Minutes 14th April 2023

Minutes Uploaded on April 26, 2023

Minutes of Castor Parish Council Meeting

Held on Friday 14th April, 2023 at 7.30pm in the Cedar Centre


  • PRESENT: Neil Boyce (Chairman), Cllr. Richard Anker, Cllr. William Baxter, Cllr. Steve Davies, Cllr. Fiona Rowlands, Cllr David Shaw, Cllr. Terry Young. Four members of the public were also in attendance.


  • APOLOGIES – Jane Greene tendered her apologies as unable to make this meeting. In addition, Cllr. Dennis Surgeon had given apologies as being unwell and unable to attend the meeting. Given that Cllr Surgeon would be unlikely to be able to attend for the next few months we RESOLVED to grant Cllr Surgeon extended leave of absence for the next 6 months.

Proposed Cllr. Boyce Seconded Cllr. Baxter


  • DECLARATIONS OF INTEREST – Young declared an interest, as an allotment holder, in the matters on the agenda related to the allotments.


  • MINUTES OF PREVIOUS MEETINGS – We unanimously RESOLVED to approve the minutes of the previous meeting, held on Monday 2nd March 2023 -. These were duly signed by the chairman.

Proposed Cllr. Fiona Rowlands and seconded Cllr. David Shaw


  • Matters arising from the previous minutes. – None


  • Public Forum – None


  • PLANNING and associated matters


  1. Joint Community Action Plan (JCAP) – We agreed the revised draft JCAP and noted that there are no immediate actions required at this time but the JCAP will be reviewed again at the next joint meeting with Ailsworth Parish Council.


  1. Neighbourhood Planning (NP) – David Shaw reported no change to the current position regarding review by the city council who will be progressing the Local Plan. Cllr. Shaw undertook to monitor the position over coming months


  1. Status report – The clerk reported that the application in respect of the pagoda at 10 Allotment Lane had again been REFUSED.


  1. Planning applications


  1. 23/00111/R4FUL – Woodlands, Splash Lane – We considered this application for the second time in the light of observations made at the public meeting held in the primary School. Cllr Shaw advised us that the application was against planning policies set out in our Neighbourhood plan, set out in the Local Plan and even set out in the National Planning Policy Framework (NPPF). We accepted Cllr. Shaw’s detailed observations, and RESOLVED to delegate to Cllr. Shaw and the Clerk the wording of our detailed objection to this planning application.

Proposed Cllr. Terry Young seconded Cllr. William Baxter


  1. 2300241/CTR – 3 Farm View – Tree reduction work in a very small garden – We have no observations to make on this application.


  • 23/00313/FUL – 4 Polls Yard – conversion of existing garage and barn into an independent dwelling. Parish Council raised no observations regarding compliance with planning policies. However, we did ask if planners could verify the original consent for Polls Yard to establish whether any restrictions on the number of dwellings were applied in the original planning consent for the development of Polls yard.


  1. Woodlands – Standing Item –
    1. Land swap proposal – No response to our formal approach.
    2. Tennis Courts and Bowling Green. No response to our formal approach.
  • Anticipated Planning application by the Tennis Club – we have no further indications of any planning application being forthcoming from the Castor and Ailsworth Tennis Club




  1. Allotment Water Supply – we considered the request for an additional water tap to be provided on the Allotment. We discussed the potential costs and possible disruption to other allotment holders and agreed to take no further action. We asked the Clerk to write to the allotment holder with our decision.


  1. Metal Detection on Council owned land – The metal detectorists to whom we had granted a licence to detect on our land, gave a presentation of their finds and the location of those finds. We were impressed by the professional way that the finds had been recorded and researched. We RESOLVED to extend the licence for a further 12 months.

Proposed Cllr. Neil Boyce     Seconded Cllr. William Baxter


  1. Tweentowns – Councillors raised concerns over rubbish on the site and the state of the churned up ground by the access to Tweentowns. The Clerk Was asked to write to the tenant requesting the tenant to take remedial action


  • HIGHWAYS – Clay Lane/ Cow Lane Bridleway. We noted the current state of the Bridleway caused by the use of a four by four whilst the Bridleway was wet and asked the Clerk to obtain clarification on any restrictions that could be applied to access by certain types of vehicles


  • Community MATTERS –


  1. Joint Parish Liaison Group (JPLG) – We approved the draft agenda circulated by John Hodder for the meeting to be held on 16th


  1. Langdyke Trust – Nature Recovery Project (NRP) – The Vice chairman reported on a planned open day scheduled for 20th We considered the proposed work to be carried out to the access to the Splash Lane Paddock and recommended the use of MOT Grade 1 crushed concrete as more hard wearing material and also approved provision of a new gate to allow access for irrigation purposes.


  1. Good Neighbours scheme (GNS) – The Chairman reported that the Good Neighbours scheme warm hubs were going well and the scheme had recruited over 70 volunteers. GNS were also seeking funding of around £250000 which would secure the future of the scheme and also avoid requiring further funding for warm hubs from those parish councils involved.


  1. Mayors Charity Award – The chairman reported, an award to Castor of £1000 and a similar award to Ailsworth to provide some transport to residents in the absence of a bus service, We RESOLVED to authorise the Chairman to liaise with a local taxi service to arrange a contract for provision of a weekly service whilst the funding lasted.

Proposed Cllr. Neil Boyce     Seconded Cllr. Terry Young


  1. Commemorative Copper Beech Tree – We had previously been informed of approval of our application for the tree to be formally recorded as part of the Queens Canopy and we now RESOLVED to purchase the official Queens canopy Plaque and a more explanatory sign. Cllr. Baxter undertook to draft the wording for the more explanatory sign and to circulate that to all parish councillors for approval

Proposed Cllr. Neil Boyce     Seconded Cllr. David Shaw


  1. Swim Run Event – We recognised that this event is well run and marshalled and that there had been no issues in previous years. We accordingly RESOLVED to permit parish council owned land to be included in the event course again in 2023.

Proposed Cllr. Neil Boyce     Seconded Cllr. William Baxter


  1. Verge Bulb Planting – Cllr. Baxter suggested that in celebration of K900 residents might be persuaded to plant several hundreds of bulbs in Grass verges and we asked the Clerk to write to Peterborough City Council seeking permission to augment the planting in the verges within the parish.


  1. Litter Pick – We noted that the parish was relatively light on litter and deferred arranging a community Litter Pick until later in the year.


  1. Standing Stones & Information Boards – Nothing further to report at this stage about the standing stones board, still in the hands of the graphic designer. We also noted that the Vivacity erected information boards were in need of replacement; costs in the region of £480 to cover both signs. We asked the Clerk to write to our ward councillor to see if he would be prepared to use the leadership funds for the purpose.


  • Governance Matters
  1. Operation Golden Orb – were informed that the commemorative Mugs had arrived today and the chairman undertook to keep these until such time as the distribution to children of the local school and playgroup could be arranged.


  1. Annual Governance & Accountability Return (AGAR)


  1. Section 1 Annual Governance Statement – We had before us the online version of the statement and considered each observation in turn. We RESOLVED to confirm our positive agreement to all the observations noting that we do not have Petty cash neither do we hold any trust funds.


  1. Internal Audit and Financial Statements – The Clerk as Responsible Financial Officer informed us that the accounts for the financial year 2022/23 had been completed and would be sent to the internal auditor and presented to the May meeting along with the internal auditor report.


  • Accounting Software – The Clerk advised us that for the future we should consider acquiring appropriate accounting software. There are two Main suppliers of software specifically aimed at local councils. On consideration of the information and costings from each supplier we RESOLVED to instruct the Clerk to acquire Receipts and Payments, single user version, of Rialtas Alpha software at an upfront cost of £825, including the first year of annual support at £175 per annum.

Proposed Cllr. Neil Boyce     Seconded Cllr. Fiona Rowlands


  1. Armed Forces Covenant – The Chairman explained the purpose of signing up to the Covenant and we readily RESOLVED to Commit ourselves to meet the objectives of this statement

Proposed Cllr. Fiona Rowlands     Seconded Cllr. Steve Davies


  • official announcements & CORRESPONDENCE. –


  1. Royal Oak, Castor – We noted that we had previously applied for this establishment to be registered as an asset of Community Value (AoCV), and that the process had not been completed. Cllr David Shaw undertook to carry out further work to progress this application


  1. A47 road works – Terry Young reported that he and Cllr. Baxter had attended a briefing session on the proposed dualling from Sutton roundabout to Wansford. We Thanked Cllr. Young for the report and will monitor progress of the work which should commence in the Autumn of this year.


  • Future Agenda Items
    1. Review of Cricket Club Lease


  • Date of next meeting – to be determined – subject to outcome of the public meeting on the Woodlands Planning applications and the availability of Cllr. Shaw and availability of the Cedar centre

Clerk & RFO 26th April 2023

Meeting Closed at 10.19pm