March 2023 Minutes

Great Hale Parish Council

Notes taken at Parish Council Meeting held on

Monday, 6th March 2023 at 7pm at Hale Magna Village Hall

Present:  Councillor N Turner    (Chairman)
            Councillor G Cooke (Vice Chairman)
            Councillor M Barnatt
            Councillor A Broom
            Councillor J Cope
            Councillor N Dady
            Councillor L Mountain
           County Councillor A Key (Lincolnshire County Council)

Apologies   District Councillor S Ogden  (North Kesteven District Council)
            District Councillor S Tarry (North Kesteven District Council)

In attendance:    Mrs Tracy Cooke – (Parish Clerk)

Public Forum

The Public Forum Opened at 7.00 pm.

The Chairman welcomed the public to the 15 minute Public Forum

There was 1 member of the public present.

A Parishioner stated that he had heard from Network Rail.  The surveys that had been done previously were not considered accurate and the work that needs to be done is a bigger job than anticipated.  If the culvert is in that poor a condition then there is the risk of a derailment.  Network Rail stated that money is short.  The Parishioner has contacted the MP and has given Network Rail another week to respond further.  He continued to say that the speed sign is effective and he had noticed a number of vehicles entering Great Hale from Little Hale slowing to 30mph when they first saw their speed.

Chairman closed the Public open forum at 7.03pm

Chairman opened the Parish Council meeting at 7.03pm

Official Business of the Council

1.    Chairman’s Welcome (22/210)

Cllr Turner welcomed everyone to the meeting and thanked everyone attending.  He thanked Cllr Cooke for charging the reactive speed batteries and changing them.  He continued to thank Cllr Cooke and the Clerk for poo picking across the fields.

2.    Apologies (22/211)

Council accepted apologies from District Councillors Tarry and Ogden for their non-attendance.

3    Previous meeting held on 6th February 2023 (22/212)

It was unanimously agreed that the draft minutes from the meeting held on 6th February 2023 were a true record. The Chairman duly signed the minutes.

4    Clerk’s Report (22/213)

a.    Chairman’s Village Natters article on website
b.    Contacted NKDC re missed poo bin 21st Feb
c.    Email to Graeme Butler re Speed sign post
d.    Emails sent and received to and from HVCS re Grant
e.    Enquiries regarding new liner
f.    Parish policing priorities form sent
g.    Emails with Simpsons re work in QE Garden
h.    Downloaded register of electors (657 in Great Hale)
i.    Website support renewed – 5 hours
j.    LALC Training renewal

5.    To receive declarations of interests (22/214)
Cllr Cooke made a declaration of interests on Item 8

6.    To receive reports from County and District councillors (22/215)
Cllr Key stated that he had nothing report but enquired as to whether we had received a copy of the consultation regarding the speed limit at East Heckington.  The proposal is to reduce the speed limit to 40mph.  Cllr Key said that he would enquire as to why we had not been informed of the consultation and ask us to be included.  He asked for our support when the consultation came through.

Cllr Turner said that there was talk of dualling the A17 And asked if this was still the case? Cllr Key replied that they had received money to do a feasibility study but it would only be for duelling the Heckington bypass section of the A17 no money is currently available.
County Council budget has been approved at 4.49% increase.

Cllr Cooke asked if we should receive notification of road works, particularly by Opals who are working around the village.  Cllr Key asked if we could send details of areas where the roads / paths have not been made good.  

Cllr Tarry submitted a short report in her absence:

1. Replacement Tree - Hall Park – Cllr Tarry has had no further information from the Manager dealing with this and so will chase and see what the position is.
2. Council Tax - at the full Council meeting held on Thursday 2nd March the Council approved a £4.95 (2.76%) increase in Council Tax for a Band D property.
3. NK Plan - also at the Council meeting held on 2nd March the Council approved the NK Plan 2023-26 which helps drive forward the Council in achieving the very best for the district across the key priorities which include communities, economy and environment.
NKDC's website will shortly be updated to include a link for the NK Plan - once the link is available, Cllr Tarry will email it across.

7    Planning Applications (22/216)

(7.1)    None received

8    Finance matters 

(8.1)    To approve the February 2023 bank reconciliation and spend to date. (22/217)
Council approved the February 2023 bank reconciliation and acknowledged the spend to date.

(8.2)    To approve accounts for payment (22/218)
It was unanimously resolved to approve the accounts for payment.

(9)    Highway matters for discussion and resolution 

(9.1)    Reactive speed sign (22/219)

    Cllr Cooke had forwarded the statistics to Councillors.  He stated that the batteries are heavy and difficult to replace.  He proposed that we obtain a smaller and simpler sign which would face the opposite direction.  This sign would not provide stats but would be a warning to drivers.  The stats are showing that where drivers see the sign, they are slowing down.

    The stats also show that there is a hardcore minority of drivers who are exceeding the limit.  We will continue to monitor the data and provide key times to the Police / PCSOs. 

    Cllr Turner said that he wanted to get data from the Fen Road too and proposed moving the sign to a location that would record speeds from the Fen Road.

(9.2)    Highways – further issues (22/220)

    Cllr Broom had previously asked Cllr Tarry how often the roads in the village should be cleaned.  He then approached NKDC and asked.  He was informed that they should be done every 6 weeks but this is not happening.  Cllr Broom said that we should be contacting NKDC, as Councillors to report issues and shortfalls.

    Action : Cllr Cooke will contact Highways to ask about notifications about roadworks.
10    Orchard Green 

10.1    Inspections (22/221):  

    Cllr Mountain completed the inspections this month.  A small amount of litter was reported.  Children have been moving stumps and roots from the cleared area and putting them under the play equipment.  She has moved them. It was proposed that a working party should clear, by hand, as many roots etc by hand.

Action:  A working party to meet at the cleared land on Orchard Park on Saturday 11th March at 9am.

Action:  Next month’s inspections: Cllr Mountain

11    Other matters 

(11.1)     Queen Elizabeth Garden (22/222)
    The quote from a contractor to clear, level and seed the area was circulated to all councillors. 

It was proposed to let the brambles grow up and then remove any that come through.  If that is not done then we will have a lot more to contend with.  Cllrs Cope and Barnatt proposed to spray the area when any new growth appears to kill off any remaining roots, so that there would not be any issues once the area has been seeded deal with the growth when it comes through. A further proposal was to accept the quotation now and progress as soon as possible.

Action:   To accept the quote but to delay until the Autumn.
     To meet at 9am on Sat 11th March at Orchard Close to remove the loose roots

(11.2)     Annual Parish Meeting (APM} 22/223
    This does not need to happen as we currently do but can be held separately on a more informal basis.  Cllr Cooke suggested going on Social media to gauge interest for a more relaxed meeting with the public, perhaps in the Church.

The APM could precede APCM on 15th May at 7pm or could attend a more informal APM on Sat 13th May

Action: Cllr Cooke to investigate the availability of the Church and to gauge interest from the public.

(11.3)     Highways Grass cutting contract (22/224)

The contract received from Highways for 2023/24 was discussed.  It was proposed and agreed to accept the Contract for 3 cuts a year.

Action: Clerk to complete form and return to Highways

(11.4)      Orchard Park Inspection (22/225)

    Wicksteed have sent this year’s inspection quote. It will be £120 for an unaccompanied visit from Wicksteed to undertake the inspection.  The quote was discussed and it was proposed and agreed to obtain further quotes.

    Action:     Cllr Broom will obtain a quote
            Clerk – to obtain a quote from the contractor who repaired the multi-play

(11.5) Internal Audit (22/226)

The Parish Council Internal Audit will be due next month.  The Clerk stated that the finances are all  in order and will be presented for Audit.

Action:  Clerk to contact Mrs Alison Bourne to arrange the Internal Audit

12    Future agenda items (22/227)

(12.1)    Speed sign
(12.2)  Annual Parish Meeting
(12.3)    Park inspection quotes
(12.4)    Elections

13    Date and place of next meeting (22/228)

Monday 3rd April 2023 @ 7pm in Hale Magna Village Hall.

The Chairman thanked all for attending and closed the meeting at 8.09 pm