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MINUTES OF THE NORTHAW & CUFFLEY PARISH MEETING HELD AT 7.30pm ON TUESDAY 17TH SEPTEMBER 2013 AT NORTHAW VILLAGE HALL

Present       Councillor Adrian Prest (Chairman)
Councillor Linda Couch (Vice-Chairman)
Councillor Brent Cheetham
Councillor Fraser Church
Councillor Peter Dace
Councillor Christine Burrows
Councillor Mike Clark
Councillor Eric Wilcox

Deputy Clerk        Carol Branigan

PC Ross Freeman

Five members of the public

35/13        Apologies

Apologies were received from County Councillor Mark Mills-Bishop.

36/13        Declaration of interest

There were none.

37/13        Minutes

The minutes of the Parish Council Meeting held on Tuesday 16th July

2013 were approved and signed as a true record, subject to one amendment re 30/13 whereby, Councillor Christine Burrows was accepted onto the Personnel & Urgency Committee, as needed, if the quorum fell short.

38/13        Update from PC Freeman

PC Ross Freeman presented the latest crime figures for the Parish (a

copy of which is attached) with comparables from the previous year and gave details of how the Speed gun has recently been used in the surrounding area and of how the Volunteer Speed gun Group will be involved in future patrols.

39/13        Question Time

There was one question from Mr Golding asking why the Agenda & Summons for the Policy & Resources Committee Meeting had not appeared on the Parish Council Website. He was correct in stating that the Clerk had complied with the statutory obligation for notice but due to ongoing problems with the Website it had not been possible to upload and display.

40/13        Reports from Committees

Planning

Councillor Linda Couch said there had been two planning meetings held since the last full Council Meeting with 10 applications reviewed. There was nothing controversial to report.  The next Planning Meeting will take place on Tuesday, 24th September 2013 at 3.30pm

Policy & Resources

The Chairman reported on the P & R Committee which took place on 3rd September 2013, with various discussions concerning financial outlay, including the new Christmas Lighting display which has been secured for the next three years with a substantial reduction in costs.

The kitchenette area in the Parish Office has been in need of an overhaul for quite some time and a refurbishment was agreed. Also the Clerk has been authorised to look into some form of Air-Conditioning as the summer months do create some uncomfortable working temperatures within the Parish Office.

The Budget figures were being monitored and a review of the Financial Regulations required no change.

Maintenance work to smarten up Cuffley village was also discussed.

The Chairman also outlined the proposal of an Annual contribution to be given to both Northaw and Cuffley Village Halls, and a resolution was passed unanimously that the Clerk be asked to find savings or reductions in other budgets in order for such annual payments to begin immediately.

Personnel & Urgency

There had been no meetings since the last full Council Meeting.

Planning Working Group

There had been no meetings since the last full Council Meeting but the Chairman outlined recent events which indicated the importance of having a Neighbourhood Plan in place, and an application has now been submitted to WHBC to formally agree the Parish Council boundaries as forming a Designated Neighbourhood Area.

The Chairman is shortly to attend a DCLG workshop for beginners to share their experiences.

41/13        Outside Committee Reports

a         Cuffley Hall

Councillor Brent Cheetham gave a short report. The Committee were very thankful for the donations they had recently received from the Parish Council and from County Councillor Mark Mills-Bishop, for ongoing maintenance, both in the sum of £1000.00 each.

The next meeting would be taking place on 19th September 2013.

b        Cuffley & Northaw Youth & Community Centre

There was now a vacancy for a representative due to former Councillor Anita Rust’s resignation.  Councillor Brent Cheetham volunteered and was proposed by the Chairman, Councillor Adrian Prest and seconded by Councillor Linda Couch and accepted in this role.

c        Kidston Institute

There was nothing to report but the next meeting will be on 24th October 2013.

d        Northaw Village Hall

Councillor Eric Wilcox reported on the AGM which had taken place on 5th September 2013.  The Chairman, Simon Jeffrey, gave praise to the Secretary, Charlotte Jeffrey and the Caretaker, Dennis Craven  for all their hard work. Bookings have increased substantially over the year and the hall is looking pristine. There had been a vacancy for a committee representative for which Councillor Mike Clark had now volunteered. He was proposed and accepted in this role. The next meeting will take place on 5th December 2013.

e        Welwyn Hatfield Association of Local Councils

The Chairman, Councillor Adrian Prest reported that there had been no further meetings.

f         Welwyn Hatfield Community Safety Partnership Priority Setting Forum

Inspector Grout had set up the above forum and was looking for representatives.  Councillor Linda Couch had volunteered but was unable to make the first meeting that would be taking place on Wednesday, 16th October 2013. The Chairman, Councillor Adrian Prest, asked the other members to consider attending in her place, and to notify the office if they were prepared to do this. Councillor Adrian Prest is also to attend as one of the Borough Councillors.

42/13        Use of Northaw Telephone Kiosk

The Chairman, Councillor Adrian Prest, reported on various ideas that had been suggested for the interior of the kiosk with one of them being to display local artwork.  Councillor Mike Clark described how a pyramid structure placed within the kiosk would be the ideal  solution to attach such displays for viewing purposes. He volunteered               to take the idea forward. The council agreed to arrange for a door lock to be fitted.

43/13        Proposal for Budget Growth items 2013 – 2014

The Chairman, Councillor Adrian Prest, presented a report by the Clerk, for suggested items of expenditure to be included in the budget for 2014-15.  These include Sports Facilities for Northaw Playing Field, rebuilding of Northaw Memorial, new Software for the office, De-fibrillators for the two village Halls, Neighbourhood Planning and  Office Air conditioning.  The Clerk is to obtain details of likely costs which he will include in a report for the first draft budget at the November meeting of the Policy & Resources Committee. The chairman stressed that this is only at “wish-list” stage and that any further ideas should be submitted as soon as possible in order that estimates can be obtained. A member also pointed out that the Notice Boards were not mentioned for their proposed replacement.

44/13        Urgent Business

The Chairman, Councillor Adrian Prest, gave a detailed report on the excessive traffic speeds that continually pass through both villages along with the various traffic calming systems installed by County. He hi-lighted the SSIN campaign group that was set up in 2006 in an attempt to change the inconvenient measures already in place, to something more tolerable, including a 20mph zone as appropriate, and sought support for County’s review of their policy in this regard. Further measures were proposed at the meeting and it was agreed that the final summary of what was considered necessary and suitable, as outlined in the updated report, be forwarded to County.

Councillor Brent Cheetham proposed, seconded by Councillor Linda Couch that this Council supports moves by County to introduce 20 mph speed limits in appropriate areas where residents support this and to have various other improvements made in terms of traffic calming in general in consultation with residents.

The Chairman also gave details of a service available for mobile   phone users whereby texting the word SNOW, together with their house number and post code to 88020, would give them advance warning of any disruption to the weekly refuse collection service.

As there were no further matters to discuss, the meeting closed at 9.10pm.

Signed……………………………………….

Date…………………………………………….