Minutes of the PC meeting held on 16th January 2017

WHITE COLNE PARISH COUNCIL
Minutes of the Parish Council Meeting held at
The Village Hall, Bures Road, White Colne on Monday 16th January 2017 at 7.30 pm.
Present: Cllr Bond, Cllr Brace, Cllr Paxton, Cllr Saggers (later),Cllr Taylor (Chairman), Cllr Tanous, Cllr Woolmore
Also Present: Clerk D Williams, Braintree District Council (BDC) Cllr Siddall, BDC Cllr Spray and 9 members of the public.
892. APOLOGIES FOR ABSENCE – None

893. DECLARATION OF INTERESTS – Cllr Brace declared an interest in Minute 900 regarding the planning application for Land on the South Side of Colchester Road as he is a neighbour of the site in the application. Cllr Woolmore declared an interest in Minute 900 regarding the planning application for Land on the South Side of Colchester Road as he is a neighbour of the site in the application.

894. CONFIRMATION OF MINUTES OF LAST MEETING – The minutes of the last parish council meeting of 15th November 2016 which had been previously circulated, were agreed as a true record and signed by the Chairman.

895. MATTERS ARISING – None

PUBLIC QUESTIONS AND STATEMENTS
The meeting was suspended for public questions and statements.
(i). A parishioner said that she has submitted a planning application for a house on land adjacent to 112 Colchester Road. She is aware that it is outside the village envelope, but it is for a family of 5 adults who want to stay and continue to be part of the community.
(ii).A parishioner said that the condition of the pavement on Colneford Hill is dangerous. The meeting was resumed.

896. RESPONSE TO PUBLIC QUESTIONS AND STATEMENTS
Cllr Taylor said that the parish council are aware of the condition of the footpath and this will be discussed later in the meeting.

897. CO OPTION TO FILL THE VACANCY OF PARISH COUNCILLOR
Cllr Taylor said that Cllr Watt had resigned from the parish council due to work commitments. She thanked him for his considerable involvement with the council over several years, and all members added their thanks. Cllr Taylor said that the vacancy had been advertised by BDC but no applications had been received, and BDC have advised that the parish council can co opt a parishioner to fill the vacancy. She therefore proposed that Mr Nick Saggers be co opted, Cllr Brace seconded the proposal, and as there were no other proposals Cllr Saggers was duly co opted as a parish councillor unanimously and he joined the table and completed the Declaration of Acceptance of Office.

898. ESSEX COUNTY COUNCILLOR
Cllr Taylor said that Essex County Council (ECC) Councillor J Pike has sadly passed away, and he will be sorely missed. Cllr Bond said that Councillor Pike was very supportive of our village. Cllr Taylor said that there will be no replacement until County Council elections later this year.

899. REPORT FROM BRAINTREE DISTRICT COUNCILLORS
BDC Cllr Spray said that she had nothing to report.
BDC Cllr Siddall said that he attended Essex County Councillor J Pike’s funeral, and asked that he is contacted with any business that would usually be sent to the Essex County Council Councillor.
Cllr Taylor asked for an update on the progress of the Local Plan. BDC Cllr Spray said that the draft plan will be submitted to the District Council in June, delayed from February.
Cllr Spray said that planning inspectors at appeal cases are looking at the council’s 5 year land stock.

900. PLANNING MATTERS (a) Applications
02124/OUT Land On The South Side Of Colchester Road – Outline planning application for the erection of up to 8no.
dwellings and associated garages. After discussion the response agreed unanimously is:- We object to this application as:-1. It is outside the village envelope, 2. We have collected data to prove that speeds along Colchester Road at this area are excessive, and entry and exit would be dangerous, 3. The White Colne Village Design Statement, page 33 item 6.4 states that all developments should be contained in the village envelope, 4. The village survey in February 2016 said that the majority response was for no development outside the village envelope, 5. We are also mindful that the Braintree District Council draft Local Plan excluded this site, and we wish to support that.
16/02169/FUL Morelands Farm Bures Road – Erection of detached annex building – the agreed response is :- We object to this application as:- 1. It is outside the village envelope, 2. The White Colne Village Design Statement, page 33 item 6.4 states that all developments should be contained in the village envelope, 3. The village survey in February 2016 said that the majority response was for no development outside the village envelope,4.It does not appear to be an appropriate development for the proposed use.
16/02187/FUL Land Adjacent 112 Colchester Road – Erection of a 4 bedroom detached dwelling complete with garage/office
and related infrastructure, including an altered vehicular access – Cllr Taylor said that whilst the parish council has sympathy with the applicants we have quoted the village envelope and the village design statement in other applications and we have to be consistent. The agreed response is:- 1. It is outside the village envelope, 2. The White Colne Village Design Statement, page 33 item 6.4 states that all developments should be contained in the village envelope, 3. The village survey in February 2016 said that the majority response was for no development outside the village envelope, 4. We have collected data to prove that speeds along Colchester Road at this area are excessive, and entry and exit would be dangerous. 5 councillors in favour, 1 against and 1 abstained. 6 members of public left the meeting.
16/02032/COUPA Tymbar Weir Farm Wakes Colne Road – Prior Approval of Proposed Change of Use of AgriculturalBuilding
to a Dwellinghouse (Use Class C3) and for Associated Operational Development – no statutory consultation
requirement – agreed response is no comment
17/00022/NMA 1 Colne Park Road – Application for a non-material amendment following grant of permission 16/00830/FUL
(Erection of rear and side extensions and internal alterations and replacement garage) – replace iron gates with
wooden gates – agreed response is no comment.
(b) Advice of Planning Applications approved by Braintree District Council (BDC)
16/01460/VAR Essex Air Ambulance HQ The Airfield Earls Colne – Application for variation of Condition 8 approved
application 09/00548/FUL & Section 106 Agreement-to extend operating hours by 2 hours per day to 2400hrs
16/01884/FUL 61 Colchester Road – Erection of extensions and alterations
16/01854/FUL Crafty Fox Cottage, Colchester Road –removal of conservatory to east elevation and replacement with pitched
roof extension

901. 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 she had been advised by our agent that the buyers of the land remain committed and ECC appear happy to wait for this buyer.

902. OPEN SPACES ACTION PLAN
Cllr Taylor said that the sensory garden for the Meadows should be included, and asked the clerk to recirculate the details so that this could be an agenda item at the March meeting.

903. COMMUNITY LIAISON
Cllr Taylor said that a wine tasting event will be held in January.
Cllr Bond said that the VET (Village Emergency Telephone System) scheme in conjunction with the defibrillator is being considered. The defibrillator should be checked weekly and Cllr Tanous agreed to undertake this with Cllr Bond.
Cllr Bond said that there is more than one board advertising lettings at 41 Colchester Road, and it was agreed that details would be forwarded to the clerk so that he could write to the agents concerned advising them that this was in contravention of local advertising arrangements.

904. WHITE COLNE MEADOWS
Cllr Brace said that removal of the water tank has to be done. He said that quotations are awaited for the drainage of the orchard. He proposed that all the wooded areas on the Meadows be thinned precisely, and it was agreed that the tree warden would be asked for advice on thinning out the trees.

905. VILLAGE HALL
Cllr Paxton said that he believed that the village hall renting rates should be revised, and that it is left to the booking officer to use discretion. The daytime charges could be reduced, and there is a potential hirer. Some radiators are to be relocated. A volunteer has agreed to record several regulatory matters.
Cllr Taylor said that she would look at the ECC grant of £350 under the Community WiFi scheme as County Broadband do not wish to be involved as fibre can be installed, and investigate another possible provider.
Cllr Bond suggested that as the hall lights are flickering, quotations to replace the dimmer switches should be obtained.

906. 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
1698 Leo Print Ltd – December newsletter £ 45.32 £ 1.22
1699 Steven Binks – Village sign restoration – part from Heritage Fund £314.74 £ 567.00
1700 D Williams-clerk sal Dec/Jan £925.82 less PAYE £ 556.22
1701 H M Revenue & Customs – PAYE for clerk salary Dec £ 184.80
1702 Mortimer Contracts Limited – hedge cut village hall to 8 feet £ 360.00 £ 60.00
1703 H M Revenue & Customs-PAYE for clerk salary Jan £ 184.80
D/D Anglian Water – village hall chargeback £263.74, allotments £35 £ 298.74
D/D Scottish Power – village hall chargeback gas £ 39.00
D/D Scottish Power – village hall chargeback – electricity £ 14.00
D/D Scottish Power – village hall chargeback gas £ 39.00
D/D Scottish Power – village hall chargeback – electricity £ 14.00
D/D Scottish Power – village hall chargeback gas £ 39.00
D/D Scottish Power – village hall chargeback – electricity £ 14.00
TOTAL PAYMENTS £ 2,355.88
Funds Received Since the last financial report, the following funds have been received:-
Nat West Bank – interest £ 0.24
Newsletter adverts £ 62.50
Allotment rentals £ 176.00
TOTAL RECEIPTS £ 238.74
(b). Financial statement & Bank Reconciliation
Following the above transactions there is a credit balance on current account of £ 5,795.84
on reserve account of £10,199.22
Total £15,995.06
Of which the balance held in reserve – Heritage Fund £ Nil
And the balance held in reserve – Village Hall maintenance & works is £ Nil
Total of allocated funds is £ Nil
Thus the balance of unallocated funds is £15,995.06​
Bank Balances 15.11.16 £ 18,112.20
Add Receipts £ 238.74
Sub Total £ 18,350.94
Less Total Payments £ 2,355.88
Bank Balances 16.01.17 £ 15,995.06
(c) The clerk reported that the new bank mandate covering the village hall account has been finally accepted by Nat West.
The similar mandate authorising the same signatories for all three bank accounts can now be submitted for the electronic banking facilities under the Nat West Bankline Lite arrangements.
(d) Mr C Mortimer presented his proposed increased prices for grass cutting for 2017. Members agreed these prices and that it was not necessary to seek alternative prices from another contractor.
(e) The clerk’s annual salary was reviewed. It was agreed to increase his salary by 1% to £5,610 pa. as 1% is the anticipated national agreement. The clerk is to advise members when the national rate is announced later in the year.
(f) The budget for the financial year from 1 April 2017 to 31 March 2018 was discussed and draft figures were considered in detail. Income figures agreed included £210 for allotment rentals, and £220 for newsletter adverts. The parish support grant now includes the Localised Council Tax Support Grant and is reduced by £346. Total income including the grants but excluding the precept is estimated at £2,505. Total expenditure is estimated at £18,162 and included Meadows maintenance of £2,500, village hall maintenance of £1,000, and a village hall manager/caretaker of £2,000. Members expressed concern at the excess of expenditure over income and said that whilst the parish council could utilise bank balances this year, either expenditure will have to be cut in future, income from the village hall increased, or the precept will have to be increased considerably. The village hall budget shows a breakeven position.
Cllr Taylor proposed that the precept is increased to £10,404 which is an increase of £664. This is an increase of 5% in the council tax for each band D property charge from £47.64 to £50.02. Members agreed the precept of £10,404 unanimously.

907. HIGHWAYS
Cllr Taylor referred to the reintroduction of the Speedwatch campaign and said that 5 volunteers have been identified, and arrangements are being made with Earls Colne Speedwatch for our volunteers to be trained.
Cllr Bond said that the location of the Speed Indicator Device (SID) is to be moved when he has obtained the equipment.
Cllr Taylor said that she is to meet with ECC Parish Paths Partnership Officer and our parish footpath representative to understand what footpaths the ECC will deal with and then consider whether the parish council wishes to become involved with the Parish Paths Partnership scheme.
Cllr Taylor said that there had been a complaint of road noise since Colne Park Road has been resurfaced.
Cllr Bond said that BDC have swept the main road, although a week later than the advertised date.
Cllr Bond said that damage has recently been caused to the village green.
Cllr Taylor said that a resident of Boley Road has complained of the potholes and he will report this to ECC. The clerk was asked to also report this,
Cllr Bond said that the footway (pavement) on Colneford Hill, uphill from Colneford House to the bend in the road is in a dangerous state, but ECC Highways have recently replied to say that the footway is not considered dangerous. The clerk was asked to send the correspondence to BDC Cllr Siddall and ask him to investigate this with ECC.
Cllr Brace asked the clerk to send the correspondence regarding the blockage of the new footpath to the ECC Parish Paths Partnership Officer and ask her to look into this issue.

908. ALLOTMENTS
Cllr Taylor suggested that the Meadows Group consider whether a sensory garden could be developed on plots 16, 17 and 18 or incorporated into the Meadows and that they will report back. This was agreed.
The clerk was asked to resend the request to Four Colnes Horticultural Society for their support towards a replacement fence around the allotments as the existing fence is not adequate to keep out rabbits, advising that a number of Earls Colne parishioners already use our allotments.

909. CORRESPONDENCE NOT DEALT WITH ELSEWHERE
From BDC regarding the change in the discretionary grants for council tax and asking for the completion of details for the village hall so this can be reviewed. The clerk was asked to deal with this.

910. OTHER MATTERS
Cllr Taylor said that she could not find ownership of the war memorial in the ECC records. She has the minute book from 1970’s to 1995 and this should be held by ECC Record Office.

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

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