Meeting Minutes: 26th March 2020


MINUTES of the Council meeting held at 7 p.m. on Thursday 26 March 2020 by means of video conferencing due to the coronavirus pandemic.

PRESENT  Councillors P Seabrook (in the Chair); K Hutchinson; D Poole; Mrs R Lloyd; Mrs C Jessup; Ms S Mugglestone; L Farrer and Mrs E Milne.

IN ATTENDANCE  County Councillor I Gardener; District Councillor J Gray and C L Thatcher, Clerk to the Council.

33/20  APOLOGIES were received from Councillors Mrs D Hellett and Mrs J Stainer who were unable to connect by computer.

34/20  PUBLIC FORUM  was not used.


None were made.

36/20  COUNTY COUNCILLOR    Councillor Gardener said that only 2% of Cambridgeshire’s children were now attending school.   There is a new scam targeting those whose children receive free school meals.

All waste recycling centres are now closed and all face to face meetings have been cancelled.

The new round of bids for LHI are invited before the end of May and bids for items which might be classed as ‘maintenance’ will not be allowed.

A comment was made about the awful state of roads, but Councillor Gardener said that work on roads was at present suspended.

37/20  DISTRICT COUNCILLOR.  Councillor Gray said that local councils are at the front line of support.   Huntingdonshire District Council’s actions are centred around business rates and council tax but they are looking ahead to support the health service.

All car park charges have been suspended and all leisure centres are now closed.  Markets continue but are stretched out along the street so as to provide spacing.

They are keeping open Hinchingbrooke Country Park and Paxton Pits but all volunteering there has been suspended.

Pathfinder House is closing tomorrow with staff then working from home.

Benefits enquiries etc have ‘gone through the roof’.

They are still operating grounds maintenance and refuse collection at present, but there are concerns that refuse collection staff are becoming stretched due to the number self-isolating and it may prove necessary to suspend collection of recycling bins, followed by green waste bins if things get worse.  A very last resort would be to cease collection of general waste.

Councillor Poole commented that the result would be green waste ending up in ditches.

Councillors Gardener and Gray left the meeting.

38/20  MINUTES  The minutes of the Council meeting of 27 February 2020 were read, and approved  as a true record of that meeting.


  • Neighbourhood Watch.   Nothing to report.
  • Hearse House repairs   Quotes from two other companies are awaited.
  • Churchyard Cobbles   No suitable contractor has been identified except for  Councillor Farrer’s company and he has promised a quotation. 
  • Annual Parish Meeting – request for noticeboard at The Leys.     It was agreed to obtain the cost of an open board.
  • Annual Parish Meeting – request for light on footpath from Ashfield to Halls Meadow.

The Clerk said he had thought this might be possible, but had realised that the streetlight from which power might have been taken was a County Council lamp and not one of ours.      Following some discussion it was agreed to seek the price of a solar powered lamp for Thrapston Rd before investigating this request.

  • Pound Lane Working Party has not met.
  • Twinning with Fernie.  Not progressed due to circumstances.
  • Litter Pick.  Councillor Mrs Lloyd said that this didn’t happen, probably as much to do with the shortness of notice as anything.  It is hoped to set it up again towards the end of the year.


  • Applications  

20/00484/TREE  Kimbolton School – reduce crowns

It was proposed by Councillor Hutchinson, seconded by Councillor Poole and agreed to recommend approval.

  • Ongoing Matters.     Mulberry Cottage stables.  No report.

                                 Former Barclays Bank, High St.   The Clerk has heard from the owners and they say that they have now decided to sell the property.  Members were dismayed that this decision might mean that the frontage remains a mess for a long time and agreed to seek the assistance of the District Councillor in trying to get some action.

41/20    REPORTS

Allotments  It was agreed to instruct the Groundskeeper to spray weedkiller on the vacant allotment plots and to remove the suckers growing from the hedge at the eastern end.

Footpaths.  The footpath along Park Lane and that on Main Road  Stonely  have mud and earth encroaching on them and reducing the width, resulting in difficulty for wheelchair users.  The Groundskeeper will be asked to cut this back. 

Outside Bodies.

Kimbolton Trust.  The next meeting of Trustees will be in May.

42/20  LHI BID AND 20 mph LIMIT

It had been agreed at the last meeting to again apply for buffer zones as it is considered these would help slow traffic before entering the village.  This is particularly important on Thrapston Road, where the 30 mph limit begins virtually at the Prep School and on Park Lane.   It was agreed to seek speed surveys at those points.

A 20 mph limit through the village will also be requested.

Councillor Mrs Jessup said that traffic speeds in East Street are bad, despite the traffic calming and ‘Access only’ signs might be helpful.


The Clerk had circulated a draft policy for consideration.  This policy provided for delegation of Council decisions during this crisis jointly to the Chairman, Vice Chairmen and Clerk.  He thought it would still be of benefit even if we are lawfully permitted to hold ‘remote’ meetings.

It was proposed by Councillor Poole, seconded by Councillor Mrs Lloyd and agreed to adopt the Policy as presented.


The Clerk reported upon a meeting called by the Vicar and held in the church at which Councillors Seabrook, Mrs Hellett, Mrs Jessup, L Farrer and he represented the Council.

The Vicar was keen to set up support networks and Lucy Ralph volunteered to assist those needing help within the village and said that she had received lots of offers of help from local people.   The Clerk offered to liaise with the Medical Centre in assisting those who were unable to collect their medicines by arranging delivery to them, whether within this parish or any parish within the catchment area of the Medical Centre.

45/20  SUCCESSION PLANNING.  The Clerk said that he had been discussing with the Chairman how the Council would continue to function upon his retiring or croaking.  At present the computer used is jointly owned by the Council and by the Clerk and is used personally by the Clerk.    It would thus be difficult to separate Council records from this and it was thought a good idea if a new laptop computer was purchased, to be used exclusively for Council matters, so that this could simply be handed over.

This was agreed and it was proposed by Councillor Mrs Lloyd and seconded by Councillor Mrs Milne that a laptop computer with separate keyboard and mouse be purchased at a cost of up to £1000.  


  • Letter from the owners of the former Barclays Bank advising their intention to sell it.
  • A request for a donation was received from St Neots Museum.  Members were reminded that the Museum granted free admission to anyone from this parish in return for the donation.

It was proposed by Councillor Mrs Milne, seconded by Councillor Farrer and agreed to donate £100 to the Museum and to endeavour to advertise the fact that parishioners may have free admission.


a)The following were proposed and approved for payment –

Fishers                                     Groundsman sundries                        23.64

K & M Lighting                           Streetlight maintenance                  125.48

JD Garden & Landscaping         Gates for cemetery ,playpark,etc 1656.00

Anglian Water                           Allotment water                                  83.61

CGM Ltd                             Grasscutting Aug to Oct 2019              2725.21

D Eades                                     March work                                     339.66

Payroll costs            Pay, PAYE & NIC + Zoom sub & signs           2400.53

48/20  HIGH STREET CAR PARKING  Nothing to report.


Councillor Mrs Lloyd reported lights out on the Causeway and Main Rd Stonely and the van with a flat tyre on Newtown is still there.

The footpaths along Park Lane and Main Rd Stonely have grass and earth encroaching and branches overhang Park Lane.

Councillor Mrs Jessup said that there is a lot of debris on the road beneath the willow by Hellett’s and across the road by the entrance to the school kitchen.

The hedges overhanging the road on the north side of Main Rd Stonely need cutting back.


The next normal meeting of Council will be held on Thursday 30 April 2020, commencing at 7pm in the Youth and Community Room at the Mandeville Hall, if permitted, otherwise by means of video conferencing.

There being no further business, the meeting closed at 2050 hours.

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