Present: Cllrs. Mr & Mrs Elliott, Webb, Lusty & Williams
In The Chair Cllr. Johnson
Minute Secretary Lorraine Green
Also Present: Chelmsford Borough Councillor Gary Stringer and 23 Members of the Public
Apologies for Absence: Cllrs. Tant, Peacock and Tully and Lord Hanningfield

The Minutes of the last Annual Parish Meeting, having been previously circulated, were then duly signed as a true record of events. All agreed.
Mr Dixon asked what the situation was with regard to last year's plans for a better Children's Play Area. The Chairman explained that the Parish Council were having a problem finding a site and to-date had not been satisfied with any area. She explained that one area that had been considered was on the Common, in the far South East corner where it had recently been cleared of trees, but that high fencing would be needed on the road side. The other area was The Larches in Swan Lane, which was on the left-hand side, which was a wooded area. The only problem here was that nobody could discover who actually owns the land. The Chairman asked that if anybody had any ideas on suitable sites please could they let the Parish Council know.
Mr Dixon also raised the question as to what the Best Value Group were actually doing. The Chairman advised that the group were looking into matters such as traffic, the new playground, the problems of litter and damage to verges etc.
Mr Dixon enquired about the increased Precept for 2000/01 in order to fund the extension to the Village Hall Car Park. The Chairman advised that the main reason for raising the Precept had been for the project of the Village Hall Car Park, which had now got the go ahead. She explained that it was due to go through in the last financial year but that it had taken the full year to get through planning and to get to the tender stage. Cllr. M. Elliott advised that the cost would be between £30,000 and £35,000. Cllr. M. Elliott also advised that the application had gone to the Planning Department at Chelmsford Borough Council on 11th June 2001 and had not been approved until 29th November 2001. He explained that they had been arguing re the topping of the car park which is still to be agreed and the order is to be sanctioned at Monday's Parish Council Meeting.
The Chairman's Report had been prepared and circulated.
Doug Taffs reported that Chelmsford Borough Council were only patching up roads rather than totally repairing them. The Chairman advised that the Parish Council were looking into the matter.
Margaret Otter commented on the first page, last sentence, with regard to the The Parish Council having made representations to Chelmsford Borough Council as part of the new Local Plan which included objections to Temple Farm.
The Chairman read out a report that had been prepared by the Trustee, Mr Barry Woodgate. In the report it stated that Mr H.B. Woodgate had been adopted as the Stock Parish Council Nominative Trustee replacing Mandy Fenwick who had resigned earlier in the year. It was reported that Mr Terry Vanner had stepped down as the Co-optative Trustee after over 11 years of service but he had agreed to be the Consultant Architect. Mrs E.M. Woodgate had been appointed as the Co-optative Trustee in Mr Vanner's place. It was reported that the properties had enjoyed 100% occupancy during the year with no change of tenants and that double glazing had been fitted to the front of the properties. Bakers of Danbury are due to be undertaking a series of remedial work over the Summer months of 2002. A copy of the accounts will be provided to the Parish Council when they are finalised and audited.
The Clerk read out the following report that had been prepared by Peter Bentley.
Staff Changes: Mrs Gallagher (Deputy Head) left in March to take up a Headteacher position at Crays Hill School. Her time at Stock has been very valuable to all the pupils who came in contact with her over the years. Her considerable teaching skills and general enthusiasm for all that is involved in school life will be missed. She did a wonderful job when Mrs Driver was so ill and the School (and Governors) will remember her for her zest for the job. In her place we have recruited Mr Robert Pike as Deputy Headteacher and, in his first two weeks, he has settled down well and the children have reacted positively to having a man for a change leading the class! Staffing levels remain unchanged from previous years and we continue to have one 'floating' Teacher available to help with specific needs or in the larger classes.
Head Count: The School has a head count of pupils around 200 (max 210) and the Head is satisfied that at this level we can maximise the per capita income we receive. Billericay still provides us with a number of pupils from outside the actual catchment area.
Financial: The School has been visited by the Essex Audit Team each term under the arrangements I made when I took over the Responsible Officers position two years ago. The audit reports have all been satisfactory and the Governors are satisfied the stewardship of the finances is of a high quality. In the last financial year we achieved a surplus which is being carried forward to fund the building project (see below). In addition, this years Budget (2002/03) which was recently set should provide us with a further financial cushion by March 2003.
OFSTED: In general this report highlighted many more strengths than it did weaknesses in the conduct of teaching and in the general management of the School. Where weaknesses were identified the Governing Body and Staff have addressed these and made changes where they felt appropriate.
Results: The School had some very good results at the 11+ this year with four girls gaining places at Chelmsford County High and one boy into KEGS, three other places were gained by pupils to Southend. When considering the size of the School and the competition for a limited number of places available each year in the High School system, we are very proud at this achievement. Other children won places into private schools. The Governors thank the teaching staff and of course all the pupils who entered the examinations who made this result possible.
Buildings: The School has had plans prepared to extend the main building in a manner which will provide, for the first time, a self contained computer room. The OFSTED report made a specific comment on the standard of computer teaching which they felt was low when compared to the very high levels achieved in all other subjects. The Governors and Staff believeer that the School cannot meet the OFSTED requirement until separate facilities are available. Some capital funding is available from Essex and the balance will have to come from past budget surpluses and other grants. The PTA will be asked to help with the purchase of some of the equipment. We hope to have the work done during the holiday period but now await the planning approval process to be completed before going out to tender.
Julia Seaman questioned as the Parish Council had helped fund the Village Appraisal what was happening with it? Mr Dixon reported that a lot of research had been undertaken and that Barry Woodgate had taken it upon himself to prepare a report and take on the analysis. As Treasurer, Mr Dixon had given the accounts to Mr Otter. He explained that £994.00 was standing to the Village Appraisal account which had been set aside should there be a report for the villagers to read.
Gary Stringer emphasised the point that the appraisal was a historical document which would be referred to when questions came up regarding housing etc. He had already found it useful when data was needed with regard to the traffic calming etc. The Chairman advised that the problem of traffic in and around Stock was currently under discussion with Chelmsford Borough Council and Essex County Council.
Phil Gane expressed concern at the way in which builders were ruining verges and not leaving building materials on the properties they were working on. He said he felt that the developers were riding rough shod over everybody and that he sees Section 106 as a bribe. The Chairman explained that the Parish Council were trying to get Chelmsford Borough Council to write in the planning permission that the builders make good any damage they cause, i.e. verges are returned to their original state. Mr Gane said that everyone seems helpless with regard to the development taking place and verges being wrecked.
Margaret Otter questioned why the Parish Council did not object to the field that needs re-profiling adjacent to Greenwoods. She criticised that the Parish Council were not objecting and putting in proper objections to plans. The Chairman advised that as a Parish Council they did as much as possible to object to plans. She reported that everyone was surprised that the Bakers Arms application went through and when Cllr. M. Elliott had checked with Chelmsford Borough Council only one parishioner had written a letter of objection. The Chairman suggested that parishioners take more interest in the plans and write letters themselves to support the Parish Council. Gary Stringer reported that it is all about apathy and that not enough people were writing to the Parish Council, Chelmsford Borough Council, himself and not attending Parish Council Meetings. He supported the Parish Council by saying that not enough people were turning up at Parish Council Meetings and then commenting that not enough was being done to object to plans. Margaret Otter declared that there was not enough time or opportunities for parishioners to object to plans and how could parishioners find out about the plans? Beth Weaver advised that plans were advertised on the noticeboard and in the Essex Chronicle. Chris Otter expressed concern that only immediate neighbours were notified of planning applications and that did not give other people the chance to object.
Richard Allan enquired as to the Council's attitude to a weight limit. The Chairman advised that the subject had been discussed with Chelmsford Borough Council and Essex County Council and that now the first stage of the A130 had been opened they were waiting to see what difference it made to the roads in the area. The second part of the road is due to be opened at the end of 2003. The Chairman advised that a census was currently being carried out on the B1007. Mr Allan said that the larger vehicles had not been significantly reduced it was just perceived. Gary Stringer advised that the item was still on the Agenda at Chelmsford Borough Council and was a proposed item in the Borough Plan.
Richard Allan reported that he had taken photographs, which had been lost between departments at Chelmsford Borough Council with regard to the footpath in the Church Meadows. He explained that he had heard nothing and was told that there was not sufficient evidence that the footpath had been used for a number of years. The Chairman agreed to go back to Mr Clarke at Chelmsford Borough Council to investigate the matter.
Mrs Raeburn advised that she had written to Chelmsford Borough Council with regard to the proposed new Doctors' surgery. She was concerned that it was being built on a very dangerous road and was going into green belt land. Mrs Raeburn reported that her letters had been acknowledged but were not being shown on file. Phil Gane also had written and received an acknowledgement. Gary Stringer asked parishioners to send a copy of all letters that were sent to Chelmsford Borough Council with regard to protests in planning to him.
Mr Dixon offered a vote of thanks to the Parish Council.
The Chairman thanked everyone for coming; the meeting closed at 9.05pm.
Stock Index Council