Minutes 10 September 2019 - NPC

PRESENT: Councillors: J Evans (Chairman), Mrs J Clayton, Mrs A White, J Downs,P McNeill, D Newsam, A Henderson, Mrs C Appleton, J Radcliffe, J Siddall
In attendance: Mrs D Locker (Clerk) and 11 members of the public & Cllr Mrs J Brockway (LCC) 
Councillors not present:  Councillors P Jenkinson & C Higham
Commencing at 7.30pm
Public Forum
The Chairman welcomed PCSO J Parker and other members of the public. He announced that before opening the meeting, the members of the public had an opportunity to address the Parish Council, on any matter, during the 15 minutes public session; although suspected that most would be in in attendance in respect of a particular agenda item which will be brought forward and their comments could be heard at that time, if agreeable.
Police Report
A report submitted by the Nettleham Neighbourhood Policing Team outlining the reported incidences for the two month period – 07/0719 – 09/09/19, was circulated. The Chairman asked PCSO Parker if there were any particular incidences to note.  The PCSO advised there had been some Anti-social behaviour (ASB) reported – including some recent neighbour disputes and ASB at Mulsanne Park, although none concerning Bill Bailey’s Playing field; however, it should be noted that the parish experiences relatively  low levels of crime.
County and District Councillor Reports
Councillor Mrs Brockway (LCC) advised:
  • LCC have undertaken some work to improve the website which is being rolled out across their range of online services e.g. applying for services or requests for information;
  • Adult, children and learning disabilities services have received some good feedback recently;
  • By way of a reminder - highways issues can be reported to LCC, on line, using ‘Fix My Street’;
  • The efforts of a number of Nettleham residents are keeping the Saxilby wildlife charity going and this is something the parish should be proud of;
  • There is a significant restructuring exercise taking place at WLDC – initially this has affected the Senior Management team, with further restructuring due to take place, across the authority.
Councillor Mrs White (WLDC) advised:
Her full report had been circulated and some of the key points include:
  • WLDC are impressed at the number of residents and councillors that attended and got involved in the recent WLDC budget setting workshops;
  • Events have been planned and are taking place to mark the ‘Mayflower 400’ celebrations – including a procession, recently through Gainsborough;
  • WLDC, LCC and English Heritage are working together to develop proposals for the future arrangements for Gainsborough Old Hall;
  • She has been selected to represent WLDC as their champion for children and skills.
Council were advised that Councillor Giles McNeill had already conveyed his apologies to the Clerk and that, in his role as Leader of WLDC, his focus also requires a more district wide, strategic approach, in addition to that of a local District Councillor.
The meeting opened at 7.40pm
101/19. To resolve to receive to resolve to receive apologies and accept reasons for absence 
Councillors P Jenkinson & C Higham
It was proposed, seconded and resolved to accept the apologies of absence, received. Unanimous
102/19. Disclosure of pecuniary interests in accordance with the requirements of the Localism Act 2011 and to consider any requests for dispensations
Declarations of interests were received from Councillor Siddall and Councillor Mrs Clayton relating to agenda item 9(g) as they are trustees of the Village Hall.
103/19. Notes of the Parish Council meeting held on 22nd July to be approved as the minutes
It was proposed, seconded and resolved that the notes of the meeting of the Parish Council held on 22 July 2019 be approved as a correct record and be signed by the Chairman.  Unanimous 
104/19. Election of a Parish Council Vice Chairman
Nominations for the position of Vice Chairman were requested, by the Chairman
It was proposed, seconded and resolved that Councillor Siddall be elected as the Vice Chairman. For: 9; Abstention: 1 – (Councillor Siddall abstained from the vote)
105/19. Clerks report on matters outstanding (information only)
The Clerk updated the Parish Council on the following matters:
  •  The Nettleham Hub had cancelled their 5k fun run event, planned for early September, due to lack of support; consequently the grant of £57.50, agreed by the Parish Council was withdrawn.
  • The Facilities Manager had been in contact with the Police who had advised that witnesses had come forward to report the driver and van that had damaged the bench, beyond repair, at Vicarage Lane which had since been replaced by the Parish Council.  Whilst the case had been reopened, there had been no further progress.
  • The Coop’s Communications Manager had written to the Council to advise that the parking restrictions, at the Nettleham car park had been reviewed, following feedback received and changes were being introduced from 1 October 2019.  The Clerk had subsequently written a response thanking the Coop for listening to and reviewing feedback from residents, customers and local organisations; also for finding a practical solution to the parking issues identified.
The Chairman advised that item 8 shown on the agenda would be brought forward and be heard as the next item.
106/19. To receive an update about the provision of the new play equipement at Bill Baileys Playing Field  - following a review of the proposals 
The Chairman advised that during 2016 the Council had received feedback, from some residents, that there was a need for play equipment for older children.  The Council set up a Working Group and a survey was circulated to village residents, requesting their views.  A Working Group assessed the responses along with existing play areas sites along with the play equipment already in situ.  Subsequently it was concluded that Bill Baileys Playing field was the best placed to site additional equipment as it had space available, it was the most central to the village and easiest to walk to.  Various consultation undertaken, by the Council, also concluded that residents wanted additional equipment to be sited, more centrally.  During November 2018, in response to a report setting out the Council’s proposals, some residents, abutting the site, advised the Council that they were unhappy about the proposal to site the new equipment at the upper (north east) tier, at the Bill Bailey’s site.
In response, the Council agreed to undertake a review of the proposals and options for siting the new equipment, at the site.  Following review, the findings were presented to the Property Committee, during January 2019 and then considered at a meeting of the full Parish Council, during February 2019, when it was resolved that the 6 pieces of new equipment proposed, be sited at the vacant upper tier of the Bill Bailey’s site.  During early June 2019, the Council was notified that their application to FCC Communities had been successful and had been awarded a grant of up to £43,000; in addition WLDC had agreed a further £8,000 grant funding, towards the project.  Residents, abutting the upper tier were subsequently notified, in writing, of the grant awarded and the proposal to start installation of the new play equipment, in due course.  In response, residents again reported their concerns, primarily that they would be affected by increased noise and anti-social behaviour should the equipment is sited at the upper tier of the site.  Some local residents also voiced their concerns at the Parish Council meeting of 22 July 2019 and were subsequently offered the opportunity for residents to meet with the Working Group to enable them to provide their input about how the equipment would fit on the available footprint, at the site.  Two local residents met with members of the Working Group (Councillors), in August, and the proposals were discussed.  Subsequently, the local residents continued to express their concerns.  The Chairman advised that Councillor Newsam would address Council, setting out details of the three (siting) proposals considered by the Working Group, along with feedback received during the summer – including that set out in 2 detailed reports, received from a local resident which had already been circulated to Councillors.
At 7.59pm it was proposed seconded and resolved to suspend Standing Orders to allow members of the public to address Council. Unanimous
Resident 1: Thanked Council for taking into account residents views and favoured option 3;
Resident 2: Advised that if Council agree (to site the play equipment at the upper tier) the residents will continue to protest;
Resident 3: Asked why the Council’s decision had been to put the equipment at the top of the site when there was already anti-social behaviour (ASB), at the upper tier;
The Chairman responded by advising that residents should report any incidences of ASB to the Police;
Resident 1: Advised that they did not wish to report ASB to the Police as their resources are already limited;
The Chairman invited comments from PCSO Parker who was in the meeting room;
PCSO Parker  Advised that incidents of ASB be reported to the Police (via 101) as resources are incident led and if no reports are received Police resources will be directed to other areas
At 8.09pm it was proposed, seconded and resolved to resume Standing Order and re-convene the meeting. Unanimous
Councillor Newsam advised Council:
  • He had taken over Chairmanship of the Working Group (WG) – since May 2019;
  • The Working Group had appraised a range of site options for siting of the equipment including: at the upper tier and further down at the side of the existing play equipment;
  • The new play equipment is designed for those in the age range 8 – 14 years;
  • During consideration of the proposals the WG had also considered the needs of other residents e.g. dog walkers, that the Keilder fort has a solid platform which is open to and would be in full view from the Scothern Road;
  • Option 1 – at the North East corner of the Bill Bailey site the fence will be moved to protect children from falling down the bank.  No new access gates would be required, so access would be through existing gates. No benches would be sited at the upper tier;
  • Option 2 – sets out some equipment installed at the upper site, although the Keilder fort would be sited low down and therefore reduce children’s viewing height;
  • Option 3 – this option would require the provision and associated cost of another large gate.  Existing fencing would be retained but a lot of new fencing would need purchasing and erecting.  This option could be considered the most neutral of the three site proposals for residents and most suited for less able children to access.  Older children don’t also have to walk through the younger persons’ park.  The existing bench, in situ, would need relocating.
  • The existing goal posts would be approximately 11 metres form the play line so the Council would have to review whether or not they would need moving.  This would require additional expenditure of around £2,000 to relocate the goal posts;
  • The cost of providing additional fencing for option 3 would be in the region of £5,000 - £6,000.
The Chairman invited each Councillor to provide their views about the proposals:
Cllr Downs: Advised that in making a decision one needs to be minded - some might say the comments of a few may be considered as self-interest whilst others be considered as in the public interest; before taking the vote, Councillors should also take into consideration what they feel residents that elected them would want them to do.  Change has occurred across the village, over the years, and the village has risen to it.
Cllr Radcliffe: Advised of some concerns about the younger children having to seek access through the older children’s area, to enable them to access their own age range equipment.  His experience is that teenagers enjoy being in quieter areas so less may play if it is sited nearer to the road.  Also some concerns about the extra cost associated with other options (2 & 3);
Cllr Mrs Appleton: nothing to put forward, at the time.
Cllr Mrs Clayton: Advised Councillors need to consider the best interests of all in the village.  Has some uncertainty about putting the large Keilder equipment alongside the smaller children’s play area;
Cllr Mrs White: Advised that she had contacted WLDC by way of a double check about planning requirements and had been advised that siting of the proposed play equipment is lawful, within permitted development and WLDC have no jurisdiction in this respect.  The issue of potential additional noise could be considered as hypothetical.  In respect of residents reports that additional noise will occur during the day – children are generally in school (during the week) for 40 weeks of the year.  In respect of comments about potential for increase in ASB – this occurs at various areas in the village and it moves around.  Cllr White gave an example of ASB where children have been seen climbing on the roof at the Linelands and was reported to the Police.  The NE upper tier of the site was well screened with trees/bushes except in front of the new house where there are now new trees and shrubs planted by the Parish Council which have not yet grown. Her experience is young people need assistance in having ownership of  areas and will be keen to report those that cause problems to their areas. 
Cllr Henderson:  All of the proposals appear acceptable but more likely to be in favour of option 1 – based on the additional cost associated with options 2 & 3.
Cllr P McNeill:  Confirmed that he had taken some time to visit the site, with a younger member of family and sought the views of others who appeared very keen to have this type of equipment installed.  His comments also included the need to encourage activity, to help in reducing the rise in obesity levels.
Cllr Siddall:  confirmed he was part of the original project group, going back to 2016 and for three years this project was considered a really good plan.  Whilst having understanding of the residents stated fears of potential ASB arising he expressed he did not feel that siting of the play equipment at the upper tier will encourage more ASB and also had concerns about the additional costs associated with providing the equipment set out in option 2 & 3.  He is aware that one of the residents took some baseline recordings on a mobile/app locally and at the large Yorkshire Wildlife Park. Cllr Siddall advised he would like to think that there could be some compromise available but the extra cost could be considered an issue.
Cllr Evans (Chairman):  confirmed that he would not put forward his personal views or be involved in the vote as he is currently dealing with a complaint made against the council, relating to this project.
Cllr Mrs White proposed and it was seconded by Cllr Henderson - that the equipment be sited on the upper tier (site option 1)
Cllr Siddall proposed an amendment to the original motion and it was seconded by Cllr Mrs Clayton that site option 2 be put forward as an amendment 
Councillor Newsam proposed option 3 
A Councillor requested that the vote be held by secret ballot, but was not supported.  Another Councillor requested a recorded vote.  The Chairman confirmed that amendments to the original proposal would need to be put to the vote, in the order received.
Proposal for an amendment to the original motion - for site Option 2. For: Cllrs Mrs Clayton, Mrs Appleton, Siddall, Against: Cllrs Mrs White, Downs, Henderson, Radcliffe, Newsam, McNeill. Abstention: Cllr Evans (Chairman)
No further amendments were made
Proposal for the original substantive motion was carried (for site option 1) 
Following the vote it was resolved that the new play equipment be sited on the upper tier (site option 1). For: Cllrs Mrs White, Downs, Henderson, Radcliffe, McNeill, Cllrs Mrs Clayton, Mrs Appleton, Against: Cllrs Siddall and Newsam, Abstention: Cllr Evans (Chairman)
107/19. Financial matters
a) To Ratify Payments made – 01/07/19 – 31/08/19
It was proposed, seconded and resolved that the Council duly ratify the payments made (shown as Appendix 1). Unanimous
Cllr Mrs White thanked the Clerk for providing clarity in the setting out of the accounts information.
b) To consider the Income & Expenditure information & balances in bank accounts at 31/8/19
The contents of the report were noted.  The Chairman checked the summary against copies of the bank statements and duly signed them as a true statement of monies held, in the Council’s bank accounts.
108/19. Plannning Matters 
a) To receive recommendations or observations on the following planning applications
1)  12 Larch Avenue - Mr A Rendall - 139737. Planning application for single storey side extension, single storey front extension and replacement of existing porch. The Planning Liaison Panel have no comments
It was proposed, seconded and resolved to approve the comments received from the Planning Liaison Committee. Unanimous
(b)  Appeals, Consents, Refusals and Withdrawals received
 i)    Appeals –
  • Land off the Hawthorns - Dixon, Gauke, Pickwell - 138494. Outline planning application for erection of up to 63no. dwellings with garages, access roads, footpaths and open space-access to be considered and not reserved for subsequent applications. The Planning Liaison Panel strongly object to this application on the following grounds and 
It was proposed, seconded and resolved that the Council’s comments be sent to the Planning Inspectorate. Unanimous
The council objects on the grounds that it does not comply with the Nettleham Neighbourhood Plan and the CLLP both of which call for 50 homes to be allocated to the site and 63 does represent a 26% uplift. Nettleham already has accepted 55 additional homes on top of the number approved on the sites allocated in the CLLP and Nettleham Neighbourhood Plan, which will provide significant additional strain on local facilities of this village. The applicant claims to have demonstrated that 63 will fit within the site, however, this is only an outline application and there is no guarantee that the final detailed plan will look anything like the layout submitted as an example. We feel it is too premature to approve the final housing number other than as is stated in the CLLP and Nettleham Neighbourhood Plan (50) until the final layout of the dwelling is submitted, to avoid potential housing number creep. The Council requests the above comments are taken into account when considering the appeal.
(ii)  Consents/Approval of Reserved Matters 
  • Land off Larch Avenue - Dixon, Gauke, Pickwell - 139785.  Application for no-material amendment to planning permission 138494 (5/7/19) – footpath.  Determined 30/07/19 – granted without conditions
  • 2 Church Street - Mrs Macphee - 139549. Planning application for change of use from butchers shop to Greek take away and delicatessen.  Application determined 30.08.19 – Granted time limit & conditions
  • 2 Sudbrooke Lane -  N Lawrence - 139660 Planning application for single storey side extension, bay window and pitched roof over entrance and garage.  Application determined 29.08.19 – granted time limit & conditions
iii)  Refusals – None
(c) Tree Applications –
  • 36, High Street - Mrs C Farrell - 041246. Fell one Scots pine
(d)  Update on outstanding planning matters    
Council were advised that Councillors had met with the Director at Stirling Developments for further discussion about the provision of a suitable path to the rear of the new development on Lodge Lane (to Mulsanne).  Stirling’s original proposals were considered not suitable to the Parish Council.  Since that time some edging for a path from the development (to Mulsanne Park), a street light and closed boarded fencing had been installed; although the Council still awaits Stirling’s update, for consideration. 
109/19.   Council Matters
a) To consider the Draft Council Standing Orders – following review
Council were advised that the Personnel & Standards Panel had reviewed Standing Orders.
It was proposed, seconded and resolved that Council accept and adopt the revised wording. Unanimous
b) To consider the Draft Council Financial Regulations – following review
The revised version be brought back to the next Council meeting, following amendments proposed.
c) To consider information about how Community Speed Watch operates in other parishes 
Council were advised that Community Speed Watch (CSW) had been considered previously by Council, although not introduced due to some concerns about volunteer safety.  Since that time, further feedback has been received about two successful CSW schemes, in operation, at Sturton by Stow and Cherry Willingham – including: about how they operate using hand held apparatus, about their links with the Police and their data.  There continued discussion about the merits and disadvantages of fixed speed signs and their cost.  Cllr Siddall recommended that Council support the hand held Community Speed watch scheme, provide up to £1,000 of funding and once set up with at least 12 volunteers, hand the initiative over to the community.  
It was proposed, seconded and resolved that the Parish Council support the Community Speed Watch initiative, provided that enough volunteers come forward, in a reasonable time, and seek external funding opportunities for fixed signage. Unanimous
d) To discuss the Council’s objection to developer’s application for beck ownership – at Kingsway
Council were advised that a developer land owner abutting the beck, at Kingsway, has applied for ownership of both sides of the beck.  The Parish Council, having maintained the beck side, e.g. the bank alongside the highway, for many years, instructed the Council’s Solicitors to submit an objection, against the developer’s application for ownership, to the Land Registry.  The window for submitting an objection was time limited.  Whilst the final cost for this action is currently unknown, it is estimated to be in the region of £1,600+vat.
Resolved that Council ratify expenditure of £1600, for submission of an objection to the developers application to register the land (Kingsway highway side of beck). Unanimous
e) To report on progress on village beck improvements
The Working Group are currently looking at restoring the village beck habitat, council were advised. 
It was proposed, seconded and resolved that the proposal for £1,000 be agreed to support the Lincs River Trust (for work associated with the village beck). Unanimous
f)  To discuss tree and estate management  - Deferred to next meeting
At 9.40pm – Councillors Mrs Clayton and Siddall left the meeting room
g) To discuss the review of the Memorandum of Understanding relating to the Village Hall
The Chairman advised that, just over a year ago, the Council sought to regularise their dealings, with the Village Hall Committee (VHC), as the Council is the Custodian Trustee.  For some years the Parish Council has provided financial support for maintenance to the village hall building and contributed each 
year, around £2,600 to capital reserves.  The original trust deed goes back to 1969, and to regularise arrangements, the Council signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU), with the VHC during 2018; although some of the contents of the current MOU have since been disputed, by a resident. The Council’s Honorary Legal Advisor was a Councillor and was instrumental in the development of the MOU which confirms it will be reviewed annually.
It was proposed, seconded and resolved that Council agree an initial sum of £1500, to instruct a Solicitor, to undertake a re-examination of the current Memorandum of Understanding, in place, with the Village Hall Committee For: 7; Abstention 1
Councillors Mrs Clayton and Siddall re-entered the meeting room at 9.47pm
h) Review of Personnel & Standards Panel – Terms of Reference. Deferred to next meeting
(i) To receive feedback following meeting with LCC regarding on-street parking in the parish. Deferred to next meeting
110/19.  Property Committee Matters
a) To receive an update about proposals to extend the current burial ground into the Swathe.
Council were advised that an outline pricing framework has been received from two specialist providers of cemetery development services.  It is anticipated that preliminary work will incude: water surveys, archaeology, before proceeding through to the planning application stage.
111/19. Correspondence received 
  • The Council have received an email, of thanks, for replacing the damaged bench, from the family of the couple who were named on the original. Thanks were also expressed to those that had rescued the original brass plaque, had polished it up and then re-fixed it onto the replacement bench.
  • An email had been received form a resident requesting a range of feedback, which has already been provided; they also requested that Council progress their Emergency Plan and consider limiting the parish precept increase.
  • Information about the LALC conference and Annual General Meeting arranged for Tuesday 15/10/19 was circulated and a request that Councillors contact the Clerk to arrange a booking, if required.
112/19. Councillor reports/Future Agenda items 
It was requested the following items be included on the next Parish Council meeting agenda:
  • Community Speed Watch
113/19.  Date of next meeting 
The Chairman requested that the next meeting of the Parish Council be changed to Tuesday 15 October, 2019 at 7.30pm at the Small Hall, The Old School, Mill Hill, Nettleham.
At 9.56pm it was proposed, seconded and resolved to suspend Standing Orders to extend the meeting for 15 minutes for discussion of an urgent item. Unanimous
114/19. To resolve whether to move into closed session and exclude the public and press in accordance with the Public Bodies (Admissions to meetings Act 1960) due to the sensitive nature of the business to be discussed
At 9.57 It was proposed, seconded and resolved to move into closed session and remove any public or press to discuss recruitment to the vacant post of Receptionist/Administrator.  Unanimous
The meeting room was cleared.
Council were advised that the Personnel and Standards Panel had reviewed the current staffing structure and ongoing needs and subsequently recommended that the post of Receptionist/Administrator be amended to that of Assistant Clerk on the staffing structure.  The revised job description and person specification had been circulated to Councillors, for their consideration, prior to the meeting.
It was proposed, seconded and resolved that the current role of Receptionist/Administrator be amended on the staff structure to that of Assistant Clerk, with duties outlined in the revised job description and that the role be advertised using a range of formats, including the use of on-line advertisers.Unanimous
The meeting closed at 10.10pm