Foxearth and Liston Parish Council – Report of meeting 25th November 2017

There was a meeting of the Parish Council for Foxearth and Liston on 25th November 2017 with Cllr Tony Clayton in the Chair and 6 local residents present. Apologies for absence were presented on behalf of Cllrs. Corinne and Philip Cox.

Chairman’s update: The Chairman reported that because of the wide consultation neccessary in the matter of the proposed designation of a “quiet lane” in Liston the public meeting would now take place on Tuesday December 5th at 5pm in Foxearth Village Hall

Defibrillator; Cllr Posen reported that a new lottery application had been submitted – and receipt acknowledged – so hopefully a decision would soon be notified. He suggested that, in anticpation of a grant, work for the installation could be prepared including the organisation of a community event to explain the use of the equipment.

Braintree District Council: District Councillor Iona Parker discussed current projects occupying the Council. Formulation of the final stages of the local plan was ongoing; all housing sites had been allocated. Consultation was taking place on three garden communities for North East Essex. Close scrutiny of all expenditure was neccessary because of budgetary constraints and a 3% rise in Council Tax was probable in 2018/19.

Essex County Council; The Leader of the Council, Cllr David Finch, explained new initiatives recently introduced including funding for volunteer groups, community and youth projects, Crowd funding – launched in October 2017, a £500,000 fund to attract ideas and the Essex lottery offering a top prize of £25,000 and from which 60% of receipts will go to charities with the remainder being divided equally between prizes and administration. With reductions in the Government’s revenue support grant budgetary control was vital; care of the elderly and child services were still top priorities. Several major infrastructure projects were in the pipeline including junction 7a on the M11. In reply to a question from the floor Cllr Finch stressed that after 5 years of a level Council Tax an increase next year would be a last resort and only when all other options had been completely exhausted. Cllr Finch urged a representative to attend a forthcoming meeting with the County’s Police and Crime Commissioner on 28th November and the Chairman intimated that he would go.

War Memorial: The Clerk read  an update report from Cllr.C Cox. Competitive quotes show a cost of £3,600 (No VAT) for re-alignment of the monument and £900 (incl.VAT) for cleaning. Cllr. Cox is expecting a grant from the Heritage Lottery Fund (WW1) of £1,100; the Village Hall Trust has offered £500  and the Parish Council £1,000 – leaving a shortfall of £1,000 for the structural work and £900 for cleaning. Cleaning could possibly be done by volunteers but it was recognised that there may be health and safety concerns. It was hoped that the work could be completed in time for a re-dedication in November 2018

The Chairman said that another company would like to quote for the work for which he had the specification. It was agreed to discuss the matter further at the next meeting. In the meantime the Clerk would approach the District and County representatives regarding grants..

Renovation of Foxearth Village sign A quotation of £150 was accepted for this work to be done in the summer.

Public Participation: Attention was drawn to a collapsed  footbridge on paths 11 and 12 and growth blockage on 31. The Clerk would contact BDC and ECC regarding signs still in place. Efforts would be made to find a handyman to care for footpaths and hedges, for which funds were available.

Planning: It was noted that the District Council had approved the felling of a sycamore tree at a Foxearth residence but had refused applications for a variation to tenancies and the installation of Velux windows at two other Foxearth properties.

In connection with new applications the Parish Council supported further minor tree work in Foxearth and the installation of an eco-toilet in Foxearth Meadows. No comments were made on applications for the retention of a log cabin for short term residential use at Foxearth Fisheries and for substantial pruning and height reduction of trees at a Foxearth residence

Finance: Councillors discussed and agreed a budget for 2018/19 with a precept payment request from BDC of £7,000. £2,607.50p has been obtained from the NALC Transparency Fund for the purchase of a new computer/scanner/printer for the Clerk’s use.

Next meeting: 10th February 2018 9.45am in Foxearth Village Hall

Ken Nice

 

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