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AnnReport 0809


									                             Crewkerne Town Council
                                                                                                                 Report No. 8
                                      ANNUAL REPORT
                                                                                                                 March 2009
              On the industrial estateOn the industrial estate
THE MAYOR’S REPORT.                                                      suffered a fungus growth at its base which has caused
                                                                         significant damage to the roots. Having taken professional
Welcome to the eighth edition of the Council‟s Annual                    advice and with great reluctance the Town Council has
Report which is designed to keep you in touch with the work              decided to fell the tree. There has been much debate and
that we are doing on your behalf. We also continue to                    suspicion that the tree is only being taken down to allow
distribute quarterly newsletters to bring you further                    development of the new building but I would state for the
information; the next issue is due to be distributed throughout          record that the designs for the building always included the
the town in May.                                                         tree remaining in its current position and that the significance
                                                                         of the tree to the town would be held above any development.
The Council continues to ensure the well being of the
buildings and land owned by the town and has established a               As well as the Open Forum slot at the beginning of each
clear policy in spending part of its precept on preventative             Council meeting we continue to hold monthly surgeries to
maintenance programmes to avoid high cost repairs in the                 allow direct contact with Councillors to discuss any matters
future. Where possible the enhancement of the amenities we               regarding the town. It is important that you use these
provide in our growing community is balanced with keeping                opportunities to express your opinions.
our precept at an acceptable level during these difficult times.
                                                                         In recognition of their contribution to the town and its citizens
Our allotments near Bincombe Beeches Nature Reserve and                  Simon Andrew and George Thomas have been chosen to
War Memorial Grounds are fully taken up with tenants taking              receive our Honoured Citizen Awards this year. Presentation
full advantage of producing their own crops. Hopes of                    of the Award takes place at the Annual Town Meeting on
increasing the number of allotments on land off the Chard                Monday 30th March.
Road came to nothing after Highways objections prevented
good access to the site but we will continue the search for              The following reports from each of the Council Committees
further suitable land.                                                   detail their work during the past year and we have also
                                                                         included the Council‟s Aims and Achievements for the same
 Due to the decline in the financial climate the development             period.
of new housing projects in the town has been delayed and to
date there has been no movement at either the Maiden Beech                                                        Cllr Mike Best, Mayor
or CLR sites and with no sight of a change in the economy
this looks to be the case for the near future. The town centre
has seen mixed fortunes in the past year: the Waitrose store
and two tier car park were opened and are bringing new
customers into the town but we have suffered the loss of                 COUNCIL AIMS &
Woolworths and Cardfair which now leaves many empty
shops in the high street. To make the situation more difficult
                                                                         ACHIEVEMENTS 2008/09
the development of the old Cooke and Sons premises for M &
Co who own the building has not taken place and the future               To support and give grants to voluntary bodies who provide
of the building seems unsure. On the industrial estate we have           cultural, social and sporting activities.
also seen a downturn with the closure of the Nampac
company and redundancies at Parker Ltd. The Town Council                         Awarded grants to West One Community Centre £7,250
will do all it can to support our retail and industrial businesses                (£6,000 of this is for the annual rent to the Town
during these very difficult and challenging times.                                Council), Crewkerne Carnival £1,000, Heritage Centre
                                                                                  £1,500, CUDOS £250, Crewkerne Action for the
Car parking on Henhayes Recreation Ground has now been                            Disabled £100, U3A £150, Friends of C. Church £50,
reduced to a smaller area behind the rugby pitch for a                            Maiden Beech School £50, C. Community Church
maximum period of two years whilst the District Council                           £200, C. Methodist Church (towards the proposed
continues to work towards providing extra car parking for the                     Community Centre extension) £600, Girl Guiding
town for long stay parking provision. The process has now                         £150, Twinning Association £150, Som. Cruse
started to re-instate the cricket field and square.                               Bereavement Care £50, Phoenix Brass £1,000, and C.
                                                                                  Army Cadets £500 to improve or aid leisure pursuits.
The provision of a new sports and community building on                          Again provided administrative support and a grant of
Henhayes is now at a stage where the plans are ready for                          £1,500 to the highly successful annual Lighting Up
submission to the planning process and further public                             celebration on 28th November in the Town Centre.
consultation. Sadly during the building of the Waitrose store
and in the preparation of the plans for the proposed new
building it was discovered that the Lucombe Oak tree which                                                             Continued on Page 2
has been a part of the town for well over 100 years has

                                                                     Page 1
To liaise with voluntary groups to achieve our objectives        PLANNING AND HIGHWAYS
Achieved:                                                        COMMITTEE
     Collaborated with Crewkerne and District Chamber
                                                                 The Planning and Highways Committee consists of all Town
        of Commerce to provide prize money for the Shop
                                                                 Council members meeting on the second Monday of every
        Cr£wk£rne campaign, and assisted with the
                                                                 month. Its principal function is to ensure an informed local
        provision of traders hanging baskets as part of the
                                                                 input into the planning decision process, and it considers all
        Crewkerne in Bloom project.
                                                                 planning applications in Crewkerne parish. After discussion
     Supported the Trash Bash team, a group of
                                                                 the Committee makes recommendations to the District
        volunteers, who kindly remove litter from areas of
                                                                 Council – the Statutory Planning Authority, and if our
        the town.
                                                                 recommendations agree with the planning officers at Area
     Administered the Crewkerne Sports and Community            West the decision is normally made at that level. Only the
        Centre Steering Group who are working towards the        largest scale applications and those involving major
        replacement of the existing inadequate sports            principles of planning policy are then considered by the
        facilities on Henhayes and the West One                  District Council committees. If we disagree, cases are
        Community Centre with one dual purpose building          discussed between the planning officers and our own District
        at Henhayes. The Council‟s approved architect‟s          Council ward members without coming back to the Town
        plans have been submitted to the Planning Authority.     Council. This system increases the probability of the District
        Applications will be sent to the Football Foundation     Council disagreeing with some Town Council
        and the RFU for grant funding.                           recommendations, and it also underlines the importance of
                                                                 understanding the planning issues involved from the
To protect and improve the environment                           officers‟ perspective when our Committee considers an
                                                                 application. Another consequence of the tight deadlines now
Achieved:                                                        being applied by the District Council is that we have to
     Awarded grant funding from the County Council of           consider some applications at Town Council meetings, as the
        £5,300 towards the Happy Valley enhancement              time available for processing applications is 28 days and our
        project, also secured funding from SSDC of               Planning meetings are 4 or 5 weeks apart.
     Helped organise a very successful community tree           Our meetings are open to the public, and personal
        planting event in Bincombe Beeches Nature Reserve        representations from applicants, objectors and others are
        in February.                                             welcomed as the planning applications are discussed. In
     Received confirmation of grant funding of £9,452           most cases the Committee makes its recommendation at the
        from the County Council‟s Market Town                    first „hearing‟, but occasionally it has to be deferred pending
        Regeneration fund towards much needed additional         a site meeting or for further information, in which case it
        street lighting in Market Street.                        may be dealt with at the next full Town Council meeting.
     Completed the project to demolish the former               This year over 90 different applications were considered.
        Church Street toilet block in order to improve the       The applications to be considered are posted, with the
        environment and pedestrian safety at this busy           agenda, on Council notice boards six days before the
        location in partnership with SSDC and SCC.               meeting. This also gives members of the public time to study
                                                                 the applications which are available in the Town Council
To co-operate with and support the Police and District           offices during opening hours, or on the SSDC website,
Council to reduce crime and disorder in the town.                  and     thus   the
                                                                 opportunity to observe the discussion and make
Achieved:                                                        representations.
     Supported the Police and approved a Designated
        Public Places Order (DPPO), prevention of alcohol        Two new dental surgeries have recently opened, the Barley
        consumption on the streets in the town centre, as        Yard Surgery off North street in Mill Lane and the Swan
        well as a contribution towards its implementation.       Practice in Market Street, the former a new build and the
                                                                 latter a refurbishment. As an adjoining parish, we have been
     Encouraged the regular Police Post „surgery‟ to be
                                                                 asked to look at The Old Mill, Misterton on the former
        held in the Town Hall, continued to maintain a
                                                                 Bradfords site, a proposal of 99 dwellings.
        close working liaison with the local police, Police
        Community Support Officers and SSDC                      Although Somerset County Council is responsible for all
        Community Safety Action Panel. Provided                  Highways decisions and work, proposals are usually put to
        administrative assistance to the Crewkerne               the Town Council for discussion and comment. The
        Community Safety Group.                                  resurfacing of Lyme Road, parts of Market Street and South
     Continued to maintain the close circuit television         Street was greatly appreciated by local and visiting motorists
        cameras in the town centre and gave assistance to        alike. Although there were teething problems with the new
        the local police to optimise the cameras‟ maximum        “Puffin” Crossing in Market Sreet, hopefully they are now
        potential for crime detection.                           all resolved. Our County Councillor helps us by assisting
                                                                 and supporting requests for any road safety requirements and
                                                                 improvements that the town needs, but of course it‟s all
                                                                 down to finance!

                                                                              Cllr Veronica Chard, Chair Planning Committee

                                                        Page 2
The accounts for the current year, which ends 31st March             Estimated income and expenditure for the current
2009, will not be audited until later in the year. The final         financial year is as follows:
accounts will be presented to the May meeting of the
Town Council and a summary published on the notice                       Income                                        £
board outside the Town Hall prior to audit. Members of                   Allotments                                  265
the public will have the opportunity to examine the full                 Bank Interest                            28,875
accounts on request.                                                     Grants & Donations                        3,600
                                                                         Grounds Maintenance                         327
The Statement of Accounts for the last audited year                      Capital Projects                          5,000
2007/2008                                                                Other Projects                            6,600
                                                                         Miscellaneous                                65
                           31st March 2007   31st March 2008             Precept                                 229,200
Balances b/fwd                      65,615           589,076             Rents                                     9,220
Annual Precept                     199,835           216,910             Victoria Hall                             3,840
                                                                         Town Hall                                 7,845
Active Lifestyle Centre            210,437
                                                                         War Mem Grounds Contrib                   1,788
Land Sale Proceeds                 495,000             3,592
                                                                         Active Lifestyle Centre                  24,247
Total other Receipts                40,243            83,687
                                                                             Total                               320,872
Staff Costs                         83,033            86,198
Loan Interest/Early Debt            12,210            69,341             Expenditure                                   £
repayt                                                                   General Admin                            30,600
Active Lifestyle Centre           212,066                809             Salaries & Wages                         90,500
Total other Payments              114,745            151,882             Grants & Donations                       15,250
Balances c/fwd                    589,076            585,035             Grounds Maintenance                      26,000
Total Cash &                       95,407            581,010             Loan Repayts                              5,112
Investments                                                              Capital Projects                         35,654
Total Fixed Assets               4,515,087         5,286,721             Other Projects                            1,400
Total Borrowings                    98,951            36,818             Burial Board Precept                     29,000
                                                                         Victoria Hall                             8,500
At 31st March 2009 the following estimated debt was                      Town Hall                                20,500
outstanding to the Public Works Loan Board:                              War Mem Grounds                           1,950
Aqua Centre 35,000                                                       West One                                  4,426
                                                                         Active Lifestyle Centre                  26,789
                                                                             Total                               295,681
It is anticipated that the expenditure for the current
financial year will be within budget.

                                  ADDITIONAL TOWN COUNCIL INFORMATION
  Town Clerk: Mrs J Warner             Property & Projects Officer: Mr J Dunn               Finance Officer: Mrs A Hooper
  Admin. Asst.: Mrs A Roffey           Secretary: Mrs J Dale

  Tel: 01460 74001                   Fax: 01460 78790

  The Council Offices are open to the public during the following hours:
  Monday to Wednesday: 9 am – 1pm & 2pm – 4pm              Thursday & Friday: 9 am – 1pm

  Council Meetings in April, May & June 2008:                  All meetings start at 6.45 pm in the Council Chamber
  14th April - Planning   27th April - Town Council
  5 May - Amenities       11th May - Planning                  18th May – Town Council (Annual Meeting)
  8 June - Planning       15th June - Policy & Resources       22nd June - Town Council

                                                           Page 3
AMENITIES COMMITTEE REPORT                                          The Council has a total of 21 Allotments - 12 at War
                                                                    Memorial Grounds in Severalls and 9 at Bincombe Amenity
The Town Council Amenities Committee meetings are held              Land. All are let and we have a waiting list.
bi monthly on the first Monday in January, March, May,
July, September and November. The Committee makes                   War Memorial Grounds in Severalls Park Avenue -The
decisions on matters relating to property and land owned by         Council maintains the small Severalls Community Hall and
the Town Council as well as issues relating to other                Memorial recreation area because the Council is the sole
amenities in the town.                                              Trustee. The hiring of the tennis hard courts is available from
                                                                    Severalls Mini Market. The Severalls Community Hall has
The public buildings and open spaces owned and maintained           some damp problems, which are being addressed prior to re-
by the Council are as follows: the Town Hall and the                letting, to Phoenix Brass Band. The Severalls Jubilee Bowls
Victoria Hall, including the Town Council and Community             Club has signed a new licence, and has built a new toilet block
Offices; West One Youth and Community Centre; Henhayes              adjacent to their Clubhouse with a grant from the Town
Recreation Ground including the children‟s playgrounds and          Council and funds from other organisations.
the Sports Pavilion; Bincombe Beeches Nature Reserve;
Happy Valley with the skateboard park, BMX track,                   The Henhayes Sports Pavilion (changing rooms) required a
basketball and football play areas; Southmead Crescent play         considerable amount of electrical improvement and plumbing
area and Barn Street recreation field. The Aqua Centre with         works to be undertaken.
Active Lifestyle Centre although owned by the Council is            Crewkerne in Bloom - The Council is supporting this project,
maintained by Crewkerne Leisure Management our „tenants‟.           with the help of the Chamber of Commerce, to promote the
West One Youth and Community Centre- some necessary                 idea of enhancing the town with floral displays. It started in
electrical upgrading has taken place and part of a roof beam        2008 in a small way but will possibly grow to join the national
had to be replaced due to dry rot. The Management                   competition. The committee is looking at new ideas to
Committee raised the funds to have the hall refurbished. All        enhance the Town for summer 2009, one way is for those who
the activities at West One are well supported.                      wish to sponsor a basket or tub in memory of someone dear to
                                                                    them. If you are interested in joining the committee or
Town Hall and Victoria Hall - Our Groundsman undertakes             sponsoring a basket please contact Cllr Sue White at the Town
routine maintenance during the winter. A review of the              Hall.
method of heating the Victoria Hall with energy efficient
heaters is being investigated, this is due to some of the           The Local Information Centre (Tourist Information)
heaters not working and replacement parts are now                   which is a valued asset for the town receives financial support
unavailable. The Council Chamber has also had a review of           from the Council.
the furniture layout for Councillors and the public seating         Vandalism to Town Council property causes a considerable
area, with some degree of improvement, however the                  amount of time and finance, which subsequently increases the
purchase of new furniture has been put on hold until funds          Council Tax.
become available.                                                   Happy Valley Project - A sub committee has been set up,
Playgrounds - A replacement new disabled friendly                   with the help of SSDC Play and Youth Facilities Officer, to
roundabout at Henhayes was purchased with funds raised by           look at ways of improving the facilities at Happy Valley. With
Crewkerne Action for Disabled (CAD) together with a                 £12,500 already agreed by SSDC and match funding by the
donation from the Town Council. All the playground                  Town Council, there is also the potential of further funding.
equipment is checked regularly by our Groundsmen, SSDC              The committee is looking at additional play equipment and
undertake quarterly checks and ROSPA/SSDC carry out                 other ideas. Some tree work has already taken place, this will
annual checks, followed by a written report.                        be a rolling programme over many years when funds are
Aqua Centre and Active Lifestyle Centre - The Active                available. A consultation with the general public will take
Lifestyle building contract has now been signed off, after all      place before any major work is carried out.
the defects, including the gym floor, have been resolved.           David Craner our official registered Town Crier continues
The flowerbeds at South Street Car Park entrance and                his excellent voluntary work. This ancient tradition adds
Church Street have been maintained. The Orchard Lane                colour and character to our town, and he continues to represent
Dental Partnership is sponsoring one of the South Street Car        Crewkerne in competitions across the country.
Park entrance flowerbeds.                                           Our thanks to the Groundsmen who have continued to
                                                                    maintain the town‟s grounds and buildings during the year and
                                                                    to the Clerk and Staff for all their work.
                                                                                            Cllr Peter Chard – Chair of Amenities

Town Councillors
SYLVIA ALLMAN                                        4 Ashland Court, Crewkerne TA18 7AP                      72875
MIKE BEST (Mayor)                                    186 Park View, Crewkerne TA18 8JH                        74245
RON BOND                                             5 Whitehall Court, Crewkerne TA18 7NW                    75284
VERONICA CHARD (Chair of Planning)                   10 Barn Close, Crewkerne TA18 8BL                        72810
PETER CHARD (Chair of Amenities)                     10 Barn Close, Crewkerne TA18 8BL                        72810
GRAHAM COLLINGRIDGE                                  22 Dairy Court, Crewkerne TA18 7EZ                       78673
HILARY LEAMON                                        Highlands, 18 Lyme Road, Crewkerne TA18 8HF              77014
ROBIN PAILTHORPE                                     9 Richmond House, Crewkerne TA18 7AB                     07835 711073
NEIL STURTIVANT (Chair of P & R)                     9 Birch Way, Crewkerne TA18 7DT                          78602
DAVID TOZER                                          7 Whitehall Court, Wadham Park, Crewkerne TA18 7NW       78875
SUE WHITE                                            126 Park View, Crewkerne TA18 8JJ                        76026
At the time of publishing, there is one vacancy due to the resignation of David Kamm because of continuing ill-health.
                                                                 Page 4

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