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February 12, 2012

Nocton Parish Council Minutes - 03 January 2012

Minutes of the Meeting of Nocton Parish Council held on 3rd January 2012

Present: Chair: Councillor Kate Tyler
Vice-Chair: Councillor Ian Goldsworthy
Councillors: Peter Askew, Neil Faulkner, Geoff Hall and MaryAnn Williams

In Attendance: Doreen Green (Parish Clerk)

11 members of the public were also in attendance

1. Apologies for Absence: Received from Councillor David Rumbelow.

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

3. Reports of Representatives:
(a) Police: Not in attendance, no report available.
(b) Village Hall Management Committee: Councillor Askew reported that consideration was being given to the installation of a water heater to the hand wash basin in the Ladies toilet.

(c) Parish Clerk:
The Clerk reported that she had now applied for funding for the Parish Dog Warden and Litter Picker from NKDC.
She had also met with Steve Welsh from Lincolnshire County Council Highways and Planning to discuss various outstanding highways issues - in particular the overgrown shrubs and trees along Wellhead Lane. He agreed to investigate and to report back to the Clerk on the actions to be taken.

(d) CLAN:
No meeting had taken place since the last Parish Council meeting and, as such, no report was available.

(e) Dog Warden:
A written report had been submitted by Michael Cummins and was read out by the Clerk

4. Public Questions:
It was noted that no prior notice of questions of the Parish Council had been received.
The Chair said that she had received a complaint regarding dog fouling on the footpath that runs alongside The Green to the school, and that she would again raise the matter with the Dog Warden.

6. Minutes of the Parish Council meeting held on 6th December 2011
The minutes of the Parish Council Meeting held on 6th December 2011, having been previously circulated, were agreed as a correct record of the proceedings and signed by the Chair.

7. Nocton Hall:
Councillor Hall gave a brief presentation on the draft Options Appraisal report which had been presented by Karen Bradford at the last meeting and invited comments from those members of the public in attendance:
A range of concerns and issues were raised which are summarised below:
• The latest Ordnance Survey maps do not reflect all the changes/developments in the surrounding land to Nocton Hall e.g. they do not reflect the road into the wood yard where the stables/barns have been converted into private dwellings.
• Legal rights of access and egress from the old RAF Hospital site were still unclear. The Nocton Park Management Committee had been unable to obtain clarification over Leda Property's right to use the access points bordering their land, allowing potential traffic flow through the private Nocton Park estate.
• There were some concerns over any plans to increase significantly the amenity use of Nocton Hall grounds. Given that some forty residents live within the grounds of Nocton Hall, these people would need to be fully consulted over any proposed changes to access and use. However, continued use by local residents/visitors was deemed acceptable.
• All Tree Preservation Orders applicable on the site should be fully respected.
• Any housing or other development of the former RAF hospital site must be on the smallest scale possible and fully sympathetic to the historic nature of Nocton Hall and the conservation status of the village.
As to the future, ideally, residents wished to see Nocton Hall and its grounds restored to their former glory. However, as it was recognised that this was likely to be unachievable, those residents expressing a view felt that Option 3 of the Appraisal (to retain the main house as a ruin and to fully restore the service wing) represented the most reasonable way forward in light of the information currently available. A number of residents were, however, unwilling to express a preference for any of the options due to the lack of detailed information available and that the Options Appraisal was currently in draft form only.
It was agreed that the comments expressed by members of the public would be incorporated into the Parish Council's initial response to North Kesteven District Council on the Options Appraisal for Nocton Hall.
It was also agreed that Councillor Faulkner would refer the issues of the potential future uses of Nocton Hall to CLAN for consideration.

8. Planning Applications and Issues:
It was noted that NKDC had been advised that no adverse or other comments had been made by members of the Parish Council on the following applications:
(a) 11/1535/HOUS Wellhead Cottage, erection of single story extension to east elevation, porch to west elevation, erection of detached double garage and garden store.
(b) 11/1434/HOUS Abbots Grange, erection of conservatory, two-story extension to rear and single story side extension.

9. Financial Matters:
(a) Grant of £250 from County Councillor Overton towards a new Parish Council Notice Board noted.
(b) Payment of £88.92 + VAT to E.ON for street light maintenance noted.
(c) Noted that payments are due to the following:
Dog Warden for December 2011
Clerk's Salary for December 2011
E.ON for new street light fittings
E.ON for replacement street light column
(d) It was agreed that the cost £66.48 +VAT of plants for the recently installed planters would be met from the 2011/12 budget.
(e) Revenue Budget and Precept for 2012/13:

It was noted that whilst the Council's current budget was sufficient to meet its existing day-to-day expenditure and commitments, it was not able to support any meaningful programme of development or improvement of facilities, etc within the parish. The proposed budget for 2012/13 therefore made provision for a new post of "Village Keeper" (see minute No.14 below), next year's Christmas Tree, plants for the planters and a small grants fund to formalise the Council's practice of supporting local groups and activities. It also took account of the lower energy costs for street lighting. Even allowing for the above, however, it was noted that there were little or no funds available to carry out other improvements and maintenance within the village. In the circumstances, therefore, it was agreed to include a sum of £1,500 within next year's budget for this purpose, including the provision of new notice boards.

Having considered the matter in some detail, the Parish Council's Revenue Budget for 2012/13 was agreed in the sum of £10,550 which, with anticipated grants for the Dog Warden and litter collection and interest on savings totalling of £380, would result in a Precept for the coming year of £10,170 - an increase of £1,900 over the current year. A copy of the agreed budget is attached as an Appendix to these minutes. It was noted that despite the decision to increase the budget, parish expenditure would remain amongst the lowest in North Kesteven and be lower than that in the neighbouring villages of Dunston, Potterhanworth and Scopwick.

It was further agreed that a copy of the budget be made available for inclusion on the Parish Council notice board, "The Doodle" and Nocton Blog.

10. Progress Reports of Parish Councillors:
(a) Councillor Goldsworthy said that a survey was currently being carried out in Dunston to assess the potential for bringing a gas supply to the village. It was agreed that the Clerk make further enquiries so that this could be considered for Nocton.
(b) Councillor Faulkner raised a number of concerns regarding various buildings on the site adjacent to the entrance to Nocton Park. It was agreed that the Clerk make enquiries of NKDC Planning Officers and report back.
(c) Councillor Williams reported on the possible acquisition of a beacon for the Diamond Jubilee. It was agreed that further enquiries be made as to cost, etc and that the matter be considered at a future meeting.
It was agreed that invitations to the Diamond Jubilee "Garden Party" be issued by the Parish Council
It was agreed that the Clerk check if planning permission is required for the erection of the Coronation Bench on The Green and to report back.
In view of the damage being done to the edge of the village green by lorries, etc it was agreed that the Clerk make enquiries as to who is responsible for providing kerb stones and, if not the Highways Authority, the likely cost of so doing.
Finally, it was noted that as a consequence of Councillor Williams' enquiries, British Sugar had agreed to meet the cost of the Christmas Tree lights
(d) Councillor Askew reported that NKDC are to work on the beck in the next two weeks.
(e) The Chair had met with County Councillor Overton and LCC Highways officers at the Wellhead Lane/B1188 junction, to discuss potential solutions to the traffic problems on that stretch of road. The meeting also considered the lack of a footpath on Wellhead Lane from the B1188 into the village. It was noted that LCC Highways will look at putting in a short length of path along the bend by the bridge.

11. Correspondence:
It was noted that correspondence received since the last meeting had been circulated and considered by councillors.

12. Date of Future Meetings
It was noted that future meetings of the Parish Council will be held on 7th February, 6th March and 3rd April 2012.