26 February 2007 – Parish Council Meeting

 

Text Box:

 

Minutes of a Meeting of the LINTON PARISH COUNCIL held at 7.30pm in the Linton Village Hall, Linton on Monday 26th February 2007

 

PRESENT

Cllr C Baxter (Chairman),Cllrs Mrs. M.Price, Mrs.J.Sawyer,J.Bridle I.Firmin, G.Harrison, and J.Whitmarsh (vice Chairman)

Borough Councillors A.Brindle and J Williams

Borough and County Councillor Mrs P.Stockell

M.D.Stevens  Parish Clerk

There were  6 members of the public in attendance
 

The Chairman welcomed everybody to the meeting.

1.  APOLOGIES

 

Apologies were received from Cllr.B.Mortimer amd Dr.Coutts.

 

2.  MINUTES of the Parish Council Meeting held on Monday 8th January 2007

The Minutes of the Parish Council Meeting held on Monday 8th January 2007 which had been previously circulated to all Member were approved as a correct record and signed by the Chairman            

3.   MATTERS  ARISING from the MINUTES of the Meeting held on 8th January 2007

a) Police Report

The Clerk reported that he had been advised  there had been two reported incidents since the PC last met. Damage to a tree in Wheelers Lane and a theft of wheel trims from a Horse Box in Stilebridge Lane. He had also been asked to advise Car owners not to leave valuable items (eg Laptops, handbags) on display when they were away from their cars. A number of thefts from unattended cars had been reported

 b) Neighbourhood Watch

The Clerk reported that he had been advised that Mrs.LHolman, the Neighbourhood Watch Co-Ordinator had resigned. A replacement was actively being sought. Anybody interested should contact Cllr.Whitmarsh as soon as possible.

c) Car Park Security

For safety reasons the ‘Cross Members’ of the Car Park Barrier had now been removed.

d) Telephone Box outside the Village Hall

This had now been replaced. The Clerk reported that he was again in touch with BT seeking a date for the actual telephone to be fitted.

e) A229  Traffic Speeds

There was nothing further to report. As far as was known the APNR Unit had not visited Linton

*All other Matters Arising would be dealt with under relevant Agenda Items

4.   DECLARATION OF MEMBERS INTERESTS

The Clerk reported that Cllrs.Mrs Sawyer, I,Firmin and J,Whitmarsh had been granted dispensation in relation to their ongoing interest in the Allotment Gardens in Wheelers Lane.

5.  A229   TRAFFIC MANAGEMENT

Cllr Whitmarsh advised the meeting that ,together with the Chairman ,Cllr Firmin and the Parish Clerk they had met Cty Cllr K.Ferrin the KCC Cabinet Member with responsibility for Highways at County Hall. This meeting had been arranged by Cty.Cllr Mrs P.Stockell who also attended the meeting. He asked that the thanks of the PC be recorded to Cllr.Mrs Stockell

The meeting itself proved to be most interesting and productive. It was clear that Cllr.Ferrin had inherited a considerable problem in organisational terms with which he was struggling to resolve.The problems identified by the Parish re the A229 and the other roads in relation to speeds, speed restrictions, road condition, signage etc were noted by Cllr Ferrin who agreed to follow some of them up (eg. Possible extension of the speed limit) It was clear from the discussion that there would, for financial reasons, be no alterations to the Linton Cross Roads in the near future. The meeting was very positive and everybody left with the view that matters , in Highway terms, were going to improve particularly when the new arrangements for road maintenance came on stream in the next financial year.

KCC had now confirmed that the speed limit roundels and the Bus Stop were to be marked on the A229 in the very near future and additional sped limit signs were to be erected. More work would be undertaken during the next financial year (White Lining)

Cllr Firmin reported that he and the Clerk had met the local Highway Inspector and the Highways Liaison Officer and ‘toured the parish’ identifying potholes and other highway matters. They had left with a list which they would ‘pass on ‘ to their superiors for action.

This very unsatisfactory arrangement and lengthy chain of command was discussed with Cllr Ferrin who acknowledged the problem

Cllr.Mrs Sawyer drew members attention to the Double Yellow Lines on the corner of Wheelers

Lane which, because of their positioning, were serving no purpose at all.She wondered if they

had been put in the right position as clearly they were in different positions on either side of the corner. There was general support for her comments/observations. The Clerk agreed to get in contact with the Highways Inspector and to meet him on site to discuss.

A real concern was expressed about the condition of the lanes generally which were beginning to suffer badly from the growing use they were receiving. A lot of damage had been done during the wet weather. Regrettably it was acknowledged that there was little that could be done to restrict traffic access to the lanes and that  the situation needed to be monitored carefully.

The Clerk reported that Stile Bridge Lane was due to be closed in order that major repairs could be carried out. Due to water erosion sections of the road had collapsed!!

SPEEDWATCH

Cllr Whitmarsh advised that Dr Coutts had arrange a Training Day with the Police.

It would be held in the Village Hall on a Saturday morning  after Easter. The Linton Group would be joined by volunteers from Staplehurst.

Additional Volunteers from Linton were still required. Anybody interested should contact Dr.Coutts.
                                                

6.   COMMENTS BY THS PUBLIC

The Chairman formally adjourned the Parish Council Meeting to hear comments from the public

Concern was expressed about the removal of two trees on a site to the west of Cornwallis Avenue and Wheelers Lane. The Tree Warden had been alerted to this issue and, after much research had discovered that they had been removed by MBC Environmental Services. For what reason and on what authority it was not known They were to be replaced.

It was generally felt that if MBC were going to fell trees or remove shrubbery from the verge of the Highway for what ever reason, they should advise the Parish Council in advance. This request to be passed onto the MBC.

Vandalism to the large Tree in the same location.

A large mature tree in the same location had been ‘ringed’ by persons unknown. This wanton act of vandalism had been reported to the police.

As a direct result of the tree being ringed it was likely that it would die and was being monitored by the Tree Warden and the MBC.If it died it would be felled and replaced.

The Chairman suggested that if the tree was pollarded it might have a better chance of survival. This was noted.

Attention was drawn yet again to the condition of the roads and the number of potholes that existed. Cllr.Firmin reported that they had been reported but little action was being taken. Funding was believed to be the problem.

There being no further comments from the public the Chairman resumed the Parish Council meeting                                            

7. FINANCE

 

GENERAL FINANCIAL POSITION

 

Opening Balance                                      £6229.55

06.02.07  HMCustom and Excise (VAT)            82.83

14.02.07   Allotment Rent                                8.00

16.02.07   Local Members Grant                    900.00

                                                             ————-

                                                               7220.38

 

PAYMENTS MADE

26.02.07 KPS (Photocopying)      11.28

             MDS(printing Inks)        28.29

             SMPG                          50.00

                                           ————

                                                                   90.27

                                                              ———–

BALANCE CARRIED FORWARD                   £7130.11  

                                                             =======

 

BUDGET 2007/2008

The Clerk reported that the Finance Group had met and prepared the Budget for 2007/2008 which was circulated.

After a brief discussion during it was agreed to reduce the Contingency Figure to achieve a more balanced Budget, the Budget for 2007/2008 was agreed. (A revised budget document would be circulated) 

 

PARISH PRECEPT 2007/2008

Resultant on the Budget the Parish Precept had been set at 20p based on  a local tax base of 256.7 equivalent to Band D and would raise £5134 

 

ADDITIONAL BID GRANT APPLICATIONS 2007/2008 

There was no further news on this matter

 

ADDITIONAL GRANTS FROM LOCAL MEMBERS

In addition to monies already received two additional bids had been made. £900 for the improvement of Perriwinkle Bank (received) and £660 towards the cost of a new Notice Board for the Village Hall (awaited). This was a joint venture with the LVHMC   

 

8.  PLANNING MATTERS

 

a)  OUTSTANDING PLANNING APPLICATIONS

 

MA/06/2070

Full Planning Permission

Former Kent Fire Brigade Training Centre

Heath Road

LINTON

 

The Clerk reported that the concerns of the Parish Council had been sent to the MBC as part of their recommendation that the Application be refused, The MBC Planning Committee met on 1st February 2007 and GRANTED Planning Permission subject to a number of Conditions (Copies available on request).

 

The concerns about the footway had been taken up with the Medway Education Trust who had confirmed that KCC Highways were satisfied with what had been installed.

 

A letter of thanks had been received from the Medway Educational Trust for allowing them to outline their case at the Parish Council Meeting.

 

MA/06/2151

Full Planning Permission

G& S Smallholding

Wheelers Lane

Linton

 

This Application had been APPROVED subject  to conditions re hours of opening etc.

 

MA/06/2263

Full Planning Permission

1, Davis Farm Cottages

Redwall Lane,

LINTON,

Maidstone

 

This Application had been REFUSED

 

MA/TA/0048/07

Tree Surgery and Felling

The White Lodge,

Loddington Lane,

LINTON

Felling of an ash tree.

 

Following circulation to all Parish Councillors and the Parish Tree Warden it was agreed to recommend to the MBC that the Application be APPROVED

 

Cllr. Firmin left the meeting at this point

 

MA/07/0320

Amendment or renewal of Conditions

Wares farm,

Redwall Lane,

LINTON

Variation of conditions re provision and siting of caravans for workers

 

The Parish Council wished to see this application APPROVED

MBC to be advised accordingly

                                                                      05.02.07

MA/07/0310

Full Planning permission

Wares Farm

Redwall Lane,

LINTON

Erection of two shower blocks,laundry/drying room and computer room etc

 

The Parish Council wished to see this Application APPROVED

 

MBC to be advised accordingly

 

MA/07/0243

Full Planning Permission

Well Dishes Oast

RedwaLL Lane,

LINTON

Erection of private garage

 

The Parish Council wished to see this Application APPROVED

 

MBC to be advised accordingly

 

The Chairman invited Cllr. Firmin to rejoin the meeting.

                                                                                  

b)  FURTHER DEVELOPMENTS on VICARAGE FIELD

 

There was nothing further to report on this matter.

 

 

 

c)  KENT and MEDWAY STRUCTURE PLAN

The Clerk reported that he was now in receipt of the LDF Core Strategy Document and had circulated Councillors with a number of relevant papers He also had copies of the DVD should any Councillor wish to see it. The Core Strategy Document was also available.The meeting was reminded  of the Public meeting to be held the following evening (Tuesday 27th February 2007) in the Boughton Monchelsea Village Hall to which all residents in Linton had been invited

It was essential that the PC responded to the Core Strategy Document as it set out what was being proposed for the next 20+ years.

 

The Chairman thanked the Clerk for the DRAFT response which he had prepared and sought responses and comments from Councillors. There then followed a short but informative debate during which a number of essential features to be included in any response were identified (eg infrastructure needs) Councillors were asked to consider the DRAFT document outside the meeting and to allow Cllr.Mrs Sawyer to add comments and views following the meeting at Boughton Monchelsea. At the request of the Chairman Mrs Randall-Webb was asked to liaise with Cllr Mrs Sawyer in the revision of the DRAFT which would then be circulated to ALL Councillors for comment. Should no comments to the revised draft be received it would be submitted to the MBC as the Linton Parish Council response.

The document would be formally APPROVED at the April meeting of the Parish Council

 

d)  SE REGIONAL PLAN

Nothing further to report

          

9   VILLAGE HALL

 

Cllr.Whitmarsh advised the meeting that a Working Party had recently completed a number of tasks including the washing down of the kitchen .Smoke alarms and energy saving light bulbs had been fitted and the outside windows repainted. Progress continued to be made but there was more to do.

He thanked the Borough Members for their assistance in purchasing a new Notice Board for outside the Village Hall. This was a joint venture with e Parish Council

 

Since the last meeting action had been taken to establish the Insurance Valuation of the Village Hall . He had now received some papers from the Parish Clerk relating to the last  professional valuation in 1995 which gave the valuation as £285.500 which had now risen to £380.000+. As the Village Hall Insurance was due for renewal it had been agreed that a new professional valuation would be sought. He would keep the PC advised.

 

10    MEMBERS  REPORTS

 

a) ALLOTMENT GARDENS

 

Cllr Mrs Sawyer reported that all the allotments were now taken. The tyres left on one Allotment would be removed. The new Notice Board was now in use

 

b)  KAPC

 

Cllr Mrs Sawyer reported that she had attended the AGM of the Maidstone Committee of the KAPC and the  subsequent Committee meeting

Her report is attached to these minutes.

Parish News No 322 had been circulated

 

c)  CHILDREN’S PLAYGROUND

 

The Clerk reported that he had resubmitted the Capital Bid to the MBC for a sum in the order of £27,000 for the development of the Playground during 2007/2008. The result of the bid was awaited.

 

d) TRAMP

 

Cllr.Bridle indicated that he had attended a recent meeting of TRAMP and gave a brief outline of the contents of the meeting. In his view the meeting did ’not get very far’. He hoped that progress would be made on some of the issues raised at the next  meeting.

       

e)  SOUTH MAIDSTONE PARISHES GROUP

 

The Clerk reported that there had been a well attended meeting of the Group to discuss the LDF Core Strategy Document and a response was in preparation which would be circulated to all 14 Parishes before submission to the MBC.

Also discussed were the implications for Parish Councils and Parish Councillors should more responsibilities be devolved to Parishes as was being proposed.

 

A request for a contribution of £50 towards the administrative costs of the SMPG had been received. This was agreed

 

11.   CORRESPONDENCE

 

The Clerk reported that he had received routine Committee Agendas and Minutes from the MBC together with routine Press Releases copies of which were available on request. Relevant documents and copies of correspondence had been circulated to Members as appropriate. Attention was drawn to the following:

 

MBC     Details of St George’s Day parade on 22nd April 2007

           Details of a series of events being organised by the Mayor * circulated

           Community Play Schemes  Grant Application Details

KCC     Inside Track Funding Schemes Issues 91 and 92

           Proposed Closure and Replacement with two Academies etc

         * Members to make individual responses.

           Towards 2010

ACRK   Details of membership  * Forwarded to LVHMC

ROSPA   Annual Inspection of Play Areas

 

12.    ANY OTHER BUSINESS NOT REQUIRING NOTICE

 

ANNUAL PARISH MEETING

The Clerk reminded the Councillors of the above and sought guidance as to the programme.

 

There followed a brief discussion during which it was agreed that there would be an update on ‘Traffic Issues’ following last years meeting and the Special Meeting and that MBC should be approached to address the meeting on Recycling and Waste Management.

 

Periwinkle Bank

Cllr Firmin reported that he was progressing a scheme for the improvement of the area known as Periwinkle Bank. To date the estimated cost was in the order of £4000 of which he had already received a grant of £900 from the Borough Members .He was meeting Cty Cllr Mrs Stockell shortly to see if she would be willing to release some of her funds for this project during the next financial year. He would keep the PC advised.

 

Gullies on the A229

Attention was again drawn to this problem .The Clerk agreed to see if he could get them emptied.

 

13.   TIME and DATE of NEXT MEETING

 

The next meeting of the Linton Parish Council will be held in the Linton Village Hall on Monday 16th April 2007 commencing at 7.30pm

 

There being no further business the Chairman thanked all those present for their attendance and closed the meeting at 9.46pm