FULL COUNCIL Wednesday 3rd November 2021

MINUTES

Present:

MembersPresentApologiesAbsent
Mayor: Cllr P Darrington Present
Deputy Mayor: Cllr L Dyball Present
Leader: Cllr M Horwood Present
Deputy Leader: Cllr L Ball Present
Cllr S Andrews Apologies
Cllr C Barnes Present
Cllr J Barnes Present
Cllr G Darrington Present
Cllr J Domigan Apologies
Cllr M Foster Apologies
Cllr J Griffiths Present
Cllr C LeePresent
Cllr V Letchford Apologies
Cllr T Searles Apologies
Cllr A Skipper Present
Cllr J Tuckfield Present

Officers:
CEO & Town Clerk – Ryan Hayman
Sales, Marketing and Democratic Manager – Suzie Barnbrook
Kent County Councillor – Cllr Perry Cole

Public Session:
John Knight – Neighbourhood Watch and Flood Warden for High Firs Estate
93 Pinks Hill, Swanley

11356 APOLOGIES FOR ABSENCE
Cllr S Andrews, Cllr J Domigan, Cllr M Foster, Cllr V Letchford, Cllr T Searles.

11357 TO RECEIVE DECLARATIONS OF INTEREST
None

11358 MINUTES OF PREVIOUS MEETING
To approve as correct the Minutes of the Meetings held on Wednesday 6th October 2021.
APPROVED WITH AMENDMENT

SALE OF PARCEL OF LAND AT PINKS HILL – APPENDIX A
To agreed the sale of a parcel of land to prevent flooding and all other requirements necessary for this project.
AGREED

John Knight: Welcomed this project and said no one on High Firs Estate would object to this proposal.

Cllr M Horwood: Commented that this is a brilliant solution for the terrible problems.

Cllr M Horwood: Thanked the CEO for a fantastic job in negotiating with the Highways Agency. Cllr L Ball: Said he is fully in favour.

11359 MAYORS COMMUNICATION
To receive such communications as the Town Mayor may desire to lay before the Council (Councillors are reminded that no decision making may take place as a result of this item)

Cllr P Darrington, Mayor of Swanley: Handed out awards at Cooling’s for best pollinator. He was pleased to share that Swanley won several awards for front and back gardens.

Thanked Cllr Perry Cole for sponsoring the Remembrance Day Bench at St Mary’s.
Attended Orchards and Horizons Schools on Monday to judge the best Art Essay Poem Competition.

11360 REPORT FROM COUNTY AND DISTRICT COUNCILLORS
(Councillors are reminded that no decision making may take place as a result of this item)

Kent County Councillor (KCC), Cllr P Cole reported:
I cannot begin this month’s resume of KCC related matters without mention of the sad loss of a fellow County Councillor and friend of mine, Ann Allen MBE. Ann was a KCC member for the adjoining division to Hextable and is perhaps best known and respected for her contribution to youth work across the county.

She is sadly missed and will be a great loss both to the Council as well as to her local residents and Kent youth in particular.

Kent County Council is working with other local authorities in Kent to bring one of the largest networks of consistent charging points for electric vehicles in the country.

Six of the 13 Kent authorities have signed up to the partnership, Sevenoaks being one of the six. While KCC has led the reject to coordinate consistent installations in the areas of the county signed-up to the scheme, funding comes from a company called Connected Kerb.

Connected Kerb are one of the UK’s leading charging point providers and aim to install 600 new charging points for electric vehicles over the next 2 years.

There will be an additional 41 charging points installed in SDC car parks across Sevenoaks, including here in Swanley, a massive increase from the current 10 chargers that are local authority located.

The chargers will offer a mixture of fast 7Kwh and rapid 50Kwh capabilities, depending on their location.

I attended the Kent Strategic Environment Conference yesterday looking at how KCC can achieve its net carbon estate target of 0% by 2030 and for Kent as a whole by 2050.

There are some exciting and promising schemes rolling out or being proposed and with COP26 running this week and Swanley suffering from yet more flooding overnight 20/21st October, the timing could not be more relevant. As you will know, some of our residents suffered further flooding to their properties literally 3 months to the day since the floods in July.

This is heart-breaking news and pushing some residents to breaking point. There is positive movement as a result of the public meetings that I held and from meeting with so many residents over the past few months:

We have a Flood Warden trained individual, Cllr Griffiths, who has stepped forward to help with issues on St Marys ward; and has been actively engaged with residents predominantly in Hibbs Close and West Harold. This brings the total number of Flood Wardens in Swanley to 2 individuals, with a couple of deputies.

We need more volunteers and the role will be further advertised through newsletters and social media outlets over the coming months.

The prospect of strategically located ‘Flood Bins’ is being developed and we hope to implement these in due course.

After various discussions, i have negotiated for a number of roads susceptible to surface water flooding to be added to an enhanced scheduled maintenance program and from now on these roads should benefit from regular drain inspections.

Coupled with this, is the request that any of the roads added to this enhanced schedule should have any reported faults attended to within 7 days, rather than the 28 day period as current.

Using external partners, KCC intend to run a professional surface water flood risk survey that will allow better informed decisions to be made in how we go forward to mitigate against the cause and effects of flooding. Difficulties in contacting KCC or other agencies,

especially ‘out of hours’ during emergencies have been highlighted and talks are taking place locally in how KCC and partners can improve our immediate response to events.

I have only concentrated on a part of the issues facing us – there is more work on-going both at local and strategic level involving many agencies that I hope will result in the fear of flooding becoming a distant memory for the majority of our residents.

But these options are often extremely costly and are time to agree and implement.

We cannot fight nature, but we can learn to work with and adapt to it.

We all, collectively, have a role to play in trying to do what is right.

District Councillor, Cllr L Dyball:
Attended portfolio planting for the Queen’s Jubilee Canopy for the Platinum Jubilee along with Cllr Esler, Cllr Griffiths, Cllr P Darrington and Cllr G Darrington. Cllr L Dyball was pleased to share that Swanley’s 1st tree was planted in Cherry Avenue Park.

Date of next meeting – Wednesday 1st December 2021

Meeting Closed: 19:59