Minutes of the Parish Council Meeting

Held in the John Lampon Hall on 25th February 2015 at 7.30p.m.

ChairJohn Gili-Ross
Parish Councillors PresentBrian Butcher, Jenny Church, Murray Harlow, Rosemary James, Andrew Savage, Chris Stevenson, Harry Stone, Bob Tyrrell and Phil Walby
Parish ClerkVal Walsom
Borough CouncillorsCouncillor Harrington (left at 8.05pm) and Councillor Willetts
Present:2 members of the public

Part I – Public

1.    Receive Apologies

Apologies were received from Rachel Howard.

2.    Questions from registered electors

Peter Murphy asked about the feasibility of a footpath along Nayland Road.  This is a busy road and there have been some minor incidents.

John Gili-Ross advised that such a project would have to go forward to the Local Highways Panel from either the Parish Council, Borough or Essex County Councillors.  Footpaths are extremely expensive to install.  The Parish Council will investigate this feasibility through the Environment and Highways committee and at the same time look at other areas requiring a footpath.  John Gili-Ross did advise that this may well be outside the LHP allocated budget at this time.

Chris Stevenson advised that it would be useful if Mr Murphy and his neighbours responded to the Neighbourhood Plan’s consultation, highlighting footpath issues.

Terry Smith represented WBFC about the feasibility of help from the Parish Council to purchase a mower for cutting the Orpen Hall Field.  The football club is looking at a second hand diesel mower which would last approximately 10 years.  They would offer to cut not only the Lorkin Daniell Field but also Poors Land. The cost would be approximately £7000 plus VAT.

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 brought forward.

4.    Declarations of Interest

Chris Stevenson declared an interest in items relating to Essex County Council Highways issues.

5.    Minutes

Minutes of the Parish Council meeting held on Wednesday 28th January 2015 were approved and signed with no amendments.

6.    Report for Colchester Borough Councillors

Councillor Harrington gave the following report:

He advised that he would give his support for any prospective footpaths.

Dog Fouling – It has been agreed to install a dog bin in Pocket Park and the location was discussed. There is an increase in dog fouling within the village.  A meeting has been arranged with the Zone Warden on Friday 13th March at 10am to which Parish Councillors are welcome to attend.  John Gili-Ross had raised the possibility of training someone under the umbrella of the Parish Council with the possibility of funding from CBC.

Traffic issues around West Bergholt – Councillor Harrington has been in conservation with Councillor Anne Brown who arranged a meeting with Councillor Bass in the village.  Councillor Bass agreed that repairs will be made immediately along Chitts Hill.   A survey will also be carried out with regards to drainage along Chitts Hill.  Work has been carried out in Hall Road – some ditches have been cleared.  Some of these works are a multi-agency issue.  Private land owners need to be encouraged to maintain their ditches and hedges.  ECC does have an enforcement department.  However, Councillor Harrington felt that this would be best carried out through the Parish Council’s Environment and Highways committee ‘knocking on doors’.

Councillor Willetts – advised that Andrew Weavers said that dog wardens appointed by the Parish Council would not be able to operate under CBC terms of reference and conditions.

7.    Finance

a)   Statement of Accounts for January 2015

The accounts for January 2015 were presented as follows:

The General Account showed 95% income, 76% general expenditure, 68% environment expenditure and 73% expenditure overall.

The Hall Account showed 96% income and 82% expenditure.

b)   Draw cheques

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

Payment DetailsExpense PurposeAmount
General Account
David KingabyWebsite264.00
John Gili-RossMileage and Train Fares216.65
SSLCMembership Subscription128.00
Inland RevenueTax176.00
Val WalsomDomain and Hostroute renewal93.97
CountrywideGrass cutting220.00
Oak View LandscapesCar park landscaping9834.00
Anglian WaterWater rates for Poors Land/Allotment52.48
Chris StevensonNP expenses and mileage211.80
I BeckwithArtificial turf for goal area3100.00
Orpen Hall Account
Mike’s CleaningCleaning580.50
G W CommercialWork on heating system127.33
Vicky Beckwith-ColeCleaning materials/Toner and ink106.58

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

[Click to view: Summary Accounts January 2015]

c)   Scout Hut Licence and rent update

The Licence has been agreed and signed.  The Parish Council has now received £520 for 2 year’s rent from the Scout Group.

d)   Car park project

The landscaping has been completed and a snagging meeting has been arranged.  A meeting has been held with G Dolden and Associates with a view to getting some compensation for the patching on the car park surface.  We will retain 2.5% of the final payment for one year at which time the patching will be reviewed.  There is one more payment to be made to the contractor.  Other than payments the project is now considered to be complete and handed over to the sub-committees.

e)   Resignation of Clerk and recruitment process

The Clerk has decided to resign her position and has given in her notice.  The job description and vacancy advertisement will be going live shortly and will be advertised as widely as possible.  The closing date for applications is 27th March 2015.  A sub-committee has been formed to appoint a new Clerk.  The sub-committee is John Gili-Ross, Andrew Savage and Chris Stevenson.

8.    Traffic Safety Plan

Chris Stevenson declared an interest in this item.

Councillor Harrington has advised that the parking restriction markings are expected to go ahead in April and the 20mph speed restrictions in June.

Harry Stone advised that to get the maximum impact from the restrictions there should be a campaign launched at the time of their implementation with parents/residents and other interested parties.

Chris Stevenson advised that the surface of New Church Road should be improved before the markings are put down.

9.    Clerk’s Items to Note

a)   Attendance at CALC Meeting on 5th March where the Essex Police Commissioner will be the guest speaker

JGR, HS, MH, RH, CS and RJ to attend.

b)   EALC – Local Council Police Partnership Seminar – 25th March 2015 – 9.30am

JGR, MH PW and CS to attend.

c)   Annual Parish Meeting – 25th March 2015

Speakers include:

  • Councillor Brown from Essex County Council
  • Chris Stevenson on the Neighbourhood Plan
  • Connie Kerbst – Superfast Essex Broadband Programme

Refreshments to be provided.  Items for the report to be with the Clerk by 7th March.  Invitations will be sent to volunteers.

d)   Best Kept Village Competition

It was agreed not to enter this year.

e)   Forthcoming Parish Council Elections

All members of the Current Parish Council, present at the meeting, will be standing for election in May.

f)   Procedure for Election of Chair and Vice Chair

John Gili-Ross presented a proposed nomination process for the election of Chair, Vice Chair and Chair of the Finance and Personnel Sub-Committee.  The process was agreed and will take place after the elections in May.  The process also includes the opportunity to advise which committees councillors would like to be on.

g)   Essex County Council – Launch of Getting Around in Essex consultation

Harry Stone will complete the consultation on behalf of the Parish Council.

10.   Planning

a)   To note decisions for Planning Applications

Decisions made at the Planning Committee meeting held on 18th March 2015:

Planning Application:

  • 150167 – Mallards, 2 The Retreat – The Parish Council supported the application with no comments.
  • 150129 – 1 Armoury Road – The Parish Council supported the application with no comments.

Other matters

The developer’s agent for a Planning Application for Homecroft, Chapel Lane is keen to meet with the Parish Council to discuss their plans.

b)   Neighbourhood Plan – Report

Consultation on Issues and Options is about to be launched.  A consultation questionnaire is in the latest Village Bulletin.  The consultation process will last about 2 months and there will be an option to respond electronically.  Exhibition boards will be displayed on the website at Neighbourhood Plan exhibitions on 11th and 18th April and at the Annual Parish Meeting.  The Neighbourhood Plan will advise on additional housing within the village.

c)   Agree response to CBC’s Local Plan consultations on Issues and Options

CBC sent all Parish Councils a questionnaire last year and following on from this the consultation response on Issues and Options was prepared by Brian Butcher.  It was proposed by Andrew Savage, seconded by Murray Harlow and agreed by all to agree the response.

11.   Environment and Highways

The Village Handyman is working with Ivor Beckwith on installing the beacon by the village sign.

12.   Premises and Recreation

West Bergholt Football Club has investigated purchasing grass cutting equipment and have asked for financial assistance.  WBFC has proposed that they will cut all the grass on the Lorkin Daniell Field.  This needs to be explored further by the committees before a decision is made.

13.   Communications

a) Update on County Broadband

County Broadband has installed a new link between Colchester and the village.  A trial of this link has been extended to certain homes to ensure correct working which has been successful so far. A meeting is taking place with County Broadband on 2nd March.

Items to Note

  • Bus and Train Maps for Essex

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 25th March 2015 at 7.00pm – Annual Parish Meeting

The meeting closed at 9.40pm.

 

Signed:                            Date:                              Position on Parish Council