YARPOLE GROUP PARISH COUNCIL
Minutes of the meeting held on 5th February 2019 in Yarpole Parish Hall.
Present: Cllr Audrey Bott, Cllr Geoff Trotter, Cllr Linda Middleton, Cllr Harold Holder, Cllr Michael Denny, Cllr Barbara Nurse, Cllr Sebastian Bowen, Parish Clerk Ms E Lewis.
2 members of the public were present for items 1-3.3
1. Apologies for absence. Apologies were received from Cllr Andrew Daniels, Cllr Ian Salmon, Cllr Diane Russell and Cllr Duncan Grant.
2. Declarations of interest and written requests for dispensation: Cllr Nurse made a declaration of non-pecuniary interest in item 5.3 and signed the book accordingly. It was agreed that she would stay in the room but take no part in the discussion.
3. Public Participation
(Item 3.3 was discussed first, but the minute is recorded in numerical order.)
3.1 Report from Ward Councillor: The scrutiny committee is considering the budget for 2019/20, with a proposed 4.9% rise in council tax. The Police and Crime commissioner is looking at a 9.54% increase in the police precept, which will enable the employment of an additional 215 police officers across West Mercia.
3.2 Report from West Mercia Police: No report had been received.
3.3 Views of local residents on Parish matters: The two members of the public present were representatives of the village hall to talk to item 9.2.
Item 9.2 was discussed at this stage, but is recorded in the minutes in numerical order.
4. Minutes of Parish Council meeting held on 11th December 2018 and extraordinary meeting held on 10th January 2019: In the minutes of the December meeting, Cllr Nurse’s surname is wrongly recorded as Russell; following amendment of this error, both sets of minutes were agreed and signed as a correct record.
5.1 Financial statement: The financial statement was agreed. The current account has a balance of £30,973.08 and the Business reserve has a balance of £15,044.78.
5.2 Cheques: Cheques were signed as follows: Village Hall £21.00, Clerk wages £507.94, HMRC (tax) £47.40 and Clerk (mileage) £33.30. Following discussion of item 5.3, a cheque to the PCC was signed for £1080.00.
5.3 Annual contribution to be made for burial ground upkeep in Yarpole and Lucton: The PCC had provided annual accounts and invoices for burial ground maintenance which had been circulated prior to the meeting. The Parish Council agreed that they would pay 100% of burial ground maintenance costs in Lucton and 75% of Yarpole. This is with the proviso that should there be exceptional costs within a particular year, the PCC can ask the Parish Council for additional funds. The PCC will be asked to send an invoice detailing total costs to the Parish Council in January or February so that the contribution can be confirmed. On this basis the Parish Council agreed to provide £1080.00 towards the 2018 burial ground costs.
6.1 184570 Hillside Cottage Bircher – proposed two storey extension: The Parish Comment agreed to offer a qualified comment on the application, as it was felt that the size of the proposed extension meant that it would not be subservient to the main dwelling and the extension was not in keeping with other houses in the area.
6.2 Updates on current planning applications/matters: The planning enforcement officer has written to the owners of Meadowcroft about the reinstatement of the hedgerow; the owners have indicated they are having a stone wall built and will then plant the hedgerow. The clerk was also asked to follow up on concerns that the rear boundary of the property is being extended beyond the planning permission and settlement boundary. An update on the reinstatement of the hedgerow (decision notice 182425) at Lucton Court Farm is still being awaited. The planning amendment application for Brick Cottage on Bircher Common has been withdrawn as the changes proposed require a revised full planning application, which will come before the Parish Council for comment in due course. The Clerk had circulated an update on the impact of the new National Planning Policy Framework on Neighbourhood Development Plans prior to the meeting. This confirms that “made” NDPs hold full weight in planning decisions for 2 years, after which there are several caveats which come into play as to how much weight the plan will hold in planning decisions. This may mean that NDPs need to be reviewed after a period within the plan time-scale and the Clerk is seeking further guidance on this.
7. Yarpole Community Field
7.1 Transfer of the land: The Clerk has been contacted by the Woodfields confirming that they have instructed their solicitors to make contact concerning the transfer of the community field to the Parish Council. It was agreed that any decision on accepting the land will be discussed at the next meeting once the information from the solicitor has been received.
7.2 Appointment of solicitor to act on behalf of the Parish Council: The clerk is still obtaining quotes from solicitors to act for the Parish Council in the transfer of the land, so this item was deferred to the next meeting when 3 quotes should be available for the Parish Council to consider.
8. Information, Consultation and Response
8.1 Herefordshire Draft Minerals and Waste Local Plan: It was agreed the Parish Council had no comments to make on the plan.
8.2 Parish Council Summit: The Clerk and Councillor Middleton had attended the 2nd Parish Council summit on the 24th January. Presentations were made on community housing and the “Talk Community” initiative, which is looking to develop community hubs to bring together volunteers and groups to promote community engagement.
9. Updates and action
9.1 Lucton & Bircher Matters: Cllr Bowen will be visiting the parish with the locality steward to look at various issues including the verge erosion in Bircher. There is no further update on Knoll Cottage at present.
9.2 Parish Hall: The village hall representatives gave a brief oversight of plans for the extended car park on the new area of land gifted to the village hall by the Bashfords. Plans will involve removing some trees and a low wall between the existing car park and the new area. Future plans for the main village hall were also outlined, which will include widening the doors at the back of the hall. These plans are dependent on raising the necessary funds. The plans will come to the March Parish Council meeting for the Parish Council to make a formal comment.
9.3 PROW and Lengthsman: It was agreed that the Clerk would submit the expression of interest form for both the PROW and lengthsman schemes for 2019/20. The footpath officer is working on the 2019/20 plan and this will come to the March meeting for approval. A new leaflet on riparian owner responsibilities has been issued by BBLP and it was agreed that the Clerk would draft a letter to go to homeowners by the stream in Yarpole to accompany the new leaflet to ensure they were aware of their responsibilities.
9.4 Traffic Calming: The results of the Speed Indicator Device speed surveys had been received. These indicate that whilst there is a speeding problem in Bircher and SIDs might help address this, in Yarpole a SID would not be of benefit due to the speeds already being low and the vast majority of vehicles travelling at or below the posted speed limit. It was agreed to proceed with the commissioning process to install two SID bases in Bircher. It was noted that the new road markings to improve traffic calming are in place on the B4362 in Bircher and thanks were expressed to Ray Wallace and BBLP for funding these. The commissioning model is being used to install additional road side speed signs in Bircher which the Parish Council is funding. A meeting had been held with Ray Wallace from BBLP to look at traffic issues in Lucton, both in the village and at the junction on the B4362. The Parish Council could look at starting the Traffic Regulation Order process to reduce speed limit in the village and it was agreed that the Clerk would look into this. Ray will also draw up some plans for new signage coming into the village from both sides, which the Parish Council could consider funding. The safety and signage at the Lucton junction on the B4362 junction is being reviewed as part of the introduction of the new speed limit on the road by Lucton school and it is likely that some further warning/slow signs will be put on the B4362 on both approaches to the junction.
9.5 Parking at Church: Ray Wallace had indicated that there is going to be a review in 2019/20 of parking issues at the church, particularly with regard to safety, as part of planned BBLP works.
10. Items for next agenda: The new plans for the village hall will be on the agenda.
11. Date of Next meetings: Tuesday 5th March 2019, 7.45pm
Tuesday 2nd April 2019, 7.45pm