BRIGHTLINGSEA TOWN COUNCIL
Minutes of the Council Meeting held at
The Parish Hall, Victoria Place, Brightlingsea on:
Thursday 14th December 2017 at 7.30 p.m.
I Block (Mayor)
B Smith (Deputy Mayor)
M Barry, V Chapman, J Chapman, D Dixon, J Howard,
D Ingate, M Judson, J Russell, G Steady and K Yallop
Tracey Pulford –Town Clerk
County Councillor Alan Goggin
6 Members of the public
- APOLOGIES FOR ABSENCE: None received.
- TO APPROVE THE MINUTES OF THE MEETING HELD ON 16TH NOVEMBER 2017 AND CONFIRM AS A CORRECT RECORD:
The Minutes were accepted as a true record.
- MAYORS ANNOUNCEMENTS:
Copy of the Mayor’s Announcements is annexed to the Minutes. The Mayor mentioned then Late Night Shopping/Christmas Market, which was very well organised and attended.
- QUESTIONS UNDER SO9(2):
- DECLARATION OF DISCLOSABLE PECUNIARY INTERESTS:
The Mayor reminded Members to declare interests when necessary.
- COUNTY COUNCILLOR GOGGIN:
County Councillor Goggin reported on the following:-
Recorded his thanks to Terry the Grounds Manager for his help with providing a bag of salt, following a complaint from a local resident about a footpath which was very icy following the recent snow fall.
- At the Local Highways Panel meeting last week, asked Steve Gove to arrange for the bollards in Brightlingsea road to be cleaned. Pleased to report that this has been done.
- The Lollypop Lady at the Ladysmith Avenue post has decided to retire, and will not be coming back after Christmas. There is a poster on the Councils web-site, at the Library and at the school. If anyone has any ideas on who could fill this post, please let us know.
- Zebra Crossings – Essex County Council have a brochure on everything to do with roads. Have given a copy of this brochure to the Town Clerk.
- The vehicle survey for Church Road, Well Street and Spring Chase has been received. It contains some very interesting facts. The survey was carried out over a 13 hour period, from 6am on the 14th November 2017. It shows 6,899 vehicle movements at the four-way junction. Essex County Council Highways are now analysing the details to see what schemes are possible.
- At the LHP meeting the request to look at Mill Street as a “Quiet Lane” is in validation.
- At the full Council Meeting on Tuesday, one of the propositions was to cancel the part night street lighting. This was not well supported. Part-night lighting will continue at the moment. By 2019 all lights will be LED.
Councillor J Chapman mentioned that Tesco’s will bringing in large lorries for a 5am delivery. She is concerned as this is in a residential area, and believed that some areas have restrictions for lorry movements from 7am. County Councillor Goggin stated that he thought the bottom of Spring Chase has restrictions from 11pm to 7am. Councillor Russell stated that this restriction is just for Colne Road. Councillor Dixon stated that the priority of the road should be established officially with the correct number, and that Ladysmith Avenue and New Street are all classed as the B1029, whereby lorries should go down Spring Chase, Lower Park Road and Colne Road to the Waterside – this causes a problem with people using Sat Nav’s. After discussion it was agreed that the Council should write to Essex County Council about this.
The Mayor then asked if any members of the public had any questions for County Councillor Goggin.
Richard Price wished County Councillor Goggin a Happy Christmas. He then stated that in the past Mr Hurst had came down to talk to us, and as you know all the crime figures have increased. Maybe Mr Hurst would like to come back to Brightlingsea and talk us through his greatest successes for 2017.
- TO RECEIVE AND APPROVE THE MINUTES OF THE FINANCE MEETING HELD ON THE 23RD NOVEMBER 2017 AND TO CONFIRM THE RECOMMENDAITONS THEREIN:
Councillor Steady proposed that the Minutes were accepted as a true record, and the following recommendations be accepted:
- The Museum is made an agenda item for the next meeting.
- WinterFest are awarded £650.00 towards their project, subject to receiving a copy of their accounts.
- The budgets would be amended, as per the minutes, and a revised budget would be sent out to all members
- Pending advise from the NALC on who should/could be appointed, Brightlingsea Town Council asks both Tendring District Council’s Data Protection Officer and the Internal Auditor, Maurice Howard, if they would give their agreement, in principle, that they would be willing to do the work. Then, should the NALC say those two people are not able to do it, the council pursues another line, alternatively if the NALC says that they are able to be the officer, then the Council can proceed. Also a Data Protection and Data Retention Policy is drawn up, and seek Tendring District Councils advise of this.
The Minutes were then seconded by Councillor Howard. Agreed.
- COMMENT BY THE CHAIRMAN OF THE FINANCE COMMITTEE, COUNCILLOR STEADY:
Councillor Steady made a comment based about finance. He stated that in his opinion we are standing on the verge of having to make some big decisions. Compared to previous administrations, they did not had to make a number of big decisions in a relatively short period of time. He stated that the crux of it all, is the availability of all the necessary information which is paramount to the importance, and to this end we have tried to get out as much financial information as possible. He then highlighted that the finance meeting on the 11th January, which will be to agree the budget, and a copy of this together with the precept projection will be circulated in advance. He also stated that the big challenge for us all, as Councillors, is that we have to step up to the plate when these decisions are being made and those that affect the town. A discussion took place.
- TO RECEIVE AND APPROVE THE RECOMMENDATIONS OF THOSE MEMBERS EXAMINING THE ACCOUNTS FOR THE CURRENT PERIOD:
The Payments and Accounts for the period ending November 2017 (as shown on the attached appendix) were proposed by Councillor Howard as follows:
General Account Cheque No’s 706867 – 706886 in the sum of £21,980.37 for payment.
Bank Balances – All Accounts – in the sum of £304,701.10
Employee payments paid for the month of November were £11,829.75
The accounts were then seconded by Councillor Barry. Agreed.
Councillor Yallop asked about the 4 invoices older than 3 months old. The clerk replied that 3 were for the Playcentre, and one for an allotment rent.
- TO RECEIVE QUESTIONS FROM THE PUBLIC:
These questions are annexed to the Minutes.
- TO RECEIVE THE MINUTES OF THE PLANNING MEETINGS HELD ON 23RD NOVEMBER AND 7TH DECEMBER 2017 AND TO NOTE PLANNING DECISIONS OF TENDRING DISTRICT COUNCIL:
Councillor V Chapman proposed that the recommendations in the Minutes of 23rd November and 7th December 2017 be agreed by Council, together with the planning decisions from Tendring District Council. Councillor Dixon stated that there was an error on the comments for 17/01749/FUL and that it should state that the council objects contrary to policy as it should be open plan. This amendment was agreed and the minutes were seconded by Councillor Russell. Agreed.
Councillor J Chapman mentioned the Victoria Cafe, and that TDC wish to know if the Town Council wishes to call in the application, or leave it to the officer’s decision. Councillor Block stated that as they have had pre-application advise on this application, the answer is no to calling it in.
Councillor V Chapman then asked that if anyone at Tendring District Council contacts a Town Councillor, can they copy the Clerk into that e-mail also.
141.. LIGHTING/SECURITY IN THE TOWN:
The Mayor briefed members that the council had been contacted by a couple of Security Firms, following the anti-social behaviour that had taken place in the town. He stated that the police have been proactive at the moment, and a number of arrests and car ceases have taken place. Councillor J Chapman stated that three arrests were made on Monday, and 4 were made today, on an incident that happened less than 24 hours ago. We asked them to patrol the town, and they have acted. A discussion took place. It was then agreed that the situation would be reviewed again in 3 months.
A discussion then took place on the lack of lights in the Victoria Place Car park.
Councillor Yallop declared an interest in this, but reserved the right to speak.
Councillor Howard said that she thought there was not enough lighting in the car park, not just because of vandalism but it is dangerous walking through at night. She thought that some sort of low level light would be a good idea. Councillor Dixon stated that he would not be in favour of lighting out there, but possibly some form of CCTV. Councillor Judson suggested moving sensitive lights to distract youths in the area, coupled with CCTV.
Councillor J Chapman informed members that she had contacted the police about this, and they stated that low level lighting does not stop any form of vandalism or drug dealing, the only thing to stop it would be flood-lights, but you cannot put them in a residential area. She stated that the Grounds Manager is talking to Ian Taylor of TDC about the possibility of CCTV, and reminded members that the car park is owned by Tendring District Council, not Brightlingsea Town Council. Councillor Yallop also mentioned she had also contacted the police, and they stated that low level lighting increases anti social behaviour, and they do not advise it under any circumstances, they also do not recommend sensor lights. Much discussion took place.
Councillor Howard then proposed that that the Town Council suggests to Tendring District Council to install some form of low lighting in the car park to make it safer.
Councillor Steady then put in an amendment to also install night vision lighting.
Councillor Smith then proposed an amendment that Tendring District Council reviews the lighting for security and safety reasons in the car park. Seconded by Councillor Russell.
A vote was taken on Councillor Smith’s amendment – for:10, against: 1, abstention: 1. Agreed.
- PROPOSED LOCAL HIGHWAYS PANEL SCHEME FOR BELLFIELD AVENUE:
Councillor Judson read out his CCC Report on Bellfield Avenue. He stated that when the road is to be made good again, dropped kerbs should be installed, where residents wanted them, and those that do not want dropped kerbs they are informed that driving across the verges are not acceptable.
Councillor Steady stated that dropped kerbs are paid for by the residents. Regarding the grass verges – how do you police that. The original proposal was that where you have the grass verges, these are taken out and made into off road parking spaces or passing places. This would get rid of the unsightly mess. A discussion took place.
It was then agreed that Councillors Judson, Steady and County Councillor Goggin meet on site and look at the problems. The Clerk informed members that any future plans should come back to the Town Council to be agreed by the Town Council, Tendring District Councillors and the County Councillor, then a Local Highways Panel Form is completed and submitted to Essex County Council detailing the proposed scheme.
- TO RECEIVE REPORTS SUBMITTED FROM COUNCILLORS CONTACT CO-ORDINATORS:
Councillor V Chapman reiterated the serious concern about the skate park and its future use. A discussion took place.
Councillor Howard gave an update on the YMCA Youth Project. They are starting in January, on a Monday evening, the first three sessions will be used for promoting the club, they will be going out to schools etc. and then open the club on the first Monday in February. It will be called a drop-in centre, not a youth club.
Councillor Barry – Swimming Pool – Pleased to report that a Mr Dave Atkinson is now on the committee, who was introduced to me by Councillor Smith. He is re-locating to the area, and has managed a swimming pool complex in another area. He has visited the pool, and carried out an assessment on the state of the pool. He is drawing up a business plan, which will give some idea of feasibility. It will give us a plan on how we go forward, how much it will cost and how we staff it etc.
There are a series of meetings taking place on 11th January with all those involved with the pool. There are a couple of developments with the Harbour Commissioners and possible EU Funding, and the swimming pool has been put forward for funding. An architect is designing some improvements to the front of the pool, and putting together costings. Funding will be applied for from English Heritage Fund and the Community Initiative Fund.
Had a meeting with Andy White, Head of Asset Management at Tendring, who has drawn up a set of Heads of Terms, a copy of which has been circulated to all members. Much discussion took place.
- TO RECEIVE REPORTS SUBMITTED FROM MEMBER REPRESENTATIVES ON OUTSIDE BODIES:
Councillor V Chapman asked Councillor J Chapman a question about street lighting, to which she answered that the police can ask for street lights to be turned back on.
Councillor Barry asked Councillor Smith why, re BRAG, Bernard Jenkin did not with to take sides at this stage, and what the rational behind that was. Councillor Smith sated that he said this at the beginning of the meeting, but did admit that he had spoken to Eastern Waste Disposal about this, and also County Councillor Goggin. At the end of the meeting he certainly got the points which BRAG put over, and that the proposed site is in the wrong place. A discussion took place. Councillor J Chapman mentioned that a traffic survey was carried out a couple of years ago at Thorrington Cross, and the results were that the roundabout is 3 times overused to what it should be, and we should ask for a copy of it.
- TO RECEIVE REPORTS SUBMITTED FROM DISTRICT COUNCILLORS:
Councillor Steady highlighted the timetable from Tendring District Council and the improvements to the toilets on the Western Promenade.
- TO RECEIVE THE TOWN CLERK’S REPORT:
2.1 – Circus Petite – as Lower Park may be too wet for a circus to visit from 26th March until 1st April, suggest Hurst Green as an alternative. Agreed.
- CLOSE OF MEETING:
There being no further business, the meeting closed at 21.02 p.m.
Chair …………………… Date 18th January 2018