MINUTES

LEIGH-ON-MENDIP PARISH COUNCIL MEETING

HELD ON MONDAY 15 SEPTEMBER 2014 AT 7.30 P.M. IN THE MEMORIAL HALL

 

Present

Chris Cudmore

CC

 

 

Gill Boden

GB

 

 

David Sparkes

DS

 

 

Kiley Pescott

KP

 

 

 

 

 

In attendance

Anthea Brooks, Clerk

AB

 

 

 

 

29/14

APOLOGIES

ACTIONS

 

 

 

29.1/14

Apologies were received from Vikky Batten, David Mattick and Val Horler, District Councillor

 

 

 

 

30/14

DECLARATIONS OF INTEREST AND DISPENSATIONS

 

 

 

 

30.1/14

There were no declarations or dispensations. 

 

 

 

 

31/14

MINUTES OF THE MEETING HELD ON 21 JULY 2014

 

 

 

 

31.1/14

The minutes of the Parish Council meeting held on 21 July 2014 were agreed as a true and accurate record and were signed by the Chairman.

 

 

 

 

32/14

MATTERS ARISING FROM THE MINUTES OF 21 JULY 2014

 

 

 

 

04.1/14

Declarations of Interest and Dispensations – MDC website needs to be updated with VB and KP declarations.  The Clerk has sent VB a new declaration to complete and when this is received will send both that for VB and KP to MDC to complete this action.

 

 

 

 

Clerk/VB

 

 

 

04.2/14

Vacancy – a vacancy notice was placed in the magazine but no one has come forward.  It was agreed that CC will put something on the PC Facebook Group page and the Clerk will put a notice on the noticeboards.

 

 

 

Clerk/CC

 

 

 

04.4/14

Pursuance of land for Cemetery extension - CC reported that he has received a positive response from Highways Development Control - complete

 

 

 

 

04.6/14

Performance – CC informed MDC and  PH where electronic responses to planning issues are not visible on the MDC website. MDC have responded and added the missing comments - complete

 

CC

 

 

 

04.7/14

Emergency Planning – GB will circulate the template - ongoing

GB

 

 

 

 

04.10/14

Signatory Mandate – the Clerk reported that the bank mandate is now correct - complete.

 

 

 

 

04.20/14

Noticeboard (adjacent to Herbert Dun House) – refurbishment – various costings for a new noticeboard have been obtained which were agreed as being too expensive.  DS agreed to speak to Simon Thomas about possible refurbishment of the existing board or a quotation for a replacement

 

 

 

 

DS

 

 

 

05.1/14

School Parking – GB raised this subject with the PCSO - complete

 

 

 

 

05.2/14

Legacy Fund – VH and PH need to complete the 2013/14 forms. 

 

VH/PH

 

 

 

07.2/14

Risk Assessment – Review of actions – this document was amended as agreed and distributed to Councillors - complete

 

 

 

 

09.8.1/14

Quarry – Long Term Management Fund – CC reported that definite documentary evidence from SCC regarding the security of the fund is still awaited.  PH is also chasing this at County level

 

 

 

CC

 

 

 

11.3/14

Training – the Clerk reported that the next Councillors training course will take place on 7 October at Woolavington.  KP will see if he can make that date and the Clerk will pass the information to VB

 

 

 

Clerk

 

 

 

19.2.3/14

Solar Farm at Soho Farm, Leigh-on-Mendip

 

 

 

 

 

·           The Clerk had contacted Mells Park Trust regarding the proposed community benefit contribution of £2,000 per year.  Mells Park Trust confirmed that the solar array is now generating power and the community payment would be in arrears.  Given that the bulk of the production would take place in the summer they proposed to make the payment at the end of September

 

 

 

 

 

·           The Trustees had asked for details as to how the money would be spent.  It was agreed that the Clerk would respond that this would be used towards maintenance of footpaths and the recreation field and towards the project for a new Cemetery in the village.

 

 

 

 

Clerk

 

 

 

19.2.4/14

Land Availability Assessment 2014 – Call for Sites

 

 

 

 

 

·           CC reported that he had responded to MDC reiterating the village linear design statement and the Council support for appropriate in fill development only.  Also reaffirming protection of land adjacent to the existing Recreation Field and informing MDC of the identification of land for a potential cemetery - complete

 

 

 

 

20.2.1/14

Amalgamation of Cemetery and PC accounts

 

 

 

 

 

The Clerk had sent a letter to the Nat West Business Department requesting the amalgamation of the Cemetery and PC Accounts.  To date nothing has been heard – ongoing.

 

 

Clerk

 

 

 

20.3.2/14

Leigh-on-Mendip Arts and Craft Exhibition

 

 

 

 

 

The Clerk reported that a letter of support enclosing a cheque for £50.00 had been sent to the Leigh-on-Mendip Arts and Craft Exhibition as requested at the last meeting - complete

 

 

 

 

21.1/14

St Giles’ Yew Trees – CC reported that information had been put in the magazine about the work which MDC would be carrying out on the yew trees.  Unfortunately work had to be delayed because of the presence of nesting birds, the work will be rescheduled for later in the autumn.

 

 

 

 

21.3/14

Rules and Regulation for Cemeteries and Burial Grounds – the Clerk is investigating rules and regulations and will report to the next meeting.  The Clerk is also seeking information regarding size of plots and layouts of cemeteries.  The Clerk stated that the Council is required to have a Burial Register Book and it was agreed that this should be purchased.

 

 

 

 

 

Clerk

 

 

 

21.4/14

New Cemetery – the Clerk had received information form SALC on the process for borrowing funds to purchase the land and establish the cemetery.

 

 

 

 

22.2/14

Disciplinary and Grievance Policy – it was agreed to ask DM to find a suitable Disciplinary and Grievance Procedure.

 

DM

 

 

 

22.3/14

Freedom of Information (Policy and Scheme) – this document had been amended as agreed and distributed and will be reviewed annually with the next date being July 2015

 

 

 

 

22.4/14

Document Retention Policy – this document had been amended as agreed and distributed and will be reviewed annually with the next date being July 2015.

 

 

 

 

23/14

Repositioning of Dog Bin adjacent to the church – the Clerk reported that she had been contacted by the householder regarding the bin which had not been reattached to the pole.  DS agreed to investigate and consider a new location for the bin.

 

 

 

DS

 

 

 

24.2/14

Footpaths – a map has been put on the website asking people to adopt a footpath - complete

 

 

 

 

24.4/14

Recreation Field – the Clerk had supplied a receipt to the Recreation Field for their rent. - complete

 

 

 

 

 

24.4.1/14

Easement letters – CC reported that letters had been sent to the three properties with gates opening onto the Recreation Field car park stating that although they are allowed to use the access they do not have right of access - complete

 

 

 

 

33/14

DISTRICT AND COUNTY COUNCILLORS REPORTS

 

 

 

 

33.1/14

District Report – VH has sent a short report via the Clerk listing the meetings she had attended during August and September.  It was noted that the VH will no longer be a member of the planning board which is becoming a smaller group although she will attend and speak as a ward member for any appropriate planning applications.

 

 

 

 

33.2/14

County Report – CC stated that PH had reported that he was still chasing up the issues on the quarry Long Term Management Fund and also contacting the quarry regarding the date of the next meeting which is provisionally booked for 7 October. 

 

 

 

 

34/14

PLANNING

 

 

 

 

34.1/14

Status of Current Applications

 

 

 

 

34.1.1/14

2014/0796/FUL Erection of 7 residential dwellings including biomass heating system and associated development, Grove Shute Farm, Tadhill, Leigh-on-Mendip

 

 

 

 

 

·           It was reported that this application had been refused by MDC

 

 

 

 

 

·           Various aspects of the design were discussed with the following conclusions

 

 

 

 

 

·           Roof Materials – the Council was undecided on whether it would be better to have the solar panels on slate rather than stand out on clay double romans.  It was agreed to look at surrounding properties as the new builds should blend in with existing neighbouring properties.  It was noted that the solar panels would probably be on the south facing roofs and therefore not visible from the road.

 

 

 

 

 

·           Building Stone – the Council accepted that the properties should be built in 100% natural building stone and not reconstituted stone as long as the application clearly defines this

 

 

 

 

 

·           Rear Timber Cladding – The Council accepted that this would only be visible from the rear.  However one side is almost entirely timber clad and therefore the preference would be for stone in this instance

 

 

 

 

 

34.1.2/14

14/00034/REF : Erection of a single wind turbine to 77 metres, along with accompanying access track, crane hardstanding, substation, associated underground cabling and temporary construction at Rockhouse Farm, Chantry

Appeal Reference: APP/Q3305/A/14/2222024

 

 

 

 

 

·           It was noted that following the Extraordinary meeting of the Council on 4 September a letter had been sent to the Planning Inspectorate

 

 

 

 

34.1.3/14

Disused Quarry at the Top of Whitehole Hill – Enforcement number ENF/2013/0368

 

 

 

 

 

·           CC reported that the Enforcement Officer is still investigating this.

 

 

 

 

35/14

FINANCE

 

 

 

 

35.1/14

Financial Statement – statement to 15.09.14 was agreed and signed

 

 

 

 

35.2/14

Cheques signed

 

 

 

 

 

·                     Clerk’s Salary for August 2014 - £190.18, Payscale 18 from 01.04.14

 

 

 

 

35.3/14

External Audit – The Clerk reported that Grant Thornton had finished their external audit.  One comment was made that although the Council have a Risk Assessment in place this was not shown to the internal auditor.  The Council must ensure that all necessary information is provided to the internal auditor to allow completion of Section 4. It was noted that no invoice has been received from Grant Thornton   The accounts will now be available for viewing and the appropriate notice placed on the notice board by the Clerk.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Clerk

 

 

 

36/14

CEMETERY MATTERS

 

 

 

 

36.1/14

Grass cutting  - both the Clerk and CC had been contacted by the Parish Council’s contractor to inform them that grass cutting had already been done on two occasions when he arrived at the Churchyard.  On investigation this had been done by MDC’s contractors and the Clerk was asked to contact Landscape Group to make sure this did not happen again.

 

 

 

 

 

Clerk

 

 

 

36.2/14

New Cemetery – Highways – CC reported that SCC Highways Development Control had assessed the proposed area for the new cemetery and had been very positive – there is nothing there which prevents the siting of the Cemetery in that place.

 

 

 

 

 

36.3/14

New Cemetery - Sub Committee – it was felt that a Sub Committee should be set up to consist of CC/the Clerk/DS and an approach made to David Pattison who was Chair of the Council when the current cemetery was acquired.  Input may be required at some point from the Vicar.

 

 

 

 

CC

 

 

 

36.4/14

New Cemetery – actions CC had devised a list of actions which need to be carried out.  It was noted that the first task would be to get a proper official land valuation.  Following that it will be necessary to approach at least three different architects for quotations for drawing up plans.  The Clerk was asked to approach Fran Britten for contact details for Terry Pinto and DS recommended Francis De Valle.

 

 

 

 

 

 

Clerk

 

 

 

36.5/14

It was agreed that although the cemetery will not be required for some years it would be expedient to spread the cost of making up the ground, putting in gates and so on

 

 

 

 

37/14

POLICIES FOR ADOPTION

 

 

 

 

37.1/14

The following policies were agreed for adoption

 

 

 

 

 

·           Health and Safety

 

 

·           Complaints Procedure

 

 

·           Recruitment Policy

 

 

·           Data Protection and Information Security Policy

 

 

·           Equality and Discrimination Policy

 

 

·           Freedom of Information Policy

 

 

 

 

37.2/14

The Clerk was asked to amend the dates of the policies to reflect the date of the meeting and also add the date for review

 

 

Clerk

37.3/14

It was agreed that an Accident/Incident Book should be obtained in conjunction with the Health and Safety Policy.

 

Clerk

 

 

 

37.4/14

It was agreed that CC would put the policies on the website when they are reissued.

 

CC

 

 

 

38/14

Wildflower Meadow Project (Somerset Wildlife Trust)

 

 

 

 

38.1/14

The Clerk reported that she had met the Somerset Wildlife Trust at a recent event and had been told about a three year Wildflower Meadow Project for the Stoke St Michael/Leigh-on-Mendip area where the Trust would be planting wildflower meadows.  The Trust had asked if an opportunity might be forthcoming for a short presentation to be made to a future Parish Council Meeting and it was agreed to extend an invitation.

 

 

 

 

38.2/14

Various suggestions were made for areas where wildflowers could be planted in the village and surrounding area such as wide verges, particularly near the village signs, and the new cemetery area.

 

 

 

 

38.3/14

The Clerk stated that she would be attending a presentation at the Earth Science Centre in Stoke St Michael on 17 September where she would make the views of the Parish Council known and extend an invitation to a future meeting.

 

 

 

Clerk

 

 

 

39/14

COUNCILLORS REPORTS

 

 

 

 

39.1/14

PCSO – DS attended the recent meeting and provided an update.  It was noted that villages are being asked to host the meeting on a rotational basis and it was agreed that GB would offer to have the meeting in Leigh-on-Mendip during November and would also invite the PCSO to the November Parish Council meeting.

 

 

 

 

 

GB

 

 

 

39.2/14

Footpaths  

 

 

 

 

39.2.1/14

DS stated that there is awareness that some footpaths are overgrown.  The path known as ‘Church Drain’ (between Bellfield and the main street) is particularly overgrown and CC agreed to pass details of the landowner to DS to inform the Rights of Way Officer.  It was noted that Simon Biddlecombe had offered to clear ‘Church Drain’ and it was agreed to ask him to do this.

 

 

 

 

 

CC/DS

 

 

 

39.2.2/14

CC and KP agreed to inform DS of footpaths in their areas which they would be able to keep an eye on.  It was agreed that any time spent on upkeep of footpaths should be noted and details given to DS who will need to do a report to Somerset at the end of the year informing them of time spent. 

 

 

 

 

CC/KP

 

 

 

39.2.3/14

It was noted that Stile 75 needs repair and that Alastair Weston needs to be made aware of this.

 

CC

 

 

 

39.2.4/14

DS agreed to speak to Brian Loten to see if would be willing to survey some of the footpaths and report back on their condition.

 

DS

 

 

 

39.2.5/14

Health and Safety – DS agreed to find out whether it is necessary to give volunteers information about risk when helping with footpath clearance.

 

 

DS

 

 

 

39.3/14

Highways – CC thanked GB for leaflet distribution reference the recent street sweeping.  CC stated that it had been reported that the pavements need some work especially near the kerbs where erosion is taking place.  CC will report this to Highways and ask for the pavements to be inspected with a view to repairing them. 

 

 

 

 

CC

 

 

 

39.4/14

Recreation Field – nothing to report. 

 

 

 

 

39.5/14

Memorial Hall – nothing to report.

 

 

 

 

39.6/14

School – nothing to report 

 

 

 

 

39.7/14

SALC – AGM to take place on 27 September, the Clerk will send apologies.

 

Clerk

 

 

 

39.8/14

Quarry

 

 

 

 

39.8.1/14

DS reported that the provisional date of the next meeting is 7 October but confirmation of this and the minutes of the previous meeting are awaited.  The company are to change their method of boiling the tar to LPG which is more environmentally friendly.  The balancing lake testing will be done next year.

 

 

 

 

39.8.2/14

GB reported hearing lorries driving through the village on 11 September at 10.15 p.m. which is prohibited.  DS agreed to report this to the company.

 

 

DS

 

 

 

39.9/14

Coleford Hub – a Management Committee is being set up

 

 

 

 

40/14

POINTS FROM PARISH BULLETIN

 

 

 

 

40.1/14

The following points were noted

 

 

 

 

 

·           High-speed broadband - Connecting Devon and Somerset (CDS) information –  the link is already on the website

 

 

·           Online Parish Forum for Clerks – the Clerk has signed up to this project

 

 

·           Mendip Rural Forum – the next meeting will be on 10 November at 6.30 p.m. at MDC, Shepton Mallet

 

 

·           Power to Change fund to launch in the autumn  - grants for community enterprises will be available

 

 

 

 

41/14

MEETINGS ATTENDED/TO BE ATTENDED

 

 

 

 

41.1/14

Somerset Wildlife Presentation – 17 September

Clerk

 

 

 

41.2/14

SALC AGM – 27 September

 

 

 

 

41.3/14

Quarry – 7 October (if confirmed)

 

 

 

 

41.4/14

Shepton Mallet Hospital Presentation – 9 October

Clerk

 

 

 

42/14

CORRESPONDENCE

 

 

 

 

42.1/14

The Clerk had received the following correspondence/information

 

 

 

 

 

·                     Email from SALC with information on the new Somerset Health and Wellbeing grant scheme from the Chair of the Board, Councillor Christine Lawrence.  The Clerk will forward to Councillors for information.

 

 

 

Clerk

 

 

 

 

·                     Information on Energy Day at Wells Town Hall on 27 September

 

 

 

 

 

·                     Email regarding South West Resilience Campaign.

 

 

 

 

 

·                     Came & Company Council Matters newsletter.  The Clerk will forward this to Councillors and make DM aware of the section entitled ‘Risk Assessments’

 

 

Clerk

 

 

 

 

·                     Somerset Waste Partnership monthly briefing

 

 

 

 

 

·                     Invitation to the Community Council for Somerset Annual Community Buildings Networking Event with Showcase and AGM which will take place on 23 October in Wellington.

 

 

 

 

 

·                     Invitation to the Presentation and Workshop regarding the proposed Shepton Mallet Health Campus – Thursday 9 October at the Council Chamber, MDC.  The Clerk will attend.

 

 

 

Clerk

 

 

 

43/14

DATE AND TIME OF NEXT MEETING

 

 

 

 

43.1/14

The next meeting will take place on Monday 20 October 2014 at 7.30 p.m. in the Memorial Hall.