Minutes of Parish Council 23rd January 2013

Minutes of the Parish Council Meeting

Held in the John Lampon Hall on 23rd January 2013 at 7.30p.m.

Chair John Gili-Ross
Parish Councillors Present Jenny Church, Bernard Colbron, Murray Harlow, Andrew Savage, David Short, Harry Stone, Bob Tyrrell, Phil Walby and Rachel Young
Parish Clerk Val Walsom
Borough Councillors Councillor Harrington, Councillor Willetts
Present: 3 members of the public

Part I – Public

1. Receive Apologies

Apologies were received from Chris Stevenson.

2. Questions from registered electors

Mr Johnson advised that, last Sunday, a replacement bus was sent to West Bergholt to replace the bus held up by the high tide over the Strood at West Mersea.  Unfortunately, it arrived 15 minutes early.  Mr Johnson will forward this information to ECC.

Residents from Armoury Road opposite the land owned by CBC where tree work is due to take place are concerned about comments made by a CBC councillor that CBC is looking into the possibility of installing parking bays on the land.  The Environment and Highways working party will look into what future plans CBC may have and also the question of whether or not there is a footpath running through it.

3. Receive items for information not on the agenda, which in the opinion of the Chairman should be brought to the attention of the Council

  • The copy of a letter from Bernard Jenkin MP to Eric Pickles about Rate Support Grants had been received.
  • A letter had been received from a resident about traffic issues around Heathlands School.  A response had been drafted and was approved.  This highlighted the issues brought up in the Traffic Plan and what has so far been achieved with regard to parking areas and the footpath on Poors Land.
  • A letter had been received from Heathlands PTA requesting use of Poors Land for this year’s Fireworks event taking place on 9th November until 11a.m. on 10th November.  WBHYFC will need to be informed.  This was agreed.

4. Declarations of Interest

Andrew Savage and Rachel Young declared an interest in item 3 – the Heathlands Fireworks event.

5. Minutes

Minutes of the Council meeting held on Wednesday 28th November 2012 were approved and signed.

6. Finance

a)    Statement of Accounts for November/December 2012

The accounts for November/December were presented as follows:

The General Account showed 94% income, 53% general expenditure, 68% environment expenditure and 58% expenditure overall.

The Hall Account showed 85% income and 58% expenditure.

b)   Draw cheques

It was proposed by AS and seconded by MH to make the following payments:

Payment Details
Expense Purpose
Mark-One Health and Safety Training 408.00
Dave Kingaby Website management 212.50
Ernest Doe Environment purchases 55.00
Mail Boxes Etc Village Bulletin 549.00
Anglian Water Water rates 36.55
Murray Harlow Expenses 15.56
V Walsom Phone calls 104.00
G Walls Environment/footpath purchases 314.34
Inland Revenue PAYE 217.84
C Stevenson Ink Cartridge 20.47
D Short Poors Land footpath materials 144.90
D Short Poors Land footpath materials 39.36
Dave Kingaby Website migration 369.00
G Walls Petrol 100.43
Inland Revenue PAYE 206.80
Zurich LCAS Membership 174.00
Mark Beaver Surveying Hall car park survey 350.00
S J Andrews Electrical works 58.80
Mike’s Cleaning Cleaning 1025.00
Roberts Cleaning Window cleaning 30.00
Elanar Technical Boiler repairs 228.48
Vincent Pizzuto Plumbing repairs 120.00
Utility Warehouse Hall Administrators phone line installation 85.00
Performing Rights PRS/PPL Licence 785.28

Salary payments were made to Val Walsom, Gary Walls and Stephen Cook from the General Account and June Mayhew and Vicky Beckwith-Cole from the Hall Account.

[Click link to view accounts – Summary Accounts November December 2012]

c)    Update on Grants – Hall Car Park and Stage Lighting and Cycle racks
  • A survey of the Orpen Hall car park has been carried out.  AS, BT and CS will meet to draw up a specification to send out for tender.
  • Still awaiting a second quote for the stage lighting.
  • CS has secured quotations for cycle racks.  These will be installed in conjunction with resurfacing the car park.
d)   To approve the Precept for 2013/2014

AS gave an explanation on how the Precept was determined this year with regard to a reduction in the number of Band D properties allocated to West Bergholt and the further reductions in Revenue Support Grant by CBC .  Following discussion it was proposed by Harry Stone, seconded by Jenny Church and agreed by all to increase the Precept by £3.05 per Band D property per annum.  This represents a 9.9% increase.  This will give a gross expenditure for 2013/2014 of £51,745.  An explanation of the Precept will be placed on village notice boards.

e)   Budgets – to approve budgets for 2013/2014

AS presented the final budget for 2013/2014 to reflect the Precept.  This had previously been discussed in November 2012.  It was proposed by Andrew Savage, seconded by David Short and agreed by all to accept the budget as agreed.

f)    Scout Hut Rent update

The Scout Group advised that they will not pay the increased rent until the Licence is in place which the PC believed they had already accepted.  A strong letter will be sent to advise the Scout Group that they must pay the new rent set in June 2012 by no later than 31st March 2013.  .  Failure to do this will trigger a 6 month’s notice termination period to quit the premises.

g)    Charity Returns

The Clerk has completed the Charity Returns for 2011/2012.

h)   Donations

Potential Parish Council donations will be considered at next month’s meeting.

i)     End of Year Expenses

Any expenses need to be claimed by the end of March.

7. Clerk’s Items to Note

a)   EALC Course
  • Roles and Responsibilities – 31/03/13 – PW and RY to attend
  • How to Raise the Profile of your Parish Council – 07/02/13 – MH to attend
  • Pension Workshop – 13/02/13
  • Allotments Day – 28/02/13
  • Funding Do’s and Don’ts Workshop – 06/03/13
  • It was agreed to look for health and safety courses for the village handymen to attend.
b)   Essex Highways –    Notification of Chitts Hill closures.

8. Report from Colchester Borough Council

Councillor Harrington reported the following:

  • Both Councillor Harrington and Councillor Willetts fought hard against the CBC Rate Support Grant cuts.
  • CBC is going through its own budget discussions and it has been agreed that Council Tax will be frozen this year, subject to ratification by the full Council.
  • Road surfaces in West Bergholt are appalling.  ECC Highways has agreed to repair some of the worst areas in Chitts Hill, Argents Lane, Valley Crescent, Chapel Lane and Newbridge Hill.
  • The Travel Plan will be presented at the next meeting of the Local Highways Panel on 29/01/13 at 6p.m. in the Town Hall.

JGR advised that from 1st April Neighbourhood Action Panels will be amalgamating to form larger groups.

9. Village Bulletin and Communications

a)    Receive update from Village Bulletin Editor

The next edition is due in March.  There is a waiting list of advertisers.  June Mayhew will be presented with a retirement gift at the Deliverers Thank you get together on Sunday 27th January.

b)   To discuss resignation of Editor and appointment of replacement

BC will continue as Editor until a replacement is found.  A notice will be placed on the notice boards to advertise the position.  Sue Swan has also indicated that she will resign once a replacement is found for her position.  She is responsible for administration of advertisers.

BC has agreed printing costs for next year.

c)    Receive update from Village Communications Officer

MH asked whether the PC was interested in Twitter and Facebook as a means of communication for the PC.

The monthly website report had been distributed, which highlights some areas which need consideration.

10. Planning

a)    To approve comments and decisions for Planning Applications:

122170 – 42 Albany Road – Supported with no comments

122068 – 66 Lexden Road – Objected with comments

130030 – 9 Bradbrook Cottages – Supported with no comments

[Click links to review full reports – Planning Committee December 2012 final report  and  Planning Committee January 2013 final report]

b)   Neighbourhood Plan

CS produced a report on the position so far.

A  Neighbourhood Plan is a requirement if Parish Councils are to benefit from cash boosts of 25% of revenues from the Community Infrastructure Levy for new housing.

11. Environment and Highways

a)    Tree in Armoury Road – to discuss outcome

Following discussions between members of the PC, CBC and the TPO Officer a plan of works has been drawn up by CBC.  The work is to begin in March.

b)   Tree inspection regime – to discuss possible implementation

A survey of trees on Parish land has been started.  DS and Gary Walls are going on a tree disease recognition course.

Councillor Anne Brown will be contacted to see whether she can help with further salt supplies from ECC Highways following the very successful snow clearing this month.

12. Premises and Recreation

a)    To discuss Orpen Hall kitchen repairs and refurbishments

The paper work has now been retrieved from the Surveyor who has been dealing with the claim.  The Loss Adjuster, Cunningham Lindsay and Insurance company have been informed of the situation.  A specification of requirements for refurbishing the kitchen as part of the repairs will be drawn up and shown to major hall users for approval before quotes are sought.

b)   To discuss toilets at the front of the hall

The toilets at the front of the hall are in serious need of repair.  A specification will be sought for the refurbishments and contractors approached as soon as possible.

c)    To discuss future management of West Bergholt Sports Club

Vicky Beckwith will be approached to see if she is willing to take over the administration of the West Bergholt Sports Club.  She will be offered an additional hour per week to be paid for by the club funds.

d)   To discuss reinstatement of Poors Land following Heathlands expansion

Ashe Construction has advised that reinstatement is due to take place during March.  However, it is likely that the area will not be completely recovered until next year.  Care needs to be taken of the Heath area of the reinstatement.

Phil Walby was appointed Football Liaison representative for the Parish Council to administer the playing fields and liaise with the users of them.

13. Emergency Response System

This item will be discussed at the next meeting due to the absence of Chris Stevenson.

Items to Note

(a) English Rural Annual Report
(b) EALC – Country Update – November/December 2012
(c)  RCCE – Village Halls and Community Buildings Update – December 2012
(d) RCCE – Oyster – Autumn 2012
(e) Clerks and Councils Direct – January 2013
(f)   Local Council Review – Winter 2012

Part II – In Committee

Matters taken in the absence of Press and Public (Public (Admissions to Meetings) Act 1960) as the item contains exempt information as defined by the Local Government Act 1972 Sch. 12a Pt (1).

There were no items to discuss

Date of Next Meeting

Wednesday 27th February 2013 at 7.30p.m.

The meeting closed at 9.35p.m.


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