Middleton Parish Council Annual Report 2021-22

I would like to begin by saying that it has been a very busy year for Middleton Parish Council, and this is a good time to reflect on what has been achieved and what the future holds.

We would like to thank Tina Hymas-Taylor, who left the Council in June 2021 for her contribution during her time as a member. The Parish Council currently has three casual vacancies, and it is important that we fill these posts in order that we can expand our role. If you would like further information please speak to any councillor or the Parish Clerk.

For 2022-23 we have set a precept of £14,000, a below inflation increase. We have to balance expenditure in pursuit of improving facilities in the village whilst reducing costs wherever possible. Sadly though, at present, many of the cost increases are both unavoidable and outside our control.

Grant funding has made a significant contribution to what we have achieved. Working with DDDC, we have been successful in obtaining £19,981 from Tarmac via the Derbyshire Environmental Trust for play equipment at the Recreation Ground. In addition, we have received £1,200 from Cllr Dermot Murphy's DCC Leadership Fund for seating and £136 from the DDDC Local Projects Fund for signage in support of Community Speedwatch. Together, these grants represent additional funding equivalent to more than one-and-a-half times our precept.

In 2021-22 the Parish Council made grant awards to the Allotment Group, Steeple Grange Light Railway, and the Village Pump. The Parish Council believes the "Pump" is an essential part of village life and something Middleton should be rightly proud of. All issues since January 2016 are available to download.

Our "Middleton Remembers" book also remains available on our website and has been downloaded a total of 607 times in the last year.

Since May 2021 the Parish Council has returned to physical meetings and in the last year we met a total of 11 times. Details of our meetings, which are now held in Holy Trinity Church, can be found on our website. Members of the public are welcome to attend can make representations during public speaking.

We thank the Church for its continued hospitality in making the building available to us.

The work of the Parish Council is wide and varied;

  • As statutory consultee on planning issues, we received eighteen applications for comment this year,
  • We have been consulted by DDDC on Public Space Protection Orders, and by DCC on the upgrade of Middleton Footpath 14,
  • We continue to work with County Councillor Murphy on streetscene issues including parking, visibility-splay issues, and white lining,
  • We have made a bid to DCC for Electric Vehicle Charging points, and
  • Are working with DDDC to extending the lease of the Millennium Garden

It was gratifying that, following representations from the Parish Council and many others, the Boundary Commission reviewed its plans, so that Middleton by Wirksworth now remains in the Wirksworth ward. As has been pointed out to them by 'one or two' others: "There's a clue in the name".

Thanks are due to members of the Parish Council, fellow District Councillors Cllr Dawn Greatorex and Cllr Mike Ratcliffe, County Councillor Dermot Murphy, the Parish Clerk and our Caretaker.

The lifting of COVID-19 restrictions earlier in 2022 has meant that life is returning to a more familiar pattern, though there are certainly many challenges ahead.

The Parish Council looks forward, as the nation does, to the Platinum Jubilee celebrations of Her Majesty The Queen which are now less than a month away.

Posted: Tue, 10 May 2022 18:26 by John Rowe

Tags: Parish Council Report