September 2010


Minutes of the meeting of the Parish Council held at the Filmer Hall on Wednesday 8th September 2010 at 8 p.m.
Present Messrs Turnill, Ireland, Worsfold, Edmed and Mrs May. Three residents
1.Apologies: Mrs Elstone, clerk
2. Declarations of Interest: None
3. Police report – none received
Action: Clerk to write to insist on report or attendance
4. Minutes of meeting of 7th July read and approved as a true and accurate record of proceedings.
5. Matters arising
a)         Insurance of hall
Mr Worsfold produced a copy of Filmer Hall Lease and Trust deed dated 19 December 1990, which runs for 40 years and which states that the Lessees (Filmer Hall Management Committee) should keep insured in the joint names of the Lessor ( Parish Council) and the Lessees the demised premises (Filmer Hall and the playground) from loss or damage by fire in a sum at least equivalent to the reinstatement value….
          It is likely that that the insurance policy from Came and Co may not be needed.
Action: Parish Council needs to be satisfied that insured sums are adequate. Clerk to obtain copy of current schedule of insurance from Robert Argles.
b) Play area
·         Mr Edmed agreed to treat the surfaces with a safe weedkiller.
·         The fence to the rear of the basketball hoop has been cut again.
c) Parish Newsletter
 This has been distributed in the parish by Sutton Valence Post Office. There is nominal charge of £16 to pay, and to Mr Turnill for printing expenses.   It is believed that the newsletter was well  received  generally.
d) 3 Suttons Carnival
Mr Edmed reported that the proposal has been dropped
6.   Highways
a)      A meeting was held with representatives of Kent Highways in August. The fault
reporting systems was discussed  and KHS indicated that there would be changes in the future. Specifically, there is a problem where a fault is considered fixed when it has allocated to a contractor. Concerns were also raised about the lack of notification of road projects affecting the Parish.   
b)      The issues with Pleasure House Lane were discussed and a follow up with Earl Bourner
was promised.
c)      Earl Bourner has contacted Mr Turnill to discuss the damaged verges.   The current
situation would appear to be that there is no KHS money available for verge works. If the farmer put up some money, Kent could allocate it to the road, but nothing is expected in the short term.
d)      Workhouse Lane is to be closed from 4th October to 12 November for Gas Main
e)      See attached sheets for responses to other Highways matters raised to KHS
representative at the meeting in August. Mr Ireland to raise individual items for matters not addressed.   Mr Worsfold commented that if roadstone or other fill material is placed in the missing road edges by anyone other that Kent Highways, then the person placing the material is liable if any subsequent vehicle damage.
7.    Planning 
a)         Applications Received
The proposed extension to the Ridge golf club ( MA /10/1236) was further discussed. It was noted that the matter had not yet reached MBC planning committee.
 New applications received for:
1.      Improved driveway to The Meadow, Chartway Street. (MA/10/1366)   – The property is
outside the parish but there was no objection.
2.      Tree felling works at Great Oak Farm, Friday St ( MA/TA/0113/10) –   Recommend
b)         Garden development in Maidstone Borough
New Planning policy PPS3 states that private garden land in now to be excluded from the classification of previously developed land and the nation minimum density target of 30 dwellings per hectare is to be removed.
Members have been circulated with more information on how this new guidance will be interpreted in the Boroug
Messrs Turnill and Ireland reported they had attended a training meeting  at MBC on planning policy. 
Some key points:
·         Parish Councillors are not expected to be expert on Planning Policy.
·         Planning applications must be determined in accordance with the development plan
·         But the Kent Structure plan is no more, and The Maidstone Borough Wide Local Plan
was published in 2000 and only part of this plan has been retained. The local plan will be replaced by the emerging Local Development Framework.  Other government guidance such as the PPS’s and other circulars must also be considered.
·         Parish Council should seek advise from Officers prior to the meeting if the issues are not
·         Parish Councils should recommend planning conditions, but these should be necessary,
relevant, enforceable, precise and reasonable.
·         Enforcement will only usually be taken if Planning harm has been identified.  
 8.  Correspondence
Letter received from local resident in respect of  possible planning breaches at Charlton Court and other matters.   Since there are several matters raised, Clerk is requested to write top the appropriate departments at MBC and copy Borough Councillor.
9.  Finance
a)         Items for Payment
Wicksteeds, KCPFA
Insurance cheque prepared but not issued 
10.   Other matters
a)      Ivy on the prison wall, Clerk has written to governor to get it cut down.
b)      Hedge in Church Lane – Clerk requested to write to Ridge Golf Club.
c)      Street light in Court Brooms – Clerk to obtain quotes for repair.
d)      Minutes of Parish Council meetings to be sent to KM and DownsMail and put on ESPC
e)      Concern was expressed that no Borough Councillor at the meeting.
11.  Date of next meeting:    3rd November 2010
There being no further business the meeting closed at 21.40