Parish Council minutes Sep 2008
KING’S SOMBORNE PARISH COUNCIL
Minutes of the Parish Council Meeting held in the Epworth Hall
commencing at 7.00pm on Monday 8 September 2008
Present: Cllr R Dyke (Chairman)
Cllr R Bevan (Items 1 – 17)
Cllr D Bidwell
Cllr R Harwood
Cllr R Lane
Cllr R Pidgeon
Cllr J Werrett
In Attendance: Mr P J Storey (Clerk to King’s Somborne Parish Council)
County Cllr M Woodhall, Borough Cllr A Ward, Footpath Warden, Village Correspondent and two members of the public were present for part of the meeting. The Chairman welcomed everyone to the meeting in particular Dawn Harrison who was taking over from Jo Finch as the Village Correspondent. Sincere thanks for all her past support and all best wishes were given to Jo Finch on her retirement. Cllr Woodhall commented on a recent seminar at HALC on changes to the Quality Parish accreditation scheme and how important he considered this accreditation to be. He then commented on his involvement with the outstanding highways matters in the Parish and Clr Werrett took the opportunity to highlight his frustration, as the Parish Councillor with responsibility for highways matters, with the lack of positive information he was getting from elements of the highways staff. He thought the continued excuse of changeover of contractor as a reason why maintenance works were not being completed and the apparent lack of any forward planning were particularly frustrating. Cllr Woodhall noted Cllr Werrett’s view that, having identified those highways matters of concern in writing to and having walked the areas in question with highways staff, a plan should then be produced identifying when the outstanding work would be programmed for completion and this should be made available to the Parish Council. Should the contractor then fail to adhere to the plan, highways staff should then pursue them, culminating in legal action against them if necessary. In sum, a more positive attitude was required by management. Cllr Ward commented that the application to develop the old Andover airfield site on behalf of Tesco Ltd had been rejected by the Northern Area Planning Committee on a split vote of 13 – 11. It would now go to Planning Control who would check for the correct interpretation of planning policy and who could overturn the rejection if grounds were thought to exist. Cllr Ward also introduced the matter of delegating responsibility to parish councils, highlighting planning and a document produced recently outlining the retention by the planning department of the right to make the final decision but substituting parish councils for deliberations presently undertaken by the area planning committees. He gave the Chairman both a copy of the document and a list of planning applications covering the last 18 months for councillors to consider.
Action: Clerk to circulate and place on agenda for next meeting
Cllr Ward updated Councillors on progress made in providing more affordable housing elsewhere and noted that discussions were in hand on the numbers appropriate for King’s Somborne. Cllr Dyke would liaise with TVBC staff on final numbers, thought to be between 6 and 8 dwellings, and Cllr Ward would monitor progress made.
Action: Cllrs Bevan, Dyke and Ward
Cllr Ward concluded by confirming that the Winterslow development had been set aside and that the current debate about fluoride in water would not affect King’s Somborne.
1. Apologies for Absence
1.1 Apologies were received from Cllrs Fahy, Pearson and Room and from PC Benton.
2. Announcements by the Chairman
2.1 None made.
3. To receive reports from the Tree Warden, Footpath Warden and other Volunteers
3.1 The Footpath Warden, Stephen Rake, commented that two successful walks had been held recently despite the appalling weather and that he would attend the ‘Paths to Partnership’ seminar being staged by HCC on 9 October with the Clerk.
4. To approve the Minutes of the Parish Council meeting held on 7 July 2008
4.1 Proposed Cllr Pidgeon, Seconded Cllr Bidwell, RESOLVED unanimously that the minutes of the meeting held on 7 July 2008 be accepted as a true record.
5. To consider any Matters Arising from those Minutes
5.1 Minute 5.5 Cllr Werrett confirmed that there were no objections from HCC to replacing the bus shelter on the Village Green but there could be problems in finding a suitable alternative location.
5.2 Minute 5.7 The loose leaf questionnaire on the bus shelter failed to get into The Gauntlet magazine but would be include in the next issue.
5.3 Minute 10.1 The PCC were content to insure the clock in the Church tower with the Parish Council continuing to meet maintenance and repair costs.
6. Declarations of Interest
6.1 None made.
7. To consider Correspondence Received and determination any action required
7.1 Details of correspondence received since the last meeting had been circulated with the agenda papers; no further specific action was thought necessary.
8. To receive reports on planning applications considered
8.1 The following responses had been made to recent planning applications received: ·
08/00941/FULLS – Hayes, Romsey Road – two storey front and single story side extensions, internal alterations and new staircase with additional bedroom – no objection ·
08/01646/FULLS – Sunflowers, Palace Close – additional storey to main section – no objection
08/01762/FULLS – Meadow Brook, Romsey Road – replacement garage with single storey residential annex – no objection
08/01840/FULLS – The Old School House, Hoplands Farm – conversion from nursery/estate office to holiday let – no objection
08/02048/Fulls – 4 The Old Iron Foundry – rear conservatory – no objection ·
08/01610/Trees – 4 Parsonage Barns – crown reductions on various trees – no objection ·
08/01753/Trees – Brook House, Old Vicarage Lane – remove one Fir and one Robinia – no objection
08/01849/TPOS – prune 4 Hazel trees – no objection
08/01886/Trees – Bryony Cottage, Stockbridge Road – fell one Ash – no objection ·
08/01907/Trees – 25 Nutcher’s Drove – pollard various trees – no objection·
08/02117/Trees – land opposite 14 Muss Lane – crown lift one Maple – no objection
8.2 Councillors noted that the appeal by the owners of Horsebridge Station against the decision not to allow them to have a marquee erected in their grounds for longer periods than at present had been rejected on visual impact grounds.
9. To receive the RFO’s Report and Budget Monitoring
9.1 The budget monitoring report showing income and expenditure to date had been circulated with the agenda. Cllr Harwood commented that expenditure appeared low for the fifth month in the financial year although he acknowledged that expenditure patterns during the year were variable. He emphasised his belief that every effort should be made to have the budgeted funds work for the community in the year they were precepted. All noted that the Council’s bank balances stood at £42345.26.
10. To approve Payments of Accounts
10.1 Proposed Cllr Werrett, Seconded Cllr Bevan, RESOLVED unanimously that the following accounts be approved for payment:
To For Net VAT Gross Chq BPC Shared costs 62.85 62.85 1451
Mr P Storey Salary/expenses 548.35 548.35 1452 HMRC Tax/NIC 231.17 231.17 1453
Mr M Rebbeck Grounds maint 1471.75 1471.75 1454 CPRE Annual sub 28.00 28.00 1455 Cancelled cheque 1456
Assn Burial Auth Annual sub 90.00 90.00 1457 Total 2432.12 2432.12
11. To consider changing the name of Council to more broadly reflect its responsibilities under new legislation
11.1 The Clerk explained the implications of various new pieces of legislation affecting local government and highlighted the on-going misunderstanding between parochial church councils (PCCs) and parish councils (PCs). Elsewhere, local councils had changed their name to ‘community council’ and it was for discussion as to what action if any should be undertaken by King’s Somborne. There was general agreement that ‘community’ was not the best term to use and also recognition that all the Sombornes should be covered if a general term such ‘The Sombornes’ was to be used; Little Somborne fell outside the current parish boundary.
11.2 Proposed Cllr Bidwell, Seconded Cllr Werrett, RESOLVED unanimously that the Clerk investigate further the implications of a name change in line with current local government thinking.
12. To determine representation and voting at Hampshire Association of Local Council’s AGM
12.1 It was decided that Cllr Bidwell would represent the Council at the forthcoming HALC AGM; the Clerk would also attend. There were two resolutions to debate; one calling for the Chief Constable to reconsider the withdrawal of police cover at carnival and other community events and the second that Government amends legislation to allow modern banking practices utilising electronic banking methods to be used by councils. The Parish Council wished to support both resolutions.
13. To consider appropriate action to be taken to prevent large vehicles from entering Old Vicarage Lane
13.1 Despite efforts to have larger or different signs displayed at the entrances to Old Vicarage Lane to prevent large vehicles from entering the road and getting stuck by the bridge, the existing signs were still on display. The Clerk would investigate alternative signs and their cost if the Council had to pay and Cllr Ward undertook to liaise with Highways staff.
Action: Clerk and Cllr Ward
14. To consider replacement of ‘No Golf’ notice on the recreation ground
14.1 A recent incident had highlighted the need to replace the missing ‘No Golf’ sign on the King’s Somborne recreation ground to prevent accidents from golf balls. The Chairman would write to those involved in the recent incident.
14.2 Proposed Cllr Harwood, Seconded Cllr Bevan RESOLVED unanimously that a sign be purchased and erected on the recreation ground.
15. To consider a request to support the campaign for an Andover Town Council
15.1 A request had been received from the organisers of the campaign to establish a town council for Andover to lend support and offer help and advice. There was some discussion on whether or not our support ‘in principle’ should be given and when put to the vote the motion was lost by one vote with two abstentions. It was noted that Cllr Bidwell had already given some guidance through the Test Valley Association of Town and Parish Councils. The Clerk was instructed to acknowledge the letter and offer some help in the future should the objectives of the campaign be successful.
16. To consider an invitation to send two representatives to an HCC ‘Paths to Partnership’ meeting
16.1 This item was determined in the Public Session.
Cllr Bevan left at this point
17. To receive reports from Members on external meetings at which they had represented the Parish Council or attended in any other capacity
17.1 Cllrs Dyke and Lane had attended a Police seminar on rural policing which had included presentations by other external organisations each with some responsibility in the community and had found it very useful in recognising each other’s roles. It was thought appropriate to invite a speaker from the Fire and Rescue Service to address the 2009 Annual Assembly on fire precautions in the home.
Clerk 17.2 Cllr Werrett had had extensive meetings with Hampshire Highways staff to discuss various outstanding matters, as reported above. A current list of actions required is attached to these minutes.
17.3 Cllr Pidgeon queried the ownership of the gullies near the garages in Scott Close as they were blocked yet no-one appeared to accept responsibility for their clearance. The Clerk would investigate further.
18. To receive Members’ reports on actions taken on lead matters including the Parish Plan
18.1 Cllr Werrett expressed his concern at the inactivity by TVBC staff regarding relocation of the speed indicator device which they were contracted to relocate at regular intervals and to maintain. He had been advised that Health and Safety rules now required certain safety features to be installed on the main road before staff could dismantle the sign for relocation. The site originally chosen on Winchester Road was now deemed unacceptable for safety reasons. Also, the required pole facing south on Romsey Road had yet to be installed. The result was that Members agreed TVBC was in default of its agreement with the Parish Council and supported fully the request made by Cllr Werrett to TVBC for a 50% reduction in the annual maintenance charge.
18.2 The Parish Plan was now five years old and Cllr Bidwell requested that a marker be put down that a new Plan should be produced for issue in 2010. This would be an agenda item for the November Parish Council meeting.
19. To receive the Clerk’s monthly report
19.1 Cllr Fahy wished it to be noted that he had started researching the history of the Yew Tree in the grounds of Yew Tree Cottage with the owner’s consent. He also wished members to note the campaign led by the Postmistress against the Government’s intention to withdraw or amend the OAP pension card system; the Clerk would investigate this further.
19.2 Cllr Pearson had recommended that a copy of the draft British Standard on tree safety be acquired but research on the internet had shown there to be much criticism of the draft and Members thought it inappropriate at this time to expend money on its purchase, preferring to rely on the expertise of the arboricultural staff at TVBC.
19.3 TVBC staff had confirmed they would be replacing the green bin by the bottle bank with a black and gold one which would enable them to empty this new bin more frequently; they would also review the request to replace the missing bin by the skate ramp but did point out it was not policy to erect green bins on non-highways land. It was thought appropriate to remind TVBC that any bins installed should be secured to a post.
19.4 The Clerk highlighted the introduction of two new requirements for Quality Parish councils; namely to prove community engagement and to enhance citizenship. The Council’s re-accreditation fell due in mid 2010 and early next year, if Members wished to seek re-accreditation, the Clerk would have to start compiling the 12 months of evidence in support of good practice. These new requirements would entail Members changing their working practices and providing proof of their activities. More details would be provided on the new requirements when they had been fleshed out and it was thought appropriate to put this item on the January 2009 meeting agenda.
19.5 It would also be necessary to identify the training needs of both Members and the Clerk as a training statement of intent would form part of the portfolio of evidence. Members were asked to consider their personal training needs and to consider attending one of the training seminars held by HALC at some time in the near future if they had not been to one in recent years.
19.6 Proposed Cllr Harwood, Seconded Cllr Clr Bidwell, RESOLVED, that the Clerk prepare for Quality Parish re-accreditation in the knowledge that any additional costs incurred would be met from Council funds.
19.7 A partial review of the South East Plan for accommodating gypsies and travellers had been received but it was not thought necessary for any comment to be made.
20. To consider Highways matters of interest to the Parish
20.1 Topics under this agenda item have been dealt with elsewhere.
21. To consider Test Valley Borough Council matters of interest to the Parish
21.1 Topics under this agenda item have been dealt with elsewhere.
22. To receive reports on the Parish recreational facilities and Cemetery
22.1 Cllr Harwood commented on the spread of seed to the detriment of the outfield and recreation ground in general from Top Field and recommended that a contractor be engaged to cut the grass in the immediate future.
22.2 Cllr Pidgeon reported that the Scouts had enjoyed another successful year and that he would be attending their next meeting in October.
23. Date, time and place of next meeting
23.1 The next meeting will be held on Monday 6 October 2008 at 7.00pm in the Epworth Hall, King’s Somborne.
There being no further business, the Chairman closed the meeting at 10.10pm
Clerk to the Council