Parish Council Minutes March 2012

You can download a copy of these minutes here (PDF file).

Broomhaugh & Riding Parish Council

Minutes of meeting held on 12th March 2012 at 7.45 in the Parish Hall Supper room

Present: Cllrs Mills (in the Chair), Reid, Howe, Dunhill, Eakins and Carew. County Cllr Dale was present with 4 members of the public and a member of the Press. In attendance were Professor Malcolm Newson of Tyne Rivers Trust and Dave Porter (Radiopages).

Prof. Newson gave a brief presentation to Councillors explaining why, after further consideration, the original proposal to place a notch in the Weir was not a good idea. The better idea is to maintain the Weir crest and put in place rock ramps to improve stability. DEFRA will fund most of the work and the Parish Council will have no increased liability in the short or long term future. The whole matter will be explained to the village at a public meeting at a later date. The Chairman thanked Prof. Newson for his time and for the explanation.

1. Apologies : None

2. Declarations of interest: None

3. Website: Dave Porter, who manages and designs the Riding Mill website gave a brief demonstration to the Council, explaining the need to update the site and also to make it easier to use and run. Updates will be automatic when entered and there can be limited pass word access by the Clerk, Councillors and even some Club committees. The whole site will be more modern and cheaper to run. Radiopages will continue to host the site and pay for the domain name (which is renewed every 2 years) and can, if preferred, make editing changes to the site for the Council. Councillors agreed to the updates and asked that the work progress. DP

4. Minutes of the meeting of 13th February 2012 were agreed as a true record.

5. Matters arising: a) Tennis Club: the letter of support for the grant application had been signed and sent;
b) Car Park: the sign had been re-sited; the VHT are paying for the planting which has been completed and donations are being sought for the benches;
c) Double yellow lines: A few comments had been received by the County Council following the consultation. It will be about 6 weeks for the committee and NCC to make a decision;
d) Millfield Road Bridge: Invitations to tender for the short term repairs to the bridge have gone out and the results will be back in several weeks;
e) Flashing lights: these are working now but will be monitored;
f) Fence at Play Park: repairs are in hand;
g) Mobile Post Office: Cllr Dale offered to find a contact from the County and the Clerk would deal directly with the Post Office;
h) Trees: The trees at the Weir have been cut down. The Council offered help to resolve the problem of a tree from the Wellington’s land falling across the Burn and onto land at Dere Hollow. Mrs Stephenson offered to ask the home owners to cut the ivy back on the outside of the wall of the road leading to the station as it was obstructing the pavement.

6. The Nick: The Chairman would write to Mrs Stevenson pointing out her prima facie liability for water flowing from her garden next to the Nick causing a hazard on the Nick, the Slaley road and the A695, suggesting her insurers should look at the problem. Advice from the County’s legal team included suggesting asking the Water Company to allow the run off into their sewage drains. This will also be followed up. JM/MA

7. Weir: Prof. Newson’s presentation and approval by DEFRA and the Environment Agency of the new plans enabled the Parish Council to make an informed decision. Cllr Eakins indicated that he was disappointed that no solution could be found which removed all the Parish Council’s liability for maintenance of the weir but accepted that the proposed solution was the best that could be achieved in the circumstances. The Council agreed that Cllr Mills should sign the agreement between the Council and the Tyne Rivers Trust subject to some wording changes. JM

8.Celebrations/Events: The Cricket Club have agreed to use of the pitch for the Sports event on Torch Day. The village will be decorated with bunting and scarecrows and the ladies from the Foyer cafe have offered extra catering. Cllr Reid would organise parking up Whiteside Bank and in the grounds of the Engineering Business. It was agreed that residents of Whiteside Bank be informed of the parking plans. Parishes not directly involved with the relay such as Slaley, Healey and Corbridge would be invited. MA

9. Handyman Report: This was accepted. It was noted the bin in the Play Park had not been emptied for some time. The County would be informed. MA

10. Vexatious Correspondence: The Council’s Policy was invoked in respect of vexatious correspondence from two named people meaning only the first fresh item in the first letter, email or other form of correspondence would be dealt with by the Parish Council between successive meetings for the following six months. Cllr Mills read out a draft letter for the Clerk to send which stated the reasons for the Parish Council’s actions in line with the Policy and she proposed that Mr Young be made the subject of a resolution; this was agreed by the Council. A second letter detailing reasons was read out relating to Dr Young. Cllr Mills also proposed this and the Parish Council agreed. The Clerk would send the letters. JM/MA

11. Affordable Housing: Cllr Dunhill raised the issue following a report he had seen in the Journal. It is some time since a Housing needs survey has been done for the village and Cllr Dale suggested writing to the County Council Housing Department who would have more recent assessment as a basis for further consideration. It was noted there was no more public money for a renewed Village Plan or survey and that setting up a scheme was very expensive. MA

12. Planning:
1. Considered by Northumberland County Council:
a) the following are pending decisions:
11/00903/FUL – House at land west of Kingmead: decision still pending, subject to a S.106 statement;
b) 12/00062/FUL – extension at Lyn-Dene, Millfield Road
2. Considered by the Parish Council with no objections:
a) 12/00260/FUL – Window at Beauclerc
b) 12/00247/PRUTPO – tree at Hazel Rigg, Millfield Road
c) 12/00349/FUL – Extension at Underwood Lodge

13. Finance: a) the financial statement was accepted.
b) The following payments were authorised:

MFAnderton salary/Feb./March/Expenses – £923.80
Sign & Design (move car park sign) – £30.00
NCC/grass cutting – £1,453.32
Northumbria Water – £8.88
Homevend (Handyman) – £70.00
Stuart Burns (trees) – £500.00
Dennis Castelow (repairs) – £150.00
Clerks and Councils Direct (Ann. Subs) – £12.00
Radiopages (website)  -£169.00

14. Minor Matters: a) Long Rigg Residents Association had approached the Council to discuss transferring the road to them.
b) The status of the footpaths near the rivers was queried; it was confirmed that the path from the end of the station was only permissive while the path along the river was a Right of Way;
c) a more detailed statement about the Parish Council’s proposals for Millfield Road Bridge would be drafted for the web site;
d) it was acknowledged that the new easterly sign for Wentworth Grange appeared to solve the traffic problems with lorries there.
The meeting closed at 9.55pm