Minutes of Parish Council 27th February 2013

Minutes of the Parish Council Meeting

Held in the John Lampon Hall on 27th February 2013 at 7.30p.m.

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

Part I – Public

1. Receive Apologies

There were no apologies received.

2. Questions from registered electors

There were no questions from registered electors.

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

  • JG-R attended a CBC Policy Review meeting where the position regarding CBC owned garages was discussed.  CBC is considering replacing some garages in the borough with social type housing.  JG-R advised that the PC should consider exercise its right to bid in this instance.
  • JG-R commended Planning Department for its help in producing Neighbourhood Plans.

4. Declarations of Interest

There were no declarations of interest.

5. Minutes

Minutes of the Council meeting held on Wednesday 23rd January 2013 were approved and signed.

6. Finance

a)    Statement of Accounts for January 2013

The accounts for January 2013 were presented as follows:

The General Account showed 94% income, 58% general expenditure, 73% environment expenditure and 63% expenditure overall.

The Hall Account showed 97% income and 67% expenditure.

b)   Draw cheques

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

Payment Details Expense Purpose


EALC Training courses


Anglian Water Poors Land water rates


Anglian Water Allotments water rates


Dave Kingaby Webmaster quarterly payment


Harry Stone Stamps (Allotments)


CBC Bin emptying


Writtle College Training courses


Inland Revenue PAYE


V Walsom Payroll software


G Walls Environs expenses


Webhosting Hostroute renewal


TC4Seasons Water work – Allotments


Harry Stone Ink Cartridge


Mike’s Cleaning Cleaning


S J Andrews Electrical work


AtoZ Toilet rolls/paper towels


V Beckwith-Cole Keys/Green bags


Ian Dickson Internal front doors


Anglian Water Water rates


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

[Click to view Accounts – Summary Accounts January 2013]

c)    Update on Grants – Hall Car Park and Stage Lighting and Cycle racks
  • CS agreed to project manage resurfacing the hall car park following completion of the survey.  A meeting to be held with AS and BT to discuss the outcomes of the survey.
  • Quotes have been received for stage lighting controls.  The grant is now ready to be submitted.
  • A quote of £710 has been accepted to supply 2 toast rack style cycle racks, to be installed as near as possible to the entrances of both halls as part of the resurfacing project.  £500 has been received from CBC’s Locality Budget thanks to MH and DW.  The balance will be funded from the Project, Grants and Donations budget including additional cost for their installation.
d)   Scout Hut rent update

A letter has been sent to the Scout Hut reminding them that they have until 31st March to pay the rent before action is taken to terminate the agreement.

e)   Social Club rent and payments due

Rent has been paid to the end of February.  However, the Social Club has asked for a British Gas invoice for the gas supply.  This will not be possible as British Gas do not supply and invoice for the separate meter.  An invoice will be drawn up and sent to the Social Club together with a copy of the bill from British Gas.  This should be sufficient for the Social Club’s accountants.  The payment must be received by 27th March 2013.  The situation will be carefully monitored to ensure the Social Club do not fall behind with payments due.

f)    Donations

It was agreed to make a donation of £300 to the Methodist Church.  No further requests had been received.

g)    End of year expenses

Expense claims to be forwarded to the Clerk before next month’s meeting.

7. Clerk’s Items to Note

a)   EALC Courses
  • Employment Issues Course – 22/03/13
  • 2 hour short courses available in-house
b)   RCCE
  • Edible Essex – practical support for Allotments
  • Best Kept Village Competition – It was agreed not to enter this year
c)    Thank you card received from June Mayhew

8. Report from Colchester Borough Council

Councillor Willetts reported the following:

  • DW was disappointed with proposals for new NAP arrangements to add Myland, Highwoods and St John’s to the existing NAP area.  He felt the large area would make it difficult to focus on individual village problems.
  • CBC has proposed a scheme to fine its residents who present their recycled waste for collection incorrectly.  The ‘small print’ would need to be read carefully to ensure waste was presented correctly.
  • CBC is heading for a deficit of £5m over the next 3 years.  A drastic reorganisation to reduce costs of contact to CBC is being introduced to reduce costs.  Contact will be limited to mainly email/electronic communication.
  • Under a new policy the first tranche of CBC owned garages are being converted into affordable housing.
  • Localism Act – Right to buy – Communities should register their local assets, including pubs, community shops etc.

Councillor Harrington reported the following:

  • It has been confirmed that the Locality Budget will be renewed for 2013/2014.  Each Borough Councillor will be able to allocate up to £2,000 in grants.
  • The Local Highways Panel has agreed spending of approximately £75,000 in West Bergholt including School Awareness Signs.  Most of what was requested in the Travel Plan has been included in the spending but not 20mph limits.  The timescale for the work to be carried out   is not yet known.
  • The situation with regard to potholes in the village is totally unacceptable and a long term plan needs to be considered.  MH has made his views known to Councillor Anne Brown who has passed these on to Councillor Louis, Highways and Transportation Portfolio holder.  Major work to repair the potholes is due to be completed by 31st March 2013.

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

9. Village Bulletin and Communications

a)    Receive update from Village Bulletin Editor

The March edition is due for delivery this week.

b)   To discuss resignation of Editor and appointment of replacement

BC advised that someone has shown an interest but nothing has been confirmed.  The position will be advertised via Heathlands ParentMail to try to get more interest in the position.

c)    Receive update from Village Communications Officer

MH felt that the website is not receiving enough ‘hits’.  Most outstanding items on the website report issued by Dave Kingaby have been dealt with.  CS suggested that a ‘reporter’ is needed to add news items to the website.

Berkley Homes to be contacted about the possibility of installing a Notice Board in the Pocket Park area.

10. Planning

a)    To approve comments and decisions for Planning Applications:

130088 – 50 Chapel Road – Observations were made

130107 – High Trees Farm and Barn, Lexden Road – Supported with no comments

[Click link to review full report – Planning Committee February 2013 final report]

b)   Neighbourhood Plan

CS produced a report on the position so far.

A meeting of the Committee is due to take place on 28th February 2013.

The committee needs to formally write to CBC to advise that they want to create a Neighbourhood Plan.  CBC will only practically support a small number of Neighbourhood Plans each year.

A NALC document has been discovered which provides some very helpful information.

Timing of a questionnaire for the Village Bulletin needs to be carefully considered so as not to miss any deadlines.

11. Environment and Highways

a)    To discuss proposed purchase of a gritting spreader

It was agreed to purchase a suitable gritting spreader up to a cost of £800.  This should result in a reduction in the amount of grit used by narrowing the spread to footpath width.

b)   To discuss potholes

CS declared an interest in this item, and took no part in the discussion and abstained from the ensuing vote.

Following discussion it was agreed that the PC would make repairs to dangerous potholes at the junction of Valley Crescent/Chapel Lane if ECC cannot confirm, within 7 days of notifying them of the proposed work, that they will be undertaking the work imminently.

c)    To discuss letter received from resident of Pirie Road re neighbour’s tree

A letter had been received from a resident in Pirie Road about a large Oak tree in the neighbour’s garden.  The PC will respond with information about how the resident can deal with this.  The PC cannot intervene in a situation like this.

12. Premises and Recreation

a)    To discuss Orpen Hall kitchen repairs and refurbishments

Cunningham Lindsey, Loss Adjuster, is to be chased about the position regarding the insurance claim.  Meanwhile, quotes are being sought for the repairs and refurbishment.

b)   To discuss toilets at the front of the hall

This is ongoing.  A contractor has been asked to look at the area and put forward some ideas/costings.

c)    To discuss complaint received re noise

A complaint had been received from the Gardeners Club about excessive noise from a band practice in the Social Club interrupting their speaker.  The Social Club will be asked to confirm that this is a one-off incident.

13. Emergency Response System

The template to be emailed to all Parish Councillors to see whether there is any interest in taking this forward.  This will be discussed at the next meeting.

Items to Note

(a) EALC – Country Update – January 2013

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 March 2013 at 7.30p.m.

The meeting closed at 9.45p.m.

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