Minutes – Swainsthorpe Parish Council Meeting – 4th March 2013







Councillors: Janet Flower (Chairperson); Tony Talby (Clerk); Doreen Holman;                  David Chapman; Glynis Frost; District Councillor Laura Webster

Two members of the public also present.


The minutes of the last meeting of the 28th January 2013 having been posted and circulated were taken as read, passed and signed by the chairperson.


The matter of the Council’s participation in the “Partnership” magazine was discussed further to the discussion of the last meeting. Items are being submitted and printed as usual.


Clr. Tony Talby presented the Planning Report in the absence of a planning officer.

There have been further drawings received with regard to the development of the Dun Cow, some of which seem to be retrospective, pertaining to works being carried out, plus architectural drawings for the extension which will need full planning permission.


The finance report was given by Tony Talby.

Balances for the current account of £2,690.00 and for the deposit account of £13,608.00 were reported. Payment to Brian Lincoln for grass cutting, previously discussed, has been increased to £600. He also agreed to mow the village green although no price was settled upon.

Tony Talby also spoke about comments from the Charity Trust about the outside toilet. From the point of view of security as well as the look of it the suggestion is that it should be somehow fenced in. The first suggestion being fencing, eight feet high or six feet with a base, which would be funded by the Parish Council. Questions were addressed to Paul Frost as an advisor about various possibilities including having a roofed construction. The idea of trelliswork was discounted as this would not provide security. David Chapman spoke about the concerns that the church authorities would have in this case, including digging holes where there is a graveyard and will enquire about the thoughts and possible regulations concerned. Tony Talby said that the probability was that four posts would be needed. What he was asking for at this point was agreement in principle that the Parish Council would be agreeable to funding the project. Paul Frost estimated the cost per fence panel at £16 – £18 and a rough calculation was attempted. For convenience a figure of one thousand pounds was mooted. Janet Flower proposed setting aside such a figure but that this would be very much dependent not only on the approval of the church authorities but also on the time-scale they were envisioning with regard to the final stage of development of the project. As this was for an extension to the church which could include an inside toilet it could very much affect the decision on how much money it would be reasonable to spend. Doreen Holman asked whether this was known when the original costings were done to which the reply from Tony Talby was that finances had been very tight and that they had been working with what seemed possible. The motion to set aside money in principle was proposed by Janet Flower, seconded by Tony Talby and carried subject to all conditions.


David Chapman began by saying that, further to the previous discussion, the Charity Trust and the Parochial Church Council are looking at options with regard to further work to the north aisle of the church or the possible extension to the building first mooted. There will be an assessment period to look at the use being made of the present facility before the case is made for the expenditure of £120,000 on a new extension.

The work done to date is paid up and on budget. Now it is up to the Charity Trust and the Project Ideas Group to ensure that the building is used and money raised for running costs.

Janet Flower asked if a price structure had been agreed for hire. David Chapman responded that this was on the agenda for next Tuesday’s Charity Trust meeting. Tony Talby interjected that he has already taken three bookings and people seemed happy with the price charged.

David Chapman told the council that Tracy is dealing with the village hall website for advertising. To a question from Janet Flower about funding for the remaining kitchen equipment David said that most of the things that had been offered were not what we needed but that the Thursday Saffron meeting will tell us if we have the funding from them. It was agreed that the present crockery etc. should not be thrown away as it belongs to the church.


On the 20th April there will be a valuation day from 10am-2pm with coffee and cakes and an art exhibition in September.


The district councilor reported that the budget meeting had agreed on freezing council tax this year and that there will be a £20 million plan including new commercial property and refurbishing of market towns. The South Norfolk Council is also creating additional revenue for leisure centres, as well as a new homes bonus with £800,000 for local projects. The Joint Core Strategy planning scheme has been submitted and is awaiting approval. The Norwich City deal will include South Norfolk and will give more control on money spent. To a question from David Chapman about saving money by sharing facilities Laura Webster said that there is a partnership on Law and Building Control which is working well so far.  Further to a question about how the JCS development will affect traffic the council was told that Long Stratton was the priority at the moment with the plan for a by-pass. The issue of the speed limit through Swainsthorpe was once again brought up as it was raised at the public meeting about the reopening of the Dun Cow. Laura Webster promised to note the concern and speak to the County Council about it. Tony Talby asked that this be followed up and an e-mail sent to him and thanked the District Councillor.


David Chapman asked about parish council elections and was told that Parish Councillors have to be elected every 4 years.

 Doreen Holman asked why we never have a representative from The Vale but Janet Flower said they had been asked but had never taken up the offer.

Tony Talby said that Mark Dyson had requested details about street lights, which he was taking care of, and also an e-mail from the war memorial people.

Janet Flower raised the issue of two considerable potholes in Church Road and asked Tony Talby to contact the authorities about them. She also asked about the repair of the mower and the strimmer and was told they would be done. Four cheques were authorised and signed.


The next meeting of the Parish Council will be on Monday the 6th May at 7.15pm followed by the Annual General Meeting at 8pm.

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