Hounslow Council

Agenda and minutes

Venue: Board Room, Ground Floor, Chiswick Town Hall

Contact: Carol Stiles Tel: 020 8583 2066 or email:  carol.stiles@hounslow.gov.uk 

No. Item


Apologies for absence, declarations of interest or any other communications from Members


Apologies had been received from Councillor Yvonne Johnson, Vice Chair, and Councillor Corinna Smart, Cabinet Member, LB Hounslow.


Councillor Dabrowska and Councillor Rai had given apologies for lateness. Councillor Dabrowska joined the meeting at 6.55 p.m.


The meeting was not quorate at 6.30 p.m. but the Chair opened the meeting at 6.40 p.m. when Councillor Rai’s arrival ensured quoracy.


There were no declarations of interest and no other communications from members.


Minutes of the meeting held on 15 July 2016 pdf icon PDF 594 KB


The minutes of the meeting held on 15 July 2016 were confirmed with one amendment/clarification:


Item 8 e), page 5, paragraph 2 that item – Repairs to the Round Pond.

After ‘ The vault/chamber…’ add ‘under the terrace’ to clarify the position. Otherwise it implied that the vault/chamber was under the pond.


There were the following matters arising:


Item 4 b), page 2 – CIC and Development Trust Update.

James Wisdom, Co-opted Member, noted that the attached Appendix to the minutes setting out the staffing structure did not appear to include the Museum Curator post, which it was expected would be a long term revenue funded post and was not part of the project. 


Action: Jonathan Kirby, LB Ealing, agreed to check and respond on this point.


Item 6 c), page 3 – Night Fishing

Councillor Collins asked whether lifebelts were back in place, noting the Council’s duty of care, particularly with the possibility in the winter of ice on the pond.


Action: Jonathan Kirby, LB Ealing agreed to check. The Park Guard service should be checking the pond area and he would raise the matter with them.


Item 8 e), page 5 – Repairs to the Round Pond.

Councillor Dabrowska had asked for a copy of the survey results when available. The Chair asked whether these had been sent.


Action: Jonathan Kirby would check and send if they had not been sent already.


Item 9, page 6 – Update on the progress of works to the Small Mansion and Other Park Buildings

It was confirmed that members would be updated on the invitation for expressions of interest once this had been progressed but this had not happened yet.



ParkGuard and Security Update pdf icon PDF 209 KB


See the report in the agenda.


Marianne Boyle, LB Hounslow introduced the report.


The Chair advised she had received an email from a resident adjacent to the Lodge expressing concern about potential arson attacks and the presence of rough sleepers. The Chair understood that the Park Guard service had made a difference to security problems. She had wanted confirmation that the level of service would continue. It was understood that the trial period was 12 months, starting from the summer.


James Wisdom, Co-opted Member, asked officers, when talking to Park Guard about the risks of ice on the Potomac Pond, to advise that the danger came after a period of freezing when a thaw started after a deep frost and the ice became unstable.


Action: Jonathan Kirby agreed to feedback this point as part of the Park Guard brief was to draw on local knowledge.


(Councillor Dabrowska joined the meeting at this point – 6.55 p.m.)


Once the sports facilities were in place, revenue generated would be used to provide ongoing security. It was confirmed that Park Guard operated in pairs, sometimes with a dog and could call on other officers to attend if required. They covered a full sweep of the park. Members welcomed the service.






Cycling in the Park pdf icon PDF 300 KB


See the report in the agenda pack.


Members made the following comments:


1.     Members noted that a current by- law of 1978 forbad cycling in the park. Following research, if there was sufficient demand for cycling, it would be necessary to consider amending the by- law. This might, for example, be amendment to allow cycling on specified paths only.

2.     Members noted officers’ comments that it was proposed to identify demand and then consider routes.

3.     Members noted that cycling in the park had proved a contentious issue in public meetings. Members were asked to note that there was a committed campaign group determined to encourage cycling, often at high speed for commuting and assuming that they had right of way. This interest needed to be balanced against the experience of other park users who often felt unsafe from cyclists riding at speed.

4.     Whilst some members considered that cycling was a facility they should have in the park as part of the health agenda, others pointed out the need to ensure that pedestrians also felt safe and were encouraged to walk in the park.

5.     Members noted the idea that it might be desirable to have a cycle path at the bottom of the park, but pointed out that this might be duplicating the existing cycle lane along the A4.

6.     Members noted that any potential cycle paths needed to be clearly demarked.

7.     Members understood that a Transport for London map showed cycle access right through the centre of the park. Members asked officers to check with the Transport team whether briefing for the project had included mention of this map of proposed cycle tracks through the park.

8.     If cycle routes were agreed, members asked whether it would be possible to light routes via solar powered lights set in paths which would be more subdued and appropriate in the park than lamps.

9.     Members asked officers to check with the Hounslow Transport team where the funding for cycling would come from. Members understood that previously there had been an allocation of £42k to a shared surface. Members wished to clarify whether this funding still existed.


 Action: Officers to check with the Transport team whether the TfL map had been included in any briefing for the project and whether there was still allocated funding.






Presentation on Sports Hub pdf icon PDF 206 KB


See the report in the agenda pack.


The Panel were informed that the condition in the planning permission stated that the final materials would be signed off by the Chair of the Planning Committee in LB Hounslow, in consultation with the Panel and ward councillors. Whilst members welcomed the Sports Hub, there were concerns about the design and the materials proposed.


Members wished to see revised proposals for the materials to be used on the sports hub building. There were particular concerns about:



·       The oppressiveness of the high black roof given the dominant position of the building within the parkland.

·       The wood cladding ageing to black which was considered too dark and prominent in the park.

·       The possibility of the gambions attracting litter pushed into the walls and the difficulties of keeping them clean.

·       Attracting graffiti.

·       The need for assurance that the wood as well as being easy maintenance would not change colour.

·       The risk that the limestone might be subject to dirty water marks, as was the experience with the new development at Dickens Yard in Ealing.

·       The maintenance and weathering of the building over time as it would be more exposed than most buildings from its position in the park.


Members agreed that officers should consult the architects on alternative colours and that this further information should be brought back to a special meeting to be arranged later in November. Members noted that an alternative pallet would need to be discussed with the planning officer and Historic England.


Action: Officers to consult the architects on an alternative colour pallet and bring information back to a special additional meeting of the Panel to be arranged in November.





Update on Park Events Licence Proposal pdf icon PDF 494 KB


See the report in the agenda pack.


Members agreed to defer discussion on this item to the future additional meeting as there was a substantial amount to discuss. Members requested that the appropriate officers dealing with licensing matters should be present.


Members became aware that some but not all of the Panel had been invited to a meeting on licensing for Gunnersbury Events in August. It was understood that this had been initiated by Ealing Events but some members had been excluded from the mailing list. Members sought an explanation from whoever had organised the original meeting.


Those members who had attended had concerns about the proposed licensing policy. Councillor Dabrowska, who had attended, advised that members had asked officers at the August meeting to come back to them with the borough’s Licensing policy and then to rewrite the proposed Gunnersbury policy as a sub set of that policy. They were waiting for Ealing Events to complete this rewrite.


Action: Officers were asked to find out why not all members of the Panel had been invited to the August meeting. It was agreed to arrange an additional meeting with appropriate officers attending to discuss the licensing policy.






Progress Report - Gunnersbury Park Update pdf icon PDF 621 KB


See the report in the agenda pack.


Although not mentioned in the report, members noted that a report had been taken to the Ealing Cabinet in respect of additional funding to match a grant from Park Life. The proposal was unclear.


Officers clarified that Park Life was a new funding stream which applied to multiple sports sites. The scheme had been launched in July and this was the first London authority to secure up to a £4m grant. The scheme as proposed considered Gunnersbury as the sustainable site with smaller satellite sites, in this case Rectory Park and Duke’s Meadows. The site which made more money could subsidise the other sites as the funding pot extended across the range of sites. It was felt that the injection of the grant from the Park Life scheme could enable further income surplus which could be invested for the benefit of the park.


The Panel noted that the proposal for a commercial gym which had now been put forward was not part of the original planning application. Officers explained that the first floor of the building offered flexible space able to be used for a gym and fitness activities. They were looking at activity classes which would be local authority run, affordable and with a public health benefit. The additional funding available allowed for a growing programme. There would be no physical change to the building.


Nevertheless, some residents and members expressed reservations that this new commercial aspect was a change to the original proposal. Concerns were raised that the parking provision agreed in the planning application had not been based on a commercial gym. However, members were advised that the number of people using the facilities would not change. There would simply be different activities. The business modelling had been developed with Sports England and checked with different groups. The gym would differ from other commercial facilities in focusing on younger people, people with disabilities and training in NVQs, working with Brentford Football in the Community. Schools could also use the facilities. Officers were confident that groups would come forward to use the facilities, especially as there would be crossover within families. For example, one sibling might use one of the other sports facilities whilst another used the gym. There was a robust business plan, with national operators such as the Football Association identifying latent demand in the area, so that the facility would not impact on sports and gym provision on other sites. Leisure pass schemes could be available across the full range of activities. The proposal was in line with both boroughs’ Sports Strategies and could also generate further revenue.


In response to further questions, members were also informed that the hours of operation would be as approved in the planning permission, namely closure at 10.00 p.m. Some gates would be closed earlier. The importance of investing extra revenue in security provision was noted.


Returning to the update report, the excellent reports provided were welcomed. There were two main issues  ...  view the full minutes text for item 19.


Update on the Trust pdf icon PDF 205 KB


This item was deferred to consider at the additional meeting to be arranged in November.


Proposal for a Memorial to Joan Catterall


It was confirmed that the preferred option for a memorial was for the volunteers’ room within the refurbished museum to be called the Catterall Room. It was suggested that the Friends of Gunnersbury Park and Museum might be able to fund a plaque for the room.


Dates of future meetings

A Special meeting will be held on Friday 4 November 2016 at 6.30pm.


Further meetings are scheduled for 27 January 2017 and 28 April 2017.


All meetings will be held at 6.30pm in the Board Room, Ground Floor, Chiswick Town Hall.



The dates of future meetings were noted as 27 January 2017 and 28 April 2017.


The proposed additional meeting on 4 November 2016 would be rearranged for a slightly later date to allow sufficient time for revised proposals for materials for the Sports Hub building to be submitted.


Urgent Business

Any business which the Chair agrees to accept on grounds of urgency.


There was no urgent business. Given the length of the agenda, the Panel agreed that the following items would be brought back to a rescheduled additional meeting:


·       Progress on the Sports Hub

·       Update on the Licensing Policy

·       Update on the Trust.