes text for item 5.


Date of next meeting

To note the date of the next meeting:

·       8 March 2023


Members noted the next meeting would be held on 8 March 2023.


In response to the concerns raised by Stephen Waley-Cohen (Co-opted member) on the use of sandy loam for footpath surfacing before the mud took over it after the imminent heavy rains and warming, Steve Hollingworth (Assistant Director, Leisure, Sports and Culture) noted that idVerde would do the drainage work there the day after.


Stephen Waley-Cohen referred to his observation about the less satisfactory performance in ground maintenance and site management and asked for any update.  Osama Al-min (Trust Manager) noted that discussion had been held with the idVerde ground maintenance staff and the Parks Team would continue to monitor their performance. He invited members to get in touch if more attention to the services was required.


ACTION: Committee members