Minutes of the meeting of the Council held in Five Ash Down Village Hall on Tuesday 11th December 2018 at 7.30p.m.
Cllrs. Blandford (Chairman), Bolton, Cox, Hoggan, Johnson (7.54pm), Illingworth (7.37pm), McQuarrie, Marshall (7.40pm), Moss, Roberts, Rose and Wells.
Also present: ESCC Cllr. Galley and Clerks Beccy Macklen and Claudine Feltham.
APOLOGIES FOR ABSENCE
Apologies received and accepted from Cllr Humphrey
DECLARATION OF MEMBERS INTERESTS
All councillors declared a personal interest in any matters relating to the Ionides Trust/Buxted Community Hall by virtue of the parish council being managing agents of the site.
Cllr. Rose declared a prejudicial interest in any matters relating to the land west of Church Road (Taylor Wimpey site) due to having owned part of the application site and a personal interest in the Ionides Surgery/Hall site due to having a business opposite the land.
Cllrs. Rose and Illingworth declared a personal interest in matters relating to the new community hall by virtue of being parish council representatives on the BCHT
Cllr. Rose declared a personal interest in any matters relating to Crusader Vehicles by virtue of owning a business adjacent to the site.
Cllrs. Cox and Wells declared a personal interest in any matters relating to the allotments by virtue of being an allotment holder
MINUTES OF PREVIOUS MEETING
The minutes of the meeting held on 13th November 2018 were signed by the Chairman as a correct record of the meeting.
Cllr Galley advised that County is awaiting the local government settlement for the purposes of budget and precept setting, but he believes that there will be a precept raise at East Sussex County Council of 2.9%
WDC Cabinet meeting will be discussing a new Corporate Plan which takes the council through the next 3 years. It will also be discussing a performance management report, which suggests performance is good. The budget is suggesting a £5 increase in council tax for Wealden. Cllr. Galley would prefer a lower amount, but this would only effectively make the difference of 1%. He will be presenting a paper on single use plastics, but officers worried at lack of resources to support a widespread scheme, therefore it is suggested that in-house initiatives take place which can then be rolled out to local businesses and parishes. The new water refill scheme will be promoted, and a question is raised as to whether it makes sense to have recycling bins in town centres? He is keen to engage McDonalds and Costa and other large companies, but WDC no not have the spare resources to do this, but the report makes first tentative steps towards change.
The largest item to discussed being the new waste contract which starts June 2019 will be in confidential session. The chosen company will be named in January. Although it will cost more, the gap to the tax payer will be less as garden waste will be charged for as it is not a statutory service. The proposed cost for garden waste collection is £50 per year (£2 per collection)
CO-OPTION OF NEW COUNCILLOR – KEVIN MOSS
Proposed by Cllr. Rose and seconded by Cllr. Roberts, Mr Kevin Moss, was unanimously co-opted onto the parish council and welcomed to the meeting. The chair welcomed Kevin to the parish council and councillors introduced themselves to him.
Public footpaths: Nothing to report
Trees: Nothing to report.
Road Safety: Five Ash Down Traffic Calming – On the request and in the absence of Cllr. Humphrey, this matter was referred to the January meeting.
Ionides Trust: It was considered sensible to postpone the next meeting until February, which will then follow the BCHT AGM.
New signs are required as the existing ones are disintegrating. The chairman removed one that had blown across the car park last week. The letter dated 16th October, concerning the various parking issues and requesting a meeting, has been re-sent to the surgery to all three partners individually and hand delivered.
The Trust should consider closing the barrier to the car park on a Sunday night through to Friday night/Saturday morning. Communication would have to take place with the Scouts regarding access for parent/child drop off.
It is worth noting that the Station car park is closed for period over weekend 15th to 17th and therefore should the car park remain open for this period? Perhaps we may have some resolution over parking issues on this site by the time of the next Ionides meeting in February?
A suggestion was made that we approach a car park management company to establish costs, but it was agreed that we need dialogue with the doctors prior to following up any other options.
New community hall: AGM on 5th February 2019 This will include an item to say all the current Trustees will be standing down and it is likely that the Hall Trust, as it is now, will be wound up.
Wealden Local Development Framework: Nothing to report
Parking bollards – clerk to meeting with Steve Holmes in the new year to confirm details
Millennium woods – No update at the current time, clerk will chase.
Fingerpost down – The broken fingerpost near the reservoir has been reported to our contractor. Cllr. Cox also reported a second broken fingerpost in Burnt Oak Road.
Communications Matters: Website: Nothing to report.
P1 Buxted Speed Watch – Request for new equipment: It was considered that the £500 requested is money well spent as the parish council, for once, can achieve something tangible. The Parish Council also gives our grateful thanks to all the group, especially Mr Irvine who started this group again. Even though he is relatively new to the village and given the numerous complaints local people have voiced about speeding this effort should be much appreciated.
Suspend Standing Orders to allow Mr Irvine to speak – the new scheme started 2 weeks ago with 8 active volunteers and a couple who are almost trained. There have been four sessions so far with two having to be cancelled due to atrocious weather conditions. It has had a remarkable effect on reducing the speed of vehicles travelling through the village, slowing down from 30 to 20 or 15mph. There have been speeds of up to 47mph registered with 42 people being reported in two weeks. Police have suggested a more modern piece of equipment and hi viz coats for extra members.
Proposed by Cllr. Hoggan and seconded by Cllr. Illingworth, it was unanimously agreed to approve the expenditure on the Speed Watch equipment within the current financial year.
Standing Orders reinstated
i) Payments: On the proposal of Cllr. Illingworth seconded by Cllr. Rose, payments totalling £7,191.42 covered by cheque numbers 4236 and 4247 were approved.
ii) Bank reconciliations: The clerk had circulated completed reconciliations for November which were signed
Cllrs Wells and Hoggan attended the Uckfield Railway Lines Parishes Committee meeting which on the most part discussed the Brighton mainline being closed for refurbishment in the new year. Not an overly successful plan of how it could work especially being during February half term with Three Bridges all the way down the line being closed.
Wealden Parish Conference-highlights 5th December 2018
Inspector Gross provided the same information as he had provided to the parish council previously. Policing has suffered under austerity cuts but net gain for constables in 2022 will be just 200 – recruiting versus natural waste. They are working hard to improve the public perception of loss of confidence, re-iterated whatever people might think, Wealden is a low crime area. Did say Speed watch had been revamped, it really worked, and their champion worked hard with the various groups. 20 schemes across East Sussex, 100 people involved.
Interesting talk about modern ‘slavery’ with active programme ‘Discovery’ based in Hastings/Rother and will be expanding into Eastbourne/Lewes/Wealden. Concerns can be reported by the app ‘Stop’.
Refresh campaign to reduce plastic waste by encouraging local businesses to ‘refill’ recyclable water bottles for free. Sticker in window, evidence points to positive feedback. Costa in Uckfield on scheme download ‘refresh’ app to see availability. Speaker said 80,000 people had downloaded the app, Beccy and I made 80,002 during her talk for details http://refill.org.uk. WDC signed up for scheme and can provide publicity for local launches. Any chance of local businesses joining this campaign? firstname.lastname@example.org
Both Cllr. Bolton and Cllr. Roberts agreed to add this scheme to their businesses.
There was a good talk from CEO Commercial/new Chief Executive, Trevor Scott, explaining WDC commercial policy. WDC have purchased the site adjacent to the Council Offices in Hailsham, spending around 12m which was only earning 1% in the bank, now 5%. Wealden have their own housing development company, Sussex Weald Homes, who are currently building properties in Rotherfield and are looking to develop the Hailsham town centre site with more control over the affordable housing and a vibrant High Street. Interesting update of local crematorium in Horam. Look forward to news about open days in the New Year.
We left before the What do you know about WDC’ Quiz and Local Plan update.
Cllr. Illingworth requested that we investigate replacing the large metal signs at the mini roundabout in Buxted with a traditional fingerpost. The clerk would ask Highways if it would be possible to remove three metal signs and replace with one fingerpost.
Cllr. Johnson also asked if we could look at replacing the highways ‘Buxted’ sign to the entrance to the village to something more fitting with the village. Clerk to investigate.
Fingerpost in Burnt Oak Road damaged. Clerk to report to contractor.
Cllr. Bolton suggested we are lacking in female councillors – two spaces to fill on the parish council. Clerk to make another request on website for more councillors.
|The meeting closed at 7.59p.m.|