DRAFT MINUTES

LEIGH-ON-MENDIP PARISH COUNCIL MEETING

 HELD ON MONDAY 16 DECEMBER 2013 AT 7.30 P.M. IN THE MEMORIAL HALL

 

 

Present

Chris Cudmore

CC

 

 

Ian Barnes

IB

 

 

David Mattick

DM

 

 

Vikky Batten

VB

 

 

David Sparkes

DS

 

 

 

 

 

In attendance

Anthea Brooks, Clerk

AB

 

 

Mr and Mrs Smith (item 8)

 

 

 

David Pattison (item 11.4)

 

 

 

Vicky Higgins (item 11.4)

 

 

 

 

 

1

APOLOGIES

ACTIONS

 

 

 

1.1

Apologies were received from Phil Ham (PH), Val Horler (VH) and Gill Boden (GB). 

 

 

 

 

2

CO-OPTION OF NEW COUNCILLOR

 

 

 

 

2.1

Vikky Batten had declared an interest in becoming a Parish Councillor.  Her co-option onto the Parish Council was therefore proposed by DM and seconded by IB with unanimous agreement.  VB signed the necessary form

 

 

 

 

3

DECLARATIONS OF INTEREST AND DISPENSATIONS

 

 

 

 

3.1

There were no declarations and dispensations.  The Clerk was asked to find the necessary form for VB to sign.  It was noted that a dispensation would have to be generated because of the budget and the Clerk was asked to look for the necessary forms.

 

 

 

Clerk

 

 

 

4

MINUTES OF THE MEETING HELD ON 18 NOVEMBER 2013

 

 

 

 

4.1

The minutes of the Parish Council meeting held on 18 November were agreed as a true and accurate record and were signed by the Chairman.

 

 

 

 

5

MATTERS ARISING FROM THE MINUTES OF 18 NOVEMBER 2013

 

 

 

 

5.1

(5.2) Internal Audit and Risk Assessment – The risk assessment is ongoing but the asset review/audit is complete with minor points for action (email from DM of 24 May 2013 refers).  The Clerk will study the documents and this will be scheduled for discussion at a future meeting - ongoing

 

 

 

 

Clerk

 

 

 

 

5.2

(5.4) Pursuance of land for Cemetery extension – the land opposite the Broad Bean Farm Shop has been identified as belonging to Hanson and the Clerk has written to them to query whether they would consider donating or selling some land to the parish council for use as a cemetery – ongoing

 

 

 

 

Clerk

 

 

 

5.3

(5.5) Collapsed wall on pavement to Barnsclose Quarry – no response from landowner since July - ongoing.  It was agreed that CC would contact Highways regarding this.

 

 

CC

 

 

 

5.4

(5.5) Churchyard Yew Trees and Church path – CC reported that he had spoken with Alastair Weston, Churchwarden, to approach MDC about the work which needs to be done on the trees which would cost approximately £1000 per year for two years to trim them to a manageable size.  It had been agreed to get the path fixed as a first priority before approaching MDC regarding funding for the management of the yew trees.

 

Church path – CC will contact MDC again about the path and try and ascertain when they may be able to upgrade it

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

CC

 

 

 

5.5

(5.7) Internal Auditor – CC had contacted Richard Blunden who lives in the village with a view to asking him to act as auditor for the Parish Council.  A reply is awaited

 

 

CC

 

 

 

5.6

(5.8) Legacy Grant – the proposals are still to be considered by VH and PH – ongoing

 

VH/PH

 

 

 

5.7

(5.10) Land for Cemetery Extension – CC reported that he had contacted Cooper and Tanner and once the sale of the land north of Sparks Farm had gone through they would approach the buyer and get them to contact the Parish Council. CC to monitor – ongoing

 

 

 

 

CC

 

 

 

5.8

(5.11) Mendip Country Practice – CC reported that he had been contacted by someone whose daughter wished to be involved in a community project and he had therefore put them in contact with VH regarding the patient support Group at Mendip Country Practice.  If this person does not join the group then CC will arrange to put the information on the website again.

 

 

 

 

 

CC

 

 

 

5.9

(5.14) Somerset CC budget savings – this item is now closed. 

 

 

 

 

5.10

(5.13) Whitehole Hill Quarry activity – CC reported that he had received an official acknowledgement from MDC about this but there was no further information at present.

 

 

 

 

5.11

(5.14) Highways – Barnsclose Quarry barrier on bend – CC reported that Highways have agreed to carry out an inspection of this bend – ongoing.

 

 

CC

 

 

 

 

5.12

(5.15) Grant to School – GB has produced a report which will be discussed under the Budget item

 

 

 

 

5.13

(5.17) Quarry meeting – CC reported that there has been no news of the next meeting.  There are no minutes from the past meeting available yet. PH requested to follow up.

 

 

PH

 

 

 

5.14

(5.22) Recreation Field – Pump Track – this item is covered under Budgets but it was noted that an amount of £1500 has been identified for the pump track.

 

 

 

 

5.15

(5.23) Memorial Hall deeds – the Clerk had found an old file with some information which she offered to photocopy and send to DM.  It was agreed that the Clerk should also email Sandrine Vaillant as some records were archived to the Taunton Records Office and information on exactly what was sent would be useful.

 

It was noted that one vehicle which had been in the car park for some time had been removed and the situation is being monitored closely.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Clerk

 

 

 

5.16

(8.1) Planning Applications – CC reported that two applications had been received after the agenda for the last meeting.  One of these involving underground cabling between Vobster and Soho did not require the involvement of the Parish Council, the other application for a two storey extension to Jasmine Cottage was on the agenda for discussion.

 

 

 

 

5.17

(9.1) Emergency Planning – it was noted that this would be discussed as a separate item. 

 

 

 

 

5.18

(9.2) Emergency Planning – Defibrillator – DM reported that he had failed to get the Hall Committee to agree to the installation of a defibrillator in the Hall.  This item will be discussed further under Budgets.

 

 

 

 

5.19

(10.1.4) Councillors had been asked to talk to village groups regarding requirements for grants in the next financial year – this subject would be further discussed under Budgets.

 

 

 

 

5.20

(10.1.5) CC had, as requested, drafted a budget and this would be discussed as a separate item

 

 

 

 

5.21

(10.1.6) The Clerk had responded to MDC and stated that the precept requirement would not be set until after 20 January

 

 

 

 

5.22

(10.1.7) Memorial Hall grant – to be discussed under budgets

 

 

 

 

5.23

(10.1.8) Recreation Field grant – to be discussed under budgets

 

 

 

 

 

 

5.24

(10.1.10) School grant requests – the Clerk had contacted SALC for advice on the type of item that that Parish Council could and could not purchase and this would be discussed further under budgets

 

 

 

 

5.25

(11.1) PCSO – GB had attended the PCSO meeting on 28 November

 

 

 

 

5.26

(11.2) Footpaths – CC reported that he had looked at the gates at Tadhill and Stocks Lane which were not closing properly and had made some adjustments to them

 

 

 

 

5.27

(11.3) Highways – bags of salt for roads and pavements had been collected and distributed appropriately.

 

 

 

 

5.28

(11.7) SALC – the clerk had sent the details of the new SALC website to Councillors as requested

 

 

 

 

5.29

(13.1) Guide to Winter Services in Somerset 2013/14 from Highways – the clerk had sent this to CC to put on the website

 

 

 

 

5.30

(13.1) Route 60+ - this course which is aimed at helping older drivers will take place in the Memorial Hall on 13 March 2014 and the Clerk will forward the information to the Village magazine for insertion in the February edition.

 

 

 

Clerk

 

 

 

5.31

(13.1) Somerset Community Oil Scheme – the clerk has displayed the information in the telephone box.

 

 

 

 

5.32

(13.1) Polling District and Polling Places review – letter from MDC.  No comments had been received by the Clerk on this subject.

 

 

 

 

6

DISTRICT AND COUNTY COUNCILLORS REPORTS

 

 

 

 

6.1

County Councillors Report

 

 

 

 

6.1.1.

CC had spoken to PH and reported as follows

 

 

 

 

 

·                     Coleford Recycling Centre – a press release had been issued on 13 December and a SCC meeting was held to discuss the issue.  Basically the proposal is to pursue closure but there will be a public consultation which runs for six weeks.  The Parish Council will be consulted. 

 

 

 

 

 

·                     Tax Base – information on the tax base should be available soon.  Currently the plan is to provide a grant similar to last year as a ‘top up’.  There is a realisation that precept information will not be available until end January.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

·                     Local Plan – some amendments were made before this went to the Secretary of State.  Leigh-on-Mendip is no longer classed as a secondary village to reflect the fact that there is no longer a journey to work bus service. 

 

 

 

 

 

·                     Development Limit – removing secondary village status would seem to mean that the development limit will have altered and clarification should be sought on this.  It was agreed that CC would write to Ian Bowen, the Principal Planning Policy Officer at MDC for clarification.

 

 

 

 

CC

 

 

 

7.2

District Councillors Report

 

 

 

 

7.2.1

VH had sent apologies to the meeting and no report was available.

 

 

 

 

8

PLANNING

 

 

 

 

8.1

Planning Application 2013/2292 – Proposed ground and first floor extension, Jasmine Cottage, Leigh-on-Mendip by Mr and Mrs Smith

 

 

 

 

8.1.1

Mr Smith gave a statement to the Parish Council on the reasons behind the decision to apply for permission to build an extension and details of the design of the proposed extension.

 

 

 

 

8.1.2

It was proposed by IB and seconded by DS to recommend approval for this planning application.  This was agreed unanimously.

 

 

 

 

8.1.3

The Clerk was asked to contact MDC with the result of the Council’s discussions.  Mr and Mrs Smith then left the meeting.

 

Clerk

 

 

 

9

EMERGENCY PLANNING

 

 

 

 

9.1

It was noted that GB had found a template for this.  The Clerk was asked to contact other Clerks to see if they already had an emergency plan or Resilience Policy in place.

 

 

Clerk

 

 

 

10

FINANCE

 

 

 

 

10.1

Financial Statement – statement to 16.12.13 was agreed and signed

 

 

 

 

10.2

Cheques signed

 

 

 

 

 

·                     Floorings Frome - £477.60 for new barrier mat for Hall

 

 

·                     Anthea Brooks – cheque for Clerk’s salary £505.80 – this amount included an additional eight hours worked during the three month period.  There was unanimous agreement that this cost should be covered.

 

 

 

 

 

10.3

Preparation of the 2014/15 Budget

 

 

 

 

10.3.1

CC had prepared a draft budget but as presented this would be over current expenditure.  The following points were noted

 

 

 

 

 

·                     The current precept is £6100, each additional £50 extra is a 0.82% increase

 

 

 

 

 

·                     SLCC Subscription – this was previously split between three Parishes.  The Clerk was asked to speak to Sandrine about this

 

 

Clerk

 

 

 

 

·                     Hall Barrier mat approved at £398 but VAT reclaimable by Parish Council so invoice will be reissued to the Council and the total amount including VAT will be £477.60.  The Hall have also identified an amount of £840 for flooring treatment and have asked for help towards this sum.  Suggest including an amount of £300

 

 

 

 

 

·                     School – bike or scooter rack – see further discussion on this subject below

 

 

 

 

 

·                     Church – an amount towards resizing the yew trees (suggestion that total amount should be split three ways between Church, MDC and the Parish Council)

 

 

 

 

 

·                     Parish Plan actions - agreed to defer the suggestion of installing a defibrillator in the village

 

 

 

 

 

·                     Footpaths – agreed to remove the weed killing element

 

 

 

 

 

·                     Cemetery expenses – new contractor required

 

 

 

 

 

·                     Recreation Field - £1000 in the account for the pump track which will be carried over.  An amount of £450 is included as contribution towards grass cutting.  There is nothing extra in the budget for help towards their insurance.

 

 

 

 

 

·                     Nominal amounts are included for Toddler Group and LOMCA neither of whom have requested a grant this year.

 

 

 

 

10.3.2

It was agreed that CC would reissue the budget and distribute to Councillors for further discussion and finalisation at the next meeting.

 

 

CC

 

 

 

11

COUNCILLOR REPORTS

 

 

 

 

11.1

PCSO – GB had attended the Policy Liaison meeting on 28 November and sent a brief report.  The PCSO post for our area remains vacant.  The Group will be renamed the Police Officer Steering Group.  WPC Victoria Ward reassured the meeting that there were still 6 PCSO’s at her disposal and resources are there if required.  The two priorities for the next quarter were sheds/non domestic burglaries and inconsiderate parking.  The next meeting is scheduled for Thursday 27 February at Frome Police Station. VB agreed to attend, if available

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

VB

 

 

 

11.2

Footpaths – CC had dealt with the two sprung gates reported as not closing properly.  MDC have agreed to remove an overhanging branch in Stocks Lane.

 

 

 

 

11.3

Highways – bags of salt had been collected and distributed as appropriate.

 

 

 

 

11.4

Recreation Field   

 

 

 

 

11.4.1

Grass Cutting – David Pattison (DP) and Vicky Higgins (VH) addressed the meeting on this subject on behalf of the Recreation Field Management Committee.

 

 

 

 

11.4.2

DP stated that in the past year the Parish Council had run the contract to cut the grass every two weeks (Mar-Oct) and in the interim week the Cricket Club had assumed responsibility for grass cutting during the cricket season. 

 

 

 

 

11.4.3

The Cricket Club were asked to provide a quote for all cutting but had failed to do so within the time set and there are some concerns about their reliability to carry out the work.

 

 

 

 

11.4.4

It was suggested that discussions should take place with the Cricket Club on various options such as the Cricket Club taking responsibility for cutting during the cricket season and the Parish Council take responsibility for the other months.  However VH/DP felt that they would prefer the Parish Council to carry on with the same commitment as this year.  It was noted that quotes will have to be obtained by the Clerk.

 

 

 

 

 

 

Clerk

 

 

 

11.4.6

Pump Track – IB stated that quotes are awaited.  The cost of materials is an issue and the Clerk offered to contact Wainwrights at Stoke St Michael to see if they could help towards the cost of the tarmac.

 

 

 

Clerk

 

 

 

11.4.7

Insurance –VH/DP stated that any help towards cost of insurance would be gratefully received.

 

 

 

 

11.4.8

DP and VH then left the meeting

 

 

 

 

11.4.9

VB agreed to be the PC representative on the Recreation Field Management Committee which has been vacant since Daggs left the PC.

 

 

 

 

11.5

Memorial Hall – already discussed

 

 

 

 

 

11.6

School

 

 

 

 

11.6.1

GB had sent in a report.  The school wished to purchase a scooter and bike rack to encourage children to scoot/cycle to school.  SALC have confirmed that this is a suitable project for the Parish Council to fund.  The school have researched products and would like to purchase as follows

 

·                     10 bike galvanised cycle rack £212.28 – no shelter required

·                     6 scooter rack £199.45

 

 

 

 

11.6.2

If the school make the purchase they can reclaim the VAT.  The suggestion would be for the handyman to erect the racks, possibly with some help from parents. 

 

 

 

 

11.6.3

GB suggested that ideally it would be good to fund both items in this financial year but if not one in 2013/14 and one in 2014/15.

 

 

 

 

11.6.4

Other items for future grants include

 

·                     Funding for special projects, e.g. science

·                     Resource budgets for teachers to buy extra materials, e.g. cooking ingredients

·                     Specific guides to support key project, e.g. Pete the Poet

·                     A specific curriculum based trip

·                     Pot of funding for children who cannot afford trips and activities (there is a means test mechanisms)

·                     Subsidise swimming lessons

·                     Residential trip next summer – help to subsidise

 

 

 

 

11.6.5

The school would provide a report with outcomes for any project supported by the Parish Council.  Ideas would also be checked with SALC. 

 

 

 

 

11.6.6

IB suggested that there was no justification for a bike rack as no children ride to school but scooters are used.

 

 

 

 

11.6.7

IB also stated that the proposed scooter rack was not fit for the type of scooter which the children use and agreed to source a different suitable type and email round the details.

 

 

IB

 

 

 

11.6.8

It was proposed that the Council should cover the cost of the scooter rack in this year’s grants, proposed by CC and seconded by DM

 

 

 

 

11.7

SALC – the clerk was asked to see if there was a training course available for VB as a new Councillor

 

Clerk

 

 

 

11.8

Quarry – DS reported that there were no issues this month.  Hedge trimming had taken place.

 

 

 

 

 

12

MEETINGS ATTENDED/TO BE ATTENDED

 

 

 

 

12.1

PCSO meeting attended 28 November 7.00 p.m., Frome Police Station.  Next meeting Thursday 27 February at 7.00 p.m.

 

VB

 

 

 

12.2

Opening of Mendip Shape Hub – CC attended the opening of the Shape Hub on 6 December which brings public services together in the same building.

 

 

 

 

12.3

DM attended the planning training meeting on 26 Nov

 

 

 

 

12.4

Mendip Planning Meeting – 8 January 2014

 

 

 

 

12.5

Mendip Investigation of Renewable Energy – 14 January at 6.00 p.m. at Wells Town Hall – public meeting. DM agreed to attend.

 

 

DM

 

 

 

13

CORRESPONDENCE

 

 

 

 

13.1

The Clerk had received the following correspondence/information

 

 

 

 

 

·                     Email from Sam Winter, SALC, regarding confirmation of the appropriate sum for Parish Councils for the purposes of section 137 (4) (a) of the Local Government Act.

 

 

 

 

 

·                     Email from Dave Grabham, Traffic Engineer, regarding installation dates for 2014 of speed indicator devices in Leigh Street, east and west bound for weeks commencing 31 March and potentially 14 April. 

 

 

 

 

 

·                     Email from Andy Mallender, Project Development Officer, Mendip Hills AONB Unit regarding the Mendip Rocks! Framework document and an event to be held on 25 January at the Somerset Earth Science Centre where ideas to improve the understanding and management of the Mendip Hills geology and wildlife and historic landscape will be discussed

 

 

 

 

 

·                     Email from Ruth Worsley, Education Coordinator regarding Quarry Faces Frome Area artefacts plea for forthcoming museum exhibition  - CC will put this on the website.

 

 

 

CC

 

 

 

 

·                     Email from Richard Cottrell regarding his campaign against Hinkley Point development

 

 

 

 

14

DATE AND TIME OF NEXT MEETING

 

 

 

 

14.1

The next meeting will take place on Monday 20 January 2014 at 7.30 p.m. in the Memorial Hall, Leigh-on-Mendip.