HASSOCKS PARISH COUNCIL
A meeting of the Parish Council on 9 November 2021 at 7.30 pm in the Council Chamber, Parish Centre, Adastra Park, Hassocks.
Parish Clerk 3 November 2021
Members of the public are encouraged to come to the meetings and a period of 15 minutes will be set aside in item 4 for the public statements and questions relating to the published non-confidential business of the Meeting. Please be aware that in order to maintain Covid safety it may be necessary to restrict attendance at this current time.
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 12th October 2021.
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 of the informal meetings held on 11th October 2021 and 1 November 2021.
6.1. To approve the Financial Report and authorise the list of payments in the sum of £17,745.30 issued between 1 September 2021 and 30th September 2021. (Appendix 1). To view Appendix 1 please click here.
7.1. West Sussex County Councillor
7.2. Mid Sussex District Councillors Report
7.3 Police Report
7.4. Rail Matters – oral Report (Cllr Leslie Campbell)
7.5. Youth Initiatives –oral report (Cllr 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 Adastra Park – Grounds & Environment Committee (27th October 2021) considered two items detailed within the Officer’s report requesting that Full Council considers authorising the release of additional funding to undertake the following repairs /replacements.
(i) Pergola. An inspection of the pergola in the Garden of Remembrance has shown that several of the wooden timbers are rotten and ideally all of the timbers should be replaced. Furthermore two of the stone pillars are damaged and it is recommended that these are rebuilt prior to replacing the timbers. The current estimated cost of this work would be £1826.90 plus VAT, however due to the increasing cost of timber this may be subject to variation. Due to insufficient funds currently available within the Adastra Park Repair & Renewal budget to cover the cost of these repairs approval is sought from Full Council for the expenditure to be funded from General Reserves.
Subject to member approval this work will be scheduled in for early in the New Year.
Member’s views are sought.
(ii) Litter. Litter is an ongoing problem in the park with a significant amount of litter being left in the Garden of Remembrance and in the area near the South Field Car Park. It is recognised that the litter bin nearest to the car park is extensively used and frequently overflowing, as is the litter bin on the northern border of the South Field. Both bins are in a very poor condition and therefore it is considered that these should be replaced with the same style of bin as has been used in the Skate park area and North Field Play areas. It is considered that a double litter bin should be installed in replacement of the bin near the South Field Car Park to accommodate the level of litter generated in this area. The cost to purchase the two bins plus fixings would be in the region of £1200 plus Vat with additional costs for installation. Approval is sought from Full Council to release sufficient funds from General Reserves to cover these costs.
Member’s views are sought.
9.2 Grants Awarded by Hassocks Parish Council. The purpose of this report is to advise Members that following the grants agreed at the Full Council meeting of 14th September 2021, letters of thanks have been received from the following recipients:
- Air Ambulance
- Victim Support
- Sussex Clubs for Young People
- 4 Sight Vision Support
- South Downs Refugee Project
- Age UK – West Sussex Brighton and Hove
Member are asked to note the above.
9.3 Precept. This is to inform members that the Council has now received the second parish precept instalment in the sum of £ 147,772 from Mid Sussex District Council.
9.4 Committee Membership. Members are requested to consider a request from Cllr Berggreen to sit on the Policy Resources & Communications Committee.
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 Council meeting is Tuesday 14th December 2021 at 7.30pm.
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.
Minutes of the meeting of the Parish Council held on 9th November 2021 at 7.30pm in Parish Centre, Adastra Park, Hassocks
Attendees: Parish Councillors Ian Weir, Jane Baker, Alex Simmons, Kristian Berggreen, Leslie Campbell, Claire Tester, Bill Hatton, Kate Bailey, Robert Brewer, David Bunting, Nick Owens and Carolyn Barton
Parish Clerk: Ian Cumberworth
Visiting Member(s): –
PC21/75 APOLOGIES Cllr Frances Gaudencio and Cllr Sue Hatton
County Councillor Kirsty Lord
PC21/76 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 12th October 2021 were accepted as a true and accurate record of the meeting.
PC21/78 PUBLIC PARTICIPATION
No members of the public were present.
To note the Minutes of the informal Planning Committee meetings on the 11th October and 1st November 2021.
80.1 Members considered the finance reports and the supporting bank statements and reviewed the payment list.
The Finance report and payments totalling £17,745.30 for the period ending 30th September 2021 were considered and APPROVED.
81.1 County Councillors reports: – Cllr Kirsty Lord (KL)
Cllr Lord was not in attendance but provided a report to the Clerk to read out.
Highways: The drain outside Boots (the Chemist) is scheduled for repair by 9th December. It is a more complicated repair than a typical pothole and requires two way lights hence not being repaired within 28 days.
The section of Ockley Lane north of Ockley Hill in the worst condition is to be repaired after Cllr Lord reported the issues to WSCC highways.
KL still awaiting a date for the repairs of Keymer road from the railway bridge to Stonepound though it is understood to be planned for this financial year.
Beaconhurst/Silverdale: Having spoken to a number of residents following the fatal accident in October its proposed KL meets with residents later this week to discuss some of their concerns. Any highways improvements or changes will need to wait for the inquest findings to determine whether there were any highway issues that contributed to the accident.
Cycle lane consultation: still awaiting an update on the results of the summer’s consultation.
Parklands road drainage: WSCC have identified a solution to increase drain capacity and are now working through the details with their contractor. They have indicated they expect to be in a position to provide more information on timings in the next few days.
Electric vehicle strategy: WSCC has started consulting on locations for electric vehicle charging points this week. Suggestions can be submitted by residents here: https://www.connectedkerb.com/west-sussex-chargepoint-network KL asked that the parish council also considers providing suggestions for locations within the village.
Woodlands Meed College: The County council issued an ultimatum to the governing body to sign the development agreement by 4th November. This was extended to 10th November. The governing body signed yesterday after their key concerns were addressed. WSCC should be signing off on the paperwork today and building can hopefully start before Christmas.
County Local Forum: The first of the new CLF approach (which is on trial for a year) will be a virtual meeting on 1st December which will be publicised by WSCC.
Although Cllr Lord wasn’t present a number of issues were raised regarding speeding on the A273 and whether county still capture data from the box located at Shepherds Walk. Historically, via a number of cables placed across the road, WSCC used to record the speed and number of vehicle movements. The Clerk was requested to establish whether County still capture this data and if so what they use the data for.
81.2 District Councillor Report – Cllr Sue Hatton (SH)
Cllr S Hatton was not present but provided a report to be read out by Cllr B Hatton.
Food Waste pilot: MSDC hope to roll out a food waste pilot scheme in spring of next year. The scheme had been delayed in part due to the pandemic and agreements and arrangements with WSCC who are the disposal authority.
Northern runway Gatwick: Members at MSDC have recently attended a presentation from GAL on the proposals for the use of the northern runway at Gatwick to accommodate additional flights. Consultations are currently being undertaken (closing date 1st December) and MSDC are likely to submit their response in the near future with Councillors having the opportunity to have an input in the response. Areas to be considered include noise levels, infrastructure, additional parking and the impact on the road system, need for extra housing and the potential benefit to the economy and in particular Crawley and impacts on pollution.
Covid: MSDC are still involved with track and trace and will continue until the end of March 2022. There were 3,600 workers on furlough in Mid Sussex at the end of September and its withdrawal will be monitored to see if it impacts in a rise in redundancies. Extra accommodation is also being made available for homeless families.
Belmont Recreation Ground consultation is ongoing
Grass cutting programme has now resumed and is back on track
Fly tipping continues to be an issue and MSDC officers are being trained to enable them to issue penalties against offenders.
Levelling up Fund: Burgess Hill were unsuccessful this time around in securing funding from the Levelling up Fund Initiative, however it is proposed to submit further bids when the second tranche of funding is due. All parties involved in the initial bid were very disappointed with the outcome of the initial bid.
Site Selection DPD: MSDC are still awaiting the Inspector’s Decision Letter as to what sites are to be accepted or refused which will inform whether further development will occur on the boundary of Hassocks/Burgess Hill (Folders Lane).
81.3 Police Report – Beat Surgeries: The Clerk informed Members that he had recently been contacted by our local PCSO’s regarding the potential use of the parish office for occasional drop in surgery sessions – this will provide an opportunity for residents to call in and raise any concerns directly with the police and also hopefully raise the presence of the police in the park.
A number of dates have been discussed however we are now awaiting confirmation of dates from the police.
Members were also advised that the Clerk and Cllr Weir are scheduled to attend a police focus group with the police commissioners office and chief inspector later this month where parishes are provided the opportunity to raise issues regarding policing in the parish and raise any concerns about activities going on.
81.4 Rail Matters – Members were advised that in September there were 270 train cancellations of which 210 were cancelled outright and 60 ran but failed to stop at Hassocks.
In line with the agreement at the last Council meeting Cllr Gaudencio, Cllr Campbell and Cllr Weir agreed to meet to discuss how to raise the issue of rail performance. Hassocks Community Organisation (HCO) had previously led on the Rail Group however this group seems to have lapsed. Members agreed to approach the HCO to see whether they would consider reconvening this group to take forward this issues regarding performance. Members felt that this should not be led by the Parish Councillors as none are regular commuters, it was therefore felt that the group would be better represented by regular users of the service. It was therefore suggested further discussions will be held with the HCO to explore available options if any.
81.5 Youth Initiatives – Nothing to report.
81.6 Report from Councillors on meetings of outside bodies where the Council is represented –
Nothing to report.
PC21/82 CHAIRMANS REPORT – Cllr Weir brought members attention to a recent letter received from Andrew Griffith MP offering to support the parish if they wished to bid for various funding initiatives the government are currently promoting including:
The Community Ownership fund – to assist communities take ownership of assets and amenities at risk of closure. £150 million fund run for four years.
Electric Vehicle charging Grants – pledged extra £620 million for electric car grants and infrastructure, this open to both residents and local authorities – projects must be completed before 31st March 2023.
The Youth Investment Fund – £500 million fund to support youth clubs in England, including youth centres, scout huts and activity centres. Further funding is available for grassroots sports.
Welcome Back Fund which builds on previous funding provided for Reopening the High street safely which aims to boost the look of the High street.
Members agreed to raise the availability of these funding sources with various groups who may wish to utilise this resource.
PC21/83 CLERK’S REPORT
83.1 Pergola: Members were advised that a report was considered at Grounds & Environment committee regarding the need to undertake some repairs to the pergola located in the Garden of Remembrance. It had been identified that a number of timbers which the wisteria currently climb over are in need of replacement, in addition two of the concrete pillars are also in need of repair. It’s understood that they will need to be taken down and rebuilt.
Full council were asked to consider whether they supported the release of additional funding from General reserves as insufficient funds were currently available within the park repairs budget due to the level of expenditure that has been required this year. An initial quote had been obtained in the sum of £1,826.90. (Net) and if members were minded to approve this funding it was proposed the work would be scheduled in January/February next year.
The Clerk indicated that In light of the extremely volatile timber market at present this price may be subject to variation therefore members may wish to allow for this in any allocation.
Member’s discussed the proposal and the overall consensus was supportive of the initiative.
Members RESOLVED to APPROVE the proposal to commission the repair and in recognition of the volatile market in timber prices AGREED to the release up to £2,100 if required to enable the works to be completed.
83.2 Litter Bins: Members were also requested to consider a report regarding the replacement of a further two bins within the park positioned:
- One at the top of the south field
- One at the lower part of the south field
Both bins are in poor condition therefore authority was being sought from Council to release funds from General reserves to facilitate these replacements as insufficient funds were currently held within the park repairs budget.
Members were advised that if they were minded to approve the proposal it is intended to obtain a double bin at the top of the south field to better cope with the volume of litter placed in the current receptacle which is often full to capacity.
A quote had been obtained for the supply and fixings in the sum of £1200 plus vat but there would also likely be a charge for installation.
Member’s views were sought as to whether they wished to support the release of funds from general reserves to finance this initiative.
Members discussed the specific proposal and RESOLVED to APPROVE the proposal and AGREED to release up to £1,500 for the supply of bins, construction of the concrete pads and installation.
Members also discussed bins generally within the parish but also dog bins and in particular at sites in Ockley Lane and Talbot Field and requested whether anything could be done about frequency of collection or repair. The Clerk informed members that MSDC are unable to allocate any additional bins but would look at the frequency of collection on those bins where issues were raised.
83.3 Grant Letters: Members were asked to note that letters/emails of thanks had been received from six grant recipients. At the time of payments all recipients were reminded of the conditions in the event the funds were not utilised
- Air ambulance
- Victim Support
- Sussex Clubs for Young People
- 4 Sight Vision Support
- South Downs Refugee project
- Age UK – West Sussex Brighton and Hove
83.4 Precept – Members were asked to note that the second precept instalment of
£ 147,772 has now been received from Mid Sussex District Council. NOTED
83.5 Committee Membership – Policy Resources & Communications: Members were requested to consider a request from Cllr Berggreen to join the Policy Resources & Communications committee.
The Clerk advised members that this committee remains light in numbers therefore if anyone else would wish to join this committee they should email him directly.
Members RESOLVED to AGREE to the request of Cllr Berggreen to join the Policy Resources & Communications Committee
PC21/84 URGENT MATTERS AT THE DISCRETION OF THE CHAIRMAN – Cllr Owens raised concerns over the Air Pollution records for Stonepound Crossroads and whether the Air Monitoring Group still met. Issues were also raised regarding the placement and number of sensors in and around this area to capture the data. The Clerk was requested to take this matter up with MSDC who have responsibility for overseeing the monitoring of this area.
PC21/85 DATE OF NEXT MEETING
To note that the date of the next Parish Council meeting is Tuesday 14th December 2021 at 7.30pm