Statement from Beverley Town Council

Below is a statement from Cllr Denis Healy (Chair of Personnel Committee), regarding an issue that has arisen regarding Town Council’s gas supply to the 12 Well Lane offices.  This statement was presented at the meeting of Full Council on Monday 10th January 2022:

“In mid-November 2021, the gas boiler situated at the Town Council offices at 12 Well Lane, Beverley stopped working, and in attempting to resolve this technical issue, it became clear to the Acting Town Clerk that the Council does not have a gas supplier, despite using and receiving gas since 2004.

The Acting Town Clerk has been in contact with the gas distribution company, Northern Gas Networks (NGN) who have confirmed that there has never been a registered gas supply to 12 Well Lane.  The property lease for 12 Well Lane states that utility supplies are the responsibly of the tenant.

NGN has reminded the Council that it is a legal requirement to register a gas supply in accordance with the Gas Act 1986 (as amended by the Gas Act 1995 and Utilities Act 2000,) and that this legislation instructs NGN to recover monies lost from unregistered gas usage.

NGN have confirmed that they will use standard rates provided to them by the gas regulator, Ofgem, to calculate a back payment going back to 2004 for unpaid for gas.

NGN have also instructed the Council to take immediate steps to appoint a gas supplier, a process which the Acting Town Clerk has in hand and at the time of writing is awaiting correspondence from British Gas to resolve the matter.

The Personnel Committee met on 20th December 2021, at which the matter was considered.  It concluded that this is a serious issue and that under the committee’s delegated powers it should follow Council policies and procedures to set up a formal investigation into the matter, which will be carried out by a councillor independent of the situation (i.e. a councillor not involved in the matter or a member of the Personnel Committee).

The Personnel Committee therefore appointed Cllr David Tucker to carry out this investigation.

The terms of reference for the investigation are to establish all the facts in relation to this matter, including the historical context for the use of unregistered gas, and to establish if further actions should be taken under the Council’s policies and procedures.

The investigation is mandated to commence on 4th January 2022, and Cllr Tucker is requested to produce a written report, outlining his findings by 31st January 2022. This will be considered at a meeting of the Personnel Committee in early February.

Cllr Tucker is at liberty to contact whichever employees, councillors, individuals and organisations he deems relevant to the investigation.” 

For more information, please contact Cllr Denis Healy directly: Tel: 07951 577002     Email: denish@denish.karoo.co.uk