West Dereham Sign Gary Trouton

West Dereham Parish Council - February Meeting

March 2020

1 Agreed as a true record of the Meeting: Signed ………………………………………….. Date ……………………… DRAFT MINUTES OF THE WEST DEREHAM PARISH COUNCIL MEETING ON THURSDAY 6th FEBRUARY 2020 HELD AT WEST DEREHAM VILLAGE HALL AT 7.30 pm PRESENT (Four Councillors):- Stuart Glover (SB), Keith Gore (KG), Lorraine Hunt (LH) Chair and Susan Pepper (SP) In attendance: Peter King, Parish Clerk, and 4 members of the public. The Chairman welcomed everyone present to the Parish Council Meeting. MINUTES FROM THE MEETING 1. Apologies for absence: Councillor Tom Foy 2. Declarations of interest on agenda items The Parish Councillors confirmed that they had no personal interests for items coming up on the agenda. 3. Notice regarding use of social media, audio recording of Parish Council meeting and invitation for public contributions. LH commented that usually at this point, the Chair asks the meeting if ‘anybody present is going to be recording, blogging or tweeting?’, but reported that at a recent Chairperson’s Network meeting she attended that she was advised that there is no obligation for anybody to confirm any of these means of media and that therefore there seems little point in asking this question and that from hereon, she will not ask this question. LH reported that the meeting is recorded to assist the Parish Clerk in the writing of the minutes. 4. Minutes of the Parish Council Meeting held on 5th December 2019 LH confirmed that all Councillors had seen the minutes of the Parish Council meeting held on 5th December 2019. The Councillors agreed that they were content that the minutes should be signed as a true record. LH as Chair signed the minutes. 5 Minutes of the Extra-Ordinary Parish Council Meeting held on 16th January 2020 LH confirmed that all Councillors had seen the minutes of the Extra-Ordinary Parish Council meeting held on 16th January 2020. The Councillors agreed that they were content that the minutes should be signed as a true record. LH as Chair signed the minutes. 6. Matters Arising 6.1 Mick George Ltd. - The Parish Clerk reported that he had posted contact details for the Mick George Community Trust Fund department and a contact for any comments or complaints concerning the company onto the Parish Council website. 6.2 Ditches, Church Road - The Parish Clerk reported that he had not received any new updates for any further proposals from the Norfolk County Council (NCC) – Flood Department. 6.3 Grass strips, St Andrews Close – The Parish Clerk noted that for several years there had been an ongoing question concerning ownership of two strips of grass in St Andrews Close and the appropriate authority responsible for their grass cutting. The Parish Clerk commented that he had contacted Borough Council of King’s Lynn and West Norfolk (BCKLWN) and had received notice that they were responsible for cutting the grass and would be adding this to their future schedule of work. 2 Agreed as a true record of the Meeting: Signed ………………………………………….. Date ……………………… 6.4 Parish Cemetery, boundary trees – The Parish Clerk reported that he had contacted the grounds maintenance company concerning the need to cut back the trees on the boundary of the cemetery and that the work had now been carried out. 6.5 Local Village Bus Services – The Parish Clerk reported that he had written to Councillor Brian Long of BCKLWN for any assistance who had responded and noted that “unfortunately there is no leverage over bus operators as previously a subsidy was paid for some routes, now because of the increasing burden to provide free bus pass travel companies are gradually pulling back from rural routes. The Borough Council is not funded as a transport body so have to look to Norfolk County, they have already taken a position that they must maintain free bus passes and as such have made their position public. It is certainly not a good situation, however dial a bus services are still available, albeit this is not as helpful as a routine service.” The Parish Clerk added that he would identify any local dial-a-ride contact details and add them to the Parish Council website. 6.6 Police Information – The Parish Clerk noted that any information he receives affecting local services or impending public meetings is added to the Parish Council website. 6.7 Lime Kilns area – The Parish Clerk noted that the hedges and trees in the Lime Kilns area of Lime Kiln Road had now been cut back as previously requested. 6.8 Potholes, Bath Road – The Parish Clerk noted that a strip of Bath Road had been repaired in December, however, new potholes had appeared in West Dereham Road and Bath Road had been reported to NCC Highways. Councillors noted that on several roads in West Dereham the Highways team had highlighted and identified several new pothole areas in preparation for repair. 7. Reports 7.1 Chair’s Report LH reported that Councillor Annie Barber had officially resigned from West Dereham Parish Council. LH added that following a meeting of Parish Councillors, Tim Glover had been co-opted onto the Council and would be present at the March meeting. 7.2 Parish Clerk’s Report 7.2.1 Repairs to Bridge at Watering Cottages, Ryston Road and Temporary Road Closure – The Parish Clerk reported that the Bridge had been closed since 22nd December following heavy rainfall that caused one side of the bridge to disintegrate and leading to the road being closed. The Parish Clerk commented that the initial time required to carry out repairs had been subsequently extended. The Parish Clerk noted that he had been advised by NCC that the work should be completed by Tuesday 11th February. 7.2.2. Flooded Bridle Path – The Parish Clerk reported that he had received a message and a photograph of a badly flooded bridle path from a Parishioner. The Parish Clerk added that he would contact the NCC Footpath department for advice. 7.2.3 Meeting with new NCC Highways Area Manager – The Parish Clerk noted that he had a meeting planned with the new local senior manager to show him the village and look at some of the outstanding concerns, including the condition of two bridge structures, unresolved flooded drains and the sweep of a couple of roads. The Parish Clerk requested that anybody present should alert him to any other outstanding items of concern. A Parishioner noted her concern at the condition of the verge along a section of Lime Kiln Road. 7.3 Handyman’s Report The Parish Clerk noted that the report covered the two months of December and January. 7.3.1 Moved the speed monitor on three occasions during this period and is currently positioned in Hilgay Road. Between the repositioning of the speed monitor, the battery is replaced by a re-charged one. 3 Agreed as a true record of the Meeting: Signed ………………………………………….. Date ……………………… 7.3.2 Attended the cemetery on several occasions to trim back the perimeter low level hedging and remove the resulting greenery to another site for disposal. 7.4 Police Report The Parish Clerk noted he had added information onto the Parish Council website and had also advertised in the recent village newsletter of a Special Constable Recruitment Event taking place at the Sandringham Centre at RAF Marham on Saturday 8th February. 7.5 Village Hall Report 7.5.1 SP noted that at the December Parish Council meeting, a statement had been read out concerning the resignations of some of the previous Village Hall Management Committee (VHMC) members. SP added that as one of the Parish Councillor representatives to the VHMC she had agreed to read out a response from the Village Hall Pro Tem committee: “Further to the statement made by a parishioner at the last Parish Council meeting the Pro-Tem Committee wishes to respond to the comments made as follows, in the order in which they were published: It is a surprise that the parishioner considers that the last Village Hall Management Committee resigned ‘en-bloc’ and wishes to correct the matter accordingly:- • Of the five ‘elected’ members one did not resign and remains in office. • Of the co-opted and appointed members of that committee the majority still remain in post. • It should be noted that three of the ‘elected’ members who resigned at different times did so in breach of the ‘Code of Conduct’ they accepted upon appointment and the terms of the Trust Deed and as a result would be ineligible to stand again for office should they so consider. The Village Hall finances upon handover were healthy to a combined total of over £4000, a sum which many other halls would be envious of. Why the parishioner considers this an ‘abysmal state’ is beyond comprehension. The Treasurer, assuming the office within the now defunct management committee, is the only elected member of that committee remaining. The matter of the upgrade of equipment has incurred considerable cost, which without significant donations would have been financially reckless. This coupled with uncoordinated meetings and improperly recorded minutes might question the validity of decisions made and attributed actions by the previous Management Committee. The renegotiation of contracts was and still is a matter of ongoing efforts which continues to take focus within the Pro- Tem Committee and was not unique to the now defunct Management Committee. In respect of the processes and procedures this was again a matter commenced long before the Management Committee took office. Indeed it is recorded as to their resistance to certain policies and documents which we are led to believe was one of the reasons for the elected Committee Members to resign over a two week period. The Parish Council has had an appointed representative on the Village Hall Management Committee throughout this transitional period and has also recently appointed Councillor Tom Foy to act as an additional appointed member. Pam Bullas and Juliet King are the appointed committee members representing (West Dereham Heritage Group). These new appointments were recorded at the PC meeting on 5th December 2019. The Pro Tem Committee issued a notice in the December Village Newsletter informing residents of the present situation. Finally it should be noted that: The Pro-Tem Committee can only operate for six months – The term of office will conclude on the 24th May 2020. With this knowledge the Pro-Tem Committee will be formally requesting the Parish Council commences the election process for five elected members within the next few months. The residents of West Dereham should be made aware that, under the terms of The Charity Commission and Trust Deed, that without five elected members the village hall will be forced to close. West Dereham Pro Tem Management Committee - January 2020” The VHMC Treasurer reported that she is currently paying out a number of bills and that a Saturday morning café has recently started, between the hours of 10.00 and 12.30am and the bar is open on Fridays evenings and Sunday afternoons and is looking to see if can open again on Tuesday evenings. The Treasurer confirmed that the VHMC is only upholding the existing bookings until the longer term 4 Agreed as a true record of the Meeting: Signed ………………………………………….. Date ……………………… future of the hall is assured. LH noted that the Parish Council has discussed the requirement to hold a further election and is now looking to set a date. The Parish Clerk noted that it is likely that the election will be held before 20th April. 7.5.2 The Parish Clerk reported that Juliet King, West Dereham Heritage Group representative has resigned from the VHMC. 7.5.3 The Parish Clerk reported that he had received a letter from the Village Hall Pro Tem Secretary that also reinforces the point that the Pro Tem Management Committee needs cease its role by 24th May 2020 and also refers to the breaches of the VH Code of Conduct and reference to the VH Trust Deed. 7.5.4 The Parish Clerk reported that he has received the most recent version of the VH Trust Deed. The Parish Clerk noted that the Parish Council has decided to take legal advice regarding the structure of the document. LH noted that the Parish Council is composed of mainly new Councillors and as result wants to clarify for peace of mind an overview of the document. In response to a question from a Parishioner, LH commented historic financial details could not be discussed as the matter was in the hands of the Police and that the Parish Council were advised that it could take up to 18 months before any investigation was completed. In response to a comment from a Parishioner, LH acknowledged that many, but not all, of the current village hall pro tem committee would have had some level of knowledge of the investigation, whilst many of the previous members of the VHMC would not have had the same knowledge. LH noted that the advice received from the Police was that the Parish Council were unable to discuss the matter and had not received any feedback to date. LH added that the situation would improve if a conclusion could be sought and things could move on for the sake of the future of the village hall. A Parishioner raised the question the role and the membership of the West Dereham Village Trust and their financial connections to the Village Hall and asked when did they hold their AGM? LH commented that it was her understanding that they were set up at the time of the sale of the new/old school in Church Road, about 20 years ago; a decision was made to sell the school; as a result the sale money was put into the Village Trust and the finances were then lent for the refurbishment of the village hall and now that loan is being repaid by the VHMC. LH noted that the Village Trust send a report to the Annual Parish Meeting that takes place every April. The Parish Clerk noted that the details of the Village Trust would available on the Charity Commissioner’s website. A couple of Parishioners questioned the authority of the VH Code of Conduct policy in respect to its application to different past and present VHMC members and were concerned at how some previous committee members had been treated leading up to their resignations. LH commented that the Village Hall has been a challenge for everybody involved and hoped that the situation could now move forward. SP added that unless people come forward at the election willing to run the Village Hall, then there was a real danger that the facility would be lost. LH thanked everyone for their views and comments and stated that now was the time to focus on holding an election sooner rather than later. 5 Agreed as a true record of the Meeting: Signed ………………………………………….. Date ……………………… 7.6 Glazewing Report SP reported on the liaison meeting held at the Glazewing site on 12th December. SP noted that she attended the meeting with Brian Long (BL) [Chair of the meeting] NCC, Jonathon Miles (JM), Director, Glazewing Ltd., Richard Stimson, Compliance Manager, Glazewing Ltd., Stephen Daw - Stephen M. Daw Ltd. and Steven Halls (SH), Planning NCC. The meeting started with a tour of the site. It was noted that the Bano Machine has been temporarily removed from the site. BL confirmed that the licence has been approved and JM confirmed they will be bringing the Bano back when they obtain enough contract work that will require it. The wall to reduce noise from the Bano had not been built and this will be reviewed when the machine returns. The problem of surface and foul water has been dealt with by an upgrade in the drainage system to prevent it leeching into nearby farm land. SH confirmed that 2000 hedging plants had been planted and were considered to be healthy along the boundary but 17 trees are still to be planted on the north boundary. JM referred to the two fires which occurred in the yard and suggested that investigations on both leaned towards arson. Some small fires had been reported but found not to have been from Glazewing site. Thermal Imaging as well as CCTV is installed and monitored constantly. In response to SP’s question about Parishioner’s complaints JM replied that they had not received any recent Parishioners complaints and that nearby residents of Station House are happy with the company’s activities. When asked about the status of the company JM noted that the reason things have been a bit quieter recently was because they had lost a contract but were actively seeking new contracts. SP raised the concern of the routes that some of the lorry drivers were taking through the village, particularly those coming off the A134 and using Bath or Lime Kiln Roads and entering Church Road where an under a 7.5 ton limit was in place on those very narrow roads. JM responded that he recognised the problem and that Glazewing has provided an e-mail with the ‘preferred noting-route’ to other party’s vehicles, but did not consider it was their responsibility to take any further actions. The matter of better signage was discussed and BL agreed to approach NCC Highways. SP invited JM to attend a future Parish Council meeting to which he seemed agreeable. SP noted that no further date had been set for a future meeting. SP requested that if there are any future concerns about routes taking by lorries going to or from the Glazewing site to contact and advise the company. SG reported that on several occasions he had stopped lorries and asked them to return to the A134. LH asked the Parish Clerk to follow up the signage with BL. The Parish Clerk noted previous correspondence received regarding the A134 Tottenhill to Thetford Local Safety Scheme and questioned whether additional signage might become part of that project. 8. Finance Report 8.1 Accounts for December 2019 and January 2020 – Payments 8.1.1 Cash Flow January 2020 – The Parish Clerk distributed copies of the Cash Flow to the meeting. The Parish Clerk noted income of £31.45 received for a cemetery fee and bank interest. The Parish Clerk reported that the January expenditure aggregated to a total of £935.24. 8.1.2 Cheque Payments for Approval for January 2020 – The Parish Clerk displayed the itemised pending payments on the overhead projector. The Parish Clerk noted the following payments that were due. 6 Agreed as a true record of the Meeting: Signed ………………………………………….. Date ……………………… Payee Cheque No Net VAT Gross Remarks Anglian Water 101134 £14.62 £0.00 £14.62 Stand pipe tap in Cemetery – Quarterly payment R. Poole 101135 £129.73 £0.00 £129.73 Handyman's Payment. Expenses &Travel – Dec19 & Jan20 Norfolk Association of Local Councils 101136 £50.00 £10.00 £60.00 Neighbourhood Awareness Training attended by LH and the Parish Clerk Peter King 101138 £702.33 £0.00 £702.33 Parish Clerk's salary & expenses for January 2020 and back pay due from May 19 to Dec 19 inclusive HMRC 101137 £28.56 £0.00 £28.56 Parish Clerk's PAYE&NIC - Nov 19 Total £925.24 £10.00 £935.24 8.1.3 LH asked Councillors present if they were content with the payments. All Councillors noted that they were content. LH noted that the cheques and control processes would be signed off as soon as possible. 9. Watering Equipment for Allotments KG commented that a plan was being considered to erect some sort of shelter that would be able to catch and hold rainwater. It was agreed to defer this matter to the next Parish Council meeting. 10. Parish Telephone Boxes KG commented that he had received a complaint from a Parishioner about the condition of the telephone box in Church Road. KG added that Councillors had previously questioned whether they might contain defibrillators at some point in the future. LH commented that the question of an electrical supply needed to be confirmed. LH noted that the telephone boxes had been adopted some years ago at a peppercorn value, however the cost of refurbishment turned out to be higher than was imagined. LH added that in the past there had been ideas put forward of the telephone boxes holding a small library or planting. It was agreed that Councillors would look to come up with some further options and put them forward as a village consultation. 11. To consider Parish Council Internal Affairs and Policies 11.1 Retention of Records Policy (new) The Parish Clerk introduced the Retention of Records Policy noting its relevance. The Retention of Records Policy was proposed by LH and seconded by SP and thereby adopted. 11.2 Standing Orders LH asked the Councillors present if they were content with the amendments made to the Standing Orders. All Councillors noted they were content. LH noted that the Standing Orders had been amended and reviewed. 11.3 Financial Regulations The Parish Clerk commented that periodically that the National Association of Local Councils circulate recommended updates to Parish Councils including several references to the management of debit and credit cards that the Parish Council does not hold, internet banking and the EU. 7 Agreed as a true record of the Meeting: Signed ………………………………………….. Date ……………………… LH asked the Councillors present if they were content with the amendments made to the Financial Regulations. All Councillors noted they were content. LH noted that the Financial Regulations had been amended and reviewed. 11.4 Internal Control Statement LH asked the Councillors present if they were content with the amendments made to the Internal Control Statement. All Councillors noted they were content. LH noted that the Internal Control Statement had been amended and reviewed. 11.5 Risk Assessment Councillors agreed to defer the review of this policy until the next meeting. 11.6 Travel & Expenses Policy LH asked the Councillors present if they were content with the amendments made to the Travel and Expenses Policy. All Councillors noted they were content. LH noted that the Travel and Expenses Policy had been amended and reviewed. 12. To comment on planning applications currently received – None received 13. Correspondence. The Parish Clerk reported that he had received a communication from ‘Keep Britain Tidy’ to carry out a litter picking session in the village. SP agreed to co-ordinate a session during April. 14. To receive further reports/items of business for the next agenda 14.1. KG requested that the subject of Footpaths be added to the next agenda. 14.2 SG commented that the hedges along Hilgay Road need to be cut before the end of February and a price be obtained for any such work as soon as possible. 14. Date of next meeting LH noted that the next Parish Council Meeting is due to be held on Thursday 5th March 2020 at 7.30pm. 15. Open Forum There were no further comments 16 Close of Meeting. The Chair thanked everyone for attending. The final closure of the meeting was at 9.00pm Parish Clerk: Peter King – Email: clerk@westderehamparishcouncil.uk Telephone: 01366 502110

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