Minutes of a meeting of the Town Council held in the Council Chamber, Windmill Lane, Northam on Tuesday 31st January 2006


PRESENT:     Chairman       - Deputy Town Mayor – Cllr K Lane

 Members        - Cllrs Mrs M M Cox, Mrs S A Mounce, A Barnes,

                           R D Bradford MBE, A Eastman, A Eastwood OBE,

                           P Hames, L Ford, R W A Miller, R M M Tisdale, P Waters 

   together with 5 Parishioners and PC Kerry Wilson, Devon and  

   Cornwall Constabulary


Apologies were recorded on behalf of the Town Mayor, Cllr E J Davies.


1.         Minutes


The minutes of the Town Council meeting held on 20th December 2005 were approved and signed.


(Vote: Unanimous)


2          Matters of report to/from Community Beat Manager


            PC Kerry Wilson reported on crime figures for the past month. 


3.         Town Clerk’s Report 


Monthly Financial Report – The Town Clerk presented the monthly financial report that included payments for this month and it was RESOLVED to accept. 


(Vote: Unanimous)


4.         Casual Vacancy – Appledore


Members considered applications from 3 residents for the vacant seat on the Appledore Ward.  There were proposals for Mr Hames and Mr Osborne and it was RESOLVED to hold a secret ballot. 


(Vote: 6 For, 3 against, 2 abst)


As a result of the ballot it was RESOLVED to co-opt Mr Hames as Councillor for Appledore Ward.


(Vote: 7 for Mr Hames, 4 for Mr Osborne)


Councillor Hames joined the meeting at this juncture.


5.         Notice of Motion from Cllr Bradford MBE


            “That this Council reconsiders the decision to create a committee system.”


            Members discussed the new Committee system which had been in place for six months.  Following a debate it was RESOLVED to maintain the Finance and Local Development Advisory Committees and to extend membership to the Planning and Licensing Committee to all Members of the Council.


            (Vote: 11 For, 1 abst)


6.         Notice of Motion from Cllr Mrs Cox


            “To consider how and when to carry out the planting on Heywood Road roundabout and to consider the financial implications.”


            Cllr Mrs Cox reported that if anything were to happen on Heywood Road roundabout the Council would need to do it on its own or possibly with the Rotary.  She advised that this was the best time of year to plant trees and shrubs and was looking for a sum of about £300 to fund the works.  It would be necessary to enter into an agreement by way of a licence with Devon County Council and it was RESOLVED to consider the terms of the licence at the next Council meeting.


            (Vote: 6 For, 5 against)


7.         CCTV Presentation


The Town Clerk reported that the Working Group investigating the possibility of CCTV were now in a position to report and wished to make a presentation to the Council.  It was RESOLVED to receive the presentation at the next Town Council meeting which will be held at 6 pm with the Planning Committee following.


(Vote: Unanimous)


8.          Northam Burrows


(a) Commons Bill


The Town Clerk advised that Geoffrey Cox MP was unable to make the dates for the ordinary Council meetings but was able to attend on Wednesday 22nd February.  It was RESOLVED to hold a special meeting of the Council on Wednesday 22nd February and to invite Residents’ Associations and the 1716 Committee.


(Vote: Unanimous)


(b) Sewage Pollution


Members considered a letter from South West Water suggesting a visit to the pumping station in Golf Links Road.  Following a debate it was RESOLVED to write to the Environment Agency asking them to attend a meeting to explain the rationale behind the consents which allow a discharge of sewage onto Northam Burrows.


(Vote; Unanimous)


(c) Commons Bill


Members considered a follow up letter from the Open Spaces Society in respect of their work on the Commons Bill.  It was RESOLVED to award a grant of £100 towards their expenses.


(Vote: Unanimous) 


(d) Members’ items


Cllr Mrs Mounce reported that the area of the Burrows referred to as the Plain was not being grazed and that this situation could be improved if it were mown and the cuttings removed.  It was understood that the Golf Club were willing to undertake the work.  It was understood that this matter would be considered by the Burrows Committee and it was RESOLVED to agree in principle that this work be done.  

 (Vote: Unanimous) 

9.         Streetworks and related matters


Members’ items


Cllr Miller reported that there was some support for a market in Northam Square, initially as a one-off event.  It was RESOLVED to support this idea in principle and Cllr Miller undertook to report back at the next meeting. 


(Vote: Unanimous)


Cllr Tisdale reported that construction work was about to start on the Bath House Hotel site and that work would continue until Christmas.  There will be numerous lorry movements, particularly the delivery of readymix concrete and an appropriate route needed to be defined and signed.  Cllr Eastwood OBE thought that the developer should erect appropriate signs on the route.  It was RESOLVED to write to the Highway Authority and the developer, expressing the Council’s concerns and asking for an appropriate route to be defined and signs provided.


            (Vote: Unanimous)


Cllr Ford reported that parking in Jubilee Road, Appledore was causing problems for the lifeboat crew and he was requesting that Devon County Council investigate this.  He also asked for the situation with regard to boat parking on the Quay and at Blackies to be investigated.  It was RESOLVED to write to Devon County Council


(Vote: Unanimous)


Cllr Eastman referred to the broken paving slabs in Odun Road which were the result of construction works by Midas Construction.  It was RESOLVED to write again to the County Council.


(Vote: Unanimous)


Cllr Waters reported that the railings to Churchfields car park and bollards and railings on the Quay need attention.  It was RESOLVED to write to the appropriate authorities.


(Vote: Unanimous) 


10.       Further applications for grant aid


Members considered further applications for grant aid.  It was RESOLVED to advise these applicants and any others that may arise, that grants for 2006 were now finalised and that any new applications will be considered later in the year for payment in 2007.


(Vote: Unanimous)


11.       Presentation of Grant Cheques


It was RESOLVED to hold a special meeting of the Council on Friday 7th April at

6.30 pm when all organisations who have been awarded a grant will be asked to attend.


            (Vote: Unanimous)


12.       Bridge Hall


The Town Clerk advised on the latest situation with regard to the Bridge Trust and also advised that a report needs to be prepared, giving details of the annual costs and how these will be met.  It was RESOLVED to consider this at a Finance Advisory Committee. 

(Vote: unanimous) 

13.       Sustainable Communities Bill


It was reported that there was a view that Torridge were not doing enough to bring into practice the policies of sustainability as set out in the Local and Structure Plans.  It was RESOLVED to write to the District Council asking them to advise on how the District Council intends to bring into practice the sustainability policies.


(Vote: Unanimous)