Minutes of a Parish Council Meeting held on Tuesday 16th October 2018 at 7.00 pm in the Village Hall
Councillors Paul Clarke (Chairman), Maurice Church, Richard Gaze, Rosemary Quelch, Robert Metcalfe, David Morgan and Brendan Treanor.
In attendance … Lynda Wilcox (Clerk cover on behalf of HALC). Four members of the public.
1. Apologies for absence were received from Cllr Sarah Murrin.
2. Declarations of interest & written dispensation requests for dispensation
2.1 David Morgan declared a Non DPI (Disclosable Pecuniary Interest) in item 5.1.1. and signed accordingly.
3. Minutes of previous meeting … 18th September 2018.
3.1 It was RESOLVED to adopt the minutes as a true record subject to the amendment of ‘Whiteside’ to ‘Wyeside’ in minute number 4.1. The minutes were signed by the Chairman with the one amendment.
4. Open session
4.1 There was no representative from West Mercia Police present.
4.2 Ward Councillor Philip Price was unable to be present.
4.2.1 Update, on progress re the Primary School … The Chairman read an email from Herefordshire Council, including:
a. Senior officers and elected members were briefed before the summer about the options for the Peterchurch rebuild and agreed with a headline recommendation that the school be rebuilt on its current site. The Cabinet Report is being developed which will authorise detailed survey work, outline design and programme, and cost estimates which is scheduled to go to Cabinet on 13th December. This will then enable the next stage of detailed work to begin.
b. The recommendation (subject to all the usual internal approval processes) is likely to be to rebuild on the current site, putting the electricity cable underground, retaining the swimming pool (possibly with a community/school contribution towards the cost), planning a potential pedestrian gate to the s106 open space/playing field/recreation area in the neighbouring development plot, addressing the highways issues as they apply to Peterchurch primary School in its current location…. So potentially addressing school car parking, parental drop off, bus stops, crossing points on the main road, but not addressing all the issues relating to road and footpath links to Fairfield (although these will be acknowledged in the report as requiring separate consideration). The challenges which still need to be investigated mainly revolve around exactly how a building programme would be scheduled given that the school will need to remain operational throughout the process, that is where we need professional input from a team of architects and surveyors to develop a viable project plan.
No report was available from the Lengthsman
4.3 Views of local residents on parish matters:
4.3.1 A request was made for an additional ‘No Dog Fouling’ sign on the permissive path from the bridge. The new clerk would approach Balfour Beatty with this request when ascertaining the delivery of signs already on order.
4.3.2 Defibrillator … Councillor Gaze would ascertain whether the password access code for the box containing the new defibrillator could be bypassed, so as to enable speedier access for those in need.
4.3.3 In response to a query about the overgrown hedge at The Old Forge, the Chairman would discuss this at his forthcoming meeting with the Balfour Beatty Locality Steward but it was likely that the parish council would need to formally request that Herefordshire Council cut the hedge back and claim the cost back from the occupant.
5.1 Comments on applications to be determined by Herefordshire Council:
5.1.1 App P183356/F Trenant Farm … Proposed refurbishment of existing cottage & construction of two storey extension & linking section between cottage & extension.
Following consideration, it was RESOLVED that there were no objections.
5.1.2 App P183369/F Poston Lodge Farm, Vowchurch … Development of a replacement electronic communications transmitting station (approx. 40m high).
Following consideration, it was RESOLVED to support the application subject to the replacement mast giving a similar or improved reception to local residents. It was further suggested that a footpath diversion might be required and footpath signage in the vicinity be reviewed prior to permission being granted.
5.2 Land sale near Hawthorn Rise/Closure Place:
5.2.1 Sunderlands had acknowledged the letter from the parish council and undertook to notify their clients of the anomalies pointed out by the parish council.
5.2.2 The Chairman commented that the land was being advertised for the development of 89 houses, independent of the play area and surrounding land. The Section 106 agreement shows that a portion of the land should be handed over for recreational use.
5.2.3 It was RESOLVED to continue to pursue the Closure Place issue and remind Sunderlands that they were required to provide access to the plot of land to the north of the area they were selling because they cannot access it from the car park at the rear of Closure Place.
6.1 Lloyds bank balances as at 4th October:
6.1.1 Business Bank Instant account … £33,110.49.
6.1.2 Treasurers Account … £2,132.20.
6.2 Street light costs re June/July prior to handover to HC on 1.8.18 … It was RESOLVED to pay outstanding invoices up to 1st August 2018 when Herefordshire Council took over the responsibility for energy costs.
6.3 HALC Clerk cover for the meeting @ £150.00 + mileage + VAT … It was RESOLVED to pay for clerk cover of the meeting.
6.4 Outstanding payments within budget allocation:
6.4.1 It was RESOLVED to settle invoices from the Lengthsman.
6.4.2 It was RESOLVED to pay the £20 hall hire fee.
6.5 It was noted that the second half of the 2018/19 precept monies in the sum of £10,830, had been received from Herefordshire Council.
7.1 30mph countdown signs … The Chairman gave an update on his correspondence with Herefordshire Council on the matter of countdown signs. It was RESOLVED that an FOI request be made to Herefordshire Council for copies of all correspondence between the Head of Highways & Community Services and the Department of Transport in relation to the installation of countdown signs on the approach to speed limit termination signs in Peterchurch.
7.2 Update on bus time tables coming in & out of village … The Chairman confirmed that it appeared to be the responsibility of Herefordshire Council, not the bus companies, to provide bus shelter timetables. The new Clerk would therefore pursue the provision of timetable signs for both directions of bus travel on one sign.
7.3 The failure of street light units at the following locations was noted … Outside numbers 4 and 10 Church Road, as well as outside 31 Closure Place.
7.4 The remit of proposed Parish Maintenance Contractor:
7.4.1 Clearance of gullies/grips on U&C roads … It was noted that the new Lengthsman would be required to liaise with the Balfour Beatty Locality Steward on some aspects of roadside maintenance. Clarification on the duties required by the Lengthsman would be discussed at the next meeting, in line with precept requirements for 2019/20.
7.5 The Chairman gave a brief report on the joint parish site meeting on October 8th, concerning the B4348 at which statements made at the meeting and by email, where Parish councils were going to support funding highway maintenance and prepared to assist with drainage work, entering into agreements to actively meet Riparian duties by representations from Herefordshire Council, it was made clear that Peterchurch Parish Council had NOT resolved to do so. It was stated that very few heavy vehicles use the highway and Poston Mill Park would not generate high levels of vehicle movement, as well as the highway being safe for cyclists, these points were disputed and since the meeting factual data has been obtained from Poston Mill Park:- ‘We have access barriers which record all traffic entering and exiting Poston Mill Park. Between 15-10-2018 to the period back to 7-8-2018 we had 10,000 entry/exit recorded on the system.(this is the maximum it will keep a record of).Also reference the road condition of the B4348 we have numerous customers which stayed at Poston Mill and have enjoyed their holiday with us, but have said they won’t come back as the road conditions coming to us put them off coming again .We would say approx. 75% of traffic would be coming or leaving Poston Mill via the A465 Hereford/Abergavenny road’.
8.1 Overgrown hedge near Old Forge… The Chairman would discuss this issue together with other footpath matters at a forthcoming site meeting with the Balfour Beatty Locality Steward.
9.1 Members noted that the ex-clerk had not responded to a request to return the intellectual property of the parish council previously display on the parish council website.
9.2 It was therefore RESOLVED to access a new .gov website and email address from Mark Millmore at Eyelid Productions for the sum of £500.00 plus on-going annual support.
10. Playing Field:
10.1 Annual play area report … The Chairman commented that there were no medium or high risks identified in the report. It was RESOLVED to replace the broken Bluetooth switch at some stage in the future. A play area inspection sheet for 16th October was noted.
10.2 Update on dog fouling signs from Balfour Beatty … The new Clerk would be requested to ascertain when the signs would be available.
11. War Memorial
11.1 It was RESOLVED that the new Clerk would pursue the grant claim.
11.2 It was noted that the Sarah Murrin was organising a wreath for the Remembrance Sunday Service following which, the parish council was funding refreshments. The Chairman would be in attendance and all other councillors were welcome to join him.
12. Information items noted:
12.1 Invitation from Leader of Herefordshire Council for Chairman to attend parish council ‘Summit Meeting’ on 17th October at the Shire Hall, Hereford. Chairman to attend
12.2 Fastershire/Herefordshire Council’s offer of free digital support and internet advice.
13. Matters raised for the next meeting on Tuesday 20th November:
13.1 Lengthsman report & clarification of duties.
13.2 Update on War Memorial grant.
13.3 Initial thoughts on precept requirements for 2019/20.
13.4 Update on new website and email address.
13.5 Update on request for additional dog sign and delivery of all signs.
13.6 Update on FOI request re 30mph countdown signs.
A resolution was passed to exclude the public from the following confidential item
14. Aspects re appointment of a new clerk
14.1 The Chairman reported on the interview of a prospective new Clerk/RFO the previous day.
14.2 It was unanimously RESOLVED to appoint Mark Hearne as Clerk/RFO for 7 hours per week on SCP 23 from 17th October 2018.