Biddenden Parish Council - Official Website

12th October 2004




Meetings 2004
13th January 2004
10th February 2004
9th March 2004
13th April 2004
11th May 2004
8th June 2004
13th July 2004
10th August 2004
14th September 2004
12th October 2004
9th November 2004
14th December 2004

These minutes are subject to approval at the meeting on November 9th 2004

Minutes of the meeting held in the Old Village Hall on  October 12th 2004


Cllr Mrs E Cansdale – Chairman                                               Cllr M Conway

Cllr Mrs G Scott – Vice Chairman                                            Cllr H Richards

Cllr Mrs U Ainscough                                                               Cllr J Rymer Jones

Cllr Mrs J Ashcroft                                                                   Cllr Mrs B Swain

Cllr Mrs R Ashton                                                                    Cllr P Whapham

Cllr R Brown

 Two parishioners were present.

 1   Cllr Rymer Jones made an addition to his entry in the members Register of Interests.

 2   In answer to a question from a parishioner Cllr Richards said the Jubilee Meadow was not available for dog walking as it was used for livestock grazing and childrens educational activities. The (larger) Millennium Field was available.


3   The minutes of the meeting on September 14th were approved (with one abstention) subject to item 5 Youth Club where the Church has agreed to help with a Youth Leader rather than “sponsor” one.


4   Referring to the minutes of the Council meeting on August 10th Cllr Richards reported that the severe cutting of the trees around the tennis courts had been arranged by the Tennis Club – not the Parish Council. The Club did, in fact, have a responsibility to keep them trimmed but the work was excessive. It was noted new growth was now occurring.


5   Post Office relocation.

The Council agreed that the Post Office Liaison Group should become a constituted committee of the Parish Council and report to the monthly council meetings.

Cllr Mrs Scott reported that a useful meeting had been held with Post Office management to clarify specifications for the proposed Post Office building. Mr Parsons is now drawing up plans based on this specification which will be considered by the Committee at its meeting on November 4th – to be reported to the Council on November 9th. The Committee hoped to seek planning permission from Ashford BC in November.


6   Speed signs.

It was noted the flashing sign on the Sissinghurst Road was now working but was in need of adjustment. Cllr Whapham asked that the fixed camera warning signs be re examined as they are, in his view, too large and badly placed (one obscures the speed limit sign!). Cllr Mrs Ashcroft would follow up with ABC.

It was noted that the £250 grant to purchase hand held speed cameras had been received. The Chairman said two more volunteers were required to use the equipment.




7   Parish Plan.

The Chairman closed the meeting to allow Mr Greensted to report. He said the questionnaire results had been passed to the Clerk who would copy to all councillors. A copy had also been forwarded to ABC for their comments. Perhaps, not surprisingly, the questionnaire results supported the findings of the earlier parish “wish list”.  Mr Greensted drew attention to the two public meetings scheduled for November 8th at 7.30 pm and 13th at 10.30 am in the Village Hall when the results could be discussed.


8  Reports from lead councillors.

Cllr Mrs Ainscough said she had read the “Planning for Minerals in Kent 2004-2021” report and there was no impact expected on Biddenden.

She had also attended a housing meeting when it was noted that the Cheeselands development should go ahead in 2005.

Regarding the “Training Highway” computer courses she asked whether the Council would support £240.87 expenditure on temporary (3 month) installation of Broadband in the village hall. The council agreed to do this subject to Mrs Ainscough checking that a cheaper alternative was not available.

Cllr Mrs Ashcroft agreed to follow up possible kerb lowering by The Weavers. It was noted that repairs are currently in hand to the High Street kerbs and pavement.

Cllr Mrs Cansdale was pleased to advise that four possible helpers had come forward for the Youth Club. There were no police matters to report.

Cllr Conway said he was still awaiting a response from ABC on funding and planning issues for “Village Gateways”.

Cllr Richards reported that the Millennium Field sign had been vandalised again and he suggested proposals for overcoming this problem with the sign remaining in situ. The Council agreed expenditure up to £750 subject to the MF & JM Committee supporting the proposals. It was noted that some information on those responsible was forthcoming.

Cllr Mrs Swain reported that the hedge around the childrens play area needed cutting and thistles needed removing. The clerk has asked Mr Sowery (mowing contractor) to consider doing this. She said the arrangements for Ashford Mayor to attend the Bonfire were in hand for November 5th.

Cllr Rymer Jones said he had attended a KAPC Area meeting on October 6th. One item of note was that funds were available for improving local footpaths. Also ABC has additional funds available for concurrent functions.

The next Parish Forum is on October 26th and Cllr Conway agreed to attend.

The next “council insert” for the Parish Magazine is required by November 1st and Cllrs Richards and Rymer Jones agreed to supply their profiles to the editor.

Cllr Whapham said he was aware of the footpath money (above) and would investigate further.


9     Planning. (see attached)


10   Finance.  (see attached)

The Clerk reported three minor queries from the Audit Commission on the 2003/4 Annual Return. The Council endorsed the Clerks response.

Cllr Mrs Scott commented that a Finance Committee meeting would be required in November to consider the 2005 budget.


11  Tennis Club.

The Chairman closed the meeting to allow Messrs Cobley (Chairman) and Crudgington to address the Council on their request for funds to resurface the courts.

They explained that they had monies available and had applied for grants but could still be £2000 - £3000 short of their total requirements of about £18000 to £20000.

Subject to the courts being available on a regulated basis to other than tennis users (eg the Youth Club) Cllr Conway proposed the Council make available up to £2000 to “top up” the Club requirements. This was seconded by Cllr Mrs Ashcroft and agreed by the Council.


12   Correspondence.

The following items were noted,

  • The Kent Rural Community Council is being renamed “Action with Communities in Rural Kent”.
  • A parishioners daughter had written to the Clerk concerning parking problems in Church View. The Clerk would respond.
  • A report on Kent Early Years Development & Childcare Partnership was tabled.
  • A consultation document on the Medway Catchment Area was tabled.


13  Next meeting. November 9th 2004.

Cllr Conway asked that Village Fete and Party Tents be considered at the meeting.



Graham Smith, Parish Clerk, October 13th 2004                       01622 890596


The Council considered the following planning items at its meeting on October 12th 2004


Decisions received from Ashford Borough Council


CO/04/00331   Access to land adjacent Old Curteis, Headcorn Road. Alleged breach of access conditions. (This is pipeline access)  Ashford Borough Council investigating.


TP/04/00111   Reduce spread and height of oak tree at 33 The Meadows.

                        Consent granted. (Explanation for decision given)


04/01375   Rogley Farm, Cranbrook Road. Addition of barn entrance. Refused.


04/01414   Rogers Hill, Cranbrook Road. First floor extension. Permission granted.


The Council considered the following,


04/01689   Folk Meadow, Tenterden Road. Shower room and bedroom in roof space.

            No objections.


04/01692   32 Mansion House Close. Conversion of garage to residential.

                  (A neighbour has raised an objection with ABC)

            Object. Insufficient off road parking would result.


04/01699  Ibornden Farm, Frittenden Road. Change of use from redundant agricultural to private sand school for riding.

            No objections.


04/01710   The Barn, Randolphs Farm, Sissinghurst Road. Conversion of barn to dwelling.

            No objections.



Biddenden Parish Council


The Council approved the following payments at its meeting on October 12th 2004


£269.10           J Mannouch, Lengthsman,Wages                                  501


£412.45           G Smith, Clerk, Salary                                      502


£140.00           Biddenden Club House – hire of village hall.                  503

                        (£50 – Youth Club; £56 – Parish Council; £34 – computer course)


£57.57             Solution Provider – provision of Council website           504


£35.93             Staples – Stationery                                                      505


£45.00             BEST – Advert in Bonfire programme               506


£42.77             G Smith for advert in Wealden Advertiser for Lengthsman         507


£35.00             Subscription to Farming & Wildlife Advisory Group      508

                        (We also subscribed in 2003/4)


£634.33           Inland Revenue – Tax and NI for Aug/Sept/October                 509


£80.00             A J Sowery.     Mowing for September                         510



The following monies have been received,


£16,224.48      ABC. Second half precept


£180.64           Reserve Account interest for previous 6 months


£1013.58         From Drummond Randall’s railway Open Day for M Field &JM*


£100.00           From C McKinnon for upkeep of Village Green*


£20.00             Anonymous towards M Field & J Meadow.



*Letters of thanks written






In answer to a query from Cllr Rymer Jones the outstanding loan to the PWLB for the purchase of the Millennium Field and Jubilee Meadow was £73,510 as at 16.7.04