Minutes of the online meeting held, via Zoom, on Tuesday 21st July 2020

Present:  Cllrs Hill, Hodson, Pudney and Dear at the Village Hall, Great Gidding and County Councillor Gardner joined the meeting later via Zoom.

048.20 Chairman’s Welcome

049.20 To receive apologies and reasons for absence:

            District Councillor Alban

050.20 Member’s declaration of Disclosable Interests for items on the Agenda – there were         none

051.20 Public & Press participation session with respect to items on the Agenda

              No members of the Press or Public joined the meeting

052.20 To confirm and accept minutes of the meeting held on 16th June  2020 – these were confirmed by Cllr Hodson and seconded by Cllr Pudney                         

053.20 Matters arising from those Minutes that will not be discussed as an agenda item – there were none


To receive reports from Councillors:

Cllr Hill – Local Highways Initiative Bid meeting – Cllr Hill met with Jo Challis, CambsCC Highways engineer with responsibility for the project, they walked around the village and identified sites for signage, road markings and the speed awareness unit (see printed emails on file that explain further).  Due to the narrow grass verges, the “access gates” will be installed at the point of the of the 30MPH signs.  CambsCC had offered to order the speed awareness sign (EVOLIS) as they were making a bulk purchase and this would result in a small saving on purchase costs.  Further emails discuss the type of post required for the sign, these are additional cost and it was felt that a stronger post (than those used for street signs) would be required due to the addition of a solar powered battery unit.  Jo Challis has subsequently enquired if a second post was required and, following discussion at the meeting, it was agreed that this would be preferred but would be dependent on the cost to the Parish Council (Cllr Hill will make enquiries of Jo Challis).

Initially the overall cost of the project was to be in the region of £7700, with the Parish Council to contribute approximately £1000.

Cllr Pudney offered that, if a second post is installed, he would be willing to move the unit between posts.

The 2021-22 bid has been submitted by Cllr Hill and its receipt acknowledged by CambsCC.

Cllrs Dear and Hodson had no further reports.

Cllr Pudney enquired when the grass triangle was cut (junction of Chapel End and Gains Lane), Cllr Dear advised that it has been cut twice so far this (calendar) year.  Clerk advised that the County Council were contracted to cut this area once a year.

County Councillor Gardener joined the meeting via ZOOM at this point.  He gave his report and then left our meeting to enable him to join Hail Weston Parish Council meeting.  His report is attached.


                        a) to note Barclays Bank statements

b) to note the Budget control statement

c) PAYMENTS AND ACCOUNTS – Cllr Hill approved and Cllr Pudney seconded  online payments in respect of the following

 WhoWhat forAmountVATAuthorisedAuthorised
21J R TroloveWages for May – 27 hours£xxxNONEJRTPH
22Bradgate FencingGrass cutting on 3/7 Invoice no 812499.6616.61JRTPH

d)  to approve Clerk’s hours worked between 1st and 30th June ( 34 hours) – signed by NH

056.20             Planning matters:

65 Main Street – removal of hedgerow.  Clerk advised that, following notification of the hedge removal, she had contacted Mr Craven of Milton Estates, the owners of the “dry yard” next to No 65, who visited the site on the same day.  Clerk also completed an online submission to Huntingdon District Council Planning Department as the site concerned falls within the Conservation Area of the village.

Milton Estates have responded to the Parish Council, but an update from the Conservation Office is awaited (copies of all correspondence can be seen on file).

It was agreed that the Parish Council would take no further action and await the report and advice of the Conservation Officer at Huntingdonshire District Council.

5 Mill Road (this should be No 7) – Copies of emails and photographs can be seen on file – the contractors had dug post holes for a new fence approx. 18 inches adrift from the original and onto land owned by Gidding Charity Trustees.  Cllr Hodson met with Mr Craven of Milton Estates, the owner of the cottage, and the fence line was re-instated as the fence was erected, bringing this matter to a satisfactory conclusion.

Planning Applications – there are 2 applications for the Parish on Hunts DC planning portal, (as at 15/7/20) requests to comment have not been received, although from the website it is noted that there is a delay in processing applications. 

057.20             Recreation Ground Update:

                        The play equipment – notices have been updated and attached to enable use of equipment with guidelines in respect of coronavirus precautions and restrictions.  Cllr Hodson requested that a notice be installed in the Noticeboard at the entrance to the Recreation Ground – Clerk will install

                        Risk assessment by Cllr Hodson on 3/7/2020 identified the following (photographs on file):

                        Safety matting at the top of the slide had been damaged by the grass cutter.  Cllr Hill will arrange to purchase a mat which will be installed over the existing matting.

                        Some play equipment needs scrubbing clean – Cllr Dear offered to clean this.

Multi Use Games Area– Cllr Pudney’s advised that some initial sketches had been produced.  The preferred site (approx. the area of a tennis court and its surround) is just inside the entrance to the Recreation Ground to the right hand side, slightly away from the trees, but this may necessitate the storage container being moved to another area of the field.  It was felt that the Winwick end of the field was too wet and overhung with trees.  Potentially a mound could be created from soil excavated to create the hard play surface, thereby creating another play option.

Cllr Pudney advised that the pedals on the multi-gym were not operating correctly and he will try to fix this.

                        Jubilee Wood /Orchard updates will be made in the Charities Trustees meeting.   

058.20             Remembrance Day wreath – reserved, awaiting information regarding service.

                        Display of large poppies – a resident had enquired last year about displaying large poppies on lampposts through the village.  Due to licences required to install/add anything to lampposts this was not to be pursued.  Poppies are available for a suggested donation of £1.50 each, Clerk suggested that one poppy be displayed for each villager who had died during the World Wars, possibly displaying them in the Church yard/entrance.  Cllr Hodson suggested attaching the poppies to the tree guards on the triangle of grass opposite the village shop, where they could be seen by all.

059.20             Cllr Hill had advised the Clerk of his intention to resign his position as Chairman at this meeting.  He also advised that he would remain as a Parish Councillor and would continue with the projects that he was currently involved with.  Cllr Pudney expressed thanks to Cllr Hill.

                        It was agreed by all present that requests to encourage parishioners to join the Parish Council has been made several times through the Clarion/Gidding News/village website over the past year and this has failed to attract any enquiries.  Clerk asked Councillors to compile a list of residents who could be sent an “invitation” to join the Parish Council.

                        Cllr Hodson, as Vice Chairman, took the role of Chairman for the remainder of the meeting.  

060.20             Co-option of Parish Councillors – as stated in 059.20 there has been no interest.   

061.20             Correspondence received since 16th June 2020 (other than that discussed in agenda items above) – copies can be seen on file. 

                        Due to COVID 19 restrictions emails have been shared almost immediately.

  1. Consultation regarding Huntingdon District Council Licensing Act – Cllr Hill will review this document and share thoughts with Councillors via email.
  2. Extinction Rebellion – Utilising road verges to reverse biodiversity loss – Clerk advised that she had attended talks/workshops on this subject and suggested that, should a parishioner come forward with the interest of sowing a wildflower area/verge, this could be accommodated and grass contractors informed of the areas not to be cut.
  3. Future Road closures and repairs/resurfacing – details and maps shared.  The County Council will install road signs/warnings prior to work commencing, therefore parishioners would be made aware at the appropriate time.
  4. Hunts DC – COVID 19 outbreak management – this document can be seen on file.

e)   Huntingdonshire District Council – notification of refund of Council Tax payment in respect of Recreation Ground

f)   a visitor to the village had highlighted an error on the newt trail directions as they appeared on the village website, and also advised that a tree was blocking the route.  Cllr Hodson has requested that the village website be amended to rectify the error and had sawn through the tree that was blocking the route (this has been reported previously on the CambsCC online reporting page).  Cllr Hodson had responded to the visitor’s email, thanking him for taking the trouble to inform about the errors/issues.

g)  Request for assistance from Parishioner in how to get overhanging trees/vegetation in the area of Gains Lane/Dells Close/ The Jitty removed, to enable BT overhead cables to be replaced/renewed– online report and request made to Cambs CC Highways Department

h)  British Horse Society – request for a researcher of ancient routes and footpaths – Cllr Dear offered to carry out the research.

062.20             Items for decisions at next meeting: 

                        Prepare for Co-option of Parish Councillor

                        Nominations and voting for the position of Vice Chairman

                        Planning matters – No 65 Main Street (if report received from Planning Dept).

063.20             Date of next meeting – Tuesday 18th August 2020,

starting at 1930 hours in the Village Hall, Great Gidding, unless we are still restricted to holding online meetings.

Meeting closed at 21.05

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