Minutes 7th September 2010


Held at the School on Tuesday, 7th September 2010, starting at 7.00pm with a Public Open Forum.

Following the receipt of a petition from residents requesting that the “Parish Council give further consideration to the erection of a shelter at the bus stop across the road from the Village Shop by The Denny”, the evening started with an Open Forum. Margaret Chadwick, as Chairman of the Parish Council, gave residents in turn the opportunity to put their views and suggestions. Following discussion it was generally concluded residents did not mind if the bus stop was moved to Station Road as long as there was a bus shelter and safe crossing of the road.
The Chairman thanked everyone for attending and said that this would be further discussed within the official meeting. The members of the public left the meeting.

The official meeting started at 7.25pm.

Present: Margaret Chadwick-Chairman, Bert Collins-Vice-Chairman, Loder Bevington, Lynn Reed, Sharyn Robinson and Mary Smith. No members of the public were present for the official meeting.

In Attendance: Cllr David Brown-CCC
Cllr Allen Alderson-ECDC
Karen King-Clerk.

2605: Apologies for Absence: David Turner (conflicting commitment)
Giles Merritt (conflicting commitment)

At this point the Chairman reported to the meeting that a letter of resignation due to an increase in work commitments had been received from Daphne Dodds. This was acknowledged and the Clerk was asked to write and thank Daphne for her hard work and efforts during her time as Parish Councillor. Clerk was to notify ECDC as required. Action: Clerk

2606: To Approve & Sign the Minutes of Meeting Number 341, dated the 3rd August 2010:
The minutes were agreed and signed as a correct record. Proposed: Loder Bevington. Seconded: Bert Collins.

2607: Matters Arising from Previous Minutes (for information only):
Min.ref.340/2589: Bert Collins confirmed that he had installed the new litter bin on the Recreation Ground.
Min.ref.341/2603: Loder Bevington asked that the Parish Plan be added to next agenda with a view to forming a sub-committee to carry out a review of the plan.

2608: Members’ Declaration of Interest for Items on the Agenda: None.

2609: County Councillor’s Report: (written report):
• August started with a meeting of the Littleport Masterplan Working Party. This meeting was to consider an options paper developed following a public consultation exercise held in Littleport. The options paper was agreed for further work, including further work on developing the centre of the village and discussions on a preferred site for a new secondary school.
• The Highways Policy Review Group met on 3 occasions during August. As well as seeking greater flexibility in general highways policy the group considered a number of other items, some of which have already been sent to Parish Councils for comment. These other items included:
The proposed winter gritting schedule and workings;
The role and remit of Area Joint Traffic Management Committees;
Jointly Funded Minor Highways Schemes;
A review of Environmental Weight Limits.
• A paper will be presented to the Policy Development Group in September, prior to consideration by Cabinet.
• As a significant stakeholder, the County Council has responded to the East Cambs District Council consultation on the Local Development Framework. I have contributed to the County Council response regarding suggestions for Burwell and Swaffham Prior.

2610 District Councillor’s Report: Cllr Allen Alderson reported to the meeting.
• Fly-tipping: It has recently been confirmed by DEFRA that ECDC’s performance in regard to fly-tipping has improved from ‘Poor’ to the top grade of ‘Very Effective’ during the last year. This reflects the number of fly-tips recorded and the level of enforcement action carried out. There has also been an increase in checks on vehicles carrying waste and investigations into waste tipped around the District since Mark Mehaffey, the Clean Neighbourhood Enforcement Officer, was employed last year.
• Government Funding for ECDC: The Department of Communities and Local Government has confirmed the release of capital growth funding for 2010/11. ECDC is to receive £180,000 of capital funding to help deliver the Ely Country Park and £90,000 to support detailed work on Ely’s Station Gateway and Southern Link Road. Also £215,000 in revenue funding for growth delivery initiatives and the new Leisure Centre.
• Ely’s Market: At Community Services Committee meeting, Councillors agreed the improvement plan which aims to develop and grow Ely’s markets over the next few years.
• Committee Meetings: Licensing Committee met on the 9th August. The proposal for all East Cambs taxi’s to be colour silver was discussed. As there was the possibility of a legal challenge to this by the Taxi Drivers’ Association, it was adjourned to a future committee meeting to allow legal clarification.
Strategic Development Committee met to discuss an Interim Position Statement on the accommodation needs of gypsies and travellers. Head of Forward Planning was asked for up-to-date figures of traveller’s accommodation needs. From 2006-2011 35 pitches were considered to be needed. 24 new pitches were given permission, leaving 11 pitches outstanding. From 2011-2016 a further 14 pitches might be needed, giving a total figure of 25 pitches. This number could be achieved by tweaking existing sites and by creating sites other than at Swaffham Prior – reasons were given why Swaffham Prior should not be considered. A full assessment of local gypsy and traveller needs will be considered at November meeting with responses to the recent Options Paper being tabled to allow a debate on site options.

2611: Correspondence for Consideration/Circulation: (see Appendix 1 for correspondence received):
CCC – Library Service Review. Noted. (Clerk asked to pass copy to Carole Stevens of Downing Court).
CCC – Cambridgeshire Play Pathfinder Project Evaluation. Details to be submitted as requested with regard to budget, etc.
CCC – Winter Service – Gritting Arrangements. It was noted that the attached map showed Commercial End included in the gritting schedule.
CPALC – Consultation Document on Council Tax. Noted.

2612: Petition received in Support of Installation of a Bus Stop opposite Shop:
Following on from the Open Forum, it was reported that CCC Passenger Transport Services had looked at the suggested relocation of the bus stop to Station Road and confirmed that they had no objections. The next step was to seek the advice of CCC Highways with regard to the possibility of installing a lay-by for the bus stop so buses could pull off the road. With regard to the upgrading of the current school crossing to a public crossing, this was already the subject of an application for funding to CCC under their “Jointly Funded Minor Highways Improvement”. The outcome of this was pending.
Loder Bevington suggested that a seat be sited for the use of people currently waiting for buses opposite the shop.

2613: Consideration of Planning Application for The Bungalow, Abbey Lane – demolish existing bungalow and replace with new dwelling. Ref: 10/00653/FUL. Following discussion Loder Bevington proposed no objections to the application. This was seconded by Sharyn Robinson. Lynn Reed noted her concerns about the proposal and abstained. Majority agreed no objections. The Clerk was asked to add the comment, when responding to ECDC, that the Parish Council would not wish to see any more than one dwelling on the site.

2614: Matters for Review:
• Clerk’s Contract of Employment. It was agreed that this would be reviewed by a sub-committee consisting of Margaret Chadwick, Sharyn Robinson and Loder Bevington. Action: MC/LB/SR
• Grasscutting Contract. The Clerk noted that the 3-year contract period with K H Services was coming to an end. It was agreed that a Working Group would look at the grasscutting requirements for the next contract period. Loder Bevington and David Turner would form a Working Group and the Clerk was to speak with Bob Thomson to ask if he would join the Working Group. Action: Clerk
• Parish Council Annual Insurance: The Clerk said she was waiting for a quote from an alternative insurance provider. As the due date was the 1st October, the meeting agreed that once the details were received the Chairman and Clerk would review and agree which company to use. Action: MC/Clerk

2615: Progress Report on War Memorial Maintenance: Mary Smith reported that work had started to clean the memorial and confirmed that this would be completed by Armistice Day. She passed around the councillors a colour sample of the rendering and asked for their agreement to its use.

The Chairman adjourned the meeting at 9pm to allow a member of the public, Deborah Welton, to speak on behalf of the Youth Club Committee. (This was an agenda item for the Pavilion Charity meeting). Reference Pavilion Charity Meeting Minutes – No.77, 7/9/10).

The Chairman reconvened The Parish Council meeting at 9.30pm.

2616: Quote for Second Gateway for Play Area:
This was considered quite high at £949.56 + VAT and it was agreed to carry this forward to the Budget/Precept meeting.

2617: Charges for Requests for Information from Cemetery Records:
Requests from people researching family histories had rose considerably in past months and although the Clerk was very happy to look up records and help wherever possible it was noted that this could take up quite a lot of time. In light of this it was agreed that a charge equivalent to the Clerk’s hourly rate of £11.43 would be made for future requests.

2618: Clerk’s Reports:
• Min.ref.341/2603: ECDC confirmed that the dog bins should be emptied once a week normally on a Wednesday or Thursday. Details of dog bin locations were given to ECDC as requested.
• Sharyn Robinson had asked why the dog bin meant for Fen Lane had been sited on Abbey Lane outside the 30mph speed sign. Upon checking, the Dog Warden confirmed that this was an error and the bin would be relocated to Fen Lane.
• Approval of Treeworks at 2 Station Road was received – removal of an Ash Tree.
• Paul Butcher of CCC Highways confirmed that 3 grit/salt bins were to be sited in the Parish once the suggested locations had been inspected and approved.

2619: Finances including Approval of Payment of Outstanding Accounts:
a) Karen King – Clerk’s salary, August 2010 £ 265-27
b) Inland Revenue – Clerk’s PAYE £ 66-20
c) Karen King – Clerk’s expenses, 24/5-30/08/10 £ 57-91
d) K H Services – grasscutting £ 917-03
e) E-ON – streetlighting £ 1-93
f) Moore Stephens – annual audit fees £ 363-08
g) Viking Direct – stationery/computer supplies £ 46-68
Total: £1718-10

Note: Suffolk ACRE Services – annual insurance of £1,277-80. Payment held until alternative insurance quote received. Minute Ref. 2614 above.

The above payments were agreed. Proposed: Mary Smith. Seconded: Loder Bevington.

• BIAA Bank Interest – August 2010 £ 0-65
• National Trust – land rent £ 60-00
• P A Hibble – Memorial (Yeo-AB4) £ 50-00
• HMRC – VAT Refund £ 3,939-78
Total: £4,050-43

2620: Parish Councillors’ Reports:
• Mary Smith carried out the play area inspections for July and August. She reported her concerns about the condition of the Cantilever Swing noting that the chord rim to the swing had become unravelled. Monster Play was informed of the condition of the swing with photo’s provided showing the damage. They considered that this damage was caused by vandalism. Following further inspection by Mary Smith and Loder Bevington it was concluded that the damage was not caused by vandalism but that the chord trim had become unravelled following poor fixing/finishing of the swing. The Clerk was to request that Monster Play visit site to inspect the damage and repair as a matter of urgency. Mary said she would meet with Monster Play when they attended site. Action: Clerk/MS
• It was also reported that the zip wire on the aerial run was very stiff and not running freely plus the wire had become slack. There was also damage to the plastic sleeve on the swing. The Clerk was to request that Adventure Playgrounds inspect and repair the damage. It was noted that Loder Bevington and David Turner were able to tighten the wire but with the additional problems the equipment should be serviced by Adventure Playgrounds. Action: Clerk
• Sharyn Robinson reported that she had accompanied a group from Red-2-Green (Options) on a walk to identify the hazards caused by overhanging vegetation, etc on pavements. The following problems and actions to be taken were noted:
– Encroaching hedges outside properties on the High Street and Heath Road. Clerk to write to householders and ask that hedges are cut back to boundary line with pavements. Action: Clerk
– Overgrown vegetation on path from Station Road Denny Recreation Ground car park to Pavilion. PC Working Party to cut back nettles and brambles. Action: Working Party
– Encroaching grass on pavement up Heath Road from Commercial End/Heath Junction. Clerk to contact CCC Highways and request cutting back overgrowth of grass. Action: Clerk
– Slippery pavement due to excess leaves and conkers at certain times of the year – High Street from Burgh Hall car park to just before 118 High Street. It was generally agreed that it would be difficult to request the owner of the trees to deal with this so no action by the PC.
– Vegetation pushing up the pavement outside High Street property. Clerk to contact CCC Highways to request inspection. Action: Clerk
• Sharyn Robinson told the meeting that one of the leaders from Red-2-Green asked if it would be possible to use the Pavilion on the occasional Friday lunchtime. This evoked discussion about disabled access to the Pavilion. It was agreed that this should be discussed at the next Pavilion Charity meeting and also considered at November’s Precept/Budget meeting. Action: PC’s/Trustees
• Sharyn Robinson also reported that there was no fingerpost on the road at the Cowbridge end of the Cowbridge to Gutterbridge footpath. Clerk to inform Karen Whymark of CCC. Action: Clerk
• Mary Smith told meeting that she was unable to attend the next Neighbourhood Panel Meeting on the 6th October at Burwell Village College. Lynn Reed said she would attend. Action: Lynn Reed
• Loder Bevington reported that Lawrence Butler would like help in lifting headstones in the cemetery as they were currently laying face down and he was unable to look for inscriptions. Loder Bevington and Bert Collins said they would carry out this work. Action: Loder Bevington/Bert Collins

The meeting closed at 10pm.

2621: Dates of Next Meetings:
2nd November
16th November (Precept Meeting)
7th December
4th January 2011
1st February
1st March

Protected Road Verge Newsletter
Chairman – Weekly Highlights
Approval for Tree Works at 2 Station Road
Electoral Services – Annual Canvas
Licensing Committee – 9/8/10 – Decision List
LDF – acknowledgement email re consultation
Cambridgeshire Playing Fields Association Newsletter
Cambridgeshire ACRE – details of AGM
CPALC – Newsletter
Moore Stephens – Approved Audit Return