MELBOURN PARISH COUNCIL
Draft Minutes subject to formal ratification at the next Parish Council Meeting
Minutes of a Parish Council Meeting held on Monday, 24th October 2011 at All Saints’ Community Hall at 7.15pm.
Present: Cllrs. D. Mowatt (Chairman), V. Barrett, I. Bloomfield, A. Brett, R. Gatward, J. Hales, M. Linnette, A. Mulcock, J. Poley, M. Sherwen, P. Simmonett, C. Stead,
M. Townsend and R. Wakerley.
In attendance: The Clerk, Deputy Clerk, and 6 members of the public.
415/11 Apologies for absence: None
416/11 Declarations of Interest:
Cllr. Wakerley declared a Personal and Prejudicial interest in Item 427/11 as his wife was a cheque recipient. Cllr. Bloomfield declared a Personal interest in Item 427/11 as cheque recipients Alison Cockburn and Janice Wakerley both worked for her in her capacity as Site Manager for Melbourn Village College.
Cllr. Simmonett declared a Personal interest in 427/11 as a cheque recipient.
Cllrs Mowatt and Brett declared a Personal interest in 419/11 and 420/11 as they live on the High Street.
417/11 Minutes of the meeting held on 29th September 2011:
356/11(a): Delete ‘Section 106’: Insert ‘Section 137’.
It was proposed by Cllr. Gatward and seconded by Cllr. Hales that the minutes of 29th September be signed as a true record.
418/11 Matter arising:
(a) 356/11 (k): Cllr Mulcock pointed out that the E-mail from Dominic Boyle which was not dealt with last time does not appear on the agenda for this meeting. E-mail was added to Item 428/11 for discussion later.
(b) 346/11: Cllr Brett raised the issue of the new banking arrangements. He wished to know how long the money in each account would be tied up. Each new account would have a maximum of £83,000 to allow for any accrued interest. There will be 5 different accounts plus HSBC. Cllr Brett to liaise on this matter with the Parish Clerk. Cllr Hales pointed out that SCDC were discussing ways of the District Council investing money on behalf of parish councils . Cllr Hales to report back on these discussions.
419/11 Up-date on the Police Site
Cllr Simmonett reported that there was no news other than the report on the community hub. He said that he was expecting a CAD drawing to be sent this week which would form the basis of the meeting to be held on 1st November by 100 Houses.
420/11 Report on the Community Hub:
Cllr Poley presented the report which had been circulated to all councillors. He made the following points:-
1) He presented the background to the consultation process and pointed out that CPALC regarded it as a template for future consultation processes.
2) He said that the turnout was around 10% of residents which was better than typical responses given other council’s experiences. There was a high % in favour of a community hub. The responses also included comments which had been collated. However, given the % response the sub-committee believed that it should also take into account the views expressed in the Village Plan
3) He reported that, given the large number of comments, the sub-committee had held a Workshop last Tuesday when it co-ordinated, collated and categorised the comments and produced a consensus statement. The sub-committee now has a clear view of what the community want which is a community hub which can operate flexibly and accommodate a wide variety of events and organisations.
4) He reported that the funding arrangements were being put in place as a mixture of grants, loans and existing funds and were regarded as feasible and which would be used to procure the building. He said that the building would be run by a Charitable Trust which would produce a Business Plan. The building would require staffing either on a full or part-time basis or a mixture of both. The project structure had been looked at and was included in the report as a ‘mind-map’. He urged fellow councillors to get involved as there is a lot of work to be done.
5) He reported that the basis of the recommendation in favour of proceeding was based on the number of votes in favour of the hub, the data from the Village Plan and the wishes of the respondents about what the hub should be used for. He pointed out that the timetable was extremely tight given the plans of 100 Houses.
Cllr Mowatt expressed his thanks to the sub-committee. This was supported by Cllr Brett.
It was proposed by Cllr Townsend and seconded by Cllr Sherwen THAT THE PARISH COUNCIL ACCEPTS THE RECOMMENDATION OF THE SUB-COMMITTEE, CONTAINED IN SECTION 2 OF THE REPORT, NAMELY, ‘A PROJECT SHOULD BE COMMENCED IMMEDIATELY WITH THE OBJECTIVE OF PROVIDING MELBOURN VILLAGE RESIDENTS WITH A COMMUNITY HUB LOCATED ON THE OLD POLICE SITE.
This was CARRIED with Cllrs Mowatt and Brett not voting given their declaration of a personal interest.
421/11 Service agreement for the parish clock
The Council received a quotation for the Service Agreement for the Parish Clock from Smith of Derby for 3 years at a cost of £477 plus VAT. It was proposed by Cllr Hales and seconded by Cllr Bloomfield THAT THE COUNCIL ACCEPTS THE QUOTE FROM SMITHS OF DERBY FOR A THREE-YEAR CONTRACT AT A COST OF £477 PLUS VAT AND THAT THE MONEY BE PAID. This was CARRIED unanimously.
422/11 Arrangements for the Chairman’s reception
It was agreed that the Chairman’s reception be held on Monday, 12th December in All Saints’ Community Hall. The scheduled meetings on that date are to be moved to the Tuesday of that week. The catering will be offered to Wintercomfort and Cllr Hales will contact them. The Deputy Clerk to be in charge of ordering the wine!
Cllr Mulcock suggested that we make plans for next year in order to secure the dates we want.
423/11 To receive a report from C.Cllr Susan van de Ven
A written report was presented to the Parish Council:-
Cllr van de Ven sent her apologies for not being able to attend the meeting in person.
1. I too was alarmed at the last meeting how much time my report took up. At other parish councils I tend to give my report in 5-10 minutes, with no questions until the very end, and then at the chairman’s discretion. This helps keep to time. Would you like me to do this? I have endeavoured at all parish councils to do a written report in advance of the meeting, but realistically have found this hard to accomplish (except of course when I’m going to be absent, like tonight).
The Parish Council indicated their support for the written report for C.Cllr van de Ven. The Deputy Clerk to inform her of this.
2. I’m working with two county council officers, Anna O’Leary and Mike Davey, to explore possible funding to support Melbourn projects under the ‘Localism’ heading: youth club and Melbourn Village Plan. Parish council representatives on MAYD will be familiar with the Transitions Funding possibility mentioned a week or so. Melbourn Village Plan members are aware that a meeting will be sought next week to look at funding possibilities.
3. Meldreth Station signage: would Melbourn PC be prepared to explore the possibility of providing directional signage at the station for Melbourn Village locations? For example, MVC, Science Park, shops, churches, etc. This idea comes from the Rail User Group. Meldreth PC endorse the idea. I’m approaching each village to consider its own relevant signage.
The Parish Council expressed its support for the proposed signage although it would like to be informed of the size and wording of any signage. The Deputy Clerk to inform Cllr van de Ven that the council supports the move. Cllr Mowatt raised the issue of the lighting of the path from the station. This is a public right of way across a farmer’s field and this suggestion would create problems.
4. The Area Joint Traffic Management Committee is most likely to disappear and another decision-making process must take its. The County Council is proposing panels of county councillors supported by officers. It is also devising a more detailed structure for handling small highways scheme requests by parishes and community groups, and parish councils will be contacted very shortly about bids they may wish to make for small highways improvements, to be funded either in part or entirely by themselves. There are various problematic aspects of this new emerging policy but for now I wanted to let you know about it. The relevant Cabinet report for tomorrow’s CCC meeting is on-line.
5. There has been much publicity in recent days about the County Council’s decision to increase councillor allowances by 25%. The allowance rise was recommended by an Independent Remunerations Panel a number of grounds, and this was taken forward by the Leader of the Council, Cllr Nick Clarke. Political groups took a free vote; all Conservatives but four voted for it and all Liberal Democrats (including me) but one voted against it. Subsequently the procedures around the setting up of the Independent Remunerations Panel have been challenged, and the timing of the implementation of the new policy was found to be incorrectly advised – it is to take effect next April, not immediately. The decision has now been challenged with a Liberal Democrat motion to the December 7th county council meeting, calling for the new policy to be rescinded.
Cllr Mowatt expressed his concern and disapprobation at the proposed increase. He was joined in this condemnation by Cllrs Barrett and Hales. Cllr Hales pointed out that there is a campaign to ‘call-in’ this decision and he would submit the details to the Clerk in case councillors wished to campaign to bring this about. Cllr Mowatt raised the issue of the necessity of feedback from the County Council Cabinet and administration about their work and decision-making
[As the time was approaching 8.00p.m the Chairman suspended standing orders to allow for public participation.]
[The Chairman resumed standing orders at 8.17p.m]
424/11 Refund for an Allotment Rent
After a brief discussion the refund was refused.
425/11 To inform the Council about the boundary between the New Recreation Ground and MVC Playing Field
The Clerk explained the situation brought about by the Land Registry’s refusal to register the land on the grounds that part of the land requested already belonged to Melbourn Village College despite the fact that this area of land had been maintained continuously over many years. It was decided that the Council should apply for ‘adverse possession’ with the agreement of the Village College and the County Council. Cllr Brett to manage this matter. The question is an urgent one due to the need to register the land for the Deed of Dedication being prepared by Cambridge ACRE. The Clerk to contact Philip Peacock of Cambridge ACRE about this matter. Failure to register in time could mean that the Council misses out on important grants.
426/11 To receive the Financial report dated 30th September, 2011
The Clerk reported with regard to Martin’s Charity, the Charity Commission had been contacted but at the wrong address. A letter has now been sent on this issue to the correct address in Liverpool.
Cllr Simmonett asked about the Magazine Account which showed 0.00. This account has been closed and will, in future, not appear on the Financial Report.
The report was noted.
427/11 To receive details of cheques drawn on the Parish Council’s account as detailed or amended by late payments. To approve payment and agree the amount(s) to be transferred from the Business ‘No Notice’ Account.
< Click on icon to view cheque list>
[Cllrs Bloomfield, Simmonett and Wakerley withdrew from the meeting at this point]
Cllr Hales asked about cheque 103185 to Ricoh. He was informed that this was for the rental for the photocopier for the next 3 months and this included servicing and toner.
The Clerk explained the invoice from MD Landscapes which was high because of the work undertaken in preparation for the opening of New Road Cemetery Gates. The invoices are always brought to the meeting for the Council’s perusal as it is not possible to detail every part of the invoice on the cheque list.
Cllr Mowatt asked about the rates on the Village Car Park. He was informed that the rebate has already been received.
Cllr Sherwen asked about the guarantee on the purchased Leaf-Blower. The Clerk to check with G.D.Squires.
Cllr Sherwen queried the cheque for Morley Manufacturing. It was explained that they had replaced the horizontal bars on the fencing and were replacing the gate with a double-gate.
It was proposed by Cllr Townsend and seconded by Cllr Hales that the cheques be approved and signed. This was carried.
[Cllrs Simmonett, Bloomfield and Wakerley returned to the meeting]
The Clerk recommends the transfer of £19,000 from the No Notice Account to the Current Account
(a) E-mail from Caroline Roberts requesting permission to erect a sign on The Cross. This was noted.
(b) E-mail from Dr David Atkins requesting a reduction in pitch fees paid by Melbourn Dynamos. This issue was dealt with during public participation time. This was noted.
(c) Letter for Bruno Peek concerning the Queen’s Diamond Jubilee Beacons – Guide to Taking Part. Cllr Townsend is taking responsibility for this.
(d) Letter from Mrs Avril Emery from Royston and District Family History Society requesting permission to record the Monumental Inscriptions in Orchard Road Cemetery. Permission was granted. The Deputy Clerk to write to Mrs Emery to this effect.
(e) E-mail from Dominic Boyle re: the provision of broadband in the village and the opportunity to access grants. Cllr Mulcock will gain more information from Mr Boyle and will report back.
(f) E-mail from Maureen Wren expressing her concern that she could not open the gates at the end of Victoria Way in order to gain access to New Road Cemetery. Cllr Sherwen reported that gate was going to be reversed do that it would be easier to open. In the meantime, the latch on the gate will be taken off. The Clerk to write to Maureen Wren about this.
429/11 Cemetery and Churchyard Inspection Report.
No report was received
430/11 To consider any matters concerning New Road Cemetery.
Cllr Sherwen presented his report:-
The highly successful gate opening ceremony brought Melbourn to the attention of a lot of people and villages. The final bits and pieces, the fence at the side, netter padlocking, grassed areas just inside on the left and such like are on the agenda for completion during the winter. Due to Matthew moving house, the fence has been delayed but will be completed and installed in November.
There are numerous jobs to be done in the cemetery, the old entrance gates will be used in the Summer House Lane main entrance, the pedestrian gate will be used in place of the stile at the top, there are trees to be replaced, soil store repairs, rabbit-proofing and hole filling. Many of the on-going jobs will come under the remit of the contractor given responsibility for the proposed maintenance schedule currently being considered.
Cllr Mowatt congratulated the Cemetery Committee on their work on New Road Cemetery. He stated that maintenance was now the key issue going forward.
431/11 To consider any developments with the village car park
Cllr Sherwen presented a report:-
The earlier plans for the design of the car park have been revised as they did not incorporate resurfacing work in the area immediately in front of the garages. The only quotation for these resurfacing costs was unacceptably high so it was decided to separate the two activities thus slightly increasing the car park area.
Additionally, the proposed start date during the summer holidays was not a possibility and the work is now rescheduled for next Easter. Re-quotations have been requested via the designers, Huck, from 4 contractors to be based on prices pertaining to and applicable to the Easter starting date. We are awaiting a response from them to Huck at this stage.
Improved central lighting will be incorporated in the final scheme although this will be through a separate contractor and will replace the 2 existing light standards.
432/11 To receive an update on the BMX Trails
Update on BMX Trails
Meeting held in Parish Office on 6th October,2011
In attendance: Cllrs. Barrett, Bloomfield, Hales and Linnette.
Members of BMX Committee: Holly Everatt, Dave King and Chris Herrell.
The Committee reported that much progress had taken place, i.e. bank account opened, security equipment purchased and in place, a web site in place and Facebook.,
Discussion took place re publicity such as Village Magazine.
Advised to speak to Angela Heylock of Young Lives for all relevant information needed to complete insurance forms (which have now been done) and sent to Mark Heyman who, I gather, will act as a broker between Committee and insurance company.
There have been a couple of issues with vandalism, but the police are aware and have been asked to keep an eye on.
There is also a gap between fence and hedge which has enabled two wheeled vehicles to enter, Justin was asked to have a look, which he has done and at a cost of £190.00 has been asked to extend the fence a couple of metres.
The next Meeting will be on 6th December.
Cllr Sherwen reported that the gap was between fence and hedge was 3 metres.
Cllr Mowatt and Townsend asked when it would be up- and –running. Cllr Barrett expressed the hope that it would be in the Spring.
Cllr Hales reported that one of the lads had written for the magazine and was drumming up support for the opening.
Cllr Mowatt expressed his delight at the progress and thanked Cllrs Barrett, Hales and Linnette.
433/11 To provide information on the Meetings of the Neighbourhood Panel
Cllr Townsend reported that the Panel had met in Melbourn last Tuesday. She reported that the police will keep their eyes on Stockbridge Meadows and the BMX Trails. Cllr Barrett reported that they had received the news that there is money available to do the work on providing doors on the porch of the community centre in Vicarage Close which will please the residents.
434/11 To receive the minutes from committees and consider proposals by the committee and consider any further action.
(a) To receive the minutes of the Planning Committee held on 3rd & 17th October. These were received without comment. Cllr Mulcock commented about the policy of receiving the meetings at Full Parish Council meetings before they had been approved by the relevant committee. Cllr Hales asked about uploading the minutes of all committees on to the website and then deleting this item from the agenda. Some councillors were opposed to this as they saw a value in having a hard copy. The Clerk informed the meeting that, if such a procedure were to be adopted the Standing Orders of the Council would need to be amended. The agenda needs to make it clear that this item is for ‘information only’ in future.
(b) To receive the minutes of the Cemetery Committee held on Monday 10th October. These were received without comment.
(c) To receive minutes of the Conservation Meeting held on Wednesday, 12th October. Cllr Gatward talked about the minutes. The situation concerning volunteers arose. Cllrs Gatward and Mowatt put forward the case for producing a list of work the volunteers may wish to do. This was opposed by Cllrs Hales & Stead who argued that producing a definitive list may well alienate volunteers. It was agreed that the presentation of any volunteer list of tasks would need to be very carefully handled to avoid prescription. Cllr Hales stressed the amount of money the volunteers saved the Council. He suggested they might all be invited to the Chairman’s Reception. Cllr Mowatt suggested that there ought to be a ‘Volunteer Evening’ sometime in the New Year where the Council might express its gratitude to the volunteers. Cllr Brett suggested that the function planned for Dec. 3rd might fulfil this function as invitations are going out to all councillors and they might take the opportunity to thank the volunteers then.
(d) To receive the minutes from the meetings of the Hub Sub-committee held on 27th September and the 4th October. These were noted.
(e) To receive any urgent reports from Committee Chairman.
Cllr Bloomfield reported the damage done to the Skate Park. This had been reported to the police and we have an incident number. This was a question of malicious damage which needed immediate action. Cllr Bloomfield had given the go-ahead for the repair costing £850. The Insurance Company were querying any claim because of the ‘malicious damage’ and it was decided that no claim would be pursued. An article to be written for the magazine about this incident, pointing out the cost to the village of such an act.
435/11 To consider any urgent matters for future discussion
Cllr Sherwen asked for all to agree to the notion of erecting a sign on Stockbridge Meadows saying ‘No Metal detectors to be used’. The Clerk informed the meeting that the item has been placed on the agenda for the next meeting of the Finance & General Purposes Committee.
There being no other business, the Chairman closed the meeting at 9.59p.m.
ADDENDUM TO THE FULL PARISH COUNCIL MEETING OF 24TH OCTOBER, 2011
Mr Ellis asked when and in what form the results of the consultation process would be made public. He was informed that copies would be available in the Library and the Parish Office and on the website. A copy of the summary would be placed on the Village Noticeboard (Section 4.3 of the Report). The developers are making a presentation on 1st November in Vicarage Close Community Centre in the afternoon and early evening which would enable people to view the plans for the whole site, not just the plans for the community hub. Councillors and representatives of the developers will be present to answer any questions from residents.
Dr David Atkins, Secretary of the Melbourn Dynamos F.C. presented his argument for a reduction in pitch fees for this season. He explained how the club has been developing over the last year and that they now had 200 children taking the opportunity to train and play. He thanked the Council for the support given to them last year when they paid no fees and asked for their help in reducing costs this year by a reduction in pitch fees when playing more than one match on the same pitch from £40 to £20. Cllr Mowatt asked Dr Atkins to send the Clerk a copy of the accounts and he agreed to do this. These are then to go to the Play Areas and Recreation Committee for a decision. Dr Atkins was thanked for his presentation.