HENHAM PARISH COUNCIL
Minutes (unapproved) of a Parish Council Meeting
Date: Thursday 1st February 2024
Venue: OSCA, Henham
Present: Chair N. Baker, Vice Chair S. Lee, Cllrs J. Leech, P. Franklin, Z. Rutterford, M. Fisher, Clerk M Dacey, District Cllr P. Lees, County Cllr R. Gooding
Declaration of interests: The Chair reminded Councillors of their duty to declare any relevant personal or pecuniary interests.
- Apologies for Absence: Cllrs Walker and LeCount, PCSO, District Cllr B. Donald
- Approval of the Minutes of the Last Meeting
The minutes of the 7 December 2023 meeting was approved and signed by the Chair.
- Matters Arising –
- Reports and Recommendations
- Greens and Village Estate – Cllr. Baker:
- Greens damage – (1) Erosion – General greens erosion in the village causing other potholes. Following a discussion, it was agreed a review of the damage will be conducted in the spring by the Chair and Cllr Leech. (2) Driveways across greens – Cllrs have been asked to review the damage along Crow Street which is particularly bad due to recent construction work on various properties. The Chair and Cllr Leech will assess the damage. (3) Construction damage to Greens by Hollybank – Cllr Lee declared an interest and absented himself from any discussions. The shingle has now been colour matched, however, the greens remain damaged. The Chair wrote to the owner of the property requesting repair to the greens now that the building works have been completed. Owner has responded to Cllr Baker raising concerns regarding practicalities of protecting the greens. Councillors have been asked to consider various options suggested by Cllr Leech in his report, previously circulated to councillors, as how to resolve this issue and will be considering the best option once the general inspection by the Chair and Cllr Leech has taken place (4) Construction damage to Greens by York Cottage – it is noted that there is damage to greens on the driveway. The Parish Council will monitor whilst works are still ongoing. (5) Driving over Greens – There was a discussion at the previous meeting regarding recent incidents of people driving over the greens and parking on the greens in the village, causing damage. The clerk has circulated a no parking letter to Cllrs to display on offending vehicles.
- Greens Bylaws – Chair has circulated a draft of the revised bylaws to Councillors for their comment. The Chair has now submitted the draft to our solicitors to review as the procedure for changing the bylaws is complicated.
- Coronation commemoration – A generous resident who is very skilled at ironmongery has kindly offered to design and make a sculpture to celebrate the coronation and has made a start on this.
- Tree Inspection – Report is still awaited. Chair will continue to chase.
- Church works – Nothing to report.
- Resurfacing The Row – The Row path falls within the ownership of the Henham Parish Council as it is part of the greens. Cllr Leech will review the damage and provide a quote.
- The Bury – The purchaser’s solicitors have approached the Chair with a request for more adequate written rights to cross the land which separates the land from the High street. Our solicitor’s legal fees will be paid by the purchasers and have been instructed to act on behalf of the Parish Council plus greens fee of £500 to be paid to the Parish Council. In line with our greens policy, the right of way will only be formalised with respect to the existing building at the Bury.
- Flooding by Heathfield – A resident has asked the Parish Council to investigate the flooding of greens outside Heathfield, this will be done as part of the general greens inspection.
- Parking signage by Heathfield – A resident has asked Parish Council to confirm status of removal of no parking on greens signage since summer 2023 which had not been replaced. Signage has now been installed.
- Greens cutting contact – The clerk has written to our contractor asking him to confirm his prices for the next year. Having held his price for a couple of years there would need to be a small increase from £455 to £480 per cut due to cost of grey diesel as he cannot use red diesel. It was agreed nem con to renew the contract.
Portrait of King – The government is issuing free portraits of the King. Chair has consulted with OSCA committee who have agreed that HPC can apply for a free portrait, the parish council will pay for framing with installation in OSCA, exact location to be agreed.
Village ponds/Woodland – (a) It was previously agreed that Cllr Franklin would liaise with ELNR regarding the woodland, Cllr Walker would liaise with the National Trust and Cllr Rutterford would liaise with our ecologist regarding suggestions for other entities which may like to take responsibility for the woodland. Cllr Walker has been liaising with the NT team at Hatfield Forest and has requested a meeting.
Village Hall – (1) General – Nothing to report. (2) Solicitors – Have been instructed to review the ownership and responsibility for the village hall as the existing documentation is 100 years old and needs updating, legal advice is expected shortly. (3) HPC Community Support Fund – Nothing to report other than clerk has issued a cheque for second tranche for Dinky Dragons.
PCSO – The PSCO is visiting the village shop on the following dates, residents are encouraged to use this opportunity to raise any concerns they may have: 24th Jan – 1045-1200 (cancelled to due PCSO attending a burglary), 12th Feb – 1045-1200, 21st Feb – 1045-1200, 1st March – 1045-1200, 20th March – 1045-1200, 5th April – 1045-1200, 24th April – 1045-1200.
Speedwatch – Nothing to report.
Management of Pledgdon Green – (a) Ownership of Common Land – A resident has previously contacted Cllr Rutterford about a fallen bough/tree on the common land which has fallen on their property. Legal advice re ownership/responsibilities of the common land has established that the Parish Council is not responsible for the common land. Cllr Rutterford and Cllr Baker had a meeting to review the legal advice and the Chair instructed our solicitors 13/12/23 seeking further clarification on a couple of points, including grazing rights and rights of access/vehicular rights. This is ongoing and a barrister has now been instructed to provide further clarification. Cllrs previously agreed the costs of £1k plus VAT for the barrister plus £250 plus VAT for our solicitors work. (b) Conservation Area Status – Broxted Parish Council is exploring whether the Brick End Road area could become a Conservation Area and have asked whether Henham Parish Council would be interested in splitting the costs (initially £1,000- £1,500 plus VAT) into extending the proposed conservation area to include to the Pledgdon Green area. It was agreed at the last meeting that Cllr Rutterford would consult with local residents in her capacity as a private individual before any decision is made by the Henham Parish Council, no negative comments received. Following a discussion, Cllr Lee proposed that HPC consults with Broxted Parish Council and offers assistance to attain conservation area status, seconded by Cllr Franklin, approved nem con. (c) Hedge Cutting – hedges around the Green and along the lane have been arranged to be cut during at a rate of £50/hr + VAT.
Website – The new website is up and running https://henham-pc.gov.uk . The Parish Council would encourage residents to provide the clerk with any additional information they would like to see on the new website e.g. details clubs/societies, photos etc. The clerk has now set up each Cllr with a new gov.org email address. The majority of Cllrs have now migrated across to gov.uk email. The technical glitch regarding the “contact us” form on the website not working has now been fixed.
Village Broadband – Openreach and Gigaclear both have plans to bring Ultrafast Broadband to Village. The Parish Council has a responsibility to ensure residents are fully informed of both endeavours and have the information to make an informed decision that suits them: (1) Openreach – The Parish Council has been approached by Openreach regarding increasing broadband speeds – in partnership with Government funding, Openreach could bring Ultrafast Full Fibre Broadband to communities using these vouchers. The vouchers are free, but recipients are expected to order an Ultrafast Full Fibre Broadband service from a supplier of their choice once service is live, as part of the terms and conditions. Open Reach have asked the Chair for permission to dig up greens which has been granted. (2) Gigaclear – Currently in the village installing their infrastructure. The Chair has written to Gigaclear in December 2023 seeking assurance that damage to the greens will be repaired.
D Day June 2024 celebrations – A resident and his team have kindly volunteered to organise an event to be held on Saturday 22nd June 2024, 1940’s theme with a band, BBQ, army tanks. This event will not be run by the Parish Council nor will it have any responsibility other than to advise on Health and Safety aspects, which Cllr Franklin has kindly agreed to deal with. Deposits paid for band and toilet hire. Bin hire has also been organised by the Chair. Chair has also applied for temporary licence.
Stansted/Elsenham Surgery merger – All patients have previously received a direct communication from the surgery about the proposed merger due to take place on 1/4/24. Update re surgery merger previously circulated to councillors by Cllr LeCount.
Car Parking consultation in Uttlesford – The Chair has responded to the consultation on behalf of the Parish Council reflecting councillors concerns regarding the proposed increases in car parking fees. All documents will also be available to view on the Uttlesford District Council website at https://www.uttlesford.gov.uk/car-parking-consultation. Consultation closed 2/2/24.
Consultation on draft recommendations for division boundaries in Essex – There is a proposed electoral Boundary change for County Cllrs in Essex. The draft recommendations propose that Henham and Elsenham leave Stansted Mountfitchet constituency and join Thaxted. The Chair is concerned that Henham Parish Council has never had any communication or business with Thaxted, whereas we have many connections with Stansted with the road infrastructure, sharing of PCSO, GP surgery, education. The Chair had a meeting with the Chairs of Stansted and Elsenham Parish Councils on 29th January and each parish has agreed to robustly object to the proposals. County Cllr Gooding was asked to support HPC’s position and agreed he will confirm his support in writing to the Chair.
|J Day & Son
| To Whom
|Village Christmas tree
|Castle Water (10000713324)
|Allotment water bill
|Refund for photo competition vouchers
|JRB Enterprise Ltd (26289)
|Dog poo bags
|Tree works by Bus Shelter and Crow St
|Old School Community Association
|Henham Village Shop Association Ltd (H00065
|Post Office fees Nov 23 to Feb 24
|Working from home allowance
|Refund for summer fete bank deposit
|Stanley Tee LLP
|Plegdgon Green legal fees
|Luxury Toilet Hire (UK) Ltd
|Deposit for summer fete toilet hire
|Refund for temporary licence for summer fete
|Barrister advice fees re Pledgon Green common
|Ricki Shelsher (1104)
|Village signs and window cleaning
|Bit Solutions (29009)
|IT support for Flexmail set up
|Henham Village Hall
|Dinky Dragons Community grant
Treasury Management Investment Policy and Strategy 2023/24 – Cllr Fisher- update Cllr Fisher has been researching the best interest paying accounts which comply with our investment policy. This is ongoing. Nationwide have confirmed rates on our accounts are increasing from 3.80% to 4.30% and 3.10% to 3.35% respectively.
2023-2024 Accounts – Q1 and Q2 Accounts for 23/24 have been reviewed and approved by Cllr Fisher
2024-2025 Precept – The HPC Income requirement held at £41,140, as agreed in the December 2023 meeting. The net tax base for Henham (i.e. number of properties paying council tax) has gone. down slightly from 686.25 to 685.71This has the effect of increasing ever so slightly (by 5 pence) the amount of council tax raised per household for the precept; for example, the band D rate for 2024-25 will be £60.00 compared to £59.95 in 23/24. All bands will increase by 0.1% for the 2024-25 precept contribution. Paperwork regarding the precept was submitted to UDC on 18/12/23 by the clerk.
- Planning and Developments –
- UTT/23/0713/OP – Outline Planning Application, With All Matters Reserved Except Scale & Access, for the erection of up to 7 dwellings and associated work, Land West Of Old Mead Road The Parish Council previously objected to a previous application and have submitted an objection. This has been called in by District Cllr Lees. Reconsultation UTT/23/2735/FUL – District Cllr Lees to check if the calling in is still standing.
- UTT/23/1732/FUL – proposed Change of use of paddock to residential and construction of 3 no. residential dwellings, Tudor Hall Pledgdon Green. Cllr Rutterford declared an interest and absented herself from any discussions. This has been called in by District Cllr Lees. The Planning Sub Committee have submitted an objection with a further evidence submitted on 31/8/23.
- UTT/23/3077/HHF – proposed New front entrance porch, single storey side and rear extensions with changes to fenestration, with additional dormer and fenestration to existing annexe (revised scheme to UTT/23/1724/HHF), York Cottage Crow Street.
- UTT/23/2934/HHF – proposed installation of a pair of centre opening metal gates and supporting metal posts, The White House High Street
- UTT/23/3091/FUL – proposed Section 73A Retrospective application for the change of use of land from agricultural to residential garden, 1 Old Mead Cottage Old Mead Road
- UTT/24/0053/FUL – Proposed new dwelling and cart lodge (alternative design to plot 1 approved under UTT/21/2328/FUL), The Barn Old Mead Road – Cllr Franklin and Cllr Leech declared an interest and absented himself from any discussions.
- UTT/24/0073/HHF – Proposed conversion of double garage and store to create 1 no. first floor annexe including addition of new enclosed two storey extension and creation of ground floor photographic studio, The Bell House, Old Mead Road
- UTT/24/0129/HHF & UTT/24/0130/LB – Single storey rear extension and conversion of ground floor bathroom into dining area, including widening internal opening, removal of rear casement window and installation of white timber patio door. Internal alteration to convert first floor dressing room into bathroom. External works to the rear garden area removing raised beds and extending paving to form patio. Remove of clay tiles to section of single storey roof and replace with natural slate tiles, Yew Tree Cottage, Chickney Road
- Proposed Development at Saffron House paddock – The Developer has written to the clerk requesting a meeting with the parish council to discuss a proposed development of 3 houses in the paddock behind Saffron House, High Street. Cllr Fisher declared an interest and absented himself from any discussions. Following a discussion, it was agreed that Cllr Lee would make contact with the developer and arrange a meeting.
Breaches: Cedar Cottage– Cllr Lee declared an interest and absented himself from discussions. There is an enforcement notice which becomes operational and effective on 31/1/22. Parish Council continues to monitor the situation. The clerk emailed UDC enforcement for an update 3/3/23 and 21/3/23 – chased again 11/4/23. Enforcement officer confirmed no action can be taken until planning decision is made UTT/22/2838/HHF – proposed Replacement roof, replacement fenestration and minor alterations to existing outbuilding, Cedar Cottage Crow Street – HPC have registered their continued objection on the basis that the existing structure is illegal and under enforcement proceedings and the proposals increase the roof height. New application submitted UTT/23/1257/HHF re proposed Replacement roof, replacement fenestration and minor alterations to existing outbuilding Cedar Cottage- HPC objection has been submitted. District Cllr Lees to speak with enforcement and provide an update.
Investigation into alleged breach- alleged airport parking, at Railway car park, Old Mead Road District Cllr Lees confirmed it is an established car park and no planning permission is required for airport parking.
Appeals: APP/C1570/D/23/3333936 – The Fuchsias Old Mead Lane – Single storey rear extension (previously approved) with part first floor rear extension over. Ground floor has an
extant permission (UTT/23/0249/HHF) – appeal is proceeding under the Householder Appeal Service (HAS), there is no opportunity to submit comments. Cllr Franklin declared an interest and absented himself from any discussion. APP/C1570/D/23/3333926 – The Fuchsias Old Mead Lane – Section 73A Retrospective application for the reduction inground level at the rear of the site and installation of
sleeper retaining walls to rear and side boundaries. Proposed single storey outbuilding, part with pitched roof part with flat roof, to be used as a domestic garage, gym and home office ancillary to the main dwelling house (UTT/23/1319/HHF) – appeal is proceeding under the Householder Appeal Service (HAS), there is no opportunity to submit comments. Cllr Franklin declared an interest and absented himself from any discussion.
Developments: Mill Road Development : The Parish Council met with the Developers Bellway Homes on 5th October to discuss areas of concern. Cllr Walker is taking the lead on this and is liaising with the developer’s agents and residents. The Developer has confirmed a letter has been sent to the immediate neighbours offering briefings on the proposals. This is mainly to residents on Vernon’s Close. The Developer has confirmed the following:
- The project website has been uploaded (https://newhomesforhenham.co.uk/). This provides basic information about the proposals and has facilities for residents to register for updates and ask questions,
- A leaflet will be sent out to the wider area of Henham village later this week making residents aware of the project and inviting them to a drop-in event later this month,
- Host a drop-in event at the Village Hall on Wednesday, 24 January, from 4pm to 8pm,
- A virtual exhibition will then be uploaded on the project website, to run for two weeks after the drop-in event,
- A survey questionnaire will be provided to those attending the drop-in event, or to be completed online on the website. The consultation will close on Sunday, 11 February 2024, and
- The consultation responses will be assimilated, and a report written summarising the outcomes. This will be circulated to stakeholders and those who have registered on the website.
Cllr Walker attended the drop in session and circulated a briefing note to all Cllrs prior to this meeting. Concerns have been raised by residents regarding drainage and ownership of ditch boundary and the Vernons Close Residents Association will be liaising direct with Bellway (developer) regarding this. Bellway stated that education funding would be split between Primary and Secondary education as detailed in the S106 report, with ECC to allocate funding. Cllr Walker will be liaising with the relevant school governor of Henham Primary school regarding this.
Bloor – UTT/23/2063/DFO – Nothing to report.
OMR-OML – Nothing to report other than Cllr Franklin has reported to UDC the OMR Road name sign damage at the level crossing, replacement sign now installed. Waste Lorries – A resident is looking into enforcing the weight limit along OMR. Cllr LeCount to attend a meeting with local residents in the new year.
Mill Road/School Road yellow lines – The Parish Council is aware of dangerous parking on the Mill Road bend by School Lane. Chair is attending a meeting with the Headteacher, a parent and County Cllr Gooding is also invited to attend on 8/2/24 to discuss parking concerns.
Toot Toot bridge – Nothing to report.
Flooding – The Parish Council thanks Cllr Leech and a resident for all their hard work in documenting local areas of flooding which the clerk has forwarded onto District Cllr Donald as the Essex Flood Partnership had a meeting on 17th January and Cllr Pavitt was attending representing Uttlesford. Cllr Franklin raised the issue of raw sewage going into OMR and will liaise with County Cllr Gooding.
Potholes – The Parish Council thanks the resident for pursuing pothole repairs in the area with Essex Highways.
Residents are encouraged to also report any matters to Essex Highways direct via the Essex Highways web site www.essex.gov.uk/highways (details also on the Henham Website), as the more people who complain regarding Highways matters the more likely something will get done.
Residents are encouraged to report unsafe or dangerous parking in our village to: email@example.com Stansted Airport Limited operates a Freephone number for reporting suspected on-street airport related car parking. The Freephone number is: 0800 7312385
Sent/Received: Letter of complaint from resident about Pledgdon Green planning; emails from residents re property flooding and school parking, Developer re Saffron House paddock, Resident re damage to greens.
Planning Applications – see 4(iii) above
- Clerk – approximately 250 emails in December 2023 and January 2024.
- Waste and Minerals Development Issues – There was an online briefing session in relation to the Essex Minerals Local Plan Review on Tuesday 30th January 2024 which Cllr Rutterford attended. The update identified Elsenham Quarry with the proposal that it is extended right down to the B1051, Pledgdon Green lane, Pledgdon Green. Following a discussion, it was agreed that Cllr Rutterford would liaise with a previous Cllr who has extensive knowledge on this matter and the Chair would contact our retired planning expert for advice. The consultation is currently scheduled for February 2024 for 6 weeks.
- SAW (Stop Stansted Expansion) – Nothing to report.
- Governance – The Parish Council Standing Orders and Financial Regulations have been circulated by the Clerk to all Councillors for review in the coming months. Complaint from resident regarding Pledgdon Green planning application, Chair has responded.
- Local Plan – Nothing to report.
- Henham SOV 100 Club draw –
District Cllr Petrina Lees conducted the December draw. She drew from a black bag containing all current members lottery balls. The winning numbers were:
Dec 157 Members
1st Prize Number 142 (R & C Balls) £228
2nd Prize Number 163 ( K Shipp) £110
3rd Prize Christmas Bonus Ball Accumulator £55 Cumulative total £55
Total funds received per draw were £785. Half will be paid in prizes plus the cumulative Christmas Bonus Ball with the balance of £392 paid to Henham Parish Council SOV Funds.
District Cllr Petrina Lees conducted the January draw. She drew from a black bag containing all current members lottery balls. The winning numbers were:
Jan 157 Members
1st Prize Number 125 (Mr & Mrs J Smith) £228
2nd Prize Number 17 (J Franklin) £110
3rd Prize Christmas Bonus Ball Accumulator ) £55 Cumulative total £110
Total funds received per draw were £785 Half will be paid in prizes plus the cumulative Christmas Bonus Ball with the balance of £392 paid to Henham Parish Council SOV Funds.
- Date of Next Meeting
The next Parish Council Meeting will be held on Wednesday 6th March 2024, 7:30pm at OSCA. Please note change of date. Everyone Welcome. Mareike Dacey, Clerk