View of the Well House with Saint Lawrence Church behind

Minutes of a Meeting of Gotham Parish Council (01/12/15)

Present: M.J. Sheppard, (Chairman) B.J.Walker (Vice-Chairman), J.M.F.Royce,  J.P.Anderson,  G.Hutter,  A.Clayworth, H.Taylor,  D.Bexon, M.Wilkins, G.Holbrook, C.Dabell.

In Attendance: Borough Councillor S.Matthews, Mr. Mark Goodwill-Hodgson (Technical architect)

The Chairman welcomed Borough Councillor S.Matthews and M.Goodwill-Hodgson to the meeting.

15/198: Apologies:  G.Clark, County Councillor A. Brown.

15/199: Acceptance of Apologies:

PROPOSED: J.P.Anderson SECONDED: B.J.Walker  All in favour.

The Chairman invited Mark Goodwill-Hodgson to explain his plans for the refurbishment of the Well House.

PROPOSAL: Suspension of Standing Orders.

PROPOSED: J.M.F.Royce. SECONDED: J.P.Anderson All in favour.

Gotham Well House Refurbishment Specification:

M. Goodwill-Hodgson had emailed detailed drawings of the Well House showing designs for its reconstruction, which had been circulated to Councillors,.  He noted, the Well House had been reasonably well looked after but had some unsympathetic repairs carried out over the years, especially the raised dais. There are some cracked tiles on the roof and the coronet pinnacle needs some attention to the crown which, he assumes, is made from oak. The metal railings are holding the structure in place. The concrete base will be lowered with staddle stones used to support the base of the stanchions, thus maintaining height and to restore the original character of the building. During the refurbishment, it will be necessary to temporarily remove the roof, which will not be subject to a demolition planning application, as it is only for refurbishment purposes.

The following list of other repairs will be necessary:

Existing electrification to be maintained, with the addition of a new light.

Repair top crown – to be assessed when removed.

Damp Proofing.

New roof tiles where required.

Metal work – repairs to railings. Polyurethane coating.

New benches to replace present. (for further discussion).

Interpretation boards on the underside of the beam, above the entrance.

White microporous paint/preservative treatment to posts.

Health and Safety procedures, during the work, are the remit of the architect. Mr. Goodwill-Hodgson referred to an informative meeting with James Bate, RBC Conservation Officer.

The work will take approximately two weeks and cost between £18,000 – £20,000.

G.Hutter reported, the ‘Supporting Local Communities Fund.’ who are  considering the GPC application. No  decision until April, 2016.

The following builders will be invited to tender a quotation:

Mick Duggan, Saunders Brothers, Bonser’s Restoration, Ackroyd’s.

M.J.Sheppard to contact Earl Howe to inquire about the history of the coronet. Parishioner, Harold Sumner, originally placed the coronet, as seen in an old photograph. He may be able to supply information re its construction.

Mr. M. Goodwill-Hodgson left the meeting at 8.06 p.m.

PROPOSAL: Re-Instatement of Standing Orders.

PROPOSED: J.P.Anderson SECONDED: C.Dabell.  All in favour.

15/200:  Declaration of Interest:

G.Hutter, H.Taylor, D.Bexon, in matters relevant to the Memorial Hall/Recreation Ground.

15/201: County Councillor A.Brown: N/a – apologies received.

15/202:   Borough Councillor Stuart Matthews:

Borough Councillor S. Matthews offered to donate £1,000 towards the refurbishment of the Well House, taken from his Council Allowance. A large sized cheque will be presented, during the official Christmas tree lighting up ceremony on the 6th December, 2015. The Chairman thanked him for his generosity.

The Cuckoo Bush Pub has had an Asset of Community Value taken out on it by CAMRA. (Real ale campaign) This organisation has served ACV’s on sixteen pubs within Rushcliffe with the good intention of preserving community public houses which can be endangered and redeveloped into flats, etc. In future, RBC will keep Parish Councils informed of such applications.

The building of the new Council offices on Rugby Road are on schedule. The Rushcliffe art collection has been sold for £42,000 due to large insurance premiums if kept on show to the public.

M.J.Sheppard thanked Borough Councillor S. Matthews for attending the meeting and he left at 8.20 p.m.

15/203: Minutes of the previous meeting:

Resolved: That the previously circulated Minutes of the Parish Council meeting held on the 3rd November, 2015, be accepted and signed as a true record of the business transacted, with the following amendment:

15/182 last paragraph – insert ‘river’ before ‘bank’.

PROPOSAL: Acceptance of the November, 2015 Minutes. PROPOSED: G.Holbrook  SECONDED: C.Dabell. Vote: All in favour.

Progress:

15/189: Kegworth Road Seat: The Clerk had contacted NCC Estimates Team re the cost of the removal of the seat to the verge, adjacent to the primary school. Quotation received of £150. The Clerk would ask for the cost of the small repair to the seat prior to its removal.

PROPOSAL: Acceptance of quotation of £150 to remove the Kegworth Rd. seat to the verge outside Gotham Primary School. PROPOSED: B.J.Walker  SECONDED: G.Hutter. Vote: All in favour.

15/185: 3 Meadow End – decking: Despite an order, from RBC Enforcement Office to remove the decking at 3 Meadow End, it  still remains in place.

15/195: Defibrillator: G.Hutter reported, Graham Whitehead of Community Heartbeat Trust, had confirmed he would be happy to check the Memorial Hall defibrillator which is due for its annual inspection.The Bus Station defibrillator will be regularly checked by G. Hutter.The battery replacement will be the Bus Garage’s responsibility.

15/195: Fracking: M.Wilkins reported, he had attended a meeting concerning Fracking at St. Mary’s Church, East Leake on the 16th November, 2015. At least eighty people attended. Nine bore holes are usually required to explore potential. Fracking can lead to pollution of the water table. J.P. Anderson commented that planning permission is required before the bore holes are sited.

15/204: Finance Monthly Payments and Receipts:

Receipts and Payments: RESOLVED: That the receipts, since the last meeting, are noted and the Accounts in Appendix F1 be confirmed and authorised for payment.

PROPOSED: J.P.Anderson SECONDED: J.M.F.Royce.  Vote: All in favour.

J.P.Anderson reported, the Plunkett Foundation would soon be paying £2,000 into GPC’s bank account to cover the costs of the ACV on the former Royal British Legion Building.

a) Recreation Budget 2016/17 – £6,988.Paper 4 (5.9% increase)

b) Cricket Club Mowing Contract Review: The Cricket Club Contract is with Gotham Parish Council and cannot be altered without the Cricket Club’s consent. The groundsman had sought an increase of £50 per annum to the cost of mowing the pitch. The Clerk circulated the mowing contract to be inspected by J.P.Anderson, P.R.Dines and E. Perrell in consultation with of Gotham Cricket Club.

Children’s Play Equipment Maintenance: J.M.F.Royce PROPOSED an amendment to the item of £850 on the Recreation Ground budget spreadsheet, to be entered as two separate items, i.e. £500 annual maintenance, £350 one off supplementary payment. SECONDED: B.J.Walker. Vote: All in favour.

PROPOSAL: Acceptance of Recreation Budget 2016/17 – £6,988. PROPOSED: J.M.F.Royce. SECONDED: J.P.Anderson. Vote: All in favour.

c) Purchase of Royal British Legion Site update – (J.P.Anderson)

J.P.Anderson circulated an up to date explanation of potential finances for the proposed purchase of the former RBL site.

A, currently private, crowd funding site had been set up on the internet but would go public in the near future. It is not easy to negotiate, due to the number of intrusive questions, which might deter people from donating money by this method. A less intrusive site is ‘Just Giving’. J.P.Anderson sought permission to use the GPC Bank account until a separate bank account can be set up. The Steering Group are currently in negotiation with the owners of the village shop to be a tenant of part of the building to be a shop and Post Office. The increased size will enable them to extend the range and variety of their goods. The group expect a second tenant to be a community run café. Other uses such as an information point for visitors and walkers are planned but not expected to be revenue earning. The Steering Group are also in discussion with a mortgage lender and are preparing to share prospectus for launch in 2016. An application has been made to set up a Community Interest Company called Gotham Village CIC.

Request: The Steering Group request support from GPC for:

a)       An interest free loan of £20,000 to be repaid on sale of the site or 25 years whichever is the sooner.

b)       A loan at no more than the Public Works Board rate of up to £80,000 over 10 years.

J.P.Anderson reported, the building has been inspected by a surveyor and is in reasonable order. The outside maintenance would be the responsibility of the landlord. The inside maintenance would be the responsibility of the tenant. Shares in the business will not necessarily make money but are intended to support a community project. Shares will not lose money.

Money from the Parish Council is important due to the low, or nil, interest rate.

B.J.Walker spoke in favour of GPC contributing to the project to give an example to others that GPC have faith in the initiative for a much needed larger shop and post office.

J.M.F.Royce commented, that bank interest rates are likely to rise next year. He was instructed to research the request for monies of up to £50,000 in the first instance, with a view to a loan from the Public Works Board.

Heritage Capital Fund:   G.Hutter sought approval to use Heritage Capital funds towards the art boards to be displayed in the roof of the Well House.

It was PROPOSED by G.Hutter, SECONDED by G. Holbrook, to use £1,000 of the Heritage Capital to top up the Well House fund, if required to satisfy the demands of the Heritage Lottery Fund Grants application stipulations. Vote: Ten in favour, one against.

15/205: ‘ACV’ nomination Cuckoo Bush:

The Cuckoo Bush premises are owned by Punch Taverns. An unknown body has taken out an ACV on the building. GPC notified by D. Mitchell  of RBC Planning Department and invited to comment. J.P.Anderson to reply.

It was PROPOSED by J.P.Anderson that GPC write a letter to G. Lowe, retiring landlord of the Cuckoo Bush, thanking him for his service to the village. SECONDED: M.J.Sheppard. All in favour.

15/206: Report by Chairman of Planning and Development Committee:

Green Belt Issues – Affordable Housing in Gotham: J.P. Anderson reported, a meeting had been set up with Miles King of Waterloo Housing, on the 15th December, 2015 with Councillors A. Clayworth, G. Hutter and M.J.Sheppard and a representative from RBC in attendance. A discussion will take place on affordable housing in Gotham and local housing needs.

Clifton Pastures: J.P.Anderson reported, Highways England has removed its three month objection to building on Clifton Pastures. It is possible a revised planning application will be forthcoming.

A.Clayworth left the meeting at 9.30 p.m.

Proposed Development: Installation of 1 No. (GRP) kiosk at Gotham Sewage Treatment Works. Comments to be sent to NCC Development. M.J.Sheppard to send GPC comment.

15/207: Planning Applications Received:        

15/14 – (ref: 15/02717/FUL) 21 Gladstone Ave.– Sub division of property to create self contained unit on 1st floor.

The issue of car parking on this narrow cul de sac will be addressed by parking on Gladstone Avenue at the rear of the property.

PROPOSAL: NO OBJECTION. PROPOSED: M.J.Sheppard, SECONDED: G.Holbrook. Vote: ten in favour, one against.

15/208: Planning Decisions Received: Nil to date.

No Planning Meeting to take place in December due to a clash of dates with the Carol Singing event.

15/209: Report by the Chairman of the  Environmental Committee: (C.Dabell)

C.Dabell reported the following matters:

Railway Walk: C. Dabell had removed fallen timbers on the Railway Walk.

Hill Road Litter Sign: The Clerk had ordered a litter sign, from RBC, for the gate entrance, opposite to Elliott’s Transport Garage on Hill Road. (a notorious picnic spot).

No Environment Meeting to take place in December due to a clash of dates with the Carol Singing event.

15/210: Memorial Hall Report from GPC representatives:

G.Hutter reported the wiring to the light at the top of the Memorial Hall Drive, is not up to standard and will cost £1,000 to replace.

Parishioner, Alison Davis has advised the Trustees that she intends to post up a warning to dog owners to keep their dogs on a lead due to a previous attack, that nearly killed her cat, by an unleashed dog walking on the Recreation Ground.

The Trustees have donated £50 towards the Carol singing event. The Clerk has written a letter of thanks.

15/211: Policing Matters/Vandalism:

D.Bexon reported the following items:

Five allotment sheds recently broken into and tools taken.

Two men seen looking through letterboxes of various houses in Gotham during the afternoon.

Cars broken into on Curzon Street.

Locks to gate on Cheese Hill broken off causing a runaway horse to be run down and killed on Nottingham Road.

Mobile telephone stolen on Leake Road.

Motorbike stolen from The Rushes and recovered on Holland Close.

PROPOSAL: Extension of meeting beyond 9.30 p.m. to reach the end of the Agenda.

PROPOSED: J.M.F.Royce  SECONDED: J.P.Anderson. Vote: All in favour.

15/212: Gotham News & Media: Editorial Team: (Editorial Team: Councillors: M.J.Sheppard,  B.J.Walker, G. Hutter and D.Bexon. Parishioner: B.Sherratt. Photographer: H.Trobridge).

M.J.Sheppard reported, the November issue of Gotham News had been distributed. One thousand copies had been printed, as the cost was no more that the usual eight hundred copies. More copies distributed to include local libraries, Kingston, Thrumpton and Barton Parish Clerks. The advertising costs were set to increase in January, 2016. H.Taylor commented that some items in the November issue were outdated by the time of publication. The cause of this was a printing hold up.

M.J.Sheppard reported, a parishioner had expressed an interest in assisting with research into Gotham Remembers items for Gotham News

15/213: Casual Vacancy: The Chairman suggested this item should be ‘attacked with vigour’ in the New Year.

15/214: Chairman’s Report:

The Chairman distributed some defibrillator information cards to those Councillors’ who had not yet received one.

The Village Christmas Tree will be erected by A. Howick on the 3rd December. A lighting up ceremony will take place on the 6th December at 6.p.m. attended by Batman and Robin who will arrive in H. Taylor’s vintage Lagonda. Posters advertising the lighting up ceremony and Christmas Carols event on the 15th December, have been distributed around the village.

15/215: Clerk’s report:

The Clerk had received a certificate from the C.P.R.E. announcing Gotham as Joint Best New Entrant, for the Village Sculpture. The certificate was accompanied by a cheque for £100 prize money. The Clerk will write a letter of thanks.

NCC Inspire, a new community benefit society which has been established to deliver cultural, learning and library services across Nottinghamshire, operational from Spring, 2016.

15/216: Matters to Report:

J.M.F.Royce representing GPC, had attended the Annual Remembrance Service Parade in East Leake.

G. Hutter had received an email from an angry parishioner on The Ridgeway whose daughter had been splashed and hit by a stone by a speeding car, while waiting at the bus stop,. The matter had been reported to County Councillor Andrew Brown who had quickly responded with the promise of a traffic survey to gauge speeding traffic. The surface of the road is very poor, mostly due to heavy lorry damage. .A storm drain along the road has not yet been investigated by the Highways department.

A petition collected from residents would assist A. Brown to bring the matter of speeding to the attention of Notts County full Council meeting as it would show joint initiative. A call for a speed reduction from 40 m.p.h. to 30 m.p.h. with an interactive speed sign might be required.

15/217: Items for Next Agenda: Well House funding applications/estimates for work.

15/218: Date of Next Meeting: The next Meeting will be held on Tuesday, 5th January, 2016 at 7.30 p.m.

M.J. and Mrs. R. Sheppard were warmly thanked for the delicious nibbles and celebration drinks before the meeting. Thanks to the Clerk and Councillors for their contributions to the table.

The Chairman wished Councillors A Very Happy Christmas.

Meeting closed at 10.10 p.m.