BRANDON TOWN COUNCIL
Minutes of a Meeting of the Full Town Council
Monday 04 March 2002 at 7:00 pm at Community Centre, Bury Road, Brandon

Present: Cllr A P Saxby (Chairman), Cllr Mrs J A Ahern (Vice-Chairman), Cllr E V Ashley, Cllr P S Baldwin, Cllr Ms J S Bourton, Cllr S J Edwards, Cllr Mrs S M Jones-Weetman, Cllr Mrs S Jureko(at 7:25 pm), Cllr Mrs E Milner, Cllr R Silvester, Cllr A Thorne Cllr N A Vant and Councillor B D Weetman (left after item 18).

Also Present: Mrs L S Sherer (Town Clerk); Sqd Ldr M Turner (RAF Lakenheath); Insp Nick Bennett (Police); Count Councillor Bill Bishop and Suffolk County Council Officers in respect of Property Review; members of the Public.

1.  APOLOGIES FOR ABSENCE
Cllr Mrs Hufton.

2.  DECLARATIONS OF INTEREST
Cllrs Mrs Ahern, Saxby (Chairman) and Vant declared an interest in Agenda Item 28. PriceWaterhouseCooper. 

The Chairman explained that Cllr B D Weetman had attended this meeting, in spite of his ill health, in order to address Item 18. on the Agenda.  In view of the fact that Cllr Weetman needed to attend a medical appointment that evening, it was proposed by the Chairman and agreed by the Council, that Agenda Item 18. should be brought forward to this point. 

18.  EXPLANATION OF CONDUCT
Cllr Ms Bourton reminded the Meeting that Cllr Weetman had sent a letter to the Chairman of Brandon Town (then Parish) Council, dated 03 December 2001, which she considered to be defamatory in content.  Cllr Silvester supported this view.  The Chairman had inadvertently commenced to read this letter to the Council.  He had disassociated himself from the contents therein.  Cllr Weetman commented that it was easy “in hindsight” to realize that the letter should not have been sent and he apologised to the Council for having sent the letter.  He did not wish to discuss the letter any further.  The Chairman re-iterated his apology for inadvertently reading out the letter and again emphasized that he had disassociated himself from the contents therein.  The Town Clerk explained, with reference to Charles Arnold-Baker “Local Council Administration” pp 66-67, that “if a councillor defames somebody while acting as a councillor, he, not the council, is liable for the consequences, if any.”   The Chairman asked Cllr Weetman to withdraw publicly the comments in the letter and to apologise in public to Cllr Ms Bourton.  Cllr Weetman proceeded to do so.  Cllr Ms Bourton was invited to accept this as closing the matter and indicated that she might find this compromise acceptable after due consideration and would convey her decision to the Town Clerk in due course.  Cllr Weetman left the meeting to attend his medical appointment.

3.  REPORT FROM RAF LAKENHEATH (SQD LDR M TURNER)
The Chairman suspended Standing Orders to allow Sqd Ldr Turner to give his report to the Meeting.  Sqd Ldr Turner was pleased to report that the U S Forces were keen to be involved with the Brandon Golden Jubilee Celebrations and their Commanding Officer, General Brennan, was very interested in participating on 03 June 2002.  As this date was not a designated US “Bank Holiday”, he was considering the allocation of a “Family Day”, on that date, in order to allow U S families to participate in the activities.  As the Mildenhall Air Fete would not take place in 2002, he felt that greater resources might therefore be available for the events in Brandon.  Sqd Ldr Turner outlined some of the attractions which could be forthcoming and, as a member of the Town Council’s Jubilee Working Group, would be actively involved in promoting the 03 June 2002 Golden Jubilee Celebrations.  The Chairman thanked Sqd Ldr Turner for kindly attending the Meeting and for his enthusiasm for Brandon’s community event.

4.  REPORT FROM THE POLICE (INSP NICK BENNETT)
Inspector Bennett, Section Commander, reported that the recent Operation First Impact had been very successful throughout the area.  He anticipated the appointment of an extra police officer for Brandon, by the end of March.  He was hopeful that, of the 195 extra officers projected for West Suffolk, over the next three years, that Brandon would benefit by a higher ratio pro-rata than other areas, leading to possibly 4 - 5 extra resources within this year.  Cllr Ashley raised the question of young people taking drugs in the area by means of homemade equipment.  Cllr Mrs Jones-Weetman raised the matter of stolen cars and subsequent burning of these; Inspector Bennett confirmed that Operation First Impact had targeted those responsible for such behaviour.  Cllr Vant felt that a vicious circle of crime can occur.  Inspector Bennett confirmed that the problems of breaking this type of circle were being addressed by the use of social workers in Prisons and Police Stations.  Cllr Mrs Milner mentioned HM The Queen’s Golden Jubilee Celebrations in Brandon and Inspector Bennett would investigate use of crowd barriers and Special Constables for 03 June 2002.  The Chairman thanked Inspector Bennett for kindly attending the Meeting.

The Chairman explained that County Cllr Bishop and the officers from Suffolk County Council would be invited to give their presentation at this stage in the meeting.  This was agreed and County Cllr Bishop and the Suffolk County Council Officers were  welcomed to the Meeting.

15.  PRESENTATION: SCC PROPERTY REVIEW STEERING COMMITTEE
County Cllr Bishop thanked the Town Council for allowing him to speak.  He went on to explain that Brandon is a pilot scheme for funding.  Target groups had been consulted and their wishes ascertained.  In addition to the presentation boards, around the room, individual information packs had been prepared for Town Councillors to take away from the Meeting, for future discussion and debate.  County Cllr Bishop emphasized that the ongoing consultation process was still in its early stages.  Since the Public Meeting, in October 2001, two Steering Group Meetings had taken place, at which issues including funding/interim management/future development/Brandon Town Council involvement, had been considered.   He outlined the available funding.

Councillors raised general questions as to location of public toilets, closing times of building, disabled access, emergency exits from second storey especially with regard to older people, etc.  The Chairman felt this was too much detail to be explored at this early stage in the project.  County Cllr Bishop advised that the entire project was to be purpose built and would therefore comply with all necessary regulations.  Cllr Vant enquired if all the relevant GP’s had been fully consulted.  Nigel Baker-Querelle, SCC Officer, responded that all Health Authorities were being fully consulted.  County Cllr Bishop concluded by saying the intention was to encourage and facilitate GP’s coming to Brandon.  The Chairman thanked the guests for kindly attending.  

5.  PUBLIC FORUM
Proposed : Cllr Mrs Ahern; seconded : Cllr Thorne; CARRIED : unanimous.  Resolution Record No. BTC77/04/Mar/02 : (1) THAT THE COUNCIL MEETING BE TEMPORARILY ADJOURNED TO ALLOW MEMBERS OF THE PUBLIC TO SPEAK. (2) THAT THE COUNCIL MEETING BE RECONVENED AFTER THE PUBLIC FORUM.  Town Clerk will discuss matters raised with the actual member of public concerned.

6.  REPORT/S FROM COUNTY COUNCILLOR/S
County Cllr Bishop had already reported to the Meeting within Item 15. above.

7.  REPORT/S FROM DISTRICT COUNCILLOR/S
Cllr Silvester advised that, in relation to the misuse of substances in the area, that Forest Heath District Council were to put in place a trained, dedicated worker to meet with young people on the street.  On Planning: (i) the matter of Waltons Way was back on the table and FHDC officers were to negotiate with the developer to reduce the number of properties envisaged; (ii) Fengate Drove was refused but will probably be the subject of an appeal.  Market Towns’ Initiative funding had been agreed for the Country Park, the Flowerpot, a Skatepark on Brandon Remembrance Playing Field in the future; he concluded that Brandon appears to be receiving considerable benefit from SRB and MTI funding at the moment.

8.  URGENT BUSINESS [pursuant to SECTION 100(B)(4)(16) LGA 1972]
Cllr Ms Bourton declared an interest in Market Towns’ Initiative matters, but was asked to remain within the Meeting to answer questions on the subject.
(i) Time Bank/Credit Union/Suffolk Acre - Cllr Vant sought clarification of this.  Cllr Ms Bourton informed the Meeting that the concept was the “banking” and exchange of a volunteer’s time and skills, to be logged on a computer database, then “matched” with a person in need of such skills.  Cllr Mrs Milner requested that the Town Council send a letter of support to the Brandon Community Partnership in this regard.  Cllr Vant asked Cllr Mrs Milner for her views on the project and the response was affirmative. Proposed:  Cllr Mrs Milner; seconded : Cllr Baldwin; CARRIED: 8 for, 0 against, 3 abstentions.  Resolution Record No. BTC78/04/Mar/02 : THAT BRANDON TOWN COUNCIL OFFERS BRANDON COMMUNITY PARTNERSHIP A LETTER WHOLEHEARTEDLY SUPPORTING THE TIME BANK CONCEPT.

(ii) Circular Bus Route - Cllr Ms Bourton explained that this was required to encourage visitors and people from villages to come into Brandon and use the town and its facilities and services.  The Town Clerk reported that Brandon, Elveden, Hockwold, Santon Downham and Weeting can each apply for maximum total amount of £10,000 each over a three (3) year period producing a total COMBINED BID of £50,000 overall for the three-year-period.  DEFRA (Vital Villages) will consider this to be their 75% contribution and would expect the individual Towns and/or Parishes to find the remaining 25%.  This could, however, be provided by MTI and so should, in theory, not cost the individual Town and/or Parish Council any money.  The necessity for such a route had been demonstrated in the parish Appraisal for Brandon as conducted in conjunction with FHDC.  Agreement in principle was sought but would be subject to assurances being received from DEFRA (Vital Villages) in respect of the actual and ongoing financial commitments of all parties in this regard.
Cllr Edwards joined the Meeting at 8:22 p.m.
The Chairman voiced concerns as to what would happen at the end of the three year funding period it the bus route did not become self-funding. Proposed : Cllr Ms Bourton; seconded : Cllr Mrs Milner; CARRIED : 9 for, 0 against, 3 abstentions.  Resolution Record No. BTC79/04/Mar/02 : THAT BRANDON TOWN COUNCIL EXPLORES FUNDING FOR THE “CIRCULAR BUS ROUTE” WITH OTHER PARISH COUNCILS THROUGH THE MARKET TOWNS’ INITIATIVE.

(iii) Notice of Application for Renewal of Bingo Licence -  No objection to the proposal for renewal to Clifford James Waterman and Dorothy Viola Waterman for The Cinema, London Road, Brandon, Suffolk (Breckland Bingo and Social Club).

(iv) Open Meeting at FHDC Offices re Planning Green Paper - All Parish/Town Councillors were invited to attend an Open Meeting on Wednesday 13 March 2002 from 6:00 pm to 8:00 pm at the District Offices in Mildenhall.  The purpose of this meeting will be to discuss proposals for a reformed planning system from Central Government and to help formulate a community response to the Planning Green Paper.

9.  RATIFICATION OF MINUTES OF PREVIOUS MEETINGS
Minutes of the Full Brandon Town Council Meeting of Monday 04 February 2002.  Item 22. - Cllr Vant wished to include the observation that the public right-of-way at the Chalk Pit was closed by a locked gate.  Proposed : Cllr Vant; seconded : Cllr Mrs Milner; CARRIED : 8 for, 0 against, 4 abstentions. Resolution Record No. BTC80/04/Mar/02 : THAT THE MINUTES OF THE FULL TOWN COUNCIL MEETING OF MONDAY 04 FEBRUARY 2002 BE ACCEPTED AND SIGNED AS A TRUE RECORD.

Proposed : Cllr Baldwin; seconded : Cllr Thorne; CARRIED : unanimous.  Resolution Record No. BTC81/04/Mar/02 : THAT THE MINUTES OF THE FINANCE COMMITTEE MEETING OF MONDAY 04 FEBRUARY 2002 BE ACCEPTED AND SIGNED AS A TRUE RECORD.

Proposed : Cllr Thorne; seconded : Cllr Baldwin; CARRIED : unanimous.  Resolution Record No. BTC82/04/Mar/02 : THAT THE MINUTES OF THE HEALTH AND SAFETY COMMITTEE MEETING OF MONDAY 04 FEBRUARY 2002 BE ACCEPTED AND SIGNED AS A TRUE RECORD.

10.  MATTERS ARISING FROM MINUTES
Item 22. Full Brandon Town Council - Cllr Vant specified the location of the public footpath (Chalk Pit/Gravel Hill/A1065) around the pit where the gate was actually locked.  He requested that the lock be removed for access and that the possibility of locating a “kissing gate”, next to the current, locked gate, be investigated.  Cllr Thorne reminded the Meeting that any such gate should comply with the provisions of the DDA.   Proposed : Cllr Ashley; seconded : Cllr Thorne; CARRIED : unanimous.  Resolution Record No. BTC83/04/Mar/02 : THAT THE LOCK ON THE GATE LOCATED AT CHALK PIT/GRAVEL HILL/A1065 BE REMOVED BY THE TOWN KEEPERS, AS SOON AS POSSIBLE, AND THAT THE INSTALLATION OF A “KISSING GATE” BE INVESTIGATED WITH DUE CONSIDERATION GIVEN TO THE PROVISIONS OF THE DISABILITY DISCRIMINATION ACT.

11.  PLANNING APPLICATIONS
F/2002/064 : 246 London Road, Brandon.  Erection of one two-storey dwelling, garage and formation of access (access off Queens Road) on land to rear of 246 London Road for Mr & Mrs P Cash.                                       Resolved : ** OBJECTION ***
Proposed : Cllr Silvester; seconded : Cllr Thorne; CARRIED : 10 for, 0 against, 2 abstentions.  Resolution Record No. BTC84/04/Mar/02 : THAT AN OBJECTION BE LODGED TO F/2002/064 ON THE GROUNDS THAT (A) THAT THIS APPEARS TO BE “BACKFILL” OR “BACKLAND” DEVELOPMENT AND (B) THAT IT APPEARS TO IMPEDE A PUBLIC RIGHT-OF-WAY.

F/2002/070 : 24 Oaklands Drive, Brandon.  Erection of single-storey front extension for Mr Yannis Prodromou.                                               Resolved : NO OBJECTION    
F/2002/081 : 95 St Benedicts Road, Brandon.  Erection of single-storey rear extension & car port to side for Mr & Mrs A W Bates.    Resolved : NO OBJECTION

F/2002/107 : 2 - 4 London Road, Brandon.  Change of use from retail (Class A1) to bristro-café (Class A3) for Ramazon Soyler.                    Resolved : NO OBJECTION

F/2002/110 : 101 St Benedicts Road, Brandon.  Erection of single-storey side and rear extensions for Mr & Mrs Fuller.                                Resolved : NO OBJECTION

F/2002/113 : 76 Rattlers Road, Brandon.  Erection of single-storey side extension for Mr & Mrs Byrne.                                                            Resolved : NO OBJECTION

F/2002/114 : 80 Crown Street, Brandon.  Erection of single-storey extension to rear and car port to side for Mr C Williams.                            Resolved : NO OBJECTION

F/2002/120 : Breckland Middle School, Crown Street, Brandon.   COUNTY APPLICATION.  Erection of an external lift shaft and provision of access ramps for the disabled.                                                                          Resolved : NO OBJECTION

F/2002/123 : Plot 5, Wimbledon Avenue, Brandon.  Erection of two-storey front extension to Industrial Unit including first floor over existing offices for Abels International Moving Services.                                                             Resolved : NO OBJECTION
F/2002/126 : 60 Spruce Drive, Brandon.  Resubmission: erection of two-storey side extension for Mr & Mrs Snazell.                                       Resolved : NO OBJECTION

TPO/02/07 : Off Green Road, Brandon.  Thin shelter belt (approx 90 Scots Pine) - TPO 1/1991.  Pine Shelter Belt.                                       Resolved : NO OBJECTION

Proposed : Cllr Saxby (from the Chair); seconded : Cllr Vant; CARRIED : unanimous.  Resolution Record No. BTC85/04/Mar/02: THAT BRANDON TOWN COUNCIL RESOLVES NO OBJECTION TO PLANNING APPLICATIONS F/2002/070, 081, 107, 110, 113, 114,  120, 123, 126 AND TOP/02/07 AS LISTED ABOVE.       

12.  APPROVAL OF ACCOUNTS FOR PAYMENT - PUBLIC ITEMS
Cllr Mrs Ahern was pleased to note that the Town Clerk had been able to reduce the Town Council’s telephone bill by 50% - i.e. to half that of the previous quarter’s figures - through more judicious usage.  Proposed : Cllr Silvester; seconded : Cllr Mrs Jureko; CARRIED : unanimous.  Resolution Record No. BTC86/04/Mar/02 : THAT THE PAYMENT LIST SUBMITTED FOR FEBRUARY 2002 BE APPROVED AS LISTED HEREUNDER.

CHEQUES FOR AUTHORIZATION 04 MARCH 2002 FULL TOWN COUNCIL MEETING    
                           
Pay                             Chq                                                           Net
No.    Date            Amount                   Supplier        No.           Total                     VAT
                           
241    Feb-02         £47.36    Finevale Services        466         £41.80                   £5.56
242    Feb-02       £479.18    East Cont Feb.02       467        £407.81                 £71.37
243    Feb-21       £112.00    Computerscene          468          £95.32                 £16.68
244    Feb-21         £95.47    TXU Energi                469          £90.92                  £4.55
245    Feb-21         £65.00    Burial Authorities        470          £65.00                  £0.00
246    Feb-21         £33.31    RCJ Bathrooms          471          £28.35                  £4.96
247    Feb-21         £66.28    TXU Energi                472          £63.12                  £3.16
248    Feb-21       £165.15    TXU Energi                473        £157.29                  £7.86
249    Feb-21       £147.09    SCC Supplies             474        £125.18                £21.91
250    Feb-21       £156.56    BT Tel bill                   475        £133.25                £23.31
251    Feb-21       £109.35    BT Fax bill                  476          £93.07                £16.28
252    Feb-21       £205.01    BT Gas bill                  477        £174.48                £30.53
253    Feb-21           £6.00    J & D Green               478            £6.00                  £0.00
254    Feb-21       £149.99    Sage payroll TWR      479        £127.65                £22.34
255    Feb-21         £30.00    SALC Risk Sem.        480          £30.00                  £0.00
256    Feb-21         £28.38    Canon p/copies           481         £24.15                   £4.23
257    Feb-21         £47.53    Viking Stationery        482          £40.45                   £7.08
258    Feb-27       £178.41    Foxley Estate              483        £151.84                £26.57
259    Feb-27       £284.64    HSS Hire Servic         484        £242.25                £42.39
260    Feb-27    £2,086.15    PW Loans Board       485     £2,086.15                   £0.00
262    Feb-04         £20.20    FHDC Garage            DD          £17.20                   £3.00
263    Feb-14       £929.34    TXU Energi Elec.        DD        £790.93              £138.41
264    Feb-17         £18.00    FHDC Rates               DD          £18.00                  £0.00
265    Feb-17       £281.00    FHDC Rates               DD        £281.00                  £0.00
Total c/f             £5,741.40                                                  £5,291.21              £450.19
                           


13.  CEMETERY MATTERS
A query had been received from various Funeral Directors seeking clarification in relation to the latest permitted Church and Graveside Ceremonies in Brandon with specific reference to the additional hours for which Town Keepers would be required.

The problem occurred mainly in the wintertime, when Town Keepers were working less hours per week, within their annual scheduled average of 37 hours per week.   If a funeral service took place in the late afternoon, on a Friday, it required the presence of both Town Keepers and involved several hours of overtime being paid by the Town Council.

Proposed : Cllr Silvester; seconded : Cllr Baldwin; CARRIED : 10 for, 0 against, 2 abstentions.  Resolution Record No. BTC87/04/Mar/02 : THAT LATER WORKING HOURS, BY THE TOWN KEEPERS, MAY BE NEGOTIATED FOR FUNERAL SERVICES IN WINTERTIME, WHEREUPON EXTRA CHARGES WILL APPLY FOR THE ADDITIONAL HOURS.

14.  NEW CEMETERY PURCHASE
Cllr Silvester declared an interest in this item and left the room at 8:39 pm.  It was agreed to confirm to the landowner of Hall Meadow that Brandon Town Council wished in principle to purchase an area of approximately three (3) acres, as already identified, subject to further negotiation on purchase price per acre and the results of a water table survey of that area.  It was agreed to discuss the item in full at the next meeting of the Full Brandon Town Council on Monday 08 April 2002 within the confidential section of the Meeting [Section 100(A)(4) Local Government Act 1972: CONTRACTS]  Proposed : Cllr Vant; seconded : Cllr Mrs Jones-Weetman; CARRIED : unanimous (less 1 outside).  Resolution Record No. BTC88/04/Mar/02:  THAT BRANDON TOWN COUNCIL CONFIRMS TO THE LANDOWNER OF HALL MEADOW, BRANDON, THAT IT WISHES IN PRINCIPLE TO PURCHASE THE PREVIOUSLY IDENTIFIED THREE ACRE SITE FOR PROVISION OF A NEW CEMETERY FOR BRANDON, SUBJECT TO FURTHER NEGOTIATION ON PURCHASE PRICE PER ACRE AND SATISFACTORY RESULTS OF A WATER TABLE SURVEY.

Cllr Silvester rejoined the Meeting at 8:45 p.m.

16.  BRANDON EAST AND WEST WARDS LIGHTING COMMITTEES
It was agreed to re-establish the Brandon East and West Wards Lighting Committees to report on the current status and future requirements of streetlighting in Brandon. 

Proposed : Cllr Saxby (from the Chair); seconded : Cllr Mrs Ahern; CARRIED : unanimous.   Resolution Record No. BTC89/04/Mar/02 : THAT THE EAST WARD LIGHTING COMMITTEE CONSIST OF THREE MEMBERS, NAMELY CLLRS MRS AHERN, MRS JUREKO AND VANT.

Proposed : Cllr Saxby (from the Chair); seconded : Cllr Mrs Jureko; CARRIED : unanimous.   Resolution Record No. BTC90/04/Mar/02 : THAT THE WEST WARD LIGHTING COMMITTEE CONSIST OF THREE MEMBERS, NAMELY CLLRS ASHLEY, BALDWIN AND SAXBY.

17.  CORRESPONDENCE FROM LINGHEATH TRUST
None received this month.

19.  CORRESPONDENCE RE. BRANDON REMEMBRANCE PLAYING FIELDS
None received this month.

20.  THETFORD ROAD PLAY AREA
The Chairman asked Cllr Silvester to report on the site visit held with the Town Clerk and a Contractor on 28 Feb 02.  This meeting had identified the work required to finish the project.  Written quotations were being sought from the required three different contractors and these would be provided for Council’s consideration, as soon as possible.  The job did not appear to present any difficulties and should be completed in the very near future.  Cllr Thorne enquired if it would be necessary to place any warning tape and signs at the location.  The Chairman and Cllr Silvester had discussed this with the Contractor and the consensus of opinion was that no such tape would be necessary.

21.  HM THE QUEEN’S GOLDEN JUBILEE CELEBRATIONS 03 JUNE 2002
Cllr Mrs Milner presented her notes of the last Working Group meeting, held on 27 Feb 02, to the Council for approval. She was pleased to report that projections for the Beacon were hopeful.  She commented upon the lack of support from other community organizations in the Town.  She had noticed that it was always the same, few people who took on the extra work of such an event; which was, after all, for the benefit of the whole community of Brandon.  Proposed : Cllr Mrs Milner; seconded : Cllr Mrs Jureko; CARRIED : unanimous.  Resolution Record No. BTC91/04/Mar/02: THAT THE REPORT OF THE 27 FEB 02 WORKING GROUP, FOR HM THE QUEEN’S GOLDEN JUBILEE CELEBRATIONS IN BRANDON, ON 03 JUNE 2002, BE APPROVED.

22.  BRANDON ORCHARD PROJECT FUNDING UPDATE
The Town Clerk had met with Cyril Brown and an application for funding had been submitted to the Market Towns Initiative within the required timescale.

23.  CONTRIBUTIONS TO NOTES ON 01 OCT 2001 FULL COUNCIL
This item to be deferred to the next Full Town Council Agenda on 08 April 2002.

24.  RESPONSE TO FHDC RE TOWN COUNCIL STATUS
FHDC had queried the status of Brandon as a Town Council.  The Town Clerk had provided the relevant evidence of the change and everything was now in order.  Copy correspondence already circulated to Councillors.

25.  DEFINITION OF STATUS OF TOWN COUNCIL
Following on from item 24. the Chairman informed the Meeting that he had recently been asked, by both Forest Heath District Council and also by Thetford Town Council, why Brandon, as a Town Council, did not have a Mayor and Deputy Mayor.  Cllr Baldwin reminded the Council that this option had previously been discussed.  He was concerned that the people of Brandon might perceive such a declaration as a waste of money; although there would, in fact, be no cost implication to change the titles.  Cllr Vant  was concerned that undeserved allegations of “delusions of grandeur” might be levelled at the Town Council.  Proposed : Cllr Silvester; seconded: Cllr Vant; CARRIED : unanimous.  Resolution Record No. BTC92/04/Mar/02 : THAT BRANDON TOWN COUNCIL MAINTAINS THE STATUS QUO WITH THE TITLES CHAIRMAN AND VICE-CHAIRMAN.

The Chairman explained that the wording on the current Regalia was incorrect.
Proposed : Cllr Ms Bourton; seconded : Cllr Mrs Ahern; CARRIED : 8 for, 1 against, 3 abstentions.  Resolution Record No. BTC93/04/Mar/02 : THAT QUOTATIONS BE OBTAINED FOR THE PURCHASE OF NEW CIVIC REGALIA WITH CORRECT WORDING AND CHAIN.

26.  RESPONSE TO FHDC RE REMEMBRANCE PLAYING FIELDS
FHDC had sought the Town Council’s commitment to the FHDC proposals for the management of the Sports and Social Club at Brandon Remembrance Playing Fields.  This commitment had been given in principle subject to review at the end of the agreed twelve-months trial period.  Copy correspondence already circulated to Councillors.

27.  TOWN CLERK’S REPORT - CODE OF CONDUCT SEMINAR
The Town Clerk had attended an official SALC Seminar on the introduction of the new Parish Councils’ Model Code of Conduct 2001 and had produced detailed notes for Councillors.  Copy report approved and forms part of the Minutes of this Meeting.
There would be a further, official SALC Seminar for Councillors, at FHDC District Offices, in Mildenhall, on Thursday 28 March 2002.  Three alternative sessions would be offered and Councillors were requested to advise the Town Clerk of when they could attend.  

28.  CORRESPONDENCE FROM PRICEWATERHOUSECOOPER
None received this month.

29.  APPLICATION FOR EXTENSION TO FOOTPATH 5
A letter from Mr M Carter had been received and previously circulated to all Councillors.  Cllr Vant rose to comment on the proposed circular route which Mr Carter had offered, as an alternative to the extension to Footpath 5; Cllr Vant advised that he understood that that offer had subsequently been withdrawn. Cllr Vant informed the Meeting that the County Solicitor had not prepared the SCC Report; it had been prepared by the Western Area Rights-Of-Way officer.  Mr Andrews was happy that, on the evidence that was presented to the SCC Committee, that Committee had reached the correct conclusion regarding the application for Extension to Footpath 5.  Cllr Vant expressed concern at the allegation in Mr Carter’s letter in respect of “aggravated trespass”.  Cllr Vant pointed out that “aggravated trespass” was a very serious allegation to make as it was an offence implying the use of violence.  Cllr Vant wished Brandon Town Council to write to Mr Carter and request an explanation of this allegation.  Cllr Vant stated that there had been a trespass upon Mr Jolly’s property, for which he had later apologised; Mr Jolly not having been there at the time the shortcut was taken anyway.  Cllr Vant concluded by informing the Meeting that Mr Eric HUNN had lodged an appeal against the decision of the SCC Committee and awaited a fair hearing.  Proposed : Cllr Vant; seconded : Cllr Mrs Ahern; CARRIED : 8 for, 0 aginst, 4 abstentions.  Resolution Record No. BTC94/04/Mar/02 :  THAT BRANDON TOWN COUNCIL WRITES TO MR MICHAEL CARTER, IN RESPONSE TO HIS LETTER IN RELATION TO FOOTPATH 5, BRANDON, SEEKING EXPLANATION OF HIS ALLEGATIONS THEREIN CONTAINED PARTICULARLY THE “AGGRAVATED TRESPASS”.

30.  PROPOSED CLOSURE OF DR HADLEY-BROWN’S SURGERY
The Chairman reported on the Public Meeting, which he had attended in the company of other Councillors, and had been pleased at the public response in excess of 400 people in attendance.  There had been some disappointment expressed at the absence of their MP, Mr Richard Spring, who had been unable to cancel a previous engagement in Haverhill.  Cllr Mrs Milner had been appalled to discover that the people of Weeting had not been consulted, or even advised, as to the Surgery closure proposals, despite the fact that the Health Authority had known of the matter in Autumn 2001.  She was concerned at the number of elderly people at the meeting who were extremely worried about the prospect of being left without health care cover.
Proposed : Cllr Mrs Milner; seconded : Cllr Vant; CARRIED : 9 for, 0 against, 3 abstentions.  Resolution Record No. BTC95/04/Mar/02 : THAT BRANDON TOWN COUNCIL WRITES TO JOANNA SPICER, OF WEST SUFFOLK PRIMARY CARE TRUST, TO EXPRESS ITS CONCERN AND DISMAY AT THE LACK OF TIMELY INFORMATION PROVIDED TO THE PATIENTS’ OF DR HADLEY-BROWN’S MEDICAL SURGERY, HIGH STREET, BRANDON.

31. OSCAR FABER BRANDON BUS FACILITIES’ STUDY
Cllr Thorne, Council’s Transport Liaison Representative, reported that was currently working, in partnership with County Cllr Bishop, on a survey to establish the needs of the people of Brandon with regard to Bus Services.

32.  PROVISION OF CORRECT CIVIC REGALIA
Already addressed under item 25.

33.  PROVISION OF HIGH SPEED ADSL, INTERNET CONNECTION
Entered by Cllr Vant as Resolution Notice No. 83 dated 08 Feb 02.  In support of his proposal Cllr Vant explained that BT is claiming there is no demand for high speed ADSL, Internet connection in the area.  In fact, BT’s own Website is inaccessible so it is impossible to vote for this service or even register requirements for its provision.  Cllr Vant would like the Town Council to write to BT and the ADSL Pressure Group (Mr Brain) requesting provision of this service for Brandon.  The Chairman added that it could be eighteen months before the service is provided for Brandon which is too long when it could be used as a specific benefit to attract businesses to Brandon.  He is aware of a company which might relocate its business away from Brandon because of this issue.   Proposed : Cllr Vant; seconded : Cllr Saxby; CARRIED : 11 for, 0 against, 1 abstention.  Resolution Record No. BTC96/04/Mar/02 : THAT BRANDON TOWN COUNCIL RESOLVES TO WRITE TO BRITISH TELECOM TO REQUEST THE PROVISION OF HIGH SPEED ADSL, INTERNET CONNECTION FOR BRANDON.

34.  ADOPTION OF PARISH COUNCILS’ CODE OF CONDUCT 2001
Already covered under Item 27.

35.  RESOLUTION TO EXCLUDE THE PRESS AND PUBLIC
Proposed : Cllr Saxby (from the Chair); seconded : Cllr Thorne; CARRIED : unanimous.  Resolution Record No. BTC97/04/Mar/02 :

THAT IN VIEW OF THE CONFIDENTIAL NATURE OF THE BUSINESS ABOUT TO BE TRANSACTED IT IS ADVISABLE IN THE PUBLIC INTEREST THAT THE PUBLIC AND PRESS BE TEMPORARILY EXCLUDED AND THEY ARE INSTRUCTED TO WITHDRAW FOR THE FOLLOWING REASONS: STAFFING ISSUES; CONTRACT DISCUSSIONS; INSURANCE POLICY QUOTATIONS.  [Section 100(A)(4) LGA 1972]

36.  STAFFING ISSUES WITHIN CONFIDENTIAL MINUTES 04 FEB 02
The confidential Minutes of the Full Brandon Town Council Meeting of Monday 04 February 2002 were accepted and signed as a true record within Item 9.

37. RETROSPECTIVE APPROVAL OF BEREAVEMENT LEAVE
Proposed : Cllr Thorne; seconded : Cllr Mrs Ahern; CARRIED : unanimous.  Resolution Record No. BTC 98/04/Mar/02 : THAT STAFF BEREAVEMENT LEAVE TAKEN BE APPROVED.  Condolences were also extended to Cllr Mrs Milner on her recent loss. 

38.  TXU ENERGI CONTRACT RENEWAL
Proposed : Cllr Mrs Ahern; seconded : Cllr Thorne; CARRIED : unanimous.  Resolution Record No. BTC99/04/Mar/02 : THAT THE TXU ENERGI CONTRACT BE RENEWED FOR A FURTHER TWELVE MONTHS.

39.  INSURANCE POLICY RENEWAL
Proposed : Cllr Baldwin; seconded : Cllr Mrs Ahern; CARRIED : unanimous.  Resolution Record No. BTC100/04/Mar/02 : THAT THE INSURANCE RENEWAL QUOTATION BY CORNHILL INSURANCE BE ACCEPTED AND THE POLICY RENEWED FOR A FURTHER TWELVE MONTHS.

40.  SAVINGS ON GAS AND ELECTRICITY SERVICES
The Town Clerk produced documentation to illustrate 5% savings which could be made by payment of the utilities by Direct Debit.  With current Bank Deposit Interest Rates at very low rates it provided a better financial benefit to save 5% on payments.
Proposed : Cllr Mrs Ahern; seconded : Cllr Vant; CARRIED : unanimous.  Resolution Record No. BTC101/04/Mar/02 : THAT THE TOWN CLERK BE AUTHORIZED TO ARRANGE DIRECT DEBIT PAYMENT FACILITIES FOR THE GAS AND ELECTRICITY UTILITIES OF BRANDON TOWN COUNCIL WITH IMMEDIATE EFFECT.

41.  APPROVAL OF 2002 HOLIDAY LEAVE DATES FOR TOWN CLERK
Proposed : Cllr Saxby (from the Chair); seconded : Cllr Mrs Ahern; CARRIED : unanimous.  Resolution Record No. BTC102/04/Mar/02 : THAT THE TOWN CLERK’S 2002 HOLIDAY LEAVE DATES OF 25, 26 + 29 APRIL, 01, 02 + 03 MAY, 12, 13, 14, 15 + 16 AUGUST, 29 NOVEMBER, 02, 03, 04, 05, 06, 09, 10, 11, 12, + 13 DECEMBER 2002 BE APPROVED [20 + 2 DAYS IN TOTAL].
 
42.  COUNCILLORS AS UNPAID DEPUTY TOWN CLERKS
The Town Clerk wondered if any Councillors would be interested in volunteering as Deputy Town Clerks, in her absence.  Councillors asked for time to consider.

43.  STAFF TRAINING FOR 2002 AND BEYOND
The Town Clerk was tasked to investigate suitable Training Courses for future staff development in line with current and proposed future legislation in this regard.  This item was deferred to the next meeting of the Full Brandon Town Council.

Meeting closed at 9:40pm.  Next Meeting as per approved Schedule Monday 08 April 2002 (Full Town Council).


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