Minutes of Melton Parish Council held on Wednesday 28th September 2022 starting at 19:00 at 17 Riduna Park, Station Road, Melton IP12 1QT.
Cllr Porter (Chair)
P Alder Clerk and Executive Officer to Melton Parish Council
F Waters Assistant Clerk to Melton Parish Council
Cllr Nicoll County Councillor
Two members of the public
Agenda – Part 1/1 – Open to the Public
Item No Item to be discussed
22.76 To receive apologies for absence
Apologies for absence were received from Cllrs Banks, Brown, Biggle, Taylor, Hilson, Harvey-Smith and Holmes and from District Councillor Smith-Lyte.
22.77 Declarations of Interest
22.77.01 To receive Amendments to the Register
None were received
22.77.02 To receive Declarations of Pecuniary Interest in Respect of Items on the Agenda
None were received
22.77.03 To receive Declarations of Non-Pecuniary Interest in Respect of Items on the Agenda
None were received
22.77.04 To consider Full / Partial Dispensations for Pecuniary Interests Declared
None were considered
22.78 Public Participation Session
22.78.01 To receive a Report from the District Councillor
No report was received
22.78.02 To receive a report from the County Councillor
Cllr Nicoll had received a positive response from residents about the Melton Road/Hill Crossings now the vegetation had been cut back. He was concerned at the lack of engagement by District Councillors on the Mini-Holland feasibility project, which is likely to be submitted in November/December. He voiced his concerns about the appeal for the land off St Andrew’s Place and that SCC would reiterate their key concerns. He encouraged residents to resubmit their objections, pointing out that the access issues are not temporary but would be long term. The Clerk was asked to establish if visual/video evidence can be submitted for the appeal.
22.78.03 Save the Deben Campaign
Co-founder of the Save the Deben Campaign, Ruth Leach, gave a short verbal presentation. They are looking to submit a designated bathing application (between Woodbridge and Waldringfield) by the end of October. This would mean effective policing of Anglian Water by the Environment Agency. Ruth asked if Melton Parish Council would add their name as a supporter to the campaign which was unanimously AGREED by all Councillors.
Proposed by Cllr Porter Seconded by Cllr Martin
22.78.04 Woodbridge Society Renaming
The Council was asked to consider endorsing the proposal to rename it to the Woodbridge and Melton Society. It was unanimously AGREED by all Councillors.
Proposed by Cllr Porter Seconded by Cllr Martin
22.78.05 To receive a proposal from the Footpath Advocate regarding Melton crossroads, Station Road and Wilford Bridge Road
Papers MPC(22)78.05 and MPC(22)78.05b previously distributed were presented by the Footpath Advocate. Concerns were expressed about the repercussions from making these changes, including increased rat running in Saddlemaker’s Lane and the loss of parking on Station Road. The Council thanked the Footpath Advocate for his work and suggested that it was deferred for a few months considering the Love Woodbridge and Melton project that is currently underway and could be looked at as part of the Neighbourhood Plan refresh.
22.78.06 To consider village matters raised by Members of the Public or Councillors
Cllr Martin gave an update on the Thermal Imaging Camera project and asked if any Councillors were willing to form a working group. Cllrs Gradwell, Darby and James expressed an interest and Cllr Martin will email all Councillors.
The Clerk reported on the 8 Ease the Squeeze initiatives from East Suffolk Council (https://www.eastsuffolk.gov.uk/community/squeeze/). It was suggested that the Pavilion could potentially be used as a Warm Room venue.
The Clerk reported that a resident had expressed concern that no cygnets had been witnessed on the Deben this year. The report has been sent on to the River Deben Association.
22.78.07 Mini Holland – Love Woodbridge and Melton
The Clerk gave a brief overview of the project contained within paper MPC(22)78.07 previously distributed. It was AGREED that the following statement of support would be submitted to the project team:
Melton Parish Council is very supportive of this project which aims to provide a holistic approach to improving access to an area for walking and cycling, whilst also balancing the needs of public transport and private car users. The Council is well aware of the issues of speeding and limited safe cycling routes within Woodbridge and Melton and hopes that this project will help to address these, whilst encouraging a more active lifestyle.
Proposed by Cllr Martin Seconded by Cllr Gradwell
22.79 To approve the Minutes of Full Council
22.79.01 Minutes of Full Council from 15th June 2022
It was RESOLVED that minutes MPC(22)M05 previously distributed, be received, noted and signed as a correct record by the Chair.
Proposed by Cllr Gradwell Seconded by Cllr Martin
22.80 To consider co-option to the Council in respect of the Councillor
At the invitation of the Chair, Jim Crawford introduced himself and offered himself for co-option onto the Council. He previously worked at Sizewell. It was RESOLVED to welcome him as a co-optee onto the Council, and he will also serve on FERM Committee. It was suggested that Cllr Brown could be the nominated ‘buddy’, which the Clerk will confirm.
Proposed by Cllr Porter Seconded by Cllr Martin
22.81 To receive and consider Minutes of Committees
22.81.01 Planning and Transport 13th July and 7th September 2022
Minutes PLA(22)M05 previously distributed were received.
Minutes PLA(22)M06 previously distributed were received.
22.81.02 Recreation Committee 6th July 2022
Minutes REC(22)M04 previously distributed were received.
22.81.03 FERM Committee 20th July 2022
Minutes FERM(22)M03 previously distributed were received.
22.82 To consider Financial and Internal Control Matters
22.82.01 To receive and consider the financial management and budget reports for the period 1 April 2022 to 31 August 2022
Papers MPC(22)82.01 and MPC(22)82.01a-f were received and it was noted that careful monitoring of the budget would be required in the current financial climate.
22.82.02 To consider risk issues
The Risk Register (https://melton-suffolk-pc.gov.uk/documents-base/risk-register/) was reviewed and discussed. It was RESOLVED to increase the Financial Risk rating to High due to the current economic uncertainty and to increase the Pavilion Project risk to Medium due to the increased costs and the issue with the access road which has also delayed the opening of the Pavilion.
Proposed by Cllr Stearn Seconded by Cllr Darby
22.82.03 To consider updated report on Community Infrastructure Levy (CIL) and Grant Funded projects
Paper MPC(22)82.03 previously distributed was received and noted. The play park improvements at Beresford Drive and the Recreation Ground is the highest priority but no new projects will be progressed or prioritised until the Pavilion project has been completed unless it is urgent.
22.82.04 To consider investment requests from Committees
Paper MPC(22)82.04 previously distributed was received and noted. The play parks at Beresford Drive and the Recreation Ground need investment. As discussed in item MPC(22)82.03 no funding can be allocated at the moment, but it was agreed that the office will speak to the District Councillor about lobbying ESC for funding to help replace the equipment at Beresford Drive and it was proposed that a public consultation would take place to garner opinion on what equipment should be installed. It was also RESOLVED to delegate selection of the Tree Surgeon to the office with Emergency Decision Maker approval if required.
Proposed by Cllr Darby Seconded by Cllr Martin
22.82.05 To consider revised and updated Business Plan
FERM considered the updated Business Plan in July and asked that some further amends were made and presented to Full Council for approval. It was RESOLVED to accept all the proposed changes as highlighted in paper MPC(22)82.05.
Proposed by Cllr Porter Seconded by Cllr Packard
22.82.06 To consider the external audit report for year ended 31 March 2022
Paper MPC(22)82.06 previously distributed was received. The Clerk reported that the certificate from the external auditor has been received, and there are no issues raised. The auditor confirms that the information provided by the Council is in accordance with proper practices and there are no other matters giving cause for concern. In accordance with the statutory requirements the Notice of Conclusion of Audit together with the required accompanying documents has been published both on the notice boards and on the Council’s website. It was AGREED to NOTE the report and Members thanked the staff involved for another successful conclusion to the annual audit, especially with the staffing changes this year.
22.82.07 To consider renewal proposals for the Council’s insurances
Paper MPC(22)82.07 previously distributed was discussed. The Clerk explained that a second quote had been sought but had not been received in time for the meeting and that the increase was largely due to the increase in sums being insured (Pavilion and inflation cost increases). Cllr Stearn noted that his recent business renewal had seen a similar increase. After some discussion it was RESOLVED to agree to pay the invoice for the renewal premium with Hiscox before the 1st October and to enter a 3 year LTA to give some security and budget control in these uncertain times.
Proposed by Cllr Porter Seconded by Cllr Gradwell
22.82.08 To consider update to Financial Regs
FERM proposed a change to the Financial Regs to agree that the Clerk and Asst Clerk could authorise payments in an emergency as highlighted in paper MPC(22)82.08. It was RESOLVED to accept the proposed change.
Proposed by Cllr Gradwell Seconded by Cllr Stearn
22.83 To receive an update on the Pavilion and Opening Ceremony
The Clerk reported that practical completion is likely to be issued next week although there were some outstanding snagging issues in hand. The access road is being briefed although there is no date but the architect and contractor are fully aware of the urgency. A single digilock will be added to the front door and the shutter key will be stored in a lockbox. Dimmer lights have been fitted and the woodwork has been painted to match the walls. We are contesting the additional charges for the gabions and discussions about the CCTV are ongoing. A risk assessment has been carried out and the Fire Risk Assessment is taking place in October. There have been several hire enquiries including regular hires, birthday parties and a community café. There is no confirmed finish date so the Open Event is still tbc. As some people weren’t aware that the open event had been postponed Cllr Porter would put a message on NextDoor and posters would be put up in the Recreation Ground/Pavilion fence. https://melton-suffolk-pc.gov.uk/recreation/pavilion-project/
22.84 To receive an update on Sizewell C
Cllr Banks was not present to give a report. Sizewell C was discussed at the Planning and Transport meeting on the 7th September.
22.85 To receive an update on the Melton Fete – 2022 and 2023
The 2022 fete debrief is yet to take place. The fete working group would like to have a budget to purchase marquees for next year’s fete. A date for 2023 has not been set but the 8th July has been proposed. Need to check that it doesn’t clash with local events such as the local primary school fairs and Woodbridge Town Council events.
22.86 To receive a verbal update on the Deben Soundings Event
Cllr Packard reported that he had been to a Deben Soundings Event in the summer. Sutton Hoo has purchased a field that reaches down to the river and it was noted that they expect there to be flooding in Melton in the near future. There are concerns that if the river wall is breached there is no way for the water to return to the river to drain away. Councillors agreed that an Emergency Plan was needed for the village although it was thought that Suffolk County Council should hold this information. The Clerk has an action from FERM to investigate further.
22.87 To receive and consider reports from Representatives to Outside Bodies
22.87.01 Burness Parish Room Management Committee
Cllr Gradwell had nothing to report
22.87.02 Melton Trust
Cllr Martin reported that they still aren’t receiving many applications but she will speak to the new Headteacher at Melton Primary School.
22.87.03 Melton Primary School
The Clerk reported that the new Headteacher started in September and there had been some new pupils joining the school. There have been talks with SCC about getting funding for a nursery building using District CIL. It was decided to donate the toy tractor and trailer which was unclaimed from the Fete to the school.
22.87.04 Melton Messenger
There was nothing to report
22.87.05 ASB Co-ordination meetings
Cllr Gradwell reported that no meetings have taken place since a new process was meant to be in place from July. Cllr Gradwell will follow up.
22.87.06 Suffolk Association of Local Councils (SALC)
Cllr Porter reported that the last meeting was cancelled due to the death of the Queen.
22.87.07 Melton, Woodbridge and Deben Community Partnership
Cllr Packard reported that there is money available for projects and he will pass on information he receives.
22.87.08 Suffolk Disability Forum
Cllr Darby reported that the next meeting is taking place next week.
22.88 To consider Items for the Melton Messenger
Pavilion Open Event and Beresford Drive public consultation.
22.89 Chair’s urgent business
There was none.
22.90 Date of next meeting
The next meeting of Full Council will take place on Wednesday 16th November 2022, starting at 7pm at 17 Riduna Park, Station Road, Melton IP12 1QT. There being no further business the meeting closed at 21:12.