Minutes of a Meeting of Gotham Parish Council (03/06/14)

Present: M.J.Sheppard, (Chairman) K. Steed (Vice-Chairman) J.M.F.Royce, G.Clark, J.P.Anderson, G.Hutter, E.Padden C.Dabell, E.Rodgers, D.Bexon, A.Clayworth.

In attendance: G.Holbrook.

The Chairman welcomed Mr. G.Holbrook to the meeting. He also welcomed D.Bexon who had been unable to attend recent meetings due to family illness.

14/116: Apologies: B.J.Walker, County Councillor A.Brown, Borough Councillor T.Vennett-Smith.

14/117: Acceptance of Apologies:
PROPOSED: J.P.Anderson SECONDED: E.Rodgers. Vote: All in favour.

14/118: Declaration of Interest:
Trustees, G.Clark, K.Steed, G.Hutter, D.Bexon in matters relevant to the Memorial Hall/Recreation Ground.

14/119: Minutes of the previous meeting:
Resolved: That the previously circulated Minutes of the Annual General Meeting of the Parish Council held on the 6th May, 2014, be accepted as a true record of the business transacted.
PROPOSED: G.Clark SECONDED: K.Steed. Vote: All in favour.

Progress from the Minutes:
14/106: Environmental Matters: new bus shelter on Leake Road (request from parishioner)
The Clerk had contacted Notts County Council and placed a request for a bus shelter alongside Leake Road, opposite to the entrance to Eyres Lane.

The Chairman announced that Item 5 on the Agenda (Casual Vacancy) should be moved to the end of the Agenda to allow Mr. Holbrook (applicant for the casual vacancy) more time to experience Parish Council discussion.

14/120: 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: K.Steed Vote: All in favour.
Bond Re-investment Update: J.M.F.Royce reported the Santander Bond had been rolled over into a .10% default account until the Handelsbanken current account was open when it would be transferred, together with the majority of funds presently in the Co-operative current account.
Handelsbanken new Current Account update: The Clerk had fulfilled a request from A.Squires of Handelsbanken to send details of the appointment of the GPC bank signatories to enable the current account to be progressed. Interest of .35% would be paid on monies transferred from Santander and the Co-op to the Handelsbanken current account.

14/121: Notts County Council: Ref: Bidwell Crescent/Railway Walk Footpaths/Bridleways:
Notts County Council had contacted the Clerk in January, 2014 re a proposal to modify the definitive map to include Cheesehill, Soldiers Lane, Bidwell Crescent twitchell, The Gas twitchell and the Railway Walk. The Clerk passed the letter and maps to K.Thorpe (Parish Paths Warden) and C.Dabell to progress. The proposal did not contain a statement and no action had been taken by GPC within the six week time frame for observation. K.Thorpe had since contacted T.Hart at NCC for explanation of the proposals and was satisfied it would not affect the ongoing usage of the footpaths. T.Hart confirmed that NCC would be responsible for re-surfacing and act as co-defenders, alongside GPC, in a case of a member of the public suing for accident whilst using the Railway Walk, the property of GPC. The Chairman was satisfied that Mr. Hart had explained the footpath maintenance was the responsibility of NCC but that the pruning back of the shrubbery either side of The Railway Walk would remain the duty of GPC. Other benefits of a path being adopted was that NCC would provide fencing alongside a field with cattle, should a safety issue arise from animals straying onto a public footpath. The Chairman would seek further reassurance from Mr. Hart re implications for liability for the footpaths in question. GPC had received a copy of the Order made by Notts County Council under Section 53(2)(b) of the Wildlife and Countryside Act 1981 re the modification of the definitive map signed and sealed on the 9th May, 2014. J.M.F.Royce thought there had been a lack of information, (no statement included and small maps) with NCC’s initial letter of intent to modify the definitive map.

14/122: Report by Chairman of Planning and Development Committee: (Chairman J.P.Anderson)
Meeting re Gravel Extracting at Barton on 27th May, 2014.(consultation deadline 11th July, 2014)
J.P.Anderson, K.Steed, B.J.Walker, G.Hutter, M.J.Sheppard and J.Raven (Clerk) had attended a public meeting at Barton in Fabis Village Hall on the 27th May. The meeting was hosted by Barton in Fabis Parish Council and explained a proposal by Notts County Council to extract sand and gravel from 74 hectares of land adjacent to Barton in Fabis. Extraction from the site would involve sixty 28 ton lorry movements daily which would impact on the A453 at Mill Hill roundabout. The public were urged to object to the proposal on the grounds of the effect of noise, flood risk, historical site damage, effect on the village environment, loss of agricultural land, safety issues and financial loss to Barton in Fabis. Natural England would be contacted and the proposal could be defeated if rare flora and fauna were found at the site. K.Mafham would send a letter of objection from GPC on the grounds of flooding risk and traffic implications.

Progress on Consultation re RBC/Aligned Core Strategy Development Plan Document.
J.P.Anderson had been in communication with Oxalis developers re traffic implications if Clifton pastures is developed. Despite frequent requests, Mr. Johnson of Oxalis had failed to send traffic information to J.P.Anderson and, it is understood, will not comply with traffic model information requests until the planning application goes public. RBC is responsible for making Oxalis keep GPC informed of traffic modelling and sustainability under the National Planning Policy Framework. There had been no provision for traffic from a new housing development to access the A453.

K.Mafham is still awaiting the Inspectors report re the Aligned Core Strategy An emergency meeting would be held in July with Barton and Thrumpton to discuss the Inspector’s Report and make a final decision re Judicial Review.. If there is a resolution to embark on a legal challenge, K.Mafham will make a critical appraisal of the report and then make the relevant challenge which could take up to twelve months and incorporate the RBC Core Strategy. The updated Local Plan would then become the Development Plan, by default, as it had already been legally adopted. The Rushcliffe Core Strategy Hearing would run from the 1st – 11th July. K.Mafham submitting comments on GPC’s behalf. B.J.Walker and T.Vennett-Smith had applied to attend the Hearing.
K.Mafham keen to send an environmental statement to AARHUS (Environment) Convention which can be linked in with GPC’s objections to develop Clifton Pastures on the basis of poor consultation.

14123: Planning Decisions Received:
14/6: (ref: 14/00214/FUL) Manor Barn – Use of former storage building for ancillary residential use to create a hobby, craft room, install new windows roof lights and external landscaping. Revised plan to use building materials in line with a Grade 2 listed building. GRANTED.

14/124: Planning Applications Received: Nil.

14/125: Environmental Matters:
C.Dabell reported the following items:
The Cherry Laurel in the bay in The Square had been planted. There was only a small depth of soil so it was hoped the Laurel would survive but ‘nature would take its course’.
The two ash trees on The Railway Walk, which it was feared had died, were now in leaf.
Boulders of gypsum were available free of charge from Laing O’Rourke. M.J.Sheppard had spoken to K.Hourd of NCC Highways re the possibility of using them to fashion into new village boundary signs. The Clerk would obtain an up to date boundary map of Gotham. Councillors were invited to inspect suitable sites at the three entrances to Gotham for the boulders to be placed. A run off distance of one yard from the carriageway was required for safety reasons. M.J.Sheppard would inspect the boulders to gauge the quality of the gypsum.
J.P.Anderson reported a meeting had taken place of the Cemetery sub-Committee. The scrub land behind Orchard Close is now clear enough to gain access. The wall abutting the Cuckoo Bush needs attention and the south side wall needs re-pointing and re-laying of the top bricks. G.Neill to weedkill and strim around the graves.
M.J.Sheppard reported S.Watson had mown the Sculpture verge. C.Dabell had obtained lawn improver for the site. Verge mowing to be monitored.

14/126: Memorial Hall Report from GPC representatives:
Solar Panels: K.Steed apologised for failing to mention solar panels in her May report. It had been suggested that the Memorial Hall might benefit from the installation of solar panels on the roof. Cost approximately £15,000 + VAT. There were no grants available and it was estimated it could take ten years to recoup the cost. If the Trustees went ahead with the installation of solar panels, would GPC offer support in the form of a grant?
E.Rodgers commented that the Trustees had missed the old ‘feed in’ tariff which offered more generous terms. She considered a ten year pay back was fairly unrealistic especially as the Hall was mainly used during evening hours. M.J.Sheppard thought that, in view of recent expenditure on the car park, GPC would require further evidence of the viability of solar panels with at least three quotations for the work. K.Steed suggested an inverter could store electricity to be used in the evening. It was agreed the provision of improved pavilions was a higher priority at the present time.

14/127: Village De-Fibrillator:
E.Padden reported she had received several quotations from electricians to install the de-fibrillator. One electrician had inspected the proposed site and deemed it unsuitable. However, E.Padden had contacted EMAS for further advice and obtained a quotation of £216 to install the equipment at Frydays. E.Padden would undertake more fundraising via letter to local firms for grant funding.
PROPOSAL: E.Padden to proceed to instruct EMAS to install the de-fibrillator at Frydays, when full funding available, at a cost of £216. (installation only).
PROPOSED: E.Padden SECONDED: C.Dabell. Vote: Ten in favour, one abstention.

14/128: Policing Matters/Vandalism:
E.Rodgers reported no May crime figures to date. K.Steed reported recent theft of garden equipment from The Ridgeway.

14/129: Gotham News & Media:
Editorial Team: Editorial Team: M.J.Sheppard, E.Padden, K.Steed and D.Bexon. The Chairman had acquired three quotations for the design, layout and printing of a twelve page edition of Gotham News. Ex Councillor R.Muir had offered to continue the production of Gotham News at a cost of £200 plus printing. Copy date 20th June, 2014.
PROPOSAL: The July edition of Gotham News to be compiled by R.Muir, at a cost of £200 plus printing by Minuteman. The future editions of Gotham News layout to be contracted to Minuteman for the following year at a cost of £180 per copy layout, plus printing.
PROPOSED: J.M.F.Royce SECONDED: G.Clark Vote: All in favour.

14/130: School Parking Safety issues (E-mail from Mr and Mrs S.Watson)
The Chairman had received an e-mail from Mr and Mrs S.Watson re dangerous parking at school drop off times on Kegworth Road. A suggestion had been made of using the Royal British Legion car park for school parking.
A discussion took place re the parking issue. GPC had already alerted the police to the problem and NCC had supplied temporary traffic lights which it was now hoping to remove. M.J.Sheppard would speak to P.C. K. Warwick re arrangements for a meeting to discuss traffic issues on Kegworth Road with an invitation to Ms. S.Lymn-Brewin to attend. The Clerk would reply to Mr and Mrs S.Watson. It was suggested that it would be preferable to delay walking up Kegworth Road until after school drop off times.

14/131: Casual Vacancy:
A vacancy had arisen following the resignation of Councillor R.Muir. The Chairman read out two letters of application for the position from G.Holbrook and H.Taylor.
PROPOSAL: Election of G.Holbrook to stand on Gotham Parish Council.
PROPOSED: J.P.Anderson SECONDED: K.Steed Vote: All in favour. Mr. Holbrook thanked the Council and accepted the position and signed the Declaration of Acceptance of Office form. The Clerk would send Mr. Holbrook papers including Declaration of Interest forms to be forwarded to Mr. D.Swaine, Returning Officer at RBC. The Clerk would inform the other applicant of the outcome of the vote.

14/132: Chairman’s Report: Nil.

14/133: Clerk’s report:
The Clerk reported she had received a courtesy e-mail from the St.Lawrence PCC re its intention to remove the fir tree in the Churchyard, adjacent to the former cherry tree, used for Christmas lighting prior to the use of a free standing Christmas Tree. Mr and Mrs Head-Rapson (original owners of the fir tree) had been informed.

14/134: Matters to Report:
C.Dabell reported a house burglary earlier in the day at 66 Leake Road.
J.M.F.Royce called for an extra meeting in late July to cover the August holiday.
PROPOSAL: A meeting of GPC to take place on Tuesday, 29th July, 2014.
PROPOSED: J.M.F.Royce SECONDED: M.J.Sheppard. Vote: All in favour.
C.Dabell reported Adcocks Butcher’s shop to cease trading on the 31st August after 89 years in business. He suggested GPC mark the occasion to celebrate this remarkable achievement of village service. Agenda item 1st July.
G.Clark asked that the grass required strimming around the public seat on Leake Road before The Ridgeway. J.M.F.Royce offered to carry out strimming.
K.Steed reported ongoing road repairs to The Ridgeway being carried out in a rather haphazard fashion with pot holes being filled in with surplus tarmac.

14/135: Items for Next Agenda: Adcocks closure.

14/136: Date of Next Meeting: The next Meeting will be held on Tuesday, 1st July, 2014 at 7.30 p.m.

Meeting concluded at 10.20 pm.