9 April 2013 – Minutes


Minutes of the Meeting of the Full Council held on 9 April 2013 at 7.30pm in the Upper Chamber, Thame Town Hall


Cllr D W Bretherton, N G Champken-Woods (Town Mayor), A Dite, N M Dixon, M L Dyer, L Emery, H M Fickling, V F Humphries,P Lambert (Deputy Mayor), D A Laver, J Matelot Green andM Welply.


Mrs H Stewart, Town Clerk.

Mrs A Oughton, Committee Services Officer.

1 Apologies for Absence

Apologies for absence were received from Cllrs Butler (Personal), Dodds (Unwell), Gunn (Business), Stiles (Unwell) and County Councillor Carter.

2 Declarations of Interest

Cllrs Bretherton and Dyer declared an interest in Item 14 Youth Memorial, within the Policy & Resources Committee minutes, as Trustees and Secretary and past Chair respectively of the Thame Youth Memorial Trust.  Both Councillors left the meeting during discussion of this item.

3 Civic Announcements

The Mayor highlighted the SODC Chairman’s Charity Dinner and Lion’s Club, 36th Charter Lunch as being very enjoyable events with excellent speakers.  The Big Bash had been highly successful and had opened the door for future events.

4 Public Participation

Mr. Scholey, resident of 10 Chalgrove Road, addressed the Council with regard to item 16 Disposal of Amenity Land.  Mr. Scholey had made a request to purchase the piece ofland at the rear of his property.  He had received a copy of the Council’s Land Acquisition and Disposal Policy and felt his request met the terms in the policy.  The land is paved and provides no benefit to the community in its current state.  If purchase was agreed the land would be enclosed into the garden with flower and vegetable planting, any trees already on the land would be retained to provide a natural screen between the neighbouring properties.  There was no intention to build on the land now or in the future and Mr Scholey would be happy to sign a legal document to that effect.

5 Report from County Councillor N Carter

County Councillor Carter had given his apologies for being delayed – there was nothing to report.

6 Reports from South Oxfordshire District Councillors

Cllr Midwinter reported that the District Council had begun looking at village housing allocations.  Cllr Welply reported that he had chaired the Audit Committee and was pleased to report the net benefit fraud figure had been greatly reduced.

Cllr Emery entered the meeting during this item.

7 Notices of Motion

There were no notices of motion.

8 Questions

There were no questions.

9 Minutes

The minutes of the meeting held on 5 February 2013 were approved as a correct record and signed by the Mayor.

10 Policy & Resources Committee

The minutes of the meeting held on 26 March 2013 were noted.

Item 4 – Youth Memorial


i)             That the shortfall of £6,746 of funding for the Youth Memorial be underwritten by means of a short term loan to the Youth Memorial Trust, to enable the project to commence in June/July 2013.

Item 9 – Scheme of Administration

Members approved the Scheme with the addition of 8.2 to read: “Delegated authority for the Town Clerk to represent the Council in taking legal action in pursuance of the Excess Charge Tickets”.


i)             That the Scheme of Delegation with the addition of 8.2 be adopted.

Item 11 – Mayor’s Allowance


i)             That the Mayor’s Allowance be increased to £2,000.

ii)            That the budget for the Civic Reception be increased to £750.

Item 13 – Treasury Management Policy


i)             That semi-permanent balances in the Council’s bank accounts be placed in a constructive mix of Fixed Term Corporate Bonds (FTCBs) as detailed in the report to maximise interest at minimal risk.

Item 16 – IT Software


i)             That the purchase of the Adobe Creative Suite 6 Design Standard software at a cost of £1228 be met from the General Fund.

11 Culture, Leisure & Recreation Committee

The minutes of the meetingheld on 19 March 2013 were noted.

12 Planning and Environment Committee

The minutes of the meeting held on 19 March 2013 were noted.

13 Personnel Committee

The minutes of the meeting held on 5 March 2013 were noted.

Item 8 – Sabbatical


i)             That the Town Clerk be permitted to have two months paid sabbatical during 2013.

14 Budget Estimates 2013-2014

With no effect on the bottom line the amendments to the figures for the Capital Rolling Fund and the Reserves were noted.

15 Public Loan

Discussion of this item was deferred.

16 Disposal of Amenity Land

Whilst it was felt there were a number of points that needed consultation the consensus of opinion was that this piece of land served little purpose to the community as it stood. The resident requesting to purchase the land could therefore progress all the necessary steps for a final decision to be made on disposal. The Council may be minded to reinvest the proceeds from any sale back into Lea Park.


i)             That the identified piece of land meets the criteria for disposal with the Land Acquisition and Disposal Policy.

ii)            That the arrangements to resolve a disposal of the land be progressed at no cost to the Town Council.

17 Elms Park Lighting

The Culture, Leisure and Recreation Committee recommended the Windsor Lamp with cast base as the preferred style of lamp.  The total cost of the project with the Windsor Lamp would be £27,907 taking into consideration the money raised from past Music In The Park events this left a shortfall of £19,238.  After discussion it was felt that the lighting scheme should be installed this year and that the current shortfall would decrease further with income from the MiTP event in May and applications for grant funding.  The Council would therefore underwrite the shortfall to enable the scheme to commence.


i)             That grant funding be applied for and any shortfall thereafter is met from the Capital Rolling Fund with a progress report given to the next Full Council meeting.

18 St Mary’s Churchyard

Discussion of this item was deferred.

19 For Information

a)    The Service Review of the Citizens Advice Bureau was noted.

The meeting concluded at 8.16pm


Signed ………………………….

Chairman, 18 June 2013