Meeting Minutes for January 20023




Cllr. D. Batchelor. (Chair)

Cllr. J. Forrester.

Cllr. B. Jeeves.

Cllr. M Russell.

Cllr M. Winnginton (late)

Gayle Whelan. (Parish Clerk)

22\73 Apologies

22/74 Declarations of interest in the following agenda:

Cllr Jeeves declared that his wife is a governor at All Saints primary and nursery school.

22/75 Previous minutes:

The minutes of the previous meeting held on Thursday, November, 17th 2022 were accepted as a true record.

22/76 Updates of actions:

Church mowings and weeding:

Action: Parish clerk to follow up on emails requesting information from StreetScene regarding when the next mow will be and where cuttings are being disposed of, and Highways for weeding.

Gulleys and weeding: Weeding is carried out twice yearly, however, it does not appear to have been carried out recently. There is the potential to have it done privately and paid for by the parish council. Action: Weeding and weed spraying difference on contracts to be followed up by the parish clerk.

Online banking: Councillors are still looking into how this may work and will continue to be explored over forthcoming months.

22/77 Public question and response from the chair:

Philip Jones discussed the stream in the middle of the village on Brook Lane is blocked.

Hedges are not being cut in the village and they are damaging the tractors' mirrors.

Action: the parish council will follow up with Highways.


Village Hall Committee:

A Warm Space was held on Tuesday for free donations, no charges. New struts have been placed in the roof to stop splaying. New barn vent will be put back on.

Mowing: Grass has not been cut in the last month.

Highways: Heavy rain - Bourne garden floods: Highways says there is a problem with the BT ducting, however, neither BT or the council have been able to sort anything out. There is a blocked gulley by the church.

Action: Highways will be contacted by the parish chair to try and get to the bottom of the matter.

Footpaths: Footpath at the back of Abbeyside has been diverted.

Gulleys and weeding: Gulley cleaning was last carried out in 2020. Weeds now growing out of gutters which are full of silt.Gulleys further out of the village also need doing.

All Saints School, Ranton: Email from Chair of governors, Andy Summers, regarding ad hoc attendance as and when needed with the school, and at parish council meetings.

22/78 Parish Clerk report..

Covered in budget planning.

Local elections will held on Thursday May 4. This may incur costs to the parish council, however, the exact amount will not be known until later this year, dependent on whether an election is needed for councillors for the parish council.

22/79 Planning updates

22/36343/HOU Coton House Farm extension. No objections.

22/80 Finance matters:

Accounts to date:

The latest statement date for December 1, 2022 showed:

Reserve account balance £978.00

Current account balance £10,746.49.

Cheques for were signed: uncashed civic amenity cheque of £292 and Christmas Tree for £276.

Action: the parish clerk will email councillors the Zurich policy schedule for the forthcoming year.

Reserve account:

The reserve account will be discussed once online banking is available.

Councillors discussed moving money from the parish council's current account into the reserve account. Cllr Jeeves proposed moving £7,000 into the reserve account (mower fund).Cllr Forrester seconded the motion. All councillors unanimously voted to move the funds across.


Finance spreadsheet: Cllr Batchelor met with the parish clerk to finalise the spreadsheet and budget plan for 2023/24.This was presented to councillors, who agreed on the following:

Salary: wage increase from April, but still within the allocated amount. (50 x £10.52)

Mowing: awaiting quotes for the forthcoming year.

Civic amenity; £153 for two-hour visits, twice a year (actual quotation).

Website: no fees next year - chargeable every two years (payable in financial year 2024/25).

Weeding & gulley cleaning: £1250 (estimation)

Christmas tree: £300 (estimation)

Defibrillator: Battery replacement 2025 and replacement pads October 2023.

Training: £200 allowance - dates for more in-depth councillor training have not been released yet.

Election costs: Calculated following the election date (end Autumn 2023)

VAT refund costs: No further correspondence from HMRC following VAT payment.

Action: Parish clerk to contact HMRC to obtain URN for completing returns online. Check statements for any number.

Newsletter printing: distribution of the newsletter, including printing and hand delivered or electronically, on website and noticeboard and through social media including facebook was discussed. It was decided that in the first instance it would be placed on the RPC website and noticeboard.

Cllr Winnington noted that inflation may affect actual costs of items within the budget, which may increase costs. Cllr Winnginton proposed to carry forward this year's financial surplus into 2023/2024's revenue. The motion was seconded by Cllr Jeeves. Councillors voted 4-1 in favour.

Precept: 2023/2024

To cover all the forthcoming year's costs, an increase in the precept would need be around 18%. Cllr Winnington suggested a 5% (£254) increase which is half the current rate of inflation and fair on the electorate. Cllr Jeeves proposed a 6% increase, seconded by Cllr Forrester. Councillors voted unanimously for a 6% increase that would result in a precept amount of £5,078.67.

Action: Parish clerk to respond to James Bellingham at Cannock Chase council regarding the increase.

Diary actions for this month: Civic amenity quote is confirmed.

Consideration for an environmentally-friendly Christmas tree next year.

Meadow friendly wilding verges, positive response, however, there is the safety aspect.

22/81 Chairman's questions/items for information/next agenda

Coronation celebrations: None currenlty planned. Nothing has been discussed at the Village Hall Committee.

The next parish council meeting is scheduled for Thursday, February 16 at 7.30pm. Cllr Batchelor gave his apologies and Cllr Jeeves will chair the meeting in his absence,

Signed…………………………………………... Date………………………

Gayle Whelan, Ranton Parish Council Clerk.