The Meeting of the Parish Council was held on Monday the 12th day of DECEMBER 2016 at the Methodist Chapel, Bell Street – commencing 7.30 pm
COUNCILLORS PRESENT: Mrs Batten (Chairwoman), Mr Lambert (Vice Chair), Mrs Bane, Messrs Cock, Cooper, Leamon, Rayner and Storey. Also present Archdeacon Hugh McCurdy, Rev. Joan Horan and 11 members of the public.
APOLOGIES: Received from Mrs McGeeney and Mrs Mills.
DECLARATIONS OF INTEREST: None.
MINUTES: Two amendments were made to Item 19. Firstly, it should read Old Methwold Road not Old Brandon Road and secondly, Mr Cock did not state that the telephone box belongs to the Parish Council. The minutes of the last meeting were then taken as read, agreed and duly signed by the Chairwoman.
PUBLIC SPEAKING: The meeting was suspended for 5 minutes to allow members of the public to speak.
1. RAF Feltwell – Sq Leader Neilds was not in attendance due to annual leave. No reply as yet from the Base Commander regarding an explanation as to why training exercises cannot take place at Stanford but the letter has been acknowledged by Community Liaison Officer, Stephanie Robins.
2. SNT –Various Police Connect emails have been received but none concerning Feltwell.
3. Risk Assessment – Mr Leamon carried out the inspection report on Saturday morning. The small gate from the car park needs addressing as it doesn’t self close as it should. There was a nut missing from the top of the fence next to the small gate which Mr Leamon replaced. The downpipe at the rear of the changing rooms needs refixing to the wall. There are two holes on the surface of the tennis court. There are bolts sticking out from the fence to the side of the club hut and these need cutting back. Clerk to speak to Handyman regarding these issues. Play equipment is green and needs pressure-washing. Car park surface needs attention where damage has been caused by lorries turning around and Mr Leamon suggested putting down crushed concrete. Next inspection to be carried out by Mrs Bane.
4. Balance Sheet – No queries.
5. Allotment Pest Control – Reports have been received for October and November. Some bait stations were damaged when the hedgerow was cut. Mr Rolph will not charge for the replacements this time.
6. NALC – Weekly newsletters and updates have been circulated. Clerk drew attention to the additional login for Chairs and Councillors to access the Norfolk ALC website.
7. Skate Park –Mrs Bane said that Sports England is about to release funding for which the Skate Park Fund is an ideal candidate and she hopes to secure between £30,000 - £50,000. With additional funding, the target of £75,000 + VAT should be met but she said the application would be more successful if the Parish Council were seen to be contributing if required. She suggested a figure of £5,000 from the capital fund subject to the project going ahead. Mr Cock said that no other requests have been made and that capital funds should be spent, and on that basis proposed that the Parish Council contribute £5,000 to the Skate Park Fund, should it be required, Mr Lambert seconded, all in favour. Mrs Bane thanked the Parish Council for their support and said that subject to funding being obtained, the project should start March 2017.
8. Briefing sessions (i) Local Plan – Site Allocations & Development Management Policies Development Plan Document (ii) 5 year land supply – No further news.
9. Highways – Bollards outside Hall Farm Close will be installed in the next few weeks according to Highways. White lines throughout the village and along Southery Road are programmed to be replaced at the start of the new financial year.
10. Street Light Replacement – Clerk said that quotation to move two lights up has come in slightly higher at £35 per light. Mrs Batten proposed going ahead with this, all in favour. Clerk has received email from Elton Parish Council who have decided, after viewing a sample of the lights, that they no longer wish to purchase them. Mr Lambert proposed scrapping them, Mrs Batten seconded, all in favour.
11. Ranger Visit – Clerk has still not heard back from the Rangers. Mrs Batten said that she didn’t believe Rangers had been out to Feltwell in months. Mr Storey will look into this. Next visit is scheduled for week commencing 16th January 2017.
12. War Memorial – H Brett & Son have scheduled in the re-lettering work for March 2017. Clerk read out letter from Historic England who are considering the war memorial for addition to the List of Buildings of Special Architecture or Historic Interest. Mr Cock offered to proceed with this. Following an input from Mr Linkin, who advised that according to the 1923 & 1948 Memorial Act, if the war memorial was listed then any future work, (repair work for example) would need planning permission, Mrs Batten proposed not to proceed with this and all were in favour.
13. ‘STOP’ Signs – Clerk has contacted Martin Edmunds from Highways who said that in order for these to be installed, a traffic order would need to be obtained and due to the budgets at the moment, there are no plans to apply for any traffic orders. Clerk read out an email from a concerned resident requesting that road markings be refreshed at this junction. Clerk had contacted Highways and was advised that these will be refreshed at the start of the next financial year.
14. Tree – Awaiting response from Norfolk County Council.
15. Grass Cutting of St Nicholas Churchyard – The Archdeacon of Huntingdon and Wisbech, the Ven. Hugh McCurdy, introduced himself to the meeting and the Chair invited the Councillors to put forward any questions to him. Mr Storey thanked the Archdeacon for attending and said that he struggled to understand how Feltwell PCC could have so little money when the Church is the second largest landowner in the country, and asked for answers on financial standings. The Archdeacon responded by stating that although the Church is wealthy, how this wealth is calculated is debatable. The Diocese owns land and operates this as an investment policy. The investments yield £2 million per annum which subsidises clergies wages and pensions. He stated that in the next 10 years, 40% of the active clergy will be retiring and this in turn incurs a huge pension bill. He said the Diocese only supplies money to upkeep church housing and does not go towards the upkeep of churches. This is done by grants and local donations. Mr Storey argued that it might be more worthwhile to retain property rather than sell it but the Archdeacon replied that the older properties cost a huge amount of money to maintain so this is not cost effective. |The Archdeacon went on to say that it costs the Diocese £54,000 per year to have a vicar in the parish and that Feltwell, along with the other parishes that Rev. Horan vicars, pays £22,000 towards her stipend. This money keeps the ministry here and is used to support the local church through the employment of the vicar. Rev Horan stressed that this money was not her salary and that other factors are included within this sum. Mr Leamon stated that at the October meeting, the Councillors learnt that it costs £25,000 per year to keep the church open however turnover was only £2,400, therefore a loss of £22,600 was made, yet £5000 had recently been found to put towards the Lottery Fund before work was started on the church roof. Rev. Horan stated that this money had been donated to the Church. The Archdeacon said that the only way forward is to try and increase congregation numbers which in turn increases donations to go towards the upkeep of the Church. The Archdeacon advised people to contact him if they had any further questions. Mrs Batten thanked the Archdeacon for attending the meeting.
16. Complaint – The Clerk has been contacted by a resident who strongly opposed deliveries being made at the back of the One-Stop. In his opinion, this would be extremely dangerous due to the narrowness of the road and it being close to a 90 degree blind bend. There are ‘No HGV Access’ signs at either end of Paynes Lane and it would also pose safety risks to children accessing the playing field. As deliveries at the front were no longer considered to be causing a problem, it was agreed to monitor the situation.
17. Explosions from Base – See Item 1.
18. Adopt a Kiosk – Mr Rayner announced that the owner of the Londis, Mrs Sawjeevvijay, was very much in favour of having the defibrillator installed on the outside wall of her premises and Mr Rayner thought this to be an ideal location as it would be positioned under an exterior light and within full view of the CCTV. Mrs Sawjeevvijay has also offered to pay for the electricity supply. Mrs Bane proposed locating the defibrillator at the Londis, Mrs Batten seconded, all in favour. Clerk to write to Mrs Sawjeevvijay to accept her offer and thank her for being so accommodating. Mr Rayner felt that it was not feasible to obtain a defibrillator from the British Heart Foundation as there are a lot of stipulations which are not viable, and therefore other avenues would need to be explored. Mr Lambert asked Mr Rayner to obtain further information and costs. Clerk read out an email from a resident putting forward an argument to keep the original red telephone box but after a discussion it was felt that due to the upkeep and the threat and cost of vandalism, money would be better spent on the defibrillator. Therefore, Mrs Batten proposed not to proceed with the Adopt-a-Kiosk and all were in favour.
19. Feltwell Senior Football Club – Clerk is still waiting for one set of keys to be returned.
20. Dog Bin – Clerk asked for clarity on where the bins are to be sited as following correspondence from John Hussey at the Borough Council, a licence may need to be obtained or residents living nearby contacted before this can go ahead. One bin to be sited on the fence along Long Lane, just past the Chinese, therefore the owner will need to be contacted, and the other to go just inside the entrance to the playing field. Cost to empty will be approximately £1.52/bin per week.
21. Precept – Clerk advised grant for 2016/17 has been reduced from £1211 to £791.
22. Email re Speeding – Clerk has returned safety camera attendance request form but has heard nothing further.
23. Vandalised Dog Bin – Dog bin has been purchased but not yet received. Clerk to speak to Handyman to install.
24. Dogs on Playing Field – Clerk to contact Borough Council to ensure Feltwell Playing Field is on the list of play areas where dogs are prohibited. Clerk also to obtain two new signs stating that dogs are not permitted on the playing field or car park.
25. Hedge cutting – the Base – Clerk has tried to contact Rene Garner but to no avail however Stephanie Robins, the Community Liaison Officer has emailed stating that the hedge by the road was cut earlier in the year. Mr Lambert said this wasn’t the case and asked the Clerk to contact Rene to ask if it can be cut by February.
26. Clerk’s Wages – Payment by standing order to commence April 2017.
27. Grass Cutting Contract – Two specifications to be tendered for; one to be the original Grounds Maintenance Contract and the other for areas which were cut by the Borough Council earlier in the year. Companies to be invited by post to tender.
28. Complaint re Dog Mess- Email was read out regarding the increasing amount of dog mess along the path outside the school. Mr Storey stated that fines can be issued but only if evidence is supplied. Mrs Batten asked the Clerk to contact the school to ask if signs can be displayed along the fence and to suggest signs be obtained from the Borough Council as these could be more effective. Clerk also to reply to resident’s email.
29. Norfolk Police Connect – Various emails received and circulated; Invitation to meet local
Police Officers on Monday 5th December 2016, between 12-3pm in Feltwell
30. Norfolk County Council – Emails received – Pregnant women urged to give up smoking to help protect their unborn baby; First countywide gritting run of the season to take place
18th November 2016; Views sought on potential third river crossing for Great Yarmouth
31. TWR Accountants – Email – Chancellors Autumn Statement Newsletter
32. Seafarers UK – Email – A ‘Thank you’ for arranging to fly the Red Ensign on Merchant Navy Day. Photographs which can be viewed at http://bit.ly/MerchantNavyDayPhotos2016. Next year the Merchant Navy Day is September 3rd 2017 and local councils are encouraged to fly the Red Ensign flag 1-4th September 2017
33. Zurich – Email – Local Councils Advisory Service Seminar
34. Op Randall Rural Crime – Newsletters received and circulated as appropriate
35. Brochures – Parish Magazine
36. CHEQUES – Were signed for the following – J Martin £812.23, S Sargent £72.00, T George £121.60, Cash £10.00, Methodist Church £19.13, Viridor £120.72, Post Office Ltd (SSE) £405.14, Berryman £16.20, CGM £1,615.02.
37. PLANNING – Mr L de Boovillae: Erection of extension to 22 St Nicholas Drive – NO OBJECTIONS; Mr & Mrs J & B McGeeney: Construction of 2-storey detached dwelling with attached garage at Beck House, 19 The Beck – NO OBJECTIONS.
38. Highways – Mr Cock said that he had been contacted by a resident concerned that the white lines are hardly visible along Hythe Road and asked that Highways be contacted to question the Safety Officer’s opinion that they are not required. Clerk to write to Highways. A resident has installed a ‘5 miles per hour’ sign on the signpost of Barretts Lane in the hope of deterring a speeding motorcyclist known to be an American serviceman. Clerk to contact USAF. Gruts still have not been filled. Clerk to contact Highways. Concern was raised regarding the dangerous siting of the poles along Southery Road. The poles that have been put along the precarious steep dyke are thought to be particularly dangerous as they are too close to the road. Clerk to ascertain if these are telegraph poles and contact Highways.
39. Fly-Tipping – Mrs Batten said she had reported fly-tipping down Old Brandon Road to the Clean-Up department of the Borough Council who informed her they are clamping down on fly-tipping and would be issuing fines to anyone found to be guilty. Mr Leamon reported flytipping of carpets at the entrance to the quarry and a settee at Mill Drift. Clerk to report.
Next meeting to be held on Monday 9th January 2017 at 7.30 pm. Meeting declared closed 9.15 pm.