12 September 2023 – Minutes of Barlaston Parish Council

posted in: Minutes 2023 | 0


Cllr P Fisher (Chairman), Cllr C Hurst, Cllr S Tudor, Cllr D Bentley, Cllr D Borasinski, Cllr E Philpott,

Cllr V O’Dunne

Also In attendance:

Mrs Claire Wright (Clerk)

Cllr Ian Parry

No members of the public were in attendance.

No Planning meeting was held

7:15 – 7:30     Public Open Forum

  1. Apologies

Cllr A Hemming

Cllr G Jones

Cllr J Dando

It was resolved to accept these.

  1. Declarations of Interest – There were no declarations of interest
  2. Written applications for dispensations under the Localism Act 2011 – The were no written applications for dispensation
  3. Minutes of the Parish Council Meeting 1st August 2023 – These were accepted as a true record and duly signed by the Chairman
  4. Matters arising from the meeting of 1st August 2023 and not otherwise on the agenda – None
  5. Minutes of the Parish Council Meeting 15th August 2023 – These were accepted as a true record and duly signed by the Chairman
  6. Clerk’s Report – See Appendix A

Reports from Councillors:

133       Implementation of electric charge points in the village.  A Company have approached the Parish Council and have advised they can install a device free of charge. The Clerk is arranging a date for the visit. – Deferred as needs power supply. 

  1. Committee updates:
  • Environmental Committee

Signage for the Wild Green following installation of new items (deferred)

Update on installation of posts / wire fencing at the Upper House – Cllr Hurst to do in October

Deposit parking barriers for Barlaston First School – Cllrs Hurst / Fisher to undertake

  • Parish Council Strategy – Clerk to meet Cllr Hemmings 26th September
  1. To note financial matters:

           (a) Bank reconciliation reports were accepted

(b) Schedule of payments report August 2023 was accepted

(c) Conclusion of audit 2023 – The audit came back clear with no qualifications.           

Expenditure – Standard NET VAT Payment
K St Leger – Salary / Expenses 1627.70 0.00 BACS
Staffordshire County Pension 604.99 0.00 BACS
C Wright – Salary / Expenses 628.80 0.00 BACS
Buxus Green – Inv202308– August Grass Cutting 1,050.00 0.00 BACS
Barlaston Cricket Club – Grant Application 1,000.00 0.00 BACS
Mazars inv 2227236 External Audit 420.00 84.00 BACS
Viking Inv 2816947 Chair 55.89 11.18 BACS
Midland Masonry Inv 7993 War Memorial 2870 574.00 BACS
Graham Burdett – Inv 30/8/23 Repair rope bridge / install King’s Coronation Bench 290.00 0.00 BACS
BT – Inv– Broadband Inv MO47 AZ 30.36 6.07 DD
Pozitive Energy Gas inv 2618182023947129 -183.44 -9.17 DD
Pozitive Energy Electricity Inv 26181620233939509 103.41 5.17 DD
Income – Standard NET VAT Payment
Vat Reclaim 1577.62 0 BACS
  1. Village Hall Porch tender update
    • Due to the suspended ceiling being retained, the drawings need to be amended as all works would need to be undertaken externally, which may push up the costs. The previous Clerk has asked if a portion of the suspended ceiling could be removed and reinstated following completion of the works which would ensure all the documents remain the same. David Byatt has advised this may be an option, however the frames do not usually go back to their original position; however, as the tiles are relatively new, the previous Clerk recommends we take this route as the cheapest option.
    • We are still awaiting a suitable date for Cllr Borasinski to meet with David Byatt to formalise the tender, without which we are not in a position to move forwards.
    • It is noted asbestos has been found in a light socket housing which needs to be removed. (Paul Fisher to advise if his contact can undertake works).
    • The Clerk has asked if David Byatt can submit a fixed price for undertaking project management for the project, details awaited.
    • Due to the complexities of the Government tender process, the previous Clerk has suggested the Parish, under the Village Hall Committee, apply for grant funding to complete the works. This would free up Parish funding for other projects. The Parish Council could contribute a fixed sum accordingly. The VAT will need to be paid and taken into account when requesting funding.
    • Recommendation is to approach National Lottery to part fund. (15K from PC balance from Lottery including VAT). All works could be included i.e., the repairs to the facias, pointing, repair of the step at the back of the building and replacing the damaged lintel. Additional costs would need to be included.
  2. Co-option of Councillor vacancy 2 Cllrs to clarify if they could make representation (they still need to conform to the legislation). A new advert has gone into the boxes and await a response. Closing date 10 October 2023.
  3. Applying The Highways Act 1980 legislation

Where hedges / trees overhand public footpaths, a recommendation is to issue the relevant landowner a notice of intent to have works undertaken if they are not done so by the landowner, however:

  • Do we delay the letters to ensure we keep to the recommendations under the Wildlife & Countryside Act?
  • What notice do we give the landowners before we take action?
  • How do we determine who the landowner is?
  • Who do we get to do the works?
  1. Plume of Feathers footpath works – The clearing of the footpath is covered under the Buxus Green contract – Cllr Hurst to make sure it is carried out.
  2. Memorial bench policy – We have received a request for the installation of a memorial bench in the village, their preference due to costs would be a wooden bench. They would be happy for the Parish to determine where this would be located. – Deferred to next meeting to allow Cllrs time to make a considered response.
  3. Noticeboard at the Downs Car Park in conjunction with the Upper House – The Upper House have confirmed they will pay for the noticeboard, one side to be used by the Parish, the other by the Upper House. Location to be agreed with the Parish Council. The Upper House will come back to the Parish with a suggested design. No response received yet.
  4. Financial Regulations – Due to the meetings being changed to the second Tuesday of the month, to ensure payments are made within the calendar month, the Clerk recommends a summary of the financial payments are issued to a member of the Finance Committee and the Chairman of the Parish Council to sign off via email prior to payment. The summary of the report to be included in the agenda and minutes of the next meeting.  Clerk and Cllr O’Dunne to meet to clarify and bring to next meeting
  5. Wedgwood Marina updateCllr Hemming to advise. Deferred to next meeting
  6. Noticeboard for Barlaston Park Ground Maintenance team from Fiskars are making arrangements to get the board installed. Still awaiting this to be completed..
  7. Risk Assessment updates:
  • Weekly play area inspections – Inspection was undertaken in August and are now awaiting their report.
  • Formalisation of the weekly play inspections process for the MUGA and Wild Play Area – Clerk to investigate a form which would be suitable. Also confirm who will be undertaking the checks – Cllr Hurst undertaken a visual inspection. Cllr Bentley to be contacted to ascertain whether he has been doing the MUGA on a regular basis.
  • Recommendation for 2 Parking Buddies for each end of Tittensor Road – it was decided that at this current time this was not required but be reconsidered at a further date if deemed necessary.
  1. Grant application update(s)
    • No grant applications have been received, however we have received a thank you letter from Barlaston Bowls and Tennis Club for the £1,000 donation, as a result the wall works have now been completed.
  2. To consider Memorial Rock and Plant are for John Russell –Cllr E Phillpott is to speak to Noreen Russell to see what her wishes are and report to next meeting.
  3. To discuss complaint for footpaths disability access in village – A resident requested a discussion to determine way forward for addressing issues – Cllr Hurst to progress on this and report at next meeting.
  4. To receive items for inclusion in next agenda
    • Installation of the Tommy figures for Remembrance Sunday on 12 November 2023 (how are these being installed and where?)
    • Xma Tree on Green – Cllr Philpott requested a site meeting.
  5. Date of next meeting – 10 October 2023


Appendix A