Minutes of a meeting of Standlake Parish Council, held in the Standlake Youth Club on 14th July 2015 at 7.00pm.
Mr. J. Rippin
Mrs. J. Clements
Mr. J. Hunt
Mr. N. Owens
1. APOLOGIES –apologies were received from Mr. P. Willis.
2. PUBLIC ITEMS – there were three items on which members of the public wished to speak:
OCC review of and consultation on subsidised bus services:
Strong views were expressed regarding the vital necessity of bus services through the village. Mrs. Smith agreed and said, having attended a public meeting on the subject, it was vital that there was a strong response from the village as there was a very real possibility of losing services. To that end she suggested the entire village be supplied with a modified version of the official consultation paper so that those unable to respond to the online consultation would be able to participate. This was agreed and Mrs. Smith and the clerk will produce the document and Mrs. Smith will arrange for distribution.
Concern regarding speeding on The Downs and the hazard to parents and children of crossing by St Giles church was expressed by two residents. Mr. Naylor said that the council was not being negative or dismissive on this matter as it was a problem throughout the village but recognised that it was of particular concern to parents walking their children to school. The council has approached the Neighbourhood Action Group (NAG) through the council’s representative, Mr. Rippin, on many occasions but were faced with a refusal to carry out speed checks other than on the Abingdon Road.
Mr. Rippin explained that, from time to time, speed monitoring devices would be put in place for a period of time and the results of these were used to determine if the deployment of enforcement cameras is required. Unfortunately, the results tend to show that the average speed of traffic is within the limit and no action is indicated. Mr. Owens suggested that the council investigate the use of monitoring equipment to produce evidence for action; it was agreed he would look into this.
Suggestions were made regarding the use of speed humps and chicanes but Mr. Naylor pointed out that this had to be installed by OCC and the cost would fall on the parish as OCC would no longer pay for this type of work. Efforts would be made to see if any money was available from Section 106 money (aka Planning Gain) but because Standlake has had no large developments it is unlikely and, it must be remembered that this money, when available, is usually for a specific purpose e.g. affordable housing.
3. COUNTY and DISTRICT COUNCILLORS REPORTS
Mrs. Fenton said she was part of a group monitoring the cleanliness of WODC swimming pools and sports leisure centres; she would appreciate receiving comments from users of these facilities . Mr. Good wished to point out that WODC was still maintaining services despite having made savings and not raised the council tax.
4. DECLARATIONS OF INTEREST -
There were no declarations of interest.
15/02161/HHD - Demolition of existing garage; construction of replacement garage and repositioning of boundary with 67 High St: 65 High St; comment that visibility for pedestrians at junction with entrance to Lincoln Farm Park will be restricted.
15/02147/RES – details of access etc for planning permission 13/0112/OPEX – erection of one dwelling, garage and ancillary works (extension to time limit): 67 High St; as above.
15/02137/FUL – Conversion of stables/store to dwelling – 99 Abingdon Rd : objection – back-building, would set precedent, materials.
15/02050/HHD – Erection of car port – Old Manor Farm 24 Aston Road B’hampton: no objection
Minutes of the Meeting held on 9th June 2015, copies of which had been previously circulated to all members, were agreed as a true record and signed by the chairman.
7. MATTERS ARISING
Playground/Recreation Ground & Maintenance – Mr. Rippin reported that he had attended a Village Hall committee meeting and welcomed the committee’s willingness to work with the council. The clerk said that he will ascertain the annual cost to the hall of the waste bin for the next meeting and the council can then decide an appropriate contribution for the recreation ground litter disposal.
Village Communications – the clerk reported that, following a long period of liaison with the constructor, the notice board was now in place, albeit at 90°to the orientation envisaged. Problems with the location of an underground cable, the inability to move the waste bin due to its deep concrete fitting and tree roots led to the decision on change of orientation having to be made at short notice without consultation, except with the chairman.
The alternative was to have incurred payment for a day’s work by two men and the storage of the board until agreement was made on disposal. While accepting the situation the clerk was faced with, Mr. Owens suggested this was the wrong place and moving the board to another, unspecified, location should be made. No vote was called but other members indicated that the board should remain where it was. The clerk stated that, in future, he would not undertake the supervision of projects such as this and a councillor should take overall control with the clerk’s involvement being limited to the administrative and financial aspects of any such project: this was not challenged by members.
Mr. Hunt asked what progress had been made on the new website. The clerk said he had not done anything apart from getting to learn the program and could give no estimate as to when it might be done as he was doing this in his spare time and not part of his clerk’s duties. An acrimonious exchange followed between Mr. Hunt and the clerk in which the clerk threatened to resign if pressed any further.
Mr. Naylor and Mr. Rippin intervened and the clerk said he would have nothing further to do with producing a new site while under pressure. He apologised for persuading the council to purchase the website software in the first instance and offered to buy this back from the council; this offer was refused. It was agreed that Mr. Hunt and Mr. Owens would examine the option of getting a third party to produce the new site and the clerk would maintain it once operational.
Assets of Community Value – Mr. Owens will report at the next meeting.
Roads, Newbridge – Mr. Naylor will contact Northmoor to discuss further action regarding Newbridge monitoring.
Busses, Bus Stops – Mrs. Smith said that 3 locations had been identified to receive a shelter: one, opposite Lincoln Farm Park was unsuitable due to resident objection but Woodlands and at Martins Lane/The Downs were suitable. OCC have measured the sites and, subject to the parish council agreeing to insure and maintain the shelters, will install the shelters at no cost. This was agreed and the clerk will write to OCC with the formal acceptance of the offer.
Footpaths – OCC have followed up on the complaint regarding the BT work on the verge outside the Black Horse and the contractors have rectified the problem. Complaints were raised by members of the public about domestic hedges overgrowing and obstructing the footpaths. It was agreed that the council’s policy on this was, in the first instance, for a councillor to speak to the occupier concerned and ask for the obstruction to be cleared; if this did not result in any action the clerk will write to the occupier and ask formally for the work to be done and explaining that, failing that, the matter would be refered to OCC Highways who had the power to enforce clearance of the footpath.
8. CORRESPONDENCE – there was no significant written correspondence and all email correspondence was distributed to councillors on receipt.
The following accounts were approved for payment:
Standlake Village Hall – car park upkeep grant £500.00
D C Bevan – Website hosting; domain name £82.78
St Giles Church PCC – churchyard upkeep grant 1st half £600.00
Absolute Solutions –mowing, litter pick, repairs, notice board £720.00
M. Prickett – notice board final payment £600.00
10. ANY OTHER BUSINESS
It was decided that there will be no meeting planned for August and that the next will be on Tuesday 8th September. There being no further business, the meeting closed at 9.15pm.
...................................................................................... Chairman .................................................................... Date