Town Council Meeting 9 September 2015 – Minutes

PONTELAND TOWN COUNCIL

MINUTES OF A MEETING OF THE COUNCIL HELD IN THE TOWN COUNCIL OFFICES, PONTELAND ON 9 SEPTEMBER 2015

Present: Councillor C Rawlings (in the Chair)

Councillors Mrs J Butcher, R Dodd, Mrs C Greenwell, Mrs S Johnson, Mrs L Noble, R G Ramsay, A Shanley, Mrs E Thompson and A Varley

82. APOLOGIES FOR ABSENCE

An apology for absence was received from Councillor Mrs C Caisley.

83. MINUTES OF THE COUNCIL MEETING HELD 12 AUGUST 2015

The Minutes of the Council Meeting held on 12 August 2015 were confirmed
and signed by the Mayor.

84. DECLARATIONS OF INTEREST

Councillor Mrs Greenwell declared an interest in item 99.

85. MATTERS ARISING
(i) Minute 72 – Purchase of recording equipment
It was reported that the equipment had been purchased.

86. PLANNING

(i) Planning Committee
Minutes of meetings held on 11 and 25 August 2015 were circulated for information.

The Chairman referred to the work that had been carried out to the outside space at 9 Bell Villas that was causing concern locally.

The Chairman also referred to discussions the Committee had had in relation to application 15/01474/FUL that related to the corner of Runnymede Road. The Committee were concerned at the contravention of the Section 106 agreement. It now appeared that there was no S106 agreement attached to this application and the Council was advised that the Planning Committee would be sending a further letter to NCC on this matter.

(ii) Report on recent planning decisions
There was nothing to report.

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87. GRANTS
(i) Rotary Club of Ponteland
Councillors were reminded that consideration of this application had been deferred pending receipt of additional information regarding the change of venue from Merton Way to the High School.

The information had been received and had been circulated to Councillors and was also included in the report submitted to the meeting.

RESOLVED – A grant of £500 be awarded to the Rotary Club in respect of this event.

88. PROJECTS REPORT

A report relating to the above had been circulated.

Councillors were reminded that the paper map draft was still available in the office for comments.

The Clerk also provided an update to Members in relation to the skate park.

RESOLVED – The report be accepted.

89. TWIZELL PLAY AREA

Consideration of this item would take place in closed session.

90. REPLACEMENT OF BOARDWALK BRIDGE IN THE PARK

A report relating to the above had been circulated.

It was stated that the boardwalk was due for renewal in accordance with the Council’s asset replacement fund. It was in poor condition.
Quotes had been sought and responses from the three contractors were included within the report.
The structure would be replaced with recycled plastic material as this would reduce maintenance costs and increase the life of the bridge.

RESOLVED – The Council agree to accept the quote from Northumbrian Turf and Landscaping in the sum of £2450.

91. EXPRESSION OF THANKS TO MRS ATKINSON IN RESPECT OF
THE OTTER STATUE IN THE PARK

Councillors wished to formally record their thanks to Mrs Atkinson for her kind donation of the otter statue in the Park in memory of her late husband.

RESOLVED – Thanks be formally recorded and a letter be sent to Mrs Atkinson from the Town Council.
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92. FLOOD RESILIENCE PLANNING
It was reported that four Councillors had attended a further meeting to discuss the above.
The group had examined some blank templates and also some plans produced by other Councils.
The plans produced by Belford and Haltwhistle appeared to be most relevant to this area and therefore it was agreed that the plan for Ponteland would be completed on that basis.
The next stage was for Councillors to volunteer to insert some details into the blank templates and an email would be sent out asking for assistance.
RESOLVED – The information be received.

93. HIGHWAYS WORKING PARTY

Minutes of a meeting of the above Working Party held on 14 August 2015 had been circulated.
RESOLVED – The minutes and the following recommendation be agreed:

(i) Installation of bollards on Callerton Lane
It was agreed that the installation of bollards on Callerton Lane would not proceed due to the detrimental effect on residents in that area.

(ii) Northumberland Local Transport Plan submission 2016-17
That the following suggestions be approved for submission to the County Council in respect of the LTP for 2016-17:
1) Raised Bus Stops along the A696 and main bus routes for reasons of accessibility.
2) New Footpaths – A number of new footpaths in order of priority to improve the accessibility in the village.
1 Eastern Way (500m)
2 The Rise (800m)
3 Errington & Marian Way (550m)
4 Western Way (400m)

3) Look at ways to improve the egress and ingress to Henderson Court located off North Road.

And the following as the reserve items:-

1) Installation of 2 no streetlights on the footpath between Kirkley Drive and Meadowfield; and 4 no streetlights on Marian Way. – This is a through road between Errington and The Rise, currently with neither footpaths nor streetlights. Also 2no lights to the link between Middle Drive and Parklands. – These are valuable additions for children going to and from the schools [Darras First School, Ponteland Middle and High.]. New lighting columns in various locations including but not limited to Greenacres, Avondale, Burnside, Callerton Court, Cote Hill and Eland View as requested by residents.
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93. HIGHWAYS WORKING PARTY (Continued)

2) Localised Kerbing
While there are kerbs on most roads in the built up area, there are two through routes which still have to be completed. These are the Rise and Woodside. The Rise has about 10% complete while Woodside has about 55%complete.The effect on the Rise has been most marked as the roadside verge is in very poor state. This has on one side been aggravated by extensive service work {Gas & Electric].

The estimated lengths are
1The Rise[ 1500m]
2 Woodside [700m]

3) Removal of double yellow lines to improve parking on Meadowfield estate- exact location to be supplied

Councillors had made numerous requests for footpath and or road re-surfacing. Mr McKenzie explained that this could not be funded by the LTP but advised that the suggestions be included at the bottom of the Council’s submission. Members agreed the following for inclusion in the submission.

‘’The Council appreciate that projects funded by capital maintenance are prioritised by various means as part of the annual road maintenance review in order to target the roads in most need of resurfacing. The Town Council would ask that that the remaining portion of Middle Drive is re-surfaced to complete the project which was started in 2013 however consideration should also be made regarding Eastern Way, specifically the portion from Edgehill to Middle Drive about which the Town Council regularly receives complaints. Finally the Council wishes to nominate footpaths at both Ridgely Drive and Ridgely Close and all along Callerton Lane for total resurfacing treatments, in the interest of pedestrian safety.’’

(iii) Maintenance contract for SIDS
Some supplementary information regarding the above recommendation had been circulated.
The Council agreed the recommendation of the Working Party to take the Gold level of cover at an annual cost of £1166.00.

94. ENVIRONMENT WORKING PARTY
Minutes of a meeting of the above Working Party held on 17 August 2015 had been circulated.

RESOLVED – The minutes and the following recommendation be agreed:
(i) Sensory Garden
The Council approve the preferred location of Coates Institute for this project and agree that this would be tied in with any re-design of the area.

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94. ENVIRONMENT WORKING PARTY (Continued)
(ii) Memorial at Athol House
The Council agreed to provide a seat and plaque in memory of Mary Short and noted that the Mayor had agreed to fund a plaque out of the Mayor’s allowance.

(iii) Review of NIB
(a) To agree that a soil test be carried out the area nearest Barclays at Coates Institute. Quotes would be sought and submitted to Council for approval.
(b) Make contact with the local business network to ask if they could assist with keeping their own areas clean and weed free. Note that the Clerk
would also discuss this with NCC Neighbourhood Services.
(c) Agree that membrane and good quality compost would be used at the Merton Way planters next year in an attempt to assist with the weed
problem.
(d) Note that there would be a longer period between the pre inspection and litter pick in 2016.
(e) Note the possible use of transport for the inspection visit next year.
(f) Note the possible actions to be taken to increase community
involvement in 2016.
(g) Note the predominant colour choice for 2016-17, namely red, white
and blue.

95. NORTHUMBERLAND COUNTY COUNCIL REPORT

Councillor Dodd stated that he continued to lobby officers at the County Council in relation to the abuse of the car park at the back of Merton Way.
He also raised the issue of ‘cold calling’ that was becoming a problem particularly for the older population and he felt that it may be necessary to generate some publicity on this issue so that people were aware of the potential problems this could cause for residents.
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96. MAYOR’S REPORT
(i) Mayor’s Diary
The Mayor had submitted details of his diary engagements for August and also details of forthcoming diary engagements for September 2015.

(ii) NCC Standards Committee
The Mayor referred to his attendance at a recent NCC Standards Committee that had taken place over two days.

(iii) NCC Town and Parish Councils Liaison Working Group
The Mayor had produced a report on the key issues discussed at the Liaison meeting which had been held on 4 September.

(iv) NALC Annual General Meeting – 17 October 2015
The above meeting was to be held in Morpeth on 17 October 2015.
The Mayor was re-appointed to the Northumberland Association of Local Councils (NALC) County Committee representing the Ponteland area.

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96. MAYOR’S REPORT (Continued)
(v) Vandalism
The Mayor referred to recent incidents of vandalism in Ponteland. He stated that a log of all such incidents was being kept together with details of the costs involved. He intended to raise this with colleagues at the NALC County Committee to see whether other town and parish councils were experiencing similar problems and how they dealt with this and ultimately he hoped it could be examined at a County level.

97. REPORTS BY TOWN COUNCIL REPRESENTATIVES ON LOCAL ORGANISATIONS

(i) Ponteland Neighbourhood Plan Steering Group
Minutes of meetings held on 7 July and 11August had been circulated.
The minutes of the 11 August also incorporate notes of a meeting of the Core Strategy Sub Group held on 17 July at County Hall.

Concern was expressed at the delay in these minutes being submitted to the Council and the process involved was explained to Members.

Those members on the Steering Group agreed to discuss this with the Chairman of the PNPSG and a suggestion was made that perhaps the minutes could be circulated to Councillors as soon as they were received.

Disappointment was expressed at the comment on page 2 of the 11 August minutes regarding the Housing Needs Survey and those members on the group were asked to pursue this further.

(ii) Ponteland Community Trust
A report had been submitted by Councillor Cowey regarding the current situation with the Trust.

(iii) Newcastle Airport Consultative Committee– 1 September 2015
Councillor Mrs Butcher submitted a report relating to her attendance at the above meeting.

(iv) Ageing Well Group
Councillor Mrs Greenwell submitted a report of a meeting of the above Group held on 24 August 2015.

(v) Ponteland Community Partnership – Ponteland Question Time –
Wednesday 23 September
Information relating to the above event had been circulated to the Council.

98. ACCOUNTS/ BANK RECONCILIATION/ BUDGET UPDATE/

The Accounts Committee approved payments totalling £60,558.32 and the transfer of this sum from the Council’s Deposit Account. The Bank reconciliation for August 2015 was also approved together with a budget report for the same period.
RESOLVED – The reports be approved.
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DATE OF NEXT MEETING – WEDNESDAY14 OCTOBER 2015 AT 6.45 P.M. AT THE TOWN COUNCIL OFFICES