1. Attendance

  • Nicola Mitchell (RDC)
  • Cllr Sam Coleman
  • Mark Adams (RDC)
  • Terry Steeples (RSF)
  • Christine Madeley (Talking Newspaper)
  • Kim Richards (RVA)
  • Nancy Tipler (Little Gate)
  • Meena Winter (18 Hours)
  • Craig Steenhoff (RDC)
  • May & Ana (DISC) Linda Sneddon (RRAF)
  • Christie Ward (Dance Ability)
  • Sarah Jacques (SoS)
  • Andrew Barton (HRRA)
  • Caroline Aherne (BDAA)

2. Apologies

  • Lorna Ford (RDC)
  • Emma Jones (CFTC)
  • Teri Sayers-Cooper (CFTC)
  • Amanda Lyons (RVA)
  • Annette Holmes (RVA)
  • Mandy Curtis (18 Hours)
  • Dee Flower (Little Gate Farm)
  • Mark Dimmock (ESH)

3. Updates and action review from December 2023 meeting

  1. The proposed changes to the Council Tax Reduction Scheme were approved at Full Council in February 2024 with a move from an 80% funded scheme to 100% funded scheme.   
  2. RDC set and agreed its budget for 2024/25 at Full Council in February 2024. 
  3. MA provided update to RDC Digital and Customer Services Strategy; thanked members of the Steering Group who contributed to the working group event on 21 February 2024. The strategy is progressing, and next stages scheduled throughout the summer 2024. 
  4. NM/MA – each consultation reviews the groups they wish to hear from, and throughout the consultation process. 
  5. HR provided details of Rother Community Lottery to TS. 
  6. HR provided ToR. To be reviewed in July 2024 meeting 
  7. Digital Switch over: Department for Science, Innovation & Technology have reviewed and updated the Public Switched Telephone Network Charter (Public Switched Telephone Network charter – GOV.UK (www.gov.uk). RDC will be supporting communications relating to the switch.  

4. Rother Draft Local Plan Consultation (Planning Policy)

Presentation by Craig Steenhoff (RDC). 

Provided background to the Draft Local Plan 2020-2040. It will guide development and land use until 2040. The plan has two overall priorities: 

  • Green to the Core – emphasising the need to consider the impact of our planning decisions on the climate emergency, biodiversity crisis and the High Weald National Landscape. 
  • Live Well Locally recognises that in all planning decisions, the goal is to create healthy, sustainable, and inclusive communities. 

Consultation opens 30 April 2024, closes 23 July 2024. Draft Local Plan 2020-2040 – Rother District Council  

Public exhibitions will be held throughout the district between May 24 – July 24, details will be announced on our website, social media and MyAlerts. Hard Copies of the Draft Local Plan will also be available, locations will be available online.  

General observations were provided, including: 

  • Language used throughout the document and in the public exhibitions 
  • What are the key messages? 
  • Engaging with people in their 20’s and younger families 
  • Challenges of getting information to people who do not go out 
  • Supporting people through change in life stages 
  • Providing accessible transport links, including walking/mobility access and cycles. 

The Steering Group gave its thanks to Craig for the pre-engagement and will encourage clients to participate in the consultation and support sharing information.  

5. Organisation Updates

Little Gate Farm

College is opening in September to help young people get the skills and support they need to go into work. Open day in Summer, limited tickets. 


Heart Of Sidley Festival on 15 June 2024, contact HoS direct if would like a stand.  


Recently been awarded National Lottery Community Funding for 3 years. Are celebrating 6th Birthday this month. Details of support groups and events can be found on their website (Home (discdementiasupport.org) ) or social media.  


Received funding for classes from Active Rother and classes are currently £2 per person

Bexhill Dementia Action Alliance

Call for volunteers, recently awarded £1,000 from Bexhill Lions. 


Established over 20 years now. Has challenges of recruiting trustees and looking to explore ways for younger people into volunteering. 


Reviewing support activities and gap analysis to develop programme. Attending Jobs Fair and mindful of the increasing demand on voluntary sector to provide and deliver on more and more complex needs, alongside budget challenges and restraints.


The Annual Carers’ Voices Conference takes place during carers week on 11 June 2024, at the Kings Centre, Eastbourne. Annual Carers Voices Conference 2024 | Care For The Carers (cftc.org.uk)   

Bexhill Talking Newspaper

Has expanded to cover Hastings and Rural Rother. 


55 Clients and 45 Volunteers. VIP hub every Thursday at The Picture Playhouse. In April, a local PCSO will be joining to give a talk on scam prevention. 


Afternoon Tea on 22 May 2024 at St Barnabas Church, Sea Road, booking in the normal way. Looking to hold an event in September to mark Older People’s Day. It will focus on matters of concern to RSF members. More details to follow.  

18 hours

Developing new strategy for RRAF and exploring ways to fund projects.  

6. AOB

Date for diary: IDAHOBIT day 17 May 2024, invitation to join CEO to follow. 

Police and Crime Commissioner elections held 02 May 2024, reminder for ID to be taken to vote.  

7. 2024 Meeting Dates for Noting

  • 2pm – 4pm, Wednesday 17 July 2024 Council Chamber 
  • 2pm – 4pm, Wednesday 13 November 2024 
Aiimee Digital Assistant Icon

Aiimee - Rother Digital Assistant

Ask me a question!