Agenda Item No
The Vale of Glamorgan Council
Cabinet Meeting: 26 January, 2015
Report of the Cabinet Member for Leisure, Parks, Culture and Sport Development
Cowbridge Charter Trust Management Agreement - Change of Name and Request to Extend the Agreement
Purpose of the Report
1. To inform Cabinet of a request made by 'Cowbridge Charter Trust' to transfer its Management Agreement to Cowbridge Charter Trust 'Charitable Incorporated Organisation' (cio) and to extend the term of the Management Agreement by 10 years to 11th October 2029.
1. That Cabinet agrees to the Management Agreement of 8th November 2010 between the Council and Cowbridge Charter Trust being assigned to Cowbridge Charter Trust cio.
2. That Cabinet consents to the extension of the Management Agreement until 11th October 2029 on the same terms and conditions as currently exist.
3. That the Head of Legal Services be authorised to execute a Deed of Assignment and Variation to enable assignment of the Management Agreement and extension of its term to take place.
Reasons for the Recommendations
1. To enable assignment of the Management Agreement to take place.
2. To enable the 'Management Agreement' to be extended for the requisite 10 year period.
3. To enable the 'Management Agreement' changes to be formalised and the documentation completed.
2. Cabinet at its meeting of 29th July 2009 agreed to enter into a written agreement with Cowbridge Charter Trust ("the Management Agreement") to undertake a revival of the Grounds of Cowbridge Old Hall (Cabinet Minute C559 refers).
3. The Management Agreement has been very successful and has provided enhanced facilities at this important historic site, complementing the adjacent Physic Garden.
4. The volunteers have raised funds to provide a greater, more cared for naturalistic garden reflecting the original garden of the house when it was a domestic property. The volunteer's work has also improved the ecological diversity of the Gardens.
5. The Town Walls have been restored, the freestanding wall that was part of the remains of the exterior wall to Old Hall and the pond area has been refurbished.
6. An Outdoor Story Telling area has been constructed where there are nine benches to seat up to 36 children and a
big chair for the Story-Teller. New benches have been installed throughout the gardens.
7. A request has been received from the Cowbridge Charter Trust to transfer the current Management Agreement to a new charitable organisation, the 'Cowbridge Charter Trust cio', and to extend the current management agreement by 10 years. A copy of this letter of request is attached at Appendix A.
8. Cowbridge Charter Trust cio ("the CIO") was entered onto the Register of Charities on 20th March 2014 and the cio status of the organisation will enable it to conduct business in its own name, limiting the liability of its members.
Relevant Issues and Options
9. Following assignment of the Management Agreement to the CIO the assets and activities of the Cowbridge Charter Trust will be transferred to the CIO and the CIO's insurance providers have confirmed that the public liability insurance will be transferred on the same basis.
10. An extension of the Management Agreement by 10 years will provide greater sustainability for the CIO and enable funding to be secured from external organisations. These funding opportunities do not exist at present, given the current term remaining of less than 5 years.
Resource Implications (Financial and Employment)
11. There are no direct resource implications as the CIO is self financing.
Sustainability and Climate Change Implications
12. Using sustainable gardening techniques local volunteers improve the sustainability of the gardens and reduce the carbon footprint.
Legal Implications (to Include Human Rights Implications)
13. Assignment of the Management Agreement is prohibited without the consent of the Council, and such consent should not to be unreasonably withheld or delayed.
Crime and Disorder Implications
14. The Management Agreement has resulted in both enhancement of the Old Hall Gardens and improved security, thereby reducing the opportunity for crime in the environs of the Gardens.
Equal Opportunities Implications (to include Welsh Language issues)
16. The Corporate Priority and service aim is “To achieve a quality environment through the promotion and use of sustainable practices and by making the best use of current and future resources”.
17. The Service Objective is “To provide, manage and maintain Parks, open spaces and play areas”.
18. The provision of an agreement will improve the working with the Community, Stakeholders and the Voluntary Sector.
Policy Framework and Budget
19. This is a matter for Executive decision.
Consultation (including Ward Member Consultation)
20. The Local Members have been engaged in discussions on this matter and have raised no concerns.
Relevant Scrutiny Committee
21. Economy and Environment.
Phil Beaman - Operational Manager, Parks and Grounds Maintenance
Tel 01446 709543
Legal Services - Committee Reports
Group Estates Officer
Accountant - Visible Services
Lead Officer Youth & Community Learning
Miles Punter - Director of Visible Services and Housing