Minutes of Parish Council 24th January 2018

Minutes of Parish Council Meeting

Held in the John Lampon Hall on 24th January 2018 at 7.30 pm

Chair: Chris Stevenson
Parish Councillors Present: Phil Spencer, Brian Butcher, Andrew Savage, Harry Stone, David Short, Jenny Church, Murray Harlow.
Parish Clerk: Laura Walkingshaw
Borough & County Councillors: Cllr Brian Jarvis, Cllr Dennis Willetts
Present: 3 members of the public



Receive/accept apologies and welcome to the Public

  RESOLVED – Apologies were received and accepted from Cllr Gili-Ross, Cllr Crichton, Cllr Tyrrell and Borough Cllr Lewis Barber


Questions from registered electors

Forest Schools –

Mrs Catherine Lewis from Heathlands School outlined the proposal to allow children from the school to partake in “forest schools” activities on the heath. She and other adults would accompany 15 children at a time to:

  • Nature walks
  • Species ID – although no picking of wild flowers would be allowed.
  • Elements of den building – although the school would provide the materials needed for this. The main ethos of forest schools is understanding & respecting the environment and so this should not cause any damage to the heath.
  • Lighting fires – would always be a small fire contained within a fire bowl, however, this activity could be done within the school grounds and not on the heath.

She would like to use the area next to the school car park area, “the mound”. She has researched what species are protected on the heath but is not sure where they are located. She has completed a theoretical management plan in order to comply with “forest schools”. This links with the plan that the Trustees were about to embark on, so it would be good to share resources.

The Parish Council felt that although they have no objection to the idea in principle, timing is the issue as Mrs Lewis would like to run 6 pilot sessions from now until Sept

when she is due to qualify, however until the Trustees have their management plan completed (possibly June) they are expected to be cautious. Although overall this could be a win-win situation with the school interested in the heath and Essex Wildlife Associations involvement, this chimes with what the Trustees planned to do anyway.

The Council does have reservations regarding the lighting of fires though and would prefer that to take place within the school grounds.

ACTION – Clerk to check the Public Liability Insurance & Tree Survey on the heath for the school.

ACTION – This item will be discussed and decided at a separate Trustees meeting later tonight.


Lampon Close Parking Issues –

A resident from Lampon Close representing several properties shared their concerns regarding the parking at the entrance to the Close. The clerk read out a letter from another resident of the Close stating that there have been times when the dustbin lorries and a breakdown vehicle could not get into the road due to the cars parked at the entrance. The residents are concerned that emergency vehicles will not be able enter if required and that they often take their lives in their hands when exiting from Lampon Close.

The Chairman informed the resident that there is a Traffic Safety Group in the village who will take up the case. The Council will apply for yellow lines from the North Essex Parking Partnership (NEPP), however this will take approximately two years, therefore in the meantime there will need to be a series of “soft” measures which will hopefully ease the situation. Letters to residents, temporary bollards and notices on windscreens will all be considered.

ACTION – The resident will send the Clerk photos of the issue and then these can be forwarded & an application can be made to NEPP.

ACTION – Cllr Stone will draft & deliver a letter to the residents of Chapel Road for the Clerk to print off.

ACTION – Cllr Stone will take this forward to the Traffic Safety Group.

ACTION – Clerk will send link to the resident clarifying the status of Lampon Close, ie. whether it has been adopted by Highways or not.

ACTION – The Borough Councillors will investigate the non-collection of rubbish.


Declarations of Interest

  DECLARED – Cllr Stevenson declared an interest in items relating to Essex County Council, particularly Highway issues. Cllr Spencer declared an interest in item 18/08a) planning application 173073.





RESOLVED – the Minutes of the Parish Council meeting held on Wednesday 22nd Nov 2017 were approved and signed by the Chairman, with no amendments. (Link to Minutes P8 Nov 17)


Report from Colchester Borough & Essex County Councillors

  Borough Cllr Brian Jarvis reported:

  • Locality Fund – he has received the last couple of applications, one from the Bergholt Youth Group and one from the Bergholt Heath Youth Football Team.
  • Lexden Road to New Church Road Pavement – he has received a letter from a resident regarding the state of the pavement. It is very uneven, the Councillor has now reported it on the Highways reporting website.

Borough Cllr Dennis Willets reported:

  • Refuse Collection Service – the system has been thoroughly modernized with the Council’s website now connecting with the cab of the refuse vehicles, meaning that any problems can now be reported back in real time and can be looked at before 4pm that very afternoon. Also, if residents regularly put out more than their allotted 3 black bags then the system will notify the Zone Wardens, who can come out and advise the residents on their waste habits. The Councillor was surprised to hear about the issues at Lampon Close and will get back with a response.
  • Gladman Planning Applications – the West Bergholt proposal (PA 173127) is due to close to comments on the 27th February, currently there are 155 objections and 3 in support so it is bound to go onto appeals, which is currently taking about 8 months. The Bakers Lane application (PA 170200) was refused in May and will be going in front of the inspector on the 30th Jan.
  • Free trees – Saturday 3rd Feb will be another “Trees for free” day from Colchester Borough Council. Residents can collect up to 3 trees from the car park at Rowan House, Sheepen Road, Colchester between 10am – 1pm.




Statement of accounts for Nov-Dec 2017

(Link to P8-9 Nov-Dec Summary)

The final accounts for Nov-Dec 2017 were presented as follows:

75% of the way through the financial year. The Parish Council Account showed 100% income, 58% general expenditure, 72% environment expenditure and 61% expenditure overall, when the categories of general expenditure & environment are totalled together.



  RESOLVED – To approve the following payments in accordance with 2017-18 budget. Proposed by Cllr Savage, seconded by Cllr Stevenson. All in favour.

January 2018

General Account
DD CBC Garage Rent 50.58
GA170201 J & M Payroll Services Jan – Wages, Tax & NI 3449.20
GA170202 WBFC Grass Cutting – Jan 40.00
GA170203 J & M Payroll Services Payroll Services – Dec 27.00
GA170204 Countrywide Grass Cutting – Jan 155.50
GA170205 Kent Blaxill Starter Switch 1.49
GA170206 Kent Blaxill Cement & Drill Bit 27.16
GA170207 EALC Cllr Training Day 1 – Cllr Short 90.00
GA170208 EALC Cllr Training Day 2 – Cllr Short 90.00
GA170209 Colchester Borough Council Dog & Litter Bins – Jan-Mar 2018 290.55
GA170210 Travis Perkins 2 x Combination Padlocks 49.68
GA170211 TVC. Lexden Road Pond Conservation 240.00
GA170212 RCCE Finance Essentials Day 70.00
GA170213 Petty Cash Reimbursemt. (LW) Petrol, Calendar & Clr A3 Copies 37.63
GA170214 TLC Removal of Tree on Chapel Rd 96.00
GA170215 KingServ Website Services Feb – Apr 18 264.00
GA170216 Esign Media Ltd 3 x “Unsuitable for HGVs” signs 335.18
Orpen Hall Account
DD Col Skip Hire Refuse Collection – Dec 103.98
DD Eon Electricity – Dec 477.86
DD CNG Gas – Dec 112.25
DD Utility Warehouse Mobile, Broadbd, MUGA Electricity 73.57
HA170069 PW Windows Gutter Clearance & Windows 90.00
HA170070 Victoria Beckwith-Cole MUGA Diary & Frames 37.64
HA170071 Zoe O Connor Hall Cleaning 1071.00
HA170072 Scotech Microphone Batteries 69.60
HA170073 Elanar Tech Services Boiler Repairs – Social Club 267.41
HA170074 A to Z Supplies Cleaning Materials 94.73
HA170075 Howdens Gripfill Adhesive 1.80
Tfr Hall to Gen Account Wages – Jan 506.65

December 2017

General Account
DD CBC Garage Rent 50.58
DD Wave (Anglian Water) Water Bill (Sept-Dec) – Allotments 61.83
Chq 104290 DVLA Car Tax – EP03 GFA 305.00
GA170186 J & M Payroll Services Dec – Wages, Tax & NI 3706.04
GA170187 WBFC Grass Cutting – Dec 40.00
GA170188 J & M Payroll Services Payroll Services – Nov 27.00
GA170189 Countrywide Grass Cutting – Dec 155.50
GA170190 Express Matting Services Rubber Playground Mats x 24 471.76
GA170191 Printerland Toner Pack 189.41
GA170192 Sovereign Duck Spring Rocker 644.30
GA170193 TCV Hall Road Pond – Coppicing 240.00
GA170194 Cox Landscapes Timber, Gate, Postmix – Storage Unit 285.60
GA170195 Chris Stevenson Survey Monkey Sub.: Nov 2016-17 300.00
GA170196 Mail Boxes Etc. Village Bulletin Printing 775.00
GA170197 Wave (Anglian Water) Water Bill (Sept-Dec) – Poor’s Field 11.97
GA170198 Petty Cash Reimbursemt. (LW) Lock, File, Draught Excluder, Stamps 65.48
GA170199 Printerland Drum Pack 106.01
GA170200 Printerland Versalink Xerox Printer 522.00
Tfr Gen to Hall Account Allotment Skip Hire 208.00
Tfr Gen to Hall Account 1 bx of A4 Paper 16.49
Orpen Hall Account
DD Col Skip Hire Refuse Collection – Nov 163.85
DD Col Skip Hire Allotment Skip Hire 249.60
DD Eon Electricity – Nov 289.11
DD CNG Gas – Nov
DD Utility Warehouse Mobile, Broadbd, MUGA Electricity 72.79
HA170066 The Fire Extinguisher Man Staff Fire Training 360.00
HA170067 Zoe O Connor Hall Cleaning 693.00
HA170068 Elanar Technical Services Social Club Roomstat Replacement 267.36
Tfr Hall to Gen Account Wages – Dec 506.65
 ACTION – Regarding the “Unsuitable for HGVs” signs, these are for Argents Lane, Clerk to contact Eight Ash Green Parish Council as the top of the lane is in their parish and to copy Cllr Barber into the email so that he is notified.


Agreement of the new Three-Year Plan

The inspection report has come back for the Orpen Hall roof, re-roofing work can wait for 2-4 years, although £10,000 of remedial work was recommended for next year, to ensure such could be delayed, it was agreed it will be better to complete all the re-roofing in Year 2, as the remedial works cost would not reduce the overall cost of re-roofing. Re-roofing costs shall be moved from Year 1 to Year 2 in the plan, as below:

Year 1: 2018-19
Prem Upstairs meeting room/Hall storage £1,000
PC Special Constable – first year set up costs (mtg 28/11) £2,000
Prem CCTV (fixed to Hall, but monitoring village vandalism hotspot) £5,000
Env Queen’s Head Pond £4,000
WWI Commemoration – disposable beacon £600
– cover for Truman memorial £380
– new village memorial £1,000


PC Neighbourhood Plan Projects £8,000
TOTAL £ 22,000
Year 2: 2019-20
Prem Re-roofing Orpen Memorial Hall £20,000
PC Resurfacing the MUGA £7,500
Year 3: 2020-21
Env Play Equipment for older children: working party 3yr period Subject to further discussions
  RESOLVED – To approve the new Three-Year Plan (Link to Three-Year Plan 2018). Proposed by Cllr Savage, seconded by Cllr Stevenson. All in favour.


Approval of the 2018/2019 Precept and Budgets based on the three-year plan

The CBC Revenue & LCTS Grant has been reduced from £2,380 to £2,173 this forthcoming year. The approval of the Three-Year plan puts £22,000 into the Projects line, which when added to all other expenditure will result in a 3% rise in the Precept this year. Rising the cost for a band D property from £62.60 to £64.48.

RESOLVED – To approve the 2018/2019 Precept and Budgets (Link to Precept and Budgets 2018/19). Proposed by Cllr Savage, seconded by Cllr Stevenson. All in favour.

ACTION – Clerk to send Precept requirement off to Colchester Borough Council tomorrow.

NOTE – Cllr Stevenson then left the room in order to take an emergency call, Cllr Stone took over as Chairman.


Reminder to Councillors to submit their end of year expenses

Cllr Savage reminded all Councillors to submit their end of year expenses so that the costs are processed before the end of March. Expenses forms were then given out to all those who wanted them.


Agreement of the appointment of the new Village Bulletin printer

  The Council has received a quote from a printer who can produce the Bulletin in full colour for the same as the current cost, therefore a change of printer has been recommended.

RESOLVED – To approve the appointment of the new Village Bulletin printer. Proposed by Cllr Savage, seconded by Cllr Harlow. All in favour.


Confirmation of the Local Services Fund Grant

A £15,000 grant has been approved and awarded to the Council from the EALC’s Local Services Fund for the provision of a Village Warden. The grant will be received in three annual payments of £5,000. West Bergholt Parish Council was one of only 13 successful applications.
NOTE – Cllr Stevenson returned to the room and took back the Chair.


Approval of Premises Committee recommendation to increase the Hall hire rates for non-regular users by 3%

RESOLVED – To approve the 3% Hall hire rate rise for non-regular users. Proposed by Cllr Savage, seconded by Cllr Stevenson. All in favour.


Approval of the maintenance cost to the Queen’s Head Pond willow tree as recommended by the Environment Committee

Although the pond is officially common land of disputed ownership, following concerns from a resident, the Parish Council will step in and fund urgent maintenance when it is necessary. TLC have quoted £580 for the appropriate works and will remove all waste, scheduled for 30th Jan.

RESOLVED – To approve the maintenance cost of the willow tree. Proposed by Cllr Savage, seconded by Cllr Short. All in favour.

ACTION – Clerk to take before and after photos and put on the Facebook Hub.


Approval of the Parish Council’s contribution towards the cover for the War Memorial at the Truman Building

The war memorial outside of the Truman Building was never intended to be outside, exposed to all weathers. It is on private land, but the Parish Council have taken the initiative to have a cover made, supported by third party contributions from 3 generous companies.

RESOLVED – To approve the Parish Council’s contribution of approx. £750. Proposed by Cllr Savage, seconded by Cllr Stevenson. All in favour.


Council Documents


To note the annual list of meetings dates

(Link to Meeting Dates 2018)

Noted and now available on westbergholt.net



To approve West Bergholt Parish Council’s Equality & Diversity Policy

(Link to WBPC Equality Policy)

RESOLVED – Proposed by Cllr Savage, seconded by Cllr Butcher. All in favour.



To approve West Bergholt Parish Council’s Grievance Policy

(Link to WBPC Grievance Policy)

RESOLVED – Proposed by Cllr Savage, seconded by Cllr Church. All in favour.



To approve West Bergholt Parish Council’s Disciplinary Policy

(Link to WBPC Disciplinary Policy)

RESOLVED – Proposed by Cllr Savage, seconded by Cllr Church. All in favour.




The minutes from the Planning Committee meeting held on the 12th December 2017 were received and the decisions made on following applications were noted

(Link to Planning P9 Dec 17):

  • 173127 – Land adj. Hill House Farm, Colchester Rd CO6 3JX The proposed development is viewed as unwanted by the residents of West Bergholt and the Parish Council, the reasons for which are laid out below:

Neighbourhood Plan

The planning application fails to take into account the emerging West Bergholt Neighbourhood Plan. West Bergholt Parish Council and the Neighbourhood Plan Steering Group have spent four years working on the emerging plan, consulting residents and formulating the best plan possible for the Parish. This plan has already determined the most appropriate and sustainable location for the additional 120 houses which the village is required to accommodate over the next 15 years.

Local Plan

Colchester currently has an existing Local Plan until 2021 and a five-year supply of local housing. The current Plan has already allocated all of the housing required within the designated Village Envelope, this application is outside the existing village envelope and therefore against current Local Plan policies. The Draft successor Local Plan, approval of which is anticipated in 2018, has already determined the numbers & position of a carefully chosen site nestled within a gap in the current Village Envelope, North of Colchester Road. The application is also contrary to the planning policies contained within Colchester’s Draft Plan. It is outside the proposed settlement boundary and exacerbates rather than prevents the coalescence of settlement patterns between Colchester and West Bergholt. There are no exceptional circumstances which would justify any departure from such policies.


The proposal for an additional 97 family houses will cause a multitude of problems for local infrastructure. The site is twice as far from the village centre compared to the preferred development areas in the Neighbourhood Plan. This will worsen the situation in Colchester Road, and not present as sustainable a pattern of day to day travel as the Neighbourhood Plan location. The local school and surgery are already oversubscribed; this proposal for larger family houses will put even more pressure on these facilities, whilst the Steering Group’s proposed mix of housing is likely to reduce that pressure as it would be phased in over time and have a less intensive effect as a result. West Bergholt’s Neighbourhood Plan involves integrated planning over the course of the next 15 years, whilst this application would be immediate, possibly completed within 18 months of approval.

The contribution proposed by the developers towards infrastructure and facilities would be minimal, whilst the Neighbourhood Plan will be seeking a significant contribution (not necessarily financial) to reduce existing traffic issues on Colchester Road whereas theirs will just make the situation worse. It would result in another junction not far from the current Maltings Park one and is far enough from the centre of the village to lead to an increase in car use to the Co Op and school.

Many people including Colchester MP, Will Quince, have already called for a stop to additional development in the Colchester area until adequate infrastructure including highway infrastructure is provided. It is the wrong development, in the wrong place and at the wrong time.

  • 173094 – 12 Albany Road, CO6 3LB – Support – The Parish Council has no comment.
  • 173073 – Church Cottage, CO6 3DU – Support – Cllr Tyrrell re-declared an interest in Planning Application 173073 and took no further part in the discussion. Cllrs Stevenson, Savage & Harlow also declared an interest, as the application involves the property of a Parish Councillor. The Parish Council has no comment.
  • 173062 – 1-2 Dunedin Cottage, Bures Road, CO6 3DW – Object The Parish Council has no objection to an extension at this site in principle, however it requires clarification of what parts of the properties are to remain and what are to be removed. The council is also concerned that the proposed two storey extension will be right up against the property’s boundary. To reiterate, the position of the houses 1-3 Dunedin need to be regularised before any extension is allowed.
  • 172970 – Patterns Yard, Nayland Road, CO6 3DQ – Support The Parish Council has no comment.
  • 172947 – 6 Lodge Court, CO6 3JL – Support – The Parish Council has no comment.


The minutes from the Planning Committee meeting held on the 17th January 2018 were received and the decisions made on following applications were noted

(Link to Planning P10 Jan 18):

  • 180028 – 9 Chapel Road, West Bergholt CO6 3JB – Observation – The Parish Council has no comment. But are very concerned at the very poor quality of the drawings submitted and the difficulty determining the extent of the application
  • 173369 – Cooks Hall Farm, Cooks Hall Road CO6 3EY – Observation – The Parish Council would defer to the greater knowledge of the Borough Council’s Planning Department with regards this application.


The recommendation from the Planning Committee meeting held on the 17th January 2018 for late planning application was discussed for approval by the Council:

  • 180065 – 48 Chapel Road, CO6 3HZ – Support – Cllr Tyrrell re-declared an interest in Planning Application 180065 and took no further part in the discussion. The Parish Council has no comment.
  • 180083 – 49 Mumford Road, CO6 3BL – Observation – The Parish Council would defer to the greater knowledge of the Borough Council’s Planning Department with regards this application.
  • 180110 – Lortay Cottage, 2 Armoury Farm Cottages, CO6 3JP – Support – The Parish Council has no comment.
  • 173276 – Patterns Yard, Nayland Road, CO6 3DQ – Observation – The Parish Council are minded to support, however are concerned about the proximity of three established trees and the dimensions of the buildings of which are not shown on the drawings.

RESOLVED – It was agreed by the Parish Council to accept these recommendations as decisions. Proposed by Cllr Butcher, seconded by Cllr Stevenson. All in favour.

Cllr Butcher then provided a quick update into the progress of the Neighbourhood Plan. The Steering Group have received the comments back from Rachel Forkin of CBC and have taken 99% of her amendments onboard. Cllr Savage has been in touch with the Planning Consultant and having received a quote from her to undertake the work required, he has now put in for a grant application to cover these costs and the word processing work which will be needed.

Cllr Butcher will be attending the Gladman Planning Application appeal on the 30th January at Colchester Town Hall.


Environment and Highways

  The minutes from the Environment Committee meeting held on 7th December 2017 and the 11th January 2018 were received. (Link to Environment P9 Dec 17 & P10 Jan 18)

  • Heath/School Entrance – the handyman has re-modelled the wooden barrier at the entrance to School Drive. The headmaster was informed that the work was going on, however the functionality had not been diminished in anyway. Will need to finish the job with the planting of hawthorns behind the barrier – Cllr Spencer will purchase. There is a need to balance this with a barrier on the other side, although a water leak still persists.
    ACTION – Clerk to find out if this is a fire hydrant and what is the latest with the situation.
  • Ponds – TCV continued work at the Lexden Road pond, but mistakenly cut down the silver birch tree on the island which they were clearly told to leave.
  • Handymen – with one handyman away on a long vacation and another busy with his new job, the handymen hours have been significantly reduced during January. This will hopefully resolve itself in the early spring.
  • Diseased cherry tree at exit of Orpen Hall – Mick Bell has kindly offered to remove this tree for free and dispose of the wood. Many thanks to him.
  • Flooding outside school gate in New Church Road – this has been reported by Cllr Barber and temporarily cleared by Matt, the handyman. Facebook was used in order to take the opportunity to let residents know that the Parish Council is doing what they can to resolve the situation.
  • Icy Road to Co Op – Facebook was also used to thank snow volunteers, Susan Hollock & Terry Waine, who cleared the path around the Co Op on one particularly icy morning completely off their own backs – Many thanks to them.


Traffic Safety Group

Cllr Stone provided a verbal update on the work of the Traffic Safety Group. The Group are meeting at the school on the 25th Jan, mainly to look at the school travel plan which Cllr Stevenson & Stone will be discussing with them at a later date. Lampon Close will now be added to the agenda


Premises and Recreation

The minutes from the Premises Committee meeting held on 8th January 2018 were received.

(Link to Premises P10 Jan 2018)

  • The first Hall Users Group meeting is due to take place at 5.30pm on the 25th January, approx. 13 are expected. Cllr Butcher will report back next month on its success.
  • Roof Survey – remedial work of £10,000 was recommended for this year, however this work would not reduce the cost of the main repairs, so it was agreed to add the major works to the 2019-20 budget as a consequence of not doing the £10,000. It is just the outer slopes of the roof which need doing, not the inner ones. Cllr Butcher wants to have checked that the tiles which are going on will not heavier than the current ones.
  • CCTV- agreed in the 2018-19 budget, this will be linking the outside and the inside of the hall and the surrounding Lorkin Daniell field.


Community Special Constables

Cllr Butcher updated the Council on the recruitment of a Community Special Constable for West Bergholt. There have only been four hits on the Police recruitment website and no applications so far.

ACTION – Clerk to drop off more advertising posters for displaying around village.


WW1 Commemoration 2018

Now that the council has agreed its contribution to the Truman Building War Memorial Cover the manufacturer will be instructed to begin.



Approval by the webmaster was sought to develop a test for emailing news reports directly to WordPress as drafts, either moderated or unmoderated – this was to see if news items could get onto the web quicker if people crafted them themselves. However, in reality it would probably involve more work for the webmaster in taking the items down and re-editing them.

RESOLVE – Therefore it was agreed to not go ahead with this plan. All in favour.



  It was noted that the following training/networking was undertaken during the last month by the Clerk or Councillors:
  • CBC Town & Parish Clerks Forum – 9th Jan – Clerk

ACTION – Clerk to circulate presentations from the Forum to all Councillors.


Items to Note

Available on table at meeting:

  • EALC County Update- Special Edition No.158
  • RCCE Essex Warbler – Vol 5 Dec 2017
  • EALC County Update – No. 157 Nov/Dec 2017
  • Clerks & Councils Direct – Jan 2018 Issue 115
  • The Clerk Magazine – Jan 2018 Vol.49 No.1
  • EALC Legal Update – Issue 6 Dec 2017
  • LCR (NALC) – Winter 2017


Correspondence Log – Jan 2018

No. 66 Buses – The Parish Clerk has received an email from a concerned resident that the No. 66 buses will be returning to every 30mins rather than the current 20 mins. This would be a really retrograde step and very disappointing in a village with 3,000 residents.

ACTION – Cllr Stone to draft a letter for the Clerk to send to First Buses asking for clarification and an explanation.


Crime Statistics – Oct & Nov 2017 (24 Crimes)

(Link to Crime Statistics Oct & Nov 2017)

8 crimes in West Bergholt in October and 16 in November.


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 matters discussed


Date of Next Meeting

  Parish Council Meeting, Wed 28th February at 7.30pm in John Lampon Hall, Lexden Rd, West Bergholt
  Meeting closed at 9.30pm
Signed: Date: Position on Council:


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