Parish Council

Parish Council minutes 4 July 2011


Minutes of the Parish Council Meeting

held in the Epworth Hallcommencing at 7.00pm on Monday 4 July 2011

Present: Cllr J Werrett (Chairman) Cllr A Brock Cllr R Curtis Cllr F Fahy Cllr P Goddard (Items 10 to 20) Cllr G Herbert (Items 10 to 20) Cllr D Harrison (Items 10 to 20) Cllr R Harwood Cllr G Pearson

In Attendance: Mr P J Storey (Clerk to King’s Somborne Parish Council)

Public Session Mrs D Harrison (Village Correspondent), Mr R Dyke (Open Spaces), Mr C Matthews (Tree Warden), Mr D Hayden and Mrs A Seymour (Footpath Wardens), Dr T Macintosh (Chairman of the Village Hall Management Committee), County Cllr Gibson, Borough Cllr Ward and four members of the public were present for part of the meeting. Dr Macintosh confirmed that the renovated pavilion in the Village Hall would be formally opened on Saturday 16 July at 3.00pm and that all councillors were invited to attend. He and Cllr Ward would review the case for a new path from the School to the Village Hall and Cllr Fahy who serves on the Village Hall Management Committee and Cllr Curtis, as the schools liaison councillor, would propose the case at the September Parish Council meeting.Action: Cllrs Curtis and Fahy

Two of the new owners of the houses built on the site of the old Somborne garage made their views known on the proposal to erect a cricket net along the outside of their boundaries. They confirmed their awareness of the possible risks but offset that against the potential unsightliness of a permanently erected net and the impact the net might have on bird and other wildlife. They also did not wish to see the demise of cricket on the recreation ground after 120 years of play and thought there were alternatives to a permanent net along their perimeter including a collapsible structure and/or notification by the Cricket Club of dates and times of fixtures so precautionary measures could be taken. The concept of signing an indemnity was mentioned. Councillors noted these comments and undertook to take them into account when discussing the formal application later in the meeting.

97. Apologies for Absence

97.1 Cllr Bidwell and PC Williams.

98. Chairman’s announcements and Councillors’ questions

98.1 The Chairman expressed the view that it might be a good idea to co-ordinate those activities which organisations and groups might be planning to mark the Queen’s Jubilee over the period 2 – 5 June 2012 to avoid conflicting dates and times and it was agreed to encourage organisers to complete the details of their event in the Village Diary, on the website and to be invited to attend the September Parish Council meeting to discuss their plans. It was also noted the Olympic torch might pass nearby which could impact on some events. The Clerk would publicise the invitation to attend.

Action: Clerk

99. To receive reports from the Tree, Footpath and Open Spaces Wardens and other volunteers

99.1 Mr Matthews reported that several of the recently planted trees were showing signs of stress as a result of the long dry weather spell. He and Cllr Fahy had done their best to keep them watered. The tree which he thought was dead was now showing signs of life and he opined that unless there were any other ideas of where trees might be planted he thought there were no obvious places left requiring trees at this time.

99.2 Mr Hayden confirmed that the footpath walks were still on-going and attracting 8 or more people on a regular basis. There had been a problem with the Horsebridge Road kissing gate, now resolved, and walkers were not following the correct route along the Old Roman Road to the annoyance of Compton Estate . Path 704, running from Stockbridge to Romsey, was in a hazardous state and this had been reported and he had attended a Hampshire Countryside Access Forum at which usage made of footpaths and access thereto had been discussed.

99.3 Mr Dyke commented that the skate ramp would benefit from repainting as it was showing severe signs of rust. The Clerk would investigate costs.

Action: Clerk

99.4 County Cllr Gibson briefed that the emphasis at the County Council at the moment was on cost cutting. However, he took note of the outstanding request to replace the missing sign at the Furzedown Road entrance to the Village and of the on-going concern at the size of trucks servicing the Forest Extra site at the top of Strawberry Lane. An application for a certificate of lawful use was being considered and legal opinion on the size of trucks permitted to use these and other roads in the UK, as a result of the EU’s decision to increase the size, was anticipated. Cllr Gibson also reported that a resident had raised the matter of speed restrictions at the junction of Strawberry Lane and Winchester Road whilst attending a surgery held by Caroline Nokes MP. However, the Police did not support any changes and consequently no further action would be taken.

99.5 The Chairman thanked all those volunteers who undertook tasks on behalf of the community for their time and enthusiasm.

100. To approve the Minutes of the Parish Council meeting held on 9 June 2011

100.1 Proposed Cllr Brock, Seconded Cllr Fahy RESOLVED that the minutes of the meeting held on 9 June 2011 be accepted as a true record.

101. To consider any Matters Arising from those Minutes

101.1 Para 85.3 Cllr Harwood reported that at the Councillors’ Surgery earlier that evening, a resident had commented on the unsightly nature of the stream and its banks and Cllr Harwood had had to explain that it was Environment Agency policy to leave the vegetation to enhance wildlife except for a controlled cut twice yearly.

101.2 Para 88.1 The Clerk confirmed that more information on the Communities Right to Build initiative was available on He reminded councillors that the concept was for local communities to determine which new developments would get approval without having to go through the normal planning application process and as long as the proposals meet certain criteria and there was community backing for them, usually determined by more than 50% votes in favour in a referendum, the project would go ahead.

102. Declarations of Interest

102.1 Cllrs Fahy and Harwood declared an interest in the application to erect a protective net on the boundary of the cricket outfield.

103. Co-option

103.1 Notices had been on display inviting members of the public to stand for co-option to the three vacancies on the Parish Council following the last elections. This had resulted in four expressions of interest from individuals who were present at the meeting. The Chairman invited each applicant to give a short presentation, which they did, and then invited them to leave the room whilst their interests were debated. There were no other members of the public present at this time.

103.2 Proposed Cllr Curtis, Seconded Cllr Fahy, RESOLVED that Mr Paul Goddard be invited to become a co-opted member of the Parish Council.

103.3 Proposed Cllr Pearson, Seconded Cllr Fahy, RESOLVED that Mrs Dawn Harrison be invited to become a co-opted member of the Parish Council.

103.4 Proposed Cllr Werrett, Seconded Cllr Pearson RESOLVED that Mr Geoff Herbert be invited to become a co-opted member of the Parish Council.

103.5 The Chairman then invited all four candidates to rejoin the meeting having explained the results of the voting and thanked them for their interest.

Each newly co-opted member then signed their declaration of acceptance and joined the meeting

104. Borough News

104.1 Cllr Ward updated councillors on the alternative sites for the bottle banks saying that the proposal to relocate the banks to New Lane was unlikely to find favour with local residents in that area and the ownership of the verge in question was unclear. He was now looking at the feasibility of relocating the banks to the layby on the hill top out of the Village towards Romsey on the A3057. The idea of smaller bins being located in the community was not acceptable because of the type of vehicles used by the contractors but he would welcome any further suggestions from the public.

104.2 He introduced ‘Insulate Hampshire’ which was a County-wide scheme to offer cavity wall and loft insulation to thousands of Hampshire homes occupied by older people over the age of 70 and which were not insulated at no charge and to others of any age at £99 for each of cavity wall and loft insulation. The scheme costs would be met primarily by the Government’s carbon emissions reduction targets and County and Borough budgets.

104.3 Regarding the reduction in the county library service, the need to save £500k had resulted in a severe reduction in the service and unfortunately a recent survey had illustrated that only 16 people per month used the King’s Somborne stops hence the reduction. Alternatives means of getting books to readers such as the Good Neighbour scheme and the voluntary library service were to be encouraged if any changes were to be introduced after the next planned review in a year’s time.

105. To receive Councillors’ reports

105.1 Cllr Fahy briefed that the pedestrian walkway adjacent to Magdalen Cottage on Winchester Road had been repaired and that he had confirmation that the white lines on the Winchester Road towards Ashley would be relined. He was still seeking agreement to have the white lines extended around the bends on this road and to improve the poor standards of verge trimming.

105.2 Cllr Harwood confirmed that the weed growth in the biodiversity plot on the 3 Fields was deliberate to allow for respraying.

105.3 Cllr Brock informed the meeting that he was now Chairman of the Neighbourhood Watch and that he had plans to increase committee numbers.

105.4 Cllr Brock reported that a successful first meeting to identify ways of improving communications within the Parish had been held and various initiatives would now be followed through by selected councillors and others.

105.5 Cllr Curtis would seek the School’s support to an all-weather path across the English Heritage and Parish Council owned land and noted that an astroturf surface might be preferable to heavy duty rubber matting. Cllr Fahy, with Cllr Bidwell, would follow up with the Village Hall Management Committee.

Action: Cllrs Bidwell, Curtis and Fahy

106. To receive reports on planning applications considered and determined

106.1 The following responses had been made to recent planning applications received: * John O’Gaunt Inn – additional comment on change of use to residential – no comment * King’s Somborne recreation ground – erection of a cricket net to protect neighbouring properties – no objection but support given to the strong representations made earlier by two new owners present that the Club should give 48 hours notice of all games and that the Club should be asked to consider the erection of the net on a match by match basis. In response to a question from Cllr Harwood, the Clerk confirmed he had received support in principle from TVBC that S106 monies could be made available to fund the net purchase and erection costs.

Cllrs Fahy and Harwood left the room whilst his application was debated having declare an interest

* King’s Somborne Village Hall – various internal changes and erection of two extensions to provide sports and general storage – supported

* The Old Exchange, Romsey Road – playroom extension – no comment

* Forge Cottage, 1 Forge Close – single storey rear extension – no comment

* Certificate of lawful proposed development – 9 Nutcher’s Drove – installation of roof solar panels – no comment

106.2 The following decisions had been notified by Test Valley Borough Council:

* 3 Furzedown Cottages erection of two storey rear extension and conservatory – permitted

* Yew Tree Cottage, Up Somborne – replace existing glazed conservatory roof with slate and other works – permitted

107. To consider Correspondence Received and determine any action required

107.1 The Clerk drew councillors’ attention to recent correspondence received which included formal notification from the Village Hall Management Committee of their intention to erect two new storage sheds and change some existing widows and doors to uPVC; an information pack and DVD explaining the digital switchover scheme; that he had replied supporting the proposal by Leiston Town Council under the Sustainable Communities Act that applicants with plans for major developments attend a meeting of the parish council to answer questions on the development ; and that the comments on the house names on the new development at the old garage site had been forwarded by TVBC to the developer for comment. No further action on any item was thought necessary.

108. To receive the RFO’s Report and Budget Monitoring

108.1 A budget monitoring report showing income and expenditure to date had been circulated with the agenda. This was noted. The Clerk confirmed he had revised upwards the forecast income from the sale of exclusive rights in the Cemetery as a result of an increased number of interments.

109. To determine an application for Grant Aid from the Working Men’s Club

109.1 An application for £500 had been received from the Working Men’s Club to assist them in purchasing a new cash register. The Clerk reminded councillors that the annual budget for Grant Aid was £500 but, if necessary, additional funds could be vired from reserves.

109.2 Proposed Cllr Pearson, Seconded Cllr Goddard, RESOLVED with three abstentions that £500 be granted to the Working Men’s Club to assist in purchasing a new cash register.

110. To approve the purchase of a notice board for outside Cross Stores

110.1 This item was deferred until the September meeting for want of more information.

Action: Cllr Fahy

111. Payment of Accounts

111.1 Proposed Cllr Werrett, Seconded Cllr Harwood, RESOLVED unanimously that the following accounts for June be approved for payment:

To For Net VAT Gross Chq
BPC Shared costs 90.49 90.49 1706
HPFA Subscription 40.00 40.00 1707
Landforce Contracts 3 Fields spraying 286.00 57.20 343.20 1708
Mr P Storey Salary/expenses 797.66 797.66 1709
HMRC Tax/NIC 207.46 207.46 1710
Mr M Rebbeck Grounds maint 692.00 692.00 1711
Totals 2113.61 57.20 2170.81

112. To note the risk assessment of the financial systems and controls

112.1 The Clerk tabled the annual risk assessment of financial systems and controls together with comments on action taken, where appropriate.

112.2 Proposed Cllr Brock, Seconded Cllr Harwood, RESOLVED with four abstentions that the assessment as tabled be noted.

113. To adopt amended Standing Orders

113.1 A revised set of Standing Orders had been circulated with the agenda papers. Following discussion, it was thought appropriate for more thought to be given to how information on planning applications should be disseminated and public involvement encouraged. Cllr Pearson would seek comments from the deputy chairman of the Planning Committee, Cllr Bidwell who was absent from this meeting, and produce a draft revision and also discuss with those Horsebridge residents to whom an undertaken had been given that this would be actioned following the comments received relating to the John O’Gaunt pub application.

Action: Cllr Pearson 113.2 Proposed Cllr Werrett, Seconded Cllr Curtis, RESOLVED that the revised Standing Orders as tabled, but subject to further amendment to the Orders for the Planning Committee, be adopted.

114. To adopt the policy for Health and Safety inspections of play areas and open spaces

114.1 Following attendance at a seminar on risk assessment and inspections of play areas and open spaces, the Clerk had tabled a policy for adoption which laid down the procedures to be followed in this respect.

114.2 Proposed Cllr Brock, Seconded Cllr Harwood, RESOLVED with three abstentions that the policy for Health and Safety inspections for open spaces and play areas be adopted, as tabled.

115. To receive the Clerk’s monthly report

115.1 The Clerk reported success on behalf of the Village Hall Development Committee in obtaining a capital grant from TVBC; the results of the bid to HCC were still awaited. He reminded councillors that a condition of the Village Hall benefiting from the £4000 budgeted this year was that this amount should be used as a multiplier in getting more capital grant money from the Borough and the County. Councillors thought it appropriate that representatives from the Village Hall should make a presentation to the Council on their plans for spending these capital grants and the associated time frame.

Action: Clerk

115.2 Volunteers were required for the next Councillors’ Surgery and Cllrs Fahy and Harrison put forward their names. It was agreed that future surgeries should last for 30 minutes starting at 6.15pm immediately before the scheduled Parish Council meeting.

Action: Cllr Fahy and Harrison

115.3 TVBC had advised that the Village Agent scheme had started well with our volunteer, Sue Jackson, being trained. It was likely that a second volunteer would be sought so the estimated 4 – 6 hours per week could be shared.

115.4 The Clerk advised that a bill for around £800 would be presented for payment resulting from a repair to a leak in the main water feed from Romsey Road to the recreation ground. The repair had been undertaken by the Village Hall builder who was on-site at the time and followed an estimate from Southern Water of £6000.

115.5 Some formalising of the right of access through the rear gates of the new houses on the old garage site was necessary. The Clerk confirmed that as they had been approved as part of the planning application they could not now be removed. However, on behalf of Fields in Trust, the Parish Council had to determine its view on access rights bearing in mind that any decision could also impact on the Scout Hut and the other resident who also had a rear garden gate. The matter would be placed on the September agenda for decision but in the meantime, the Clerk would write to the new house owners outlining the situation and the dangers of using gates which opened onto a car park with the attendant dangers of moving traffic.

Action: Clerk

115.6 Finally, the Clerk produced a four inch bolt which was one of two holding a grab rail in place on the toddlers climbing equipment on the King’s Somborne rec which had been deliberately pulled from its position by vandals thereby endangering any toddler whom might be using the frame.

116. Date, time and place of next meeting

116.1 The next meeting will be on Monday 5 September 2011 at 7.00pm in the Epworth Hall, King’s Somborne to be preceded by a Councillors’ Surgery at 6.15pm.

Action: All

There being no further business, the Chairman closed the meeting at 10.50pm