BRIGHTLINGSEA TOWN COUNCIL

Minutes of the Online Annual Council Meeting held on

Thursday 21st May 2020 at 7.00pm.

Present:

Councillors

G Steady (Mayor)

J Chapman (Deputy Mayor)

M Barry, M Beckett, J Carr, G Chasney,

J Howard and B Smith

In attendance:

Tracey Pulford – Town Clerk

County Councillor Goggin

4 Members of the public

173.WELCOME BY THE CHAIRMAN:

The Chairman welcomed everyone to the meeting, and confirmed the protocol for the meeting.  He said that everyone would be ‘muted’ and anyone wishing to speak is to raise their hand, and either he or the Clerk would invite them to speak.  Also, voting will be by the show of hands.  Councillor Steady then informed those present, that if the meeting was still in progress at 7.55pm, the meeting would take a break so respect could be given for the ‘clap for our key workers’.

174. MAYORAL ARRANGEMENTS FOR 2020/2021:

The Mayor briefed members on The Local Authority and Police and Crime Panels (Coronavirus) (Flexibility of Local Authority and Police and Crime Panel Meetings) (England and Wales) Regulations 2020, which came into force on 4th April 2020.  He stated that current Mayor  and Deputy Mayor can legally remain in place until an annual meeting is held in May 2021, or unless the council decide to elect a new Mayor/Deputy Mayor earlier.

Councillor Chapman then proposed that Brightlingsea Town Council postpones the election of Mayor and Deputy Mayor until May 2021 as provided for in the stated regulations. Seconded by Carr.

A vote was taken: For: 7; Against: 0; Abstention: 1.  Carried.

175. APOLOGIES FOR ABSENCE: None received.

(Post meeting note: Councillor Judson gave his apologies to the Clerk at 7.39pm)

176. TO APPROVE THE MINUTES OF THE MEETING HELD ON 23RD APRIL 2020 AND CONFIRM AS A CORRECT RECORD:

Councillor Barry proposed that the Minutes of the meeting held on the 23rd April 2020 were accepted as a true record.  Seconded by Councillor Smith.  Agreed.

177. DECLARATION OF DISCLOSABLE PECUNIARY INTERESTS:

The Mayor reminded Members to declare interests when necessary.

178. APPOINTMENTS OF COMMITTES / COUNCILLOR CONTACT AND COORDINATOR / REPRESENTATIVES ON OUTSIDE BODIES AND ADDITIONAL DUTIES AS PER STANDING ORDERS:

Councillor Howard proposed that the members on the Finance & Property Committee, Staff Committee and Planning Committee for 2020/2021, are as listed.

Finance & Property Committee

Chairman: Councillor Carr

Vice Chairman: Councillor Chapman

Councillors Barry, Beckett, Chasney, Howard and Smith,

Staff Committee

Chairman: Councillor Chapman

Vice Chairman: Councillor Barry

Councillors: Beckett, Carr, Chasney, Howard and Judson

Planning Committee

Chairman: Councillor Smith

Vice Chairman: Councillor Chapman

Barry, Carr, Howard, Judson and Steady

Seconded by Councillor Chasney.  Agreed.

Councillor Carr proposed that the Councillor Contact and Coordinators for 2020/2021, are as listed.

Amenity Areas & Open Spaces

Councillor Steady

Western Promenade

Councillors Howard and Chasney

Swimming Pool

Councillor Barry

Youth & Services for Children

Councillor Howard

Footpaths & Allotments

Councillor Smith

Tourism & Communication

Councillors Chasney, Carr and Howard

Welfare & Services for the Elderly

Councillors Chapman and Beckett

Hard & Harbour

Councillors Carr, Chasney and Smith

Transport & Highways

Councillors Beckett and Judson

Regeneration

Councillor Chapman

Seconded by Councillor Chapman.  Agreed.

Councillor Beckett proposed that the members appointed as representatives on Outside Bodies for 2020/2021, are as listed.

Essex Association of Local Councils

To be determined as and when

Tendring District Association of Local Councils

Councillor Beckett

Colne Smack Preservation Society

Councillors Carr, Chasney and Smith

C.C.G. (Clinical Commissioning Groups)

Councillor Beckett

Local Police Liaison

Councillor Chapman

Churchyard Committee (2 members)

Councillor Howard and Judson

Seconded by Councillor Howard.  Agreed.

Councillor Smith proposed that the members appointed as representatives on Additional Duties for 2020/2021, are as listed.

Safeguarding Officers (2 members)

Councillors Barry and Chapman

Emergency Plan

Councillors Howard and Chapman

Springmead Trust (9 members)

Councillors Barry, Beckett, Carr, Chapman, Chasney, Howard, Judson, Smith and Steady

Seconded by Councillor Barry.  Agreed.

179. TO APPROVE THE PAYMENT OF INVOICES FOR MAY 2020:

Councillor Beckett proposed that 8 internet/BACS payments, totalling £10,164.40, be authorised for payment.  Seconded by Councillor Chapman.  Agreed.

180. REPORT FROM COUNTY COUNCILLOR GOGGIN:

A copy of the report from County Councillor Goggin had been circulated to all members.

County Councillor Goggin reported on the following:-

Item 1 – The recycling centres at Clacton and Colchester have re-opened.

Item 4 – The next meeting of the Local Highways Panel is scheduled for 18th June.

Item 6 – Attending meetings with Councillor Howard and the Colne Community School regarding the zebra crossing and change of pedestrian access.  Another meeting is scheduled for 9th June.  County Councillor Goggin gave thanks to Councillor Howard, and also to Councillor Judson for his input a couple of years ago.

Item 14 – Thanks to Councillor Chapman who helped the 4th Brightlingsea Scout Group with their grant.

He then mentioned  his role at Essex County Council, which is Deputy for Education.  He mentioned the back to school targets, and that Essex County Council have been negotiating with the Schools, Unions etc.  Essex County Council are taking the lead from the Government and where possible would like children to go back to school from 1st June.  He then mentioned that out of the 570 schools in the County, 455 have never closed and have been open for key worker children.

Councillors then asked County Councillor Goggin the following questions:-

Councillor Smith – the zebra crossing in Victoria Place still has a lamp missing, is there an update on its replacement?  He mentioned that there could be a liability issue, if someone was hurt or killed on this crossing, and the County Council had taken a long time to put a replacement in place.  County Councillor Goggin asked if this has already been reported to Essex County Council, but will look into anyway.  The Mayor replied that the Town Council would check to see if the Council have reported this, or whether it was by a member of the public, and would let County Councillor Goggin have the relevant reference numbers.

Councillor Beckett – What are Essex County Councils plans for children next week during half term, as many parents have just discovered that the free school meal vouchers, which they were expecting, are not going to be available for half term week?  He asked if County Councillor Goggin could do what he could, as this is not giving people enough time to plan.  County Councillor Goggin asked  if this query was just about the food vouchers?  Councillor Beckett replied what support Essex County Council might give to parents of Brightlingsea, whose children will not receive free school meal vouchers during half term?  County Councillor Goggin replied that he would look into this tomorrow.

Councillor Barry declared an interest in the following  subject:

Councillor Barry – As Deputy Portfolio Holder for Education can you tell us the process, at County level, of what you went through to get to the decision of schools reopening on the 1st June, and the measures proposed to be taken in schools to a) contain any spread of the virus and b) deal with  the concerns of staff, parents and students.  County Councillor Goggin replied that Essex County Council have never opposed the Government guidelines and would like as many schools open, and offer as many places as possible.  He said that his Portfolio Holder has been in consultation with the Minister, all the unions, and all the head teacher associations.  He said that locally, Market Fields School has been open throughout this pandemic, with 75% attendance.   Much discussion took place.   The Mayor then asked for this item to be discussed under the item later on the agenda.

Councillor Chapman mentioned the grant to the Scouts, and that she has now passed the details onto the Football Club to see if they are able to claim also.  She then thanked County Councillor Goggin for all his help and time spent on social care issues in the community.

181. QUESTIONS FROM THE PUBLIC:

Q1) At this moment of time I spend a lot of time walking footpaths and streets.  The footpaths are becoming impassable, and with the number of Groundsmen you have available it is not possible that they could go through the footpaths with a weed spray, and get the weeds down, so people can carry on walking through them?

A1) The Mayor replied that he will be working with Councillor Smith on this, as Councillor Smith is taking over ‘CCC’ for footpaths.  He reiterated that most of the footpaths are the responsibility of Essex County Council, and these issues need to be flagged up with them, so they can carry out remedial works, however they only cut once a year.

182. TO NOTE THE MINUTES OF THE PLANNING MEETING HELD ON 14TH MAY 2020 AND TO NOTE PLANNING DECISIONS OF TENDRING DISTRICT COUNCIL:

Councillor Smith proposed that the recommendations in the Minutes of 14th May 2020 be agreed by Council, together with the planning decisions from Tendring District Council.  Seconded by Councillor Chapman.  Agreed.

Councillor Smith then added the following:-

  • The Garden City proposals – Two to the West have been dismissed by the Inspector, however the one close to Greenstead and Wivenhoe is to continue.  This is for 9,000 houses.
  • The update on the planning meetings, is an article which is going on the web-site, so we get a continuation of public participation on planning applications.

183. COUNCIL UPDATE:

Councillor Carr asked members to look at the request from the Harbour Commissioners, to see if there was a suitable place in the town, where the refurbished Inner Bench Head Bouy could be situated.  He asked for ideas to be sent to him from members and members of the public.

Councillor Smith mentioned the prevention of crabbing on the Town jetty.  He said that the signs were in the wrong place, as they were half way down the jetty.  If there is a high tide, you cannot see the signs, they need to be moved to the beginning of the jetty.  Councillor Carr replied that he had spoken with the Chairman of the Commissioners, and the Harbour Master. The first thing is that they failed to close the jetty, this was then closed, with a chain across, however someone came and removed the chain, so the crabbers came.  The jetty is closed to crabbers, however anyone using the causeway to get to their boats are limited to how many people can use the jetty at any one time.  Councillor Smith reiterated that the ‘no crabbing’ signs remain in the wrong place, and need to be placed at the beginning of the jetty.  Councillor Carr replied that he would pass this on to the Harbour Commissioners.

Councillor Howard asked Councillor Carr if there were any plans for better signage for parking around the Hard, to stop people parking when there is a high tide.  Councillor Carr said he would look into this.

Re-opening of Schools – Councillor Barry briefed members that he felt this was something the council should be involved in, as representatives of the local community.  He stated that his wife is a teacher, but this is not about the teachers, it is about the whole scenario of the public body/resource opening up again.  He stated that observations on the situation in Brightlingsea, if the national survey is anything to go by, a 0.27% infection rate means that 30-40 people in the town could be infected at any one time.  Going into schools at this particular time, is totally irresponsible and the health and safety of children and staff remains everyone’s first priority during this period.  In order to protect our community, who have been compliant over the past few weeks, we need to be as reassured as we can, that any measures taken do not lead to further spread of infection.  He said that all he is asking for, is information on what has informed this decision, and this information should be readily available.  The Mayor said that he would support this request, however things are changing on a daily basis, but as a Town Council we should make some representation.  Much discussion ensued.    

It was then requested that Councillors Howard and Barry would take this forward and start the process of gathering all the necessary information and come back to Council with their recommendations.  Also Councillor Howard would contact the Head Teacher of the Brightlingsea Primary Schools to arrange a meeting.  A vote was taken, which was unanimous.  Agreed.

Bradwell B Consultation – The Mayor briefed members that following the April Council meeting, the Clerk had contacted Bradwell regarding their current consultation period, which we believe should be extended further.  They have offered to provide a briefing with members to answer any questions we may have.  After discussion it was agreed that a ‘virtual’ meeting would be arranged with those members who wish to attend.

Essex County Council / Church Road Traffic Management Improvements – The Mayor briefed members on the current situation, and asked Councillors Beckett and Judson to review the situation and come back with recommendations.  Agreed.

184. BTC SCHEDULE OF MEETINGS – JUNE 2020 – MAY 2021 (COUNCIL AND PLANNING):

Councillor Steady proposed that the list of meetings, as already circulated, from June 2020 – May 2021, be agreed by all members.  Seconded by Councillor Beckett.  Agreed.

185.     CLOSE OF MEETING:

There being no further business, the meeting closed at 20.35 p.m.

Chair ……………………

Date: ……………………

Report Potholes

Essex County Council is responsible for highways in and around Brightlingsea. Report potholes directly here.

Text-to-speech

Most articles on this site feature a "Listen" button - when clicked you will hear the text read back. Make sure your speakers are on and the volume is turned up.

FixMyStreet

FixMyStreet directs reports of problems with your street, such as failed streetlights, to the correct local authority department.

Discover Brightlingsea

Read the annual town guide produced by the Town Council. 

© Brightlingsea Town Council 2011 – .
Site designed and maintained by Big Red Web Design. Webmaster.

© Brightlingsea Town Council 2011 – .
Site designed and maintained by Big Red Web Design. Webmaster.