Challock Parish Council Virtual AGM Minutes

 

Memorial Hall, Audrey Allen room

Tuesday, 19th May 2020, 7.30pm

 

Members of public present: 2

 

 

Apologies

 

None

 

Present

 

Michael Fisher (Chairman), Russell Jaques (Vice Chair), John Ramsden, Tracy Brown, Max Thomas, Anthony Aitken, Duncan Hardie & Di Sandy (Clerk).

 

Welcome

 

Russell Jaques thanked everyone for attending.

 

Declarations of Interest

 

Councilors no new changes to the declarations of interest.

 

Minutes of Last Meeting

 

Minutes of 28th April 2020 meeting were signed by Russell Jaques as an accurate record.

 

Proposed by Councillor Fisher and seconded by Councillor Thomas.

 

All agreed.

 

Election of Chair

 

Michael Fisher wished to stand as Chair. Michael Fisher was proposed by Max Thomas and seconded by John Ramsden. There were no other proposals

 

Election of Vice Chair

 

Russell Jaques wished to stand as Vice Chair. Russell Jaques was proposed by Max Thomas and seconded by Michael Fisher. There were no other proposals

 

 

Election of Representatives

 

Councillors discussed and agreed the representatives for this financial year.  

 

  

 

 

Representative 2019/2020

Representative 2020/2021

 

 

 

Footpaths

Vacant

Tracy Brown/John Ramsden

 

 

 

Challock Primary School

Anthony Aitken

Anthony Aitken

 

 

 

Village Hall Committee

Anthony Aitken

Anthony Aitken

 

 

 

Parish Council Finance

Michael Fisher

Michael Fisher

 

 

 

Speed Watch

Michael Fisher

Michael Fisher

 

 

 

Police Forum

Ceased for now but looking to restart

-

-

 

 

 

William Oure Charity

Max Thomas

            Max Thomas

 

 

 

Play Area

Max Thomas

Max Thomas

 

 

 

KALC and Parish Forum

Russell Jaques

Russell Jaques

 

 

 

Cricket Club Liaison

John Ramsden

John Ramsden

 

 

 

Forester Sub-Committee

John Ramsden

John Ramsden

 

           Tracy Brown

Tracy Brown

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Aaron Newell PCSO Monthly Report

 

In these unprecedented times police colleagues and I have still been out trying to keep the community safe. Our call demand has changed, and I am pleased to see that the number of crimes occurring appears to have reduced. We are however getting a high number of calls related to Covid19 breaches. PCSOs from the Community Safety Unit are out daily patrolling parks and other public open spaces to uphold Government guidelines and deal with any breaches.

 

Whilst out patrolling my rural wards I have been disappointed to find areas of fly tipping. I can appreciate that with the Ashford household waste recycling centre currently being closed it is difficult but that is no excuse for fly tipping. I would urge anyone who sees acts of fly tipping, either in the act or the aftermath, to report it to Ashford Borough Council -  either on the council website: https://www.ashford.gov.uk/the-environment/streets/fly-tipping/ or telephone: 01233 331111 (8.30am - 4.00pm Monday - Friday).

 

This month I have received numerous reports of nuisance and speeding vehicles in rural locations. This is disappointing to hear and not helped by the roads being quieter. I have been out with the Ashford Community Safety Unit camera van and will be arranging regular speed checks.

 

Councillor Fisher highlight the parish council when the police speed checks were being carried out no motorcycles were recorded as speeding.  Councillor Fisher informed the parish council of a new speed recording equipment has recently been launched which records decibels (sounds of speeding vehicles).  It was agreed for the Clerk to make enquiries with Aaron Newell if equipment is available in Kent.

 

Clerk’s Report

 

Highways

 

Clerk has reported hazardous conditions due to build-up of leaves in Kiln Close to street cleaning ABC. Parishioner said that ABC street sweeper has not been to Kiln Close since last summer.

 

PROW – Public Rights of Way

 

Clerk has reported split tree along footpath AE86 adjacent to old schoolhouse. Reported overgrown vegetation at footpath adjacent to The Beeches, Buck Street. 

 

The Lees

 

Grounds man has removed the wood shavings from the removed lime tree. 

 

Grounds man has filled the potholes along the 3 Lees tracks. 

 

Play Park

 

Grounds man has repaired damaged fence.  The play park gate is currently padlocked.

 

Correspondence

 

  1. Received an email from KCC Public Health of a new text service has been launched across Kent and Medway for people of all ages needing mental health support. Pressure posters has been displayed on the notice boards and on the website.
  2. Received correspondence from Mr & Mrs Davis concerning their driveway and requesting for 6-week postponement due to current climate.   
  3. Received an update from Sophie Robins Girling’s on the easement for Plots 1 – 5 Lilybuds. Waiting on confirmation from other parties’ solicitor to the negotiated form.
  4. Received email from Ashford Volunteer Bureau informing Kent Community Foundation has a hardship fund running for children with families with complex needs.  These are cash grants directly to families in financial difficulty. KSAS also have cash grants available for families in general who are experiencing financial difficulties.  They are currently open for applications. 
  5. Received notification from KCC Ward Councillor Charlie Simkins of waste recycling centres re-opening from the 15th May.
  6. Received an email from KCC Darren Hickman regarding the design works for Faversham Road footpath link.  Darren has requested the Clerk to write to the residents for deed of dedication concerning their land given up for the footpath and to inform residents of the new housing development King & Johnston of possible removal of the oak tree. 

 

Matters arising from correspondence

 

  1. Awaiting on advice from Girling’s regarding Trees driveway.
  2. Councillor Fisher commented previous reports from Darren Hickman states the tree does not have a TPO.

 

A252 Safer Road Scheme Fund

 

Draft proposals of A252 Safer Road Improvements have been received consisting of 30 mph being introduced at the roundabout.  Gated entrances at the traffic islands and at roundabout. Clerk responded to Andy Bond KCC Highways to thank the team for taking on board our comments throughout the consultation process.  Overall, we are very pleased with the proposals and attention to the roundabout introducing gateways approaching the roundabout and 30 mph signs.  This is very much welcomed and should improve the safety for all (drivers and parishioners on foot).  Also thank you for taking on board our comments regarding the traffic islands and our concerns farm vehicles hitting the islands and high sided vehicles (lorries) at the third traffic island just passed the entrance to Green Lane.

Last year, the Parish Council arranged with KCC Highways to repair the foot way and our grounds man trimmed back the overgrown hedging.  This has improved the safety of parishioners on foot walking along this stretch of road. 

 

The proposed widening of the areas around the traffic islands is welcomed however, the Parish Councillors are concerned that this may increase vehicles to speed in this area.  We would appreciate your feedback on this and whether other villages with traffic islands that have been widened in this way has improved safety.  Andy Bond responded by saying it is considered that as this widening is very localised to the island, to allow farm vehicles to pass without mounting the footway or verge, the overall effect on approaching vehicles will be minimal and in reality possibly influence drivers to take greater care.

 

Councillor Fisher commented not convinced widening of traffic islands would slow traffic down. 

 

Councillor Aitken raised concerns of the variant speed limits along Buck Street/Faversham Road leading up to roundabout with 30 mph signs and increase of driveway entrances. 

 

Hand Sanitizers for Community Places

 

Councillors considered Clerk’s proposal of donating and installing wall hand sanitizers in community places i.e. Village Hall, Methodist Chapel, St Cosmas & St Damian Church etc.

 

Clerk has obtained prices starting from £63 for wall sanitizer dispenser, liquid hand gel & notice.

 

Though not budgeted in financial budget for 2020/21 there are funds available through the VAT refund due. £500 was allocated for the VE celebrations of which £70 was spent on wreath, stakes & bunting, with a further £50 to be spent on the purchase of medals. 

 

Councillors agreed for the Clerk to purchase wall hand sanitizers for community places.  Clerk to liaise with Community groups of installation instructions.

 

Finances

 

The current account balance on 30th April 2020 is £13,416.00

 

The NS&I account balance is £11,919.45

 

Received 1st half of precept £10,344.

 

Internal Audit

 

The Internal audit is due to take place on the 9th June 2020 with Lionel Robbins at the Audrey Allen room maintaining 2 metre safe distancing practice. 

 

AGAR – Annual Governance Statement and Accounting Statements

 

Clerk has prepared AGAR and is waiting upon visit from internal auditor to complete section.

 

Parish Council Insurance Renewal

 

The Parish Council has now come out of 3-year agreement with Hiscox (Came & Company)

Clerk has obtained the following quotations: -

 

Zurich £660.01 (3-year agreement £616.01)

Hiscox £876.54 (3-year agreement £835.20)

BHIB £513.84 (3-year agreement £488.02)

 

Councillor Hardie to check insurance policy includes cyber protection.

 

The following cheques were signed by Councillor Fisher and Ramsden

 

Chq no. 022060 Mr J Sandy various grounds work (memorial bench, potholes, tree saplings, VE memorial) £527.77

 

Planning

 

The following application was discussed:

 

20/00533/AS Ashdown, Church Lane, Challock, Ashford, TN25 4BS

Proposal: Two dormer windows and rooflight to front elevation and rooflight to

side elevation to facilitate loft conversion

 

Challock Parish Council supports this application.

 

Ratification of Planning Applications

 

There were no applications to ratified.

 

Items for Information

 

75th VE Day Commemorative Celebrations May 2020

 

Due to the coronavirus and parishioners having to stay at home several alternative events to commemorative VE took place.  An exhibition of those parishioners fallen during the World War 2 were on display along with bunting in a v shape of wooden stakes.  At 11 am a national two-minute silence took place where people were asked to stand on their doorstep.  Deryck Sutton laid a wreath at the memorial.  At 3 pm a national toast was raised to give thanks to the heroes of WW11 and people were encouraged to raise a toast from their gardens.  Perla Hardie sang There will always be an England for Challock on You Tube.  The Parish Council wish to thank everyone who joined in with the commemorative events and helped organise.  A special thanks to Deryck Sutton for providing information for the exhibition and Perla Hardie for her lovely singing.  Councillor Jaques thanked Councillor Aitken for arranging for the primary children sending in their drawings of VE Day. 

 

Memorial Seat

 

A memorial seat for Puff Miller has now been installed in the church grounds.  Received an email from Clare Hook on behalf of the Church committee thanking the Parish Council for the new seat and very pleased with its location. 

 

Village Website

 

Councillor Hardie has developed a new village website which meets accessibility regulations. Councillor Hardie to arrange on-line training to Parish Clerk and other users i.e. community groups (church etc.) on how to access the website. Councillor Hardie to invoice Parish Council for running costs of the new website. Launching of the new website to be advised later, waiting on new domain.  Councillor Hardie commented on arranging for councillors to have parish council email accounts rather than using their own personal email accounts.

 

Annual Parish Meeting

 

1.Approval of Annual Parish Meeting Minutes 18th June 2019

 

Minutes of 18th June 2019 Annual Parish Meeting were signed by Russell Jaques as an accurate record.

 

2.Chairmans Report (separate sheet)

 

Chairman Fisher read out the Chairman’s Annual Report

 

3.KCC Ward Councillor Charlie Simkins Report

 

I am writing this in lieu of giving a brief talk at your annual  Parish Meeting which I would normally be attending over the course of this month and I would ask that you circulate it to your councillors and across as wide an audience as you think appropriate. You will understand that under current circumstances the content will be different to normal and will centre mainly on matters relating to the Coronavirus epidemic.

 

The County Council has many obligations but at present one of its main aims is to provide support for elderly and vulnerable people to prevent additional hardship at such a difficult time. In this regard, in collaboration with central government, local authority partners, the voluntary community and the NHS, the county council has set up a helpline called KENT TOGETHER. This  can be reached by telephone on 03000 419292 on a 24 hour basis or by internet at www.kent.gov.uk/kenttogether. In the first week 1279 calls were made to the helpline and 2129 different requests were processed. I would encourage everyone to publicise this service.

 

Indeed, the pandemic is resulting in unprecedented liaison between government ministers and our county council leaders in which our Leader Roger Gough has been at the forefront. As well as covering medical and financial issues, grave concern has been expressed over the lack of Personal Protection Equipment for nursing staff in hospitals and care homes. I am glad to say that two deliveries of 14 pallets each were delivered   to the council’s distribution centre in the week preceding Easter. Council leaders will be pressing for further supplies and distribution will be closely monitored with delivery shared across front line agencies, the NHS and care homes.

 

As is well known the Chancellor has attempted to provide a lifeline for businesses and individuals but there will of course be those that do not qualify. This is one reason why the helpline outlined above may be crucial. Charities are another area which have suffered a severe loss of income and the recent package will hopefully be an important lifeline particularly for small charities.

 

All local authorities are facing further pressures on cash flow as income declines and expenditure rises particularly on social care.  I am pleased to report that the government is fast forwarding the payment of grants for social care funding, but it has been made clear that extra funding will be required in many other areas.

 

In recent weeks I have been liaising with the committee of the Smarden Community store in their valiant attempts to open the new store and the post office there. Having seen this at first hand I can vouch for the fact that the committee has encountered a wide range of difficulties which through determination and collaboration they have overcome. Probably the most disappointing of these setbacks is the curtailment by the Post Office of plans to install the computer and to complete final training for the staff. Regrettably, this could delay opening of the Post Office until the most serious effects of Coronavirus are behind us. However, the good news is that the committee expects to open the shop shortly, initially on a click and collect basis until social distancing restrictions ease.

 

Looking ahead I am pleased to report that just over 88% of parents of primary school children applying for places in September have been granted the school of their first choice. This is despite the number of applications being the highest for four years.

 

We are all having to change our lives in this disruption and at KCC we are using technology to have virtual meetings to enable all councillors to participate in and question policy.  It is amazing how quickly this is becoming accepted as normal!

 

I fully understand how difficult life has become over recent weeks for many people, but I know that that the sense of community spirit will prevail in the traditional British ‘chin up’ manner. Good luck to everyone. I can continue to be contacted by email at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

 

A.O.B

 

Councillor Jaques thanked Clerk and grounds man for rapid response to the current A252 road closure adjacent to grass area Challock village sign.  Wooden stakes and barrier tape have been installed to prevent drivers deliberately driving over the grass area.

 

Parish Forum

 

Parishioner commented on the hand sanitizer and to be mindful when installing it to prevent theft; ensure it is screwed to the wall.

 

Parishioner commented encouraged by the A252 road safety improvements scheme and look forward to its fruition. 

 

Councillor Fisher thanked parishioners for joining the parish meeting; welcomed their comments and taking an interest. 

 

Councillors discussed locations of where speed watch can take place and agreed the sooner, we can get several volunteers the better.  Wish to proceed this summer. 

Clerk to place a request in June’s Forester. 

 

 

The meeting closed at 9.01 pm                                                                                           

 

Parish Council Meeting Dates for 2020

 

Next Parish Meeting Tuesday, 14th June 2020

                     

Future Parish Meeting Dates:

 

Tuesday 14th July

Thursday 17th September

Thursday 15th October

Thursday 19th November


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