Minutes of the Council Meeting held on the 20th April 2022 at Norton Canes Community Centre Brownhills Road Norton Canes at 7.00pm
Cllrs. J Preece Chairman
Mrs A Bernard
Mrs S Harding
Mrs D Todd
Also in Attendance:
Mrs L Florence (Clerk)
M Hoare District Councillor
Mrs G Turner
4 Members of the Public
7.00pm Public Participation:
Library Digital Heritage Project
The Chairman gave an update on the Digital Heritage Project stating that discussions had taken place with the District Council regarding this project which is based on the use of a mobile phone which would provide the opportunity for people to be able to look at the street scene they are in whilst walking along and provide up to date information about the village.
At certain places of interest QR codes could be sited so that when scanned could show historical pictures of how it looked in the past and provide historical information.
However, copyright for this project is really strict and express permission must be granted for the use of all pictures and an agreement and licence for their use must be made.
It is considered that a lot more thought needs to given to the project but if anyone has any photographs or historical objects, they wish to donate these could be given to the historical groups and stored in the library.
Potholes on Blakeney Way
Feedback was requested on the current situation as to the potholes on Blakeney Way which are progressively getting worse.
The construction of the road was discussed and it was considered that it had been a standard construction and not designed for the number of vehicles using the road.
Currently lorries are using the pavement to park and in general the road is in a very poor state. Repairs that have been carried out to date have not been satisfactory.
County Cllr Mrs S Thompson is currently away on holiday so she was not present to give an update
The Clerk informed Members that she has a site meeting with Cheryl Larvin SCC Highways Officer tomorrow and would raise these matters with her.
Access to GP services
Discussion took place regarding the Doctors surgery which has not yet returned to work full time for face-to-face appointments and the surgery is only open at certain times.
On contacting the doctor’s surgery either by telephone or calling in you have to discuss your medical condition with the receptionist before an appointment can be made which is not confidential as you could be overheard.
Any complaints people have regarding the service provided should be sent direct to the appropriate Commissioning Body or taken up with County Cllr J McMahon who is the cabinet lead for Health and Well Being.
Public Participation closed at 7.20pm
Apologies were received from Cllr D Bilbie
49/2022 Declarations of Interest
Councillor J Preece declared an interest in the Parochial Church Council
50/2022 Minutes of the Meeting and Matters held on 16 March 2022
The Minutes of the Council held on the 16 March 2022 were agreed as a true and accurate record.
Proposed: Cllr J Newbury
Seconded: Cllr D Todd
Matters arising from the Minutes of the meeting held on 16 March 2022
Page2 – Flooding Outside the Co-op
County Councillor Mrs S Thompson has spoken to the Manager of the Co-op and the matter has been resolved by rodding the drain which alleviated flooding.
Page 3 – PCSO’s
The Clerk reported that two new PCSO’s have been appointed who will cover Norton Canes and Heath Hayes.
51/2022 Police Report
The Police were unable to attend the meeting.
52/ 2022 Councillor Vacancies
Two applications had been received for the Councillor vacancies from Mr William Bird and Mr Steve Loundes.
The applicants gave a presentation to members which highlighted their previous work and interests and how they relate to the work of the Parish Council.
It was resolved:
To unanimously agree to co-opt Mr.William Bird and Mr.Steve Loundes as Councillors for Norton Canes Parish Council.
Proposed: Cllr J Bernard
Seconded: Cllr M Holder
All in favour.
53/2022 Reports from Councillors
Football Posts on the Cema – Cllr Sanders raised the issue as to the number of teenagers who play football on the Cema and how difficult it was for them to play as the pitch only has small goal posts. Could we ask the District if they would be prepared to fund new larger goalpost.. The Clerk to speak to Colin Donnelly regarding this matter.
Forget me Not Day – Cllr Mrs S Harding made reference to the forthcoming “Forget -Me- Not” Event 2022 which is due to be held on Wednesday 18 May 2022 at Norton Canes Community Centre.
The preparations are in hand with Volunteers coming forward. Flyers have been ordered and information to be put on the web site.
Forget -Me-Not seeds to be planted around the Parish Office.
It was noted that Cllr Mrs D Todd and Cllr Mrs S Harding are Dementia Champions and the main contacts for helping people to live with Dementia. This information to be put in the Village Newsletter. Cllr.Mrs.D.Todd will then become the Dementia ambassador for both Norton Canes and Heath Hayes.
Library Opening Times – Reference was made to the Library opening times which are now Mon/ Tue/ Thurs 10am to 1pm and Friday 10am to 5pm. Cllr Mrs S Harding requested that the Notice Board in the Medical Centre be amended, the Parish web site be updated and information be put in the Village Newsletter.
54/2022 Reports from Committees
A schedule of planning applications that had received were circulated prior to the meeting. A Planning Committee was being arranged to discuss the applications and submit the Council’s comments.
Cllr Mrs A Bernard thanked the Clerk Mrs L Florence and Mrs G Turner for the work that had been done for the plans for the Jubilee events. Cllr.Mrs.Bernard outlined plans for the Jubilee Event as follows:
Thursday 2 June 2022
A patriotic musical sing along will take place before the lighting of the Beacon at 9.45 p.m. as part of a national event..
Saturday 4 June 2022
Progress is being made with the Picnic in the Park with live bands and bouncy castles but there still some final preparations to be sorted. The events working group will continue with the planning or the jubilee events.
Best Kept Village Competition
Cllr Mrs A Bernard gave an overview of the new format for the Best Kept Village Competition which Norton Canes has been part of for a number of years. The competition was originally started to encourage village residents to take pride in their communities.
The Community Foundation for Staffordshire took over running the (BKV) competition after the closure of the Community Council of Staffordshire. The competition has been renamed “Richard Winterton Auctioneer’s Best Kept Village Community Competition” following the announcement by Richard Winterton’s Auctioneers of their countywide sponsorship of the competition with a focus on the community aspect of village life.
The BKV competition this year aims to develop and highlight a sense of pride amongst local people throughout Staffordshire. It illustrates and emphasises how much voluntary work is undertaken to keep Staffordshire beautiful and how communities work together to make where they live desirable and a place, they are proud to call home. https://bestkept.community/aboutA village will be judged on its maintenance and appearance and the community spirit amongst its residents and how that is evidenced throughout the year via supporting photographs and videos. Judges will take into consideration where a village does not have a certain feature, e.g., a bus shelter, war memorial, large open space, etc. this will be considered in marking and villages will certainly NOT be at a disadvantage because they do not have BKVC features.
Members agreed that an entry should be made for the BKV competition for this year.
Cannock in Bloom
The Parish Councll has been invited to enter this year’s Cannock in Bloom competition. Some discussion about how this competed with the Best Kept village competition and that only one should be considered. The criteria for entry in Cannock In Bloom focuses more on volunteers whereas we use our Lengthsman to undertake our garden projects so this does not totally fit with the entry criteria and we would struggle to identify an area.
Traffic Island on Norton Hall Lane
Discussion took place regarding the Traffic Island on Norton Hall Lane CC Thompson and the Clerk have been in touch with Cheryl Larvin SCC Highways Officer regarding what could be placed on the Island and whether there would be a height restriction.
Confirmation has been received that the main concern would be visibility but if ideas can be out forward for anything tall to be placed towards the centre of the island and planters more towards the edges then there would be no objection to future discussion being held. Councillor Mrs A Bernard to formulate some ideas for Councillors to consider.
- Audit and Governance
Members noted that the Audit and Governance meeting due to be held at the end of March but this has now been rescheduled for next week. It is a legal responsibility for the Council to receive the end of year financial position.
There were no financial matters to consider.
55/2022 New Cemetery
The Clerk informed Members that she had received an email from the Solicitors advising that the Licence with the amendments made is referred to by the Diocese Solicitors as a ‘travelling’ Licence. The Licence can only be completed once the land has been acquired.
The Solicitor was asked if he had read through the ‘travelling’ Licence and was now content that it included the amendments that had been previously agreed and that we have a secure licence. He believed that the track changes are correct as follows:
- The £500 is a one-off payment, not an annual sum.
- Whilst the licence remains subject to termination under clause 7 this must be for a breach of the licence obligations and notice must be given prior to termination, given the Parish Council an opportunity to remedy the breach.
Discussion took place.
It was resolved:
- A Faculty application be made to the Diocese.
- A letter be sent to Holfords
- The Clerk look at options for the engagement of a Solicitor to commence legal proceedings re purchase of the land.
Proposed: Cllr J Bernard
Seconded: Cllr J Newbury
Discussion took place regarding various pot holes in the Village. The Clerk informed Members that she was meeting with Cheryl Larvin the SCC Highways Officer in order to do a site visit around the Parish.
Members gave examples for information as to where some of the pot holes are such as outside the School, Norton Terrace, Brownhills Road / Hednesford Road, outside James’s shop window and the roundabout at the bottom of Brownhills Road.
57/2022 Neighbourhood Plan
Members received an update on the work of the Plan and consideration was given to funding for a biodiversity study and report by Staffordshire Wildlife Trust at a cost of £5100. Councillors agreed that whilst this was a significant amount of money this work was important.
It was resolved:
It as agreed in principle to approve the funding to the sum of £5100 but that Audit and Governance Committee be asked to identify where the funding can be found within the Parish budget/reserves.
Proposed: Cllr M Holder
Seconded: Cllr D Todd
58/2022 Grove Colliery
The Chairman reported that gates had now been installed and the site was starting to be made secure
59/2022 Chairmans Announcements and Correspondence
The correspondence with the Councillors papers was noted.
60/2022 Authorisation of Accounts
A schedule of payments was circulated prior to the meeting. Some of the expenditure on the list authorised under delegated powers and the remainder were listed for approval at the meeting.
It was resolved:
To approve the expenditure on the schedule of payments.
All in favour.
61/2022 Date of Next meeting
Date of next meeting: Annual Meeting on Wednesday 18 May 2022 – at 7pm at Norton Canes Community Centre Brownhills Road Norton Canes.
SIGNED …………………………………… DATED …………………………….