Councillors present.  Chairman John Wright, Chris Cudmore, Steve Anderson, Graham Harris, Ty Schlechter               


The MINUTES OF THE LAST MEETING of  19TH December 2005 were accepted and signed.




School Signage – despite two phone calls and two e-mails to the supplier, no response has been received.  Further information to be sought from other suppliers.                                     ACTION JA

Cemetery Extension – JW has not yet proceeded with the owner of the land in question.                                                                                                                                               ACTION JW

Access Walk – Wright Assoc – a letter of thanks has been sent for donation received.

Land at Park Hayes – SA stated that the Solicitor has this in hand, and this should be finalised this week. 

PCSO – Cover of Frome area – SA reported that this was a special operation, and the press coverage was for publicity.

Village Plan – GH has stated that two further volunteers had come forward. 

Reporting of Parish Council meetings – Précis sent to Janet Gilham, JA awaiting reply.

Deeds – TS stated that we have enough information to prove that the land is the property of the Parish Council.  The legal costs would be too high for affidavits to be signed and for issuing of Land Certificates.  JW proposed that no further action is taken, all agreed.  Deeds could be left with the Parish Clerk, although one set for the cemetery land is held by FDC in Frome.  TS suggested that they are all held in the Records Office in Taunton or with FDC.      ACTION JA.                   


The meeting was adjourned for a report on Affordable Housing:


A meeting was held on13th January to discuss Affordable Housing in Leigh on Mendip.

A report of that meeting is attached.

The following points were raised.

It was stated that should the Parish Council request refusal of the planning application, this would only go to the Planning Board if MDC Planning Department refused permission and it went to appeal, which could then delay the scheme. 

SA was concerned that this was a very difficult decision to make, there is a need for housing in the village but the Parish Council were aware of problems within the scheme.  .

Concern was also raised as to the purpose of leaving a strip of land between the proposed housing and the privately owned land.

Concerns were raised regarding further social housing in the village.  Only five or six are rented, the remainder now privately owned so there is a requirement for this type of housing.  The affordable housing was available for renting only, not for shared equity and will never qualify for right to buy.

The original presentation some two years ago seemed to promote the idea of shared ownership rather than rent.  

The Parish Council has requested a copy of the survey results from the Community Council for Somerset.  The Council were advised that there are people on the waiting list wishing to move into these homes, these must have parish connections.

Concern was raised that this might be out of date.  We do have authority to do our own survey and GH stated that this is something that could be included in a parish survey being carried out under the Village Plan scheme. 

JW stated that it may be preferable to move the development back 8-10 feet to give more room for manoeuvring cars off the road.


This ties in with a request from David Heath MP of ‘The Role of the Parish Council in Planning’; JW is replying to this on17th January, and will also ask if the option is available to carry over the grant to the next financial year.  The Parish Council will await information from David Heath to confirm this in writing. and if no guarantee is received by the 26th Jan, then we must give a decision to Planning Dept by that date. 

JW proposed that we defer a decision while awaiting an answer from David Heath to ensure we maximise our options.  If we do not make a decision, funding could be lost for up to four or five years.  All agreed.


QUARRY LIAISON MEETING – JW stated that the meeting had been postponed until next Monday.  He understood that an announcement was to be made that Halecome Quarry would resume quarrying from the end of January.  This could mean further employment in village.



 JW proposed that the Parish Council co-opt both applicants, Jan Schlechter and Frank Higgins.

TS declared an interest and declined to vote.  The motion was seconded and carried.                                                                                                                                                                           ACTION JA



Financial statement – JW proposed acceptance, all agreed

SLCC Membership – JW proposed acceptance, all agreed.  Chq No 448 value £64 signed.

Hall Rent – Invoice No 635 covered the meetings to the end of the financial year and additional hours at other meetings.  SA proposed acceptance, all agreed.  Chq No 449 value £44 signed. 

Jacksons Fencing; Access Walk Kissing Gates Inv. No 543477 – TS proposed acceptance, all agreed.  Chq value £1099.80 signed.  VAT will be reclaimed at the end of the year.


Cemetery – Finance Statement agreed and signed


Mowing Contract – Mary Mears will be asked to obtain quote from Dave Jarvis.  If this shows a considerable increase on last year’s costs, then further quotations should be obtained.




Tweed Farm – (07774/01 – Resiting Development – no objection.


Knightstone Housing – The plans showed that an agreement had been reached to change the stone to Limestone.  Parish Councillors asked for comments and decision adjourned to a later date (see above)

1 Bellfield – Application for extension refused..


Temporary Closure of Post Office – A proposal had been received from Bren Wigmore to re-open the post office in the village and the necessary details have been passed to her.




LAND AT PARK HAYES – SA stated that a letter had been received from MDC regarding the slow process of this purchase. Mendip have now been advised of the current situation.


PCSO – Paul Emery has been informed of missing road signs and he will follow this up with Highways.  SA will be attending a meeting of the Steering Group on Wednesday and asked if there were any comments from Councillors for follow up.


HIGHWAYS – JW reported that there are some markings in the village around some, but not all potholes.  We will await developments.


PARISH PLAN –GH awaiting two letters, from local services supporting the Plan.  

The Committee consisted of eight, the Chairwoman being Vicky Taylor, and GH Secretary.  GH put the chances of success at 98%.  He hoped to complete the Presentation for the December 18th  Parish Council meeting.  Costs would be kept to a minimum with offers from the Rec Field Committee for meeting venue and the use of the Leigh on Mendip School photocopier.

Grants are: - Somerset CC - £1410; Local business - £100 and Parish Council - £300 £100 (corrected at meeting on 20th Feb 2006).  Gloria Cawood reported that under these terms, Somerset County Councillor's contribution would be £50 and she is awaiting the cheque.


Gloria Cawood also stated that she has used her funding to donate £500 to Leigh on Mendip School/Pre-school for the purchase of two benches for the new Adventure Playground 


FOOTPATHS – CC stated that Kissing Gates would be installed from 23rd January, SA and TS assisting Mike Durbidge.  CC stated that there are ongoing negotiations regarding one stile, which the owner wants to retain.


REC FIELD – SA reminded the meeting of Burns Night celebration on 21st January 2006 


CORRESPONDENCE – the following were circulated to Parish Councillors:-

Correspondence :  Parishes Information Bulletin; MDC New Cleansing Contract; Parishes Training Event 30.01.06.; RSS Update; SRYP Newsletter; Stds Committee 17.01.06.; Clerks and Councils Direct; Somerset Access Annual Newsletter; Comm Council for Som Interim Parish Plans; MDC Shepton Mallet and Wells Area Board; SCC SALS Fund; SCC Som. Local Transport Plan (2006-11); ODPM Stds of Conduct in English Local Govt: The Future; Mendip Community Support Information; MDC Citizen Award Scheme; Mendip Society Newsletter


DATE OF NEXT MEETING –Monday 20th February 2006 at 7.30pm in the Memorial Hall