MINUTES FOR THE MEETING OF BARLEY PARISH COUNCIL

HELD AT THE TOWN HOUSE ON MONDAY 5th JANUARY 2015


  1. Present

Cllr Jerry Carlisle (Chairman), Cllr Ian Turner, Cllr Tony Slater, Cllr Graham Clark, Cllr M O’Brien, District Cllr Gerald Morris, Mr Tim Martin (RFO), Mrs Laura Childs (Clerk)


4 members of the public.


  1. Apologies

Cllr G Northen


  1. Councillor’s declaration of interests

None


  1. Minutes of last meeting

The minutes of the meeting held on 1st December 2014 were read and approved.

Proposed by Cllr G Clark and seconded by Cllr T Slater.

  1. Matters arising

Cllr Carlisle that reported that he has received an email from Gary Henning who is Herts County Councils’ Highways Locality Officer for North Herts, advising that unfortunately there has been no progress made with regard to finding out who is responsible for cutting the trees back on Bankside. All parties involved are arguing that it is not their responsibility.


The issue regarding the road gullys and surface water problems around the village and particularly on the bend by the Fox & Hounds remains unresolved. The Clerk reported that there had still not been any contact from Mr Derek Jerrard, our contact at Ringways, Herts County Councils Highways contractor.


Cllr Carlisle advised that he had spoken to Mr Steven Marsh regarding the Parish Council visiting his property in Smiths End Lane to view the small business that he operates from there. Councillors agreed a date to visit and Cllr Carlisle confirmed this with Mr Marsh (who joined the meeting later in the evening).


Following confirmation from Mr David Williams and Mr Phil Smith it is understood that the War Memorial does fall under the ownership of the Parish Council and therefore will need to be added to the asset register for insurance purposes.


A letter of response has been received from Herts Constabulary Chief Constable Andy Bliss, although the general content was somewhat unsatisfactory some questions were answered. A response has been drafted picking up on a number of points made by the Chief Constable and this has been circulated amongst the Councillors prior to the meeting. Cllr Carlisle asked if everyone was generally happy with the content of the response then he and Mr Haughey would meet to finalise the letter and send out. It was agreed that Chief Inspector Julia Wheatley, Sergeant Guy Westwood, Mr Oliver Heald MP, County Cllr Tony Hunter and District Cllr Gerald Morris would be copied (cc’d) into the response.


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Cllr Turner and Brian Haughey explained the recent difficulties that the Speedwatch team have been experiencing with the systems now in place and the lack of action taken when vehicles are being caught speeding multiple times.


  1. Financial Officers report & signing of payments

Mr Martin reported that the following payments were due this month


Parish Council

Laura Childs Parish Clerk (December hours) £163.20

Tim Martin RFO (December hours) £ 43.20

Malcolm George Village Grass Cutting (quarterly charge) £542.60

The Diary Parish Plan article (revised amount £120.00

Hardcastle Burton PAYE services £102.00

HMRC PAYE contributions £207.00

Brian Haughey Reimbursement of printing costs for Parish Plan £447.00


It was agreed that these payments should be made.

Proposed by Cllr Turner and seconded by Cllr Slater


Town House

Carol Robinson Cleaning & materials (December) £ 62.50

Alison Stacey Letting Officer fee (November & December) £148.00

Jerry Carlisle Reimbursement for safety tape and repairs to cooker £153.48

Tim Martin Reimbursement for water heaters £238.69


It was agreed that these payments should be made.

Proposed by Cllr Clark and seconded by Cllr Turner


Deposit cheque for November wedding refunded to Mr Christoper Wilshere for £150.00

Cllr Northen had emailed (in her absence from the meeting) to enquire where the funds should be paid following a successful fund raising event on behalf of the Play Ground Committee. It was agreed that all monies should be passed to Mr Martin for banking purposes. Mr Martin agreed to contact Cllr Northen to arrange the handover of funds raised.


Mr Martin confirmed that he had made the discussed adjustments to the budget for 2015 – 2016 and the final budget was unanimously agreed. Cllr Turner suggested that the Parish Council should advertise the fact that the precept has not been raised by the Parish Council for the last 4 years. It was agreed to place posters on the village notice board to that effect.


  1. Planning

Ref no: 14/03170/1LB - White Posts, High Street, Barley. Replacement hardwood framed painted, double-glazed windows.

This application has been discussed previously but the plans have now been amended slightly, following discussions it was unanimously agreed that there were no objections to this application.




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Ref no: 14/03183/1HH – Part first floor rear extension, single storey rear and side extension following demolition of existing conservatory and garage.

The submitted plans were reviewed by the meeting. Following discussions it was agreed to request that the glass in the window of the new shower room should be obscured glass and not clear as shown on the plan. Subject to this change being made the Parish Council had not objections to the application.


  1. Local Plan Preferred Options 2011 – 2031

The plan is now open for review and should any residents have previously written or registered then they should have received a letter inviting them to review the plan and comment.


Cllr Carlisle explained to the meeting that it should be considered that Barley has perhaps escaped lightly in terms that it doesn’t have any large areas of development suggested. He went on to explain that there have however been suggested changes to the village boundary, really just adjusting it to fit with existing redundant agricultural buildings and to take in already existing property gardens. Cllr O’Brien asked that it should be noted that all the entrances to the village should be protected.


Following discussions it was agreed that a meeting should be held, inviting villagers to view the proposed amendments to the village boundary, giving the Parish Council the opportunity to explain to those concerned these changes. A date of 17th January was decided and the Clerk was asked to post notices around the village. Following feedback from villagers the Parish Council will draft a response to NHDC with its view on the proposed changes.


  1. Town House

The keys for the upstairs room and all other Town House keys have now been handed to Mr Martin by Cllr Turner.


Since our last meeting Cllr Carlisle and Cllr Slater have cleared out the gutters and installed the hedgehog brushes into the gutters, which should hopefully, going forward, prevent so many leaves building up.


The plaster has been stripped off and ply board is being put onto the wall in the store room and the downstairs kitchen to protect the walls whilst they dry out.


Cllr Carlisle reported that he had met with a company to obtain a quotation for the sanding and polishing of the floors, both up and downstairs. The prices received back were approx. £2,000 for the main room downstairs and £900 for the small room downstairs, with £2,600 quoted for the upstairs floor. Following discussions, it was suggested that due to the high cost it might be best to get together a working party and undertake the work ourselves.


Mrs Stacey, the Town House letting officer explained that the lettings are looking good for this coming year, with 10 weddings booked already. She reported that someone from NHDC had visited to check the premises licence and undertook a brief inspection of the building.


Mr Nick Shaw, who attended last months meeting and had expressed an interest in forming a new Management Committee for the Town House, confirmed that he would be happy to take this forward. He explained that four other people had come forward to help form the committee to include; Cllr Northen; Mrs Stacey; Cllr Turner and Mrs Turner.


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The Clerk agreed to email Mr Shaw with all the contact emails for the Parish Council and Cllr Carlisle agreed to email a copy of the flooring quote to Mr Shaw, for his reference. Cllr Carlisle suggested that a Town House Committee meeting is held soon to decide on their roles etc.


Cllr Carlisle has asked Mr Partt to provide a quote for redecorating both the upstairs and downstairs of the Town House and the exterior.


Cllr Turner advised that the lights are not coming on outside and that two of the glass panels in the back door had been damaged and will require replacing. There is also an ongoing hinge problem that needs dealing with.


  1. Recreation Ground

Cllr Clark confirmed that the gate at the exit of the Plaistow onto Bankside that was vandalised last month has now been repaired and graffiti found has been removed.


Cllr Northen reported via email, that the new swing seats should be fitted in February. The fund raising disco held in December was a huge success and raised approx. £750.


The Clerk was asked to write to the contractors who cut the Plaistow (Steve Bullards) to ask if they can confirm prices for next year and the frequency of cuts etc.


Cllr Turner reported that the Tennis Club will come back with their proposed plans for a shelter / hut at the next meeting.


  1. Scout Hut

Cllr Carlisle has instructed P R Newson to carry out the tree survey required for planning permission. Mr Ashcroft is waiting for the outcome of this survey before he can submit the planning application. There is also the access issue to be sorted out.


  1. Health & Safety

Cllr Slater confirmed that Mr Neil Drage was due to come in and test and service the fire alarm system in the coming week. Janine Drew of Drew & Baltrop, the Parish Councils advisors on Health & Safety has completed her report following the meeting with Cllr Slater in November and Cllr Slater will review this on receipt.

  1. Parish Plan

Cllr O’Brien confirmed that all the questionnaires have now been completed and printed and are due to be distributed around the village this coming weekend. With a plan to collect them back in two weeks later.


  1. Correspondence

All correspondence received is to be circulated amongst Councillors.


  1. Any other Business

Cllr Turner asked if anyone knew about the road closure of New Road, the road that runs from Flint Cross up to Great Chishill and if the closure would bring more vehicles through Barley. It was advised that a new water main is being put in and the closure was expected to be in place for approx. 10 weeks. The closure wasn’t expected to affect Barley.


The meeting closed at 22.05


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