Councillors present: Cllr. R. Crisp – Chair (RC), Cllr. A. Jenkinson (AJ), Cllr. F. Eglington (FE) & Cllr. Alison Muir (AM), Cllr. Sue Leet (SL), Cllr. George Gillett (GG), Cllr. Stephen Gillett (SG) &
Present: Vicky Bright – Clerk.
14/11/1 Cllr. Crisp welcomed all to the meeting.
Public Forum – LGA 1972, Section 100(1):
One member of the Public was present.
John Haylock wanted to advise the Council that the Victorian Street Lamp outside the Church/Manor House had not been installed by the Meredith’s as reported by the Council in our September meeting; he was unsure who had been responsible.
Cllr. Crisp advised that our minutes and the information were based on documentation provided by the electricity company and Professor Rodwell, and therefore we would continue to proceed on that understanding, unless other evidence was produced. Cllr. Crisp confirmed that Professor Rodwell would be carrying out the maintenance and repairs to the street lamp free of charge.
Local Authority Reports:
Norfolk County Council
No representative present and no apologies or report sent.
Borough Council of Kings Lynn & West Norfolk
No representative present and no apologies or report sent.
Norfolk Constabulary – SNT
No representative present and no apologies or report sent.
Accepted Apologies for absence – LGA 1972, Section 85(1) & (2):
Cllr. Alan Collins & Cllr. Mick Peake
Members Declaration of Interest ( items on the agenda) – LGA 2000 Part III:
Cllr. Sue Leet declared an interest in Item 11 (iii). Cllr. Adrian Jenkinson declared an interest in Item 11 (ii).
Minutes of the last meeting held on 7th October 2014- LGA 1972, Schedule 12, para 41(2):
The minutes of the last meeting held on 7th October 2014 were adopted as a true statement and signed by the Chairman (RC).
NCC Parish Partnership Scheme (Highways Improvements)
The Clerk reported that due to the success of working in partnership with Parish/Town Councils for the last three years, the Norfolk County Council Parish Partnership Scheme Initiative will be repeated in the financial year 2015/16. The County Council has allocated £200,000 on a 50/50 basis to fund schemes put forward by Town and Parish Councils to deliver projects that are priorities for local communities, delivering local highway improvements. Schemes can be within or off the highway provided they are linked to the highway. The closing date for submissions is the 30th January 2015.
What sort of schemes would be acceptable?
• Small lengths of formal footway.
• Trods (a simplified and low cost footway).
• Improved crossing facilities.
• Improvements to Public Rights of Way.
• Flashing signs to tackle speeding.
• This year we will accept bids for part-time 20mph signs with flashing warning lights, outside schools.
What schemes will not be considered?
• Bids for minor traffic management changes such as speed limits or waiting restrictions will not qualify.
• Bids for installation of low-energy LED lighting in streetlights to help cut energy bills and maintenance.
It was suggested that ideas and suggestions from residents on proposals for the scheme be considered and the Clerk should place an article in the December issue of the village life, asking residents to submit their ideas. The item was then deferred to the January meeting
Reports and Matters Arising from the Minutes of the Last Meeting (For Info Only):
The Chairman advised that Karen Agnew-Griffith had now presented the Council with the funds for the play area repairs and maintenance, at a total of £3,132.62. This was on the agreement that the monies be ring fenced for the play are and accounts be kept and made available.
Cllr. Crisp confirmed that she had arranged for the wreath for the Remembrance Service and would be attending and laying the wreath at 3pm on Sunday 11th November.
Cllr. Crisp advised that she had received a letter from the Bowls Club explaining they had been de-registered for VAT and now has to pay VAT on their purchases. They have asked if the Parish Council can make purchases and re-claim the VAT on behalf of the Bowls Club. The Clerk advised that she had sought guidance on this from NALC and been advised that this was not possible, as it is unlawful and would be classed as VAT avoidance/evasion. The only way we could help the Bowls club would be to purchase items at our own cost as a donation, these items would then be the property and responsibility of the Parish Council. It was agreed that this was not financially viable for the Parish Council and that the Clerk write to the Bowls Club to explain why we were unable to do this.
Cllr. Crisp advised she had received several complaints recently regarding loud music and noise at the weekends. She confirmed that Mick Parfitt had reported to her that he had located the culprits and had given a polite warning. Hopefully this will resolve the problem.
Cllr. Crisp that the bench believed to have been stolen from the cemetery, as reported at the October meeting, had in fact not been stolen, and just moved to another area of the cemetery.
Clerk’s Report and Updates from previous minutes
I have spoken with Damien Hegarty at Lightsource; he has confirmed that we need to get a quote from a contractor to install the solar panels. Once we have a quote we are happy with, Lightsource will then pay for the works (not exceeding £18,000) within 20 days upon the receipt of the written quote from contractor and an invoice from the council. Therefore the council should receive payment before having to pay the contractors invoice. I have got the details of Lightsource’s rooftop division who design and install the PV Systems and I will be contacting them and sourcing other companies to obtain quotes for the December meeting.
David George has re-fixed the bin on the High St. Churchyard wall and is in the process of re-fixing the bin on West End. I have sourced a price to replace the two missing liners from the bins on School Lane and High St – £12.56 & VAT each.
It was agreed that the Clerk should proceed with ordering the two replacement bin liners.
There have been complaints received regarding the rubbish on the Recreation Ground and the bin at Hovell’s Lane not being emptied, I asked David George if he could empty these regularly for us, but unfortunately he is unable to provide this service. It was agreed that Cllr. Crisp and Cllr. Collins would empty the bin on Hovell’s Lane junction, Cllr. G. Gillett will continue to empty the bin on School Lane and Cllr. Jenkinson will empty the bin and check for rubbish on the Recreation Ground in future. Cllr. Jenkinson confirmed that he has already cleared up the existing rubbish. The Clerk confirmed she had re-confirmed the 2 bins that BCKLWN empty for us free of charge.
Normandy Close Update
Update from Head Teacher, Carole Reichs
“We held the ‘Walk to School Week’ earlier this term, which was met with very interesting responses from parents. A number were very cross that we asked them to meet us at the sports and social club; others were pleased to know where the sports and social club is situated and may start to park there. Hopefully we have raised awareness that there are other parking options available. We’ll keep trying and encourage parents to park sensibly.”
It was agreed that the Parish Council had done everything within their powers to improve the situation. It was agreed that the Clerk would continue to work in partnership with the PCSO and Head Teacher to encourage parents to walk their children to school and park at the Sports & Social Club.
West End Flooding
Andy Wallace, Highways has confirmed that he has instructed one of his Technicians to investigate the gullies nearby; he will update us with what is found. It was requested that the Clerk also contact Highways regarding the drains at 61 Methwold Road.
Roy Payne at Westcotec is looking into possible options to resolve the problem of the street light shining into the windows of 19 West End; he is waiting for information from the manufacturers. Failing this it may be possible for Westcotec to make and install a shade for said light, at a cost of approximately £40.00. I will report back on this in December.
Westcotec have agreed to hold the quote for street light maintenance until June 2015, when our contract with K&M Lighting comes to an end.
I spoke with Dr. Nisbit who felt he was not the right person to present a talk at a village meeting. He has put me in touch with a Paramedic, Natalie Chandler from Methwold Hyde who may be able to help and I have left messages for Andrew Barlow the East Anglian Ambulance Service, Community Partnership Manager to ask if he can attend the next meeting and do a short presentation. I hope to have something in place for the December meeting.
Play Area Inspections
I was contacted by John Hussey at BCKLWN, they used to arrange and invoice us for the Annual RoSPA Inspection that should be carried out on the play area equipment each April. It appears the last time a RoSPA inspection was carried out was in 2011. Cllr. Eglington believes that David George did RoSPA training and was previously responsible for the play area annual inspections. The Clerk is to look into our options for this and report back in December.
Clerks Maternity Cover update
Rachel Buckle – Clerk to Methwold Parish Council has offered her services to cover for my maternity leave. I thought it prudent for her to meet with Rosemary and Alan in December, and then all being well I would have her attend my last meeting in February to meet everyone before she takes over the reins on 16th February. I have offered her assistance with the end of year accounts, audit and annual return and the AGM and AVM agenda’s, this would be classed as Keeping in Touch Hours whilst I am on maternity leave and would be paid at my normal hourly rate.
Cllr. Jenkinson advised that he had attended the NALC Forum on 27th October and had met several Councillors’ and Clerk’s from surrounding councils. Many issues were discussed, including; Street lighting, apparently many councils now had new LED street lighting ad had managed to get the lamps adjusted. The Clerk is to look into this. Faster Broadband, apparently many had reported that there had not been much improvement to speed in their villages and Police presence at meetings was discussed, it appears that many local villages still have a police representative attend their meetings regularly. The Clerk was asked to contact the SNT Team and raise concerns that we do not receive representatives at meetings or any reports.
Cllr. Leet reported that a settee had been dumped on Foulden Road. The Clerk is to report this to BCKLWN. Cllr. Leet also advised that the directional sign at Little London Road had still not been repaired; the Clerk advised she would follow up on this with Highways.
Cllr. Eglington raised concerns over the Common Drove road, he reported it was full of potholes and is very muddy and impassable. Cllr. Crisp advised this is a private road and therefore there is not much the Parish Council can do.
NCC Norfolk’s Budget and Services 2015-18
The Clerk read out a letter from NCC advising that they need to make savings of £12.9m for the 2015/16 financial year, and that the majority of these savings will be made through further efficiencies, but that there are some proposals which will involve changes to services. They have published details of the proposals and a consultation with the public to encourage people to give their views. This consultation will be open until 19th December 2014.
www.norfolk.gov.uk/budgetandservices or contact Paul Jackson Tel: 01603 228999 firstname.lastname@example.org
14/01387/F – Erection of new boundary wall between 59 School Lane and the Manor House.
The Council resolved to offer No Objections to Planning application 14/01387/F.
Parish Council Bank Balances and Reconciliation
The Payments and receipts from 7th October to 3rd November 2014 were scrutinised and approved. The Lloyds Treasurer account balance was confirmed as £28,252.62 as of 3rd November 2014.
That the Bank balances and reconciliation of payments & receipts be received and adopted and initialled as such by the Chairman (RC).
Cheques for signing and approval and to authorise payment of outstanding invoices
It was agreed to approve the payments of the following outstanding invoices and the cheques were approved and signed by Cllr. R. Crisp and Cllr. F. Eglington.
Payee Net VAT Cheque No Gross
CGM Landscapes (Oct) 251.60 50.32 001908 301.92
Westcotec (Street Lights) 2227.75 445.5 001909 2673.30
ICO (Data Protection Registration) 35.00 0.00 001910 35.00
CP Tree Services (Cemetery) 450.00 0.00 001911 450.00
Mrs. V. Bright 17.10 0.00 001912 17.10
Royal British Legion (Wreath) 17.00 0.00 001913 17.00
Total £2998.45 £95.82 £3494.32
Income from September to October 2014
TOTAL INCOME £134.00
Cllr. Jenkinson confirmed he had spoken with the Director of CGM, Tim Glove, who had then forwarded our concerns to the Operations Manager, Ian Burton. Mr. Burton then contacted Cllr. Jenkinson and offered his apologies, and agreed to come out and cut the grass at the cemetery and re-cut the recreation ground. A team arrived within 1 ½ hours to do this. Mr. Burton offered an extra cut as a gesture of goodwill, which Cllr. Jenkinson refused as it was felt this was not acceptable compensation. It was agreed between Cllr. Jenkinson and Mr. Burton that CGM would perform 3 extra cuts in total, one to be done this week, followed by a second cut in 14 days, when they would also clear the brambles and vegetation which had become neglected, with a final cut in December. It was then agreed that Cllr. Jenkinson would oversee the works and advise the Clerk and Council when the works had been carried out and if it was to a required standard. The Clerk was advised to send off the with held payment for Septembers invoice, but to with hold Octobers payment until the last cut had been completed in December and Cllr. Jenkinson was satisfied with the quality of the works.
Cemetery Water Tank Options
Cllr. Jenkinson advised that he had a plastic water butt which he was happy to provide and install to replace the galvanised tank that was stolen from the cemetery.
It was agreed to accept Cllr. Jenkinson’s offer to supply and install the plastic water butt he has available in the interim.
Asset Maintenance/Repairs Update
Cemetery Chalk – Matthew Leet is currently meeting with the 3 Undertakers and the grave diggers to advise them of the new location for the stock pile. Once he has confirmed the new site with them all, he will then arrange for removal of the existing stock pile and make good the ground.
Bus Shelter – David George is due to start work on the Bus Shelter repairs at Whittington this week. I also asked him to repair the latch on the gate at the Cemetery and I believe he has already done this.
Play Area Repairs Quote
The Clerk confirmed that the committee have now passed over the funds to the Parish Council; the cheques were given to Rosemary for a total of £3,132.62. The cheques will be paid into the PC bank account, and the money will be ring-fenced for the play area only. The Committee has requested that Records must be kept and accounts must be made public, plus any member of the Playground Committee can check these until the sums have been used in full. The Clerk will ensure that the monies are recorded correctly and will send a regular update to the committee, as and when the funds are spent.
The Clerk presented a quote of the works needed for the play area repairs from David George for
It was agreed that the Clerk should instruct David George to proceed with the repair works needed.
The Clerk confirmed that the contract had now been forwarded to David George for his signature, and that it had been agreed that any works completed by David George would be subject to an inspection and sign off by the Council before invoices were submitted for payment.
Whittington Closed Cemetery Update
The Clerk confirmed that she had returned the completed Notice of Closure form to the PCC. It was suggested that the Clerk look into what options there are for maintenance of the Cemetery, by contacting the current contractors, David George and BCKLWN, and report back at the next meeting.
Items for next meeting and Date of next meeting: Confirmed as Tuesday 2nd December 2014 at 7:30pm, in the Village Hall.
There being no further business the Chairman thanked everyone for their attendance and declared the meeting closed at 20:35pm
Signed: R. Crisp, Chair Date: 2nd December 2014