12 January 2016 @ 8:00 pm Ilam School

Present -                T Prince, C Sellers, L Oulsnam, V Nottage, R Wain, S Hudson

P Watson (Clerk), P Mortimer (NT), Anna Johnson (NT)

Apologies -            E Wain (District Councillor), C Hibbert-Foy


Minutes of the meeting held on 27 October were read and signed as true and correct.

Matters Arising

      E Wain has advised that Mark Deaville is back at work following his illness so the meeting about parking will probably take place in February or March.

      E Wain has advised that he would present the business case for SMDC’s financial support to refurbishing and upgrading Dovedale toilets at a Council meeting on 12 January.  Leek Post & Times got information from T Prince about the situation but Peak Park asked them not to publish it.  The Clerk will contact Emma Stone at Peak Park to check progress.

      The Clerk reported that Thorpe’s village signs cost their PC £636.  The PC thought this was affordable and asked him to investigate suppliers.

      The Clerk will try to arrange a meeting with the County Highways Liaison Officer regarding village drains, flooding opposite Bob Sellers’ house and installation of village signs at a time to suit C Sellers and S Hudson.  The Clerk has reported the tree trunks stuck under Ilam bridge and will check what action is being taken.

National Trust

      Activities have been reprogrammed and plans for discussion are expected around April.  The Clerk will email NT’s Vision Statement to Councillors for their comments. 

      NT plan to increase parking provision for visitors and will seek to improve the surface for staff parking in the Croft.

      Two years ago Peak Park would not allow NT to fell the dead tree.  Now NT is looking at options again: leave it, fell it or reduce it to leave only the trunk.

YHA - No representative from YHA attended but the Clerk will continue to invite them so they can attend when they have some information for the villagers.


      £1149.05 in the account.  The Council decided to apply for the same precept as last year (£600) to cover costs of new village signs, insurance and other ongoing expenses.

Staffordshire Parish Councils’ Association

      SPCA has advised that, under the new Transparency Code for Smaller Authorities, the Council has a legal obligation to set up a website containing accounting and governance information, together with details of PC meetings.  The Clerk has set up such a website at with links to the site from the Ilam village website and the Staffordshire County Council one.

      SPCA also advised that the existing arrangements, whereby Grant Thornton audit the PC annual accounts, will end after the current financial year.  The Government is funding a new “Sector Led Body” to provide a reasonably priced national audit service.  Up to 31 March 2016 there is an option to opt out of using this body but the Clerk advised against it as any alternative would involve more work and probably be more expensive.  The Council agreed.

Planning – Councillor Hibbert-Foy’s recent planning applications has disappeared from the Peak Park website and it is assumed that she will resubmit it with some modifications.

Highways - The Clerk will report the new potholes on the Castern road and the floods by Coldwall Farm and on the Thorpe-Ashbourne road.  He has already reported the pothole on Blore road and will check what is being done.


      The Clerk wrote to the Diocese to express the PC’s disappointment about the winter closure of Dovedale House and the departure of Mr & Mrs Hackney.  The Diocese’s reply was not reassuring and the Clerk has copied it to the PCC for their consideration.

      The PC decided not to enter the 2016 Best Kept Village competition.

      No Councillor was interested in joining the SPCA Executive or attending their Local Councillor Training Course.

Next Meeting

08 March 2016.