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

Parish Council Minutes 4th October 2012

4th October 2012

The Parish Council met in the Village Hall on Thursday 4 October at 8.00 pm.



Before the meeting County Councillor Simon Walsh addressed the Parish Council. He reflected on the successful meeting of the Highways Panel (further details below) and said that he would continue to press for more money to be available for legal costs etc. It was important to press for the resources to complete the project.

Other issues, that he updated the council on, included the £11 million pothole repair programme using the new ‘jet’ system. This was progressing countywide. Speed limits were under review with possible extensions of 40 mph limits and 20 mph outside schools. The Parish Council hoped that this may eventually apply to extensions in the village to Blagdens, Hill Road to Radwinter as well as Anso Road.

The Adult Community Learning programme was now available, as well as free online and video-based courses through Essex Library Service.

Secondary School choices needed to be in by the end of October.

Councillor Walsh was thanked and left the meeting. The Chairman opened the Parish Council meeting at 8.30 pm

  1. MINUTES OF MEETING HELD ON 6 September 2012

    Two minor corrections were agreed and would be signed by the Chairman.


    There were none not covered elsewhere


    Community Achievement Form
    the Council congratulated Councillor Haylock on receipt of this award.

    Notification of assets
    There is now a requirement to register all assets of land etc. that might be considered of community value with the District Council to safeguard them for the future. The assets do not have to be owned by the Parish Council and can include the property of other parties. These may include churches, pubs, shops etc. Mr Weedon agreed to do the appropriate registration forms.

    Multi Agency Forum
    Miss Frost agreed to attend this meeting on 11 October

    Road Closures
    The Clerk notified the meeting of several road closures which are being displayed on the noticeboard.


    The view of the Church clock
    obscured by a large Ash tree. Mr Haylock agreed to look at this and clarify on whose land the tree is situated.


    Community Speedwatch
    the Community Speedwatch continues to be active. The Parish Council expressed their gratitude for the efforts of all concerned especially as the consensus view was that the campaign was having a positive effect on speeding, at least in the centre of the village. Reports were received from David Tupman and Tricia Ridgway. It was evident that there were some issues to be resolved at an imminent meeting.

    The possibility, as brought up in Miss Ridgway’s report, of conversion of the existing flashing speed signs to show actual speed was discussed. As the signs are not that old it was thought unlikely that they would be replaced. This would have to be an issue for the future after some of the more pressing road safety issues had been resolved.


    The Footway Project
    Four members of the Road Improvement Committee had attended the Highways Panel Meeting on 24th September. They were made to feel very welcome and the Chairman of the Parish Council was invited to address the meeting. He explained the situation and its history. The panel were very sympathetic and eventually agreed to allocate £50 000 out of this year’s remaining budget of £94 000 to progress the project. The plan is now to achieve a four foot wide tarmac footpath at a cost of £135 000. This does not include the cost of anything other than the path itself. Further funds would have to be found for telegraph pole moving etc. The Chairman was speaking to the Electricity authorities about the possibility of using their community funding for this.

    It was agreed that, whilst a very positive step had been taken forward, the momentum needed to be maintained. Contact with Rissa Long and Penny Channer would be a vital part of this. The Chairman agreed to contact them to discuss reparations to house holders amongst other issues. It would be helpful at this stage if it was possible to get an engineer to look at specific potential problem areas. Alan Weedon agreed to try to contact June Jones.

    Anso Road
    Work on the subsidence had been scheduled and it was hoped that it would be sooner than the end of the year that had been mentioned. There is still concern about the unsuitability of this road for large and heavy traffic and this would continue to be pursued.

    Highway Rangers
    It was expected that the Rangers would be doing some work in the village tomorrow. This included the 30 mph and village signs.

    Mr Drane was still pursuing these issues and was congratulated on his persistence.

    Both hedges, whose owners had been contacted, had been cut, albeit to a limited extent. The situation would be kept under review and the item retained on future agendas.


    The Draft Budget
    was discussed and agreed. As a consequence it was also agreed to raise the precept from £7800 to £8000. This modest 2.5% increase is only the second increase in 8 years.

    Cheques were signed as follows

    Ridgeons (Ivor Thomas) Wood for Owl Box £29.62
    Harry Luff : Path Cutting £227.10
    Audit Commission £162

    Speed Display Equipment The Road Improvement Committee had discussed the possible purchase of a speed display unit to be linked to the Radar Speed Gun. This would probably cost £695, and it was agreed that while this was a good idea, purchase may be contingent on receiving another New Homes Bonus. It is not yet clear if this money would be available next year. This would be discussed again when the end of the year financial situation is clearer.


    The Council was pleased to note that the Village and surrounds were experiencing less litter problems.


    There had been some duplication in the cutting of paths by the county and some left uncut, particularly those formerly cut by Mr Haylock. Miss Frost agreed to contact Robin Warburton.


    It was agreed that it would be good to have more Neighbourhood Watch information in the Newsletter with perhaps more up to date information on local incidents. Mrs Scott would be asked for some contributions.


    Boyntons – No comments deemed necessary on the slight changes.

    Fence at Little Orchard – had been reported to the Planning Department but no reply received thus far. The clerk would chase this.

    Hempstead Hall – The council were concerned about the drainage issues. Wash Cottage, Little Bulls Farm and the road had experienced flooding in times of heavy rain. The Clerk would inform the planning department of the Council’s objections to the swimming pond, highlighting these drainage problems.


    The AGM is to be held on 10 October

DATES OF FUTURE MEETINGS – Thursdays 8 November, 6 December and 10 January all at 8pm in the Village Hall.

The meeting closed at 9.30 pm