Agenda item




Following the District Council elections in May 2019 the Council developed and agreed a Corporate Plan in November 2019 and a Delivery Plan in February 2020, which detailed the authority’s key priorities and objectives over the four-year period to 2023.


Soon after agreement of the Delivery Plan the COVID pandemic spread to the UK and much of the Council’s focus during 2020 moved towards a response to this unprecedented situation supporting our residents and businesses. Over the following two and a half years the Council has balanced its response to the pandemic and new and emerging situations including delivery of the Homes for Ukraine programme locally and the rising cost of living pressures whilst delivering against the Delivery Plan objectives and maintaining core serviceprovision.


During this time the Cabinet has reviewed the Delivery Plan objectives and actions in October 2020 and November 2021 reviewing progress and setting priorities for the forthcoming twelvemonths.


This report details the progress made in delivering against the Delivery Plan and outlines where priority focus will be directed over the next six months – ie until the Full Council elections in May 2023, following which the newly elected Council will have an opportunity to develop a new Corporate Plan.


Options considered:

Given the changing context in which the Council has needed to operate over the period since March 2020 due to COVID and issues arising as a result of the war in Ukraine, the Council could have resolved not to progress any of the Corporate Plan objectives because of the need to direct capacity and resources in responding to those unprecedented worldevents.


However, the Cabinet has considered the capacity of the Council to take forward actions detailed in the Corporate Plan Delivery Plan, sometimesover

extended timescales, reflecting the changed context in which the Council has had to operate.











The alternative options considered were:-

·       do nothing to re-profile the Delivery Plan actions,or

·       agree to “pause” all Delivery Plan actions and concentrate on the COVID, Homes for Ukraine and cost of living pressures responses and Business As Usual service provision.


The report details a practical and measured response to the Council prioritising its Delivery Plan actions for the remaining period of this Council administration – ie through until May 2023.







Reasons for Recommendations:

Cabinet is asked to review and comment on the progress made against the original and revised Delivery Plan objectives and agree those objectives where they would wish focus to be directed over the period to May 2023.


To reflect the changed circumstances in which the Council has operated over the period since March 2020 in seeking to balance its Corporate Plan priorities against unforeseen developments such as COVID and the war in Ukraine.


Cabinet Member(s)

Cllr Tim Adams, Leader of the Council

Ward(s) affected


Contact Officer, telephone number and email:

Steve Blatch, Chief Executive,, 01263 516232



Cllr T Adams – Council Leader introduced the report and informed Members that he was very proud of the work achieved by officers across the Council, following a significant reprioritisation in response to the Pandemic. Despite this, he added that the Council had still achieved a number of priorities set-out within the Corporate Plan, and this report would outline which actions would be given priority in the lead up to the 2023 local elections.


Questions and Discussion


      i.        Cllr J Toye referred to red RAG status items within the report such as the Growth Sites Delivery Strategy, and asked whether this would still be delivered. He added that a proposal to develop a procedure and guidance note for registered social landlords was also outstanding, and asked if this would be progressed. Cllr T Adams replied that the Economic Growth Strategy was expected to come forward for consideration in December, but he would need to seek clarification on the other action.


     ii.        Cllr C Cushing stated that he was concerned that developing an economic strategy so late in the Council term would not be effective, and noted that the delay was difficult to justify. He added that KPIs for boosting business sustainability and growth did not appear within the Corporate Plan and asked why this was the case. Cllr T Adams replied that the Council had been granted an award for its efforts supporting businesses throughout the pandemic and noted that a more detailed response regarding the KPIs could be supplied in writing.


    iii.        The Chairman noted that it was unfortunate that this far into the Council term there was still not an Economic Growth Strategy in place to support the formation of the Local Plan and wider economy. He added that this was not a criticism of the reprioritisation, as this had been a necessary step during the Pandemic to provide vital support to businesses. It was suggested that it would have been prudent to enhance resources so that a strategy could have been brought forward at an earlier stage. The CE replied that whilst it would be appropriate for the Portfolio Holder to provide a written response on the preparation of an Economic Growth Strategy, discussions had taken place as to whether the Strategy would come to the Committee for pre-scrutiny in December, though this was yet to be confirmed. He added that the DFPCC had stated that the Economic Growth Strategy was not critical as an evidence-base for development of the Local Plan, as this would be based on separate evidence prepared by the BE Group on land supply for existing and future business growth. The CE suggested that economic growth in the District’s predominantly tourism-based economy relied on business support rather than land use, and the strategy was therefore not considered a prerequisite to the development and finalisation of the Local Plan.


   iv.        Cllr J Toye noted that he had recently discussed support for rural businesses with the local MP, and whilst the Economic Development Team were small, they were very proactive in supporting businesses, but he was unsure whether they would have the capacity to bring plans forward at the current time. The Chairman replied that he recognised the size of the Team and the importance of supporting local businesses, but noted that it was right to question whether there was adequate resource to achieve the priorities set-out within the Corporate Plan.


     v.        The recommendation was proposed by Cllr P Heinrich and seconded by Cllr H Blathwayt.




1.    To review and comment on the progress made against the original and revised Delivery Plan objectives and those objectives where focus will be directed over the period to May 2023


Supporting documents: