MINUTES OF ORDINARY MEETING HELD 27th SEPTEMBER 2017

 

Present

Cllrs Mr Frank Hemmings (FH), Mrs Jackie Allen (JA), Mrs Barbara Humphreys (BH), Ms Kirsty Cottam (KC),
Mr Michael Maxfield (MM), Mr Newman James (NJ), Miss Lynne Painter (LP), Mrs Dot Griffiths (DG),
Mrs
Sarah Williams (SW), Mr Brian Colley (BC) & Ms Eleanor Burnham (EB).
Mr Shaun Jones (SJ), Clerk to the Council.

 

Not Present

Cllr Mr Gareth Baines,

 

Apologies

Apologies for absence: Cllrs. Mr Mark Holmes, Mr Terry Evans & Mr Mark Roberts.

 

Declarations of Interest

Declarations of Interest: No declarations of interest made at this point

 

 

67.      TO CONFIRM AND SIGN THE MINUTES AS A TRUE RECORD OF THE MEETING HELD ON 26TH JULY 2017.

The draft minutes for the Council Meeting held 26th July 2017 are now put to the Council as an accurate record of proceedings.  The motion proposed JA and seconded LP was passed unanimously.

 

68.      TO CONSIDER ANY MATTERS ARISING FROM THE MINUTES RECEIVED ABOVE NOT REPORTED ELSEWHERE.

 

Minute 57 – 26.7.2017 – The additional car parking spaces at Chirk Leisure Centre are now available

                                         in the evenings and weekends.

 

Minute 61 – 26.7.2017 – The re-appointment of Cllr. Geoff Edwards of Penycae CC was ratified

                                         by Wrexham County Borough Council.

 

 

69.      TO CONSIDER NEIGHBOURHOOD POLICING MATTERS
The usual statistics report has been presented to members and noted.
Currently reports are at the lower end of normal.

 

LP reports of off-road motor bikes using the hospital field behind Lodgevale.  Who should this be reported to ?  Also quotes the Highway Code para 242 & 244 regarding causing obstruction by vehicles.  It should be noted that police vehicles are seen to be non-compliant.

DG reports of a vehicle – a farmer’s 4x4 Land Rover with dogs in the back completely blocking Colliery Road at 6:30pm.  Told this is not a Policing matter, nor a Highways matter – very frustrating.  For emergency services like Fire and Ambulance this is a major problem as well as the bus services.  Would “No Parking” signs help ?  A request for the Chief Superintendent and Jo Rodgers of WCBC Enforcement to attend a future meeting made.  NJ also recommends inviting WCBC officers to help.  A matter over the visual appeal of the location is to be put on a future General Purposes Committee agenda.

 

 

 

70.      TO HEAR PRESENTATION FROM CLLR. SUE SCHOFIELD, ST MARTINS PARISH COUNCIL – IFTON COLLIERY 50TH ANNIVERSARY OF CLOSURE..

Mrs Sue Schofield gave a presentation outlining the plans to commemorate the 50th anniversary of the closure of Ifton Colliery which include the commissioning of a new statue to be placed in St Martins.  This Statue is to keep the History and Heritage of the area in a central position, to act as a reminder of those who lost their lives whist earning a living and provide a learning resource which will last not only for the next 50 years but as long as the statue remains.  The colliery officially closed on 23rd November 1968 so the 50th anniversary in next year in November.  Sue was accompanied by other members of the fundraising committee – among them miners that worked at Ifton.  In addition, as part of the fundraising effort a medal commemorating the anniversary has been struck and is limited to 500.  SJ agreed to hold a stock at Chirk Parish Hall to see if local families would be interested in purchasing - £25 each – all proceeds towards the appeal.  Councillors did offer support and encouragement as well as some nuggets of information to help the fundraising effort.  Sue requested Chirk Town Council write a letter of support for the project signed off by all Councillors.  In addition she asked if Council would financially support the project.  Council agreed to the request to write a letter of support and will consider the request for financial assistance under agenda item 12.  FH thanked Sue and her colleagues for a very interesting and informative presentation and wished them success in their efforts in reaching the fundraising target of £50,000.

 

71.      TO HEAR PRESENTATION FROM EILWEN JONES, REGIONAL EMERGENCY PLANNING OFFICER – COMMUNITY EMERGENCY PLAN – CHIRK IN PILOT SCHEME.
The Clerk was informed that Ms. Jones had been signed off sick and this presentation has been postponed to the next Ordinary Meeting to be held on Wednesday 25th October 2017.

 

72.      TO RECEIVE REPORT AND RECOMMENDATIONS FROM GENERAL PURPOSES COMMITTEE MEETING HELD 21ST AUGUST 2017.
The draft report and recommendations of the General Purposes Committee meeting held 21st August 2017 are now put to the Council as an accurate record of proceedings.  The motion proposed JA and seconded MM was passed unanimously.
A request to bring forward the revised Chirk Cemetery rules and regulations to Full Council was made.
One matter arising – concerns the new Lodgevale notice board, who are the key holders ?  Currently the Clerk has access and any posters should be dropped into the Parish Hall.

 

73.      TO RECEIVE REPORT AND RECOMMENDATIONS FROM STAFF SUB-COMMITTEE MEETINGS HELD 21ST AUGUST 2017 & 13TH SEPTEMBER 2017.
The draft report of the Staff Sub-Committee meeting held 21st August 2017 is now put to the Council as an accurate record of proceedings.  The motion proposed JA and seconded SW was passed unanimously.
Recommendations made are now put to Council, motion carried.  The now adopted Social Media policy is to be circulated to all Councillors.

SJ apologises for not having completed the report of the Staff Committee relating to their meeting on 13th September 2017.  This will be brought in front of Councillors in the very near future.

 

74.      TO RECEIVE ORAL REPORTS FROM COUNCIL REPRESENTATIVES.

JA attended the One Voice Wales Wrexham and Flintshire group meeting, it was a long meeting and gave warning over management of precepts, in some cases Councils are not being prudent – also there is the issue of future sustainability.

Given the Welsh Government health budget in 2008 was 34% of the total expenditure but is now forecast for 2020 to be 56%, Town and Community Councils will have to exercise caution if asked to take on more devolved activities.  BC ask where is the detail ?


JA also attended along with FH and SJ the recent Town and Community Council forum hosted at the Guildhall. The main agenda item was the Community Agent scheme. JA has asked in relation to any assistance given in completion of forms as to who would be liable for any error ? Is there an indemnity ?  Perhaps look at the Citizens Advice Bureau instead.  Also the question was asked of the principal authority as to any idea of what further financial burdens may be placed on our tier of local government.


Penycae Community Council hosted a meeting to propose the concept of clustering and sharing amongst Community Councils in Wrexham.  JA & FH attended.

 

KC who is the Chair of Black Park Community Centre reported that it has been agreed to run the Haloween and Christmas parties for local children again this year.  SW to be invited to future meetings.  Also agreement over the cancellation of the waste contract has been reached.  EB requested an update by way of short presentation on the current use of Black Park Chapel in the near future.


SW expressed disappointment over an invitation to all Councillors to make a factory visit only to later learn that the company declined one individual from joining the visit.  FH has agreed to speak with the company.


The Chirk Environmental Liaison Group recently met and a number of Chirk Councillors attended.  There have been three incidents over the last month, two resulting in dust clouds and one was a fire.  The company have solved the problem of the first cloud however are currently not sure what caused the second.  Mention of the permit was made with the current shared arrangement between Wrexham Council and Natural Resources Wales moving to NRW being the sole regulator.  There was some dissatisfaction expressed over the length of time this is expected to take.  Mention of the new dust silos and that the company still expects peaks in July and December where some stockpiles may be seen. 

FH attended a recent dinner hosted by the Vale of Llangollen Lions Club.  This took place at the Hand Hotel in Chirk.  Representatives from a wide area including East Anglia, Stoke-on-Trent and Anglesey were attending.  A lot of charity work is undertaken by the Lions in the area which also includes the annual Santa sleigh – an offer was made to Chirk for Santa to visit before Christmas.

 

FH along with other members of the iBeacon working group participated in a tour of the proposed points of interest/beacon sites in Chirk.

 

75.      TO RECEIVE ORAL REPORTS FROM LOCAL MEMBERS – WREXHAM CBC.
FH reported that he attended a full Council meeting earlier today.  Scrutiny committee made a recommendation that the Executive Board and Chairs of Committees accepted a reduction in remuneration.  This was rejected and pay levels are held.  It was stated that the CEO is to attend her last meeting on November 13th.  The recruitment for a new CEO is underway.

Any requests for dropping of kerb stones to create off road parking spaces are stuck.  The Housing Officer is looking into this.

Attended a Craig Close residents meeting and also one for Princess Avenue.  Both demonstrate a good working relationship with WCBC and tenants.  Hopefully this can be replicated in other neighbourhoods.

Dementia Friendly Swimming sessions at Chirk Leisure Centre – a pilot scheme – did encounter an issue of a gas leak which postponed the initial session.  The school was also evacuated.  The upshot was there was no hot water in the Leisure Centre for a period.

Finally it is noted there are a number of noisy manhole covers on Church Street.  These have been reported to Welsh Water.


 

76.      TO DECIDE UPON APPEALS FOR FINANCIAL ASSISTANCE RECEIVED.
A request for financial support from Chirk AAA Bowling Club.  They are embarking on a project to improve the playing area – overall estimated cost of £1,500.00.  NJ proposed and SW seconded a donation of £200 be made.  Motion carried.
After the earlier presentation – see minute 70 above, Councillors discussed the request for a donation towards the appeal.  NJ recognised that 1000 were employed up until 1968 and many were part of Chirk’s community and proposed a donation of £500, this was seconded by SW.  Motion carried.


 

77.      TO RECEIVE LEGAL OPINION AND APPROVE THE COMPLETION OF LEASE AGREEMENTS OVER 2 PLAY AREAS – CROGEN AND JOHN/EWART ST.
SJ reported that both lease agreements have been thoroughly worked through and all matters of concern within have been responded to by Martin Howarth of WCBC in a manner that satisfies.  SJ is now able to recommend to Council that both lease agreements are signed off.  All Councillors agreed to proceed.  SJ will obtain the bound agreements for signing.

 

 

78.      TO RECEIVE ANNUAL RETURN 2016/17 – EXTERNAL AUDITORS REPORT.
The Clerk updated Councillors on the completion of the External Audit of Accounting Statements 2016-17.  No matters were raised by Grant Thornton who conducted the audit and they have signed the Annual Return.  The invoice for £276.75 issued by the Welsh Audit Office is to follow.  SJ will now put up the statutory “Conclusion of Audit Notice” on our notice boards and website.  It must be displayed for 14 days.


A vote of thanks by Council to the Clerk for having achieved an unqualified audit.
 

79.      TO RECEIVE THE ORAL REPORT OF THE CLERK – INCLUDES CORRESPONDENCE.
Now that a new Notice Board has been installed at Lodgevale SJ has received some requests from commercial advertisers to have their posters included.  Councillors appreciate that there is limited space available and agreed that only Council and Community notices be displayed.

Advertising banners on railings surrounding Chirk Open Spaces have peaked recently.  Most have not sought permission from the Council to display.  The Clerk was asked to remove from the corner of Chapel Lane and Holyhead Road as so many looked unsightly.  Organisations must seek permission to hang banners on fencing around our Community spaces –contact the Clerk at Chirk Parish Hall.


Looking ahead to the Centenary of the end of WW1 in November 2018 some grant funding to improve the Cenotaph in Chirk is being researched.  The Enabling Grant scheme run by Wrexham Council may not bear fruit because of the stated criteria.  Other grant sources to be check out.

A commercial proposal for enhancing the CCTV coverage in Chirk has been received and will be put on a future General Purposes Committee agenda.

Correspondence:-


 

·        Gill Jones – The New Saints FC Foundation Ltd – Invitation to support a bid for Cics Cymru funding.   Noted – SJ has consulted with MH and SW who up to now had heard little of this initative.

·         Matthew Jones – The Racecourse Community Foundation – Invitation to support a bid for Cics Cymru funding.  Noted – see above.

·         Marlene Jones – St Mary’s Church Handbells – Letter of thanks for recent donation. Noted.

·         Christine Ashford – Wales in Bloom Awards – Friends of Chirk Station awarded “Outstanding” in the In Your Neighbourhood Awards.  Also awards to the St Mary’s Churchyard who are also now a Green Flag accredited green space & Cafi Wylfa for their frontage.  Noted – a commendable achievement by all the volunteers.

·         One Voice Wales AGM motions 2017 –6 motions that will be presented and voted on at the upcoming OVW AGM. Noted - These were not fully discussed as the meeting had run over on time allowed.

·         One Voice Wales – Consultation on Sustainable Management of Natural Resources – extended to 30.9.17– A Pembrokeshire Clerk wishes to encourage member Councils to make comment over the fact that every footpath is changed to be a cycle track or bridleway. Noted – circulated to all members by email (25.9.17) and also to WCBC Rights of Way and Mr Deryn Poppitt who has a keen interest in local footpaths – all encouraged to submit a response.

·         Christine Ashford – Chirk Celebrations and Lights Committee – Letter reporting on the successful fund raiser where the Military Wives Choir gave a concert in St Mary’s Church.  An offer for Council Member to buy a commemorative program with funds raised donated to the Choir’s Foundation.  Noted – and some members bought a program.

80.      TO RECEIVE REPORT AND RECOMMENDATIONS FROM PLANNING SUB-COMMITTEE MEETINGS HELD 8TH AND 13TH SEPTEMBER 2017.
The draft report of the Planning Sub-Committee meeting held 13th September 2017 (incorporating advice provided on the 8th September 2017 where no quorum) is now put to the Council as an accurate record of proceedings.  Councillors passed.

 


 

 

81.      TO CONSIDER PLANNING APPLICATIONS P/2017/0759 & 0760 – THE LODGE, BLACK PARK, CHIRK.
P/2017/0759 Listed Building Consent to Relocate Bedroom Fire Surround and Form Ensuite
The Lodge Black Park Chirk
Wrexham
Comments: Members were happy to leave to the Conservation Officer to determine whether the applicant’s proposals are in keeping.  Agrees to approve on this basis.

P/2017/0760 Listed Building Consent to Reform Fire Surround to Inglenook and Provide Housing for Boiler
The Lodge Black Park Chirk Wrexham
Comments: Members were happy to leave to the Conservation Officer to determine whether the applicant’s proposals are in keeping.  Agrees to approve on this basis.

 

82.      TO APPROVE PAYMENTS TO BE MADE AS ON LIST ATTACHED.
A list of invoices and payments (to 27.09.17) amounting to £14,491.80 & £432.88 (using pre-paid creditcard) was given to the Council and were passed for payment (see addendum). Proposed JA and seconded LP for approval – motion carried.

 

83.      TO PRESENT ITEMS FOR INCLUSION ON THE NEXT AGENDA.

Invitation for Police Inspector/Chief Superintendent to attend a future meeting.

 

Meeting closed 9:10pm.

 

 

 

 

Signed                                    Chairman                                                                           25th October 2017