Remit, members and meeting papers
Full Council Meeting

Council meets approximately every five weeks and may decide to create working-parties for large projects or short tasks. These can, and sometimes do, co-opt additional members from the community.

Planning applications are considered by a standing committee that meets every three weeks to agree local comments on applications being submitted to the Planning Authority (the South Downs National Park Authority).

Other currently-active Committees and Working Parties are listed below. There are also functional panels for internal matters including Personnel, Internal Audit/Corporate Governance (which also acts as a complaints panel in the event of complaints about the Council by the public), oversight of the All Saints and Malling Community Centres, and a financial Grants Panel, which assesses grant applications four times each year.

Public attendance

Members of the public have the right, and are welcome, to attend meetings of the council and its committees and working parties. Due to Covid-19 safety measures, capacity in the Council Chamber is currently limited and members of the public wishing to attend meetings should contact the Town Council in advance.

Questions regarding items on the agenda may be heard at the start of each meeting with the Chairman’s consent, subject to time available. Questions or requests to address the council should, whenever possible, be submitted in writing to the Town Clerk at least 24 hours in advance. For more information on how to ask questions, please contact us. General questions about the work of the council can be raised at our offices between 9am and 4pm Monday to Friday, when our staff will be pleased to assist.

All Saints Centre Steering Group

Following the demise in 2001 of the All Saints Trust (who had leased the All Saints Centre since it was gifted to the Town Council in the early 1980’s) the Council decided that it wished to continue direct management of the All Saints Centre. The Centre has continued to enjoy great popularity, offering an eclectic range of events and activities, whilst running on very informal lines and remaining true to the original church covenant requiring it to be used as a community arts and youth centre. The Steering Group exists to maintain oversight of the Centre and periodically consider the detail of proposals and projects, and make recommendations to assist the Council.

Richard Burrows, Stephen Catlin, James Herbert, Merlin Milner, Ruth O’Keeffe, Richard Waring, Shirley-Anne Sains,

Meetings Agendas and minutes

Allotments service working party

  • To consider proposals for changes in allotment policy and management, eg revision of policy and rules; introduction of eco-friendly practices; wider tenant responsibilities; allocation of tenancies and potential to reduce the nett cost of the service.
  • The Working Party to focus upon rules and guidance that accord with the Council ‘visioning’ priority of environmentally-sound practices (and wider Government policy); that address current ‘work-around’ anomalies, and that create a positive environment for allotment holders wishing to engage more fully with sound environmental practices. Further; to consider potential for additional low or zero-cost activities to promote good ecological practice on allotments.
  • To formulate recommendations in time for introduction for the 2021/22 year

Matthew Bird, Richard Burrows, Stephen Catlin, John Lamb, Imogen Makepeace, Dr Wendy Maples, Shirley-Anne Sains, Emily Clarke,

Meetings Agendas and minutes

Audit and Governance Panel

  1. The Audit & Governance Panel comprises 6 Members, who are NOT also authorized to sign cheques or other financial instruments, or appointed to the Finance Working Party.
  2. The Panel is asked to meet at least 3 times per year, at a practical time following the ends of the 2nd, 3rd, and final financial quarters, with a remit to monitor treasury management and budgets. The Panel will act as a public complaints review panel should the need arise, making recommendations to Council as appropriate.
  3. The Audit Panel is delegated authority to carry-out on behalf of the Council those aspects of the prevailing national audit and governance regime that call for member oversight of details (eg routine bank reconciliation to ledgers, and recommendations to write-off bad debt). Any items where it is necessary to record a Member’s signature are to be delegated to the presiding Chairman of the Panel.  All such reviews and signatures are to be detailed in Panel minutes, and thereby reported to Council at the next appropriate meeting.

Matthew Bird, Stephen Catlin, Dr Wendy Maples, Merlin Milner, Rob Handy, Jonathan Vernon,

Next Meeting
Audit and Governance Panel - September 28, 2022 - 6:00 pm

Meetings Agendas and minutes

Buildings Working Party

The Buildings Working Party is tasked with oversight of maintenance of the Town Hall, All Saints Centre, and Malling Community Centre and other buildings/structures. Currently mandated to administer the refurbishment of Malling Community Centre, and authorized to act for Council in that regard, the Working Party will otherwise formulate recommendations for Council as appropriate with regard to repairs; non-routine maintenance matters, or replacements/refurbishments of major plant and equipment.

Matthew Bird, Stephen Catlin, Guy Earl, John Lamb, Dr Graham Mayhew, Merlin Milner, Richard Waring,

Meetings Agendas and minutes

Commemorations & Events Committee

  1. Originally a Working Party set up in 2012 to address a number of imminent commemorations; this body had its mandate extended in response to the similar considerations arising through to 2019; when it was established as a standing committee to address the continuing volume of noteworthy commemorations foreseeable in the next few years.
  2. The Commemorations & Events Committee is mandated to consider significant anniversaries/centenaries or similar occasions, and such notable events as may be presented, and to formulate recommendations for Council as to the appropriate recognition of them.

Stephen Catlin, Guy Earl, Imogen Makepeace, Dr Wendy Maples, Dr Graham Mayhew, Ruth O’Keeffe, Jonathan Vernon, Kate Wood, Merlin Milner,

Meetings Agendas and minutes


Lewes Town Council is the parish council for the civil parish of Lewes.  It is a statutory body consisting of Eighteen representatives who are elected every four years.  Every seat on the Town Council has traditionally been contested in elections by several candidates.

Dr Janet Baah, Matthew Bird, Richard Burrows, Stephen Catlin, Guy Earl, Rob Handy, Oli Henman, James Herbert, John Lamb, Imogen Makepeace, Dr Wendy Maples, Dr Graham Mayhew, Merlin Milner, Ruth O’Keeffe, Shirley-Anne Sains, Jonathan Vernon, Richard Waring, Kate Wood, Emily Clarke,

Meetings Agendas and minutes

Devolution Working party

Tasked with oversight of negotiations with Lewes District Council regarding devolution of local assets or services.

Richard Burrows, Stephen Catlin, Guy Earl, Dr Wendy Maples, Dr Graham Mayhew, Kate Wood,

Meetings Agendas and minutes

Equality, Diversity and Inclusion Working Party

This Working Party should:  identify and catalogue over the forthcoming year improvements and moderations to the current policy  meet annually to update and refresh council principles.  demonstrate to the public that the Council is fully committed in developing Equality, Diversity and Inclusivity.

Dr Janet Baah, Matthew Bird, Stephen Catlin, Rob Handy, James Herbert, Dr Wendy Maples, Emily Clarke,

Meetings Agendas and minutes

Finance Working Party

  1. The Finance Working Party comprises six members, who are not also appointed to the Audit and Governance Panel.
  2. The Working Party will meet initially in late October/early November with additional meetings as required, but with the object of formulating recommendations to the December meeting of Council for service expenditure budgets; amendments to fees and charges, and a Council Tax Precept value for the ensuing year.
  3. Should additional meetings be required, these must allow for final recommendations to be made to Council no later than the January meeting.

Guy Earl, James Herbert, Imogen Makepeace, Dr Graham Mayhew, Kate Wood, John Lamb,

Meetings Agendas and minutes

Grants Panel

  1. The Grants Panel will meet four times per year, in accordance with a published annual schedule.
  2. There is no public or applicant access to meetings of the panel.
  3. The Panel is tasked to assess applications for financial grant, following principles of the Council’s published Grants Scheme, and to make recommendations to Council for payment or otherwise.
  4. The Panel is not required to justify its recommendations, but is asked to consider any helpful comments that may be made to assist applicants who are either denied a grant or offered an amount less than that applied-for.
  5. The Panel is asked to make its recommendations with due regard to the budgeted sum available for the year, although recommendations may be made which either leave an unspent balance at year-end, or which require supplementary funding from the General Fund, provided these are in reasonable proportion to the overall total for the year.

Richard Burrows, James Herbert, Shirley-Anne Sains, Ruth O’Keeffe, Kate Wood, Stephen Catlin, Imogen Makepeace, Dr Wendy Maples,

Meetings Agendas and minutes

Landport Bottom Management Committee

Landport Bottom, previously owned jointly with Lewes District Council (LDC), is now owned outright by the Town Council. Day-to-day the site is managed by the Lewes District Ranger and, following the transfer of ownership, this service continues under contract with LDC. This Downland site has a number of aspects which make its management less straightforward than an urban park or sports facility and there is a high level of interest and practical involvement from within the community. A standing Landport Bottom Management Committee is therefore established as:
  1. Landport Bottom Management Committee comprises eight members, with a remit:
    1. To conserve and enhance Landport Bottom as an important feature of the local landscape
    2. To increase biodiversity by appropriate habitat management
    3. To protect and conserve the Scheduled Ancient Monuments; Registered Battlefield site, and other important historical features.
    4. To promote quiet, informal enjoyment of Landport Bottom by the general public.
    5. To involve the local community in the development and management of the site
    6. To increase the understanding and awareness of the importance of the site, amongst local people and visitors.
    7. To manage the site with the Health and Safety of the visitors, staff and volunteers as a high priority.
    8. To manage stock with the highest welfare standards.
    9. To maintain current fixed assets to high standards.

Matthew Bird, Richard Burrows, Rob Handy, Ruth O’Keeffe, Shirley-Anne Sains, Jonathan Vernon,

Meetings Agendas and minutes

Malling Community Centre Steering Group

The Malling Community Centre Steering Group is tasked with general strategic oversight of that Centre’s operations, meeting ad hoc and formulating recommendations for Council or other committees, functional panels, or working parties as appropriate.  This may include scrutiny of current, future and proposed business plans; staff structure and costs; profit and loss; contracting-out; income and expenditure reporting as well as review of booking, operations issues and management plans.

Dr Janet Baah, Matthew Bird, Stephen Catlin, Guy Earl, John Lamb, Merlin Milner, Shirley-Anne Sains, Kate Wood,

Meetings Agendas and minutes

Open Council Working Party

To identify methods for improved public engagement and greater provision of information to residents of Lewes. It is suggested that this should include:-  A review of information sharing and the methods used to share key events and policy developments  Consideration of good practice on methods of online deliberation and social media, such as on key town-wide issues  Identifying ways to provide more joined-up support for community engagement in and around Council-owned buildings

Matthew Bird, Stephen Catlin, James Herbert, Imogen Makepeace, Dr Wendy Maples, Ruth O’Keeffe, Shirley-Anne Sains, Jonathan Vernon, Richard Waring, Kate Wood,

Meetings Agendas and minutes

Pells land exchange Working Party

A land-swap proposal has been made by Lewes District Council in respect of land held by the Town Brook Trust, to better-align boundaries with the proposed North Street Quarter development. Very small areas of land are involved, but there are implications for the future plans for the Pells. It was proposed that a Working Party be set up to consider the matter in detail.

Stephen Catlin, Dr Graham Mayhew, Ruth O’Keeffe, Shirley-Anne Sains, Kate Wood, Emily Clarke,

Meetings Agendas and minutes

Pells Pool Community Association Liaison

The working party helps maintain our working relationship with the Pells Pool Community Association (PPCA), who are licensed to manage the swimming pool each Summer; and to develop a long-term joint vision on which future developments at the Pool can be based.  Any Councillor is welcome to attend the occasional meetings of this group.


Meetings Agendas and minutes

Personnel Panel

  1. The Personnel Panel comprises six members.
  2. The Panel will meet ad hoc if required to consider matters of staff discipline or grievance; new or amended policy requirements or proposals related to staff pay and conditions, and recruitment and appraisal of the Town Clerk.
  3. In matters of policy or recruitment, the Panel is authorized to formulate recommendations for consideration by Council.
  4. In matters of staff discipline or grievance or similar matters, the Panel is delegated authority to act on behalf of Council, with the caveat that Council remains the final arbiter in any appeal process.

Stephen Catlin, Richard Burrows, Imogen Makepeace, Dr Graham Mayhew, Dr Wendy Maples, Kate Wood,

Meetings Agendas and minutes

Planning and Conservation Committee

The Council has delegated authority to the Planning Committee:
  • To consider all matters relating to the use and development of land affecting, or likely to affect, the Town area and its environs.
  • To exercise the power and duties of the Council in respect of the powers conferred on it from time to time under the Town and Country Planning Acts and the Orders and Regulations made thereunder including:
    • development control
    • the local plan process
  • To respond on behalf of the Council to all Consultations by the District and County Councils on planning applications, Tree Preservation Orders and related matters;
  • To monitor, review and where necessary make recommendations to the Council for amendments to the planning consultation procedure;
  • To consider and make recommendations to the Council regarding any matter related to the role of the Town Council in terms of planning and planning consultation processes.
  • To consider and make recommendations to the Council regarding transport and travel related issues generally and specifically with regard to:
    • The transport and highway impact and implications of planning applications;
    • Local and Transport plans and modifications thereto;
    • Proposals for promoting (either directly or indirectly) community transport schemes within the Town
    • Highway and related matters
    • Signage and Streetscape-related matters
  • To respond on behalf of the Council to consultations received from the District and County Councils regarding on‑street and off‑street parking matters and Highway and Traffic Orders.

Dr Janet Baah, Stephen Catlin, Rob Handy, John Lamb, Imogen Makepeace, Merlin Milner, Shirley-Anne Sains, Emily Clarke,

Meetings Agendas and minutes

Transport Committee

Set up to: Work with statutory bodies (including LDC and ESCC), agencies, community groups and stakeholders on transport related issues; To facilitate a Lewes transport policy that is both sustainable and integrated. This would use the work prepared during the drafting of the Lewes Neighbourhood Plan and earlier work by the Town Council’s Traffic Working Party on a Lewes transport forum, as a starting point; Work with residents and businesses to consider and possibly fund traffic measures such as crossings, signage and speed limits; Continue to monitor the LTC-funded Compass bus service, reporting back to Council; To work with the Council’s Planning Committee, ensuring that any recommendations are reviewed before consideration by Council.

Dr Janet Baah, Matthew Bird, Stephen Catlin, Rob Handy, James Herbert, Imogen Makepeace, Merlin Milner, Ruth O’Keeffe, Jonathan Vernon, Richard Waring, Emily Clarke,

Meetings Agendas and minutes

UN Sustainable Development Goals Working Party

Council was asked to note the UN Sustainable Development goals, which are a universal call to action to end poverty, protect the planet and ensure that all people enjoy peace and prosperity. It was recognised that achievement of the goals requires action at all levels from the international to the local, from organisations to individuals and from national government to parishes. The working party working party was established with three main purposes:- A         To assess the current activities of the Town Council against the 17 over-arching goals, as well as their sub-categories, to establish what we are doing to help bring about the goals. B          To look at what further activities the Town Council might promote that would enable Lewes to make its contribution towards achieving the goals. C          To create a snapshot report against which all future activities can be measured.

Dr Janet Baah, Matthew Bird, James Herbert, Imogen Makepeace, Ruth O’Keeffe, Emily Clarke,

Meetings Agendas and minutes