Cross Keys Swing Bridge, Sutton Bridge, Lincolnshire

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Sutton Bridge Parish Council
Archived Meetings News for 2010


Dec 202010

Notes on the Sutton Bridge Parish Council Meeting
held at St. Matthews Church, 30th November, 2010

Present; Cllrs. M. Booth, C. Brewis, C. Brandon-King (Acting Chairman), R. Middleton and D. Wall

There were no copies of the Agenda for the meeting available to members of the public and when copies were requested, the response was that it had been posted on the four Parish Council Notice Boards and was available on the Sutton Bridge Parish Council’s website.

The meeting began with the Open Forum.

Mrs. Hardy asked two questions:
1. Why had the Parish Council not told the public what had happened to the previous Parish Clerk. She had been mentioned at a couple of meetings as not being available, but the public had not been told why. The response was that it had been in the local papers that the Clerk had resigned. Mrs. Hardy said she would have preferred to have heard it direct from the Parish Council. The temporary clerk intervened and said until she had resigned which she's now done, they didn't know what was happening with her.

2. Would the members of the Parish Council decline from writing letters to the press which bad-mouthed other councillors. Lots of good things were happening in Sutton Bridge with lots of people working for the benefit of the town and to keep opening the papers and seeing these types of letters is not good. The response was that members of the Parish Council were free to write letters to the press if they so wish under their own names, but if they write as a Parish Councillor, then it has to go through “The Chair”

Mr. G. Croxford advised there would be an inaugural ceremony for the SBCCF at the site of the proposed new community centre on Saturday, 4th December, at 10.30 am. The local MP, John Hayes would be present to initiate the project.

Mr. Clery advised that as there were still matters regarding the lease for the SBCCF to be ironed out, it would not be possible to “cut the first sod” on 4th December as the appointment of a monitoring surveyor had yet to be made, and without which, Health and Safety approval would be denied.

The Main Meeting then followed.

APOLOGIES: Cllr. C. Brandon-King read out apologies from Cllrs. Grimwood, Preston, Dewsberry and Davis. Cllr. Brewis offered the apologies for Cllr. Stancer.

MINUTES OF PREVIOUS MEETING (26.10.2010): The Clerk advised that as these had been circulated to all councillors and unless there were any comments to be added, they should be taken as read and signed. This was agreed.

POLICE MATTERS: there being no Police personnel present, this was deferred in case of late arrival.

CHAIRMAN’S REPORT: The Parish Council office had been open every day and had been manned by Cllrs, Brewis, Preston and Middleton. Correspondence to the Parish Council could now be sent by email address to clerk@suttonbridgeparishcouncil.co.uk. Cllr. Preston had sorted out the outstanding matters regarding the allotments, invoices were now being sent out and remittances being received in. The road island was being removed near Nene Lodge Residential Home, and the metal work from it had been placed in secure storage by the Highways Department. Mrs. Ripley was thanked for the work she had done on behalf of the Parish Council.

CLERKS REPORT: The website was now “on line”. The claim for the Parish Partnership had been applied for.

COUNTY & DISTRICT COUNCILLORS REPORT: Cllr. M. Booth reported that the public toilets that had been closed had been repaired but within five days of reopening the Gents had again been vandalised. He suggested that a reward should be made for information regarding the vandalising of the said public toilets. (The clerk intervened and asked if this would be valid and suggested it goes on the agenda for the next meeting). There was the continuing problem of rubbish collecting on the road sides. There is still no news about the proposed Travellers Site, despite that fact that the Inspector was due to send his report to the Secretary of State by the 5th November. Reference was also made to the problem of HGV traffic in Chalk Lane. The Fire & Rescue Service were holding a weekend of recruitment.

FINANCIAL MATTERS: Cheques for payment had been prepared and signatories would be Cllrs. C. Brand-King, with either Cllrs. Dewsberry or Preston to countersign them.

CORRESPONDENCE: A letter was received from the Parish Council’s solicitors, containing a copy of the lease for the SBCCF with changes made by the Parish Council solicitors to be initialled. The question arose as to how long should the Parish Council keep Planning Documents?

Other letters:
• LCC re Flood Risk assessments.
• The Constitutional Club objecting to a liquor licence being granted to the new proprietors of the adjacent building.
• a new group in the town to place new benches on various sites, such as the Arnie Broughton Walk, the Memorial Park, Tom’s Wood, the Green near the Swing Bridge and the East Bank Lighthouse as well as in four play areas . A suggestion was made that perhaps they cut down on the amount of benches and place a dog litter bin in the ABW instead.
• Gritting Routes.
• The solicitors about the damage caused by the spraying of the knotweed in the Arnie Broughton Walk.
• Power Station Liaison re Mrs. J. Jenkins retiring from the Sutton Bridge Power Station on 9th December, letter of thanks to be sent to her.
• On line billing for BT services.
• Re how the Parish Council treats larger planning issues, these will now be discussed by full council.
• Letter from Solicitors re damage to trees.
• SBCCF requesting permission to put up notices on PC land.
• Friends of Sutton Bridge Open Spaces enquiring about public liability on placing the new seating, funded by maximum grant from the Power Station, in various play areas and open spaces in Sutton Bridge. Cllr Brewis said that not all the sites were under the control of the Parish Council, that the Green at the Bridge was owned by Railtrack, and he believed that there was a covenant on the land on the Falklands Estate for provision of a village hall or the like.
• The Youth Club would close in December. Due to cut backs in funding the LCC were now not able to take it over from the Methodists.
• The Environment Agency advise of Flood warning seminar on 8th December.
• Long Sutton Parish Council regarding items of mail.

PLANNING APPLICATIONS:

• A new casement window for the ground floor of Curlew Lodge.
• A bungalow to be erected on the site of 25 Railway Lane North.
• SBCCF new community centre – granted.

OUTSIDE REPORTS: Cllr. Grimwood had sent in a report that specific areas of the Japanese Knotweed in the ABW had been sprayed and it had now died off.
Cllr. Preston had sent a report that records regarding the allotments were now in order and rents statements had been issued and due payments were now being received.

WEBSITE: Up and running.

MULTI-SPORTS CENTRE. Cllr. Middleton stated that the Football Club should pay more towards the use of electricity and water rates, and would like to have a discussion with Mr. Clery regarding the joining of the two facilities (Community Centre and Sports Pavilion) together.

CHARTER OF FRIENDSHIP: Cllrs. Middleton and Dewsberry to pursue this in the coming year.

STANDING ORDERS: Mrs. Ripley produced some papers which she said were the same Standing Orders as used in other Parish Councils and are what SBPC should have, plus a few minor amendments that would not apply to SBPC. These were adopted.

MANDATE FOR INCREASED NUMBER OF CHEQUE SIGNATORIES: authorised.

MEMBERS REQUESTS: Cllr. Booth said that some of the S106 money could be used to keep the Youth Club open. The reward money mentioned earlier to be discussed next meeting. G. Taylor and Przyslak had been invited to attend a Parish Council meeting. It was agreed to ask the Police about the CCTV which always seemed to be “on the blink” on the day it was required to view.

SUTTON BRIDGE PC BUILDING CONTRACT: There followed a very long, convoluted discussion on this subject, with standing orders being suspended several times. For the release of the S106 money SHDC insists that SBPC are to appoint managing surveyors. It was questioned that if SBCCF decided not to continue to run the new centre – what happens? It would revert to the responsibility of SBPC. The S106 money is on trust until 2014(?) and if not used will have to be returned. The money must be kept in the coffers of Sutton Bridge and not in the coffers of SHDC for use anywhere in the borough. The lease has to be approved by Health & Safety before any work can be started.

PARISH PAROCHIAL COUNCIL: Re the burial ground. It was agreed that the Parish Council should have met with the PPC in the first place. The clerk will write to them to sort it out for discussion at the next meeting.

BUDGET/PRECEPT: Cllr Brewis suggested accepting it as put before them. Agreed.

The SBPC then went into closed sessions and the public were asked to leave the meeting.

The next SBPC meeting is scheduled for 25th January, 2011 at 7 pm, St. Matthew’s Church


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Nov 22010

Notes on the Sutton Bridge Parish Council Meeting on
26 October 2010

Present: Cllrs. Brewis, Booth, Davies, Brandon-King, Middleton, Grimwood, Mrs. Rowe.

Mrs. Jane Ripley (Parish Clerk to Gedney and Sutton St. Edmunds) was introduced as Minute Taker.

  1. APOLOGIES:

    Cllrs. Dewsberry, Wall, Preston (who would be late), Stancer

  2. FINANCE:

    In absence of Parish Clerk there had been some problems to sort regarding banking but matters were now in hand.

  3. OPEN FORUM:

    Mr. Shapland queried the incorrect naming of the road on a planning application for a hot food take takeaway. Response given is that the Parish Council’s observations will have to be sent to the South Holland District Council and for the applicant to reapply with the correct details. He also asked about the Christmas lights. Why could they not be stored rather than left out all year? The response was that there had been a problem arranging for the “cherry picker” to remove the lights at the end of the last season. It has now been decided that the lights will be tested and rearranged on the tree in the churchyard for this year and for them to be removed early in the New Year. There are no funds available for the purchase of more Christmas decorations.

    Mr. Clery advised the meeting that the legal agreement between the Parish Council and the Sutton Bridge Community Centre Fund had now been signed, and it had been established that the funding amount would be available. He went on to ask where Cllr. Mrs. Rowe’s loyalties lay with regard to the good of the village and asked why on the Marina Project she had not spoken up about it beforehand. Cllr. Mrs. Rowe replied that she had never asked the police not to be involved in the Community Centre, she went on to say that she was not and is not involved on the Marina Project but it is her husband who is involved and if the matter is discussed in Council she declares an interest and leaves the room. Mr. Clery also referred to the “shadowy nature” of Bridge Watch saying it ought to be “fairer to the community”.

    Mr. Croxford started to comment on statements made at the last meeting regarding the gasifier plant. Cllr. Davies stated he would respond to this later in the agenda.

    Mr. Stalley questioned why the Chairman did not intervene when councillors were disrespectful to each other as had happened at the last Parish Council meeting. The response here was that this was “normal banter” in exchange of views between councillors at meetings. Mr. Stalley also referred to the non-attendance of Cllr. Stancer at Parish Council meetings, should he not be asked to resign if he had not attended meetings for six months or more? The response was that if he had made apologies for his non-attendance and these were accepted by the Parish Council, then he was still able to continue as a parish councillor.

    Mr. Vaughan commented on the retrospective planning application being made in respect of the Anchor Public House, as he considered this was way outside the original layout and that it appeared many unauthorised changes had been made, as well as the fact that near neighbours had not been advised of the changes being made as had the next door neighbours of the actual premises. The response was that the Parish Council would send their observations regarding this application to the SHDC.

AGENDA

  1. APOLOGIES FOR ABSENCE AND REASONS GIVEN: as above.
  2. POLICE MATTERS: there being no police presence at the time, the matter was left in abeyance in case a police officer came along.
  3. CLERK’S REPORT: in the absence of the Parish Clerk, Mrs. Ripley advised the Parish Council that as from 2011 all Parish Councils will be able to make payments through BACS banking system.
  4. CHAIRMAN’S REMARKS: With the unexpected absence of the Parish Clerk, they were now taking legal advice from LALC and SHDC and this would be further discussed in closed session. Cllr. Dewsberry was progressing well. At present Cllrs. Middleton. Booth, Grimwood and himself were keeping the Parish Council office open.
  5. TO RECEIVE DECLARATIONS OF INTEREST: Cllr. Booth had already signed the declaration Book regarding his interest in Allotments.
  6. PLANNING MATTERS:

    COMMERCIAL: much discussion took place with regard to the change of use of existing shop at 112 Bridge Road, from general store to hot food takeaway plus alterations to form 3 units of living accommodation. As an incorrect address had been given, this would have to be referred back to the SHDC, at the same time requesting an extension of time and holding objections.

    Extended discussion took place regarding the retrospective planning application to the Anchor Public House. Cllr. Booth will call on nearby residents to hear their views on this subject, as it has been pointed out that residents living at the rear of the said premises have not been advised of any of the alterations. Mrs. Ripley will contact SHDC with the Parish Councils observations regarding over-development of the site, lack of parking, and possible environmental issues. She advised that this could be done “on line” and this was agreed by the Parish Council.

    Multi-use Community Centre, Memorial Park, Bridge Road: No objections. The Parish Council support the planning application. .

    OTHER: No objection to the two storey extension at Fields Farm North.
    Mention was also made about applications relating to St. Matthew’s drive, Nene Lodge on East Bank for an all weather ménage, but these two applications were not on the agenda. There was no objection to the storage building for “Clearview” St. John’s Bank, Walpole St. Andrew.

    Bearing in mind the earlier observations of the correctness of addresses for planning applications, it should have been noted that the correct name is King John Bank.

  7. NOTES ON MEETINGS HELD ON TUESDAY 28TH SEPTEMBER AND 19TH OCTOBER 2010; On the advice of Mrs. Ripley, the Parish Council were told that these could be signed “as read” without going through them page by page as had previously been the case, unless a councillor had an observation to make. Cllr. Middleton queried the omission of a cheque for the sum of £135.00 not having been included in the list of payments. This was then written in and the minutes signed. Notes for 19th October 2010 were also signed “as read”.
  8. NEW BURIAL GROUND: Cllr Middleton asked that professional advice be sought to cost the three proposed sites identified as a possible extension to the burial ground/cemetery so that they were available for when the Parish Council discussed the matter again. Cllr. Brewis stated soil tests had already been done and it was agreed that a search of the Parish Council office be made for the relevant documentation before the next meeting. It was suggested that information/advice be sought from the LALC and SLCC, although it was also stated that where the burial ground goes is down to the Parish Council. It was agreed that Mrs. Ripley obtain quotations from various professional advisory bodies.
  9. CHRISTMAS LIGHTS: Cllr Booth said the present lights must be tested to ascertain they were still in working order and that they be realigned ready for Christmas. It was agreed that the lights be left in situ for this year and to put the item on the agenda for next Parish Council meeting that the lights be removed in January 2011. The Parish Council have no funds available for any new lights for this year.
  10. TO RESOLVE THAT IN FUTURE, MINUTES OF MEETINGS be prepared as recommended by LALC and Arnold-Baker: it was agreed to adopt this method of recording Parish Council Meetings.
  11. TO ASCERTAIN IF THE CCTV PROVISION IS PROVIDING VALUE FOR MONEY: Cllr. Grimwood reported that every time there had been the need to check on the CCTV footage, there had been a “glitch” in the system. It had been noted that since the CCTV system had been in existence there had been a reduced number of incidents in the area. It is a problem is getting people to man the CCTV screens, as they have to meet very strict criteria. It was decided to leave the camera in situ. With regard to the maintenance of the CCTV, it would appear that responsibility is passed from pillar to post. The cost of this system in Sutton Bridge is £1000 per camera per annum. Cllr. Brewis remarked that if the camera footage was not being monitored when an incident was in progress then it could not be used as evidence in a court of law. It was suggested that the Portfolio Holder in Place for Sutton Bridge, SHDC Cllr. Gary Taylor, be formally invited to attend the next Parish Council meeting to discuss the matter.
  12. PARKING AT EAST END OF BRIDGE ROAD AND MARINA: Cllr. Davies had been looking into this matter and requested an adjournment until the next Parish Council Meeting.
  13. TO CONSIDER THE RECOMMENDATIONS OF THE STANDING ORDERS WORKING PARTY: and to resolve they be adopted, where appropriate. This was also to be discussed in closed session.
  14. TO RECEIVE REPORTS FROM DISTRICT COUNCILLORS.

    Cllr. Brewis stated that the decision regarding the CPO for the Travellers Transit Site was due within the next two weeks. The Wind Turbine farm at Tydd St. Mary was going ahead. Concessionary fares safeguarded the for time being. Objections to the removal of the Magistrates Court from Spalding to Grantham meant a reluctance on the part of witnesses to turn up as Grantham is not easily accessible by public transport from the South Holland area. The workload should be spread between more accessible places, eg King’s Lynn and Peterborough. There was no significant change to grant for the public transport system in our area. That work on ‘the bollards’ would commence on 16th November.

    Cllr. Booth stated that the Chief Executive of the District council would now be working for 3 days in Norfolk and 2 days in South Holland. That heavy goods vehicles using Chalk Lane were breaking their remit. It was proposed that the subject of these HGV’s be on the agenda for November.

  15. HIGHWAYS MATTERS: There would be a temporary closure of the lay-by on the south side of Bridge Road, (opposite Frankie’s Café) for one day between the 6th and 10th December, when the area would be resurfaced. Cllr. Grimwood pointed out that the trees needed to be cut back where the road from the Port meets Bridge Road, as they obscure the vision of drivers. A similar problem exists at the corner of Garners Lane and East Bank.
  16. CORRESPONDENCE: The Parish Partnership is renewed from 2010 to 2011. Grants were available for improvements to Right of Ways and Bridle paths. The outstanding issues regarding the Arnie Broughton Walk had now been resolved, although there is still the problem with the knotweed itself it has been sprayed again and it is hoped that it will eventually be eradicated. An emailed letter on behalf of Bridge Watch questioning again the Parish Council’s understanding of the PREL Screening and Scoping document was read out. The response was that in normal parlance screening could be interpreted as landscaping, etc. The Parish Council agreed not to respond to the email. It was also stated that up until the 25th October, 2010, PREL had not submitted a planning application to SHDC.
  17. TO RECEIVE REPORTS FROM COMMITTEE/WORKING PARTIES: Cllr. Grimwood stated that the public toilets were still locked and awaiting repairs. The goal posts had been removed from the playing field near the Youth Club but a stump left still needed to be removed. The Knotweed had been sprayed again. Cllr. Preston reported on the Allotments. The PC have 59 allotments and rentals for same were being sent out. The dyke near Speechley’s Allotment was still blocked by asbestos, although this was considered as non dangerous, but that the dyke still needs clearing. Cllr. Davies reported on Planning as was heard previously in the meeting and also referred to the PREL Screening and Scoping document and he considered that Bridge Watch were being vindictive by suggesting the Parish Council had not understood the real meaning of the document, he emphasised again that it was not a Planning application. Cllr. Middleton reported on the Parish Council’s website (suttonbridgeandwingland) and said that they were working on it. He also reported on the Multi-Sports Centre, saying that it was envisaged to have a large and a small football pitch, a cricket circle and tennis courts.
  18. TO RECEIVE REPORTS FROM OUTSIDE BODIES REPRESENTATIVES: There was very little of interest to report here.

The public part of the meeting closed at approximately 9.30pm, the Parish Council then went into closed session.

In response to the question raised at a previous meeting regarding councillors speaking clearly so that they could be heard at the back of the room, the acting Chairman had thoughtfully brought in a microphone.


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Oct 222010

NOTES ON THE EXTRAORDINARY SUTTON BRIDGE PARISH COUNCIL MEETING HELD AT ST. MATTHEW’S CHURCH
Tuesday, 19th October 2010

Present: Cllrs. Alan Davies, John Preston, Christopher Brandon-King, Robert Middleton, John Grimwood, Mrs. Jenny Rowe.

The meeting started with an informal introduction by acting Chairman, Cllr. Brandon-King, in the absence of Cllr. Dewsberry, who is recovering from surgery. He then explained to the general public that the reason for this meeting was because at the last Parish Council Meeting of the 27th July, Cllr. Mrs. Rowe had said that major planning applications and important matters were not properly discussed at Parish Council Meetings.

He went on to say that since the Marina application plans had only been brought to their attention at the last Parish Council Meeting, they had asked South Holland District Council for an extension for consideration, as the deadline was October 20th.

  1. APPOINTMENT OF MINUTE TAKER:
    Cllr. Brandon-King proposed that Cllr. Preston should take the Minutes of this meeting and Cllr Preston said he would and all agreed.
  2. APOLOGIES FOR ABSENCE:
    Cllr. Wall, Cllr. Booth and Cllr. Dewsberry.
  3. OPEN FORUM:

    Mrs. Giles said that the Marina would be a good thing for Sutton Bridge, bringing in much trade, that it would not be a drain on the finances of the town, as the project Managers had funding in place.

    Mr. Blundell asked why was the Parish Council now focussing so much attention on something that would have little impact on the lives of many of the residents of Sutton Bridge, when in November 2009, they passed the Screening and Scoping document ‘on the nod’ for the incinerator plant, or gasifier as PREL would prefer to have it called, which would obviously have a much greater impact on the lives of the majority of the residents in Sutton Bridge. It appeared that no consideration whatsoever had been given to the effect on the residents or to the traffic movements, which would involve a large vehicle movement in and out of the proposed site every 4.5 minutes. The Planning Committee had no comment, questions or objections to make about any of this.

    Cllr. Brandon-King answered that the difference was that PREL had presented a lot of information as well as having held open days for the public, whereas the Marina Project was something new. However, Mr. Blundell insisted that it was still not recognised that the Incinerator plant was NOT a recycling centre as the residents of the town had been led to believe, and still believe, and indeed the minutes of the Annual Parish Meeting originally referred to the PREL proposal as a ‘recycling plant’.

    Cllr. Brewis arrived at 6.55 pm.

    During the ensuing discussion, Cllr. Preston, who is on the Sutton Bridge Planning Sub-Committee, expressed the view that the document Mr. Blundell was referring to was about landscaping and tree planting in relation to the proposed incinerator.

    Cllr. Brewis repeatedly asserted that PREL had not put in a planning application. Mr. Blundell attempted to point out that the Screening and Scoping document which went through on the nod last November contained a significant amount of detail about the PREL proposal. He repeated his question: why did the Planning Sub-Committee not have any questions about PREL’s intentions when they clearly intended to go through the Marina proposal in great detail?

  4. PLANNING APPLICATION FOR THE PROPOSED MARINA:

    Cllr. Middleton stated that he knew there had been a presentation regarding the Marina staged at the Bridge Hotel when the plans were first drawn up, which Cllr. Grimwood said he had attended.

    From the floor, Mr. Stalley was allowed to comment that a large copy of the plan of the Marina Project had been on the wall of the Parish Council Office for a long time. Cllr. Brandon-King stated that when he became a Parish Councillor he had been informed that it was a ‘dead duck’ and therefore had not taken any interest in it.

    Standing orders were again suspended while Mr. Clery advised the Parish Council that he had been in contact with Mr. Andrew Gee at Lincolnshire County Council about the Project. The Project is led by Lincolnshire County Council for a cost of £750,000, with additional money from other sources, including some S106 money. Mr. Clery agreed that it would be an asset to Sutton Bridge. He asserted that since Henry Smith Charities own the land, Nene Marine would be lessees. He added that the Charity is supportive of the Marina project.

    Cllr. Davies then stated he had received a letter from a resident regarding potential parking problems in the Marina area and the disruption this might cause local residents, bearing in mind the heavy lorries that are already going to and from the port area. Cllr. Brandon-King stated that parking problems should not impact on local residents, adding that Councillors have an obligation to respect residents’ feelings on parking problems and other issues.

    There followed a discussion regarding the proposed site for the Marina and Cllr. Middleton stated that with more vessels mooring at the Sutton Bridge Marina, instead of in the Wisbech Marina, it could possibly have the effect of relieving road traffic problems with less opening and closing of the Swing Bridge, as well as less pollution in the part of the river between Wisbech and Sutton Bridge.

    Cllr. Grimwood said that he was concerned about any funding issues that may arise if the proposed project failed. However, he proposed that the Parish Council agree the project should go ahead, but with the proviso that their observations regarding the parking problem should be made to the District Council and the Highways Authority. Seconded by Cllr. Davies. This was unanimously agreed and Cllr. Middleton asked for the vote to be recorded.

    Cllr Brewis got quite angry at this suggestion and said that if the Councillor had been listening earlier, he would have heard him say that he could not vote on planning matters in the Parish Council as he was on the Planning Committee at South Holland District Council. The verdict was that the voting would not be recorded.

  5. TO EXTEND THE INVITATION TO THE SOUTH HOLLAND DISTRICT COUNCIL TO ATTEND THE MEETING BEING HELD ON 1ST NOVEMBER AT 8 PM, AT THE CONSTITUTIONAL CLUB, REGARDING THE SUTTON BRIDGE DEVELOPMENT FUND AND THE USE OF THOSE FUNDS:

    It was agreed to write to Cllr. Taylor, Portfolio Holder for Place for Sutton Bridge and Cllr. Przyszlak who is responsible for the handling of the S106 fund. It was also suggested to invite Cllr. Porter, Leader of the District Council, as well as Bruce Wakeling, Economic Development Manager. Mr. Clery said this meeting will follow the Sutton Bridge Community Centre Fund AGM, which starts at 7 pm, and which is to be chaired by the Editor of the Spalding Guardian. The Sutton Bridge Development Fund meeting is at 8 pm.

    Cllr. Brewis proposed extending the invitation to the above mentioned SHDC Councillors to attend the SBDF (sic) Meeting following on from the SBCCF AGM. Seconded by Cllr. Preston. There being no further business the meeting closed at 7.33 pm.

It was interesting to observe that Standing Orders were frequently suspended and reinstated during the course of this meeting in order to allow members of the public to contribute to the discussion.

Cllr. Brandon-King invited fellow Councillors to stay behind as he had an announcement to make.

The next Sutton Bridge Parish Council ordinary meeting is on Tuesday, 26th October 2010.


Oct 172010

Notice of an Extraordinary Meeting of Sutton Bridge Parish Council
to be held at St Matthew's Meeting Room
at 6.45 on Tuesday, 19th October 2010

After appointing a Minute taker and receiving aplogies, the two main items for discussion are:

1. To inspect and comment on the Marina Planning Apllication

2. To consider a request to extend an invitation to South Holland Councillors to attend an open meeting on at 8pm on November 1st at the Constitutional Club to discuss the Sutton Bridge Development Fund and the use of the monies.


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Oct 42010

Notes on the Sutton Bridge Parish Council Meeting on
28th September 2010

In the absence of the Chairman, Cllr David Dewsberry, the vice-chairman, Cllr Brandon-King conducted the meeting.

A Finance Meeting preceded the main Parish Council Meeting.

Under the item of Invoices paid was a payment for £150 for sandwiches for the Sedlec visitors.

Open Forum: Based on the number of residents who wanted to speak, the public were given a timed 2mins 5secs to make their statement or ask their question out of the total allocated 15 minutes.

Questions:

Why does Cllr Brewis not deliver his Newsletter to all residents as is stated on it?
This questions was asked by a former PC Cllr who said he never got a newsletter from Mr Brewis although he had seen him deliver them to his next door neighbours. Cllr. Brewis said he would respond in writing.

A resident wanted to know why the Parish Council was still pursuing the question of creating more parking space at the east end of the town when the Council had looked into this some time ago and was told this was not an option. She also said the Pc should consider the front of churchyard option for the proposed new cemetery

Councillor Davies said it was he had received a letter from a resident about it. An additional answer was given later under Agenda Item 8, when he said the matter would be deferred when more information was available.

After giving reasons, a parishioner challenged the validity of the vote taken at the Parish Meeting on 21st September on the grounds that the public did not vote on the question as it was posed on the Agenda. She asked the PC to consider more fully the front of churchyard option, as this would be the cheapest and the one with less responsibility for the PC. Later in the Meeting Cllr B-K said a meeting would soon be arranged with the Parochial Church Council to discuss matters relating to the churchyard.

A member of the public asked if the PC had already paid the £20,000 for the pedestrian crossing. Cllr Brandon-King said it had and that the work would be carried out before the end of November. Build-outs would be removed and the island removed from the pedestrian crossing.

A Statement made by a parishioner, thanking PC for their support over the Travellers’ Site Compulsory Purchase Order Meeting at Long Sutton, but criticising residents for not turning up.

A statement made by a resident about the unsuitability of using the Speechley’s Allotment as a playing field.

One resident asked that all councillors spoke up as it was difficult to hear what was said from the back of the room.

A Question from a resident about dog-fouling nuisance along the West Bank, who wanted to know if bins could be allocated there. He was told that the PC would look into erecting dog litter bins.

The same questioner also expressed concerns about using the Memorial Park for an extension to the cemetery, adding he did not think they could do because of covenants attached to it. However, suggesting that the cost of moving the football pitches to Wright’s Lane, which had been suggested, would be greater.

The same questioner was also concerned about the extra volume of traffic that would occur if the Marina was built.

From the floor Mr Clery stated that Henry Smith’s Charities owns the river bank and the river bed from Foul Anchor to the sea.

There was no police representative present, but it was stated that a lady had reported to the police that she had been attacked by a dog in the park. Cllr Booth said he had heard that PCSO’s might be disbanded. If so, he added, it would be a shame because our PCSO has done so much good.

Agenda item 3: matters outstanding: the clerk apologised for the omission of ‘The Cemetery’ from the Agenda.

At this point Cllr Brandon-King referred to the Parish Meeting Sept. 21st) and, after apologising for the poor quality of his slide show on that occasion, when he wanted to present the Parish Council’s costings for the three options the Parish Council had identified: Speechley’s Allotment, Wright’s Lane Allotment and the Memorial Park option, he said he had made available a sheet given the costings for the public attending Tuesday’s Parish Council Meeting to see.

It was also stated that the Signs for the Arnie Broughton Walk are ready.

Agenda item 4: Chairman’s Remarks

Item 6: Planning: There was some discussion on the plans submitted on the proposed Marina. Cllr Preston said there were questions to be answered as to who the group were who were proposing the Marina and said before any decision should be made, he would like more information. There still seems to be some dispute over the ownership of the land for the proposed Marina. Mr Peter Clery said it belonged to Smith’s Charities. Cllr Davies raised some questions about the planning application. Cllr Brewis advised the Parish Council on procedures concerning planning applications, which involved the Lincolnshire County Council. He said the time limit should be extended to allow for a meeting with the applicants to resolve the questions raised in their application.

Item 13: Reports from District Councillors: Cllr Brewis asked for this item to be brought forward in the Meeting because he had another Meeting to attend. He denied he had overruled the Clerk’s brief to arrange a venue for the Traveller’s site meeting, but that he had been in discussion with Terry Higgins of SHDC who had suggested the Market House in Long Sutton. Therefore, he said the letter in the paper was not true. He then read his report too quickly for this reporter to take down any notes. Copies were presented to the Clerk and other councillors.

Item 7: Ratifying the Minutes of the last Meeting took an inordinate amount of time. Cllr. Brandon-King said he wanted to introduce simpler minutes (as set out in the yellow book) to save wasting PC Meeting time.

Item 8: The CCTV camera has not been working due to an electrical fault. When it is working it is not 100% operational because the operation centre is not fully manned. In the absence of John Grimwood, the matter was deferred.

Item 10: SBPC website. Cllr Middleton asked for a website for Sutton Bridge to be set up – a website that would include all the things going on in the village, not just PC matters. Cllr Brandon-King said there already was one and that it just needs input from the Clerk. Not more than six months ago, the PC resolved to set up a website working party consisting of Cllrs. Brandon-King, Brewis, nothing had happened. Cllr Brandon-King agreed to set one up in conjunction with Cllrs Middleton and Preston. They aim to meet asap after October 17th!

Item 11: The recent Sedlec visit. Cllr Middleton praised the success and the behind-the-scenes-hard work that had gone into the planning and preparation of the visit. However, he had grave concerns. Among them:

Why was the arrival event held in the Greyhound Pub and not the Royal British Legion Hall?

Why was the visit not advertised fully so that parishioners could attend? Cllr Rowe said she had not received an invitation to attend any of the events organised, except the Saturday evening reception.

He was dismayed that the only food offered (apart from Saturday evening and the final Sunday lunch) was sandwiches, (which according to the cost given under Invoices paid, was £150.)

Here was some discussion over the ‘twinning document’ – was it in fact a twinning document or merely an agreement of friendship? Where would it be displayed? Do parishioners know about this document?

Cllr Brandon-King answered that earlier in the year when the question of who should organise the Sedlec visit was raised, an extraordinary meeting was held specifically to discuss twinning to ask if parishioners would form a committee to organise the visit. Several members of the public raised their hands, but since then nothing had happened. In the event, the Chairman of the PC recently received a letter from the Czech visitors saying when they would be arriving and it was decided that something had to be done quickly. Cllr Preston said he had been in touch with Westmere School to discuss presenting a slide show to the pupils about Sedlec and the association of Sutton Bridge with the Czech town. It was hoped that contact between pupils in both places would result.

Item14 Highways: A letter from LCC was read out advising that installing the zebra crossing would hopefully commence in early October. Delay was due to the particular equipment not being easily available. The other road works were delayed because of an objection by a parishioner over the speed limits. This objection was overturned and the work should be carried out by the end of 2010.

There was a discussion about flooding in the Chestnut Terrace area which is being looked into. It seems that the cause may be due to a blockage caused by drainage pipe with asbestos in it, and large hole that needs a cover.

Item 15: Correspondence. A letter was read out from the Big Bloomers advising the PC of the bronze award won by Sutton Bridge at the East Midlands in Bloom competition. [It was noted that while some congratulation was given to the Council for being awarded a grade in the best-kept village competition, not one councillor praised the efforts of the Big Bloomers in their very successful entry into the EMiB competition.] Cllr Middleton asked if the Bloomers could ‘do’ the roundabouts, until it was pointed out that LCC would not allow this on health and safety grounds. Then a resident asked [from the floor] if the Bloomers could take on the Rose Garden, as well. It was pointed out that the Bloomers need more volunteers to tend to the areas already planted.

Letters from Sutton Bridge Art Group and the Bowls Club were also read out thanking the PC for their donation of £100 to each group.

A letter was read from the SBCCF advising the PC of the AGM on November 1 at the Con Club that would be followed by a discussion involving parishioners on what they want for the new Community Centre. The meeting will be chaired by the Editor of the Spalding Guardian.

Item 16: Reports from Committees. Cllr Wall said he had been appointed Chairman of the Personnel Ctte and that it had met recently. They were recommending that the Clerk’s hours should be changed and the Parish Office opening hours should also be changed to allow the clerk more time to prepare for PC meetings, which invariably were held on Tuesdays, and to deal with PC business without interruption. This was considered to be important.

The new Office opening hours would be Monday, Wednesdays & Fridays from 10.00am to 1 pm. The clerk would work on Tuesdays and Thursday on PC business.

The meeting continued until nearly ten pm when the PC went into closed session.


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Sept 22 2010

Sutton Bridge Parish Meeting 21st September 2010

AGENDA

  1. Apologies for absence received from Cllr Brewis...
  2. To approve the Notes of the Annual parish meeting 2010 during which there was reference to the proposed 'recycling plant'. It was pointed out that PREL's proposed development is emphatically not a recycling plant but an incinerator, or gasifier, which is their own term for the process involved in burning biomass material.
  3. To resolve if parishioners require the Parish Council to provide a cemetery in Sutton Bridge.

After much discussion between the 50 or so residents who turned up at such short notice, the resolution put to the meeting for a vote, became, either by sleight of hand or by sheer ineptitude: 'Do we want a cemetery?' A loaded question which got an understandably emotional affirmative response.

But this was not the question on the Agenda. Residents expected to be asked to vote on whether they required the Parish Council to provide a cemetery.

This motion has yet to be voted on. Do we require the Parish Council to provide a cemetery?

The Parish Council still does not have an obligation to provide a cemetery.

A parishioner made a presentation in which she highlighted the options that were available to the Parishioners. These would not have been presented to the public if the original Agenda had been strictly adhered to. It is a pointless exercise to vote on something when you don't know what the consequences of your vote might be.

She said the options were:-

This resulted in a lot of heated exchange, particularly over keeping the Memorial Park as a recreation area.

It's worth noting that the full name of this area is 'War Memorial Park'; it was to be used as a pleasure park, garden or recreation ground for the benefit of the villagers. To take part of this area would amount to the desecration of a War Memorial.

The front of the churchyard has been ruled out by the Parochial Church Council, of which Councillor Dewsberry is a member, without any discussion. Of the two allotment sites, Speechleys belongs to the Parish but is worked by the son of one of the councillors. Wrights Lane belongs to Henry Smith's Charities, landlords of another councillor, who do not wish to sell anyway. It would be costly to compulsorily purchase this land.

In the event it emerged that none of the sites was adequate to provide the future burial needs of a growing parish. For a projected 70 years and a population growing to over 3000 two and half acres would be the planning requirement. Sutton Bridge already exceeds 3000. None of the proposed sites would be adequate.

No resolution was possible because of the poor presentation by the Vice-Chairman who attempted to give the Park's committee's evaluation of comparative costs.

A parishioner pointed out that the figures were inadequate and inaccurate—it was not possible to compare figures because they were more akin to guesses than true estimates; any attempt at comparing such airy-fairy figures was a waste of time.

At this point, a parishioner said that nobody could read the figures which had been projected ineptly and illegibly on the wall without a screen. They had not been drawn up and presented by an independent evaluator. He said that there was no point in continuing the meeting. He proposed that the meeting be adjourned until such time as proper figures had been obtained and drawn up by an independent person. Another meeting should be called with an independent and competent presenter who would facilitate a proper discussion of what is a very important issue for the people of Sutton Bridge.

It was further suggested that funding from S106 money should be sought for the purpose of hiring an independent evaluator.

These proposals were accepted unaminously and the meeting was abandoned in some disarray.


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Jul 222010

The End of Written Answers to Questions Raised at
Sutton Bridge Parish Council Meetings

The Parish Council meeting of June 29th 2010 began as a shambles with Councillor Brandon-King, off agenda, seeking to amend the minutes of the Annual Parish Meeting which took place months ago.

It ended in a shambles long before it should have done when Councillor Dewsberry, no doubt with the approval of the Vice Chairman, saw fit to raise issues concerning actions of the Parish Clerk which should not have been discussed at all in a public meeting. She certainly should not have been subjected to a public dressing down.

Meanwhile, Councillor Dewsberry had delivered a headmasterly lecture on the way the Open Forum would be conducted in future. What he likes to call ‘The Public’ would have to put their hands up to signify their intention of contributing to the Forum. They would only be allowed to speak for 15 minutes in total—if 15 people wished to contribute they would only be allowed a minute each; if only one person wished to speak they could presumably have the whole 15 minutes. Only brief statements or questions would be allowed. To prove the point Chairman Dewsberry proceeded to heckle a member of The Public into silence while he was in the middle of paraphrasing what he wished to say.

The Parish Council had already decided to cease the practice of providing written answers to questions raised by the residents in the Open Forum and revert to the previous practice, by special dispensation from the Chairperson, of trying to answer questions when they were asked, on the assumption that Councillors were willing or able to offer answers. Otherwise residents had to wait till the next meeting for ‘answers’ which are rarely satisfactory, if provided at all.

Open Forum questions are not minuted. Local residents will not now know anything about questions raised on their behalf nor will they get a record of answers to issues they ought to be concerned about.

It might be asked whether this is the way to run what is supposed to be a democratic process.

Now seems a good time to take a close look at what was achieved by having written answers to residents’ questions—this had been the practice since January 2010. Councillor Booth had proposed that this be done in order to save time during Parish Council meetings; it was imagined that this would be one way to achieve openness and transparency. Somebody decided to put a stop to the process; the decision was neither discussed nor voted on at a Parish Council meeting. Who made the decision?

It is not at all clear how the written ‘replies’ we have were concocted or who wrote them but the answers, which, for the most part, only raised further questions, were said to emanate from ‘Sutton Bridge Parish Council’ as a body. One might have supposed that the answers were discussed and agreed by the whole Council.

The following is a resumé of a brief bit of ‘democratic’ exchange. It is arranged under subject headings.

WHO ARE BRIDGE WATCH?

Open Forum 26th January 2010 Sometime during this Open Forum, Mrs Minns, for reasons best known to herself, saw fit to ask a question which the Council could not possibly begin to answer: she asked if Bridge Watch was a one man band or several people; she asked who had nominated them to this position and whether they had set themselves up as a shadow Parish Council. She wanted to know how long members of Bridge Watch had lived in the parish and what services the members of the Group had offered to the community. She herself, she said, had served as a parish councillor for approximately 15 years and had said and done what she thought best for the community.

At the Open Forum of the 30th March 2010 in the absence of any comment from the Parish Council, Mr. Ford neatly answered this: he said that at the January meeting a question was raised asking, "Who are these people, how long have they lived in the village and what have they done for the village?" He stated that we all lived in a democracy and it did not matter if a person had lived in a village for one day or was born there. He added that the divisions in Sutton Bridge between lifelong residents and incomers were deeply entrenched; as long as the division existed, there would be no cohesion in the community—community spirit could not exist. He concluded that the experience of both sides should be used and they should merge together for the benefit of the village.

The divisions within the community are of long-standing and they existed certainly during the period that Mrs Minns was a councillor.

There is a newspaper report which tells us that there was a vote of no confidence in the Parish Council as long ago as 1990...

THE BEHAVIOUR OF COUNCILLOR BRANDON-KING AT THE
PARISH COUNCIL OF THE 25TH NOVEMBER...

Many complaints about Councillor Brandon-King’s behaviour towards the Parish Clerk in November 2009 were sent by individuals who were independently struck by what they all witnessed on that occasion.

Open Forum 26th January 2010 The Chairman failed to answer or even acknowledge the complaints for more than two months.

The Chairman said that ‘letters would be considered by the council and an acknowledgement sent’.

What were the details of the council’s discussion and were the letters considered by the whole council or a small cabal? Why was Councillor Brandon-King never taken to task over his behaviour which was in clear breach of the Code of Conduct?

Open Forum 23th February 2010 In answer to further questions about a lack of response from the Parish Council to letters of complaint about this issue it was apparently agreed at the Employment Liaison Panel Meeting held on 16 February 2010 that members of the public should be sent a reply advising that Cllr Brandon-King apologised for his perceived behaviour at the meeting held on 26 November 2010.

No such reply was ever received.

Open Forum 30th March 2010 Mrs. Giles stated that at the meeting held in February 2010 Cllr. Brandon-King stated that Bridge Watch members were behind a complaint to the Council about his behaviour toward the Parish Clerk. She asserted that she and her husband had written to all councillors individually and to Mr J Scarsbrook, SHDC, purely as an individual. She asked if she could now have a reply to the letter. To date only Cllrs Booth, Councillor Mrs. Rowe and Mr. Scarsbrook had had the courtesy to reply to her and her husband. To date they had not had a reply from the Chairman and she bitterly resented Cllr Brandon-King lumping their letter together with other letters received from residents.

Other members of ‘The Public’ had also written to complain about Councillor Brandon-King’s aggressive behaviour; they too had done this as individuals. One such complainant had gone to the extent of pointing out that his position had nothing to do with any Code of Conduct but was about his outrage at the complete lack of human decency shown by the Councillor in question. The complainant himself is now a Councillor...

TRAINING FOR PARISH COUNCILLORS

Open Forum 26th January 2010 Mr. Stalley asked how many councillors had attended Mr. Scarbrook’s training sessions and what had they learned from attending.

Purely statistical answers were given: all newly elected members attended a special training session held in the Church for members of Sutton Bridge parish council following elections in 2007. 5 members had since attended a further session on 09 July 2009...

Is this enough in the way of training? What benefit is to be derived from one or two training sessions? What evidence is there that Councillors have learned anything at all?

During the Open Forum of the 30th March 2010 Mr Blundell referred to the minutes of 26th January 2010 where Cllr Brandon-King under item 14 of the agenda said that members of Bridge Watch had accused councillors of being untrained with regard to the Code of Conduct.

The Minutes had been signed as a correct record but this was not what had been said at all.

Mr Blundell pointed out that it’s easy to say that some Councillors have attended one or two training courses but, having been a trainer in education, industry and commerce for 40 years, he knew very well that it doesn’t matter how many training courses you’ve been on—in fact some people collect them like trophies—the real question is what difference has a training course made to a trainee’s behaviour? After trying to demonstrate new behaviour for a week, a trainee often reverts to old habits. They die hard.

What had councillors learned at Code of Conduct training that would help them to deal with disrespect—a problem common to many councils?

The answer to this evaded the issue of what Councillors had learned but rather glibly pointed out that it is the decision of individual councillors if they wish to intervene when they feel that it is appropriate. The Chairman has responsibility to keep the meeting in order and can also intervene. The Clerk cannot intervene in relation to a member’s conduct but can lodge a grievance if she so wishes or report a member to the Standards Board.

The question arises — why don’t Councillors and Chairman intervene more often? Mr Scarsbrook had suggested that the Parish Clerk could make interventions. This advice would presumably have been an element in Councillor training.

Making a complaint to the Standards Board rarely appears to get anywhere...

BRIDGE ROAD SAFETY ISSUES

Open Forum 26th January 2010 Mrs. Stalley asked if the council could give her an assurance that commodities being transported to and from the proposed incinerator plant either during its construction or its operations will pass along the A17 bypass and that nothing will be transported along the Bridge Road in Sutton Bridge.

This is a recurring issue which the Parish Council consistently ducks. The answer on this occasion was a complete evasion of responsibility: representatives from PREL will be in attendance at the Annual Parish Meeting to answer questions.

Mrs. Stalley followed this up by asking what the Parish Council intended to do about heavy lorries which unnecessarily travel along Bridge Road 24/7 instead of using the bypass. She stated that the vehicles are breaking up the road surface causing pot-holes and that some travel at speeds dangerously in excess of the speed limit.

The answer demonstrated the Parish Council’s unwillingness to take residents’ concerns seriously: all highway repairs are reported to Lincs C C highways when found by the Clerk. The Parish Council have no plans to address the HGV traffic on Bridge Road at present.

Residents might wish to ask loudly — Why not?

Open Forum 30th March 2010 Mr. Giles stated that in a recent newspaper article Cllr Davis was seen in a photograph posing near an island and was quoted as saying that if the island had not been there it would not have been hit. He added that Cllr. Brewis did the same following the accident at the zebra crossing in an attempt to score points and both had failed to offer any sincere condolences to the next of kin. The Chairman had ruled that no councillor could speak or write to the press on their own without going through the Clerk first. This did not appear to have been done in either case.

Answer: The Chairman noted the comments made.

What kind of answer is that?

Open Forum 27th April 2010 Mrs Blundell advised that at a recent meeting some members of Bridge Watch and the Parish Council the question of road safety along Bridge Road was discussed in the light of the recent accidents and it had emerged that the PC is in discussion with the portfolio holder for Highways (Mr William Webb) as part of their negotiations over the amendments to the Road Enhancement Scheme. She advised that one parish councillor has already suggested speed cameras to make Bridge Road safer and she advised that Bridge Watch would like to suggest the following:

Reply: The council will raise these issues with Lincs CC at a meeting to discuss Safety Issues.

In spite of this quite clear written response, a prominent Sutton Bridge Parish Councillor was heard to say that these ideas would not be put to LCC since they did not emanate from the Parish Council. There can be little trust that the Parish Council will ever do what they say they will do in response to public pressure.

Open Forum 27th April 2010 Mrs. Spiller said that her husband died as a result of a motor bike accident and she was very upset at the comments made at the March meeting of the Parish Council which were reported in the local press in relation to the accident. The comments implied that her husband had been speeding which was incorrect. She added that she was distressed that the council were using her husband’s death to get what they want regarding the enhancement scheme and asked that the council did not keep putting this in the paper and for them to stop doing so because it was very upsetting.

Reply: The Council conveyed its apologies for the upset caused to Mrs Spiller and her family.

A long campaign has been fought by the majority on the Parish Council whose platform was ‘to get rid of the Enhancement Scheme’. The bollards, it seems, are responsible for all the accidents that occur on this busy thoroughfare. There has never been any rational discussion of the issues. Vested interests rule...

Open Forum 27th April 2010 Mrs Sutton asked if there had been any decision with regard to the 30 mph speed limit for West Bank because it was difficult to emerge from Lime Street due to oncoming traffic. She also advised that the junction at Railway Lane North was dangerous and asked that it be considered. She also advised that at a recent football match a player was injured and it had taken two hours for the emergency services to arrive which was an air ambulance, no ambulance arrived by road at all and stated that Sutton Bridge deserved better services.

Reply: The highway matters will be raised with Lincs CC.

We have no idea what highway matters have been raised with LCC nor what the outcome of the last meeting with them. Any discussion that members of the Parish Council has on highway matters is shrouded in mystery for reasons best known to themselves.

PANELS & SUB-COMMITTEES

Open Forum 26th January 2010 What did Cllr Brandon-King mean by ‘bizarre rules’ and ‘heavy handed’ procedures that his supposed sub-committees are supposed to eliminate? How specifically will his proposed sub-committees create a ‘channel of communication’ that does not exist at the moment?

It was suggested that Cllr Brandon-King be asked directly to answer this but there is no record of an answer if one was ever given.

In answer to the question whether there was not a danger that setting up two proposed sub-groups would render the work of the Parish Council even less transparent than it is now, ‘no comment’ was made.

Open Forum 27th April 2010 Mrs Giles asked that under item 10 on 24 November 2009 the clerk stated that the Employment Liaison Panel should in fact be a committee. Cllr Brandon-King said after much contention, "No it must be a panel" and Cllr Booth backed him over this. Since he stated that any fool should know that to attend a panel is not compulsory, why was he surprised when people did not attend the panel meeting? She asked if Cllr Brandon-King was changing his mind and was now asking for a ‘committee’ because he didn’t get his own way with the panel. She added that he had stated before that he should have done his homework first.

Answer – Cllr Brandon-King has answered personally by letter.

So we have no idea what this is about... This leaves room for the suspicion to grow that there is something fishy going on...

CHRISTMAS LIGHTS

Open Forum 26th January 2010 The Christmas lights were said to be ‘the best seen in the parish for years...’

INCINERATOR OR GASIFIER

Open Forum 26th January 2010 When would it be made clear to the residents of Sutton Bridge that the PREL project was not a recycling facility but an incinerator? The Parish Council’s decision to make no comment or observations on the matter when they received the initial report relating to the project was astounding.

The matter was discussed in a not very well-informed way during the meeting. The council agreed to invite PREL to the Annual Parish Meeting and to request a holding objection in relation to the Screening & Scoping document.

There is no information as to whether the objection still stands or whether the Parish Council has taken steps to firm up its objection.

THE CEMETERY ISSUE

Open Forum 26th January 2010 Has the Parish Council made any further decisions with regard to the cemetery? In recent minutes LALC had advised that the council should hold a Public Meeting to ask if they wanted a cemetery and surely this should be done before planning for any cemetery sites.

The answer to this as usual evaded the issue: the council were currently assessing the three propose sites [without a public meeting] and would be seeing the Archdeacon to discuss the use of land in the present churchyard and the future cemetery provision.

Nothing gets followed up consistently. This is how the Parish Council remains adept at burying issues...

THE COMMUNITY CENTRE PROJECT

Open Forum 26th January 2010 Mr. Clery advised that he wished to update the council with regard to the new Community Centre project. He had written a letter to the council to raise the issue of ownership of the land because it would be more beneficial if it could be sold to the Charity for a nominal sum rather than be leased. He advised that the police and library services had committed themselves to use the centre.

Open Forum 23 February 2010

Q: Is it correct that the proposed Community Centre would be cut down in size.

A: The Community Centre plan has been reduced. The mezzanine floor has been omitted for the time being and the provision for a pavilion has been withdrawn.

Mr Clery advised that the bulk of the funding for the project would need to come from the Section 106 funds. There was a gap in funding for the original proposals and the new committee had now agreed to phase the building rather than complete it all at once. Langwith Builders through EMPA would complete the project and there would be no need to tender for the works. The ground floor would remain at 500 sq meters with the proposed upper floor at 250 metres which would be installed once more funds became available. It was hoped that the building would be up and running at the end of the year and the release of funds from the Section 106 funds would be released as the invoices were produced.

Open Forum 30th March 2010 Mr Clery advised that £4500 had been raised by the recent Auction. He advised that the main issue would be to persuade South Holland District Council to release the allocated Section 106 funding and the £50,000 Parish Council contribution. He suggested that there should be consultation between the Parish Council, SHDC and the SBCCF as they were all consultees.

Open Forum 27th April 2010 Mr Clery advised that Section106 funds for the SBCCF would be discussed at SHDC on 11 May 2010. He added that he had spoken to the ‘Bridge for Heroes’ group and there was no common ground between the two groups and there had been no formal offer made by them for the Bridge Hotel. There would be free accommodation offered to servicemen in the week and weekend visitors would raise additional finance.

THE YOUTH CLUB

Open Forum 23 February 2010 Mrs Blundell stated that a letter was read by the Clerk from a young man from the Youth Club asking the parish council for money for sports equipment. Has the parish council been able to offer them some help in this matter?

The answer to this was that the Council had placed the matter on the agenda for the Finance Meeting to be held on 30 March 2010, The letter was acknowledged.

There is no further information.

Q: What was the situation regarding the enclosed area behind the Youth Club?

A: There is funding available to re-vamp the area but the work cannot commence until Lincs CC take over the lease for the building and negotiations between SHDC and Lincs CC are still ongoing.

CONTINUING QUESTIONS ABOUT THE ROAD SCHEME ‘CONSULTATION’

Open Forum 23 February 2010 Mr Blundell asked why the minutes of 18th August were edited, what the criteria for editing the minutes was, how often editing took place and why Cllr Booth's statement confirming that Cllr Brewis had paid for the survey out of his own pocket, and pre-empted discussion of a more comprehensive survey produced by LCC Highways Department, claiming falsely that his document had been agreed by them; it was then distributed it as coming from the parish council. All this was omitted from the minutes.

Cllr Brandon-King answered that the minutes were edited once only, on the instructions of the Chairman and Vice Chairman.

This does not answer the question of how often Parish Council minutes are edited in general. How often are ‘inconvenient’ things edited out?

Cllr Brandon-King suggested that Cllr Booth's remarks were not left out for any sinister reason, more because it was considered to be a minor comment in a long run of question and counter-question. He thought that Cllr Brewis's involvement in the survey form was already known at that time. His notes at the time revealed that

a) Cllr Rowe asked how much the previous survey cost and how was it funded?

b) Cllr Dewsberry said he had no idea of the cost.

c) Cllr Booth responded by saying that Cllr Brewis had done it himself.

Cllr Brewis’ involvement in the amendment of the Saxby Consultation document might have been well-known but this would have been the first acknowledgment in writing of an action which contravened the Code of Conduct. No action...

TWINNING

Open Forum 23 February 2010 Mrs Ford asked if the Parish Council could tell her exactly who in Sutton Bridge benefitted from the visits to and from Sedlec-Prcice which had cost the parish hundreds of pounds, residents never having heard about it. She also asked how the Parish Council could justify the expense.

Answer - The questions were answered in the Chairman's report on 23 February 2010.

THE ARNIE BROUGHTON WALK

Open Forum 23 February 2010 Mrs Faires asked what the cost of spraying the Arnie Broughton Walk would be and if the council could advise her of the measures in place to ensure it was in a reasonable condition for this year.

Answer: There were no plans at present to carry out any work on the Arnie Broughton Walk.

Up-to-date developments may be found on the Arnie Broughton Walk page.

THE PROPOSED TRAVELLERS’ SITE

Open Forum 23 February 2010 Mr Stalley stated that he had read an article in Spalding Today in relation to the Travellers’ Site and the SHDC intention to compulsorily purchase Land in Centenary Way to facilitate the site. He asked what the parish council intended to do about the matter.

Answer: The parish council have always opposed the site and they would voice their opposition to the proposal to compulsorily purchase land for the transient traveller's site.

THE PROPOSED ‘BRIDGE FOR HEROES’ PROJECT

Open Forum 23 February 2010 Mr Taylor advised that ‘Bridge for Heroes’ had sent a letter to the Parish Council outlining the project and gave a brief description of the project aims. He added that at present the team had four directors, 17 managers and there would be a predicted 1.9 million pound spend a year in the area and asked that the council offer their support to the project.

Answer: The Council does support the aims of the ‘Bridge for Heroes’ Project.

BEHAVIOUR AT PARISH COUNCIL MEETINGS

Open Forum 30th March 2010 Mr Stalley stated that he was making his statement in defence of both his wife, who was clearly targeted at the last parish council meeting, and himself simply because they were totally fed up with certain people having a go at them over certain matters that are not their concern and which in many ways are not directly the concern of the parish council. He was referring to the outrageous irrelevant outburst by two older members of the community at the last parish council meeting. He said that if they wished to make inflammatory remarks they should relate to Parish Council business only. The Chairman of the Parish Council was at fault and should have instructed the Clerk to disregard the irrelevant outbursts.

Answer: The Chairman had noted the comments made.

BIG BLOOMERS

Open Forum 30th March 2010 Mrs. Hardy thanked the Council for their generous donations to the Big Bloomers and advised that they would provide a report of their first year in the near future.

BRIDGE WATCH AND THE PARISH COUNCIL MEET AT LAST

Four members of the Parish Council and six members of Bridge Watch met together on Monday 19th April 2010.

At the February Meeting, a member of the Parish Council asked under the 'Members' Questions' section on the Agenda for a meeting of the Parish Council and Bridge Watch. This resulted in a letter from the Council (via the Clerk) to meet informally. As no Agenda was issued and no prior indication of the matters which the Parish Council wished to discuss with Bridge Watch, members prepared a loose list of possible topics that might be raised and appointed one of themselves to act as initial spokesman. One/two Bridge Watch members asked their own questions. The informality of the Meeting enabled and encouraged open discussion and everyone who wished to contribute was able to do so.

Before discussion started it was agreed that, during the meeting, to facilitate openness, all exchanges between Bridge Watch and Council representatives would be strictly confidential and that individuals from both parties could take their own notes if they wished. What follows is based on one BW member's notes.

Initially Bridge Watch asked the Parish Council members present why they wanted to meet with them and the opening remarks were made by the Councillor who requested the Meeting. He said it was important to get rid of the 'them and us' attitude in the village; and to rekindle the community spirit within the village that seems to have disappeared.

This was reiterated by his colleague who added 'we should pull together'. The councillor later said there was a need at District and County level to change the perception of Sutton Bridge being at the bottom end of the county, to one of it being the 'Gateway to Lincolnshire'.

It was suggested that perhaps there should be more informal meetings to raise issues and offer support as well as criticism. Another councillor said there was a lot of common ground and that 'only good comes from meeting with everyone'. It was suggested that informal meetings might 'eliminate the necessity to bombard the Parish Council at the 'Open Forum' session', which is unsatisfactory from the point of view of both sides. No answers are allowed to be given, except under special dispensation by the Parish Council Chairman, which rarely happens. The public has to wait until the next Meeting to receive a reply and these are rarely satisfactory. This idea will be put before the full Parish Council for them to decide.

It emerged later during the Meeting that the Council is considering allowing members of the Parish Council, who have an immediate answer that does not require further discussion between the Council and its members, to respond to the public at the Open Forum session, if this is appropriate. This was welcomed by all those present.

One of the issues raised was the lack of communication between the Parish Council and the public. It is important to disseminate topics and decisions to the wider audience to raise awareness in the village. People seem not to be aware of what is going on. This was one of the aims of Bridge Watch's website. It not only covered general news and views, but commented on important issues like the planned new incinerator and wind farm as well as the impending compulsory purchase of land for a new transient travellers' site. It also reported on Parish Council matters.

Lack of attendance by more people at Parish Council Meetings was discussed, one Parish Council member wondering if the venue (the church) was off-putting. It was generally agreed that people only usually attend if they have a grievance. What is needed is more publicity about what goes on in Parish Council Meetings.

Among the items raised at the meeting included the Council's opinions on the new cemetery site, including plans to enhance part of the Arnie Broughton Walk if the Memorial Park option is adopted, although this will not happen until there has been a public meeting. It concerned the opportunity to access some 106 money if the memorial Park option was part of one scheme that included the renewal of the Arnie Broughton Walk area. One councillor affirmed an objection to recreational land being used. The Council does NOT have an obligation to provide a cemetery.

Conduct at meetings was also raised. It was stressed that it was very important that all those attending Parish Council Meetings should follow the Code of Conduct, and in particular pay respect to everyone at all times, allowing each member to put their point of view without interruption or dismissal. Female attendees at Council Meetings should be treated equally and courteously; certain 'chauvinistic' tendencies by some male members of the Council should be curbed. Open and frank discussion (as occurred at this informal meeting) should be the Parish Council's aim in future. Individual councillors should be advised to temper their aim to be 'definite' in making their point of view.

There was concern that the Parish Council often acted from 'guidance' from one particular source, although this was strongly denied, even in the face of one reported incident.

Another important issue raised was the problem of litter and the need for more bins, particularly in the lay-bys beside the A17. After the recent clean up by SHDC, the problem is recurring because litter dumped in the lay-bys is being blown across the road to be trapped by the shrubs. A councillor said there was a move to plant bulbs along this section of the A17 to enhance it and encourage people not to throw litter out of the vehicles as they pass. He added that bins are soon to be located in all the A17 lay-bys.

The litter problem is exacerbated because the bins do not seem to be emptied on a regular basis and that there appear now to be 'health and safety' issues connected with this task. One councillor observed that this problem has only been a matter of real concern during the past year.

The subject of the proposed incinerator was raised as a matter of concern because of the huge volume of traffic, noise and carbon emissions caused by lorries accessing the plant from all directions of the A17 more or less continuously. Bridge Watch urged the Council to discuss this more fully.

Road safety was discussed in the light of the recent accidents. This was inevitably linked to the 'Road Enhancement Scheme' and a good deal of useful discussion took place which highlighted the importance of wider discussion of the proposed alterations to the scheme which was denied residents of Sutton Bridge last year.

The Parish Council said that discussions are taking place with the portfolio holder for Highways with a view to improving road safety along Bridge Road. A Bridge Watch member reminded the meeting of earlier concerns about traffic use along Bridge Road made by this same portfolio holder.

There was general agreement that the Meeting had been useful.

But during the very next Parish Council meeting Councillor Booth raised a very serious issue that had been brought up in the meeting with Bridge Watch, thus betraying a confidence. When he also asked Councillor Rowe if she was a member of Bridge Watch, it became clear that Bridge Watch could have no trust that meetings with members of the Parish Council would be confidential as had been agreed; any further meetings were likely to be counter-productive. No further meeting will take place until/unless the complexion of the Parish Council changes radically.

THE SIZE OF FONTS IN PARISH COUNCIL MEETINGS AGENDAS

Open Forum 27th April 2010 Mr Giles asked why under agenda item 11 Cllr Brandon-King wished to change everything to do with the agenda. The council had been in power for 3 years and in this period there had never been a problem with the way the agenda was presented; why did he now want to consider amending the minutes format and agenda. His main point was that he did not mind amending the minutes format if it meant the minutes included what a councillor actually said which might lead to a transparent and more democratic council.

Answer: Cllr Brandon-King has replied personally by letter.

It turned out in discussion when we got to it on the agenda that this item was about font sizes! The more important question that would be worth addressing seriously might be to do with the abnormal order of Sutton Bridge Parish Council agenda. Normally, after apologies, to establish some continuity of purpose, proper agendas start with a look at the Minutes of the last meeting and then go on to matters arising. One of the reasons why Sutton Bridge Parish Council meetings are often such a shambles is because they don’t do this. The ‘Notes’ of the last meeting are alluded to half way through the agenda—nobody by then seems to know where they are.

PARKING

Open Forum 27th April 2010 Mrs Minns stated that she asked the same question at meetings which was when the Parish Council would do anything about parking at the east of the town

Reply: The matter has been placed on the agenda for the meeting scheduled for 25 May 2010.

As it happens, it seems pretty clear that SHDC have no intention of making any extra designated parking space in Sutton Bridge: there is already more than sufficient parking relative to the size of the place.


What follows is a word for word record of the written ‘answers’ that were provided to residents’ questions at Parish Council meetings from January to April 2010


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Jun 16 2010

Questions raised at the Parish Council meeting
held on 27 April 2010

Mr Giles – Asked why under agenda item 11 did Cllr Brandon-King wish to change everything. The council has been in power for 3 years and in this period There has never been a problem with the way the agenda if presented so why after all this time foes he want to consider amending the minutes format and agenda. He advised that he did not mind amending the minutes format if it means the Clerk includes what a councillor says and it leads to a transparent and more democratic council.

Answer – Cllr Brandon-King has replied personally by letter

Mrs Giles asked that under item 10 on 24 November 2009 the clerk stated that the ELP should in fact be a committee. Cllr Brandon-King said after much contention “No it must be a panel” and Cllr Booth backed him over this. He stated that any fool should know that to attend a panel is not compulsory so why was he surprised when people did not attend the panel meeting. She asked if Cllr Brandon-King was now changing his mind and was now asking for a “committee” because he didn’t get his own way with the panel. She added that he had stated before that he should have done his homework first.

Answer – Cllr Brandon-King has answered personally by letter.

Mrs Blundell – advised that at a recent meeting some members of Bridge Watch and the Parish Council the question of road safety along Bridge Road was discussed in the light of the recent accidents and it had emerged that the PC is in discussion with the portfolio holder for Highways (Mr William Webb) as part of their negotiations over the amendments to the Road Enhancement Scheme. She advised that one parish councillor has already suggested speed cameras to make Bridge Road safer and she advised that Bridge Watch would like to suggest the following:

Reply - The council will raise these issues with Lincs C C at a meeting to discuss Safety Issues.

Mrs Minns – Stated that she asked the same question at meetings which was when the parish council would do anything about parking at the east of the town

Reply – The matter has been placed on the agenda for the meeting scheduled for 25 May 2010.

Mr Clery – Advised that the S106 funds for the SBCCF would be discussed at SHDC on 11 May 2010. He added that he had spoken to the Bridge for Heroes group and there was no common ground between the two groups and there had been no formal offer made by them for the Bridge Hotel. There would be free accommodation offered to servicemen in the week and weekend visitors would raise additional finance.

Mrs. Spiller – Advised that her husband died as a result of a motor bike accident and she was very upset at the comments made at the March meeting of the parish council which were reported in the local press in relation to the accident. The comments implied that her husband had been speeding which was incorrect. She added that she was distressed that the council were using her husbands death to get what they want regarding the enhancement scheme and asked that the council did not keep putting this in the paper and for them to stop doing so because it was very upsetting.

Reply – The council conveyed the council’s apologies for the upset caused to Mrs Spiller and her family.

Mrs Sutton asked if there had been any decision with regard to the 30 mph speed limit for West Bank because itt was difficult to emerge from Lime Street due to oncoming traffic. She also advised that the junction art Railway Lane North was dangerous and asked that it be considered. Shae also advised that at a recent football match a player was injured and it had taken two hours for the emergency services to arrive which was an air ambulance, no ambulance arrived by road at all and stated that Sutton Bridge deserved better services.

Reply – The highway matters will be raised with Lincs C C.


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May 5 2010

Questions raised by members of the public at the Parish Council meeting held on 30th March, 2010.

QUESTIONS RAISED IN THE OPEN FORUM 30 MARCH 2010

Mrs Ford – Requested that a microphone be used at council meetings because councillors could not be heard.

Answer- The matter has been placed on the agenda for the meeting scheduled on 27 April 2010.

Mr. Ford – Stated that at the January meeting a question was raised asking who are these people, how long have they lived in the village and what have they done for the village. He stated that we all lived in a democracy and it did not matter if a person lived in a village for one day or born there. He added that worryingly how long has personal division in Sutton Bridge been in existence between the lifelong residents and incomers and that as long as the division existed and there was no cohesion the community spirit would not exist. He concluded that the experience of both sides should be used and they should merge together for the benefit of the village.

Mr Stalley stated that he was making his statement in defence of both he and his wife who was clearly targeted at the last parish council meeting and myself simply because they were totally fed up with certain people having a go at them over certain matters that are not their concern and which in many ways are not necessarily the concern of the parish council.

He stated that he was referring to the outrageous irrelevant outburst by two older members of the community at the last parish council meeting these people really should remember the old saying that suggests from a safety point of view “that people in glass houses should not throw stones”. He added that perhaps another time they wished to make inflammatory remarks any remarks made should relate to parish council business only. On that occasion it certainly did not so therefore the Chairman of the parish council was at fault and should have instructed the Clerk to disregard those remarks made thereby putting a stop to the fiasco.

Answer – The Chairman had noted the comments made.

Mr. Chapman asked when the damage to the verge adjacent to the RAF Memorial would be rectified.

Answer – the matter had been reported to the Lincs CC Highways for their attention.

Mrs. Hardy – Thanked the council for their generous donations to the Big Bloomers and advised that they will provide a report of their first year in the near future.

Mr. Blundell – Stated at the last Parish Council meeting in February 2010 at the beginning of the meeting a letter he had written to the chairman was read out and his name was read out by the chairman.

He stated that this was totally at variance with the usual practice and advised that normally the Parish Clerk reads letters with anonymity.

He states that

Answer:- It is the decision of individual councillors if they wish to intervene if they feel that it is appropriate. The Chairman has responsibility to keep the meeting in order and can also intervene. The Clerk cannot intervene in relation to a members conduct but can lodge a grievance if she so wishes or report a member to the Standards Board. The Archdeacon’s visit was reported to the meeting on 30th March, 2010

Mr Clery – advised that £4500.00 had been raised by the recent Auction. He advised that the main issue would be to persuade South Holland District Council to release the allocated 106S funding and the £50000.00 Parish Council contribution. He suggested that there should be consultation between the Parish Council, SHDC and the SBCCF as they were all consultees.

Mr. Giles – stated that in a recent newspaper article Cllr Davis was posing near an island and was quoted as saying that if the island had not been there it would not have been hit. He added that Cllr. Brewis did the same following the accident at the zebra crossing in an attempt to score points and both had waived any sincere condolences to the next of kin and he thought as advised by the Chairman that no councillor could speak or write to the press on their own without going through the Clerk first.

Answer – The Chairman has noted the comments made.

Mrs. Giles stated that at the meeting held in February 2010 Cllr. Brandon-King stated that all bridge Watch members had written to the council to complain about the behaviour of Cllr. Brandon-King toward the Clerk. She advised that she and her husband had written to all councillors individually and to Mr J Scarsbrook, SHDC, as an individual and asked if she could now have a reply to the letter. To date only Cllrs Booth, Councillor Mrs. Rowe and Mr. Scarsbrook had had the courtesy to reply to her and her husband. To date that had not had a reply from the Chairman and she bitterly resented Cllr Brandon-King lumping their letter together with other letters received from residents.


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Apr 25 2010

NOTES ON THE MEETING HELD AT THE MEETING ROOM
St Matthew's Church, Sutton Bridge, between four members of the Parish Council and six members of Bridge Watch, on 19 April 2010.

At the February Meeting, a member of the Parish Council asked under the 'Members' Questions' section on the Agenda for a meeting of the Parish Council and Bridge Watch. This resulted in a letter from the Council (via the Clerk) to meet informally. As no Agenda was issued and no prior indication of the matters which the Parish Council wished to discuss with Bridge Watch, Bridge Watch members prepared a loose list of possible topics that might be raised and appointed one of their members to act as initial spokesman. One/two Bridge Watch members asked their own questions. The informality of the Meeting enabled and encouraged open discussion and everyone who wished to contribute was able to do so.

(Before discussion started it was agreed that individuals from both parties could take their own notes if they wished and what follows is based on one BW member's notes)

Initially Bridge Watch asked the Parish Council members present why they wanted to meet with them and the opening remarks were made by the Councillor who requested the Meeting. He said it was important to get rid of the 'them and us' attitude in the village; and to rekindle the community spirit within the village that seems to have disappeared.

This was reiterated by his colleague who added 'we should pull together'. The councillor later said there was a need at District and County level to change the perception of Sutton Bridge being at the end of the county, to one of it being the 'Gateway to Lincolnshire'.

It was suggested that perhaps there should be more informal meetings to raise issues and offer support as well as criticism. Another councillor said there was a lot of common ground and that 'only good comes from meeting with everyone'. It was suggested that informal meetings might 'eliminate the necessity to bombard the Parish Council at the 'Open Forum' session', which is unsatisfactory from the point of view of both sides. No answers are allowed to be given, except under special dispensation by the Parish Council Chairman, which rarely happens. The public has to wait until the next Meeting to receive a reply and these are rarely satisfactory. This idea will be put before the full Parish Council for them to decide.

It emerged later during the Meeting that the Council is considering allowing members of the Parish Council, who have an immediate answer that does not require further discussion between the Council and its members, to respond to the public at the Open Forum session, if this is appropriate. This was welcomed by all those present.

One of the issues raised was the lack of communication between the Parish Council and the public. It is important to disseminate topics and decisions to the wider audience to raise awareness in the village. People seem not to be aware of what is going on. This was one of the aims of Bridge Watch's website. It not only covered general news and views, but commented on important issues like the planned new incinerator and wind farm as well as the impending compulsory purchase of land for a new transient travellers' site. It also reported on Parish Council matters.

Lack of attendance by more people at Parish Council Meetings was discussed, one Parish Council member wondering if the venue (the church) was off-putting. It was generally agreed that people only usually attend if they have a grievance. What is needed is more publicity about what goes on in Parish Council Meetings.

Among the items raised at the meeting included the Council's opinions on the new cemetery site, including plans to enhance part of the Arnie Broughton Walk if the Memorial Park option is adopted, although this will not happen until there has been a public meeting. It concerned the opportunity to access some 106 money if the memorial Park option was part of one scheme that included the renewal of the Arnie Broughton Walk area. One councillor affirmed an objection to recreational land being used. The Council does NOT have an obligation to provide a cemetery.

Conduct at meetings was also raised. It was stressed that it was very important that all those attending Parish Council Meetings should follow the Code of Conduct, and in particular pay respect to everyone at all times, allowing each member to put their point of view without interruption or dismissal. Female attendees at Council Meetings should be treated equally and courteously; certain 'chauvinistic' tendencies by some male members of the Council should be curbed. Open and frank discussion (as occurred at this informal meeting) should be the Parish Council's aim in future. Individual councillors should be advised to temper their aim to be 'definite' in making their point of view.

There was concern that the Parish Council often acted from 'guidance' from one particular source, although this was strongly denied, even in the face of one reported incident.

Another important issue raised was the problem of litter and the need for more bins, particularly in the lay-bys beside the A17. After the recent clean up by SHDC, the problem is recurring because litter dumped in the lay-bys is being blown across the road to be trapped by the shrubs. A councillor said there was a move to plant bulbs along this section of the A17 to enhance it and encourage people not to throw litter out of the vehicles as they pass. He added that bins are soon to be located in all the A17 lay-bys.

The litter problem is exacerbated because the bins do not seem to be emptied on a regular basis and that there appear now to be 'health and safety' issues connected with this task. One councillor observed that this problem has only been a matter of real concern during the past year.

The subject of the proposed incinerator was raised as a matter of concern because of the huge volume of traffic, noise and carbon emissions caused by lorries accessing the plant from all directions of the A17 more or less continuously. Bridge Watch urged the Council to discuss this more fully.

Road safety was discussed in the light of the recent accidents. This was inevitably linked to the 'Road Enhancement Scheme' and a good deal of useful discussion took place which highlighted the importance of wider discussion of the proposed alterations to the scheme which was denied residents of Sutton Bridge last year.

The Parish Council said that discussions are taken place with the portfolio holder for Highways with a view to improving road safety along Bridge Road. A Bridge Watch member reminded the meeting of earlier concerns about traffic use along Bridge Road made by this same portfolio holder.

There was general agreement that the Meeting had been useful.


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Apr 5 2010

Questions raised by members of the public at the Parish Council meeting held on 23 February 2010

Mrs Blundell - stated that a letter was read by the Clerk from a young man from the Youth Club asking the parish council for money for sports equipment. Has the parish council been able to offer them some help in this matter?

Answer - The council have placed the matter on the agenda for the Finance Meeting to be held on 30 March 2010, The letter has been acknowledged.

Mrs Blundell - Asked what the situation was regarding the enclosed area behind the Youth Club.

Answer - There is funding available to re-vamp the area but the work cannot commence until Lincs C C take over the lease for the building and negotiations between SHDC and Lincs C C were still ongoing.

Mr Blundell - asked why the minutes of 18 August were edited, what the criteria for editing the minutes was, how often editing took place and why Cllr Booth's statement confirming that Cllr Brewis had paid for the survey and distributed it as coming form the parish council was omitted from the minutes.

Answer - Cllr Brandon-King advises the following:

The minutes were edited once only, on the instructions of the Chairman and Vice Chairman. I was advised that LALC's preferred method is NOT to report meetings verbatim.

Cllr Booth's remarks were not left out for any sinister reasons, more because it was considered to be a minor comment in a long run of question and counter-question. (I think that Cllr Brewis's involvement in the survey form was already known at that time.) My notes at the time revealed that
a) Cllr Rowe asked how much the previous survey cost and how was it funded?
b) Cllr Dewsberry said he had no idea of the cost.
c) Cllr Booth responded by saying that Cllr Brewis had done it himself.

(There is no record of any reference to "distributed it as though from the Parish Council")

Mr Giles - asked if it was correct that the proposed Community Centre would but cut down in size.

Answer - The community centre plans has been reduced. The mezzanine floor has been omitted for the time being and the provision for a pavilion has been withdrawn.

Mrs Grimwood - stated that she was a bit perturbed when Mrs Stalley blew her top at the last meeting at a member of the council and that she forgot she was in a church. She added that if that was the way she treated lorry drivers she could understand why she received the abuse she does from them.

Mrs Ling - stated that she had lived in the house at the top of Railway Lane without any trouble for 53 years and had never had problems with it. She stated that her and her family would use the driveway 6 or more times a day without problems.

Mr Shapland - asked why items 21 and 22 on the agenda were to be held in closed session and he did not understand why.

Answer - The matters were to be discussed in closed session due the contractual and legal nature of the items to be discussed.

Mrs Ford - asked if the parish council could tell her exactly who in Sutton Bridge benefitted from the visits to and from Sedlec-Prcice which had cost the parish hundreds of pounds and the residents had never heard about it. She also asked how the parish council could justify the expense.

Answer - The questions were answered in the Chairman's report on 23 February 2010.

Mrs Giles - Asked if Cllr Booth intended to divert a further £50,000.00 of the 106S fund to the SBCCF project under Item 11 and reminded Cllrs Preston, Dewsberry and Grimwood that they should declare an interest in the matter because they were members of the SBCCF committee.

Answer - Cllr Booth advised that the council were not looking to allocate further 106S funding to the SBCCF for the time being.

Mrs Giles - She asked that if SHDC had requested repairs to the play equipment why the repairs had not been done because the council had moved the safety surfacing funds to the general account to pay for playground repairs.

Answer - The repairs listed on the agenda were the responsibility of SHDC and the parish council wished to press for the repairs to be carried out asap because they had been outstanding for a considerable amount of time.

Mrs Faires - asked what the cost of spraying the Arnie Broughton Walk would cost and if the council could advise her of the measures in place to ensure it was in a reasonable condition for this year.

Answer - There were no plans at present to carry out any work on the Arnie Broughton Walk.

Mr Stalley - stated that he had read an article in Spalding Today in relation to the Gypsy Site and the SHDC intention to Compulsory Purchase Land in Centenary Way to facilitate the site. He asked what the parish council intended to do about the matter. He also stated that since Mrs Ling had raised the point about the house they had bought from her he asked what this had to do with the parish council when she could have asked them directly.

Answer - The parish council have always opposed the site and they would voice their opposition to the proposal to Compulsory Purchase Land for the transient traveller's site.

Mr Clery - advised that the bulk of the funding for the project would need to come from the 106S funds. There was a gap in funding for the original proposals and the new committee had now agreed to phase the building rather than complete it all at once. Langwith Builders through EMPA would complete the project and there would be no need to tender for the works. The ground floor would remain at 500 sq meters with the proposed upper floor at 250 metres which would be installed once more funds became available. It was hoped that the building would be up and running at the end of the year and the release of funds from the 106S funds would be released as the invoices were produced.

Mr Reid - stated that on 26 November he had sent a letter to the council in relation to the conduct of Cllr Brandon-King towards the Clerk to which he had not received a reply two months on and he requested a reply. He added that if the councillor had apologised, if not why not and if he had not apologised he should soon. He stated that many residents hold the Clerk in high regard and did not warrant being publicly insulted by a new member when she had been in post for over 15 years.

Answer- It was agreed at the Employment Liaison Panel Meeting held on 16 February 2010 that the members of the public are sent a reply advising that Cllr Brandon-King apologised for his perceived behaviour at the meeting held on 26 November 2010. This was deferred at the meeting on 23 February 2010 due to confusion relating to the notes of the ELP meeting held on 16 February 2010.

Mr Taylor-advised that the Bridge for Heroes had sent a letter to the parish council outlining the project and gave a brief description of the project aims. He added that at present the team had four directors, 17 managers and there would be a predicted 1.9 million pound spend a year in the area and asked that the council offered their support to the project.

Answer - The council does support the aims of the Bridge for Heroes Project.


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Feb 24 2010

Questions Raised at the Parish Council Open Forum on
26 January 2010

The following item was issued by the Sutton Bridge Parish Council. It is a list of their responses to questions/statements made by Sutton Bridge residents in Open Forum at the Parish Council meeting on 26th January and distributed at the Parish Council meeting 23rd February, 2010.

Mrs. Minns – Asked

Mrs. Minns stated that the parish council members were voted on and unless or until any of them committed a crime or such to stop you in your position they remain there.

Mrs. Minns then asked

Mrs. Minns stated that she had served as a parish councillor for approximately 15 years and had said and done what she thought best for the community. She added that the Bridge Watch members could voice their opinions in the Open Session at Meetings so why Bridge Watch.

Mr. Stalley – Stated that he had written a letter to the Chairman of the parish council dated 25 November 2009 with regard to the conduct of Cllr Brandon-King’s conduct towards the parish clerk during the parish council meeting held on the 24 November 2009. In the letter he had requested a reply as soon as the Chairman was able. He stated that it had now been two month’s since the Chairman had received the letter and to date he had not received a reply and asked why.

Answer – The Chairman has now acknowledged the letter received.

Mr. Stalley – stated that when the parish clerk was on holiday there seemed to be no problem going ahead with the meeting held on 18 August 2009 while she was out of the way. He asked why the parish council meeting that was to be held when she unfortunately had swine flu was cancelled and who made the decision and why.

Answer – The decision was made by the Chairman in consultation with members of the council.

Mr. Stalley – Asked how many councillors have attended Mr. Scarbrook’s training sessions and those who have how they think they benefitted from attending.

Answer – All newly elected members attended a special training session held in the Church for members of Sutton Bridge parish council following elections in 2007.

5 members had since attended a further session on 09 July 2009 and due to a council meeting held on 20 January 2010 no members of the council had attended the training session held on that evening.

Mrs. Stalley – Asked if the council could give her assurance that commodities being transported to and from your proposed incinerator plant either during its construction or its operations will pass along the A17 bypass and that nothing will be transported along the Bridge Road in Sutton Bridge.

Answer – Representatives from PREL will be in attendance at the Annual Parish Meeting to answer questions.

Mrs. Stalley – Asked what the parish council intended to do about heavy lorries which unnecessarily travel along Bridge Road 24/7 instead of using the bypass. She stated that the vehicles are breaking up the road surface causing pot-holes some travel at speeds in excess of the speed limit, which all goes to make Bridge Road an even more dangerous road than need be.

Answer – All highway repairs are reported to Lincs C C highways when found by the Clerk and the parish council have no plans to address the HGV traffic on Bridge Road at present.

Mrs. Stalley – Asked exactly what did Cllr Brandon-King mean by “bizarre rules” and “heavy handed” procedures that his supposed sub-committees are supposed to eliminate? How specifically will his proposed sub-committees create a “channel of communication” that does not exist at the moment?

Answer – It is suggested that Cllr Brandon-King be asked directly to answer.

Mrs. Stalley - Ask if there was not a danger that setting up of the two proposed sub-groups will render the work of the parish council even less transparent than it is now?

Answer – No comment in relation to this matter.

Mr. Morley – Stated that he wished to thank the Clerk for her efforts with regard to the Christmas lights because the display had been the best seen in the parish for years.

Mr. Blundell – Stated that the PREL project was not a recycling facility but an incinerator and found the parish council’s decision to make no comment on the matter when they received the report relating to the project. He stated that he would be interested in any comments the council may have.

Mrs. Faires – Asked when and how all the residents would be made aware that the PREL project was not a recycling centre.

Answer – The matter was discussed during the meeting and the council agreed to invite PREL to the Annual Parish Meeting and to request a holding objection in relation to the scoping document.

Mrs. Blundell – Asked if the council had decided any more with regard to the cemetery. She added that in recent minutes it was advised by LALC that the council should hold a Public Meeting to ask if they wanted a cemetery and surely this should be done before planning for any cemetery sites.

Answer – the council were currently assessing the three propose sites and would be meeting the Archdeacon to arrange a meeting to discuss the use of land in the present churchyard and the future cemetery provision.

Mr. Middleton – Asked why he had not yet received a response to his letters in relation to his complaint about Cllr. Brandon-King’s behaviour at the November meeting.

Answer – The Chairman advised that the letters would be considered by the council and an acknowledgement sent.

Mr. Cleary – Advised that he wished to update the council with regard to the new Community Centre project. He had written a letter to the council to raise ownership of the land because it would be more beneficial if the land could be sold to the Charity for a nominal sum rather than the land is leased. He advised that the police and library services had committed themselves to use the centre.

Answer – The matter of the sale of land to the SBCCF has been placed on the agenda for the council meeting scheduled for 23 February 2010.


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