Agenda and minutes

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Contact: Sarah Claridge, Committee Services Officer 

No. Item


Declarations of interest


There were no declarations of interest made.



Minutes pdf icon PDF 623 KB

Minutes from 12 June 2017 and 14 June 2017.


Recommendation: That the minutes of the meetings held on 12 June 2017 and 14 June 2017 be APPROVED as a true and accurate record.


Additional documents:


The following amendment was made to Local Plan Preferred Option (minute 5):

“Car free residential would only be suitable in areas where a controlled parking zone (CPZ) could be enforced”


The Committee resolved to APPROVE the amended minutes of the meeting held on 12 June 2017 as a true and accurate record.


The Committee resolved to APPROVE the minutes of the meeting held on 14 June 2017 as a true and accurate record.



Report back on recommendations pdf icon PDF 80 KB

Contact Officer: Andrew Brown, Scrutiny Officer,

Tel 01865 252230,


Background Information

Scrutiny is empowered to make recommendations to the City Executive Board and the Board is obliged to respond in writing.

Why is it on the agenda?

For the Committee to note and comment on recent executive responses to Scrutiny recommendations.  Since the May meeting the Board has responded to recommendations on the following items:

·         Local Plan Preferred Options

·         South Oxford Science Village Planning Application

·         Fusion Lifestyle’s 2017/18 Annual Service Plan

·         The local impacts of Brexit

·         The Council’s use of PSPO powers

Who has been invited to comment?

·         Andrew Brown, Scrutiny Officer




The Chair presented the report on recommendations.  All recommendations from the meetings in May and June meetings were agreed or agreed in part.


The Committee NOTED the report.



Fusion Lifestyle's Performance Report - 2016/17 pdf icon PDF 304 KB

Background Information

Fusion Lifestyle is the Council’s leisure partner. The Committee has requested an annual report on Fusion Lifestyle contract performance.

Why is it on the agenda?

For the Committee to scrutinise Fusion Lifestyle contract performance. The Committee is asked to note the report and provide feedback.


Report to follow

Who has been invited to comment?

Councillor Linda Smith, Board Member for Leisure, Parks & Sport;

Tim Sadler, Executive Director for Sustainable City;

Mark Munday, Divisional Manager, Fusion Lifestyle.


Additional documents:


The Director for Sustainable City presented the Annual report. He highlighted that:

·         Participation levels  had fallen

·         Free swimming sessions for the under 17 had been well attended

·         Customer satisfaction levels were high

·         Introduction of healthier alternatives were to be offered in the vending machines.


The Divisional Manager for Fusion Lifestyle said that in the last year, participation levels for bonus card holder had reduced. This was due to a combination of leisure centres being renovated and the opening of several low cost gyms in Oxford which are offering cheaper prices for gym users than Fusion. Fusion’s business plan is not to match them on price but to focus on value. By providing good quality facilities, continuing to staff the centres and offering a wide range of activities which are attractive to the whole family.


The steeper decline in participation levels of bonus users in deprived areas has led to Fusion offering a cheaper offer for users of the Leys Leisure Centre. There is a higher rate of casual users in deprived areas. This data is not captured by Fusion.


The Committee provided the following feedback:


The Committee requested a breakdown of the participation rate, activity and ethnicity per leisure centre.


Given the market has changed and participation levels are falling, is the current Council contract with Fusion still working?   The Director for Sustainable City said that the impact on falling participation rates is more of a financial concern for Fusion than the Council. There are no financial implications for the Council as the Council no longer pays Fusion an infrastructure grant or user subsidy.  If the trend continues, Fusion might get worried about their business model.


The Committee asked to see participation figures for all council funded leisure activities. The Sports Development Manager said that data was available and she will make sure it is sent to the committee.


Both Fusion and the Council will be running marketing campaigns to promote Fusion’s range of activities.


GP referrals are still happening and Fusion has trained more staff so that more GP referrals can be accepted. It is a perennial struggle to maintain GP referrals and encourage surgeries to refer people. It was suggested the GP referral form was too cumbersome to fill out.  Officer to review this and report feedback to GPs.


Fusion has the same target as the Council to reduce CO2 emissions each year by 5%. We are getting to a stage where more expensive schemes are needed to meet this target. This year LCD lighting has been installed at Ferry Leisure Centre and a pool cover for Hinksey is being considered.


Concern was raised about BME usage at leisure centres particularly the women’s only pool session being staffed by men which has discouraged users. The Divisional Manager for Fusion Lifestyle said that it was Fusion’s intention for female staff to run female only sessions however, occasionally it can’t be due to sickness etc. 

The Committee asked whether Fusion could make the pool private during women only sessions  ...  view the full minutes text for item 20.


Work Plan and Forward Plan pdf icon PDF 165 KB


Background Information

The Scrutiny Committee operates within a work plan which is agreed at the start of the Council year.  The work plan will be reviewed at every meeting so that it can be adjusted to reflect the wishes of the Committee and take account of any changes to the latest Forward Plan (which outlines decisions to be taken by the City Executive Board or Council).

Why is it on the agenda?

The Committee is asked to:

1. Review and note its work plan for the 2017/18 council year.

2. Select a priority topic for review, which could be one of the following suggestions:

      I.        Impacts of the Westgate Shopping Centre;

    II.        The use of restorative justice to resolve low level cases of antisocial behaviour;

   III.        Implementing the Oxford Living Wage across Oxford;

  IV.        Disabled student’s allowance / support for young people with disabilities;

   V.        Childhood obesity.

3. Appoint a Scrutiny Member to lead a review into the chosen topic area. 

Who has been invited to comment?

·         Andrew Brown, Scrutiny Officer


Additional documents:


The Chair presented the report.


Work Plan

The Committee reviewed and noted its work plan for the 2017/18 council year. The Scrutiny Officer said that the Housing Panel will now meet on 5 September to discuss the four CEB housing reports scheduled for September.


Cllr Henwood asked that the Committee add Air Quality to the list of potential review topics. The Committee discussed the merits of each of the 6 suggested review topics.


The Committee agreed to review the topic “Implementing the Oxford Living Wage across Oxford”, Cllr Ladbrook was appointed Chair.


The Scrutiny Officer said he would meet with the chair and a scoped review would come to the Committee in September.


Forward Plan

Members of the Finance Panel requested that Item 16 – Additional funding for feasibility studies for investment property development opportunities be looked at by the Finance Panel in September.


The Committee asked if there was a report on tower blocks and fire safety going to CEB in the near future and stressed the importance of Scrutiny considering this issue. The Scrutiny Officer said that the Housing Panel was expecting a briefing at their meeting on July 27 (which had been moved from 10 July, the date listed in the paperwork).



Dates of future meetings

Meetings are scheduled as followed:


Scrutiny Committee




31 July 2017 – Provisional

7 September 2017

9 October 2017


7 November 2017


All meetings start at 6.00 pm.


Standing Panels

Housing Standing Panel – 10 July 2017

Finance Standing Panel – 6 July 2017

Shareholder Standing Panel – 11 July 2017




The Committee agreed to cancel the provisional meeting scheduled for 31 July 2017.


The next meeting  is scheduled for 7 September 2017