Agenda and minutes

Social Overview and Scrutiny Committee
Wednesday 13th November 2019 7.30 pm

Venue: Council Chamber, Council Offices, The Campus, Welwyn Garden City, Herts, AL8 6AE

Contact: Sharon Keenlyside 

No. Item



To note any substitution of Committee Members in accordance with Council Procedure Rules.


There were none.




There were none.



To confirm as a correct record the Minutes of the meeting held on 4 September 2019 (previously circulated).


The Minutes of the meeting held on 4 September 2019 were confirmed as a correct record and signed by the Chairman.



Report of the Corporate Director (Public Protection, Planning and Governance) on the status of actions agreed at the last meeting.


The Committee noted the report of the Corporate Director (Public Protection, Planning and Governance) which gave an update on actions from the meeting held on 4 September 2019.



To note declarations of Members’ disclosable pecuniary interests, non-disclosable pecuniary interests and non-pecuniary interests in respect of items on this Agenda.


Councillor L.Chesterman declared a non-pecuniary interest in items on the Agenda as appropriate by virtue of being a Member of Hertfordshire County Council.



Up to thirty minutes will be made available for questions from members of the public on issues relating to the work of the Committee and to receive any petitions.


There was none.



Presentation to update Members on Council funded services provided by Citizens Advice.


Citizens Advice Chief Executive, Debbie Rixon and Advice Services Manager, Debbie MacCormick, gave a presentation to update Members on Council funded services provided by Citizens Advice.


Citizens Advice have provided a service to the residents of Welwyn Hatfield for the past 79 years. They were accredited by the Advice Quality Standard and the Financial Conduct Authority.


The outcomes of the service achieved value for money. According to Treasury approved figures, for every £1 invested in the service during 2018/19, they produced the following results:-


       £3.11 in savings to government and public services (fiscal benefit, for example through interventions)

       £15.05 in wider economic and social benefits (public value)

       £15.75 in value to people we helped (financial outcomes following advice such as debt written off, obtaining grants and benefits)


Which provided a total of:


       £1.4 million insavings to the public purse

       £6.7 million in public value

       £7 million in the pockets of local people


In Welwyn Hatfield, there were approximately 53 individual clients seen each week by Citizens Advice. Each client had 3 or 4 problems each which equated to approximately £17,182 problems per year.


Housing First provided specialist housing support for rough sleepers and in the last six months helped 397 people with 777 problems. Of these, 150 were helped without presenting to the Council’s Housing Needs Department. Citizens Advice have prevented 302 cases of homelessness at a cost of £240 to the Council. The annual financial cost of a single rough sleeper was estimated at £20,128.


Funding from various funders enabled Citizens Advice to provide:-

·         Advice in British Sign Language

·         A Crisis Intervention service

·         Help for people to claim Universal Credit

·         Home visits for people who were sick or disabled

·         Energy advice to help combat fuel poverty

·         Support for victims of scams

·         Help to appeal against a benefits decision

·         A dedicated service for tenants of paradigm Housing

·         An outreach service in Welwyn Library


The Chief Executive and Advice Services Manager for Citizens Advise provided their email addresses if Members wanted to contact them with questions, would like more data or a copy of the presentation slides. They would also come out and talk to people about victims of scams if requested.


The Chair and Members of the Committee thanked the Citizens Advice for all the good work that they do.




That the presentation from Citizens Advice be noted.



Report of the Corporate Director (Resources, Environment and Cultural Services) and presentation from GLL to inform Members of the work of Greenwich Leisure Limited over the period April 2019 to September 2019.


Head of Service –GLL Central Region, Matt Perren, and the Partnership Manager – Welwyn Hatfield, Craig Woodward, gave a presentation to update Members on the Welwyn Hatfield and GLL Partnership over six months to the end September 2019.


The Greenwich Leisure Limited (GLL) merger with Finesse Leisure, the previous operator, was completed on 1 May 2018.

By the end of the current contract in January 2029, the merger would have saved the Council £7.2M in management fee payments.


GLL had partnerships with over 30 local authorities across the UK and trades under its ‘Better’ brand.


There were seven different sport and leisure sites within the contract with Welwyn Hatfield Council.


The partnership had made the following improvements to their services over the period April to September 2019:-


·         Improved site access control with the scan and enter system being updated across their managed centres

·         GLL staff are paid at least the ‘Real Living Wage’

·         Management Team Review had now been completed

·         Successful Apprenticeship Programme implemented

·         Launch of ‘Listen 360’ – a system that asks customers for feedback and to rate GLL

·         Social Value Impact of £2.2M – GLL had developed an online tool with Sheffield University to obtain a Social Value Impact figure. This had shown an increase over 2018.


Usage of the sports and leisure sites had increased year on year in all key areas cross the partnership, with significant growth in both the over 65’s and under 16’s using the facilities.


Several successful community events had taken place over the last six months including litter picking at King George V Playing Fields, GLL’s Annual Golf Society Day which raised over £1000 for Cancer Research and the Big Summer programme coordinated by the Community Partnerships team. GLL participated in Big Summer 2019 by hosting a range of activities for all the family at Stanborough Park, King George V Playing Fields and Moneyhole Lane Playing Fields. Activities included a climbing wall, bungee run and field games.


The Welwyn Hatfield Community Fund had been established over 2019 using a legacy funding from the former Finesse Leisure Partnership. Bids for the fund can range from £350 to 350k. Over 20 applications had been received to date with 5 successful applications:-


·         Monks Walk School £3850 – Rugby World Cup Roadshow

·         Welwyn St Mary’s £15000 – Playground refurbishment

·         Hatfield Town Council £8653 – Cancer Rehabilitation Programme

·         North Mymms Cricket Club £4000 – Programme & Club Development

·         Bushin Martial Arts £500 – Protective Equipment


Future GLL projects for 2020 included:-


·         Continuing to promote the new Welwyn Hatfield Community Fund

·         Developing a Healthy Hub

·         Reviewing and improving the Health Offer across the local partnership.

·         Delivering further employee and team development and training.

·         Preparing to operate the new Splashlands from Summer 2020


Members enquired about zero hour’s contracts and staff turnover. Members were informed that GLL still operated zero hour’s contracts as this was usual for people who worked in the sport and leisure industry. All staff were paid the real living wage as GLL wanted to ensure that  ...  view the full minutes text for item 41.



Presentation to update Members on the Public Health Partnerships Fund and Projects.


The Environmental Health Team Leader, Jeannette Hollingsworth, gave a presentation to update Members on the Public Health Partnership.


In the Health and Social Care Act 2012, responsibility for public health was passed back to Local Authorities. Hertfordshire was a two tier Council; Borough Council and County Council, so the Public Health Partnership was formed


Healthy Hub, Welwyn Hatfield, was being set up to provide a universal and targeted public health service, integrated locally. It would enhance the public health offer by including local services, provided by the community/voluntary sector that addressed the wider determinants of health. It also enhanced reach and accessibility for the public and looked at prevention rather than cure.


The Healthy Hub would aim to be a Public Health service, all under one roof that delivered a range of services. The Hub would be ‘virtual’ with all services offered online. There would be a central coordinator/outreach worker that could deliver triage, brief interventions and signposting or referral. The service would look at both physical ailments and mental health and wellbeing.


Every Borough within Hertfordshire was doing something slightly different with their Healthy Hub service. They were targeted to particular problems and linked to wider priorities; population health management, social prescribing, delivering health improvement services, such as, smoking cessation and health promotion campaigns.

Welwyn Hatfield was the only virtual Healthy Hub.


The Council had regular meetings with the partners at Hertfordshire County Council and were now looking at branding. The expected launch date for the Healthy Hub was February 2020.


Key objectives were information gathering and asset mapping, setting up focus groups, web design and branding. A web designer had been commissioned and Inform had been recruited to carry out a mapping exercise for the borough.


Members asked how people who were unable to use technology would be able to access the service. Members were informed that the service would be widely available to carer’s, friends and family, General Practitioners and district nurses, who could access the service on someone’s behalf. There would eventually be a phone number that the public could use to access information.


Members asked if it was possible to access the information in a way that did not leave a search history on the computer as vulnerable young people may have concerns about this when trying to access the Healthy Hub from their home computer. The Environmental Health Team Leader would consult with the web design team.


Members asked how the Hub would be publicised and were informed that Officers would use every channel available including social media and libraries. Officers welcomed any ideas from Members.


The Chairman thanked the Environmental Health Team Leader for an informative presentation.




That the presentation on the Public Health Partnership was noted.




Report of the Corporate Director (Resources, Environment and Cultural Services) and accompanying presentation provides the Committee with performance indicator data collected for those services that fall within its remit for Quarter 2 along with comparative information where available.

Additional documents:


Report of the Corporate Director (Resources, Environment and Cultural Services) and accompanying presentation provided the Committee with key performance indicator data for quarter two collected for those services that fell within its remit along with comparative information where available.


Performance indicators used to measure how well the Council was performing and improving services over time.  They could also be used to help plan for future service improvements where the service was consistent with our published corporate priorities set out in the Council’s Business Plan 2018-21.




That the Performance Indicators for Quarter Two for 2019-20 be noted.




Report of the Corporate Director (Housing and Communities) provides an update on the Sports Partnership key activities and events over the past year.



The Sports Partnership Officer, Milan Johnston, gave a presentation on the Sports Partnerships key activities and events over the past year.


‘This Girl Can’ was a Sports Partnership event that took place 17 – 23 June 2019 and showcased over 45 physical activities and opportunities across the borough for girls and women. Women were less likely to take part in sports than men, with a gender gap of 14.6%.

The event was promoted through the Welwyn Hatfield Interactive Online Calendar and there were over 300 participants. There was a mixture of free and paid for activities. 


Friday Night Kicks aimed to provide a youth diversionary project. 58 young people aged 11-17 had signed up and there were over 380 attendances between May –October 2019. In recognition of it being a high quality sports activity, Friday Night Kicks had been nominated as Community Project of the Year.

Funding had been secured for the next three years and it would continue to be delivered at the Ridgeway Academy.


The Sports Partnership had applied to the Sport England Community Asset Fund for funding to redevelop the current skate park facilities at King George V Welwyn Garden City. A conditional offer of £35,000 had been made. Section 106 funding had been allocated to the overall cost of the project so a total of £70,000 had been secured      .

A focus group had been set up with skateboarders to discuss what equipment they would like to see.

The development was going out to tender and it was expected to be completed by next summer. The Skate Park would not be supervised but the Sports Partnership were working with a company that would deliver skate boarding lessons and were setting up a satellite group to work with beginners.


Plans for 2020 include:-


·         Sports Facilities Strategy action plan – meeting bi-annually to discuss the strategy

·         Delivery of the Dragon Boats event at Stanborough Lakes

·         Sporting Chance Project – funding from Sport England to engage 14-19 year olds on the cusp of the Criminal Justice System

·         Herts Year of Culture 2020, This Girl Can 2020 and Big Summer 2020


Members enquired as to whether participants of Friday Night Kicks were aware of Jubilee Grants which would help fund football kits. The Sports Partnership Officer informed Members that she would send out an email to remind partners about this.


A Member asked how many primary schools in the borough took part in the ‘Daily Mile’. The Sports Partnership Officer would report back with the figures. The Sports Partnership were encouraging schools to sign up.




That the Sports Partnership Annual Report 2019 and presentation be noted.





The pro-forma which sets out the Committee’s overview work programme has been updated since the last meeting to enable forward planning of items to be considered to take place. Items which the Committee agrees it would like to consider will be scheduled into the work programme.


The pro-forma setting out the Committee’s overview work programme which had been updated since the last meeting to enable the forward planning of items to take place was submitted.




That the work programme be noted.