MPC(23)M09 Minutes of Full Council meeting on 13th December 2023

Full CouncilMinutes Uploaded on January 8, 2024


Minutes of the meeting of Melton Parish Council held on Wednesday 13th December 2023, commencing at 7pm, at the Melton Parish Council offices, 17 Riduna Park, Station Road, Melton, IP12 1QT.


Cllr Bann

Cllr Bourne

Cllr Brown

Cllr Darby

Cllr Gradwell (Chair)

Cllr Holmes

Cllr Martin

Cllr Packard (attended for Part One)

Cllr Stearn


Cllr Corston

Cllr Taylor

In Attendance:

P Alder Clerk and Executive Officer to Melton Parish Council

F Waters Assistant Clerk to Melton Parish Council

Melton Footpath Advocate

Melton Cycling Advocate

8 Members of the public

District Cllr Smith-Lyte

Part One of Two – Open to the Public

Item No         Item to be discussed

23.121            To receive apologies for absence

Apologies for absence were received from Cllrs Corston and Taylor and County Cllr Nicoll.

23.122            Declarations of Interest

23.122.01          To receive Declarations of Interest in Respect of Items on the Agenda

Declarations of interest were received from Cllrs Gradwell and Stearn in relation to item MPC(23)125.06.

23.122.02          To consider any applications for dispensations

This is an ongoing dispensation relating to MPC(23)83.01. Cllrs Gradwell and Stearn declined to participate in the discussion of this item.

23.123            Public Participation Session          

23.123.01          To receive a report from the County Councillor

Cllr Nicoll sent his apologies and a report was read by the Clerk.

23.123.02          To receive a report from the District Councillor

Cllr Smith-Lyte reported that a newsletter would be circulated soon, that she has been clearing drains of leaves and has contributed to the Beresford Drive play area refurbishment and Melton Football Club. She has been assisting flood victims on St Audry’s Lane and there is a plan for District wide tree planting/care although none is currently planned for MPC land. There are some concerns regarding the water quality at Waldringfield now it is being tested as a bathing site and ESC will be meeting with the Environment Agency. At this point Cllr Smith-Lyte left the meeting.

23.123.03          To receive a report on the Deben Estuary Partnership

The Partnership’s chair and vice chair gave a short overview of the Partnership and explained that they are working on an update of the 2015 Estuary Plan. Further information can be found at Further to Cllr Smith-Lyte’s reference to water testing, they explained that it was only 2 readings at Waldringfield that registered as poor. It is thought that they could be related to super moons/super high tides rather than Anglian Water. The Chair asked how MPC could assist. MPC has a nominated representative on the Partnership and they are interested to know our thoughts on flooding, especially as focus has previously been on tidal surges/coastal flooding rather than flooding from upstream/surface water runoff. There is a public meeting on the 18th January and MPC’s Climate Advocate will be notified. Cllr Bann asked about the river path and if SCC PROW are involved. It was confirmed that they are along with Natural England.

23.123.04          To consider village matters raised by Members of the Public or Councillors

A resident of Hall Farm was in attendance and asked for further planting along Woods Lane to mitigate the impact of traffic. This is something that could be covered by Cllr Smith-Lyte’s District tree planting scheme. A resident of Station Road raised concerns about the traffic on Station Road and the impact of pollution. The resident asked that MPC supports creating a cleaner, safer, better future for local residents. The Chair requested for the resident’s notes to be emailed to the Council to be held on file and to be considered when the Active Travel project looks at Melton elements.

23.124            To approve the Minutes of Full Council from 18th October 2023

It was RESOLVED that minutes MPC(23)M08 and MPC(23)M08 conf previously distributed, be received, noted and signed as a correct record by the Chair.

Proposed by: Cllr Martin    Seconded by: Cllr Bourne

23.125            Planning & Transport – Chair of P&T to lead assisted by the Clerk

23.125.01          Planning Applications – to review new applications received

DC/23/4328/OUT Land west of PROW 21, Woods Lane

Numerous planning applications have been submitted and refused for this land and the last appeal in March 2022 was dismissed by the Planning Inspector. Although this latest submission has fewer houses and proposes landscaping to help hide the development it was RESOLVED unanimously to OBJECT on the same grounds as previous responses to applications, namely that it contravenes the Melton Neighbourhood Plan and East Suffolk’s Local Plan. It was AGREED to delegate the writing of the response to Cllr Brown and the Clerk.

Proposed by: Cllr Gradwell            Seconded by: Cllr Stearn

23.125.02          Planning Applications – update on any existing Planning Applications
DC/22/4775/FUL – Land South Of Primary School And East Of The Street Eyke

MPC submitted the following response to the updated planning application: Melton Parish Council’s concerns, previously submitted, regarding the impact of increased traffic on the A1152 and in particular on the Melton crossroads still remain. As a way of trying to reduce the number of private car journeys the Parish Council asks ESC to consider that the section 106 agreement should include funding to increase the frequency of the no65 buses servicing Eyke and the provision of real-time information on those services via the installation of a display board.

23.125.03          Public Consultations
Healthy Environments SPD-
Rural Development SPD –

After discussion it was AGREED that no responses needed to be submitted.

Sealink Consultation –

After discussing concerns about the project raised by Campsea Ashe PC and Friston PC, it was RESOLVED to respond in support of those concerns. The disruption to Suffolk is likely to be immense, especially as it will take place simultaneously as SZC. It would be preferable to route through offshore installations.

Proposed by: Cllr Gradwell            Seconded by: Cllr Darby

23.125.04          Planning Notices – review Planning Notices received

None received

23.125.05          Planning Appeals – review position on existing Planning Appeals

AP/23/0070/NONDET Boat Constancie

The owner of this houseboat has lodged an appeal against ESC for non-determination of their Certified Lawfulness of Existing Use (CLE). MPC was not a consultee on the original application. It was agreed to make NO COMMENT on this appeal.

Proposed by: Cllr Gradwell            Seconded by: Cllr Brown

23.125.06          Planning Enforcement

ENF/23/0027/COND – Deben Meadows (DC/23/0120/DRC) – nothing to report

ENF/21/0086/DEV – Bye Engineering – the latest update from ESC was that they were currently awaiting further information from the agent in response to comments received in consultation with the various parties.

ENF/22/0449/SIGN – Deben Mill Sign – the owner has been given a period of time to remove the sign following the refusal of the second planning application.

23.125.07          Local Highways Matters

Paper MPC(23)125.07, previously distributed, was received and discussed. It was AGREED to move the SID from Bredfield Road to Wilford Bridge Road – facing traffic coming out of Melton.

23.125.08          Bus Service Improvement Grant

Cllr Bann reported that a joint bid between Woodbridge Town Council and Melton Parish Council to Suffolk County Council was in the process of being compiled. Surveys were due to be carried out in Woodbridge and Melton on Thursday 14th December and the online survey is live until Monday 18th December. The bid will request for the diversion of the 64/65 buses into Ipswich Hospital, some real time information boards, bus shelters and timetable cases. Thanks was expressed to Cllr Bann for all his hard work on this project. It was RESOLVED that MPC would indicatively set aside £5k from CIL towards this bid, which if the bid is successful will be ratified at the next Full Council meeting. There was one abstention and all other Councillors were in favour. It is also hoped that we can appoint Bus Stop Adopters who will help to keep the bus shelters tidy and timetable cases updated.

Proposed by: Cllr Gradwell            Seconded by: Cllr Brown

23.125.09          Active Travel Woodbridge – formerly Love Woodbridge & Melton

The MPC Clerk and Chair met virtually with members of the project team. Concerns were raised regarding communications, especially about the name change. The consultation for the Woodbridge elements will be taking place in February and we will be kept informed. A list of potential areas/elements in Melton will be compiled and brought to Full Council in January before sharing with the project team. The Woodbridge and Melton Society also met with the project team this week.

23.125.10          Neighbourhood Plan Refresh

Cllr Brown attended a seminar and a meeting is being arranged with planners in January to discuss the refresh, appoint a consultant and apply for a bid to assist with the costs.

23.126            Recreation – Deputy Chair of Recreation to lead assisted by the Assistant Clerk Paper MPC(23)126, previously distributed was received and discussed. The maintenance officer has agreed to be the emergency point of contact for the Pavilion whilst the office is closed over Christmas and will be remunerated (Chair, Clerk and Chair of FERM to discuss). Councillors expressed their thanks to the maintenance officer. The Recreation Working Group will discuss a longer-term solution at their next meeting. The Recreation Working Group will also appoint their Deputy Chair at their next meeting.

23.126.01          Beresford Drive Play Park

Paper MPC(23)126.01. previously distributed, was received and discussed. It was unanimously RESOLVED to appoint company 3 for the refurbishment. Cllr Darby mentioned that Newtide might be able to make a financial contribution towards the costs. The Asst Clerk will prepare a letter from the Chair thanking the school for their involvement in the project.

Proposed by: Cllr Martin    Seconded by: Cllr Darby

23.126.02          Tree Policy

Paper MPC(23)126.02, previously distributed, was received and discussed. It was unanimously RESOLVED to approve the Tree Policy with immediate effect.

Proposed by: Cllr Martin    Seconded by: Cllr Bourne

23.126.03          TPOs

None had been received. The Asst Clerk will contact ESC’s Arboriculturist regarding the TPO for Waterhead Lane.

23.126.04          Fete 2024 Update

Cllr Darby reported that plans were well underway for next year’s Fete on the 22nd June. Lots of bookings have been made, including a dog show and they are looking at hiring a PA system. St Andrews will be running the teas from the Pavilion. The car parking plans are being discussed and will be taken to Recreation Working Group. All Councillors were encouraged to sign up to help with the preparations and on the day.

23.127            To consider Financial and Internal Control Matters – Clerk to report and advice to Council from Chair of FERM

23.127.01          To appoint the Chair and Deputy Chair of FERM

Cllr Martin agreed to stand as the Chair of FERM for the rest of this financial year. The Deputy Chair will be appointed at a later date and any Councillor who is interested in the role should contact the Clerk.

Proposed by: Cllr Gradwell            Seconded by: Cllr Darby

23.127.02          To receive the financial management and budget reports for the period 1 April to 30 November 2023

Papers MPC(23)127.02 and MPC(23)127.02a-g, previously distributed, were received and discussed. The office was thanked for their work in preparing the documents. The bank statements were checked and signed by the chair as accurate against the financial statements.

23.127.03          To consider the recommendation from Budget Working Group for the 2024/25 budget and Precept Request

Papers MPC(23)127.03 and MPC(23)127.03a and b, previously distributed, were received and noted. A final decision on the 2024/25 Precept will be made at Full Council in January 2024.

23.127.04          To consider updated report on Community Infrastructure Levy (CIL) and Grant Funded projects Paper MPC(23)127.04, previously distributed, was received and discussed. It was AGREED to set up an EMR of £5k from CIL for the bus bid, which will be ratified in January if the bid is successful.

23.127.05          Bank Accounts and Investments – To receive an update on the bank accounts and investments – Paper MPC(23)127.05, previously distributed, was received and discussed. It was RESOLVED (8 in support and 1 against) to invest any funds in excess of £170k into the CCLA. It was also AGREED to add Cllr Stearn to the Lloyds account.

Proposed by: Cllr Gradwell            Seconded by: Cllr Martin

23.127.06          To consider risk issues –

The Risk Register was reviewed. Recreation Working Group will review the need for car park CCTV upgrades now the solar lights are in place. Once the CCLA investment is set up the financial risk will be reduced to medium. The Pavilion Operations risk will include reference to Recreation Working Group looking at out of hours cover.

23.127.07          Business Plan Update – Paper MPC(23)127.07

Subject to some minor amends from Cllr Brown regarding other energy projects and explaining the difference in CIL payments if you have a Neighbourhood Plan (25% and uncapped) it was RESOLVED to approve the Business Plan.

Proposed by: Cllr Gradwell            Seconded by: Cllr Brown

23.127.08          Melton Emergency Plan

The Clerk reported that she and the Chair had met with an Emergency Planning Officer from Suffolk County Council and an Emergency Plan document for Melton is being prepared and will be brought to Full Council in January.

23.128            Sizewell C

Cllr Bourne offered to attend the Southern Transport Forum on 12th February 2024 with Councillor Bann offering to be a reserve/2nd attendee.

23.129            To receive and consider reports from Representatives to Outside Bodies

23.129.01          Burness Parish Room Management Committee – Cllr Gradwell reported that they would be submitting a planning application to replace some rear windows and that they were very grateful for the grant donation towards the cost of the roof repairs.

23.129.02          Melton Trust – Cllr Martin reported that they had been busy with applications and had received 6 since October. Thanks was given by MPC for the donation towards the Beresford Drive play park refurbishment.

23.129.03          Melton Primary School – The Clerk reported that she visited a nursery near Halesworth which it had been hoped would be a design that could be replicated at Melton. Unfortunately this was not the case and a new design will be required. Concerns were also raised about Concertus as the Project Managers.

23.129.04          Melton Messenger – Cllr Brown had nothing to report.

23.129.05          Suffolk Association of Local Councils (SALC) – Cllr Gradwell attended the SALC conference which was very good and informative and gave the opportunity to connect with other groups. Highways will be trying to collate work for an area to be more efficient.

23.129.06          Suffolk Disability Forum – Cllr Darby had nothing to report and the next meeting is in January. Concerns were raised about the river path not being accessible. The Clerk reported that this had been reported on the Highways Reporting Tool. Cllr Darby will liaise with Cllr Bann regarding this issue.

23.129.07          Melton, Woodbridge and Deben Community Partnership – A representative will be attending the January Full Council meeting.

23.129.08          Woodbridge and Melton Society – Cllr Bann reported that there is an article about the Melton Old Church and the Garrod family in the next newsletter. They are looking for talk ideas and it was suggested that Captain Francis Light (explorer and founder of Penang), St Audry’s Hospital or the Phyllis Memorial Maternity Hospital could be interesting subjects.

23.129.09          Deben Estuary Partnership – see item 23.123.03

23.129.10          Adaptive Action Group – Climate Advocate had not sent a report.

23.130            To consider Items for the Melton Messenger

Bus Stop Adopters and bus bid (Cllr Bann), Fete Save the Date, Emergency Plan and Business Plan. Any further suggestions to be sent to the Clerk by the 10th January.

23.131            Chair’s urgent business

There was none.

23.132            Date of next meeting

The next meeting of Full Council will take place on Wednesday 17th January 2024, commencing at 7pm at 17 Riduna Park, Station Road, Melton IP12 1QT. Following consideration of the confidential items and there being no further business the meeting closed at 21:04.