Agenda and draft minutes

Venue: Council House

Contact: Democratic Advisor  Email:


No. Item



To receive apologies for non-attendance submitted by Councillors.

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Declarations of Interest

Councillors will be asked to make any declarations of interest in respect of items on the agenda.

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Minute Number



Councillor Mark Shayer


Councillor is a remunerated member of the Freeport Board.




Minutes pdf icon PDF 101 KB

To confirm the minutes of the previous meeting held on 10 October 2022.

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Councillor Holloway noted that she could not see her and Councillor Wheeler’s questions on vacant properties included in the minutes.


The Committee agreed that the minutes of the meeting held on 10 October 2022 were an accurate record of meeting.


Chair's Urgent Business

To receive reports on business which in the opinion of the Chair, should be brought forward for urgent consideration.

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There were no items of Chair’s Urgent Business.


Freeport Mobilisation (Appendix 2 To Follow) pdf icon PDF 183 KB

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Councillor Mark Shayer (Deputy Leader and Cabinet Member for Finance and Economy) introduced the report and highlighted –


a)    Plymouth and South Devon Freeport was a flagship and highly ambitious programme to create thousands of high quality jobs and to play a crucial part in post-COVID19 pandemic recovery;

b)    The Freeport model used simplified tax and custom benefits aimed at attracting new and expanding businesses as well as attracting foreign investment;

c)    The Government was providing £25 million of seed capital that needed to be locally matched to unlock site infrastructure;

d)    The Freeport would supercharge the South West Economy by building on the regions unique national capabilities in Marine, Defence and Space;

e)    It was a unique opportunity to level-up, address historical challenges and leverage exciting opportunities to transform the economy of Plymouth and South Devon, through three key objectives:

                      i.        Creating a national hub for trade and investment;

                     ii.        Promoting regeneration and job creation;

                    iii.        Creating a hotbed for innovation.

f)     The Plymouth and South Devon Freeport would;

                          i.        Enable new employment land to be bought forward at the three sites of South Yard, Langage and Sherford;


                         ii.        Support a new £30m Innovation Centre at Oceansgate;


                        iii.        Provide a major expansion plan for Princess Yachts;


                        iv.        Include £29m investment from Local Authorities;


                         v.        Leverage £250m private sector investment;

                        vi.        Deliver over 3,500 jobs.

g)    Officers had last updated the Committee in February 2022;

h)    The Plymouth and South Devon Freeport was in the first 3 Freeport’s out of the 8 to reach the milestone of submission and approval of the full business case;

i)     The focus was now on mobilising the organisations, its resources and initiatives;

j)     Thanked the public and private sector partners for their hard work and expressed delight with the progress that had been made to deliver regeneration and high quality jobs to the city region.


In response to questions it was explained by Councillor Mark Shayer, Caroline Cozens (Head of Strategic Programmes, Economic Development), David Draffan (Service Director, Economic Development) and Richard May (Interim CEO, Plymouth and South Devon Freeport) –


k)    As the full occupation of the site is not yet know, only Strategic Transport Assessments have been undertaken to date in partnership between Devon County Council, National Highways as well as Plymouth City Council and detailed assessments would come forward  with individual planning applications;

l)     The innovation plans had originated 8 years ago and there would be a mobility hub on site with multi-storey parking, with priority for car-sharing and cycling, to ensure there was not conflict within the residential areas close to the site;

m)  A planning application for a development at Princess Yachts had been previously submitted and when a further application was submitted, a pre-application enquiry would be undertaken to look at the issues on that site;

n)    Most of the land that is being brought back into beneficial use was at Langage and Sherford;

o)    More would be done to publicise what a Freeport was to members  ...  view the full minutes text for item 70.


Policy Updates pdf icon PDF 149 KB

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Laura Hill (Policy and Intelligence Advisor) presented the report and highlighted –


a)    The Chancellor’s Autumn statement had been announced with the aim of restoring stability to the economy and build long-term prosperity for the UK;

b)    Further announcements had been made since the agenda had been published for the meeting;

                      i.        The Government had approved local spending plans for the UK shared prosperity fund which exceeded EU funding and it would be spent on levelling up in three key areas: communities and place, supporting local businesses and people and skills;

                     ii.        The Secretary of State for Levelling-Up, Housing and Communities had announced further changes to the planning system, alongside the Levelling-up and Regeneration Bill.


Risk Update pdf icon PDF 169 KB

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Ross Jago (Head of Governance, Performance and Risk) presented the report and highlighted –


a)    Risk 6 relating to insufficient economic performance to sustain the city’s economic and growth plans had mitigations such as the Plymouth and South Devon Freeport;

b)    The carbon reduction targets would be discussed at the January 2023 City Council meeting;

c)    Remaining risks would be looked at in some detail during the budget scrutiny process at the end of January 2023

In response to questions it was highlighted –


d)    The Joint Local Plan set out the provision for housing and within it was a range of initiatives that had been delivered since 2013 under the Plan for Homes Program, so delivery of housing was on a positive trajectory with detailed housing numbers due to be published;

e)    Risk 19 had no previous RAG rating as it was a new risk that had been identified by the department;

f)     The decision to make changes to bus provision would likely be addressed by the relevant Cabinet member at budget scrutiny in January 2023;

g)    Bus patronage levels had yet to return to pre-pandemic levels.

The Committee agreed to –


1)    Note the position with regard to the Strategic Risk Register.


Culture Plan Annual Update pdf icon PDF 148 KB

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Councillor Pat Patel (Cabinet Member for Customer Services, Culture, Leisure & Sport), supported by Hannah Harris (CEO of Plymouth Culture), Victoria Pomery (CEO of The Box) and David Draffan (Service Director, Economic Development) introduced the report and highlighted -

a)    Cultural activity in Plymouth was abundant and remained a key component in delivering and driving Plymouth’s destination agenda;

b)     There were over 380 creative and cultural enterprises within the city and the sector in Plymouth remained stable, despite the effects of the COVID19 pandemic;

c)    Plymouth was successful in securing £12.34 million of Arts Council NPO funding;

d)    A cultural mapping tool had been developed to help better understand how people access cultural services and how;

e)    British Art Show 9 was open and had already attracted over 47,000 visitors;

f)     An investment strategy with the aim of driving new and increased funding into the sector to broaden and deepened engagement with local residents and communities was the priority;

g)    A mapping activity had been undertaken to improve the consistency of data being collected around who was attending cultural events;

h)    There was also a focus on looking at the impact of culture on people’s lives and if people were cross-pollinating;

i)     The figures would help to gain a deeper understanding of the barriers that people face in accessing events;

j)     The cultural sector had challenges ahead but it was important to look at how the value of culture could benefit other agendas in the city;

In response to questions it was reported –


k)    There was an understanding of the value of the cultural sector in economic and social terms and it would be important to look at the data to not just understand who was accessing events, but also who wasn’t and to ask why, rather than make assumptions, to understand the data further;

l)     Early indications were that impact was being made in some areas identified as ‘hard to reach’, but more analysis and work on this would take place;

m)  There had been a lot of work done nationally to better understand the broader impact and value of culture and Plymouth Culture would be taking this on board and applying it locally;

n)    Over 10 years previous, a similar data collection activity was undertaken in Plymouth and research indicated that incentives were not the right method to driving usage and national data showed the same, so the ‘Tap-In’ app was taking a different approach in providing users with more information on events that they might like in the city;

o)    The ‘Tap-In’ app was in the pilot phase and did not have a function within it to book for events;

p)    All feedback from users would be reviewed and solutions looked into for the evolution of the functionality of the app;

q)    The cultural partnership had been formed, comprising of a cross-section across Plymouth with the aim of linking culture into other agenda’s and was linked closely to the growth board;

r)    Feedback on the ‘Tap-In’ app  ...  view the full minutes text for item 73.


Visitor Plan Annual Update pdf icon PDF 1 MB

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Councillor Pat Patel (Cabinet Member for Customer Services, Culture, Leisure & Sport), supported by Amanda Lumley (Chief Executive, Destination Plymouth Ltd) and David Draffan (Service Director, Economic Development) introduced the report and highlighted –


a)    The Visitor Plan 2030 would enable Plymouth residents to benefit from the visitor economy, supporting quality jobs, job retention and creation whilst also enabling Plymothians to take full advantage of the city’s rich history, heritage and unique environment;

b)    The Visitor Plan 20230 was formally adopted in March 2020;

c)     The biggest challenge was moving forward despite a reduction in funding from £160,000 to £60,000;

d)    Pre Covid19 the economic impact was measured at £334 million and in 2021, this had bounced back up to around £240 million;

e)    In 2021, the media reach audience of Destination Plymouth PR was 647 million to the value of £17 million;

f)     In 2019, there had been around 290,000 visitors to events, increasing to over half a million in 2022;

g)    It was agreed that the remit would be broadened to encourage people to not just visit Plymouth but also to choose to work and live in the city;

Following questions from the Committee it was further explained that -

h)    Events had been taking place during the summer on The Hoe for a number of years, taking similar formats with regards to fencing, but feedback received following the 2022 event would be taken into consideration during discussions around a possible 2023 event;

i)     The events team word hard to retain their relationship with residents on The Hoe and would be keen to understand and resolve issues;

j)     A report would be provided to the Committee on lessons learnt from the 1 Big Summer event in 2022;

k)    Destination Plymouth was formally recognised as a Destination Management Organisation (DMO) and the review undertaken in 2021 by the Department for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport made recommendations to Government that were accepted to create a three-tier system;

                      i.        The Destination Plymouth board was very confident that Plymouth would meet the criteria for a Level 2 Local Visitor Economy Partnership and would be bidding at that level;

l)     The Box could be considered as an alternative to having a ‘Heritage Centre’.

The Committee agreed to –


1)    Note the report.


Horizons Fund Activity Plan Update pdf icon PDF 189 KB

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Councillor Pat Patel (Cabinet Member for Customer Services, Culture, Leisure & Sport), supported by Elaine Hayes (Interim CEO, National Marine Park), Kat Deeney (Head of Environmental Planning) and David Draffan (Service Director, Economic Development) introduced the report and highlighted -

a)    The summer program connected with over a million people and collected views on the National Marine Park (NMP) from approximately 860 people, which had led to a greater understanding of how people wanted to be involved with the NMP, but also the barriers to its use and enjoyment;

b)    Opportunities such as Sail GP had ben great opportunities in raising awareness as well as having been recognised by the late Queen Elizabeth II with the only kelp award in the UK and consequently being retweeted by Buckingham Palace and going global as a consequence;

c)    Work had also been carried out looking into developing the vision and purpose of the NMP and its governance infrastructure;

Following questions from the Committee it was also highlighted -

d)    Learning had been gathered about current barriers people face in accessing the NMP;

e)    Learnings relating to the Culture Plan could link in with work on the NMP.

The Committee agreed to –


1.    Note the report;

2.    Recommend to a future Committee that officers returned in Spring 2023 with a report that set out framework for the NMP Horizons Delivery Stage bid;

3.    Recommend to a future Committee that the Interim CEX of the NMP returned in 6 months with a more detailed update on progress.



Work Programme pdf icon PDF 115 KB

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The Committee agreed to add the following items to the work programme –


a)    Non-Commercial Bus Route Service Reductions;

b)    Use of Hydrogen in Public Transport.


Tracking Decisions pdf icon PDF 66 KB

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The Committee noted the tracking decisions document.