Annual Parish Meeting 2015 – Minutes
Minutes of the Annual Parish Meeting for Normanton on Soar held in the Hall on Wednesday 8th April 2015 at 7.30pm.
J.Hellier (in the Chair), S. Sleight, K.Bonser, D. Smith & S. Slaney
39 members of the public
PCSO Kathy Lucock
Parishioners: PC Warwick
The Minutes of the Annual Parish Meeting held on 2nd April 2014, as circulated, were confirmed and signed as a true record of business transacted.
Proposed by J. Bonser seconded J. Herrington
Motion duly carried.
Precept: In November 2014 we held a budget meeting to set this the 2014/15 precept and you will know from your rates bill that there has been an increase in the precept. We had to budget an extra £1000 to cover the cost for a Parish Council election which will be held on May 7th 2015. We secured a transitional grant from Rushcliffe Borough Council of £420. We don’t know whether this grant will be available next year. We have managed to keep the overall expenditures more less the same as the year before.
Solar Farm: At this meeting last year a public vote was taken on the action that the Parish Council should take regarding the large scale solar farm planned for Stanford Hills. It was decided that the Parish Council should object to this development and the Parish Council teamed up with Stanford on Soar Parish Council and financed the opposition group made up from members of both communities. Several Councillors from both parishes attended a planning meeting and it was very apparent that the planning officer was very much in favour of the massive development and if not for the strong arguments put forward by Borough Councillor Adair and County Councillor Brown this development would have most certainly been allowed to happen. We would like to thank them for their efforts and hope that future developments similar to this are not encouraged by the planning officers. The bad news is that this cost us £2559.85 which is covered under the Section 137 funding. This is an amount we are allowed to spend per electorate in the village.
Flooding: The Parish Council is having ongoing discussions with Nottinghamshire County Council, the Environment Agency and Severn Trent Water. They have identified problems with the drain network and are planning the best long term solution. Nottinghamshire County Council have cleaned out some of the ditches and Severn Trent Water have removed tree roots and have cleared out the surface water sewer.
Verges: The Parish Council have continued to take responsibility for the upkeep of the verges from Nottinghamshire County Council and is looking to restore the verges on Main Street which was damaged by vehicles driving on them during the floods, however we are reluctant to fully restore them until we are confident that the flooding issue has been resolved. The contract was awarded again to Ladybug Garden Services and the first cut was made last week. I think you will agree that the verges are looking very well.
Best Kept Village Competition: We are going to enter the competition again this year.
School Keep Clear markings: these are going to become enforceable Monday to Friday between 8am – 4.30pm.
Far Lane: The Parish Council are still pressing for Far Lane to be fully resurfaced but in the meantime the pot holes have been filled.
Stanford Road: The main road from Stanford on Soar through to Normanton on Soar is also in a very bad condition and was due to be resurfaced last year but abandoned through lack of finance, we hope this will be resurfaced this financial year.
Playing Field: Again a source of income from the playing fields is the caravans, which helped offset the legal fees. The dog warden has still been conducting regular visits and offending dog owners have been spoken to. It is important to remember that the whole playing field is a play area. The Parish Council will support the dog warden in any prosecutions that may result from the service. We along with the Village Hall committee have purchased some new signs to help enforce this.
Community Shop: A change of directors took place in 2014.
The council would like to thank Heather Herrington for all of her work in writing articles for the Loughborough Echo and the Village News. Thanks again to John Herrington for all of his hard work in maintaining the Village Website. Anyone who wishes to put anything onto the website please contact John Herrington directly.
The financial statement of the Parish Council, showing the receipts and payments from 2013/14 audited, 2014/15 (not yet audited) and the 2014/15 and 2015/16 budgets, was circulated. (Copy bound with these minutes).
Report from Borough Councillor R. Adair.
Report from County Councillor Brown
PCSO Kathy Lucock informed the meeting that Normanton on Soar had a low crime threshold with only three crimes taking place in the last 3 months. 14th January 2015 a car was stolen from Far Lane, the vehicle was recovered in Nottingham City Centre and the offenders were prosecuted. 16th February golf clubs were stolen from a vehicle on Far Lane and between the 23rd & 26th a child’s bike was stolen from Butt Lane.
Reports from Village Organisations.
1) Women’s Institute: We had an average attendance of 31 members at meetings over the year ended January 2015; slightly up on last year. There were visitors at most of the meetings. We actively welcome visitors – they often join as members. We had speakers at 8 of our 12 meetings covering a wide range of topics and interests. Another meeting was given over to our AGM and supper, and the remaining 3 meetings were social events. We hosted the meetings of the Soar Valley Group of WIs during 2014. This involved organising and hosting a meeting of all the group members in May, and a celebration of Christmas at St James’ church in December. This latter was very well received by all who attended. We have organised several visits during the year and continue to run a bi-monthly lunch club for members. Through the year we have participated in events with other members of WIs in our local group, and supported activities organised by our County Federation. 2015 is the centenary of WI in England in Wales. We are planning to celebrate this milestone with a free members days of activities in May. The impact of your WI can be felt throughout the village and in the wider community. Our members can be found at the centre of most village activities. We welcome more members, and our details can be found on the village website, in Village News, in Parish Lines and in the weekly village section of the Loughborough Echo.
2) St. James PCC: This report, I’m pleased to say, is full of good news. As you will know we have been without a regular priest since Glenn Martin left almost five years ago. In July we will be welcoming a new priest call Michael Brock, good name for a rural priest, who will be joining us on a part time basis and will be responsible for St. James’, St. Michael’s and St. Anne’s churches in Sutton Bonington. Mike is 62 and has chosen to take this post in the run up to his retirement at 70. He is married to Carolyn and they have a son living in Southwell and a daughter in Loughborough. I think there is a third child but I am not sure. For the last 11 years, Michael has been in a group of parishes near Hunstanton in Norfolk but before that he worked in and around the Diocese of Southwell and Nottingham so is well known locally. He has a degree in psychology and trained for priesthood at St Johns College, Bramcote. He is being installed on June 3rd at St. Michaels and his first service with us will be June 28th before he sets off on a family holiday to celebrate his and Carolyn’s Ruby wedding. In the last five years we have been well supported by a variety of retired clergy and our Area Dean. I am proud to say that, unlike many other churches in an interregnum, we have not had to cancel a single service and, in fact, we have increased the number of people who worship regularly with us. We must be getting something right. We have done work to maintain the trees in the churchyard, to repair the central heating pipes and will shortly be doing some remedial work on the wall. We hope to be able to do some internal work as well. Thanks to the generosity of many people in the village, and I would like to mention especially Maurice Clayton who died recently, we are financially solvent. We had successful concerts and a lovely church fete and I hope that we will continue to serve our community well. I should make mention of the cleaners, Ladybug Garden Services, the village choir, the bell ringers, the flower arrangers and anyone else who helps to support us. Music is an important part of our church life and our next project is to fix the organ. This will cost around £23,000 and we are on the lookout for grant funding. We will be putting the money made at this year’s fete towards the organ fund and if you have any ideas for fundraising please let me know.
3) Men’s Association: The organisation is in sound financial health. There are currently 22 members and it is anticipated this will increase over the year – good value for £5 per annum. There is a full programme of events with some additional ones during the daytime for those unfortunate to be not working. The next event is a talk by Gary Root on issues with an Airport
The event for May is an activity – Golf where we play in teams to minimise problems with beginners. Future events include a Green Bowling activity, a Tram Pub Crawl, a talk by a Lawyer and a talk on the Rainbow Hospice. We try consistently to get a good mix of visits, talks and activities and search for matters of interest – in this respect any ideas from whatever source is always welcome.
4) Community Shop: Our year end is at the end of May but disappointingly turnover is down for the third year running, our peak being 2011/12 which was £33,000. Projected takings based on the previous 10 months will be approximately £28,500. The most significant reason for the drop in sales is competition from large supermarkets, some of which are seeing their own turnover and profits drastically reduced. Many shoppers have either changed suppliers or brand products. We have to make some profit in order to pay our way and to keep going. This current year we have paid out £4,000 from the shop savings, which have accumulated slowly over the last seven years, towards the covered area outside the shop. This will prove beneficial to the whole of the community of Normanton on Soar and its many visitors who use the hall and play equipment. The directors are fully aware of the trend of the shopper but we say again that there are a large number of Normanton on Soar inhabitants who do not use the shop, some of whom only come in to ask for a poster to be displayed. Our staff are aware of the situation and new ‘ideas’ are being developed. This is a positive step to encourage an increase in footfall and turnover. But if history repeats itself, increase will most possibly be from non-villagers. We have a hard working team of volunteers for which the directors are thankful. However in the last six weeks we have had 4 of them leave to give time to family commitments and/or increases in their own work. More volunteers are needed but it is becoming harder to recruit them, as most of us are aware people do not want to do anything for nothing. For the first time in 5 years that I have been involved in running the shop we have recently had to close all of one afternoon due to lack of volunteers.
Matters of Report.
- Community Shop – it was suggested that younger volunteers should be recruited and possibly a discount scheme be introduced to encourage regular shoppers. It was proposed that an advert should be placed in the Village News. The Parish Council are to look at ways they can help with recruiting more volunteers.
- Allotment gate is locked leaving allotment holders unable to access their allotment gardens. The padlock is being temporarily used on the front gate whilst a new padlock is purchased. A new key is also to be placed in the keysafe.
- Interest was shown in renting the scrub area by the allotment hedge. It was suggested that the person interested should forward their details to the Clerk and the proposal will be taken to the May Parish Council meeting for a decision.
- A request was made for the disabled car parking to be moved to the other side of the car park as allotment holders often find it difficult to get past. Request is to be raised with the Jubilee Field Committee.
- A request was made for the installation of double yellow lines at the end of Far Lane going towards Moor Lane as vehicles tend to park on the corner of Far Lane/Main Street making access very difficult. Request to be submitted to Nottinghamshire County Council
- A request for equipment on the playing field for older children was made. It was proposed that the children could attend a meeting of the Parish Council and put forward their suggestions. The Parish Council will discuss the proposal at the next PC meeting and will arrange a date to meet with the children. S. O’Connell to be informed of the date.
- Concern was raised as to why the Ferry was still not up and running and could the Ferry be moved further down the river to the rear of the Plough. It was explained that discussions are ongoing between the Parish Council and landowner. Following meetings with British Waterways it was established that the option of moving the Ferry was not feasible.
- It was suggested that the Normanton on Soar Annual Parish Meeting, Village Hall and Community Shop could have their AGM’s running concurrently.
- An appeal was made by Soar Valley Bus for volunteer drivers.
- It was confirmed that Fibre Optic Broadband will be available in the village by June 2015. Residents must then approach their service providers for connection to the service.
A presentation from Network Rail and Murphy’s Construction on the proposed bridge works and road closures followed the meeting.
Meeting closed 20.16pm.
- Hellier – The Old Rectory, Main Street, Normanton on Soar
- Smith – 5 Main Street, Normanton on Soar
- Slaney – 80 Main Street, Normanton on Soar
- Bonser – The Cedars, Butt Lane, Normanton on Soar
- Lister – Butt Lane, Normanton on Soar
- Sleight – 1 Ivy Cottage, Butt Lane, Normanton on Soar
- Cole – 16 Far Lane, Normanton on Soar
Clerk to the Council
Jenny Faulks – 7 Brick Kiln Lane, Shepshed, LE12 9EJ
01509 560807- firstname.lastname@example.org
Andrew Brown- email@example.com 07847 253146
- Adair – firstname.lastname@example.org – 01159847412