Hothfield Parish Council the rustic heart of Kent


Minutes of the Ordinary Parish Council Meeting

held at The Village Hall, Hothfield,

on Monday 9 October 2006 at 7.00 pm

PRESENT: Mrs S Whittington, Mr J Collins, Mr R Fletcher, Mr P Howard, Mr L Hughes, Mr R Pitt and Mr A Rawlins, Mrs L Marshall (Rural Warden) and PC Phil Smith



MEMBERS OF THE PUBLIC: There were 12 Members of the Public present

Apologies for Absence were received from Mr P Patten who is on holiday.

Mr Rawlins declared an interest in Planning Application 06/01201/AS – Hothfield Manor.

i) Updating of Declarations of Interest for the Code of Conduct
The Clerk reminded Councillors that they should update their Declarations of Interest
with the Monitoring Officer if necessary.

Minutes 47 of the September meeting and 48 of the Extraordinary Meeting were accepted and it was unanimously agreed that Mrs Whittington should sign them.
Proposed Mr Collins Seconded Mr Howard

The Chairman opened the Meeting to Members of the Public from 7.07 pm to 7.27 pm for
questions and comments.

Councillors discussed the problems being experienced with Anti Social Behaviour in
Hothfield with Mrs Marshall and PC Smith. The fact that victims are not prepared to report
incidents of crime or name the perpetrators, because they are concerned about reprisals,
means that the Police are unable to take action. Most of the evidence gathered by PC Smith is anecdotal and this is filed by the Police for intelligence purposes.

The Crime Figures for Hothfield are higher than in some other areas. This is in part due to
the fact that a number of crimes can be attributed each month to theft from the petrol station
and to some motorists filling up with petrol and driving away without paying.

A lack of street lighting was put forward as a reason for some of the problems.

Mr Rawlins asked whether security cameras would help and PC Smith said they would
but they are very expensive.

Mr Collins suggested putting up a goal post in the Village Hall Car Park. The Clerk
expressed concern to the Chairman regarding this from a Health and Safety point of view.
The goal posts need to meet ROSPA Guidelines and it may be necessary to install a safety
surface. The Chairman said she thought it was a Village Hall matter but as leaseholder the
Parish Council may still have a liability and we need to check this matter.

Mrs Whittington said she hoped they may be able to use the Youth Forum to address some
of the problems.


After discussion, Mr Howard proposed that we discontinue the Speedwatch Scheme in
Hothfield and inform Pluckley Parish Council that we do not wish to join with them in
buying a machine. Councillors unanimously seconded this proposal.

With regard to Traffic Calming, Mrs Whittington reported that she had spoken to
Andy Corcoran and he had told her that the traffic calming measures for the village had
not been approved in the 2006/2007 budget. It was agreed to urgently pursue this matter
with KCC.

Mr Patten has dealt with the correspondence from ABC on Tourism. His reply was
added to the Round Robin.

Mr Fletcher reported that he had attended the recent Parish Forum and that the
Parish Profiles and Local Needs Housing were discussed. The Parish Profiles are very
important and Mr Fletcher passed a copy of Hothfield’s Profile to the Clerk and asked
her to return it to ABC.

ABC re State of the Borough Debate
ABC Parish Forum 27.09.06
Housing News
Southern Water Dealing with the Drought
KAPC Finance Information Day
KAPC Parish News
KAPC Agenda for 04.10.06
Southern Water
KCC Website Agreement
KCC re KCC Guide to Development Contributions and the Provision of a Community
Infrastructure – Consultation Document
North Weald Police Forum Minutes of Meeting held 20.09.06 plus Crime Figures
KAPC Notice of Annual General Meeting to be held 04.11.06

Accounts to be paid

Hothfield Village Hall Rent £59.40   £59.40
Clive Stanley Webmaster Services £198.00   £198.00
ABC Village Hall Rent £1149.91   £1149.91

Accounts proposed by Mr Pitt Seconded by Mr Collins

Resolution: Councillors unanimously agreed to pay the above accounts.

Bank Balance
The account balance stands at £8116.44.

The Village Appraisal Account stands at £1500 and this amount shows in the
Reserve Account balance.

Bank Mandate
Since the publication of the agenda, the Clerk had been contacted by NatWest and
discovered that we only have 2 current councillors who are signatories on the account
Mr Patten and Mr Collins.

She visited the Bank and was given ID forms for all Councillors who wish to be signatories
on the account. She handed these out and asked all Councillors to visit the Bank at their
earliest convenience, taking their passport and driving licence with them as ID.

NatWest in Ashford have asked for a letter authorising them to deal with the Clerk
in respect of Account Information only.

Freedom of Information Act/Web Site
We now have a Link to the Explore Kent Website. Mr Rawlins took
the agreement and if he is happy with the content he will sign it and return it to KCC together with 2 x 1st Class stamps.

Mr Pitt reported that he had spoken to Mr Stanley regarding the Launch of the Website and
they had decided that, rather than holding a social event the best method of publishing the
Website would be to put posters up around the village. Mr Pitt said he would organise this.

Councillor List
A new list of Councillors and their details was circulated and Councillors were asked to
check that the details are correct. These details will be put on the web site unless anyone

Village Hall Accounts
These were distributed to Councillors last month and Mrs Whittington asked for any
questions or comments.

Mr Fletcher said he did not think they were detailed enough.

As we have been receiving reports that the Village Hall is having financial problems, it was
agreed to ask the Village Hall Committee for a copy of their accounts at the end of
September, 6 months into the Financial Year. Mr Collins said that the flat roof on the
Hall will need replacing in the next few months and suggested that a sum be put into the
Parish Council’s budget to help towards the cost. If we have the Village Hall figures at the
next meeting, we can take them into account when we discuss the Parish Council budget.

Budget Preparation
The Clerk handed out copies of the Working Financial Forecast to 9 October. Mr Pitt
offered to prepare the budget for discussion at the next meeting.

Tenders for repairs to Play Equipment
Only one quote has been received. One of the other firms invited to tender telephoned
the Clerk to say that they did not receive the letter until 5 October and would not be able to
quote in time. They asked whether it was possible to have an extension. They also asked her to inform Councillors that they were very busy and if they did quote and were given the work they would not be able to undertake it for a few weeks.

After discussion it was agreed not to open the quote we have received, but to hold it on file
and invite the other two firms to tender in time for the next meeting in case the third firm did not received their letter in time.

See attached list.

Formation of Planning Committee
All Councillors were circulated with a draft copy of the Terms of Reference.

The Clerk contacted KAPC regarding the formation of a Planning Committee and was
advised that the committee should consist of 5 members. Three Parish Councillors who will have voting rights and 2 members of the Public who will be on the Committee in an advisory capacity. There will also be 2 ex officio members.

Mr Howard, Mr Hughes and Mr Patten agreed to represent the Council on the Committee. Mrs Sheila Flynn has agreed to join as a Non Council Member and Mr Howard is to ask Mr Boorman if he would agree to join as a Non Council Member.

The Parish Council resolves to establish a Planning Committee under Section 101
Discharge of Functions of the Local Government Act 1972.

Nothing to report.

Tidying Village/Litter Control
A group of Community Service Volunteers visited the village and strimmed the verge outside the School. We hope they will return to do some more work and possibly paint the Village Hall. Mrs Whittington agreed to negotiate further help.

Welcome Pack
This idea will be referred to the Village Appraisal Committee.


There being no further business the meeting closed at 9.50 pm.

Signed …………………………………………………………. Dated …….............................
Mrs S Whittington, Chairman



12 SEPTEMBER 2006 – 9 OCTOBER 2006

Planning Applications Received

Full Planning Permission requested – Delegated to Officers unless otherwise stated:-

06/01777/AS Mr and Mrs Jeffreys, High Ridge, Pluckley Road, Hothfield,
Ashford, Kent TN26 1ER
Rear Extension – To renew Planning Consent 02/00042/AS
Parish Council: Support
06/01106/AS Mr J Van Loggerenberg, 37 Park Drive, Hothfield, Ashford, Kent TN26 1EG
Construction of a double garage, new roof to conservatory, dog kennel
(retrospective), wooden patio to front elevation and the creation of a new
vehicular access
Parish Council: Support
Councillors expressed concern about the roof lights on the garage.
They are out of keeping with the rest of the house and
we feel that the roof should be tiled

An Application to Determine whether Prior Approval is required for the Details of Agricultural Development has been received re:-

06/01540/AS Oakover Nurseries, Britton Farm, Maidstone Road, Hothfield,
Ashford, Kent TN26 1AR
Provision of storage shed for nursery materials

The following application has been granted:-
05/00863/AS Montash Properties Ltd, re Home Farm, Park Drive, Hothfield,
Ashford, Kent TN26 1DR
Proposed conversion of existing barns to 2 No. dwellings and erection
of associated carport/store

Last Update  03.11.2006
 2006 Hothfield Parish Council