Regeneration Cabinet Member – Minutes – 8 April 2013

54        (35) Northern Lincolnshire Broadband – PROGRESS FROM CHECKPOINT B2 AND NEXT STEPS – The Director of Places submitted a report which provided an update on the progress with the Northern Lincolnshire Broadband Programme and reported on the successful passage of Broadband Delivery UK (BDUK) Assurance Checkpoint B2 and the next steps.

The Northern Lincolnshire Broadband project underwent a major audit on 18 February 2013, ‘Assurance Checkpoint B2’. BDUK was a government team established to oversee all projects and audit projects via a series of Assurance Checkpoints.  It was reported that BDUK Assurance Checkpoint B2 assessed the project’s readiness to procure and that the Northern Lincolnshire Broadband project received confirmation from BDUK on 25 February 2013 that it had successfully passed this checkpoint at the first attempt.

Resolved – That the progress on taking forward the Northern Lincolnshire Broadband project be noted.

55        (36) 2012 VISITOR FIGURES: THE LOCAL AND NATIONAL PICTURE – The Director of Places submitted a report which provided an insight into how the 2012 Olympics, the Queens Jubilee Celebrations and also the adverse summer weather had affected visitor figures and also local and national events.  The report provided both a national and local comparison.

It was explained that tourism was important to the local economy, even though North Lincolnshire was not a traditional tourist destination.  It was reported that North Lincolnshire had a quality tourism offer ranging from adrenaline sports to historic houses and gardens, with over 75 places to visit in the area and 1,335 quality inspected bedspaces. Tourism employed over 4,000 people and was worth around £167 million to the local economy.

In 2012 there were 2,618,517 recorded day-visits to events and attractions in North Lincolnshire. This represented an increase of more than 3.4% on the previous year and was good news in a year where the national visitor figures had been seen to fall.

It was reported that the Meteorology Office had confirmed that June to August was the wettest summer since 1912.  Even though North Lincolnshire was historically one of the driest parts of the UK, many events were cancelled and others were poorly attended due to the weather.

The report identified areas that had seen significant increases in visitor numbers, which included the Pods and several of the area’s golf courses.  In addition the Pink Pig at Holme had shown the importance of good quality locally produced food.

Resolved –  That the information within the report be noted.

56        (37) WATERS’ EDGE VISITOR CENTRE TOURIST INFORMATION PROVISION – The Director of Places submitted a report which sought agreement in principle to develop a fully networked Tourist Information Centre at Waters’ Edge in Barton upon Humber.

Waters’ Edge Visitor Centre was open seven days a week. The free admission Visitor Centre was set in an 86-acre country park on the Waterfront at Barton upon Humber and offered plenty of free car parking, a café, gift shop and toilets.

Since the reduction in Humber Bridge tolls it had been noted that more visitors from across the river had visited the area, with a significant increase in visitors with HU postcodes of around 15%. It was reported that the area regularly attracted visitors from Anlaby, Hessle, North Ferriby, Melton, Cottingham, Kirk Ella and Beverley.

In January 2013 the Brigg Tourist Information Centre (TIC) had closed for four weeks to allow refurbishment to take place, with the TIC service being temporarily relocated to two locations, Brigg Heritage Centre and Waters’ Edge Visitor Centre.

Due to the success of the temporary locations it was proposed to increase customer service by making Waters’ Edge a networked TIC to supplement the current provision in Brigg.  Further details were outlined within the report.

Resolved – That the development of a fully networked TIC at Waters’ Edge (option 3 in the report) be agreed in principle, to be implemented as part of the review of the Planning and Regeneration division.

57        (38)  FEES & CHARGES 2013-2014 REGENERATION CABINET PORTFOLIO – The Director of Places submitted a report which sought approval to fix the level of fees and charges for the financial year 2013/2014 in relation to the council’s Regeneration Cabinet Portfolio.

Fees and charges were re-assessed annually.  Details of the proposed fees and charges for 2013/2014 were outlined in Appendix 1 to the report.

Resolved – That the fees and charges for 2013/2014, set out in Appendix 1 to the report be approved.

Note: Reports are in Portable Document Format (PDF) and therefore require a suitable reader to view them. A reader can be downloaded free from the Adobe website (full instructions for downloading the reader are provided on the site).

Where there is no report this is because it is exempt, as it contains information which is considered to be of a confidential nature, as detailed in the Local Government (Access to Information) Act.