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Town Council

Saxmundham Town Council
Market Hall
High Street
Saxmundham Suffolk IP17 1AF
Tel/Fax: 01728 604595
www.saxmundham.org
townclerk@saxmundham.suffolk.gov.uk


Minutes of a meeting of Saxmundham Town Council
held at the Market Hall on Monday 13 January 2014
at 7.15pm


A member of the public raised concerns regarding traffic congestion on the High Street due to vehicles parking. Brook Farm Road was also raised as an area of concerns with a serious issue regarding vehicles parking on the junction of Rendham Road/Brook Farm Road. He reported that he had spoken to the police and, in their opinion, the cars were not parked dangerously. Highways have commented that yellow lines cannot be implemented because of lack of support by the residents.

Tescos impact on the traffic on the traffic lights junction – a resident asked if there was any possibility of a filter lane to ease congestion.

PC Jamie Newson reported that he would be taking action on the High Street congestion due to parking on double yellow lines. This is now an SNT priority. Regarding Brook Farm Road he had spoken to SCC Highways, who had asked for police support, particularly by the Primary School. The police cannot ensure that there is a police presence every day and confirmed that they were supportive of double yellow lines in Brook Farm Road.

Another member of the public commented that when planning permission was given, inadequate parking was provided for cars of households.

Mr Moye commented that unless there were the personnel to enforce parking restrictions it would be a waste of money. He further commented on the lack of police presence and was frequently blocked in his driveway on the High Street due to inconsiderate parking.

Cllr Tricker noted that a lot of these issues have been raised in the past. He reported that there was a majority that wanted lines but no consistancy in the same place. Highways have said that they would look at the parking in Brook Farm Road. Parking also takes place on zig-zag lines and at school times the bus is not able to pass safely. He has been told that parking on the zig-zag lines were not enforceable. He suggested that further discussions take place with Brook Farm Road residents.

It was noted that if yellow lines were in place then they were enforceable.

PC Jamie Newson noted that there was a lack of police and also in parts of the High Street a single yellow line was not enforceable due to incorrect signage.

Cllr Tricker noted that whilst Highways were working with some of these things they can take a while to reach fruition.

PC Jamie Newson confirmed that parking on zig-zags does have more serious enforcement consequences.

Another member of the public had witnessed offenders being let off when caught parking on double yellow lines on the High Street.

Cllr Mrs Andrews reported that she had received several phone calls from people complaining about parking outside the school. Their concerns were that the bus drivers were having to get out of their buses to ask parents to move their cars so the bus could pass. She further noted that over Christmas and New Year she had been on pain killers due to a trapped sciatic nerve and that she may have to get up and walk around during the meeting.

REPORT FROM THE LOCAL POLICE: (report attached)
14 criminal damages reported. PC Jamie Newson listed the particular crimes.

Mr Palmer requested that parking violations be added to the police report.

Cllr Tricker requested that, if a meeting with Highways takes place, speeding is raised as an issue in Brook Farm Road and crossing the main road.

REPORT FROM THE COUNTY COUNCILLOR:

Cllr Tricker raised the matter of where the 6 broadband fibre optic cabinets would be located. There had been no feedback from the County Councillor.

Action: Request the location of the 6 fibre optic broadband cabinets from the County Councillor.

The County Councillor reported that SCC had discussed the 2 housing applications in Darsham which would provide a new village hall and village green. Both applications were approved. He noted that, with pressure, developers can be persuaded to offer facilities over and above for the benefit of the community.

The viability of a proposed new route to Sizewell from the A12 was being reconsidered.

The County Councillor agreed to chase up on the matter of the fibre optic cabinets.

He confirmed that the s106 agreement for the new Darsham village hall was in the region of £300,000.

REPORT FROM THE DISTRICT COUNCILLORS:
Cllr Sir P Batho reported that SCDC has decided to make available to all district councillors a sum of £4,000 per year (£2,000 for the remainder of 2013-2014). It was noted that the money was only available for new projects within the locality.

Cllr Mrs Andrews gave advanced warning that Theberton would be commemorating the award of the Victoria Cross. Mr Smith is hoping to borrow the VC and other medals to have them on display over a weekend in Theberton village hall. The insurance costs are high and Theberton would be trying to raise the money for this. Their commemorative weekend and church service would be held at the end of April 2015. The new money allocated to the District Councillor could be used to fund the costs of this event.

Cllr Mrs Andrews has also received complaints from Henley Close regarding flooding emanating from Harpers Lane. It was noted that this was on the agenda.


Present: Cllr Fisher (Chairman): Cllr L Hailey: Cllr D Sculley: Cllr D Tricker:
Cllr R Plant Cllr M Andrews: Cllr Sir P Batho: Cllr K Howe:

In Attendance: Mrs Heelis – Acting Town Clerk
15 members of the public



4423. TO CONSIDER AND VOTE FOR CO-OPTION OF A COUNCILLOR FOLLOWING THE RESIGNATION OF GRAHAM COOKE – 2 prospective candidates.

There were 3 candidates for the vacancy. Apologies were received from James Sandbach.

Lyn Jardine was invited to give an introduction about herself. She explained that she had lived in Saxmundham for approximately 9 years and works in Lowestoft. Saxmundham is growing at a phenomenal rate and she recognised that this had plus and minus points. She can contribute to the Town Council business skills and experience as a manager to produce a positive outcome.

Cllr D Tricker asked if Lyn Jardine was involved in any other local groups. Lyn Jardine confirmed she had volunteered at a local crisis centre. She also noted that she would be retiring in a couple of months.

Cllr Mrs Andrews noted that Mrs Jardine’s application lacked an education background. She asked Mrs Jardine to expand on her education.

Mrs Jardine responded to Cllr Mrs Andrew’s request stating that she spoke 2 other languages and had a wide international business background. The Chairman thanked Mrs Jardine for her contribution.

Cllr Mrs Andrews proposed a personal interest as she knew one of the candidates very well.
Cllr Fisher declared a personal interest as he knew one of the candidates.

Cllr Andrews proposed a vote by ballot. Agreed.

Round One
Candidate A – 4 votes
Candidate B – 3 votes
Candidate C – 1 vote

Candidate C was eliminated as the candidate with the lowest vote.

Round Two
A second vote was taken on the remaining candidates:

Candidate A – 4 votes
Candidate B – 4 votes

Due to a tie in the voting the Chairman used his casting vote to vote for candidate A.
Candidate A, Mrs Jardine, was duly co-opted onto the Town Council, signed her Declaration of Office and took part in the remainder of the meeting.

The Council broke for a 10 minute recess.

4424. TO RECEIVE THE NEWLY ELECTED COUNCILLOR’S DECLARATION OF ACCEPTANCE OF OFFICE AND AGREEMENT TO ABIDE BY THE CODE OF CONDUCT:
The Declaration of Office was received from the successful candidate, Mrs L Jardine.

The meeting was closed to take the County Councillor’s report.

4425. TO RECEIVE DECLARATIONS OF INTEREST:
* To Receive Amendments to the Register – None.
* To Receive Declarations of Pecuniary Interest in Respect of Items on the Agenda – None.
* To Receive Declarations of Non Pecuniary Interest in Respect of Items on the Agenda. Cllr Tricker declared an interest as a volunteer director of SADCIC
Cllr R Plant declared an interest as Treasurer of Action Sax
Cllr Fisher declared an interest as secretary of Friends of Saxmundham Station
* To Consider Full/Partial Dispensations for Pecuniary Interests Declared – None.

4426. TO RECEIVE APOLOGIES FOR AND CONSENT TO ABSENCE:
Cllr D Willett. – no apologies
Cllr Ms C Trotter-Langois. – family crisis

Maddie Gallop, illness

4427. TO APPROVE AND SIGN AS A TRUE RECORD THE MINUTES OF 9 DECEMBER 2013 TOWN
COUNCIL MEETING
previously circulated:
The minutes were duly approved and signed as a true record with the amendment of:

The addition of ‘Mr C Lucas’ at the beginning of para 2 of the public forum.
The replacement of ‘will be’ with ‘was’. Para one of the public forum.


4428. TO NOTE THE STATUS OF ACTIONS ARISING FROM THAT MEETING:
The attached report was noted.
Item 5 – Update - Cllr K Howe noted that there was an appeal by Zorbas on 22 January 2014.

4429. TO CONSIDER CORRESPONDENCE RECEIVED:

A – CORRESPONDENCE TO BE NOTED AND CIRCULATED:
712 SCC – Risk of motor vehicles crashing onto to rail tracks.
It was noted that there were no known sites where vehicles could crash onto the rail tracks.
713 EON New energy prices – Noted.
714 NHS Cambridge Community Services – Newsletter – Noted.


B – CORRESPONDENCE TO BE DISCUSSED BEFORE REPLY: None received.

C – OTHER CORRESPONDENCE RECEIVED TO DATE:
C406 Email Sizewell C Community Forum Invite for 27th March at Sizewell Sports & Social Club
Cllr Plant will attend.
C407 Email Martin Sawyer Request to be considered for position of Town Councillor Noted.
C408 Email Lyn Barns Invitation from BOS to their AGM on 20 January, 7pm in the Market Hall.


4430. CHAIRMAN’S/TOWN CLERK’S ANNOUNCEMENTS:
Cllr Fisher noted that he had received a thank you from the Saxmundham Welfare Charity. The Council formerly recorded their thanks for an excellent Christmas lunch that the charity provided.

4431. TO RECEIVE A REPORT FROM THE FINANCE COMMITTEE & CONSIDER ITS RECOMMENDATIONS:
* To approve monthly Finance Report to the end of December 2013:
The Finance Report was circulated. There were no further queries on the report. Approved.

* To approve the Finance Committee’s recommendations to support, for community use, the Police Station building.

The building has been submitted for listing as an asset of community value under the Localism Act. Cllr Plant explained that the Finance Committee had made provision in the precept of £25,000 to repay any loan taken out to take plans forward.

Cllr Tricker supported this venture but noted that the police may not vacate the building. However, they may relocate to the Fromus Centre which would compliment the plans for the police station.

Cllr Plant suggested that the Town Council work closely with the Fromus Centre to provide the best possible outcome.

Cllr Sir P Batho noted that the station house was a further project that was being taken forward. He suggested that the library be placed in the police station if it came under the control of the Town Council.

Cllr Tricker emphasised the importance of finding a permanent base for the young people of Saxmundham and that this could be the police station. The station house would be on a lease basis and not owned by the Town Council. He noted that the police station project would require a sound business case.

The project would:
* Give a tangible benefit for Saxmundham.
* Potentially provide a transport benefit.
* Provide a community hub.

Cllr Sir Peter Batho expressed concern over taking over both buildings and stated a preference for the police station which he believed could house the library as well, providing a community centre for the town. He put an alternative view on the poor condition and ongoing significant maintenance of the station house

The freehold for the police station would be in the region of £200,000.

Cllr Plant proposed that the Town Council support the police station building as a community centre for Saxmundham. Cllr Mrs Sculley seconded. Unanimously agreed by a show of hands.

* To approve the Finance Committees recommendations to support any community initiative towards the use of the Railway Station building.

Cllr Plant proposed to support any viable business case for the station house for a future library. Cllr Howe seconded. 7 for and 2 against. It was resolved to support the resolution.

Item 13 was brought forward as the outcome may impact on the budget and precept.

4432. TO AGREE THE DETAIL FOR THE PART-TIME ADMINISTRATION ASSISTANT:
Cllr Fisher proposed the delegation of the recruitment process to the Personnel Committee with a view to make a recommendation to the full Council for appointment of the Administration Assistant. Cllr Plant seconded. Agreed.

Cllr Plant presented his report proposed the recommendation of 20 hrs per week for the Administration Assistant to enable the Council to become a proactive Town Council. Cllr Fisher seconded.

Cllr Tricker suggested that the Council canvas other Town/Parish Councils for their position on Administration Assistants.

Cllr Plant noted that the Council has a duty of care to their employees. He explained that he has carried out considerable research into this matter. He continued to explain the ratio between the staff salaries.

Cllr Mrs Andrews noted that when she worked in local government there was a salary scale for staff. The Acting Town Clerk, Mrs Heelis, explained the current negotiated SLCC/NALC salary scales that were in place.

Cllr Plant emphasised that the Clerk should be a salaried post.

A vote was taken on the proposal
6 yes
1 against
2 abstentions

It was resolved to recruit an Administration Assistant for 20 hours per week and to delegate authority to the Personnel Committee to oversee the recruitment process and recommend the appointment to the full Council.

4433. TO CONSIDER THE 2014/2015 BUDGET AND RECOMMEND A PRECEPT:
Cllr Mrs Sculley queried why the Market Hall budget had been reduced from £10,000 to £5,000.

Cllr Fisher explained that the Market Hall is subsidised by the Town Council by rent and hall hire outside of the annual grant to the charity.

Cllr Plant clarified that additional funds could be drawn from general reserves if required.

Cllr Tricker suggested that with the additional staff resources, outside funding via grants could be progressed.





Cllr Sir Peter Batho noted that the budget and precept had increased by 20%. He queried the Council Tax grant and the use of this in softening the impact of a significant increase in the precept. He felt that the budget needed trimming.

Cllr Plant noted that £40,000 in the budget was due to the potential of 2 major projects which may be taken forward in the next financial year.

Cllr Fisher explained that cutbacks had been made to reduce the increase.

Cllr Plant proposed a precept of £127,030. Cllr Howe seconded. 8 in favour . 1 against. Resolved.

Cllr Howe proposed that the meeting continue until 10.15pm. Agreed.

The Council went into recess for 10 minutes.

4434.TO RECEIVE A REPORT FROM THE MARKET HALL COMMITTEE:
No report.

4435. TO REVIEW AND COMMENT ON THE FOLLOWING PLANNING APPLICATION:

DC/13/3685/FUL
Mr & Mrs M Wilson
18 Manor Gardens, Saxmundham
Erection of an extension to provide a new entrance hall and staircase to first floor level, together with conversion of and extension to existing loft space to create new bedroom with en-suite bathroom.

Proposed to support the application. Unanimously agreed.


To note Planning Decisions received:
Approved DC/13/3063/TCA Fairfield House East, Fairfield Drive, Saxmundham.
T1-To re-pollard Willow to previous pollard height.
T2-To crown thin Beech by 30% to allow more light to property.

Permission granted DC/13/2962/FUL Part Side Garden, The Chestnuts, Church Street, Saxmundham.
Erection of a new 3 bedroom one and half storey dwelling and garage in the former side garden of The
Chestnuts, Saxmundham.
DC/13/3162/FUL 37 Fairfield Road, Saxmundham
Single-storey side extension.

Cllr Mrs Andrews suggested a Saxmundham TC Planning Committee and that training be sourced from SCDC planning department.

Action: To be placed on the next Town Council agenda.

4436. TO RECEIVE A REPORT FROM THE SAXMUNDHAM NEWS AND WEBSITE WORKING PARTY AND CONSIDER THEIR RECOMMENDATIONS: (Report Attached)
Cllr Tricker presented the report.

Recommendation: to overhaul the website in terms of user-friendly ability and content.
Recommendation: to move to retaining and focusing on the centre section of the Saxmundham News for the Town Council and to list a ‘who does what in local government’ and to promote the website.
Recommendation: to establish a communications committee to action the recommendations and promote the use of social media.

Cllr Tricker proposed the above recommendations. Cllr Fisher seconded. Agreed Unanimously.


4437. TO CONSIDER THE TOWN SIGNAGE: (Report Attached)
Cllr Howe presented the report prepared by Action Sax. 6 sites were identified for new town signs and quotations had been sought. However, installation costs were not known at this stage. SCC Highways would submit costings for the installation work.
Cllr Tricker endorsed the proposal and that the signs would enhance the town. SADCIC would be supportive of providing some funding towards this. He suggested that the Town Council co-ordinate donations from local businesses.

Cllr Tricker proposed that the beneficiaries are approached before the Town Council commit to the project.

4438. TO CONSIDER DILAPIDATION OF WHITE HART:
Cllr Howe suggested that the Town Council contact the owners for an update on the future of the White Hart. Agreed.

Action: Clerk to contact the owners of the White Hart for an update on the future of the pub.

4439. TO CONSIDER CONCERNS OVER BUILD-UP OF WASTE IN THE GULL TRIBUTORY LEADING TO THE RIVER FROMUS:
Cllr Howe explained that complaints had been received from residents in Deben Road. He suggested clearance to address the problem and to take the debris off site.

Action: Clerk to contact the Environment Agency to remove the debris from the Gull Tributory.

4440. TO RECEIVE A REPORT ON THE PROGRESS OF THE TOWN PLAN:
Cllr Plant reported the findings of the working group and the outcome to develop action plans for the 5 main outcomes. It was noted that some of these priorities could be funded privately. He would feed back in more detail to the next full Council meeting. He confirmed that the cycle track was one of the priorities.

Action: Cllr Plant to provide a report to the next Town Council meeting on the progress of the Town Plan.

The Chairman proposed that items 19-21 be deferred.

4441. TO RECEIVE A REPORT ON THE LOCAL BUS SERVICES:

4442. TO DISCUSS THE BUS ROUTE ON BROOK FARM ROAD:

4443. TO RECEIVE REPORTS FROM REPRESENTATIVES OF VARIOUS COMMITTEES including working parties:

4444. DATE AND TIME OF NEXT MEETING: 10 February 2014 at 7.15pm.

Meeting closed at 10.45pm


SIGNED _________________________________


DATED _________________________________
Page 2 of 7 Town Council Minutes 13 January 2014

* Page 7 of 7 Town Council Minutes 13 January 2014




 
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