Minutes – 13th February 2012

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Minutes of the Blean Parish Council Meeting held at the Village Hall, School Lane, Blean on Monday 13th February 2012.
Those Present:    Cllrs: W. Leetham (Chairman); H. Samuelson (Vice-Chairman); G King; C. Sturgeon; C. Dunster; P. Hutt; C. Harris; B. Flack
Ward Cllrs. Mrs H. McCabe and J Gilbey.
Apologies: No Apologies.
There were no members of the public present.
The Chairman opened the meeting by welcoming everyone to the first meeting of 2012.
1. Changes to the Register of Members’ Interests
Cllr. Flack reported that she is now a Trustee of the Friends of Blean Church which is now a charity.
She will write and inform CCC Monitoring Officer Mark Ellender. Copy to be retained for the office files.
 2. Declarations of Interest in Matters to be discussed.
Cllrs. Sturgeon and King Declared an Interest in Agenda Item 5.5.
3. Matters raised by the public
No members of the public present.
3.1 Reports from Ward and County Councillors
a) Ward Cllr. McCabe started her report by thanking everyone involved in the wonderful day when the knitted scarf was wrapped round the hall.
She said that Kent Highways needed thanks for the way they had dealt swiftly with snow clearing on the roads.
She had two enforcement matters to report on:-
Caravans on land next to Mr Firmin’s property
The family on the land next to Mr Firmins are a genuine family with several children. When the large caravan is back on the land one of the ordinary caravans will be removed.
Cllr. Leetham asked if the planning permission only applied to Mr Collins, Cllr. McCabe said she had asked the Officer and the permission applies to ‘a gypsy’.
She hoped the matter was now resolved.
Seapier Morgan Stud
Cllr. McCabe had received a formal letter stating that there had been an Alleged Breach as the building was not in accordance with planning permission. The height of the roof had been measured and it was one metre over the height permitted.
CCC has written to the developer asking to either lower the roof height or submit a new planning application for the extra height.
County Cllr. John Simmonds entered the meeting at 7.40pm.
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b) Ward Cllr. Gilbey gave his report in which he said that CCC had started the process for the Local Plan. The Budget meeting is next Thursday. The Westgate Towers traffic scheme starts in March with a twelve month consultation.
A bus shelter will be erected at Blean School later this year.
The planning application for the land rear of 40 School Lane has been refused.
c) County Cllr. Simmonds gave his report in which he said that the County Council had set their budget last Thursday and the good news is that there will be no increase in Council Tax.
He said that the Government cuts are in the region of £21million making the next two years very difficult.
He spoke of the crash that had occurred recently on Pean Hill and said he will look into what he can do but it is mostly due to speed.
He said there had been no objections to the advert published regarding the new 30mph speed limit by the school.
Cllr. Leetham said that the speed camera was on the A290 at Pean Hill today.
3.2 NHW Report
Cllr. King gave his report in which he reported that apart from one break-in at a house on Whitstable Road, when a model train was stolen, it had been a very quiet period locally. Metal thefts, thefts of and from vehicles, and the usual crop of scam phone calls, all of which he has publicised, have occurred in the district, but there are no reports, affecting Blean. He has received 70 messages from Kent Police and the Trading Standards Authority, mostly of an advisory nature. Contacts have been maintained with the PCSO, including PCSO Bradbury, who is replacing our current officer in the near future.
4. Minutes of the last Meeting
It was noted that the minutes dated 14th November 2011 needed to be re proposed and seconded as a true record as Cllr. Flack had been absent at the October meeting.
Proposed Cllr. King, Seconded Cllr. Sturgeon, all present agreed.
The minutes of 12th December 2011 were approved and accepted as a true record of the meeting.
Proposed by Cllr. Samuelson, Seconded by Cllr. King, all present agreed.
Signed by the Chairman.
5. Matters Arising
5.1 Cllr. Dunster queried minute item 2.2 of NHW report regarding a man contacting a resident saying that elderly people had to give up their homes for families. Cllr. King explained the situation and that the resident’s family had dealt with it.
Cllr. Sturgeon reported that the electrical and P.A.T. testing had been completed in both the hall and parish office.
5.2 Cllr. Leetham updated the meeting on Ken Waddington’s progress following his knee replacement. Cllr. Samuelson reminded the meeting that the Council needed to have medical certificates from Ken as well as a ‘Fit to Work’ one before he can resume his duties.
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5.3 Cllr. Leetham reported that the Wicksteed play equipment inspection is due, the clerk to arrange a date and Cllr. Leetham will accompany the inspector.
Cllr. Flack reported that there had been no response from the playgroup regarding the working party for the new play area. She is investigating adult play equipment and had contacted Bridge PC who are very pleased with theirs. A discussion was had on the suggestion of the spoil from the building of the hall extension being used for an adventure play area.
Cllr. Sturgeon mentioned that young residents still ask for goal posts and it was suggested that they join the working party.
5.4 Permission for BVHMC to use the recreation ground for the Annual Fete & Folk Festival on 30th June and Queen’s Jubilee celebration on 3rd June.
This was agreed subject to vehicles, in the interests of safety, using the gate by the parish office and pedestrians using the other gate by the recycling area.
5.5 To receive from BVHMC a formal reply to the offer by BPC to transfer the freehold of the hall.
Cllr. Leetham reported that he, Cllrs. Flack and King had had a useful meeting with Andy Burgess to clarify the matter of parking as tractors had to be able to access the recreation ground to cut the grass.
For the benefit of the public Cllr. Sturgeon read out the letter from BVHMC to BPC which had already been distributed to the Parish Councillors.
The meeting was then opened for discussion.
Following the discussion it was agreed for BPC to write a letter to BVHMC to be presented at the next BVHMC meeting, confirming BPC’s offer of the freehold of the hall and land required for the proposed extension, plus ten thousand pounds with the addition of one thousand pounds towards legal fees for the transfer. Resolution proposed by Cllr. Samuelson, seconded by Cllr. Harris with 6 votes in favour. Cllrs. Sturgeon and King abstained from voting due to Declaration of Interest.
5.6 The installation of another caravan on the land next to Mr Firmin’s property.
This matter had already been dealt with in minute item 3.1a by Cllr. McCabe.
5.7 It was agreed to pay the combined membership of ACRK at a saving of £5.00.
6. Reports including Village Hall
6.1 Cllr. Sturgeon gave the Village hall report – attached to these minutes.
6.2 Cllr. Samuelson suggested that the BPC write a letter of thanks to BVHMC and supporters thanking them for the effort and hard work put in by them to stimulate community spirit in the village as requested in the Village Survey.
6.3 Cllr. Hutt reported that a mobile home and generator had appeared at Hempshall Hall which had been empty for thirty years. The son had taken over the ownership from his father. Cllr. McCabe will investigate.
6.4 Cllr. Leetham reported that he had completed the clerk’s appraisal, the outcome of which, is that, in future, the circulating documents and planning applications will start and end with the Chairman for his comments.
Cllr. Leetham will attend the KALC Emergency Planning meeting at Lenham
Cllr. Leetham asked the clerk to put a link for supporters to vote for Keirs Meadow Nature Reserve on the PC website for the Queen’s Jubilee.
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7. Correspondence
All correspondence and emails received had been previously circulated to Cllrs.
1. Letters to & from Mrs Letts – Minutes & Vicarage Lane.
2. Letter to Mr Lai – Hempshall Lodge, Honey Hill & reply
3. Letter to BP School – support for bus shelter – reply sent to BPS & email sent to CCC adding BPS support.
4. Letter of thanks from Cllr. King to Mr Lamimg of C W Lyons & Son for supplying a replacement Blean Millenium sign
5. Letter from KCC John Simmonds – Highway gangs to do general maintenance work – PC has put together a list – clean street signs & weight restriction sign.
6. Letter from Cathedral Archives – storage of parish records being transferred to the new History & Library Centre in Maidstone – email sent asking for BPC records to be retained in Cathedral Archives & include archives presently stored in deed boxes at Nat West bank –at a cost of £25 per year.
Proposed Cllr. Leetham, Seconded by Cllr. Samuelson, all present agreed.
7. Update of information to Nat West bank of signatories – all completed.
8. Letter to the University – land being made available for affordable housing
9. Email CCC Parking Regulation Review – request for disabled bay outside shop included
10. Blean Interpretation Panel – to be installed on 23/24/25th Jan
11. KCC – Notice of A290 30mph speed limit – response sent
12. IPC – Kentish Flats Wind Farm – Notice of Preliminary Meeting & available Relevant Representations
13. KCC – Notice of Public Footpath CB15 (part) public path diversion and definitive map and statement modification order 2011
14. Letter from BVHMC responding to the offer by BPC of the transfer of the freehold of Blean Village Hall
15. ACRK, CPRE, Kalc Road Show events to promote supporting communities and neighbourhood planning.
16. KCC – Street Lighting Review
8. Planning Applications
CA/11/02019/FUL – Replacement dwelling – 52 Honey Hill – No objection providing width of access is addressed. – APPLICATION WITHDRAWN
CA/11/01956/FUL – Extension and alteration of village hall and provision of additional parking area – Blean Village Hall – No objection
CA/11/01659/FUL – Erection of single-storey dwelling with associated parking – land rear of 40 School Lane – Objection – Drainage & access
CA/11/01944/FUL – Erection of two-storey extension to provide fitness centre and studio, new four badminton court sports hall and re-configuration of car park – Sports Centre, The University of Kent, Blean CT2 7NZ
CA/11/01780/FUL – Erection of conservatory to front elevation – 34 Whitstable
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CA/11/01632/FUL – Erection of self-contained two-storey annexe, replacement
garage and roof alterations including balcony to rear – 5A Tyler Hill Road –
CA/11/01870/FUL – Demolition of existing side extension and construction of new
dwelling – Land adjacent to 29 Tile Kiln Hill – GRANTED
CA/11/01956/FUL – Extension and alteration of village hall and provision of
additional parking area – Blean Village Hall – GRANTED
CA/11/01659/FUL – Erection of single-storey dwelling with associated parking –
land rear of 40 School Lane -REFUSED    
9. Approval for invoice payments and signing of cheques
Banking details for December 2011
Cheques signed since last meeting
Chq. 002167 – Serco – Waste Collection Nov 2011                                    £   26.30
Chq. 002168 – K Waddington – Handyman wages Dec 2011                     £ 126.73        
Chq. 002169 – Mrs D Horswell – Clerks salary Dec 2011                         £ 649.16
Chq. 002169 – Petty Cash Dec 2011                                                            £     2.16
Chq. 002170 – HMRC – PAYE & NIC Dec 2011                                       £   56.02
Chq. 002171 – Open Spaces Society Annual Subscription              £   40.00
Total                                                                                                               £ 900.37
Received in – UK Power Networks                                                              £   35.85
Banking details for January 2012
Cheques for approval and signature
DD – BT Broadband & telephone                                                                £ 161.26
Chq. 002172 – BVHMC – Rent Dec 2011                                                    £    10.00
Chq. 002173 – BVHMC – BPC Utility Bills for Oct 2011                            £    21.79
Chq. 002174 – Serco – Waste Collection December 2011                           £    26.30
Chq. 002175 – Southgate Electrical Co Ltd – PAT Testing in office           £    46.80
Chq. 002176 – CPRE – Annual membership                                     £    30.00
Chq. 002177 – ACRK Annual Membership                                      £    65.00
Chq. 002178 – K Waddington – Handyman wages Jan 2012                       £    96.93
Chq. 002179 – Mrs D Horswell – Clerks salary Jan 2012                           £ 649.16
Chq. 002180 – Petty Cash Jan 2012                                                              £    34.83
Chq. 002181 – HMRC – PAYE & NIC Jan 2012                                         £    50.62
Chq. 002182 – Zurich Insurance Renewal                                                     £2312.63
Chq. 002183 – Re-imbursement to BVHMC for Concurrent Funding   £ 578.05
Items (Electrical & fire testing, insurance, repaint kitchen)
                                                                                    Total                           £4083.37
Bank Statement as at 13th February 2012
Current Account – £2000
Business Reserve Account £30,972
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Ward Cllrs. McCabe and Gilbey and County Cllr. Simmonds left the meeting at 9.10pm.
10. Any other business
10.1 Cllr. Flack asked about the lighting of beacons for the Queens Jubilee.
10.2 Cllr. Leetham said that he and Cllr. Flack had discussed the recycling area and suggested that it is got rid of and the area revamped.
10.3 The next meeting will be on Monday 12th March 2012
There being no further business the meeting closed at 9.25pm.
Date     _______________                 Signature     ______________________________
BVHMC report for the Blean Parish Council meeting 13th February 2012.
Since our last report, on 12th December the planning application to refurbish and extend the village hall was granted by CCC on 25th January 2012, subject to conditions. BVHMC has made an application to Rural Kent, for assessment of the hall, under their Hallmark awards scheme.
An application for grant funding was submitted to Mark Reeves under the KCC community halls capital funding scheme to meet the deadline for submissions at the end of December 2011. 
Thanks to KCC and Cllr John Simmonds for the grant contribution towards the architect fees, 2 grants are in the process of being paid and Jo Pannell is following up the remaining outstanding grant.
The Knitting Together collaborative initiative with the Friends of Blean Church and Raise the Roof volunteers had a spectacular unravelling on 28th January at the Saturday coffee morning and on the recreation ground when it was measured as 1100 metres, a Guinness book of records entry we hope? 
Widely covered by the local press and supported by approx. 100 members of the Blean community holding it aloft with Cllr H McCabe as Sheriff of Canterbury officiating, while it was measured and recorded, this was a truly wonderful occasion. Thanks to Barbara and Liz of the Friends group for this innovative idea and to everyone involved who contributed to this successful result, seeing really was believing, as the scarf is huge and was wrapped around this hall twice.
The scarf will be made into blankets for those in need and other warm garments and innovative accessories designed by Barbara, which will be sold for donations to both groups. The get to-gethers will continue as social gatherings for the knit and natter groups while they unpick the sewing from the knitted lengths, and this particular aspect has been priceless especially during the cold and dark winter days over the past 3 months to enable people to meet up and natter in the hall. 
A special supper and social occasion is being held in the hall this Friday 17th for everyone to join in the celebration of this fantastic achievement. Posters and e-mails around the village give details of Liz, Barbara and Chris to contact regarding the supper (and future get togethers are planned, I understand, for the knitting group to meet up) in the hall.
The Blean village annual barn dance has been re-booked for Saturday 25th February @ 7.30pm in the Tyler Hill Memorial Hall posters and messages for details are out in our community.
Sales of Hello Eiffel, a wonderful little book, (courtesy of Stewart Ross and Jennifer Strait) were very active over the Christmas period and will be on sale throughout this year to raise funds for the village hall project.   Books can be supplied via our monthly events or direct from Stewart’s website www.bleanbasedbooks.com.
Friday film night in the hall is now firmly established – both the December and January nights were very popular – regrettably there won’t be a film night in February as the hall is fully booked, however Friday 16th March is confirmed as our next film show, which will reflect climate change week.
Half-term activities in the hall this week for the children includes soft clay modelling workshops on Wednesday and Thursday morning and a Saturday morning film show which is hoped will become a regular monthly event.
Thanks to all our Trustees, community supporters and volunteers as without their enthusiasm and commitment we couldn’t continue to raise funds and interest for the future refurbishment and extension of this old hall. 
The most heartening aspect is that young families are moving back into the village, and more young couples have expressed interest and signed up for our information list, from the last two social events. 
4 young men have now joined Raise the Roof as Duke of Edinburgh Award volunteers undertaking their community service. 2 are doing their gold award and 2 are doing their bronze award. All have been very active helping us at our events since January. 
As mentioned before these young people are our future, and will be the users and beneficiaries of the proposal to bring the hall into the 21st Century which is a huge affirmation of the decision to grant permission for the building proposal.
This reflects the community and their confidence that the hall is on track, realistically the hard work starts now to get the funding necessary to build.
Carol Sturgeon – Chairman