Minutes of the Meeting of Great & Little Gidding Parish Council held on Tuesday 16th February 2016 at 7:30pm
Present: Cllrs A Alexander (Chair), L James (Vice-Chair), P Hodson and R Giddens
In Attendance: L Ellis (Clerk), District Cllrs D Tuplin, D Tysoe and one member of the public
CCC = Cambridgeshire County Council
HDC = Huntingdon District Council
PC = Parish Council
01.16 Chairman’s Welcome
The Chairman welcomed everyone to the meeting and introduced the new Clerk.
02.16 Apologies and reason for absence
Cllr R Hayden (illness)
03.16 Member’s declaration of Disclosable Pecuniary Interests
04.16 Public and press participation session with respect to items on the agenda
05.16 To confirm and accept minutes of 15th December 2015
To take the minutes as read and approve them as a true and accurate record. Proposed by Cllr Hodson and seconded by Cllr Giddens. The minutes were then duly signed by the Chairman.
06.16 Matters arising from minutes (information only)
It was reported that the salt box has now been moved to the correct location.
07.16 Communication from Councillors
Cllr Tuplin reported that Sawtry Parish Council were organising a workshop at 7pm on Wednesday 2nd March to provide an update on planning issues due to recent changes to permitted development rights. From 1st April HDC will issue new planning applications via email and will no longer issue hard copies. The PC will need to consider their options for viewing applications. It was noted that Sawtry PC would be purchasing a projector.
Cllr Tysoe reported that HDC will shortly be discussing the annual budget. It had been agreed that Council Tax would be frozen for 5 years and are now 3 years into that period. HDC are aiming to be self-sufficient and the impact on residents has been relatively low. The problem with the ‘New Homes Bonus’ is that if we continue to give planning permission for new houses, the houses are not built and the land value increases, HDC has no legal ability to enforce the developer to build.
Cllr Tysoe asked if the PC had a neighbourhood plan as funding is available to HDC to assist with the process and provide professional support to Parish Councils. HDC has some useful guidance for PCs who wish to produce their own neighbourhood plan which are easier than previously however it can still be daunting. Having a strategic plan for the village would help to provide a degree of protection from developers wishing to develop in the area. A referendum is required as part of the neighbourhood plan process.
Cllr Tysoe reported that the Leisure Group are now returning a surplus but that not all of the centres are making a surplus however there is a commitment to keep all of the centres operational. It was noted that the management structure of the Leisure Centres has changed.
Cllr Tysoe reported that HDC are currently looking at shared services and in particular ICT, they are working with Cambridge City and South Cambs DC, looking to make ‘back office’ services more efficient.
Cllr Giddens reported that a resident has kindly trimmed the hedges on both sides of the bridleway off Luddington Road.
Cllr James reported that:
the trees on the B660 had been trimmed and that those on Gains Lane had been marked out, numbered and work is imminent.
the village sign has been refurbished and installed
the tender for the buses has now been taken up, when timetables are available they will be disseminated out.
Cllr Alexander reported that the water leak was in the process of being repaired. It was noted that a further leak has been found at Gains Lane, Anglia Water have visited but we still have a damaged storm drain.
Cllr Tuplin left at this juncture (7:50pm)
08.16 Update on the Parish Clerk vacancy
Resolved. The new Clerk commenced her duties on 1st February 2016.
09.16 S137 funding for the Church lead replacement
Cllr Hodson reported that the insurance company were not paying-out fully on the claim for the stolen lead as the Church did not have an alarm in place. The PC agreed to consider providing funding for an alarm system, Cllr Hodson to request that the relevant Church group provides the PC with costings for consideration.
10.16 History Group Village Hall hire
It was noted that the History Group had requested funding which had been agreed in October 2015. The Clerk to raise a cheque for £128.
11.16 To consider the tree report
The invoice for the tree report has been paid as confirmation had been received that all areas had been covered. The majority of the trees do not belong to the Council. It was noted that recently a tree had been removed when it may have been possible to save it, there appears to be no communication between HDC and the PC on such matters. Cllr Tysoe offered to assist in identifying who was responsible for tree works being carried out and suggested he could be contacted via email in the future to assist.
It was agreed that the owners of the trees should be advised of the remedial work required to their property and in particular to those trees overhanging the playing field.
12.16 To agree the date for the Annual Parish Meeting
It was agreed that the APM should be held on Tuesday 10th May 2016.
13.16 Update on the Parish Councillor vacancies
It was noted that 2 residents had shown an interest in joining the PC. The Clerk to invite the individuals to the March meeting to sign a Declaration of Acceptance.
Correspondence was duly noted. The Clerk to issue the correspondence schedule with the agenda.
a)Payment of accounts
£240.00 – R B Woodworking (100935)
£205.77 – CGM (100936)
£359.41 – Salaries (100937)
£114.00 – Cambridgeshire CC (100938)
£128.00 – History Group (100939)
£15.23 – BT (DD)
All payments were unanimously approved and all associated documentation was initialled by two signatories.
Cllr Hodson reported that he had reconciled the bank account balance. It was agreed that the Clerk be a signatory and a bank mandate completed. Cllr Hodson agreed to provide the necessary documentation.
16.16 Items for discussion at the March meeting
Hunt Meet horse boxes parked on Main Street and Mill Road obstructing access to driveways and parking on pavements.
17.16 Date of next meeting
Tuesday 15th March 2016
Meeting closed The Chairman thanked everyone for attending, the meeting then closed at 8:35pm