BRIGHTLINGSEA TOWN COUNCIL

 

Minutes of the Council Meeting held at

The Parish Hall, Victoria Place, Brightlingsea on:

Thursday 21st March 2019 at 7.30 p.m.

 

Present:

Councillors

B Smith (Mayor)

G Steady (Deputy Mayor)

M Barry, J Chapman, V Chapman, J Howard,

D Ingate, J Russell and K Yallop

 

In attendance:

County Councillor Alan GogginTracey Pulford –Town Clerk

12 Members of the public

 

  1. APOLOGIES FOR ABSENCE: Councillors Dixon and Judson

 

  1. TO APPROVE THE MINUTES OF THE MEETING HELD ON 21ST FEBRUARY 2019 AND CONFIRM AS A CORRECT RECORD:

 

Councillor Dixon proposed that the Minutes of the meeting held on the 21st February 2019 were accepted as a true record. Seconded by Councillor Block. Agreed.

 

  1. MAYORS ANNOUNCEMENTS:

 

A copy of the Mayors Announcements are annexed to the minutes.

 

The Mayor mentioned that the Town Council was proposing to hold a Beach Clean Up on Saturday 13th April 2019, and this will be discussed under agenda item 9.

 

  1. DECLARATION OF DISCLOSABLE PECUNIARY INTERESTS:

 

The Mayor reminded Members to declare interests when necessary.

 

  1. FIVE MINUTE REPORT FROM COUNTY COUNCILLOR GOGGIN AND QUESTIONS:

 

County Councillor Goggin reported on the following:-

 

Since the last meeting he has attended:-

  • Library meeting at Clacton on the 25th. This meeting was called by a couple of libraries that had run a Community Library. It was interesting to find out how they worked, and representatives from Great Bentley, Thorrington and Alresford also attended.
  • Full Council Meeting on 12th March, which was called as an emergency debate.
  • The Harbour Commissioners have held two meetings, one for businesses, the other for leisure.
  • Highways Panel Meeting at Weeley on the 14th.

 

County Councillor Goggin recorded his thanks to Ian Block, who, over the last 10-12 years has been excellent, first class, and has worked very well with him.

Items outstanding from the last meeting:-

  • Zebra Crossing in Victoria Place – Essex County Council agreed to the re-painting of the white lines, and pleased to report that this has now been carried out.
  • E-mail from Councillor Barry about a Street Light in Victoria Gardens. Pleased to report that Essex County Council have advised that this light is awaiting a heritage style lantern for the top. Once this has been fitted, the entire column will be painted black, in keeping with the character of the area.
  • Full Library meeting was excellent, with some good points being raised and good debates. He advised that he voted for the motion “The use of Essex Libraries is changing and its changes are accelerating. There is now an obligation on the administration to ensure the library service meets the current and future needs of the residents of Essex; represents good value for money for Essex tax payers; there has been a high level of public and political engagement including MP’s to the consultation to the Essex Future Library Services, this includes a total number of signatures on petitions – 57,000, 21,000 people were consulted in the survey that was carried out. The consultation has only just closed and it will be sometime before the evidence from the consultation is fully analysed, but given the level of interest, this Council (Essex County Council) calls on the Cabinet Member for Corporate and Customer to continue to explore the opportunity to use all Libraries as Community Hubs and to maximise the use of the buildings and the sites to generate income for library services.” He stated that he has not seen a response from the survey, however he has been told that 17 different bodies have expressed an interest in taking over their library.
  • The Pride of Tendring Awards will be taking place tomorrow night.

 

The Mayor mentioned PR1’s and the incident of the traffic lights on Church Hill. County Councillor Goggin said that he had received a response, and briefed as follows: The incident was reported on the Monday, and was right in the middle of the carriage way. They had to carry out surveys to find out whether there were any services linked to this area, which took time. They came out on the Thursday and the work was finished on this day, however the ground was still wet. Apparently the traffic lights were thrown in the bushes on the Friday, causing them to be ruined.

There were no questions to County Councillor Goggin from Councillors.

County Councillor Goggin then replied to a question that had been asked at a previous meeting, about how often the Police and Fire Brigade Commissioner met with Highways. He stated that they meet every 6 weeks but they do all meet together sooner if there has been a death or serious injury.

Councillor J Chapman mentioned the lamppost which has been damaged outside the bus stop and stated that lady had fallen over there today. She also mentioned that she has now heard back from Essex County Council stating that the person who drove into the lamppost has pleaded guilty to driving a motor vehicle without due care and attention, failed to stop after a road accident, received a £1,200 fine, and £165 Court costs with 8 penalty points. The office has re-submitted the danger to Essex County Council, so hopefully it will be fixed soon.

The Mayor then asked for questions to County Councillor Goggin from members of the public.

Q1) On my tax return it mentions cultural and libraries. Can you find out how much money Essex County Council actually get from the Government for Libraries? Also is it up from last year, and what % of money from Central Government is for libraries?

 

A1) County Councillor Goggin replied that last year the money spent on libraries was £12.2m  and the budget, which was passed recently, was £12.4m. The Mayor stated that the ‘block’ grant goes to all the County Councils, and with the exception of Social Services, the other budget setting is dependent on what those Councillors wish to do. Councillor Smith said that he would clarify this situation.

County Councillor Goggin informed members that the motion on the Library, 19 Councillors voted against the proposition that he voted for. Councillor Yallop asked how many voted for it. County Councillor Goggin replied that 50 voted for, 19 against and 2 abstentions.

 

  1. RESIGNATION OF TOWN COUNCILLOR:

 

The Mayor briefed members that Ian Block has resigned from the Town Council. On behalf of the Town Council he has written to Ian thanking him for his time and contribution on the council. He stated that as we are close to the elections in May, there is no requirement to fill his position..

  1. TO RECEIVE AND APPROVE THE RECOMMENDATIONS OF THOSE MEMBERS EXAMINING THE ACCOUNTS FOR THE CURRENT PERIOD:

The Payments and Accounts for the period ending February 2019 (as shown on the attached appendix) were proposed by Councillor Yallop as follows:

General Account Cheque No’s 707263 – 707279 in the sum of £16,393.82 for payment.

Bank Balances – All Accounts – in the sum of £195,488.97

Employee payments paid for the month of February were £12,840.62

The accounts were then seconded by Councillor Smith. Agreed.

 

  1. TO RECEIVE QUESTIONS FROM THE PUBLIC:

These questions are annexed to the Minutes.

County Councillor Goggin left the meeting to attend the Council Meeting at St Osyth.

  1. THE GREAT BRITISH SPRING CLEAN – 22ND MARCH – 23RD APRIL 2019:

The Mayor briefed members that Keep Britain Tidy, in partnership with the Daily Mail, are holding a Great British Spring Clean between the 22nd March and 23rd April 2019. He then asked for permission to hold a Town Council Beach Clean Up on Saturday 13th April 2019 from 10am until 12noon. Agreed.

 

  1. TO RECEIVE THE MINUTES OF THE PLANNING MEETINGS HELD ON 21ST FEBRUARY AND 7TH MARCH 2019 AND TO NOTE PLANNING DECISIONS OF TENDRING DISTRICT COUNCIL:

 

Councillor V Chapman proposed that the recommendations in the Minutes of 21st February and 7th March 2019 be agreed by Council, together with the planning decisions from Tendring District Council. Seconded by Councillor Russell. Agreed.

 

  1. TO RECEIVE REPORTS SUBMITTED FROM COUNCILLORS CONTACT CO-ORDINATORS:

 

Councillor Yallop stated that on Social Media there was a picture of some appalling parking down Sydney Street, and Councillor Judson made comments that the payments did not come under his remit. Can we please clarify with him what Highways entails.

 

Councillor V Chapman asked Councillors Ingate and Smith about the height of the metal on the Hard, and if they had received any update. Councillor Ingate replied that there is no restriction on height, only weight. Councillor Yallop stated that Tendring District Council had been down previously, and they stated that it should not be over a certain height. She said that she would speak to TDC’s Enforcement Officer tomorrow.

 

  1. TO RECEIVE REPORTS SUBMITTED FROM MEMBER REPRESENTATIVES ON OUTSIDE BODIES:

Councillor V Chapman stated that in her EALC report she said that she would provide the office with a copy of the NALC report, and she would leave a copy with the Town Clerk. She mentioned that she had attended her last TDALC meeting last evening, where Councillor Janet Russell is the Secretary. Lots of points are also discussed at these meetings – roads, street lights etc. Also highlighted was the web-site called Fix My Street, which is a very good web-site. Councillor Yallop mentioned that Fix My Street is also linked to the Town Council web-site.

 

  1. TO RECEIVE REPORTS SUBMITTED FROM DISTRICT COUNCILLORS:

 

Nothing further to add.

 

  1. TO RECEIVE THE TOWN CLERK’S REPORT:

 

Councillors Yallop, Russell and V Chapman all declared an interest in the following item:

2.1 Agreed That the term of office to the James Aldous Trust is extended for Councillors Dixon, Russell and Yallop, until the charity is closed.

2.2 Agreed – Brightlingsea Allotment Holders Society can hold a ‘Centenary Celebration’ on the Council’s allotments on Saturday 21st September 2019, from 11am until 4pm. Town Clerk to liaise with Insurance Company over whether or not the event can be held using the Council’s insurance policy regarding public liability.

2.3 Members felt that the idea of a stall selling Syrian foods was a good idea, but the suggested location is in the wrong place. Members were concerned that a stall on the large paved area in Victoria Place could cause problems with sight lines. They also had concerns whether or not a generator would be used, would there be cables running across the pavement/road, do they have public liability insurance etc.?   More information was required.

Councillor Steady mentioned item 1.14 and the Succession Planning E-mail, which had been circulated to all members. He stated that it is proposed to have a display in the council Reception Area of the Parish Hall, giving information to members of the public and prospective candidates, so they can read about the council.

Councillor Russell moved, in accordance with the Public Bodies (Admission to Meetings) Act 1960, in order to discuss items of a sensitive nature and items which are commercially confidential, the press and public be excluded. This was seconded by Councillor Yallop.  Agreed.

 

  1. MOTION TO EXCLUDE THE PUBLIC IN ACCORDANCE WITH THE PUBLIC BODIES (ADMISSION TO MEETINGS) ACT 1960 – To discuss the following:
  • To receive the Staff Minutes from the meeting held on the 7th March 2019 and confirm as a correct record
  • Property Update
  • Town Centre Project

 

  1. TO RECEIVE THE STAFF MINUTES FROM THE MEETING HELD ON THE 7TH MARCH 2019 AND CONFIRM AS A CORRECT RECORD:

Councillor J Chapman proposed that the Staff Minutes be accepted as a true record, and the following recommendations be accepted:

 

  • The Contact for Sue Gilders is extended for a further 6 months.
  • The Town Council participates in the Care in the Community Scheme, and a volunteer will work with the Groundsmen on a Friday, at the Bayard Rec, white lining pitches etc. It is an unpaid position and they will have a mentor who will come round and check how they is getting on.
  • The new NJC Scales/rates, as of 1st April 2019, as in the agreed in the 2019/2020 budget are implemented from 1st April 2019.
  • A vote of thanks was given to the staff for their attitude towards Councillors.

 

Seconded by Councillor Yallop. Agreed.

 

  1. 199. PROPERTY UPDATE:

 

The Hard – Councillor Ingate briefed members on a paper he had circulated titled ‘The Hard, the possible way ahead’. A lengthy discussion took place.

 

It was then agreed that the Council writes to Burges Salmon outlining the situation to determine if the land is, in fact, subject to escheat. It was also agreed that the Council writes to the Land Registry stating that on the evidence that we have they made an error, can they look at it and give a considered reply. Councillor Russell stated that in addition to this, the council have the responsibility to write to the Crown Estates stating that the land has been de-registered.

 

Brightlingsea Leisure Village – Councillor Steady briefed members that communication has been sent to Fox Leisure, and to date no reply has been received.

Councillor Steady mentioned that the Council owns three oyster laying’s in the Estuary, and will be having a meeting with a local resident to discuss this, as it appears that they have not been registered to the Town Council.

Councillor Barry briefed members on the Lido Development. He then asked for authority from the Town Council to get an emergency commercial site electrician on site, to make the electrics safe, with the necessary safety certificates etc. It was then agreed that Councillor Barry has the authority, under H&S, to spend £500.00 to make the electrics safe and the Town Council would pay for this work to be carried out.

  1. TOWN CENTRE PROJECT:

A copy of a paper ‘Town Centre Scheme’ had been circulated to all Councillors. Councillor Smith mentioned that the council did, last year, adopt the NALC Model Standing Orders which details the requirement that the Council is to advertise any contract with an estimated value exceeding £25,000 on Contract Finder website and this is a mandatory requirement.

A discussion took place. Councillor J Chapman informed members that she and the Grounds Manager have started to re-write the specification for the job, and are waiting for further quotations.

  1. CLOSE OF MEETING:

There being no further business, the meeting closed at 21.07 p.m.

 

 

Chair ……………………   Date 18th April 2018

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