Agenda and minutes

Extraordinary Virtual Meeting of Council, Council - Thursday, 28th May, 2020 5.00 pm

Venue: Online via the Zoom App. All Councillors and registered speakers will have been sent an appointment with the meeting link.

Contact: Susan Howl, Democratic Services Manager  01395 517541; email


No. Item


Public speaking

Information on public speaking is available online



The Chairman welcomed members of the public, Councillors and Honorary Aldermen to the first of East Devon District Council’s Extraordinary Virtual Council meetings on Thursday 28 May 2020. 

He explained that all participants were taking part remotely and the meeting was being viewed online and recorded.

During the meeting the public would be able to participate if they had pre-registered to speak, and the Chair would invite public speakers to participate in the meeting at the under item 1.  No members of the public had registered to speak at this meeting.


The Chairman continued to outline the process for ensuring the meeting could take place effectively for those participating directly or those watching online.


Before commencing the meeting the Chairman sadly made two announcements about the deaths of two former East Devon District (EDDC) Councillors Aldermen David Scott and Douglas Hull. 

David Scott passed away peacefully aged 89 on 20th May 2020, after a brief spell in hospital, and will be sadly missed by all that knew him. David was first elected in 1982.   He gained much respect from his colleagues on EDDC, and he also served on Exmouth Town Council with a great love for the town. David retired in 1999 after serving 17 years as a councillor.


Douglas Hull sadly passed away on 25 May 2020. Douglas was a big supporter of Axminster and was extremely well-known locally for his public service, having held a series of elected offices over a period of over 50 years.

He served at different times on Hawkchurch Parish Council, Axminster Rural District Council, Axminster Town Council (serving as Mayor three times), East Devon District Council (which made him an Honorary Alderman in December 2019) and Devon County Council (where he was also an Honorary Alderman – and a former vice-chairman).

One of Douglas’s proudest achievements was the establishment of the Millwey Industrial Estate, without which Axminster would be a much less prosperous and viable community.  Douglas will be sadly missed.


The Chairman then started the meeting by doing a roll call of everyone present, and then confirmed that the meeting was quorate.



Motion: to determine whether to hold a meeting to elect positions

‘Should the Council hold an Extraordinary General Meeting on 8th June 2020 at 6pm to elect the positions of Chairman and Vice-Chairman of the Council.’


The Chairman said that a number of requests had been made over recent weeks, his responses to which had been circulated to the whole membership. The Chairman detailed the background to the requests and how events unfolded and explained his reasoning for the approach that had been taken and why therefore the Council was now holding two EGMs.


The Chairman then invited members to speak on the issues outlined above.


A number of Councillors stated that they would not be supporting the motion since it was not the right time to have an EGM whilst a pandemic was occurring and when experienced Councillors were already in key roles to provide continued strong and stable leadership at a time of crisis.

Others commented that elections and changes within the Council would normally be happening in May and that by not holding meetings as requested would be undemocratic.


During the debate a motion was put forward that the question be put, which was seconded. The Chairman considered that there had not been enough debate and that therefore the question would not immediately be put and permitted further comment.


Cllr Andrew Moulding proposed having a recorded vote on the motion.

Cllr Ian Hall seconded the motion.


The proposal to decide whether to have a recorded vote on the motion was put to the vote and carried unanimously by those present.


The Chairman then invited those present to vote on the motion to determine whether to hold a meeting to elect positions, and it was carried by a majority of those present.

Recorded vote:

Councillors Megan Armstrong, Paul Arnott, Jess Bailey, Denise Bickley, Kevin Blakey, Kim Bloxham, Sarah Chamberlain, Andrew Colman, Olly Davey, Peter Faithfull, Cathy Gardner, Steve Gazzard, Sam Hawkins, Paul Hayward, Nick Hookway, Sarah Jackson, Luke Jeffery, Vicky Johns, Geoff Jung, Fabian King, Dan Ledger, John Loudoun, Dawn Manley, Tony McCollum, Kathy McLauchlan, Paul Millar, Geoff Pook, Geoff Pratt, Val Ranger, Marianne Rixson, Jack Rowland, Eleanor Rylance, Ian Thomas, Joe Whibley, Tony Woodward, Eileen Wragg, Chris Wright, - voted in favour – 37.


Councillors Mike Allen, Dean Barrow, Susie Bond, Colin Brown, Fred Caygill, Iain Chubb, Bruce De Saram, Alan Dent, Ian Hall, Marcus Hartnell, Mike Howe, Stuart Hughes, Ben Ingham, Paul Jarvis, David Key, Andrew Moulding, Helen Parr, Christopher Pepper, Philip Skinner, Phil Twiss, Tom Wright - voted against – 21.




That this Council agrees to hold an Extraordinary General Meeting on 8th June 2020 at 6pm to elect the positions of Chairman and Vice-Chairman of the Council.


The Chairman declared the meeting closed at 17.28pm.