VILLAGE LIAISON MINUTES
Minutes of the September meeting of the Vilage Liaison Committee
Stoke Ferry Feed Mill
VILLAGE LIAISON MINUTES
Wednesday 7th September 2005
Present: Ms Jacqueline Murfitt (Environmental Protection Officer, King's Lynn and West Norfolk Borough Council)
Mr Matthew Ferrie (Parish Council representative)
Mrs Pat Holton (Village representative)
Mr Alastair Inskip (Grampian Country Food Group)
Mr Mike Smith (Grampian Country Food Group)
Mr Ray Thompson (Editor, Village Pump)
Apologies have been received from Mr Manley, Mr Moore, Mr Murphy and Mr White.
Mr Ferrie is replacing Mr Harrison as representative of the Parish Council. Ms Murfitt read a letter from Mr Harrison to the meeting advising of his resignation from The Parish Council. Points against other items raised in this letter are included under the appropriate sections of the minutes.
2. Minutes of the previous meeting (2nd March) and matters arising
The minutes of the previous meeting were agreed.
3. Complaints received since the last meeting
Mr Thompson said that the length of the minutes as published in the Village Pump had been raised. It was suggested that the list of complaints in the published version could be summarised, as had been done once before. The full list would still be included on the copies issued to those attending the meeting and on the copy passed to the Parish Council. Members of the public who wished a copy containing the full list are advised to contact either a member of the meeting or the Parish Council.
Twelve complaints have been received by the company since the last meeting.
Figure 1: Analysis of complaints received since the last meeting
Six complaints made reference to odour problems, five referred to noise problems (one complaints referred to both odour and noise problems) and two reported incidents involving company vehicles.
Two complaints had been received by the Borough Council in the same period. Diary sheets were sent out for both complaints but neither was returned. As a consequence both complaints have now been closed without further investigation.
There were no further comments, matters having been already addressed in the meeting.
5. Odour, dust and particulates
Ms Murfitt said that the first month's preliminary data was now available for the dust monitor installed by the junction of Lynn Road and Furlong Drove. Although the data still has to be verified, the initial results show levels of dust and particulates lower than those measured in King's Lynn and well below the action levels. The position of the unit was discussed; it was thought that it may have been better situated towards the bottom of the High Street. Ms Murfitt said that the unit had been placed as close as possible (within a few metres) to the optimal location identified from meteorological records of the prevailing wind. The unit must remain in place for six months, but consideration would be given to a second trial at an alternative location once the current trial is concluded.
6. Any other business
The purpose and future of this meeting
Several members of the meeting felt that it was important that the purpose and future of the meeting was discussed. It was agreed that it was unfortunate that the Environment Agency had indicated that its representative would not chair the meeting in its capacity as regulator.
The purpose of the Liaison Meetings was discussed, and it was agreed that this was:
"A forum for the sharing of information between residents and the company."
It was noted that this communication was two-way; it includes comments from residents about the activities of the company and information from the company on its operations including proposed changes.
Residents are encouraged to make comments on the activities of the company, but are advised that a name and contact number must be left in order facilitate investigation.
Vacancy for Village Representative
A vacancy has arisen in the meeting for a Village Representative. It was agreed that this position would be advertised in the Village Pump and on various notice boards within the village. Candidates must be resident within Stoke Ferry, able to attend four meetings per year and prepared to receive and forward comments from other residents of the village.
The term "justified complaint"
Some comment has been made regarding the phrasing of the section of the company's permit application relating to complaints. The wording used was chosen after consultation between the company, their appointed environmental consultants, the Borough Council Environmental Protection Office and the guidance issued relating to the application process.
The following points were noted in the meeting relating to this subject:
i. In addition to the application made by the company, the process for issuing the permit involves statutory consultation with a number of public bodies including the Primary Care Trust and the Borough Council amongst others.
ii. The submission of the Borough Council is a matter of public record, and includes the opinion of the Borough Council on the effort required to regulate the company's activities. Included within this submission were the minutes of the last two years Liaison Meetings including all complaints discussed, in addition to details of complaints investigated by the Council.
iii. The Borough Council has a statutory duty to investigate all complaints. There are strict guidelines on how this is carried out. . When a complaint is received the complainant is issued with a diary sheet to record details of their complainants and the offender is notified of the allegation, in order that, should they be unaware they can take steps to ameliorate their behaviour. If this sheet is not returned within the period of time specified when it is issued the guidelines require the complaint to be noted but no further investigation is undertaken.
Attendance at Parish Council meetings
It was agreed that a representative of the company would be available to attend Parish Council meetings in order to answer directly questions raised by Parish Councillors in these meetings.
There is no news to report on the permit application.
Vehicle activated speed sign
The speed sign offered by the company was discussed. Further details are still awaited from Highways regarding the installation. In response to a query the company said that it would be happy for the sign to be installed anywhere in the village. The suggestion was made that it might be better located by the school.
It was reported that the mobile speed trap had visited the village, and several vehicles had been stopped.
The company agreed that the doors of the Dukes Head would be painted before the next meeting.
7. Dates of Meetings for 2005
2.30pm, Wednesday 7th December 2005