Minutes of the Parish Council Meeting
held on Thursday 14th March 2019
in The New Bridge Community Centre, Bridge Sollars
PRESENT: Councillor John Macklin (Chairman), Cllr S Hubbard (Vice Chairman); Cllr Sharon Knights; Cllr Rosemary Morgan; Cllr S Keefe; Cllr Lesley Handscomb; Cllr M Holmes; Cllr L Goldwater
PRESENT: Mrs Lesley Hay (Parish Clerk) Ward Cllr S Williams;
The Chairman welcomed those present to the March meeting.
1. Apologies for absence – Cllr N Newton; Cllr S Crump
2. To receive declarations of interest or written requests for dispensations – Cllr J Macklin signed on behalf of the NBCC.
3. To receive a report from the local Police Officer/Newsletter circulated – no representative present.
However, the Clerk reported having received a recent email with regard to Crime Prevention Advice. After discussion, it was agreed that the Clerk would invite Paul Crumpton to the May Annual Parish Meeting to give an hour-long presentation to the Parish Councillors. An invitation to parishioners to attend this meeting will be advertised Notice Boards and, on the website.
It was agreed to a 7.00p.m. start with the Annual Parish Council Meeting starting at 8.00p.m.
4. Ward Councillor Steve Williams report:
Ward Cllr Williams reported that due to the May elections he was unable to give a report to this meeting.
5. Chairman’s report:
The Chairman reported that The New Bridge Community Centre had had a management meeting on 21st February with new members attending. At this meeting the deed of covenant was discussed and it was agreed that they should make a formal request to the PCC to renew the deed on the same terms.
A meeting with Wendy Coombey the diocese representative and Bridge Sollars PCC is planned for 15th March to discuss the renewal in more detail.
The AGM for the NBCC will take place on 4th April, 2019. The Chairman invited councillors to sign the members book as a way of supporting the charity. The NBCC has also distributed leaflets to parishioners to advertise the charity and promote the AGM.
The Chairman reported that he had met with the lengthsman, Dave Campbell, on 18th January for a parish walkabout to look at outstanding issues with the following results:-
Pothole on C1097 was filled with Viafix by the lengthsman on that day
The potential to erect a kissing gate at the junction of KT4 and BN4 was inspected; a new gate ordered and has now been fitted. The Chairman made arrangements with landowners for access on to the site. The Chairman visited Dave on the day of installation and has since been to inspect and can report he has made a good Job re-fixing the fences etc.
Ferry Lane Byford, The Chainman and lengthsman inspected the Culvert which was clear but the ditches leading to the Culvert were blocked and the grippers non-existent. The Chairman confirmed with the clerk that money was still available in this financial year’s budget and it was agreed to accept the quote to hire a small digger for a day to clear out the ditches and grippers and also clear ditches on Byford Common.
The Byford road between the village and Ferry Lane has very bad potholes which, although reported to Balfour Beatty over 12 months ago, have not been filled. The Chairman again liaised with the Clerk and it was decided to ask the lengthsman to fill in these using 16 bags of Viafix.
The lengthsman has also fitted a discreet Sign at the start of Byford footpath BY31
Paul, our Locality Stewart, looked at the pot holes at the bottom of Bishon Lane, the un-tarmacked section. Paul has come up with a solution, when the tarmacking season starts in the summer, he will arrange for scrapings to be used to fill the pot holes.
Byford verge markers have been fitted.
Tree on Byford footpath has not yet been removed by Balfour Beatty – Cllr Hubbard will follow this up with Balfour Beatty.
There has been a barrage of complaints from parishioners over the last month concerning two incidents – mud on the road by Kenchester Rectory caused by contractors hauling muck from Magna Castra farm and Mr Jenkins of Bishopstone Court regarding a deep ditch which has been dugout on the new road. Bishopstone Parishioners raised concerns it was a hazard to drivers. Also, the removal of the verge on the lane to Bishopstone Church – parishioners again raised concerns because you could not identify edge of road as the verge had been removed and the mud from this work had blocked the culvert causing the stream to run down the road. After making contact with the Locality Stewart by email he did an inspection and agreed to put up verge markers to identify the hazards but because it is a Riparian ditch it was the landowner’s responsibility to clear the culvert.
Councillor Goldwater reported a missing culvert cover in Mansell Gamage. Balfour Beatty came out the same day to replace this as it was considered a serious health and safety risk. There was concern as this missing cover was only replaced last year and it could well be that the cover had been stolen.
Open Session – as no members of the public were present, no issues were raised – Chairman closed the open session.
6. The minutes of the Parish Council Meeting held on 10th January 2019 were unanimously agreed to be a true record. These were duly adopted and signed by the Chairman.
7. Highways report and Environmental Matters
(7.1.) Mansell Gamage culvert – issue resolved.
(7.2) Lengthsman and P3 worksheet for March – April – no specific items raised.
It was suggested that a quarterly report/feature should be included on the website to highlight the work undertaken by the lengthman in order to keep the parishes roads; lanes; ditches and footpaths/and footpath furniture in good repair.
It was agreed that the Clerk will forward copies of the lengthsman worksheets to Cllr Keefe and the Chairman will forward supporting photographs and for these to be uploaded on to the website.
(7.3) Footpaths – item covered under Chairman’s report.
(7.4) Update by Tree Warden. Cllr Goldwater reported that there has been a good response to the offer of black poplar trees and hopefully these are being planted throughout Herefordshire – the offer is still open. The ash tree die back remains an ongoing problem and further guidelines and an action plan are being drawn up in the hope of a more co-ordinated approach by the parishes throughout the County. This to include best practice; risk assessment and encouragement be more proactive. Item to be deferred until next meeting.
(7.5) In accordance with the Herefordshire Litter Spring Clean – the annual ‘Litter Picking’ days were discussed and it was agreed Byford would organise a village project which will concentrate on Solitary Island where there is a problem with fly tipping. These items will be cleared and with the help of the Estate Office a fence will be erected in an attempt to prevent further fly tipping. Provisional date 25th March 2019. Cllr Hubbard and Cllr Holmes will liaise with leaflets; litter picking up equipment; black bags etc.
Bishopstone will organise a littler picking date on Saturday 6th April 2019 at 10.00a.m. – meeting be at the Notice Board. The Chairman will liaise with leaflets; notices, litter picking equipment; black bags etc.
Mansell Gamage will litter pick on the 14th April – the Chairman and Cllr Goldwater will liaise.
As there were no representatives from Kenchester – no dates were agreed.
8. Finance: Up-to-date accounts sheet/schedule of payments sheet had been circulated.
(8.1) It was unanimously agreed to pay all outstanding invoices and cheques were raised and signed.
(8.2) After discussion, it was agreed to increase the Clerk’s salary point from Grade 24 to Grade 25 as from the 1st April 2019. The Clerk explained that there had been no indication, as yet, of any ‘cost of living’ increase for 2019 -20 – any information with regard to this usually comes via HALC.
After discussion, it was unanimously agreed between the Clerk and Councillors that her hours would remain at 5 hours per week – but that any increase would be discussed at the budget/precept setting meeting in November.
(8.3) After some discussion it was unanimously agreed by all Councillors present that Bishopstone Group Parish Council would not renew their annual subscription with HALC for this coming year.
9. Planning matters:
(9.1) NDP report to Parish Council Nov 2018 – Cllr Hubbard reported that
the examiner’s suggestions are being implemented – the plan will then go back to the Herefordshire Council and hopefully will go forward to referendum at the end of May.
(9.2) Planning application 190378 – Rosemullion Bishopstone – the Chairman confirmed that he had spoken with the immediate neighbours who have no objections. The Parish Councillors present had no objection to this planning application.
(9.3) No new planning applications have been received.
10. CORRESPONDENCE: Code of Conduct – HALC – circulated. It was noted that
Herefordshire Council had in June 2018 revised their Code of Conduct and it was agreed that any decision with regard to changing Bishopstone Group Parish Council’s Code of Conduct will be deferred until further information is available and any revised Code will be discussed; agreed and adopted at the May Annual Parish Council Meeting.
Election day – 2nd May 2019. The Clerk confirmed she had attended a meeting in the Town Hall on Wednesday 6th March when nomination papers were made available.
The Clerk distributed these papers with a short ‘crib sheet’. The Clerk explained the importance of completing these papers which have to be completed by Councillors and returned in person to the Town Hall before 4.00p.m. on the Wednesday 3rd April, 2019.
The Clerk confirmed she has an up to date Electoral Roll for each parish – and can make electoral roll numbers available for proposers and seconders as required.
The Clerk asked those present if they were willing to stand as a Parish Councillor for the forth coming election – all those present confirmed their intention.
11.Date of next meeting – Thursday 9th May Annual Parish Meeting at 7.00pm. with a presentation by the Crime Prevention Officer – to be followed at 8.00p.m. by the Annual Parish Council Meeting.
Meeting closed at 8.45p.m.