Minutes – 9th September 2013

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Minutes of Blean Parish Council Meeting held at the Village Hall, School Lane, Blean on Monday 9th September 2013


Those Present:    Cllrs: W. Leetham (Chairman); B. Flack (Vice-Chairman);

G King; C. Dunster; C. Sturgeon; C Goldstein; P. Hutt; H. Samuelson.


Also present: Five members of the public.


1. Apologies for absence:  – Ward Cllr. J. Gilbey; Ward Cllr. B. Fitter and County Cllr. J Simmonds.


The Chairman welcomed the Councillors and members of the public to the meeting in the new refurbished hall and explained the location of the fire exits and toilets.


Prior to the Parish Council meeting Helen Bennington, from Canterbury City Council, was in attendance to answer any questions and solve problems regarding the new bin system.


The main concern was from the Woodlands Estate where Cllr. Goldstein is in contact with the residents and was able to explain their problems to Helen who will visit to see how the problems they are encountering can be solved.


The Chairman thanked Helen for her time in attending the meeting.


2. Changes to Register of Declarations of Interest and DPI in Matters to be discussed.

1. Cllr. Sturgeon and Cllr. King declared an interest as Village Hall Management Committee members in matters to be discussed.

2. Cllr. Flack reported that she is now Vice-Chairman of Orchard School.


3. Matters raised by the public

3.1 It was noted that the potholes in Chapel Lane have been re-whitelined but they have still not been repaired despite the Council being informed that the work would be done in August.

The clerk will email Marie Lampkin (KHS).

3.2 Mrs Kelk reported that the stile on footpath CB8 has still not been repaired, although it was reported to the PROWO after the last Parish Council meeting and the path is still very overgrown.

It was noted that a letter had also been received from Mrs Letts reporting that a number of footpaths were still overgrown although they had been reported previously. The clerk will report them again to PROW.


4. Reports from Ward and County Councillors

There were no Ward Councillors present due to them attending other meetings and County Cllr. John Simmonds was not present due to family commitments but Cllr. Leetham reported that he had written to both Cllrs. Gilbey and Simmonds as he had heard a rumour that the ban on HGV’s on the A290 was to be lifted.

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Cllr. Gilbey had replied that he wasn’t aware of this fact and would investigate further and County Cllr. Simmonds replied that this was being looked into by KHS.


5. Approval of the Minutes of the Parish Council meeting held on 8th July 2013

The minutes of the 8th July 2013 meeting were approved and accepted as a true record of the meeting.

Proposed by Cllr. Sturgeon, seconded by Cllr. King and all Cllrs. present AGREED.

Matters arising

5.1 It was noted that there had been no feedback following the accident and Cllr. King said that he was continuing speed checks with the PCSO.

5.2 Ref: 8.5 Cllr. Sturgeon reported that the signing of the Transfer of the Freehold of Blean Village Hall and the lease for the Parish Council office had been completed on 31st July.


6. N.H.W. Report

Cllr. King gave his report in which he said that a prowler had been spotted about a week ago in a back garden in Westfield but ran off when he realised that he had been seen. A burglary occurred in late August at a property in Blean Common. The glass panel was broken in the front door to gain access. A necklace was reported stolen but has since been recovered.

A number of speed checks have been carried out at various locations in the village by PCSO Mat Farley and by constables. Offending motorists have been dealt with.

A variety of postal, email and telephone scams have been received by householders with appropriate warnings being circulated through the NHW network and via the parish council website.

91 messages have been received from Kent Police and Trading Standards, which have been publicised through the usual channels of the NHW street contacts, the council website and via the community news channel in the Kentish Gazette.

The annual grant of £240 is now due, however, due to careful attention to all expenditure, Cllr. King felt that £200 would be sufficient to administer the scheme for the next year.

This was proposed by Cllr. Leetham, seconded by Cllr. Sturgeon and all Cllrs. present AGREED.


7. Village Hall Report

Cllr. Sturgeon read out the BVHMC report (attached to these minutes).


Cllr. Leetham read out a letter of thanks, from the Hall Management Committee and Trustees, for the sum of £10,000 sum granted to them by Blean Parish Council, plus an additional £1500 towards the legal expenses and chartered surveyor's report.


8. Matters Arising including:

8.1 Public Paths & Rights of Way

As mentioned previously in the minutes, 3.2, a letter had been received from Mrs Letts regarding overgrown footpaths.

Cllr. Samuelson said that the path by the school has been cut by the University.


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8.2 Recreation Ground inc. play equipment

1. The new fort has now been installed and Cllr. Flack was congratulated on all her hard work in organising the project.

The mound is also now in place and Cllr. Flack is looking into having mesh put over it and the area seeded. At a later date it is hoped that the fort and the mound can be linked together by a bridge and a slide. Cllr. Flack is in consultation with Home-Front for their advice.

A bid is to be put into Capital funding in the hope that a grant can be obtained for this work.

The naming of the fort will now take place at the coffee morning on 28th September.

It was thought that it would be a good idea to have pictures of the fort for the children to colour in and name.


8.3 Neighbourhood Plan or Alternative

It was thought that the best option would be a Parish Plan which would be discussed at a meeting to be held on Saturday 19th October in the village hall.

It was important that this would be a village led project with a committee.

Ward Cllr. Ben Fitter is to be approached to discuss an on-line questionnaire.


8.4 Speed Signs

Cllr. King reported that, surprisingly, overall the speed limit is adhered to. This is confirmed by the speed checks carried out by the PCSO. The interactive sign is effective.


8.5. Kevro Properties Correspondence

There has been no response from Kevro Properties following the letter sent by recorded delivery from the Parish Council asking for a meeting with them to discuss various concerns. One of which is the bad state of repair that the garage site behind the shops is in.

It was agreed to contact Caxtons who it is thought could be the agents.


Cllr. Goldstein left the meeting at 8.20pm.


9. Councillors’ Reports

9.1 Cllr. Dunster asked if a light could be put up at the top of the track leading to 39 Blean Common as it is very dark but Cllr. King said that it is a private road with the top section having to be up to Highways standard.

9.2 Cllr. Samuelson asked if there had been any problems with parking outside the Dyslexia Centre. Cllrs replied that there hadn’t been any problems.

Cllr. Samuelson also reported that a new fence is to be installed around the school after which a new noticeboard will be put up.

9.3 Cllr. Hutt said that a street light is not working on the A290 and he will report it on the KCC website.

9.4 Cllr. King reported that he had seen recently a single-decker bus with at least 18 children standing. Cllr. Samuelson said that there is an ongoing problem with Stagecoach regarding school buses.

9.5 Cllr. King also wished Cllrs. to be aware that the email that Alex Graham had sent about the problems with parents parking for football sessions and Cllr. King’s

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involvement was incorrect as he had not called the police but warned that residents might do. It was suggested that a meeting be had with Alex and the team managers to discuss the parking problems and other issues.

9.6 Cllr. Leetham proposed that the Parish Council ask CCC Transportation committee to agree to double yellow lines being put on the first 30metres in School Lane at the junction with Tyler Hill Road.

Proposed by Cllr. Leetham, seconded by Cllr. Samuelson, all Cllrs. present AGREED.

9.7 Cllr. Leetham also reported that:

there is still a vacancy on the Parish Council
the clothing and bottle banks will be removed shortly
the 6x bus no longer serves Canterbury West station
there is a sign at the Hare and Hounds pub that parents can use their car park when dropping and picking up children from school
Cllr. Goldstein has recently attended a KALC Councillors conference from which she has given a written report to each Cllr.

9.8 Cllr. Samuelson asked whether there had been any further communication regarding the land behind the Royal Oak. Cllr. Leetham replied that Cllr. Gilbey had said that there had been no planning application submitted.


10. Correspondence

All correspondence (as previously circulated to members):

1. Chairman’s Conference – 2nd October

2. DCLG Notes on Neighbourhood Planning Edition 6‏

3. Rural News 130

4. Rural News 131‏

5. CCC – Parish newsletter September 2013‏


7. Kent Police – News in Kent – Summer 2013

8. CCC – Commenting on Planning Applications

9. KCC – Parish & Town Council Seminar – 10th October – Maidstone

10. Silver River – Channel 4 Social History Series

11. KCC – Safe and Sensible Street Lighting

12. Clerks & Councils Direct – September 2013

13. SLCC – The Clerk magazine – September 2013

14. Letter from Mrs Letts ref overgrown footpaths

15. Thank you letter from BVHMC to BPC for £11,500 towards the hall building and legal fees

16. Letter from Alex Graham – re football practice and parking issues

17. Email from Marie Lampkin (KHS) ref repair of potholes in School Lane, Chapel Lane and Bourne Lodge Close


11. Planning Applications

The following applications have been received and circulated to all Cllrs. for comment.



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1. CA/13/01314/FUL & CA/13/01315/LB – Refurbishment and conversion of former agricultural buildings to form 2 dwellings including demolition of milking shed – Honey Hill Farm, 11 Honey Hill CT2 9JP – No objection by PC

2. CA/13/01409/FUL – Demolition of existing integral garage and construction of new two-storey side extension – 2 Chestnut Avenue, Blean CT2 9HY – No objection by PC

3. CA/13/01388/FUL – Change of use from garage workshop to annexe adjoining main dwelling, application for the retention of conversion works completed in 2012 and the change of use from agricultural land to garden for land to the rear of nos 2 and 2A Tile Kiln Hill – 2 Tile Kiln Hill, Blean CT2 9EE – In circulation


11.1 Decision Notices

1. CA//13/01166/FUL – Single rear extension with pitched roof over and first-floor extension over the existing garage.- 9 Badgers Close, Blean, CT2 9HH – GRANTED

2. CA/13/01409/FUL – Demolition of existing integral garage and construction of new two-storey side extension – 2 Chestnut Avenue – GRANTED


11.2 Proposed Works to Trees in a Conservation Area

1. 16 School Lane – Fell a Silver Birch  located along the fence on the left hand side. 2. Tile Kiln House, 26 Tile Kiln Hill – Pollard an Ash tree to old pollard points 6m in height, located in the rear garden.
Reduce the height and crown of a small Ash tree by no more than 25%12.


12. Approval for invoice payments and signing of cheques


Banking details for July 2013


Cheques for Approval and Signature

Chq. 002384 – Home Front – Deposit for Fort                                             £1400.00

Chq. 002385 – Commercial Services Trading Ltd – ½ yearly grass           £  945.82

Chq. 002386 – HMRC – PAYE & NIC July 2013                                        £    52.90

Chq. 002387 – Mr K Waddington – Handyman’s Wages July 2013          £  152.93

Chq. 002388 – Mrs D Horswell – Clerks Salary July 2013                        £  684.30

Chq. 002389 – Mrs D Horswell – Petty Cash July 2013                              £    44.88



DD – Serco Waste Collection – June 2013                                                  £    27.84



Total paid out             £3308.67



Banking details for August 2013


Cheques for Approval and Signature

Chq. 002390 – BVH – Transfer Grant & Legal Fees                                  £11,500.00

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Chq. 002391 – Howfield – Faulty Alarm                                                        £       90.00

Chq. 002392 – Mrs D Horswell – Clerks Salary August 2013                    £     668.56

Chq. 002393 – Mrs D Horswell – Petty Cash August 2013             £       35.30

Chq. 002394 – HMRC – PAYE & NIC August 2013                                    £       48.30

Chq. 002395 – Mr K Waddington – Handyman’s Wages August 2013      £     164.33

Chq. 002396 – Wicksteed – Paint for play equipment                                 £       59.40

Chq. 002397 – Cutters Garden Services 3 x pathways                                £       80.00

Chq. 002398 – M. Jowlett Haulage – Top Soil                                             £     360.00

Chq. 002399 – Home Front Limited  – Remainder for Fort             £   5830.00

Chq. 002400 – Blean NHW – Annual Expenditure                          £     200.00

DD – Serco – Waste Collection July 2013                                                   £       27.84



Total paid out        £19,063.73



Received in – Bacs payment – VAT refund                                                  £1,153.84



Bank Statement as at 9th September 2013

Current Account – £2000

Business Reserve Account – £30,337.50

(Interest bearing account used to feed Current Account, when needed, to maintain a balance of £2000)


12.1 Concurrent Funding Application 2014/2015

The clerk had circulated a statement of accounts and proposed expenditure to the Cllrs. prior to the meeting so on this basis it was agreed to put in an application for £8,275. It was also agreed to reduce the number of grass cuts from 18 to 16 per year.

Thanks were given to Ken Waddington for his speedy work on removing the graffiti from the signs and bus shelter. It was agreed to increase his number of hours worked each week from four to five.


12.2 Capital Grant Application

It was agreed to put in an application for the purchase of new play equipment.


13. Date of next meeting

The date of the next meeting is 14th October 2013


15. There being no further business the meeting closed at 9.07pm..




Date     _______________                 Signature     ______________________________




Report from BVHMC for BPC meeting 9th September 2013.




I won't go into the general details since we last met in July as there's too much to report, and as the evidence is here for all to see, it's academic.

It reminds me of re-decorating, the end product is fabulous but no-one quite knows about the unforgiving relentlessness and background grind which so many people have stuck at, since 2010, to deliver this building for the Blean community.


You'll all understand that Phase 1 project remains very much work in progress but the hall was opened for business from last Friday and as long as groups  don't mind having the builders and volunteer working party in the hall doing their work, we were delighted to open the hall again..


All user groups have been very understanding and accommodating and appear very content to have the hall back in use.  Zumba were the first group in on Friday evening closely followed by the Gardener's group, who held a very successful and well attended Autumn show on Saturday last.


For those who haven't seen the complete refurbishment and extension of the hall it is amazing, so much work has been achieved over the summer months by the builder and his hard working, 7 days a week, work force.  Please come along on Sat 28th September to the inclusive to all coffee morning, the launch of the Blean Heritage Museum and result of the naming of the fort competition.


Details will be announced regarding the inclusive to all Blean community party on Sat 12th October here in the hall which will confirm that the hall is officially open.  At the moment we're all very focussed and committed to the finishing off needed at the nightly working party, which attracts octogenarians and teenagers which may take a month or so.


Steve Cook the builder still has internal work to do before handing the building back to us.  We won't have a cooker in the new kitchen until we do more fund raising but we'll manage by keeping calm and carrying on.  The main hall kitchenette has a cooker which serves this hall, and can be shared.


We'll find everything eventually that we've got stored in endless garages and spaces on and off this site.  The main kitchen should be plumbed in and ready for use by the end of this week.  The main toilet blocks will take another 3 weeks to complete.  Life is latex, vinyl, which goes down and off at regular intervals, endless painting and cleaning, by working together this strengthens Blean community as anyone who feels like offering their help, in anyway they can, is welcomed along and greatly appreciated.


The transfer of the freehold, land and lease from BPC to BVHMC was agreed and completed on 31st July by us both, and our Solicitors.

Carol Sturgeon.