LEIGH-ON-MENDIP PARISH COUNCIL MEETING HELD ON 
               MONDAY 20 JUNE 1988 IN LEIGH SCHOOL

Present  were  B  Chubb, J Davis, G Lee, P Rooke, D  Turner  &  D 
Yelland  who  took  the Chair.  Cllr Hewett & 6  members  of  the 
public were in attendance.

1    Apologies were received from A Gould.

2    The Minutes of the meeting of 18/06 were accepted & signed.

3    MATTERS ARISING:  No reply was yet forthcoming from the  GPO 
concerning the Post Office or from SCC regarding the Speed Limit, 
the Clerk will write again. Pitten Street had been resurfaced and 
repaired.  The Clerk had been told that the Planning  Application 
for Manor Farm was due for discussion at the Planning meeting  on 
21  June.  When Cllr Hewett consulted his list for  that  meeting 
this application was not on it - Clerk will check with MDC.

4   PLANNING APPLICATIONS: Approximately 20 minutes was spent  in 
discussion  with  Cllr Hewitt on the subject of  how  the  Parish 
Council  could  more  effectively  get its  views  considered  by 
Mendip District Council's Planning committee. Various problems  & 
examples  were  drawn from the village to illustrate  the  Parish 
Councillors dissatisfaction with the planning process.
(i)   Mr  Yelland  raised  the concern  of   Councillors  at  the 
infilling  occuring  with  the village and  stated  that  in  his 
opinion  it  was not beneficial.  Cllr Hewitt  replied  that  the 
approval  of infilling was not necessarily the case as the  Local 
Plan  included the need to try and maintain the character of  the 
area.   Each plan was viewed in relation to  its  surrounds.Leigh 
was  lucky to be classified as a 'village' as this  allowed  some 
development. Mr Yelland pointed out that Tadhill & Townsend  were 
outside  the  structure  plan  -  Cllr  Hewett  stated  that  its 
inclusion,  if desired  should have been raised at the  structure 
plan appeal.
(ii) Mr Turner pointed out that in the last year this Council had 
had  to  deal  with  more applications  for  dwellings  than  had 
probably  been  dealt within the last ten years.   He  felt  that 
the  expansion  of the village ought to be staggered.  Mr  Hewett 
said this could not be controlled by the Council.
(iii)  Mr  Turner drew attention to the use of Bradstone  on  the 
houses  at  the Sawmills development which the  PC  had  strongly 
opposed  - Cllr Hewett stated that he also had opposed  this  but 
had been outvoted.
(iv) In the same development attention was drawn to the  District 
Council's objection to a pumped sewer.  This had been allowed  at 
Towns End and the lack of consistency was querried.
(v)  Mr  Rooke expressed concern as to the Sawmill  site's  lower 
access, sited on a dangerous bend, Cllr Hewett suggested that  on 
any  question  of  access  the PC ought  to  consult  the  County 
Surveyor - who had not objected in this case.
Cllr  Hewitt  stated  that  examples of  valid  objections  to  a 
proposed  plan could be that it overshadows an existing  building 
but not that there is a transformer on the site.  MDC work by the 
book  as  to  size  of  plot  for  each  dwelling.   He  informed 
Councillors  that  there was no right of appeal once  a  planning 
application is passed.
It was agreed that more discussions ought to take place with Cllr 
Hewett and other concerned departments on Planning Applications.

5    HALECOMBE QUARRY
Mr  Yelland stated that despite the fact that the PC had not  yet 
received  the  Planning Application for the quarry  extension  he 
felt  that  after the Parish Meeting & the one held  by  Somerset 
County Council the Parish Council ought to decide its policy.

He  sought  confirmation from fellow councillors of  his  feeling 
that the villagers were not opposed in general terms to quarrying 
at  Halecombe  but that they had reservations about  the  present 
application  as  it  stood. It was agreed  that:   1)The  Council 
members were not opposed to quarrying.  2) They were not  opposed 
to Halecombe in general.  3) They all had reservations about  the 
present planning application as it stood. 

Mr  Rooke suggested a referendum be called on this  issue.   Miss 
Chubb  pointed  out that although the basic plans are  known  the 
actual  details  eg siting of access are unknown. It  was  agreed 
that  it  would be the P C's intention to seek the views  of  the 
parish  by way of a questionaire or survey.  It was  agreed  that 
when  this was done new residents of the village, not yet on  the 
electoral roll must be taken into account.

Mr  Davis suggested a meeting with SCC to state  villages  point, 
Cllr Hewett agreed that this may be a good idea.


Mr  Yelland stated that Mr Grazier had suggested a Quarry  Liason 
Committee  made up of 2 Parish Councillors & 2 members of  Wimpey 
Hobbs.   The  general feeling was that all  eligible  Councillors 
ought to take part in the discussion.
  
Advice was sought from Cllr Hewett on the matter of'Interest'. It 
was  agreed  that Mr Lee, as an employee of Wimpey  Hobbs  had  a 
pecuniary  interest  and Cllr Hewett felt that Miss  Chubb  &  Mr 
Yelland,  as employees of ARC, had an indirect interest.  It  was 
felt, however, that their specific knowledge could be of value to 
discussions at the Parish Council level.

This meant that 4 Councillors remained to discuss the subjects of 
Noise, Blasting, Dust, Water, Size of Plant area, Plant Position, 
Planting of new banks, & Footpaths, with Wimpey Hobbs. Miss Chubb 
suggested  the  inclusion  of restoration and after  use  of  the 
quarry.  It was agreed that Mr Davis would contact Wimpey Hobbs & 
arrange  a  meeting involving himself, Mr Gould, Mr  Rooke  &  Mr 
Turner and the Clerk.

Mr  Turner pointed out that the expansion of the quarry had  been 
stated at the meeting on June 16 to be dependent on the provision 
of  a  new route onto the Nunney bypass. There was  concern  that 
this could open up Tadhill to quarrying. 

Mr  Yelland went through a letter received from Mr R Dixon  about 
the  Halecombe Planning Application. The Chairman felt  that  the 
policy already agreed at this meeting had dealt with many of  the 
questions raised. 

Mr  Hewell  stated  that in the February 1986  Draft  Policy  the 
purpose of the identification of quarrying zones was to safeguard 
them  for future quarrying not to allocate them.  It  was  stated 
that the Parish Council must remember that they can still  reject 
the  plan  at  the end of the day but that they  can  carry  more 
weight if they consult.
Concern  was expressed that at the County Council meeting  on  16 
June  a wrong impression may have been given of village  feelings 
about the proposed quarry expansion from the survey conducted  by 
Mr Lee & Mr Fear.  Mr Yelland  had received 3 letters & 3  verbal 
complaints saying the survey was not representative.  Concern had 
also been expressed to another Councillor. Mr Lee stated that  he 
felt  compelled to take the survey after the Parish Meeting  when 
the  Chairman  had called for a vote at the  end  despite  saying 
earlier  he  would not do this.  Mr Yelland stated  that  he  had 
explained  to  Mr  Lee that he had asked  for  an  indication  of 
feeling  from  those left but had stated more than once  that  no 
vote  taken  was legally binding on the  Parish  Councillors,  he 
offered   to  resign  if  the  Councillors  felt  he  had   acted 
improperly.  It was agreed that an indication had been  requested 
not a vote & Mr Yelland's offer was rejected.

Mr Rooke expressed the concern of many at the % quoted on the HTV 
programme but it was agreed that as no count was taken there  was 
no validity to the figure quoted.

Mr  Yelland  said that at the SCC meeting the Chairman  had  said 
that the survey was conducted independently and that he had  read 
out a letter containing 4 provisos that he said had been asked in 
conjunction  with  the survey.   These did not form part  of  the 
survey & the Chairman of the meeting must be informed of this.


Part  of a letter from the Secretary of the Asham &  East  Mendip 
Group was read out expressing concern that a member of the Parish 
Council  had  misused his position in conducting the  survey  and 
alleging irregularities and misconceptions during its  execution. 
Cllr  Hewett  when  appealed  to said  he  felt  the  survey  was 
misguided  & spurious.  Mr Lee asked the Chairman to read out  11 
letters from Parishioners saying that they had signed the  survey 
of their own volition, without intimidation.  The Chairman did so 
but pointed out that they did not answer the allegations raised.

Mr  Turner felt that Mr Lee ought to have approached  the  Parish 
Council before conducting the survey.  When asked if he would  be 
prepared to submit the survey for independant ratification Mr Lee 
refused on the grounds of confidentiality.  Mr Lee agreed that it 
should be withdrawn from Somerset County Council.
The  3 Councillors present without a declared  "Interest"  agreed 
that  a  letter  would be sent to the  Chairman  of  the  meeting 
convened  by  Somerset County  Council expressing  their  concern 
that  the  survey  was  not  a  true  representation  of  village 
feelings.  It  would mention the Parish  Council's  intention  to 
conduct  an independant survey at a later date. The letter  would 
also  make clear that the 'surveyors' were  employees  of  Wimpey 
Hobbs.Mr  Yelland  suggested that they request  answers   to  the 
points  raised  by  the  Councillors  in  their  original  letter 
concerning the submission.

Copy of the relevant page of PC Minutes 20 June 1988
Mr  Yelland said that due to the cost involved in  conducting  an 
independant survey this matter must be raised at another meeting.  
Some  discussion  took place as to the timing & form  the  survey 
should take. 

A  questioner  from  the floor drew  attention  to  the  proposed 
revision  of the Somerset Quarrying Structure plan  and  querried 
whether  this application ought to be delayed.  She querried  why 
Wimpey Hobbs had applied now.  Mr Yelland said he thought it  had 
to do with long term investment in new plant and Mr Turner stated 
that a new mineral policy would not be formulated for at least  5 
years.

Mr Lee left at this point.


6    HIGHWAYS & FOOTPATHS.
Mr  Yelland was in receipt of a letter concerning the  lamentable 
state  of  the footpath from Ivy Cottage to Barn  Close.  General 
concern  was expressed as to the state of all  village  pavements 
which  were  impassable  due to overgrown verges -  a  letter  of 
complaint will be written to the County Surveyor.

The  state of the road outside the Sawmills development,  Knowles 
Auto Repair workshop & Fox Cottage was causing concern also  the 
state of the bank up to the Post box & damage to the road at  the 
lower access to the Sawmills development - a letter will be  sent 
to the Surveyors Department.

Discussions  took place on the errection of a sign at  the  Great 
House  Farm  end of the High Street warning motorists  about  the 
lack of a pavement - enquiries will be made.

Mr Rooke  had  received  a complaint about  cars  parking  near  the 
junction of Pitten Street & the Main Road - the  Chairman offered 
to approach the offenders personally.

7    ASHAM & EAST MENDIP GROUP - CHANGE OF DELEGATE STATUS
Mr  Davis said he felt that as an observer on this  committee  he 
could  not speak on behalf of the Parish Council and  proposed  a 
change of status from Observer to Representative, seconded by  Mr 
Rooke  -  Motion  carried.  A letter will be sent  to  the  Group 
asking if they will accept the change.
   
8    A questionaire from Leisure 2000 had been received & will be 
circulated to the Councillors for their comments.
A letter informing on Procedures for dealing with Obstructions to 
Rights of Way was read.
A letter requesting money from South Wandsdyke CAB was considered 
a  proposal by Mr Rooke to donate 5, seconded by Miss Chubb  was 
defeated on the Chairman's casting vote.  It was decided to defer 
this to the next meeting.

9    MATTERS TO BE CARRIED FORWARD
CAB request.  Mr Davis will report back on the parameters set for 
the first meeting of the quarry liason group.

10    The  next meeting will be on 18 July 1988 at  7.45  in  the 
School.

The Meeting closed at 10.40pm.


mn20688   


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