Annual Parish Meeting Minutes

The following are the minutes of the 2016 Annual Parish Meeting, which have been formally approved at the 2017 meeting:-

20th April, 2016
The Annual Parish Meeting held at 7.30p.m. at Mill Lane Centre, Bradwell (draft minutes).
PRESENT: Councillors Howlett (Chairman), Comer, Joel, Macdonald, Shaw and Wells; Parish Clerk J Caborn; County Councillor A Grey; Borough Councillor C Annison; Mrs M Humpleby and Mrs M Hilton (Bradwell Community Woodland Project), Mrs J Waters (Saturday Superstars), Mr B Haylett (press correspondent), and members of the public.

1) APOLOGIES – Councillors Francis, Johnson and Wainwright; Borough Councillor H Wainwright.

2) MINUTES OF MEETING 22nd April 2015: The minutes were accepted as a true record and signed by the Chairman.

3) PARISH COUNCIL REPORT: Reference was made to the report circulated via the latest edition of ‘Bradwellian’, and a number of issues were highlighted, including the progress of the Persimmon development in South Bradwell, and particularly about the routing of foul and waste water discharges from these properties. The discharges from the 150 ‘phase 1’ properties will be routed via the Morton Crescent pumping station, despite fears that ‘foul water’ flooding suffered by some existing Bradwell properties will thus be exacerbated – although promises have been made that discharges from the other properties will be routed via Oriel Avenue, it has been difficult to obtain ‘guarantees’ that this will actually be the case.

Reference was also made to the planting of trees on Gipsies Green, installation of seats near the war memorial, the ‘act of remembrance’ carried out at the war memorial last year, which will be repeated on Remembrance Sunday this year, and the recent ‘rubbish collection’ which was once again very well used. A comment was made that the amount of money that the council spent on ‘training’ seemed small – it was explained that the training of new Parish Councillors is carried out ‘in house’, with an input both from experienced members of the council, and from the clerk, who attends good training and update sessions provided by the Society of Local Council Clerks, of which he is a member.

4) COUNTY COUNCILLORS’ AND BOROUGH COUNCILLORS’ REPORTS: County Councillor Grey gave a brief outline of his work at the council and meetings attended – he referred to the input that he and other members of the County and Borough Councils have had concerning the routing of foul and waste water discharges from the Persimmon properties. He further mentioned the general pressure from the Government for new properties to be built throughout the country, the ‘devolution of powers’ proposal which would, if agreed, involve the creation of an elected mayor for Norfolk, Suffolk and possibly Cambridgeshire, and difficulties faced by the James Paget Hospital in recouping monies owed for treatment given to foreign nationals. He would like to see a reinstatement of several local bus routes which have been discontinued recently, and the replacement of the County’s ‘cabinet’ governance system by a ‘committee’ system, and he will continue his efforts towards making Bradwell a good place to live in.

Borough Councillor Annison stated, further to the foul/waste water issues already referred to, that Anglian Water has approved proposals to upgrade all three local pumping stations (Morton Crescent, Belton Stepshort and Burgh Castle). He thanked all members of the Parish Council for their support, and he will continue to attend council meetings regularly.

5) POLICE REPORT: It was noted that once again no Police Officer was in attendance, and that there has in fact been a significant reduction in Bradwell Safer Neighbourhood Team staffing levels, and that the local PC now has to oversee policing in five villages.

6) BRADWELL COMMUNITY LIBRARY/READING ROOM TRUST REPORT: No representative of the Trust was present. Mr P Harrison, who is now managing the library service, has reported that it is reasonably well used, largely by elderly people but also by parents with children, there are five new members but some have been lost. The users appear happy, there is a good selection of books, and new stock is regularly received.

7) AMIS MEMORIAL TRUST REPORT: Councillor Macdonald described the work of this Trust, and outlined its history, following the untimely death of Mr R Amis in 1987 – it has raised money for Woodlands Middle (now Primary) School over many years. That school was originally chosen as it used to be the case that nearly all Bradwell children attended it, and it would spread the donations too thinly if more than one school was to benefit.

Councillor J Francis, a member of the original committee since 1987, is now standing down, to be replaced by a family-connected member – Councillor Macdonald proposed a vote of thanks to Councillor Francis for his input into the work of the Trust over many years. The Parish Council Chairman is also automatically a member of the committee – Councillor Howlett has served in that capacity for twenty years, and will stand down at the end of this ‘council year’, and Councillor Macdonald therefore proposed a vote of thanks to Councillor Howlett for his input into the work of the Trust over that time period. Councillor Howlett thanked Councillor Macdonald for his many years of service to the Trust. It was agreed unanimously that Councillor Macdonald should continue to serve on the Trust’s Advisory Committee for a further three years.

a) Poor Marsh Trust - Rev’d C Tinker has taken over responsibility for this charity, and he is seeking to appoint other Trustees from the members of his church.

b) Bradwell Community Woodland Project - It is now ten years since the ‘Generation Wood’ was created, and a memorial tree has been planted by students who planted the trees as children ten years ago. Some of the trees have recently been coppiced, to ‘open them out’ and thus hopefully reduce vandalism – although it is rather untidy at present, it will not be ‘tidied’ until later in the year when bird nesting activity has finished. It is hoped that more wild flowers will grow. New volunteers will be welcome. Mrs Humpleby and Mrs Hilton thanked the council for its ongoing support.

c) Mill Lane Centre - Councillor Joel and Mr Callan reported that the Centre is ‘going from strength to strength, it has a good manager and assistant manager, and that for the first time in seven years it will be necessary to increase rents. The chairman recalled that Mr Callan had been the chairman of the original Centre committee, and that his daughter had been the manager, and that they had been able to get it finished in time.

d) ‘Saturday Superstars’ - Mrs Waters gave a brief report regarding this club, for children and teenagers with Additional Needs – a 21 year old called Laura still attends, as she says ‘it does things I really like’.

a) A request was made for a litter bin to be installed near Lords Lane, to enable volunteers who pick up dumped rubbish from the path adjacent to the nearby allotments site to have somewhere to deposit it. Borough Councillor Annison agreed to make such a request. A request for the Borough Council to clear litter from nearby Cley Road was also reiterated.

b) It was agreed that a submission asking for the Bradwell Community Library building to be ‘listed’ should be made. The Parish Council has already requested that this, and the neighbouring Community Centre building, be registered as ‘assets of community value’, to give the Parish Council an opportunity of purchasing either building, in the event that they are ever put up for sale.

c) It was recalled that the Parish Council was once responsible for funding its local police officer – and that it has more recently declined a request to fund a ‘local’ PCSO.

Councillor Wells proposed a vote of thanks to Councillor Howlett, for all his work as chairman over the past twenty years. He further suggested that Councillor Howlett’s earlier comment, that the work of the chairman was ‘easy’, as the council committees ‘did all the work’, was not actually true. Councillor Howlett concluded the meeting by reading a statement that he had prepared earlier (copy attached, overleaf) expressing his deep disappointment that only eight residents have agreed to be nominated for the 15 seats on Bradwell Parish Council. The meeting closed at 8.25p.m.