Just some of the topics raised at yesterday’s meeting of Kirkby on Bain Parish council in its brand new home in Wharf Lane. The meeting will be remembered not just for the marvellous facilities provided by the Primary School hall, but for a great turnout by residents keen to participate in debates and to express concerns.
The public forum, nominally restricted to ten minutes, was extended to accommodate a presentation made by representatives of the proposed Shanti Festival and a discussion on two current planning applications, about which residents have very strong views, including the potential for flooding, fears of escalation and concerns about infrastructure.
East Lindsey District Council Leader Craig Leyland attended our meeting and provided very valuable guidance on a range of subjects including planning concerns, licensing applications, reduced precept, street lighting plans and the problem of potholes.
The matter of Parish Council Elections was also raised, and a view was expressed that ideally all councillors should be elected rather than co-opted. Historically this has been hard to achieve in Kirkby on Bain because of insufficient numbers of eligible people applying to join the Council. We hope this situation will change!
The council also addressed concerns about community engagement and the role of the Annual Parish Meeting, which is not a council meeting, but must take place every year between March 1st and June 1st. Councillors now see this event as a welcome opportunity to increase public engagement, for instance by celebrating positive achievements and debating local issues.
Following the discussion Councillors Martin Briscombe, Peter Dewrance and Penny Stones volunteered to take the idea forward for this year and report back as soon as possible. They have agreed to make a start next Tuesday. If you have any ideas about how you would like the Annual Parish meeting to work for us all, please do contact the sub-committee as soon as possible, as time is short. You can do this by contacting us directly or by using the “Get in Touch” page on this website. We are keen to involve you right from the start and we look forward to the day when you will set the agenda.
Another matter raised was the Transparency Code, a government initiative which will replace the need for external audit for parish councils with turnover less than £25,000. “The code will require the on-line publication of information which the Government says will provide taxpayers with a clear picture of the councils’ activities, spending and governance and will improve the ability of communities to hold local public bodies to account.” (National Association of Local Councils)
We welcome this development, and see this website as a good way to keep you informed.
Finally, thanks were expressed to St Mary’s Church for accommodating the Council in recent times and to Simon Morley, Head Teacher at Kirkby on Bain Primary School and the Board of Governors, for according us the privilege of being the first community group to meet in the new school hall.