Minutes of the online meeting held, via Zoom, on Tuesday 16th March 2021

Present:  Cllrs Hodson, Hill, Cotton, Maciag and Pudney, District Councillor Alban and the Clerk

181.20 Cllr Hodson welcomed those present to the meeting.

182.20 County Councillor Gardener gave his apologies as he was attending another meeting.

183.20 Declarations of interest were given by Councillors Hodson, Hill and the Clerk in      respect of 193.30 relating to the Great Gidding Charity

184.20 No members of the Public & Press were present.             

185.20 Minutes of the meeting held on 16th February 2021  were confirmed as a true and correct record.  Cllr Pudney proposed, Cllr Cotton seconded                        

186.20 Matters arising from the Minutes of the February Meeting:

                        Cllr Hodson queried the amounts that were mentioned in County Councillor Gardener’s report – Clerk confirmed that £20 million was the figure stated to be spent on footpaths and £2.73M to be spent on flood prevention.

                        The waste bin opposite the shop is not being emptied by the volunteer.  It was agreed to remove this as soon as possible – Councillor Pudney will undertake this action.

                        *** District Councillor Alban joined the meeting


District Councillor Alban advised the District Council budget meeting voted there would be a 0% in respect of the District Council element of Council Tax.

Fly tipping continues to be a problem along the B660 corridor, particularly alcohol bottles.  The Enforcement Team are following up where addresses have been found.

Land adjacent to 21 Mill Road – the allocated Enforcement Officer has emailed Cllr Alban and the Parish Clerk and it is hoped that progress will be made.  Cllr Hodson thanked District Cllr Alban for his ongoing support with this matter.

District Council will become responsible for civil parking enforcement as regards double yellow lines – this is likely to start in 2 years time.

Cllr Alban and Cllr Beuttell are proposing that, when restrictions allow, a meeting for Councillors and Clerks within his District Council ward can be held to enable views, ideas and experiences to be shared.

***      District Councillor Alban left the meeting.

Councillor Hill – he has presented the LHI bid in respect of Mill Road and Luddington Road, online.  We will learn the outcome in June 2021.

Councillor Hodson – allotments were still very wet.

There were no further reports from Councillors


a) to note Barclays Bank statements

b) to note the Budget control statement and the cash flow forecast – it was noted that the speed awareness camera will not be purchased until 2021-22 and therefore a surplus will be shown in the overall budget at the end of the financial year.

Grass cutting budget – the current contract has cost much less than anticipated.

Contingency fund – this has not been spent this year.

Website maintenance – there has been an overspend on this budget due to the requirement to bring the website content in line with current required legislation.

c) PAYMENTS AND ACCOUNTS – to approve online payments in respect of the following:

 WhoWhat forAmountVATAuthorisedAuthorised
64J R TroloveWages for December – 27 hours£xxxNONEJRTPH
63Inkwell printing – paid prior to the meetingGidding News – distributed early March25.00NONEJRTPH
65L J Nicholson, Ivy Cottage FlowersFuneral wreath – R P Hayden40.00NONEJRTPH

d)  to approve Clerk’s hours worked between 1st and 28th February ( 28 hours)

Payments and clerk’s hours agreed by Cllr Hill and Cllr Cotton.

189.20 Planning matters:

a) Ref: 20/00243/ENTRÉE 65 Main Street (Andrea Dollard,  Enforcement Officer at HuntsDC) – removal of hedgerow  – Clerk has emailed to enquire which party has been requested to replace the hedge, response awaited.

b) Report no 34428 (Zaria Bettles, Footpath Officer) Blocked public footpath (No 6) between Chapel End and Mill Road reported online – she has responded to advise that Jury Duty had delayed her work and she was asking the various landowners to work together – Clerk has queried the comment about working together as only one landowner/property is related to the blockage.

Cllr Hodson enquired of the Clerk if Parish Council could legally remove the obstruction – Clerk to research.  Cllr Pudney read out the wording relating to the Rights of Way Section 137 of the Highways Act – Clerk will ask a direct question of the Footpath Officer regarding the requirements to enable this to be resolved.  Cllr Pudney suggested a direct request be sent to the Footpath Officer regarding action that the Parish Council can legally take to remove the obstacle.

c)          2 Gains Lane – aerial removed, conservatory still in situ – Chorus Homes ( SARAH CINCIUS, NEIGHBOURHOOD SERVICES MANAGER, also referred to Neighbourhood Officer, Cameron Keysell) had emailed a response to the Clerk to advise that this was ongoing and delayed by access issues due to COVID.

d) land adjacent to 21 Mill Road (REF: 18/00246/ENURES) – Acting Planning Enforcement Officer Sally Granshaw has made telephone contact with the occupier, and plans to phone him again on 17th March 2021 to discuss further, and will then advise the Parish Council and District Councillor Alban of the outcome.

190.20 Recreation Ground Update:

            Planning application for the MUGA – payment has been made, Clerk advised that the Planning Application is not yet showing on the Huntingdonshire District Council planning list (as at 10.3.2021)

            As a result of the latest issue of the Gidding News, a resident has offered to get involved with the MUGA project.

            Cllr Hodson advised that Bradgate had cut the grass and, as the prices, terms and conditions of the contract with Bradgate remain the same as last year, he proposed that we retain them in this role.  Cllr Hill agreed.

191.20 Annual Parish Meeting – with the uncertainties around COVID restrictions, particularly in person events, after much discussion it was agreed that the Annual Parish Meeting should take place at the start of the April meeting (20th April at 7.30PM), this will be online and notices will be displayed 14 days prior to the event to advise parishioners (noticeboards/website/shop).  Parishioners will be invited to join via ZOOM.

192.20 Parish Council use of social media. 

            From time to time comments have been made about this Parish Council on social media sites that exist within the village.  At present the Parish Council do not use social media.  It was discussed at length, with all Councillors expressing their view how to respond, or if a response is required, or if a social media “presence” is required and if so on which platforms.

            Cllr Maciag pointed out that parishioners are given the opportunity to ask questions and air their views by attending the monthly Parish Council meetings and, more recently, join the online meetings.

            It was suggested that an official statement/comment should be used on occasions when it was felt that the Parish Council needed to respond.  Clerk will devise a wording for approval and adoption at the April meeting.

193.20 Charity proposal had not been included in the associated documents for this meeting and this item will be deferred until April meeting.

194.20 Rights of Way and Footpaths – Cllr Pudney has offered to take on this role as one of his responsibilities.  Clerk had shared with Councillors a list of rights of way and footpaths within the Parish, with associated landowners where known, together with details of outstanding issues within the Parish and will keep Cllr Pudney informed about current and future matters.

195.20 Correspondence received since 16th February 2021 (other than that discussed in agenda items above).  Due to COVID 19 restrictions emails have been shared almost immediately.

            a) a letter from Freshwater Habitats Trust to request to sample water at Townsend Pond – this was agreed.           

196.20  Items for decisions at next meeting:

            Request to Parish Council from the Great Gidding Charity Trustees in respect of rental of village Allotments on an annual basis

             Social Media – official statement to be adopted                               

197.20 Date of next meeting – Tuesday 20th April 2021,

starting at 1930 hours ONLINE via ZOOM

            Meeting closed at 20.45

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