HASLINGFIELD PARISH COUNCIL
Minutes of meeting held on Monday July 14th 2014
Present – Bob Branch, Trina Backhurst, Tony Adcock, Julie Coxall, Lucian Hatfield, Jenny Jullien, Christine Kipping, Ron van der Hoorn, Sue Watson, Robin Page and Sebastian Kindersley were in attendance. There were two members of the public present, also, two guests from SCDC – Jo Mills, Director of Planning & New Communities & Planning and John Koch, Team Leader (West)
1 Apologies for absence – John Offord
2 Declarations of interest – Trina Backhurst declared an interest in the reinvestment of bond monies from the Bank of Cyprus, as she works for N W Brown Investments
3 Open Forum for public participation – A member of the public from The Elms came to discuss maintenance of the area, which has become overgrown with 3 very large, overhanging trees and undergrowth, making her house dark and gloomy. It was agreed to get someone in to advise on long-term tree maintenance using the resources from The Elms maintenance fund.
The Little Rose pub has been successfully registered as a Community Asset, thanks to Keith Murray and his supporters. However, for the long-term future, we need to use our village pub as much as possible to make sure it is viable.
4 District Councillor’s Report – Robin Page mentioned the Cambridge University report debating the best use of agricultural land. With 7,000,000 hectares of land already in arrears in the UK, and nearly 50% of our food being imported, he feels that government housing policy and rising population is unsustainable and ignores environmental and other implications.
5 County Councillor’s Report – Sebastian Kindersley shared concerns with the recent appeal decision at Waterbeach to build 1800 more houses and the serious implications for Haslingfield if the planned CEMEX housing in Barrington goes ahead, despite local objections. On a more positive note, the launch of the Bike Bus between Cambridge Station and Gamlingay will be starting at Wimpole Hall on 27th July 2014 and passing through Barton in its way to Cambridge. It will operate 4 times a day on Sundays and Bank Holidays.
6 Minutes of June 9th 2014 – Approved and signed; TA proposed, JJ seconded
7 Matters to be reported from these minutes – 3 amendments; Wrenbridge Properties is spelt with a ‘W’ and Sidney Gardens has no apostrophe. The caretaker is away during June/July not July/August
8 Planning applications – C/11/40/045/33/14, 1 School Lane, application for tree work to trees subject to a preservation order – recommended for approval
9 Planning Matters – The Planning decisions taken by the District Council despite unanimous objections from the Parish Council were discussed with Jo Mills and John Koch. They explained that a planner’s job is to follow both national policy and local policy whilst listening to all points of view. Policies must be applied consistently across the board, because if a decision is appealed against and won, costs are awarded against the Council. In future District Council Officers would look to have a dialogue with the PC to explain their decisions and suggestions were made for an improvement in communication.
10 Additional matters for discussion – The new landlords of the Little Rose pub are running it for a trial period. There is a possible plan to build 2 houses on the site but the pub itself will remain as long as it is used. FL asked to confirm Article 4 letter has been written to SCDC (later confirmed that it has). The Remembrance Sunday poppies scattered in the Wellhouse Meadow are now colourfully in bloom. Any trained first aiders in the village are sought to be listed in the Parish Emergency Plan directory – please contact Tony Adcock.
11 Committee and Working Party Reports
a) Environment – The Elms – Trees and overgrowth at The Elms will be cut back to let in more light; specialist advice will be sought.
b) Village Hall – The PC is to assume the cost of marking Car Parking lines at the Village Hall. Two quotes are expected by the end of July for the building refurbishment. It was agreed that fitness training in the Village Hall would be acceptable, but not football training, as balls could damage the lights and ceiling equipment and scuff the walls. Hall Committee to follow up. The VH Committee has agreed to use floodlights with removable cables on the football ground. TB mentioned that the 1926 Badcock memorial is in a poor state and needs professional cleaning.
c) Allotments – Nothing to report.
d) Trumpington Meadows – CK signed the Community Access Agreement on behalf of HPC. The bursar for the 2 local primary schools mentioned that floodlights cost £500 per bulb to replace, as a cherry picker was needed to replace them. Tennis Club has been informed of the cost.
e) Play Area – SW mentioned the need for shade at the park on a very hot day, as there are currently no trees. It was suggested that villagers might be able to donate trees, for example in remembrance, and we will seek advice on suitable trees to plant between the fencing and picnic area.
f) Website and C&V – JC might be able to help on the website.
g) Tennis Club Planned Developments – Fields in Trust have agreed in principle to the lease and floodlights and a third tennis court. There will be further discussion on the issue raised in the meeting of a multi-purpose court, RB to follow up with HLTC on finalising lease.
h) Parish Emergency Plan – Three team members have been trained with St. John’s Ambulance and two people have offered to help. There have been phone and broadband problems and BT now wants to dig a trench to lay a new cable.
i) Skate Park – CK mentioned that the area is very overgrown and there needs to more visibility into the area. A Working Party is needed to help clear it and this is to be advertised in the C&V along with a general call for volunteers to help clear Haslingfield footpaths. The Parish Clerk is to receive people’s offers of help.
12 Correspondence – The Parish Council would like to join with parents in thanking Alan Webb, Project Manager and the following volunteers for all their help, dedication and hard work in running the Connections Bus, without whom this facility would not be available:
Mrs Joyce Dale, Mrs Diana Offord, Mrs Wendy Timbs, Mr Peter Hains and Mrs Christine Kipping,
13 Council Procedures – Motion to retain existing second signature control procedure – TA has recently been authorised to be a signatory, along with RB and JO. It was agreed to continue to use cheques with two signatures, rather than electronic payments.
14 Council Procedures – Discussion/motions on ‘gagging rules’ in new NALC Procedures – Unable to download the new rules, suggesting they may have been withdrawn. Chairman feels it is unacceptable to suggest we should have written permission before speaking to the press, and all Councillors agreed.
15 Report on Bond money in Bank of Cyprus – TB warned there may be stiff penalty charges to get out of the clause to automatically roll-over the Bond after 3 years duration. Letters to be written to withdraw original signatories. RB, TA and JO to be the agreed new signatories. RH proposed, LH seconded.
16 New Play Equipment at Recreation Ground – CK presented new play equipment options. Inspectors advised that outdoor table tennis is subject to adverse weather conditions and often becomes extra seating. It was decided to buy an item of play equipment for the 12+ age group. A ‘Spica’ has been ordered after consultations with play inspectors from Kompan, using Freddie Gellert’s bequest and other community monies.
17 Traffic calming – status and progress –RB finalised drawings with Skanska, and CCC are preparing draft Traffic Regulation Orders. If no objections the work will probably take place in September/October 2014.
18 Cycle Path from Haslingfield to Grantchester – LH, assisted by SK, is now inclined to look at the route from Haslingfield to Harston using cheaper surfaces. To approach the County Cycle Officer to get into the City Deal.
19 Report on School Lane – Wording on the signs is not correct, as Footpath no. 9 runs down the length of School Lane and beyond. FL to ask Peter Gaskin for suggestions on appropriate wording.
20 Finance – Outstanding accounts and salary cheques signed for payment: JJ proposed JC seconded.
Date of next meeting Monday 11th August 2014 at 7.30pm in the Village Hall