Agenda and minutes

South Wigston Residents' Forum
Wednesday, 7th September, 2016 7.30 pm

Venue: Bassett Street Community Hub, Bassett Street, South Wigston, Leicestershire, LE18 4PE

Contact: Veronika Quintyne  Email:

No. Item


Local Policing Issues


Police Community Support Officer J Darby presented the crime prevention statistics. These cover the last three months. They are noted as follows.

                                                                 Last 3 months                     Previous 3 months

Burglary Dwelling                                          6                                          4

Burglary other than Dwelling                        3                                          6

Theft of Motor Vehicle                                    0                                          3

Theft from Motor Vehicle                            10                                         5

Robbery                                                         0

One empty property was burgarled. Sporadic thefts took place from unsecured vehicles. Sat Navs were targeted. Police consultations of residents are ongoing. Blaby Road park was flagged as a problem area. The problem was resolved .No additional problems have been reported. One man was placed on an Anti Social Behaviour contract for stealing from children and for assaults. He is now excluded from the South Wigston area.

Young people performing anti social behaviour acts have been visited by the Police and given suitable warnings. A project on bowling and citizenship is being established by Police Constable Carl Sutherley. Cycle lanes on the Saffron Road are the responsibility of the County Council Highways department. The County Council is carrying out consultation on removing traffic islands and other road furniture. A resident was concerned this may mean children are at risk from running between the traffic.

The Police are aware of people parking on double yellow lines on Countesthorpe Road. This is to be addressed.

Parking on double yellow lines is an issue for the County Council Highways department The Police act when there is an obstruction.

It was reported that people are driving the wrong way down one way streets, driving at speed by St Thomas`s church, going through to the petrol station and driving onto the footpath.

PC Darby will report these issues to PC Sutherley for informing the Highways Forum.

Councillor Boulter will raise the following issues with the County Council:

  • a request for a Lollipop Lady on Blaby Road
  • People parking on Stoneygate Road on double yellow lines, throwing rubbish around the area at night and in the morning.


Minutes of the Previous Meeting held on June 2016


An amendment to section 3 of the June 8 2016 minutes was received by tonight`s Chair Councillor J Boyce The amendment was agreed by Councillor .S Morris, the usual Chair. The changes have been added to the minutes of June 2016.


The resident who raised the amendments to the minutes of the June meeting asked the Chair when in this meeting time would be given to discuss Edward Garnier’s Adjournment Debate of the previous day, 6th September.  The Chair said it could be at Chair’s Update. 


Action: A copy of the amended minutes will be circulated at the meeting of November 8th 2016 and added to the Council`s website.


Funding Updates


The planting baskets for Blaby Road were purchased and hung.

St Thomas Children’s Group award of £400 was endorsed by the Policy Finance Development Committee.

Oadby and Wigston Community First Responders are to present at the November 2016 meeting.

Phoenix Therapies Group presented a proposal to the Forum for funding. This is titled,” Take the Weight Off Your Mind”.

The Families Foodies are to provide an update for the next Forum meeting.


Leisure Facilities Update - Presentation


A paper copy of the Leisure Facilities update 2016 presentation was circulated at the meeting. Following the presentation residents were invited to ask questions.

A new programme on managing diabetes has been successfully introduced. Diabetes is one of the local Authority`s biggest health issue. New sessions to help manage this issue are to be offered

On the question of whether access to a cafe could be made available all the time the venue is used, the Officer noted people are able to access tea and coffee from a vending machine.

A resident requested an obstacle course gymnasium be installed.

Action: Circulate an electronic copy of the Leisure Facilities presentation.



Customer Service Update


Jacky Griffiths provided a verbal update on developments with the Customer Service Centre in Bell Street. The Centre opened 12th October 2015. A range of Council Services including a benefits online service are provided to residents.

Two satisfaction surveys are carried out annually. A 100% satisfaction with services was recorded for the March 2016 survey. October 2016 will see the next survey activated.

Compared to feedback at Bushloe House between August 2015 and August 2016, there was a 258% increase in resident satisfaction with Customer Centre services. In the future more choice is to be offered as to how residents receive services. Online services are to be provided to reach people working various hours. The Officer requested residents respond to the widely advertised Council Tax Support consultation.

Residents’ questions were responded to as follows:

  • The Council provides a range of services and for this identify the recipients as service users, for other processes designated the term residents.
  • A request for a Customer Service Centre at South Wigston Library was previously met but the low take up did not justify the maintenance of the resource. The Customer Centre in Wigston has been placed where all residents can best access it.
  • The Council Office at Bushloe House is not almost empty. Discussion is taking place on its further use. The building was not appropriate for housing a post office due to the nature of its business and for security reasons. A post office opens in Wigston 20th September 2016.
  • In order to get the process right in registering residents to vote, some residents may have got two voting return papers. The Officer responsible for the process of ensuring everyone is enabled to vote is very diligent and wishes to get this democratic process right.


Residents were encouraged to respond to the current online consultation on the Council Tax Support Scheme. A leaflet explaining the Scheme and direction to the link to access it was circulated.

On concluding her presentation update, the Chair expressed thanks to the Officer


A resident asked that we be called citizens or residents because that means we have rights and duties.  We are not customers and shouldn’t be referred to as such as that takes our rights away.  The Leader of the Council said this would be considered.


Litter Campaign


The Campaign has been running since the end of 2015. People are being invited to take part by forming litter picking groups and sending the message to friends, neighbours and Community Groups. Primary schools are being liaised with, as are links through the Leicester Universities and the media.

Residents were requested to spread the word about the campaign and get involved. A hard copy of a flyer about the Litter Campaign was distributed. It states how people can get involved in the Litter Campaign and who to contact for more information.

A resident suggested the Litter Campaign could establish an award through Pride of the Borough to recognise groups of people or an individual for their contribution to the Campaign.

Pride of the Borough organise regular litter picking sessions. For more information, contact Brocks Hill Country Park and Centre, Washbrook Lane, Oadby, Leicester, LE2 5JJ. Email:

Telephone: 07874 228491 Email: 

The Chair thanked Colin Robertson for presenting the update.


Phoenix Therapies - Presentation pdf icon PDF 555 KB


An electronic presentation titled;”Take the Weight Off Your Mind”, was shared with residents by Phoenix Therapies representatives. The presentation outlined the courses provided and their impact on participants.

A working partnership has been formed with the South Wigston voluntary Organisation Helping Hands. This will help with delivering the course to 50% of people using Helping Hands who experience mental health problems.

Funding has been awarded for a bespoke Take the Weight Off Your Mind” course to the Council`s Youth Council. This will address the mental health needs of young people in South Wigston. An award for this work has also been received from the Trustee Savings Bank.

Phoenix Therapies requested £1000 from South Wigston Residents Forum to run a course. Oadby Residents Forum also awarded Phoenix Therapies £1,700 for a bespoke course for its residents and Wigston Residents Forum awarded them £1,000 on the basis that South Wigston Residents Forum would match fund this sum.

The Chair put a motion to residents asking if they wished to have the proposal funded. One resident proposed it, another seconded it. On voting 9 people were in favour of awarding the funding .There were no abstentions or dissenters. The motion was agreed. The Chair thanked Lainy Wills and Paula North for presenting the update.

Action: Circulate the presentation with the minutes to residents.


South Wigston Traders' Update


The South Wigston Traders Group Chair noted that Christmas Capers will take place.

Countesthorpe Car Park is identified as a place for a public bike stand in the Council car Park.

Action: The Chair is to take this forward for discussion.


Chair's Updates


On the question of whether an under spend could be used to tidy the bus shelter area by the Salvation Army, the Chair stated this area is to soon undergo painting.


Items Raised by Residents and Suggestions for Future Items


Parliamentary Question Time by Sir Edward Garnier MP. This relates to governance issues at Oadby and Wigston Council.

Residents asked the Chair for clarification in relation to questions raised at Parliamentary Question Time by Sir Edward Garnier, Harborough MP. This relates to the MP`s speech on governance issues at Oadby and Wigston Council.

The issues in question related to: 214 grievances taken by 9 senior managers against the senior management team; estimated £550,000 spent on investigation, legal costs etc; and critical comments concerning management and governance of the Council.  Residents asked why Forum meetings had been told nothing in the eighteen months since the resignation letter of one of those staff appeared in the Leicester Mercury after the May 2015 election. 

The Chair responded with the following points in relation to questions posed by residents.

  • On the day the information was raised in Parliament, the Chair was informed at very short notice this was to happen, with very little time to respond.
  • The issue concerns a Council staff group grievance which is still being dealt with by lawyers and is not open for sharing with the public.
  • On receiving the grievance the Chair did not assume it was one sided. An independent body went through the evidence. Sir Edward Garnier has taken it out of context and has not visited Oadby and Wigston Council offices since February 2016.
  • The grievance if wrongly dealt with could have cost the Council more than half a million. Time is being taken to ensure the Council follows employment procedures properly and get it right.
  • Understanding the full context of the issue, may not have led anyone to do a different one from the current one.
  • Reserves are in place to cover this type of emergency.
  • Sir Edward Garnier indicated a sum of £500,000 for the cost of arbitrating the current staff /employer issue as he has added in funds for temporary staff coverage costs.
  • A press release was put out this morning. Most of this press release can be read on Radio Leicester`s website.
  • This issue has been on the Council agenda a number of times.
  • The Chair is happy to share what is in the public domain. He noted the information is redacted.


A resident stated that there is no way that 214 allegations from 9 senior managers can possibly be ‘just a staffing issue’, it can only be a problem with management and governance. 

A resident stated that the Council does not respond – doesn’t reply to correspondence or phone calls, nor does the Senior Management, and that residents have nowhere to go with issues other than to their MP.  Edward Garnier is acting on behalf of residents. 

Another resident stated the view that the Liberal Democrats have had a majority for over 20 years, do not have a strong opposition, and have drifted to a position of protecting the Council instead of fulfilling their role of holding the Council to account, and representing residents.  The same resident had to ask the  ...  view the full minutes text for item 20.


Date of the Next Meeting


Tuesday 8th November 2016, Fairfield Primary School hall, Cheshire Drive, South Wigston at 7.30pm.