MINUTES

LEIGH-ON-MENDIP PARISH COUNCIL MEETING

HELD ON MONDAY 17 MARCH 2014 AT 7.30 P.M. IN THE MEMORIAL HALL

 

Present

Chris Cudmore

CC

 

 

Vikky Batten

VB

 

 

David Mattick

DM

 

 

Gill Boden

GB

 

 

Kiley Pescott

KP

 

 

 

 

 

In attendance

Anthea Brooks, Clerk

AB

 

 

Phil Ham, County and District Councillor

PH

 

 

Two members of the public (item 10.1)

 

 

 

 

 

1

APOLOGIES

ACTIONS

 

 

 

1.1

Apologies were received from David Sparkes and Val Horler, District Councillor

 

 

 

 

2

CO-OPTION OF NEW COUNCILLOR

 

 

 

 

2.1

Kiley Pescott had declared an interest in becoming a Parish Councillor.  His co-option onto the Parish Council was therefore proposed by DM and seconded by VB with unanimous agreement.

 

 

 

 

 

2.2

The Clerk informed the Council that she had received information from MDC on the procedure to be carried out when a vacancy arises.  It was agreed to follow this procedure for the one remaining vacancy.

 

 

 

Clerk

 

 

 

3

DECLARATIONS OF INTEREST AND DISPENSATIONS

 

 

 

 

3.1

There were no declarations or dispensations.  The Clerk provided KP with the General Notice of Registrable Interests and the Declaration of Acceptance of Office to complete and sign and return to her.

 

 

KP

 

 

 

4

ELECTION OF VICE-CHAIRMAN

 

 

 

 

4.1

DM was proposed by GB, seconded by VB and appointed unanimously as Vice-Chairman.

 

 

 

 

5

MINUTES OF THE MEETING HELD ON 17 FEBRUARY 2014

 

 

 

 

5.1

The minutes of the Parish Council meeting held on 17 February 2014 were agreed as a true and accurate record and were signed by the Chairman.

 

 

 

 

6

MATTERS ARISING FROM THE MINUTES OF 17 FEBRUARY 2014

 

 

 

 

6.1

(5.1) Declarations of Interest and Dispensations – the Clerk was in contact with MDC to make sure their website was up to date with VB’s declaration and would send KP’s information in due course.

 

 

 

Clerk

 

 

 

6.2

(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

 

 

 

6.3

(5.3) Pursuance of land for Cemetery extension –

 

 

 

 

6.3.1

The land adjacent to The Firs had been identified as belonging to Hanson.  The Clerk had received a response to her email which was favourable to the Council pursuing the possible purchase of this land for the cemetery extension.  Three points for further investigation had been identified as follows:

 

 

 

 

 

·                     Suitability of the ground – the Clerk had spoken with a local gravedigger and no problem was envisaged with the type of ground likely to be encountered when digging graves

 

 

 

 

 

·                     Planning permission – CC had consulted with MDC Planning who had stated that a Change of Use application would be necessary. Highways was the major issue as an area would be needed large enough to allow a hearse to pull in off the road.  CC agreed to contact the Highways Department at Somerset County Council and would let PH know if he encountered any problems.

 

 

 

 

CC

 

 

 

 

·                     Current tenant – it was noted that DS had spoken to the tenant previously and it was agreed to ask him to make contact to discuss the future use of the land

 

 

DS

 

 

 

6.4

(5.4) Collapsed wall on pavement to Barnsclose Quarry – a further letter has been written to the landowner - ongoing

 

Clerk

 

 

 

6.5

(5.5) Churchyard Yew Trees and Church path – CC reported that he had chased MDC for progress on the resurfacing work to the path and it is hoped that this will be carried out within the next week or so.

 

 

 

CC

 

 

 

6.6

(5.6) Land for Cemetery Extension (off Soho to Whitehole Hill lane) – CC reported that Cooper and Tanner had reported that the sale of this piece of land has gone through.  CC had provided them with an email to send onto the purchaser regarding the Council’s enquiry about the cemetery extension - complete

 

 

 

 

 

 

6.7

(5.7) Highways – Barnsclose Quarry barrier on bend – CC has sent a reminder to Highways about this – ongoing.

 

CC

 

 

 

6.8

(5.12) Somerset Minerals Plan – the Clerk had sent the information to the Village Magazine for inclusion in the March edition regarding the consultation on the Somerset Minerals Plan which would take place 21 March at the Memorial Hall.

 

 

 

 

6.9

(5.14) Performance – CC will inform PH where electronic responses to planning issues are not visible on the MDC website.

 

 

CC

 

 

 

6.10

(5.14) Torr Works, erection of four wind turbines  - it was noted that a full Environmental Impact Assessment was being carried out

 

 

 

 

 

 

6.11

(5.15) Emergency Planning – GB will circulate the template within the next couple of weeks.

 

GB

 

 

 

6.12

(5.16) Cemetery Fencing Repairs – separate agenda item 9.

 

 

 

 

6.13

(11.5.2) Grass Cutting – the clerk had contacted Chris Brown at Shepton Mallet Landscapes regarding grass cutting in the Recreation Field and Anthony Cross regarding cutting the cemetery and churchyard to accept their quotations.  These quotations were accepted under Financial Regulations as agreed in previous meeting

10.1 c) When applications are made to waive financial regulations relating to contract to enable a price to be negotiated without competition the reason shall be embodied in a recommendation to the Council.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

6.14

(7.1.1) E-Petition regarding Planning Chaos – CC confirmed that the e-petition was available on the village website.

 

 

 

 

6.15

(7.2.1) Park Hayes Outline Planning – DM had ascertained the cost of a judicial review the first step of which would cost in the region of £5,000.  VB had put a leaflet through doors with her contact details and had become a member of the ‘Friends of Park Hayes’ group.  CC had written to MDC informing them of the possibility of a Judicial Review taking place.

 

 

 

 

6.16

(9.1) PCSO Meeting – VB was unable to attend and GB went in her place

 

 

 

 

6.17

(9.3) Facebook – VB had set up a Village Facebook Group for Leigh-on-Mendip.  The Clerk had sent an email round to the contact list to inform them of the existence of the Facebook Group

 

 

 

 

 

 

6.18

(9.5) Recreation Field – VB had attended the meeting.  The Committee were happy with the results of the grass cutting contract award

 

 

 

 

6.19

(11.1 – 4) – all meetings had been attended as per the last minutes apart from DM who had been unable to attend the Memorial Hall meeting

 

 

 

 

7

DISTRICT AND COUNTY COUNCILLORS REPORTS

 

 

 

 

7.1

County Councillors Report

 

 

 

 

 

PH reported as follows

 

 

 

 

 

·                0% SCC council tax although 1.9% for Police and 1.9% for the Fire Authority

 

 

·                The Chief Executive of SCC has resigned and Pat Flaherty is Acting CEO

 

 

·                Flooding – a 20 year Somerset Flood Plan has been put together in five weeks

 

 

·                £1.4m has been made available to try and catch up with pot hole repairs.  It is important to report any that are noticed

 

 

·                Attended all three quarry liaison meetings last week

 

 

·                Somerset Minerals Plan consultation at Leigh Memorial Hall 21 March 2014 12 noon to 7.00 p.m.

 

 

·                Coleford Recycling Centre – please action the request sent out for a letter to be sent to SWP.  Every Parish Council approached has done this or is doing it.

 

 

·                Coleford Children’s Centre has been kept open

 

 

·                Informed Vicky Higgins that £1000 would be available for the Pump Track from the Health and Wellbeing budget.

 

 

 

 

7.2

District Councillor’s Report

 

 

 

 

7.2.1

PH reported as follows

 

 

 

 

 

·                0% MDC Council tax

 

 

·                The Planning Charter will go to Planning Board on 26 March. This will provide for a lot more pre application advice which will be monitored and recorded and will allow applications to be dealt with more efficiently.  Planning Technicians will be doing a lot of this work which will free up the Planning Officers.

 

 

·                A decision on the wind turbines at Torr Works is expected and will go to Planning Board on 26 March.

 

 

·                Wells Sports Grant Development – leisure contract in place by 2015

 

 

·                Local development order for the Bath & West Showground

 

 

 

 

·                Business Enterprise launched by Astor Homes

 

 

·                Mendip Hub – second phase now open providing a lot more space.  Council chamber will be built by the end of September

 

 

·                Expansion of Coleford Hub – an application has been made for some funding from central Government.

 

 

·                Mendip Strategy on Reusable Energy – will be ready by the end of March.  DM will send PH a copy of his email report on the Wells presentation. 

 

 

DM

 

·                Quarry Liaison meeting – PH organising a meeting with SCC and CC/DS regarding the fund.

 

 

 

 

8

COLEFORD RECYCLING CENTRE

 

 

 

 

8.1

PH had sent an email round asking Parish Councils to write to SWP making the following points 

 

 

 

 

 

·                Regretting the decision to close

 

 

·                Confirmation that the site will be mothballed for the next 12 months

 

 

·                Possibility of an asset transfer to the village of a ‘community right to buy’ of the site

 

 

·                Any increase in fly tipping will be dealt with but not at the cost of Coleford Parish Council or MDC.

 

 

 

 

8.2

It was agreed that CC would compile a letter to this effect and send to SWP.

 

CC

 

 

 

9

CEMETERY FENCING

 

 

 

 

9.1

CC reported that he had received a quotation from Chrysalis which includes dismantling and disposing of the present fence CC to confirm whether this includes VAT

 

 

CC

 

 

 

9.2

A quotation had been received from Jacksons which includes a gravel board which is extra to the Chrysalis quotation but does not include clearance of the present fence.

 

 

 

 

9.3

It was noted that the fence clearance will provide an opportunity to carrying out some work to the hedge which needs to be cut back .

 

 

 

 

9.4

It was noted that a third quotation is required for comparison.

CC

 

 

 

9.5

It was agreed that the Clerk would check whether the replacement of this fence is covered under the Council insurance.

 

 

Clerk

 

 

 

10

PLANNING

 

 

 

 

10.1

Request for a Judicial Review of Park Hayes Outline Planning Permission

 

 

 

 

10.1.1

Two members of the public were present and Council was updated by VB on actions since the last meeting.  The following actions were agreed.

 

 

 

 

 

·                     DM will find out whether there is an Ombudsman for Planning to which the case can be sent for advice

 

DM

 

 

 

 

·                     VB will make contact with the landowner on behalf of the Friends of Park Hayes.  VB will also contact the developer to voice the concerns of the residents and to ascertain what steps can be put in place to make sure that any development is safe

 

 

 

 

VB

 

 

 

10.1.2

The members of the public then left the meeting.

 

 

 

 

10.2

Pump Track Planning Application

 

 

 

 

10.2.1

The application for Planning Permission for the Pump Track on the recreation field, the demolition of a storage shed and the erection of a new storage shed of similar size was completed and signed.  The Clerk was asked to send this to MDC along with three additional copies.

 

 

 

 

Clerk

 

 

 

11

FINANCE

 

 

 

 

11.1

Financial Statement – statement to 17.03.14 was agreed and signed

 

 

 

 

11.2

Cheques signed

 

 

 

 

 

·                     Clerk’s Salary - £449.82

 

 

·                     HMRC (payment of tax) -  £205.46

 

 

·                     MDC (payment for planning application for Pump track) - £97.50

 

 

 

 

11.3

Other Finance issues

 

 

 

 

11.3.1

The Clerk issued bank signatory forms to KP and VB for completion.

KP

VB

 

 

 

11.3.2

A bank change of address form for the Cemetery Account was completed and signed.  The Clerk will return this to the bank

 

Clerk

 

 

 

11.3.3

A bank change of signature authority to take account of the removal of two Councillors who have resigned and the co-option of two new Councillors was completed and signed.  It was resolved that the signing rules in the current Mandate for the Account detailed (Leigh-on-Mendip Parish Council) be replaced in accordance with the new Mandate.  The Clerk will return this to the bank.

 

 

 

 

 

 

Clerk

 

 

 

11.3.4

The Clerk had received a request from the PCC for a grant towards the purchase of a ramp to allow disabled access to the church.  It was agreed to place this on the agenda for discussion at the next meeting

 

 

 

Clerk

 

 

 

12

PREPARATION OF ANNUAL NEWSLETTER

 

 

 

 

12.1

It was agreed that CC would prepare a draft of the annual newsletter based on last year’s copy for distribution and discussion and agreement at the next meeting in April.

 

 

CC

 

 

 

13

COUNCILLOR REPORTS

 

 

 

 

13.1

PCSO – GB attended the meeting on Thursday 27 February at Frome Police Station and had distributed a resume of the meeting.  It was noted that recruitment for a new village PCSO will begin in April but training will be required and therefore may not be in post until June.  It was also noted that anyone with information on the recent sheep worrying by dogs should report that by dialling 101 and asking to speak to PC Victoria Ward.  Any information received will be confidential.  The next meeting will be on 21 May.

 

 

 

 

 

 

13.2

Footpaths – it is intended to carry out footpath clearance on Church Walk and those villagers with gardens backing onto this path will be informed when this takes place.  Notice of this will be added to the website and Facebook page. 

 

 

 

 

 

13.3

Highways - CC reported that the next road sweeping will take place on Thursday 3 April 2014.  GB offered to distribute the leaflets.

 

 

GB

 

 

 

13.4

Recreation Field – VB reported that the Committee are rethinking their strategy on the permanent licence

 

 

 

 

 

13.5

Memorial Hall – DM reported that the Quiz Night will take place on 5 April and DM will inform the Committee that the Parish Council will enter a team.  The request from the Leigh-on-Mendip Arts and Craft Exhibition to store display boards and lighting in the Hall was declined.

 

 

 

 

13.6

School – GB reported that the children are using the new scooter rack. 

 

 

 

 

13.7

SALC – the clerk updated the Council on her recent training session with SALC and reported that she would be attending a further two sessions in early April.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

13.8

Coleford Hub – GB reported on developments with the Coleford Hub.  A business plan is being put together with the intention of attracting funding to transfer the Youth Centre over to an Enterprise body.  Decorators who are currently doing work at the Shape Hub have offered a day’s labour for free.

 

 

 

 

13.9

Quarry

 

 

 

 

13.9.1

CC reported on the liaison meeting attended by DS and CC on 11 March.  The Long Term Management Fund was supposed to have been set up jointly between Somerset and the Quarry in 2002.  A letter had been written to the CEO and Chief Executive of SCC in July 2013 and a reply had been received stating that the fund would be addressed.  However a report had been received from Somerset this time to state that no further progress had been made.  PH had volunteered to set up a meeting with SCC to take this matter forward. 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

PH

 

 

 

13.9.2

PH had requested that the minutes of the liaison meeting be sent out quickly as the minutes of the previous meeting were not available.

 

 

 

 

13.9.3

Planning permission to extend the balancing lake is expected very soon and as soon as this is available excavation will start on the eastern end of the quarry.

 

 

 

 

13.9.4

The next meeting is scheduled for 7 October 2014.

 

 

 

 

14

POINTS FROM PARISH BULLETIN

 

 

 

 

14.1

It was noted that Mendip is trying to set up a Parish to Parish communication similar to Facebook.  Slides from the last Forum had been distributed.  The Minerals Plan consultation will take place on 21 March at Leigh Memorial Hall. 

 

 

 

 

15

MEETINGS ATTENDED/TO BE ATTENDED

 

 

 

 

15.1

60+ Driving Session – took place in the Memorial Hall on 13 March and was well attended.

 

 

 

 

15.2

PCSO Meeting  - 21 May in Coleford

VB

 

 

 

15.3

Minerals Plan – 21 March Drop in at the Memorial Hall from 12 noon to 7.00 p.m.

 

 

 

 

15.4

Recreation Field AGM – 7 April, AGM at 7.30 p.m. and Committee meeting at 8.00 p.m.

 

 

 

 

15.5

Memorial Hall – 7 April at 7.30 p.m.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

16

CORRESPONDENCE

 

 

 

 

16.1

The Clerk had received the following correspondence/information

 

 

 

 

 

·                     Email from SALC regarding Government consultation on the draft Openness of Local Government Bodies Regulations 2014 which covers filming and the use of social media at council meetings and the recording of decisions taken by officers under delegated powers.  It was agreed that the Clerk would forward this to Councillors for information.

 

 

 

 

 

 

Clerk

 

 

 

 

·                     Email from SALC regarding the Legislative Reform (Payments by Parish Councils, Community Councils and Charter Trustees) Order 2014 which came into effect on 13 March allowing parish and town councils to adopt modern methods of payment

 

 

 

 

 

·                     Email from SALC regarding payments to HMRC which must be made electronically

 

 

 

 

 

·                     Email from SALC attaching the policy consultation on the proposed transparency code which will be implemented as part of the Local Audit and Accountability Act 2014 which is of key interest to councils with an annual turnover of less than £25,000.  The deadline for response is 15 April 2014.  The Clerk was asked to forward this to all Councillors.

 

 

 

 

 

 

Clerk

 

 

 

 

·                     Email from SALC regarding letter received from the Leader of Somerset County Council requesting donations to the Flood Relief Fund.  It was agreed to put this on the agenda for discussion at the next meeting.

 

 

 

Clerk

 

 

 

 

·                     Letter from the office of David Heath MP enclosing notices of his forthcoming Advice Centre in Frome on 11 April with a request that these should be displayed on noticeboards.

 

 

Clerk

 

 

 

 

·                     Letter by email from Campaign for Protection of Rural England asking for the Council to consider joining the organisation

 

 

 

 

 

·                     Email from Dave Woolley a clerk of some years standing  introducing himself as a mentor to new clerks in Somerset and Dorset.

 

 

 

 

 

·                     Email from Katie Cameron, Communications and Outreach Support Officers at Plantlife who in conjunction with the British Lichen Society is offering an apprenticeship in Lichens in Atlantic Woodlands 2014/15

 

 

 

 

 

·                     Letter from Grant Thornton giving details of the annual audit of accounts for the year ending 31 March 2014.

 

 

 

 

17

DATE AND TIME OF NEXT MEETING

 

 

 

 

17.1

The next meeting will take place on Monday 21 April 2014 (Easter Monday) at 7.30 p.m. in the Memorial Hall, Leigh-on-Mendip.