MINUTES FOR THE MEETING OF BARLEY PARISH COUNCIL
HELD AT THE TOWN HOUSE ON MONDAY 2nd NOVEMBER 2015
Cllr Jerry Carlisle (Chairman), Cllr Ian Turner, Cllr M O'Brien, Cllr G Clark, Cllr G Northen, Cllr Y Lee, Mrs Laura Childs (Clerk), Mr Tim Martin (RFO)
1 member of the public
Dst Cllr G Morris
Councillor’s Declaration of Interest
Minutes of Last Meeting
The minutes of the meeting held on 12th October were read and approved.
Proposed by Cllr I Turner and seconded by Cllr G Clark.
The Clerk has now received the revised agreement for the BT red telephone box situated in the High Street, Cllr Northen and Cllr Y Lee are going to review the agreement to see exactly what implications are involved prior to formally going ahead.
No further progress has been made with regard to the placement of the memorial bench for the late Mrs Audrey Gooding.
The meeting to discuss improvements to the village website is still to take place, a date will be agreed at the end of this meeting.
Mr Brain Haughey spoke about the Speedwatch (Drivesafe) scheme within the village and said that for the time being it is no longer in operation. There are insufficient volunteers to operate effectively and until more people step forward Speedwatch will no longer operate in Barley. Cllr Carlisle reported that he and Cllr Clark had attended a meeting with Sgt Guy Westwood and spoke about taking forward some previously discussed initiatives such as the poster scheme where the school children draw speed awareness signs. Cllr Clark will be discussing this with the school. The police have committed to continue with their speed enforcement efforts in the village.
Mr Nick Shaw, Chairman of the Town House Management Committee reported that the floor had been polished and waxed and everyone commented on how nice it looked. Mr Darren Partt has committed to waxing and polishing the floors on an ongoing basis, free of charge, as a community gesture. The Clerk was asked to write to Mr Partt to thank him for his kind offer.
The refurbishment of the downstairs kitchen is nearing completion with the plumbing to be completed next week and the flooring done shortly after this. Mr Shaw asked if he could have permission to purchase a new oven for the downstairs kitchen at a cost of £230 + VAT and the meeting gave the go ahead for this.
Mr Shaw is still waiting to hear if the grant application for the cost of the new curtains and blinds has been successful, he expects to hear in January.
In an attempt to reduce the vibrations created by the sound system Mr Shaw spoke about a system they are trialling using sound installation material underneath the speakers.
The issue of the kitchen wall cabinet and the kettle placement in the kitchen upstairs has been resolved by the use of another socket that the kettle can be plugged into, the kitchen cabinet will be replaced next week.
The car park lights are still not connected and despite numerous attempts Mr Shaw is finding it difficult getting Busy Bee to carry out the necessary work to fix them. He will however continue to try.
The District Council wrote to the management committees of various village halls throughout the county to advise that they are clearing out their records offices and they have historical records regarding the Town House which they are sending to Mr Shaw, he will review the information when it arrives and pass on to Cllr Carlisle and then Mr Geoff Wilkerson, who holds lots of the historical documents associated with the village.
Ref no. 15/02610/1 – Land adjacent to the Fox & Hounds, High Street, Barley, SG8 8HU
Detached 4 bedroom dwelling and ancillary works (as a variation of planning permission granted under ref. no. 13/01699/1).
Following extensive discussions the meeting resolved to ask NHDC for more time to consider the application and to seek clarification of a number of matters including the likely timing of the District Council Planning Committee meeting to determine the planning applications for the Fox & Hounds the outcome of which may have a bearing on the Parish Council's comments on this application.
Ref no. 15/02677/1HH – The Birches, The Mount, Barley, SG8 8JH Detached garage.
Following discussions it was agreed that there were no objections to this application.
Financial Officers Report & Signing of Payments
Mr Martin reported that the following payments were due this month
Laura Childs Parish Clerk (October hours & office allowance) £ 267.64
Tim Martin RFO (October hours) £ 61.60
James King Works on the Plaistow hedge at back of playground £ 300.00
Whippletree Bench tops £ 664.84
(Cllr Carlisle authorised this payment in between meetings)
Bryany Underwood Money to purchase provisions for Auction of Promises
fund raising event for Childrens Playground £ 633.75
(Parish Council to be reimbursed following event on 14/11/15)
It was agreed that these payments should be made
Proposed by Cllr I Turner and seconded by Cllr G Clark
Alison Stacey October Letting Officer & caretaking £ 192.50
Nick Shaw Refund for cleaning expenses £ 23.94
Nick Shaw Sound proofing material £ 94.80
Darren Partt Work on the floor, buffing pads & floor wax £ 218.76
Hodgson & Hodgson Noise limiters testing £ 660.00
Cavendish Equipment New Kitchen £3,892.19
Carole Robinson October cleaning £ 75.70
Vanessa Martin October taking £ 50.00
It was agreed that these payments should be made
Proposed by Cllr G Clark and seconded by Cllr M O’Brien
Deposit cheques returned
T Shorter £150
M Cooper £150
D O’Farrell £150
The bank statements were reviewed by the meeting.
Mr Martin confirmed that a payment of £750 had been paid into the Parish Councils account as a grant payment for a picnic bench for the playground area from County Cllr Tony Hunter.
Mr Martin advised that the refund had finally been received from Scottish Power for £1,300.
Following the advice by our insurance brokers, Came and Company, that the children’s playground should be inspected on a weekly basis with any damage reported. Cllr Clark has set up a weekly schedule of inspection.
Cllr Clark noted that there has been some rubbish dumped behind a property along Bankside that needs to be removed.
The Tennis Club are still investigating the rating issue. Cllr Lee agreed to consult with her rating colleagues at work as to the merits of the District Council seeking to make a rating assessment on the tennis courts.
Cllr Turner asked that the grass verge is maintained around the edge of the Tennis Courts to stop the grass causing damage to the court surface. He also advised that any decision on the shelter is being deferred until the Scout Hut changing rooms have progressed.
Cllr Carlisle has spoken to Curwens, the Parish Councils solicitors, and advised them that following the grant of planning permission for the proposed changing rooms at the rear of the scout hut we are now in a position to proceed with the termination of the existing lease and grant of a new lease to the scouts as previously agreed.
A meeting is still to be arranged to meet with the Richmond family to discuss the right of way and access issues. Cllr Carlisle agreed to speak to Mr Richmond to set up a meeting.
Health & Safety
Cllr Carlisle advised that a volunteer still needs to be found to take over the Health & Safety from Mr Tony Slater. No other issues to be reported.
Cllr O’Brien advised that there had been a meeting held last month to take forward the idea of a ‘web forum’ which was one of the matters raised by the Parish Plan. An update has been drafted to put in the Diary along with a call for volunteers to take forward projects that were raised through the Parish Plan. The committee talked about putting their energies into perhaps just 3 projects to start with.
Cllr Carlisle talked about whether following on from the Parish Plan the village should look at a Neighbourhood Plan and what the benefits of that might be.
The Clerk read out a letter received from NHDC requesting the Parish Council consider their budgets and precept level for 2016 also giving the deadlines to respond to them by. All other correspondence received is to be circulated amongst Councillors.
Any Other Business
Mr Brian Haughey spoke about the recent figures that the police published with regards to the speed of vehicles passing through the village and that he was somewhat sceptical about the validity of the figures. It was proposed by Mr Haughey that the village looking into hiring the same equipment that the police use for monitoring speeds and placing them in the same locations for the same period of time to establish our own set of figures and thus whether the police claim about a significant reduction in speeding was credible. The cost for this would be £595 + VAT to supply, install and provide a report following the checks.
Mr Haughey has also looked into the cost of the speed awareness signs that flash up to show the speed you are travelling at and these are approx. £2,200 to purchase. Discussions took place about the merits of installing these types of flashing signs and installing the boxes to check speeds. The meeting resolved that in the first instance we would initially install the boxes to check speeds and once figures are received consider further the purchase of the flashing signs.
Cllr Northen asked on behalf of the Playground Committee if there would be any objection to introducing a credit card machine to allow them to accept card payments at their upcoming Auction of Promises fundraising event. Following discussions it was agreed that this could be done
It was noted that the timber directional ‘finger board’ at the junction in Shaftenhoe End was falling down due to the post having rotted away. Whilst this would usually be a Highways matter if they were asked to effect a repair they would undoubtedly replace this old finger board sign with a new metal version which would be regrettable and so it was agreed that the Parish Council would look into costs to repair the post.
Mr Stuart White was pressing for the renovation works to the Village Notice Boards which hang on his barns to be carried out as soon as possible. Cllr Turner agreed to undertake this work.
Cllr Lee spoke about recent fly tipping that she had noted along the road to Nuthampstead and the Clerk has also reported fly tipping along Bogmore Road twice in the last two months unfortunately this seems to be on the increase.
Cllr Lee reported a footpath sign which has fallen down along the rear of the properties at Crossways due to a rotted post and the Clerk agreed to notify The Parish Paths Partnership.
It has been noted that the allotment let to Mr Chris Allen has become overgrown and unkempt. The Clerk was asked to write to Mr Allen to enquire if he wished to continue letting the plot as there is a waiting list of other interested parties.
Meeting closed at 22:35