Meeting Minutes: 25th January 2024


MINUTES of the Council meeting held at 7 p.m. on Thursday 25 January 2024 in the Youth Hall at the Mandeville Hall, Kimbolton.

PRESENT  Councillors  Mrs R Lloyd;  Ms C Jessup; L Farrer; K Hutchinson; Mrs D Hellett and Mrs J Stainer. .

IN ATTENDANCE    County Councillor I Gardener; District Councillor J Gray and Lionel Thatcher, Clerk to the Council plus two members of the public. 

Councillor K Hutchinson took the Chair in the absence of Councillor Seabrook and welcomed the new Head Master of Kimbolton School, Mr Will Chuter, plus two representatives of the Bluefield Group.

Mr Chuter responded by saying that the tradition of co-operation between the School and the parish would, he hoped, be strengthened.

The Bluefield representatives were invited to speak on their proposals for a solar farm at Rookery Farm, Stow Longa.   The array should provide power for up to 13,000 homes and is an improvement on previous systems, since the proposal also includes batteries to store energy until needed.   Whilst Rookery Farm is in Stow Longa, much of the development would be in this parish, with just a small part being Stow Longa plus the connection to the grid being in Catworth parish.

Literature explaining the project was distributed and it is understood that a planning application will be made in spring/summer this year.  

1/24   APOLOGIES  were received from Councillors P Seabrook (illness); Ms H Bradbury; R Gooderham and M Buckley.

2/24   PUBLIC FORUM  was not used.


   None were made.

4/24 COUNTY COUNCILLOR  Ian Gardener said that the County Council is working with Huntingdonshire District Council to implement a civil parking scheme.  This should be effective from 2025 and would remove the supervision of parking and associated fines from the police and pass it to Huntingdonshire DC, who would employ Civil Parking Inspectors.

He referred to the flooding by the Prep School and said that the sump on the grass was being cleared of vegetation, following which the pipes will be cleared.

The County Council’s council tax increase for 2024/25 will be 4.99% plus 2% for adult social care.

Three new officers have been appointed, Karen Southwell who is now the Local Highways Officer; Dan Weeks who is the Public Rights of Way Officer and Julie Skinner who is responsible for drainage.

 Following all the complaints about weeds growing in gutters, the County Council will be re-commencing the weeding of gutters.

Councillor Gardener pointed out that bids for 20mph schemes were required by 15 March and it was agreed to defer consideration until the next meeting.

5/24    MINUTES of the Council meeting of 14 December 2023 were read, approved and signed as a true record of that meeting.

Councillor Gardener left the meeting


  • MVAS signs . The Clerk said that an android phone was required to communicate with the MVAS but it seemed that Councillor Ms Bradbury owned an Iphone.     It was proposed by Councillor Mrs Hellett, seconded by Councillor Mrs Lloyd and agreed to purchase a secondhand android phone for the purpose at a cost of about £80, unless another method was possible.
  • Proposed closure of Fire Station.   The Mandeville Hall has been booked for a meeting of council representatives from interested councils around the area who will hear the proposals from Fire Officers.  This will be on Thursday 19 March, commencing at 7.30pm.
  • Oak Tree.   The oak tree purchased has arrived and a date for its planting will be notified soon.
  • Play Equipment for Pound Lane.  It was agreed to defer consideration until the next financial year.
  • War Memorial Gates.  It was agreed that some refurbishment was necessary and the Grounds Staff will be asked if they are able to undertake the work.  Failing that quotes will be sought.

7/24    PLANNING

  • The following applications were considered –

23/02340  69 Main Rd Stonely – demolish and erect 4 bed dwelling.

It was proposed by Councillor Mrs Hellett, seconded by Councillor Mrs Lloyd and agreed to recommend approval as appropriate development.

23/01183/4  4 Gimbers End, Stonely – 2 storey rear and single storey wrap-around side extensions; replace timber windows & doors; garage & internal alterations inc Listed Building consent.

It was proposed by Councillor Mrs Stainer, seconded by Councillor Ms Jessup and agreed to recommend approval subject to the inclusion of a condition preventing the garage ever being converted into a separate dwelling.

8/24   REPORTS

Allotments   Councillor Mrs Hellett reported on the condition of the plots, one or two of which were poor.  One tenant had not paid her rent and was not contactable and it is thought that she still has possessions on the allotment.  Attempts will be made to make contact to ascertain her intentions.

District Councillor Jonathan Gray joined the meeting.

 Playgrounds.  It was agreed to look at the price of replacement benches and repairs to the gate at the rear of Tollfield.

Pound Lane   The price of a basketball hoop will be investigated.

Cemetery Cottage.   The quotes received for the shower appeared excessive and it was agreed to seek another.

Village Maintenance.

The bin at Castle Gardens is overfull

The fence at Rookery Lane bridge needs replacing and there is a tree in the river.


  • Mandeville Hall Committee.   Councillor Hutchinson said that an attempt to resurrect the cinema is to be made, with the next showing in March. Tickets will be available by means other than online.

The RBL banner remains in the Hall at present and a quote received for re-framing was over £1000.

  • Kimbolton Trust           No report
  • Kimbolton School Governors.  Councillor Mrs Hellett said it is hoped to commence the swimming pool repairs soon.

9/24   FLOOD FORUM  A Flood Resilience Day is to be held on 27 January.

10/24  20mph SPEED LIMITS   Earlier agreed to defer consideration until the next meeting.


The Clerk reported that two expressions of interest had been received and, after hearing of their interests, it was proposed by Councillor Mrs Stainer, seconded by Councillor Ms Jessup and unanimously agreed to invite Mr Josh Lee to join the council.

12/24  WEBSITE  The Clerk said that the Chairman , Councillor Mrs Hellett and he had met with Mr Moore and looked at the proposals, which were generally very good.

There was one big fly in the ointment though, and that is the requirement that Council websites must comply with WCAG2.1AA standard and, at the moment, this one does not.    Mr Moore offered to make the adjustments to make it compliant for the sum of £640, but the Clerk suggested that, if he would undertake the work on the basis that he covered the cost initially, the council would reimburse him provided the adjustments resulted in a compliant website.   This he agreed to do.


  • Tree Pruning in churchyard.     The agent for the church has asked that we arrange the pruning of several trees near to the west door of the church as, it is believed, they are causing cracks to the church tower.  It was agreed to seek an independent opinion and quotes.
  • A request has been received from an individual who wishes to purchase one of the banners made for the Jubilee and Coronation and displayed in the High St.   It was agreed that it is hoped that the banners will be hung in the High Street again on future occasions and therefore they will not be sold.
  • The Clerk said that the precept demanded for 2024/25 will result in a Band D charge of £108.86, based upon a tax base of 611.4.



  • The following were approved for payment –

H J Hellett          Hedge cutting                 408.00

Mick George      Skip hire                          223.20

Hunts D.C.        Fitness Instructor               86.40

K & M Lighting  Mtnce                              128.15

Aubergine262    domain hosting               120.00

Phantom Power  PA  Christmas event     420.00

VisionICT           email hosting                  259.20

L Halsall           Aquafit Instruction            352.77

Smith of Derby     Church clock mtnce     288.00

           Arthur Ibbett          Service mower           414.93

           E Farrer & Son 2 x cemetery wall          8520.00

H Brace              January     work           1680.00

Payroll costs      Pay,PAYE,NIC             3150.58

C L Thatcher  reimbursement fuel             58.53

15/24  DISTRICT COUNCILLOR  Councillor Gray said that the refurbishment of St Neots Market Square was now underway, at a cost of some £50million.

He referred to the decisions made regarding the precepts of the combined authority, the county council and Huntingdonshire DC.   The charge for green bins was going ahead and there is a discounted charge of £50 for those paying before the end of January and for those making future payments by direct debit.

16/24    HIGH ST CAR PARKING  no report


Councillor Farrer pointed out that the surface of Carnaby footpath was getting worse and represented a trip hazard.

Councillor Mrs Lloyd referred to a vehicle being parked on a front garden where there had been no kerb lowering.  She thought double yellow lines should be painted at junctions.


The next meeting of the Council will take place on Thursday 29 February 2024, commencing at 7pm in the Youth Room at the Mandeville Hall.

There being no further business, the meeting closed at 2145 hours.

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