Minutes of the 12th meeting – 26 April 2017
Held in the upstairs Meeting Room, at The George Inn, Maulden, 20:00hrs
Committee/Working Group members:
Simon Barnes Acting Chair (Treasurer/Chair Local Economy WG)
Alan Plom (Secretary/Chair Infrastructure WG)
Cllr Roger Ball (Maulden Parish Council)
Simon Ratcliffe (Local Economy WG)
Ruth Plom (Social, Welfare, Education WG)
Apologies for absence:
David Bailey (SG Chair)
Alan Murray (Communications)
Cllr Philip Jackson (MPC Chair)
Cllr Stephen Summerfield (MPC)
- Welcome and Update
- Simon Barnes (SB) chaired the meeting as David Bailey was unable to attend due to work commitments. Simon stressed that pressure of work and other personal commitments was becoming a significant problem for the Group, with two key people who may not be able to remain involved.
- More volunteers are needed urgently to help build on the work done so far. This is vital if we are to deliver the Plan, which is “massively important” to the future of the Village. It was agreed that we particularly need to involve younger members of the Community.
- This could be delivered through a series of ‘mini-projects’. AP suggested these could form ideal topics for students at local schools to incorporate in their studies, eg produce a film aimed at the ‘younger’ generation.
[ACTION: SR to establish contact with Redborne, via Alameda School.]
- Minutes of previous meeting (29/3/17)
Agree subject to 2 minor amendments [Min 8.1(b) Action = SB, and 9(iv)] and Simon signed. [ACTION: AP to amend and post in the NHP Dropbox folder and on MauldenVillage.org website.]
- Matters arising and review of actions (carried forward from previous meetings)
Actions arising from 30/11/16, 25/1/17, 22/2/17 and 29/3/17 not covered on agenda were deferred to the next meeting. [ACTION: AP to produce a summary list for next meeting.]
- Village update
- CBC’s draft ‘Local Plan’ – consultation [RB]
- Siobhan Vincent (CBC’s Neighbourhood Involvement Officer) had explained the consultation process for CBC’s ‘Community Plan’ at our last meeting. RB reminded us that the views of attendees at the “Shaping Where you Live” event held at Haynes Village Hall on 23 Feb were collected by completing a questionnaire and placing coloured dots on a map showing the sites selected from CBC’s Call For Sites exercise. A photo of the map and subject headings had been posted on Maulden Voice. [ACTION: AP to post copies in Dropbox.]
- CBC’s questions were grouped under the headings:
- Local Character
- Jobs and Business
- Growth and Infrastructure
- CBC’s analysis had just been published and RB anticipated this will be presented at MPC’s next meeting (8/5/17). [ACTION: RB to summarise the findings at the next NHP meeting.]
- Joint NHP/Maulden PC Housing consultation meeting (3/4/17) [AP/RB]
- All agreed that this had been a very successful meeting. Nearly 100 had attended the meeting in the Village Hall on 3 April. The strips of 7-colour dots left over from CBC’s consultation were used to identify individual’s preferences, ie 3x ‘for’ and 3x ‘against’ the potential development sites selected by CBC. The multi-coloured dots avoided ‘herd-mentality’, and the extra white dot was used to link those placed on the map to completed Questionnaires. The MPC-owned land from the corner of Clophill Rd and Silsoe Rd to the allotments had also been added to the map as another option.
- Alan and Ruth Plom were thanked for analysing the location of the 325 coloured stickers placed on the Call for Sites map. This had revealed a few apparent clearer ‘majority preferences’. In particular: ‘no-building’ on the site adjacent to Ampthill, the land behind Duck End Farm, the ‘Pig Farm’ on Clophill Road and Old Hall Farm on Clophill Rd. Two sites with a significant majority in favour ‘for’ building were the MPC-owned land on the corner of Clophill Rd and Silsoe Rd/Allotment area, and land behind The Brache. [ACTION: Mike Browning offered to type the stats into an Excel Spreadsheet]
[ACTION: Nigel Coote said he could produce an ‘infographic’ type map summarising the analysis. Suitable format map to be obtained from Robbie Locke/Siobhan Vincent.]
- DB had adapted the Housing Questionnaire produced for the first NHP Introductory meeting in January, so they could be linked to the placement of dots on the Call for Sites map, and to record detailed information about the demand, size and type of properties needed. [ACTION: Volunteers needed to analyse the questionnaires. To be raised at AGM.]
- As people arrived they were asked to complete a signing-in slip, and invited to provide their address and/or leave a contact email address. It was also emphasised that the information being collected would be anonymous. However, ‘only’ 56 (of a potential 95) forms had been handed in. It was assumed some represented the views of couples. A small number admitted they had come from Ampthill – who would probably have objected to the large adjacent site. [NB. They were asked to indicate they were from Ampthill on their forms.]
[ACTION: Ruth Plom agreed to type names and email addresses into a spreadsheet so we can contact attendees in future.]
- Report from Maulden Parish Council meetings (13/3/17 + 27/3/17) [RB/PJ]
Cllr Roger Ball gave an update on relevant developments since the last MPC meeting on 27/3/17 – including the ongoing discussion about introducing ‘Health Hubs’ in Central Beds and the status of MPC’s ‘Working Groups’/sub-Committees regarding the requirement to hold meetings in public IF they were ‘decision-making’ bodies.
- Recent Planning Applications
RB confirmed that the PC had objected to the recent applications on the grounds that they are outside the ‘Development Envelope’; would cause a loss of green spaces and agricultural land; the school being full and increased traffic, as well as foreshadowing the emerging Maulden Neighbourhood Plan. It was suggested that a map of ‘recent and pending’ Planning Applications should be produced and maintained for public reference.
[ACTION: RB to ask Cllr Allen if there is a complete list which could be made available.]
- SB (NHP Treasurer) explained that the application for funding had not been finalised due to other pressures, and the fact that several written estimates are needed for each item of proposed expenditure. [ACTION: SB to discuss with DB and submit application asap.]
- RB confirmed that the PC had also agreed to ‘loan’ the NHP up to £250 for publicity materials etc, in advance of funding being received. This would be available in the 2017-18 budget.
- Project Plan
- The proposed AGM on 25 April proved impossible due to the non-availability of key individuals and work pressures. SB’s proposal to hold the AGM immediately before the next meeting, in The George and starting at 19:30hrs, on 31 May, was agreed. [ACTION: SB/AP to discuss agenda with DB.]
- SR suggested we should be radical – ie consider changing the structure away from ‘formal Committees’ (which can turn people off getting involved) to ‘Focus Groups’. AP recalled these had been used successfully by some other NHPs. [NB. Reports are available in Dropbox and hard copy (from AP).] SB advised that the Steering Group was in effect a small ‘Executive Committee’ to which Working Groups reported. Consultants might also be able to advise us on alternative structures. AP suggested that the CBC NHP Training Day would also be an opportunity to discuss what others have done and what works (or not!).
- (iii) It was agreed that a resume of the year and the proposed introductory leaflet – using the (to be finalised) logo – will be presented at the AGM. The AGM will be advertised on social media. A poster could also be produced for display in local shops and pubs. It could also be advertised via Maulden Lower School. [ACTION SB/SR]
- Steering Group & Working Group Membership
As discussed earlier, more volunteers and active support is needed. This would be raised at the AGM.
- Developing the Timeline
- AP reported that Julian Smith had a contact in a local consultancy company (Woods Hardwick Associates) who had already prepared an NHP for Bletsoe and had recently been commissioned to produce Henlow’s NHP. [ACTION: AP to obtain details and a quote if possible.]
- The Project Plan will be reviewed at the AGM. [ACTION: SB to discuss with DB and AP.]
- CBC Training Event
AP had contacted Siobhan Vincent – the training session has been deferred from Friday 28 April to another Friday, in May (date TBC). [ACTION: AP to chase up CBC again and inform WGp Leaders of date, asap.]
- Working Group Updates
- Infrastructure – AP reported that he had established contact with the person who had pushed through the traffic calming measures in Greenfield. He has agreed to advise the Group. AP had also discovered some useful research reports on Traffic Calming, posted on the Dropbox by DB last year.
- Other WGps – Deferred to next meeting. AP reminded members of the wide range of information relevant to each Group that DB had posted in Dropbox. [ACTION: WGp Leaders to review available information.]
- MNHP Logo – SR has adapted the design. [ACTION: SR to circulate the final design, TBC with SB.]
- Publicity Statement – for leaflet, etc. It was agreed effective ‘communications’ is vital and a ‘Communication Team’ should be created – to include SB, SR, NC and AM. [ACTION: SB]
- (iii)Banner – Ideally needed for the AGM. [ACTION: AP to resend quote to SB. SB to arrange purchase – possibly using MNHP funds?]
- Next meeting + AGM = Wednesday 31 May, starting earlier at 7:30pm, in The George, with the Steering Group expected to start at ~ 8:30pm. [ACTION: AP confirmed upstairs meeting room is booked – through to November.]
Meeting ended at 21:30pm