Minutes – 12th November 2012

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Minutes of Blean Parish Council Meeting held at the Village Hall, School Lane, Blean on Monday 12th November 2012.
 
Those Present:    Cllrs: W. Leetham (Chairman); G King; C. Sturgeon; C. Harris; C. Dunster; B. Flack; P. Hutt.
 
Also present: Ward Cllr B. Fitter, County Cllr. J Simmonds (entered the meeting at 7.40pm) and three members of the public.
 
The Chairman welcomed the Councillors and members of the public to the meeting and explained the fire drill and location of the toilets.
 
1. Apologies for absence:  H. Samuelson (Vice-Chairman) – work commitments; Ward Cllr. J. Gilbey – attending CCC meeting.
 
2. Note Changes to the Register of Members’ Interests
No changes reported.
 
3. Declarations of Interest in Matters to be discussed.
Cllrs. Sturgeon and King reaffirmed their interest as Hall Management Committee members.
 
4. Matters raised by the public
4.1 Mrs Kelk raised the matter of a water pipe which runs over footpath CB8 and appears to have burst causing a part of the footpath to be washed away. It is thought that it could be an old water pipe.
The clerk will contact S.E. Water to investigate.
 
5. Reports from Ward and County Councillors
5.1 Ward Cllr. Ben Fitter reported on the R.A.M.P. meeting which he had recently attended at the City Council when the Concurrent Funding budget for 2013/2014 was discussed.
He said that in line with budget cuts £127,000 is available whereas £179,000 had been applied for. Consequently, there were two options:
A. Fund core items at 71% of each PCs bid. This takes into account that some PCs need much higher levels of funding for 2013-14 than they did previously. 
B. Cap amounts requested at last years amount, allowing all to be funded at 83%. 
It was thought that option B would be the fairer option.
Harbledown and Rough Common are to receive an extra £2,000 as they have an extra open space to maintain.
All village halls now bid for their own Concurrent funding and Cllr. Fitter said that Blean were the only village hall not to have their bid downgraded.
5.2 County Cllr. John Simmonds gave his report in which he said that KCC Draft budget had been submitted for consultation. He wished that there were more responses to consultations overall.
 
 
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He spoke of a recent matter in a neighbouring parish where both he and Ward Cllr. Fitter were able to work together and solve the problem. He said that the message is that if they are alerted to problems then they can work together and solve them.
Cllr. Simmonds said that the two interactive signs (new one at Canterbury end of Blean and the replacement of the one knocked down at the Royal Oak) are on order.
KHS are looking at how to enforce speed limits, roundels will be painted on the road. He said that Blean is unlikely to get Police speed checks due to man-power cuts with the priority being enforcing law and order. He will send details to the clerk of the Camera Partnership.
 
6. Approval of the Minutes of the Parish Council meeting held on 8th October 2012
The minutes of 8th October 2012 were approved and accepted as a true record of the meeting.
Proposed by Cllr. King, Seconded by Cllr. Harris, all present agreed.
Minutes signed by the Chairman.
 
Matters Arising from the Minutes
Cllr. Dunster referred to Minute item 10.1 regarding blocked ditches surrounding her property and other properties as a result of the development at 39 Blean Common. She had spoken to the workmen at length but was frustrated that nothing is being done regarding the flooding and drainage problems. She had also telephoned KHS regarding the 15 or 20m which is meant to be provided to Highway standard.
Ward Cllr. Fitter will investigate the problem and talk to the planning officer and drainage engineer associated with the development. Cllr. Simmonds suggested that a meeting is arranged between the planning officer, KHS, Cllr. Fitter and himself to discuss the problem.
Cllr. Sturgeon reported that also from Minute item 10.1 the hedge at Mrs Burroughs was cut the next day.
Reference Minute item 6 the grab rails will be fitted when the correct glue is found and the key to the cigarette butt box has been lost but probably will result in it being forced off the wall and a new one put up in the new agreed position.
 
7. N.H.W. Report
Cllr. King gave his report in which he said that two reported incidents had occurred since his last report.
The patio door of a property in Honey Hill was removed and entry gained while the occupants were away from the building. It is believed that the offenders may have been posing as window cleaners in the area.
Despite many warnings via the NHW network and in the community news column in the local press, residents continue to leave valuable items in unsecured vehicles.
In the latest incident, a passport, a quantity of clothing and a leather bag were stolen from an unlocked car which was parked on the driveway of a property in Chapel Lane.
Cllr. King had received forty six messages from Kent Police since his last report.
County Cllr. Simmonds said that the PCSO from Chartham had been attacked and so our PCSO, Mike Bradbury, was having to cover there as well as his own large area.
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8. Village Hall Report
Cllr. Sturgeon gave the BVHMC report (attached to these minutes).
Mr Gammon asked Cllr. Sturgeon where all the information could be found regarding the village hall events as he did not have access to the internet. He was told that it was on noticeboards, in the local newspaper column and on leaflets.
Cllr. Sturgeon said that BVHMC are still putting in applications for grants and has applied to CCC for one on behalf of the Heritage Museum.
 
9. Matters Arising
9.1 Public Paths and Rights of Way
Cllr. Leetham said that most of the footpaths are waterlogged due to the recent weather.
9.2 Recreation Ground including play equipment
Cllr. Flack reported that the play equipment bid to ‘Awards for All’ had been unsuccessful as Blean was not considered a socially deprived area and funding is directed to certain areas. She will be re-submitting the application and will also apply for smaller amounts from other sources. Cllr. Simmonds asked how much the project would cost and suggested talking to the Rural Communities Officer.
9.3 Road Safety Measures
The pavement by the school has been altered to stop people double-parking outside the school and making it difficult for passengers to get on the buses.
Cllr. Fitter asked if there had been any complaints or problems with regard to this and, if so, to report to him.
9.4 To discuss, approve and sign the Nature Reserve ‘Fields in Trust’ Title Deed
In view of the problems this may cause in connection with the transfer of the freehold of the Hall it was agreed to leave this until a later date.
9.5 To discuss a Memorial to Hazel McCabe
Cllr. Leetham had spoken with Hazel’s son, Colin, and he had suggested a tree, bench or something in the Village Hall would be a suitable memorial. Cllr. Leetham had circulated this suggestion to all Councillors and Cllr. King had suggested a bench and a Hazel tree positioned both together either at the far end of the Recreation Ground or where the recycling area is at present.
Cllr. Leetham will let Colin know of the decision and quotes will be obtained for an oak bench in the meantime.
9.6 Co-option of new Parish Councillor
A letter had been received from Mrs Carol Goldstein, following her request to become a Parish Councillor, which had been circulated to all Councillors.
Proposed by Cllr. Leetham, Seconded by Cllr. King, all present agreed.
Cllr. Leetham welcomed Mrs Goldstein onto the Parish Council. The Declaration of Acceptance of Office form to be signed at the end of the meeting and counter-signed by the clerk. The clerk will give Mrs Goldstein all the relevant forms for her completion.
9.7 Parking at the top of Chapel Lane
A letter had been received from a resident concerned about the parking of vehicles at the top of Chapel Lane making it difficult and dangerous when driving into Chapel Lane from Blean Common.
 
 
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After discussion it was agreed to contact Ryan Shiels (KHS) requesting that double yellow lines be put at the top of Chapel Lane. It was noted that the Transportation Board only meet once a year.
Proposed by Cllr. King, Seconded by Cllr. Flack, all present agreed.
10. Councillors’ Reports
10.1 Cllr. King said that he had noticed a big improvement with buses not using waiting time at the Tyler Hill junction bus stop.
10.2 Cllr. Flack asked what had happened about the trees outside the shop. Cllr. King had spoken to Binny who said that he still intended to take the trees down and the clerk had written to Mr Kelk asking for the trees not to be removed but had not had an answer.
10.3 Cllr. Flack also asked what was happening about the renovation of the noticeboard on The Green and Cllr. Leetham said that he would have a word with Tony Abbott about it.
10.4 Cllr. Dunster said that she had spoken to residents about the possibility of the trees being cut down outside the shop because of dog fouling and they had said that they will still tie their dogs to the lampposts. People would be most upset if the trees were cut down.
10.5 Cllr. Dunster also spoke of the problem with people parking their cars at the village hall and catching the bus into Canterbury.
10.6 Cllr. Leetham said that the Memorial Field gates need welding and painting. Ken Waddington is to be asked to carry this out.
10.7 Cllr. Leetham had carried out a risk assessment in the Parish Office and proposed that a new vacuum cleaner be bought as the old one hadn’t been PAT tested and didn’t work properly.
Cllr. Sturgeon said that the clerk is quite welcome to use the Hall’s vacuum cleaner. This offer was accepted.
10.8 Cllr. Flack spoke about the wheelie bin which is frequently left by the binmen against the Hall wall. Cllr. Sturgeon said that once the yellow box is painted for it to stand in it may alleviate the problem.
10.9 Cllr. Leetham reported that he had heard from Andy Burgis about the quantity of spoil that he has calculated will be from the Phase 1 extension. There will be approx. 145 cubic metres, half of which will be top soil. The Parish Council will get a quote to see how much it will cost to use the spoil to make a natural play area.
10.10 Cllr. Leetham spoke of the traffic count through the village which is more or less the same as 2011 with southbound being higher than northbound.
 
11. Correspondence
Letter to 42 Whitstable Road – Overgrown hedge
Rural News – Edition 122
CCC – Agenda –Development Management meeting – 16th October
Notification from Balfour Beatty – Highway improvements in the area
CCC – ‘Help make a scene to remember’
Applause – Sept – Dec 2012
KALC Parish News
KALC Minutes – Canterbury Area meeting 10th October
Notice of new KCC fault reporting website link
Letter to Mr Kelk opposing the cutting down of trees in front of the Londis Shop
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KALC – Notice of the 65th AGM – Ditton Community Centre – 17th November
Reply letter to Mrs Schofield – Parking at the top of Chapel Lane
Notice of the Joint meeting of the N and S Rural Area Member Panel – 5th November
CPRE – Countryside Voice – Winter 2012
Kent Fire & Rescue Service – Towards 2020 update
 
                                                                                                                       
12. Planning Applications – The following applications had been received and circulated to all Cllrs. for comment.
 
1. CA/12/01539/FUL – Erection of two-storey modular office and seminar block – Land at Research and Development Centre, UKC – No objection by PC, however, comments are: proposed design is not complimentary to the existing adjacent buildings, temporary structure should be removed within the 5yr period and planting of new trees to replace any that are removed should form part of the granting of permission.
2. CA/12/01580/FUL – Erection of single-storey modular office block adjacent to the University Medical Centre and Pharmacy – Estates Buildings Office, UKC – No objection by PC – Comments are: does not consider the design to be ‘of highest standard of design’ as mentioned in the Design and Access statement and PC also recommends that permission is granted for a maximum five year period.
3. CA/12/01626/FUL – Enclosure of an open courtyard – The Markaz, 1 Giles Lane – No objection by the PC. The covering will enhance the facility.
4. CA/12/01539/FUL – Erection of two-storey modular office and seminar block – Land at Research and Development Centre, UKC – Amended Plans with tree survey – No objection by PC but trees should be replaced.
5. CA/12/01850/FUL – Replacement Dwelling – 52 Honey Hill, Blean CT5 3BP – No objection by PC but concerns over access.
6. Letter of Notification – CA/12/01887/FUL – Erection of ten buildings standing two, three and four storeys in height to create student accommodation (797) bed spaces comprising townhouses and cluster blocks and associated administration/catering/welfare facilities, along with refuse and recycling facilities, car and cycle parking, drainage, landscaping and recreation space and new access road off University Road – Land to the West of Keynes College UKC – No objection by the PC as it was felt that accommodation on campus was needed and would relieve the pressure in the City. It was agreed to write to the planning officer to express concern that the University doesn’t help with affordable housing in the area.
7. Letter of notification – CA/12/01784/FUL – Installation of solar photo voltaic panels to the roof of west wing of library building – Templeman Library, UKC
Decision Notices
1. CA/12/01269/FUL – Entrance foyer extension to front and back of Ingram Building and extension to front of Stacey Building – Ingram Building UKC – GRANTED
2. CA/12/01368/FUL – Change of use of ground floor from retail (Use Class A1) to education (Use Class D1) – 9 Tyler Hill Road – GRANTED
3. CA/12/01626/FUL – Enclosure of an open courtyard – The Markaz, 1 Giles Lane, Blean – GRANTED
 
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4. CA/12/01474/BLE – Certificate of Existing Lawful Use for the use of Hempshall Lodge as a dwelling – Hempshall Lodge, Honey Hill CT5 3BW – WAS NOT LAWFUL
5. CA/12/01580/FUL – Erection of a single-storey modular office block adjacent to the University Medical Centre and Pharmacy – GRANTED – Conditions regarding a temporary period of five years ending on 1st November 2017 and to ensure the protection of trees in the interests of visual amenity.
Proposed Works to Trees in a Conservation Area
1. Reduce the height of three conifers and a sycamore by 50%, Reduce the height of a row of conifers and fell the end tree on the row, all located in the back garden – Courtlands, Vicarage Lane
2. Cut back the Willow tree by 5ft, located in the alley at the side of the property – 50 Tile Kiln Hill
13. Approval for invoice payments and signing of cheques
Banking details for October 2012
Chq. 002318 – Meadow Grange – Plants for flowerbeds                            £ 32.88
Chq. 002319 – BVHMC – Hall Rent – Sept & Oct 2012                            £ 22.00
Chq. 002320 – Mr K Waddington – Handyman’s Wages Oct 2012            £124.93
Chq. 002321 – Mrs D Horswell – Clerks Salary Oct 2012             £661.20
Chq. 002322 – HMRC – PAYE & NIC Oct 2012                                        £ 40.75          
Chq. 002323 – Mrs D Horswell – Petty Cash Oct 2012                              £ 23.44          
DD – Serco – Waste Collection – September 2012                                     £ 26.30
DD – Serco – Waste Collection – October 2012-11-06                               £ 26.30
DD – BT – Telephone and Broadband                                                         £194.37
           
Total               £1152.17
 
Bank Statement as at 12th Nov 2012
Current Account – £2000
Business Reserve Account – £37,825.60
(Interest bearing account used to feed Current Account, when needed, to maintain a balance of £2000. Includes anticipated expenditure up to 31st March 2013
Reserves funds of £11,000 earmarked for the BVHMC)
 
14. Date of next meeting
The next meeting is on 10th December 2012 at 7.30pm.
 
15. Any other business
There being no further business the meeting closed at 9.02pm..
 
 
 
 
Date     _______________                 Signature     ______________________________ 
 
 
BVHMC report for the Blean Parish Council meeting 12th November 2012.
 
The transfer of the freehold of the hall from the Parish Council to BVHMC is on-going and I have no further information to offer at this stage. 
 
The AGM was held on Monday 23rd October, with 2 members of the public attending,   a new village rep was elected as Trustee, which makes 11 committee members in total
 
An Art Group confirmed that they will be using the small hall on Thursday evenings from January 2013. The hall is currently used daily over 3 sessions; we have a waiting list of hirers for vacant slots at peak times, although weekend slots are available for private hire at times.
 
It was agreed at the AGM that an additional charge of £6.00 per session will be made to hires, for use of the oven and/or hotplates or water heater used continuously, when catering for large groups/suppers/occasions and private events, as energy prices are rising again.
 
Jon Shelton from Blean Initiative met with Andy Burgis & me recently. He supports the idea of the village hall becoming their local hub, as it’s in a prime location, accessible to all, when Phase 1 is built it will offer hospitality, toilets, information, and could be easily integrated into their maps/walks. The form this may take is by installation of large interpretation panels on the inside walls of the community café, depicting & representing the natural environment, the range of species found in the Blean Forest area, and using images from Godfrey’s archive collection to complement and reflect the Blean environment. They may   like to hold their Woodland Fairs on Blean recreation ground in the future to link with the hub & community café within Phase 1 project. Clearly this will need to be negotiated with the Parish Council.   Jon Shelton’s team will support BVHMC to write the bids for the interpretation panels for us to submit, when we have built the project.
 
New “smart” thermostats have been installed in both halls which are pre-programmed to meet the daily needs of user groups and conserve energy when the hall is empty, while protecting the hall against frost conditions. Guidance is given on notices to advance the setting or temperature if necessary, this then reverts to a default and minimum setting. If anyone need help with the changes please contact Richard Meadows (Hall Responsible Person) direct – details in hall foyer.
 
The constant pluming of the boiler and constant hot water supplied has been investigated & remedied by adjustment to the eco switch.   
 
Raise the Roof volunteers have offered to spray yellow paint to denote the external hatched area for the green waste bin, plus all parking places which require work to meet compliance. The Parish Council have offered to supply the paint and are liaising direct with the Hall’s responsible person.
 
An updated What’s Going On in the village hall leaflet was created and circulated recently to all regular user groups for them to confirm or change their information and add contact numbers and further details, if necessary. The majority of groups took advantage of this free publicity to inform the leaflet and the public regarding interest groups available to join in their village hall.
 
This was circulated to all on the email list of supporters, put on the bleanvillagehall.co.uk website and displayed on village poster boards.
 
The BVHMC agreed it would be nice to share their £100 prize money from the Romanian Judges Award with the John Graham Centre, each group benefitting by £50.00 to spend on an item. We’ll offer them the Romanian flag as a memento of the visit, if they’d like it.
 
Hall fund raising & Reminder dates:
 
·        October – the children’s film & scientific experiments show, raised £120-00, the spooky coffee morning raised £206-00.
·        Godfrey’s remembrance photographs shown at the same time raised £126 donations for the Blean Museum.
·        Last Saturday’s Christmas Fair raised £767 at today’s count (to be confirmed) thanks to the wonderful local support, generosity of giving, and above all, dedicated volunteer input. 
·        This coming Saturday’s Quiz and supper night is sold out. 
·        Sat 24th November – next home-made coffee morning with children’s craft tables, haircuts @ 10am – mid-day.
·        Sunday 25th November – Blean choir’s first sing-along & get together @ 10.00-11.30am all voices welcome.
·        Sunday 25th November – 3pm – 5pm Children’s film show – Space Chimps £2.00 children, parents guardians FOC. Refreshments available.
·        Saturday 8th December – Seasonal coffee morning – Jackie’s mega raffle and the draw for the single star quilt will be drawn. 
·        22nd December – Afternoon/evening Film show SG & JM organising.
·        Volunteers will take a well-deserved break until 19th Jan 60’s night with live band in Blean School Hall.
·        2013 Calendar of social events will be confirmed , circulated to all and posted up on boards and bleanvillagehall.co.uk website and Facebook page.
·        Blean Leaflet and village hall appeal letter + gift aid form and return envelope will be distributed to all households over the next few weeks. It highlights: – Localgiving.com a charity (detailed on the letter) matches donations up to £10-00 in their ‘Grow your tenner’ campaign, so any individual £10 sum which is donated through this site, up to January 2013, will be match funded and then it’s worth double + more if gift aid is received. 
·        We are optimistic that our village community will support this appeal for the greater good of all and for the future of the village by providing donations for a much needed extended and refurbished hall.
Carol Sturgeon