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Parish Council Minutes (Meeting- 15/07/14) :  details


Cllrs. Edward Brown (Chairman), Steve Marriott, Helen and Andrew Blowers, John Lloyd, Kaye Aisthorpe, County Cllr. Anthony Murray, Clerk Angela Hallam-Baker, and 3 parishioners (Pat Edwards, Jean and Moira Taylor).

1. Apologies for absence: PC Mark Lynn (Northumbria Police).

2. Police Report: PC Lynn had submitted a written report stating that the parish had been crime-free since the last meeting, but the theft of power tools was continuing in the area. The Police were alerted to a stolen lorry at Glanton containing a quad bike, but when they arrived, the thieves had left the scene, leaving the lorry with the quad bike. Enquiries are continuing.

3. The minutes of the meeting held on 17th June 2014 were agreed and signed.

4. Matters arising from the minutes:

• Safety mirror on War Memorial corner – as agreed at the last meeting, the safety mirror had been purchased, the total cost amounting to £48.84 including carriage and VAT. Cllr. Marriott kindly agreed to erect this on a post in a suitable position.

• List of Village Hall Trustees and keyholders – since no reply had been received from Colin Martin to the Clerk’s request for this, it was agreed that she should write to the secretary, Peter Brewis, to ask him for a list. It was considered that this is necessary in case of fire, flood, access to the generator, or any other important reason why entry to the Hall might be required.

• Kirknewton website: Pat Edwards reported that this is now up and running and can be accessed at: It is also on facebook. A Parish Council Page would be made available for agendas and minutes of meetings, as well as links to other relevant websites.

• No through road sign at Yeavering – the Clerk had ordered this sign and asked for it to be erected with urgency. She had heard from David Dobson that recently four lorries and numerous cars had gone down the lane and the lorries had had difficulty in turning round. NCC had acknowledged the request and agreed to erect the sign.

5. Financial Report: After deduction of £48.84 for the safety mirror, the bank balance stands at £688.25.

6. Post Sixteen Transport: In spite of demonstrations by parents, and numerous letters of opposition from parish councils and individuals, to the imposition of charging for post sixteen pupils’ transport to school and further education, the County Councillors had voted to levy the charge. The decision was decided by only three votes, these all being Independent members who voted with the Labour group. This decision will mean that most of the post sixteen pupils will have to pay £600 a year or more if they stay on at school. The only reasons for which they can leave school at age 16 would be for jobs or apprenticeships; those going into further education will also have to pay the fee. Northumberland College, Ashington, is offering a free bus service from Berwick, but this would mean students would have to leave early in the morning and arrive back late. It is hoped that parents will appeal the decision.

7. Parish View on Rural Housing: A questionnaire had been received from the Glendale Gateway Trust regarding parishes’ views on affordable housing. This involved a series of boxes to tick, but the majority of these appeared to be irrelevant for Kirknewton due to the following:

• No mains water or drainage

• Limited electricity supply

• Local flooding

• No regular local transport

• Poor broadband reception

• No jobs

• No schools

• No suitable sites It was therefore agreed that the clerk should write pointing out these factors.

8. Neighbourhood Plan for Glendale: The Chairman and Clerk had attended a meeting on 7th July hosted by Wooler Parish Council to discuss the possibility of the Glendale parishes grouping together to develop a long-term (10-20 years) planning policy. It was pointed out that there must be one central parish chosen, and that this would be Wooler, being the largest one. Funding of £7,000 would be available to be shared amongst all the parishes. Doddington PC stated that as Wooler is an urban parish and the other parishes rural, there would be a divergence. However, each parish representative was asked to discuss the matter with their councillors and decide whether they consider it feasible to proceed with a joint Neighbourhood Plan for Glendale. A further meeting with representatives of NCC would be arranged.

9. Local Transport Plan Programme 2015-2016: The clerk had received a letter from NCC Transport requesting priority issues for consideration. Already on the list was the safety concern on the War Memorial corner, but it was hoped this would be dealt with when the traffic mirror is erected. It was agreed that resurfacing of the U1023 road from the Village Hall to the Church should be added, and that the clerk should write now and enquire when the Westnewton bridge works are due to start. Since the requests are not due until mid-September, it was agreed to leave any further matters until the September meeting.

10. County Councillor’s Report: Cllr. Murray reported that most of NCC’s time had been taken up by discussions on post sixteen transport, and there was therefore nothing further to report.

11. Any other business:

• Village Hall Trustees – Cllr. Brown announced that he had resigned from the Village Hall Committee and his trusteeship, and that Cllr. Lloyd would represent the Parish Council.

• Post Office Lane – the grass verges need to be cut as the vegetation is overhanging the road. Also the ditch where the pipe emerges from under the road is clogged up with debris which needs to be removed. The clerk was asked to write and request that this work be done.

• North Area meeting at Ancroft on Wednesday, 16th July – the Chairman agreed to attend this, although no agenda had been received. • Akeld bus shelter – although this is not in Kirknewton Parish, it was noted that the shelter is in a bad state. Since Akeld is unparished, Cllr. Murray offered to mention it to the relevant department at NCC.

• OilCAN – since Cllr. Blowers had moved to Scotland, the post of co-ordinator for the Kirknewton/Milfield Group had been vacant. Angela, as current co-ordinator for the Branxton Group, had agreed to take this on too, since a few of her Group members had dropped out.

12. Date of next meeting: Tuesday, 26th August 2014, at 2.00pm.

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