The MEETING of HASSOCKS PARISH COUNCIL will be held on Tuesday 12 April 2022 in Parish Centre, Adastra Park, Hassocks which is scheduled to commence at 7.30pm.
Parish Clerk 5th April 2022
Members of the public are encouraged to come to the meetings and there is an opportunity for them to address the Council relating to the non-confidential items on the published agenda. A period of 15 minutes will be set aside in item 4 Public participation.
1.1 To accept Apologies for absence.
2. DISCLOSURE OF INTERESTS
2.1. To deal with any disclosure by Members of any dis-closable pecuniary interests and interests other than pecuniary interests, as defined under Hassocks Parish Council’s Code of Conduct and the Localism Act 2011, in relation to matters on the agenda.
3.1. To accept the minutes of the Parish Council meeting 8th March 2022
4. PUBLIC PARTICIPATION
Up to fifteen minutes will be available to allow for the public to make representations, answer questions or give evidence in respect of any items of business included in the agenda, in accordance with Standing Orders.
5. TO ACCEPT THE FOLLOWING MINUTES
5.1. Planning Committee – to note the minutes for 7th & 28th March 2022
5.2 Neighbourhood Plan Committee – to note the minutes for 3rd March 2022
6.1. To approve the Financial Report and authorise the list of payments in the sum of £18,216.96 issued between 1st February 2022 and 28th February 2022. (Appendix 1 please click here).
7.1. West Sussex County Councillor Report
7.2. Mid Sussex District Councillors Report
7.3 Police Report
7.4. Rail Matters – oral Report (Leslie Campbell)
7.5. Youth Initiatives – oral report (Frances Gaudencio)
7.6. Reports from Councillors on meetings outside bodies where the Council is represented.
8. CHAIRMAN’S REPORT
8.1 Current matters (oral report)
9. CLERK’S REPORT
9.1 Cllr Owens resignation/Member vacancy – Council is asked to note the resignation of Nick Owens from Council.
A Notice of Vacancy has been published inviting electors to request a poll, as required by law. If no such request is received within the prescribed time the Council may co-opt a Member (Local Government Act 1972 s87).
If a poll is not requested the Council will currently have two vacancies on Council, it is therefore proposed that if no expressions of interest are forthcoming that consideration be given to placing an advertisement in the local press seeking any interested parties to come forward. The Council will continue to publicise the vacancy on its website and noticeboards.
9.2 Grants letters of thanks – The purpose of this report is to inform members that following the grants agreed on 8th February 2022 emails/letters of thanks have been received from the following.
- Life Centre
- Michelle Binks in relation to the funding support provided by the Council for the Mayday event in Adastra Park
In addition a letter of thanks has been received from the Adastra Bowls Club thanking the Council for the contribution towards the replacement of the windows and doors of the bowls pavilion.
9.3 Safeguarding Policy – The proposed draft Safeguarding Policy is set out in Appendix 2 (below) and members are requested to consider the attached policy for adoption,
Member’s views are sought.
9.4 Annual Meeting – Members are requested to consider what format they would like the meeting to take this year. It is scheduled to be held prior to the next full council meeting on the 10th May 2022
10. URGENT MATTERS AT THE DISCRETION OF THE CHAIRMAN for noting and/or inclusion on a future agenda.
11. DATE OF NEXT MEETING
To note that the date of the next Parish Council meeting is Tuesday 10th May 2022 at 7.30pm which will follow on from the Annual Parish meeting which will commence at 7pm.
EXCLUSION OF PUBLIC AND PRESS
In view of the confidential nature of the business about to be transacted Councillors will be referred to the Confidential Agenda. If any members of the public or press are in attendance they will be requested to withdraw from the meeting in the public interest.
FILMING, RECORDING OF COUNCIL MEETINGS AND USE OF SOCIAL MEDIA
During this meeting members of the public may film or record the Committee and officers from the public area only providing it does not disrupt the meeting. The Confidential section of the meeting may not be filmed or recorded. If a member of the public objects to being recorded, the person(s) filming must stop doing so until that member of the public has finished speaking. The use of social media is permitted but members of the public are requested to switch their mobile devices to silent for the duration of the meeting.
All members of the public are welcome to attend to attend meetings of the Parish Council and its Committees.
Item 4 – a period of 15 minutes will be set aside for the public statements and questions relating to the published non-confidential business of the Meeting.
It may be necessary to consider particular items in confidential session and where this arises, these items will be considered at the end of the agenda.
HASSOCKS PARISH COUNCIL DRAFT SAFEGUARDING POLICY
1.1 Hassocks Parish Council expect that all who use our services and facilities are treated with respect and kept safe from harm. We are committed to taking all reasonable precautions to safeguard the welfare of children, young people and vulnerable persons when they are engaged in activity associated with the Parish Council and /or whilst using our premises and facilities.
2.1 The Council will endeavour to safeguard children and vulnerable persons, in that:
- The welfare of the child and vulnerable adult is paramount
- All children and vulnerable adults have the right to protection from abuse
- All suspicions and allegations of abuse will be taken seriously and responded to swiftly and appropriately
- All staff, volunteers and elected members of the council have a responsibility to report concerns to the appropriate officer (Parish Clerk)
- All staff, volunteers and elected members of the council are not to deal with situations of abuse or to decide if abuse has occurred
3. Duty of care
3.1 Disclosure and Baring Service (DBS) checks will be carried out on relevant staff in accordance with the eligibility criteria in the Rehabilitations of Offenders Act 1974 (Exceptions) Order 1975.
Hassocks Parish Council has a duty of care to protect others from harm; this includes a range of processes including risk assessment and health & safety practices.
Allegations or suspicions of inappropriate behaviour by a member of staff or Councillor must be referred immediately to the Clerk who will refer the matter to Social Services at County Council for investigation. The Clerk will log concerns and record action taken; this information will be stored confidentially.
Hirers of Parish Council facilities must ensure that any activities for children, young people and other vulnerable adults are only provided by a fit and proper person. When requested, you must provide us with a copy of your Safeguarding Policy and evidence that appropriate Disclosure and Barring service (DBS) checks have been undertaken.
Contact numbers for reporting concerns
· West Sussex Safeguarding Children Partnership: 01403 229900
· For emergencies which require same day response: 07711 769657
About vulnerable adults
· Adult Social Care: 01243 642121
· For emergencies which require a same day response: 033 022 27007
In case of an emergency please ring 999
You must refer; you must not investigate
Minutes of the meeting of the Parish Council held on 12th April 2022
at 7.30pm in Parish Centre, Adastra Park, Hassocks
Attendees: Parish Councillors Ian Weir, Jane Baker, Carolyn Barton, Frances Gaudencio, Kate Bailey, Claire Tester.
Parish Clerk: Ian Cumberworth
Visiting Member(s):- County Councillor Kirsty Lord (Sent Apologies)
PC21/120 APOLOGIES Cllr Kristian Berggreen, Sue Hatton, David Bunting, Bill Hatton, Alex Simmons and Leslie Campbell
Absent without apologies: Cllr Robert Brewer
PC21/121 DISCLOSURE OF INTERESTS
Disclosure by Councillors of personal interests in matters on the agenda, and whether the Councillor regards their interest as prejudicial under the terms of the Code of Conduct. – None.
The minutes of the meeting held on the 8th March 2022 were accepted as a true and accurate record of the meeting.
PC21/123 PUBLIC PARTICIPATION
No members of the public were present.
Members noted the Minutes of the informal Planning Committee meetings on the 7th and 28th March 2022.
125.1 Members considered the finance reports and the supporting bank statements and reviewed the following payment list.
The Finance report and payments totalling £18,216.96 (Appendix 1) for the period ending 28th February 2022 were considered and APPROVED.
126.1 County Councillors reports: – Cllr Kirsty Lord (KL) had submitted her apologies but had provided a report for the Clerk to present as follows
Stonepound was due to close overnight for roadworks on the 13th April 2022 where four way lights will be in operation from 8pm to 6am with some access restrictions for resurfacing works and the reinstallation of the cycle refuge on Keymer Road. Still awaiting a date for the works to install the loops for the traffic lights at Stonepound. The lights are currently as optimised as they can be so running slightly better than they were, but the work is needed for the lights to be efficient as possible. Unfortunately, it was not feasible to undertake these works at the same time as the proposed closure.
A meeting has also been scheduled with County and the Parish to discuss an element of the recent Traffic Regulation Order (TRO) in Hassocks.
Discussions are ongoing with highways on possible solutions for the café structure in the centre of Hassocks.
Working with WSCC highways and landowners to facilitate the removal of Ash trees on Clayton Hill as part of the Ash die back programme.
Recently met with Parish Cllrs Weir and Baker and the Highways manager in Clayton with a view to improving the cycling and walking facilities for residents between Hassocks and Clayton and to review speed limits. Concerns were also raised regarding the standard of repairs on the kerbside opposite the Ditchling Road junction with the Highways manager.
Cllr Lord advised that she had raised concerns about the communications relating to the road closure for drainage installations on Keymer Road in the week before Christmas and the impact on local businesses, together with concerns with communications with landowners about the ash die back programme. These issues were raised directly with the CEO of WSCC during a discussion about how County liaises with residents and local businesses.
A briefing has been requested from officers at WSCC for the Chair of the Parish Council, District councillors and Cllr Lord about the latest plans for the new primary school now that the development of the Ockley Lane site is underway.
126.2 District Councillor Report (Cllr Sue Hatton sent her apologies) nothing to report
126.3 Police Report – nothing to report
126.4 Rail Matters – Cllr Weir advised members that work on the embankment is nearing completion and the tunnel is progressing well.
126.5 Youth Initiatives – Cllr Gaudencio updated members on a number of initiatives Hassocks Youth projects were running or are in the process of organising in the near future.
126.6 Report from Councillors on meetings of outside bodies where the Council is represented –
Cllr Frances Gaudencio attended a meeting of the Hassocks Community Organisation where they were advised of what the Council was doing in respect of the new planters to celebrate the Queens Jubilee. Cllr Gaudencio also advised that the HCO are also seeking to raise funds to repair the clock located at the infants school
Cllr Gaudencio was also scheduled to attend a SUDS Flood group later this week.
Cllr Weir advised he attended a meeting with the Twinning Association. It is likely the event will not occur this year as there is still some reluctance for people to travel and meet up. It is likely the event will be hosted in Hassocks next year some 3 years later than originally scheduled. The twinning association are proposing to draft a programme which will be considered later in the year. This will be reviewed dependent on the circumstances at that time
Cllr Weir indicated he had also hosted a meeting of the safer cycling group where they discussed the possibility of establishing a cycling route from Ditchling to Hurstpierpoint and beyond.
PC21/127 CHAIRMANS REPORT – nothing to report.
PC21/128 CLERK’S REPORT
128.1 Cllr Owens resignation/Member vacancy – The clerk read out the Cllr’s resignation letter as requested. Members expressed the view and wanted to place on record their appreciation and thanks for all the work and support Cllr Owens had provided to the Council over the years and in particular his contributions on energy efficiency matters on the respective committees and when representing the parish council at district council planning meetings.
Members were advised that a notice of vacancy had been advertised and the Council were awaiting to see whether any members of the public call for an election. If an election is not called then the council would be able to co-opt onto the council.
This would also mean that the Council would have two current vacancies on the council.
The Clerk suggested that the council may wish to consider advertising the vacancies within the local press at a future point (Hassocks Life and Talkabout) however the vacancies would continue to be advertised on the Councils website and noticeboards.
Members AGREED to this proposal in the event of interested parties are not forthcoming an advertisement will be placed in the local press.
128.2 Grants Letters of thanks – Members were informed that the Council had received two letters of thanks for grants awarded in February from:
Michelle Binks for May day funding which is due to take place in Adastra Park on May 2nd and the charity Life Centre.
The Council also received a letter of thanks from the Adastra bowls club for the contribution provided to go towards the replacement of the existing windows and doors in the bowls pavilion.
128.3 Safeguarding Policy- the Clerk introduced the draft Safeguarding Policy which Policy Resources and Communications Committee were scheduled to consider but unfortunately recent meetings had been cancelled. Therefore the paper was brought forward to Council to consider and approve for adoption, the intention of the policy was to formally codify the Councils responsibilities. Members were advised that the Council does not normally run or organise events therefore this document is felt to be proportionate for the council’s needs.
Members were requested to consider the attached document and indicate whether they would consider the document for formal adoption.
Members welcomed that the policy was concise and clearly set out incorporating the key information.
After careful consideration Members APPROVED the adoption of the said Safeguarding Policy with immediate effect.
128.4 Annual meeting plan meeting is scheduled for the 10th May prior to the next full council meeting. Member’s views were sought on the format to be followed.
Members discussed a number of options as to how this meeting could be enhanced although it was acknowledged that there was limited time for this year’s event. On this basis members agreed to run the session in line with the previous formats with the various chairs drafting a report setting out details of the work and achievements of the respective committees, but it was felt important that this should be revisited later in the year so that changes could be made for 2023 which could incorporate the use of visual aids and greater publicity to raise the public’s awareness to try and increase attendance from the public.
Cllr Weir indicated that if the respective Chairs submitted their reports in bullet point format by the 28th-29th April he would be happy to pull them together into one report so that it reduces the level of potential duplication.
PC21/129 URGENT MATTERS AT THE DISCRETION OF THE CHAIRMAN – Cllr Simmons advised members that it is understood that some individuals from the village have left for Ukraine to support the current conflict.
PC21/130 DATE OF NEXT MEETING
To note that the date of the next Parish Council meeting is Tuesday 10th May 2022 at 7.30pm which will follow on from the Annual Parish Meeting which will commence at 7.00pm.