The Chairman welcomed all to the meeting.
- Present were Chairman Steve Smith, Cllr Jude Chin, Cllr Keith Godman, CllrAnn Hirst, Cllr Audrey Lummis, County Councillor Stephen Burroughes and 6 members of the public.
Apologies for absence were received and accepted from Cllr Martin Wyard and Professor John Tesh
To receive members’ declarations of interest. Chairman Steve Smith declared an interest in 4 e) as the Glebe Land to be discussed includes his house and garden.
- Minutes. The Minutes of the meeting of 11th November have been circulated to all by email.
The clerk noticed an omission of the 2 members of the public present. When amended this was signed by the chairman as a true record.
- Clerk’s report.
3.1. Progress with development of Jubilee Field
3.1.1. Installation of swing – Sovereign delivered and installed the basket swing over 3 days in the week before Christmas. Charges for the secure storage of parts were avoided by Cllr Ann Hirst kindly offering her garage as it was nearby.
There is enough money in the sports-pot to bid for the next phase in developing the play area: children’s Flicky Trail and elements of a Trim Trail. SPC unanimously gave the Clerk the go-ahead to apply for more funding.
3.1.2. Grant for hedge – Clerk applied for £300 for a hedge for the top of the Jubilee Field.
£120 was awarded. Andrew Stephenson had quoted for restoring the hedge at £100 plus £15 each for standards. SPC agreed unanimously that £55 of last year’s fete money be used to pay for the extra standard trees.
3.1.3. With the development of the Jubilee Field comes added costs. We will have to make provision for this. The new blades for the mower, which Townlands Trust have agreed to jointly fund, will be purchased after two more spring cuts with the old blades.
3.2. Up-date on purchase of dog-bins 2 green dog-bins have been installed located on the Jubilee Field and outside the Town Meadow. Funding has been received from Stephen Burroughes’ County Council’s Locality budget for these for which we are most grateful.
3.3. Progress with Deed of Variation for ac cess to Jubilee Field from Holden’s Lane . Nothing to report as yet.
3.4. Holden’s Lane planning proposal:
3.4.1. Decision needed about fencing and gate to Jubilee Field (see plan 4385 18F) Greg Dodds has amended the original plan sent to include 2 gates – one for vehicles, one for pedestrians as shown on hard copies. SPC unanimously agreed that since the fence and gate would be on our land that we should maintain them provided they were good quality and robust. A 3 barred fence was appropriate and we expected the gate to be 5 barred.
3.4.2. The clerk is to write to Greg Dodds on 3 issues: the fence and gate; a request that Binders to maintain the new Sewage Plant so that the 2 plants on the site are maintained by the same company; and information about the adjacent ditch which needs to be cleared.
3.4.3. ‘Concerns’ correspondence re. paving, parking and drainage.
sent email 5/1/15 to JP Chick re weight on permeable paving
sent letter 5/1/15 to Flagship re. parking allocation – no replies yet
spoke to Charlie Binder after chasing Binders for a reply to letter 9/10/15
Binders took over the maintenance of the Flagship sewage plant about a year ago (Midlands Co. could no longer do the job adequately for the cheap price!). Mr Binder has no jurisdiction to answer any questions about the new plant as he has only quoted for it. He says that he imagines the contract for maintenance will go out to tender. He knows the site and says he thinks the ditch concerned is wide/big enough to take discharge from both plants.
3.5. Local Plan Documents re. sites which are protected from development, Sweffling Other village. Is the AP28 policy (area to be protected from development) still required?
Clerk spoke to planning dept about this. This is our opportunity to increase the areas of the village which we want to be free from development e.g. Jubilee Field, Townlands Meadow, fields adjoining the Glebe land that is coloured ‘green’ from the AP28 policy- or to reduce them County Councillor Stephen Burroughes explained that this is a 15 year cycle of development needs. It is important that we decide where we want limited development or piecemeal development.
He suggested that we could also link it with the changing needs of the village’s speed limits.
A meeting is to be convened the week beginning 23rd February to discuss Area Specific Policies and speed limits together.
3.6. Rights of Way – report on Swefling footpaths after clerk’s meeting with Richard Tyson
Clerk had a comprehensive meeting at the beginning of December regarding the Parish Council’s responsibilities regarding footpaths. The PC have no responsibility for footpaths – it is the SCC.
Footpaths each have a statement with an accompanying map. Clerk to apply for this at Library.
Clerk to put a reminder in ‘The Bridge’ about how to complain about a footpath/ROW on the SCC website.
3.7. Highways – up-date on reported problems to County Council.
Hedge on B1119 by Rendham Bridge, reported overgrown, has been cut back.
Bridge on Footpath damaged – has been reported by Richard Tyson.
3.8. Police communication
Clerk has received a visit to introduce the new Sgt, Justin Siggins 1459 – based in Halesworth Ext 5136. There is to be a meeting of the Saxmundham/ Framlingham Police Priorities Setting meeting On Wednesday 14th January 2pm at Saxmundham. Councillor Audrey Lummis to attend.
- Councillors’ Reports
4.1. County Councillor’s Report.
Stephen Burroughes was welcomed to the meeting and thanked for his report which will be posted on the website.
He is in touch with the Hut Committee and is planning a project to insulate the Village Hut at a cost of several thousand pounds.
He reported that the Sizewell C consultation originally planned for early 2015 had been pushed to the other side of the election. The 4 village by-pass mooted by MP Dr Dan Poulter had much local support and he felt the local community needed some sort of benefit from EDF.
On the subject of extending the 30mph speed limit (from Rendham through Swefling), he spoke of his Local Highways Budget some of which could be put towards a such a scheme, to benefit Swefling Parish.
Neighbourhood Plans. Funding is available. This is definition of what you want your village to be like. There might be funding for the old Village Plan to be up-dated to a Parish Plan. Councillor Burroughes advised us to speak to our new SCDC Councillor after the May elections.
4.2. Jude Chin report on Budget Review Meeting on 25th November
SCC and SCDC have key financial challenges:
Cuts are inevitable and new models for cheaper delivery of services will be identified. Returns on assets are also under scrutiny. £130 m. has been saved but another £120 m. has still to be saved.
SCDC has a balanced budget but there are unfunded gaps beyond this. Services are now shared with Waveney. There are no plans to cut major services with a 0% rise in Council tax over the next 2 years. District Council elections are to be held this May with a decrease in the number of councillors.
5.1. Electoral Register revised 1 December 2014 – requested by email.
5.2. Sizewell Survey re 4 villages by-pass – response from MP Dr Dan Poulter. A response has been sent to all participants. Clerk has received a similar letter with pie charts:
5.3. Local Plan Documents – consultation period 15th Dec – 27th Feb ’15. SPC to send response after meeting week beginning 23/02/15
5.4. Car-parks consultation – response required by 23/1 /15. SPC will not send a response.
5.5. Environment Agency advice on prevention of flooding of The Gull. Nov ’14
After the November flooding in village, a notice was put in the Bridge about landowners’ artesian responsibilities. The environment agency was called to a property in the Street/Holden’s Lane after flooding at this road junction. Their verbal report states that clearing the Gull in the village is important and that the short section between the Glemham Road and the Alde which falls from 15m above Snape to 11m above Snape is particularly so.
5.6. Suffolk Community Emergency Planning Newsletter – attention drawn to this.
5.7. Broadband roll-out meeting 22/1/15 Bruisyard Village Hall 7pm – David Fordham will attend on behalf of SPC.
5.8. 47 Emails circulated
6.1. To receive and approve payments since last meeting.
3 cheques paid totalling £712.32 were approved
6.2. To authorise cheques for signature.
4 cheques totalling £305.93 were authorised. Clerk has ascertained grant money has been released for payment of swing. Cheque to be paid to Sovereign when this clears. £2534.70`
6.3. To receive the financial report from the RFO including balances at Barclay’s Bank.
Current Account £341 75
Business Account £1771.18 Total = £2112.93
6.4. Precept request
The precept letter has been received and clerk has replied with the request of £2,200 for 2015/2016.
In addition there will be Council Tax Support Funding of £59.48
In answer to a question about whether the Precept could be reduced, it could, but a reserve would be needed for maintenance of the Jubilee Field
6.5. Insurance up-date.
The clerk has notified the insurance company of new assets, swing (estimated increase £30) and dog bins (estimated increase £4).
- Planning Matters
7.1. To receive any planning decisions. Kathryn Oelman our local planning officer has sent the details of the outstanding applications Alde House Annex, Sweffling Hall Farm colonial tents and more recently Poplar Farm. All were given permission.
There has been much communication re the planning office’s policy of relying on the website for PC’s information about decisions etc. A letter from the House of Lords (Lord Marlesford) asking a question of the government about the legality of this has confirmed that we should get the information sent. Clerk to write formally to the Planning Department asking that information re. applications and decisions are sent to us.
7.2. To consider any planning applications.
7.2.1. Alde House DC/14/3429/FUL Safari Tent and Shepherd’s Hut
SPC have responded with a rejection of this planning application, after a meeting last week. This comment is now on the website for public viewing.
7.2.2. Swallow’s Nest – Mr and Mrs Rusack of the Stables Sweffling gave a preview of plans for a house on their land; they will submit to the Planning Department later this month. Questions were asked by the council.
- Matters to be brought to the attention of the council.
8.1. David Fordham has reported that he has heard from SCDC about the change in road name, from Chapel Lane to Woolnough Lane. Clerk to put a notice in ‘the Bridge’.
8.2. Holocaust Memorial Day 27th January 2015 Letter received
8.3. ESTA thank SPC for supporting their plans for Saxmundham to become a Transport Hub. They want financial support, but SPC unable to make such a donation.
8.4. Sizewell Wider Public Information – attached to email, a flyer for consultation by 26th January – Emergency Plans for Sizewell B. Professor John Tesh agreed to attend the meeting on 29th January at Sizewell Sports and Leisure Centre.
- Date of next meeting, time and venue.
The dates of the next 2 meetings were confirmed as
Tuesday 3rd March 7.00pm Open Meeting.
Annual Parish Meeting and SPC AGM Tuesday 12th May 7.00pm
Dates for July and September meeting to be confirmed after elections on 7th May
Mrs J A Abbott
Clerk to Swefling Parish Counci