Agenda and minutes

Venue: Guildhall

Contact: Committee Administration 01905 722006, 722085, 722027 

No. Item


Declarations of Interest

To receive any declarations of interest.




Public Participation

Up to a total of fifteen minutes can be allowed, each speaker being allocated a maximum of five minutes, for members of the public to present a petition, ask a question or comment on any item on the Agenda or within the remit of the Committee.




Sansome Walk Decommissioning Lessons Learnt pdf icon PDF 87 KB

That the Committee note the report.

Additional documents:


The Committee considered the report of the Head of Internal Audit on the lessons learnt.


The Chairman had requested that the item be put on the agenda in order that there could be scrutiny of the work undertaken by contractors and consultants appointed to the Sansome Walk decommissioning project and any steps that the Council might consider over the abortive works and associated costs to date.  It was noted that this report sat alongside the lessons learned report of Internal Audit.


Councillor Johnson was in attendance and he spoke with the Chairman’s consent. It was noted he was the relevant Cabinet Member during the decommissioning period.


The Chairman highlighted that there was an exempt appendix to this report. Members noted that they wished to have as much discussion as possible on the lessons learned before excluding members of the public from the meeting.


The Deputy Director - Governance introduced the report and provided an overview. She clarified that the exempt appendix was confined to legal advice. She confirmed that, for the public minutes, a number of the lessons learned were identified which related to the Council’s capacity to manage the complexity of the project and how it had been set up involving multiple contractors and advisors.


The Head of Internal Audit then presented the Lessons Learnt report and commented in detail on the findings.


Committee Members proceeded to ask questions and Officers responded.

The main points raised were in summary as follows:


·           Officers explained the difference between the capital and asset management framework and the asset management strategy. The framework sets out strategic principles governing the Council’s approach to asset management. The strategy process focusses on how those strategic principles will be delivered and includes performance measures. This approach will help to ensure the Council is in a stronger position to continue to achieve successful project outcomes.


·           It was noted that there were two projects – the new development at Perdiswell and the consequent redundant building at Sansome Walk. The Sansome Walk building had operated safely whilst it was open to the public. In response to a question about the date on which the decision was taken to decommission, the Committee were advised that the Cabinet decision in December 2016 to commence demolition was by default a decision to decommission.


·           With regard to the number of parties involved and the finding of a lack of clarity on ownership, Officers advised that Place Partnership were managing the project on the Council’s behalf, with a number of partners. Property management had now been brought back in-house. It was evident that there should have been greater clarity and awareness as to issues and emerging risks associated with the demolition project. Officers gave assurance that arrangements had been put in place to resolve this issue.


·           It was noted that there had been a number of changes in both senior management and in political control during the timeline of the project, and Members expressed the view that a lack of continuity has interrupted the process.  ...  view the full minutes text for item 34.


Any Other Business

Which in the opinion of the Chairman is of sufficient urgency as to warrant consideration.




Item Involving the Disclosure of Exempt Information


RESOLVED: That under Section 100A(4) of the Local Government Act 1972, the press and public be excluded from the meeting for the following item of business on the grounds that it involves the likely disclosure of information as defined in Schedule 12A of the said Act.


Sansome Walk Decommissioning Lessons Learnt

That the Committee notes the contents of this report which provides legal advice on the implications of the adequacy of the services provided to the Council by consultants and construction contractors.


The Committee noted the contents of this report, which provided legal advice on the implications of the adequacy of the services provided to the Council by consultants and construction contractors.