Stoke Ferry Parish Council June Meeting
Minutes of the Stoke Ferry Parish Council meeting held on 10 June 2015
Attendance: D Clements (Chair); P Denny; C Hardy (Vice-Chair); S Harrison; S Lintern; A Lyons; M Precey; E Taylor; J Taylor (Clerk); Borough Councillor C Sampson; County Councillor M Storey; nine members of the public.
Apologies None. Cllr Leamon was absent, but later presented apologies for absence due to a sudden family emergency.
Minutes of the last meetingCllr Hardy proposed acceptance; Cllr Precey seconded; Carried.
Matters arising Ownership of The Common: Cllr Clements was awaiting a further response post Land Registry’s inability to define ownership. Ownership of land adjacent Bridge Road: ongoing. Cllr Hardy queried the aim of determining ownership – this had been previously agreed with the eventual aim of determining the ownership of all the land within Stoke Ferry Parish boundary.
Footpath from the Common to the moorings: see response from resident at item 17.
2Agriculture: air quality monitor – they are awaiting action from Borough Council; overgrown footpath by playing field – they are having the next-door field cut which should help.
Health Watch/provision of GP services in the village: Clerk had contacted HW – they are running a specific project on this subject in the autumn and will get in touch then for our input.
Land between Indigo Road and 2Agriculture warehousing: Clerk had spoken to Stoke Ferry Regeneration Ltd: they are willing to clear the area; Clerk is going to put them in touch with CGM direct.
Highways visit due on 20 July: all requests for action to the Clerk or councillors please.
Adoption of BT phone box: Clerk to follow up as lower priority action.
Fences at entry points to village: to be discussed under item 13.
Oxborough SpeedWatch area: to be discussed under item 13.
- Declarations of interest from members on any item to be discussed.
Cllr Lintern declared on item 15 – payment to 1-Tek.
- Accounts 2014/15: to receive internal auditor’s report and consider acceptance of Annual Report
Clerk reported that the auditor had made a few points regarding procedure, which the Council agreed to adopt. There should be a quarterly check of the accounts and bank reconciliation by a councillor who is not Chair, Vice-Chair or a signatory on the Council’s bank accounts. Cllr Lintern was suggested for this role. Cllr Hardy proposed; Cllr Precey seconded; Carried.
Annual Return: Clerk read out the balances for year end 31 March 2015. The Council provided answers to the required statements by the Council on the Annual Return. Cllr Hardy proposed acceptance of the Annual Return; Cllr Lintern seconded; Carried.
- Review of assets register
Clerk read out the assets and their values. She had checked the appropriate value of some items with Chris Stocking; others were agreed as the purchase price. It was agreed that values should not be increased.
- To consider adoption of new categories in the Receipts and Payments accounts book
Clerk provided the new suggested categories, and reported that the internal auditor had provided new spreadsheets which would supersede the physical accounts book and reduce the amount of Clerk’s time needed. The new categories were accepted.
- To consider a formal Donations Policy
It was agreed that general requests from external organisations for donations should not be considered. Clerk explained that Section 137 grants, which are designed to fund projects within the village for the benefit of residents, are not categorised as donations.
It was proposed that an exception be made for the Poppy Appeal. Cllr Denny proposed; Cllr Hardy seconded; Carried.
- To consider location of Council meetings
Cllr Clements reviewed previously-agreed arrangements with All Saints Academy, which provided for the Bowls Club to move to a Friday for the weeks where a Council meeting was to be held. This appears no longer to be possible. Mally Reeve confirmed that the Village Hall would most likely be available and would confirm this direct to Cllr Clements. Cllr Clements confirmed that the next Parish Council meeting would be held in the Community Centre, and the item would be considered again at that meeting.
- Request for interment of ashes in the Cemetery
Clerk confirmed two outstanding requests for ashes to be interred, probably during July and August, and a burial in June, the fee for which of £480 had been received. Clerk reported that Mrs Stocking had offered to donate a bench for the Cemetery, and that she would liaise with Mrs Stocking regarding the placement. The suggested location for the bench to be donated by Mrs Fuller was approved.
- To consider a Statement of Goals for the year ahead
Items suggested as follows:
Refurbishment of railings;
Replacement or refurbishment of street signs (Cllr Hardy provided a list);
New sign at Border Road/Oak Road “No Ball Games”;
New dog bin at Border Road/Oak Road.
Cllr Precey queried whether the dog bin at The Common was still in place. Clerk would check how many bins are being charged to the Council.
- Playing Field: issues raised at Annual Parish Meeting
Cllr Clements reported that there would be a meeting at the Playing Field the next evening and encouraged all to attend and support the Committee. Cllr Lintern reported that signs had been placed to discourage football near to residences and that the situation had improved. Cllr Clements reported that children had been seen playing on the blue container at the Playing Field; Cllr Lintern emphasised that the official response should be to call the police.
- Speeding in the village
Cllr Clements had been in touch with Borough Council regarding the location of proposed gates at the Lynn Road entrance to the village. BC could not confirm the parish boundary. Cllr Clements would pursue. Cllr Hardy reported that it would be Highways that would need to install the gates. Item to be considered again at next meeting.
Community Speed Watch: Cllr Clements emphasised that this would need to be run by residents and not the Parish Council, and asked that if anyone were interested to please come forward. Cllr Denny reviewed the requirements for the scheme, which are for a minimum of three people to be present with the speed monitor at one time, and it must be used at least 11 times per month. The police are responsible for insuring participants. Cllr Denny pointed out that there can potentially be drawbacks for participants.
- To consider planning applications approved/refused by the Borough Council
- To approve payments to be made
|June||Payments for authorisation on 10th June 2015|
|30/04/2015||Clerk April salary||Chq||388.37||0.00||388.37|
|27/05/2015||1-Tek provision of computing equipment||Chq||390.00||78.00||468.00|
|31/05/2015||Clerk May salary||Chq||388.37||0.00||388.37|
|31/05/2015||Clerk May expenses||Chq||102.08||6.73||108.81|
|31/05/2015||CGM Cemetery and Playing Field||Chq||165.54||33.10||198.64|
|01/06/2015||Anglian Water March - May 15||DD||15.07||0.00||15.07|
|02/06/2015||E-on lighting electricity May 15||DD||43.22||2.16||45.38|
|04/06/2015||All Saints Academy May room hire||Chq||15.44||0.00||15.44|
|08/06/2015||Westcotec lighting maintenance June||Chq||15.44||3.09||18.53|
|10/06/2015||Luisa Cantera, internal audit||Chq||120.00||0.00||120.00|
Cllr Hardy proposed approval; Cllr Precey seconded; Carried. Cllr Lintern abstained.
16 Correspondence received
- To receive further information or suggested items to be considered for the next meeting agenda (councillors/public)
Cllr Clements reported that, from 15 June, the last collection time for mail from the Post Office would be 20 minutes earlier, at 4.40pm. Collection times from other post boxes would be correspondingly earlier. She advised residents that if they wished to make a complaint this should be done via the website royalmail.com/customer-services, or else by phoning 03457 740740. The postmistress advised that Stoke Ferry post office is the only one within an eight mile radius to provide a late pick-up time. The Clerk was asked to post a complaint via the website on behalf of the parish council, and Cllr Clements pointed out that the more people who complained, the more likely it would be to make a difference.
Cllr Precey requested that the policy regarding donations be further considered at the next meeting.
Cllr Denny reported that he had been approached regarding the village shop, and whether a suitable site could be identified for a larger shop stocking a wider range of products. It was recognised that it is very difficult for small village shops to compete with supermarkets. Cllr Clements requested that if residents had any suggestions on this matter to get in touch.
Cllr Denny passed on a concern from a resident, who understood that there is a village-owned allotment near the Cemetery. Councillors confirmed that this land is privately-owned. Cllr Precey reported that he is in discussion with landowners regarding release of land suitable for village allotments.
A discussion took place regarding Council protocol for correspondence; Cllr Clements informed the meeting that Council’s Standing Orders were in the process of being reviewed and would cover this subject. Any further discussion could take place after the meeting was adjourned.
Cllr Storey mentioned, in relation to the comment on village shops, that there are grants available to pubs who wished to expand their range of services. Regarding white gates at the entrance to villages, generally they are twinned, generally they are on NCC property and therefore need NCC permission, and in his experience they are generally very successful.
Regarding the Site Allocation Document, Cllr Storey informed the meeting that those who wished to be present at the Inspector’s review should contact the Inspector direct. Cllr Clements reported that she had asked when Stoke Ferry would be discussed, but this was not known.
Cllr Storey reported that work on the important northern distribution route for Norwich continued, although it could be that a legal challenge might be made. New money had been made available for Norfolk schools during the 2014-2018 period, intended for repairs to existing schools and for new schools. Increased provision of special needs education is a particular focus.
As always, Cllr Storey reminded residents that this and other information could be found on the NCC website, or they were welcome to contact him direct.
Residents mentioned the following:
Vandalism on the playing field – it was hoped that parents would attend the meeting the following evening as it was important they be involved.
Path between Wretton Road and Buckenham Drive was impassable because of the weeds. It was not clear who owned this path – Clerk would investigate with Borough Council and Highways at NCC. A resident informed the meeting that this path was not on official maps of the village. Cllrs Sampson and Storey requested that they be copied in on any correspondence. Cllr Lyons reported that Highways would be dealing with weeds within the following two weeks.
Cllr Clements commented on how improved the village hall was looking.
The footpath between the Common and the moorings as listed in Matters Arising was confirmed as running along the correct route and it was not blocked. This could be removed as resolved from Matters Arising.
The public footpath across Chapman’s Field had not been reinstated. Clerk to contact owner.
White gates on entrances to the village – Cllr Clements clarified that one set of gates would be installed initially, on Lynn Road from Downham Market direction.
Cllr Lintern reported that the Bridge was being repainted, thanks were due to Kenny Mann.
Cllr Clements reported that the festival on the playing field was cancelled, but the village yard sale was taking place on 12th July.
- Date and time of next meeting
Wednesday 8 July 2015 at 7.30pm in the Community Centre.