2021-01 January – Minutes

Minutes Uploaded on April 6, 2021

MINUTES OF THE ONLINE MEETING OF MATFEN PARISH COUNCIL HELD ON        TUESDAY 26 JANUARY 2021 AT 7.00PM                                                                                                 

 PRESENT:  Cllr Stuart Mills, Chairman of the Council together with Mrs Ann Gregory Smith,  Keith Mavin, Frank Robson, Kevin George and Justin Dempsey.

In attendance:  Mrs M Senior, Clerk to the Council and County Councillor Mrs V Jones




0121.04  COUNTY COUNCILLOR’S REPORT – Cllr Mrs Jones gave her verbal report in matters relating to                       Northumberland County Council and Matfen Parish.

a)     Street Lighting.  NCC is reviewing the streetlights requested in Ingoe.  Cllr Mrs Jones will contact the resident in Ingoe to discuss options. It was reported that the light outside the Village Shop has been out for several weeks.  This had been reported to NCC.

b)     LTP 2021/22. The road from Fenwick will be resurfaced as part of the LTP 2021/22..

c)      Covid-19 response.  The vaccine programme is going well with the majority of over 80s already vaccinated and work has started to vaccinate the over 75s .

d)     Elections 2021.  The elections are still going ahead in May and further information will be available in the next few weeks.

0121.05  MINUTES OF THE MEETING HELD ON 24 NOVEMBER 2020.  It was proposed by Cllr Mrs A Gregory Smith seconded by Cllr K Mavin and AGREED that the minutes of the meeting held on 24TH NOVEMBER 2020 as an accurate record.


a)     RESURFACING OF THE ROADS.  Minute 1120.05a refers.  The road through Matfen had been resurfaced however the white lines are still to be reinstated.  It was noted that the road from the Great Whittington junction to Standing Stones also needs to be resurfaced.

b)     NOTICE BOARDS AND PICNIC BENCHES.  Minute 1120.07a refers.  Mr J Oliver had agreed to help carry out the work to install the notice board and the seating however as two men are needed it had not been possible due to the current lockdown restrictions.  The work will be carried out once lockdown has been lifted.

c)      WEBSITE  Minute 1120.11a refers.  Cllrs S Mills and K George had met to discuss a new Matfen website.  It was agreed to progress this with NetWise UK who specialise in Parish/Town Council websites.  The website will be accessible and meet current requirements.  The cost will be £499 to set up the website and £250 per annum thereafter.  The existing domain name will be retained and transferred from the existing registrar. The clerk will make the necessary arrangements to set up the new website.

d)     TREE CONDITION REPORT.  Minute 1120.11b refers. Unfortunately, Cllr S Mills contractor is unable to carry out the work required therefore the clerk will look into obtaining quotes.

e)     BRIDGE REPAIRS.  Minute 1120.11c refers.  Northumbrian Water had confirmed that they would repair the railings to the bridge in November.  This had not been done therefore the clerk will chase this up.

0121.07  FINANCE

a)     ACCOUNTS FOR PAYMENT.  It was proposed by Cllr S Mills, seconded by Cllr Mrs A Gregory Smith and AGREED to approve the expenditure on the list circulated.

  1. TO ACCEPT AND APPROVE ACCOUNTS UP TO 31ST DECEMBER 2020. It was agreed to accept and approve the accounts up to 31st December 2020.  The accounts show a balance of £19,647 with a forecast balance of £16,947 at 31st March 2021
Mrs A Senior Clerical Services 469.03   469.03 101148
H M Revenue and Customs PAYE 117.40   117.40 101149
Mrs A Senior Play area inspections 75.00   75.00 101150
Corbridge Parish Council SLCC subscription 2021 41.30   41.30 101151
Came and Company Insurance renewal 500.18   500.18 101152
Eventbrite UK Ltd Councillor training 10.00   10.00 101153
Mrs A Senior Postages and travel 81.07   81.07 101154
Barclays Bank Bank account interest 0.27   0.27 07.12.20

0121.08  CORRESPONDENCE received since the November meeting had been circulated to all councillors by email     and noted.

a)     Northumberland County Council – Fens Burn Bridge proposed works.

b)     Stamfordham Primary School – Thank you letter for donation.

c)      Residents – Poor state of the roads around Bog House.  Cllr Mrs V Jones had spoken with the residents and NCC had carried out some running repairs. NCC are aware of the issues and are in regular contact with the resident.  Cllr Mrs Jones had asked the Highways Engineer to carry out a review of the roads around Bog House.

d)     Northumberland County Council – Northumberland Communities Together : Feeling Connected Webinar

e)     Matfen Village Hall – AGM 9th February 2021 at 6pm via Zoom.

f)       Northumberland County Council – Local Election Arrangements

g)     NALC – eNews weekly

h)     Clerks and Councils Direct – Publication No 133 – January 2021

i)       National Association of Local Councils – Chief Executive Bulletins monthly

0121.09  PLANNING MATTERS.  All applications received since the last meeting are listed below together with the   decisions on outstanding applications.

a)     Ref No:  20/04051/FUL West End, Matfen – Single storey porch and dayroom extension to existing dwelling

b)     Ref No:  20/04045/LBC Matfen Hall, Matfen – Listed building consent to construct a pair of gateposts to existing entrance and build low level stone walls with black cast iron railings above to connect the existing posts to the boundary wall stone piers.  The Parish Council had been contacted by a resident regarding this application.  Concerns were expressed regarding the lack of communication with the parish over the closure of well used footpaths through the wood.  It was suggested that the Parish Council should invite the new owners to a future Parish Council meeting to discuss their plans for the hall.

c)      20/02511/LBC South Fens Farm, Stamfordham – Listed building consent for the replacement of garden room windows and doors.  GRANTED

d)     20/04116/FUL Stonecroft, Ingoe – Extension of front gable to create enlarged kitchen area to accommodate dining space and to improve layout, relocate porch.


a)     INGOE PARKING.  A request had been received from a resident in Ingoe to remove 2 mounds of earth by the wall opposite Richley Terrace and to relocate the grit bin to the opposite side of the farm gate.  Cllr F Robson expressed concerns over access for large farm vehicles trying to pass with vehicles parked on the grass verge.  It was agreed that the Parish Council cannot give permission as they are not responsible for the verge however would raise no objection.  It was noted that cars are regularly parking in this area. The letter asking residents not to park on the village green will be circulated to all councillors for approval before sending out.

b)     MATFEN VILLAGE STREET LIGHTING.  Cllr Mrs A Gregory Smith had spoken to Gavin Barlow, NCC and he advised that the new lighting column are due to be installed in February 2021.

c)      PUBLIC TOILETS.  It was agreed that the public toilets would remain closed until all Covid restrictions had been removed.

0121.11  ANY URGENT ISSUES (FOR INFORMATION ONLY).  Nothing to report.

0121.12  DATE OF THE NEXT MEETING.  The next meeting of the Parish Council will be held online on Tuesday 30th  March 2021 at 7.00pm.  The link will be circulated and made available to residents 7 days before the meeting.  The advice from NALC/SLCC is still for Parish Councils to meet remotely however should the advice change before the date of the next meeting the venue of the meeting will be publicised in advance.