04-25-23 TC MINS
MINUTES OF THE MEETING OF LOUTH TOWN COUNCIL
HELD IN THE OLD COURT ROOM, THE SESSIONS HOUSE, LOUTH
ON TUESDAY 25th April 2023
Present The Mayor, Cllr. J. Baskett (JB) (in the chair).
Councillors: Mrs. E. Ballard (EB), M. Bellwood (MB), L. Cooney (LMC), S. Crew (SC), D.J.E. Hall (DJEH), G.E. Horton (GEH), M. Lamb (ML), A. Leonard (AL), Mrs. S.E. Locking (SEL), Mrs. J. Makinson-Sanders (JMS), K. Norman (KN), B. O’Brien (BO), J. Simmons (JS), P. Starsmore (PS), Mrs. P.F. Watson (PFW) and D.E. Wing (DEW)
Councillors not present: J. Garrett (JG), D. Hobson (DH), H. Filer (HF), L. Frost (LF)
The Town Clerk, Mrs. L.M. Phillips was also present.
Cllrs. Mrs. JMS and AL spoke about the Active Travel Scheme, reading out an email conversation between Cllr. R. Davies and Cllr. A. Hall:
“Cllr. R. Davies: Ahead of Next Week’s Louth Transport Board I would like to provide an update as to the Active Travel Scheme elements around the town centre.
Cornmarket – Further to feedback from various sources, the Louth Transport Board, at the last meeting, recognised that the prevailing view was that the Experimental Order provisions of a full time closure of the Cornmarket area were not balanced to the needs of the location and the surrounding businesses and market operations. It was determined that the Council should be looking to move to a seasonal arrangement which allowed for the café culture to be dominant for part of the year and for parking to be reinstated over the winter months. This has been reviewed and given the timeframes for the relevant legal processing to establish this arrangement it was determined that to open the Cornmarket in the very short period before the “season” begins would be terribly confusing leading to further dissatisfaction.
The scheme will therefore be left to expire at the end of the Experimental Traffic Order at which point the Cornmarket will then revert to previous arrangements. In the meantime the relevant processes for establishing a seasonal regime and the requirements in terms of legal order processing, signage, appropriate street furniture during the closure and their associated management regimes will be put in place prior to the 2024 “season”.
Mercer Row & Market Place – Consideration is still required as to how these two areas are treated. At the last Transport Board it was determined that this was to be subject to discussion after a local “walk around” by the Executive Member for Highways which would also consider any other opportunities to enhance existing walking and cycling opportunities in the town.
I will be present at the Transport Board meeting on Tuesday so I will happily take any arising questions.
Cllr. A. Hall: Many thanks for your email. In terms of the Cornmarket clearly my recollection of the meeting varies from yours. I believed that the board agreed that the Cornmarket would be reverted back to car parking within 72 hours. The time frame given by the Executive member Cllr Richard Davies. Why wasn’t the boards decision implemented?
Apologies this couldn’t wait until the next meeting. However, I feel that a response to this query is required before deciding on my attendance of future meetings. If the board isn’t going to be listened to by elected representatives, it is a complete waste of everyone’s time.
Cllr. R. Davies: We would have liked to action that immediately but unfortunately due to the legal timescales needed to be given for orders it wouldn’t have been possible in a sensible fashion, hence this slightly staged approach.
We are getting to the point we agreed of having a seasonal scheme.
The one key issue we need to nail down is how we engage with the local community to ensure everyone understands the regime.”
- Apologies for Absence
Apologies for absence were received from Cllrs. JG. HF, DH, LF
- Declarations of Interest / Dispensations
- AL – Agenda item 10 – as the Chairman of the Hubbard’s Hills Trust
- Mrs. JMS – Agenda item 10 – as a member of the Hubbard’s Hills Trust (Dispensation in operation)
- GEH – Agenda item 7 – as a member of ELDC.
- DEW – Agenda item 9 – as an acquaintance of the Chairman and Secretary of the Trinity Allotments and Agenda item 10 – as a member of the Hubbard’s Hills Trust
- DJEH – Agenda item 7 – as a member of ELDC and as a Cllr. who gave funds from their ELDC Cllr. Grant.
- Town Clerk’s Remarks
The Town Clerk thanked those Councillors who were stepping down from the Council at the Election on 4th May, for their work in the community and assistance over the years, giving each a card. She reminded Councillors that if they were returned they would each need to complete a Declaration of Acceptance of Office form before the start of the next meeting and she reported that a Governance and Finance Committee meeting would be called on 2nd
- Council Minutes
It was RESOLVED to approve the minutes of the meeting of 13th December 2022 as a correct record.
- Committee Minutes
It was RESOLVED to adopt the resolutions contained within the following Minutes:
- Planning Committee – 21st February 2023
- Planning Committee – 14th March 2023
- Community Resources Committee – 30th August 2022
- Community Resources Committee – 1st November 2022
- Community Resources Committee – 31st January 2023
- Governance and Finance Committee – 22nd November 2022
- Governance and Finance Committee – 3rd January 2023
- Personnel Committee – 5th July 2022
- Personnel Committee – 1st November 2022
- Personnel Committee – 7th December 2022
- Personnel Committee – 6th February 2023
- Review of Policies and Procedures
The Council reviewed its Co-option Policy and it was RESOLVED to approve this for use with the deletion of ‘normal Town Council’ from the second paragraph of section 1 and the addition 1) at paragraph 1 of section 2, after the words ‘in writing’ of ‘Explaining why you would like to join the Council, what you could bring to the Council and how you meet the Town Councillor – Person Specification.’ 2) at part b of section 2 after the words ‘opportunity to’ the addition of ‘view applications immediately prior to a meeting and ask questions of the candidates at the meeting.’
- Rate Relief Support
It was RESOLVED that the Town Clerk should be given delegated to authority to sign a Rate Relief application to ELDC from Edan Lincs on behalf of the Town Council, confirming its support.
- Meeting Dates
It was RESOLVED to approve the schedule of proposed meeting dates for 2023/24.
- Payment for Trinity Allotments 2023/24
It was RESOLVED to send payment of £881.98 in respect of the annual rent of the Trinity Allotments, calculation based on the 2022 payment (£790.31 plus 11.6% RPI for 2022) and make enquiries as to how much the owner might be prepared to sell the land for.
- Hubbard’s Hills
A. Leonard reported that a contractor had been instructed to start the Riverbank work which would cost circa £85k and the Trust were setting aside another £10k on top of that as a contingency against any unforeseen costs. Mr. Leonard confirmed that if costs started to sky rocket the Trust would have to halt the work while they replenished funds. The work was to start at the Hallington end of the Hills and progress to the duck pond. It would be a belt and braces job and particular attention would be paid to the bends which were the worst areas. The new bridge was to be of green Oak and would be very strong. Work was due to start on that in the coming weeks. These two items would take up most of the Trust’s reserves and the Trust hoped to use the 1st instalment of the Council’s maintenance contribution to tide them over. He confirmed that sections of the Lincolnshire Fencing on the top path were being replaced amongst other things. There had been some vandalism in the toilets. The Trust were looking to restore the railings at the Crowtree Lane end of the Hills and there might be a need to make good the road leading in from Crowtree Lane as LCC were reluctant to take responsibility. Cllr. LMC wondered how much interest the Trust had earned on payments made by LTC since its inception in 2009. Mr. Leonard did not have those figures to hand but stated that under Company Law the Trust had to have a business account and the interest rate on that was currently 0.06% minus bank charges. Cllr. Mrs. PFW wondered if as a Charity the Trust ought to have two accounts. Mr. Leonard confirmed that the admin cost to keep on top of two was too much, having to pay for each cheque. Cllr. JS wondered if the administration could be done digitally. Cllr. JB thought that the new agreement was a good one and was happy that Mr. Leonard was coming to Council to talk. He wondered if Mr. Leonard would do a walk around of the Hills with Councillors to show them on the ground the work that was needed, being done, planned etc. He also wondered if the Trust had thought of involving the public any more. Mr. Leonard spoke on Cllr. JB’s last point saying that the Trust were worried about volunteers in the Hills as the liability if one had an accident was huge. It was RESOLVED to approve payment of the 1st instalment of the Council’s maintenance contribution to the Hubbard’s Hills Trust in the sum of £24,500.
- Coronation of King Charles III – Bespoke Planter
The Council received an update from the Town Clerk who redistributed a drawing of the original proposed planter and a second revised drawing, which addressed the concerns that had been raised previously. A mock up of a similar planter in position in the Cornmarket was also circulated. A discussion ensued. GEH requested a recorded vote and it was RESOLVED as follows:
|That the Town Council leave the decision on a planter until after the elections, for the new Council.|
|For||EB, JB, SC, GEH, ML, AL, SEL, JMS, BOB, DEW, PS|
|Against||MB, LMC, JS, PFW|
- James’ Church Clock
Council noted that there was a problem with the clock at St. James’ and that in 1965 it had obtained a faculty to install the electrical winding mechanism and since had met the cost of repairs and electricity. The Town Clerk reported that the situation was slighting different than noted on the agenda as she had that day been informed that an initial inspection had already taken place, the cost for which was £350 + VAT and a further quote for work had been received in the sum of £1,397 + VAT. It was RESOLVED that the Council would meet the cost of the aforementioned.
- Date of Next Meeting
It was noted that the date of the Council’s next scheduled meeting was 16th May 2023.
The Meeting Closed at 9.02pm.
Signed_______________________ (Chairman) Dated_________________________