Agenda and minutes

Culture and Communities Scrutiny Panel - Thursday 7th January, 2021 3.00 pm

Venue: Virtual Meeting

Contact: Scott Bonner 

No. Item


Declarations of Interest

To receive any declarations of interest.


There were no declarations of interest received at this point in the meeting.


Minutes - Culture and Communities Scrutiny Panel - 10 December 2020 pdf icon PDF 13 KB


The minutes of the Culture and Communities Scrutiny Panel held on 10 December 2020 were submitted and approved as a correct record.



PREVENT - Update pdf icon PDF 680 KB

The Head of Stronger Communities and the Community Safety Partnership Officer will be in attendance to provide Members with an update on the Council's contribution to the PEVENT agenda.


The Head of Stronger Communities and the Community Safety Partnership Officer provided the Panel with an update on the PREVENT agenda. As part of the presentation the following points were made:


·         The Community Safety Officer advised the Panel that he was the Council’s lead officer for Prevent and reducing reoffending.

·         PREVENT was a safeguarding function, whose duty fell under s26 of the 2015 Counter Terrorism and Security Act. This Act placed a duty on Councils to safeguard those at risk of becoming radicalised.

·         The primary aim of PREVENT was to empower individuals and communities to resist extremist rhetoric. This also involved working with professionals and partners so they could identify relevant risks and vulnerabilities, and potentially make referrals to the CHANNEL programme. 

·         Individuals at risk of extremist rhetoric were from a wide demographic.

·         The CHANNEL element of PREVENT was voluntary and based on consent. 

·         PREVENT worked in a similar fashion to other crime prevention initiatives, such as trying to prevent gang related activities.

·         In Middlesbrough there was a multi-agency operational group known as the Bronze Group which met every two months. This group formed action plans to help reduce risk.

·         The group worked with the public to identify what risk factors to look out for.

·         The group recently reviewed its internal training plan, which was now five stages rather than three.

·         Promotion of PREVENT occurred through a number of different mediums, such as road shows, website material and campaigns with partners such as the NHS, CRC probation and youth services.

·         Actions plans were derived from a regional Risk Assessment with actions focused on the education of professionals and identifying new and emerging threats so that resilience could be built around high risk groups. An example was online gaming in that gangs could take advantage to radicalize young people in that environment. 

·         Example risk actions included work carried out with a range of diverse communities and the third sector, educational establishments and roadshows at James Cook Hospital and the Hill Street Centre.

·         There was a constant requirement to understand engagement needs with different communities.

·         Recent projects included working with the Learning Disabilities Community that utilised tools such as the Picture Exchange Communication System (PEX) to generate publicity that would be understandable to the Learning Disability Community and their carers. 

·         Different levels of training were provided and had recently been reviewed which would be rolled out in spring 2021. The Council also hosted Home Office training material on the PREVENT website.  

·         WRAP 3 training had been completed with a minimum of one Designated Safeguarding Lead per school and a lot of work had been completed around COVID resilience in the face of “Fake News.”

·         Face to face and virtual training had been delivered to schools and school governors.

·         Awareness raising was a large proportion of what PREVENT did, particularly around digital resilience.

·         Online safety awareness was planned with a virtual PREVENT session with foster carers.


The Head of Stronger communities provided the Panel with an update on CHANNEL  ...  view the full minutes text for item 20/21


Terms of Reference - Cultural Events pdf icon PDF 220 KB


The Chair advised the Panel that that Terms of Reference for the Panel’s review into Cultural Events in Middlesbrough were:



Using examples of best practice, learn how cultural events are delivered in Middlesbrough how they contribute to wider social regeneration initiatives.



In light of COVID-19 explore potential future Event formats to understand if Cultural Events can be sustainable in a post Covid world.



To learn how Cultural Events can contribute to wider Economic Initiatives in Middlesbrough.


The Terms of Reference were submitted and agreed by the Panel.


ORDERED: That the Terms of Reference for the Panel’s review into Cultural Events be agreed.  


Cultural Events in Middlesbrough pdf icon PDF 1 MB

The Principle Events Officer will be joined by the Vice Chair of Middlesbrough Mela to provide the Panel with examples of event best practice and how they contribute to wider social regeneration agendas.

Additional documents:


The Creative Programmes Manager the Vice Chair of Mela provided the panel with a verbal report and made the following points:

·         Some of the events that were delivered, or supported, by the Council’s Events Team included the Mela, the Organge Pip Market and the Christmas events programme, Discover Middlesbrough and Local History Month.

·         The Events Team also supported external event organisers that wanted to come to Middlesbrough to deliver cultural events.

·         Some of the benefits of delivering cultural events included raising the positive profile of the Town; attracting visits to the Town Centre which increased spend in Middlesbrough’s local economy as well as helping to support the local creative economies of Middlesbrough, the Tees Valley and the North East.

·         Events also helped to promote inward investment as many investors were keen to see a thriving Town Centre with robust events programmes taking place.

·         Events provided the opportunity to provide new skills for residents, especially through engagement work.

·         Many events delivered in Middlesbrough were not one-off events with most having sub-work programmes that further enhanced community engagement. Those engagement events provided the opportunity for schools, communities and individuals to participate and by extension develop skill sets and improve their wellbeing.

·         Cultural events also had a positive impact on community cohesion.

·         The Middlesbrough Mela was supposed to celebrate its 30th anniversary in 2020, however the COVID pandemic prevented this.

·         Ordinarily the Mela received audiences of between 30,000 – 50,000 people with over 100 crew members being involved. Hold the event also led to an increase in employability for the duration of the event.

·         Events such as the Mela helped to attract investment via sponsorship and funders. 

·         As part of the Mela, there were additional events that worked with over 150 people from community groups on various commissions. These commissions worked with professional artists, musicians and choreographers over a three month period which contributed to the creative content of the Mela and for its associated, smaller events such as parades.

·         The written reports provided to the Panel about the Mela gave examples of different community groups that had engaged with the event and what such engagement looked like. Examples included the Mela Big Knit that reached over 100 people.

·         Activities associated with larger events helped combat social isolation and reach those individuals engage with events like the Mela where they had not done so before.

·         The Events Team actively worked alongside the Stronger Communities service as this helped to identify community groups that may benefit from cultural engagement. This could be communities with diverse demographics, or those that had not previously engaged with cultural events. This was especially true for those communities in the east of the Town.

·         The Events Team also worked with a number of external agencies including the Police and the Police and Crime Commissioner all of which helped to support and reinforce social and community cohesion. 

·         The Covid Pandemic had resulted in cultural events being offered in different formats, namely online. Changing to new formats had however resulted in  ...  view the full minutes text for item 20/23


Chair's OSB Update

For the Panel to agree the Terms of Reference for its forthcoming review into Cultural Events.


The Chair advised the Panel that at the previous meeting of OSB a Call In was considered regarding the frequency of waste collection, moving from weekly to fortnightly. Unfortunately, the meeting was unable to take place due to technical issues.


The Chair also advised the Panel that since the Call In meeting, a decision had been made to maintain weekly waste collections therefore the issue may not be heard again by OSB.


ORDERED: That the information be noted.



Any other urgent items which in the opinion of the Chair, may be considered.