Minutes of the Council held on 15th September 2021 at Norton Canes Community Centre at 7pm

Present:   Cllrs J.Preece








Also In Attendance:     Mrs.L.Florence (Clerk)

Mrs.S.Thompson   – County Councillor

M.Hoare – District Councillor

D.Garbett – Bloxwich Community Partnership

Grace Yates-  Bloxwich Community Partnership

7 p.m. Presentation on Youth Outreach Programme

Mr.D.Garbett  Manager at the Bloxwich Community Partnership and a Co-worker Ms.Grace Yates  attended the meeting at the invitation of the Council to give a presentation on Outreach Youth Programme that has been running in their community for over 40 years originally as T P Riley at the school and he has been employed for 20 years at the Partnership.   The Partnership has charity status and is run by a Board of Trustees. The programme has been able to address issues of anti-social behaviour in a deprived area which has been supported by Walsall Council.  The Partnership is a Charity and relies on funding and raising funds through a shop located at the Community Centre in Bloxwich.  The Partnership have also been successful in obtaining money through funding bids.    Mr.Garbett outlined the activities undertaken at the Programme and the type of work they do in engaging the youth in the area. They promote getting young people to respect where they live which does have an impact on how they view their community. They are also able to signpost young people to other services/activities.  Mr.Garbett said that he had met with the Chairman of the Council and the Clerk recently about buying into a service that they could provide in an Outreach programme in the village bringing the skills that they have and the experience the youth programme. He recognised that Norton Canes was different in what would be required to that of the programme in Bloxwich but there was transferrable practices that would engage young people.


Mr.Garbett outlined the costs involved in delivering a 44 week programme and the Chairman told the meeting that a report detailing the costs involved was for further discussion under an agenda item later in the meeting. Mr.Garbett referred to a Youth Bus that are getting up and running and would be part of the programme delivered in Norton Canes.  This is a good way of engaging with young people and finding out what makes them be on the streets, looking at what activities they would like to be involved in.  At first it would be a fact finding mission



Councillors asked questions of the Partnership. A question was raised as to what the Council can expect from the programme at the end of the 44 week period that identifies what works well and where we are falling short.  Mr.Garbett said the regular reporting   could be part of the contract with the Partnership and if Council did decide to approve the expenditure to deliver a programme in the village, then the Parish Council would determine the activities that they would like to see involved and be very much part of what kind of programme is delivered. Evaluations will be undertaken and the frequency of these can be determined by the Council.   The Partnership does work with statutory organisations such as Police and Schools and would follow this approach in Norton Canes.


The question was asked as to whether the Partnership has the capacity in terms of staff to take on the programme in the village.  Mr.Garbett said that he felt that the Partnership could deliver this programme as they already have the available staff, they will be responsible for all staffing matters.  Cllr.Newbury said that funding bids have historically been the problem in getting youth outreach workers or programmes in the village. Mr.Garbett said that they would be able to support the Council in getting bids as they do have some experience in this but also have support from Walsall Council for their own bids.


Mr.Garbett and Ms Yates were thanked for attending and providing the Council with the presentation which was very informative.


Public Participation commenced at 7.40 p.m.


Costs of waste at Poplars site –  Mr.Knowles raised the issue of charging for builders rubble at the Poplars site as of the 1st November.   He felt this would only encourage more fly tipping as people will not want to pay.  He asked if there was any pressure the Council could put on the County Council to change this.  Some discussion ensued on this topic and the Chairman did say that as District Councillor he had put a motion forward about this but felt he wasn’t listened to.  County Councillor Mrs.S.Thompson said that she would take this matter back to the County Council.


Mr.Knowles also asked why the recycling bins had been moved from the District Council car park.  It was reported that this decision has been taken across the District as a whole due to contamination of the bins.   This had arisen due to during the pandemic and the closure of waste sites, the bins had been filled incorrectly.   The bins located on supermarkets are a private arrangement with companies.


Norton Aluminium – Mr.Knowles asked whether there was still a Norton Aluminium Liaison Committee as he wished to report that the company have been working all nights.


Action:  Clerk to check the status of the Norton Aluminium Liaison Committee as to whether it is still meeting.


                 Planning application for 5G Mast on Burntwood Road – ­  District Councillor M.Hoare reported the decision of refusal for a 5G Mast to be located on Burntwood Road.   The Company involved have been invited to come and discussion options for different locations but there has been no contact.   Cllr.Fereday said that he felt the business parks in the village would be a more appropriate location.


 Public participation closed at p.m. 8.05 p.m.


127/2021  Apologies

                    Apologies were received from Cllrs.J.Bernard, Mrs.A.Bernard, Mrs.Z.Stretton, M.Stretton and Mrs.D.Todd


128 /2021  Declarations of Interest

                    There were no Declarations of Interest to report.


     129/2021   Minutes of Extra Ordinary Council Meeting on 9th August 2021

  The minutes of the Extra Ordinary Council meeting of the Council held on the 9th August were agreed as a true and accurate record.


       Proposed:          Cllr.M.Holder

  Seconded:         Cllr.D.Bilbie


    Matters Arising from the Minutes: 

There were no mattes arising


130/2021 Police Report

No police report had been received.  The meeting was told about a recent incident regarding a   theft of car from Chasewater Grange estate.  Police are advising drivers to be aware with keyless cars as they are becoming more of a target.


131/2021  Committees of the Council  – Terms of Reference

                   Cllr.M.Holder as Chairman of the Audit and Governance committee referred Councillors to the

report from the Audit and Governance Committee recommending unanimously to adopt the

terms of reference for the Council’s statutory Committees.    From the report Cllr.Holder said

there were 2 caveats, one which relates to quoracy of committee meeting which needs to be

included in the Terms stating that there should be one third of the Committee in attendance in

respect of quoracy but no less than 3 members.  The other amendment that is required relates to how the Chairman and Vice Chairman for the Committees are appointed.  Standing Orders states that these posts are appointed to at the Annual Meeting but the normal practice for this Council is that each Committee appoints the posts at the first meeting of the Committee. The Audit and governance Committee had considered this and proposed that the usual practice of appointing to the posts should remain the same.


It was agreed to accept the Terms of Reference as circulated but including the amendment relating to quoracy and that the Council move to the formality of amending the Standing Orders to reflect the change re appointment of Chairman of Committees to be put forward at the October Council meeting..


It was resolved:

              To approve the Terms of Reference for Committees to include the amendment re quoracy.   Move to formally amend the Standing Orders to reflect the change in appointment of Chairman of Committees to be put before October Council meeting.

              All in favour.




132/2021  Support Roles

                  A report was circulated to Councillors prior to the meeting regarding the Youth Worker role. This

was discussed in detail as part of the presentation at the beginning of the meeting.  The report gave details of a youth outreach programme in the village and asked Councillors to consider authorising the expenditure for a programme as detailed by the presentation given at the start of the meeting by the Bloxwich Community Partnership.


Discussion ensued and it was agreed that funding for this project be authorised. The Chairman felt that this should be treated as a rolling programme and not just a 12 month one which would allow for consistency in delivering youth work in the village.    Cllr. Mrs.Harding said that she was aware of the Partnership work with youth in the Blxowich area and felt that it had made a difference. It was suggested that reporting about the project should be on an agreed frequent basis to ensure the Project is delivering on what the Parish Council require. Cllr.Newbury said that he thought the programme was a breath of fresh air for the young people of the village.


Cllr..M.Holder referred Councillors to the finance for this project and where this could come from in terms of the Parish finances.  There is significant funds in reserves which need to spent that would meet the costs of this programme and also the £400 that was donated from Heath Hayes and Wimblebury Youth Club when it was closed was specifically for youth project in this village so this amount could also be included.  There are sufficient funds therefore to fund the proposed youth programme.


The Clerk will draft a Contract for approval by both parties and agree a commencement date.


It was resolved:

              To fund a Youth Outreach Programme with Bloxwich Community Partnership and a draft Contract be drawn up to reflect the terms agreed


The Chairman referred to other support roles that were being looked at and that he had now received a response from an organisation.  No firm proposals to report yet but dialogue is continuing about how we could look at having this kind of service in the village and that there is potential for joined up working.


133/2021  Reports from Councillors

    Miner’s Memorial books – Cllr.Mrs.S.Harding told the meeting that following the successful

launch of the Miner’s Memorial the Parish Council were presented with a replica cast of the

Plaque that the Council had purchased.   The detail of where this should be displayed will be for  a future agenda.


There has been a Memorial book produced which tells the story behind the plaque.  Cllr.Harding said that she felt it should be a good resource for schools to use in history lessons re the mining heritage of the village.  Cllr Harding said that each book costs £10.00 and she would like to propose that each school has 5 copies.  The total expenditure for this if Councillors approved it would be £150.00.


It was resolved:


           All Councillors were in favour to purchase 15 Miner’s Memorial books at a cost of £150 to provide each school with 5 copies each.


134/2021   Reports from Committees


No of Planning Application Address of proposed application


Proposal Comments by Parish
Planning Committee
CH/21/0358 11 Spinney Close

Norton Canes

Proposed First Floor side extension and rendering to all elevations Planning Committee to consider
CH/21/0352 Sainsburys Foodstore

Voyager Drive

The Orbital

Installation of plant and relocation of fire door No objections
CH/21/0320 Junction of Burntwood Road/Brownhills Road 5G Mast Parish Council put in response strongly objecting on the basis of the site location being totally unsuitable in close proximity to residential property and in the centre of the village which would detract from the presentation of the village.


This application has now been refused

CH/21/0363 119 Walsall Road

Norton Canes

Proposed ground floor rear


Planning Committee to consider
Decisions by CCDC




CH/21/0287 31 Walsall Road Two storey side extension


Permission granted


The schedule of planning applications considered for the September meeting were circulated. The Clerk reported that where the schedule states that the Planning Committee had yet to consider the applications, that the Committee had now reviewed the plans and no objections raised regarding any of them.



The Clerk referred to ongoing items which required Council’s consideration:


Bench on Walsall Road  – it has been agreed that we should look to install a bench on Walsall

Road by the bus stop to provide somewhere for people to sit when walking along this long

stretch of road.  The Highways Dept have been contacted about permission to install this bench

as part of it would sit on the pathway and half on the grass verge behind the bus stop.

Highways do not own the grass verge so cannot give permission for this section of land.  The

Clerk is liaising with the Company involved in maintaining this area about permission for the

bench and will report back to full Council once this is resolved.


Discussion ensued on the type of bench that could be purchased and photos of examples were given in the report circulated to Councillors.  It was agreed that a bench for keyworkers in the sum of £1,185 + VAT   should be purchased in recognition of all keyworkers during Covid.  It was further agreed that this bench should be located on Jubilee Gardens as a focal point in the village and that one of the existing benches on Jubilee Gardens should then be relocated on Walsall Road.


Flashing Speed Signs  – the Clerk reported that following a highways meeting when it was agreed

to explore the cost of flashing speed signs to be located on certain roads in the village where

speeding was reported as being a problem, the costs involved for a flashing speed sign that

would just flash the speed that the vehicle is going and no registration recognition would be

around£ 2,500 per unit.   The cost of installation would be £650 per sign.   Discussion ensued on

whether Councillors wished to support this initiative to try and make drivers aware about

speeding.   County Councillor Samantha Thompson has agreed to fund the installation costs of 2     signs which would require the Council to meet the purchase cost of 2 signs. The costs involved to the Council would be estimated at between £4,500 and £5,000 dependant on the type of sign.


There was some discussion about which roads to locate the signs on which may lead to

residents asking for more signs to be put on roads.  County Cllr. Samantha Thompson said that

she was awaiting traffic data on two roads in the village Walsall Road and Hednesford Road and

dependant on the outcome of that data, consideration may be given to these roads being

prioritised for the new signs.


It was resolved:


                 To authorise the expenditure for the keyworkers bench to be located on Jubilee Gardens and for the purchase of 2 flashing speed signs.


      Audit & Governance

      External Auditors Report for 2020-21 was circulated prior to the meeting.  The meeting was told that the Council had received a clean bill of health in terms of its financial management with just a minor issue relating to a calculation in the Asset Register which was amended and accepted by the Auditors.


135/2021   New Cemetery

                   Following discussions relating to the new cemetery we are now at the point of applying for a Faculty application through the Diocese.  It is acknowledged that there is still a lot of work to commence relating to purchase of land, project management, tendering, design and layout.  Cllr.Holder stated that we are already 18 months into the planning permission and there is a risk that if we do not prioritise this work now then the permission will expire. The Audit and Governance Committee had discussed the status of the new cemetery and felt that it was important that the Clerk now prioritise this work which may detract from the day to day work of the Council.  It is suggested that a report be prepared for October meeting re costs for additional admin support for Council’s consideration.


Action:        Report re additional admin hours to be put before October Council meeting.


136/2021   Highways

The Clerk reported that there had been no meeting of the Highways Liaison meeting recently but that she is following up items from the schedule of works and reporting any highways issues.  The Highways Liaison officer has informed the Clerk that there may be a delay in dealing with some of the issues raised due to the high number of emergency calls that they are currently dealing with.


137/2021   Cema Upgrade

                   It was reported that work on the new playground would be commencing around the 16th   September together with the installation of the gym equipment.  Artwork for the entrances has been agreed with Planet Art as the preferred provider. The artwork will consist of historical facts and a mining theme. The access for disabled users has been resolved.


138/2021    Neighbourhood Plan

                The Plan is at a point now where we are starting to analyse the data from the surveys that     have been  completed on all areas of the Plan.   Now that community groups are starting to re-open we are starting to engage with those groups to promote the Plan.


139/2021    Grove Colliery

                    The Chairman reported that the sale of Grove Colliery to Little Wyrley Estates(LWE) has now been completed. The Consultants for the Neighbourhood Plan are arranging a meeting with LWE to look at next steps for this site.   Ideas now need to be looked at as to what can be included and as part of the consultation process for the Plan the feedback coming through from local people is mirroring what is already being suggested such as a combination of business, environmental and leisure uses.


140/2021    Chairman’s Announcements and Correspondence

                     To note the correspondence that was circulated prior to the meeting.


141/2021    Authorisation of Accounts

A schedule of payments for August and September was circulated prior to the meeting. The     payments for August were noted and the payments for September were authorised.


Proposed:       Cllr. M.Holder

                          Seconded:       Cllr. K.Fereday


All in favour of accepting the payments for August and September.                             


     142/2021   Date of next meeting : Wednesday 20th October 2021 at 7 p.m.  Venue to be confirmed. Clerk

                          to look into different venue due to the Community Centre being small.





     143/2021   Items for Information and Future Agenda   


                         The meeting closed at 9.10 p.m.


SIGNED: ………………………………………………………………………   Dated : …………………………………………………..