Minutes of the Meeting of Birtley Parish Council held in the Supper Room of Birtley Village Hall starting at 8.00 pm Tuesday 1st March 2011.

Present Messrs EN Coulson (Chairman), DRB Burn, J Robson, Mrs SW Crone, WG White and Mrs A Lowes Clerk: Robert Macfarlane and PC I Robertson.

Apologies Unitary Councillor Cllr E Heslop

Declaration of Interest DRB Burn – Village Hall Committee and Crone – Drainage issues.

Minutes The Minutes of the previous meeting held on 7th December were agreed and signed by the Chairman.

Matters Arising
 Play Area The matting has not been put down correctly and is causing damage to the lawn mower. When the weather improves the situation will be looked at.
 Public Seat It was RESOLVED to purchase a seat (£120) to be sited in the play area.
 Notice Board The Parish Notice Board has been erected and keys allocated (Clerk, Chair, DRB, HP, PO)

All councillors were circulated with a full list of correspondence.
NNPA LDF Consultation-Design and Landscape, NCC Provision of Local Services and 2011/12 budget, NCC Parish Precepts and Council tax 2011-2012, Great Poppy Party Week-end 10th to 12th June, Tynedale Hospice newsletter, NALC , CAN newsletters.
• Grant requests Requests for grant aid were received from GNAA and Age Concern.
• Tynedale Court Closure This local Court has been in existence since 1840s and a public event will mark its demise in the form of an Evensong which will be held in Hexham Abbey on 10th April

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Public First Focus
The Neighbourhood Beat Officer PC I Robertson outlined the Farm Watch scheme which appears to be a great success and a deterrent. The scheme has produced some good results and a number of arrests; the level of crime being quite low at the moment. Scrap metal theft and oil are being targeted. PC Robertson said he would look at some parking issues in the village.
He offered some good news about Bellingham Police Station staying open with eight police officers based there.

The blocked drains outside of Birtley Hall have still to be attended to as well as several potholes.
The Clerk was asked to write to NCC Highways. The Wark Bridge Liaison Group has made a sterling effort in contacting every resident about the repairs and closure of the Bridge. Because the Clerk lives out of the area he has missed out on some of the communications.

No issues

20081063 Proposed windfarm Bavington Hill Head Farm. NCC have produced a statement of case and this is now to be heard through the inquiry procedure.

20090663 The Waterfalls Birtley NE48 3JQ Site visit by Area Planning Committee 25th January 2010. The Waterfalls Birtley NE48 3JQ BPC Objection Refused permission by Development Control Committee of NCC 23rd June 2010. The Public Inquiry started on 1st February 2011.

20090677 Construction of two storey extension to original farmhouse. The Waterfalls Birtley NE48 3JQ NCC granted permission conditionally under delegated powers.

MTCT The Mid Tyne Community Trust still has funds and applications are invited. The future of Community Forums is being reviewed.
Village Hall Hazel Pittock is now treasurer of the Village Hall Committee and there are plans to hold functions such as wedding parties and picnics.
NCC No report.

Royal Wedding
A request by the Village Hall Committee has been made to the Parish Council to help fund a public event in the Village Hall. It was agreed that the cost of hiring equipment would be too much for the Council to consider funding. However the Chairman will explore the possibility of presenting every child of school age with a memorable token of the day. It was estimated that there are about twenty children in the parish. The Chairman will undertake a census.

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Policies and Documents
All published on Birtley PC website at www.birtley.info
Freedom of Information – last reviewed on 2nd December 2008
Complaints Policy and Procedure – reviewed 7th December 2010
BPC Standing Orders – adopted 7th December 2010
Risk Management – reviewed 7th December 2010
BPC Grant Awarding Policy – adopted by the Council 16th March 2010
To consider at a future meeting – Vexatious Communications policy.
To consider at a future meeting – Equality and Diversity

Risk Management
Financial Regulations
It was decided that the current document was robust and fit for purpose.
Internal Audit Review
It was RESOLVED that the internal auditor is sufficiently independent, unbiased and objective and is competent to carry out the audit. The relevant responsibilities of members, Clerk and Internal Auditor were defined and the Clerk will publish a timetable of when the audit will take place along with reporting dates. The Council must approve Accounting Statement by 30th June
The Clerk has received some new guidance from BDO. This advises councils to record (and keep) original purchase costs as such for each item in the Assets Register. The Chairman discussed the values of the Council’s assets and signed the Assets Register on behalf of the Council.

Financial Matters
Bank Statements 1st December 2010: Treasurer’s Account £2057.96, BMM £1898.44
Approved Payments The following were agreed: Clerk’s salary £175, Clerk’s expenses £42.58 (£40.58 plus £2 vat), Hire of Hall £10 (March), Northumberland Estates (Playing Field) £1.00, Allianz Motor Insurance £201.40, CAN £15, One&One £10.56, TVCS £73.50 (Lawn Mower Petrol). Under LGA1972 s137 payments to GNAA £25 and Age Concern £20.

Next Meeting
Tuesday 17th May 2011 at 8pm in the Supper Room of Birtley Village Hall
There being no other business the meeting was closed at 9.00 pm.
Signed Chairman………………………………………

Date……………….………17th May 2011………….
Chairman: Mr EN Coulson, Vice Chair: Mr DRB Burn,
Councillors Mr J Robson and Mrs SW Crone, Mr WG White and Miss A Lowes
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