Councillor Nigel Avey was welcomed to the first meeting of Cabinet since his appointment as Environment Portfolio Holder. Councillors received reports from Overview and Scrutiny Committee, Asset Management and Economic Development and the Finance and Performance Management Cabinet Committee.
Further reports outlined progress on the Council’s Transformation Programme and office Accommodation Review. Following the listing of the Civic Offices, Councillor Chris Whitbread described the sensitive process of negotiation with Historic England needed to obtain the best outcome for residents.
Leisure Portfolio Holder Helen Kane emphasised the importance of fitness and good mental health encapsulated in its Leisure and Wellbeing Strategy. Addressing a petition supporting the retention of sports facilities in Epping, Councillor Kane reassured councillors that significant investment has been made recently in Epping and other centres. There is a long term aspiration to redevelop the site of the current sports centre for housing but Councillor Kane was committed to sports provision. She is looking at potential options and locations for better facilities in the future.
Councillor Chris Whitbread added that Waltham Abbey Swimming Pool had remained open while Waltham Abbey Leisure Centre was being built and Epping Sports Centre would remain open until any alternative developments were completed.