I never encountered/I had never encountered 'take a decision' in my fairly long life until I started my ESL teaching career. It is foreign to my dialect and when I first encountered it I thought that it was an ESL "mistake", possibly a direct translation from the mother tongue.
Though it sounds strange to my ear, I can't see any reason why it couldn't be used and why it couldn't hold the same meaning as 'make'. Frequent usage normally dispels any notions of strangeness.
Possibly - I'm only hazarding a guess and this, from the text - it is a form that was more common in previous generations.
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