Minutes of Parish Council 26th February 2020

Minutes of Parish Council Meeting

Held in the John Lampon Hall on 26th February 2020 at 7.30 pm

Chairman: Cllr Chris Stevenson
Parish Councillors Present: Cllrs Harry Stone, Murray Harlow, Jenny Church, Brian Butcher, Bob Tyrrell and Phil Spencer
Parish Clerk: Laura Walkingshaw
Borough & County Councillors: Borough Councillor Brian Jarvis
Present: 5 members of the public



Receive/accept apologies and welcome to the Public

  Apologies were received and accepted from Cllrs John Gili-Ross, Norma Smith, Andrew Savage, David Short and Borough Councillors Lewis Barber & Dennis Willetts.


Questions from registered electors

A resident of the Maltings asked the council what more local residents and the Parish Council could do in the light of the NEEB Planning Appeal on the 5th May?

The Council chairman, Cllr Stevenson gave an overview of the appeal process:

  • Existing comments relating to the planning application will be automatically forwarded to the newly appointed Inspector.
  • New comments/responses can be sent to the Planning Inspectorate (PINS) using the reference 3211685 from individual residents, maybe an overarching one from the Maltings residents as a group and one from the Parish Council.
  • The Inspector may allow people to comment at the Hearing itself on the 5th May at Colchester Town Hall. There appears every likelihood that much of the discussion may focus on Colchester’s 5-year housing supply (however now we have an adopted Neighbourhood Plan a 3-year housing supply is all that is required).
  • Other aspects of the impact of the development on traffic, environment etc. may or may not be discussed but residents’ attendance should be encouraged at the hearing.
  • It is unsure how the Inspector will fit the hearing into one day
  • Some of the day will be taken up with the Inspector visiting the site and so residents in attendance would be useful. Note, residents are not allowed to ask the Inspector questions during the site visit but can make observations.
  • The resident’s responses could comment on the issues of traffic, parking and the impact of the environment of the planning application, whilst the Council’s will be focused on the Neighbourhood Plan and the site not confirming to the plan.
  • Colchester Borough Council (CBC) Planners position will be to defend this appeal. CBC are comfortable that they can make the target for the 5- or 3-year housing supply.
  • Parish Council’s response will be that although there are many potential development sites in the village, this is not an appropriate site. This is an argument which has previously been accepted by CBC, the Neigh Plan Examiner and is now in the emerging Local Plan set of documents.
  • The Neigh Plan is now adopted, and the Village Settlement Boundary is now in place and agreed.

ACTION – Clerk to check if NEEB responded to the Regulation 16 submission of the Neigh Plan.

ACTION – Clerk will arrange a meeting between Councillors and some of the Maltings residents prior to the 10th March response deadline.

ACTION – Residents to draft their response based on the impacts and “harm” which the application would have on them. Whilst the Parish Council will draft their response based on the Neigh Plan.

ACTION – Clerk to arrange meeting with Maltings residents prior to the Hearing on the 5th May.

ACTION – Parish Council will be sharing their response with CBC at a meeting on Friday 28th Feb for their comments.

A second resident asked if the village’s Special Constable situation had stalled of late?

Vice chairman, Cllr Butcher updated the resident on the latest situation, i.e. that both our intended Special Constable’s had been attested and were working towards earning their independence, however the first one has become pregnant and so is currently on maternity leave whilst the second has decided to become a full-time police officer and so has left the programme.

The Parish Council will be re-doubling its efforts in advertising in order to try to recruit more potential Specials.

As an aside, the Community Safety Plan Working Party Terms of Reference are due to be discussed under item 20/26c this evening, it had been hoped that the Specials would contribute to the plan however Cllr Butcher has a meeting planned with Chief Inspector Rod Huddleston on the 13th March, so hopefully that will help shape the Community Safety Plan in their absence.

ACTION – Clerk to put the resident on the Com Safety Plan circulation list so that he could possibly contribute as a proofreader.


Declarations of Interest

  DECLARED – Cllr Stevenson declared an interest in all matters linked to Essex Highways

Cllr Tyrrell declared an interest in item 20/23 Planning Application 200120


Previous Minutes

  RESOLVED – the Minutes of the Parish Council held on Wednesday 22nd Jan 2020 were approved and signed by the Chairman, with no amendments. (Link to Minutes P10 Jan 2020)


Report from Colchester Borough Councillors

Borough Councillor Jarvis reported:

  • Locality Budget – now closed. The application made by the Parish Council for 8 oak trees had been approved by the Borough Councillor, but then disappeared in the system. The Councillor apologised and wanted it noted that he would happily approve the same application if submitted again in May once the new Locality Budget opens.
  • Trees for Years – if the Parish Council or any resident has an area where it would like to plant some of CBC’s Trees for Years then please let the Councillor know and he will put them in touch with the relevant department at CBC.



a) Statement of accounts for Jan 2020 (Link to P10 Jan 20 Summary)

The final accounts for Jan 2020 were presented as follows:

83% of the way through the financial year. The Parish Council Account showed 100% income, 61% general expenditure, 71% environment expenditure and 64% expenditure overall, when the categories of general expenditure & environment are totalled together.

Bank Rec at £95,134.98

b) Payments
  RESOLVED – To approve the payments in accordance with 2019-20 budget. Proposed by Cllr Harlow, seconded by Cllr Church. All in favour.

Payments List

February 2020
DD Barclays Charges/loyalty points (14.17 – 1.54) 12.63
GA19173 King & Co. 8 Oak trees, stakes & ties 225.80
GA19174 ARCO 4 x Hi-viz fleece & polo shirts 181.87
GA19174a ARCO 4 x trousers, hats & goggles, 3 x hi-viz tsr 223.55
GA19175 J & M Payroll Services Feb – wages, tax & NI 5039.67
GA19176 J & M Payroll Services Payroll services 27.00
GA19177 Countrywide Poor’s Land grass cutting – Feb 165.00
GA19178 WBFC  Grass cutting 40.00
GA19179 Petty Cash Replenishment Petrol 57.50
GA19180 Cox Landscapes Mortice brackets – allotments 14.40
GA19181 Ernest Doe Manure fork 16.00
GA19182 Tree & Lawn Company Mumford Oak 408.00
GA19183 Colchester Borough Council Building Regs – inspection fees 209.58
GA19184 Harry Stone Expenses – ink cartridge 24.99
GA19185 Brian Butcher Expenses – ink cartridges 34.00
GA19186 Jacqui Kibby Bulletin Editor Remuneration 210.00
GA19187 Safety Signs for Less Signage 202.32
GA19188 EALC Grants Course – LW 114.00
GA19189 M & J Construction Roofing Work – 3rd to 25th Feb 20 46,552.44
GA19190 EALC Health & Wellbeing Conference – CS 30.00
GA19191 EALC Health & Wellbeing Conference – NS 30.00
GA19192 EALC Health & Wellbeing Conference – BTB 30.00
GA19193 TLC Environmental Services Asbestos removal and ceiling reinstatement 8,698.66
GA19194 EALC Standing Orders Course – CS 84.00
GA19195 Kent Blaxill Safety Boots 37.97
GA19196 Phil Spencer Expenses – Printer Cartridge 20.29
GA19197 Bob Tyrrell Damage Claim & Expenses 76.80
Tfr PC to Hall Account VAT return – Jun – Aug 19 296.73
Tfr PC to Hall Account VAT return – Sep 19 – Jan 20 901.23
Sub total 63,964.43
Tfr Hall to PC Account Wages – Feb 570.35
Tfr Hall to PC Account GA19187 Hall Signage 128.95
TOTAL 63,265.13
c) To note application to the ECC Community Initiative Emergency Fund of £8,327.76 for removal & replacement of the asbestos ceiling above the stage in the Orpen Hall.

Application noted and payment given approval in item 20/22b.

d) To approve full payment of the Orpen Hall re-roofing project of £75,143.85 + VAT as per the tender contract agreement, although the actual payments will be made in a series of tranches.

RESOLVED – Approval of full payment proposed by Cllr Stone, seconded by Cllr Tyrrell. All in favour.

e) To remind Councillors to submit their end of year expenses forms (signed)

Councillors were reminded to submit their expenses forms for 2019-20.

f) To agree the appointment of an internal auditor for the Parish Council accounts.

RESOLVED – Cllr Stevenson proposed the appointment of Jan Stobart as internal auditor for the Parish Council for the 2019-20 end of year. Seconded by Cllr Spencer. All in favour.

ACTION – Clerk to inform and book date with Jan Stobart.



a) The minutes of the Planning Committee meeting held on Wed 19th Jan 2020 were received and the decisions made on following applications were noted (Link to Planning P10 Jan 2020):

  • 200069 – Pattens Yard, Nayland Road, CO6 3DQ – Support:
    The Parish Council has no comment.
  • 200140 – 65 Lexden Road, CO6 3BW – Object:
    The Parish Council does not object to the rear extension on this dwelling in principle, but to its cladding on this particular plan. It is an inappropriate use of industrial material in a residential setting. Please refer to PP10 of the CBC-adopted West Bergholt Neighbourhood Plan, where the Village Design Statement policies apply:
    DG3 – General Design – all proposed new build and extensions must enhance the area and make a positive architectural contribution.
    DG27 – Careful consideration should be given to the visual impact of extensions and particularly conservatories, when they are visible either from the street or from public thoroughfares such as footpaths, bridleways etc.
    In this application’s case the extension will be seen from the alleyway between 65 and 67 Lexden Road.
  • 200169 – Horsepits Farm, Cooks Hall Road, CO6 3EX – Object:
    The Parish Council would remind the Borough Council that this application is contrary to all the previously given approvals relating to this property and therefore object. Original approval was given on PA 081956 19/11/2009, with condition 5 stating: “For the avoidance of doubt as to the scope of this permission. The building hereby shall only be occupied by dependent relatives of the residents of the main dwelling on this site known as Horsepits Farm and the ancillary residential unit hereby permitted shall not be occupied otherwise nor let independently to any other occupiers nor shall it be sold or leased independently as a separate planning unit or otherwise independently of Horsepits Farm.” Planning Application 152337 was refused by the Borough Council on 09/12/2015 for a “Change of use of Granny Annexe to Private Dwelling house” siting paragraph 55 of the NPPF and reiterating that the annex building is conditioned to be used in association with the main dwelling at Horsepits Farm. The decision notice went on to state that “allowing the conversion of this rural annexe would constitute a new dwelling away from the West Bergholt settlement limits.” Permission from CBC was approved for “application 162704  to vary condition 5 of planning permission 081956” on 12/12/2016 and then extended by PA decision 191391 on the 09/07/2019 until 31 July 2021 due to the further education of a dependent relative, but again reiterated “For the avoidance of doubt as to the scope of this permission because the development is granted solely in recognition of the personal situation and individual circumstances of this case and would not have otherwise been acceptable to the Local Planning Authority.”
  • 200120 – 50 New Church Road, CO6 3JE – Support:
    Cllr Tyrrell declared an interest in this item once more and took no further part in discussions. The Parish Council has no comment.
b) To agree the following decision, based on the recommendation made by the Planning Committee via email on late planning application:

  • 200343 – 96 Lexden Road, CO6 3BW – Support:
    The Parish Council has no comment.

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

ACTION – Clerk to recirculate Treble Tile application to the Council ready for discussion next month.



a) The minutes from the Environment Committee meeting held on 20th February 2020 were received. (Link to Environment P11 Feb 2020)

Cllr Spencer talked the Council through the Handymen’s work schedule, which listed the work given to them to achieve before the end of February. He also updated the Council on the following:

  • Mumford Close kerb stones will be re-laid by ECC.
  • Queen’s Head Pond railings restoration will begin next week.
  • ECC’s Place Services have assessed the land swap area of the Poor’s Land yesterday and will submit their report imminently.
  • Cllr Murray Harlow is to re-join the Environment Committee as the Orpen Hall Management Committee is no longer a Parish Council committee and therefore he is free to join another PC committee.

The Parish Council commended the Handymen for all the work they have been doing to make the village look so tidy lately and Cllr Spencer for ensuring its implementation.


Tree Planting

Tree Planting to note included:

  • Planting of the Purple Beech hedge behind the Village Sign on the entrance to the village.
  • The purchase and planting of 8 oak trees around the Lorkin Daniell Field as replacements for those trees recently lost through tree ivy damage or inclement weather. These replacements were planted as implementation of the Council’s Tree Removal and Replacement Policy.

ACTION – Clerk will re-apply to the Locality Budget when it opens to reclaim the cost.

  • The Environment Committee have possibly identified a tree planting site alongside the Poor’s Land hedge by Colchester Road, however larger trees than those available as whips from CBC would again be preferable to avoid vandalism and breakages. Planting would take place in Nov/Dec.


Council Documents

a) To review and ratify West Bergholt Parish Council’s:

  • Health & Safety Policy.
  • Lone Worker’s Policy.
  • Risk Management Scheme.
  • Publication Scheme.
  • Tree Removal & Replacement Policy. (See link to WBPC Council Documents).

RESOLVED – Cllr Stevenson proposed to approve these policies with no changes, Cllr Spencer seconded. All in favour.

ACTION – Clerk, Chairman & Vice Chairmen to review a policy a month as part of their regular meetings in order to ensure the council’s policies are all up to date.

ACTION – Clerk to check when the Handymen last did their H & S training and to book them on new courses, if required.

b) To approve West Bergholt Parish Council’s MUGA (Multi Use Games Area) Working Group Terms of Reference

Following the termination of the WB Millennium Sports Club the MUGA reverted to being a PC-operated facility on Lorkin Daniell Trust land. A MUGA Advisory Group was created with PC representatives, users and coaches and reported to the then Premises Committee on matters to do with the tennis courts. This advisory committee oversaw the arrangements for maintaining the courts, advertising the facilities and arranging bookings. The advisory committee was subsequently dissolved once the maintenance and other day to day arrangements were found to be operating well and that there was no appetite in the community for a tennis club to be set up. However, following the local governance changes covering the oversight of PC and Trust land a MUGA Working Party is to be re-established. It will be a task and finish group who will oversee the re-surfacing of the facility and consider its long-term management.

ACTION – Clerk to add amendment to Terms of Reference.

RESOLVED – Cllr Stevenson agreed to propose the MUGA WG Terms of Reference with addition of said amendment. Cllr Tyrrell seconded. All in favour.

c) To approve WBPC’s Community Safety Plan Working Group Terms of Reference

The Council will be seeking volunteers for this Working Group from outside of the Parish Council possibly from local clubs/organisations. There will be advertising online, and notices put up to recruit interested parties. There are several Community Safety Plans around Colchester, but it would benefit West Bergholt to create its own plan to fit is own individual needs.

RESOLVED – Cllr Stevenson proposed to approve the Terms of Reference, Cllr Stone seconded. All in favour.


Parish Council ‘Open House’ Events

To discuss whether West Bergholt Parish Council should hold ‘Open House’ events

Cllr Smith looked to champion “Open House” events with Cllr Butcher. In Cllr Smith’s absence Cllr Butcher presented a two-page discussion paper on this idea, which was accompanied by comments of the experiences from other PCs and Clerks. These included a variety of comments and often noted the scarcity of attendees to such events.

Therefore, it may be better to consider moving forward with an informal meeting based on another topic, e.g. health & wellbeing, computer literacy etc. so steering these events to when the council are meeting to consider another topic anyway. This steps back slightly from the original agenda but would come under the heading of Health & Wellbeing.

The first topic for consideration is something that could be launched at the Annual Parish Meeting on the 22nd April.

ACTION – Clerk to put on Items for Next Agenda list.



  The training/networking undertaken was noted during the last month by Councillors or the Clerk and feedback provided:

  • Public Speaking – DS – 21st Jan 2020


Items to Note

  1. Correspondence Log – Feb 2020
    Received a call from a resident with concerns on dog fouling. Bulletin, website and notices will be used to remind dog owners of their responsibilities.
  2. Crime Statistics – Jan-Feb 2020
  3. Essex Highways Highlights – Jan 2020
  4. Essex Warbler (RCCE) – Vol 30 – Feb 20
  5. EALC – Legal Update – Issue No. 23 – Feb 20
  6. LCR (NALC Magazine) – Winter 2020
  7. EALC – County Update – No. 195 – Jan 2020
  8. Glasdon Catalogue
  9. Essex Police – Colchester Partner Briefing – Feb 2020
20/30 Items for the next agenda – 26th Feb 2020
  • Methodist Chapel & Hall
  • Council Action Plan
  • Annual Parish Meeting
20/31 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

  The next meeting of the Parish Council will be held on Wednesday 25th March 2020 at 7.30pm in the John Lampon Hall (back hall), Lexden Rd, West Bergholt.
  Meeting closed at 9.05 pm
Signed:                                                                    Date:                     Position on Council:


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