Meeting of Charsfield Parish Council

Tuesday 23rd July 2013




Present: Cllrs P Holloway, F Moor, D Murray, J Pedgrift, A Reeve and E Winkworth (Chairman), SCC Cllr P Bellfield, the Clerk and 1 member of the public


Minute numbers and Actions
1       Apologies: Cllr R Wright, SCDC Cllr B Snell and PCSO C Hassler


2       Declarations of Interest

There were none.


3       Minutes of meeting on 7th May were approved and signed


4       Matters Arising

4.1      Ratification of in absentia election of Cllr J Pedgrift to Vice-chairmanship

The decision was ratified.


4.2      Removal of Bottle Banks due to car park damage from collection lorries

The Chair explained that the lorries that empty the bottle banks damage the village hall car park. The council resolved to request their removal. The Clerk will write to SCS requesting their removal by reason of the damage done.


4.3      Financial assistance for Chapel to perform requested drainage work

It was agreed that there was no need to discuss this matter unless a request for financial assistance is received.


4.4      Installation of Silt Trap near chapel by SCC Highways

The Chair explained the suggestion and after discussion it was agreed that there was no need to discuss this matter until the results of the drainage works at the chapel were known.


4.5      Village Road Sign maintenance

The Clerk reported that the parishioner in question had gathered £120 towards the work and the Council resolved to fund the difference. The Clerk will order the work.
























5       Report from SCC Cllr Bellfield

Cllr Bellfield reported that: –

  • The SCC Accounts showed that SCC had saved £26. Over the next 4 years they are expected to save another £156 million which is approximately 25% of their budget.
  • SCC Highways Dept. are spending more on maintenance this year than last year. They have repaired the majority of potholes, have completed more mileage of top dressing than last year and are maintaining the acknowledged high standard of the county’s roads.
  • The introduction of the Endeavour Card (the young adults’ prepayment and discount card for public transport) has been delayed and is now expected at the half-term.


  • The BT contract for CSD which was not to be extended due to additional costs for extra items is now likely to be extended because BT have offered a 5 year extension at apparently very favourable rates.
  • The press recently criticised SCC for the plan to pay all staff a one-off bonus of £250 (pro-rata to hours) before SCC had released the news. SCC does intend to pay this bonus but will remove the current automatic salary increments and won’t pay it to senior staff. The change has been agreed with unions.

In response to a question on whether the bonus should be paid at all with regards to the aforementioned required budget savings, Cllr Bellfield pointed out that SCC has shed approximately 4,000 staff over recent years and staff have not had a wage rise for 3 years.

The Chair asked if the new Local Plan was in place and Cllr Bellfield explained that barring unlikely legal challenges to the implementation process it is.

Cllr Bellfield confirmed that SCDC do have to inform the Parish Council of any planning applications received for land within the parish but do not have to inform anyone else beyond posting the planning notice on the site.

After discussion of the current Suffolk Coastal Strategic Housing Land Availability Assessment Cllr Bellfield explained that he believed that Charsfield is classified, within the Local Plan, as a Sustainable Village which means that some development may take place. He also suggested that the Council might like to consider a Neighbourhood Plan, which required a referendum, needs to align with the Local Plan, will be adopted by SCDC and is then legally binding. The Clerk will investigate.

Cllr Bellfield agreed to apportion some of his locality budget towards the roundels that have already been discussed in Council. Clerk to write to SCC.









































6       Report from SCDC Cllr Snell

Cllr Snell had sent his apologies and report (below), which the Chair read out.




7       Crime Report: From PCSO Christian Hassler

PCSO Hassler sent a report stating that there were no crimes reported in the Parish between the 1st of May and the 30th of June.




8       Finance

8.1      Required payments were approved as well as a Standing Order to pay the Clerk’s salary.


8.2      Balance of Accounts as at 28/6/13

Current Account   £    4,631.44
No. 2   £    4,545.27
Total   £    9,176.71


8.3      The Clerk explained his calculated at cost printing expenses and the Council agreed to pay them as necessary.


8.4      The Clerk explained that an RFO is expected to maximise the interest gained by managing a current and savings account for the Council. The Clerk was asked to implement this.


8.5      The mandate change form changing the correspondence, adding bank account access for the new Clerk and removing it for the previous Clerk was approved and signed.




8.6      The NS&I forms were signed by the two Cllrs present. The Chair will arrange for the third to sign and send the forms off.


























9       Correspondence

The Chair reported a phone call about a pot hole. The Clerk explained that SCC prefer online entry of reports via their website and the Chair agreed to report the problem.


The correspondence report had previously been circulated.





10    Planning

10.1   C13/1201/ – New 5 bed house next to Springfield House, Chapel Lane

The council had no objections to the proposal but pointed out the possibility of surface water from the site exacerbating the flooding problem down the hill by the Chapel. Clerk to inform SCDC.








11    Approval of dates for future meetings

The dates will be approved by email.




12    Any Other Matters of information

The Chair reported that he had attended the Charsfield Coronation Fest on Charsfield Recreation Ground on the 15th of June and that it was a splendid event. The Council thanks all of the organisers and especially Jan Pedgrift.


The Chair reported that the Grit Bin had now been installed and that the appropriate staff at SCC had been informed so that it can be filled.


The Council discussed quotes for covering the village hall car park or sections of it with Tarmac. It was resolved that the clerk would arrange site visits from each contractor who quoted, with 3 Cllrs, to clarify requirements.


Cllr Pedgrift reminded the Council of the agreed £500 donation to the Charsfield Recreation Ground. The Clerk will arrange this.


Cllr Pedgrift reported that the school have been offered adjacent land for a playing field and car park and are considering the offer. Charsfield Recreation Ground have objected on the grounds of there being existing playing fields in the village. The Council have as yet received no planning application regarding to this land.


Cllr Pedgrift reported that the recreation ground is looking unkempt. Arrangements are underway for the thistles to be sprayed and a grant to tarmac the path has been applied for.

























13    Date of Next Meeting: Tuesday 24th September 2013 in the Village Hall at 7:30pm.


The meeting closed at 10:04pm



Suffolk Coastal District Council

Councillor Bob Snell’s report to Earl Soham Parish Councils, July 2013



1.         Local Development Framework (now renamed “the Local Plan”)


On 6 June the Council was advised that the Inspector had found its Core Strategy (CS) “sound”, subject to a set of “Main Amendments” that were suggested during the hearing.  With these changes added, the Council approved the CS on 5 July and its contents can now be given considerable weight in planning decisions.  We now await a timetable for Site Specific Allocations (as originally consulted on in 2008/9), which will identify individual sites, land and areas to be allocated for development to meet the needs set out in the CS.


Full details of the LDF and the inspector’s examination are available on the Council’s website.



4.         Planning applications


The appeal against the Council’s refusal for a 25MW solar farm at Hacheston will be heard at a local public inquiry on 25, 26 and 27 September, with a fourth day if required on Tuesday 1 October.



5.         Sizewell C consultation


The process has doubtless been delayed by the stale-mate in the electricity price negotiations between EDF and the government.  In addition, the prospects for a Hinkley Point style funding for the local community has receded, with alternative promises of direct payments from the government, but nothing is certain.  The process of consultation and review will continue.



6.         Number of SCDC Councillors


Following a public consultation earlier this year, the Boundary Commission (BC) announced that it is minded to recommend that the council should have 43 councillors in the future, twelve fewer than the current arrangements. The BC is now consulting (from 23 July to 1 October 2013) by asking local people and organisations to help draw up new wards for the district. As recommendations are developed, the BC will take into account local community identities as well as ensuring electoral equality for voters.



7.         SCDC Accommodation

A confidential progress report on the review of the Council’s office accommodation was presented to Cabinet on 16 July.  An Accommodation Project Board had been set up to ensure Suffolk Coastal has office accommodation to suit its future requirements, as a progressive, modern council, following a previous report that the facilities at the Council’s Melton Hill headquarters were no longer fit for purpose, because it is increasingly expensive to maintain and it is too big for the current staffing level.  Cabinet granted delegated responsibility to continue with the work, with a report on the preferred option to be presented by the end of the year.


8.  New Council Chairman


For the 2013/14 council year, Peter Bellfield has been elected Chairman of the Council.  Your ward member, Bob Snell, has become Vice Chairman.