Minutes of Castor Parish Council Meeting
Held on Thursday 7th September 2023 at 7.00pm in the Cedar Centre
- PRESENT: Neil Boyce (Chairman), Cllr. Richard Anker, Cllr. William Baxter, Cllr. Steve Davies, Cllr. Fiona Rowlands, Cllr David Shaw, Cllr. Dennis Surgeon Cllr. Terry Young. Three members of the public were also in attendance.
- APOLOGIES – Cllr Baxter had apologised for being unable to attend the early part of the meeting but arrived after planning matters were considered.
- DECLARATIONS OF INTEREST – Richard Anker & Terry Young declared interest in Allotment matters on the agenda as Allotment holders.
- Co-option to Vacancy – We asked Mr Gary Elliott to leave the room whilst we discussed his application to be co-opted on to the parish council. After careful consideration we unanimously RESOLVED to invite Mr Elliott to accept co-option to the parish council with immediate effect and he duly accepted and took part in the remainder of the meeting.
Proposed Cllr. Neil Boyce Seconded Cllr. David Shaw
- MINUTES OF PREVIOUS MEETINGS – We unanimously RESOLVED to approve the minutes of the previous meeting, held on Friday 1st June 2023 -. These were duly signed by the chairman.
Proposed Cllr. Steve Davies and seconded Cllr. David Shaw
- Matters arising from the previous minutes. – None
- Public Forum – None raised at this point in the meeting
- PLANNING and associated matters
- Local Plan Review Consultation – David Shaw reported on the public meeting held in the primary school hall on the previous evening. The event had been extremely well attended (estimated to be in excess of 120), with seating for over 80, and many others standing around the hall and outside unable to find space in the hall. We thanked Cllr. Shaw and Martin Chilcott for their presentations to the meeting. Cllr. Shaw had summarised the points raised at the meeting and had prepared a draft response for the parish council to submit to the planning policy team at the city council. We RESOLVED to instruct the Clerk to submit our formal response based on that provided by Cllr. Shaw.
Proposed Cllr. Neil Boyce Seconded Cllr. Fiona Rowlands
- Joint Community Action Plan (JCAP) – We deferred consideration of this matter to our October meeting.
- Neighbourhood Planning (NP) – The Chairman reported that he had written to the city council regarding support for neighbourhood planning and awaited a response. He agreed to take the matter up again with the NP Officer.
- Status report – The clerk reported on four planning applications permitted since our last meeting and the revised status report had been published on the parish council website. We noted the content of the revised report.
- Planning applications –
- 23/01025/TRE – High & Over, Peterborough Road – T4? &group G2 T1 Ash – remove to ground level we instructed the clerk to seek clarification of which tree(s) are affected as it is unclear from the application and may affect the street scene. We also noted that there was no mention in the application of replanting.
- 23/01051/HHFUL – 1 Farm View – Demolition of existing garage and Conservatory, Proposed alterations to existing house and a single storey extension. We noted that the proposed works would be highly visible from the road over a low wall and will, in our opinion, affect the street scene. We consider that the visual effect of the finished materials shown on the plans are unacceptable. If approved the external finish must match the existing building in accordance with planning policies set out in the Supplementary Planning Documents for Design and Development in Selected villages.
- Woodlands – Standing Item – Shaw reported the latest update from the Tennis Club and we noted that the Nene Park Trust application had still not been determined and we agreed that the Clerk and Cllr. Shaw should draft a letter seeking a progress report on the application.
- LAND & ALLOTMENTS:
- Cricket Club –
- Scoreboard location – representatives of the cricket club were present and with their consent we agreed to the siting of the electronic scoreboard by the corner of the existing practice nets.
- Proposed lease –
- The chairman reported that he had negotiated with James Munn of Buckles (who had dealt with a similar lease with the Orton Longueville cricket club) to act on behalf of the parish council for a reduced fee of £1000 + Vat subject to minimal changes to the draft lease as circulated. We RESOLVED to Appoint James Munn on the basis of the terms negotiated.
Proposed Cllr. Fiona Rowlands Seconded Cllr. Terry Young
- We discussed, at length, the lease as drafted with the representatives of the cricket club and noted their preference for a 40-year lease with a mutual break clause at 25 years and every 5 years thereafter. A stumbling block in the draft lease is the prohibition to store flammable fuel and the need to run a generator and fuel mowers. We also noted that the cricket club, as currently constituted, did not have trustees. We agreed to seek the advice on these matters from the solicitor acting on our behalf in respect of concluding the lease with the Club.
- Allotment Tenancy Agreement – The Clerk had circulated a suggested revised lease based on our earlier consideration of a polytunnel erected on allotment plot. After further consideration and noting the potential risk to the public of temporary structures on allotments we concluded that the revised leases should prohibit greenhouses and polytunnels, without exception. The existing clause requiring prior approval of permanent structures to remain. We also considered the possibility of a water harvester being erected on the allotment, and concluded, that in accordance with the clause on permanent structures we would need to approve the design, before construction. Furthermore, we would also require proof of Public Liability insurance from the applicant.
- Allotment Lane Post – The chairman undertook to seek a response from the city council
- Parish Councillors observations regarding Land & Allotment – None
- HIGHWAYS – No Matters considered
- Community MATTERS –
- Joint Parish Liaison Group (JPLG) – We agreed to defer further consideration to our October meeting
- Langdyke Trust – Nature Recovery Project (NRP) – Fiona Rowlands reported that work had started on construction of the water harvester in the paddock on Splash Lane. We also agreed to negotiate with Peterborough Environment City Trust (PECT) terms for using Tweentowns as an additional Nature recovery space and for tree planting.
- Standing Stones & Information Boards – there was no update from the position recorded in our previous minutes.
- Playground re-instatement – The Chairman reported that Kompan will start work on 5th October to replace the fire damaged equipment and the play park will be closed for a two-week period for that purpose. Kompan will supply separate quotes for additional works on the slide, ground levelling and gate. Subject to agreement of the costs involved those works will be carried out on a later date.
- Parish Walk – we received a comprehensive report from Cllr. Baxter on issues arising from the parish walk. Cllr. Davies provided an analysis of those matters to be dealt with by the city council or by a parish council appointed contractor. We agreed that Cllr, Davies in conjunction with the chairman would refine the list and construct a tender document for discussion at our October meeting.
- Driving Standards within the village. Anker reported on some personal observations of poor standards and Cllr. Boyce undertook to discuss enforcement matters with Clare George at the City Council
- Short term CCTV rental – The Clerk reported that a webinar is to be held on 22nd September to demonstrate deployable CCTV. The Chairman undertook to attend the webinar and report back to the October meeting
- D-Day 2024 – we considered the non-committal response on behalf of the events organising group in the village and asked the Clerk to at least register our participation in the national Beacon lighting event on 6th June 2024.
- Community Transport – We noted that the £1000 from Castor & Ailsworth Parish Councils had still to be passed to the “Good Neighbours” Scheme (GNS) to co-ordinate transport requests. The chairman undertook to provide the Clerk with the New bank account details for GNS
- Governance Matters –
- Banking arrangements – We noted the balances held in our accounts at Unity Trust Bank and Metro bank on 95day notice. We considered the balances available for immediate access at Unity trust bank were adequate for the time being, subject to arrangements for settling the insurance Claim and anticipated invoice from Kompan. We agreed to continue monitoring at future meetings.
- Insurance renewal. The clerk reported on quotations received from three sources. We agreed to ask Cllr. Surgeon to examine the quote ss received and RESOLVED to delegate to the Clerk, Chairman and Cllr. Surgeon to agree which insurance quote to accept for the council’s insurance commencing 1st October 2023.
Proposed Cllr. Neil Boyce Seconded Cllr. Richard Anker
- Co-option to Vacancy – We unanimously RESOLVED to co-opt, with immediate effect, Mr Gary Elliott to fill the vacancy on the parish council caused by the resignation of Mrs Jane Greene.
Proposed Cllr. Neil Boyce Seconded Cllr. Fiona Rowlands
- official announcements & CORRESPONDENCE. –
- PKF Littlejohn – The Clerk reported that the External auditor PKF Littlejohn had signed off the Annual Return with no matters to be brought to the attention of the parish council. We noted that the Clerk had published the statutory “Notice of Completion of audit”.
- Swim Run October event – The Chairman reported on the late request from the organisers to stage this event including some use of parish council land and an additional request to site information gazebos on Ferryfields near Milton bridge. We gave our unanimous approval to both requests
- Future Agenda Items
- Review of Cricket Club Lease
- Land management tender to the October meeting
- Date of next meeting – scheduled to take place on 5th October at 7pm in the Cedar Centre
Clerk & RFO 20th September 2023
Meeting Closed at 10.00pm