REC(21)M04 Recreation Minutes from 7th July 2021

RecreationRecreation Minutes Uploaded on July 12, 2021


Recreation Committee

Minutes of the meeting of the Melton Parish Council Recreation Committee held on Wednesday 7th July 2021 at 7pm at the Melton Parish Council offices, 17 Riduna Park, Station Road, Melton, IP12 1QT.


Cllr Mr C W Taylor (Chair)

Cllr Miss K S Martin

Cllr Mr M Holmes

Cllr Mr P James

Mrs C McBurney


Cllr Mrs C Gradwell

Cllr Mr A Porter

Cllr Harvey-Smith

In Attendance:

Mrs P Alder Assistant Clerk & Management Officer to Melton Parish Council

2 members of the public


  Part One – Open to the Public
21.51 To receive apologies for absence

Apologies for absence were received from Cllrs Porter, Gradwell and Harvey-Smith

21.52 Declarations of Interest
21.52.01 To receive Amendments to the Register

There were none

21.52.02 To receive Declarations of Pecuniary Interest in Respect of Items on the Agenda

There were none

21.52.03 To receive Declarations of Non Pecuniary Interest in Respect of Items on the Agenda

There were none

21.52.04 To consider Full/Partial Dispensations for Pecuniary Interests Declared

There were none

21.53 Open Forum for Members of the Public to talk to Councillors

District Cllr Smith-Lyte raised, on behalf of a resident also in attendance, the request for a full-sized football goal to be installed somewhere in the Parish. There are no large goals anywhere in the area (just 5-aside goals at the Recreation Ground MUGA and a similar goal at the Hall Farm Road Sports Ground) and little provision of activities and facilities for teenagers. This request had been considered by the Committee previously but there was nowhere appropriate for the goal to be erected at that time. However, since the divestment of land from East Suffolk it may now be possible to erect a goal at Hall Farm Road Sports Ground. As there was an item on the agenda to discuss this area it was RESOLVED to take item 21.57.01 out of order

21.57.01 To decide the consultation approach for Hall Farm Road Sports Ground (REC(21)57.01). There have been several suggestions about how this area of land could be improved, including allotments, community gardens, benches and sports/play equipment. It was RESOLVED that a working group would be set up to take the project forward and local residents would be invited to join. It was noted that the area has a covenant on it which means it must be retained as an open space, meaning that a restricted access community garden or allotments would not be possible. Cllr James asked to be on the group, as did the resident in attendance. It was suggested that Cllr Harvey-Smith should be approached to participate. Cllr Smith-Lyte would be happy to be included if it was felt to be beneficial and offered the use of her locality budget for improvements to the area. The Asst Clerk will liaise with the resident to progress the formation of the working group. Recent consultations carried out by Martlesham Parish Council could be used as a template for this project and the Asst Clerk will disseminate any information she can obtain. In the meantime, it was AGREED that the Asst Clerk would investigate the cost and feasibility of getting a football goal installed as soon as possible.

Proposed by: Cllr Martin                                                        Seconded by: Cllr James

  It was RESOLVED to revert to the order of the Agenda
21.53 ctd Cllr Martin raised the issue of encroaching hedges/vegetation along Melton Road. The Asst Clerk will raise this with Highways. She also wished to convey thanks from Cllr Abbott for all the help that the Recreation Committee and Asst Clerk provided in ensuring the NHS Thank You Day was a success.

Mrs McBurney conveyed the thanks from a resident who uses a mobility scooter for considering her request to ensure that the openings onto the playing field in the new barrier would not be blocked by vehicles.

The River Deben Association provided some information about the Deben Summer Festival taking place from the 7th to 15th August this year. The Committee was pleased to hear this was happening and although the Parish Council was not able to provide any activity for the event it was happy to publicise the festival.

21.54 To approve the draft minutes of the previous meeting

After a lengthy discussion regarding the issue of cycling in the woods (signage and enforcement) and whether the minutes were a true reflection of the discussion it was RESOLVED to agree the minutes of the meeting held on 26th May 2021 (REC(21)M03 previously distributed).

Proposed by: Cllr Martin                                                        Seconded by: Cllr James

21.55 Melton Playing Field
21.55.01 Paper REC(21)55.01 was discussed and it was RESOLVED that CGM should be engaged to distribute the topsoil to even out the field as per their revised quote. The turf will be lifted, topsoil laid beneath it and then the turf reinstated. It is hoped that the grass will not suffer too much damage and seeding will not be required.

A request had been made to consider creating an additional gap in the new barrier fencing near to the flagpole to ensure easier access. After discussion it was AGREED that no additional gap should be created as there are enough gaps in the barrier already and that the flagpole is like the Beacon and there has never been an access point near the Beacon and nor has it been considered necessary. It was felt that it was safer to direct people onto the field at a safe distance from the Beacon/Flagpole as funnelling people through a narrow gap, where people could already be congregating, would create more of a hazard than people choosing to step over the barrier (which they could/would still do even if you created an additional gap). Finally, the cost of creating a new gap was not justified for the very infrequent occasions when a flag raising event/ceremony would take place.

Members commented that the car park and new railings looked particularly good and were pleased to hear that new bike racks are being installed this week. They were shown a picture of the proposed location (behind the noticeboard in view of the CCTV) and were happy with the proposal.

Proposed by: Cllr Martin                                                        Seconded by: Cllr Taylor

21.56 Woodland and Trees
21.56.01 Tree Safety Survey – Tree Works

The Committee reviewed the quotes that had been received for the tree works that are required as a result of the Tree Safety Survey (REC(21)56.01). One quote was significantly lower than the other two which would normally elicit concern.  However, having used this contractor previously and being happy with their work, it wasn’t considered to be too much of a concern and the savings were considerable. It was RESOLVED that subject to the necessary paperwork being received and considered appropriate then contractor 3 would be engaged to carry out the work.

Proposed by: Cllr James                                             Seconded by: Cllr Martin

21.56.02 Burkes Wood Pond Survey

Members discussed the Suffolk Wildlife Trust (SWT) pond survey that was carried out in May 2021 (REC(21.56.02). The presence of the non-native invasive NZ pygmyweed was noted and there was a discussion on how best to proceed. The Asst Clerk is investigating companies and organisations who have experience of dealing with this plant. It was proposed that an article about the weed would be included in the next Melton Messenger and signage would be erected near the pond explaining the issue and advising people about the risks associated with dogs/people entering the water. The Asst Clerk will keep the committee informed as any new information/advice is received.

21.56.03 Tree Warden Report

The Tree Warden conveyed his apologies that he was unable to attend in person and had provided a written report (REC(21)56.03). Members considered the suggestion of creating a parallel hedge between the ditch and tennis courts but it was felt there was insufficient space and the roots could be restricted by the roadway and ditch. Cllr Martin offered some saplings that could be used as part of the Queen’s Green Canopy project. The Committee passed on their thanks to the Tree Warden and Tree Crew.

21.56.04 Queen’s Green Canopy

Planting for this project will take place in the Autumn. It is hoped that the areas cleared of bracken in the woods will be potential planting areas and a resident has already offered an oak sapling.  It is hoped that that Tree Warden will be able to apply for saplings for the project

It was AGREED that the Woodland Management Report would be included on the agenda for the next Recreation meeting.

21.57 Divested Land
21.57.02 The Committee discussed the SWT report on the reed bed/riverbank area (REC(21)57.02). It was decided that a little bit should be done each year. Cllr Abbott’s husband will be approached regarding the wildlife recording and the Tree Warden/Tree Crew will also be approached about helping out, potentially with buddleia removal. It was AGREED to revisit this report each year to see what else can be done.
21.58 Maintenance Officer

The Maintenance Officer has carried out his usual tasks of grass cutting, litter picking, CCTV checking etc. In addition he has installed the new flagpole and cut back the hedge/verge along Melton Road. He will be installing the new bike racks at the Recreation Ground car park and will treat the weeds that are coming through the tennis court surface. The Committee were very pleased with all the work done by the Maintenance Officer.

21.59 TPO Applications

There were none

21.60 CIL and Grant Funded Projects
21.60.01 The Asst Clerk reported that through the use of CIL funds the car park improvements, purchase of bike racks, dog bin and SID and the tree safety works had been completed. An asbestos survey was carried out at the Pavilion this week and although the report has not been received yet it is not thought there are any major issues. It is still hoped that demolition will take place this year.
21.61 Delegated Decision Reports
21.61.01 A record of decisions delegated to the Asst Clerk to the Council in accordance with the requirements of the openness of local government bodies regulations 2014 (REC(21)61.01) was presented to the Committee which covered the:

·         Purchase of dog bin for Longwood Fields

·         Emergency Tree Works in Leeks Hill woods

There were no comments on the report.

21.61 Anti-Social Behaviour

Cllr Gradwell was not in attendance to give an update on recent ASB meetings. The Asst Clerk reported that there had been no recent reports of ASB at the playing field but the police had it on their board to visit the site as and when possible.

Cllr Holmes wished for it to be noted that the Highway Code just says you can’t cycle on a pavement.

21.62 Committee Chairman’s Urgent Business
21.62.01 To receive a report on urgent business not otherwise on the agenda

There was none

21.63 To agree items for inclusion in the Melton Messenger/In Touch

NZ pygmyweed article (REC(21)56.02)


21.64 Date of Next Meeting

The next meeting will take place on Wednesday 15th September 2021 commencing at 19:00 at the Melton Parish Council offices. There being no further business the meeting finished at 20:28.


Actions from Previous Meetings

Minute item Action Status
21.20.01 Asst Clerk to liaise with the Maintenance Officer about the feasibility of installing board walks in the muddy area near the protected oak in Burkes Wood. Ongoing
21.21.01 Carry out a public consultation with residents around Hall Farm Road Sports Ground once covid restrictions are lifted – in conjunction with 21.57.01 Open
21.25 Revisit requests for grit bins later in the year Open
21.57.01 Asst Clerk to arrange formation of Working Group for Hall Farm Road Sports Ground and to investigate purchase of full sized football goal Open
21.55.01 Asst Clerk to engage CGM to carry out the topsoil work Open
21.56.01 Asst Clerk to engage Contractor 3 to carry out Tree Safety Works upon receipt of appropriate paperwork Open
21.56.02 Asst Clerk to create article and posters regarding NZ pygmyweed Open
21.56.04 Woodland Management Report to be included on agenda at next Recreation Meeting in September Open
21.57.02 Asst Clerk to contact Tree Crew and Cllr Abbott’s husband regarding wildlife recording and buddleia removal Open
21.57.02 Reedbank report recommendations and actions to be revisited annually Open