Minutes of the Meeting of Milton Ernest Parish Council held on Monday 30th July 2015 at 8.00pm in the Village Hall

Present: Cllrs Dilley, Williams, Newman, Reddington, the Clerk (Sue Bottoms), 5 members of the public.

  1. Apologies for Absence: Cllrs Sharman, Winter, Snowball and Borough Councillor McMurdo.  The Parish Council sent good wishes to Cllr Sharman on his recent marriage.
  2. Declarations of interest in items on the agenda:
    1. i.            To receive written requests for a dispensation: none.
    2. ii.            To consider any requests for a dispensation: none.
  3. To approve the minutes of the meeting held on the 25th June 2015: These were signed as a true record of the meeting.
  4. Public Open Session (15 mins):

i)        Neil Roy reported that work had started on the refurbishment of the Village Hall.  This year £5000 was raised and £5000 was used from reserves to get the work underway.  New equipment for the kitchen would be needed including a high speed dishwasher.  The Committee would be seeking grants for the equipment; some from ward funding and some from the Rural Grants Committee for which parish council support would be needed.  The activities which usually take place in the Village Hall were still continuing whilst the work was underway.

ii)      A Thurleigh Road resident noted that the road would be affected again when the planned protests at Yarlswood take place.  What action was being taken to open the Clapham entrance?  Cllr Dilley said that Cllr McMurdo was working to deal with this but had reported that the agent involved had changed again.  . If a planning application was to be submitted in the future, the Parish Council could ask that a condition is placed on the application that the road is re-opened but given that site is private property until then there was little else that could be done.

iii)    The Fete accounts were not yet produced but it was understood that over £1000 extra was raised this year.

  1. Planning:

Applications Received:

15/01558/TPO Chestnut Cottage, 7 Bedford Road, MK44 1RR.  Horse chestnut – High pollard. No objections.

Applications Approved by Bedford Borough Council:

15/01412/TPO 17 Huntsmans Way, MK44 1SA.  Works to various trees to crown lift and reduce by 25-30%.  Consent granted.

15/01102/FUL 3 Thurleigh Road, MK44 1RF. Erection of detached garage to rear/side and relocation of sun room. Permitted.

Other Matters: The Clerk has sent in objections to 14/00815/FULWM.

6. Village Welfare: To consider and agree action regarding the following:

i)        To receive an update on resurfacing of River Lane/London End: Cllr Reddington reported her meeting with Andy Prigmore.  She said that the Borough Council were equally frustrated at being unable to finish the work but given the residents action had no choice but to cease the work.  It would have cost £2000-£3000 to complete the work at the time but to bring back the equipment would cost £20,000, which the Borough Council are not willing to spend.  He had hoped to tag the work on to future work taking place in Bletsoe but that would not be possible.  A new alternative programme would need to be devised, which may be a possibility, but it would not be to the same degree.  It was resolved that Cllr Reddington should go back to Andy Prigmore to get a definite agreement to plan the work.                       Action: Cllr Reddington

ii)      To agree action regarding the old post office footpath:  Cllr Reddington reported discussing this with Andy Prigmore on her walk about with him. He felt it was quite solid if perhaps appearing unattractive.  Andy Prigmore would ask Martin Anderson from the Borough Council to check if it was structurally sound.  Cllr Reddington agreed to contact Andy Prigmore to check this had been done.

Action: Cllr Reddington

iii)    Resurfacing of Paths: Cllr Reddington reported that the footpaths in Marsh Lane and Huntsmans Way were inspected on her walk about with Andy Prigmore.  2 out of 4 were fine in his view and 2 out of 4 needed some work.  Cllr Reddington to ask Cllr Snowball for electronic copies of his photographs to send onto Andy Prigmore.   This was possibly an opportunity to get other paths resurfaced in the village.                                                        Action: Cllr Reddington

iv)    To receive an update on Riverside Meadow and agree any further action: :  Cllr Dilley reported that a compromise had been reached to everyone’s satisfaction.  The bend in the path would be cut further away from the hedge in future.  Cllr Dilley still intended to put together a five year maintenance plan to be incorporated into the Neighbourhood Development Plan.

v)      To consider and agree action regarding missing sign at entrance to permissive path from Thurleigh Road: Cllr Reddington raised this at her meeting with Andy Prigmore.  He suspected that the sign has gone because the path had expired and funding for maintaining permissive paths had ceased.  Andy Prigmore agreed to find out the expiry dates for paths in the parish.

7.  New Village Welfare Issues:

  1. To agree action re: the cutting of Riverside Meadow: It was resolved that the Clerk ask for a quote from Martin Towler to cut and bale the meadow.  Cllr Dilley will obtain a further two quotes.     Action:  The Clerk and Cllr Dilley
  2. To consider the proposed 2-tier school system: It was resolved that the Clerk write to the lower school to say that the Parish Council in principle were in support of the two tier system  and therefore the restructuring of the school.
  3. To consider the diversion of the path in front of Milton Ernest main gate and agree action: Cllr Newman reported that Cllr Winter was in collision with a car leaving the nursing home whilst riding his bike along the path that crossed the entrance.  Cllr Reddington had discussed the path with Andy Prigmore to see if it could be re-routed further away from the wall of the nursing home to enable cars to see pedestrians and cyclists using the path easier.   He was not supportive of this but proposed re-writing the “give way” marking more clearly where the path meets the nursing home entrance and to repeat it on the other side of the entrance as well.  It was resolved that given the potential safety considerations, particularly where young children use the path, Cllr Reddington would advise Andy Prigmore that this alone was not considered acceptable and that if necessary the matter would be taken further.  Cllr McMurdo to be copied in. 

Action: Cllr Reddington.

  1. To consider the destruction of a ridge/furrow field and barn owl territory meadowland behind Radwell Road: Discussion took place on the matter in consideration of the circulated communications but at this time there was little more that the Parish Council could do and would maintain a watching brief.
  2. To note new PCSO and the proposed protest at Yarlswood 8th AugustIt was resolved that the Clerk write to the new PCSO Daniel Corbin asking for a copy of the traffic management plan to be used on the day.          Action: The Clerk

8.  Finance:

i)        Decision: to accept the monthly reconciliation presentation: It was resolved to accept this.

ii)      Decision: to agree payments to be made.

iii)    Book Receipts: £10 had been received.

Cheque No Who To Amount (£)
DD BBC Salaries July 293.33
465 S Bottoms Expenses 31.85
466 Warners Grass Cutting 30/6 276.00
467 Broxamp (Litter bins x 2 for playing field) 423.48
468 Wicksteed playground inspection 72.00
469 Warners Grass Cutting 17/7 276.00
470 S Dilly refund for room hire NDP 40.00

It was resolved to accept these.

9. To receive E-mailed questions from members of the public and to agree action:

A letter had been received from a resident in Radwell Road.  It highlighted the problem of parking obscuring vision generally along the road and also the problem of through traffic on Radwell Road especially the empty coaches and buses. The resident wanted to see Radwell Road similarly protected to Thurleigh Road. Cllr Dilley reported that he had already asked Cllr McMurdo to action the authority that Bedford Borough Council have over the routing of the school buses and ask that the school buses and coaches do not use Radwell Road, unless they are collecting or dropping off local children.  The matter of traffic management was included within the recent NDP questionnaire and consideration will be given to the consensus opinion of residents in proposing viable options.  He had also requested a copy of the traffic modelling that the Borough Council should have completed as part of their pre-build assessment in an attempt to measure the impact on the village from the extension of the Western by-pass.  It was resolved that the Clerk write to the resident to say that in completing the NDP, an attempt would be made to incorporate into it the responses made regarding traffic in the village.  Action: The Clerk.

10.  Reports by Representatives:-

i.  NDP Steering Group: Cllr Dilley reported that there had been three meetings following the collection of the questionnaires.  Some basic analysis of the results had been undertaken.  A meeting had taken place with Alex Munro the NDP consultant and new objectives had been set.  There would be a need to ask for an extension of the time deadline (end of September) with regards the grant monies received.

ii. Playing Field Committee: Cllr Williams reported that the two new bins had arrived and would be installed later in the summer.  An inspection had taken place and the report was awaited.  The Clerk would chase if not received in the next week.  Cllr Williams reported receiving correspondence from some local youths requesting a skate ramp.  They are seeking further information to assess demand and will investigate further.  Action: The Clerk.

iii. P3 Working Group: Cllr Dilley had raised one issue with Cllr Winter.

11.  Review of Actions Summary from Last Meeting: Reviewed and updated.

13. Date of the Next Meeting: Thursday 24th September 2015 at 8pm in the Village Hall.     Apologies in advance from Cllr Reddington.

…………………………………………………………………………………….  Chairman  24th September 2015