Agenda and minutes

Venue: The Holding Room, The Guildhall, St. Giles Square, Northampton, NN1 1DE. View directions

Contact: Partnerships and Communities Team  0300 330 7000 e-mail:

No. Item


Welcomes, introductions and apologies pdf icon PDF 185 KB

Additional documents:


ATTENDANCE: Jamie Wells NBC (JW), Pauline Woodhouse (PW), Cllr Phill Larratt (PL), Christian Buckingham (CB), Matthew Toresen (MT), Janet Gordon (JG), Nana Haja Salifu (NH)

APOLOGIES: Cllr James Hill


Minutes and matters arising


Windrush Event 2020


PW gave an update following on from the last meeting and how we progressed with it, stating how that since the minutes were completed, we did in fact complete a grant application. JJ to update further.

JW-After the last forum, I was able to get together a plan for a Windrush event, following various conversations with different members from the forum. I submitted an event plan that regardless if successful, I would like to deliver with the forum. The event aims that I put forward were:

  • To run an open public event that will have guest speakers and organisations providing information about the Windrush and useful contacts for those affected. The event will also include a Windrush drama performance from the Northampton School for boys.
  • Northampton film house to host a film screening, presenting films about the Windrush.
  • Inspiration FM to do media work around the event including advertising, promoting, having guest speakers on the radio and creating a blog for the event.

For the public event, I have provisionally booked the Guildhall and have also made contact with Northampton School for boys, who have confirmed they will provide a drama performance for the event.

Going forward, I would like to have this as a regular agenda item at the forum meetings. I would also like to have a small planning meeting occur between the forum meetings to help with the progress the event development. I will send out a meeting date to all of the forum members with an action plan attached, keeping everyone up to date. The meetings specifically for Windrush will be open to everyone who would like to be part of the planning.

PW-This all sounds brilliant and I’m sure many people would like to be involved in this. 

JG-Nadine Morgan does a production called the front room, I can find out if they would like to be involved.

JW-That would be great, we could also have them perform at the event as well, should they want to.

JG-Regarding a film suggestion, “The Big Life” is a great film I saw about the Windrush. Jade turner is the film coordinator.

PW-A documentary will be good to present as well. Regarding inspa FM, they will be fine keeping us update. At the open event, we could also have painting around the Windrush and historical items.

CB-We would like to have a presence in the planning and on the day.

PW-This will be a good chance for the Guildhall use new caterers. Also, it will be good to have legal at the event.

PW in terms of books and materials, Morcia Walker may have some bits she could provide and help with.

ACTION-JW to send out an meeting invite to the forum, with the type of information we would like for the event including-

  • Film suggestions
  • Documentary suggestions
  • Organisations and speakers
  • Materials to display (paintings, books, clothes, flags etc)

This will help people know what were looking for, helping them bring relevant information to the next planning  ...  view the full minutes text for item 3.


Northampton Unitary Update


Phil Larratt came to provide an update on the Northamptonshire unitary progress.

PL-As people know, due to the issues around the county council, the central government has decided to reform the whole county, splitting it into two big unitary authorities, therefore removing all boroughs and districts. This will all come in effect by the end of March 2021. It was originally meant to change by the end of this year’s march, but unfortunately due to issues in central government, this got delay until 2021.

Plans are currently on going regarding developing the new unitary structure. There is a committee with representatives from all local authorities and the county council working on this. Things are moving ahead slowly and there’s somethings I don’t fully know yet as its still being worked on. This includes all the different services, budgets etc. Contracts are also being investigated such as the highways etc. to make sure they can be picked up by the new unitary, once in place.

In Northampton, to make sure this town has a good voice during the process, one thing that we looking to create is a town parish council. It is currently in consultation, but if successful, it helps protect certain things in Northampton such as the mayoralty etc. the police is also looking to change their mapping and boundaries, to help it fall in line with the new unitary.

PW-Can you explain the difference between the governance and running the smaller town/parish councils.

PL-They will all have the same powers as rules to follow set by centre government. There will be a slight rise in council tax, but this means the extra money that is generated will be spent in the areas in came from. This helps to keep a direct investment within that area.

PW-Is there a contingency plan, come the new unitary, if an area hasn’t settled well within its new parish.

PL-There is an external body that we are working with regarding setting up new parishes. They will help with the development of the local parish clerk officers, structure etc. I believe they will be able to help in big way.

MT-Will grants be continuing from the local authority in the same way the borough provides a grant system now?

PH-I’m not sure right now but it is something that will be investigated as we know how important it is to support local community groups and organisations.

PW-In terms of the support and services we have now, do you see anything that needs to change with this new focus and new change that looks at the needs of the community across the near area.

PL-First off, we need to get the governance right. Without this it will be hard to structure and priorities the support system. To help structure this, we will be having input from all districts and borough. One all this is in place we will be able to see what can be improved or what needs to continue.

PW-What happens to  ...  view the full minutes text for item 4.


Community news exchange


PW-as a new member, Nana would you like to tell us more about your organisation.

NH-I’m from the Salifu Dagarti Foundation. We provide family support for those who are suffering from mental health. We work on a few projects in the community such as supporting people around isolation, including the elderly. We also run a youth club. We try to link them as well such as having the youth group come and provide support to the elderly. Our youth group is very diverse, and we look to raise awareness around racism with them. We also promote the effects of issues around social media such as bullying by encouraging people to talk it.

PW This all sounds brilliant! What is the age range with your youth group and how many do you have attended?

NH They range from 10 to 17 and we average 20 children.

PW Where does the youth group meet?

NH Either at lings or Weston Favel. When starting the youth group we found it difficult to get numbers not because of the children, but because of the parents. Parents are scared for there children so worry when they want to go to new things.

Other community news

CB-There is grant funding available from the police for community groups. Ill share the link with Jamie for him to share. Also, there is a new crime prevention link that again Ill share to Jamie. Action JW to share information to the Diverse Forum.

One final thing, Chinese New Year event is being held at the deco theatre. We also have holocaust Memorial Day coming up here at the Guildhall.

MT-Still progressing in my roll, I’m trying to go out and meet with as many groups as I can within Northampton, so I would like to come up and meet Nana and see where we can work with them and support them.

JG- From the start of February to the end of the month we have a play called “Alone in Berlin”, which is a thrilling true story of which I encourage you to get involved in. Also in June we have the carnival, the theme is “around the world in carnival festivals”. The carnival website is Application forms are available through the website, so we are encouraging people to start applying now

JW-to share the forums calendar and bring leaflets too all future forums



Diverse Forum-Future agenda items


PW-To ask Phil Larratt to come and provide further update around unitary.

JW-Windrush event-planning update

JW-To get one of the chaplains to attend from either the saints, cobblers or county ground.



Date Of Next Meeting


19th March-11am-1pm in the Godwin Room, Guildhall.