Confidential to members until formally approved
The Kennet and Avon Canal Partnership
Draft unconfirmed minutes of the meeting held on Friday 9th September
at 2:00 at Devizes Wharf Centre
1. Welcome and Apologies
David Inight (KACT), Marian Livingston
(Reading Borough Council), Mark Minkley (Banes),
Ken Oliver (Wiltshire Council), Fleur de Rhe-Philipe
(Wiltshire Council), Andrew Rowles (West Berks
Council), Mike Rodd (KACT), Mark Stevens ( BW) In Attendance:
Rebecca Wells (KACT), Apologies:
Bill Fisher (K&A Trade Association),
David Lawrence (Banes).
MGR welcomed all to the meeting and introduced
Marian Livingston who is the new Councillor
representing Reading Borough Council.
2. Minutes of Last meeting
These were accepted and it was noted the minutes
would now go public.
3. Matters Arising
MGR did write to Robin Evans and received a reply,
which was circulated.
4. New waterways charity update
MS stated that on Monday 12th September the results
of the DEFRA consultation would be published. MGR
would attend the official presentation. MS noted that
BW is still on target to become a charity in April 2012.
He also pointed out that the consultation document
and the response only provides the basis for the
future Charity, and it will be up to the Interim
(Transitional) Trustees to develop these underlying
principles into firm ways of working. The Interim
Trustees have been appointed and they are now
actively setting up the new Charity and also
negotiating the financial arrangements with
ACTION MS will send a list around of the
FDRP pointed out that that the finance has not been
completely agreed and this will need to be settled.
MGR added that there were issues in regards to the
pension liabilities and he felt that the Charities
Commission would have questions regarding this.
ML asked if a service delivery agreement been set
up. MS said that there would not be one per se, but
there would be a contract with government setting out
the obligations the new charity would have to look
after Britain’s waterways.
MGR noted that BW’s properties portfolio is a key
source of funding, and praised the efforts made by
current BW directors in not losing control of this
i) Report from Local Waterways
MGR reminded the group that it was intended in the
Partnership for the K & A and B & T
proposal for BW becoming a charity that for each of
BW’s 11 operational areas there should be a powerful
stakeholder “Local Partnership” At an early stage the
K&A Canal Trust, with support from IWA, agreed with
BW to set up a Pilot “Local Partnership”, by effectively
“morphing” this existing K&A (HLF) Canal Partnership
into one of these new Local Waterways Partnerships
However, it appeared that the make-up of the existing
Partnership was not in-line with the emerging Defra
proposals, and hence new members were brought
onto the LWP, and this existing Partnership continued
to operate in parallel.
The LWP has had some difficulty in determining
exactly how it should operate and, indeed, what its
role should be. The LWP made a late submission to
the DEFRA consultation, largely highlighting issues it
had with the Defra proposal..
ii) Discussions on the future
relationship between the waterways
MGR reported that there now are 3 such Trial LWP's
partnership and the existing
set up. MGR and MS have met with the other 2
chairmen and they all have agreed that there were
issues in the proposed model. It was clear that these
discussions had impacted thinking and a new model
of how the LWP’s should be formed and where they
fit in the NWC governance, has emerged from BW.
KO raised the question as to whether there have
been any change in who the Partnership members
should be. MGR responded that one of the serious
problems has been that the original BW view was that
the Partnerships should be made up of individuals
and not representatives. However, in his discussions
with the other chairmen, they had clearly also
accepted that having representatives of key
stakeholders were essential.
FDRP pointed out that the HLF agreement stated
that BW would show the HLF Partnership their budget
before any works are completed. This then gives the
stakeholders a say in how they feel the money is
being spent. She asked if this would still happen with
two Partnerships operating in parallel?
She added that, regarding the Terms of Reference for
the LWP's that have been circulated, they seem very
restrained and contentious.
MS stated that he does not see a conflict with the two
groups, as they are very different in their workings.
He felt the HLF Partnership was about the thinking
about problems, whereas the Local Waterways
Partnership was about delivering solutions.
FDRP commented whilst the HLF Partnership has not
been particularly active recently, this was largely due
to the lack of any major issues. She felt that the
Terms of Reference for the LWP’s actually were very
similar to that of the existing Partnership! She also
said that her main concern that if there were 2 two
groups there would be possible conflict of decision
KO suggested that the HLF Partnership and the Local
Waterways Partnership should merge in to one and
then all key players will be included.
MGR agreed that this seems to make a lot of sense,
and that he increasingly felt that it was vital that the
Partnerships should include all relevant stakeholders.
6. Update on BW work on the K&A and
MS reported that he has managed to secure more
restriction of boat movement.
funding for the next year than in previous years, due
to the overall number of defects that the canal has
when compared to others. His team are on target to
start the winter program of works, with more lock gate
replacements and some dredging.
ACTION: MS will circulate winter works
The water levels have not been that high due to the
weather we have had. But MS is very pleased with
the way the water levels have been managed.
MS went on to say that at the start of this year there
was a temporary ban on new commercial boat
licences being granted in the Devizes to Reading
section. Before this ban was imposed BW had asked
marinas and people with businesses along the canal
how many boats they anticipated they would be
increasing their number of boats by: This information
was then built in to the proposal.
Work is now being done to see if there are any
alternative arrangements that can be found, and if the
ban can be lifted.
ACTION MS will circulate the list of proposals,
noting that they have not all been agreed.
7. Update on Mooring Strategy work
Due to Damien Kemp being off ill there has been a
delay in the strategy being concluded.
KO has offered to chair the next meeting if DK was
not available. The next meeting will be in two weeks
time. A conclusion should be reached.
ACTION KO to report
9. Date of Next Meeting
To Be Confirmed.