Minutes of the Great Staughton Parish Council – 10 November 2011

Minutes of the Great Staughton Parish Council – 10 November 2011

Held at the Village Hall


H Duberly (HD) (Chair)             J Bowen (JB)                            G Gilbert (GG)

J Hitchin (JH)                              R Jewell (RJ)                            W Mumfod (WM)

P Willmer (PW)                            A Withers (AW)                       M Young (MY)

D Palmer (DP) (Clerk)

Also in attendance:

Mr Graham Holgate & Ms Sue Taylor (Dillington Residents), District Councillor Jonathan Gray (JG) and County Councillor Peter Downes (PD)

a)    Residents’ Forum

HD welcomed everyone to the meeting and invited Mr Holgate and Ms Taylor from Dillington to open the meeting.

Mr Holgate said that there had been difficulties in Dillington as some residents had placed rocks on the grass verges in order to prevent damage by vehicles.   As the road was narrow, damage had been caused to vehicles when manoeuvring.   Another resident had also reported a similar incident to WM.   It was noted that the verges were part of the highway and the responsibility of Cambridgeshire County Council.   To be discussed further under item 6 – Highways.

1.   Apologies:  


2.   Minutes of Meeting held on 15th September 2011 were agreed as a true record and signed.

3.   Matters Arising.

3)         Land Registry forms downloaded, Village Hall deeds to be sought.  Action: HD/RJ/DP

3)         Queen Elizabeth II Fields Challenge application has been processed, further information is

required.   JB said that the Parish Council need to confirm the following:

  • can the playing field be designated as “public playing field and recreation ground”? Agreed
  • a notice will need to be erected displaying the name of the field and a little information about the Queen Elizabeth II challenge. Agreed
  • the title of the field “The Queen Elizabeth II Playing Field, Great Staughton”. Agreed

3)         PW said that East Anglia Children’s Hospice bottle collection only takes place in Norfolk

3)         Post Office/Blades – now open.

3)         the damaged wire fence not yet removed.   A reminder to be sent. Action: DP

5)         RJ asked JG what the outcome was of the recent planning application variation relating to

O’Dells garage site.  Action: JG

6)         electricity poles at 41 & 49 The Green damaged.  Action: DP

7)         HD spoken to Norman Hardy, the Tree Warden, and agreed to plant trees on Kimbolton Road.

10)       Broadband – Cambs CC have been contacted and they aim to ensure that there is 90%

superfast coverage for Cambridgeshire and Peterborough.   The time scale is not known.

4.   Attendance at other meetings

WM attended a Cambridgeshire Countryside Watch meeting and informed the meeting that the new non-emergency number to contact the Police is 101.   This number can be used from land lines and mobile phones and will cost 15p per call.

AW attended the AGM of Cambridgeshire ACRE and mentioned the excellent short video that had been produced to demonstrate the work of ACRE and which included input from various people living in  Great Staughton   He recommended that everyone view the video at http://youtu.be/5ELOkSc4IuA.

5.   Planning Applications from 15th September

1101537FUL – 24 Dillington – single storey garage to front– objections

1101683TREE – 12 The Highway – tree works – approved

1101694TREE – 81 The Highway – tree works – approved

1101537FUL – 24 Dillington – reposition of garage on previous application – objections

1101802FUL – 8 The Highway – extension, loft conversion & garage – still in circulation

Blades/Brook Farm – HD declared an interest and RJ chaired the meeting for this point.

JG said that there were 4 main points to be considered by the planning department:

  1. the use of the building on the road frontage and associated land
  2. the stationing of a burger van on the land
  3. the display of advertisements
  4. the repainting of the building

Huntingdonshire District Council needed to determine the exact usage when the previous occupants were in place over the last 10 years.   It was agreed that the previous business was for the sale and repair of lawn mowers.   Hunts DC also requested further information about the complaints received relating to the burger van.   Following discussion, it was understood that smell and the appearance were a problem to some residents.   Feedback to be given to Hunts DC.  Action: JG/DP

6.   Highways

HD took the chair.

A letter had been sent to Cambs County Council regarding the highway improvements discussed at the September meeting.   In brief, the response was as follows:

  1. a reduced speed limit in the school area

Cambs CC could put this on a speed limit review list and undertake a consultation.  All costs would need to be met by the Parish Council.

  1. moving the interactive 30 mph sign from its current position to the approach to the village

Cambs CC would conduct a survey.   If acceptable all costs to be met by Parish Council.

  1. extending the 30mph limit on Perry Road further out of the village

see response to item 1.

  1. installing a zebra crossing where the school crossing patrol operates

This would need a survey and audit.   The footfall would need to meet certain criteria.   All costs to be met by the Parish Council and expected to be £25,000 approx.

  1. making Dillington Road through to Cage Lane ‘restricted access’ or ‘access only’

Would need a traffic regulation order and would cost approx £2,500 for legal work and signs.   May be objections from the Police as to who would monitor.

  1. installing a roundabout where The Green meets the B645

Cambs CC would conduct a survey, etc.   The cost of the roundabout would be in the region of £100,000 – to be met by the Parish Council.

It was agreed that further details were required from Cambs CC in order to progress this.   Action: DP

A letter had been received from Mr & Mrs Benford asking why the recommendation from the village plan on page 3 of the action plan had not been progressed.  (“investigating the feasibility of changing the existing chicane on The Highway into a give-way restriction”).   HD will contact Mr & Mrs Benford to discuss although the meeting did not wish to give this priority at this time.  Action: HD

With regard to the difficulties experienced in Dillington on the verges, following discussion, it was agreed to write to Cambs CC outlining the situation and asking for clarification.

GG – One of the 40mph signs situated in The Town is damaged.

The ramp at the entrance to Vicarage Walk is too steep for wheelchair users.

The pavement near 46 The Causeway has a deep dip which fills with water when it rains.

Where the pavement has been altered outside the O’Dells garage site it is now too steep and the surface is slippery.

On The Highway where the entrance was to O’Dells garage, parking is taking place in a restricted area and this is obstructing the view of drivers exiting Beachampstead Road,   Clerk to check with the District Council the terms of the original planning application.

JB – the pavement repairs on Green Close are incomplete.  Action for all of above: DP

JH – the highways works at Dillington have been done well.

RJ – mentioned that footpath 29 is being re-routed.   WM is meeting with the Clerk of Perry Parish Council (J Alford) to discuss.   RJ is speaking to John Cooper at Cambs CC.   Action: RJ/WM

7.   Correspondence:

  • letter from Hunts DC regarding the Precept application for 2012-13.   HD reminded the meeting of the sum received for the current financial year.   RJ proposed that an application be submitted for the same sum of £12,000.   Seconded by PW, carried unanimously. Action: DP
  • letter received from Hunts DC asking for a contribution towards CCTV cameras.   Clerk to reply – no.  Action: DP
  • Valerie Fordham had written to HD as the recent appeal to the Environment Agency had been successful and Anglian Water has been advised that they have a duty to provide a public sewer to serve Dillington.   The meeting asked for a reply to be sent to Ms Fordham congratulating her and expressing their pleasure at her success.  Action: DP
  • Hunts Citizens Advice Bureau requested a donation.   WM proposed that a letter be sent saying we would like to support them and asking for further information together with a copy of their latest accounts.   PW seconded the proposal and carried.  Action:DP

PD pointed out that generally at the CAB there is a small team of paid people supported by a huge

number of volunteers.

  • a letter received from Jigsaw Cambridgshire who received lottery funding to invite local people to become involved in archaeology. Action: AW
  • information received from TCI Renewables regarding the proposed wind farm near Southoe village.  WM said that he had been informed of a meeting on 21st December at Perry Baptist Chapel where TCI Renewables will be making a presentation to Perry Parish Council.   Great Staughton Councillors were invited to attend.
  • Crime Report received from PCSO Carol Corn which was circulated prior to the meeting.   AW expressed concern at the lack of follow-up information and would also like numbers of resolved criminal cases.   AW asked whether the local Police Force are able to deal with cross-county criminal activity.   WM proposed that the Parish Council subscribes to Cambridgeshire Countryside Watch.   This will ensure that more detailed information is received. Action: WM/DP
  • HD asked whether the Neighbourhood Forum was still active and JG said a meeting had been held recently.   MY and AW will attend the next meeting.  Action: MY/AW
  • the formal diversion notice of footpath 12 was received.

8.  Cheques in and out


Hunts DC precept         £6,000.00


Village Hall Grant            £500.00

Suffolk ACRE Insurance   £381.06

Cambs ACRE subs            £25.00

H Duberly                        £10.00

St Neots Museum             £50.00

P Round                         £235.20

Village Handyman           £128.00

Village Handyman           £102.20

Clerk                             £289.26

Total                           £1,220.76                        The payments were unanimously agreed.

Bank balance             £10,435.94

Two further annual grants were proposed –

A contribution towards cemetery upkeep of £400.00 proposed GG, seconded PW, all in favour.

A contribution towards Life magazine of £450.00, proposed AW, seconded GG, all in favour.

9.   Village Plan

It was agreed that further information should be obtained on the Highways works that were proposed in the village plan as mentioned under item 6 above.   PD pointed out that there is an opportunity to bid for funds for local minor highway improvements and Great Staughton could be eligible.   Bids for up to £10,000 can be submitted.   The Parish Council will have to find 10% from their funds.   The deadline is 30th December.   Reduction in speed near to the school was felt a priority. Action: HD/DP

The steering group for the Village Plan is waiting for the accounts to be audited before handing over to the Parish Council.

A meeting has been arranged at the end of November with Phillip Peacock from Cambs ACRE to discuss affordable housing and a new village hall.   The following will try to attend the meeting: HD/MY/AW/GG/JH.   PW said that the Localism Bill could give the villagers more say in this type of venture.

10.   Neighbourhood Watch

At present Jenny O’Dell coordinates the local Neighbourhood Watch scheme and, as she has done so for a long time, would like someone else to take on the role.   PCSO Carol Corn has requested that a Councillor be nominated for liaison.   A Councillor will discuss with Jenny O’Dell what is required and report back to the Parish Councillors at the next meeting.                                           Action: HD

11.   Parish Matters

JB has been asked whether the Parish Council will be celebrating the Queen’s Diamond Jubilee or the Olympics?   A working group comprising JB, RJ and AW to consider the suggestion.   An article will be placed in Life asking for any suggestions.  Monday, 4th June was suggested as a date. Action: RJ/DP

AW asked about the current situation with the village website.   MY explained that the designer has experienced problems with the ‘pc.gov’ site and has been trying a ‘.com’ site without any difficulties and which is totally accessible.   MY proposed the new site replace the current one and, once it is up and running, another volunteer be invited to maintain it.                                                          Action: MY

GG has been asked whether it is possible to install an extra street light on the Causeway.   Unfortunately, funding is not available for this at present.

JG said that the parliamentary constituency review proposed that Huntingdonshire should have 3 MPs. Hunts DC has responded positively to this.   Further reorganisation has taken place at the District Council with a reduction in higher level staff.

PD mentioned that the conversion of schools into academies has triggered unforeseen costs.   Some cuts have been amended which means that libraries will not close, although there will be fewer books and more volunteers working in libraries.   PD asked whether the Council was interested in the Highway Warden scheme.   Those involved do not need to be Councillors.   To be discussed at a later date.  Action: HD

PD gave some information about the ‘Help at Home’ scheme which is a free service for 3 weeks for people leaving hospital.   Contact details are 01354 694413, e-mail whfh.hunts@care-network.org.uk.  This could be displayed in Life.  Action: PD

At a recent clinic held by PD in Perry, a resident of Great Staughton mentioned problems with parking in some areas of Beachampstead Road.   MY believes that this has now been dealt with.

12.  Date of meetings for 2012:

5th January

8th March

3rd May                        Annual Parish Assembly

17th May                      Annual General Meeting

5th July

6th September

8th November

Mr Holgate, Ms Taylor, PD, JG and DP left the meeting at 9.45pm.

The Clerk’s Terms of Engagement were considered and the hours changed to 22 per month.

The meeting closed at 9.50pm.


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