Stanhoe Parish Council

Minutes of Parish Council Meeting

Held on Wednesday, 12th January 2022 at 6.00pm
in the village Reading Room

Clerk to the Council – , tel 01485 518570


Mr D. Lord (DL)                     Chairman
Miss R. Brown (RBR)
Mrs R. Birkin (RB)  
Mr M. Wilson (MW)
Mr B. Gorton (BG)
Dr S. Shaw (SS)
Mr T. Fitzjohn (TF)

Mr W Leighton                      Clerk

Apologies: None

In attendance: None

1. To consider apologies for absence: All Councillors were present.

2. To consider approval of the minutes of the last meeting held on 11th November 2021: No queries were raised and the minutes were passed and signed by the Chairman.

3. To record declarations of interest in any item to be discussed: No declarations of interest were made.

4. To adjourn meeting to allow public participation:  No members of the public were present.

5. The Queen’s Platinum Jubilee Beacons – 2nd June 2022: Councillors were in agreement to not purchase a Jubilee Beacon. However, it was felt that the village should celebrate the Queen’s Platinum Jubilee at some stage during the Bank Holiday weekend of 2nd – 5th June 2022. The Chairman would liaise with the Chair of the MEHM Trust and the PCC with a view to holding a joint event.

6. Go to Town Bus Service: Despite making further contact, RBR advised Council that she had still not received a response from WNCT. The Clerk would now contact WNCT and request an update.

7. Parish Council Budget Setting 2022/23: In view of the continued expenditure on play equipment repairs, to ensure that safety and inspection standards were met and maintained, and cosmetic work that may be required to the War Memorial (see item 14), Councillors were in agreement that a small increase in the precept for 2022/23, from £7000 to £7300, would be appropriate. This represented a 4.28% increase and was roughly in line with inflation. It should be noted that there was no increase in the precept in 2021/22.

8. Additional Geese on the Pond: The Clerk had contacted the RSPB, and was directed to the RSPCA, regarding advice on the management of the geese on the pond. The RSPCA do not currently respond in person unless an animal is sick, injured, orphaned or unable to survive and callers are directed to the ‘advice and welfare’ section of the RSPCA website. Further details can be found at Living with - canada geese (V2.0) - 2015 (1).pdf  which, whilst looking specifically at Canada geese, does offer some advice on how to deter geese from a garden.

9. SAM 2 Update: The SAM 2 had been working without issue. The fastest recorded speeds within the 30mph limit from 1st November 2021 to 31st December 2021 had been:

Date Time Speed Sign Position
1st November 20:35 55mph Leo facing Burnham Market
3rd December 02:20 65mph Grange facing Docking

During November 14,170 vehicles passed the speed sign, in December the figure was 14,701 vehicles.

10. Norfolk County Council Budget Consultation 2022/23: SS attended the virtual Norfolk County Council Budget Consultation 2022/23 meeting held on 8th December 2021. The key points were:

Continued uncertainty with COVID and funding
Significant issues with social care
A “transformation” approach to improve efficiency and save money
Need for a further £5 million RECURRENT savings
A proposed increase in council tax of 1.99%

11. Bircham Crossroads: Whilst officially in the Parish of Docking, the junction at the Bircham Crossroads continues to concern both the Parish Council and the residents of Stanhoe. A concerted and continued effort by the Parish Council eventually resulted in the signage that was knocked down in April 2021 being replaced. Whilst further accidents had occurred at the junction in October and November 2021, before the signage was replaced, it was hoped that now full signage was in place this may help to reduce the number of accidents in the future.

12. Children’s Play Area - Update: BG and DL had very recently looked over the play equipment and whilst generally it appeared okay, the replacement of shackles and caps, identified in the 2021 Annual Inspection, had still to be rectified. DL would hasten the contractor, Playscape and also ascertain whether the shackles and caps could be purchased on a ‘self-fit’ basis. MW confirmed that the next inspection of the play equipment would take place in April/May 2022.

13. Parish Update Session by the BCKLWN: SS reported that unfortunately the planned Parish Update Session did not go ahead due to significant IT issues. Whilst the Planning Service had said that a further session would be arranged, nothing had been heard. The Clerk would hasten this.

14. War Memorial: Two complaints had been received regarding the cosmetic appearance of the War Memorial. Whilst DL, assisted by Mr Tim Bentinck who lives near the memorial, had undertaken a light cleaning of the stonework, it was acknowledged that some remedial work was required to repaint the lettering. A Grade 2 listed monument, the War Memorial must be maintained in accordance with expert advice and Council agreed that a specialist report should be commissioned in the first instance. DL agreed to make some initial enquiries.

15. Stanhoe Church: DL expressed concern that the village may not be aware of the issues regarding the long term future of the church. Built in the 13th century, it is the oldest building in Stanhoe. With a dwindling congregation it is highly likely that in the foreseeable future in the absence of wider use, it will have to close through lack of funding.  Many may take its’ existence for granted; this would be an error. The Council agreed to invite the vicar to come to a meeting in the near future to brief us more fully on the situation.

16. Parish Council Meeting Dates for 2022: Parish Council meetings for the remainder of 2022 would take place on the following dates:

9th March
11th May (to be followed by Annual Parish Meeting)
13th July
14th September
9th November

All meetings would start at 6.00pm.

17. Provision of Broadband for Permanent Residents in Stanhoe: SS highlighted an issue with a resident in Cross Lane who had been told by Openreach that there would be no availability of Fibre to the Property (FTTP). The Clerk would take up the issue with the Project Manager at Norfolk County Council.

18. Planning Applications and Information: The following planning applications had been received or decided upon since the last meeting:

Application Number Proposal Decision

Partial demolition of an existing dwelling house and the construction of a new private dwelling 

High Barn
Burnham Road

Parish Councillors voted, by majority decision, to object to the proposals. 

DL would draft a response and pass to Councillors for consideration, prior to a formal response being submitted to the BCKLWN

19. Financial Report and approval of payments: Up to date income & expenditure accounts, budget report and bank statements were circulated to Councillors by the Clerk. No queries were raised.

Approval was sought and agreed for the following payments:

Chq No Payee Reason £
100848 W. Leighton Salary November & December 2021 325.68
100849 HMRC PAYE November & December 2021 81.40

20. Resident’s Concerns/Issues Raised after the Agenda was Published:

 Tractors in the Village: MW advised Council that, whilst not speeding, tractors transiting the village were often mounting the grass verges rather than slowing down or stopping. This was causing significant damage to the verges and the road edge and, in some cases, the tractors were getting perilously close to some properties. The Clerk would seek advice from the Police and the Highways Department.

Egmere Meeting: A drop-in session with the Egmere farming team would take place on 27th January. DL and MW planned to attend and would report back at the next meeting.

Memorial Plaque: The Duck Inn agreed to accept and display a specially commissioned memorial plaque to commemorate the resilience of the Stanhoe community during the pandemic. The Clerk would make the necessary arrangements for the presentation of the plaque with the Lieutenancy Office.

21. Items for the Next Agenda – Meeting of 9th March 2022:

The Queen’s Platinum Jubilee Celebrations
Go to Town Bus - Update
SAM 2 – Update
Children’s Play Area – Update
Parish Update Session
War Memorial
Broadband Issues
Tractors in the Village
Egmere Meeting – 27th January 2022
Memorial Plaque

No other items were discussed and the meeting closed at 7.45pm.