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Zoom meeting Flood Scheme Task & Finish Group

Zoom meeting Flood Scheme Task & Finish Group

23 people present: led by Kevin Mowat (KM), Director of Place.

Dave Stewart (DS) was back from sick leave to give some background information.

- He worked in the early stages with the EU to secure the grant for the project.

- He's now in the process of applying for further funding.

- Addressing the concern about the engagement of a London artist for the artwork on the wall rather than using local talent, DS explained discussion took place with Tom Littlewood of Ginkgo Projects, and that the work went out to tender and there were 41 applicants countrywide and from a shortlist of 5; Lydia Johnson was appointed in late June.

- KM asked if anything was finalised - not yet as she'd been told to hold back until ideas come from this group. She will be asked to be present at the next meeting.

- There is to be a meeting on 18th January with KM, Colin Hurst - Town Partnership (who expressed disappointment at being involved at such a late stage)- and those businesses directly affected by the positioning of the wall and these discussions to be brought back to the Task & Finish Group for it's next meeting.

Cllr Chris Lewis (CL) (who initiated this group) was disappointed that we had not been involved in choosing the artist and asked that lessons should be learned from this situation.

KM reassured that nothing will go through until there is more agreement - he has not yet heard from several of the seafront businesses - hopefully to be resolved by the 18th January meeting.

Cllr CL said that the kiosk operators are leaseholders - has the council contacted kiosk holders?

Nicolle Amil (NA) said that she was disappointed that we have been involved at such a late stage, and should have been from the beginning, not when it was a virtual fait accompli.

KM said that NA can contact the artist directly, as art is subjective. Perhaps an advocate from Paignton to liaise with Lydia and Cllr Jane Barnby accepted that role. She expressed reservations of being able to communicate with Lydia, and KM agreed that art is subjective, but we must insist that the meaning of the artwork must be obvious and not need interpretive plaques (which was the case on Beacon Quay). We are looking at perhaps 4 designs that can be repeated along the length of the wall.

Cllr Dave Thomas (DT) asked how much money from the recently acquired Torbay Council Future High Streets Funding of £13.36 million would need to be directed to providing the street furniture, plantings and other aesthetic work which is not covered by the Environment Agency money, and KM advised that he was working with the cabinet in an effort to downsize the contribution as the Bid was a lower figure than the application for £19 million.

Jo Penhaligan (hope I've spelt that correctly) of Torbay Council said that the information has been included in the next Beach Hut and free Torbay Weekly, but the hoarding information discussed at the last meeting was not yet in place.

Cllr Hill asked if KM knew how the glass barriers installed at Sidmouth had stood up to the waves, and was advised that, yes they had stood up to the waves, but sadly had not proved to be vandal proof.

Next Meeting end of the month where the positioning of flood gates will be discussed, together with the up and over access - steps and ramps. KM said please let him know anything else that anyone wants to be discussed and it can be put on an Agenda.

Freda Bamford Dwane

Note: Artist's name is Lydia Johnson from the Citizens Design Bureau

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