LogoPUBLIC YOUTH MEETING

Monday 17 March 2008

(NB This is a brief report by the Clerk to the Parish Council. It is not the official report of the Meeting)

1

The public meeting was called by a group made up of representatives from The Youth Development Service, Orbit South, Sedlescombe Parish Council, Sussex Police, Rother Homes and The Buzz Project to discuss the project to turn the old, unused (now demolished) scout hut in East View Terrace into a new youth and community facility. The young people are expected to use the facility two evenings a week under the guidance of a professional youth worker and to allow the community to hire it for other purposes when not needed by the young people.

The meeting was chaired by District Councillor Tony Ganly. It was well attended by young people and there were several adults present from East View and other areas of the Village.

A survey had been completed by people living in East View Terrace as their properties are closest to the old scout hut site. 69 out of 110 forms delivered had been completed.

Of those that replied, 93% were in favour of a Youth Club in Sedlescombe. This view was confirmed by those attending the public meeting. Only 7% of those that replied to the survey did not think Sedlescombe needs a Youth Club.

Of those that replied to the East View survey, 57% were in favour of a Youth Club at the old scout hut (now scout hut site).

The young people have, for some months, been meeting once a week in a room of the Queen's Head pub and the landlord, Grant Burberry, was thanked for his cooperation.

Not all those attending the public meeting were convinced that East View Terrace is the best place for the Youth Club because of current and past anti-social behaviour at East View. They also fear what will happen when young people leave the club and noise from the club itself. The site appears to some at the meeting to be more risky than other sites because the old scout hut had already been set on fire and damaged which had led to its recent demolition. The culprit(s) had not been found. The lack of outside play space at the scout hut site was also thought to be a disadvantage. It was suggested that young people from other parts of the Village will not be willing to go to East View Terrace. However, the initial request for somewhere to meet had come from the East View young people and it had been them that had applied and obtained funding. There was an overwhelming show of hands at the meeting in favour of the scout hut site. Unfortunately, Rother Homes is still trying to end the current lease on the scout hut site and this matter remains with their Solicitors. The site cannot be used until this matter has been sorted out.

Other sites in the Village such as the kickabout area, the sportsfield, village hall, Chapel Hill Church or Riverside playing field were suggested by the adults present as possibly being more suitable because they are more remote from houses. Several young people said, and this view was supported by Sue Manwarring of the Youth Development Service, that it is important to them that they should have their own space and, therefore, a place that is already in use by others and where they cannot store their equipment is not going to be suitable. The Youth Opportunities Funding can only be used for the purposes it has been applied for.

2 Some of those present at the public meeting suggested that young people and children from other parts of the Village are unaware of the work that had been done to raise money for a Youth Club and should be asked for their opinions on the location.

The Youth Development Service agreed to work with the young people to draw up a questionnaire to be distributed on the school buses.

The Clerk agreed that inserts will be distributed with the Parish Council Annual Reports/Directories which will be going to every house in April to make the whole Village aware of the current situation.

3 An evaluation of all sites that might be suitable for a Youth Club site will be carried out.
4 A further meeting was arranged for Wednesday 23 April at 7pm. Venue to be confirmed.

 

  Mrs P Raymond
Clerk/RFO, Sedlescombe Parish Council
01424 870508
sedlescombe@freezone.co.uk
www.sedlescombe.og.uk
18 March 2008