Minutes of the Meeting of Milton Ernest Parish Council held on Thursday 28th January 2016 at 8.00pm in the Village Hall

Present: Cllrs Dilley (Chairman), Williams, Newman, Winter, Snowball and Sharman, the Clerk (Sue Bottoms), Borough Councillor McMurdo and 7 members of the public.

  1. Apologies for Absence: Cllr Reddington.  The Parish Council agreed to accept her apologies.
  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 26th November 2015: These were signed as a true record of the meeting.
  4. Public Open Session (15 mins):

i)        Request for funds for equipment for local Community First Responders: Sally Tugulu attended to ask if the parish council would consider contributing to the purchase of the start up kit package needed.  She is based in Pavenham and Milton Ernest is within the area she covers.  The parish council said that they would put it on the agenda for consideration at the February meeting.  Action: The Clerk.

ii)      Bedfordia – Call for Sites: Mr Purser asked if the parish council were aware of the plans.  Cllr Dilley said that they were and were in dialogue with the Borough Council about them.  Should the development go ahead, the most likely route into the proposed development would be via Clapham not Thurleigh Road.

iii)    Milton Ernest Lower School consultation on Two-Tier Entry: Mr Jackson asked what steps did the parish council take to ensure the village were aware of the consultation.  Cllr Dilley explained that it was the responsibility of the school to ensure that the village were aware not the parish council.  The school had been made aware of concerns regarding traffic and parking and Cllr Dilley had monitored traffic on a school morning.  It is the responsibility of the school to ensure safe movement of children during the school day.  Any changes to the school structure would be subject to a planning application which the parish council would comment on.

iv)    Heavy Good Vehicles/Traffic in Thurleigh Road: Mr Freshwater said that the issue was raised at the October meeting and the problem was getting worse. Cllr McMurdo said that he had enquired with Mr Brian Hayward at the Borough Council following the October meeting, but he had been informed that there were no funds available for number plate recognition cameras.  Mr Freshwater said that they were becoming much cheaper.  Cllr McMurdo agreed to re-write to the police as the existing traffic measures required enforcement.  He would also approach Mr Hayward again.    Action: Cllr McMurdo.

v)      Narrowness of Footpath between Church Walk and Flewton End: It was thought that this required the clearance of soil and grass which had encroached across the footpath.  Cllr McMurdo would take the matter up with the Borough Council.  Action: Cllr McMurdo.

  1. Planning:

Applications Received: None.

Applications Approved: 15/01761/FUL Church Barn, Church Green MK44 1RH. Erection of a new 4 bedroom two storey dwelling house and detached garage (adjacent to existing house).

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

i)        To receive an update regarding the intended purchase of land in Huntsmans Way: Cllr Dilley reported that the Crown Solicitors had valued the land at £5000.  It had been agreed that Geoff Atkinson should write to say that the parish council agreed to the purchase and to establish the further costs involved in the legal purchase.  The Borough Council had allocated £7000 from the Rural Areas Fund which needed to be spent by the 10th of February 2017.

ii)      To receive any update regarding parking issues related to Milton Ernest Lower School: Cllr Dilley had monitored morning traffic around the school and noticed that most used the village hall car park but a few used Marsh Lane albeit for a very limited period whilst they dropped off their children.  He understood that the school had written to the parents regarding parking.  The school would need to consider the traffic implications of additional children should the school get permission to expand and this would need to be dealt with through any application submitted.

iii)    To consider the formation of a working group to consider traffic management options in Radwell Road: Cllr Dilley reported that the police had undertaken speed monitoring over a week in Radwell Road.  Two cameras were used, one near River Lane and the other near the garden centre.  1% of the traffic was exceeding 35mph.  At the garden centre, 55 vehicles in total travelling in both directions exceeded 35mph, at River Lane there were 15-20.  Cllrs Dilley, Snowball and Newman along with a member of the public who had experience in traffic management would form the working group.

iv)    Gate/Huntsman’s Way: The Clerk had written to Bedfordia to ask if the gate could be replaced with a fence and a smaller gate but had heard nothing.  Cllrs Newman and McMurdo suggested writing to Ian Rudge. Action: The Clerk.

8.  New Village Welfare Issues:

i)        To consider whether to hold a community litter pick: It was agreed that the Clerk ask the Borough Council if they could have a litterpick on the 2nd April 10-1pm.  Action: The Clerk. Cllr McMurdo would ask the Borough Council to undertake a litter pick outside the 30mph on the Thurleigh Road.  Action: The Clerk and Cllr McMurdo.

ii)      To consider action regarding the glass recycling at Milton Ernest Garden Centre: Cllr Williams suggested trying to schedule a regular monthly collection.  Cllr McMurdo agreed to initially contact James Lynch at the Borough Council to see if he could suggest a solution.  Action: Cllr McMurdo. Cllr Dilley agreed to speak to the garden centre. Action: Cllr Dilley.

iii)    To consider and agree action regarding parking and speeding in Radwell Road: Cllr Dilley said that the parish council had received a letter from a resident in London End.  Cllr Dilley had drafted a letter in response which the Clerk would send.     Action: The Clerk.

iv)    Grass Cutting Contract: This is due at end of March.  Clerk to inform Warners and invite another contractor to quote.  Action: The Clerk.

9.  Finance:

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

ii)      Decision: to agree payments to be made: It was agreed to accept these (See below).  Cllr Newman gave the Clerk £80 from the Christmas Event.

iii)    Decision: To consider and agree action regarding the budget for 2016-17: Following consideration it was agreed to approve this.

iv)    Decision: To agree the level of the precept and complete paperwork: Following discussion, it was agreed to request £14,790 which amounted to a 5% increase.

v)      Decision: To consider funding request from Milton Ernest Lower School and agree action: The Clerk to write informing the school that a grants application form was being created and would be adopted at the February meeting.  The date for applications would be the 31st May and would explain the criteria. Action: The Clerk.

vi)    Decision: To consider the appointment of an internal auditor: Gill Wiggs had written to say that she was increasing her fee to £135.  It was agreed that the Clerk should write to her agreeing to her appointment and the fee increase.  Action: The Clerk.

Cheque No Who To Cost (£) VAT (£) Amount (£)
DD BBC Salaries – Dec 293.33 293.33
DD BBC Salaries – Jan 293.33 293.33
496 Warners – WI Garden 155.00 31.00 186.00
497 Rushden Town Band 300.00 300.00
498 HMRC PAYE 319.60 319.60
499 Wildmans Glass collection 110.00 22.00 132.00
500 BBC Election Expenses 74.84 74.84
501 S Bottoms – Expenses 12.00 12.00
502 Milton Ernest VH Hall Hire 103.00 103.00

10. To receive E-mailed questions from members of the public and to agree action: This was dealt with under 8iii above.

11.  Reports by Representatives:-

i.  NDP Steering Group: Cllr Dilley reported that draft policies had now been created from the questionnaire responses.  Before sending to the Borough Council, Cllr Dilley would circulate to the parish council for comments.  The next NDP meeting was next week.  There had still not been any request for a return of the current grant funding which was due back at the end of December.

ii. Playing Field Committee: Cllr Williams reported that the meeting had focussed on finding funds to cover the cost of re-surfacing.  Possibilities included The Lottery Fund, Bedfordia and Ward funding.

12. Review of Actions Summary from Last Meeting:

Cllr McMurdo agreed to chase the Borough Council regarding the issue of school buses using Radwell Road.  Action: Cllr McMurdo.

13. Date of the Next Meeting: Thursday 25th February 2016 at 8pm in the Village Hall.    

…………………………………………………………………………………….  Chairman  25th February 2016