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PC Meeting, May 2021

posted 30 Apr 2021, 05:01 by N Day   [ updated 10 May 2021, 04:07 ]

Agenda for the Parish Council meeting on May 4, 2021

click here to get a copy of the agenda in PDF form, and the Clerk's notes are available via this link. A copy of the minutes follow the agenda, or you can download a copy of the the minutes in PDF form.

From Catherine Fox, Parish Clerk:

The Next Meeting of the Parish Council will be held at 7:30 on TUESDAY 4th May 2021 via remote conferencing on Zoom (Meeting ID 313 378 5045, Password 941083 or via this link) with Andrew Pett in the chair.

Please Note: Due to restrictions currently in place around COVID-19, there will be no physical meeting. Those who wish to comment on any item on the agenda are invited to join the Parish Council via ‘Zoom’. Councillors will not be making decisions about items not on the agenda. Any personal information given will be dealt with in line with the Parish Councils General Privacy Notice, full details of which can be found on the website.

All members of the Council are hereby summoned to attend for the purposes of considering and resolving the business to be transacted at the meeting as set out below.

1. Silent Prayer.

2. Election of Chairman.

3. Apologies for absence.

4. Declarations of Interest.


(a) Councillors to declare any disclosable pecuniary interest in any items on the agenda;
(b) Councillors to declare any other interest in any items on the agenda.

5. Election of Officers.
  1. Election of Vice Chairman.
  2. Cemetery Manager.
  3. Playing Field Manager
  4. Reading Room Committee Representative.
  5. Gransden Society Representative.
  6. Sportsfield Association Representative.
  7. Tree Warden.
  8. Little Gransden Airfield Local Consultative Committee Representative and Gliding Club Consultative Committee Representative.
  9. Communications Officer.
6. Minutes. Consideration of the minutes of the meeting on 12th April 2021. and of the APM on 22 April.

7. Open Forum for 15 minutes to enable members of the public to bring any matters to the attention of the Parish Council. 

8. Matters Arising.   

  1. Neighbourhood Development Plan – update by Cllr Pett.

  2. Risk Assessment. Review of inspections of the Parish Council’s assets.

  3. EWR Consultation. To review the responses received from residents and consider next steps in submitting collective Parish Council comments during the consultation period.

9. Reading Room Cottage fence replacement

10. Reading Room Cottage. Insurance renewal for 2021/22

11. Parish Council Insurance for 2021/22. To consider the renewal premium and sums assured.

12. Clerk’s Financial Statement.  For April 2021 and Budget Review.

13. Payments for Approval.

14. Audit of our Accounts for y/e 31st March 2021

15. Approval of the Annual Governance Statement – Section 2 2020/21.

16. Highways.

  • Any repairs or maintenance needed;

17. Correspondence. 

            1. Sand Road

            2. Tennis Club Grant Application

18. Planning At the time of publication of the agenda, there were no planning matters for consideration.

19. Next Meeting Monday 7th June 2021 at 7.30 pm     (To be confirmed)


Minutes of the Parish Meeting held on 4th May 2021

Those present were:

  • Giles Scott, Chairman;
  • Peter King, Parish Councillor;
  • Catherine Fox, Clerk;
  • Nigel Day, Parish Councillor;
  • Jeff Gorton, Parish Councillor;
  • Nick Ginn, Parish Councillor;
  • Michael Capps, Parish Councillor;
  • Lisbeth Ricciardi, Councillor;
  • James Catmur, Parish Councillor;
  • District Councillor Richard West;
and 3 members of the public. 

1. The meeting was opened at 7.30 pm with a silent prayer

2. Election of Chairman.

It was proposed by Andrew Pett, seconded by Peter King and carried unanimously that Giles Scott be elected chairman.  It was agreed that Giles Scott sign the appropriate Declaration of Acceptance of Office at the next meeting on 1st June.

3. Apologies.  Apologies were received from Parish Councillor Michael Capps who will join the meeting later, and County Councillor Julie Wisson.

4. Declarations of Interest.  There were no declarations of interest.

5. Election of Officers.

5.1. Vice Chairman.  It was proposed by Nick Ginn, seconded by James Catmur and carried unanimously that Nick Ginn be elected vice chairman.  The remaining officer elections were taken and unanimously agreed so that:

5.2. Nigel Day elected Cemetery Manager. (proposed Nigel Day, seconded Giles Scott).

5.3. Andrew Pett elected Playing Field Manager. (proposed Andrew Pett, seconded Jeff Gorton).

5.4. Peter King elected to the Reading Room Management Committee. (proposed Peter King, seconded Andrew Pett).

5.5. Michael Capps elected representative to the Gransden Society.(proposed Michael Capps, seconded Giles Scott).

5.6. Nick Ginn and Andrew Pett elected Sportsfield Representatives. (proposed Giles Scott, seconded James Catmur).

5.7. Michael Capps appointed Tree Warden. (proposed Michael Capps, seconded Giles Scott).

5.8. Nick Ginn elected representative to the Little Gransden Airfield Consultative Committee and also to the Gliding Club Consultative Committee. (proposed Nick Ginn, seconded Andrew Pett).

5.9. Nigel Day elected Communications Officer. (proposed Nigel Day, seconded Jeff Gorton).

Councillor Gorton confirmed that he would be stepping down as a Parish Councillor following this meeting, having served 27 years. Councillors wished to thank Councillor Gorton for his contribution to the work of the Parish Council and for his dedication and tireless commitment during his time in office.

6. Minutes of the previous monthly meeting held on 12th April 2021 had been circulated. These minutes were approved and will be signed accordingly by the Chairman. The minutes of the Annual Parish Meeting held on 22nd April 2021 were approved for recommendation to the next year’s Annual Parish Meeting and initialled by the Chairman.

7. OPEN FORUM.  The meeting was closed for twenty-one minutes. 

Councillor Richard West reported his ongoing frustrations with HDCs Enforcement Team’s responses to the numerous breaches of condition by the Sand Road developer. In particular, around the light pollution, blocked drain and incomplete works around the Sand Road/East Street Junction. Councillor West regretfully acknowledged that the deadline of 28 days for the developer to rectify the breach of condition 20 had passed. Councillor West has written to Ian Winfield to suggest that the drains be cleared and any costs should be charged back to the developer. At the time of the meeting, no response had been received.

Councillor West reported that unfortunately, despite continuing pressure and correspondence with Andrea Dollard, there is no definitive answer as to how HDC are taking adequate enforcement action in the best interests of the residents.

Councillor West reported on the East West Rail proposal, commenting that the district council were in support of Route E.

A representative from County Broadband commented on the positive response from residents around the County Broadband initiative. The feedback already received had been good; with 50 per cent of the target number required to make installation viable already achieved in the first three weeks. A full presentation will be made to the village in the near future; a representative from the Parish Council will be invited to attend.

8. Matters Arising: 

8.1 Neighbourhood Development Plan. Councillor Pett reported on the progress of the NDP. The steering group is now in a position to apply for the Locality grant for 21/22.   Cambridgeshire ACRE support has been discussed with Rachel Hogger. COVID restrictions last year meant that only the first part of last year’s planned work was able to be carried out. The intention is to base this year’s proposal on completion of the planned support to be taken to consultation by December 2021 so that the referendum can be held in early 2022. 

The ACRE day rate has increased by £50 to £450, meaning that some of the input will be reduced and more of the work will be carried out by members of the steering group wherever possible.  Hunts Planning will also be approached for support and advice as appropriate.

8.2 Risk Assessments. Councillor Pett confirmed that he and Councillor Scott had undertaken risk assessments on the street lights and also the seats around the village. It was noted that some of the lamp posts are leaning and some are attached to telegraph poles. Pictures will be taken at each inspection to monitor this and the Clerk will make enquiries around who is responsible should they become unsafe.

The bench on Caxton Road remains in a poor state of repair, Councillor King is in the process of obtaining quotations for the replacement of 4 new slats that can be fitted to the concrete base. Once received, this quotation will be presented to the Parish Council for their consideration.

It was noted that one of the metal benches in the playing field has corroded and requires attention. Clerk to make enquiries around the costs of removal and replacement.

8.3 EWR Consultation. Further to the Parish Councils request for any comments around the EWR proposal to be submitted, one has been received.

It was agreed that the Clerk should draft a document that incorporates the points raised at the previous Parish Council Meeting and also those in the correspondence received. This document would then be reviewed, amended and submitted by a working group convened for this purpose only, consisting of Councillor Scott, Councillor Catmur, Councillor Ricciardi, Councillor Day and District Councillor West.  

9. Reading Room Cottage Fence Replacement.

The fence surrounding the tiny garden area has become dangerous. In line with requirements, attempts had been made by the Caretaker to obtain 3 quotations to replace the fence on a like-for-like basis.  The one quote that was received was from Huntree Fencing for £665.00 ex VAT.

In light of the concerns raised by the immediate neighbour to the property and the urgency of repair work required, Councillors unanimously agreed to approve the quotation provided agreeing that approval could be justified under section 11.1 of the financial regulations.

10. Reading Room Cottage Insurance 2021/22.

Councillors considered the renewal premium and sums assured. Due to the specialist nature of the insurance policy required and in line with previous years, only one quote has been sought. The renewal premium is £495.05. This is an increase of £50.32 on last year’s premium of £444.73 and includes a mutual bonus saving of £87.35.  Approval was proposed by Councillor Gorton, seconded by Councillor Scott and unanimously agreed.

11. Parish Council Insurance 2021/22.

The renewal quote from Parish Protect had been circulated. This year, Parish Protect have re-tendered the Parish Protect scheme to the UK insurance market and as a result, The Military Mutual have been selected as the new Parish Service provider. Parish Protect were not able to offer a single policy that would cover the Reading room and the remainder of the Parish assets. Instead, two policies were required, one exclusively for the Reading Room (underwritten by Zurich) and a separate policy covering the remainder of the assets. The combined cost for these policies was £1784.76.

A second quote had been obtained from BHIB. The premium here being £1548.15 or £1473.68 on the long-term agreement of 3 years. As in previous years, this was for one policy covering the Parish assets as well as the Reading Room. At the underwriter’s request, due to the thatched roof on the property, additional and detailed information had been provided. 

After due consideration, it was proposed by Councillor Pett, seconded by Councillor Scott and carried unanimously that the quote from BHIB for £1,473.68 on the 3-year undertaking be accepted.

12. Financial Statement for April 2021.  The sheet filed as Appendix No. 1 had been circulated.  The statement was unanimously approved and will be signed by the chairman.  Councillors also noted the budget review as at the end of April 2021.

13. Cheques for approval. 

The following payments were approved:

Proposed James Catmur, seconded Peter King. 

 1 Clerk’s expenses for April 2021 £51.83
 2 Buchans Landscaping & Grounds Maintenance  £206.01
 3 HMRC - PAYE (period ending 5th June 21)      
  £55.40
 4 Adlams Solicitors (Cemetery Extension) 
 £940.00
 5 CAPALC – ICCM Cemetery Training Course
(Cemetery Management & Compliance)
 £120.00
 6  Refund of Cemetery Fees Overpayment – J Dibble
 £3.00
 7 SLCC Membership Fee 2021/22 £154.00
 8 Groundwork UK – Unspent NDP Grant
 £4750.00
 9 The Mower Shed  £120.00
 10 Mr R McIntosh (Garden of Remembrance)
  £7.50
 11 NFU Mutual
(Reading Room Cottage Insurance 2021/22)
 £495.0

Automated Payments payable May 2021

1
 DDBT – Broadband Reading Rooms
(12th May 2021)
£30.16
2
 SOCaretaker Salary – May 2021
(28th May 2021)
£653.58
3
 SOClerk’s Salary – May 2021
(28th May 2021)
£704.45
Councillors also approved payment to BHIB for the Parish Council Insurance at £1473.68. (see item 11) and to Huntree Fencing for £665.00 exc vat (see item 9).

 14. Audit of accounts for y/e 31st March 2021. The accounts for audit had been circulated to councillors and were unanimously approved (proposed by Councillor Scott and seconded by Councillor Pett).

15. Approval of the Annual Governance Statement – Section 2 2020/21. Councillors considered the Accounting Statements in Section 2, page 5 of the Annual Governance and Accountability Return 2020/21. Approval was proposed by Councillor Gorton, seconded by Councillor Scott and unanimously agreed.

Councillor Capps joined the meeting.

16. Highways.  

16.1. Councillor King had met with Ian Winfield from Highways regarding the installation of additional signage on Meadow Road. A second site meeting will take place between Ian Winfield, a road safety engineer and Councillor King on May 12th where any further actions will be discussed.

16.2. The drain outside 1 Meadow Road despite being marked is still sunken and appears to be worsening. Clerk to look into this.

16.3. Concerns have been raised around the increase in the number of speeding vehicles along Caxton Road. Councillor Catmur confirmed that the Speedwatch team would be out again from Wednesday 5th May and that Caxton road was an area to be covered.

17. Correspondence.

17.1 Sand Road. Several residents had copied the Parish Council into correspondence with the HDC enforcement team around various and ongoing breaches of the planning conditions.

In particular, concerns had been raised around the works on the pavement on the junction of Sand Road and East Street which appears to be less than the minimum 1.2m width stipulated in the planning conditions. The pavement is at its narrowest width at the most dangerous point despite repeated assurances that the developer would take remedial and definitive action. Councillors felt that the Parish Council should write again to the Enforcement team to express its dissatisfaction with the pavement to support and the echo the comments made by individual residents. It was sadly noted that a limited response is expected from HDC who Councillors believe have not made full and adequate use of their enforcement powers from the start.

Photographs of the blocked drain caused by works undertaken by the developer had been sent to the Clerk and circulated to Councillors. It was agreed that the clerk would write to Highways to highlight the problems that this could cause to an already struggling drainage network and ask for action to be taken.

17.2 Tennis Club Grant Application. A request had been received from David Prest as representative of the Tennis Club. The letter of support from the Parish Council previously agreed needs to be slightly amended to meet the requirements of the full application. The changes required are confirmation of the right of use agreement, consent for the work to go ahead and a statement of safeguarding arrangements. Councillors unanimously agreed the proposed changes with no further comments.

18. Planning. There were no planning applications on which the Parish Council had been asked to comment.

19. Date of Next Meeting.

In light of the removal of the ability to meet remotely from May 7th, and also the restrictions on meeting face to face. It was agreed that for the purpose of approving payments, the next ordinary meeting of the Parish Council would be held in the outdoor area of the Reading Room. The agenda will be reduced and all other items will be carried to the July meeting when it is anticipated that all restrictions will have been lifted.

The Next Meeting has been arranged for Tuesday 1st June 2021.

This meeting closed at 8:39pm.