PURLEIGH PARISH COUNCIL

ANNUAL REPORT FOR THE PERIOD

1st APRIL 2014 - 31st MARCH 2015

 

YOUR COUNCIL

Steven Potter (Chairman) Lower Barn Farm, Roundbush Rd, Purleigh.

Tel 01621 828270

Nigel Arthur (Vice Chairman) Birch House, Maldon Rd, Latchingdon.

Tel: 01621 744523

Lawrence Cooper Wickhams Farm, Slough Lane, Danbury.

Tel: 01245 22322

Michael Elliott Saffron, Chelmsford Rd, Purleigh.

Tel: 01621 828512

Diane Guest Coachmans, Church Hill, Purleigh.

Tel: 01621 826732

Brian Oliver Cosy Nook, Chelmsford Rd, Purleigh.

Tel: 01621 828433

Mervyn Perriman 5, Guernsey Court, Maldon

Tel: 07721 888882

Graham Rayner 5, Hawkins Close, Cock Clarks, Purleigh.

Tel: 01621 828117

Gavin Strathern Spar Hill Farm, Chelmsford Rd, Purleigh

Tel: 07702 322203

CLERK

Jane Potter 27 Anchor Reach, South Woodham Ferrers. CM3 5GS

Tel: 01245 320426

E-mail: jane.m.potter@btinternet.com

WEBSITE www.purleigh.com

 

CHAIRMAN’S OVERVIEW OF THE YEAR

 

The Parish Council has held twelve ordinary meetings during the year at which Councillors made 86 attendances out of a possible 108. Two Councillors attended every meeting and we are once again very grateful to our District Council Ward Members, John Archer and Sue White and our County Council Ward Member, Penny Channer for attending the public sessions held before each meeting and for keeping us informed about the work of the District and County Councils.

 

Prior to our public sessions we have also hosted a community policing ‘street meet’, learnt about the role of the new community (formerly village) agents and had a very interesting presentation from Gerry Richardson (Emergency Planning Officer, Maldon District Council) on emergency planning and community resilience.

 

During the year we commented on 49 planning applications and were consulted on the new Community Infrastructure Levy draft charging schedule, the Local Plan and the District Council’s Corporate Plan. The total amount of money we required from Maldon District Council for the year ending 31st March 2015 was £30,000, of which £28,551 will be charged as precept, the remaining £1,449 being a government grant to offset the cost of the localisation of council tax.

 

During the year the Parish Council has continued to provide and maintain the pavilion and playing field for the benefit of parishioners. This year we spent £4,353.95 on general running costs, which included utility bills, fire extinguisher maintenance, a fire risk assessment, PAT testing the small electrical items in the building, cleaning costs, materials for the new curtains, and new signs banning dogs from the children’s play area. It does not include the cost of insurance or grass cutting however which cost an additional £3,794.80, or the purchase of a new litter bin for the playing field which cost £322.85. During the year income derived from letting the pavilion came to £4,488.00. After careful consideration therefore the Parish Council agreed at its February meeting that the letting fees for the Pavilion in 2015/2016 should remain the same as in 2014/2015. We are very grateful to the Purleigh Playing Field Association whose members painted the railings and ceiling of the verandah, and acquired a notice board which has been installed on the end gable of the pavilion nearest the car park. Our most sincere thanks also go to Mrs. Teresa Scragg who very generously made the new pavilion curtains free of charge, and Jan Huggins, without whom the project would not have come to fruition. We greatly appreciate all their help. I’m sure the late and much missed Rita Ellis would be very pleased with the results, as the project was undertaken in her memory.

 

 

This year saw the Parish Council paid Maldon District Council’s Ranger Service £640.14 to enforce the parking restrictions in Pump Lane. The Rangers have been very successful and issued approximately 25 fixed penalty notices throughout the year. The school and community police officers have been very supportive of this parish council initiative and we look forward to continuing the arrangement and seeing safer and more considerate parking next year.

 

Highway matters have again taken up much council time during the year. I am very pleased to be able to report that the broken fingerpost in Birchwood Road has been completely refurbished and reinstated. This restoration work cost £395 and was paid for from the bequest left to the council by Miss Janet Pawsey, a former resident of Howe Green Road.

 

Flooding has been a consistent theme during the year and we have submitted a list of flood prone areas in the parish to be incorporated within the Essex Highways Flooding Emergency Response Plan in the hope that they will be given priority when flood prevention measures are undertaken. The areas we identified were Maldon Road, (in the vicinity of Little Oaks and at its junction with Cold Norton Road); Roundbush Road, where we asked for an investigation into the repeated flooding of Briar Cottage and for the culvert under Barons Lane to be inspected, freed from obstruction, and preferably enlarged; and Chelmsford Road. Although the remedial works carried out in Chelmsford Road last year have greatly reduced the risk of flooding, we have asked for the culvert in Lodge Lane to be freed from any obstructions and for an investigation into the causes of the recent flood in Lodge Lane. We have also asked Essex County Council to take action to prevent further surface water flooding in Birchwood Road.

 

Given the recent spate of road traffic incidents in Maldon Road we have asked Traffic Management Officers to carry out a speed survey in Maldon Road between Glenworth and Thatchers Croft and we hope that a Community Speed Watch team will soon be deployed in the area, once volunteers have received the appropriate training. Essex County Council has also been asked to clear the roadside drains and repair the gully which has formed at the edge of the carriageway between Mayfair Industrial Estate and Deadaway Brook.

 

I am pleased to report that we were successful in getting the blocked drains cleared outside Cornlands in Hackmans Lane and that we have helped to secure considerable improvements to some of the parish’s Bridleways and Byways, including those in Mill Lane and Kent Wood. In response to a request from parishioners we have also made arrangements to have the paving stones on the greensward surrounding the post box in The Street regularly cleared of grass.

 

The Parish Council would like to take this opportunity to thank Mr. and Mrs. Challis for continuing to maintain the War Memorial garden so beautifully, Jim Ovel for all his work in the parish, Mrs. Dilworth for her work at the pavilion and the clerk for continuing to efficiently administer the work of the council.

 

Finally, it is my annual duty to report that the council has one employee, white, British who received training during the year. We are not able to detect any pattern of inequality arising from this data.

 

FINANCIAL MATTERS

 

During the period 1st April 2014 to 31st March 2015 the Parish Council’s income and investments amounted to £63,875.45 and in the same period it spent £37,885.38 on parishioners’ behalf. At 31st March 2015 the following monies were held:

 

General Fund:

Barclays Community (Current) Account £904.72

Barclays Business Premium Account £9,767.51

Petty Cash £50.00

Earmarked Reserves:

Historic Buildings Fund £8,760.97

Miss Pawsey’s Legacy £6,506.87

£25,990.07

 

 AUDIT OF ACCOUNTS FOR THE YEAR ENDING 31st MARCH 2015

 

To comply with the legal requirement to enable interested parties and local electors to exercise their rights with regard to the accounts, PKF Littlejohn have appointed 8th June 2015 as the date on or after which interested parties can exercise their rights under the Accounts and Audit (England) Regulations 2011.

 

The accounts will be available for inspection at The Shrubberies, 27 Anchor Reach, South Woodham Ferrers, between the hours of 10.00 a.m. and 3.00 p.m. on Mondays to Fridays (excluding public holidays) from 8th May to 5th June inclusive (by prior arrangement with the Clerk).

 

A copy of ‘Council’s Accounts: A Summary of Your Rights’ has been displayed on the Parish Council’s noticeboards, as required by the Audit Commission Act 1998.