MELBOURN PARISH COUNCIL
Draft Minutes subject to formal ratification at the next Parish Council Meeting
Minutes of a Parish Council Meeting held on Monday, 28th February 2011 at All Saints’ Community Hall at 7.15pm.
Present: Cllrs. D. Mowatt (Chairman), A Brett, R. Gatward, J. Hales, M. Linnette, A. Mulcock, M. Sherwen, C Stead and M. Townsend.
In attendance: The Clerk, C. Cllr. van de Ven and Kirstin Bicknell
721/10 Apologies for absence: Cllrs. Barrett, Bloomfield, Simmonett and Wakerley.
722/10 Declarations of Interest: Cllr. Brett declared a Personal and Prejudicial Interest in the following items: 732/10(b) as he lives at that end of the High Street; Item 732/10(g) as in he lives in the vicinity; and Item 725/10 (re item 681/10 (b) and (c)) as he lives nearby. Cllr Hales declared a Personal Interest in Item 732/10(a) as he is a member of the committee.
723/10 Minutes of the meeting held on 24th January 2011:
It was proposed by Cllr. Gatward and seconded by Cllr. Hales that the minutes of 24th January be signed as a true record.
724/10 Matters arising:
Item 643/10 (Schedule of Risk Assessment) Banking and Investment Controls. Cllr. Hales has provided the Clerk with this information.
Report presented by Catherine Shilton. Cllr. Gatward enquired if a letter had been sent to ACRE. The Clerk said she had not been asked to send one at the time but would do so now. The Clerk is to request that the Council be kept in the loop and is kept abreast of the results
725/10 To receive the Minutes of the Planning Committee meeting held on 7th and 21st February 2011:
7th February: Cllr. Brett reported that he had received an e-mail from Craig Peacock asking about any developments. It was agreed that he would reply as he suggested and invite Craig’s input on the first draft of the car park design. C. Cllr. van de Ven reported that part of the budget has been taken away from the Safer Routes to School funding.
[Cllr. Hales declared a Personal and Prejudicial Interest in the next report due to his having family living in the village.]
Cllr. Stead reported on his attendance at the Heydon Grange Wind Farm open meeting. There was a gathering groundswell of people who were against the wind farm. The Civil Aviation Authority has also got involved and was also against the wind farm.
[Cllr. Hales returned to the meeting]
21st February: There were no comments
726/10 Recreation Ground:
There had been a request from Newton Cricket team to obtain one of the rollers on the Recreation Ground. The Parish Council turned down this request as it hoped that a cricket team would be set up in the village in the future. The Clerk is to ask the Ranger to oil up both rollers, secure them together and cover them with a suitable cover.
727/10 Report from C. Cllr Van de Ven:
C. Cllr van de Ven presented her report to the meeting:
1. Budget cuts were voted through on Feb 15th. Much protest and three arrests in council chamber during course of the day.
The Conservative administration is committed to a 0% council tax increase for coming five years. Public consultation had supported a rise of just over inflation in order to save key public services, with roads, busses and libraries as priorities. As a Lib Dem councillor part of my role was to help compile an alternative budget. We are one of the only councils nationally to do that. Rather than just rant against cuts we show how we’d do it differently; the budget is then scrutinized publicly. The alternative budget mitigated the damage of many of these cuts and provided a platform for reinvestment in year two onward. It was presented as an amendment to the cabinet’s budget proposal, but was rejected outright.
To give a small sample of how CCC cuts will impact Melbourn:
Bus service: A 100% cut to bus subsidies over four years. I have heard these called:
‘ferrying a lot of air around’ and ‘a luxury we can’t afford’. In terms of CCC’s statutory duty on public transport provision: it must ‘seriously consider socially necessary services.’ Concessionary bus fares become CCC responsibility from April; without subsidized busses the demand from CF decreases. This is a quick way of saving money. Locally, bus services 128 (£73,539) and139 (£4,407) are to be phased out – 139 from April 17th this year.
School crossing patrol officers – to clarify, there will be some efficiency savings and new patrols will not be granted. However I have double checked and Melbourn’s current SCP has been assessed as necessary and will remain. Road safety education will be reduced – details have been requested. Duke of Edinburgh Award support funding has been cut.
Libraries: Our LAP and the other nine LAPs have been held up as models nationally of community supported libraries. 13 small libraries are facing the withdrawal of county support and unless they can convert they won’t survive. This includes Great Shelford.
I put forward a motion on public question time, which would have allowed members of the public to submit questions to full council in written form only, as the present arrangements are biased in favour of those without work, mobility or other restrictions. The motion was rejected. It was very good to see that of the four public questions permitted at the Feb 15th meeting, two were from Melbourn people.
While these are very difficult times, there is good news too, and this is largely down to the proactive community we live in.
2. Heating oil bulk-buying club is now set up and a blurb will appear in Melbourn Mag.
3. Youth Club: Thanks to Melbourn PC, plus Meldreth, Shepreth and Foxton, who have all provided strong and enthusiastic support for keeping the youth club up and running. A steering group has been set up, consisting of parish council reps, and we’ll be meeting again next week. Fowlmere PC has now also been approached and will discuss at their March 15 meeting. It is great that the parish councils have come together in this way.
4. PSG: basketball club starts at MVC this week following arrangements with the college. There will be no charge for room hire but adult volunteer supervisors needed.
5. Rail User Group: I wanted to hold one meeting per year in Melbourn on principle, though we have been offered free premises at Meldreth Manor School – I suggest the offer is taken up in order to save public money. Our AGM is next week and will be held at MVC.
Meanwhile, First Capital Connect have said that they would like to initiate their first Community Rail Partnership through our RUG. This is good news. More on that soon.
6. Back Lane Liaison Group: the district councillors and I have been approached by SCDC at last and are getting the ball rolling.
C. Cllr van de Van asked for any questions on her report to be put in writing or any more information required.
728/10 Clear Crescent Play Area:
The Clerk is to ask for an estimate of the amount of soil to be disposed of. It was also noted that to get a 25 year guarantee on the gate this needs to be registered on-line. Cllr. Sherwen is to take photographs of the site so these can be passed on to Jackson Fencing in the hope that a visit to assess the site will not be necessary.
729/10 To receive a report and recommendation from the interviewing panel with regard to the post of Deputy Clerk:
Cllr. Hales reported that the interviewing panel which had consisted of himself, the Chairman, Vice-Chairman, Ian Dewar (CEO of CPALC) and the Clerk.
The panel recommend Mr Peter Horley to the post of Deputy Clerk. There is to be a 6 months probationary period.
Cllr. Mowatt thought that the Council were very lucky to have such a very talented individual apply who had all the attributes needed in a Clerk for the future.
It was proposed that the recommendation from the Interviewing Panel that Mr Peter Horley be offered the post of Deputy Clerk be accepted by the full Parish Council. This proposal was accepted by the meeting.
The interviewing panel were thanked for their work.
The Chairman is to ring Mr Horley and offer him the position.
Cllr. Hales will take the contract up to SCDC to be looked at to make sure it is up to date with current legislation. When this had been done the Clerk will write to Mr Horley formally offering him the post of Deputy Clerk and enclosing the contract for him to sign.
730/10 Financial Report as at 31st January: Cllr. Hales said that the Council need to look at where it was keeping money and to spread it around. The Internal Auditor, Mr Huett is to be asked for his advice on this matter.
[Cllr. Stead left the meeting at this point, the time being 8.58pm]
731/10 Cheques to be signed:<Click on link to see cheque list >
The Clerk recommended the transfer of £16,700 from the Business No Notice Account to the Current Account.
The Clerk recommended the transfer of £690 from the Business 14 Day Notice Account to the Business No Notice Account.
The Clerk recommended the transfer of £1,855.44 from the Magazine Account to the Business No Notice Account.
It was proposed by Cllr. Townsend that the cheques be approved and signed, seconded by Cllr. Brett and Carried.
(a) Melbourn Mobile Warden Scheme – Thank you for the donation on behalf of the Management Committee of the Melbourn Mobile Warden Scheme. Noted
SCDC has reduced its donation for 2011 by 25%.
[Cllr. Brett having declared a Personal and Prejudicial Interest in the next Item for reasons stated in Item 722/10 left the room.]
(b) Letter from Juli Stallabrass Assistant Licensing Officer from SCDC – request to extend trading hours of Kebab Van.
After much discussion it was decided that the Clerk would write to Juli Stallabrass informing her that although some of the Council were in favour of the application, the decision was made that the Council did not wish to go ahead at the moment with any extension to trading hours of the Kebab Van until the car park has been refurbished and would like to put the matter on hold until then.
[Cllr. Brett returned to the meeting]
(c) Letter from Maureen Moody – Royal Wedding celebration music and bunting.
The Clerk is to inform Maureen that if there is some bunting and it has not been disposed of then the Residents Association may borrow it. No local approval is needed.
(d) E-mail from CPALC – Garden Party at Buckingham Palace.
It was proposed by Cllr, Hales THAT CLLR. GATWARD BE NOMINATED TO ATTEND THIS EVENT. Seconded by Cllr. Brett and CARRIED.
(e) CCC – Highways Wardens. Noted
(f) CCC – Changes and reductions to Bus Service. Noted
[Cllr. Brett, having declared a Personal and Prejudicial Interest in the next item for reasons stated in Item 722/10, left the room]
(g) Correspondences from Dipak Solanki – 49 High Street.
There were concerns about one store that has the rights to the Lottery now having to share this with another store. Noted.
[Cllr. Brett returned to the meeting]
(h) Letter from Barbara MacKellar – Little garden at 83 High Street.
The Clerk is to write to Barbara thanking her for her letter and informing her that the Council wishes to take her up on her offer of help.
(i) No further correspondence was received.
Kirstin Bicknell addressed the meeting and spoke about Stockbridge Meadows Artwork. She told the Council there had been 650 participants and that she had brought along samples of the designs from Jo Chapman, the artist, for Council approval. The final concept will be three towers in different sizes that each use 3m x1.5m sheet of metal that is laser cut and rolled in three different ways. The towers will be placed at three sites round the meadows and sunk into the ground set in concrete bases. The towers will be intricately cut out and imagery taken from the natural structures of leaves, feathers and grasses and incorporating text from the poems. They will have a delicate appearance that allows light to fall through, creating shadows and fragments of the landscape to be viewed through the artworks so that they become a part of it.
Kirstin has applied to SCDC for an extra £2,500 which will enable better materials to be used.
The remainder of the funds held by the Village College which amount to £2,496.01 will be taken back by CCC if not used by 31st March. Kirstin requested that the Clerk invoice the Village College for this amount which will then be held by the Parish Council.
The Council approved both the designs and the invoicing of the remaining money.
[As the time was approaching 10.00 it was proposed by Cllr. Townsend and seconded by Cllr. Hales that the meeting continue till 10.15pm]
733/10 Cemetery & Churchyard Inspection Report:
Cllr/ Hales had carried out the inspection for February. New Road cemetery needs tidying up and the soil store needs to be emptied. The new water structure has a blue pipe with two lumps of wood behind the tap. A chrome tap has been fitted instead of a brass one as requested. The pipework needs redoing. Cllr. Gatward is to meet up with Derek from PAS to point out these matters to him.
Orchard Road cemetery needs a lot of work carrying out.
Cllr. Sherwen reported that the post on the latched gate in New Road Cemetery was loose and needed fixing. The Clerk is to arrange for the Ranger attend to this.
734/10 New Road Cemetery:
The Clerk reported that she had been contacted by a Miss Giffin who used to live in the village. She had given a seat at The Cross and picnic bench to the village in remembrance of her father. Miss Giffin who is 92 years of age wished to be buried in Royston but was fearful that due to lack of space that this may not happen. She was asking the Council if it would agree to her being buried in New Road Cemetery and to confirm this to her in writing in order that she could include Melbourn as an alternative to Royston in a codicil to her will.
The Council agreed to this as a special circumstance as she had once lived in the village.
[As the time was approaching 10.15pm it was proposed by Cllr. Townsend and seconded by Cllr. Hales that the meeting continue till 10.30pm.]
735/10 Village Car Park: This was now waiting for the Safer Routes to School to come back to Cllr. Hales and comments are to be invited from Craig Peacock with regards to the car park design.
736/10 BMX Trails: There was nothing to report at the present time.
737/10 Village Plan: The Clerk gave each Councillor a copy of the Melbourn Village Plan newsletter dated February 2011. Cllr. Mowatt thought this was an excellent news-sheet and sent his congratulations to the group.
The Report working group is working very hard to produce a draft of the report which it hopes to present to the Council at the end of April with a view to hopefully obtaining formal approval at the end of May.
738/10 Neighbourhood Panel: Next meeting to be held in April.
739/10 Committee Reports:
(a) Conservation: Cllr. Gatward drew the Councillors’ attention to the volunteer session in Stockbridge Meadows, which is to be held on 6th March and will include things like clearing out of nest boxes, raking up dry grass, spreading of bark chips and adding more logs to the lizard enclosure.
500m of hedging had been planted on New Road. Another 500m cannot be planted as there is a crop growing in the field and planting the hedge would interfere with this. Some of this hedging may be used elsewhere, the rest is to be planted on a spare allotment used by the workforce as a storage/bonfire site and can then be used at a later date.
(b) Highways and Rural Footpaths: Cllr. Hales reported the resurfacing of the footpath on land by Elm Way is to commence on Friday.
(c) Play Areas, Recreation and Youth. There were no comments
(d) Urgent reports from Committee Chairmen: There were no urgent reports from Chairmen.
740/10 Future Meetings. Noted
(a) 7th March – Planning
(b) 14th March – Conservation+ Cemetery
(c) 21st March – Planning
(d) 28th March – Parish Council
741/10 Annual Parish Meeting:
This is to be held on Monday 11th April at All Saints’ Community Hall commencing at 7.00pm
742/10 Urgent Matters: There were no urgent matters
There being no other business the Chairman closed the meeting at 10.30pm