Minutes 22 June 2021

Meeting of Whittington Parish Council at 7:30PM on Tuesday 22nd June 2021 at St Philip & St James Church, Church Lane, Whittington, WR5 2RQ

Minutes 06/2021

Present: Steve Burrows (Chair), Dan Bayliss, Jenny Knights, Steve Brooker, Katie Lambeth-Mansell, Susan MacLeod
In attendance: David Hunter-Miller (Clerk), Rob Adams (District Councillor), Malcolm MacLeod (Chair Whittington Community Hall Management Committee), David Chestney (Whittington Community Hall Management Committee), Linda Robinson (County Councillor)

1. Apologies for absence
Apologies were noted from Rob Stepniewski.

2. Declarations of Interest
Susan MacLeod declared a Disclosable Pecuniary Interest in all items pertaining to Whittington Community Hall.

Steve Brooker declared a Disclosable Pecuniary Interest in all items pertaining to Whittington Community Hall.

3. Dispensations
A dispensation had previously been granted to Susan MacLeod to allow participation and voting on all matters pertaining to Whittington Community Hall.

A dispensation had previously been granted to Steve Brooker to allow participation and voting on all matters pertaining to Whittington Community Hall.

4. Open Session
The meeting was adjourned for the open session.

4.1. District Councillor
Rob Adams provided a report:
• A further meeting is arranged regarding the parkway development (item 6.1).
• A consultation on Wychavon District Council’s boundary review would be circulated shortly.
• Wychavon District Council were working on a Covid recovery plan.
• Carrington bridge and SLR4 projects are due to be completed spring 2022.
• The Armed Forces Covenant was looking for businesses to make a pledge of support.

4.2. County Councillor
Linda Robinson provided a report as follows:

Since we last met, I have been busy trying to adjust to my new County role and have attended many more inductions and training meetings. As I am sure you can imagine there is a lot of information to process. Whilst there are advantages to this all being done remotely; it is harder to put names to faces that you have not had the opportunity to meet in person.

Yesterday I had my first conversation with Barry Barnes as he had been away on annual leave. He spoke at length and explained his role as my Highways liaison officer. I spoke to him about your concerns with the flooding on Church Lane and he said that surveys have been done and Severn Trent have done quite a bit of work on this one re the pipe that goes under their pumping station and whether that is their liability. Evidently they are working together with the drainage department and I will be alerted as soon as progress has been made. Naturally I will let you know as soon as I hear any more.

I would like to share with you a wonderful opportunity for any one from Whittington that might like to volunteer to help at the Commonwealth Games which are being held in Birmingham next year. Please visit www.birmingham2022.com/getinvolved/volunteering

County are very good in communicating latest COVID statistics with members and I will share some of them with you as part of my report. The vaccination take-up continues to be good with appointments now being made for the over 18’s. However more cases of the Delta variant which originated in India have been recorded in Worcester. The advice is to not drop your guard and continue to practice ‘hands, space and fresh air‘ at all times Confirmed cases in Worcestershire have increased by 42% in the last 7 days.180 new confirmed cases have been recorded. Today the Worcestershire rate stands at 30 cases per 100.000. The current England rate is 86.

At least 2.7m people in the U.K. have downloaded the new NHS app which is separate from the Test & Trace one and allows users to share their vaccination status when travelling internationally or attending large events in the UK such as Wimbledon or Euro 2020 games. A huge bonus has been the surge in downloads has triggered a rise in numbers registering for organ donation. 51,000 donor preferences have been added in the last four weeks which is five times more than in April.

Finally, some interesting national travel stats:
On trains passenger levels have fallen to 22% of pre Covid levels whilst
Bus travel is currently at 21% and traffic volume is at 90%
One of my fellow County Councillors from Tenbury attended a parish council meeting in Rushwick last week. He has now been contacted by Test & Trace and has been advised to self-isolate for ten days as one of the Parish councillors has tested positive.

I hope you will appreciate that this has led me to think that having given my report this evening and answered any questions you may have for me, I will then take the precaution to leave your meeting. Unless of course there is a particular item on the agenda that you would like me to stay for and then perhaps you could move that item forward. Your clerk can then alert me if any further issues come to light that need my attention.

For noting my new County e-mail address is LRobinson2@worcestershire.gov.uk

4.3. Whittington C of E Primary School
There were no matters to report.

4.4. Whittington Church
Services were continuing in line with current restrictions.

Arrangements to remove the existing portacabin and construct a single storey building in its place (planning application 20/00790/FUL) were ongoing. Approval for the remaining grant funding was expected shortly.

4.5. Brethren Church
There were no matters to report.

4.6. Whittington Community Hall
An update was received under item 8.

4.7. Public participation
No questions were received.

The meeting resumed following the open session.

5. To consider and adopt the minutes from the Parish Council meeting on the 25th May 2021
It was resolved to adopt the minutes as a true record and they were duly signed by the Chair.

6. Progress reports

6.1. SWDP / Parkway Development
There were no matters to report.

6.2. Whittington Walk development
An update was received as follows:
• Phase 3 works were progressing rapidly, with sales starting September 2021 and works completed on site in approximately 30 months.
• Approximately 190 properties were now occupied.
• No updates were available on the other items previously raised.
• One of the public footpaths on the site had been obstructed and this had been reported.

6.3. Flooding, Church Lane
Investigations into the surface water drainage were ongoing. Unfortunately, no existing drainage infrastructure had yet been identified across the adjacent field.

6.4. Advertising banners, A4440 island
It was noted that the illegal advertising banners had now been removed.

6.5. Broadband update
It was resolved to defer this item until a future meeting.

7. Correspondence

7.1. Resident: Enquiry regarding Graham-Gilmour road naming and alternative suggestions.
It was resolved to send the list of all names on the Whittington Church war memorial to Wychavon District Council for use as possible future road names.

7.2. Norton-juxta-Kempsey: To consider the Norton-juxta-Kempsey Neighbourhood Development Plan ‘Regulation 16’ stage consultation.
It was resolved that the Parish Council had no objections or concerns.

7.3. Wychavon District Council: Consultation on Draft Hackney Carriage and Private Hire Policy.
It was resolved that the Parish Council had no objections or concerns.

7.4. Boundary Commission for England: Parliamentary boundary review consultation.
It was noted that the Whittington boundary was unaffected by this consultation. It was thus resolved that the Parish Council had no objections or concerns.

7.5. Worcestershire CALC: Latest training schedule.
The above training schedule was noted.

8. Community Hall Project

8.1. To receive an update
Progress on site was progressing swiftly and with the building works expected to be completed on the 16th July 2021. The official opening event is scheduled for the 4th September, with bookings opening to the public from the 6th September.

Interviews had been conducted for the Hall Manager and Caretaker/Cleaner position. A Caretaker/Cleaner had been appointed. A decision on appointing a Hall Manager would be deferred until the new hall was up and running and the demands of the role were better understood.

8.2. Finance and budget expenditure
It was noted that VAT totalling £58,458.63 relating to the Community Hall Project had been successfully reclaimed from HMRC.

The final remaining tranche of grant funding under the Community Legacy Grant was due to be received shortly.

8.3. Community Hall project additional costs
It was resolved to approve the following additional costs associated with the project:

1 Installation of Pump Alarm for Drainage £372.31
2 Lock Suiting for all Doors £218.61
3 CCTV Survey of Road Drain £683.82
4 Alternative Roofing material* £5417.90
5 New Route for Surface Water Drainage* £5400.00
6 Concrete Kerbs and Edgings to replace Timber £854.28
7 Additional Paving for Landscaping £713.05
8 Additional Planters for Landscaping £2277.49
9 Cycle Shed and Stands* £2500.00
10 Revised Kitchen Layout £597.67
11 White Goods for Kitchen £833.14
12 Bases for Kitchenette £2107.80
13 Fridge for Kitchenette £188.97
14 BT Duct for Fibre** £651.46
15 Extended timescale for Contract* £5000.00
Interim Total £27816.50
16 Omission Auto-opening Front Door £1950.00
17 Saving on South Boundary Fence £1625.00
Total Additional Costs £24241.50
Landscaping – Planting etc to be let directly by PC £6607.47
*Provisional Figure
**Already Approved by PC
Items 1-6 Additional Costs to Contract
Items 7-15 Costs added from Value Engineering

It was resolved to seek further clarification from the Project Manager regarding the additional costs relating to the ‘extended timescales for the contract’ and seek general clarification on terms and conditions relating to project delays. It was acknowledged that some delays were down to the additional project requirements.

The following quotations were received relating to planting and landscaping:
• Mid-West Landscaping: £19,841.81 ex VAT
• HFN Landscapes: £6607.47 ex VAT
• Two other companies were invited to quote but failed to do so.
It was resolved to accept the quotation from HFN Landscapes.

A grant has been obtained from Wychavon District Council for a sculpture to be placed in the grounds surrounding the new hall. Quotations for the sculpture have been received from:
• The Cathedral Stonemasons in the sum of £2140.00 ex VAT
• Steve Allard & Son in the sum of £1834.00 ex VAT
• Other Stonemasons approached did not submit a quotation.
It was resolved to accept the quotation from Steve Allard and Son.

8.4. Deed of Novation: To approve and sign the Deed of Novation and associated documents relating to the novation of the architectural design carried out by Boughton Butler Ltd.
It was resolved to sign the Deed of Novation.

9. Planning

9.1. 21/01225/HP: 3 Fleetwood Lane, Whittington, Worcester, WR5 2NR. Loft Conversion.
It was resolved that the Parish Council had no objections or concerns with the proposals.

10. Parish matters for discussion/decision

10.1. Smart Water: To consider the purchase and distribution of Smart Water kits for parishioners.
To assist with cash-flow for the Community Hall Project it was resolved to defer signing up to the scheme until autumn 2021.

10.2. Risk Register: To consider and adopt an updated policy.
It was resolved to adopt an updated policy.

11. Lengthsman Scheme

11.1. To receive an update
An update was received on the work completed by the Lengthsman during April and May; invoices had been received and a claim would be made with Worcestershire County Council.

11.2. Vehicular Activated Sign (VAS): To approve the purchase of a replacement 12V battery charger.
It was resolved to approve the purchase of a 12V battery charger up to the value of £50.00.

11.3. Work schedule: To consider any items for the Lengthsman’s work schedule.
No items were requested.

12. Allotments

12.1. To receive an update
The ‘Private – Allotment Holders Only’ signs had arrived and would be installed shortly.

Allotment holders that had not yet returned their rent or tenancy agreement would be contacted.

13. Finance

13.1. Budget expenditure
It was resolved to approve the budget expenditure.

13.2. Bank reconciliation
It was resolved to approve the bank reconciliation.

13.3. Invoices

13.3.1. David Hunter-Miller (salary and expenses): £879.10
13.3.2. HMRC (PAYE): £207.90
13.3.3. Worcestershire County Council Pension Fund: £319.52
13.3.4. Sam Joyner (Lengthsman April): £135.00
13.3.5. Sam Joyner (Lengthsman May): £135.00
13.3.6. Interclass PLC (Community Hall Project): £119,175.60
It was resolved to settle the above invoices and cheques were duly signed.

14. Councillors’ reports and items for the next agenda
It was resolved to contact the Police to request increased patrols of building sites around Whittington.

It was resolved to add the following items to the next agenda:
• S106 wish list
• Broadband update

15. Date of the next meeting
The next scheduled meeting is at 7:30PM on Tuesday 27th July 2021.

The meeting closed at 9:45PM.