Minutes of a scheduled meeting of the Parish Council on
Monday 9th September 2019 at 19.00 hrs in the Parish Hall
Councillors: Chris Williams (Chairman), Richard Lloyd, Margaret Harkin, Corinne Cranham and Patrick Sullivan.
Ward Councillor David Hitchiner, the Lengthsman (Paul Wright) and 9 residents.
1. Apologies for absence – None
2. Declarations of interest and written requests for dispensation … None.
3. Open Session
3.1 West Mercia Police…There was no representative from West Mercia Police.
3.2 Ward Councillor David Hitchiner – Ward Councillor Hitchiner provided a brief update on key Hereford County Council issues commenting specifically on the following:
3.2.1 The Parish Summit on the 20 September 2019 with the budget for 2021/22 being the primary focus.
3.2.2 An event in support of STOMP (Stopping Over-Medication of People with a disability) which will take place on the 26 September 2019.
3.2.3 The current five-year housing supply figure for 2019 is 4.05 years which represents a decrease in the corresponding 2018 figure of 4.55yrs.
3.2.4 The Hereford Transport package which is currently subject to a “Pause and Review” phase.
3.2.5 A Children and Young People Partnership showcase event on the 7th October 2019.
3.2.6 The Chairman asked the Ward Councillor to follow up work initiated by his predecessor by checking the liability, in terms of time, for utility companies in making good any deterioration following work on the roads.
3.3 Lengthsman Report – The Lengthsman confirmed that he had attended to damaged equipment in the playground as a result of vandalism.
3.4 Issues Raised by Local Residents – A resident reported that Allensmore Nurseries were failing to comply with the requirement outlined in the Planning Permission 174715 for “all staff / site traffic and site delivery traffic movements shall be made using the access onto Brampton Road only (with the exception of the Gas Service operations that will use the Stoney Street Access)”. It was RESOLVED that the clerk would write to Allensmore Nurseries bringing this to their attention. A resident asked if a ramp could be installed at the entrance to the recreation ground from Pennyplock to facilitate easier access for residents with mobility scooters. The resident was invited to write to the clerk who would in turn approach Herefordshire Housing.
4. Minutes of previous meeting … 8th July 2019
4.1 It was RESOLVED to adopt the minutes of the above meeting and they were signed by the Chairman.
5. Clerk Correspondence
5.1 A resident had written asking if there were plans to install a scooter park in the recreation ground. It was RESOLVED that the clerk would reply advising that currently no funds are available for a scooter park but their request would be recorded should the necessary financial position change.
5.2 A resident registered concern over a dead tree in the recreation ground. It was RESOLVED that the clerk would write to the Duchy of Cornwall asking if a maintenance check of all trees in the recreation could be undertaken.
6. Finance … The bank balance at 31st August 2019 in the Treasurers Account was noted as £16,225.51. As at 31st August 2019 there was £179.07 in the Business Bank Instant Account.
6.1 It was RESOLVED to make the following payment.
6.1.1 Clerk’s salary in accordance with the employment contract.
6.1.2 Groundworks – £105.93
6.1.3 Lengthsman – £545.00
6.1.4 Clerk’s contractual expenses – £100.00
6.1.5 Misc expenditure (Keys Cut) – £10.00
6.1.6 NDP Postage – £1.32
6.1.7 NDP Stationery – £85.58
6.1.8 Stationery – £66.81
6.1.9 Travel – £12.60
6.1.10 PAYE – £195.00
6.1.11 HALC £240.00
6.1.12 Countrywide Maintenance – £140.78
6.1.13 DJN Planning (NDP) – £943.40
6.1.14 Playground Inspection – £58.60
6.1.15 Madley Parish Hall – £105.00
6.2 Section 106 monies – The clerk reported that the Assessment Application is with Balfour Beatty which will prompt a quote for the proposed work on Stoney Street.
6.3 Precept 2020/21 – The clerk advised that the precept request is required by HCC no later than the end of December 2019. It was RESOLVED that the Finance Working Group should consider the precept before the next Parish Council meeting. It was further RESOLVED that Councillor Patrick Sullivan would join the Finance Working Group to replace former Councillor Jane Hirst.
6.4 Donation to the Village Hall Car park –It was RESOLVED that a donation of £500 would be offered to the Village Hall Committee as a contribution towards the cost of re-surfacing their car park.
7. Planning … Comments on applications to be determined by Herefordshire Council:
7.1 Planning Application 192672 –Land adjacent Town House B4352, Madley, Herefordshire – Councillors listened carefully to representations made by residents at the meeting especially around issues such as the Madley NDP, impact on listed buildings, ecological considerations and the design and appearance of the proposed dwellings. With regards to the NDP, Councillors concluded that, as it was currently in draft having just completed the Regulation 14 consultation, it could be not considered material to the scrutiny of the planning application. There was discussion on the ecological issues where residents strongly disputed the findings of the report commissioned by the developers. The Parish Council did not consider they could arbitrate on this issue and recommended that further independent work should be undertaken. With regards to the design and appearance of the proposed dwellings Councillors were of the view that the “look and feel” would be consistent with the preferences expressed by residents during the NDP process. The range and type of the proposed dwellings was also discussed and Councillors acknowledged there is a good mix of housing with a particular focus on two- and three-bedroom properties. Again, this is consistent with the preferences expressed by the residents in the context of the NDP. Councillors noted that the proposed development would be in close proximity to listed buildings in the village and this should be afforded further attention by the planning authority. On balance, the Parish Council were minded to support the planning application subject to the following conditions. Firstly, further work should be undertaken to examine the ecological impact of the proposed development. Other conditions include the relocation of the 30 mph signs to a position further from the entrance to the development plus a clear commitment to providing roundels on the B4352 adjacent to the 30 mph signs. Further, the Parish Council insisted that the village gates be relocated along with the 30mph signs and that this relocation not be at their expense. Finally, the Parish Council would urge the developers to interact closely with residents should the planning application be approved by the LPA. It was RESOLVED that the clerk would write to the LPA accordingly
7.2 Planning Application – 192615 – Handlands Cross Farm, Madley, Hereford HR2 9JW – Change of use of existing workshops, currently used for joinery, to 21 dog boarding kennel units in 3 blocks. Although the issues of noise were raised associated with 21 dog kennels it was not considered a major issue especially as no objections had been submitted by local residents. On that basis, the Parish Council agreed to support the application and it was RESOLVED that the clerk would write to the LPA accordingly.
7.3 Planning Application – 192703 – Land North of Faraday House, Madley, Hereford. Application for approval of reserved matters following Outline approval 152036 (erection of 27 dwellings including affordable housing). Councillors had no issue with the proposed mix of housing especially as it was consistent with the preferred type and range expressed by residents during the NDP process. The long-standing technical challenges linked to this application were discussed but provided that they could be resolved satisfactorily Councillors were minded to support the application. It was RESOLVED that the clerk would write to the LPA accordingly.
7.4 Planning Application – 192752 – Blenheim Farm, Madley Hereford HR2 9LU – Change of use of land from agricultural to residential (C3) to facilitate the enlargement of the planning units known as “Blenheim Farm” and “The Lodge”. Following discussion, Councillors agreed to support the application with the proviso that the landowner maintained the hedges to allow easy access to the footpath. It was RESOLVED that the clerk would write to the LPA accordingly.
8. Neighbourhood Plan (NDP) – The Chairman confirmed that the Regulation 14 consultation on the draft NDP ended at 17.00hrs on the 9th September 2019. All comments submitted in response to the consultation would now be forwarded to the Planning Consultant who will then consider whether any changes to the draft plan are required in conjunction with the NDP Steering Group. Once finalised the draft plan will be forwarded to Herefordshire Council who will undertake a further environmental assessment. The draft plan will then be presented to the Parish Council for approval after which it will be subject to a further consultation (Regulation 16) at which point it will carry some influence in any subsequent planning applications.
9. Standing Orders and Financial Regulations 2019 – It was RESOLVED that Standing Orders and Financial Regulations 2019 should be adopted and published on the website.
10. Lengthsman Working Group – Councillor Margaret Harkin provided a brief report of the lengthsman working group meeting which took place on 29 August 2019. It was RESOLVED that the clerk would produce an action log which will, in future, categorise the lengthsman activities as follows:
• Regular and Planned Activities
• Adhoc tasks with safety implications
• Adhoc tasks without safety implications
11. Recreation Ground – The clerk reported that a number of instances of vandalism had occurred in the recreation ground in recent weeks leading to damage to the play equipment. The clerk also highlighted the recent findings in the playground inspection which highlighted concerns over damage to the surfaces around some of the play equipment. It was RESOLVED that the clerk would request a quote from Wicksteed for undertaking the necessary repairs.
12. Footpaths Officer Report – Councillor Richard Lloyd reported that there was little to report this month. In discussion, the Chairman reported that, given the magnitude of the work involved in maintaining the village footpaths, it should be tackled systematically working outwards from the centre of the village. It was RESOLVED that this would be discussed further at the next meeting.
13. Road Verges for Wildlife (VOW) – Following discussion, it was agreed that the Parish Council should sign up to the VOW initiative and it was RESOLVED that the clerk would write to Balfour Beatty accordingly.
14. Removal of BT telephone boxes – The clerk confirmed that the Parish Council’s decision to allow the BT telephone box adjacent to Hazel Cottage to be removed had been communicated to Hereford Council.
15. Traffic & road issues -The clerk reported that sufficient volunteers had come forward to proceed with the Community Speed Watch initiative. The Chairman reported on the current situation regarding the B4352 where Balfour Beatty had confirmed that it would be 2/3 years before resurfacing work took place. More immediately, Balfour Beatty have acquired a budget to allow a refresh of the 30 mph roundels in beige rather than red and it is hoped this work will take place before the end of 2019.
16. We Don’t Buy Crime/Smartwater Protected Towns & Villages – Following discussion it was RESOLVED that the clerk contact the organisers and invite a representative to attend a future Parish Council meeting.
17. Matters raised for next scheduled meeting on Monday 14th October 2019 – The election of a Vice Chairman.
18. Discussion with a Prospective New Parish Councillor – Following discussion it was RESOLVED to offer Mr Simon Blackmore a seat on the Madley Parish Council which he gladly accepted.
19. It was RESOLVED that following acquisition of the CiLCA qualification the clerk’s salary should be increased to SCP25.