Full Council Meeting Minutes 27th January 2022

Full Council Meeting Minutes Uploaded on September 2, 2022

Minutes of the Meeting of Doddinghurst Parish Council held on
27th January 2022, at 19.30 in the Parish Room (adj. Village Hall), Church Lane, Doddinghurst, Essex, CM15 0NJ.

Present: Cllrs. Mrs D. Dicker (Chairman), Mrs J. Le Page, Mr D. Potter, Mr M Capon, Mr G. Smith, Mr P. Arnell, Mrs K. Pond.
In attendance:

Brentwood Borough Councillors: Ms C. Gelderbloem and Mr K. Parker
County Councillor: Mrs L.Wagland.
Clerk: Mrs C. Fuller
Project Officer: Mr R. Blake

1. Apologies for Absence: Cllrs. Mrs D. Rogers Harrison, Mr R. McCheyne, Mr A. Smith and
Borough Cllr C. Poppy
2.  Resolved: Minutes of the Parish Council Meeting held on the 4th November 2021 were approved and signed.
3. Declaration of interests from members of any items on this agenda. None.
4. Information: Members of the public were invited to speak. None.
5. Information: Clerks report for November and December 2021
The reported was noted, including financial reports for the period.
Barclays Bank
A VAT claim was made in mid-January for £461.42 for Quarter 3 (Oct-Dec)
c) PRECEPT 2022-23
The Tax Base figure and precept calculator has now been sent to all parishes by Brentwood Borough Council. DPC resolved to freeze the Band D figure for the 2022/23 financial year at £63.40. With a tax base of 1195.80, the precept figure will be £75,814. The 2021/22 precept is £76,014, so this represents an actual cash decrease of £200, or -0.26%. This is for resolution at Item 9 on the agenda.
If the Council approves I have decided to defer the consideration of closing the Santander account and opening a Unity Trust Bank account for now. The Barclays account is running smoothly and I do not see the need to rush into making changes at this time. I am now an authorised signatory on the Barclays account, and the mandate change request has been sent to Santander.
When all the mandate change work is completed the following signatories will be in place for Barclays and Santander: Mrs C. Fuller, Cllrs. D. Dicker, M. Capon, G. Smith and J. LePage.
Since the last council meeting there have been 4 new ashes plots, 1 re-open ashes plot, 0 full burials and 2 Deed of Grant transfers
Since the last council meeting there has been 1 new allotment holder.
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Just before Christmas Alan & Gail Farrow planted two cherry trees on the recreation ground close to the village hall. They have been reimbursed for the cost. A plaque thanking Mr Farrow for his work as Parish Councillor will be installed near the trees shortly.
Broadmead Leisure has removed the cross trainer from the recreation ground which was presenting a finger entrapment risk and was beyond economic repair.
The car park adjacent to the children’s play area is currently partly tarmac and partly loose material but the surface is uneven. Quotes are being requested to dig it out and level it, laying a new surface of compacted gravel with a new edging strip. Quotes will be brought to the next appropriate meeting for consideration.
ACTION: The Clerk to send a photo of the adjacent strip of highways land to Cllr. Wagland.
In December a resident launched a petition against the landowner preventing walkers from using the woods behind Dagwood Lane, next to Apple Tree Farm. I have been collating any responses and four residents protested about the restrictions. The landowner had confirmed that he is putting in new fencing to make the land secure but the public will still be able to walk the perimeter of the land, which he has named Kingfisher Farm.
Cllr. Parker reminded those present that the land is privately owned and there are no public footpaths around it or through it.
Cllr. Capon reported that there are a number of routes commonly used but not designated Public Rights of Way.
a) Cllr. Capon to arrange a meeting with ECC Footpaths to gain an understanding of how paths can be protected or put forward for designation as PROWs for use by the public.
b) Cllr. Capon and the Clerk to walk the land, with permission of the landowner.
c) Cllr. Wagland to consult the PROW team.
(During this item, Cllrs. Potter and Arnell arrived, along with Borough Cllr. Gelderbloem)
Work from guidance has now been lifted and the Deputy Clerk will be working from the office from week commencing 24th January. The office has remained open to the public throughout Plan B regulations.
l)  Resolved to approve the Schedule of Payments for November & December 2021.
6. Schedule of Correspondence received up to the end of December 2021. Noted.
7. Minutes and Feedback from Committees a) Information and  Resolution: Planning Applications for November & December 2021 and to date. The Applications Pending and Applications Decided data sheets were reviewed and approved.
ACTION: Clerk to write to Brentwood Council given the outcome of the appeal APP/H1515/C/20/3265 Land at Rustic Dene, Parkwood, Doddinghurst as constant development such as this is incursion into the Green Belt.
b) Information and  Resolution: Minutes and decisions of the Finance & Resources meeting held on 18th November 2021 were accepted.
c) Information: Notes of the Communications Working Party meeting held on 25th November 2021 were noted. Next meeting to be held on 10th February.
ACTION: All Parish Councillors to be offered a dedicated email address.
d) Information: The Clerk’s notes of the BBPCA meeting held on 24th January 2021 were tabled and noted.
e) Feedback from members relating to committees attended since last meeting. None.
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8.  Resolved to accept and adopt the Budget for 2022/23 as recommended by the Finance & Resources Committee.
9.  Resolved to accept the recommendation from the Finance & Resources Committee to freeze the precept at Band D at £63.40 for the financial year 2022/23, giving a precept amount of £75,814, which is a cash decrease of £200 on the previous year (-0.26%).
10. Information: Reports from Borough & County Councillors
Cllr. Wagland:
• ECC’s increase in council tax for next year will be 4.49%, mainly social care for adults and children. 17,000 people in Essex benefit from social care including those with learning difficulties and complex needs. ECC is also receiving successive reductions in Government funding.
• Essex Housing has been set up to enable the building of affordable and specialist housing.
• ECC is committed to reducing waste and encouraging others to stop generating waste.
• Applications for business grants of up to £6,000 expire next week.
• Locality Fund will continue, albeit with less funding.
• The target for road deaths is zero by 2040 and they are steadily reducing. Accidents involving under 16’s have however increased and could be because ECC has not been able to access schools during lockdowns.
• Roger Hirst is committed to getting unlawful scooters off the road. The licenced scheme is seen as a success. Cllr.Wagland will send through guidance on how unlawful scooters can be reported.
• Ingatestone & Fryerning Parish Council’s Neighbourhood Plan is reaching its final stages before adoption. It was noted that Doddinghurst PC halted its Neighbourhood Plan in 2013 and BBC still holds allocated funding.
• Gritters have been out and can be tracked online.
Cllr. Gelderbloem:
• A grant for wellbeing of the community is available. The Chair advised her to speak to Rev’d Ann.
• She asked whether the youth co-ordinator from the church had been in touch. They haven’t.
• There has been an accident on Ongar Road into Blackmore Road due to the illuminated bollards not being cleaned. She asked members to highlight any that are not working.
Cllr. Parker:
• He will chase Will Russell for information on the Waterworks Spring Farm exhibition to be held at the Village Hall on 26th February. Building work will start as soon as the judicial review period is over.
• Completion of the Local Development Plan is imminent, and work on its review will start almost immediately.
• Current applications have resulted in the loss of only 1% of Green Belt, and there are no brownfield sites left in the Borough.
11. Information: Parish Office Refurbishment Phase 2
The Project Officer had previously circulated an update report to members, and he tabled a more detailed copy to the proposed Refurbishment Working Party. Costings for the works are being sought and it was noted that the contract will need to be advertised nationally on the Government’s Contract Finder website, although local contractors can also be approached to quote. Some of the smaller works have been carried out in-house already, eg halogen lamps in the Parish Room swapped for LEDs and replacement smoke detectors have been fitted.
12.  Resolution: To suspend Standing Order 3(x) to allow the meeting to extend beyond 2 hours.
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13.  Resolution: To set up a Refurbishment Working Party consisting of Cllrs. Potter, LePage and Arnell to work with the Project Officer to progress the project and make recommendations to the Council.
14. Information: Cllr. LePage updated members on plans for the Platinum Jubilee Event to be held on 5th June. So far the following has been booked: marquee, band, bouncy castle, magician, stilt walker, cream teas, and two school choirs. It is a work in progress but is keeping to budget (budget was increased to £6,000 by the F&R Committee). Cllr. LePage appealed for volunteers to help on the day.
15.  Resolved to find out more about S-Type Security & Solutions Ltd and its services and processes, including contacting other councils who use their services for their opinions, before considering inviting them to give a short presentation at a future Parish Council meeting.
16. Information: It was noted that Gigaclear will be bringing full fibre broadband to the village.
ACTION: Clerk to send the Gigaclear email to Cllr. G. Smith, who will liaise with Cllr. Wagland.
17.  Resolution: To start meetings of the Parish Council and its Committees at 7.30pm.
18. Information: Agenda of the Annual Parish Meeting on 28th April to follow the same format as previous years.
19. Other urgent information (No council actions/letters/undertakings permissible on this item).
The meeting closed at 22.00
Minutes signed: Date: 3rd March 2022