Minutes July 2020

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Minutes of the Parish Council Meeting held on 8 July 2020

Via Zoom commencing 7.30pm.


Councillor S Shelley               Chairman

Councillor Rosemary Wildblood

Councillor C Capjon

Councillor Hugo Wildblood


Clerk:  Mrs T Gould


Questions from Members of the Public – see 20/008/1 below.


20/001             Apologies        Councillors R Harris and A Hudson.


20/002             Declarations of Interest

20/002.1          There were no declarations of interest.


20/003             Virtual Meeting Policy

                        The Chairman welcomed everyone to this first virtual meeting and requested that Members                         agree to the Virtual Meeting Policy (a copy of which had been circulated to Members).

20/003.1          RESOLVED: That the Virtual Meeting Policy be accepted.


20/004             Minutes

20/004.1          RESOLVED: that the minutes of the Parish Council meeting on 11 March 2020

be signed by the Chairman.


20/005             Finance                      

20/005.1          Financial Statements and Bank Reconciliation statements for April and May and the                                 bank reconciliation for June 2020 (forwarded by email to Members) were presented by the                         Clerk.  The following invoices had been approved during the lockdown period:

20/005.1.1       21st Century Glaziers – £149.52 (Re-glazing of Burston Noticeboard) – (reference Minute   

20/005.1.2       Clerk’s Salary – £414.04.

20/005.1.3       Reimbursement to Clerk for payment to HMRC £95.00.

20/005.1.4       Howards Ltd (Payroll Services) – 2019-20 £108.00.

20/005.1.5       Roe Contractors Limited – £600.

20/005.1.6       BHIB Ltd – £556.44 (Insurance)

20/005.1.7       Howards Ltd – £60 (Enrolment including submission re Declaration of Compliance with                           The Pensions Regulator).

20/005.1.8       Hands & Co (Internal Auditor) – £55.

20/005.1.9       T W Storey – Replacement of Stocks – T W Storey (Sandon Garden Products) £100 (Ref                         July 2019 Minute

20/005.1.10     Clerk’s Pay £412.01 (including expenses) and Payment to HMRC £95.00

20/005.2          TW Storey (Sandon Garden Products) Fitting of Berrisford bench and slabs – £550.

                        The Chairman updated on the condition of Berrisford Road bench.  Three                                      quotes had been obtained and Councillors had agreed by email to order a replacement                               bench from Mr Storey.  The Bench had been replaced and refitted.

The Clerk proposed that £400 be allocated to bench maintenance from unallocated funds to                         pay for the Berrisford bench and to cover any potential future bench maintenance costs.                            The Clerk stated that the Fixed Asset Register would be amended to reflect these changes.

20/005.2.1       RESOLVED: To allocate £400 to Allocated Funds – Bench Maintenance from                                         Unallocated Funds.

20/    To pay the invoice (T W Storey) for the replacement of the Berrisford Bench – £550.

20/005.2.2       The Hilderstone Road bench also needed refurbishment.  Mr Storey had undertook this                            work and refitted the bench at no cost to the Parish Council.

20/    RESOLVED: The Chairman to write a letter of thanks to Mr. Storey.                                           

20/005.3          End of Year Accounts                     

20/005.3.1       Internal Audit Report – audit completed 5 June 2020 and circulated to Members.  The                              content of the report was noted, and actions would be taken to address the points raised.

20/005.3.2       External Audit Form – Internal Audit Section completed and signed by Internal                                        Auditor.

20/005.3.3       Annual External Audit Accounts Statement, Annual Governance Statement and                                        Certificate of Exemption (Signing of documents by Chairman/Responsible Financial                                 Officer).

20/    RESOLVED: That the Governance Statement be signed by the Chairman following                                signature by the Clerk.

20/    RESOLVED: That the Accounts Statement be signed by the Chairman following                                    signature by the Clerk.

20/    RESOLVED: That the Chairman and Clerk sign the Certificate of Exemption certifying                         that the Parish Council finances for the year ending March 2020 did not exceed £25,000                           for either Income or Expenditure and that the other criteria were met.  The required                                   information to be published on the website before 1 September 2020.

20/005.4          Financial Internal Audit Calendar and Event Diary.  Issue 3.  6th April 2017

20/005.4.1       Continued adoption. Audit control procedures were in place and were considered                                     adequate and proportionate to address the issues raised by the risk assessment.

20/005.5          Accident Risk and Financial Risk Assessments.  Issue 6.  6 April 2017 – adopted.

Safety checks would be undertaken in the next four weeks on the two benches at Burston                         Pool.   Safety checks had been undertaken as follows:

20/005.5.1       The condition of the Berrisford Bench had deteriorated and had been replaced.

The Hilderstone Road bench was not in good order and had been replaced.

The two noticeboards were in good order.

The flagpole was in good order.

The Stocks in Stocks Lane had been replaced.

Burston Car Park had been resurfaced.

The two Bus Shelters were in good order but needing cleaning.

The flagpole is in good order.

20/005.5.2       Audit Calendar/Event diary – Issue 3 6 April 2017, continued adoption.

20/    Audit control procedures were in place were considered adequate and proportionate                                  to address the issues raised by the risk assessment.

20/    Independent audit completed on 5 June 2020 by Hands & Co.  Report circulated to                                  Member Councillors.


20/006             Report from County Councillor – not present.


20/007             Report from District Councillor – not present.


20/008             Items Raised by Member Councillors/Clerk

20/008.1          Formal Complaint received dated 8 May 20120 from Mr D Barrett re Burston                                            Pond – Fishing Rights.  The Clerk read out a formal complaint that had been received                               from Mr Barrett.

20/008.1.1       RESOLVED: The Chairman to write to Stafford Borough Council raising Mr. Barrett’s                           concerns and asking for an update on the lease with the Fishing Club.

20/008.2          Members asked for confirmation that there was still a Parish Council vacancy.

RESOLVED: The Chairman/Clerk to take forward suggestions put forward by Members                         to address the vacancy.

20/008.3          A Highways and Planning update had been forwarded to Members.

20/008.3.1       The Railway Bridge Fence had now been repaired and would be removed from the agenda                         going forward.

20/008.3.2       Dog and Doublet junction markings – three No Entry Signs are now in place.

20/008.3.3       Burston Grid – no further update.  Email sent to County Highways 2 July                                      requesting an update.

20/008.3.4       Footpath 36.  Burston Pool to Canal Bridge.  A further temporary closure was                                           issued at the end of May.  The footpath has continued to erode.  The County                                             Council have asked the Parish Council if they are prepared to make a financial                                           contribution to repairs when a scheme is determined.

20/    RESOLVED: The Parish Council approved in principle to make a financial contribution               towards the cost of improvement to Footpath 36 but requested more detail of the plans.                            Councillors made suggestions as to other funding streams and it was agreed to feed these                         back to Staffordshire County Council.

20/008.3.5       Sandon Gateways – no further update.

20/008.3.6       Clearing vegetation from footpaths on A51 and Hilderstone Road – no further                                          update.

20/008.3.7       Road signs obscured by hedges and those requiring a clean – Chairman to                                                  address this issue.


20/009             Correspondence

20/009.1          Staffordshire County Council – weekly email updates forwarded to Councillors.

20/009.2          Stafford Borough Council – updates forwarded to Councillors.

20/009.3          Staffordshire Parish Councillors Association – weekly updates forwarded to                                              Councillors.  Training dates forwarded to Councillors.


20/010             Date of Next Meeting: Wednesday 12 August, Sandon Parish Room (venue to be                                    confirmed).


20.011             Dates of Meeting 2020-2021 – dates circulated for information.


The meeting concluded at 8.10 p.m.