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December 12, 2011

Nocton Parish Council Minutes - 01 November 2011

Minutes of the Meeting of Nocton Parish Council held on 1st November 2011

Present: Vice-Chair: Councillor Ian Goldsworthy (in the Chair)
Councillors: Peter Askew, Neil Faulkner, David Rumbelow and MaryAnn Williams

In attendance: Councillor Marianne Overton (present for part of the meeting only)

5 members of the public were also in attendance

1. Apologies for absence: Received from Councillor Kate Tyler, Doreen Green (Clerk) and Councillors R Kendrick and J Money (NKDC)

2. Declaration of Prejudicial Interest in Accordance with the Ethical Code of Conduct: None declared.

3. Review of Standing Orders

Public Questions

It was agreed that further to the discussion at the last meeting, Standing Order 62(b) be amended as follows:

"Members of the public shall be afforded a period of ten minutes at each meeting to ask a question of the Parish Council or to make a brief statement about any matter affecting the village. Such questions or statements shall be submitted to the Clerk in writing a minimum of ten working days before each meeting. The question or statement shall be printed on the agenda and it is not necessary for the person submitting the question or statement to be present at the meeting. The Clerk, in consultation with the Chair, shall determine at which point on the agenda public questions shall be taken. Generally, however, this shall be as near to the start of the meeting as is practicable.

In addition, and where appropriate advance notice has not been given, the Chair may allow a question to be asked at the meeting where in her/his opinion the matter is considered to be urgent and cannot reasonably be left to the next meeting.

At the express invitation of the Chair, members of the public may also be permitted to speak briefly on matters being discussed by the Council during the course of the meeting but only in those circumstances where no other member of the Council has indicated her/his prior wish to speak."

General Review

It was agreed that a Working Party comprising the Chair, Vice Chair and Councillor Neil Faulkner be established to review the Parish Council's existing Standing Orders, Policies and Procedure, etc and to prepare revised documentation for adoption at the Annual Meeting in 2012.

4. Reports of Representatives, etc

(a) Dog Warden
A written report had been lodged with the Clerk and would be circulated when she returns from holiday.

(b) Litter Collector
No issues of concern reported.

(c) Police
No police representative present.

(d) Village Hall Management Committee
Councillor Rumbelow said that there would be no VHMC meeting this week as the Secretary was away. There would be a Welcome Winter Lunch on Monday, 7th November from 12.00 to 2.00 p.m. and the Nocton Christmas Fair was being held on Saturday 26th November. Photographs for the Nocton Photographic Competition should be submitted by 19th November.

5. Public Questions

No public questions had been submitted prior to the meeting and there were no urgent issues raised by members of the public present at the meeting.

6. Minutes

The minutes of the Parish Council Meeting held on 4th October 2011, having previously been circulated, were agreed subject to the inclusion of Gill Rumbelow in Minute No. 4(b) as being one of the residents cleaning the bus shelters.

7. Traffic Census.

It was agreed to ask that the traffic census be held during the third week in November. Councillor Ian Goldsworthy would contact Alan Brown.

A paper from Alan Brown (LCC Highways) was circulated and it appeared that most of the issues raised in the recent Village Walk-Round were being addressed addressed. However there were two additional issues that should also be raised:

(a) the condition of the road surface of Potterhanworth Road from the 30mph sign to the Wasps Nest turn off.

(b) footpath surfaces throughout the village
Again, it was agreed that Councillor Goldsworthy would raise these two issues with Alan Brown.

8. Village Street Lighting

The letter from e-ON dated 11th October 2011 was noted. It was agreed to proceed with Option 2 for dealing with the street light in Main Street (by the cluster seat/bus stop) which was obscured by branches by replacing the existing old pole bracket with a new and longer two metre bracket. The damaged supply box would also be repaired at the same time. The cost of £434 could be met from the Parish Council's budget. The Clerk would be asked to contact e-ON on her return from holiday.

9. Nocton Village Hall - Repair and Maintenance Issues.

Councillor Askew reported that given the health and safety issues, the damage in the ladies' toilet, possibly as a result of subsidence, had now been made good. However, the problem was far larger than had been anticipated as when the broken tiles were removed the breeze blocks behind had dropped and had to be re-cemented at a total cost of £700. The damaged area in the bar by the pool table had not yet been repaired. Councillor Askew asked if the Parish Council would be prepared to meet the cost of this work as it represented a considerable drain on the Village Hall Management Committee's resources. It was agreed to consider this request at the meeting referred to below.

After a short discussion it was agreed that an early meeting be held between Parish Councillors and members of the Village Hall Management Committee to consider the options available and to agree a way forward. The Clerk would be asked to make the necessary arrangements as soon as she returned from holiday.

10. Jubilee Mugs

It was agreed that, subject to there being sufficient demand (which would be assessed in early 2012) commemorative mugs for all the children in the village be purchased as part of the Queen's Diamond Jubilee celebrations.

11. NKDC Independent Remuneration Panel

It was agreed not to make a nomination to serve on this Panel.

12. Planning Applications and Issues

It was noted that no applications had been received for comment since the last meeting.

13. "The Nocton Doodle"

It was agreed to provide a monthly report and other information about the Parish Council to this new publication which is replacing the former "Parish Magazine". The report would also be made available to other local sources e.g. Nocton Blog.

14. Report of Councillor Marianne Overton (LCC).

(a) Wellingore Village now has a Post Office and Shop (with the help of local grants) which is being successfully run by the local garage owner.
(b) Metal Thefts are on the increase in our area and are now a high priority for the Police. All residents are asked to be vigilant and to report anything suspicious without putting themselves in any danger.
(c) County Councillors are forgoing an increase in their expenses this year and the resultant savings (a total of £2,000 per member) are being made available for each Councillor to donate in their area. Councillor Overton requested that all bids should be made to her by 1st December.
(d) Accidents on the B1188 are still a major concern, especially at some of the junctions. Councillor Williams reported that action to deal with the problem was supported by all the Parish Councils in the Cluster Group and a letter from the Group is being sent to LCC Highways Department.

Finally Councillor Overton reported she was pleased to hear of the new 200 Club that was being initiated in Nocton as a means for raising money in the community, as grants and other funding were in very short supply, especially in this area. She also welcomed the efforts being made within the village to fill the gap in provision caused by the closure of Day Centres.

15. Reports of Parish Councillors

Councillor Faulkner said he was concerned that if the provision of a play park for young children had to wait until the findings of the new Community Led Action Plan (CLAN) were known, it could be at least three to four years before anything happened. Councillor Williams, on behalf of CLAN, said that should it become apparent that before the final plan was published there was a clear need for this or, indeed, any other development, then the Parish Council would, no doubt, wish to investigate the matter more promptly. The Vice-chair and Councillor Askew suggested that the area of The Green between the school entrance path and the entrance to the wood opposite the Church represented a possible area for such a play park. It was agreed to continue to monitor feedback for this development.

Councillor Williams reported:

(a) The Launch of the 200 Club. First draw would take place at the end of January and 50% of all membership income would be given as prizes with the balance retained for Community Projects. If the Village was to attract any sizeable grants/funding then one of the provisions was likely to be that the community was seen to be raising money independently. This Club would help to meet that criterion.

(b) Queen's Diamond Jubilee. Next meeting was on 9th November and the Vintage Fashion Show and tea was being held on 19th November.

(c) The Planters were now in place and Bell Brother Nurseries had offered Pansies and Hebes for £60 00. Councillor Rumbelow said that he would see if he could source a cheaper option and liaise with Councillor Williams.

(d) The Christmas Tree had been chosen along with lights and would be delivered before the end of November. Councillor Askew would ask the Village Hall Management Committee to agree its siting, etc.

(e) British Sugar had written to the Parish Council regarding a temporary increase in lorries through the village. Councillor Williams understood from a parishioner that the company might be prepared to make a donation to help compensate for the disturbance and offered to follow this up. It was agreed that any such donation would be put towards the lighting, etc of the Christmas tree.

Councillor Goldsworthy said that as ten parishioners had requested an election to the vacancy caused by the resignation of Debbie Wilson, NKDC had informed him that the poll would take place on 8th December 2011. The formal notice and detailed timetable, including the final date for the receipt of nominations, would be posted on the Parish Council Notice Board very shortly.

17. Date of Future Meetings

It was noted that future meetings of the Parish Council would be held on 6th December 2011 and 3rd January, 7th February, 6th March and 3rd April 2012.

It was agreed that prior to the start of the next meeting wine and mince pies be provided to those members of the public in attendance.