Minutes of the Great Staughton Parish Council – 13 January 2011

Minutes of the Great Staughton Parish Council

Meeting held on 13 January 2011 in the village hall

H Duberly (HD) (Chair)     R Benford (RB)          G Gilbert (GG)
A Withers (AW)                    M Young (MY)          D Palmer (DP) (Clerk)

Also in attendance:

Mr J McCullum                     Mr Frank Backhouse (FB)
Cambridgeshire County Councillor P Downes (PD)

a) Residents’ Forum/Village Plan

Frank Backhouse, from the Village Plan committee, reported from the recent meeting held to discuss the results of the questionnaire. It was felt that the Village Plan committee needed direction from the Parish Council as to what monies would be available to support proposals from the village plan committee during the next financial year. The committee are planning to have a draft proposal available prior to the next Parish Council meeting in March and this will be circulated to Councillors for their consideration a few days before the meeting. The committee would like to present the proposals at the Parish Assembly in April and for these to be adopted by the Parish Council at the AGM in May 2011. FB left the meeting at 7.40pm. Clerk to add Agenda Items to March and May meetings.

1. Apologies: J Bowen (JB), S Clarke (SC), J Hitchin (JH), R Jewell (RJ),
W Mumford (WM), P Willmer (PW) and District Councillor J Gray.

2. Minutes of the meeting held on 11th November 2010 were amended to correct the meeting date in July to 7th July 2011.
The minutes were agreed as a true record of the meeting and duly signed.

3. Matters Arising

2/15) Componentising council property – PD did not have anything to report
3/7b) The form from the Land Registry has been received by the Parish Council. Action: HD/DP
3/15a) Anglian Water marker posts – a letter has been sent; work not yet done. Action: DP
7) PCSO Carol Corn was asked to attend the next meeting.
11) The website is almost ready. The ‘gov.org’ element is causing some difficulties.
12) Some e-mail discussion had taken place prior to the meeting regarding the Precept application that was submitted. However, the figure agreed at the last meeting was an increase on the previous year and it was felt that this was the right sum at present. Some concern was expressed about potential cuts in services by the County and District Councils.

PD said that details of the reductions in County Council services will be explained to County Councillors on the following day but he was expecting that they would be right across the board. In particular there will be a reduction of funding for education and youth services, funding for county music will disappear, libraries will close and there will be a reduction in social care and road maintenance. It is anticipated that there will be a 28% reduction is services over 4 years. Some savings have already been made, eg merging some services with Northamptonshire. A 17% reduction in senior management at the council will take place. Day Centres supported by the council will probably close, although it is understood that Great Staughton Day Centre has already negotiated a 3 year contract from April 2011.

PD is setting up a website to keep people informed between meetings. There will be a link for Great Staughton.

PD also reported that Cambridgeshire schools are generally performing well. Longsands has done well and Ernulf is improving, as are schools nationally.

With regard to the Localism Bill – PD said this would go through by the end of the year. PD said he was willing to give a brief outline of the effects of this on Great Staughton at the Parish Assembly.

4. Attendance at other meetings

RB attended a CPALC meeting and requested that another Councillor attend the AGM on 16th February, MY said he would attend. It is hoped that a more active role could be taken on the CPALC committee and in particular with regard to the Highways committee.

5. Planning

Current Planning Applications From 11 November 2010
Ref No Address Changes
1001883FUL Place House Internal alterations & installation
of 2 new windows & 1 roof light
100194FUL 24 Dillington Extensions and alterations to house

Following discussion is was agreed that an objection would be lodged relating to 24 Dillington due to the overbearing scale of the extension with regard to the property next door at number 22 Dillington.

6. Highways
There is still no explanation regarding road sweeping of Green Close.

PD asked whether the recent accidents in the village had happened because the roads had not been gritted, but they had been gritted and it was thought that black ice was the problem.

Gritting had been requested near the school but this has been refused at present. HD suggested that the County Council continue to be asked to grit from the Highway to the school. A letter has been received from Cambs County Council regarding the winter services programme and requesting help with delivery of the services. Training, materials and insurance could be met by the council, the actual gritting may have to be a cost to the Parish. HD asked PD whether there was any change on snow clearance. This could be covered under the same arrangement as the gritting. HD will check with WM

RB reported that the street light by the Church Bridge is not working.

RB said there had been 3 visits by the Police recently with 27 speeding offences up to the 9th January.

GG said the street light on Manor Close was not working.

SC had e-mailed to say that the light at the playing field end of Causeway Close was not working.

HD was concerned that when Fairline boats pass through the village they were causing damage to the verges near the chicane. The Clerk had written to the Council asking for suggestions on this matter without a satisfactory reply. An answer could be to strengthen and repair the specific area where the damage happens possibly by reinforcing the vulnerable area with concrete honeycomb and then grassing over.

GG said there has been damage to the verge outside Mr J McCullam’s house. Action: WM
GG said there are 2 potholes at the junction with Beachampstead and Manor Road. Action: DP
There is also a lot of mud on the road out of the village going to Little Staughton where the bungalow has been demolished. Clerk to contact the builder.

HD read a letter that was delivered to the meeting from Mr Corner at The Green. The letter expressed concern at the number of accidents when cars coming from Kimbolton brake suddenly when they see the flashing ‘30’ sign. Mr Corner felt that flashing sign was incorrectly sited and contributed to the number of accidents at this place. He suggested that the sign should be positioned before the bend at the Tavern (approaching from Kimbolton) so that drivers would then be braking on a straight piece of road rather than on the bend. It was felt that Mr Corner was correct in his conclusions and additionally the initial 30 mile an hour warning sign should be moved further out of the village. PD said that generally the County Council sited the speed warning signs near the first house on the approach to a village. RB said several traffic problems were raised as part of the village plan questionnaire. Contact Cambs CC.

7. Correspondence

Cambridgeshire ACRE – end of funding from Hunts DC supporting Parish Plans
St Andrew’s Church PCC – requesting status of finger post to Church – Clerk to send copy quotations.

CJ Allen, Hunts DC – Flood Forum meeting – pass to RJ for consideration

Footpath 29 – will take some time to resolve

Victim Support – request for publicity for their activities – pass to Life magazine

Tree Warden – reported a problem with a branch resting on cable – Clerk still trying to resolve.

8. Trailblazer – Cambs ACRE

An application has been submitted for Trailblazer funding for the proposals put forward from the village plan. Those accepted will hear during January if they are successful.

9. Cheques in and out from 11 November 2010:

11-Nov Village Handyman 1326 128.00
16-Nov Grant to Life magazine 1327 450.00
2-Dec P Round – November 1328 109.28
13-Jan Petty cash 1329 17.83
Clerk 1330 289.26
Total 994.37
Balance at bank 7,128.92
The payments were unanimously agreed.

10. Post Office

The new proposal for a ‘Post Office Local’ service to be based at Blades was greeted with enthusiasm and wholeheartedly approved by those present at the meeting. JB had also asked that her support be mentioned in her absence. At present there is a preliminary consultation period and RB proposed that a letter of support should go from the Parish Council and also from individual members of the Council.
Action: ALL

11. Litter Pick

AW said that notices will be placed in Life magazine during January and February.

12. Parish Matters

GG had received a request from Helen Glanville on behalf of the school. The new fence is being broken by people entering the school grounds to recover balls. RB asked whether a floodlit area should be provided so that people could play football at night. MY understood that young people meet in the car parking area at night. To be discussed with PCSO Carol Corn at the next meeting.

GG mentioned problems with the new sound limiter in the village hall. MY had arranged for various people, including Hunts DC Environmental Health officer, to meet in the village hall the following day to check the levels as the system appeared to be cutting out at a very low level of sound.
HD pointed out there were only 2 incidents included in the Police report and said that, once again, Councillors were aware of other crimes being committed during the period.

13. Date of next meeting:

17th March 2011 at 7.30pm

The Chairman thanked everyone for attending and the meeting closed at 8.45.


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