Clerks Report – Parish Council Meeting 15th July 2020, 7.30pm via Zoom.

Supplementary documents circulated to support the agenda:
  • Parish Online mapping report
  • Relevant policy documentation can be found at: https://www.eccleshallparishcouncil.co.uk/publications/ (agenda item 6)
  • Grant Request from Eccleshall Amateur Dramatics
  • Local Government Code of Conduct Consultation documents
  • Parish Survey report.
Committee Updates (to note):
Footpaths:
  • All required paperwork and insurances have been provided, and Mr. Cole has met with Mr. Smith to discuss the work and complete a handover of the tools. He has completed a full inventory of all tools and materials owned by EPC. Initial works have been completed to replace steppers on footpath 6. He has also strimmed and replaced a way marker post on footpath 17. The Clerk ordered strimmer accessories to allow this to be undertaken.
Enhancements:
  • Various areas of the parish are becoming overgrown, and quotations have been received for consideration on the agenda.
  • The pillar clock has been repaired (replacement micro switches).
  • The ash tree at Bishops Court has been reduced by 1-1.5m and deadwood removed. The Clerk is liaising with Mr. Keyzor to see if any other work is required.
Traffic Management:
  • It is possible that the intermittent working of the speed device is due to a loose fuse casing – this has been adjusted and the unit is being monitored to see if this has solved the problem. When next sited at Chester Road we will be able to see if the tree branch still affects the battery charge.
Policy and Resources:
  • A grant application from Eccleshall Community Amateur Dramatics Group will be considered later on the agenda.
Borough Councillor Update:-

Cllr. P. Jones spoke out against the Raleigh Hall 13,700 metres development on Wednesday 1st July but it was approved.

Liaison Reports:

Community Centre:- the Community Centre is not in a position to open at this point in time, and this will be reviewed in September in line with any updated guidance.

Offley Hay Village Hall – No meetings have been held.

Visit Stafford – No report.

Slindon News:- No report.

Croxton :- No report.

Community Transport – According to the Community Transport department, the County Council car schemes do not have permission to operate yet.

Allotments – No report.

Ecclian Society:-

  • The 25 flower mangers have been put up and are getting established. They certainly add some brightness to the centre of Eccleshall. The flowers troughs at the crossroads and around the town are also looking good. The watering by Perry’s is working very well and many thanks to the Parish Council for their help in funding this.
  • The virtual Open Gardens organised by residents worked really well and were viewed by more than 3000 people. The event also raised £500+ through a GoFundMe link and from donations.

Children/Young People:  No report.

First Responders: No report.

Other Updates:

The Parish Council has received a Freedom of Information request regarding a breakdown of costs for the proposed Eagle statue, including amounts budgeted, expenditure to date and outstanding costs This request is being processed and information will be supplied in accordance with legislation

Information to support agenda items:                 
  1. There has been no legislative or procedural changes since the last review to require any amendments to these documents. It is recommended to approve the policies without changes. The current discussions on the code of conduct may result in future amendments to these policies.
  2. Cllr. L. Dale has circulated the following email ahead of the meeting:

Over the lockdown period of the past 4 months Councillors may have had time  to consider how they would like things to change or develop in the future. I thought this could be an opportunity, bearing in mind the 2 recent surveys that took place, for Councillors to come to the September meeting with:-

  1. Ideas for new projects ( no matter how unlikely they may seem)
  2. Support for existing local projects, which may benefit from Parish Council investment.
  3. Any other ideas
  4. Beech Road Play Area.

8. A key recommendation of the Committee on Standards in Public Life’s (CSPL) Review of Ethical Standards in Local Government was for the Local Government Association ( (         (LGA) to create an updated model code of conduct for all tiers of local government. SLCC officers, directors and members have been closely involved in the workshops and               consultations on the new model code up to this point and this week the LGA presented a draft document for consultation. The response deadline is the 17th August. Councillors        and Clerks are strongly urged to complete the online questionnaire. There are many examples of bullying, intimidation and abuse within the sector, and reviewing the code       of conduct aims to set a clear framework for expected behaviour. The online questionnaire is available via https://www.local.gov.uk/code-conduct-consultation-2020

  1. Quotes received to date from appointed grounds maintenance contractors:
  • Copmere – to remove large tree branch. Tidy up trunk. Remove waste. £120.00 + VAT
  • Croxton Footpath – to dig off vegetation on 80m of footpath by Croxton play area. Remove all waste to licensed green waste facility. £95.00 + VAT
  • Footpath on Chester Road – to dig off vegetation on 400m of footpath from opposite Kerry Lane to end of footpath. Remove all waste to licensed green waste facility. £525.00 + VAT
  1. Croxton Well – to strim grass down. Rake up. Cut grass again to finish.  Remove all waste to  licensed green waste facility. £127.50 + VAT. £22.50 for ongoing monthly cuts.
  2. Eccleshall toilets are now open but require enhanced cleaning in line with SBC policy and government guidance for opening of toilets due to Covid-19. Cllr. Pert has asked ‘if the Parish Council could pick up the two hourly cleaning regime during the opening hours as part of the recovery phase to COVID 19 and the drive to reopen our High Streets and shops’, or consider any other level of contribution.
  3. Croxton Play area was re-opened for use on Saturday 4th July. In line with government guidance, a full risk assessment was undertaken and appropriate action taken to re-open the site with clear guidance and signage in place for users to follow. The guidance can also be found on the parish website at https://www.eccleshallparishcouncil.co.uk/croxton-play-area-guidance-for-use/
Correspondence, further information:
  • EPC has received a letter from SCC encouraging the installation of defibrillators on council buildings. Noted for information only as it has no physical office, and the community centre already has a defibrillator in place as do many areas of the parish
Correspondence circulated, to note:
  1. SPCA Weekly Bulletins
  2. NALC coronavirus updates
  3. Visit Stafford Updates
General Council Updates:
  • Any items for inclusion on a meeting agenda must be received by the Clerk 10 clear days ahead of the meeting date.
Notes:

SCC- Staffordshire County Council                                 SARH – Stafford and Rural Homes

SBC- Stafford Borough Council                                      SPCA – Staffordshire Parish Councils Assc.

EPC – Eccleshall Parish Council