Minutes of a meeting of Standlake Parish Council, held by telephone/online conference call on 10th November 2020 at 7.30 pm.
Mr. B. Parnham Chairman
Mr. J. Rippin Vice Chairman
Mrs. L. Burton
Mrs. S. Garrett
Mr. D. Bevan Clerk
Cllr. C. Mathew (OCC), Mr. J Barnas and Finlay Barnas (11) Mr. J. Appleyard, Mrs. J. Sangha
1. APOLOGIES – Mr. S. Jones, Mrs. A. Knipe
2. DECLARATIONS OF INTEREST –Mr. Rippin declared an interest in application 20/02498/HHD.
3. PUBLIC ITEMS – Mr. Appleyard (Magdalen Farmhouse) made clear his objections to the application 20/02884/FUL as this would result in back building with possibility of further applications were it to be approved: he was also concerned that such a large building would be overbearing on his property (Grade II listed) as well as the proposed tree planting reducing light to his property. Mr. Appleyard complained that the timescale for objection was too short and the statutory notice stated that neighbouring properties had been informed which they had not. Mr. Mathew and Mr. Parnham suggested he contacted the district councillors to complain about this inaccurate statement. Mr. Parnham thanked Mr. Appleyard and said the council would discuss the application later in the meeting.
Finlay Bonas has carried out a survey amongst Standlake Primary School students showing there is an intertest in an expanded skate park. He also produced brochures (previously forwarded to councillors) detailing the types of skate ramp he envisaged and indicated that a selected design would be within the existing area along the multi games area. Congratulating Finlay on his work, Mr. Parnham and others suggested that a wider survey of older youth would be welcome if it can be done in the present circumstances. Also a detailed design should be completed and costed before the council could decide on the way forward.
4. COUNTY & DISTRICT COUNCILLORS’ REPORTS – Mr. Mathew reported that a motion, proposed by him, to instruct OCC to look again at alternatives to the preferred plan for the A40 had been carried by the council unanimously; he said that pressure was needed to be put on the cabinet to ensure this was not ignored.
20/02498/HHD: Erection of ancillary accommodation in rear garden: 21 Rack End Standlake Witney. Object: separate development not ancillary to main property; it is a non-temporary building contrary to the title deeds.
20/02537/HHD: Alterations and new pitched roof on garage: 109A Abingdon Road Standlake Witney: Mr And Mrs T Whealy. No objection
20/02884/FUL: Demolition of farm buildings. Erection of two detached houses and a detached garage along with associated works: Former Magdalen Farmyard Abingdon Road Standlake: Mr Andrew Townsend. Object: back building; precedent; impact on listed building.
6. MINUTES - Minutes of the Meeting held on Tuesday, 13th October 2020, copies of which had been previously circulated to all members, were agreed as a true record and will be signed by the chairman at a later date.
7. MATTERS ARISING
Sewage/Flooding – Thames Water continue to provide updates when requested. The sewer lining is almost complete, sealing of some manholes will commence next week and they are also installing flow meters for flow monitoring at a several locations in the village. Mr Parnham continues to try and get a response from OCC regarding the flooding in Woodlands but has had no reply to date. Mr Mathew said that though he had sent numerous emails he has also not had any replies from OCC; it is difficult to see what further action he can take.
Roads/Traffic/Speeding /Traffic Calming – Provisional estimates for a lowering of the speed limit on the Downs Road to 40 mph have been received: OCC admin fees £3000, survey(s) £300 each and then the cost of (unspecified number of) repeater signs. This will be investigated further. Thames Valley Police have been giving guidance for the use of the mobile SID equipment which is in the process of being purchased. Mr. Mathew reminded the clerk that he would look favourably on a request to fund half of the cost from his Councillor Priority Fund (CPF); the council thanked Mr. Mathew and the clerk will forward the application form to him.
Playground/Recreation Ground & Maintenance - Mr. Parnham has carried out an inspection on the Rack End playground and, apart from the broken steering wheel on the car which has been removed, there is nothing outstanding. He said that people should exercise caution in wet conditions to avoid slipping on equipment (particularly the climbing tower) but saw no evidence of any moss build up. Windrush Way was also inspected but no action required apart from replacing the Advisory Notice that had been ripped down again.
Path by Notice board. – Still awaiting estimate from OCC who were hastened last week.
Hornsway Trees and cutting – The planting of the new trees is expected sometime in November, but no estimate has yet been received. Cutting back of existing foliage and removal of some dead trees should commence on 16th November. There is still no estimate from OCC for supplying/planting replacement trees.
Windrush Pollution – Mr. Mathew reported that he had another meeting with Robert Courts MP and Thames Water regarding Windrush pollution; he was not comforted by what he heard. He also raised the matter of a non-return valve at Mrs. Sangha’s property and will be meeting with a TW representative soon.
Planning White Paper – The only reply received from the addressees has been from Robert Courts MP who merely reiterated the governments position and stated his support for it.
Councillor Vacancy – The post has been advertised and responses are required by 5th December so a decision can be made at the December meeting.
Skate Park – see public items.
8. CORRESPONDENCE –Request for support from Volunteer link up; it was agreed to donate £50.
9. ACCOUNTS – the following accounts were approved for payment.
Absolute Solutions – car park repair; erect S’watch signs £50.00
Absolute Solutions – grass cutting £375.00
10. CLERK SALARY REVIEW - Mr. Parnham said he had reviewed the clerk’s salary and hours and discussed this with councillors. He proposed that the salary, which had not been increased since 2016, should be increased to the National Association of Local Council’s (NALC) recommendation for 2020/21 grade SP20 and backdated to April 2020; furthermore, he proposed an increase of 1 hour per week to 10 hours. Mr. Rippin seconded and passed unanimously.
11. BUDGET 2021/22 – The clerk produced the amended 2012/22 budget (previously distributed to councillors). He and Mr. Parnham had made minor adjustments and the clerk’s salary increase is included. The clerk drew attention to the apparently large, estimated, closing bank balance. This was entirely due to the large surplus from the FY2019/20 and included some £10,000 in the Community Fund which will be largely spent on the Speedwatch efforts. In summary he proposed the Precept remained the same as last year but warned that this would need to be closely examined in the budget discussions for the FY22/23. It was agreed unanimously that the Precept for FY21/22 be set at £25,000.
12. VILLAGE CHRISTMAS TREE PURCHASE – Following last year’s discussion on supporting the tree it was agreed that the council cover the full cost of the tree at £140. The tree will be erected as usual by the Gun Dogs club.
13. DEFIBRILLATOR BATTERY PURCHASE – The defibrillator at the Village Hall needs a replacement battery. As the council had already agreed to cover the cost of consumables it was agreed to pay the estimated cost of £147 plus VAT.
14. ANY OTHER BUSINESS – Mr. Rippin said the school flashing lights appeared not to be working; the clerk will check and report if necessary. The next meeting will be by Zoom conference call on Tuesday 8th December 2020 at 7.30pm. There being no further business, the meeting closed at 8.55 pm.
....................................................................................... Chairman .................................................................... Date