Policy, Resources & Communications



To:     All Members of the Policy Resources & Communications Committee (Carolyn Barton David Bunting Ian Weir, Kate Bailey, Don McBeth and Paul Shepherd) with copies to all other Councillors for information.

A meeting of the POLICY RESOURCES & COMMUNICATIONS COMMITTEE will be held on TUESDAY 16 January 2024 at 7.30 pm in the Parish Centre, Adastra Park, Hassocks.

Parish Clerk 9 January 2024



3. MINUTES to accept the Minutes of the Policy Resources & Communications Committee held on 28 November 2023. (Previously Circulated)


5. Remembrance Day/Parade – (verbal update) to provide members with an update of ongoing discussions regarding future arrangements.

6. Communications – update on programme of articles to be produced over the year to appear in Hassocks Life. (verbal update).

7. Annual Parish meeting (verbal update).

8. Business Plan – The Councils current Business Plan is due for review therefore this will provide an opportunity for Members to consider and review the organisations current priorities and identify any future priorities.

The Business Plan should inform the resource requirements of the organisation and prioritise the delivery timeframe of any objectives. This should act as the catalyst to inform the focus of the work programme for a defined period together with the resources required.

Members are requested to consider setting out a timeline and proposed approach to review the Business Plan to inform the ongoing work programme of the Council.

By way of background I have incorporated links to the current Business Plan Booklet (2018-2023) and a high level Summary of Actions (traffic light format).  (Appendix 1). Please click here to view Appendix 1 the Hassocks Parish Council Business Plan.

Please Click here to see the HPC Business Plan 2018- 2023 Summary of Actions and ongoing activities.

9. URGENT MATTERS at the discretion of the Chairman for noting and/or inclusion on a future agenda.

10. DATE OF NEXT MEETING. 27 February 2024.

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 present they will be requested to withdraw from the meeting.


11. Minutes to accept the confidential minutes of the Policy Resources & Communications Committee held on the 28th November 2023 (previously circulated).

12. Staffing Matters (Appendix 2).

Please Note
All members of the public are welcome 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.

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 Policy Resources & Communications Committee held on 16th January 2024 at 7.30pm in the Parish Centre, Adastra Park, Hassocks.

Attendees: Parish Councillors Carolyn Barton, Paul Shepherd, Ian Weir, Don McBeth and
Frances Gaudencio.

Parish Clerk: Ian Cumberworth.


PRC23/66    APOLOGIES – Cllr David Bunting

Absent without apologies Cllr Kate Bailey.


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 28th November 2023 were accepted as a true and accurate record of the meeting.

Cllr Barton advised Members that post the PR&C committee recommendation regarding delivering a balanced budget (precept), Full Council subsequently approved a further sum to be allocated to support ongoing priories of the Council.


No members of the public were present.

PRC23/70    Remembrance Day/Parade arrangements

Cllr Barton advised that she had spoken to representatives from the Legion and is scheduled to attend the Royal British Legion County AGM meeting which is being held at Downlands School this weekend (20/1).

Further enquiries will be made at this event to gather more information on the organisation of an event of this type.

Some outline costs have been established with potential participants and further work is in progress to establish wider costs associated with an event of this type.

Members discussed the issue of public liability insurance and the Clerk undertook to contact the Councils insurers. Then to see whether its existing policy is sufficient or whether further cover would be required if the parish were to oversee the event and to establish costs associated with this.

Members discussed the option of engaging with a group of interested parties to oversee the organisation/co-ordination via a steering group, if the Council were minded to take this forward once further information has been obtained. The need to organise marshalling volunteers at an early stage would be important.

An update will be provided at the next Policy Resources & Communications Committee.

PRC23/71   Communications

The Clerk introduced this item and indicated that subject to the latest version of the article for Hassocks Life being agreed this evening it would be forwarded onto the editor for inclusion in the February edition.

Members thanked Cllr McBeth for the initial draft and all other contributors who submitted suggested amendments resulting in what was felt to be an informative but easy to read article. All Members were content to agree the final version for publication.

The Clerk undertook to submit this to Hassocks Life for publication.

Cllr Gaudencio raised the point of clarification that all correspondence with the publication should be via the office team.

Cllr Gaudencio indicated that the three Members of the editorial team (Cllr Gaudencio, Cllr McBeth and Cllr Shepherd) are scheduled to meet later this month to discuss future items for publication.

Members discussed whether a Communication plan had been drafted identifying items for future editions. Cllr Gaudencio confirmed that this had been done and this could be shared with the PR&C members.

PRC23/72    Annual Parish Meeting

Members discussed the potential options on the format of the event and the Clerk circulated a paper setting out further detail of what an Annual Parish Meeting could consist of.

Although the meeting currently appears in the meeting diary on the same day as the Annual Parish Council meeting, Members AGREED that to raise its profile it should be changed so that it would be held on a separate date.

Members discussed various dates and venues and concluded that a booking should be made for Adastra Hall for Thursday 23rd May 2024.

Members expressed the view that they would be keen to engage at this event with some of the groups the Parish Council supports at this event, whether this be via display stalls or presentations. It was emphasised that the meeting primarily was to provide feedback on the Parish Council over the previous 12 months via reports from the Chair and others but to also encourage engagement with the community.

Designated Members (Cllr Gaudencio, Cllr McBeth and Cllr Shepherd) indicated they will meet further to discuss potential formats, content for consideration, and come back to this Committee in due course.

Members felt that any event will need to be well publicised. The actions being taken were noted.

PRC23/73    Business Plan Review

The Clerk introduced the item requesting that Members consider setting out a timeline to review the current plan and to develop an approach they wished to take to refresh/update the current plan. Within the agenda links had been provided to the current Business Plan booklet and the traffic light summary report which currently appears on the ‘Parish Councils website.’

Any plan developed should assist in informing the resource requirement within the office to support the delivery of the priorities of the Council.

Members were advised that they should consider the Current Business Plan, the Priorities Statement and the allocated ‘Earmarked reserves’ when considering amendments/revisions to the current document. Policy Resources & Communications Committee have also led on the development of the Business Plan with full Council considering and signing off the adoption of the final version.

Cllr Weir indicated that there was a scheduled meeting of the Chairs, later this month where some consideration could be given as to how this work stream could be developed.

The consensus amongst Members was that this could be the starting point but other Members should be provided with the opportunity to participate in the process. It was suggested that an invite should be sent out via the Clerk.

Members briefly discussed the current format/presentation and content and AGREED to take this away and come forward with a proposal at a future meeting.



To note that the date of the next is Tuesday 27th February 2024 at 7.30pm