Agenda and draft minutes

Asset Management Forum - Monday, 17th June, 2024 9.30 am

Venue: online via zoom app

Contact: Debbie Meakin  01395 517540; email


No. Item


Notes from the previous meeting held on 4 March 2024 pdf icon PDF 177 KB

To agree the notes from the previous meeting.


The notes from the previous meeting were agreed.


Declarations of interest

Guidance is available online to Councillors and co-opted members on making declarations of interest



Cllr Hookway; Affects NRI Member of Exmouth Town Council: Minute 3 Place and Prosperity Team update

Cllr Barlow; Affects NRI Member of Sidmouth Town Council: Minute 3 Place and Prosperity Team update

Cllr Davey; Affects NRI Member of Exmouth Town Council: Minute 3 Place and Prosperity Team update

Cllr Heath; Affects NRI Member of Beer Parish Council: Minute 2 Community Asset transfer proposal

Cllr Hayward; Affects NRI Employee of Axminster Town Council: Minute 3 Place and Prosperity Team update and Minute 5 Property and FM Team update


Public speaking

Information on public speaking is available online





Matters of urgency

Information on matters of urgency is available online





Confidential/exempt item(s)

To agree any items to be dealt with after the public (including the press) have been excluded. Thereare no itemswhich officersrecommendshould be dealtwithin thisway.





Community Asset Transfer Proposal - Land at Jubilee Gardens, Jubilee hardstanding (including playpark) and Beach Court Car Park, Beer pdf icon PDF 493 KB

Additional documents:


An expression of interest had been submitted by Beer Parish Council to acquire land ay Jubilee Gardens, Jubilee hardstanding and Beach Court car park.


Consultation was now underway with senior management, the local Ward member, the Asset Management Forum, and others as appropriate.


The Forum was presented with the expression of interest with a request for their comments as part of the consultation which would assist in informing the recommendation to Portfolio Holder.


The Assistant Director for Streetscene provided the Forum with the history of maintenance of the Gardens.  Negotiations had been ongoing for some time over the wider Beer Parish asset transfer pilot.  The maintenance level had been reduced since 2009 due to budget restraints, but had been carried out as scheduled and to the specified requirement.  The proposal by the Parish Council aspired for an enhanced level of maintenance.  Concerns still to resolve included:

·         Plan need to be in place for biodiversity and bat roosts;

·         Health and safety, and risk management, for any works taking place on the bank and cliff edge;

·         Consider the cost of maintaining the retaining wall and cliff slope areas, rather than excluding from the red line transfer.  These have higher maintenance costs;

·         £15,000 annual “saving” for Streetscene maintenance contract was not a tangible saving, in that those staff were still employed and would have to be deployed elsewhere.  Whilst there was demand in other parts of the district, the saving to the District Council was minimal;

·         An SLA would need to be in place between the Events Team of EDDC and Beer Parish Council in order to manage the bookings, administration and the health and safety requirements for events at the Jubilee and associated areas such as Charlie’s Yard.


Councillor John Health gave a provisional view from the Parish Council, with comments on their outcomes as follows:

·         Beach Court car park would transfer to BPC and continue to be managed by EDDC, with BPC paying costs, they would be responsible for boundaries, repairs and white lining – estimated £1200 income to BPC;

·         If gardens transfer, assets must be in serviceable condition, and any H&S issues are dealt with prior to transfer or the clear cost identified to the BPC which has not been quantified yet;

·         Cliff excluded from transfer;

·         Opening up of gardens – renew and maintenance of fence and railings falls to BPC;

·         EDDC owns the beach, being a considerable income generator for the authority from the concessions there;

·         Does not feel that the cliff area would deteriorate further at this stage.


The Assistant Director – Place, Asset and Commercialisation outlined to the Forum:

·         The financial and operational risks for the area in question, because of the coastal location and cliff.  Whilst Jubilee Gardens is owned by EDDC, it was in the gift of EDDC to close sections of the Gardens area off if there was a risk to the public, such as a risk of cliff fall.  If transferred there would need to be agreement around this and the two  ...  view the full minutes text for item 6.


Place and Prosperity Team update pdf icon PDF 201 KB


The Assistant Director – Place, Asset and Commercialisation presented the team update, which covered updates on:

·        Depots review

·        Public toilets, Esplanade and Drill Hall, Sidmouth

·        UKSPF Feasibility Study

·        Seaton and Axminster Employment sites

·        Seaton Moridunum


The Interim Director for Place spoke to the Forum about the rationale for the delivery of  small business units, making reference to the challenge of market failure.  On paper, as a profit making exercise, the small business units would fail because of the cost of maintaining the units against the realistic rent level that a small business could afford.  However the Council was taking a more holistic approach in supporting the social and economic needs of the area; therefore some assets would not bring profit but be of huge benefit in supplying local jobs.


Questions and comments from Members included:

·        Lease land to local business to develop their own units to progress the delivery of units at a faster pace;

·        Feasibility Study useful for making difficult decisions based on evidence;

·        It was confirmed that ongoing maintenance for the two public toilets in Sidmouth, subject to planning permission going through, would be provided by Rockfish;

·        Emphasising the importance of the Camperdown Depot site due to its location to serve the marine economy.


The Forum noted the report.


Estates Team update pdf icon PDF 1001 KB


The Estates team update covered:

·        Turnover and occupancy;

·        Review of concession provision at Steamer Steps, Budleigh Salterton following storm damage to the existing hut.  The team are working with the current tenant to provide a solution that can tolerate seasonal storms;

·        Terms now agreed for site at Durham Way, Honiton;

·        2 units at Riverside Workshops, Seaton being prepared for bringing to the market.


Questions and comments from Members included:

·        Progress on the review on office accommodation at Blackdown House and Exmouth Town Hall, in line with the Business Centre.  In response, the Forum were advised that the accommodation strategy was due before the Executive Leadership Team in the following months.  The use of the Business Centre had only been a temporary measure for meeting space demands, and was intended to revert back to its intended use as office space for small businesses; how the office facilities were used at BDH and ETC were currently being reviewed;

·        In response to a question about the concession at Budleigh Salterton referenced in the report, the Forum were informed that the lease of the beach to EDDC extended far wider than the hut that had been storm damaged.  It was re-iterated that the team were working with the existing tenant to provide a solution.  Demand was high for the concession in that location.


The Forum noted the report.


Property and FM Team update pdf icon PDF 943 KB


The Forum were presented with an update report from the Property and FM Team, covering work completed and planned for the period November 2023 to May 2024.


Questions and comments from Members included:

·        Increases in costs for toilets included for the replacement of outdated wash and dry units, replacing them with separate units in order to keep the toilets open.  Whilst new builds  for many toilets was scheduled, repairs and replacements still had to be made to keep the facilities open and hence high costs in recent times;

·        In response to the grant application for Sidmouth Pool (as indeed other pool sites) decarbonisation consultancy works, it was confirmed that if the application was successful, the budget allocated for the same work would not be used;

·        Discussions were continuing on a solution to resolve the appetite for two additional toilet cubicles in the Ham West area with Sidmouth Town Council;

·        Explanation of gutter work at the Ocean, Exmouth.


The Chair thanked the team for their continued work.  The Forum noted the report.