Minutes of the September council meeting

WHITE COLNE PARISH COUNCIL
Minutes of the Parish Council Meeting held at
The Village Hall, Bures Road, White Colne on Tuesday 15th September 2015 at 7.30 pm.
Present: Cllr Brace, Cllr Paxton, Cllr C Pearcey, Cllr R Pearcey, Cllr Taylor (Chairman), Cllr Watt
Also Present: Clerk D Williams, Braintree District Council (BDC) Cllr Siddall and 3 members of the public attended.

753. APOLOGIES FOR ABSENCE – Cllr Bond, BDC Cllr Spray.

754. DECLARATION OF INTERESTS – Cllr Taylor declared an interest in Minute 767 as she knows the allotment holder who wishes to keep bees on his allotment, and she is a beekeeper. Cllr Taylor also declared an interest in the planning pre application statement after Public Questions and Statements that she will make regarding her property. She will remain in the meeting during consideration of these items but will not take part or vote.

755. CONFIRMATION OF MINUTES OF LAST MEETING – The minutes of the last parish council meeting of 21st July 2015 which had been previously circulated, were agreed as a true record and signed by the Chairman.

PUBLIC QUESTIONS AND STATEMENTS
The meeting was suspended for public questions and statements.
(i).A parishioner referred to the recent planning application approval for up to 5 houses at the Former Goods Yard, Bures Road, and said that he had several questions:-
(a) how are the reserved matters dealt with.
(b) what is the access to the allotments.
(c) what is the position regarding the right of way.
(d) is it a requirement for the developer to submit a full planning application following this outline planning approval.
(e) noting that the site work can be done on Saturday mornings can this be challenged.
The meeting was resumed.

756. CONSIDERATION OF ISSUES RAISED AT PUBLIC QUESTION TIME
(i). Cllr Taylor said in answer to the questions raised:-
(a) With the reserved matters the developer seeks approval from the District Council, and the parish council would be
consulted if their approval was required.
(b) Access to the allotments is outlined in the plans.
(c) The position regarding the right of way would be raised at a meeting with Essex County Council (ECC), the developer and
the parish council.
(d) The parish council is unsure whether a full planning application is required following outline planning approval as previous
applications elsewhere in the parish have just followed the reserved matters and a full planning application was not submitted.
BDC Cllr Siddall said that he would investigate this and report back.
(e) Cllr Taylor said that the approval regarding Saturday morning site work cannot be challenged.

Cllr Taylor left the chair and Cllr Watt took the chair for the following item.

PLANNING PRE APPLICATION STATEMENT
The meeting was suspended for a planning pre application statement.
Cllr Taylor said that she had been in discussions with BDC Planning Department and the Heritage Buildings Adviser concerning replacement windows for her listed farmhouse. Agreement has been reached regarding the contractor, the like for like design, and the small panes of minimal double glazing. It will not impact on neighbours.
The meeting was resumed.

757. CONSIDERATION OF ISSUES RAISED AT THE PLANNING PRE APPLICATION STATEMENT
Members said that they were satisfied with this statement and could not see any reason to object to these works.
Cllr Taylor took the chair again.

758. CONSIDERATION OF CO-OPTION OF PARISH COUNCILLORS TO FILL TWO VACANCIES
Cllr Taylor asked if there were any nominations for co-option for the two vacancies.
Cllr Watt proposed Mrs Rita Pearcey, Cllr Paxton seconded the proposal and all members approved the co-option. Cllr R Pearcey completed the Declaration of Acceptance of Office and joined the meeting.

759. VILLAGE HALL
Cllr C Pearcey asked whether VAT paid can now be reclaimed for village hall expenditure in view of the reorganisation of the village hall finances which are to be included in the parish council annual accounts, and the village hall bank account which is to be under the control of the parish council. It was agreed that the clerk seeks guidance from the Rural Community Council of Essex.

760. CONSIDERATION OF CO-OPTION OF A PARISH COUNCILLOR TO FILL THE VACANCY
Cllr Taylor asked if there were any nominations for co-option for the second vacancy.
Cllr Watt proposed Mr John Brace, Cllr Taylor seconded the proposal and a majority approved the co-option. Cllr Brace completed the Declaration of Acceptance of Office and joined the meeting.

761. REPORT FROM BRAINTREE DISTRICT COUNCILLOR
BDC Cllr Siddall said that the local plan is being developed.

762. PLANNING MATTERS
(a) APPLICATIONS
15/01071/FUL Acorn Cottage Bures Road – erection of single storey rear extension, first floor side extension and alterations
including balcony- We have no comment subject to neighbours’ views and the guidelines in the Village Design
Statement adopted by White Colne Parish Council and endorsed by Braintree District Council, but we are
disappointed not to see a Design and Access Statement.
15/01132/FUL Colneford House, 40 Colneford Hill – We support this application but would wish to see any lighting of the
swimming pool and the greenhouse controlled by conditions.
B) ADVICE OF PLANNING APPLICATIONS APPROVED BY BRAINTREE DISTRICT COUNCIL (BDC)
15/00435/OUT Former Goods Yard Bures Road – Outline planning permission for residential development (up to 5 dwellings) and creation of new access/highway alterations​
15/00705/LBC Colneford House 40 Colneford Hill – Internal alterations and refurbishment

763. CONSIDERATION OF A REPORT ON THE HEADS OF AGREEMENT FOR THE TRANSFER OF WCPC LAND TO ESSEX CC IN RETURN FOR THE TRANSFER OF THE VILLAGE HALL AND LAND TO WCPC.
Cllr Taylor said that approval has been given for the outline planning application for the development. Our agent suggested that the S106 monies of £7,500 should not be lost as this application was a renewal of an agreement and not a new development which under new arrangements is not payable. He is in discussions with ECC regarding this. No meeting has yet been arranged with the developer.

764. COMMUNITY LIAISON
Cllr Taylor referred to the parish council’s agreement to fund repairs to the war memorial to a maximum of £500 and said that only one quotation had been received, and we are awaiting further quotes.
The clerk referred to the application to BT for the decommissioning of the telephone box, and said that approval has been received from BT following their consultation with BDC, and the standard contract for the purchase of the BT box for £1 had been completed. The box is now to be decommissioned and the parish council will be advised when the defibrillator can be installed. The free paint is to be provided by BT. Cllr Taylor asked that the clerk contacts the ambulance service who earlier had indicated that funding would be available for a defibrillator.
Cllr Taylor said that BDC had introduced a Timebank scheme, being a volunteer scheme whereby voluntary hours provided are banked and can be drawn on to use later. She said that she is trying to enrol personally to see if it is a scheme that can be recommended to the parish council, and she will report further.
Cllr R Pearcey said that no village events have taken place since the last meeting. Forthcoming events include a Stationmaster’s Arms night on 26th September, Children’s Halloween Party on 31st October, a Craft and Gift Fair on 7th November, a Quiz on 13th November, and a Stationmaster’s Arms night on 28th November.
Cllr Taylor said that the handyman is to strim the orchard in the Meadows, expecting it to take 3 days at £80 per day. This was approved. The pond has to be dredged with a JCB digger in the winter time and quotations will be obtained. A strategy is needed for the Meadows, and Cllr Taylor and Cllr Brace will discuss this and prepare one for consideration at the next meeting.
Cllr C Pearcey said that Mr Hadley had cut the Meadows and the clerk was asked to write and thank him and ask for his invoice, and also ask for his agreement that a JCB digger can cross his land to drain the pond in the winter.
Cllr Taylor said that the new web site is being developed, and training is to be arranged to enable authorised people to update the web site as necessary.

765. FINANCIAL MATTERS
(a).The clerk reported that since the last meeting, the following payments are to be made. These were authorised :-
Cheque Payee Details Amount £ VAT incl
1603 Playsafety Limited – annual inspection of play areas – amount to be advised
1604 N Powell Davies – internal auditor’s report £ 150.00
1605 P K F Littlejohn LLP – external auditor’s report – amount to be advised
1606 H M Revenue & Customs – PAYE for clerk salary August £ 183.20
1607 E L C Builders Ltd – village hall works from maintenance fund £3,600.00 £ 600.00
1608 Braintree District Council – copying charges for planning application £ 7.88
1609 JRB Enterprise Ltd – dog poop scoop bags bulk purchase – Meadows £ 275.90 £ 45.98
1610 D Williams-clerk net sal Aug & Sept less PAYE & use of home as office £26 £ 576.26
1611 H M Revenue & Customs – PAYE for clerk salary September £ 183.20
1612 B Alderman – web site maintenance £ 100.00
1613 Leo Print Limited – September newsletter £ 83.03
1614 EALC – councillor training day W Paxton – release after 30.09.15 £ 70.00
D/D Anglian Water – village hall water chargeback 51.48, allotments £35 £ 86.48
D/D Scottish Power – village hall chargeback gas £ 50.00
D/D Scottish Power – village hall chargeback – electricity £ 13.00
D/D Scottish Power – village hall chargeback gas £ 50.00
D/D Scottish Power – village hall chargeback – electricity £ 7.00
TOTAL PAYMENTS £ 5,435.95
Funds Received
Since the last financial report, the following funds have been received:-
Nat West Bank plc – interest £ 0.65
TOTAL RECEIPTS £ 0.65

(b)Financial statement & Bank Reconciliation
Following the above transactions there is a credit balance on current account of £ 2,618.38
on reserve account of £10,193.58
Total £12,811.96
Of which the balance held in reserve for the Heritage Fund is £ 1,182.74
And the balance held in reserve for Village Hall maintenance & works is £ Nil
Total of allocated funds is £ 1,182.74
Thus the balance of unallocated funds is £ 11,629.22
Bank Balances 21.07.15 £ 18,247.26
Add Receipts £ 0.65
Sub Total £ 18,247.91
Less Total Payments £ 5,435.95
Bank Balances 15.09.15 £ 12,811.96
(c) Cllr Taylor asked that the clerk updates the budgeted expenditure at each meeting with the actual expenditure.
(d) The clerk referred to the proposed arrangements for electronic banking facilities for the Village Hall bank account, and advised that he had not been able to obtain the views of the internal auditor despite writing more than once. He said that he had written to Nat West Bank advising that the Council is proposing to make changes to the title of the village hall account, to change the signing instructions, and to request electronic banking facilities for that account, and a response is awaited.

766. HIGHWAYS
Cllr Watt said that Anglian Water has fixed the water leak problem on Colneford Hill.
Cllr Watt said that the impassable overgrown footpath near the sewage works was FP 27 in Colne Engaine parish, and the clerk was asked to advise ECC Highways of this and send a copy to Colne Engaine parish council. The footpath along the old railway line also needs attention, and the clerk was asked to contact the Flitch Way Rangers regarding this.
Cllr C Pearcey said that the 30mph sign on the right hand side of Bures Road on leaving the village needs straightening, as does the signpost on the Colchester Road at the junction with Bures Road.
Cllr C Pearcey said that there had been no progress regarding the ECC Highways works to the top and bottom of the village green, and the clerk was asked to contact ECC Highways for an update.

767. ALLOTMENTS
Cllr Taylor declared an interest in this item. She referred to the agreement that the allotment agreement is altered to add that bees are not to be kept on an allotment plot unless the plot holder has a bee keeper’s certificate. She said that as we have a duty of care to other allotment holders, the plot holder should be a member of the Beekeepers’ Association, and will then have public liability of £5m. Members agreed and the clerk was asked to amend the agreement accordingly. Cllr Watt will ask the holder to join the Beekeepers’ Association and establish whether or not the bees could be moved to the edge of the allotments in the winter.

768. CITIZENS ADVICE BUREAU
Cllr Taylor said that a letter had been received from the Citizens Advice Bureau seeking a donation. Members said that they would like to help, but there are no funds available in the parish council’s limited budget, and so we are unable to assist. The clerk was asked to reply.

769. EMERGENCY PLAN
Cllr Watt said that a copy of the parish emergency plan had been received from BDC and required updating. He said that he would do this and return it to BDC.

770. CORRESPONDENCE RECEIVED
From Essex Air Ambulance seeking a donation. Members said that they would like to help, but there are no funds available in the parish council’s limited budget, and so we are unable to assist. The clerk was asked to reply.
From C Mortimer advising that he is unable to cut the village green grass and pick it up in view of the wet weather, and he asks if he can just cut the grass and leave the clippings. The clerk was asked to reply and say that the grass must be cut and picked up, if necessary when the weather is dryer.
From BT advising that Colneford Hill and parts of Colne Park Road are not included in the latest upgrade to Superfast Broadband, and they are due in the next round.

There being no further business the parish council meeting was closed at 9.40 pm.

Chairperson…………………………………………………. Date……………………………
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