MINUTES OF THE ORDINARY COUNCIL MEETING HELD 26th APRIL 2017

 

Present

Cllrs. Mrs Jackie Allen (JA), Mr Frank Hemmings (FH), Mrs Barbara Humphreys (BH), Mr John Vant (JV),
Mr Newman James (NJ), Mr Michael Maxfield (MM) & Mrs Sarah Williams (SW).

WCBC Cllrs. Mr Terry Evans (TE) & Mr Ian Roberts (IR).
Mr Shaun Jones (SJ), Clerk to the Council.

 

Apologies

Cllrs. Mark Holmes & Mr Brian Colley.

 

Declarations of Interest

No declarations of interest noted based on the published agenda.  See Minute 151 where two declarations were made.

 

142.    MINUTES OF THE ORDINARY COUNCIL MEETING HELD 29th MARCH 2017

The draft minutes for the Council Meeting held 29th March 2017 are now put to the Council as an accurate record of proceedings.  The motion proposed JV and seconded FH was passed unanimously.

 

143.    MATTERS ARISING

As noted in report of Finance Committee meeting on 24th March, SJ advised that the review of the Document Retention Policy as an agenda item for tonight’s meeting had been omitted by mistake.

Minute 134 – 29.3.2017 – TE confirmed the bin located outside the Old Doctors Surgery has now been

                                           removed.

 

144.    NEIGHBOURHOOD POLICING
The usual police statistics sheet shows a low number of incidents that have been reported since the last report issued.  There are four instances of antisocial behaviour and one reported theft from a motor vehicle.  In the priorities noted, a warning letter was sent to a local resident seen parking on the zig zag lines and this was caught on the CCTV system.  This letter was the 1st of it's kind and now having been translated into Welsh, this kind of response to illegal parking in Church Street Chirk can be replicated.  Some concern was raised over lorries parking in the Rhos y Waun area.  It is understood that most likely servicing Kronospan and are really quite a nuisance.  Some are seen parking overnight in the circle.

 

145.    REPORTS FROM COUNCIL REPRESENTATIVES
FH attended the planning appeal hearing relating to the seven traveller pitches proposed at Halton.  On the appellant side there were three persons including a family member to the applicant.  On the side of Wrexham County Borough Council there was a single representative from the planning department. For many gathered who wanted to make proper representation over genuine concerns about the suitability of the site it was seemingly predetermined and that the Inspector (Ms. Melissa Hall) only wished to hear matters that directly related to the original reason for refusal, that of highways access.  Because there was interference or harassment of the hired planning consultant by Chirk Town Council the intention to have such a specialist speak was lost.  SW added that she was very concerned over what went on.

 

146.    REPORTS – LOCAL MEMBERS WREXHAM CBC

TE reported of an imminent repair (2.5.17) of a noisy manhole cover on Holyhead Road (B5070).  With regard to nuisance dust reported in Duke Street there has been some improvement of late.  Nothing further to report as Council disbanded ahead of fresh elections on May 4th 2017.

 

 47.    NOTICE OF ANNUAL AUDIT
SJ advised that the Internal Auditor is to attend his office on Wednesday 7th June 2017.  Work in preparation of this visit is underway.  Grant Thornton who are the External Auditors have clarified when our Annual Return and supporting papers should be made available for public inspection.  June 9th to July 6th 2017 and notices put up on 26th of May 2017.  The Annual Return will be reported on and should be signed off at the next Ordinary Meeting - 31st May 2017.

 

At 6:56pm the agenda for the Ordinary Meeting was suspended to allow for the Annual Town Meeting to commence at 7:00pm.  A Summary Report of the meeting to be written up by the Clerk. 

 

The Ordinary Meeting Agenda resumed at 8:10pm.

 

148.    OFFA/EWART ST. PLAY AREAS – LEASE AGREEMENTS
SJ updated on the work to complete lease agreements with Wrexham County Borough Council over to play areas.  Quotations for the legal work have been received from GHP legal in Chirk and a recommended legal adviser Peter Korn based in London.  It was proposed by FH and seconded by SW that the local company should be supported.  SJ will revert to GHP you try and negotiate a more attractive estimate - currently £600 per lease.  There was a query over who owns the land with respect to the Ewart Street play area - could this actually under housing ?  SJ will make enquiries.

 

149.    POLICIES FOR ADOPTION – DATA PROTECTION & USE OF SOCIAL MEDIA
It was proposed Sub-Committee should be established.  Once many of the policies have been formally adopted it will also meet annually to reconfirm.  The motion was carried.  Another policy that should be considered relating to harassment and bullying - SJ to bring this forward.  Also look to source training on data protection.  It may be possible to attend a WCBC session on Data Protection.

 

150.    CLERK’S REPORT

Reference made to offer of new councillor induction training. After the election offers to new councillors will be for them to attend training as soon as possible.  One Voice Wales have written inviting Councils to propose a maximum of two motions for debate at the upcoming AGM on Saturday 30th September 2017, these must arrive no later than 12 noon on Friday 30th June 2017.  Members were advised that the Annual Chirk Fun Day will take place on Saturday 24th June from 12 to 4 p.m.  At the Chapel Lane play area there has been some damage of the soft surface near to the roundabout.  A quotation from Play and Leisure, the original installers, has been received of £420 plus VAT to make good - agreed the expenditure & motion carried.  SJ briefly went through the Ongoing Matters sheet.  With regard to minute 88 from the November meeting a quotation has been received from Mant Leisure, however, it is seen as very expensive at approximately £75,000 to provide an alternative play surface from the current play bark.  For 2 consultations noted in minute 110 from the January meeting we failed to meet the submission deadline.  Outstanding actions from minutes 123 in February and minute 130 in March are now complete.

 

151.    APPEALS FOR FINANCIAL ASSISTANCE

The first appeal for financial assistance is from the Chirk Community Newsletter. Councillor Allen & Evans declared a personal interest as they are serving members on the committee.  They remained in the room but took no part in discussions.  Letter outlines that the costs of producing have risen and to offset this.  There was a short discussion over whether Council could cover the cost of an issue but that it is over the £500 cap.  SJ to check the reason for the limit in place.  It was proposed by SW and seconded by FH that a donation of £500 be made - motion carried.  A second appeal letter from the Friends of Bellevue Park - proposed by FH and seconded by BH for this to be Left on the Table.

 

 

152.    CORRESPONDENCE
The following correspondence has been received since the last Ordinary Council Meeting. 

·         This year the Playday 2017 will take place on the 2nd of August. Noted.

·         A letter from the Welsh Dee Trust and an accompanying survey will be distributed to all Counsellors.  Noted.

·         Chirk AAA’s Football Club writes to thank the council for the recent Financial Assistance given. Noted.

·         Likewise the Welsh Air Ambulance acknowledges receipt of the recent £100 donation. Noted.

·         Mention of a Local Council Markets Seminar to be held on the 30th of June made as we have had some discussions over the Saturday market being rejuvenated here in Chirk. Noted.

·         A letter received from the Wales Audit Office with respect to matters relating to the 2015/16 audit are noted.

·         The National Trust at Chirk Castle have written requesting a place to store chattels at the Parish Hall in a case of extreme emergency after a short discussion this was agreed.

·         An offer from British Red Cross received offering training in first aid - to be circulated to all Counsellors.

·         The Emergency Planning Officer for the North Wales Councils Regional Emergency Planning Service has written and requested for a survey to be completed.  This has been actioned.  In addition it was suggested that a short presentation to members would be of interest.

·         An invitation to become a Local Council Charter Branch (from the NALC Tree Charter Communications Officer) was discussed and the decision made to leave on the table.

·         The Alzheimer's Society write to thank us for our recent donation of £50. Noted.

·         A request from a resident of Black Park for the Council to consider selling a small piece of land linked to the play area.  Members are concerned over safeguarding of community assets and open green spaces and have asked the Clerk to write and politely the decline. Motion Carried – SJ will action.

 

153.    PLANNING MATTERS
Nothing to report.

 

154.    ACCOUNTS/PAYMENTS

·         Payments
A list of invoices and payments (to 26.04.17) amounting to £12,300.45 & £120.32 (using pre-paid creditcard) was given to the Council and were passed for payment (see addendum). Proposed FH and seconded NJ for approval – motion carried.

·         Bank Reconciliation Report – to 31.3.17
Received and approved.

·         Expenditure vs. Budget – to 31.3.17
Received and approved.

 

155.    ANY OTHER BUSINESS

·         Mention of improved signage across Cemetery and Recreation areas. 

·         JV asked if the new WCBC Public Space Protection Order applies to all Chirk Town Council community assets - e.g. Recreation Ground ? 

·         MR asked TE a question about Castle Walks - barrier ? 

·         NJ made mention of the leaking tap in the Cemetery. 

·         The annual triathlon was well attended this year. 

·         It was proposed that a letter of congratulations be sent to the AAA's senior football team on their recent Cup win - carried. 

·         A date for the AGM was discussed and between the 10th and 17th of May the 17th was agreed.

 

Meeting closed 9:12pm.

 

Signed                                    Chairman                                                                                     31st May 2017