Tuesday 2nd September 2008 in Churton Village Hall

1. Present: Parish Councillors Helen Dearden, Jan Edwards, Howard Mead, Angela Palmer, Diana Mander; Churton resident Mrs Jennifer Clayton; Chester City Cllr Paul Roberts and Charles Higgie.
2. Election of Chairman: Cllr Angela Palmer was elected as chairman
3. Apologies for Absence: None
4. Co-option of Councillor: Mrs Jenny Clayton, of Crabtree Cottage, Churton, CH3 6LE, email JennieClayton@allingtonhughes.co.uk was co-opted onto the council with immediate effect. An acceptance of office form was signed. There were still two vacancies on the council, and it was agreed that councillors will think of possible people who could make a positive contribution.
5. Minutes of the previous meeting on July 8th were approved as a correct record. It was noted that Cllr Jan Edwards needs hard copy of minutes and agenda.
6. Post of Clerk: It was agreed to appoint Charles Higgie, with immediate effect, for a six month trial basis. The commencing salary will be £836-22 per annum, an hourly rate of £8-041, to be reviewed annually on 1st April, and paid on alternate months by cheque. Contracts were signed and exchanged.
7. Matters for further discussion. Cllr Paul Roberts said that it was now considered good practice to have this earlier in the agenda, rather than as "any other business".
8. Matters arising from the minutes.
a) It was noted that new bank mandates would have to be sorted.
b) It was agreed to accept Mr Ron Parker's offer to cut the grass around the George V coronation commemorative tree, the Elizabeth II coronation commemorative tree, and in the grounds of the Village Hall, for £300 a year, as negotiated by John Gallagher. The clerk is to contact Mr Ron Parker to confirm the agreement. It was noted that some residents have agreed a rota to cut grass verges.
c) Speeding is still a problem with some drivers, although the 30mph flashing sign helps. Early morning and 4-6pm were the worst times for speeding traffic. It is hoped to reduce speeding by making more use of the speed indicator device. Three people are needed to operate it, one to hold it, one to shout out the number plate, colour and make of car, and one to record these details. All three have to be trained. At the moment only four people were trained to use this equipment, two councillors and two non-councillors. More needed to be trained to use this equipment. The training was done in the day, by a Police Constable. The clerk would find out if training can be done at other times. Dodleston and Mickle Trafford have carried out speed checks. Deliberately leaving a parked car in the road can slow down traffic. Parents with children may be willing to help. It was agreed Cllr Palmer would draft a flyer for this. Cheshire County Council have re-painted the 30 signs on the road. They will not re-paint the signs, but offered paint to do this. It was agreed to accept this offer.
d) Street Cleaner. Chester City Council have emptied the bins and the dog bins, on Cllr Paul Roberts' request. It was agreed to appoint Charles Higgie as street cleaner, three hours a week at £6 an hour, and paid on alternate months by cheque.
e) It was reported that the barbeque had gone well, with 89 adults and 37 children attending. £132-50 had been taken on the day on the door. £714-50 were the total ticket sales, £112 had been taken in the raffle, making a total of £826-50. There were expenses of £509-65, leaving a total of £316-85. It was agreed that the clerk would pay this into the Village Hall account. Redecorating and buying items for the kitchen were suggested as uses of the money. The Whist Club, Bingo, Keep Fit, Farndon Brass Band and Churton Parish Council, were the only regular users of the hall. Various people were suggested as possible volunteers for the Village Hall Committee. They will be approached and asked their views on the best way of spending this money. Thanks were expressed to people who made the barbeque a success. Cllr Mead is working on a planning application for a new notice board. A wall chart for bookings for the next year was needed.
f) Paul Roberts has contacted Chester City Council for advice about the wooden plaque for the George V tree. Secure in concrete in the ground seemed best option.
g) The Village Plan Committee still needs a chair, although it has a treasurer and two secretaries. It had not wanted a chair who was also a Parish Councillor, although it now looked that this was the only option. There didn't seem a lot of enthusiasm for the project. It was agreed to have one more Saturday morning meeting.
h) The White Horse may sell a few items to regular customers. There are grants for pubs wanting to open shops on their premises.
9. Correspondence.
a) Churton Parish Council will be represented at the Community Pride final on September 25.
b) The council were notified of two consultation meetings about new Area Working for Cheshire West & Chester. One was at Mollington Village Hall, 5-6.30pm on September 7, organised by Chester City Council North & South Area Committees, and 1.30-4.30pm at Four Ways Inn in Delamere, organised by the Cheshire Association of Local Councils. The clerk and chair will attend the first one. It was not clear whether or not Churton could be represented at the other event as it was not in the Association. It was agreed to consider joining, at the next meeting.
c) The council received invitations to Cheshire County Council's Chairman's Garden Party on Tuesday 30th September, 3.30-.6.30pm at Tatton Park. Invitation cards were shared out.
d) A letter from the WRVS asking for a donation to their emergency service will be considered at the next meeting.
e) Cheshire County Council have grants towards countryside access improvements, for path resurfacing, notice-boards etc. This will be circulated, along with information from the Police Authority and The Village Quiz. Information from the Village Hall Forum will be passed on to Howard.
f) Churton has been asked to comment on visiting times and car parking fees at The Countess of Chester Hospital. Cllrs were unhappy about proposed reduction in visiting hours and felt that car parking fees should be stopped. Cllrs can reply on their website at www.coch.nhs.uk
10. Planning applications had been dealt with. Works seems to have started on a property without planning permission, but permission was not needed.
11. The next Area South meeting is at The Barbour Institute, High Street, Tattenhall, CH3 9PX on Thursday October 2nd. It starts with a Joint Consultation Meeting on the Cheshire West & Chester Shadow Authority Consultation on Neighbourhood & Area Working 5pm - 6.30pm, followed by refreshments, a "drop-in" session 7-7.30pm and the usual meeting 7.30-9.30pm.
12. Accounts for payment - G Ward £144 for street cleaning, P Roberts £132-12 expenses and acting clerk. Agreed to pay. Clerk to transfer money to replenish current account.
13. Matters for discussion. There was a problem with the hedge overhanging the pavement alongside Chester Road on right hand side towards Farndon, and a problem with the footpath down to River Lane, which is impassable. Clerk to write to the estate.
14. Date, time, place next meeting. Tuesday November 2nd at 8pm at Churton Village Hall.