Wednesday, 15th March, 2023 6.00 pm

Venue: Council Chamber, Civic Centre, Oldham, West Street, Oldham, OL1 1NL. View directions

Contact: Liz Drogan 

No. Item


Civic Appreciation Awards

Miss. Keira Louise Arnold, Miss.Hannah Miah, Mr.Ibrahim Yousaf BEM BCyA


To receive apologies for absence


To order that the Minutes of the meeting of the Council held on 14th December 2022 and 1st March 2023 be signed as a correct record pdf icon PDF 506 KB

Minutes of the meeting held on 1st March 2023 to follow.

Additional documents:


To receive declarations of interest in any matter to be determined at the meeting


To deal with matters which the Mayor considers to be urgent business


To receive communications relating to the business of the Council


To receive and note petitions received relating to the business of the Council

(time limit 20 minutes)


There is one Petition to note:

Executive Director for Place and Economic Growth

Petition in relation to the implementation of a parking scheme of three hour waiting outside the Salvation Army Citadel, Farrow Street, Shaw

 (33 signatures)


Youth Council

(time limit 20 minutes)


Protected Characteristics for Care Experience

Many care experienced people face discrimination, stigma, and prejudice in their day to day lives. Public perceptions of care experience centre on the idea that we are irredeemably damaged and that can lead to discrimination and assumptions being made.

We do realise discrimination we face often comes from unbiased prejudice and what is reported about care experienced people.   For instance, despite care experienced people making up around 1.4 per cent of the UK population, they account for 25 per cent of homeless people in England and a quarter of the prison population. Nearly half of all under 21-year-olds in contact with the criminal justice system have been in care.

When we look at the statistics like these it’s easy to see why people make assumptions about the likely characteristics of children and adults that have care experience. Issues around school attainment, and behaviour within school of some in the care system will lead to the way care experience is discussed in schools, workplaces, and the media.  However, we are not statistics, we are just young people struggling with everyday life like everyone else.

We feel that when things go wrong it is expected due to our circumstances, but if things go right, we succeed despite our circumstances.  Care experienced young people don’t want our care being mentioned or used as an excuse, as it makes people look at us differently.  Comments like “You’re smart - for a kid in care” and “it’s understandable with what you deal with”, make us want to pretend to be someone else. 

When we talk with colleagues in schools and as part of the Children in Care Council, we have realised that the discrimination and unconscious bias, at its worst, can lead to care experienced people being refused employment, failing to succeed in education or facing unfair judgements about our ability to live independently or even to have families of their own.  Designating care experience a protected characteristic would mean decision-makers would have to consider the needs of care experienced young people more seriously and have to consider how their decisions and polices affect people with care experience.

This discrimination, that they have experienced, is similar in nature to other groups that have a legally protected characteristic under the Equality Act (2010). So, while there may be ways that society can help reduce stigma and discrimination, including creating greater public consciousness on these issues, just as with other areas of equality, there is a case to go further. Therefore, the Council should make care experience a protected characteristic for Oldham.

We propose that the council notes:

  • Care experienced people face significant barriers that impact them throughout their lives.
  • Despite the resilience of many care experienced people, society too often does not take their needs into account and often face discrimination and stigma across housing, health, education, relationships, employment and in the criminal justice system;
  • As corporate parents, councillors and officers have a collective responsibility for  ...  view the full agenda text for item 8.


Questions Time


Public Questions pdf icon PDF 252 KB

(time limit 30 Minutes)


Questions to Leader and Cabinet

(time limit 30 minutes)


Questions on Cabinet Minutes and Urgent decisions taken pdf icon PDF 238 KB

(time limit 15 minutes)


14th November 2022

12th December 2022

23rd January 2023

Urgent Decisions

Additional documents:


Notice of Administration Business

(time limit 30 minutes)       


Motion 1

Actions Not Ambitions – A Renewable Energy Future

Councillor Jabbar to MOVE and Councillor Akhtar to SECOND:

We have seen a significant increase in the cost of energy since the start of the War in Ukraine, exacerbated by the cost-of-living crisis, meaning that residents and businesses in Oldham are facing energy bills almost twice what they were 18 months ago.

Next month, the Energy Price Guarantee will rise to around £3,000 a year for a typical household, this is an almost £2,000 rise from the Energy Price Cap set in August 2021 at £1,277. Lower and middle-income households in Oldham are struggling with this increase.

A survey by the Federation of Small Businesses in November 2022 found that 25% of their members had seen their energy costs double and 19% have seen their energy costs triple.

Whilst support from central Government has been welcomed by both households and businesses, it has not gone far enough. More than half the residents responding to the GM Residents survey say they are having difficulties paying their bills. Almost a quarter of businesses in the FSBs survey anticipate that with further energy bills rises coming in April they will have to close, downsize or radically restructure.

At a time where oil and gas supplies are restricted, investment in the UK’s renewable energy sector is paramount to creating energy security and ensuring that people in towns like Oldham are not impacted by the effects of a conflict over a thousand miles away.

Oldham has ambitious targets to become the Greenest Borough in Greater Manchester and meet the goal of being a carbon neutral borough by 2030, with the council being carbon neutral by 2025.

In doing this we have invested in renewable energy schemes across Oldham, including our pioneering Mine Water Heat Network. To protect the people of Oldham from further shocks to the energy market, as well as to meet the council’s ambitious climate targets, municipal investment in renewable energy is an innovative way of utilising council owned assets to add value and support the local economy.

Whilst Oldham is not known for its sunny weather, solar panels are able to be used in all weather, with rain and wind helping their efficiency by clearing away dust and debris that block light from reaching the panels. By installing solar panels at council assets and building a solar farm at Wrigley Head, Oldham Council can utilise renewable energy created here in Oldham to meet these targets and reduce our own energy bill in the process.

This Council notes:

  • 57% of respondents to the GM Residents Survey say they are struggling to pay their energy bills.
  • Since the We Can Help initiative was launched in September 2022, over £100,000 has gone to residents directly to help them with their energy bills, an increase of 200% compared to the same time period last year.

        That Oldham Council has been leading the way with innovative renewable energy solutions, including the continuing  ...  view the full agenda text for item 10.


Notice of Opposition Business

(time limit 30 minutes)


Motion 1

Reputation of Oldham Metropolitan Borough Council At An All Time Low

Councillor Sharp to MOVE and Councillor Arnott to SECOND:

Oldham is a town made up of decent hard-working people. There is an untapped potential which is yet to be unleashed. Sadly, the same cannot be said of Oldham Metropolitan Borough Council (OMBC).

OMBC is dragging our Borough down, due to poor leadership and mismanagement of our history, assets and services.

The failure of OMBC to deliver the best possible services that many residents rely on and pay for, is one of the key reasons why this administration is failing this Borough. It is not the hard-working frontline staff that are to blame, they have been dealt a bad hand, it is the lack of leadership and responsibility at the top. There is an iron law at the top of OMBC; which is that it is run in the interests of those who run it, instead of those who pay for it.

Driven by the next press release or headline, OMBC and this administration is failing to manage the numerous town centre focused projects properly, such as the thirty-two million pound overspend on the Cinema, the failed ‘Hotel Future and Conference Centre’ that was never built, two Coliseum theatre plans that were scrapped, Marks and Spencer’s, Lidl and a ‘Budget’ Hotel at Princes’ Gate scrapped and failing to materialise.

It is no wonder residents fear the costs of the Spindles/Town Centre project running over budget by tens of millions of pounds given the Councils track record.

The bunker mentality that exists within the administration and leadership of OMBC is damaging this Borough. The failure by the administration to attract the right investment and failure to deliver on existing projects is damaging the prospects of our Borough. The failure to attract the right talent starts and ends with those at the top.

In 2012 Oldham Council was runner up in the prestigious most improved council award and in 2014 Oldham was ‘highly commended’ at the LGA Council of the Year Awards. Since that high water mark things have gone very wrong and it is clear radical measures need to be taken to restore the confidence of our residents, our business community, and our workforce.

Now more than ever we need to restore pride in the Metropolitan Borough of Oldham.

It is clear this Council’s strengths are; spending millions of pounds of resident’s hard-earned money and throwing it away on failed scheme after failed scheme. It is clear this Council does not have the experience to manage the Borough’s finances and is incapable of bringing regeneration schemes to fruition in Oldham.

If Oldham is to have any chance of rebuilding residents trust, incentivising people to stay or move into the area with their families and offering a full rounded living experience, then there needs to be massive change at this Council. Sadly this administration is not fit for purpose and nor is the leadership at  ...  view the full agenda text for item 11.


Update on Actions from Council pdf icon PDF 149 KB

Additional documents:


Annual Reports 2022 pdf icon PDF 4 MB

Report to follow


Review of Special Responsibility Allowances for Members appointed to the Greater Manchester Combined Authority Overview and Scrutiny Committee pdf icon PDF 229 KB

Additional documents: