YARPOLE GROUP PARISH COUNCIL
Minutes of the meeting held on Tuesday 5th December 2017 at 7.45pm in Yarpole Parish Hall.
Present: Cllr Audrey Bott, Cllr Linda Middleton, Cllr Jane Bayliss, Cllr Duncan Grant, Cllr Michael Denny, Cllr Barbara Nurse, County Cllr. Sebastian Bowen, Parish Clerk Ms E Lewis.
2 parishioners were present.
1. Apologies for absence. Apologies were received from Cllr Holder and Cllr Russell.
2. Declarations of interest and written requests for dispensation. No declarations were made.
3. Public Participation
3.1 Report from Ward Councillor: The West Midlands ambulance service has recently been rated the top service in the country. There has been a call-in over the decision to charge charities full fees for waste/recycling. (This is a process by which a cabinet decision can be challenged.) The budget for the coming financial year is still being worked on, and the council is looking at how to use the funds generated by the sale of council farms.
3.2 Report from West Mercia Police: No report had been received.
3.3 Views of local residents on Parish matters: The parishioners present were interested in hearing about progress of the NDP which is covered under item 7.
4. Minutes of Parish Council meeting held on 7th November 2017: The minutes were agreed and signed as a true record.
5.1 Financial statement to date: The financial statement was agreed. The current account has a balance of £24,349.21 and the Business Reserve balance is £15,030.34.
5.2 Cheques: Cheques were signed as follows Ernest Coverley (Noticeboard repair) £387.00, Steve Woodfield (mowing) £258.00, Wigmore School prize £30.00, Clerk wages £350.09.
5.3 Budget and precept for 2018/19: The draft budget for 2018/19 which had been circulated prior to the meeting was agreed following a minor change so that the 5th expenditure item reads PC contribution to PCC cemetery upkeep. It was agreed to set the precept for 2018/19 at £20,000.
5.4 Parish Council Reserves Plan: The reserves plan had been drafted after the finance working group meeting and circulated prior to the meeting. The plan allows for general reserves of £5,000 and earmarked reserves for parish projects and future election costs. The reserves plan was agreed. It will be reviewed twice each year – at the end of the financial year and when the annual budget is agreed.
6.1 Update on any current planning applications: An appeal has been lodged against the refusal of planning permission for application 162068 – 3 proposed dwellings on land opposite Yarpole Village hall. The Parish Council submitted agreed comments on the application in August 2016 and March 2017 and it was confirmed that the Parish Council did not wish to withdraw or amend these comments.
7. Neighbourhood Development Plan
7.1 Parish Council response to independent examiners queries: The NDP examiner had submitted a list of queries on the NDP for the Parish Council to answer. A draft response to all the questions had been circulated prior to the meeting and it was agreed that this be submitted to the examiner. Thanks were expressed to Bill Bloxsome and Brian Barnett for their assistance in this matter. Due to the environmental assessment and Habitats regulation Assessment needing to be revised to cover all housing sites considered during the development of the NDP, the examiner has decided to temporarily suspend the examination whilst Herefordshire Council undertake this work. This suspension is likely to run from 11 December until 15 January 2018. It was confirmed that the NDP would still hold some legal weight in planning decisions due to its status as having passed regulation 16.
8. Traffic Calming in Parish
(Note – after agreement the following two agenda items were taken out of order, with item 8.2 being discussed first. The minutes are recorded in numerical order.)
8.1 Installation of 6 SID bases and hiring of SID via BBLP for 2018/19: The Parish Council agreed to fund the installation of six Speed Indicator Device bases via the BBLP scheme at a cost of £2995 from the Parish Council reserves. Two bases will be situated in each of Bircher, Lucton and Yarpole villages. BBLP will need suggestions of where to place the bases and they will then assess the suitability of the location. Cllr Stokes will look at potential sites in Yarpole, Cllr Nurse will do the same for Bircher and Cllr Russell will be asked to undertake this for Lucton (where the B4362 near the school was suggested as the best location). (Action JS, BN, DR) The Clerk will look into the cost of hiring a SID from another parish, costs of buying a SID and whether the lengthsman would maintain/move the SID if the parish bought its own device, and report back to the January meeting. (Action EL)
8.2 Report from meeting with BBLP re traffic calming scheme in Bircher: A meeting had been held in Bircher that morning to discuss traffic issues and possible solutions for the village. Ray Wallace (Senior Engineer (Network Regulation) Balfour Beatty), Michael Brookes (BBLP locality steward), Cllr Nurse, Andrew Daniels, Cllr Bowen and the Clerk had been in attendance. The meeting suggested that a scheme of traffic calming measures, such as roundels on the roads and larger speed signs, together with deployment of Speed Indicator Devices could discourage speeding through the village. Ray Wallace will produce some costings for the traffic calming measures for the Parish Council to consider (money has been allocated within the reserves to support traffic calming schemes across the Parish). Speed enforcement was also discussed: the police have indicated that they cannot undertake speed enforcement in the village due to lack of safe locations from which they can undertake speed checks. It was suggested that a local landowner might be willing for the police to use his land from which to undertake speed checks and Andrew Daniels agreed to look into this. It was also suggested that speed collection data could be undertaken within the limit to check and analyse the speed vehicles are travelling and the Clerk will investigate this. (Action EL)
9. Information Consultation and Response
9.1 Herefordshire Council Travellers Site Development Plan: The draft plan was noted. A query was raised over whether 5 pitches at the temporary site which will be located on the A49 outside Leominster was sufficient to meet demand; Councillor Bowen will look into this.
9.2 Application for grant of £100 for newsletter audio disks: An application had been received from the newsletter for a donation to be sent to the RNIB in recognition of their work providing audio disks of the newsletter for parishioners. The Parish Council agreed that their general policy of only giving grants to local community organisations, rather than national groups/charities, meant that they were not able to make a donation to the RNIB as requested in the application. Should the newsletter wished to apply for a grant in support of production costs the Parish Council would be more than happy to consider this.
10. Updates and action
10.1 Lengthsman Scheme: There were no matters to report.
10.2 Lucton & Bircher Matters: The bench by the noticeboard needs repair but it is not clear who owns the bench. Cllr Nurse agreed to investigate and report back. (Action BN)
10.3 Parish Hall: There were no matters to report.
11. Items for next agenda: Parking on the roads and junction by the church is an issue and will be discussed at a future meeting.
12. Dates of Next meetings: Tuesday 6th February 2018, 7.45pm
Tuesday 6th March 2018, 7.45pm