IPSTONES PARISH COUNCIL
Minutes of the meeting held on Wednesday 18 January 2017 at 7 p.m. in the Memorial Hall Extension
PRESENT: Councillors Philip Barks, Linda Malyon (Chair), Heather Morris, Howard Mycock, Sandy Richards, Barry Shuttleworth, Andrew Stevenson & Patrick Stimpson. The Clerk, 1 Reporter and 2 x Members of the Public
APOLOGIES: Councillor John Williams
DECLARATION OF INTERESTS: These are to be taken as they arise.
DISPENSATIONS: It was agreed unanimously ‘that a general dispensation be granted to all serving members of Ipstones Parish Council under section 33 (2) of the Localism Act 2011, for the setting of Annual Precept’. No other requests for dispensations had been received.
It was agreed that the minutes for the meeting held on Tuesday 6th December 2016 as being a true record
01/17. MATTERS ARISING
- Sign, Clerks Bank: It was noted that there is not a sign on Clerk’s Bank that is obscured by an over grown hedge. Cllr Barks said he will find out where the Sign is. It was agreed to send a letter of apology to the people that the original letter had been sent to. Cllr Morris suggested that in future if anything like this is reported to the parish council, it should be checked out before writing to people.
- Foxt Telephone Kiosk: Cllrs Maylon & Mycock reported that they had seen Mrs Mann and she had confirmed that her husband is still intending to repair/paint the kiosk. It was noted that another person has also offered to do this. Concerns were raised as to whether the paint would still be ok as it was purchased some years ago.
- Stop Tap (on second tap in Cemetery): Mr Leeson had not yet been asked to replace this – the Clerk said she will phone him.
- Proposed Area for the Remembrance Crosses: The Clerk advised that she had e-mail the Vicar to ask if the suggested size was sufficient.
02/17. PLANS: The following planning applications had been received: – Cllr Malyon reported that at the full meeting of the District Council in December it had been moved that the DC will resume forwarding the full paper copies of planning applications to Parish Councils.
SMD/2016/0673 Proposed new access/parking area at Lime Tree Villa, 97 Brookfields Road, Ipstones. On proposal by Cllr Shuttleworth and seconded by Cllr Mycock it was agreed unanimously to support this application.
SMD/2016/0795 Proposed change of use of existing barn to form extension to existing living accommodation and construction of single storey extension to form sunroom, including retention of works carried out under expired planning permission 09/00072/FUL at Pelham Farm, Ashbourne Road, Bottomhouse. On proposal by Cllr Stevenson and seconded by Cllr Stimpson it was agreed unanimously to support this application.
SMD/2016/0797 Retrospective permission for a single storey domestic garage at Park Green Farm, Foxt Road, Foxt. It was agreed unanimously to support this application.
SMDC re SMD/2016/0658 Proposed 2 x No log Cabins for holiday let at Land behind Stonewalls, Foxt Road, Foxt. Notification that this application will be reported at the Planning Applications Committee on 19/01/2017 had been received.
- Mrs Cooke re Flooding at Whirley Low, Foxt: An e-mail with several pictures of the flooding had been received. The photos were shown to Members. Standing Orders were suspended to allow Mrs Cooke to speak. Mrs Cooke explained that there is only one standard 10” grid and that this gets blocked quickly in times of heavy rain as all the debris from the Park Nook area all runs down to Whirley Low. Cllr Malyon said that she has reported the issue to Highways and that they were due to come out and inspect the site yesterday (17th) and said that she would keep Mrs Cooke informed of what they decide to do about the issue. It was also noted that there was an area of flooding in Shaw Walls Lane and it was agreed to notify Cotton Parish Council of this as it is in their parish.
- Lengthsman’s Report (November): Details of this were noted.
- Midlands Air Ambulance Charity: A letter had been received regarding Memorial Donations and about the cost of keeping the Air Ambulances operating. It was proposed by Cllr Morris and seconded by Cllr Stimpson to give a donation of £100 under Section 137 (Miscellaneous Payments) to the Midland Air Ambulance Charity. This was agreed unanimously.
- Community Council of Staffordshire re Best Kept Village Competition: Following a discussion it was agreed not to enter this year but to consider entering again in future years.
- Wicksteed Leisure Ltd – Report on Inspection of Play Equipment at Foxt: Issues raised from the report were: –Racing Car – Generally satisfactory, but recommend loose side panels are re-fixed as required. Swing Bay for 2 x swings – Satisfactory condition. Note: Failures have been reported of the welds on this type of swing suspension. These can only be detected by internal inspection, which requires dismantling. This is not carried out by Wicksteed during annual inspections. Refer to the manufacturers for advice as required. Balance Beams (Low Risk) – generally satisfactory, but monitor the timber condition for splinter hazards. Recommend affected areas are rubbed down smooth as required. Access Gate from Road (Low Risk) – handle can be stiff to operate. Recommend that gates are adjusted as required. A minimum 12mm gap is recommended between gates and posts in both closed and open positions to prevent potential pinch/crush hazards in operation. Operator’s Sign (Low Risk) – Generally satisfactory, but recommend the notice is refixed to the gate. General (Low Risk) – Recommend intrusive hedgerow and nettle growth is cut back as required, in particular at eye level at access path. General (Medium Risk) – Access by dogs is not physically prevented and routine inspection should include monitoring and removal of animal faeces. The Multiplay Unit, Concrete Seat and Litterbin were noted to be in a Satisfactory Condition. Cllrs Mycock and Stimpson agreed to take a look (esp. at the gate)
- SCC re ‘Notice of Termination of Lengthsman Agreement’: It was noted that the County Council are terminating the Lengthsmen Agreement with Town and Parish Councils as from 31 March 2017.
- SCC, Community Highway Liaison Officer re Lengthsmen Scheme: A reply to the parish council’s enquiry to keep the Lengthsman and for the parish council to fund this from the precept, stated that it is fine for the Lengthsman to carry out the following work: – Clearing debris from grid tops; strimming verges that are not covered by the Mowing Contractors, Cleaning Road Signs, clearing debris from pavements and roads following storm weather, trimming back smaller bushes/shrubs that are on the verge side (Litter Picking is done on behalf of the District Council and they are to continue funding this for the financial year 2017/2018).
- Dean Goodwin re Funding Opportunities (S.E.L.F.I.E): A support Service for Families & Young People): Details of an e-mail had been received from Mr Goodwin (following a telephone call to the Clerk), and it was agreed to invite Mr Goodwin to a meeting to explain about possible projects and funding.
- Community Council of Staffordshire re Diary of Village Events for 2017: This was noted and it was agreed that the Clerk should complete this.
- SCC re Debt Benefit and Consumer Advice: Following the receipt of an e-mail it was noted that the County Council will be cutting funding to the Citizen Advice Service in Staffordshire. It went on to say that, if, collectively, partners from across the county are able to contribute around £300,000 the CA will be able to offer a scaled back service in
- SMDC/BT re 90 Day Consultation for their current programme for the intended removal of payphones in the Staffordshire Moorlands: It was noted that there was no removals scheduled in the Ipstones Parish in this round of removals. Members agreed to write to BT and remind them that the Phone Kiosk in Church Lane, Ipstones has been listed and that the parish council have adopted the Kiosk in Foxt following the removal of the payphone several years ago.
- SMDC re Forward Plans (Development Capacity, Viability and Community Infrastructure Levy Study): It was noted that in November parish councils were invited to make comment on the methodology relating to the above and that it had come to their attention that a number of parishes had raised concerns over the technical nature of this document and the ability to be able to feed back in this specialised field. They stated that parishes do not have respond to the document. They went on to say that there will be further full public consultation on the next stage of the Local Plan at a later date and parishes will have the opportunity to comment at that time.
- Cllr John Williams re ‘Blocked Public Footpath No 52 (between its junction with PFP 53 & PFP 54: An e-mail stated that this public footpath is again being obstructed. It was noted that this has been reported previously. It was agreed to report again.
- Ipstones & Foxt Senior Citizens: A letter had been received enquiring if the parish council would consider giving a grant toward the cost of providing trips and entertainment for the Senior Citizens. Cllrs Malyon & Shuttleworth declared a personal interest in this and did not take part in the discussion or decision. It was proposed by Cllr Stevenson and seconded by Cllr Morris to give a donation for the sum of £200.00 under Section 137 (Miscellaneous Payments). This was agreed.
- Mr Hall, Manager of Ipstones Fire Station re Potential housing for Old Fire Pump: it was noted that Breeze House are unable to help with providing a ‘shed’ to store/display the Old Historic Fire Pump. The Clerk reported that Mr Hall has said that the Pump is fine being stored at the Leek Fire Station, as currently the area it is being stored in is not used for other purposes and the Old Pump is undercover and secure. It was agreed to have a think of possible alternative locations for the pump to be stored in the future.
- Mrs N Clarke re Pot Holes at Bottom of Clerks Bank and near Churchside Barn, Church Lane: It was noted that these potholes have been reported previously and agreed to check when they are to be repaired. Cllr Morris also mentioned that the ‘door’ on the Street Light unit on the Light outside Church Barn is loose and agreed to report this.
- SMDC re District Council’s New Web Site: Details of this were noted. It was agreed to respond that the Website needs to display a Contact Phone number for the DC.
- The Pensions Regulator re Staging date for automatic enrolment (01/02/2017): Details of the actions to be taken next had been received.
- SCC re Notification of publication of Inspector’s report on the examination of the Minerals Local Plan for Staffordshire (2015 to 2030): It was noted that the Inspector has confirmed that the Plan is ‘sound’.
- Other Newsletters, Bulletins etc
SPC Assc. – Bulletins for 08/12; 15/12; 22/12; 05/01 & 12/01 NALC – Policy Consultation – Draft Public Service Ombudsman Bill SPC Assc – Training Courses – How to respond to Planning Applications (15/02) SPA Assc – Training Courses – Local Councillor Training Course (21/02)
04/17. PROVISION OF LENGTHSMAN SERVICE FOR NEXT FINANCIAL YEAR 2017/2018: As noted in minute 03/17. f. & g. on page 3, it is noted that the County Council will no longer be funding the Village Lengthsman Scheme for Parish Councils, however according to an e-mail received they have no objection to the parish council continuing to employ a Lengthsman to carry out minor highway duties as listed on that e-mail, however it would need to be funded by the Parish Council. Following a discussion it was agreed unanimously that the parish council should fund the provision of a Lengthsman to carryout minor highway maintenance duties as it would be beneficial to the parish as many of these minor works would not get done by the Highways Department.
05/17 Quotes for the resurfacing of PFP 102 (Public Footpath/bridleway between 3 Church Lane and the corner of Belmont Road: The Clerk reported that she had forwarded the details of the proposed work to three Contractors inviting them to submit a quote by 11/01/2017 and that the details had also been displayed on the Noticeboards in Ipstones & Foxt, however only one quote had been received. The quote was for a section at the top of the path to be tarmacked with the aim to direct water to the drain that is there and then to resurface with hard core to a metre wide with a wider ‘passing section’ just before the bank so that two horse riders can pass (this is a requirement of the County Council’s Rights of Way Dept). Following a discussion it was proposed by Cllr Morris and seconded by Cllr Stevenson to accept the quote in principal for the sum of £4350 plus VAT (from W Jordan & Sons) with the condition that the owners of the properties on the either side of the top of the path also agree to have the sections in front of their properties tarmacked, this would increase the chances of surface water from the Church Lane area being directed to the drain at the top of the path and therefore reduce the chances of the hard core part of the path being washed away in periods of heavy rain. (Both property owners have expressed a verbal interest in this, subject to the cost, and the Contractor is to give them quotes). This was agreed unanimously.
06/17. QUOTES FOR REPAIR WORK TO MILLENIUM ARCH: Two quotes had been received. It was proposed by Cllr Stevenson and seconded by Cllr Barks to accept the lower of the two quotes which was for £271.50, from Whiston Joinery. This was agreed unanimously.
07/17. SETTING THE PRECEPT FOR THE FINANCIAL YEAR 2017/2018: The Clerk had issued each Member with estimated figures for general/regular expenses for the year and other possible expenditure they may wish to consider. The Clerk said that in her opinion the precept could be kept a zero % increase or even decrease the % slightly. Following a discussion in which it was agreed that there would be extra expenditure with the funding of the Lengthsman and the resurfacing of PFP 102 it was proposed by Cllr Malyon and seconded by Cllr Stimpson to keep the precept % at zero and ask for a precept of £20103.90 (there would also be a Council Tax support grant of £368.19). This was agreed unanimously.
08/17. KNOTWEED SPRAYING AT NOONSUN COMMON: It had been reported to a member that some of the spray had gone over to the adjacent field and that it had killed a section of grass which is not growing back. The Owner of the field has verbally asked a member of the council if he can be reimbursed for the cost of re-seeding the field. Following a discussion it was agreed to ask the Owner of the field to write a letter addressed ‘to whom it may concern’, giving the following details: – the size of the area affected by the weed spray and the cost of re- seeding that section of the field. This letter can then be forwarded to the Contractor with a view of claiming the cost of the re-seeding.
09/17. MOWING EQUIPMENT SERVICING: Two x verbal quotes had been received for a basic service (any parts that need replacing would be extra apart from basic parts included in the service). It was proposed by Cllr Stevenson and seconded by Cllr Barks to accept the lower of the two quotes which was £15 each for the Strimmers and £35 for the mower, plus VAT. This was The Countrystore, Ipstones. This was agreed unanimously.
10/17. ROAD SAFETY AT BOTTOMHOUSE CROSS ROADS: The most recent e-mail from County Councillor Gill Heath stated she is will be meeting with the Community Traffic Management Officer about Bottomhouse and that it is on her DHP, but she is waiting to see when the funding will be made available. Cllr Barks stated that he had seen a couple of other near misses, when drivers appear not to have seen the STOP sign when travelling from Onecote. It was also noted that the road markings at the junction are also faded. It was agreed to ask if the repositioning of the STOP sign and the re-painting of the Road Markings can be treated as urgent and to reiterate the request for the Speed Limit to be reduced from 50 mph to 40 mph along the ‘lighted’ section of the A523 at Bottomhouse.
11/17. STONES ON VERGE AT TOWN END ROAD, FOXT: It was noted that an Inspector from County Highways has inspected the site and reported that the verge in question is privately owned so they (The SCC) cannot do anything about the stones. It was agreed to write to Mr & Mrs Cope with this information.
12/17. HIGHWAYS: The following issues were reported: –
- Pot Holes, Belmont Road (Just past the ‘30’ mph Sign): It was agreed to report these.
- Grids that need ‘Jetting’: It was noted that the Grid on the south side of Foxt Village Hall is totally blocked and needs jetting as a matter of urgency. The Clerk added that she has a list of blocked grids from the Lengthsman that will also be reported.
- Foxt Road, Froghall Road (between Lime Kilns and A52): It was noted that the edge of the road on the right hand side as you go toward the A52 is breaking up and becoming dangerous. It was agreed to report this again.
- Road going toward Cheddleton (Between the lane to Sharpcliffe and Basford): It was noted that this road is in a very rough condition with many potholes and agreed to ask Cheddleton PC if they will report this to County Highways as it is in their parish.
13/17. ANY OTHER BUSINESS DEEMED URGENT
- Former Chip Shop, High Street, Ipstones: It was reported that the property is now empty and that a window had fallen out onto the pavement and almost hit a passer-by. It has been noticed that another window is looking dangerous. It was agreed to write to the Property Owner and the Enforcement Officer.
14/17. QUARTERLY ACCOUNTS REPORT (1 OCT 2016 – 31 DEC 2016): Members had received a copy of the report and the Bank Statements were available for inspection. It was agreed to accept the report as a true record.
15/17. ACCOUNTS FOR PAYMENT: The following accounts were agreed for payment: –
|Redwood Tree Specialists – Spraying Japanese Knotweed||240.00|
|Lengthsman’s Payment (Net) January||167.58|
|Lengthsman’s Expenses (plastic ring for Bin Bag when litter picking)||10.99|
|Clerk’s Salary (Net) – January||628.20|
|Clerk’s Expenses inc Ink Cartridges||45.04|
|To reimburse Clerk from Chairman’s Allowance for purchase of Flowers and Card for a 92th Birthday||
|Wicksteed Leisure Ltd for Inspection of Play Equipment at Foxt||54.00|
|Mick Reeves Farm Equipment for metal post and re-hanging of gate to Foxt Community Area||
|Ipstones Memorial Hall re hire of Hall for Doctors’ Surgeries||625.00|
|Ipstones Memorial Hall re hire of Hall for meetings x 3||45.00|
|Midlands Air Ambulance – donation – Under S137 Misc Payments||100.00|
|Ipstones & Foxt Senior Citizens – donation – Under S137||200.00|
The date of the next meeting was confirmed as Wednesday 22 February 2017 at 7.00p.m. in the rear Extension of Ipstones Memorial Hall