WYKEHAM PARISH COUNCIL
Approved Minutes of the Parish Council Meeting held at 6.30pm on
Monday 18 November 2013 in the St John Office, Wykeham Business Centre.
Cllrs. Lady Downe (Chairman), J P Terry (Vice Chairman), R A H Sword, G Barnett, L S Day
and Mr C H Holmes (Clerk).
Also present for part of the Meeting was PC Bilton.
1 Apologies for absence
All Members were present.
Borough and County Councillor D Jeffels sent apologies.
2 Declaration of interests
In accordance with the adopted Code of Conduct, it was AGREED to grant dispensation to all Members to allow them to contribute to the discussion of all agenda items. This decision is in the interests of the inhabitants of the Parish and will facilitate effective consideration of the business. Voting dispensations will be considered as and when they become necessary.
3 Minutes of the Meeting held on 10 October 2013 and Matters Arising.
The Minutes were AGREED to be a true record and Lady Downe signed a copy.
The Clerk reported that he had discussed making a bid for a grant for a computer with the Scarborough Borough Council Officer responsible for servicing the Central Rural Area Committee. She had advised that such a bid was unlikely to be successful and would have stood more chance if the computer would be accessible to members of the public in a venue with regular opening hours. Cllr. Sword considered the suggestion to have merit and mentioned the Tea Rooms as the sort of venue that might be acceptable. It was AGREED that he would research the possibilities before the next round of funding bids in 2014.
ACTION – CLLR. SWORD TO RESEARCH THE LOCATIONS FOR PROVIDING A COMPUTER FOR USE BY THE COMMUNITY.
Cllr. Day confirmed that the bidding list to the Area Committee was oversubscribed but he was pleased to be able to report that Wykeham Cricket Club had received a grant of £1K.
Members received the latest Financial Statement (attached as Appendix 1) and noted the receipt and the payments made since the last Meeting. Payments to the Wykeham Parochial Church Council and to the Clerk and HMRC as set out in the Statement were AGREED in principle. Cllr. Sword will, in due course, submit invoices for Churchyard maintenance and servicing of the Church clock.
The Clerk proceeded to take the Meeting through the Provisional Budget Figures for 2013 to 2015 as set out in a report (attached as Appendix 3) that had been circulated with the agenda. He pointed out that the Borough Council has advised that it can be assumed that if the Council Tax payers who do not receive support, continue to contribute at the current level in 2014/15, that this will again raise £2,010.00. As reported at the last Parish Council Meeting, the Borough Council may again be able to add a grant of £190.00 to make a total of £2,200.00. The Model Agreement grant will be increased by 3.2% and will total £2,561.59. Members noted that the bus shelters and surroundings will need some attention.
Taking into account likely income and expenditure, the uncommitted balances at the end of March in 2014 and 2015 are projected to be about £2,177.00 and £2,921.00 respectively but no allowance has been made in the projections for making financial contributions towards community projects such as the Derwent Valley BRIDGE or the WRNM News.
In addition, the monies available in the Marquee fund will total about £1,249.00 in 2014/15 and the present balance in the Business Account is £1,131.00.
It was AGREED to accept the Provisional Budget for 2014/15, in principle, including a Precept of £2,010.00, the Model Agreement proposals and the Borough Council’s grant of £190.00. This agreement is subject to the Borough Council confirming that the 2013/14 level of Council Tax payments will again raise £2,010.00 in 2014/15 and that a grant of £190.00 will be made.
ACTION – THE CLERK TO CONFIRM BUDGET DECISIONS TO THE BOROUGH COUNCIL.
The Clerk confirmed that the agreed Parish Council response to the Borough Council’s consultation on Local Support for Council Tax was submitted following receipt of the further information that had been requested.
5 Community Projects, issues and initiatives
Cllr. Sword reported that the Annual General Meeting of the Village Hall Committee was held on 16 October. All but one of the original Trustees remain “on board” and two new ones have been appointed. Other people would like to help and five members of the public attended the meeting. A follow up meeting has taken place when a location for the Village Hall, in the Hillyard near the School, was discussed. Advice on funding was received from Sarah Lally-Marley from Ryedale Action/Seachange. It is intended to hold regular meetings from now on.
At this point, PC Bilton arrived and Lady Downe suspended the agenda so he could make his Report, a copy of which had been circulated previously.
PC Bilton concentrated on crime and other significant incidents. He said that the drugs incidents were relatively minor and the numbers reflect increased Police activity in dealing with such matters. Other incidents of note involved two individuals assaulting each other, the theft of a canoe from Wykeham Lakes and several incidents involving vehicles. These included a complaint about the way a vehicle was being driven, a car that was overloaded with passengers and several instances of break-ins/attempted break-ins of vehicles. PC Bilton stressed the need for people to not leave property on display when they park their vehicles, even for a short period. Some of the vehicle incidents happened in adjoining Parishes but it is clear that venues and facilities along the A170 are a target for criminals.
The wider area is also experiencing a spate of poaching which PC Bilton saId is a regular occurrence at this time of year. He has been offering advice to farmers and other landowners about how to secure their boundaries and reduce the scope for unauthorised access. Regarding the theft of live stock, PC Bilton described one particular case which has many aspects and he explained how the Crown Prosecution Service will always focus on a limited number of the most significant crimes committed by an individual when the matters are taken to Court.
PC Bilton noted Cllr. Terry’s comment that a burnt out car had been found along the road up to Rowe Howe. Cllr. Sword said the car had been removed by the Borough Council.
Lady Downe thanked PC Bilton, (and his colleagues), for their efforts on behalf of the community and he left the Meeting.
Lady Downe reopened the agenda and Cllr. Day provided an update on the Millennium Walk and Ruston Village Amenity Area project. Bulbs have now been planted, work has taken place to construct steps at the Downe Arms bridge and drainage work is to be carried out at Fishpond Wood. Cllr. Terry remarked on the increase in the number of walkers using the Millennium Walk.
Cllr. Barnett commented on the potential damage to fencing being caused by Mrs Risker’s horses and Cllr. Day offered to discuss this with her. Mention was also made of the need to re-hang a gate beyond East Gate in Ruston and Cllr. Day said this would be addressed by the Working Party which will be meeting shortly
ACTION – CLLR. DAY TO SPEAK TO MRS RISKER ABOUT POTENTIAL DAMAGE TO FENCING BY HER HORSES AND ADDRESS THE MATTER OF THE GATE THAT NEEDS RE-HANGING.
Cllr Terry confirmed that the Christmas edition of the WRNM News will be the last to be edited by Mrs Terry. Discussions have taken place with one possible candidate for taking over the role of editor and there is still the issue of possibly having to make a computer and broadband services available. It was AGREED that Cllrs. Day and Sword would continue to research these issues including whether a local firm might have a spare computer available.
ACTION – CLLRS. DAY AND SWORD TO FOLLOW UP THE INTEREST SHOWN IN BECOMING EDITOR OF THE WRNM NEWS AND ALSO RESEARCH IF ANY LOCAL FIRM COULD HELP WITH COMPUTER HARDWARE.
Cllr. Sword reported on the recent AGM of the Derwent Valley BRIDGE which was attended by 60 people. A new Committee has been appointed and a Steering Group Meeting will be held on 19 November. Clllr. Sword commented that Parish Councils will again be asked to support the BRIDGE financially and, with this in mind, it was noted that last year Wykeham Parish Council did request information about how well the facility was used by its residents.
Under Other Community Issues, it was noted that the carriageway where the road from Ruston joins the A170, at the top of the hill, has still not been repaired. Cllr. Terry expressed concern about the state of the road at Burton Terrace, Ruston and it was AGREED that the Clerk would ask Cllr. Jeffels to take these matters up with County Highways.
ACTION – THE CLERK TO ASK CLLR. JEFFELS TO REFER THE ABOVE HIGHWAYS MATTERS TO MR WEST AT COUNTY HIGHWAYS.
6 Consultations and liaison
Members considered a briefing note from the Clerk which summarised the implications for the Parish of North Yorkshire County Council’s Proposed Reductions to Bus Service Subsidy. It was AGREED to support the overall Strategy. As regards a separate County Council consultation on Post 16 Home to School and College Transport it was AGREED that increasing the charge from £360 to £480 p.a. for unsubsidised students would be excessive and that any savings should be made by spreading the cost more evenly amongst users.
The County Council was also consulting on a range of measures to save money on Household Waste Recycling Centres in 2014/15 and later years. It was AGREED that none of the proposals could be supported as they would lead to fly tipping and a subsequent burden of responsibility on landowners, District Councils and the Police. The modest level of savings being aimed for should be made by cutting back on non-essential services.
Scarborough Borough Council was consulting on the submission version of the Whitby Business Park Area Action Plan and it was AGREED to continue to support the expansion of the development. Members were pleased to note that in the two areas for development on the eastern edge would be for buildings which are low in height and scale to protect long distance views and the setting of Whitby Abbey.
ACTION – THE CLERK TO FORWARD THE ABOVE AGREED COMMENTS TO THE RELEVANT LOCAL AUTHORITIES.
7 Planning Application
Members considered an application to develop a Wind Turbine at Kirk Gate in Sawdon. It was AGREED to OBJECT to the proposal because it would have a detrimental visual effect on the landscape/countryside. Furthermore, the Parish Council considers that this type of proposal may only be acceptable, in principle, where it is specifically needed to serve a development.
ACTION – THE CLERK TO REPORT THE ABOVE VIEWS TO SCARBOROUGH BOROUGH COUNCIL.
8 General correspondence
Members received and considered the list of general correspondence that is attached as Appendix 2. It was noted that the Planning Inquiry into a proposed Wind Farm at West Heslerton commences on 19 November in Malton and that there is to be an open day regarding another Wind Farm proposal at Cottam Airfield which will be held in Driffield on 30 November. With regard to the latter proposal, Cllr, Sword had attended a preliminary meeting to discuss the applicant’s plans for public consultation.
9 Public Question Time
No members of the electorate attended the Meeting.
10 Date and time of next Meeting
Monday 20 January 2014 at 6.30pm in the St John Office at Wykeham Business Centre.