Minutes of Parish Council 25th June 2014

Minutes of the Parish Council Meeting

Held in the John Lampon Hall on 25th June 2014 at 7.30p.m.

Chair John Gili-Ross
Parish Councillors Present Jenny Church, Murray Harlow, Rachel Howard, Rosemary James, Andrew Savage, Chris Stevenson, Harry Stone, Bob Tyrrell and Phil Walby.
Parish Clerk Val Walsom
Borough Councillors Councillor Harrington, Councillor Willetts arrived 8.30pm
Present: Brian Butcher and 9 Members of the Public

Part I – Public

1.    Receive Apologies

Apologies were received from David Short.

2.    Questions from registered electors

Mr Sanach – Social Club – Thanked PC for use of the Field. £800 was raised for the East Anglian Childrens’ Hospice at the family fun day.  Mr Sanach raised a query about the accuracy of a letter sent to them regarding overdue payments.  This will be looked into.

Peter Wakeling – Siting of Kebab van on the Orpen Hall Car Park – A letter has been received from Mr Wakeling which will be taken into consideration when deciding the outcome.

JGR stated the Planning Application to site the Kebab Van on the Queen’s Head car park was refused.  Other options are being explored by the owner.  The owner has asked if he could still operate within the village.  3 members of the PC have met with the owner to discuss the owner’s intentions to operate within the village.

Phil Walby stated there is a proposition that the Kebab Van could operate within the Orpen Hall car park but no decision has been made.

Mrs Poole – The objection is the length of time and number of nights the Kebab van could be operating.

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

No items were received.

JGR had attended a meeting of the Police and Crime Commission for Essex prior to this meeting, which included an update of the recent murders in the town.  This is at the top of everybody’s policing agenda.

4.    Declarations of Interest

Chris Stevenson declared an interest in Items 8 and 12 relating to highways.

5.    Minutes

Minutes of the Annual Parish meeting held on the 21st May 2014 and Parish Council meeting held on Wednesday 28th May 2014 were approved and signed.

4.    Report for Colchester Borough Councillors

Councillor Harrington gave the following report:

Recycling bags have now been delivered late to Firmins Court.

Two litter bins to be installed next week.

Traffic Safety Plan – Parking restriction lines will be thin primrose colour.

JGR – The LHP has approved funding for 20mph limit in New Church Road.

Kebab Van application – Councillor Harrington will give any help he can for both parties – for and against any proposals made.

7.    Finance

a)  Statement of Accounts for May 2014

The accounts for May 2014 were presented as follows:

The General Account showed 46% income, 7% general expenditure, 15% environment expenditure and 9% expenditure overall.

The Hall Account showed 22% income and 17% expenditure.

b)  Draw cheques

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

Payment Details Expense Purpose Amount
General Account
Collier and Catchpole Macadam 47.04
EALC Training 67.00
Countrywide 2 months grass cutting 440.00
I Beckwith Work on play equipment and LD field 307.80
CALC Annual subscription 35.00
Anglian Water Water bill – Poors Land 10.678
Inland Revenue Tax 176.20
V Walsom Refreshments for APM 60.10
CBC Dog bins 1372.80
Orpen Hall Account
Mike’s Cleaning Cleaning 594.00
RCCE Annual Subscription 48.00
Elanar Technical Service Boiler repairs 106.85
EALC Training 150.00
AtoZ Supplies Cleaning materials 136.00
I Beckwith Installing wall mounted ashtray 54.44
P Walby Travel expenses 28.35
S J Andrews Electrical work 142.28
Phil Walby Refund for hire of hall  33.00

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

[Click to view Summary Accounts – Summary Accounts May 2014]

c)  Terms of Reference
  • Environment and Highways Working Party – Download PDF
  • Premises and Recreation Working Party – Download PDF
  • Planning and Development Committee – Download PDF

These were adopted.

d)  To approve the Finance Regulations

These were adopted and include regulations for BACS payments. – Download PDF

e)  To approve the Standing Orders

These were adopted. – Download PDF

The Terms of Reference, Finance Regulations and Standing Orders will be uploaded to the website.

f)  Orpen Hall Car Park – financial update

The specification has been revisited and 2 quotes were received out of 3 requested.  The lowest quote of £62,000 was put forward for approval.

AS produced a financial review for the new cost. There are funds available but this will result in a big reduction of our financial reserves.  There will be further costs to G Dolden Associates, the Project Manager.  It was proposed by AS, seconded by CS and approved by 7 Parish Councillors to proceed with the work.  2 Parish Councillors abstained.

g)  Broadband update – ‘CIF Response’ Grant update

The PC needs further information from County Broadband to include in the Grant proposal.

h)  Scout Hut Licence and rent update

We now have sight of the proposed Licence from the Scout Association which has been circulated to some members of the PC.  There are some areas of the Licence, which need to be discussed, and a meeting will take place to look at any ‘grey’ areas.  We will not exercise the option to close the Scout Hut at this time and hopefully move this forward to a satisfactory outcome as soon as possible.

Thanks were given to Peter Cox for his work on behalf of the Scouts.

i)  Social Club – overdue payments

Payment of the gas element of the Invoice sent on 2nd July will be looked at and a response made to the Social Club accordingly.

Other Issues

Pat Fosker undertook a very thorough Internal Audit of the 2013/2014 accounts but has advised that she will not be able to do it next year.  Therefore, we need to find a new Internal Auditor.

8.    Traffic Safety Plan

Chris Stevenson declared an interest in this item.

There have been some adverse comments about the red markings on New Church Road.  There is some confusion as to what they mean.  JGR has asked Highways for some signs clarifying the meaning of the markings.  Advertising of the work to be carried out will be published on 3rd July.

9.    Update on Orpen Memorial car park project

The work will be undertaken during the school summer holiday.

10.   Clerk’s Items to Note

a)  Local Government Boundary Commission – Electoral Review of Colchester

b)  RCCE – Nominations for Election to the Board of Trustees

c)  EALC – Pensions – EALC is reviewing the new pension requirements and have asked ECC for assistance in this matter.  The PC will await clarity on this.

11.   Planning

a)  To approve comments and decisions for Planning Applications (Reports from the Planning Committee’s meetings on 16th April 2014 were received):

To approve comments for Planning Applications:

  • 144987 – Delmont, Hall Road – Observations – The extension could benefit from having a ‘hipped’ roof design which may present a more aesthetically pleasing design.
  • 145003 – Pattens Yard, Nayland Road – Observations – The Committee welcomes the general redevelopment and tidying up of this site but notes local objections regarding the impact on neighbouring properties, and would ask that the final design mitigates as far as is possible against the issues that have been raised.
  • 145062 – 66 Lexden Road – Observations – The PC recommends that alternative finishes/materials be investigated for the proposed cart lodge to enable it to blend in better with property styles in Lexden Road.
b)  Neighbourhood Plan – Report

There is now Facebook activity on the Neighbourhood Plan.  The 2 surveys have been put onto Facebook.  The Evidence group has met and will be gathering information about the village.  The Futures group has met about 4 times.

Hoping to go out with some sort of consultation in the autumn.  We have been advised that grants are running out very quickly.

The Steering Group is to have a stall at the Village Fayre on 4th July at the school.

12.   Environment and Highways

Chris Stevenson declared an interest in any items relating to Highways

a)  Footpath from Lexden Road to the fields, opposite the Scout Hut

Debris had been left on the footpath.  This has now been cleared.  The resident in the house adjacent to the footpath needs to be contacted.

b)  Village Handyman – workload

There is concern that there is too much work for the current hours allocated.  CBC has been contacted to see if there is anyone, currently employed by them, who may like to undertake some work as an additional job.

Need to consider employing someone on a near full time basis in the future.

CS will provide a list of services provided by ECC Highways which can be utilised.

Other issues

The Open Gardens held on 22nd June raised just under £3,000 and was very successful.  Congratulations were awarded to the Gardeners Association.

13.   Premises and Recreation

a)  Practice goal area – repairs

The practice goal area has become worn.  The young people would like a better facility if possible.  There is funding available in the Lorkin Daniell Field account for such projects.  It is proposed to lay artificial turf in this area at a cost of approximately £4000.  Ivor Beckwith would be able to undertake this work and he has had experience of doing such work in the past.  It was proposed by AS, seconded by HS and approved by all to undertake the project.

b)  Decoration of halls

Quotes have been received to decorate the Orpen Hall and corridors surrounding it.  It was agreed to accept a quote of £3,588 to decorate the hall and corridors between the 2 halls subject to a firm proposal of what work is to be carried out for this price.

c)  Hall utility suppliers

It was agreed to switch the gas supply from British Gas to CNG at a fixed contract for 2 years.

d)  Relocation of Kebab stall

DS/CS/PW met on 8th June.  Various items were discussed regarding opening hours, siting, rent, removal of van overnight, trial period.  A filter would need to be installed, evidence of Health and Safety and food hygiene standards would need to be met.

11th June meeting with the owner.  It was suggested that the van is sited at a distance from where the current Fish and Chip van is parked, near to the youth shelter, for minimum impact to residents.  He will be purchasing a new van which will be driven off site each evening.  Local residents would need to be canvassed and BYG evenings need to be considered.  The period during which the car park will be resurfaced to be considered.  Planning Permission would not be required as it is a mobile vehicle.

The PC will need to receive a formal proposal from the owner for consideration.

The first step will be to consult with residents and it was suggested that letters will be distributed to local residents including those in New Church Road.

It was suggested that a public meeting is held, possibly the week preceding the next PC meeting in July.

CS will look into the planning aspect of the proposal.

14.   Communications

To discuss social networking and the Parish Council

Questions and comments are now appearing on Facebook.

MH, JGR and CS will meet to discuss the future of Facebook and the Parish Council.

We have an increase of hits on the Neighbourhood Planning area of the website.  However, there are not enough looking at westbergholt.net.

15.   War Memorial

Report from Working Party

RJ has chased the Stone Mason who has given her an estimate of the likely cost.  This will be progressed.

There has been no progress regarding the war memorial on the Brewery site as O&M Ltd, one of the two property management companies, has failed to respond to requests for information.

16.   Emergency Planning

Report from Working Party

An article was published in the Village Bulletin with little response.  HS will work with the Care Network and other groups to produce the vulnerable persons list.

Items to Note

a)     LCR – Summer 2014
b)     RCCE – Annual Report

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 matters discussed.

Date of Next Meeting

Wednesday 23rd July 2014 at 7.30p.m.

The meeting closed at 9:50p.m.

Signed:Position on Parish Council: Date:
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