Biddenden Parish Council - Official Website

13th July 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 to be held on August 10th 2004

Minutes of the meeting held in the Old Village Hall on July 13th 2004


Cllr Mrs E Cansdale – Chairman                                               Cllr R Brown

Cllr Mrs G Scott – Vice Chairman                                            Cllr M Conway

Cllr Mrs U Ainscough                                                               Cllr H Richards

Cllr Mrs J Ashcroft                                                                   Cllr J Rymer Jones

Cllr Mrs R Ashton                                                                    Cllr Mrs B Swain

Apology from Cllr P Whapham

Cllr N Bell, Ashford Borough Council, attended

 Two parishioners were present.

1   There were no alterations to members Register of Interests

2   There were no points raised by parishioners present

3   The minutes of the meeting held on June 8th were approved and signed by the Chairman.

 4   Matters arising

Youth Club

Cllr Mrs Ashton reported that there had been some minor trouble from several youths who came to the hall on an evening the Club was not due to meet. There had been some rudeness to the booked hall users and some pilfering of Club refreshments.

Mrs Ashton also reported that no parents had come forward to offer help running the Club from next season despite a note sent home via Club participants.

The problem would be discussed with the Club leader –Anthony Hadfield. He would be asked by Mrs Cansdale to come to the August meeting of the Council.(Since done)

Mrs Ashton also agreed to see that adverts were placed in the August and September editions of the Parish Magazine for parents to help run the Club.

Speed signs

Cllr Richards clarified the difference between speed “signs” and “notices”. Signs are fixed and need to adhere to government traffic regulations as to their positioning. Notices are temporary and mobile and can be placed in any sensible location – with Police advice and permission. The Council could therefore purchase flashing speed notices for use at approved sites around the village but fixed signs as on the Sissinghurst Road would not be allowed on the Tenterden and Headcorn roads.

The Chairman has investigated the use of hand held cameras for speed monitoring in the village and has applied for a £300 grant to purchase the equipment. Six volunteers and a collator would be needed to use the equipment (not all at once) and some had already approached the Chairman to help. They would all need Police training.

The Council agreed to fund the £300 necessary if a grant was not forthcoming.


Cllr Conway reported that Council inserts in four Parish Church magazines per annum would cost £800. He felt that something “more modern” was required and he and Cllrs Mrs Ainscough and Rymer Jones would meet J Betts (the magazine editor) to discuss the way forward. A report would be made to the August meeting. (Subsequent to the meeting Cllr Rymer Jones prepared the attached paper.)

 Village Gateways

Cllr Conway was still investigating the possibilities but initial examination indicated costs could be high. Cllr Bell said he would help as required.

In discussion the plethora of signs around the parish was mentioned and it was agreed an “audit” was required so that some rationalisation could be suggested.

Post Office

Cllr Mrs Scott said she had little to report at this time except to say that some initial drawings were in hand. She would ask Mr Carter (Post Office) to come to the August meeting to explain options of ownership in the provision of a Post Office.

Mrs Scott also mentioned that an initial scrutiny of Parish Plan questionnaires had shown overwhelming support for retention of a Post Office.

 5   Ashford Borough Council Report – Cllr N Bell

Cllr Bell reported three topics,

  • There was a possibility that ABC may offer the ownership and hence management of the village car park to the Parish Council. Cllr Bell asked if the Council would carefully consider this possibility.
  • The Government Spending Review visualised Council Tax rises in the order of 6.7%, 5.5% and 5.1% over the next three years.
  • Local Needs Housing was subject to a review and would the Parish Council respond to the review paper in the requested timescale. (The Chairman has the Review Paper.)


6  Reports from councillors

Cllr Mrs Ainscough was awaiting more information on the possibility of a “free” parish guide.

Cllr Mrs Ashcroft had received some reports of overgrown hedges fouling pavements and would write to the owners concerned.

Cllr Mrs Cansdale reminded councillors of the need to maintain the playground inspection book to meet our audit and insurance obligations and Cllr Mrs Swain would assist with this.(Cllr Richards had the repair of a drop post leading to the playing fields in hand)

Mrs Cansdale also reported that newts and other protected species had been found on the site of the proposed local needs housing scheme. DeFRA would advise on action to take.

Cllr Richards reported that the next Millennium Field and Jubilee Meadow meeting would be on July 27th. Cllr Richards would also check that our Stewardship agreement with DeFRA was now in the current Chairmans name rather than as originally with Mr T Richards.

In answer to a question from Cllr Rymer Jones, Cllr Richards explained the mowing/grazing rotation on the Jubilee Meadow.

Cllrs Mrs Ashton, Rymer Jones, Mrs Scott and Mrs Swain had nothing further to report beyond other items in these minutes.

 7   Parish Plan

The Chairman closed the meeting and asked Mr Greensted to update the Council.

He said all questionnaires had been circulated and many had already been returned. An initial scrutiny shows that the village is very supportive of,

  • Retention of the Post Office
  • The Council policy on securing open spaces for the village
  • Traffic calming/speed reduction schemes
  • A Youth Centre

Initial results should be available by August and final analysis by September.

Ashford Borough Council had given a grant of £1000 towards the Plan and further grants were possible. Cllr Bell had helped secure these grants.

The village school were undertaking a “perfect village” project in the Autumn term.

A further village meeting would be held in October to explain the Plan results.

 The Chairman then reopened the meeting.

 8   Planning – see below

Cllrs Brown, Rymer Jones and Mrs Scott would assist the Chairman for the coming month.


9   Finance – see below

Cllrs Mrs Scott raised two points on the circulated budget spend to date and queried what they were,

  • £91.61 miscellaneous expenditure is the net cost of printing Parish Plan meeting invitation tickets and ABC fee for consideration of parish councillors allowances (this fee applies to all parish councils)
  • £283.50 miscellaneous income is a Forestry Commission grant for woodland maintenance.

The Council approved a quote from  T Turness-Pearson of Biddenden for painting and restoration of the village sign in the sum of £250.


10 Correspondence

Various items were noted:

  • Revised Planning Guidance information received from government was passed to Cllr Mrs Scott for scrutiny.
  • Local Needs Housing Review was passed to the Chairman for consideration
  • A letter had been received from “Images of England” (part of English Heritage) to say that photographs of listed buildings could be withheld, on written request, from their public website.
  • A Commission for Integrated Transport report on the bus industry had been received.
  • Kent Fire Service plan for 2004/5 was tabled.
  • The Biddenden Consolidated Charity accounts had been received.
  • Mid & S Kent Council for Voluntary Service newsletter had been received.


11 Other items

 The Chairman asked the clerk to write and thank Mr/Mrs Watson re watering the war memorial plants and Mr/Mrs Frost re cleaning paint from the bus shelter.(Since done)

The PCC has also thanked the Parish Council Chairman for her work in replanting the war memorial garden.

Broadband would be operative in Biddenden from July 28th.

Cllr Conway asked if the Squash Club could remove its accumulated rubbish and replace its worn out dustbins.

It was noted that the clerk was not available for the September Council meeting and Cllr Mrs Ashcroft agreed to take the minutes.


12  Next meeting

August 10th 2004          The meeting closed at 9.15 pm.


Graham Smith, Parish Clerk, July 16th 2004                  01622 890596


Planning items considered at the meeting on July 13th 2004

Decisions received from Ashford Borough Council:

 03/00595  1&2 The Old Workhouse. Two pitched dormers to front elevation, (Retrospective)  Consent granted. 

04/00547  Broadoaks, Fosten Lane.  Relocation of access and provision of stable.            Permission granted.

0400712  74 North Street. Removal of hedge and erection of fence and gate. Refused.

04/00740   Dashmonden Court, Tenterden Rd. Provision of detached double garage     and store. Permission granted.

04/00744 & 745  Weeksland Farmhouse, Weeks Lane. Extension and internal alterations. Permission granted.

04/00752 & 753  Weeksland Farmhouse, Weeks Lane. Dormer windows to front and attic alterations. Permission granted.

04/00769  Court Reed Farmhouse, High Halden Road. Extension.

            Permission granted.

04/00809  Woodland, Cot Lane. Single storey side extension and loft conversion.

            Permission granted.

04/00817  Weeksland Farmhouse, Weeks Lane.  Replacement conservatory.

            Consent granted.

04/00956  Rogley lodge, Cranbrook Rd. Two storey extension. Permission granted.

04/00981  Chart Hills Golf Club, Weeks Lane. Erection of 3 flag poles.

            Advertisement consent granted.


The creation of fishing ponds at Green Acres, Sissinghurst Rd. and sale of fish and chips at Honeybee Farm, Headcorn Rd. have both been advised by ABC that they need to apply for Planning Permission.


The following decisions were taken by the PC Planning Committee of Cllrs Mrs Cansdale, Ainscough, Ashcroft and Ashton: 

04/00958  Medhurst Barn, Cranbrook Rd. Change of land use for one mobile home and one touring caravan. Object.

04/00959  Chart Hills Golf Club, Weeks Lane. Raised deck viewing terrace.  No Objections.

04/01047  6 High Street. Replace two existing windows and decorate. No objections.

04/01079  Standen Barn, Smarden Road.  Single storey extension etc. No objections but would wish restriction placed on potential change of use of garages.

04/01149  Forgefield House, North Street. Rear extension. No objections.

The Council approved the following payments at its meeting on July 13th 2004

£269.14           J Mannouch, Lengthsman, Wages         473

£412.42           G Smith, Clerk, Salary              474

£30.00             Kent County Training Partnership (“Quality” course for clerk)  475

£162.00           Biddenden Club House. Hire of Village Hall. (£102 PC meetings, £60   Youth Club)     476

£25.00             Donation to Citizens Advice Bureau      477

£391.60           Mid Kent Water. Gordon Jones Field rate 6 months to June 8th.  478

£52.82             Staples, stationery                                 479

£180.00           Commercial Mowing Services. Mowing for May 2004         480

£150.00           All Saints Church, Biddenden. Additional pages for PC in Church Magazine      481

£100.00           Mr John Betts. Honorarium for editing newsletter in above                482

£447.88           Sue Boon Contractors. Plants for Village Green                               483

£366.00           Chart Hills Golf Club. Parish Plan public meeting June 16th.      484

£634.11           Inland Revenue. Tax and NI. May – July                                          485

£100.00           G Smith. Imprest account ie expenses                                  486

£438.30           Printing at Cranbrook. Parish Plan questionnaires.                            487

£3235.37         Direct Debit on July16th to Public Works Loan Board.

                        (Millennium Field and Jubilee Meadow repayments)

The 2003/4 Parish Council accounts were audited by our Internal Auditor on July 7th and were approved for forwarding to the Audit Commission. The Internal auditor will submit his report shortly but he had only minor comments.

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