Hempstead in Essex
Resting place of William Harvey and Sir Eliab Harvey and birthplace of Dick Turpin

Parish Council Minutes 11th October 2005

11th October 2005

The Council met in the Village Hall on Tuesday 11 October 2005 at 8.15pm



  • County Councillor Simon Walsh
  • PC Ryan McNamara
Also present:

  • District Councillor Mrs Sue Schneider

    A couple of minor amendments were noted to the prologue but the minutes were taken as read and signed as a correct record by the Chairman.


    from previous Minutes, not dealt with in the main agenda.

    • Path at Pond
      Miss Frost continues to look for a specialist contractor able to offer the use of different materials and will report back in due course. Mrs Midgley suggested Wiles Building & Surfacing Contractors in Sudbury.– Action DF

    • Ring of Trees
      A specialist is due to appraise the trees this week and provide a quote for pollarding. A local resident has offered to donate three hundred crocuses for this area. It was confirmed that any planting must remain outside the trees, on the banks. The problem of cars parking along the side of the Ring of Trees and eroding the verge was discussed. All were asked to find a suitable solution.– Action ALL

    • Clearing of Stream
      Mr Sladen and Mr McCarthy have surveyed the stream through the village and identified potential problems. Thirteen action items were listed and a working party has subsequently addressed most of these. There is also the stretch behind The Old Bakery and a further stretch near Moses Farm which need to be investigated – Mr Sladen will try to gain access as soon as practicable.– Action JS

    • Policing
      A further incident of anti-social behaviour has been reported to the police and it is understood the police took a statement from the victim. Pre-school have also voiced concerns and Mr Sladen has asked them to report all incidents to the Police as and when they happen.

    • Parish Plan / Village Appraisal
      Having just received some literature from RCCE, Mr McCarthy recapped on his presentation of what would be involved in completing a Village Appraisal. To accompany this he also presented the 1992 Hempstead Appraisal completed by Robin LeClerq. These documents will be circulated for all to read before the next meeting.– Action ALL

      Having outlined the two-year time scale estimated to complete the new appraisal, a discussion ensued to establish whether this was good use of the time and resources of those concerned. Miss Frost suggested that a report highlighting Parish Council achievements in the recent past, in particular the last year, and suggesting items that could be tackled by the Parish Council in the future might be an alternative. Such a document could be the foundation of that used at the Annual Assembly in 2006. Miss Frost was asked to start to create a first draft of such a report for discussion at the next meeting.– action ALL

    • Benches
      Mr Haylock agreed to look at all benches to consider repair/replacement and report back at the next meeting.– Action DH


    Various ideas were discussed and it was resolved that the prize money would be used to reinstate oak posts and chain around the Ring of Trees. Mr Haylock would consider suppliers and cost. Mr Thomas suggested McVeigh and Parker for chain.

    The possibility of fixing the Ruggles Brize trophy to the post of the village sign was discussed together with other locations.


    • Two letters from Uttlesford District Council relating to the new licensing laws were passed to Mr Sladen to pursue as necessary.– Action DH
    • RCCE had sent an invitation to a function on 11 November to celebrate their 50th Anniversary. Those wishing to attend need to advise the clerk so a reply may be sent.– Action ALL
    • Saffron Walden & District Footpath Association requested an update of the footpath review. A reply had been sent giving the current situation and confirming that consultation continues.
    • Mr Ewer had written to a resident stating that the footpath and bridleway through his property would remain permissive. Miss Frost will review this matter.– Action DF

    Mr McCarthy has written a letter to Cllr Bass stating the case for inclusion of our footway scheme in the LTP2 budget. Copies of this letter and enclosure were also sent to Sir Alan Haselhurst MP, Cllr Walsh and Mr Paul Hardy. Acknowledgement had been received from Sir Alan Haselhurst’s office. Mr McCarthy has asked Cllr Schneider to ascertain the date of the forthcoming LTP2 meeting. Cllr Schneider was also requested to ensure that the LDP committee had written to Essex County Council in support of the footpath scheme and to chase up answers to the three questions asked at the last Transport & Highways committee meeting.– Action SS

    Mrs Midgley presented a report following her attendance at the Road Safety Committee and highlighted that there had been 3 deaths on the roads in Uttlesford during the holiday period. The police are targeting drivers who were over the alcohol limit in the morning by breathalysing drivers pulled up for minor offences. Wimbish were applying for speed cushions near their school.

    Mr McCarthy and Mr Haylock were in the process of drawing up a list for submission to the Highways Department for the next Planned Parish Visit.– Action SM/DH


    Helen Philip needs to supply appropriate paperwork in order that reimbursement for the purchase of software manuals can be approved. The clerk will liaise accordingly.

    Miss Frost had received a request from the local Fire Officer to attach an A5 leaflet to the forthcoming newsletter offering free fire alarm checks.


    Mr Haylock reported that Gary White had stated that it was difficult to revise footpaths and most applications fail, often because landowners were unwilling to assist with the cost of these changes. Mr Haylock would contact Gordon Hands to ask for further communication with Gary White. A meeting of the sub-committee would then be arranged.– Action DH

    Following the Parish Council’s request for replacement of a missing way marker on footpath 29, Nigel Eley (West Area Highways Dept, Essex County Council) had visited site and has subsequently written to the Parish Council identifying a number of illegalities in respect of the path where it ran through Wood Cottages and Watendlath. Mr McCarthy has liaised with the owners of both properties and it is understood that Mr Eley will be having a meeting with them in due course. A number of issues were raised by Mr Eley, including the width of the path, which at 1 metre did not comply with the minimum 1.5 metres required. The Parish Council agreed to support the residents over the width of the path, particularly as it has only recently reopened. The Parish Council will also take this opportunity to remind Essex County Council of its responsibility to maintain field edge paths, none of which had been cut this year.


    The following accounts were presented for payment and cheques drawn up:

    The Gutter Press Newsletter Jun 04 – Jun 05 £248.05


    There was nothing for review


    Mr Sladen had placed the order for the sign and it was due soon.


    Mr McCarthy mentioned the Stop Stansted Expansion rally against night flights to be held on 24 October.


    • Mr Haylock requested attendance at 3 workshops being held by PPP to develop local skills. This was approved by the Council.
    • Miss Frost raised the possibility of the Parish Council being able to reimburse reasonable service costs to residents who use their own equipment (eg strimmers) when voluntarily participating in working parties and/or emergency assistance (eg in the case of floods). The clerk was asked to check the insurance implications of this suggestion. The matter was forwarded to the next meeting pending receipt of this information.– Action CD

The dates of the next meetings are 10 November, 8 December 2005 and 5 January 2006.

The meeting closed at 10.10pm.