Following the latest Ward Forum meeting, the Liberal Democrat councillors representing the Avenues called a meeting on 3 November 2000 to discuss the fountain issue.
Harry Atkinson attended this meeting as the Avenues Residents' Association delegate.
Cllr Fareham (Con) was the chairman. Other councillors present were Cllr Butterworth, Cllr Robinson, Cllr P Walker (DC), Cllr Collinson and Cllr D Woods. Also present was Kevin Robinson (Area Coordinator), Steve Hirst (Admin Assistant), Louise Johnson (Admin Assistant to the Wyke Area Committee), John Emmerson (Engineering Design Manager in charge of monuments), a representative from the legal department.
Agenda Item 1
The public (ie Harry Atkinson!) was given five minutes to ask questions
His questions were:
Why did the council in their briefing notes claim that the accident to the fountain was unwitnessed, when they themselves had approached one of two witnesses for a statement? No satisfactory answer was given, and Cllr Fareham asked for a full report on this for the next Area Committee meeting on 30 November.
It was important to raise this issue, as the council would probably have succeeded in their legal action against the motorist had witnesses been called. They could then have recovered the full cost of the fountain from the driver's insurers.
Why were both damaged fountains not considered for repair at the same time? The Monuments Officer (Mr Emmerson) blamed financial considerations and said that the fountains were damaged in different ways. Cllr Fareham asked for a report to be ready for the meeting on 30 November.
It was revealed that tenders had been put out for restoration of the fountain. These were due in on 13 November 2000. John Emmerson was asked to broaden the tender request to include two additional fountains, to see if it was feasible to consider eventual restoration of the fountains long missing from Marlborough and Victoria Avenues.
After the end of the formal meeting, Cllr Butterworth, John Emmerson, Louise Johnson and Harry Atkinson had an informal discussion in which all the issues concerning the fountains were raised.
The officers were impressed by the wealth of information provided by local historian Chris Ketchell (the Local History Unit) on the history of fountains in Hull.
They were also interested in the pictures of the Avenues fountains in "An Illustrated History of The Avenues and Pearson Park, Hull" (edited by Chris Ketchell and published by the Avenues and Pearson Park Residents Association).
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