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Properties & Burial Grounds Minutes 25th January 2022

MINUTES OF A MEETING OF THE PROPERTIES & BURIAL GROUNDS COMMITTEE HELD ON TUESDAY 25th JANUARY 2022

PRESENT: Cllr. Gilbert (in the Chair), Cllrs. Bunyan, Kings and Rampling.

APOLOGIES: Cllr. Waters.

Declaration of Interests, Dispensations and Predetermination:

Members are required to declare any interests, dispensations or predetermination on items on this agenda in accordance with the Council’s Code of Conduct. Members are reminded that changes to the Register of Interests should be notified to the Clerk.

21/21: St. Dunstan’s Churchyard:

The Clerk reported the work to remove 2 dead limbs from one of the trees in the Churchyard, had now been completed.

22/21: Burial Ground Rules and Regulations:

Governments grants for Children’s Burial Costs:

The Clerk advised she had recently discovered we could claim back the cost of a child’s burial plot from the Government. She advised that in our current rules and regulations all costs associated with the burial of a child are waived.  Members discussed the benefits of making a claim against the Clerks time in doing so. Cllr. Gilbert proposed that it be noted that a grant is available, but to continue with the current procedure for the time being. This was seconded by Cllr. Kings and agreed.

23/21: Golford Cemetery:

Roof and bell repairs:

The Clerk reported that following the concerns raised at the site meeting in July that there were several damaged or missing roof tiles, work has been completed by Staplehurst Roofing, to replace them. Repairs to the bell which were also needed, were untaken at the same time at a total cost of £180.  

24/21: Sissinghurst Cemetery:

The Clerk reported that following the required approval, from the TWBC Tree Officer, work to fell the 5 conifers on the northern boundary had begun this week. It was also reported that the Parish Warden had now planted the Red Oak that had been purchased to commemorate the Queen’s Platinum Jubilee, in the new part of the Cemetery.

25/21: Cranbrook & Sissinghurst War Memorials:

Painting of the Howitzer:

The Clerk had been in contact with Dave Hazlewood who had agreed to liaise with the cadets in respect to painting the howitzer and the plough. It had previously been agreed that he would be reimbursed for the cost of any paint or materials required.

The vegetation growing between the howitzer and the plough, which had previously described as a ‘small tree’ had now been identified as a buddleia. Members agreed the grounds contractor should be asked to remove it.

26/21: Public Toilet Building – Crane Lane:

It had been agreed at the Full Council Meeting in January to accept the quote from Hurstways to recommission the ladies toilet to become unisex and the disabled toilet. A date to commence has not yet been received, so the Clerk was asked to chase a starting date for the work approved.

The Clerk also agreed to contact Twilight Cleaning Services to obtain a written quote for a daily cleaning service.

Cllr. Gilbert would contact Belle Vue School to advise we were going ahead with the refurbishment works and to formally accept their offer to tidy up the exterior of the building, as part of a community project.

27/21: Angley Cottage:

The boiler is scheduled for servicing by Marshalls Heating Ltd this Thursday. Cllr. Bunyan advised she would undertake the annual inspection of the Cottage before the next committee meeting. She would liaise with the tenants to arrange a mutually convenient date and time.

28/21: Vestry Hall:

a) Tower Room:

Cllr. Gilbert advised he was keen to bring the room back into use. We still had to find a location to store the surplus hall flooring and the room would benefit from some redecoration. It would provide a useful space when the Community Centre project gets underway. The Clerk advised that suggestions for who to approach for quotes to decorate would be gratefully received, as all trades appear to be extremely busy in the current climate.

b) The Clerk advised that the previously approved repairs to the roof light in the ladies’ toilet that was leaking and was possibly affecting a neighbouring property, has been scheduled for the end of February.

Cllr. Gilbert agreed to undertake an inspection of the hall to identify any issues that may require attention. The Clerk agreed to chase Hurstways regarding the work to the restore the ceiling paper which was approved some time ago, but as yet has not been done.

29/21: Vestry Hall Cottage:

Cllr. Gilbert agreed to undertake the annual inspection before the next committee meeting.

30/21: Information Centre:

A quote of £150+ VAT for servicing the electric doors had been received. Cllr. Bunyan proposed the quote be accepted; this was seconded by Cllr. Rampling and agreed.

31/21: Noticeboards and Shelters:

a) Quote for replacement or repair of bus shelter:

Following damage to the bus shelter on Hartley Road and Angley Road, a quote of £514.58 from GW Shelter Solutions, for replacement polycarbonate panels to repair both, had been obtained. Cllr. Gilbert proposed the quote be accepted; this was seconded by Cllr. Kings and agreed.

The Clerk reported cleaning of all the bus shelters, had recently been completed.

b) Penny Farthing refurbishment costs:

A quote to refurbish the Penny Farthing had been received from Cranbrook Iron Ltd. Strengthening and preparation for galvanising would be in the region of £1,000. Shotblasting and galvanising the structure would cost £726.00 + VAT. To provide an accurate quote for all the work necessary, a thorough survey of the structure would need to be undertaken. The Clerk was asked to request a firm quote, to include the expected life span of the structure, if the work is undertaken. A separate quote for treating the structure with a Mordant solution to ‘weather’ the bright silver finish that would result from galvanising, would also be requested.

32/21: Benches and Cycle Racks:

Request to site a memorial bench:

The Clerk advised we had received a request to site a memorial bench by the mother of a young man, who had recently died and who’s ashes had been interred in the Cemetery. Members were advised of the location she had asked for the bench to be sited. It was proposed by Cllr. Gilbert, seconded by Cllr. Bunyan and agreed to approve the request. Installation costs would also need to be met. The Clerk had recently obtained a brochure from Memorial Benches UK, who are based locally in Ticehurst and had been recommended on both cost and quality. The brochure was tabled to the Members present. The Clerk would provide details of both British Gates and Memorial Benches UK as companies that can provide a good standard of product to anyone wishing to purchase a bench.

33/21: Red Telephone Kiosks:

No issues were raised.

34/21: Items for Information:

None were raised.

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