Minutes – Extraordinary meeting – 1st August 2011

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Minutes of the Blean Extraordinary Parish Council Meeting held at the Village Hall, School Lane, Blean on Monday 1st August 2011.
Those Present:    Cllrs: W. Leetham (Chairman); H. Samuelson (Vice-Chairman); G King; C. Dunster; C. Sturgeon; C. Harris; P. Hutt; G. Tomaszek and B. Flack.
Ward Cllr. Mrs H. McCabe.
Apologies received from Ward Cllr. J. Gilbey.
There were 12 members of the public present.
1.         Changes to the Register of Members’ Interests and Declarations of Interest in Matters to be discussed
Cllr. King declared a personal interest (Chapter 3 – Code of Conduct), regarding both items on the agenda, as member of Blean Village Hall Management Committee. But he stated that he would be commenting and voting on both proposals.
Cllr. Sturgeon declared the same as Chairman of Blean Village Hall Management Committee.
2.         Proposal for the Parish Council to give written permission and consent to Blean Village Hall Management Committee to apply for planning permission from Canterbury City Council, in respect of the detailed plans which members of the Parish Council have viewed.
Cllr. Samuelson asked the Chairman if the permission included the whole lot, including the second stage of the extension.
The Chairman replied that it did.
Proposed by Cllr. Flack
Seconded by Cllr. King
Agreed unanimously.
Members of the public were then allowed to speak for three minutes.
Mr John Letts said that, according to the present lease, permission was not needed at this stage from the Parish Council regarding clause 3.5 as this referred to making structural alterations.
Cllr. Sturgeon replied that clause 3.5 had been referred to because of the cutting into of the walls. Mr Letts replied that that permission will only be needed after planning permission has been approved. That being said, Mr Letts was thanked for his advice and it was agreed that the formal letter from the Parish Council will be postponed until after planning permission has been obtained.
3.         Proposal for the Parish Council to offer the transfer of the freehold of the village hall and land for the proposed extension plus a grant of £10,000, subject to legal formalities, to Blean Village Hall Management Committee.
The Chairman said that Mark Ellender, Head of the C.C.C. Legal Department, having been asked for advice said that, if the transfer were to take place, it will have
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to be subject to Charity Commission and other approval which he didn’t think would pose any problem.
Cllr. Sturgeon asked when the £10,000 would be granted. The Chairman suggested that it should be paid when the Village Hall Committee thinks it appropriate.
Cllr. Sturgeon said that, in reality, the Hall Committee need to have evidence from the Parish Council, in the form of a letter of commitment, regarding the time limit which needs to be sooner rather than later.
Cllr. Flack said that a letter needs to be the first stage.
Cllr. Samuelson asked where the £10,000 is coming from.
The Chairman replied that it will come from the hall reserve that the Parish Council has set aside for the hall maintenance.
Cllr. Sturgeon asked if the grant of £10,000 was a condition of the Hall Committee taking over the freehold. The Chairman replied that it was.
Mr John Letts asked if this was a way of the Parish Council getting rid of the hall maintenance costs. The Chairman replied yes.
Ward Cllr. McCabe spoke of the Concurrent Funding which village halls are included in. She quoted Hackington as being an example in that the Parish Council bid for Concurrent Funding from CanterburyCity Council on behalf of the Village Hall Committee.
Cllr. Sturgeon said that, if the lease were to be transferred, the Parish Council and Village Hall Committee should still share the commitment to the community and that the Hall Committee should still be able to apply to the Parish Council for grants. She said thatonce the extension is built many more people will be able to use the new hall and its amenities which is not possible with the present hall.
Mrs H Letts asked what would happen if the present Parish Council changes. Cllr. Hutt replied that why would any future Parish Council not want to be supportive.
Cllr. Flack said that there is lots of discussion that needs to take place and that the reason of the meeting tonight is to agree on the offer to Blean Village Hall Management Committee.
The Chairman read out the letter of offer to Blean Village Hall Management Committee.
The proposal was then – Proposed by Cllr. Hutt
Seconded by Cllr. Harris
Agreed unanimously.
There being no further business the meeting closed at 7.50pm.
Next full Council meeting is on Monday 12th September.
Date     _______________                 Signature     ______________________________