Minutes of a scheduled meeting of the Parish Council on
Monday 21 June 2021 at 19.00 hrs.
Due to the Covid 19 crisis the meeting was held remotely.
Councillors: Chris Williams (Chairman), Simon Blackmore, Patrick Sullivan, Margaret Harkin and Paul Rigglesford.
John Harrington (Cabinet Member for Infrastructure & Transport (HCC)), Ward Councillor David Hitchiner, Mark Hearne (Parish Clerk) plus two residents.
- Co – option of Mr Paul Rigglesford – It was RESOLVED to co-opt Mr Paul Rigglesford to the Parish Council.
- Apologies for absence – Councillor Nick Hiscutt-Blackmore
- Declarations of interest and written requests for dispensation –
- Open Session
- Councillor John Harrington was invited to comment on the recent incident in Madley where local roads were badly affected by the presence of a huge quantity of mud. Councillor Harrington explained that he had instructed Balfour Beatty to clear mud off the road to make it safe but the problem of clogged ditches remain adding that the landowner has 28 days to clear the debris. With reference to a photograph showing significant mud remaining on the road the Chairman suggested that this constitutes a danger and immediate remedial action is justified. On the basis of the photograph Councillor Harrington agreed and asked for the image to be forwarded to him. On a broader issue, Councillor Harrington explained that Herefordshire Council are drafting a protocol which will set out the riparian responsibilities of landowners which will also include details of a staged and graduated response where issues arise. It is proposed to share the document with Parish Councils shortly. The Chairman raised the issue of transparency after an incident has been forwarded from the Locality Steward, for instance, to the drainage team and the seeming impossibility of acquiring updates from Balfour Beatty. Councillor Harrington acknowledged there is a problem with the reporting processes and agreed to follow up this issue. In response to a question posed by the Chairman, Councillor Harrington confirmed that, where a pipe which has been laid on privately owned land, albeit with the authority of Herefordshire Council, the landowner is responsible for its maintenance. The Chairman thanked Councillor Harrington for attending the meeting.
- Ward Councillor David Hitchiner – In his report Ward Councillor Hitchiner covered the following issues:
- The proposed changes to Parliamentary boundaries would move Stoney Street ward to the North Herefordshire constituency. Councillors registered opposition to this proposal.
- The Parish Council summit is due to take place on the 23rd June 2021.
- Reports of traffic problems on Belmont Road caused by motorists visiting the McDonalds restaurant.
- Lengthsman’s Report – The Lengthsman was not present at the meeting and had not submitted a report.
- Issues Raised by Local Residents
- A resident raised a concern over development at Canon Bridge and was aware that the developer is due to brief the Parish Council on his plans. The Clerk advised that this is expected to take place when face to face meetings resume and it was RESOLVED to inform the resident when arrangements for the presentation have been agreed.
- Minutes of previous meeting … 17th May 2021 and 7th June 2021. It was RESOLVED to adopt both sets of minutes as a true record and they will be signed by the Chairman in due course.
- Clerk Correspondence
- A representative from Verges on Wild had written thanking the Parish Council for signing up to restricting some verges in the parish to a single late cut.
- A resident has raised concerns over the recent problem of mud flooding onto Brampton Road and the impact on the ditches which have become clogged. This issue was discussed earlier in the meeting with Councillor Harrington.
- A resident had written suggesting that spoil left on the track alongside Gitnel Farm was preventing access to the adjacent field. The Chairman reported that both he and the lengthsman have visited the site and considered that access is not impeded. The Chairman added that he is content to meet with the resident at the site.
- A resident left a message on the Parish Council website asking if there any plans to replace the stile and gate either end of the footpath that leads up the side of The Feathers on Brampton Road. Councillor Harkin agreed to visit the site and report back to the Clerk.
- A resident has expressed concerns over the traffic management on Stoney Street when the Sunday car boot is in operation. Councillor Blackmore commented that this issue impacts on local businesses as customers are unable to reach the village without unacceptable delays. It was RESOLVED that the Clerk contacts the owners of the car boot to see if they would be prepared to meet the Chairman and Councillor Blackmore to discuss the issue.
- A resident had suggested that the draft minutes of the meeting held on the 17th May 2021 were misleading in describing the outcome of the recent NDP referendum. Councillors were satisfied that the minutes were accurate and no amendment was required.
- The Treasurers Account and the Business Bank Instant Account is £35,052.38 and £179.19 respectively.
- It was RESOLVED to make the following payments:
- Clerk’s salary (May 2021) in accordance with the employment contract.
- PAYE (May 2021)- £133.20
- Stationery – £3.50
- Lengthsman – £220.03
- Countrywide Maintenance – £70.39
- Sovereign (gym equipment) – £2,852.12
- HALC Internal Audit – £240.00
- Financial Monitoring 2021/22 – The Clerk referred to a spreadsheet which shows the spend to date plus an extrapolation of expected costs to year end. Based on this information there is a reasonable expectation that the reserves at 31 March 2022 will be circa £29k.
- Internal Audit Report 2020/21 – Councillors noted the observations and recommendations in the report. The Clerk drew attention to a comment relating to the Business Bank Account which did not generate monthly statements because the balance was insufficient to accrue any interest payments. It was, therefore, RESOLVED for the Clerk to transfer £25k to the Treasurers Account. The Clerk highlighted the recommendation for the Parish Council to publish a Reserve Policy and the Clerk agreed to provide a draft for the next meeting. In discussion, Councillor Sullivan asked for a copy of the asset register.
- Councillors approved Section 1 – Annual Governance Statement 2020/21.
- Councillors approved Section 2 – Accounting Statement 2020/21.
- Additional Waste Bins – It was RESOLVED to seek a quotation for two additional waste bins for deployment in the recreation ground.
- Section 106 monies –No further updates were reported.
- It was RESOLVED to make the following payments:
- Planning – Comments on applications to be determined by Herefordshire Council.
- Planning Consultation 211987 – Senna Croft, Woodyatts Lane, Madley, Hereford. A domestic outbuilding in the form of a garage. Following discussion, Councillors agreed to support the proposals set out in the planning application and it was RESOLVED that the Clerk inform the LPA accordingly.
- Section 106 Town/Parish Wish – Councillors suggested that the following should form the response to the invitation from Herefordshire Council for amenities that could be funded from Section 106 monies in the future.
- Accessibility via footpaths
- Development of facilities and access to recreation ground (to include toilets).
- Speed and Traffic Management
- Facilities for young people.
- Neighbourhood Development Plan (NDP) – There was discussion on the implications for future planning applications following the adoption of the NDP. Councillors noted that it will be important that the NDP informs the consideration of future planning applications adding that the views of local residents captured during the NDP process must influence all future development in the parish.
- Lengthsman Working Group – Councillor Harkin guided the meeting through the action log and reported that no work is outstanding. It was RESOLVED that the Lengthsman is asked to weed the pavement opposite the Cross.
- Recreation Ground – Councillor Cranham was not present at the meeting.
- Footpaths Officer Report – Following the recent resignation of Richard Lloyd as Footpaths Officer no report was submitted. Councillor Rigglesford was asked if he would be interested in assuming the role but requested information before reaching a decision. It was RESOLVED that the Clerk provides some background information.
- Traffic & road issues – During discussion, Councillors noted the continuing poor condition of Brampton Road but Ward Councillor Hitchiner was unaware of any emergency funding which might expedite the resurfacing work that is required. It was agreed that representations should continue to be submitted to Balfour Beatty when the Brampton Road shows further deterioration. There was a brief discussion on the Bridge Sollers Road in which Councillors acknowledged that any resurfacing work will generate more traffic into Madley. Councillor Rigglesford alluded to the issue of speeding traffic through the village but there was no obvious solution to the problem.
- Summer Newsletter – Although Councillors were generally content with the draft newsletter subject to a couple of minor editorial changes. It was, therefore, RESOLVED that the newsletter should be forwarded to the printers with a copy to be posted to each household in the parish. Councillor Rigglesford suggested that extracts from the newsletter could be published on the Parish Council Facebook page and the Clerk confirmed a copy will be published on the Parish Council website.
- Community Events – Councillors agreed that the focus should be on four events per annum so considered there would be practical problems in holding a disco immediately after the fireworks display especially as they would take place in different locations. It was RESOLVED, therefore, to limit the event to fireworks only but revisit the idea of a disco for a later event.
- Matters raised for next scheduled meeting.
- To check on Councillor availability for the summer picnic.
The meeting closed at 20.43hrs