May 2023 Minutes APCM

Great Hale Parish Council

Notes of the Annual Parish Council Meeting held
Monday 15th May 2023 at Hale Magna Village Hall

Present:  Councillor N Turner (Chairman)
               Councillor G Cooke (Vice-Chairman)
               Councillor M Barnatt
               Councillor J Cope
               Councillor N Dady
               Councillor L Mountain
Apologies    Councillor A Broom
                    District Councillor S Ogden (North Kesteven District Council)
                    County Councillor A Key (Lincolnshire County Council) 

In attendance:    District Councillor S Tarry  (North Kesteven District Council)
                           Mrs Tracy Cooke – (Parish Clerk)
                          4 Members of the Public


Official Business of the Council

1.    Election of Chair and Vice-Chair (23/23)

It was proposed, seconded and  unanimously resolved for Cllr Nicholas Turner to remain as Chair and for Cllr Grahame Cooke to remain as Vice-Chair 

Action:  Clerk to scan and send appointments to NKDC

2.    To Receive Apologises and Reasons Given (23/23)
Council accepted apologies from Cllr A Broom for his non-attendance.

3.    Notes of the Meeting held on 3rd April 2023 (23/24)
It was unanimously agreed that the draft minutes from the meeting held on 3rd April 2023 were a true record.  The Chairman duly signed the minutes.

It was proposed, seconded and unanimously agreed to close the Parish Council meeting at 7.17pm and re-open the Public Forum to allow the Churchwarden to present her Statement for the Annual Parish meeting.  

Whilst the Public Forum was open again a Member of the Public raised the ongoing issue that Network Rail had been but said that works were planned months in advance. Network Rail had not replied to the MP.

The same member of the public wished to thank the Churchwarden for all her work, creating a ‘living church’.  Members of the Parish Council agreed and added their thanks too.

The Churchwarden left at 7.33pm

4.    Clerk’s Report (23/25)

    A list of actions completed by the Clerk were read to Council. 

Internal audit completed
    AGAR form completed
    Election information placed on boards and website 
    Previous Financial Year closed and new 2023/24 spreadsheet created
    Park inspection arranged
    Updated Assets register (provisionally)
    Completed Insurance form for new year
    Correspondence with Beacon Fen Energy Park

5.    To receive declarations of interest under the localism act 2011. (23/26)
    Cllr Dady made a declaration of interests on Item 7.1
    Cllr Cooke made a declaration of interests on Item 10

6.    To receive reports from any district councillors, county councillors or police in attendance. (23/27)

    Cllr Tarry said that the elections had been held and it was busy now with training.
There will be the Annual Council on 23rd May for Committees where Councillors will find out which committees they will be on.  She asked if there was anything she could help with a re-iterated that she is always available to help where she can.

7.    Planning applications (23/28)
7.1    Notification of application: 23/0479/PNH Proposal: Single storey extension with hipped roof Location: 7 Barnard Close Great Hale Sleaford

    No comments or objections were made.

    Cllr Tarry left the meeting at 7.40pm with 2 members of the public

8.    To review and amend where necessary the council’s standing orders, financial regulation and other policies (23/29)
All policies had been circulated to Councillors prior to the meeting via email.  There was a total of 21 documents.
Cllr Cooke proposed that due to the huge amount of reading, that this should be postponed for the next meeting.  Cllr Dady seconded the motion and all agreed unanimously.
The Chairman proposed that everyone should email all when they have read the policies to allow the Clerk to have amendments ready for  the next meeting.

    Action: All to read policies and email the Clerk with any comments.

9    Financial matters (23/30)
9.1    To Approve Statement of Accounts and Bank Reconciliation to Date (April 2023)
It was unanimously resolved to accept the statement of accounts and bank reconciliation to date.

9.2    To Approve Accounts for Payment (23/31)
It was unanimously resolved to approve accounts for payment.

9.3    The internal auditor’s comments were discussed and all found to be in order.
9.4    The Annual Governance Statement 2022/23 (section 1) of the Annual Governance and Accountability Return were read and signed where appropriate.
9.5    The Accounting Statements 2022/23 (section 2) of the Annual Governance and Accountability Return and the end of year bank reconciliation were completed and were unanimously approved and agreed.

10    Highway matters for discussion and resolution 

10.1    Reactive speed sign (23/32)
Cllr Cooke updated Council on the speed sign.  He said that it continues to be effective.  The batteries need changing approximately every 2 weeks.  Our request for a post for the sign is with the Road Safety Partnership.  Once that is installed we can upgrade to Solar.

10.2    Leas Road (23/33)
Cllr Turner stated that a lorry had demolished the sign, which he then tried to put back into place. There are more lorries using the road.  
    Cllr Cooke proposed that the narrow fen road could have a weight / size restriction on it.  This was discussed but could cause issues for houses and farms further along that need deliveries or to use heavy vehicles.
    Cllr Dady proposed that we speak with the landowner regarding the overgrown hedge, which is encroaching onto the highway opposite. Cllr Barnatt said the hedge has been there forever but the traffic and size of vehicle has made the situation worse.
Cllrs Cope and Barnatt said that they will speak with the landowner.
Cllr Mountain suggested offering to use farm machinery to help trim it.

Action:  To contact Highways / CC Key for signage

10.3    Other Highways Matters (23/34)
The Fen Road will be closed again from 6th – 9th June to allow for Level Crossing maintenance.

11    Orchard Green for discussion and resolution (23/35)
11.1     Cllr Cope gave an update on his inspections of the park.  He stated it was generally pretty good and was looking tidy.  The grass cutting, however, is a bit rough and untidy.

    Cllr Cope said that he proposes that someone rotavates the ground in the park area.  Cllr Barnatt said that he had spoken to a Contractor who would drag it and rotavate the area.  He quoted £100.  Cllr Barnatt has sprayed the area.  

    Cllr Cope proposed that we authorise the Contractor to progress.  We will need a quote from the Contractor and Council to authorise.

    Action:  Cllr Turner will do the next month’s (May) inspections and observe

11.2    Annual playground inspection May 2023 (23/36)
    Jim Hayes from Wicksteed Park inspected the park on Wednesday 10th May 2023. The report was received today (Mon 15th May 2023) and circulated to Councillors.

    Actions from the report include:

    Swings need to be tightened
    Holes to be filled
    Matting to be levelled.

12.    Other matters for discussion and resolution 

12.1    Ever Reach (23/37)
    The Clerk explained that the current mobile phone contract has gone up to nearly £16 per month.  The Ever Reach system would be approximately £12 (including VAT) and would allow anyone to call a local number assigned to us to contact the Clerk.  Any answer machine messages would be saved to Gmail, allowing the Clerk to be notified immediately of any messages and calls.

    Action:  Clerk to give notice on the mobile phone account and obtain the Ever Reach system

12.2    Insurance – policy renewal (23/38)
    The Parish Council Insurance premium had been received, taking into account the new speed sign and other purchases this year.  The premium has increased but is within the Budget allowed. 

It was proposed, seconded and unanimously agreed to pay the new premium of £965.79 

12.3    Assets Register (23/39)
    The Asset Register has been updated and forms part of the Insurance Policy.  The additional bench, dog poo bin, laptop and reactive speed sign has been added.

    It was proposed, seconded and unanimously agreed to the new updated Assets register (dated 31st March 2023)

12.4    Dog fouling (23/40)

    Cllr Turner said that he had some solid dog fouling signs and tie wraps.  Depending on where they are to be positioned, holes need to be drilled in the signs ready for installation.

    Action: To obtain some posts and put up some solid signs along the footpath.
      Cllr Cooke said that he would be happy to assist

13.    Future Agenda Items (23/41)
    Beacon Fen Solar Farm
    Quickline Grant fund
14.    Date and place of Next Meeting (23/)
    Monday 5th June 2022 at 7pm in Hale Magna Village Hall

The Chairman thanked all for attending and closed the meeting at 8.51pm