Minutes of a Meeting of Gotham Parish Council (07/06/16)

Present: Councillors, M.J. Sheppard, (Chairman) G.Hutter (Vice-Chairman),  J.P.Anderson, M.Wilkins, G.Clark,    G.Holbrook,  J.M.F.Royce, C.Dabell, B.J.Walker, P.Bower, A.Clayworth.

In attendance: County Councillor A. Brown, Mrs. P.R.Dines.

16/134: Apologies: D.Bexon, H.Taylor, Borough Councillor S. Mathews.

16/135: Acceptance of Apologies:

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

The Chairman welcomed new Councillor, Philip Bower, to his first meeting as a Parish Councillor.

16/136: Report by County Councillor A.Brown:

Councillor Brown reported the sudden, sad death of Martin Suthers, Deputy Leader of the Conservative Group. He will be a very much missed member of the Council.

A meeting of the Police and Crime committee had taken place. Paddy Tipping has been re elected Police Crime Commissioner and will significantly increase the budget to fight the increase in rural crime.

The Chief Constable is retiring to Cyprus and being succeeded by Deputy Chief Constable, Sue Fish who has delayed her retirement to take on the role.

NCC is looking at the possibility of setting up new enterprise zones in Nottingham County’s most deprived areas using the, now available, European budget of £3,000,000.

Councillor C. Dabell arrived at the meeting at 7.37 p.m.


Tonight, RBC is holding a Performance Management meeting. Borough Councillor, S. Mathews attending.

Councillor Brown has been investigating Councillors’ use of credit cards and is shocked to discover tax payers’ money routinely spent on first class rail fares.

G.Hutter reported an accident on the Ridgeway when the driver of a car caused an accident by driving on the wrong side of the road. The other vehicle hit a telegraph pole.

J.P.Anderson suggested lorries could be re routed to British Gypsum via the A60.

Councillor Brown left the meeting at 7.45 p.m.

16/137: Borough Councillor S. Mathews: (Apologies received).

16/138: Declaration of Interest: Nil.

16/139: Minutes of the previous meeting:

Resolved: That the previously circulated Minutes of the Parish Council meeting held on the 3rd May, 2016, be accepted and signed as a true record of the business transacted, with the following amendment: pg.4 amend to read ‘P.C.S.O. A. Davis’.

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

Progress: G.Hutter had confirmed with D.Healey that he is considered a ‘self employed contractor’. The minimum wage applies.

PROPOSAL: Suspension of Standing Orders, as and when Mrs. P.R.Dines wishes to speak during the meeting.

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

Mrs. Dines reminded Council that the work undertaken by D. Healey is valued and he should continue to be paid the Government approved minimum wage.

PROPOSAL: Allowance of funds to cover wages of  D.Healey in line with the minimum wage.

PROPOSED: A.Clayworth  SECONDED: G.Hutter. Vote: ten in favour, one abstention.

PROPOSAL: Reinstatement of Standing Orders.

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

J.P.Anderson  reported a conversation with the Chairmen of Gotham Cricket and Bowls Clubs re the ongoing grant from GPC to both Clubs. The Bowls Club had ordered supplies for the green too late to benefit from the 2015/16 grant so this would be viewed as an underspend and carried forward to 2016/17.

The Cricket Club had recently endured some financial difficulties. J.P.Anderson and P.R.Dines had offered to assist the Club with financial re structuring to include the ongoing GPC grant which would also be carried forward from 2015/16 to the current year. The annual Cricket Week is a major fundraiser for the Club and it is hoped Councillors will lend their support.

Resolved: That the previously circulated Minutes of the Extraordinary Parish Council meeting held on the 17th May, 2016, be accepted and signed as a true record of the business transacted, with the following amendments:

Pg. 2 16/128: Report by Chairman of the Environment Committee: 13th sentence alter ‘five’ to ‘nine’ years. Delete 31st – 33rd line beginning ‘G.Holbrook stated’. Delete last sentence in second to last paragraph: ‘to reflect the lack of the stone dais’.

Approval of Minutes: PROPOSED: J.P.Anderson  SECONDED: M.Wilkins. Vote: All in favour.

M.Wilkins suggested the use of a Dictaphone to record meetings.

PROPOSAL: Use of a Dictaphone to record future Parish Council Meetings to avoid long winded changes which hold up the meeting’s business.

PROPOSED: M.Wilkins  SECONDED: G.Hutter. Vote: five in favour, two against, four abstentions.

Mrs. P.R.Dines pointed out the Standing Orders state ‘Minutes are sent out by the Clerk to all Councillors, to read and correct, one week after the meeting to allow alterations to be made prior to the next meeting’.

The Clerk, asked Councillors to adhere to this rule. Currently, only four Councillors routinely returned suggestions on amendments to the Minutes.

16/140:  Finance:

a/ Monthly Payments and Receipts:

PROPOSAL: Acceptance of Payment and Receipts for June, 2016.

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

The Clerk reported an outstanding invoice for Gotham News Advertisements, (£28) arising from year 2015/16. Council agreed to write the debt off but report the matter to Slimming World Head Office.

b/  Acceptance of 2015/16 Audit.

PROPOSAL: Acceptance of Audit for 2015/16.

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

c/ Top up Gotham Remembers Budget (£-228 to date)

PROPOSAL: Transfer of £500 from underspends to top up the Gotham Remembers Budget.

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

The Clerk reported an overspend on Cemetery gardening during 2015/16. J.P.Anderson to arrange a Cemetery sub-committee meeting in the near future. Meetings take place on site to assist with decisions on maintenance. The Clerk will attend to take notes.

J.M.F.Royce requested the Clerk to add his name to the membership list of the Cemetery sub- committee.

16/141: Chairman of Planning and Development Committee: (J.P.Anderson)

J.P.Anderson reported there had not been a meeting of the Planning Committee during May due to the need for an Extraordinary Meeting to discuss the Well House refurbishment.

Affordable Housing: Both earmarked sites for affordable housing have been turned down, due to the landowners being professionally advised to obtain market value for the sites. RBC have been informed. The tranche of funding via Waterloo Housing is no longer available. Affordable housing will be an ongoing project with the hope that a suitable site becomes available in the future.

16/142: Planning Decisions Received: Nil.

16/143: Planning Applications Received:

16/6: (ref: 16/01261/CLUEXD  63 Moor Lane. – Application for a Certificate of Lawfulness for the occupancy of the dwelling without complying with condition 2 of planning permission S/21/345, which retained the dwelling for occupation by a person working the surrounding land for agricultural purposes.


PROPOSED: J.P.Anderson  SECONDED: M.J.Sheppard. (vote not required).

16/144: Report by Chairman of the Environment Committee:

Village Sculpture Slabs: C.Dabell reported, the long awaited slabs in front and to the side of the Village Sculpture public seat, were rather disappointing. M.J.Sheppard had met the NCC Contractor, Tony Walsh, for a discussion about the project which was complicated to achieve due to the uneven surface, manhole cover and slope of the site.

Cuckoo Bush Mound working party: (Environment Agenda).

Resited Bench: The little used village seat has been removed from Kegworth Road to outside Gotham Primary School. The Kegworth Road footpath is in a bad state and a direction sign for ‘Wood Lane’ is required. Clerk had reported the pavement a few months’ ago but would repeat the request to K.Hourd of NCC Highways.

Well House: G.Hutter had researched an East Midlands Airport grant which may be useful to cover the seat costs.

K.Thorpe researching suitable photographs to display on the new art boards.

G.Holbrook reported, that prior to the meeting of the Well House Project Management Sub Committee, on the 18th May, 2016, the contractor and architect had attended a site meeting at the Well House, also attended by J.Bate. Notes of the Project Management Sub Committee meeting were taken by architect, M.Goodwill-Hodgson. These notes had been circulated to the Council.

G.Holbrook circulated samples of sandstone suitable for use for the stools and flooring.

G.Hutter reported an extra item for the roofing, i.e.bonnets, would save the roof tiler time as they cover the ends of each tile lessening the cost of the job. Reclaimed tiles might be sold to help offset the cost of the bonnets, estimated at £1,070. Bonnets could move the project into the contingency fee but would have formed part of the original building so would be a disirable addition to the project.

PROPOSAL: To fit bonnets, in principle, if in line with budget projections.

PROPOSED: G.Holbrook  SECONDED: J.P.Anderson. Vote: nine in favour, one against, one abstention.

Heritage Day: 18th September, 2016: G.Hutter and C.Dabell had approached the following attractions.

Morris Men (Cost £100). They offer lessons in Morris Dancing.

Punch and Judy and fairground organ (£500).

Basket Weaving – two weavers known about in Barton and Castle Donington.

Two Suffolk Punch Shire Horses.

Buses (£300) Nottingham Heritage Vehicles and a Nottm City Council bus painted in S. Notts livery to be parked in The Square.

Reception for invited guests to be held in the Memorial Hall with transport to The Square in a double decker bus.

M.J.Sheppard read out a letter from Earl Howe accepting the invitation to officially open the Well House.

Children’s displays in St. Lawrence Church and Church Hall open for photographic displays.

Press coverage in Nottingham Post, Radio Nottingham, Loughborough Echo.

16/145: Memorial Hall Report:

G.Hutter reported, the Remembrance Day Service will take place in the Memorial Hall on Sunday, 13th November, 2016. A screen will be provided to relay the service to the Moonrakers’ room. P.Riley taking orders for wreaths.

The recent Race Night raised £1,000.

The Cricket Club require a replacement mower and have approached the Memorial Hall Trustees for a loan rather than GPC who might impose an interest charge. G.Hutter raised this matter to reinforce the bad image GPC currently has.

A complaint from a neighbour re light pollution, from the Memorial Hall, was discussed.

16/146: Policing Matters/Vandalism: Nil to report.

16/147: Gotham News and Media:

Official copy date – 17th June, 2016. A feature will appear on The Queen’s Birthday to include the lighting of the Beacon.

16/148: Report  on Fracking Meeting 12th May, 2016 (M.Wilkins)

M.Wilkins circulated a report from North Yorkshire which had recently been faced with an approved Fracking planning application.

A Meeting to discuss the threat of fracking, adjacent to Gotham, had taken place on the 12th May, 2016. Attendance  – approximately 40 parishioners. The meeting was well received with two  power point presentations giving statistics and information regarding the process of Fracking.

Thanks recorded to M. Wilkins for arranging a stimulating meeting.

16/149:  H.M.Queen’s Birthday Celebration:

Posters displayed around the village inviting parishioners to a ‘Picnic in the Park’ on Sunday, 12th June, 2016. Bunting and balloons to be displayed. The Cricket pavilion to open the bar for refreshments. Attendees to supply their own picnic.

16/150: Parish Council Image: (J.P.Anderson).

Arising from a letter from ex Councillor, Robert Plant, J.P.Anderson offered to take up the matter of the Parish Council image within the village. More could be done to improve how the Parish Council is perceived by the village and outside bodies, such as RBC and other parishes. This is mostly down to communication and information. J.P. Anderson had produced a list of ideas which were circulated to Councillors to consider. GPC is statistically the largest non-political party within RBC. Perhaps thirteen Councillors are too many. Should ‘GPC make a habit of ‘blowing its own trumpet more’?

16/151: Chairman’s Report:

The Chairman had received a complaint from A. Litchfield re worn tarmac outside 108 Nottingham Road. (Reported to NCC Highways).

A report had been received of children riding BMX bikes at the Gotham Nature Reserve. C.Dabell confirmed, an inspection revealed no damage to the site.

16/152: Clerk’s Report:

The Clerk would try to attend the Town and Parish Conference on the 10th June, 2016. No other GPC representative available.

16/153: Matters to Report: Nil to report.

16/154: Date of Next Meeting: The next Meeting will be held on Tuesday, 5th July, 2016 at 7.30 p.m.

Meeting closed at 10.00 p.m.