Chairman's Report - Chairman's Report 2014


Halford Parish Council
Chairman's Report
Cllr Colin Black

Parish Assembly May 14th 2014

I am pleased to present my forth report to our Parish Assembly. I said last year that I felt sure it must soon be someone else's turn to do this soon and indeed it is as I am standing down as Chairman of the Parish Council tonight, though I will remain as a Council member. Thanks to all in the village who have supported me while I have undertaken this role.

Despite all the government cutbacks and pressure on public services I am pleased that we have again been able to hold the 2014 Precept at the same level as the previous year.

Quality Status Council
The Parish council continues to hold its 'Quality Status'. We have to demonstrate that we are representative, in touch with our community, competent and capable of taking on an enhanced role. This enables projects and initiatives which reflects the need and preferences of the villagers to be more easily realised. It also allows the Council to represent you with greater authority.

Roads and Drainage
Continual negotiations with the County Council take place regarding minor repairs to weather damaged roads. We are pleased that good relationships continue with our contact at County and we now get timely responses to issues we raise, many thanks to Cllr Nick Gale for his work on our behalf in this area.

The speed of traffic on the main road through the village is a constant concern and one that your Council is fully aware of. We liaise constantly with the police and encourage them to 'speed trap' as often as they can. We have recently received further support on this matter from the County Council who are supporting increased activity from the camera crews. We are also seeking support for a review of the layout of the 30 mph limit to make this more effective.

A Village Archive
We are pleased to support the setup of a formal village archive. In the past few years with the Jubilee and the Royal Wedding, the material that we have seen on display in the Village Hall has given a fascinating insight into the history of the village and I feel this incredible asset should be properly collated and documented and hopefully added to. There is already a store of material kept at County Hall and it will be good for the village is access to this is improved. I hope everybody will support Maggie in building and maintaining the archive and making it more accessible on a regular basis.

Public Participation
We welcome members of the public at our monthly meetings and allocate 15 minutes for such participation. This is a two way process and it is important that we are kept aware of issues that affect Halford and I would encourage you to participate when you can.

Working with others
The Parish Council has enjoyed working with other organisations from the village. We are also very grateful for the considerable support from many in the village around recent planning matters.

We are very appreciative for the help and assistance we get from our District and County Councillor, Mrs Izzi Seccombe and would like to thank her for the time she spends coming to our meetings and on the advice given at other times.

Thanks also to The Halford Inn who allow our regular monthly meetings to take place there and indeed their support for Halford in general. A pub is essential to the heart of many country villages and we should be grateful for that and we should remember - USE IT OR LOSE IT.

Finally I must also thank our Parish Clerk, Karen Parnell. Her knowledge of local government law is most helpful to the lay members of the PC and she endeavours to keep us on the straight and narrow and indeed sometimes actually achieves that!

Colin Black
April 2014