MINUTES OF A THE COUNCIL MEETING HELD ON 11 MARCH 2020

PONTELAND TOWN COUNCIL

MINUTES OF A MEETING OF THE COUNCIL HELD IN THE TOWN COUNCIL OFFICES, PONTELAND ON 11 MARCH 2020  

Present:  Councillor A Varley (in the Chair)

Councillors S Ahmed, Mrs C Caisley, L Darwin, R Dodd, Mrs C Greenwell, A Hall, Mrs S Johnson, Mrs K Overbury and A Shanley.

  1. APOLOGIES FOR ABSENCE

 Apologies for absence were received from Councillors T Edwards-Clay and Mrs K Woodrow.

 MINUTES OF THE COUNCIL MEETING HELD 12 FEBRUARY 2020

The Minutes of the Council Meeting held on 12 February 2020 were submitted for approval.

RESOLVED – The minutes be approved.

  1. DECLARATIONS OF INTEREST

Councillor A Shanley declared an interest in an item raised under 150(i) below.

  1. MATTERS ARISING

(i)         Minute 138 – Remembrance Displays

Councillors were advised that permission was not required for the Poppy displays provided that they were displayed for less than 28 days.

  1. PLANNING

(i) Planning Committee  

Minutes of meetings held on the 4th and 18th February 2020 were circulated for information.

Further to item 1.1 in the Minutes of 4th February it was reported that permission had been granted for the change of use at 10 West Road, Ponteland.  The Town Council had objected, and Councillor Hall had attended the Castle Morpeth Local Area Council meeting on 9th March.

(ii) Report on recent planning decisions

There were no reports.

  1. GRANT APPLICATIONS

A report relating to four grant applications that had been received had been circulated.  It was noted that there was £2450 left in the small grants budget heading, and this was the last meeting of the Council before the end of the financial year.

(i)         Friends of St. Mary’s

An application had been received from this newly formed group which had been set up to enable all members of the community to help enhance the grounds and buildings of St. Mary’s Church.  Individuals were being asked to provide funds however, they were also seeking grants for specific projects.  A request for a grant of £1000 towards the cost of display boards for the church had been submitted.

RESOLVED – A grant of £1000 be approved.

(ii)        Ponteland Community Singers

An application for a grant had been received from the above newly formed group.  This was aimed at the promotion, wellbeing and reduction of loneliness particularly amongst carers and those suffering from dementia.  The running costs of the group were estimated at between £70 and £80 per week and funds to cover three months rent at the URC church at Broadway were being sought in the sum of £292.50.

Members felt this was a worthwhile cause which was of benefit to the community.  However, it was noted that if future grants were sought, there may be a request to see a constitution.

RESOLVED – A grant of £292.50 be approved.

(iii)       Ponteland Community Partnership (PCP)

A grant application had been received from the PCP requesting a donation towards their running costs in the sum of £720.

RESOLVED – A grant of £720 be approved.

(iv)      Great North Air Ambulance (GNAA)

A request for funding of £300 towards the cost of acquiring a Lucas 3 system which dealt with automatic chest compressions had been received from the GNAA.  This equipment would be used at an incident where CPR was needed.

It was suggested that any sum left from the remaining budget heading should be given to the GNAA in recognition of the work they carried out in the area.  This would mean a grant of £437.50 being offered to the GNAA.

RESOLVED – A grant of £437.50 be approved.

  1. PROJECTS REPORT

The projects report had been circulated for consideration.

An update regarding water at the allotments was provided.  To date, five tenants out of 21 had asked for a water butt.  Several others already had these on their plot.  They would be ordered as soon as possible.

RESOLVED – The report be accepted.

 

  1. REVIEW OF STANDING ORDERS AND FINANCIAL REGULATIONS

 Councillors were reminded that a review of the Standing Orders and Financial Regulations had to be carried out on an annual basis.

The October Town Council meeting had appointed a small working party comprising of the Mayor, Councillors Hall, Mrs Overbury and Shanley to review the documents and report back to the Council before the end of the financial year.

The suggested amendments were set out within the report for consideration and on various pages that were attached to the document.

Once agreed, a revised copy would be issues to all Councillors.

RESOLVED – The amendments to Standing Orders and Financial Regulations be approved as set out in the report and attachments.

  1. UPDATE ON NEW PLAY AREA – CALLERTON LANE

An update report following a meeting that was held with Keir and NCC on 25th February was circulated.

Following the discussions, a further layout was being produced by the play equipment suppliers which would require discussion by the Council together with approval of any required funding from the Town Council.

RESOLVED – The report be noted.

  1. EVENT TO EDUCATE PONTELAND RESIDENTS RE WASTE

RECYCLING

A report had been circulated relating to a suggestion to hold events in Ponteland to educate residents about waste recycling.

This followed a visit by four Councillors to the West Sleekburn Recycling Centre operated by Suez UK on behalf of Northumberland County Council.  Members were impressed by the operation and had also learned a great deal from the visit.

Although the public were unable to visit the site, NCC were keen to disseminate information about waste management and good recycling practice to communities.

An offer had been made for NCC to come to Ponteland and give a local presentation.  It was therefore suggested that the Town Council should mount two events over the next few months at the Memorial Hall at an anticipated cost of £180 to cover room hire.

After some discussion and suggestion, it was agreed to have one event initially to gauge how popular this was with residents.

 

Various suggestions had been made regarding ways to assist residents with recycling queries.

The Clerk was asked to obtain a cost for providing a recycling wheel inside a future edition of PNV and report back to the next meeting.

RESOLVED –

(i)         The Council agree to arrange one event at the Memorial Hall initially with an option to hold a second if it proved popular.

(ii)        The Clerk obtain costs for supplying each household with a recycling wheel and the costs of sending this out with PNV.  She would report back to the next meeting.

 HIGHWAYS WORKING PARTY

Minutes of a meeting of the above Working Party held on 14th February 2020 were submitted.  There were no recommendations for approval.

The Chairman reported that two speed indicator signs would soon be installed in Prestwick and the current sign on Callerton Lane would be moved to Thornhill Road.

She also mentioned that all the lamp heads on the swan neck lights on Main Street were to be replaced under warranty.   Staff and members continued to receive reports that several lights were off.

RESOLVED – The minutes be approved.

  1. ENVIRONMENT WORKING PARTY

Minutes of a meeting of the above Working Party held on 17th February 2020 were submitted.

Members noted that Councillor Shanley had asked to join the membership of this Working Party.  This was agreed.

RESOLVED – The minutes be approved.

  1. NORTHUMBERLAND COUNTY COUNCIL REPORT

Councillor Dodd reported that approval had been given to carry out improvements to the Merton North car park, some of the funds were from his small schemes allowance which he had retained for this purpose.

Work was progressing well on the new school and leisure complex and it was likely that public open days would be held prior to opening later in the year.

A 2-year budget totalling £1.6 billion had been agreed by the County Council.

A document dealing with security of Councillors had been issued by NCC and Councillor Dodd agreed to provide copies for the Town Council.

Essential gas main works on the North Road were ongoing.  Councillor Dodd had asked that a review of the capacity of the gullies on North Road be carried out.

  1. MAYOR’S REPORT

 The Mayor submitted details of his diary engagements for January, February and March 2020.

 REPORTS BY TOWN COUNCIL REPRESENTATIVES ON LOCAL ORGANISATIONS     

(i)         Ponteland Community Partnership

Minutes of a meeting of the PCP held on 15th January were circulated for information.  A summary of the meeting held on 19th February provided by Councillor Mrs Greenwell had also been circulated.

(ii)        Richard Coates Educational Foundation

Minutes of a meeting of the above meeting which had been attended by Councillor Mrs Greenwell were circulated for information.

(iii)       Ageing Well meeting

A report of the above meeting held on 17th February had been circulated by Councillor Mrs Greenwell.

(iv)      Fairtrade event – 29th February

Councillor Mrs Greenwell provided a summary of the above event that she had attended on behalf of PTC to welcome Senor Guerrero from Peru to Ponteland.  He was a Fairtrade coffee farmer and he gave an interesting talk on how the Fairtrade movement had worked for him and his family.

Senor Guerrero was presented with some gifts to commemorate his visit to the area which he was delighted to accept.

  1. ACCOUNTS/ BANK RECONCILIATION/ BUDGET REPORT

The Accounts Committee approved payments totalling £52,827.62. A copy of the monthly budget report was also circulated, as well as the Bank reconciliation document for February 2020.

RESOLVED – The reports be accepted.

 

IT WAS RESOLVED THAT UNDER THE PUBLIC BODIES (ADMISSION TO MEETINGS) ACT 1960 THAT THE PRESS AND PUBLIC BE EXCLUDED FOR THE FOLLOWING ITEM ON THE GROUNDS OF THE CONFIDENTIAL NATURE OF THE BUSINESS TO BE TRANSACTED.

 

  1. MERITORIOUS SERVICE AWARD 2020

Councillors were asked to select a nominee to receive the above award in 2020.

Various nominations were made which Councillors voted upon.

RESOLVED – The Meritorious service award for 2020 be presented to Mr Derek Deans for all his work with the Scouts over many years, litter picking and general help to the community.

 

DATE OF NEXT MEETING – WEDNESDAY 8 APRIL 2020 AT 7.00 P.M. FOR THE ANNUAL TOWN MEETING FOLLOWED BY A MEETING OF THE TOWN COUNCIL AT APPROXIMATELY 8.00 P.M. TO BE HELD AT MERTON HALL.

PLEASE NOTE THERE ARE NO FURTHER MEETINGS OF THE TOWN COUNCIL DURING THE COVID-19 OUTBREAK, UNTIL FURTHER NOTICE.

 

THESE MINUTES HAVE NOT YET BEEN AGREED BY THE COUNCIL AND ARE THEREFORE IN DRAFT FORM.

 
 

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