Parish Meeting 5th April 2016



10 electors of the Parish

Councillors Geary & Hosking

In attendance: Dean Thompson (Chicheley Hall)

Chair: Robert Ruck-Keene

Clerk: Jo Parker

Apologies for absence

Matthew Pearce, Jill Tarrant, Keith McLean, Paula Blamires, Christine Girard

Minutes of previous meeting

Approved as a true record of the meeting.

Matters arising

Traffic and incorrect sat nav instructions to Chicheley Hall are still a problem

Grain store is being built at Hill Farm after successful planning application

We missed out on defibrillator funding via the British Heart Foundation but the meeting agreed to support an application for funding from alternative sources as well as earmarking some funds towards the purchase. Clerk to pursue.

Bus shelter repairs have been completed; thanks to Ian Richardson for an excellent job

SIDS are operational, and had been in the village during the previous week. Statistically speeding is a problem. Police van follows the SIDS (the village is a ‘hot site’). There are questions over what more the police centrally might do, as Newport Pagnell police have done all they can. Cllr McLean is following this up. More volunteers are needed to staff SIDS in neighbouring villages. At the next NAG meeting on 29th June, a strategy between council and police will hopefully be discussed.

Inspection covers – MKC not of the view that they have sunk.

Fallen fire/water hydrants need a piece of wood behind them

Plan MK

Plans have been circulated by email.

Chair read out a submission on behalf of the meeting, which was agreed.

Councillor Geary reported that at the recent Executive Scrutiny Group names of the villages affected by proposed satellite settlements were removed. In his view the document is not fit to be the visionary document. Refresh of the core strategy is needed, given that expansion is a must, but this should be on a five rather than fifty year basis. In Milton Keynes developers will only build to accommodate the market. Growth should not be more than 1750 houses a year; maximum growth here has been 3000 houses a year.

A legal challenge as to how this has been handled is being prepared, and it was suggested that we make a modest contribution from parish funds, up to 500 if requested.

Later this year, the outcomes of this round of consultation will be considered then the proposed plan will follow. There will be a further 12 weeks of consultation and modification, after which the planning inspector will comment, prior to a public enquiry (summer 2017). Recommendations will be due by autumn 2017, after which MKC will adopt or amend the plan in spring 2018.

Likely outcome is a mixture of the proposed options. Some of option 1 and 4 are likely to be involved. Rural areas are a real asset to MK, so we hope option 3 is avoided.

Ward Councillors’ update

Minerals local plan is in the final stage of consultation. Our comments were submitted. Public enquiry due in June/July. View of our councillors is that the plan is not sound; they will represent the area.

School transport has improved

Thanks were expressed to the ward councillors for the donation to the Village Hall from the ward budget, to support refurbishment

MKC budget for next financial year was passed in February (approved first time). 3.95 % increase in Council Tax. Kitchener centre in Olney will remain open and service likely to be enhanced. Pink sacks will be available for at least another 12 months. There will be a review of waste and recycling. Sheltered housing warden service has been retained. Green bins will still be provided free of charge. Plans to close play areas have been dropped at least for the short term. No libraries closed; Olney remaining open. Some service cuts to children and schools – e.g. child mental health services. Money for improving failing schools has gone.

In May elections, Keith would be standing again; the Chair encouraged meeting members to support Keith as he has done a tremendous amount for Chicheley.

Anthony Stansfield would be standing again as police and crime commissioner; the Chair expressed his support as one of his key objectives is tackling rural crime.

Annual accounts

Presented and approved (proposed by Pat Townsend, seconded by Pierre Girard).

We do not depreciate our assets, on the advice of the auditors. An extra pound for (nominal) has been included to cover the bus shelter. There has been a significant reduction in the cost of the insurance, and significant expenditure on the bus shelter repairs. A 3-year commitment to the insurance company only gives us a small discount.

Audit & new audit rules

Thanks expressed to David Blamires for completing the internal audit.

The Clerk will respond to feedback from last year’s audit regarding recommendations to earmark funds for additional expenditure and not maintain reserves (e.g. defibrillator plans, reduction in insurance, repairs to bus shelter).

There have been some changes to the procedures for external audit whereby we have to submit our accounts but do not have to have an audit, so we have not opted out of the current arrangements, following consultation with members of the Parish by email.

The audit documentation was circulated and approved (proposed by Cris Tarrant; seconded by Judith Duncombe).

Future expenditure

Donation to Village Hall made, under Section 137.

Agreed to withhold planned SCAN donation until its future is clear

Agreed to earmark 500 for the MK strategic plan ‘fighting fund’. This could come out of Section 137 allocation; Chair to check with other parishes how they are dealing with it.

Agreed to earmark 500 towards defibrillator

Clerk to inform auditors of future spending plans.

Election of Officers

The Chair and the Clerk were reappointed (proposed by Pat Townsend; seconded by Ian Townsend)

Any other business

Street light out on Bedlam Lane – all to report to ensure it is mended.

Road wear and tear (A422) in same place as in previous years – this has been reported.

New system for reporting faults is operational.

A ward visit will follow. All to send areas of concern to Clerk so list can be collated ready for the new service lead to pick up. Reference numbers when faults have been reported are useful to share, to enable tracking of progress.

Recent flooding led to a diversion along Gog Lane, which caused further congestion. Chair to raise with MKC (Tony Toynton)

Ian Townsend alerted the meeting to possible traffic disruption along Bedlam Lane at the end of the month when the thatched roof is replaced. Patience requested.

The Chair thanked the Councillors for attending.

Date of next meeting: Tuesday 11 October 8pm