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Langham Parish Council


Draft Minutes of the meeting held on 27th January 2009


1          Attendance and Apologies for Absence


Cllr. W. Durlacher       Acting Chairman

Cllr. C. Garnett            Borough Councillor

Cllr. A. Ellis

Cllr. A. Stacey

Cllr. M. Bottwood


Also present were Mrs Kimberley, The Kelly family, County Councillor Clover, a member of Dedham Parish Council, the guest speaker Beverly Davies and Mr. D. Winter, Clerk to the Council


Apologies were received from Cllr. E. Schofield, who was unwell, and Cllr. R. Watson who was not able to attend.


2          Declarations of Interest


There were no declarations of interest.


3          Beverly Davies spoke on the Community Initiative Fund (CIF) and Grants in General


Beverly Davies explained the history of the CIF and hoped there would be at least another 4 rounds. This could not be guaranteed until after the June elections. The end of September was likely to be the deadline for applications, with judging panels in December. A list of additional grant sources had been supplied to the Parish Clerk by e-mail.


After this item, County Councillor Clover, the member of Dedham Parish Council, and Beverly Davies left the meeting.


4          Eco-friendly House on Old Mill Road


Cllr. Garnett pointed out this was an exceptional application which would be dealt with by Colchester Borough Council. The CBC planning committee might choose to make a site visit to which the Kelly family and the Parish Councillors would be able to attend.


After this item, the Kelly family left the meeting.


5          Minutes of the Meeting held on 25th November 2008


Cllr. Bottwood proposed and Cllr. Stacey seconded that the minutes be agreed as accurate. This was accepted unanimously and Cllr. Durlacher signed the minutes.


6          Matters Arising from the Meeting of 25th November 2008


Any items where action is carried forward are shown in the minutes.





Action By



Community Council Smoke Alarm Quotes 

The Clerk was asked to investigate obtaining two additional quotations. Rob Clark was to be thanked for all his work on this project.           

David Winter

This was investigated and it was agreed in the circumstances to proceed with the work. However, in future every effort must be made to obtain three written quotations.


Amendments to Proposed Community Centre Work

It was agreed the Clerk would write to the Community Council Chairman to express the concern of a member of the public that the amendments would not be to the detriment of the overall plan for improvements.          

David Winter



Road signs around the Lodge Lane area.

Cllr. Garnett agreed to visit Mr. Hardie to see the extent of the problem.

Cllr. Garnett

Cllr. Garnett has checked the site and had left an invitation for Mr. Hardie to discuss the problem.


Hedges overhanging the pavement approaching Agrimix

This problem was investigated and the Clerk was asked to contact the owners of the site, thought to be Palmer Brothers, and to inform Mr. Maplestone for ECC.

David Winter

See item 11.

6.2 (a)

Essex County Highways Visit

Cllr. Stacey agreed to put the questions made by residents, excluding the names of the questioners, and the answers received on the village web site.

Cllr. Stacey


6.2 (a

Essex County Highways Visit

The Clerk was asked to contact Mr Harris to check the legal position regarding positioning rocks, cutting hedges and notices placed at the side of the highways..

David Winter

See item 11.

6.4 (b)

Parish Plan

The meeting is to be held in the club room downstairs on 7th February 2009 for a drop in session from about 10 a.m. to noon. There will be a notice placed on the web site.

Councillors to be asked to attend meetings of individual organisations


The Clerk was asked to book the room.






Cllr. Stacey

Cllr. Watson



David Winter









Done 3/12/2008

6.4 (c)

Postal Scam

The Clerk was asked to contact Brian Hindley of Neighbourhood Watch to check the accuracy of the details.


David Winter


This was a high cost number. Brian Hindley said the details we had were not quite accurate but the number had now been blocked.

6.5 (b)

Rubbish at Rayners Court

Cllr. Garnett has organised the removal of this. However, the Chairman and Clerk are to write to and visit the tenants to ensure they understand they have to organise their own rubbish removal in future.


Cllr. Schofield and David Winter


Tenants have been contacted


Community Council    

Cllr. Durlacher proposed and Cllr. Watson seconded the motion that the Council donate a £20 raffle prize for the dance in aid of Community Council funds on 13th December


David Winter



6.7 (d)

Grant Sources

Beverley Davies is to be invited to our January meeting to speak on this topic.



David Winter



Done and attended.



Cllr Stacey reported that the route of Footpath 31 south from School Road had been partially cleared by the CC. He will contact Mary Moir re the position for complete clearance and re-opening. Footpath 25 needs restoration and Mr John Rix will be contacted.

Cllr. Stacey



Youth Activities in General

There will be a section addressing this at the Parish Plan meeting of 7th February, manned by young people. The publicity for this is to be organised by the Chairman

Cllr. Schofield

Illness has prevented this from happening.





Operator’s Licences at School Farm Buildings           

As a continuation of the “meet and greet” exercise at Lodge Lane, the Clerk will arrange a meeting for Cllrs. Durlacher, Ellis and Bottwood, and any other interested Councillors, with Mr. Whitnell.

David Winter



The Clerk met Mr Whitnell who seemed reluctant to meet the Councillors. Cllr. Bottwood was given the information to be able to discuss this with him if wished.


Powerplus Engineering

Letter to be sent to Mr. Elmer

David Winter


Done but not to his satisfaction. His response has been circulated as part of correspondence item 4.


ECC to be asked to monitor HGV movements.

David Winter


See item 11.




Cllr. Garnett and the Clerk were to discuss the letter received from en-form.


David Winter


En-form asked if they were interested in speaking at our Parish Meeting, but has not yet replied.


Land Registration

The Clerk was asked to check what land the Council owns, with help from Mrs Smerdon, and to check the costs of registering it.

David Winter

See item 11.


Lettice Dyke

The Clerk was to arrange a Country Dance for 24th January 2009.

David Winter



Lettice Dyke

Cards and/or a calendar are to be investigated.

Cllr. Stacey


 Examples were shown and will await Cllr. Schofields return.


Lettice Dyke

Use of a second web site with paid for advertisements as at Rayne is to be investigated.

Cllr. Bottwood

No further action.


Lettice Dyke

Closing Thomas Love is to be investigated.

David Winter

See item 11.


Receipts and Payments

Once the financial turmoil has died down, the Council should consider putting more money into higher interest bearing accounts.

Cllr. Watson and David Winter

See item 12.



7          Residents Questions.


Mrs. Kimberley reported the dreadful state of School Road.


8       Reports to the Council.


8.1       Planning                      


Cllr. Ellis provided the planning report for December 2008 and January 2009.




Application No 081813 - Land Adjacent to Jeveck, Chapel Road, Langham – REFUSE

Application No 081818 – Jeveck, Chapel Road – Proposed poolside changing rooms – APPROVE

Application No 082008 – Fairlight, Moor Road – Certificate of Lawful Use or Development - GRANTED

Application No 081991 – Nightingale Farm, Nightingale Hill - Loft Conversion - APPROVE

Application No 082024 – Jeveck, Chapel Road – Retention of Existing Staircase - APPROVE




Application No 081813 – Land Adjacent to Jeveck, Chapel Road, Langham - APPEAL




Application no. 081991 – Nightingale Farm, Nightingale Hill


We note that this application is for renewal of existing approval given in 1998. We have some concern at the size of the conversion and its impact on the view from public places, namely Footpaths 20 and 22 and the highway. Other than these concerns, we have no objections.


Application no. 081998 – Glebe House, Rectory Road


This application clearly seeks to upgrade and refurbish the existing storage facility in the former listed Coach House. This seems a necessary and desirable aim and the Parish Council has no objections.


Application no. 082008 – Fairlight, Moor Road


This application appears to be framed more as a normal application for planning approval than a Certificate of Lawfulness and we wonder why this is presented as a request for a Certificate of Lawfulness. The property footprint will change but there will be no change in height. Other than these comments we have no objections.


Application no. 082015 – 2, Perry Lane


We note that neighbouring dwellings are substantial and it is possible that the building line will be moved forward, in keeping with the neighbouring properties. Other than this observation, we have no reason to oppose this application.


Application no. 082024 – Jeveck, Chapel Road


This is a second application and we note that pre-application advice has been taken. In this case, we have no objections.


Application no. 082138 – Wick Lea, Wick Road


We are concerned at the size and scope of the proposed extension to this property and that it would be out of character with the neighbouring properties. We also note that the Block Plan indicates “Existing garages with accommodation over”. The Parish Council is unaware of any planning application for this particular development. Accordingly, whilst we see no valid reasons for objection, we consider that any planning approval for the current application should be deferred until all outstanding permissions have been obtained.


The clerk was to write to the planning department to ask for copies of all planning applications and recommendations that were applicable to School Farm Buildings. It is important to ensure all companies operating on the site do so with planning permission.

                                               Action – David Winter


8.2       Roads and Transport


The really good news is that the footway on the north side of School Road will actually be constructed in early March. It has taken rather longer than I had hoped, but at least it is happening. It has been suggested that it should be accompanied by a pedestrian crossing and a 20mph limit outside the school. The head is quite keen on the latter. Personally, I would have thought the former more useful. Could I have your views on both please?                                                                                                                                                      Action – All Councillors


Councillor Bottwood and I are meeting Ray Smith of ECC Highways on 29 Jan to discuss the results of the speed exercise on Langham Lane and Park Road and to press for a 40mph limit on Park Lane. We shall take the opportunity to discuss other issues, such as vehicle operated speed signs in Wick Road and School Road. I also want to try out on him the idea of using a small piece of Homestead land at the junction of School Lane and School Road as a parking area for parents delivering children to school.


The clerk was asked to write to Essex County Council Highways to remind them that the increased use of Park Lane and Langham Lane by HGVs is damaging the road surface and the edge of the roads, in some cases undoing the good work done on recent repairs.                                                                                    Action – David Winter


8.3       Recreation Ground

At the recent meeting of the Recreation ground committee meeting grants to various organisations that helped at the bonfire night were agreed. Having cleared the ditch on the western side of the recreation ground, the rabbit ferreter was asked to try to reduce the number of rabbits.


8.4       General Purposes       


The Village Development Committee had its first meeting on 6 Jan. It was a good meeting with lots of ideas. Many of them hinge on the Community Centre. Given this and our increasing role in buying for them, I think that the earlier we meet their management the better. I mentioned this to Allan Cadman at the photo shoot and he did not dissent.


The Parish Plan meeting is on 7 Feb between 10 and 12. It will take the form of asking people to put down their ideas in a short form and securing as many names and email addresses, telephone numbers as we can. Please encourage all those you know to attend.


I have had a session with Class 4 at school. They have some ideas for development of the recreation area which will be useful.


Finally, the judges for the regional round of the Village of the year will be with us on April 3. I have alerted all those who played a part in our previous presentation. My own view is that we do something very similar, but you may wish to discuss this. There is £2000 at stake, so it is worth putting on the thinking caps! With any luck we shall have the Langham Heritage Society up and running by then (Simon is leading on this.) The other area we do need to beef up is the web site. At present it doesn't make the most of all the organisations and what they do - not Andrew's fault, he can only work with what he is given. Could we all have words with those we know who could provide material. I will take on the WI, the Reading Group and the Art/craft club.


8.5       Housing


The recent inspection defined work that needed to be done

  • On the property next to Rayners Court

  • To solve damp problems in Rayners Court

  • To replace a 40 year old kitchen.


8.6       Community Council    


They had met but Cllr. Schofield was unable to attend.


8.7       Ward Councillor          


(a)     Section 106 Money due to Langham


When the new house was built at the top of Grove Hill, Langham Parish Council will be entitled to £3,034 to be used for a recreational or leisure project.


(b)       A12 Junction and Cuckoo Farm Park and Ride


There seems to be an increased chance of funding for this in the next year..


(c)        Colchester Site Allocation


The CBC has rejected the possibility of a park and ride scheme between Wick Road and the A12. The only plans they are willing to countenance are for affordable housing

  • To the west of Wick road to the junction with Park Lane

  • From School Farm Buildings along the edge of School Road towards St. Margaret’s Cross

  • In the vicinity of High Street/Chapel Road


(d)       Grants


Cllr. Garnett could envisage the availability of grants reducing as the financial constraints got tighter. However, he had an indication that Langham might be well placed to obtain substantial funding for a major project. Cllr. Garnett proposed and Cllr. Ellis seconded the motion that the shop, community council, recreation ground committee and church should formally be invited to investigate the practicality of a major project, and that Cllr. Watson might lead on this with the Village Development Committee.                                              Action - Cllr. Watson and David Winter


8.8       Footpaths                    


Cllr Stacey reported that the route of Footpath 31 south from School Road had been resolved by the CC. Footpaths 25 and 33 have been re-instated. He will contact Mary Moir re the position regarding the improvement of what he knows as the vineyard footpath.                                                                     .           Action – Cllr. Stacey


9          Essex Green Village 2009


Cllr. Ellis proposed and Cllr. Garnett seconded the motion that Langham should not enter this competition this year as there were enough other activities in progress. This was agreed unanimously.


10        Correspondence Received

1          Information Commissioners Office.

The Council has to adopt an approved Publication scheme which makes certain kinds of information routinely available to the public. A template guide has been circulated and the Clerk was asked to complete this and circulate it for the Councillors’ approval.                                                                                               Action – David Winter


2          Parish Expenditure Requirements

The precept request for 2009/10.has been received and has to be sent to CBC.

                                                                                                                                                Action – David Winter

3       CBC Local Development Framework

This item will be added to the agenda for the February Parish Council meeting. This will provide an opportunity for the Parish Councillors to voice their opinions. Any comments should be sent to Cllr. Ellis by 13th February so that he can provide a response ready for the Council meeting and prior to his holiday. The response will have to be submitted by Friday 27th February, the end of the same week as the meeting. The relevant e-mail has been circulated but for further information, contact

                                             Action – All Councillors

4          Letter from Mr. Elmer

Mr Elmer was not satisfied with the reply to his original letter. The Clerk was asked to write to him to let him know what planning enquiries were taking place.

                                             Action – David Winter

5          Letter from Mr O’Sullivan

Mr O’Sullivan donated £60 towards the cost of the replacement planters.


6          The Playing Field

The newsletter of the Essex Playing Fields Association.


7          HM Revenue & Customs

Advance notice to send the employer’s annual return.


8          Mobile Library

2009 dates have been posted on the notice boards.


9          Essex Community Forum

Annual Review showing where some of the grants for 2008 have been spent.


10        EALC County Update


11        Fieldwork   The magazine of the CPRE.


12        Essex Wildlife Trust  Winter newsletter


13        Healthy Voice  The newsletter from NHS North East Essex. Cllr. Ellis took this copy.


14        Department for Transport

Drink drive campaign details are to be given to the shop and posted on the notice boards.                                                                                                                                                                                   Action – David Winter


15        Bus Passenger News  Details are to be given to the shop


16        Making the Links


17        The Bulletin  Newsletter from English Rural Housing Association


18        CBC Forward Plan of Key decisions


19        Mencap  Details are to be given to the shop and posted on the notice boards.          

                                                                                                                                               Action – David Winter

20        Minerals & Waste Development Framework  A large consultation document is available.


21        Wicksteed Annual Safety Inspection

Cllr. Durlacher proposed and Cllr. Garnett seconded the motion that Wicksteed carry this out at a cost of £45. This was approved unanimously.                                                                                                 Action – David Winter


22     Langham Recreation Ground Estimate

An estimate of £2,150 has been received for the gate at the western end of the ground. This will be discussed at the next Recreation Committee meeting.


11     Administrative Matters


(a)        General


In the last 8 weeks illness has rather restricted the time the Clerk has had available for Council work. However, the major activities have been


  1. The CBC emergency meeting at the Town Hall with Cllr. Schofield, which was not as bad as the previous year, but which still seemed not particularly memorable!

  2. Amplifications were required and made to the audit report.

  3. Arranging for Beverly Davies to attend this meeting.

  4. Organising and holding the Country Dance for the Lettice Dyke Trust, with a total of £440 being raised for it..

  5. Recreation Committee Meeting.

  6. Village Development Committee inaugural meeting.

  7. Complaint from Tony Howard over the internal cleaning of Rayners Court. This is being handled by Colchester Homes.


(b)       Hedges overhanging the pavement approaching Agrimix


This problem was investigated and the Clerk was asked to contact the owners

of the site, thought to be Palmer Brothers, and to inform Mr. Maplestone for ECC.

`                                                                                                                                          Action – David Winter


(c)        Essex County Highways Visit


The Clerk was asked to contact Mr Harris to check the legal position regarding positioning rocks, cutting hedges and

notices placed at the side of the highways.                                                                                   Action – David Winter


(d)       Powerplus Engineering


ECC is to be asked to monitor HGV movements.                                                                         Action – David Winter


(e)        Land Registration


The Clerk was asked to check what land the Council owns, with help from Mrs Smerdon, and to check the costs of

registering it.                                                                                                                                  Action – David Winter


(f)        Lettice Dyke


Closing Thomas Love and moving the money to Lettice Dyke is to be investigated.

Action – David Winter


12        Receipts and Payments


A list of receipts (£110) and payments (£4,017, which included two items granted to the Community Centre and the Pinnacle grass cutting contract) was circulated as part of the financial report. The Clerk reported that actual expenditure is likely to be £9,100 more than budgeted. Income is only likely to be £1,300 more than budgeted.


It was agreed that once the financial turmoil had died down, the Council should consider putting more money into higher interest bearing accounts.

Action - Cllr. Watson and David Winter



13     Next Meeting


The next meeting will be on Tuesday 24th February 2009, at Langham Community Centre at 7.30 pm.


14        Any other urgent business


(a)        Councillors were asked to be present at the Parish Plan Meeting on 7th February at 10..00 am at the Community Centre.

(b)        It was explained that the Emergency Plan would not be able to have a copy of the full electoral roll attached to it.


There being no other urgent business, the meeting closed at 9.35 pm.