MINUTES OF THE ORDINARY COUNCIL MEETING HELD 27TH JANUARY
on-line over video /telephone conferencing
Cllrs. Mr Brian Colley (BC) -
Chairman, Mrs Jackie Allen (JA), Mr Gareth
Mrs Barbara Humphreys (BH),
Mr Newman James (NJ), Mrs Sarah
Mrs Dot Griffiths (DG),
Terry Evans (TE), Mr Chris Burgoyne (CB),
Mr Michael Maxfield (MM),
Mr Frank Hemmings (FH), Mr Mark Holmes
Miss Lynne Painter (LP)
Mr Mark Roberts (MR)
Also in attendance:
Mrs Karen Brown (KB) - Clerk to the
Mrs Rebecca Ap Gwyn (RAG) –
Jack Butler - Press
BC wished all Members a happy new
Prior to the main meeting agenda,
BC read out a statement in relation to the recent media events
which have left many Councillors upset and perhaps frustrated due to
the Council’s inability to deal with these issues.
BC stated: We continue to be
restrained by the procedures and processes relating to complaints
regarding a Councillor, to the Welsh Ombudsman and therefore can not
comment or discuss these cases. I consider this unfortunate because
Chirk Town Council was mentioned in many press reports which, as
Chairman, I find very disappointing considering the excellent work
that Chirk Town Council, its Councillors and employees contribute to
the residents of Chirk.
In the Clerk’s report agenda item
9, Karen mentions her recent One Voice Wales Code of Conduct
Training and I wish to remind all Councillors of their obligation to
adhere to this Code and Standing Orders. I also strongly recommend
that Chirk Town Council reviews its Code of Conduct 2016 and make it
more robust and up to date in light of recent events. I also
strongly recommend that Chirk Town Council reviews and strengthens
its social media policy. I consider that Chirk Town Council, through
the Clerk, should manage all releases of information to social media
or at least approve of such releases. This I am sure can be achieved
after the new website is completed. Chirk Town Council must strive
for a policy and culture within the Council that recognises the
Council acting as a team with recognition and rewards of the team.
supported this statement.
Apologies for Absence
There were no apologies for absence.
Declarations of Interest on items on the agenda
and sign the minutes as a true record of the Ordinary
Meeting held on 16th December 2020
The minutes were reviewed. NJ proposed the
minutes as a true account, CB seconded, all agreed.
any matters arising from the minutes received above not
Item 59 – Clogged drains – Members asked if
the sweeper had been to Pentre and Black Park. FH will chase
Wrexham CBC. TE stated that remedial works are due to start
on the drains between the Hand Hotel and the AAA’s.
Item 65 – Parking – The parking officer had
been to Chirk and issued a number of enforcements. The Clerk
confirmed the letter from the Council has been sent to all
oral reports from Council Representatives
that she had chaired the Wrexham/Flintshire One Voice Wales
Area Meeting held on 26/01/21. Key points reported:
Only 50% of Councils have published their
87% of Councils are Members of One Voice
Consultation on the reform of Community
Councils will take place during 2021 on topics around:
voting age of 16, staff can stand for election and resign
only if elected, Councils to produce an annual report,
Council meetings can be held in public houses, members of
public can make representation at meetings. Training was
initially going to be mandatory, however it is looking like
this will be for each Council to decide its own training
The next guest speaker requested by the group
was for Natural Resources Wales to talk about the recent
flooding and drains/culverts issues.
oral reports from Local Members – Wrexham CBC.
FH reported that there
had been two incidents of fly tipping. Members asked if
there are consequences for this? FH explained that the
authority is involved and it is very complicated.
There was flooding on Lodgevale and was
unable to obtain any sandbags. SW suggested that a supply of
sandbags could be purchased and stored at the Parish Hall.
FH attended the Wrexham
Town and Community Council Forum the main focus being a new
Charter aimed to improve the relationship between all
BH asked about the
landslide at Penybont. FH confirmed the wall and part of the
road has gone, the situation is very serious and experts are
surveying the site but it is too early to know how long the
repairs will take.
TE reported that the recent flooding on
Princess Avenue, The Nurseries, Longfields, Old Rhos y Waun
is of concern. Everyone was working together.
Concerns were raised over the possible future
plan of 180 houses on Lodgevale as the current drainage can
not cope. JA noted that the recent changes to planning laws
will help as they have to include drainage in the planning
The Council agreed to discuss at a future
General Purposes Committee the purchasing 100 sand bags.
Action: Clerk to seek prices and agenda item when
TE stated that many Chirk businesses have
benefited from the Business Grants available during the
recent lockdowns. LP added that the Business Support Team in
Wrexham had been very helpful.
Salt bins have been refilled. And pot holes
are a never ending problem.
There have been noise, dust and smell
complaints about Kronospan. TE has written to Wrexham about
the new droning noise.
NJ asked about the
damaged fence on the Recreation Ground. KB reported that
that it was a road traffic accident.
The listed wall at Whitehurst Gardens has
partially collapsed due to the recent rain. CADW are looking
Cllr Mark Roberts joined the meeting
the Kronospan response to the Liaison Meeting Terms of
BC summarised the letter which offered Chirk
Town Council a membership on the Liaison Group of five
members (inclusive of Chirk and Wrexham Councillors). TE
stated that he was not happy with the proposal as Chirk Town
Council voice is being suppressed. SW reminded Members that
at the November 2020 meeting when the Council requested six,
that the Council was happy to comprise to five and therefore
felt that, whilst not ideal, it was better than four.
BC added that there is also the Wrexham
Council meeting chaired by Ian Bancroft, Wrexham Chief
Executive, planned for 25th February 2021, which
will look at improving communication, the fire incident and
FH said that the most
important thing is to keep talking, and to support NRW in
the new licence.
Members highlighted the second paragraph in
the letter and within the reply to Kronospan to note that
the Council recognises that meetings are confidential.
Members also wanted to include the recent noise pollution
within the response, both points were agreed to be included
in the letter. SW proposed to accept the membership of five.
FH seconded the proposal. The Council agreed.
Clerk to send response.
To receive a
Community Agent update:
Members noted the content of the monitoring
FH highlighted all the letters, cards and
phone calls received from local residents who were really
appreciative of the Christmas hamper. Yvie and the two
ladies from Shifnab put in an exceptional effort; it was a
great team effort with 72 hampers being delivered to
individuals and families in the community. Members of the
Council would like to see the hamper scheme continue
annually. It was agreed that an official letter of thanks is
sent to the Community Agent -Yvie Bernett.
Clerk to send letter.
To review the
Community Agent hours
The hours were reviewed. GB proposed to keep
the hours flexible 16-20 hours per week until the end of
March 2021. SW seconded the proposal. All agreed.
the report of the Clerk – includes updates, correspondence &
speed sign data.
KB presented her report and highlighted the
key updates since the last meeting- internal audit, lift
repair works, Parish Hall continued closure due to tier 4
restrictions, fence damage, health and safety update,
meetings and events attended including the Code of Conduct
training. KB discussed the training and the recommendation
that the Council should consider amending its Standing
Orders to state that newly appointed Councillors must attend
Code of Conduct training. The Council agreed to consider
this as part of the wider review of the Standing Orders.
Clerk to agenda this at a future General Purposes meeting.
Defibrillators – The Clerk highlighted the
shortfall between donations received and actual cost being
£95.75; in addition, the £500 HSBC match funding had not
been received but was still due. GB proposed to purchase the
defibrillators and the Council to contribute the £95.75
shortfall and to proceed before the HSBC money is received.
SW seconded the proposal. All agreed.
Clerk to proceed with the purchase.
Covid-19 Plaque – DG updated Members in
detail following her approach to Jim Heath (local artist) to
ascertain if he would undertake the work on the plaque.
However a new idea of a carved wooden bench was now
proposed. DG stated that the bench would be sited just
outside the Millennium Gardens looking towards the town. SW
raised concerns that a wooden bench would not last and would
be losing the plaque. MH proposed to have both the bench and
the plaque. FH seconded the proposal for both and the
DG & Clerk to oversee bench and plaque.
Correspondence - NHS, Social Care & Frontline
Workers Day on 5th July 2021 - Communities are being asked
to do this by agreeing to raise a unique flag at 10am;
participate in the Two-Minute Silence at 11am, the Nation's
Toast at 1pm, Afternoon Tea at 4pm, the ringing of church
bells 71 times with each ring representing a year in the 71
years of the NHS at 8pm, from within their local
communities, as a 'tribute' to the Heroes of the NHS, Social
Care and those that work so tirelessly on the frontline.
The Council discussed supporting this day and
agreed to show the intent to support, subject to the
lockdown restrictions in July.
Clerk to add to annual calendar and seek the flag for this
GB highlighted that by signalling out one
event, the Council should consider supporting other special
days. Action: Clerk to work with Council on an agreed
upon appeals for financial assistance received
MH declared a personal
Catholic Church, Chirk seeking funding for
external repair works. Members discussed if funding can be
given to Churches. Members discussed the wider issue of how
donations are allocated. FH proposed that appeals for
financial assistance be discussed in detail at a General
Purposes Committee and the decision on this appeal be
deferred to the next meeting. This was seconded by NJ.
Clerk to arrange a General Purposes Meeting.
highlighted the Welsh Churches Act Fund – up to £500 which
the Church could also apply to.
The Urdd – contribution towards children and
young people of Wales to enjoy and compet in Eisteddfodau,
sports, community activities and the Urdd camps. JA proposed
to leave on the table. This was not supported. NJ proposed
to leave to the next meeting and discuss with the wider
issues. This was agreed by all.
Wales Air Ambulance – agreed to defer to next
General Purposes Meeting.
planning applications dealt through the Planning Committee
P/2020 /0741 - The Lodge, Black Park, Chirk,
Wrexham - Domestic greenhouse. – The Committee had no
objection to the proposal.
P/2020/0863 - Glascott, Castle Crescent,
Station Avenue, Chirk, Wrexham - Removal of conservatory and
erection of new sunroom. – The Committee had no objection to
GB proposed that the Council has no
objections. MM seconded the proposal. All agreed.
approval of payments made between 01.10.2020 to 31.12.2020
A list of payments between 01.10.20 to
31.12.20 amounting to £43,840.48 (included VAT) was given to
the Council. JA confirmed that all payments are pre-approved
by herself and BC. GB proposed and CB seconded that the
payments be retrospectively approved. The motion was passed
items for inclusion on the next agenda
Thanks were given to all Councillors
volunteering at the Chirk Surgery vaccination day, it was
appreciated by everyone. Councillors enjoyed being out and
able to help and see people. JA hopes people can assist
again at the next vaccination day.
SW raised the growing idea of a
Children’s/Community Bike Track in Chirk, FH & MH are
looking at potential sites with SW; insurance and signage
would be an issue to consider.
Clerk to agenda for next meeting.