The Minutes of the Meeting of Birtley Parish Council which was held in the Village Hall on 4th December 2007 commencing 8 pm.

1 Present Cllrs EN Coulson (Chairman), WG White, J Robson, DRB Burn,
Mrs SW Crone and Ms A Lowes
Also present: Clerk Robert Macfarlane and Cllr N Ridley

2 Apologies Cllr Alex Kerr

3 Declaration of Interest None

4 Minutes Minutes of the previous meeting held on 29th August having been circulated earlier were agreed and signed by the Chairman.

5 Matters Arising
Waterfalls Farm – Clerk had reported the potential problem to NCC and Environment Agency who are monitoring the site fill. It is being used as a “transfer station” where inert waste is processed for other products not as a landfill. The Environment Agency has given some exemptions but NCC requires planning permission and a timetable for action has been served. It has been reported that Waterfalls UK has financial problems.
Notice Board – The owner of the wall would welcome a new notice board and has volunteered to point the wall in preparation. Chairman has brochures.
Flora’s Seat – The Council has not yet made a contribution.
BT Phone Box – Clerk to enquire what is happening with remains of the box.

6 Communications All councillors were circulated with a list of correspondence

Planning Inspectorate Northumberland Estates Lease & rent
Age Concern Grant Aid TDC Susi Goncu Grant Form
FitzpatrickWoolmer Notice Boards Fire & Rescue IRMP
War Memorial Trust Small Grant Scheme TDC Play Area
Audit Commission Allianz Insurance Play Area
CAN Annual Report & AGM NALC Annual Report and Accounts
Characteristic Communities TDC Planning Forum 9th November
NCC Mineral and Waste LDF Alnwick Community Development Trust
NNPA Leader Approach (Grants) TDC Dog Proof Fencing Grants
NE Memorials Project Project Monitoring Form
Belonging Boundaries 26 Nov NCC Kickstart Grants Scheme
North East Assembly NEA CAN Annual Report & AGM
defra Act on CO2 National Energy Association Fuel Poverty HOME truths NCC Committee Papers
TDC Minutes CPRE Overview

 Playing Field Fencing and Dog Notices – P Milburn to start work. TDC have offered £300 grant. Clerk to order four signs costing £45 each from Top Signs.
 Risk Management – Council approved the document
 TDC Bottle Bank – Possible location at side of Village Hall. Chairman to investigate and talk to neighbours.
 Standards Board – Council now in full compliance

7 Roads
The flooding outside of Woodbine Cottage and Northumbria House has been attended to.
NCC and Millknock Quarry will jointly fund repairs on the access road to the quarry. There may be another six years of quarrying left.

8 Footpaths – no matters for consideration.

9 Planning
Ray Estate/The Steadings/Green Rigg Fell joint Public Inquiry, BERR and Planning Inspectorate, to start in January. DRB Burn will attend the meeting and draft a statement with SW Crone.
Clerk instructed to write to MP and Director of Planning re planning policies and restrictions on individual developments.

10 Reports
Village Hall The Committee is busy at present with an insulation project and have to decide whether to insert insulation behind the internal wooden panels or have stone-cladding on the outside. The ten-year lease is due to be renewed in 2010
TDC The Wark Bridge is to maintain the status quo for the foreseeable future. This bridge is in a sorry state of repair; it needs painting and weeding!

11 “Belonging Boundaries”
The Clerk and District Councillor attended a meeting arranged by TDC to discuss possible arrangements for parish councils under the structure of the new Unitary Council. It was resolved that the Clerk inform TDC that Birtley Parish Council wish to remain in the Mid Tyne cluster of parish councils.

12 War Memorial
Holden Conservation has completed the work on the memorial. It looks superb. However some spillage at the foot of the statue on the pavement looks unsightly. Clerk to contact Holden. DRB Burn to ask PCC for a contribution to the overall cost.

13 Play Park
The suppliers RSS have now attended to the installation problems and the Clerk has paid all invoices. P Milburn can now be instructed to commence the fencing and erect the No Dog signs. Two new gates are also needed possibly costing £300. Cllr Crone has prices for new goal posts for the football field and is awaiting news of the FA grant. Cllr Burn will give Cllr Crone a copy of the lease so she can look into the possibility of transferring the Northumberland Estates lease arrangement for the play area from the Village Hall Committee to the Parish Council. The Clerk was instructed to transfer the insurance cover to the Village Hall committee. The Chairman will arrange a visit to Park End to see their ride-on Husqvarna mower in action.
Inspection Procedure. Chairman will inspect weekly, and the Clerk will conduct a more detailed quarterly inspection. The Clerk will arrange a yearly specialist inspection.

14 Financial Matters
Bank Balances 9th November Treasurer’s Account £20501.58, Instant Access £6077.09

Precept It was agreed to keep the Precept at £1700 for 2008-9

Approved Payments: Clerk’s salary £150, Clerk’s expenses £47.08, Hire of Hall (Dec) £20, Allianz Insurance plc £63.46 (play area), Petrol £48.47, Coulson Construction£1175 (£1000 plus vat £75), A Lowes For planters £60, Holden Conservation Ltd £1720, Milburn Joinery and Fencing £476.58 (vat), Record RSS £19532.13(vat), Top Signs

Next Meeting
The next meeting of Birtley Parish Council will take place in the Village Hall at 8.00 pm on 26th February 2008
There being no other business the meeting was closed at 9.35 pm.