QUARTERLY REPORT FOR THE PERIOD
1st APRIL 2017 — 30th JUNE 2017
Nigel Arthur (Chairman) Birch House, Maldon Rd, Latchingdon.
Tel: 01621 744523
Graham Rayner 5, Hawkins Close, Cock Clarks, Purleigh.
Tel: 01621 828117
Colin Ash Gardeners Cottage, Spar Lane, Purleigh
Tel: 01621 827055
Steven Bardwell Brooklea, Cold Norton Road, Latchingdon.
Tel: 01621 740234
Brian Oliver Cosy Nook, Chelmsford Rd, Purleigh.
Tel: 01621 828433
Steven Potter Lower Barn Farm, Roundbush Rd, Purleigh.
Tel 01621 828270
Gavin Strathern Spar Hill Farm, Chelmsford Rd, Purleigh
Tel: 07702 322203
Jane Potter 27 Anchor Reach, South Woodham Ferrers. CM3 5GS
Tel: 01245 320426
CHAIRMAN’S OVERVIEW OF THE QUARTER
As required by law, the May meeting of the Parish Council began with the election of the Chairman and appointment of the Vice Chairman. Before making these appointments the Parish Council thanked Gavin Strathern for his skilful Chairmanship over the past two years after which I was elected Chairman and I am pleased to report that Graham Rayner agreed to act as Vice Chairman, in addition to agreeing to continue to represent the Parish Council, with Steven Bardwell, at meetings of the Dengie Hundred Group of Parish Councils. I am also grateful to Brian Oliver for continuing in his role as passenger transport representative, Colin Ash who has agreed to continue to inspect the Children’s Play Area every week, Steven Potter who remains a Trustee of the Purleigh Education Foundation, is our point of contact with the grass cutting contractor and groundsman, and also acts as bookings secretary for the pavilion and Gavin Strathern for continuing in his role as the Parish Council’s point of contact with Essex County Council in times of bad weather.
At the May meeting the Parish Council approved and signed the accounts for the period 1st April 2016 to 31st March 2017 which showed the Parish Council to have Net Assets in the sum of £32,172.10 at 31st March 2017 compared with £26,928.26 the previous year. This sum does however include an insurance settlement of over £10,000 which has been spent in this financial year on the new play equipment in the children’s play area. The accounts were then audited by our independent auditor, Mr. John Smith-Daye of Lambert Chapman, and then forwarded to Littlejohn LLP for external audit. Mr. Smith-Daye was satisfied that all regulatory requirements had been met and that the Parish Council’s accounts were accurate and transparent.
May is also the month when the Parish Council conducts its annual risk assessment and inspects its tree stock. The Parish Council is responsible for the care and management of trees on the playing field and common, in the closed churchyard (including those growing within Rigby’s Path), to the side of the war memorial and at the front of the allotment gardens in Chelmsford Road. We would greatly appreciate it if anyone notices any damage to these trees, or is concerned about their health, that they report their concerns to the Parish Council as soon as possible so that appropriate action can be taken. This year we also carried out a risk assessment in All Saints churchyard and inspected all the memorials.
I am pleased to report that the Children’s Play Area was professionally inspected on 26th April 2017 and was awarded an overall risk assessment of ‘Low’. The minor maintenance issues identified by the Inspector have been put in hand. The best news to report concerning the Children’s Play Area however is that, after seven months of closure due to vandalism, the area has re-opened complete with a new piece of equipment which incorporates a log rope traverse, weaver, parallel ropes, traverse wall and step logs. We really hope that it will be well used and enjoyed for many years to come. A positive outcome of the damage is that a new organisation has been formed in the parish the 'Purleigh Community Fund' whose aim going forward is to regenerate the play area in conjunction with the Parish Council to enhance the landscape of Purleigh and create a community asset to be proud of. It is very much hoped that by getting more parishioners and their children involved in this project vandals will be deterred. In June we also carried out further repairs to the pavilion and more maintenance to the outside of the building has been put in hand.
Highways, as usual have taken up a significant amount of Parish Council time. In addition to the routine reporting of pot holes and damaged road signs the Parish Council has requested a speed survey in Hackmans Lane and continues to support proposals from residents for some parking restrictions in The Street on the bend opposite The Bell.
As you know, we hold a public session from 7.15 p.m. to 7.30 p.m. immediately before each monthly meeting, so if you have any issues about the parish you would like to discuss, please come along and talk to us. Members of the public are warmly welcomed at these sessions and to stay and listen to the rest of the meeting if they wish to do so.
During the period 1st April 2017 to 30th June 2017 the Parish Council’s income and investments amounted to £76,223.00 and in the same period it spent £11,562.76 on parishioners’ behalf. At 30th June 2017 the following monies were held:
|Barclays Community (Current) Account||£913.92|
|Barclays Business Premium Account||£38,269.03|
|Historic Buildings Fund||£8,768.69|
|Miss Pawsey’s Legacy||£16,658.60|
Income and Expenditure
During the year the greatest sources of income were the parish precept (£40,000) and income from the pavilion and playing field (£1,362.00). The precept requirement is calculated each January as part of an on-going budgeting process.
The Parish Council spent £1,482.03 during the quarter maintaining and improving the pavilion and playing field on behalf of parishioners. This sum included significant repairs to the floor inside the pavilion and the Parish Council spent an additional £1,960 on grass cutting in the parish. £2,646.06 was spent on general administration which included the insurance premiums for the year, the data protection registration fee, and affiliation to the National and Essex Associations of Local Councils who provide legal advice, updates on new legislation and training throughout the year.
The Parish Council was also pleased to give a grant to the table tennis club for £272.50 to pay for new tables and to reimburse POPHA £30 for its membership of Colchester Community Transport which provides subsidised travel to local venues for older parishioners.
Every month the Parish Council receives details of volunteering vacancies in the District. In July for example there were opportunities to become a telephone befriender, and get involved with Maldon CVS and a Maldon museum.
To find out about these vacancies please contact the Maldon & District Volunteer Centre on 01621 851891; E-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org, website:www.maldoncvs.org.uk or on twitter @maldoncvs. Details are also displayed on the Parish Council’s notice boards at Pump Corner or can be obtained from the clerk.
To hire the Wells Pavilion please contact Steven Potter on 01621 828270.
Occasional bookings for Purleigh residents cost £7.50 per hour, and regular bookings for local clubs and organisations cost £6.50 per hour.