October 6th 2020 Meeting Minutes

October 6th 2020 Meeting Minutes




Present: Couns Salton, East, Connor, Browne, Smith, Davies, Taylor and Brookfield.

1.Welcome and introduction:  Coun. Salton welcomed everyone and thanked all councillors for their input during lockdown.

2.Apologies:  Coun., Entwistle.

3.Declaration of interests :


  1. Minutes of the last meeting:

These were agreed and will be signed off at the next physical meeting.


  1. Public forum:


  1. Mayors Update:


Coun Salton had met BWD network manager Simon Littler along with Coun Connor, East and BWD Coun. Julie Slater to discuss the A666 crossing. He assured them, that although it will not be the same kind, it will be safe and situated lower down near Devon Street. Work is due to start later this month.

Coun Salton had visited Meeting Places and seen the work of the youth zone and holiday club. She said Age Concern are starting Thai Chi lessons and anyone needing further information should contact her.

  1. Deputy chairmans update:

Coun East said the youth zone at Meeting Places is helping to cut down on anti social behaviour and efforts are being made to extend to bring in arts projects. Congratulations were passed to Steve Frisby who had started Meeting Places.

Four Seasons had quoted for the autumn/winter planting, providing two quotes, one with all the planters covered and one without the motorway ones. It was agreed to go with the full order as the motorway is at the gateway into the town. The cost will be £5,465 and is included in the annual budget.

Coun East had spoken to Crown Paints representatives and they do not wish to hold a meeting until March/April. There is only one outstanding application. Coun Taylor said the cricket club had applied for a kitchen renovation project, but Coun East said the application was for £10,000 and the fund only goes up to £2,000. In light of the delay for a meeting, it was agreed to look into the town council running its own awards scheme, with capital grants looked and at Coun Taylor suggested raising the amount from £2,000 to £5,000. Coun East is to re discuss with Crown Paints.

Coun East said the minutes and news re the Darwen Deal are now advertised on the town council website and also via social media.

He said the Rotary Club of Darwen had agreed to match fund a scheme supported by the town council to provide BP home monitors and pulse oximeters for the local health centre for help with patients suffering from hypertension and COVID. The town council has agreed to pay £1,236.75 for 25 monitors and 15 oximeters.

Coun. East said heritage week had been cancelled due to the pandemic. He said the Darwen Tower fund now stands at £75,555 and the Rotary Club who administer it, want to get to £78,000 before going to the Darwen Deal. It was agreed, as the council is not to sponsor the annual bonfire display, the council would make up the shortfall of £2,445. Coun Browne asked that careful spending of public money is undertaken, particularly in pandemic times when finances are stretched.

Several requests had been made to save the mosaic at Hollinsgrove Church. There is a place for it at Darwen Heritage Centre. Coun East said he has organised a meeting with the Congregational Federation and the Lancashire Memorial Trust to try and work out a solution. Coun. Smith said costings need to be worked out to find the best solution.

Coun East to meet with Darren James re Darwen Live.

Coun. East thanked Coun Taylor for his work organising a COVID bench. Coun. Taylor said the official welcoming of the bench would be attended by himself, the lady who suggested the idea, Coun Salton and Professor Dominic Harrison.

Christmas activities in the town centre are to be discussed. The Rotary Club is hoping to hold a Father Christmas session at Meeting Places.

Coun. East paid tribute to Keep Darwen Tidy volunteers who have worked throughout the pandemic to keep the town tidy.

The Food Larder is now at St Joseph’s Church.

  1. Bonfire

The annual event has been cancelled in its original form due to COVID. The cricket club is looking at any alternatives. Due to the cancellation, there will be no collection for the Mayor’s fund.

  1. Crown Awards

Dealt with in item 7.

  1. Finance

£730 – R Hay for salary and expenses, including webcam for Zoom.

£107.32 – R Hay pension.

£40 – J. Barritt – PAYE

£5.13 – HMRC.

  1. Correspondence


New bus timetables and a plea for help to save Darwen Theatre Library have been circulated and publicised. A letter had been received from Stirling Council for advice on the hub following the proposed closure of the Royal Bank of Scotland. Coun Connor and East had discussed the matter with the council.

  1. Updates

Dealt with in item 7.

  1. Any other business

Coun. Salton said the A boards need delivering to schools. Coun. East to organise. Coun Salton said the representatives who had attended the council meeting from St James’s at Over Darwen had left, but new people are continuing the project. Coun. East said there will be no civic ceremonies on Remembrance Day. Coun. Browne said anyone wanting a poppy wreath is asked to contact Steve Potter. Cost is £25 each. Coun. East to contact the town crier to find out any updates.

  1. Date of next meeting

Tuesday, November 3rd, 7 p.m. Zoom meeting – . Items for the agenda to be with the clerk by October 26th please.

Author: Rebecca Hay