Parish Council Meeting
You are summoned to attend a meeting of Eccleshall Parish Council, to be held at 7.30pm on Wednesday October 20th 2021 at Offley Hay Village Hall. This will be followed by a meeting of the Planning Committee.
1. To receive and note apologies for absence
2. Declarations of Interest and Councillor requests for dispensation relating to items on the agenda.
3. Public Participation
4. To approve the minutes of the Parish Council meeting held on September 15th, 2021.
5. Co-option of Councillor to Town Ward vacancy
- Signing of Declarations of Acceptance of Office and Disclosable Pecuniary & Personal Interest Forms.
6. To receive any reports from Borough and County Councillors and police representatives.
7. Committee Updates:
- To note the minutes of the committee meeting on the 6th October
- To note the plan to request public feedback about the Kids at Play and 20’s plenty speed reduction initiatives in the next Parish Newsletter.
- Electric charging points – to approve the recommendation to continue to lobby the County Council for support to provide car charging points, to include on street public charging points.
- To approve the recommendation to write a joint letter with Standon Parish Council to the County Council to extend an existing public bus route to include pick ups in Cotes Heath and Croxton.
- To approve the recommendation to write to Cllr. Pert regarding the poor condition of the Newport Road pavement.
- To consider and approve retention of Mr. Graham Cole as footpaths operative for the Parish Council
- To report back on the seat at Elford Heath and to decide a course of action
- To consider plans and costs to erect the remembrance unknown soldier silhouettes
Policy and Resources:
- No updates to report.
- To consider and approve the revised committee terms of reference and delegated authority proposal.
- Initial feedback on the meeting held on the 14th October with local community groups regarding the 2022 Jubilee celebrations
8. To consider issues reported by the Ecclian Society with regards to the Borough Council watering contract.
9. To consider a suggestion received by the Ecclian Society to work together and co-ordinate volunteer activity to tidy up areas within the town.
10. To consider and approve the quotations for Christmas trees and associated costs.
11. To receive the Clerks Report, containing liaison representative updates.
- To note receipt of the NALC Points of Light 2021 local council case studies and any comments or ideas arising from the content.
- Resident concerns about closure of post office from 18th October to 8th
- Resident concerns about the condition of the horse chestnut tree on SBC owned land and the request to lobby for it to be inspected, along with concerns regarding ongoing maintenance of the area.
- To note the thanks of Eccleshall First Responders
- To receive and consider the correspondence received from the County Council regarding suspension of the Vacant Seat Scheme on school buses.
- To consider if any response required for the Stone Westbridge Park consultation (link available here)
13. To receive the Chairman’s Report
- To approve sending a letter of thanks to the Church and representatives providing the refreshments for the service.
14. Financial Matters:
· To accept the Financial report and bank reconciliation to end September 2021.
· To approve accounts for payment October 2021.
- To pass a resolution in accordance with Public Bodies (Admission to Meetings) Act 1960 to exclude the public and press for discussion of confidential staffing matters from the Staffing Committee meeting held on 11th October 2021:
- To note any feedback from the Clerk’s appraisal report.
- To consider the report and recommendations from the staffing committee with regards to the review of the Clerks current pay scale.
16. To request any future agenda items and confirm the date and venue for next meeting – 17th November 2021, Eccleshall Community Centre, 7.30pm, pending any changes to current government advice.
Clerk to the council – 14/10/2021
Minutes of the Meeting of Eccleshall Parish Council held on 20th October, 2021
A meeting of Eccleshall Parish Council was held at Offley Hay Village Hall on 20th October, 2021 at 7.30pm. This meeting was followed by a meeting of the Planning Committee at 8.40pm.
The meeting opened with prayers
127/21). Present were:-
Councillor P. Jones (Chairman) Councillor L. Dale
Councillor R. Taylor Councillor J. Jones
Councillor G. Dale Councillor B. Delanchy
Councillor R. Langford Councillor A. Reid
Councillor S. Kean Councillor C. Wilkins
Councillor S. Mifflin Councillor S. Perren
Mrs Stacey Worden (Clerk)
10 members of the public
128/21.) Apologies were received from Cllrs. Amos and Leather, and Borough and County Cllr. Pert.
129/21). To consider Declarations of Interest and Councillor requests for dispensation relating to items on the agenda.
There were no requests to receive, and no declarations of interest were made.
130/21). Public Participation:
A member of the public spoke regarding their concerns about the declining standards of the town. This included issues with the watering contract – the displays were not watered in accordance with the watering specification provided to the Borough Council, to the detriment of the plants. Other concerns including the maintenance of SCC owned street furniture (Oak posts) not being repaired/replaced. The Council was urged to use its influence with the Borough and County Councils to ensure works are undertaken and standards maintained.
131/21). To approve the minutes of the Parish Council meeting held on September 15th, 2021.
The minutes, which had been previously circulated, were agreed and signed.
132/21). Co-option of Councillor to Town Ward vacancy
The applicant to be considered has withdrew the application, and the co-option will be deferred to the next meeting.
133/21). To receive any reports from Borough and County Councillors:
Borough Councillor P. Jones provided a verbal report. Updates included:
- As the Chair of the Borough public appeals committee, he recently attended training
- His monthly surgery was held on the 9th October, and another is planned for November.
134/21). Committee Updates:
- The minutes of the committee meeting on the 6th October were noted.
- The Council noted the proposal to request public feedback about the Kids at Play and 20’s plenty speed reduction initiatives in the next Parish Newsletter.
- It was resolved to approve writing a letter to County Cllr. Pert, requesting County Council support to provide car charging points, including consideration of on street public charging points.
- It was resolved to approve the recommendation to write a joint letter with Standon Parish Council to the County Council, proposing the extension of an existing public bus route to include pick-ups in Cotes Heath and Croxton. This is requested in order to provide a transport service for those students in Cotes Heath who are struggling to get to school following suspension of the vacant seat scheme. Cllr. P. Jones will also bring the issue to the Stone Parish Liaison group at its meeting on the 27th October. It was also resolved to write to Sir. Bill Cash to ask him to also write to the County Council to request a resolution to the issue.
- It was resolved to approve the recommendation to write to Cllr. Pert regarding the ongoing poor condition of the Newport Road pavement and request remedial works.
- It was resolved to approve the retention of Mr. Graham Cole as footpaths operative for the Parish Council. The scheme has been very successful and has significantly improved access and condition of many parish rights of way.
- The Clerk advised a comprehensive set of documents and photos have been submitted to the Borough Council for development of an updated Bench to Bench walks brochure. Cllr. Wilkins was thanked for all his work in putting the materials together.
- G. Dale has contacted the resident with concerns about anti-social behaviour as a result of a proposal to site an additional memorial bench at the top of Kerry Lane. The resident initially thought a different location was proposed and has confirmed they have no objections to site it on the County owned small triangle of land at the top of Kerry Lane. It was resolved to contact the County Council and the individual wishing to site the bench in order to progress the installation. It was also resolved for the Council to adopt and maintain the bench after installation.
- To consider plans and costs to erect the remembrance unknown soldier silhouettes. Mr. Sheard has volunteered to erect the silhouettes in the town and Slindon free of charge. The town silhouettes will be erected on the SBC owned open space on the Stone Road. SBC has provided a legal agreement to approve siting of the silhouettes for a period of 3 weeks, from the 1st It was resolved to approve the Clerk to sign the legal agreement on behalf of the Parish Council.
Policy and Resources:
- No updates to report. The next meeting will be held on the 1st
- It was resolved to approve the revised committee terms of reference and delegated authority proposal. The proposal allows the events committee and/or the Clerk to incur expenditure on events approved by the full Council, within a defined scope and budget allocation. Changes to the event scope or expenditure in excess of the allocated budget must be brought back to the Council for further approval. It was also resolved to approve temporary delegation to the committee during August and December to approve the use of parish owned land for external events. Any potentially contentious requests will be referred to the full Parish Council for consideration.
- Taylor provided an update on the meeting held with local community groups on the 14th October to discuss the 2022 Jubilee celebrations. The meeting went well and a skeleton programme of events for each day has been drawn up and can be shared at the next meeting. A dedicated Jubilee website will be set up.
135/21). To consider issues reported by the Ecclian Society with regards to the Borough Council watering contract:
The current contract with SBC stipulates that baskets and mangers are to be watered for four days each week, irrespective of weather. The Ecclian Society advised not all displays were being watered on each visit. The operatives explained that they were not watering displays where they felt it unnecessary – however this led on some occasions to large gaps between watering and as a result, the plants suffered. The Clerk liaised with SBC on a number of occasions to raise these concerns and request this was addressed with the staff to ensure all displays were watered each time. Unfortunately, displays were still missed. Borough Cllr. Pert has asked SBC Streetscene to provide a written response to the concerns. It was resolved to request a site meeting with Mick Bailey in order to discuss the issues and feel confident that this would not be repeated next year. It was also noted that past service has been excellent. Members also considered whether it would be appropriate to request a reduction in the final bill, as the requirements of the specification were not met.
136/21). To consider a suggestion received by the Ecclian Society to work together and co-ordinate volunteer activity to tidy up areas within the town.
It was resolved for members of the Council and the Ecclians to meet and formulate a proposal to be brought back to the Council for consideration.
137/21). To consider and approve the quotations for Christmas trees and associated costs.
It was resolved to approve Woods Farm for the supply of 70 small trees and 2 large trees at a cost of £2,050, to include installation of the two large trees.
It was resolved to approve AS Electricals for the installation of the lights on the two large trees at a cost of £579 and to remove them at a cost of £270.
It was resolved to approve Traction equipment for the cost of hiring a cherry picker at £200 for hire in November and January for the Stone Road lights, in addition to the cherry picker loaned free of charge.
138/21). To receive the Clerk’s report, containing liaison representative updates.
The Clerks report was received by the Council.
- To note receipt of the NALC Points of Light 2021 local council case studies and any comments or ideas arising from the content: The report was noted.
- Resident concerns about closure of post office from 18th October to 8th November: The Council noted the concerns, but the current providers have assured residents there is no plan to close, and it will be re-opening in November with additional staffing support.
- Resident concerns about the condition of the horse chestnut tree on SBC owned land and the request to lobby for it to be inspected, along with concerns regarding ongoing maintenance of the area: Borough Cllr. Pert has advised that the SBC has undertaken an inspection of the tree but it is awaiting a second opinion before deciding on a course of action.
- Eccleshall First Responders had written to express thanks at the sponsorship funding, which was received by the Council.
- To receive and consider the correspondence received from the County Council regarding suspension of the Vacant Seat Scheme on school buses: The letter was received in response to the Council’s request to consider offering places to those who are unable to access transport to school as a result of the scheme suspension. SCC reiterated the reasons for the suspension (accessibility legislation) and suggested the PC could approach Community Link to fund its own transport. From previous enquiries, this option would be a prohibitive cost for the Council as well as for individual families. It was resolved to contact County Cllr. Pert to request the facilitation of a meeting between County Cllr. Jonathon Price, Parish Council representatives (including neighbouring parishes) and residents, in order to see if a solution can be found. It was noted that other counties do not have this problem, as they have either applied for exemption from the requirements or taken steps to meet them. It was also resolved to contact neighbouring County/unitary authorities to understand the actions they took so this could be brought back for discussion.
- To consider any response required for the Stone Westbridge Park consultation: No response was needed, but members noted concerns with where s.106 monies for Eccleshall were being allocated and how this could be accessed. Cllr. P. Jones is meeting with the SBC Chief executive and will ask the question.
140/21). Chairman’s Report:-
It was resolved to approve sending of a letter of thanks to the Church and representatives who provided refreshments for the service.
141/21). Financial Matters
To accept the Financial report and bank reconciliation to end September 2021:
It was resolved to accept the financial summary, which includes the bank reconciliation up to and including the 30th September 2021.
Payments made since the last full Council meeting were received and noted as follows:
|Japhlin – Computer maintenance (monthly direct debit)||55.62|
|The Friends of Crown Surgery – grant for insurance to hold public events||N/A||N/A||100.80|
|Rob Keyzor Tree Surgeons – works completed at the Eyeswell Open Space||2,220.00||444.00||2,664.00|
|Eccleshall First Responders – Annual sponsorship grant||N/A||N/A||1,000.00|
|A.G. Jones – movement of SIDS devices||N/A||N/A||100.00|
To approve accounts for payment October 2021:-
Authorisation was sought for payment of the following accounts:-
|TGM – Grass Cutting||399.50||79.90||479.40|
|SPCA – 2 x training courses and councillor guides||101.25||0.00||101.25|
|Mifflin & Dean – Croxton play area repairs||266.58||53.32||319.90|
|Mr. Graham Cole – footpaths maintenance||120.00||0.00||120.00|
|Stone Town Council – Trafalgar Evening (Chairs allowance)||40.00||0.00||40.00|
|Eccleshall Guide – full page parish information listing||145.00||0.00||145.00|
|Mr. Peter Jones – Civic Service refreshments (Chairs Allowance)||100.00||0.00||100.00|
|1st Eccleshall Scouts Group – June guide delivery||100.00||0.00||100.00|
|E.On – lighting at Croxton||162.68||32.54||195.22|
All were in favour and the cheques were signed accordingly.
142/21). To pass a resolution in accordance with Public Bodies (Admission to Meetings) Act 1960 to exclude the public and press for discussion of confidential staffing matters from the Staffing Committee meeting held on 11th October 2021:
- To note any feedback from the Clerk’s appraisal report. The Chair summarised the appraisal discussions and advised committee members were pleased with the performance of the Clerk.
- To consider the report and recommendations from the staffing committee with regards to the Clerks salary review. Members considered the report and it was resolved to approve the recommendations from the staffing committee, effective from October 2021.
143/21). Items / Date and Venue for next meeting:-
The next meeting of the Parish Council is scheduled for 17th November 2021, at Eccleshall Community Centre, 7.30pm, pending any changes to current government advice. Agenda items can be forwarded to the Clerk for consideration.
There being no further business, the Chairman declared the meeting closed at 8.40pm.