Minutes of the Meeting of Standlake Parish Council, held in the Youth Club, Church End, on 13th June 2023 at 7.30pm
Mr. B. Parnham Chairman
Mr. J. Rippin Vice Chairman
Mrs. J. Macdonald
Mr. D. Jeffcoat
Mr. J. Clements
Mr. D. Bevan Clerk
OCC Cllr. D. Levy, WODC Cllrs. C. Maynard and L. Nicholls.
Cllr. Nicholls said that, following the Parish Council’s reporting of concerns by a resident regarding the construction of 2 dwellings adjacent to 63 High Street, she had investigated the circumstances. While there was no question of changing the planning grant of permission, a visit by WODC had identified that there were some areas where the builders were not in compliance with the conditions of the application. This would be addressed by WODC.
Cllr. Maynard said that feasibility studies have now been carried out on re instating the Carterton to Oxford railway and the result is positive. Sources of funding are being investigated and it is hoped that current housing expansion will contribute. On Thames Water, the roll out of water meters continues and TW’s sewage monitoring figures are to be put into the public domain.
PLANNING – 23/01421/HHD: Proposed single storey garage (amendments to previously approved 20/02037/HHD) Larkfield House Lancott Lane Brighthampton: Mr & Mrs D Rivers. No objection.
Sewage/Flooding – Mr. Parnham reported the following: Thames Water: a problem with the lining on The Downs has been identified and contractors have been instructed to address. No further updates or issues identified. The situation is continued to be monitored. OCC - High Street: unfortunately, no further update has been received from OCC. We will continue to chase.
Environment – Mrs. Macdonald reported the following: Plants are growing well, but lack of rain is an issue - so the team have been out and about and have made the following observations.
The wildflower bank at the village hall is showing signs of a wide diversity of plants, following the management of the area in the Autumn.
Lucy Kennery from LWVP will assist with a survey of the site and mapping species in June. This will enable us to record the density and diversity of plants in years to come.
The pollinator patch around the village hall has been noticed and admired and is encouraging a wide variety of insect activity.
A bird box at the village hall - much in use by the birds last spring, will be replaced by LWVP. It has sadly been removed and has disappeared.
The Jubilee tree and the trees on the High Street are being monitored in this dry weather.
Discussions are ongoing about sites and sizes for planters around the village, funded from the Coronation fund.
20 bird boxes have been ordered from BNBG to enable the school leavers to have a workshop to make and take a bird box when they leave Standlake School.
Mrs. Macdonald said that she was completing a biodiversity survey and it was agreed that she do this on the Council’s behalf.
Buses/Bus Stop/Shelter – Mr. Jeffcoat said that the seats had now been installed and the provision of a timetable board is expected soon. He also noted that the shelter appeared to be well used.
Coronation – Mr. Parnham said he had sold more mugs at the school Fete with orders for some more. Once all the income and costs have been collated and passed to the clerk a final balance will be calculated and donations as previously agreed will then be made. With regard to the proposed planters, final numbers and locations have not yet been finalised. The clerk expressed his concern that there were no firm plans to ensure the upkeep in future years. Mrs. Macdonald was of the opinion that sufficient volunteers would be forthcoming.
In addition, the PCC are requesting the provision of water at the far end of the car park for visitors to the graveyard to be able to draw water for irrigating flowers on the graves. The clerk explained a pipe was installed, from the church to the entrance to the existing and new graveyards, when the car park was constructed. Some years ago, for numerous reasons, the PCC decided not to make the connection to the water supply at the church. It was agreed that the Parish Council would provide a suitably mounted tap at the graveyards, but it was the responsibility of the PCC to make the connection at the church.
Received: Mr. Parnham - from initial sale of mugs (102) £510.
The following accounts were approved: (paid*)
Absolute Sols - Butts path cutting £55.00*
Gallagher - insurance premium £1145.84*
C Cleland - churchyard mowing £372.50*
St Giles church - leaflet grant £200.00*
D C Bevan - clerk salary and expenses £1648.70*
D C Bevan - key cutting (recreation ground) £18.00*
Absolute Solutions - mowing £370.00*
AGM - coronation mugs £127.44*
HMRC - clerk PAYE £393.80
10. DATE OF NEXT MEETING - Mr. Parnham said that the next meeting will be held in the Youth Club on Tuesday 11th July 2023 at 7.30 pm.
11. There being no further business, the meeting closed at. 8.30 pm.
Dan Levy, County Councillor Report, 13 June 23
Carterton to Oxford Railway
The County Council commissioned a report on the feasibility of a railway from Carterton to Oxford via Witney and Eynsham. A line would greatly help those of us living to the west of Oxford, and make the A40 more bearable. The report has said that the line would be technically and financially feasible, albeit with a probable cost of £700m to £900m. There is clearly a huge amount of work ahead to turn this aspiration into reality.
There is an interesting article in the Oxford Mail on the topic, featuring WODC councillor Charlie Maynard, who is the Chair of the Witney-Oxford Transport Group. Witney campaigner says rail link 'urgent' as 1000s of homes planned | Oxford Mail
I very much share the aspirations for the railway.
Roads and Transport update.
Botley Road remains closed at the Railway bridge. Can I remind everyone that trains continue to run into Oxford, and that many buses are terminating at Osney, with a pedestrian underpass into the city. Other buses, including the rerouted S1, are going down Woodstock Road. Predicted chaos hasn’t happened!
Nuneham Viaduct has been repaired ahead of schedule and the line from Oxford to Didcot has been reopened.
Pulhams have been acquired by the Go-Ahead Group’s Oxford Bus Company.
Town and Parish charter.
OCC is looking at developing a ‘Town and Parish Council Charter’. Recognizing the importance of town and parish councils (incl. parish meetings) in local government, the charter would aim to strengthen how OCC works town and parish councils. The charter will be co-created through a process of engagement, kicking off in July.
Please do get in touch with comments, issues, and concerns.