Agenda item

Announcements on behalf of the Mayor or the Leader of the Council


The Mayor stated that he hoped all Members had enjoyed a good summer break.


The Mayor was pleased to announce that he had attended his first Giving for Thurrock event at the Tilbury Cruise Terminal where £450 had been raised and thanked all those involved.


The Mayor reminded Members to leave their webcasting swipe card on the table when they left this evening with any Member forgetting would be asked to donate £10 to the Giving for Thurrock Fund.


Members were also reminded that they could donate a small amount of money each month through the Pay Roll Giving Scheme.


The Leader of the Council, Councillor Gledhill, updated Members on the Government funding for Grays and Tilbury with both set to benefit from Government funding to bring improvements to infrastructure, drive economic growth and increase job opportunities and would receive a share of the Government’s £3.6 billion New Towns Fund with each in line to get up to £25 million in funding. Grays had also been named as one of the additional 50 towns successful in the first round bids for the Government’s Future High Street Fund. This would mean that the Council would receive funding to develop a detailed business plan to bid for a share of £1 billion Government funding, which could be used to invest in new infrastructure to revitalise Grays High Street, attracting businesses, shoppers and homes to the town.


The Leader stated this was on top of the ambitious plans Thurrock Council had already announced for Grays Town Centre, stretching from the Thameside Theatre to the very heart of the town. With £200 million in investment already secured including an underpass at Grays Station, which had received £11 million funding from the Government through the Local Growth Fund. In addition, private investment were set to transform the State Cinema site and create a revitalised shopping centre.


The Leader updated Members on the successes Thurrock Council had enjoyed tackling anti-social behaviour in the borough:


           That a temporary injunction had been secured preventing anyone from setting up an unauthorised encampment on specific areas of both public and private land in Thurrock. This would mean that anyone who set up an illegal encampment would face the prospect of immediate arrest and would give the Council the tools it needed to move on encampments within just a few hours rather than the days it currently takes. The interim injunction would be in place for several months whilst the Council prepared the case for a final injunction. This had been the first successful interim application for an injunction of this nature since the London Borough of Bromley’s injunction was significantly reduced in its scope by the High Court, a decision which was currently under appeal to the Court of Appeal. 


           That a joint campaign between Essex Police and the Council’s Environmental Enforcement Officers to tackle anti-social behaviour and activities linked to discarding nitrous oxide canisters in car parks in Thurrock had proven to be a real success. In the first few weeks of this operation alone the Council had seen some fantastic results, including:


           20 Fixed Penalty Notices issued for offences such as littering, fly-posting and anti-social behaviour.

           26 Community protection warnings issued to people involved in Anti-Social Behaviour in Grays, Chafford Hundred and Tilbury. 


           A 10 year Criminal Behaviour Order had been secured against a nuisance dog owner who had made his neighbours lives a misery. This decisive action followed fines totalling more than £12,000 after the man failed to comply with a noise abatement notice. Our environment protection team had worked scrupulously with the local community, RSPCA and Essex Police to ensure this thoughtless individual was brought to justice.


The Leader was delighted to announce that Thurrock Council’s Give a Gift campaign won Best Community and Neighbourhood Initiative at the Association for Public Service Excellence Awards last Thursday. The Give a Gift, hosted by the Council, was a campaign that collected presents in the run up to Christmas for Thurrock’s children in need, who may not otherwise receive presents at Christmas. This initiative donated for more than 2,400 children. The Leader thanked all the sponsors, residents, staff, volunteers and intu Lakeside that gave their time and support which had brought the community together. The Leader stated that the Give a Gift would be returning to intu Lakeside for its fourth year this year with more information being announced at the end of October.


The Leader was also pleased to announce that Thurrock’s Principal Social Worker, Fran Leddra, had been appointed to the position of Chief Social Worker for England in a joint role with Mark Harvey of Hertfordshire County Council. This a huge recognition of Fran’s talent, expertise and experience as well as the high esteem our services here in Thurrock are held.


The Leader provided a Clean It, Cut It, Fill It update that since April 2019:


-       1,084 potholes filled – more than 99% within agreed timeframes

-       647 fly-tips cleared

-       1,299 tonnes of waste cleared from our streets

-       2,187 fixed penalties have been issued for offences such as littering, dropping
        cigarette butts and various forms of anti-social behaviour

-       187 Fixed Penalty Notices for fly-tipping as well as three vehicles seized

-       54 Prosecutions for failing to pay Fixed Penalty Notices