MINUTES OF LEIGH ON MENDIP PARISH COUNCIL MEETING HELD ON MONDAY 15TH JANUARY 2007
AT 7.30 P.M. IN THE MEMORIAL HALL
Councillors present. J Wright, C Cudmore, G Harris, F Higgins, V Taylor
Apologies: T Schlechter will be late.
THE MINUTES OF THE MEETING of were accepted and signed.
Footpaths – still awaiting list of numbered stiles from B Loten
Following a query from members of the public attending, Conditions regarding the S106 were explained. We have been informed that Mendip Housing Dept have not yet informed Knightstone Housing of their list of nominees. Contact will again be made with Mendip Housing to check that this is in hand and names of those nominated will be passed to the Parish Council ACTION CC
TS joined the meeting at 7.50 p.m.
The Rec Field is not registered with the Land Registry, and it was requested that the land be registered. It was agreed that the Parish would bear the cost of registration. ACTION JA
It was agreed that the Planning application be submitted by Parish Council on behalf of Rec Field Committee but all costs borne by the Rec Field. The Parish Council asked that they see the plans before they are submitted.
The Memorial Hall land is not registered with the Land Registry, and it was requested that the land be registered. It was agreed that the Parish would bear the cost of registration. ACTION JA
Cookswood Quarry, development of holiday retreat – 067818/010. Following lengthy discussions it was agreed to recommend refusal due to the many concerns arising from the reported studies by the landowner in consideration of this request. A full list is being sent to Mendip Planning Dept and a copy will be kept with the Minutes.
The full details of the government proposals on the future of post offices will be studied and the questionnaire will be completed at the next meeting.
Parish Plan Costs – C Peat Chq No 486 agreed and signed
Repairs to wall – loose stones on the outer of the wall nearest to the church at the front have been reported. As a closed churchyard, responsibility lies with MDC. ACTION JA
Mowing Tender – quotation for mowing of cemetery to be obtained from one other source. D Jarvis to be engaged should his be the lowest. ACTION MM
Footpaths – FH reported that the report on repairs required to the footpath and stiles along the Mells stream have been passed to S Petherbridge.
TS reported a footpath to the quarry (8/23) is overgrown and needs attention.
SALC -CC reported that the next SALC meeting is on 5th march
Road Cleaning -CC reported that the road sweeper is due on 30th January
Highways – the white lines at Townsend are already wearing off and need attention
Also gullies have not been cleared, which causes flooding throughout the village.
GH reported that cones have appeared opposite the garage, their reason for being there is unknown.
CC reported that a sign showing the length limit for lorries has been erected at Soho.
CC reported that he had attended the Planning Board meeting on 3rd Jan. re Ivy Cottage
Correspondence – Parishes Information Bulletin; Mendip Times; Clerks and Councils Direct; Public Transport Timetable; Booking Clerk – Memorial Hall; The Clerk. Avon & Somerset Police update; Mendip Strategic Partnership; Card from D Heath, MP; SCC re Unitary Council; Local Election info.
Date of next meeting – 19th February 2007
DEVELOPMENT OF HOLIDAY RETREAT
Peter Brett Associates are reliable experts and are familiar with the methodology used, so apart from the fact that they did not measure the topography but used ‘data supplied by R Massey’ (source unknown) it is expected that the data would be satisfactory.
P12 - 3.4 Alternative of 113 hectares of farmland - this was never a possibility and should be questioned as to why it is even mentioned other than to pad out the paperwork
P13 - 3.5.4 Issue of noise is dismissed rather casually and needs to be properly assessed
P27/28 - 126.96.36.199. Mendip District Local Plan - permit the development provided "it does not lead to increased visitor pressure on such a scale as would harm the natural heritage or distinctiveness of the locality. It is felt that with 143 chalets and over 300 people this would have a detrimental effect on the locality.
P29 - 188.8.131.52 Policy Q12, further restrictions on noise issues, which cannot be quantified
P34 – 5.4.8 Other potential species of nature conservation interest. No mention of Deer that roam freely. Also the established Rookery at the south west corner of the site has not been included in the survey.
P48 - 184.108.40.206 and again P50 - The location of the findings of the Great Crested Newts and Smooth Newt are reported to be in the Accompanying Map in Appendix 1, Volume 2 but this was not found. There is no named Appendix 1, but assuming that this is the report by Country Contracts then the Indicative Habitat Plan GW.T11 has no newt locations identified.
Without knowing when the surveys were carried out it is impossible to know whether proper assessments were made. The report by Country Contracts is dated February 2006 so presumably the surveys were carried out in the winter months before then. Winter 2006 was abnormally cold with lengthy frozen periods. The presence of newts in ephemeral sites would be expected if sampling was in summer as newts would migrate to these areas, or if conditions were severe in their normal rest area.
220.127.116.11- the report acknowledges that there will be damage to habitats and injury will be avoided by moving newts to safe areas. However, disturbance by visitors will be avoided by permanent barriers around the habitats – which habitats?; does this include the lake habitat?
18.104.22.168 Error in statement as it repeats statement 22.214.171.124 and does not refer to the state of the developed site.
126.96.36.199 The results of the survey indicate that the site is important for invertebrates but the survey was constrained by the time available, which limited the survey methods applied. But a proper survey was necessary given the magnitude of the proposed development. Implies that there were constraints on the time allowed for the work to be done, or the brief was restrictive.
5.5.9 More extensive surveys would be required to complete a comprehensive species list for the entire site!
5.5.10 Consideration should be given to completing more extensive surveys to support management of the site for invertebrates
Given all of the above statements by Country Contracts, how can the conclusion be reached that there will be minimal impacts from the development?
188.8.131.52 On the traffic count is states “ ….no recent traffic counts and it is considered that if local traffic counts were undertaken now (spring 2006) they may not be indicative of likely traffic patterns during the summer months in a tourist area” The single day sampled (3 July) was done in school term outside of the peak traffic periods (i.e. done 1000-1400)
184.108.40.206 States that traffic counts were not gathered from July to August as there would possibly be very little change in vehicle movements – but no local evidence produced to substantiate this.
220.127.116.11 Underestimates likely number of vehicles at 157 (1.1 per chalet) whereas it is quite likely that two or more cars may turn up, therefore the car park will be woefully inadequate. Also inbound visitor vehicles assumed to be evenly proportioned over a four hour period from 1500h – 1900h. No evidence for this and more likely to be 1500-1630h.
18.104.22.168 Comparison with existing (2006) traffic presented incorrectly, “ …. 0800-1100 (inbound) and 1500-1900 (outbound).” It is the other was around.
22.214.171.124 Without proper traffic counts the statement here that the increase in traffic will not be detrimental to the existing traffic cannot be supported or substantiated. This is an important area to local residents.
126.96.36.199 The development will need to be linked in some way across the existing public highway. This statement is vague and full details of any link submitted.
8.8.5 It is understood the developer will undertake to provide a minibus to pick up visitors from the nearby railway stations. [Surely the developer is submitting this application and what is the frequency to be of the minibus, this cannot be found anywhere] The Transport Assessment in Volume 2 provides no information.
188.8.131.52 There is a public right of way which runs through the site and is elevated above the level of the surrounding land. ‘It is understood that this will be retained’ – a vague statement given that the application should be by the developer!
There is a lack of any firm proposals regarding lighting of the site. This should be addressed more fully especially with regard to environmental issues.
Also extending the street lighting from Holcombe to the entrance would not be welcome as it would increase light pollution overall quite dramatically.
J M ANDERSON
Leigh on Mendip Parish Clerk