Minutes of Parish Council 23rd November 2016

Minutes of the Parish Council Meeting

Held in the John Lampon Hall on 23rd November at 7.30 pm

Chair: Chris Stevenson
Parish Councillors Present: Murray Harlow, Jenny Church, Harry Stone, Andrew Savage, Phil Spencer, John Gili-Ross, Bob Tyrrell, Brian Butcher
Parish Clerk: Laura Walkingshaw
Borough Councillors: Cllr Brian Jarvis, Cllr Dennis Willetts
Present: 3 members of the public



Receive/accept apologies and welcome to the Public

  Apologies were received from Cllr Cook, Cllr Crichton and Borough Cllr Barber

RESOLVED – that the apologies from the Parish Cllrs be accepted.


Questions from registered electors

2a A resident of Colchester Road had concerns regarding the possible development of a site opposite their house as part of the Neighbourhood Plan, highlighted in the recent consultation and requested an update on how this was progressing.

Cllr Stevenson, also Chair of the Neighbourhood Plan Steering Group, assured the resident that there was still a long way to go before the Neighbourhood Plan (NP) was finalised. The present Consultation comes to a finish at the end of November. Following analysis of residents’ comments, the West Bergholt NP Steering Group will then have to decide on the exact location of any development, and a 2nd Consultation would then be held probably in the early part of next year.  Following this, the final plan would be sent to Colchester in the summer, after which statutory consultations would be held by the Borough Council before the matter was considered further by an appointed Inspector. If the Inspector deems the plan to be in conformity with the planning regulations a referendum would be held in the parish. Assuming the Neighbourhood Plan was acceptable to the community a new Village Envelope would mark the area within which landowners or developers could then apply for planning permission in the normal way to proceed with building houses on individual sites.

The resident was also invited to attend the next Neighbourhood Plan Steering Group meeting on the 7th Dec at 7.30pm in the John Lampon Hall.


Declarations of Interest

  Cllr Stevenson declared an interest in items relating to Essex County Council, particularly Highway issues



  RESOLVED – that the Minutes of the Parish Council meeting held on Wednesday 26th October 2016 be approved and signed by the Chairman, with no amendments.


Introduction from new Village Bulletin Editor

  The new Village Bulletin Editor, Jacqui Kibby, was unable to make the meeting.

However, Cllr Stevenson wanted to use the time to reflect on the sad loss of the previous editor, Bernard Colbron, and formally note the Parish Council’s appreciation for his work both on this committee and for the Village Bulletin itself. The Parish Council has made a donation to his chosen charity “Friends of Colchester Museums” in remembrance of him.


Report from Colchester Borough Councillors


Borough Councillor Jarvis reported:

  • Dog Fouling – the penalty fine rose from £50 to £75 at the end of October. The Zone Wardens can issue the penalties and although there are only 2 Wardens for the very large area of Stanway, Lexden & Rural North, if the public can spot a pattern of regular offences & times and then inform the Wardens, hopefully something can be done.
  • Locality Budget – the Borough Councillors have not heard from the Friends of the Old Church following the previous meeting, will need to respond quickly.
    ACTION – Clerk to send a reminder to Nicole Long.
  • Rowan House – the developers are now onsite. This is where the new Curzon cinema will be, part of the overall re-development of the St Botolph’s area.


Borough Councillor Willetts reported:

  • Un-named lane between Bourne Road & Queens Road. This is a private road, which the residents are very concerned about due to it being an unadopted highway and therefore a private road. It is designated as Hollys Road on Colchester Council’s “c-maps” electronic register, however no one is sure what the road is and what it is called, so the first step in addressing this confusion (and help avoid any disputes regarding access) are to have it officially named. The Borough Council would like to have the Parish Council’s support in this matter.
    ACTION – Clerk to check with the residents what they would like the road called and to report the findings back to the Borough Council
  • Problems with vehicles parking on the greensward on the corner of Armoury Road. There are no parking restrictions on this road. Cllr Gili-Ross informed the Borough Councillor that the Parish Council are already aware of the issue and that the problem is in hand.
  • Planning Application 161891 – Storage Container. The Borough Council felt that the use of a storage container would be inappropriate and would set a precedent not to be encouraged in a rural area. Cllr Stevenson informed the Borough Councillor that the Parish Council have asked to speak to a Planning Officer & Manager for advice on how to move this forward.


Introduction from Zone 4 Warden

  Zone 4 Warden, Melinda Bracey, introduced herself and the work of her team to West Bergholt Parish Council. Melinda is one of two Zone Wardens, covering Stanway, Lexden & the Rural North, they also have four Operatives who work extremely hard in the area.

The team recently circulated the Zone 4 Warden Information Pack detailing the work they do with dog fouling, street name signs, bins, litter, road safety, schools and education. The Parish Council thanked the Warden and the whole team for all their hard work.

ACTION – Clerk to contact Melinda with details of the Traffic Safety Group and the planned Village Fete




Statement of accounts for Oct 2016 (circulated at the meeting)

The final accounts for Oct 2016 were presented as follows:

58% of the way through the financial year. The General Account showed 95% income, 62% general expenditure, 53% environment expenditure and 58% expenditure overall.

Please note, the low figure in the Neighbourhood Plan column, (even though the group held the exhibitions), was due to receiving funds from the now closed Parish Plan account.

The Hall Account showed 69% income and 40% expenditure.

Please note, no payments were received from the Social Club this month, their debt now stands at £4,131.12.


To approve the following cheques for payment and signature in accordance with 2016/17 budget:

November 2016

General Account
DD – CBC Garage Rent 50.08
DD – PWLB Public Works Loan 2684.13
Kent Blaxill Concrete & Post 61.84
Countrywide Grass Cutting 151.00
Thompson, Smith & Puxon Professional Services 604.20
EALC Training – Advanced Cllr Day 2 – CS 75.00
WB Methodist Church Bus Shelter Rent 105.00
Landscape Services Hedge Cutting & Flailing 708.00
Ernest Doe Filter 2.53
WBFC Grass Cutting 40.00
Chris Stevenson Survey Monkey Subscription 300.00
J & M Payroll Services Wages, Tax & NI 2489.52
Laura Walkingshaw Petty Cash Replenishment 56.80
Friends of Col. Museums Donation to Bernard Colbron’s Charity 50.00
Zurich Municipal Car Insurance for Ford & Kubota 617.75
John Gili-Ross Poor’s Land Gate Repairs 218.72
Ponder Construction Orpen Hall Toilet Refurb 43033.39
Orpen Hall Account
DD – Col Skip Hire Rubbish Skip 147.31
DD – CNG Gas – Oct 100.75
DD – CNG Gas – Nov 208.34
A to Z Supplies Cleaning Items 86.34
Safety Signs 4 Less No Dogs Signs 60.12
Kent Blaxill JL Toilet Parts 15.18
GW Commercial Heating Boiler Repairs 176.73
Victoria Beckwith-Cole Cleaning Materials 8.99
Tfr to Gen Act Wages 326.91
DD – Utility Warehouse Mobile, Broadband, MUGA Electricity 67.76
Essex Central Services Window Cleaning 35.00
Lynsey Tatum-Morris Refund for Hall Booking 36.00
Zoe’s Cleaning Cleaning 936.00
Ponders Construction Drain Clearance 234.00


Current Levels of all the Parish Council’s Accounts & Investments

Cllr Savage has produced a summary sheet of the current levels of all the Parish Council’s accounts and investments, along with details of where that money can be used.

ACTION – Cllr Savage will circulate the Accounts & Investments sheet to all Councillors.


Prospective 2017/18 Budgets

Cllr Savage circulated a draft sheet to update the Council on the prospective 2017/18 Budgets at the meeting.

General Account:
  • In the General Account the figure in red is for Environment, which has had the greatest increase of approx. 11%. The Environment Committee have now confirmed that they are happy with those figures.
  • The item missing is the “Projects/Grants” figure. Will need to look at the list of projected projects like last year to determine what that figure will need to be.

ACTION – Clerk to organize Finance Meeting for December

ACTION – Clerk to circulate Running List of Projects before 6th Dec.

Cllr Savage will produce a list of different scenarios for the January Parish Council meeting for the budgets to be decided.

ACTION – Clerk to email more recent members of the Parish Council to ensure they understand this sequence of events.

Hall Account:
  • The expenditure budget has been agreed at 3%.
    ACTION – Premises Committee to bear in mind the possible need for a new boiler/roof.
  • The receipts budget will be discussed at a meeting of the Trustees of the Orpen Hall on the 7th Dec.


Final figures for the Orpen Hall toilet refurbishment

The Orpen Hall toilet refurbishment final figures were:

34,579.00 (tendered quotation)

+ 2,314.50 (+ justified additions – Instruction 01 £1188, Instruction 02 £1126.50)

 –   110.00 (- Drain Maintain credit)

36,783.50 + VAT




A verbal report on the plans for a Village Fete in 2017 was received.

Eight people attended the meeting regarding the 2017 Village Fete. Sat 9th September has been reserved as the best day to hold it, as not in competition with the School Fayre in July and after the summer vacation enabling more groups/clubs to take part.

The intention is to hold Veg/Flower/ Produce/Craft Show in the halls, teas & cake to be supplied by Bluebells Pre-School. Events to be held in the middle of the Lorkin Daniell Field and plots available around the outside. There will be a £10 charge for the plots, then the groups/clubs can keep any profits they make and encourage new members for their organisations at the same time.


Monthly Website Report

Cllr Harlow suggested that members of the Communications committee look in detail at the recommendations in the webmaster, Dave Kingaby’s, Monthly Website Report

ACTION – Clerk to arrange Communications meeting in January


Village Bulletin

Cllr Stevenson informed the Council that he understood the new editor has produced her 1st edition of the Village Bulletin and that he will be contacting her regarding the remuneration. Any changes to the Bulletin will be of a gradual nature and presently the costs look the same, the receipts from advertising more than paying for the printing.


Progress Report from Clerk

  Clerk presented her report and an update of the outstanding actions were:

  • 7.5T Vehicles on Argents Lane – the sign is enforceable, however one of the signs may be missing (white on blue advisory from the Chitts Hill direction).
    ACTION – Cllr Stevenson to check the signage.
  • War Memorial – need to check latest update with Boydens Mgt Co.
    ACTION – Clerk to pass the details to Cllr Gili-Ross.
  • 150 dwellings listed on CBC website for West Bergholt – Cllr Butcher checked, not an actual CBC figure, but a suggestion by a developer.
  • Beacon Lighting in 2018 commemorating the end of WW1 – may need to invest in a disposable beacon for this.




The minutes from the Planning Committee meeting held on 16th November 2016 were received and the decisions noted on the following applications:

  • 162685 – Pattens Yard, Nayland Road – Support – The Parish Council are happy to support this application subject to it being in line with the Borough Council’s policies. As an observation, though, the Council would like the Borough Council to note that there is a lack of detail in the information provided, notably that the roof lights shown on the proposed elevations are not shown on the proposed site plan.
  • 162704 – Horsepits Farm, Cooks Hall Road – Support – The Parish Council have paid due regard to the special circumstances that have led to this application and are happy to support it as it is of a temporary nature, provided the dates supplied on the attached letter are adhered to.
  • 161659 – 43 Colchester Road – Support – The Parish Council has no comment
  • 162672 – The Old Rectory, Cooks Hall Road – Support – The Parish Council has no comment
  • 162771 – Land to the rear of Queens Head Pub, Queens Road – Observation – The Parish Council reiterates its previous comments: “The Parish Council have no objection to the design, but have sympathy with neighbouring residents regarding the road safety & the noise concerns. We would ask the planner to pay due regard to the number of objections, however, it is understandable regarding the proximity to residents. The Council would like to recommend the incorporation of an external smoking area to be provided inside the new garden area, so to stop people smoking at the front of the pub, with all the noise and mess implications that incurs.” It is also concerned about the impractical nature of the car park layout that is shown to over-estimate the number of parking spaces. The Parish Council would encourage the Borough Council to investigate the environmental nuisance implications that functions will have on the neighbouring residents in the summer months and would encourage it to attach the appropriate conditions, possibly a noise management plan. In summary, the Parish Council would support the scheme being “called in” by the Borough Councillors for proper debate by the Colchester Planning Committee.

RESOLVED – An additional note was added to the previously agreed decision on Planning Application 162771 “The Parish Council support the Environmental Comments from Colchester Borough Council and ask that they are a condition of any planning approval.”


Neighbourhood Plan


An oral report on the progress of the Neighbourhood Plan was received from Cllr Butcher.

The AGM is due to held on 7th December at 7.30pm in the John Lampon Hall.

Cllr Church and Gunter Klaphake have completed the comment coding. There have been almost 100 paper questionnaires and 70 electronic ones completed.

Colchester Borough Council’s final consultation is due in Feb/March, after which it will be in the hands of the Inspector. Cllr Butcher has submitted the West Bergholt policies to Rachel Forkin of CBC for her comments.


Environment and Highways


The minutes from the Environment Committee meeting held on 10th Nov 2016 were received.

Following the damage to the Poor’s Field after this year’s Fireworks display, the new gate will be fitting tomorrow in place of the finger posts and the Environment Committee will be sorting out the reimbursement of costs & damaged turf.

Going forward there must be more contact between the Parish Council and the PTA regarding the siting, timing and reinstatement works next year. Cllr Stevenson and Cllr Butcher to contact Ian Davies, co-chair of the PTA Fireworks Committee, to begin establishing those links.


A verbal update from the representative of the Traffic Safety Group was received from Cllr Stone.

Cllr Stone informed the Council that the Group was now well established, meeting once a month, attempting to move forward on the 5Es. They are planning a workshop event on 25th Feb, hoping to get a good response from the public. 30 people have signed up to be members on the Trygve app. Cllr Stone is recording the information gathered by the app and then hopefully repeated offences can be passed on to the Parking Partnership. All being well, enough of a pattern can be established so that the new Park Safe vehicle could arrange a visit to West Bergholt. There will be an item in the next Village Bulletin and on the website making residents aware of the issues. The group would like to have banners outside the school and the allotments to remind people to park considerately.

RESOLVED – to propose a budget of £300 for the Traffic Safety Group

Heathlands School, with the good contacts of Rachel Hopkins & the School Council, is currently gathering some of the relevant statistics:

  • An updated figure of the number of children who live outside the village
  • The modal split figures on how children arrive at the school

ACTION – Clerk to request that a 20mph roundel marking be painted onto the red area of tarmac at both ends of New Church Road. This had been requested via an application to the Local Highways panel but no response on this or the signing matter had been received.


Premises and Recreation


The minutes from the Premises Committee meeting held on 7th Nov 2016 were received.

Cllr Butcher & Cllr Harlow recently met with representatives of the youth & adult Football Clubs, both of which are taking various options back to their committees. There will be a follow-up meeting in mid-January. Cllr Stevenson is to review the draft WBFC license.

ACTION – following changes to the Environment & Premises Terms of References Cllr Gili-Ross to send Clerk a Word copy for her to update.



  It was noted that the following training was undertaken during the month of November by the Chair:

  • Advanced Councillor Day 1 – 15/11/16 – CS

Cllr Stevenson would recommend the above course for all Councillors.


Items to Note (available on table at meeting)

  1. Correspondence Log – Nov 2016
  2. Crime Statistics – Sept 2016
  3. Clerks & Councils Direct – Issue 108 – Nov 16
  4. Landscape & Amenity – Nov 16
  5. The Clerk – Vol.47 No. 5 – Nov 16


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).
  No items were discussed.


Date of Next Meeting

  Next meeting will be held on Wednesday 25th January at 7.30pm in the John Lampon Hall, Lexden Road
  Meeting closed at 9.13pm
Signed: Date: Position on Council:


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