MINUTES of a meeting of the Full Council held at 7.30pm on Wednesday 19th May 2021 in The Mountfitchet Exchange, 72 Chapel Hill, Stansted Mountfitchet, Essex
Cllr M Caton (Chairman), Cllrs A Barnes, P Davies, J Hogg, J Hudson, M Jessup,
J Kavanagh, A Khan, J O’Brien, F Richards, G Sell and D Wallace-Jarvis
Mrs Ruth Clifford – Clerk
Mrs Emma Philbrick – Trainee Deputy Clerk
Mr Dan Schlanker – Communications Officer (via Zoom)
District Cllrs M Caton and A Dean (via Zoom)
County Cllr Ray Gooding (via Zoom)
Mr Paul Chambers and Keith Brown – Touchpoint (via Zoom)
1 member of the press (via Zoom)
4 members of the public (via Zoom)
Apologies for absence were received from Cllr Brett due to feeling unwell
One member of the public spoke to ask if the Parish Council would still like to be actively involved in Climate Change. Pre Covid-19 there was a Climate Change Working Group set up but due to restrictions this group has not met but now that restrictions are being lifted will meetings start to take place? The Chairman confirmed that the Parish Council would definitely like to be involved in this still and she will follow up to get the meetings reconvened.
39 DECLARATIONS OF INTEREST – None
40 UPDATE FROM PAUL CHAMBERS RE TOUCHPOINT
Paul Chambers and Keith Brown gave an update on what progress Touchpoint have made since it was agreed that the Parish Council would work with and support them in Crafton Green. They have had various meetings with local organisations and were currently awaiting a meeting with the Chairman and Chair and Vice Chair of F&GP to discuss some well thought out plans and offerings they have.
They have held meetings with Enterprise East who are their preferred partners to run a café. This would include a meal provision for the elderly as well as activities for loneliness. Jo Halliday, who was the previous cook at the Day Centre, had been very helpful and is working closely with them on how best to reach out to the existing customers of the Day Centre.
There are big plans for the outside space and they are in a position to start applying for funding for this. This includes seating, planting and creating a garden for those particularly without any outdoor space. In order to submit the grant application, they need the support of the Parish Council as landowners and Essex County Council.
Touchpoint have been approached about getting involved with the Holiday Activity Food Programme Holiday Hunger and asked if willing to go forward with this for this summer. They have been introduced to Essex Boys & Girls Association and they are willing to run it for Touchpoint if they can supply the premises. One of the activities mentioned is getting the kids involved in creating the new garden area.
Debt management specialist Reach are keen to work with Touchpoint and would like to work towards supplying a drop-in service once or twice a week and they will also fund the training of Touchpoint volunteers to offer a triage type service to identify when someone may need to be referred.
Touchpoint have made presentations to the Health and Wellbeing Boards and are also in talks with Let’s Talk, Stansted! on ways to work together. They are receiving a lot of positive feedback.
There is a horsebox café running outside the Day Centre on Thurs 20th May – 11am to 2.30pm offering free coffee and giving residents a chance to find out more about them. Let’s Talk, Stansted will also be present.
Cllr Sell commented that it all sounded encouraging and that his concern from the outset was the provision for elderly residents. How long will the Service Level Agreement with Enterprise East be for? Paul confirmed that no decisions have been made on this, but they would think it would be 3-5 years. Cllr Sell supported this as it is important for stability. He advised that each District Councillor had a new homes bonus, and he is happy to support the agreement with Enterprise East. Paul Chambers advised that they were trying to arrange form some of the elderly residents of the hot meal service to visit Enterprise East at a café they are currently running and would be happy for Cllr Sell to also visit to see how it is run and what they offer.
Cllr Khan commented that it all sounded very exciting, and he is happy to have talks about funding from the New Homes Bonus. As Government protection comes to an end with furlough ending, he believes debt advice will be a much-needed service. Touchpoint need to ensure that the people delivering this service are properly trained with the correct accreditation which Paul confirmed they have. Paul also advised that they had been in talks with Kate Robson from the CAB who had offered her help where she can. Cllr Khan asked when they would be looking to be up and running, and Paul advised that this depends on the grant applications and how quickly people respond to help push things forward.
Cllr Caton asked Paul to explain to the meeting how they had set themselves up as a charitable organisation. Paul advised that they are a registered charity who facilitate a great team. They are all volunteers who want to do what’s right for the community.
At the end the Chairman asked members if they were happy in principle as landlords whether they would support Touchpoint’s application for funding for outdoor equipment. This was unanimously supported.
41 TO RECEIVE THE MINUTES OF THE FULL COUNCIL MEETING HELD ON 28TH APRIL 2021 AND ANNUAL COUNCIL MEETING HELD ON 12TH MAY 2021
Cllr Kavanagh noted that the numbering of the Full Council minutes was incorrect, and the Clerk confirmed she would get these changed.
RESOLVED To accept the minutes of the Full Council meeting held on 28th April 2021 and Annual Council meeting held on 12th May 2021 as true and accurate account
42 MATTERS ARISING & ACTION POINTS
No matters arising and the action points had been completed.
43 CHAIRMAN’S REPORT
The Chairman, Cllr Maureen Caton, reported the following:
Let’s Talk, Stansted! have been on Social Media to advertise fund raising for their virtual walk to Rungis. They have teamed up with the Rungis Twinning Committee. Cllr Caton did a welcome back video and the Twinning Committee in Rungis also did a support video.
The Horsebox arranged by Touchpoint will be on site at Crafton Green on Thursday 20th May 2021 between 11am – 2.30pm.
The Youth Council met last night and it was an extremely productive meeting. There are 3 committed members of the Youth Council and they will be working with the Parish Council’s Communications Officer to promote a video to encourage new members.
Everyone is very impressed with how they are communicating, the ideas they have come up with so far and how committed and productive they are. Cllr Sell asked if they would be attending any Parish Council meetings? Cllr Caton confirmed that they have already attended some meetings via Zoom and would be attending in person when restrictions allow.
The co-option process was moving forward and adverts had been put out asking for anyone interested to apply. Training would be giving for any new members and she hopes that there is a good interest in the positions.
The Knight signs are being re-instated on Thursday 20th May with a photoshoot taking place on Friday 21st May.
The Youth Council have been discussing how they can contribute to Youth Activities over the Summer. The idea for a musical event on Mountfitchet Green was put forward and this is something they are keen to make happen. They are working with UDC and in particular John Starr to take this idea forward.
44 DISTRICT COUNCILLORS’ REPORT
District Cllr Sell – Report attached
Cllr Kavanagh asked if the rumours were true that Uttlesford had bought the old banana factory in Little Canfield? Cllr Sell confirmed that they had, and that District Cllr Caton had raised this at a recent meeting due to concerns. Dist. Cllr Caton confirmed that his concerns were that the decision was made 6 months ago to purchase this land and to make it a depot for refuse collection. Once bought there was considerable interest from the private sector for them to rent space out. The Council are keen to extract value for the site and have submitted a planning application, but District Cllr Caton had not seen any costings for this. His main concern is that they are getting too far ahead without any proper budgeting. The only response he received to his concerns were that when they have an answer, they will write to him.
Cllr Sell also advised that the Uttlesford Chief Executive had resigned and will be leaving in September. They will be looking for a replacement.
District Cllr Khan reported the following:
There have been issues around Council meetings. Because of this the Governance Committee had set up a task and finish group who have changed the processes.
He had been speaking to residents at Walpole Meadows regarding their concerns at UDC taking on the business units. Their issue is the Open Space and their hopes that it would not be signed off before all of the issues raised by the Parish Council and local residents had been rectified. He had spoken to Adrian Webb and asked him to link with Cllr Barnes regarding this.
45 COUNTY COUNCILLOR’S REPORT
Cty Cllr Ray Gooding reported the following:
Essex now have a new Council and he gave his thanks to everyone who had supported him again in the recent elections. At the end of this term, he will be the longest standing Cty Cllr for the Stansted Division. Cllr Kevin Bentley is the Leader of the Council; unfortunately Cllr Gooding is not a member of the Cabinet this time but he does have a new position on Scrutiny.
He has been asked about the planting of flowers for Stansted In Bloom and the need to clear building waste which has been dumped on the site. This is proving difficult as it is on Highway’s land and he is getting push back about the need for a licence. He is working to get this resolved. Cllr Barnes advised that Amherst Homes had generously offered the labour to tidy up the waste dumped by others, but they only had a short window to benefit from this kind offer. The licensing issue needs to be sorted urgently.
Cllr O’Brien asked what action is going to be taken regarding blocked drains in the village. Issues on Hargrave Close have been complained about for 4 years and action needs to be taken. Cllr Gooding is happy to talk separately outside of the meeting to discuss individual cases. Cllr O’Brien suggested they needed a walk around the village and this was supported by the Chairman. The Clerk will liaise with Cllr Jessup as Chair of Emergency Planning on availability for this to happen.
Cllr Gooding also reported that a resident had raised serious concerns regarding the safety of Gypsy Lane after several serious accidents on that stretch of road. It is difficult as it is on the Essex/Herts border and history and statistics are needed.
Cllr O’Brien asked if there was any update on the MUGA at Forest Hall School? Cllr Gooding advised that there wasn’t and he believed that there was still an issue around the PFI but he hadn’t been kept up to date on the matter. Cllr O’Brien commented that he thought the issue around the PFI had been answered by a member of UDC and the outcome was that there should be no issue with having a full-size area.
Cllr Hogg commented regarding the Bloor Homes appeal for Pennington Lane. Highways had put a holding objection on the proposal, but Bloor homes had issued a response to these and there had been no further comments by Highways apart from advising they had concerns. He would like to know what these concerns are as he is meeting next week with the Inspector and Bloor Homes. Cty Cllr Gooding said that this is a common battle that Highways face and that their biggest concerns and issues are with the strategic infrastructure.
46 PAYMENTS FOR AUTHORISATION – Approved
47 PLANNING APPLICATIONS
1 UTT/21/1505/HHF – 2 CANNONS MEAD
Single storey rear extension and porch
The Parish Council objects to this application due to over-development of the site.
48 TO REVIEW STANDING ORDERS
The Clerk advised that she had received advice from EALC regarding the outstanding issue discussed at last week’s Annual Council meeting relating to the following clause:
The Chairman and Vice Chairman of the Council, ex-officio, shall be voting members of every committee and sub-committee.
This was not in the NALC Model Document but it has been confirmed that it is up to the Council to decide if they wish to retain the clause in their own Standing Orders.
Having been proposed by Cllr O’Brien and seconded by Cllr Kavanagh it was:
RESOLVED to retain the clause.
This was unanimously agreed and the Standing Orders approved.
Meeting closed at 8.51pm
PP Convene meeting of Climate Change Working Group
41 Correct numbering of Full Council minutes
45 Clerk to discuss availability dates with Cllr Jessup for walk around with Cty Cllr Gooding
You are summoned to attend a meeting of the FULL COUNCIL which will be held on Wednesday 19th May 2021 at 7.30pm in The Mountfitchet Exchange, 72 Chapel Hill, Stansted, Essex
1 To receive apologies for absence
Adjourn for public participation
2 To receive declarations of interest
3 Update from Paul Chambers re Touchpoint
4 To receive the minutes of the Full Council meeting held on 28th April 2021 and Annual Council meeting held on 12th May 2021
5 Matters arising and action points
6 Chairman’s Report
7 District Councillors’ Report (if available)
8 County Councillor’s Report (if available)
9 Finance – Payments for authorisation
10 Planning applications received for comment
11 To review Standing Orders
Ruth Clifford, Parish Clerk- 13 May 2021