Minutes 1st May 2018

YARPOLE GROUP PARISH COUNCIL

Minutes of the Annual Parish Council meeting held on Tuesday 1st May 2018 at 7.30pm in Yarpole Parish Hall.

Present: Cllr Audrey Bott, Cllr Linda Middleton, Cllr Duncan Grant, Cllr Barbara Nurse, Cllr Harold Holder, Cllr Michael Denny, Cllr Geoff Trotter, County Cllr. Sebastian Bowen, Parish Clerk Ms E Lewis.
2 members of the public were present for public participation time only.

1. Election of Office of Chairman: Audrey Bott was nominated by Barbara Nurse and seconded by Harold Holder. She accepted the position and signed the acceptance form.
2. Election of Office of Vice Chairman: Duncan Grant was nominated for the position by Michael Denny and seconded by Linda Middleton. He accepted the position.
3. Apologies for absence. Apologies were received from Cllr Julian Stokes and Cllr Diane Russell.
4. Declarations of interest and written requests for dispensation. The Clerk made a declaration of pecuniary interest in item 9 and signed the book accordingly. It was agreed that after introducing the item the Clerk and members of the public would leave the room for the discussion.
5. Public Participation
5.1 Report from Ward Councillor: An extra £5 million has been received from Amey and Herefordshire Council are looking at how to improve the repair system for potholes. The funds from the sale of the council’s farms will hopefully be reinvested in property to generate income for the council. Universal credit will come into force in Herefordshire in the next few months.
5.2 Report from West Mercia Police: No report had been received.
5.3 Views of local residents on Parish matters: Two members of the Save the Mortimer Forest group were present to introduce their campaign against plans to build over 60 holidays cabins in the Mortimer Forest.
6. Minutes of Parish Council meeting held on 3rd April 2018: The minutes of the meeting held on the 3nd April were agreed and signed.
7. Appointments of members to working groups and outside bodies: Members were agreed as follows: Parish Hall Committee – Diane Russell and Barbara Nurse; Footpath Officer – Peter Greer; Lengthsman – Duncan Grant; Tree Warden – Ian Ramsay.
8. Clerk’s devolved power to raise cheques below value of £500: This was agreed.
A resolution was passed and the public were excluded from the following item:
9. Clerk’s hours: A paper on hours worked by the Clerk over the past months, and work pattern, had been circulated prior to the meeting. It was agreed to increase the Clerk’s contract to 10 hours per week from 1st May 2018, this will be reviewed annually. It was also agreed to pay 28 additional hours for the work done in the period up until 1st May, at a cost of £282.52.
10. Finance
10.1 Financial statement to date: The financial statement was agreed.
10.2 Cheques: Cheques were signed as follows Village Hall £14, Clerk April wages £400.54, Hi Trees (lengthsman) £210 and Clerks annual office allowance and petrol £73.40.
10.3 Appointment of internal auditor: Both HALC and Gillian Vaughan had quoted £150 for the internal audit of the accounts and it was agreed to ask Gillian Vaughn to undertake the work.
11. Planning:
11.1 181102 Bramble Cottage, 7 Phillips Acre – proposed garden room: The Parish Council agreed they had no comment to make on this application.
11.2 Update on current planning applications/matters: Following visits to Knoll Cottage, Herefordshire Council are looking to issue an urgent works notice and if the required work is not undertaken they can employ contractors and charge the owner of the property for the costs.
12. Data Protection
12.1 Audit of information: The audit needs an additional line to cover information held relating to grant applications to the Parish council. Following this addition, the audit was agreed.
12.2 Data Protection Policy: The policy was agreed, with a review date of May 2019.
12.3 Privacy Policy: The policy was agreed, with a review date of May 2019.
13. Information, Consultation & Response
13.1 Village Hall Premises Licence: It was agreed that the Parish Council had no objection to the application.
13.2 Lucton Speed Limit Review: It was agreed that the Parish Council fully supported the proposal to reduce the speed limit on the U92404 to 30mph in the vicinity of Lucton school. The desire to see the speed limit reduced on the B4362 in Lucton was restated.
14. Updates and action
14.1 Lucton & Bircher Matters: The Clerk, Cllr Nurse and a local resident had met with traffic engineers from BBLP to discuss possible locations for Speed Indicator Device (SID) bases in both Bircher and Yarpole. Before agreeing to install SID bases, BBLP will undertake speed surveys in the relevant location (for which the Parish Council will need to pay) and the results need to demonstrate that speed is a sufficient problem to justify the use of a SID. A report detailing possible locations for the SID bases and next steps will be sent to the Clerk.
14.2 Parish Hall: It was noted that the constitution of the Parish Hall is out of date, but the Charity Commission has refused to allow this to be modified. The committee is planning to apply for a grant for a new noticeboard.
14.3 Parish Council vacancy: Andrew Daniels introduced himself to the Parish Council and after a brief discussion it was agreed to co-opt him to fill the vacancy on the council.
14.4 Mobile signal: Cllr Stokes had raised the problem of the mobile signal in the parish (via email); the mobile signal is extremely patchy and in some areas of the Parish almost non-existent and causes problems to many residents. It is understood that there is sufficient space at the exchange in Yarpole for a repeater station which would improve the signal in the lower part of Yarpole village. The problem of some of the houses in Lucton which do not yet have access to fibre broadband was also discussed; this affects about half the houses in the hamlet, due to them being connected to a different exchange to the other properties. It was agreed that the Clerk would contact BT open reach to ask for information and possible solutions for both issues. (Action EL)
14.5 Footpath between Church Farm and the church: There is a footpath between Church Farm and the church in Yarpole village. This path is regularly used (and has been for years) by parishioners, and always muddy/overgrown. As far as the Parish Council can ascertain, the path is not owned by anyone and it was agreed that the Parish Council would explore the possibility of putting a PROW application in for the path. The Clerk will investigate the process and report back. (Action EL)
15. Items for next agenda: The results of investigations into parking at the church will be discussed at the next meeting.
16. Date of Next meetings: Tuesday 5th June 2018 7.30pm
Tuesday 3rd July 2018, 7.30pm