Committee details

Scrutiny Panel 2 - Culture and Tourism

Purpose of committee



1.    Purpose/Objectives of the Review


  • To promote Northampton’s heritage and culture on a national and global platform.
  • To increase visitor numbers to Northampton through its diverse heritage and cultural offering.
  • To increase jobs and spending linked to tourism.
  • To use the vehicle of tourism to provide learning about Northampton.


Key Lines of Enquiry


Ø   To gain an understanding  of the culture and heritage within the Borough of Northampton

ØTo gain an understanding of how Northampton’s tourism, heritage and culture offer is marketed and to identify any gaps that can be developed

ØTo receive an overview of Northampton’s heritage assets

ØTo review the extent to which an holistic image of Northampton as an attractive cultural, heritage and tourism place to visit

ØTo understand the roles of both Northampton Borough Council and other partners in promoting the town of Northampton


2.   Outcomes Required


·             To recommend an action plan that will ensure the marketing and the promotion of the Northampton’s culture, heritage and tourism are effective.

·             To identify key areas to focus in order to enhance Northampton as an appealing place to visit and recommend a plan of action.





3.   Information Required


·           Background data 

·           Background reports

·           Best practice data

·           Desktop research

·           Surveys

·           Evidence from expert internal witnesses

·         Evidence from expert external witnesses

·         Site visits (if applicable)


4.   Format of Information


·                     Background data, including:


Presentation to set the scene:  a summary of the current marketing of tourism, culture and heritage carried out by Northampton Borough Council, information regarding the key cultural, tourism and heritage assets within the borough and potential opportunities to attract visitors and the types of attractions which Northampton can offer  


Ø    Relevant Legislation including:


National Heritage Act 1983

Enterprise and Regulatory Reform Act2013.

National Parks and Access to the Countryside Act 1949

Ancient Monuments and Archaeological Areas Act 1979


Ø    Statistics: including:


Website and Social media statistics

Statistics: Visitors to the town and tourism in Northampton, in particular, Cultural Quarter and Heritage Sites


Ø    Relevant published papers, such as:


Central Government’s paper “Preserving historic sites and buildings”

Central Government’s paper Backing the Tourism Sector A Five Point Plan” 2015

Building “Heritage Protection in the UK – Key Facts”


·                     Best practice external to Northampton/Case Study examples


·                     Internal expert advisors:


Ø    Cabinet Member for Regeneration, Planning and Enterprise, NBC

Ø    Head of Economic Development, NBC

Ø    Head of Planning, NBC (for heritage)

Ø    Cabinet Member for Environment, NBC

Ø    Head of Customers and Culture, NBC, Town Centre Manager (regarding events), Cultural Services Manager (regarding events at the Museums).


·                     External expert advisors:


Ø    Communications Director and Director with responsibility for events, Northamptonshire Chamber of Commerce

Ø    Director, Highways, Northamptonshire County Council

Ø    Director, Northampton BID

Ø    Director, Northampton Tourism Association

Ø    Director, Visit Britain

Ø    Director, The Association of Leading Visitor Attractions (ALVA)

Ø    Director, Historic England

Ø    Northampton Heritage Group

Ø    Director, Canal River Trust (CRT)

Ø    Head of History (Heritage), University of Northampton

Ø    Travel Agents in the town

Ø    Visitor Groups, Northampton

Ø    Residents and Visitors (through a survey)

Ø    Freeman of the Borough

Ø    Local Historian, such as Ms V Hedges


·                    Site visit to various heritage and tourist attractions within the borough




5.   Methods Used to Gather Information


  • Minutes of meetings
  • Desktop research
  • Site visits
  • Officer reports
  • Presentations
  • Examples of best practice/case studies
  • Witness Evidence:-


Ø  Key witnesses  as detailed in section 4 of this scope


6.   Co-Options to the Review


·         Martin Sutherland, Managing Director, Royal and Derngate Theatres, Northampton, to be approached to be co-opted to the Review


7.  Community Impact Screening Assessment


  • A Community Impact Screening Assessment to be undertaken on the scope of the Review


8.   Evidence gathering Timetable


June 2017 – March 2018


·         15 June 2016                        - Scoping meeting

·          13  July                                - Evidence gathering

·          14    September                   - Evidence gathering

·          4 December                        - Evidence gathering

·         18  January 2018                 - Evidence gathering

·         22 March                              - Approval final report


Various site visits will be programmed during this period, if required.


Meetings to commence at 6.00 pm






9.                                            Responsible Officers


Lead Officer               Ian Gray, Director of Regeneration, Planning and Enterprise

Co-ordinator              Tracy Tiff, Scrutiny Officer


10.         Resources and Budgets


Director of Regeneration, Planning and Enterprise, to provide internal advice.


11.       Final report presented by:


Completed by March 2018.  Presented by the Chair of the Scrutiny Panel to the Overview and Scrutiny Committee and then to Cabinet.


12.       Monitoring procedure:


Review the impact of the report after six months (approximately November/December 2018)



Contact information

Support officer: Tracy Tiff, Scrutiny Officer, ext 7408.