Environment & Highways 9th June 2022

Highlights of Environment & Highways Meeting on 9th June 2022

Bluebells - Environment

The Environment & Highways Committee of West Bergholt Parish Council met on 9th June 2022 with topics including:

  • Village sign & Jubilee Beacon,
  • Playground inspection and action required/undertaken,
  • Committee Terms of Reference,
  • Ponds & Trees,
  • Storage requirements.

Environment Committee Minutes

Meeting held on 9th June 2022 in the Social Club meeting room

Members present:John Gili-Ross (Chairman), Manya Barrow, James Owers, David Short and Harry Stone
Others:One member of the public
Apologies:No apologies for absence

John welcomed a member of the public, who was observing the meeting as a potential new Parish Councillor. He commented on the fantastic Fete which he felt it hard to improve on and all agreed. He also asked for the issue of the leaf blower to be considered before starting on the agenda. The existing blower is old and has two defective parts which it is hard to replace.  As it is essential for the work of the Handymen, he proposed that we should buy a new one, similar model, at a cost of £380. This was approved unanimously. (N.B. It has now been purchased).

1.    Village Sign & Jubilee plaque/beacon

Work on the Village Sign is progressing well and will soon be finished off. The plinth with the Jubilee plaque is uneven at the top and needs sealing. The Jubilee Beacon will be removed and repainted following its recent use.

2.    Handyman work schedule

The Handymen work schedule is focussed on grass cutting for the next few weeks.  The availability of staff was discussed.  A scheme allowing the banking of hours was agreed. Each works 8hrs/per week and this flexibility could make more time available at peak times.

3.    Playground inspection

The play equipment inspection presented few areas needing attention – the shackles on some swings will be changed.  A Rocker has been removed as it is broken and its replacement could be included in Phase 4 of the enhancement programme.  If it is intended to apply for a CIF grant for this phase JGR pointed out that an application has to be made by mid-August. HS undertook to check on the availability of any equipment from the Aldham play area by speaking to the Aldham Clerk, Grahame Walkingshaw. (N.B. This has now taken place and no decisions will be made by Aldham PC for about a year. The main items would be swings which are not recommended because of their condition, but we could obtain a rocker and basketball practice equipment).

4.    Terms of Reference of the Committee

These were considered to be generally comprehensive and only minor amendments were proposed, mainly to include the maintenance of the MUGA.  These will be presented to the PC for approval but first issues surrounding responsibility for the Orpen Hall Car Park and beds surrounding the Hall need to be considered by OHMC and an agreement made with this committee.

5.    Ponds

  1. A letter concerning the spraying of ponds has been sent to the Environment Agency and we have received no reply. 
  2. Work on the Hall Road Pond will be carried out by an organisation with volunteers later this month. This will cost £260.

6.    Tree donations

Trees donated by TLC and Scissorhands will be planted in the play area as soon as possible.

7.    Storage

Extra storage space.  CSH will provide a skip next week to clear rubbish from behind the garage stores.  A discussion took place concerning the need for more storage space – one main reason is to accommodate BYG’s equipment. JGR will research the possibility and cost of a unit similar to that use by the Orpen Players located in that area.  The moves by OHMC to provide a Parish Office were noted and it was thought that joined up thinking is needed to ensure all needs are met before any project of this nature is agreed.

8.    Training

Three courses have been booked for one of the Handymen.

9.    Other items to note

JO volunteered to liaise with the PTA over the various emails concerning the school fete and to monitor its activities.

The safety hazard caused by the hedge and shrubs at the corner of Cooks Hall Road is being looked at and letters may need to be sent the residents concerned.

10. Date of next meeting

The next Environment Committee meeting will be held at 5pm on Thursday 14th July 2022 in the Social Club Meeting Room, Orpen Memorial Hall, Lexden Road, CO6 3BW.