STEEPLE MORDEN PARISH COUNCIL

Minutes of the Parish Council Meeting held in the Village Hall on

Monday 9 January 2017 at 7.30pm

Present:                     Councillors: J Brocklehurst (Chairman), S Martin, J Clayton, S Norton, C Upchurch, S Wheatley, G Belson, A Drew

District Cllr Murfitt

In attendance:               Mrs S Walmesley (Clerk) and 3 members of the public.

 

PARISH COUNCIL MEETING 7.30 PM

 

1.

APOLOGIES FOR ABSENCE AND DECLARATIONS UNDER THE CODE OF CONDUCT AND REQUESTS FOR DISPENSATIONS

Apologies were received from Mr Whittington and County Cllr Dent.

Mr Clayton declared a Pecuniary interest under Item 8.1 as the Landowner

 

 

2.

COMMENTS AND OBSERVATIONS FROM PARISHIONERS AND MEMBERS OF THE PUBLIC

2.1 Inconsiderate Parking

Mr Martin reported that he had been asked by a resident of Hay Street to relay her concern over the parking at the junction of Hay Street and Cheyney Street during the day. The resident had given the registration numbers of the cars to the police who said that they could not send out a patrol and suggested that they contact the Parish Council. It was believed that the owners of the vehicles were connected to the Pre-school. The Primary School Headteacher had also been approached and said that he was unable to do anything. The Chairman advised that this was an ongoing issue and the advice to the Parish Council in the past had been to report to the Police.

The Chairman then advised that following the item in the last newsletter, regarding the parking of vehicles, an Odsey resident  had pointed out that the Highway Code stated that all vehicles parked on the roadside outside the 30mph limit at night should leave their side lights on. This meant that the commuters parking by the railway station were breaking the law.

It was agreed that the Clerk would contact the PCSO and ask him to look at the inconsiderate parking on Hay Street and she would also ask him about the parking on the roadside in Odsey.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

-Clerk

3.

COUNTY AND DISTRICT COUNCILLOR REPORTS

3.1 County Council

 Cllr Dent was not in attendance.

3.2 District Council

Cllr Murfitt advised that she had passed on a request to Cambridgeshire County Council for posts to be installed on the grass verges in Odsey to prevent vehicles parking.

She asked if there had been any issues with the refuse collections during the festive period. It was advised that the collections had been satisfactory but noted that there was usually always some recycling materials left behind. Mrs Murfitt advised that 99% of green waste collected was recycled.

Devolution for Cambridgeshire and Peterborough had been passed and there would be the election of a Mayor in May 2017.

Mrs Murfitt had put an item in the parish newsletter to confirm that there would be no changes to existing services, or County boundaries, if the proposal to include Steeple Morden in the Parliamentary boundary of North East Hertfordshire went ahead.

South Cambridgeshire News was going to have an events section so Mrs Murfitt suggested that any events in the village be notified to South Cambridgeshire District Council and they would be included in the publication.

She concluded her report by advising that it was International Women’s Day on the 8th March 2017 and anything for discussion at an event was invited.

The Chairman thanked Cllr Murfitt for her report.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

4.

 

TO APPROVE THE MINUTES OF

4.1 The Parish Council  Meeting held on 12th December   2016

On a proposition by Mrs Wheatley seconded by Mrs Norton the minutes as circulated were taken as read and then approved as a true record  and signed by the Chairman.

 

 

5.

MATTERS ARISING AND CARRIED FORWARD

5.1 A505 Junction

5.1.1 Update on HCC agreed work at Junction

There was no further update from the Clerk. It was noted that there had been a further accident at the junction before Christmas.

 

 

 

 

 

 

6.

FINANCES

7.1 To receive the financial statement and to approve the payment of bills

The invoices were checked by Mrs Drew. On a proposition by Mr Clayton, seconded by Mrs Norton,  the following payments as listed in the monthly financial report were approved:

HALES PRINTERS

Newsletters January 2017                                                                                                        £48.00

IN & OUT           

Disabled toilet clean December 2017                                                                                   £ 16.72

BASSINGBOURN-CUM-KNEESWORTH PARISH COUNCIL

Contribution towards stationery                                                                                              £35.09

MORDEN CONSULTANCY SERVICES LTD

Website domain renewal (inc. £2.88VAT)                                                                            £17.27

E-ON

Direct Debit January 2017                                                                                                     £ 74.00

MRS S WALMESLEY

Clerks salary & expenses 1/10/16 -31/12/16                                                                                  £  893.63

HMRC

PAYE Oct -Dec 2016                                                                                                            £  213.00

TOTAL                                                                                                                                    £1297.71

6.2 Budget 2017/18

A discussion took place on the draft budget 2017/18 with slight modifications made. St Peter & St Paul Church had made a request for an increased donation towards grasscutting of £950. It was believed that this figure included VAT. The Clerk was asked to check with the Church Treasurer to see if they were able to reclaim the VAT and if not then the budgeted amount would be increased. There was also an earmarked fund for the Recreation Ground maintenance group so that they would be able carry out minimal expenditure without prior approval from the Parish Council. On a proposal by Mr Clayton, seconded by Mrs Norton, the budget was agreed with a precept requirement for 2017/18 of £28,500. All Councillors in agreement. The Clerk to notify South Cambridgeshire District Council of the ‘demand’.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

-Clerk

 

 

 

 

-Clerk

 

7.

RECREATION GROUND/CONSERVATION AREA

7.1 Recreation Ground Maintenance –working group update

Mrs Drew reported that everything on the ground was fine except for the disappearing toilet rolls and paper towels. The Chairman advised that the village hall drain had been blocked and this could have been due to the disposal of the towels in the disabled toilet. The Village Hall Committee had paid the invoice but the cost would need to be divided between the users.  Whilst clearing the drain bits of masonry were found so it was suspected that one of the drainpipes might have collapsed. Mrs Wheatley referred to the previous decision for a keypad entry system for the toilet which had still not been installed. It was agreed that the Clerk arrange as soon as possible.

 7.1.1 Dangerous Willow tree by brook

The Clerk advised that the contractor she had approached suggested that the tree be felled. To prevent it damaging other trees a mobile elevated platform could be used but this option would be a lot more expensive. Councillors were also asked what to do with the rubbish.

Councillors agreed that a mobile platform would not be needed as the area would recover from the work. They were also happy for the logs from the felled tree to be piled up for wildlife with chippings left on the site. The Clerk to advise the contractor of this so that he could prepare the quotation. Mrs Drew had arranged for another contractor to look and he had provided a second quotation.

7.2 Planting of Bulbs at entrance to village

Dr Belson had spoken to the contractor who had agreed to send the quotes she had prepared for Guilden Morden Parish Council. Her contact details were passed to the Clerk who would follow up.

7.3 Car Park Lighting

Mrs Drew had requested a quotation from the installer of the CCTV cameras. On receipt the quote was not as requested. She would follow up.

7.4 Access to Meadow

Some of the Councillors had met to look at the proposal to take down some of the conifers next to the children’s playground. They all agreed that this would be impossible and the only option was to make an entrance at the south side of the kissing gate where three or four trees would need to be removed and a barrier installed. The feeling of Councillors was that for the one day a year that vehicle access to the meadow was needed it was not worth it.  They felt that it would be better for the organisers of the firework event to hire matting if the ground was not dry enough. Mrs Drew had obtained quotes for the hire of matting cost of which would be down to the organisers of the event. It was agreed that the Clerk send a formal e-mail to the Primary School PTA advising of this.

7.5 Conifer Trees by Play Area

At the site meeting the cutting down of the conifer trees to 8ft a similar height of the Bowls Club hedge was discussed. Mrs Drew  had obtained a quote for £5,950 which was not included in the budget for the next financial year. She stated that something needed to be done about the trees soon especially inside the play area. In 2016 some of the branches were cut back by the Recreation Ground working group. A discussion took place on the Section 106 money, and budgets, where it was agreed to look again in July 2017 to see if there was any spare funding available in the 2017/18 budget. If not the work would be included in the budget for the following year 2018/19.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

-Clerk

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

-Clerk

 

 

 

-Clerk

 

 

 

 

-AD

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

-Clerk

8.

MAINTENANCE

8.1 Footpaths

8.1.1 Footpath 7

The Chairman reported that an e-mail had been received from the Ramblers Association  who had persuaded Cambridgeshire County Council that they were in the wrong regarding the footpath signage. To correct the route a new bridge would need to be built over the ditch.  The County Council had offered to cover the cost of getting the Ordnance Survey map altered providing that another party pay for the statutory press notices which would cost around £400.  At a previous meeting the Parish Council had agreed not to contribute to this path, which ran across private land, as it could set a precedent for the future. It was noted that there was a tenant farmer and the landowner, Mr Clayton, confirmed that the diversion whether or not it took place would have no impact on him.

It was advised that the footpath was well used by ramblers and parishioners and suggested that they could be asked to contribute to the cost as it was believed that the tenant farmer would not be willing to meet the cost. Mr Clayton offered to match donations up to a maximum of £200. Mrs Norton had a list of parishioners who had petitioned for the change and would contact them to see if they were willing to contribute.

8.1.2 Footpath 10

Cambridgeshire County Council had advised that they would be holding their panel meetings to discuss the applications for the Minor Highway Improvement funding on the 30th and 31st January 2017. Representatives were invited to attend to support their application. The Chairman and Mrs Norton would liaise.

8.3 Village Grasscutting Contracts 2017-19

The Clerk confirmed that she had asked County Council Highways for updated highway verge maps which could then be sent out to contractors. Mrs Norton was investigating an option for the cutting of the cowslip meadow. Mr Clayton suggested joining forces with neighbouring parishes to tender as this could be more cost effective. The Clerk agreed to approach Litlington and Bassingbourn-cum-Kneesworth with the suggestion as they were renewing their contracts this year.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

-SN

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

-SN & JB

 

 

 

 

-SN & Clerk

9.

VILLAGE WEBSITE

9.1 Hosting

The Chairman had forwarded details of another hosting company which was being followed up by the Clerk.

9.2 Upgrade

The Clerk had reminded Morden Web Design that they had agreed to make some modifications before the Parish Council contract expired.

 

 

 

-Clerk

 

10.

PLANNING APPLICATIONS

10.1 Planning Ref S/3581/16/FL

Rear of 1 Westbrook Close –Erection of dwelling and creation of new vehicular access (revised scheme pursuant to extant planning permission S/2423/14/FL) to provide adjoining garage

 (T Pryor)

Recommendation -Support

10.2 Notification of an Appeal  for Planning Ref S/1712/15/FL

Mr Martin reported that he had received notification of a Planning Appeal for the South Cambridgeshire District Council refusal for a fence at 3 Cheyney Close.

 

 

11.

COMMUNITY HIGHWAY VOUNTEERING SCHEME

11.1 Update on Proposal for Litter Picking

Dr Belson advised that it was time to start organising volunteers in the different zones.  She had set up a specific e-mail address SMLitterpick@yahoo.com for people to submit details of the zones they were in. She would then be able to let the volunteers know the dates of the litter picks which would be timed to follow the blue bin refuse collection dates.

11.2 Additional Litter Bins

The Clerk was to urge a response from South Cambridgeshire District Council regarding the installation of an additional litter bin. The last litter bin currently north on Hay Street was by the school drop off car park. A discussion took place on a proposed location for a new bin and it was agreed that the best place was by the bus shelter on Hay Street.

11.3 Registration of Volunteer Group with Cambridgeshire County Council

The Clerk had sought advice from County Cllr Dent who supported the registration of the group and asked that a form is completed with the list of volunteers and e-mail to the address on the application form. The Clerk would liaise with Dr Belson.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

-Clerk

 

 

 

-GB &Clerk

12.

TO CONSIDER CORRESPONDENCE RECEIVED INCLUDING:

12.1 SCDC South West Parishes Patch Meeting 18th January 2017

Details had been circulated to Councillors. Anyone interested in attending was asked to let the Clerk know so that she could book a space.

12.2 SCDC Proposal from Tree Officer

Ian Lorman, the Tree Officer, had written to the council advising that as part of ongoing improvements to the service at South Cambridgeshire District Council he was proposing to offer a competitive service to assist with the H&S safety audit processes relating to regular tree inspections. He had outlined the draft parameters/specification for a SCDC tree health and safety survey. Parish Councils were asked to register their interest so that he could see if there was enough to present a business case.

Councillors agreed that they were aware of the need for regular tree inspections, of trees on parish land,  but felt that they would rather continue independently. It was suggested that the tree surgeons appointed to carry out current tree work in the village be asked to carry out a visual inspection.

12.3 Complaint about dog numbers

The Chairman had received a letter from a parishioner concerned over the number of dogs in a District Council property. The concern had been forwarded to Cllr Murfitt who had reported this to the legal officer as it was believed to be the same tenant that received an injunction on the number of dogs allowed in the past.  Cllr Murfitt advised that the injunction had now expired but, because there had been concerns raised, the South Cambridgeshire District Council officers would welcome more evidence of the dogs causing a nuisance.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

13.

COUNCILLORS’ ITEMS FOR INFORMATION AND REQUIRING THE URGENT ATTENTION OF THE CLERK

13.1 Drain Clearing

Mrs Upchurch reported that she had spoken to the contractors in Cheyney Street who were clearing the drains. They had advised that the drains in The Green, which were known to be blocked, were not included in their contract. Councillors were also aware that there were some drainage issues in Bogs Gap Lane and North Brook End. The Clerk was asked to find out the position with County Highways.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

-Clerk

14.

DATE OF NEXT MEETING Monday 13th February  2017

 

 

There was no further business and the Chairman declared the meeting closed at 8.55 pm

-----------------------------------------------                                                                 ------------------------

Chairman                                                                                                                      Date