Agenda item

Questions from Councillors

To answer questions submitted by Councillors under Standing Order No. 11(2)


a.           Question from Councillor J Walker to Councillor Brennan


“Residents would like more secure bike storage at the arena and throughout the borough.  Could RBC look to include bike storage, like that located in the Bridgford Road car park and the around Nottingham City, for other locations in and around Rushcliffe?”


Councillor Brennan responded by stating that it was a significant challenge to provide a completely secure storage facility, which also had public access.  For example, the unit in central West Bridgford was linked to a City card scheme and the Council did explore if it could create something similar to work with the Parkwood membership card but this would require significant investment including electrical supply.  However, the Council recognised that there had been problems with cycle thefts at the Arena, so in addition to the various CCTV cameras that have been installed, an additional cycle rack next to the entrance doors had been installed, right in front of the temporary desks allowing good oversight by Parkwood customers and staff.  Additionally, if customers used an appropriate D style lock, then this should afford a very good level of protection.  Councillor Brennan advised that since the Council had taken this action the situation with bike thefts had much improved.  Furthermore, as part of the Council’s emerging Walking and Cycling Strategy, the Council would continue to explore opportunities such as at the new Bingham Arena to create more cycle parking and secure storage at appropriate locations and within its resources.


b.           Question from Councillor Gowland to Councillor Inglis


“Given the proposed reduction in the Fire Service in West Bridgford, will Rushcliffe undertake a public information campaign on fire safety (in the same way as it supports the police in security campaigns)?”


Councillor Inglis responded by stating that any such decision would be made by the Fire Authority.  The Fire Service was a part of the South Notts Community Safety Partnership, which was a statutory body under the Crime and Disorder Act 1998, which had the aim of bringing agencies and communities together to tackle crime and Anti-Social Behaviour in the local community.  As a result, the Council already regularly shared comm’s messages including allied ‘community risks’ such as fire safety. Therefore if the Fire Service made this change and created an information campaign as part of their mitigation, the Council would always seek to support and promote that.  The cuts had yet to be made, there would be a consultation period, and Councillor Gowland and her Labour colleagues were urged to petition to stop the cuts.


c.           Question from Councillor Thomas to Councillor Brennan


“What progress has been made in implementing the council motions adopted on Quieter Fireworks (March 20), Protection of Hedgehogs (July 21) and Reducing use of Pesticides (March 2022)?”


Councillor Brennan responded by stating that a briefing note had been prepared, which would be sent to all Councillors next week on the actions taken as a result of all supported Council motions and questions in 2021/22.  However, in the meantime and in respect of fireworks, she confirmed that the Council had issued a number of press releases including an article in Rushcliffe Reports, which encouraged the public use of low noise fireworks.  In terms of its own operations, the Council only used fireworks at the Christmas Light switch in West Bridgford and last year low noise types were used and were well received by the public in attendance.  In relation to the protection of hedgehogs, the Council had carried out a range of communication initiatives to promote the protection of hedgehogs including social media updates, articles in Rushcliffe Reports etc.  The Council’s estates, facilities and parks team had been made aware of the motion and were ensuring that hedgehog protection was integrated into current working practices.  The topic of hedgehog preservation had also been raised in operational working group meetings with key agencies such as Via. Whilst the Development Management team was requesting hedgehog highways (appropriately sized hole in fences to link gardens and areas of open space) to be included on all appropriate new developments and requesting developers to provide guidance/advice notes on biodiversity net gain to all new occupiers explaining what measures were in place on their plots, which included bat and bird boxes they find on their properties.  In relation to pesticides and herbicides the Council had adopted a revised, and significantly reduced, spraying regime implemented by Streetwise on all Council land with particularly sensitive sites being clearly identified.  Written procedures were in place for responsible pesticide use by the Council’s Pest Control Service to minimise impact on wildlife and pets.  An article on the topic was included in the summer edition of Rushcliffe Reports and further work would be included in the next version of the Council’s Environment Policy due in late 2022/23.


Supplementary Question


Councillor Thomas asked if there were any further plans to use the quiet fireworks during the current season?


Councillor Brennan advised that she was not aware, but she would ask that that would take place.