BRANDON PARISH COUNCIL
At a meeting of the Full Council held on Monday 3rd September 2001
at the Community Centre, Bury Road, Brandon at 7.30 pm

Present: Cllr Saxby (In the Chair), Cllr Mrs Ahern, Cllr Ms Bourton, Cllr Edwards, Cllr Mrs Jureko, Cllr Mrs Milner, Cllr Silvester, Cllr Thorne, Cllr Weetman and Cllr Vant.

Also present: Squadron Leader Turner, Inspector Bennett and four members of the public.

1.Apologies for absence.
Apologies for absence were received from Cllr Baldwin, Cllr Mrs Hufton and Cllr
Mrs Jones-Weetman

The Council held a one-minute silence in remembrance of Sadie Baldwin

It was proposed by Cllr Saxby, seconded by Cllr Mrs Ahern and agreed that a letter of condolence be sent to Cllr Baldwin

2. Declaration of Interest.

Cllr Edwards declared an interest in Item 24, the Heritage Centre. Cllr Weetman declared an interest in Item 36, the Old Photocopier

It was proposed by Cllr Saxby, seconded by Cllr Mrs Ahern and agreed that the meeting be adjourned to allow for the following reports.

3.To receive a report from RAF Lakenheath

The Chairman welcomed to his first meeting of Brandon Parish Council Squadron Leader Turner.

Squadron Leader Turner gave a brief resume of his background in the Royal Air Force and that he had only been in post two weeks but was looking forward to his new position. At present he had nothing else to report.

Cllr Ashley arrived

4.    To receive a report from the Police

Inspector Bennett spoke of the spate of vandalism and anti-social behaviour currently affecting the Town. The problem appears to be people between the ages 12-16 who are around town in the early hours. Inspector Benneft reported that more officers are being made available for Brandon and the Police were trying to become more visible and pro-active.

Cllr Ashley expressed his concern at the difficult tasks facing the Police. Cllr Ashley then gave details of an incident he witnessed.

Inspector Bennett stated that if members had encountered problems getting through to the Central Control room they needed to write letters of complaint either to himself or the Chief Constable.

Cllr Weetman reported that he had been recently stopped in his car and asked if the Police could stop youths. Inspector Bennett stated the Police had no power to just stop people because of Human Rights.

Cllr Milner felt that there was a need for more pro-active policing.

Cllr Vant spoke of his concern over bicycles being ridden along the pavements, which seems to be a particular problem in the west of the town. Inspector Bennett agreed to look into the problem, but acknowledged the risk to young cyclist on the roads. Cllr Thorne stated that electric wheelchairs might need to reduce speed. Cllr Weetman gave details of the legislation covering the use of electric wheelchairs and scooters.

Inspector Bennett reported that PC Keith Grant was taking over from PC Haygreen as the Community Liaison Officer.

Cllr Saxby thanked Squadron Leader Turner and Inspector Bennett for their time.

5. Urgent Business. - Any item that the Chairman considers as a matter of
urgent business pursuant to section 100(B) (4)(16) of the Local Government Act
1972

The Clerk reported that two letters had been received inviting members to attend the
Annual General Meeting of Suffolk Acre and Suffolk County Council’s Locality
Forum. No one was available to attend the meetings.

The Clerk reported that the Brandon Community Regeneration Project was now changing into a Steering Group and ultimately a Charitable Trust with a Limited Company. The first meeting of the Steering group will be held on Thursday 20th September 2001. The group had asked the Parish Council to nominate one representative to the new Group. After some discussion members agreed that because Brandon is the largest community within the area the Council should try to negotiate for two representatives. Cllr Mrs Milner indicated that she was willing to be a representative on the new group; her nomination was accepted. The Clerk circulated details of the new trust. Members requested the Economic Development Committee to look at them and report back.

Cllr Vant enquired whether a reply had been received in respect of the Lingheath
Trust. The Clerk reported that a letter had been received from the Charity Commission indicating that the Council can nominate Trustees of its own choice with
immediate affect.

6 .To receive, confirm and sign the minutes of the Full Council meeting held on Monday 2nd July 2001

It was proposed by Cllr Weetman, seconded by Cllr Mrs Jureko and carried by 8 votes to 4 against with 3 abstentions that the minutes of the Full Council meeting held on the 2nd July 2001 be received, confirmed as a true record and signed.

7. To receive, confirm and sign the minutes of the Planning Committees held on
Monday 2nd July 2001, Monday 16th July 2001, Monday 6th August 2001 and
Monday 20th August 2001

It was proposed by Cllr Mrs Ahern, seconded by Cllr Vant and agreed that the minutes of the Planning Committee held on the 2nd July 2001 be received, confirmed as a true record and signed.

It was proposed by Cllr Mrs Ahern, seconded by Cllr Mrs Jureko and agreed that the minutes of the Planning Committee held on the 16th July 2001 be received, confirmed as a true record and signed.

It was proposed by Cllr Vant, seconded by Cllr Mrs Milner and agreed that the minutes of the Planning Committee held on the 6th August 2001 be received, confirmed as a true record and signed.

It was proposed by Cllr Mrs Jureko, seconded by Cllr Vant and agreed that the minutes of the Planning Committee held on the 20th August 2001 be received, confirmed as a true record and signed.

8. To receive, confirm and sign the minutes of the Burial Committee held on Tuesday 3rd July 2001.

It was proposed by Cllr Mrs Jureko, seconded by Cllr Saxby and agreed that the minutes of the Burials Committee held on the 3rd July 2001 be received, confirmed as a true record and signed.

9.To receive, confirm and sign the minutes of the Economic Development Committee held on Tuesday 3rd July 2001 and Monday 6th August 2001.

It was proposed by Cllr Mrs Milner, seconded by Cllr Vant and agreed that the minutes of the Economic Development Committees held on the 3rd July 2001 and the 6th August 2001 be received, confirmed as a true and signed.

10. To receive, confirm and sign the minutes of the Environment and Open Space Committee held on Tuesday 3rd July 2001 and Monday 6th August 2001.

It was proposed by Cllr Mrs Jureko, seconded by Cllr Vant and agreed that the
minutes of the Environment and Open Space Committee held on the 3rd July 2001 be received, and save for an amendment to Footpath P5 were confirmed and signed.

It was proposed by Cllr Mrs Milner, seconded by Cllr Mrs Ahern and agreed that the minutes of the Environment and Open Space Committee held on 6th August 2001 be received, and save for an amendment to Footpath P5 were confirmed and signed.

11. To receive, confirm and sign the minutes of the Health and Safety Committee held on Monday 9th July 2001.

It was proposed by Cllr Thorne, seconded by Cllr Saxby and agreed that the minutes of the Heath and Safety Committee held on the 9th July 2001 be received, confirmed as a true record and signed.

12. Matters arising from the Minutes.

Cllr Silvester stated that he believed he had been appointed Clerk of Works for the Multi-Ball Court project on the Thetford Road Play area. Cllr Saxby reported that the Minutes had been checked, there was no indication that Cllr Silvester had been appointed Clerk of Works. Cllr Silvester accepted the explanation. Cllr Saxby then outlined details of how the Council found out about the payment of 75 % due when the equipment was delivered to the site. Cllr Mrs Milner also expressed the need for Councillors not to attend meetings on their own but to always have at least two members present so that any such claim could be repudiated. Cllr Saxby then reminded members of the Ultra Vires rule. Cllr Silvester stated that he not agreed to pay 75%, but had agreed to bring the question of payment to the Council’s attention.

Cllr Ashley stated that he still believed the Multi-Ball court to be the wrong size. Cllr
Ashley also felt that this Council were getting the blame when Forest Heath District
Council had agreed to look after the project.

Cllr Vant referred to page 28 and asked if a reply had been received from Cllr Ms Bourton. The Clerk reported that to date no reply had been received. Cllr Vant asked Cllr Ms Bourton if she would like to reply now. Cllr Ms Bourton reported that she and other members had attended a meeting with the landowner. Cllr Saxby gave details of the letters received from the Land Agent and Temporary Administrator. Cllr Ms Bourton stated that she had never instructed the Temporary Administrator to write in those terms. She had however, given him a full brief of the project and can only assume that he misunderstood her instructions. Cllr Ms Bourton felt that the letter of the Land Agent was regrettable.

Cllr Vant asked if any reply had been received on the Churchyard Wall. The Clerk reported that replies were still awaited.

Cllr Mrs Ahern asked if Cllr Silvester had heard anything from the Safety Forum in respect of adopting Parish Council Street Lights. Cllr Mrs Ahern believed that the Council might have to review its offer. Cllr Silvester agreed to investigate the matter and report back.

13. To receive a report of the Annual Cemetery Walk.

The report on the Annual Cemetery Walk was received and referred to the Burials committee for further discussion.

14. To receive a report on the Nine Stiles Walk.

Cllr Saxby gave a report on the Nine Stiles Walk. Four Couneillors and several members of the public attended the walk. Cllr Weetman stated that the walk was not yet accessable to the disabled. Cllr Saxby stated that some paths were overgrown and agreed to give details to the Clerk.

15.To receive and adopt the financial statement, list of accounts paid and list of accounts to be paid (including confidential payments) .

Cllr Silvester reported that the Council had overpaid the grant Brandon Remembrance Playing Field. The Clerk reported that she had just discovered this and that the Finance Committee will discuss the matter. Cllr Ms Bourton reported that there had been an overspend on Stationery. The Clerk reported that the office contained very little stationery and that the supplies were needed to carry out the Council’s work. The Finance Committee is shortly looking at precept and this issue will be discussed then.

It was proposed by Cllr Weetman, seconded by Cllr Ashley and agreed by seven votes for to two against and one abstention that the financial statement, list of accounts paid and list of accounts to be paid be accepted.

Cllr Ms Bourton asked for her vote against the motion to be recorded.

16 To receive notice of the appointment of external auditors.

Noted. The Clerk reported that it was unlikely that the audit would be carried out this year. Members requested the Clerk to obtain more information.

17. To debate whether the Council wish to have reports from County and District Councillors as a future agenda item at full council meetings .

Cllr Saxby reported that reports from District and County Councillors at Full Council meetings were recommended at the recent Chairmans’ course he attended. Cllr Saxby asked members for their views. After some discussion it was proposed by Cllr Saxby, seconded by Cllr Mrs Ahern and agreed by six votes to two abstentions that the Council asks for written reports from District and County Councillors at there Full Council meetings.

Cllr Silvester stated that he would only be able to comment on the committees he is involved in at Forest Heath. Cllr Weetman asked if the local members covered all the main committees at Forest Heath District Council, Cllrs Edwards and Silvester believed they were.

18. To review the schedule of meetings and the attendance by members at Committee meetings.

Cllr Saxby spoke of attendances at meetings and that the formation of a Committee system had been a cultural change for the Council and had resulted in extra meetings and additional work for the Clerk.

Cllr Saxby felt that if members were having problems attending meetings they could withdraw, as the new Councillors were not on committees.

Cllr Vant felt that the schedule of meetings did not always reflect the need for meetings. He felt that Committee meetings should be called as and when required. Cllr Saxby stated that the meetings should be confined to Mondays if possible and outside this day by arrangement with the Clerk. Cllr Saxby proposed, seconded by Cllr Mrs Ahern and agreed that Committee meetings be held on the first and third Mondays of the month. The Committees to be booked on a first come first serve basis. Meetings to commence at 6.30 pm.

19. To receive a report from the Clerk on the Cllrrent position of the Thetford Road Play area.

The Clerk reported on the advice received from the Council’s Solicitors. Cllr Ashley stated that the Council should offer to buy back the equipment starting at £2000. Cllr Mrs Milner wondered whether the Council should offer 10% of the total value. It was agreed that the offer should start at £2000.

20. To receive a letters from:
(a) Brandon Neighbourhood Watch.

The letter was received from Brandon Neighbourhood Watch. Cllr Weetman believed
that the Council had never made a decision to financially support Neighbourhood Watch. Cllr Weetman also expressed concern that the current set up of Neighbourhood Watch may be unconstitutional, as the ordinary members of Neighbourhood Watch were not allowed to vote at the Annual General Meeting. Cllr Mrs Ahern to liase with the Clerk over Council’s the reply.

(b) Forest Heath Crime Prevention Panel

It was proposed by Cllr Weetman, seconded by Cllr Mrs Jureko and agreed to pay a grant of £20.00.

21. To receive a report from the Clerk on the Clerk’s to Larger Council Group.

The Clerk reported that at the last meeting of the group received a presentation from representatives from the Standards Board for England. The new model code of conduct should be available in the autumn. The main change appears to be that Parish Council will be able to adopt individual codes. These codes need to be adopted by March 2002. Once a Council adopts them and a copy is sent to the Standards Board it would be affective on all Members. If  Members do not sign up to the code within a set time they will cease being a councillor. A new Draft Code for Officers is currently being prepared.

22. To receive a request from the West Suffolk Disability Resource Centre and
Daryl Fraser, Senior Road Safety Officer for articles to be included in a Parish
Newsletter.

It was agreed to pass the letter onto Brandon Life

23. To receive a letter from The Village Signs of Suffolk.

Members agreed to give details of Brandon’s sign, subject to the organisation being made aware of the Council’s copyright.

24. To receive a request from Brandon Heritage Centre for a grant.

It was proposed by Cllr Ms Bourton, seconded by Cllr Weetman and agreed that a grant of £28.42 be paid to the Heritage Centre. The Clerk was asked to write to Center Parcs to ask them to promote the Heritage Centre to its visitors.

Cllr Silvester and Cllr Edwards declared an interest and took no part in the discussions.

25. To discuss the provision of an Internet provider for the Parish Council.

Cllr Thorne reported that he was still waiting for more information. It was agreed to adjourn the item to the next meeting.

26. To receive details from the Youth Justice Board of “Young Offenders to payback Community”.

It was agreed to give a copy to Inspector Bennett. Members felt that the Orchard may be a suitable project.

27. To consider membership of the Local Advisory Service, the Open Spaces Society and Action for Market Towns.

The Clerk reported on the respective costs and advantages of membership.

It was proposed by Cllr Weetman,, seconded by Cllr Mrs Jureko and agreed by seven votes for to one against with one abstention that the Council joins the Open Spaces Society.

It was proposed by Cllr Mrs Milner, seconded by Cllr Weetman and agreed that the Council joins the Action for Market Towns group.

It was proposed by Cllr Mrs Ahern, seconded by Cllr Saxby and agreed that membership of the Local Advisory Service be consider at precept.

28. To receive notice from SALC of various training courses.

Noted. Cllr Mrs Milner asked if they ran any Saturday courses. The Clerk agreed to forward the request to SALC.

29. Resolution 74 from Cllr Mrs Milner:
“I should like to propose that the Parish Council commemorate the Queen’s Golden Jubilee with a grand street party on the Market Hill followed by a firework display”.

Cllr Mrs Milner outlined her tentative proposals for celebrating the Queen’s Golden
Jubilee in June 2002. Members welcomed the proposals. It was proposed by Cllr Mrs
Milner, seconded by Cllr Weetman and agreed that the project be delegated to the
Environment Committee to draw up the concept and ideas. Cllr Silvester felt that the
matter should be considered at precept. It was agreed that the matter be placed on the
Finance Committee agenda.

30. Resolution 75 from Cllr Weetman:
“That this Council resolves that all future Parish Council grants to local organisations only be made on a partnership funding basis i.e. the organisation should be willing to raise an equal amount to the grant requested or half of the amount needed themselves”

Cllr Weetman stated that Council grants should be given on a partnership basis; he felt that this would encourage groups to raise part if not half the money needed by them. Many groups consider that money will also be available from the Parish Council.

Cllr Silvester expressed his concern that some groups were unable to raise funds themselves. Cllr Vant stated that this had always been the problem with lottery funding. Cllr Thorne wondered whether a lower limit of £l00 should be considered. Cllr Mrs Jureko expressed her concern with the Playing Fields. Cllr Ms Bourton stated that this was not a grant but precept.

Cllr Mrs Milner proposed an amendment that all future Parish Council grants to local organisations only be made after consideration of the organisations capabilities to raise money themselves. As no seconder was found to the amendment, the original proposal was put to the vote and was lost by two votes for to seven against.

31. Resolution 76 from Cllr Vant:
“The Council resolves to increase the limit to the spending the Clerk may instigate in an emergency to £2000, this to include the taking of legal advice (Amendment to Standing Order 65c)”

Proposed by Cllr Vant, seconded by Cllr Weetman and agreed that the resolution be accepted, the item to be referred to the next meeting of the Council.

32. Resolution 77 from Cllr Thorne:
“That the Council considers changing the Council from a Parish Council to a Town Council”

Adjourned to the next meeting to allow for a change of wording.

Cllr Edwards left the meeting.

33. To receive reports on Brandon Remembrance Playing Fields .

Cllr Ashley gave his report. Cllr Silvester felt that the management Committee were doing there best.

Cllr Ms Bourton left the meeting

The Clerk reported that a letter had just been received from the Trust in respect of the artefacts; the letter will be October’s agenda.

Cllr Vant proposed and agreed that all Cllr Ashley’s report be raised at the next
Steering Group meeting. It was also agreed that the Council should write to the Trust
for clarification on the grounds maintenance contract and the current role of the
groundsman. Cllr Silvester stated that the groundsman had very little equipment.

Cllr Silvester left the meeting

34. To receive notice of an application for a Justices Licence in respect of "Breeze" Nightclub, London Road, Brandon.

Noted

35. To discuss the preparation of a book containing members interests.

Adjourned to the next meeting.

36. To discuss the disposal of the old computer and photocopier .

The Clerk reported that only one computer bid had been received. The bid of £75 was accepted.

The Clerk reported that she had received a letter concerning the old photocopier from the Blue Badge Association. It was agreed to advertise it in Brandon Life - sealed bids to be returned before the next meeting.

Cllr Weetman declared an interest and left the room.

37. To discuss payments to the Temporary Administrator.

It was agreed to refer this item to the Finance Committee. Copies of the correspondence to be sent to Cllr Ms Bourton, Cllr Edwards and Cllr Silvester.

38. For the Councils information:
(a)    Copy of a correspondence from Brandon Action Group
(b)    SCC - The Countryside Service
(c)    Anglian Waters Drinking water quality report
(d)    First Eastern Counties Service Changes
(e)    Suffolk Scene
(f)    SCC - Environment and Transport Service Leaflet
(g)    All Aboard - Newsletter for Childcare providers
(h)    Local Government Commission for England - Final recommendations on the future electoral arrangements for Forest Heath in Suffolk
(i)    Suffolk Waste Local Plan Issues Report
(j)    Brecks Countryside Project - leaflets
(k)    Association of Burial Authorities Information leaflet No 15.
(l)    Suffolk County Council’s - A Waste Local Plan for Suffolk. First Issues Report

Noted

39.To receive a letter from Cllr Ms Bourton.

It was proposed by Cllr Saxby, seconded by Cllr Thorne and agreed that in view of the confidential nature of the business about to be transacted, it is advisable in the public interest that the public be temporarily excluded and they arc instructed to withdraw.

In Committee

After some discussion it was proposed by Cllr Saxby, seconded by Cllr Jureko and unanimously agreed that there was no case to answer against the Clerk. There would be no reprimand and no formal apology.

The Chairman was directed to send a letter to Cllr Ms Bourton answering the
following points:
1.    That her apology had been noted in the minutes
2.    That Standing Orders prevent the amendment of minutes unless the Member is
       present to propose the amendments. Accordingly, amendments cannot be made by
       letter.
3.    That all documents have been supplied

Cllr Mrs Ahern felt that the last paragraph of Cllr Ms Bourton letter must be addressed.




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