Parish council minutes

Parish Council minutes 12 March 2014


Members Present: Mrs Barbara Babb, Mr Andrew Hewitt, Mr George Heywood, Mr David Lloyd, Mr Jim Lowe, Mr Trevor Mills, Mrs Kate Slocombe, Mrs Shirley Tilley and Mr David Watson.

Also in attendance 2 members of the public, Alison Boyle (part), PCSO Liz Rendle and Cllr. Robin Julian (part)

Parish Clerk: Patrick Blosse

1118 Apologies for Absence Cllr Robin Julian had sent apologies that he expected to arrive late.

1119 Minutes of the Meeting of 12th February 2014 The minutes of the parish council meeting held on 12th February 2014 were confirmed and signed.

1120 Declarations of Interest Kate Slocombe re item 1125 (ii) Football Pitch, Grass Cutting ; Shirley Tilley re item 1139 (a) 1 Gorwood Road planning application; Kate Slocombe and Barbara Babb re item 1126 Field Rents.

1121 Public Participation None

1122 Crime Report: PCSO Liz Rendle reported that there had been 2 crimes recorded for the parish in the past 2 months: some specialist equipment had been stolen from a vehicle (which had not been locked) and there had been another theft from the Hillpark construction site, this time of £1,500 of equipment from locked sheds. Andrew Hewitt recommended the use of wireless cameras. Liz stated that crime in rural areas remained low but these thefts proved that it is still vulnerable and that better security is needed. Liz also reported that there had been a theft of heating oil in a nearby community and advised that tanks should be securely locked.

1123 Alison Boyle: AONB Alison said that she had been appointed to the Board of the North Devon Coast Areas of Outstanding Natural Beauty. The association had been founded in 1959 as a result of the Countryside Rights of Way Act and the local board manages the area from Hartland to Combe Martin, employing 2.4 fte staff. It maintains close links with planning issues, such as the Atlantic Array. The focus for the next year is to be on farming and land management following increasing pressures on farmers to protect the countryside. The existing 4-year plan ends this month and the next meeting of the Board, in April 2014, will concentrate on the development of a new long-term plan, which is likely to include Bucks Mill and other local issues.

1124 Clerk’s Report

I. Correspondence: A summary of various items of general correspondence was supplied to each member. The following item was specifically drawn to the Council’s attention:

• Devon County Council Adult Social Care Day Services – Stakeholder events

• Affordable Housing on Exception Sites (Policy DM21) – see item 1139 (c)

• DALC: Consultation on filming and use of social media at public meetings

• DCC: Invitation to Stakeholders: Briefing on the Consultation on the future of residential care services at 20 Devon County Council Residential Care Homes. Shirley Tilley offered to attend the meeting at Caddsdown Business Centre on 14th March 2014

• Sally Nicholl: Letter concerning the planning application for the turbine at Babeleigh Barton – see item 1139 (d)

• Easy Read Scheme – flyer and poster

• British Lichen Society Apprenticeship

• Village Green – Issue 135, Spring 2014

• DALC Newsletter, March 2014

• Emergency Management Flyer

• Healthwatch Voices: Issue 3

• Clerks and Councils Direct: March 2014

 1125 Football Pitch

i) Having obtained keys for the club house, Jim Lowe had inspected it and found 9 bottles of gas, 30 pairs of football boots, a number of footballs, a set of football shirts and a large quantity of rubbish that needed to be removed. He had obtained a quote of £300 for clearing the rubbish but it was apparent that there was a quantity of asbestos in the building. It was agreed that councillors should visit the site at 10am on Saturday 15th March 2015. Jim Lowe had already had the gas bottles removed. It was agreed to donate the footballs to the Playing Fields Association, that the shirts would be donated to an appropriate cause and that the boots would go to the recycling centre. An indicative price of £650 had been received for making the club house secure but this had been provided without the benefit of a comprehensive survey. It was agreed that the Health and Safety Executive would be asked to evaluate the state of the building.

ii) Grass cutting – One bid had been received so far for grass cutting of the pitch but further bids were expected by the end of the month so any decision on the issue was deferred until the next meeting.

1126 Parish Council Fields: Rents: The clerk had spoken to Brian Chapple, who had agreed to an increase to £340 per annum and to Mr and Mrs Babb, who had agreed to an increase to £250 per annum with effect from March 2015. Having tried a number of times to contact Peter Bromell by telephone without response, the Clerk will now write to him.

1127 Thornhillhead Communications Mast: A letter had been sent to Arqiva on 19th February 2014 accepting their offer of £1,000 without obligation but there had so far been no response. The Clerk had been contacted by a consultancy purporting to be acting for 02 and Vodafone wanting to renegotiate the rent of the mast in order to install upgraded equipment in preparation for G4 but had not, so far, made any further contact. Robert Hicks and Co. had offered to act on the Parish Council’s behalf in any negotiations at no cost to the Council as any costs would be passed on the lessee.

1128 Thornhillhead Moor: No invoice had been received from Hicks & Co. Andrew Hewitt suggested that, once the invoice had been received and it was known how much remained in the account, a pre-meeting should be held with Robert Hicks before meeting with the graziers. George Heywood reported that there were still no ‘cattle’ warning signs up.

1129 Grant Application: Victim Support: A letter had been received from the Victim Support charity appealing for funds. Any decision was deferred to the next meeting.

1130 Summer Bus Service: All three of the other participating parish councils had been asked about continuing with the service in 2014. Putford and Bradworthy had definitely agreed to carry on. Parkham Parish Council will discuss the issue at its next meeting on 1st April but their Clerk had indicated that it was “almost certain” the council would continue to support it. Jim Lowe had been told by Community Transport that there would be little or no change in the cost.

1131 Pannier Market Hopper Bus A very enthusiastic response had been received from Community Transport but there was concern expressed about the service potentially clashing with the 372 service. One member thought that the new Waitrose in Torrington might start a hopper service of their own. Jim Lowe will continue to discuss the issue with Community Transport.

1132 Best Kept Village Competition: A map is still required. Kate Slocombe has one which she will photocopy and send to the Clerk.

1133 TAP Fund Application An application has been submitted and had received a positive response from Malcolm Harris, Community Development Officer at Torridge. It now requires approval by Devon County and Torridge District Councillors. The application now includes Peters Marland and Frithelstock as well as Langtree. The submission has been supported by professional photographs taken by a local photographer, the cost of which is to be offset against the photographer’s use of the village hall.

1134 War Memorial: Grant Application Applications are now being accepted for smaller schemes so an application will be submitted to Devon County Council for the next tranche of grants. Support is required from the British Legion and Cllr Robin Julian, who agreed in person to supply a supporting letter. The clerk will formally write to both parties.

1135 Village Library: The Clerk had spoken to the vicar who was enthusiastic about the scheme but needs to ratify the decision with the PCC, which next meets at the end of March 2014.

1136 Torrington Hospital: Andrew Hewitt reported that further consultation and opinions are being sought but that he felt that the proposals will go ahead “whatever happens”. On a related issue, Cllr Julian said that he had spoken to the leader of Devon County Council about the potential closure of the Springfield Day Centre in Bideford, and others that are threatened with closure, and had been told that no decisions had yet been made. David Watson reported that they were no longer taking any referrals.

1137 Lengthsman Service/Drain Clearing: It had been confirmed with Julian Roskilly of Devon Highways this week that there no news on when lengthsman rotas will restart. Andrew Hewitt suggested that a survey of local road conditions and potential lengthsmen works should be carried and it was agreed that Andrew Hewitt and David Lloyd would do this together.

1138 Members’ Reports

Cllr. Robin Julian reported that some pothole are being temporarily patched and would be repaired properly at a later date and that many people were “up in arms” about this. There had been reports of footpath material being used to patch potholes in roads, which was unacceptable. He stated that some money was being provided by central government specifically for pothole repairs but he did not know how much would be allocated to Devon. The County Council had stated that some roads were under threat of temporary closure notices and there was a possibility that some might close altogether. He felt that more and more would need to be done by the parishes in the future, especially as Devon County was facing another £49 million of budget cuts next year.

George Heywood (i) reported an incident at Bideford Rugby Club where a defibrillator had been used to save a life. The Clerk explained the proposals for providing a defibrillator in Frithelstock, which had formed part of the TAP Fund Grant application, and gave an overview of prices and delivery options. It was agreed that the Clerk would investigate these further and report back. (ii) George also reported that it had not been necessary to use any salt this year. (iii) A pothole at the top of Orleigh Hill needed to be filled – to be reported to Devon Highways by the Clerk. (iv) He said that he thought that the licensee using the football pitch for archery was under the impression that the grass would be kept cut at all times. The Clerk will clarify the position with her.

Jim Lowe (i) reported that there had been no response to requests for repairs to the street lights and believed that this work had been sub-contracted to Southern Electric. (ii) Four questions are wanted for the guest speak at the Annual Parish Meeting. Jim will put an item in Village Scene asking for suggestions.

Kate Slocombe announced open afternoons at Buckland Brewer and Parkham Schools on 25th and 27th March respectively.

Shirley Tilley commented on the number of vehicles parked along the road. Andrew Hewitt pointed out that this was probably because the holiday cottages are occupied. (ii) Shirley also pointed out that Cornwall Fire Brigade was using a call centre based in Yorkshire and hoped that this would not happen to the Devon and Somerset Fire Service as it would lead to loss of local knowledge.

David Watson (i) reported seeing dog mess on the ramp to the community shop and behind the chapel. It was recommended by one member that ‘No Dogs’ signs could be put up but no decision was taken. (ii) David also said that the notice board ought to have softer wood or an alternative backing as it was very difficult to insert pins. Jim Lowe to discuss with Richard Dorset.

Alison Boyle and Cllr. Robin Julian left the meeting at this point.

1139 Planning

a. Applications:

i) 1/0133/2014/FUL – Removal of condition 3 from planning approval 431/1993 to allow the change of use of the existing garage in to a kitchen, The Jays, 1 Gorwood Road. It was unanimously agreed to support this application.

ii) Devon County Council Planning Application at Buckland Brewer CP School – Retention of one existing modular classroom for a further 15 years. Notice of this application had been received too late to be included on the agenda. A decision was deferred to the next meeting and the Clerk was asked to notify DCC accordingly.

iii) 1/0128/2014/FUL – Braddons Park Wind Turbine. Notice of this application had been received too late to be included on the agenda. A decision was deferred to the next meeting and the Clerk was asked to notify Torridge Council accordingly.

b. Decisions:

iv) 1/1125/2013/FUL – Variation of conditions 2 & 14 of planning application 1/0504/2012/FUL to allow change in power output from 50kW to 100kW (Height to blade tip 39.997m), Craneham Farm, Buckland Brewer, Devon – Granted permission – Noted. The Clerk and the Chairman had both reminded Torridge Council that the Parish Council had previously registered its objection to the application.

c. Rural Settlement Plan Update (i) Jim Lowe reported that most of the points raised by the Parish Council concerning errors and omissions in the draft rural settlement plan for Buckland Brewer had been corrected or re-instated, including:

• the new property for which an application has already been accepted is to be included within the settlement boundary (plot 2)

• all in-fill sites have been included

• the plot of land off Tower Hill (plot 7) has been reinstated. It had been thought that access would be too narrow but Torridge had accepted that this would be improved if a garage was demolished.

• reconsidering the limitation of the number of industrial units

• admitting that the development plot in Gorwood road had been omitted in error

It had been stated by Kate Little (Joint Head of Planning) that there was little or no hope of meeting the Local Plan’ publication deadline.

The Cock Pheasant plot (plot 1) was still not included within the settlement boundary but the Chairman had distributed an explanation of policy DM21, indicating that it could still be designated for affordable housing at a later date, and that not including it within the settlement plan could protect it from other development proposals. Jim had been contacted by a representative of Aster Homes, a housing association with properties in mid and south Devon wanting to expand into North Devon, and had asked them to attend a future meeting.

(ii) David Brown, responsible for providing the small industrial units at High Bickington, has also been asked to attend a future meeting.

d. Babeleigh Barton turbine A letter had been received from Sally Nicholl concerning an application for a wind turbine in Parkham parish. She had first written to the Chairman at this time last year suggesting that Buckland Brewer might apply to share in any community benefits from the scheme and was concerned that the issue had not been brought to the Council’s attention. The Clerk had responded to Mrs Nicholl’s pointing out that Buckland Brewer had a policy of not commenting on turbine applications in other parishes and that it had no rights in law to seek community benefits if they did not constitute part of the planning application. Jim Lowe recalled having a lengthy discussion on the telephone with Sally but could not recall having seen her first letter. It was unanimously agreed that any letters submitted to members of the Parish Council should be brought to the Council’s attention.

1140 Accounts

i) Bank balances:

• Parish Council Current Account was £3,055.46 as at 28th February 2014

• Thornhillhead Moor Account was £18,216.03 as at 19th February 2014

ii) Payments due (£1187.23)

• Parish Clerk’s salary, expenses and associated PAYE: £187.23

• Buckland Brewer Village Hall – £1,000

iii) Receipts since last meeting (£80.00):

• Archery licence: £50.00

• Contribution from Frithelstock Parish Council towards training costs: £30.00

iv) Repeal of section 150(5) of the Local Government Act 1972 (two cheque signatories).The Clerk reported that legislation requiring Parish Council expenses be paid by a cheque signed by at least two signatories was being repealed. This opened the way for the use of internet banking and other forms of transaction that were not previously possible. However, his recommendation was that it was unnecessary for Buckland Brewer to change its banking practices at this time, which worked adequately for its purposes, and this was agreed unanimously.

Dates of Next Meetings:

Monday 17th March 2014 at The Chapel – 7:30pm – Parish Support Network Sub-Committee

Wednesday 9th April 2014 at Buckland Brewer School – 8:00pm

There being no further business, the meeting closed at 9:42 pm

Chairman: ………………………………………………………………………. Date: …………………………………


Parish council minutes 12 February 2014

Meeting of Buckland Brewer Parish Council Held on Wednesday 12 February 2014 at 7:30pm at Buckland Brewer School

Draft minutes

Members Present: Mrs Barbara Babb, Mr Andrew Hewitt, Mr George Heywood, Mr David Lloyd, Mr Jim Lowe, Mr Trevor Mills, Mrs Kate Slocombe, Mrs Shirley Tilley and Mr David Watson.

Also in attendance 1 member of the public

Parish Clerk: Patrick Blosse

1095 Apologies for Absence Cllr Bob Hicks, Alison Boyle

1096 Minutes of the Meetings of 8th January 2014 and 5th February 2012 The minutes of the parish council meeting held on 8th January 2014 and the Budget Review and Finance Sub-Committee meeting of 5th February 2014 were confirmed and signed, subject to a clarification of item 1087 Members’ Reports: George Heywood to which was added “George Heywood stated that Councillor Robin Julian was wrong in his statement that farmers could do no more”.

1097 Declarations of Interest Kate Slocombe and Barbara Babb in respect of item 1102: Report of the Budget Review and Finance Sub-Committee held on 5th February 2014.

1098 Public Participation None

1099 Clerk’s Report

I. Correspondence: A summary of various items of general correspondence was supplied to each member. The following item was specifically drawn to the Council’s attention:

o Devon Countryside Access Forum, request for new members – George Heywood expressed an interest

o Village Green Winter 2013 – Jim Lowe discussed the opportunity to obtain a war memorial grant and it was agreed that a professional’s opinion would be sought to assess the extent of works needed

o DCC Highways: Response re ‘priority system’ for Tower Hill – noted that no action was possible

o DALC: Invitation to Royal Garden Party – Chairman’s name has been submitted

o DCC: Flood Clean-up and Repair Work – noted that lengthsman duties delayed

o South West Heritage Trust/North Devon Record Office – it was agreed that the Clerk would write to Cllr Julian asking why the North Devon record Office could not be affiliated. Andrew Hewitt will also ask his contacts

o Winter Friends NHS Choices campaign Newsletter – It was agreed that, in the light of all the consultations taking place about support services and inevitable cuts in these services as a result of government financial policy, the Parish Council sets up a sub-committee to look at ways and means of supporting existing groups within the parish or whether there is a call to facilitate any further practical support. The sub-committee is to comprise Barbara Babb, Andrew Hewitt, Shirley Tilley and David Watson. It was agreed to co-opt Dawn Adams. Further co-options could take place to involve other interested members of the community. The group’s first meeting will be in The Chapel at 7:30pm on Monday 17th March 2014.

o Notice of Road Closure – Babeleigh Cross to Buckland Brewer to Tuckers Park 14th April – 18th April 2014 – Western Power Network

o Notice of next Torrington Area Advisory Group – 15th April 2014, 7:00pm, Methodist Church Hall, Mill Street, Torrington

o Letter of thanks from CAB for grant payment

o Application for Hire of School Premises for 2014 – future meeting dates were confirmed and the Clerk will complete and return the form

o TDC: Empty Homes Toolkit – noted, no action required

o TDC: TAP Fund 2013/14 and approach from Langtree Parish Council for a joint application. It was agreed that Buckland Brewer would submit a TAP fund application together with Langtree. Clerk to coordinate.

o DCC: Devon Mobile Library Service – new timetables

o Linking Life in the Torridge – Parish Survey

o Jane Lowe: New Hall Update

o Invitation to join a Rural Sounding Board – Jim Lowe to follow up

o Best Kept Village Competition: Guidelines and Judging Schedule. The map provided had not been satisfactory. It was suggested that Phil Slocombe should be able to supply something more suitable.

II. Insurance: Following approval of the budget at last month’s meeting, street furniture cover has now been added to the insurance policy.

III. Future Guest Speakers: A representative from WildWestNet has agreed to attend the meeting scheduled for 9th April 2014 to present their satellite broadband services and it is hoped that a representative from Tarka Housing will attend the meeting of 12th March 2014.

1100 Consultation on the Future of Youth Services in Devon It was generally agreed that a proper youth club was needed for the village but that no-one was available to run it. There will be a forum at Caddsdown Business Support Centre 1:00-3:00pm on 9th April 2014. Jim Lowe to attend. George Heywood said that what was most needed was transportation to clubs in Bideford, Torrington and further afield.

1101 Consultation on DCC Day Services The Chairman and clerk had investigated the consultation papers provided on the internet, which were comprehensive and provided for each individual day centre. It was agreed that no comments would be submitted at this stage.

1102 Report of the Budget Review and Finance Sub-Committee held on 5th February 2014

The meeting had discussed a land valuation report that had recently been received and rent reviews for the fields and allotments. The report identified approximately 20 acres of land in the Parish Council’s ownership, most of which was used for permanent pasture, with a total value of about £165,000. The Chairman and the Clerk had attended a briefing meeting with the Parish Council’s land agent prior to the meeting and had been told that three of the rental agreements were now below the market rate and ought to be increased. It was proposed by the sub-committee that the following tenant’s rents should be increased appropriately and that the clerk should write to them seeking increases of approximately 25% to take effect on or after 25th March 2015:

Mr B Chapple

Mr F Babb

Mr P Bromell

It was further proposed that all other field rents would remain unchanged until the next rent review, which would take place in 2016/17 in preparation for any rent changes to take place from 25th March 2018. It was also proposed that the Clerk should write to all tenants to inform them that the rent review has taken place and when the next review is planned. These recommendations were proposed by Jim Lowe, seconded by Shirley Tilley and agreed unanimously.

Draft letters had been prepared but the advice of the land agent was that these did not meet the requirements of a formal rent review and that approaches should be made in person initially to negotiate the increases. It was agreed that the Clerk would contact the tenants

The land agents fee for carrying out the valuation was £300.00 + VAT

1103 Renting of Football Pitch June Gaydon is away on holiday for a number of weeks but she has agreed to the terms of the licence and arrangements have been made for her to sign it on 24th February 2014. George Heywood asked about income for the grass and it was agreed that this would be advertised in Village Scene. Jim Lowe has not yet obtained the keys for the pavilion.

1104 Thornhillhead Communications Mast – Response to Arqiva On the advice of Geoffrey Cox, MP, it was agreed that Arqiva’s offer of £1,000 as a one-off payment should be accepted, without obligation, and that the letter previously drafted by the Clerk should be sent subject to adding an opportunity to renegotiate the rent for “any future upgrades, such as the provision of 4G”. It was also agreed that Andrew Hewitt would obtain pictures of the mast as it is currently configured so that any future changes can be noted.

1105 Thornhillhead Moor An email had been received from Claire McIntosh. Mrs Holt was pleased to accept some spare trees to plant on their bank and 6 would be provided when the fence is complete. There is also quite a significant fly-tipping problem up there, which will have to be sorted out once the fencing is complete and it is clear how much funds are available. Claire had written a letter to the County Solicitor for advice on what the signs should say so as to not increase the Parish Councils liability should there be an accident.

1106 Summer Bus Service An invoice and breakdown of the service costs and usage had been received on 12th February 2014. The Clerk is to write to the other 3 parishes to confirm that they are willing to continue the service next year.

1107 Tower Hill/Glen Bridge A response had been received from Ian Rawle, Neighbourhood Highway Officer stating that priority points could cause confusion and complaints and that this site could not be recommended on safety grounds. A reply from Julie Pepworth regarding Glen Bridge also indicates that it is unlikely that a weight limit can be imposed.

1108 Village Green The School and Jim Lowe have planted poppies in readiness for planting out on the village green later in the year and Jim Lowe asked others to the same. Andrew Hewitt suggested that shrubs might be suitable than another tree and this was agreed unanimously.

1109 Village Library Shirley Tilley has been offered some shelving, which she hopes the church will be willing to put up. Pat Blosse, in his capacity as a bookdealer, is willing to keep the shelves stocked with books that could be borrowed by parishioners with an honesty box for small donations to church or village funds. It was agreed to proceed with the scheme and the Clerk will write to the PCC outlining the scheme and asking permission to erect the shelves.

1110 Pannier Market Hopper Bus Shirley Tilley distributed flyers outlining the Pannier Market Hopper Bus Service and suggested that the scheme might be extended to take in Buckland Brewer and other outlying villages. It was agreed that the Clerk would write to Torridge Community Transport suggesting such a scheme.

1111 School Bus to Torrington Nothing to report

1112 Torrington Hospital Andrew Hewitt gave a resume of the work continuing on the consultation about the future of the hospital and the Care Closer to Home scheme. There were no new developments to report.

1113 Snow Warden Update George Heywood reported that the extra salt has arrived.

1114 Annual Parish Meeting: Torridge District Council Leader The Chairman reported that Cllr. Philip Collins, the Leader of Torridge District Council, had agreed to attend as guest speaker at this year’s Annual Parish meeting on 28th May 2014. He would like notice of about 4 questions so that he can prepare suitable responses.

1115 Members’ Reports

Andrew Hewitt reported that the Orleigh Hill drains had been cleared but then the hedges had been cut and the drains were blocked again. He asked if the timing of the cuts could be discussed with DCC. George Heywood pointed out that the hedge-cutting is done by contractors and that timings are subject to weather conditions. The item was noted.

George Heywood George pointed out that the Council was earning no income from Thornhillhead Moor and that the sale of some or all of the land would raise funds for the parish. – noted.

Jim Lowe reported that i) Glen Bridge was approved for a weight limit of 40 tons and that it was highly unlikely that the County would pursue a traffic order for any change, especially as this could cost £3,000, ii) he had responded to the Devon Waste Plan consultation mentioning biodegradable landfill and the use of waste to generate energy, iii) a response had also been sent on the Public Transport consultation on each of the 4 points highlighted and iv) that the plans to extend high speed broadband were continuing but that it was unclear whether Buckland Brewer would benefit.

Trevor Mills pointed out that the leaves at Glen Hill had now been removed.

Kate Slocombe i) reported that a street light was out in Barton Road. Jim Lowe will notify DCC, ii) and that her husband had dug out the drain on Gorwood Road (Buckland side of Jewels Cottage at the bottom of Friends Hill)

Shirley Tilley i) highlighted the dangers of cars dropping-off and collecting children from the playschool and ii) reported a scam concerning phone numbers staring 0809, 0284 and 0876 which, if responded to, could cost £1,500 a minute.

1116 Planning


i) Devon County Council Planning Application at North Hele, Buckland Brewer, Bideford, EX39 5LZ Planning Reference DCC/3618/2014 – Demolition of circular slurry store and replacement with below ground slurry store, extensions to agricultural buildings and installation of new residential sewage treatment plant – noted

ii) 1/1125/2013/FUL: Variation of conditions 2 & 14 of planning application 1/0504/2012/FUL to allow change in power output from 50kW to 100kW (Height to blade tip 39.997m) at Craneham Farm, Buckland Brewer, Devon. The Council had previously objected to this application on the grounds that a dwelling was within 600m. Following consultation by email a response had already been made to restate the Council’s objection and to point out that the nearby residents would be even more adversely affected.

iii) 1/0736/2013/FUL – 2 small wind turbines at Mambury Farm, East Putford – no comment as outside the parish

iv) 1/1151/2013/FUL – Beeches Farm, Buckland Brewer, single storey conservatory extension – supported

The Chairman pointed out that some responses had been submitted to Torridge Planning department showing that the Parish Council had “no objection” but that an earlier minute of the council had agreed that all responses would be given as a positive ‘support’ or ‘objection’ as the term “no objection” implied some ambivalence and the members would prefer to be seen to be supportive where appropriate.

1117 Accounts

i) DALC Finance update – Local Government Finance Settlement – the Clerk pointed out that there was no risk that capping or referenda would be applied to parish councils’ council tax decisions in the current year but these might be considered for the largest local councils in 2015/16. It was unlikely that such conditions would be applied to small parishes in the foreseeable future.

ii) Bank balances:

• Parish Council Current Account was £3,337.88 as at 31st January 2014

• Thornhillhead Moor Account £18,724.59 as at 19th December 2013

iii) Payments due (£615.78 + VAT):

• Parish Clerk’s salary, expenses and associated PAYE: £206.33 (including £30 for a filing cabinet)

• Buckland Brewer Village Hall: £7.00

• Robert H Hicks – Land valuation report: £300.00 + VAT

• Summer Bus Service: £102.45

iv) Receipts since last meeting (£40.00):

• Field rents: £40.00

v) Transfer Between Funds Members agreed a transfer of £250.00 from the Thornhillhead Moor account to the Parish Council’s general account to cover the cost of the Parish Clerk for the year 2013/14, being 2 hours per month plus a sum of about £30 towards office expenses and mileage costs.

Dates of Next Meetings:

Wednesday 12th March 2014 at Buckland Brewer School – 7:30pm

Monday 17th March 2014 at The Chapel – 7:30pm – Parish Support Network Sub-Committee

There being no further business, the meeting closed at 9:41 pm

Parish council minutes 8 January 2014

Meeting of Buckland Brewer Parish Council Held on Wednesday 8 January 2014 at 7:30pm at Buckland Brewer School

Draft minutes

Members Present: Mrs Barbara Babb, Mr George Heywood, Mr David Lloyd, Mr Jim Lowe, Mr Trevor Mills, Mrs Kate Slocombe, Mrs Shirley Tilley and Mr David Watson.

Also in attendance 6 members of the public including Claire McIntosh of Hicks & Co. and Cllr Robin Julian (DCC)

Parish Clerk: Patrick Blosse

1072 Apologies for Absence Cllr Bob Hicks, Alison Boyle

1073 Minutes of the Meeting of 11th December 2013 The minutes of the meeting held on 11th December 2013 were confirmed and signed.

1074 Declarations of Interest None.

1075 Public Participation None

1076 Clerk’s Report

i. Correspondence. A summary of various items of general correspondence was supplied to each member. The following item was specifically drawn to the Council’s attention:

o Clerks & Councils Direct: January 2014

o Torridge Household Waste & Recycling Guide – updated – distributed by email 8/1/14

o DCC: Public Transport Consultation It was agreed that Jim Lowe would respond on behalf of the Parish Council

o DCC: Adult Social Services Accommodation Strategy – members to submit their own responses

o ‘Be Prepared’ Newsletter – distributed by email 8/1/14

o Best Kept Village and Pam Parker Maps Competitions – It was agreed that the an application would be submitted

o Changes to the Mobile Library Service – noted. Jim Lowe reported that there would still be1 library van per month

o Renewable Energy Planning Masterclass – distributed by email 8/1/14

o TTVS: Snippets Issue 48 (inc. Police Small Grant Scheme)

o Schedules of Planning Applications

ii. Insurance – A response had been received from Community First regarding Public Liability cover. “The Property Owners Liability is covered automatically under the PL. We consider the ownership of land to be an expected activity of a PC so where the PC are held to be legally liable the policy would pick it up.”

iii. Website – work completed, invoice received for £50.00 – payment approved

1077 Budget Review/Setting 2014/15 Precept Following a discussion about the proposed budget and the need to provide sufficient funds to meet the costs of snow clearing, increased hours for the clerk and a reserve to meet the costs of the elections in 2015/16, it was proposed by David Lloyd, seconded by Barbara Babb and agreed unanimously to approve the budget and set a precept of £6,000 (including the amount of the support grant element).

1078 February Meeting, Budget Review and Finance Committee The clerk had received a comprehensive valuation report from Robert H Hicks & Co. which will be presented to the Budget Review and Finance Sub-Committee when it meets on 5th February 2014.

1079 Renting of Football Pitch There was no objection from any of the parish councillors to the licence that had been distributed by email and it was agreed that the clerk should complete the agreement with June Gaydon as soon as practicably possible. No response has been received from Maurice Knuckey about the keys to the pavilion. Jim Lowe to contact Roger Vanstone and John Adams.

1080 Thornhillhead Communications Mast No response had yet been received from Geoffrey Cox, MP.

1081 Thornhillhead Moor

Claire McIntosh reported that she had met with Lin Holt as there are a number of unforeseen side effects of the management of the moor which affect her and her property. Of all the local residents she has been the most affected. Although they are graziers, they do not have cattle grazing rights and therefore do not stand to benefit from the agreement in any way. Cattle gather by her gate and she sometimes cannot get her pony and trap out. Her chimney pot has been blown off and her solar panels damaged, which she thinks is as a result of the recent cutting, and the subsequent loss of some of their shelter. As there is quite a sum in the account for the moor now, Claire thought it would be a good gesture to offer to buy them a few young trees to plant into their bank. This was agreed and Jim Lowe offered to supply 6 from those that have been donated to the parish.

Scrub clearance was done in December for which payment needs to be arranged. Mark has started the clearing for the additional fencing and this ready to go. Swaling needs to be arranged.

Claire stated that Hicks & Co.’s management fee needs to be charged and, once the fencing works are complete, a meeting should be arranged to discuss the accounts and the distribution of the graziers surplus. Following this, a graziers meeting is needed for next grazing season.

George Heywood pointed out that there were still no signs about the presence of cattle. Claire said that she had asked for quotes and was researching the appropriate wording to safeguard the Council against litigation.

1082 Summer Bus Service Jim Lowe is to chase a bill for this year’s service.

1083 Tower Hill Roger Walter has lost his guttering again as there is not room for 2 cars to pass by his property. Jim Lowe suggested a priority system and will progress the issue with DCC Highways.

1084 Torrington Hospital In the absence of Andrew Hewitt there was nothing to report.

1085 School Bus To Torrington Jim Lowe had complained to DCC about the route that the bus was taking. However, DCC experts had apparently driven the route and confirmed that it was safe and suitable.

1086 Snow Warden Update George Heywood reported that he had not yet found out about any possible salt deliveries.

1087 Members’ Reports

Kate Slocombe reported that the school had developed good links with the contractors building the new houses and school visits to the site were being arranged.

Jim Lowe i) Pearce are hosting an event to launch the sale of the properties at Hillpark at 10:00am on Saturday 1st February 2014 at Atlantic Village

ii) Jim still has some saplings left for use around the village.

iii) The 2 end allotments are in a mess and might need to be rotovated. Trevor Mills recommended sowing with red clover.

iv) Jim had received a call from Dawn Adams regarding the provision of landing lights for the Devon Air Ambulance helicopter. He felt that the recreation area of the new housing estate might be a suitable site.

v) Jim suggested that the Leader of Torridge Council, Cllr Philip Collins, should be invited as the guest speaker to the Annual Parish Meeting on 28th May 2014. This was agreed unanimously and Jim will contact him.

George Heywood i) had heard an item on the radio saying that lengthsman services should be the same in all counties

ii) George asked Robin Julian about the comment he had made at the last meeting suggesting that, in response to the county’s budget cuts, farmers could be asked to do more, stating that he did not think that they could do more than do already. Cllr Julian did not specify what extra works he expected farmers to do.

David Lloyd Noted that potholes around the village were getting bigger.

Trevor Mills reported that the leaves at Glen Hill had still not been swept.

Shirley Tilley i) warned about a virus known as ‘Ransom’ which locks computers and demands payment of a fee to restore it.

ii) noted that a report of activities was now included in the North Devon Journal and that the information is apparently being taken from Village Scene

iii) asked if Tarka Housing could be invited to attend a future meeting to provide an update on Tucker Park. Clerk to arrange.

Robin Julian (DCC) had emailed officers in DCC Highways about the leaves at Glen Hill, the bridge and other issues reported to him but had received no responses yet. He also stated that he had taken on board George Heywood’s comments.

1088 Planning

(i) North Devon and Torridge Local Plan: Part 3 Engagement There was a discussion about the draft document supplied and a number of errors and omissions were noted. It was agreed that the Chairman and Clerk would liaise and submit a response including:

a. No mention of the 24 property development on the old factory site

b. Seeking clarity on status of Cock Pheasant field

c. Plot 2 excluded from plan/ should be included

d. Plan include provision for infilling but makes no mention of plots 3 and 4

e. One residence is excluded from the boundary

f. It had been agreed to increase size of Plot 5 on advice from Torridge but this was not shown on the map

g. Plot 7 excluded from the plan/ should be included

h. Clarification needed why allotments, playing fields and football pitch not inside boundary

i. Question the criteria for industrial development adjacent to the football pitch

j. Question who designated the conservation area and whether it can be lifted


ii) 1/1067/2013/OUT: Wind turbine, Watershute Farm, Horns Cross (Late item) – no comment


iii) 1/1027/2013/FUL: The Cottage, Gorwood Road, remove porch and erect conservatory – Granted Permission – noted

1089 Accounts

Bank balances:

• Parish Council Current Account was £3,489.1 as at 31st December 2013

• Thornhillhead Moor Account £18,724.59 as at 19th December 2013

Payments due (£339.43 + VAT):

• Parish Clerk’s salary, expenses and associated PAYE: £119.42

• Peter McClymont – Website redevelopment and maintenance fees: £50.00

• DALC: Clerk’s One-day Course: £120.00 + VAT (£60.00 rechargeable to Frithelstock and Monkleigh Parish Councils)

• Citizens Advice Bureau – £50.00

Receipts since last meeting (£4,695.15):

• Thornhillhead Moor Stewardship Fee: £4,436.59

• Single Farm Payment (Football Pitch): £258.56 (Received in THM account, to be transferred to Council’s General Account)

Dates of Next Meetings:

Wednesday 5th February 2014, Budget Review Sub-Committee at The Chapel – 8:00pm

Wednesday 12th February 2014 at Buckland Brewer School – 7:30pm

The meeting closed at 9:15 pm

Parish council minutes 11 December 2013


Members Present: Mrs Barbara Babb, Mr Andrew Hewitt, Mr George Heywood, Mr David Lloyd, Mr Jim Lowe, Mr Trevor Mills, Mrs Kate Slocombe, Mrs Shirley Tilley and Mr David Watson.

Also in attendance 10 members of the public including Jane Lowe (Village Hall Committee) and Cllr Robin Julian (Devon County Council)

Parish Clerk: Patrick Blosse

KEY: Actions are shown in bold blue type Decisions are shown in bold red type

1059 Apologies for Absence Barbara Babb, Kate Slocombe and Alison Boyle.

1060 Minutes of the Meetings of 13th November, 19th November (Personnel Sub-committee) and 3rd December 2013 (Budget Review Sub-committee) The minutes of the meeting held on 13th November, 19th November and 3rd December 2013 were confirmed and signed.

1061 Declarations of Interest None.

1062 New Community Hall Jane Lowe gave a presentation about the new Community Hall. Jane provided a transcript of her presentation, which is attached at Appendix 1.

1063 WildWestNet: Broadband Opportunity The representative from WildWestNet did not attend the meeting.

1064 Public Participation Alex Dziurzynski explained that he had submitted an outline planning application for a new property on land off Gorwood Road and hoped that it would meet with the Council’s approval.

1065 Budget Review Sub-committee Report: The Clerk provided a resume of the Budget Review Sub-committee held on 3rd December. A budget paper was distributed and explanations were provided on any significant changes in the proposed budget, including:

• Supplementary Support Grant (not previously in the budget), £50.00cr

• Increased field and allotment rent income, £464.00cr

• A proposed increase in Clerk’s hours to 24 per month following receipt of guidance from NALC and a recommendation of the Personnel sub-committee – an increase of £1,033.00

• Establishment of a training budget, £300.00

• Other administration costs, website maintenance and subscription fees, £233.00

• Contribution to Election Costs Fund, £750.00

• Legal Fees relating to land transferring to the Parish Council, £500.00

• Increased contractors fees for Salt Spreading, £900

• Contribution towards Playing Fields Association regular maintenance costs, £250.00

• Budget reductions for completed projects (Village Hall, PCC cobblestones and Back Lane), £1,650.00cr

The clerk explained that a small part of the budget could be met from reserves. This would leave a balance in reserves of just over £3,000, roughly 52% of net expenditure (excluding precept) and that he would not wish to see reserves any lower than that. The proposed net budget that would fall on the precept amounted to £6,000. No decision was required at this stage as the Council has until 31st January 2014 to submit its precept amount to Torridge Council. It was agreed that members would consider the budget report during the next month and that a final decision would be made at the next meeting.

1066 Personnel Sub-committee Report The Chairman gave an overview of the Personnel Sub-committee held on 19th November which was held solely for the Clerk’s 6-monthly performance review. It was agreed that the clerk’s hours would increase to 24 with effect from 1st April 2014 and that his appointment would be formally confirmed.

1067 Clerk’s Report

I. Correspondence. A summary of various items of general correspondence was supplied to each member. The following item was specifically drawn to the Council’s attention:

o Lyn & Chris Layton: Objection to grazing on the football pitch

o BB History Group (Lyn Layton): Thank you for grant

o Alison Boyle: Christmas wishes and congratulations to Andrew Hewitt on his appointment as vice-chairman of the Torridge Area Advisory Group

o Claire McIntosh: Fencing at Thornhillhead Moor: Members agreed to proceed with the fencing as proposed

o Atlantic Array Offshore Wind Farm: Withdrawal of planning application

o DCC: Devon Local Flood Risk Management Strategy public consultation 27th November – 27th January: Chairman and Clerk to liaise to draft a response

o Citizens Advice Bureau: Application for grant: Members agreed to a grant of £50

o DCC: Devon Waste Plan: Pre-submission Consultation: Jim Lowe to attend

o Torrington Community Cares Oversight Group Meeting: Tuesday 18th November 2013

o Richard Cottrell’s Campaign West

o Peter McClymont: Mock-up of redesigned website: Members were asked to review the site and report any feedback directly to Peter McClymont

o Geoffrey Cox: Christmas card

o Maggie Melville: Email regarding wind turbines

o Torridge Household Waste & Recycling Guide A-Z:


II. Allotments Notice had been received on plot 8 (R J Thompson, wef 28/2/14), who plans to leave his shed for the next tenant and on plot 2 (G E Hasler, wef 31/3/14), who might be prepared to manage a half-plot if anyone wishes to share it.

III. Archery The clerk reported that a licence has been drawn up for use of the football pitch for archery. Clerk to distribute copies to members.

IV. Insurance Community First have confirmed in writing that our public liability risks are adequately covered in respect of the use of parish-owned land. A quotation for an increased annual premium of £37.04 for street furniture has been provided.

V. S.137 Spending Limit 2014/15 The government has announced that the limit that a parish council may spend under S.137 powers will be £7.20 per elector for 2014/15 – equivalent to £4,745 per annum.

1068 Thornhillhead Communications Mast A letter has been received from Arqiva suggesting that they were not prepared to increase their offer, Geoffrey Cox, MP has been contacted and has undertaken to take up the matter on the Council’s behalf.

1069 Members’ Reports

Andrew Hewitt reported as a member of the Clinical Commissioning Oversight Group that the beds at Torrington Hospital had now been withdrawn. Only 3 bed places had been provided recently with only one patient, for whist 24/7 nursing cover had been provided.

Andrew also reported that the school bus had been seen going via The Glen. Jim Lowe to call DCC to complain.

Jim Lowe reported that no invoice had yet been received for the Summer Bus service and that he would chase it up.

George Heywood stated his concern that there were no facilities for 8-14 year-olds and asked whether the youth club should be restarted. Jim Lowe pointed out that a basketball hop and volleyball court had been provided. David Watson pointed out the difficulty of finding someone to run it.

George also asked whether it would be economically sensible to ask for a settlement figure on the BT wayleaves. Clerk to investigate.

David Lloyd asked if Pearce Construction could review their traffic movements as their route seemed questionable. Jim Lowe to contact the site manager, Paul Knox.

Trevor Mills reported that leaves on the road at The Glen were causing a problem and the annual sweep was needed. Jim Lowe to contact Highways.

Shirley Tilley asked if the Parish Council would agree to bellringers going round the village on the following Tuesday. There was no objection.

Shirley also asked Robin Julian, the DCC representative, to report on his activities:

Robin Julian (DCC) said that he managed a locality budget of £10,000 and that the parish Council should consider making an application for funds for a suitable scheme. He said that DCC would continue to provide services such as the Lengthsman, but that parishes and farmers were being asked to do more for themselves. Cllr. Julian is a member of the Highways Committee and said that he will always fight for work to be done on potholes and other highways issues but that he need to be told exactly where the issues were located. He was informed about various works that were required.

1070 Planning

(i) Communications with Torridge DC re Settlement Plan (Lower Abbots) Jim Lowe reported on discussions that had taken place with Torridge Planning regarding Lower Abbots. It had been suggested by Torridge that the site proposed in the Settlement Plan was too small for any significant development and that the Parish Council should consider extending the boundary to include the whole of Lower Abbots. Jim Lowe reported that this was acceptable to the landowners. It was proposed by Shirley Tilley, seconded by David Lloyd and carried by 6 votes to 1 that the whole of Lower Abbots should be included in the Settlement Plan.


ii) 1/0981/2013/OUT: Land off Gorwood Road, outline application for single dwelling and garage – No objection

iii) 1/0654/2013/FUL: Land at Langtreemoor lane, Langtree – Installation and operation of a single 250kw (hub height of up to 30m and 45m to blade tip) – Affecting a right of way – No comment

iv) 1/1027/2013/FUL: The Cottage, Gorwood Road – Remove porch and erect conservatory – No objection


v) 1/0864/2013/FUL: 15 Southwood Meadows: Proposed extension – Granted Permission

1071 Accounts

Bank balances:

• Parish Council Current Account was £4,295.53 as at 29th November 2013

• Thornhillhead Moor Account £14,029.44 as at 29th November 2013

Payments due (£256.23):

• Parish Clerk’s salary, expenses and associated PAYE

Date of Next Meeting:  Wednesday 8th January 2014 at Buckland Brewer School – 7:30pm

The meeting closed at 9:30 pm

Chairman: ………………………………………………………………………. Date: …………………………………



Agenda Item 1062

New Community Hall: Presentation by Jane Lowe 11th December 2013



The following information has been shared with the public at AGM and is regarded as a matter of public record.

Last November we hoped to have planning permission for the new development, including our own project, signed off & agreed with Torridge. We knew only when that had happened could we make a beginning.

During November 2012 Village Hall engaged Gates as Employers Agents (in effect they will act as our site project managers and deal with all matters builder) and also as CDM (Care Development Manager), effectively site Health & Safety managers & enforcers, now a legal requirement. This gives us, as trustees, comfort that we have a full & proper professional umbrella which will shield us from personal liabilities connected with site and building contract matters.

Towards the end of last year, we were led to believe that there was a significant amount of matched funding available (£20k + £20k) between TDC & Community Council of Devon, available only to submissions received by 31st January 2013 – a lot of pressure was put on TDC to sign off the planning permission – this proved elusive, with nominal sign off only being agreed in the last week of January. The bid for funding on this occasion was, whilst thorough, not successful mainly because of the enforced rush and inability to prepare, outside our control, but the work put into this will form a significant part of the foundation for future large bids.

The S106 agreement, which (as you are aware) is Village Hall’s quasi guarantee of funding and land upon which to build, was not signed off by TDC until spring 2013. Only at that stage, did Village Hall discover that, for all the proper reasons, we were not direct beneficiaries of the S106 as it was pointed to you, the Parish Council, who are rightly regarded as guardians of matters community. To remind us all, the basic terms of value to Village Hall are that as soon as 20 houses are built, sold and occupied, £325k will be released to the community & a parcel of land will become available for sale at a nominal price. You will also be aware of the correspondence between us and yourselves regarding letters of intent to ensure that as soon as the terms of S106 are complied with, Village Hall will receive the funds, and solicitors for both sides have already been instructed to effect land purchase – Village Hall will cover legal fees for both Parish Council & Village Hall for their specific portion of land, having given various assurances about return of unspent funds, interest charges etc. To affirm, Village Hall regards Parish Council as our partner in this venture.

During July & August, a few fairly complex applications for funds had been made – with only limited success, it has become apparent that funding will only be agreed when we can evidence that the hall is under construction ( a chicken and egg scenario) – we have to accept that in such times, and with much fraud having taken place over recent years, this is a reasonable precaution from funders and we will have to respect these conditions. Also during this time we instructed Gates to go out to tender with full building spec – we have invited builders to quote using local labour where possible. Quotes were a little staggering, ranging from just short of £1M at the top, to £850k at the bottom including a cost to hold to price for one year. Any idea of self-build has been vehemently discouraged by Community Council of Devon (apparently quite common in the 1970s & 80s) and common sense on many levels bears this out in analysis with massive changes in building regulations, Health & Safety Law, and not having the in depth knowledge of builders track records to know who can deliver within the set timescales without placing us at serious financial risk. It is probable that prospective funders would not pay out on self-build either – it is simply no longer considered acceptable practice.

In recent times Village Hall has created a new officer role – Project Liaison Officer – dealing with all matters new village hall, including planning the overall project, applying for funds and interfacing with the professionals e.g. Nigel the architect, & Gates. As I have been doing this “off the side of a desk” for many months, alongside the secretary role, it makes sense to stand aside and concentrate purely on this, which will become increasingly time consuming.

The key challenge for us in the coming months is to make ourselves fit for a Big Lottery funding application. At the end of September I attended (along with Parish Council Chair) a Lottery Funding Masterclass – I believed that at the end of this day I would be “genned up” to know how to fill in successfully a 100 page application and away we would go. THIS PROVED TO BE FAR FROM THE CASE. Many participants of that day simply gave up at the end of it. Lottery representation was there on the day, and made clear they were not interested in time wasters (their words, not mine). The hurdles are immense and average time from start to finish in terms of Lottery is 74 months.

I presented to this Village Hall committee in full at the beginning of October, half expecting people to find the cross between “Dragons Den “ & “The Apprentice” just too challenging. However, all of us genuinely believe that if we don’t achieve a new hall this time, we can bury our ambitions for future generations forever. So following a “blind ballot” the majority of trustees opted to go for Lottery funding (as opposed to giving up or seeking an alternative solution).

Before we can apply to Lottery at Stage 1, we must own the land on which we wish to build. Whilst we wait for houses to be built and sold, we see this as our chance to get ourselves in the best position to be at the top of the application pile (finding funding is competitive, we are up against the rest of the country). We are seeking an accreditation called Hallmark – this will start in earnest in January – and an independent bill of health approved by Lottery for our financial set-up (known as Sustainability) – we know we may have a lot of work to do on our operational model, but we also know that without this, any application to Lottery is likely to be among the first to be discarded. I now have the pack which will start us on the road to Hallmark and it is my intention to review this over Christmas and try and put together a programme for us that is manageable (bit size chunks). We will need to address properly formulated policies as a start – I am informed that we don’t necessarily need to “reinvent the wheel” – there are some “off the peg” ones Community Council of Devon (CCD) can help with although we will have some of our own that will have to be included. I have already identified to our trustees areas I regard as financially vulnerable but CCD will certainly add some meat to those bones and help us find solutions. I have starter meetings “pencilled in” at Community Council of Devon for early February to construct an overarching project plan for agreement by our trustees which will include “Plan B “ and possibly “Plan C” too and to commence a full financial analysis. We shall be seeking funding i.r.o. £0.5 M. There is only one alternative funder identified who will potentially provide a sum of this size and they will be equally challenging in demands of us.

Also during this time we are seeking to get outline planning permission for the old hall – simply high level change of use, so that it will auction quickly when needed – it is not realistic to assume we will be able to maintain 2 properties for long so a quick sale is vital. We will not be able to sell – we will be prevented by both TDC now – they need to be satisfied we are not “selling the family silver”, & Charity Commission at contract stage, as they have control of the freehold (the freehold is registered in the name of Official Custodian) and a public vote is needed – until we can evidence that we have an alternative for the community to use, so the community as a whole is not at risk.

It is important to point out that at AGM, 5 trustees resigned and one fresh face joined us – we await representative trustees from church, WI & skittles which will bring our trustee contingent back to 16 – we will still have 2 places and have made it clear that we both welcome and need new blood on our committee.If anyone from Parish Council can help us with this it would be regarded as a great service both to the hall and to the community.

Finally, as the S106 names the Parish Council as beneficiary, I am advised to request that you approach Pearce fairly regularly (monthly?) for an update regarding the sale and occupancy of the housing – it is probable they will not proactively seek to part with funds and land as a first priority and a request for information should form part of the S106 agreement made between them and Parish Council.

Jane Lowe, Project Liaison Officer & Vice Chair, Buckland Brewer Village Hall

Dec 2013


Parish council minutes 13 November 2013

Draft Minutes


Members Present: Mrs Barbara Babb, Mr Andrew Hewitt, Mr George Heywood, Mr David Lloyd, Mr Jim Lowe, Mr Trevor Mills, Mrs Kate Slocombe, Mrs Shirley Tilley and Mr David Watson.

Also in attendance 5 members of the public, Christopher Bowman and Glen Harper (NEW Clinical Commissioning Group)

Parish Clerk: Patrick Blosse

KEY: Actions are shown in bold blue type Decisions are shown in bold red type

1038 Apologies for Absence Cllr. Robin Julian and PCSO John McGovern

1039 Minutes of the Meeting of 9th October 2013 The minutes of the meeting held on 9th October 2013 were confirmed and signed.

1040 Declarations of Interest: None

1041 Public Participation: George Schofield and Maggie Melville both spoke in opposition to planning applications for wind turbines.

1042 Care Closer To Home/’Torrington Community Cares’: Shaping the Future of Healthcare in the Torrington Area

Dr Chris Bowman, Vice-Chair of the Northern, Eastern and Western Devon Clinical Commissioning Group and Dr Glen Harper, Care of the Elderly Consultant, gave a presentation about the Care Closer To Home initiative. The group is a revised version of the previous PCT, now lead by GPs. There had been a marked increase in demand for services for the elderly, many now having more than one condition, and significant cuts in health funding planned by 2015. Research indicated that more people recover better at home and that it takes only 2-3 days for patients to become institutionalised in hospitals. There has also been a rise in the demand for A&E services since 2010 but this is not always the best place for people to be treated. The Commission is tasked with developing a plan for the future and believes that getting the plan right for the rural areas of Torrington and Holsworthy will mean that it should work anywhere. Research shows that 40%-50% in hospitals don’t need to be there but, in spite of this, lengths of stay have gone up and the small turnover of patients leads to loss of nursing skills. During the current 8-week consultation period, the beds at Torrington Hospital have been re-opened by transferring nursing staff from South Molton. The Commission is using an independent oversight group to evaluate their plans over the coming 6 months. The Commission is seeking to use resources more creatively but to provide services of the same quality which are safe and provide the same level of satisfaction. Key themes include improving end-of-life care and they are considering opening clinics that combine additional social support like old style day centres. A question and answer session followed. Kate Slocombe pointed out that more beds could be needed for the winter/’flu season. Jim Lowe said that centres of excellence were needed that were accessible. For example stroke patients needing care within 1 hour. Chris Bowman said that GPs needed to do more to help with prevention to avoid so many people having to use centres of excellence. Andrew Hewitt asked if Torrington Hospital was used enough or if it could be used for recuperative care. Glen Harper said that he hoped people would get home sooner and benefit from community care. Chris Bowman pointed out that 60% of patients in Torrington Hospital were in for social rather than medical reasons. Shirley Tilley asked if it was more expensive to have nurses travelling round the community. Chris Bowman said that, although there was a cost involved it was still cheaper than maintaining a bed in a hospital and the nurses could treat more patients in the community. George Heywood praised the work of the local A&E but felt they were under too much pressure. Chris Bowman said that ambulance and paramedic services were trying to get more people straight home rather than having to visit A&E. A number of brochures/questionnaires were left for parishioners to complete.

1043 Clerk’s Report

• Correspondence. A summary of various items of general correspondence was supplied to each member. The following item was specifically drawn to the Council’s attention:

• DCC: Review of in-house Day Service Provision

• War Memorials Trust – Flyer regarding care of memorials

• Community Council of Devon – Surgery in Holsworthy 20/11/13

• Torridge DC: Emergency Planning and Community Resilience – Encouragement to develop a Community Emergency Plan Clerk to respond to Torridge showing that this has already been included in the Parish Plan

• Letter from Jenny Wallace re Wind Turbines

• DCC Highways: Travelling in Winter leaflet

• Healthwatch Voices: Issues 1 and 2

• South West Water: Water Main Requisition

• Friends of Buckland Brewer School: Thank you for the grant

• Devon Highways: Safety Awareness Training – 8 sessions available including Barnstaple Civic Centre Friday 6th December AM or PM – distributed by email 12th November 2013

• Northam Town Council: Grass Cutting information request – distributed by email 12th November 2013 No action to be taken

• Care Closer to Home Event 13th November 2013: Distributed by email 12th November 2013

• Register of Electors: Alterations, November 2013 (2 creations)

• DCC: Highways, Capital Development and Waste Management: Storm Events 2012 – Infrastructure Legacy and 2014/15 Budget Priority Consultation – distributed by email 12th November 2013 Clerk to supply electronic link for members to make comments online if theywish

• DCC: Devon Remembers – helping communities mark the centenary of WW1 – grants for restoring war memorials – distributed by email 12th November 2013 No action required

• Atlantic Array: notification of the appointment of the Examining Authority and notification of the Preliminary Meeting – distributed by email 12th November 2013

Shirley Tilley asked whether the ‘Village Green’ publication was still available. Clerk to investigate.

• DALC Council Health Check Scheme The clerk had explained the workings of the scheme to Frithelstock Parish Council, who chose to wait until after the clerk had attended the training day on 20th November before deciding whether the scheme was necessary.

• Crime Report In the absence of a police representative, the clerk reported that there had been 3 incidents reported in the last 3 months: 2 thefts from the Hillpark building site which had resulted in 2 site visits, an article in the Village Scene and 2 newsletters placed in the community shop and on the notice board. Also one theft of garden equipment from an open outbuilding/shed. Officers will be attending the Christmas Market. A new officer, PCSO 30674 Liz Rendle, has recently joined the team.

• Allotments Peter McClymont has today given notice on plot 5b. It was understood that the tenants of plot 5 (Walters) were interested in taking over 5b and this was agreed in principle

1044 Localism Act: Dispensation It was unanimously agreed that all Parish Councillors would sign a dispensation to permit them to speak and vote concerning the setting of a budget and precept for 2014/15 at meetings between now and 31st January 2014.

1045 Mobile Library Consultation: Proposed Withdrawal of Service DCC is consulting on the withdrawal of various library services including the mobile service that is currently offered to Buckland Brewer as it falls into the category of one that has 3 or less regular users. Kate Slocombe said that she thought the Year 6 children were using it. She will find out and report back.

1046 Asset Register and Insurance Review The insurance company had stated that it should not be necessary to increase the Council’s level of Public Liability cover and that additional cover for the public’s use of Parish Council land should not be necessary. The Clerk is still waiting for a written response from the Council’s insurers.

1047 Minute 1014 (iv) of 11th September 2013 – clarification of policy re future wind turbine applications Following some discussion about the new guidance document and whether this should replace or enhance the existing policy, it was agreed to defer a decision to the next meeting. Clerk to email a link to the new guidance document.

1048 Summer Bus Service No invoice has yet been received.

1049 Thornhillhead Moor No report had been received.

1050 Thornhillhead Communications Mast The clerk had written to Arqiva on 13th October 2013 but no reply had yet been received.

1051 Winter Road Salting George Heywood had obtained a quote from the contractor: £350 per trip for the first 4 trips per year, £300 for next two and £200 for any subsequent trips. George has made a number of attempts so far to obtain further supplies of salt from DCC but has had no response yet.

1052 Village Hall Good progress is being made regarding the new community hall plans. Jane Lowe will attend the next Parish Council meeting to provide an update. A public meeting has been arranged for Wednesday 20th November in the village hall. The Village Hall Trustees require a new representative from the Parish Council as David Lloyd has decided to step down. It was unanimously agreed that Jim Lowe should take his place.

1053 Village Green Jim Lowe thanked Andrew Hewitt for removing the tree. It had been too wet to plant a new one so this will be done in the spring. The schoolchildren are growing the poppies on. Andrew Hewitt will prepare the poppy beds.

1054 Football Pitch The clerk had met with Tony Grills of Northside Atlantic Football Club, and, subject to the Parish Council’s approval, agreed to lease the site them from 1st January 2014 at an annual rent of up to £400 per year. However, an email had been received yesterday stating that, although the club were still keen to take over the pitch, they would not be permitted by the league to change venues mid-season and hoped that the pitch would still be available next year. The clerk had also met with June Gaydon, who would like to use the area for archery practice with the possibility of developing a small archery club. Subject to June meeting adequate health and safety requirements, including signage, maintaining recommended distances behind the bosses etc, it was agreed to allow June joint use of the field for a rent of £100 per year. June and her friend, Paulette (who has recently been chosen for the National Team) expect to use the field about 3 times per week throughout the summer months and less frequently during the winter. There was some discussion about how best to keep the grass down. A final decision about this would be made at the next meeting

1055 Budget Review Sub-Committee The Clerk advised that, at the Torrington Area Advisory Group meeting held in Monkleigh last month, the Leader of DCC, John Hart and Jenny Wallace of TDC had advised parishes to be prepared to take on some of the services that the County and Districts are having to cut due to grant reductions. As yet, there is no cap on parish precepts but this situation might not exist forever.

A letter had been received from the Playing Fields Association asking members to consider an annual allowance in the parish budget to contribute towards maintenance. Also, the Council will need to consider the cost of elections coming up in 2 years time.

Members were asked to provide the Clerk with bids for spending before the Budget Review meeting on 3rd December 2013.

1056 Members’ Reports

Andrew Hewitt i) Andrew provided an overview of the ‘Tough Choices’ presentation given by the Leader of DCC, John Hart, at the recent Torrington Area Advisory Group meeting. (For members guidance, a resume is attached at Appendix 1. Ii) Andrew had been in touch with a company called Wild West Net that could provide 20mbfast broadband by satellite for£25 per month. It would also require an initial cost of £100 and users would be required to ‘bounce’ their signal to other users if necessary. There could be a possibility of obtaining a free wi-fi link for the village hall. A representative of the company will attend the next parish council meeting.

Jim Lowe Thanked Andrew Hewitt for the refurbishment of the war memorial.

George Heywood i) George had heard of a scheme for a free defibrillator and appropriate training. Item to be added to next agenda. Ii) It was confirmed by the clerk that Joe Wolfe has paid the rent for Hymns Peace. Jim Lowe is to contact him about its future use. Iii) George reported that a tree had blown down on Snow’s field. Iv) George asked if future winter meetings could start earlier. It was agreed that, in future, meetings from November to March inclusive would start at the earlier at 7:30pm

Trevor Mills reported that the heads, legs and skins of 2 calves had been dumped at Hymns Peace. Jim Lowe had spoken to Torridge Environmental Health Dept. who had said that the Parish Council would need to deal with it and he would ask a suitable contractor to have the remains bagged and removed

David Lloyd reported that the Barton Road gullies needed clearing. Clerk to follow up with the lengthsman.

David Watson reported that a wire fence was down alongside the football pitch but repairs were in hand.

Kate Slocombe reported that the school bus to Torrington was now following its designated route and not going via ‘The Glen.’

1057 Planning

Email from Paul Green at Torridge DC re Industrial Units It was agreed that Jim Lowe and the Clerk would draft a suitable response to Torridge asking for the industrial units to remain as an integral part of the settlement plan.


i) 1/0801/2013/FUL: Land at Tuttsclump Farm, Parkham, wind turbine No comments

ii) 1/0864/2013/FUL: 15 Southwood Meadows, proposed extension No objection


iii) 1/0696/2013/FUL: Tythcott Farm – Refused

iv) 1/0688/2013/FUL: Holbrook Farm – Granted permission

v) 1/0721/2011/FUL: Sunderleigh wind turbine additional information – Refused

vi) 1/0790/2013/FUL: Coles Manning, single storey side conversion – Granted permission


vii) 1/0559/2012/FUL: Land at Swanton Farm, Horns Cross – single small-scale wind turbine and associated equipment – sent to appeal – previous submission was “no comment”. It was unanimously agreed to make no additional comments.


1058 Accounts

Bank balances:

• Parish Council Current Account was £4,053.65 as at 31st October 2013

• Thornhillhead Moor Account £14,514.44 as at 19th September 2013

Receipts since the last meeting:

• Field rents, £247.50

Payments due (£1050.20):

• Parish Clerk’s salary, expenses and associated PAYE to 31st October (£127.52)

• Grant Thornton Audit Fee – £510.00 (of which £485.00 will be met from the Thornhillhead Moor Account). The clerk read a letter from Grant Thornton in response to a request for a reduction this fee that had been turned down

• DALC, Training Courses (Planning, A Hewitt, 16/10/13. £42 and ‘Budgets and Precepts’, J Lowe, 22/10/13, £30)

• Jim Lowe, travel expenses in relation to the ‘Budgets and Precepts’ course held in Exeter. £40.68

• Lemon Jelly Youth Work, donation- £300.00

Dates of Next Meetings:

Tuesday 19th November 2013, Personnel Sub-Committee – Clerk’s 6-monthly review

Tuesday 3rd December. Budget Review Sub-Committee

Wednesday 11th December 2013, Buckland Brewer School

Wednesday 8th January 2014 at Buckland Brewer School


The meeting closed at 10:20 pm





Chairman: ………………………………………………………………………. Date: …………………………………

Buckland Brewer Parish Council – 13th November 2013 Appendix 1


Notes from the Torrington Area Advisory Group meeting held on 22nd October at Monkleigh Village Hall

At the previous meeting held on 23rd July, Cllr. Cathrine Simmons of Torrington Town Council was elected Vice Chair of the Group. However, she now has a further role with Torrington Town Council and so is not able to fulfil the Vice Chair role for the Advisory Group. In view of this, Andrew Hewitt of Buckland Brewer Parish Council was elected as Vice Chair.

After the usual agenda items, i.e. Minute approval, matters arising etc., John Hart, Leader of DCC, was invited to speak.

Essentially, his message was that there will be many more cuts to budgets in the coming years.

• Excluding education, due to government grant reductions, spending has been cut from £600m to £500m and this has resulted in reduced staff numbers and a change to working practices. There has however been no real apparent change to service.

• Another £110m cuts are necessary by 2017

• There will be no support to parishes who will be required to undertake some duties currently undertaken by DCC (nothing specific yet)

• Library Services- under consultation. The current 8 library buses likely to be cut to 4 because 4 are nearing their ‘end of life’

• Youth Services will be targeting those not in employment. There is quite a small percentage take-up of younger people of the services available (youth clubs etc.)

• Day Centres – these too will be looked at

• Currently, DCC subsidises the bus service by £6m. DCC receives £7m from the government for bus services but pays the bus companies £12m!!

• DC is looking at a 1.98% increase in Council Tax next year. Anything over this percentage requires a referendum which would cost the county £1m to organise

• DCC only receives 50% of the Business Rates, the rest goes to central government (and forms part of the grant distribution)

• New Homes bonus (a levy on every new home built- £250) is of the order of £20m, of which DCC keeps 20% and Districts 80% (Parishes get nothing!!)

• Fast Broadband – Torridge is a priority

• 407 parishes in Devon


Local Plan Update (Ian Rowland of Torridge District Council)

The 4,000 comments received following the January consultation are being worked through.

A new draft consultation will be published early in 2014 but with a very short turnaround period.


Torrington Hospital

Contrary to perhaps popular belief, the beds closure has only been delayed for an 8-week evaluation period and the feeling is that the closure will still take place.

• Only 2 beds are currently occupied

• An independent survey is being undertaken of people’s views

• Cllr Martin (Mayor) holds a surgery every Saturday morning at 10:00am to receive views

• An Oversight Group is being setup to oversee the survey results


TDC Budget (Jenny Wallace of Torridge District Council)

The current year grant of £10m will be cut to £6mby 2016/17

A number of services have been tendered giving savings of £2m

More cuts are to come and TDC will be consulting in the coming months on what services can be cut.

Parishes were strongly advised to seriously consider their precepts in view of DCC expectations that we will be asked to take on more duties and responsibilities.




Parish council minutes 9 October 2013


Members Present: Mr Andrew Hewitt, Mr George Heywood, Mr David Lloyd, Mr Jim Lowe, Mr Trevor Mills, Mrs Kate Slocombe, Mrs Shirley Tilley and Mr David Watson.

Also in attendance 8 members of the public, Paul Knox (Pearce Construction) and Cllr. Robin Julian (DCC)

Parish Clerk: Patrick Blosse

KEY: Actions are shown in bold blue type Decisions are shown in bold red type

1016 Apologies for Absence Mrs Barbara Babb

1017 Minutes of the Meeting of 11th September 2013 The minutes of the meeting held on 11th September 2013 were confirmed and signed.

1018 Declarations of Interest Mr Jim Lowe and Mr Andrew Hewitt regarding item 1033: Grants, in respect of the application from the Playing Fields Association.

1019 Public Participation

Brenda Mills made a complaint about the number of ‘splits’ on her property and asked for them to be repaired. As this was a highways matter, Cllr. Julian offered to discuss the issue with her after the meeting.

Maggie Melville stated that, following her statement at the last meeting, the Chairman had said that there were mistakes in her presentation but had declined to discuss the issue with her further and considered his actions to be a form of bullying.

1020 Hillpark Development A presentation was given by Paul Knox Director of Pearce Construction. He valued the dialogue with the Parish Council and other villagers. The first 20 foundations have been poured and the superstructure is under way for 8 properties. There has been a slight delay on the laying of the road. The first 20 properties should all be under construction by Christmas and should be available for occupation by next Spring. Paul reported that there had been one complaint received, that there had been an issue with mud on the road and that they had suffered 3 thefts from the site. Also, youths had been entering the site at night and clambering on the scaffolding. There had been a few problems with supplies which had caused some slight delays. No marketing had taken place yet. Shirley Tilley asked if any off-plan sales were anticipated but Paul stated that they had not had any of these in the past 5 years. Kate Slocombe asked if a safety video would be shown to the schoolchildren and Paul agreed that this would be arranged. David Watson asked about the sign to ‘Hillpark’ at Catsborough Cross which was encouraging cars and deliveries to use the bridge at The Glen which the Council would prefer them not to use. Paul offered to contact the AA and DCC Highways to have the sign moved or removed.

The clerk reported that a letter had been received from the Council’s solicitor stating that the contractor anticipated the first 20 properties to be sold by Spring 2015, at which point the S106 land and monies would be released. Paul pointed out that there could be some disparity between the properties being completed and actually sold. The solicitor’s letter included a return that needed to be completed and it was agreed that the Chairman and the Clerk would do this at a later date.

1021 Clerk’s Report

• Correspondence. A summary of various items of general correspondence was supplied to each member. The following item was specifically drawn to the Council’s attention:

o Correspondence between Great Torrington Town Council and Northern Devon Healthcare NHS Trust re Great Torrington Community

o Connecting Devon and Somerset Parish Briefing

o Road closure C505 at Collinsdown Farm

o Torrington Area Advisory Group – next meeting 22nd October 2013 in Monkleigh Village Hall at 7.30pm

o ‘Care Closer To Home’ Clinical Commissioning Group – Engagement Exercise 1st October – 26th November

• DALC Council Health Check Scheme The clerk explained the workings of the scheme, which was designed to help Clerk’s improve their administration of Council affairs, particularly in relation to paperwork. The cost would be £50 plus the travel expenses of the DALC consultant. It was agreed to take part in the scheme on the understanding that Frithelstock and Monkleigh Parish Council’s would share the cost.

1022 Localism Act: Code of Conduct Review The NALC model code of conduct had been distributed to members before the meeting. It was agreed that the model would be adopted for the remaining term of this Council.

1023 Asset Register and Insurance Review Following consultation with the Council’s insurers, it was apparent that an insurance review could not be completed fully until an asset register could be completed with up-to-date replacement values. Hicks & Co. have been asked to supply land valuations. The clerk distributed a draft of other assets that he was aware of with his estimates of replacement values and asked members to consider both the valuations and whether any further assets should be added so that the final asset register could be ratified at the next meeting. The insurance company had stated that it should not be necessary to increase the Council’s level of Public Liability cover and that additional cover for the public’s use of Parish Council land should not be necessary. The Clerk was asked to check this with the Council’s insurers again.

1024 Thornhillhead Moor No report had been received.

1025 Thornhillhead Communications Mast Jim Lowe reported on the meeting that he and two other members had with Geoffrey Cox, MP on 28th September. Jim Lowe has drafted a letter to Arqiva requesting a figure of £5,000, which the Council agreed should be sent. Andrew Hewitt reported that a national review of mast rents was in progress which could substantially reduce the level of rents that could be anticipated.

1026 Winter Road Salting George Heywood reported that the Council currently has about 3 tons of salt and he is awaiting feedback from DCC about obtaining more. The Council’s current contractor wants to increase the price for salt spreading to £350 per trip (currently £200). George Heywood was asked to negotiate a scale of charges with the contractor based on the number of runs required.

1027 Allotments Field Visit Jim Lowe reported on the field visit that had taken place on 21st September. Nobody has shown an interest in plot 13 so far but this plot and numbers 14 and 15 were in a poor state and the Council might need to spend up to £300 to put them right. It was suggested that a photo-array could be considered for field number 1500. Hymns Peace is not being used and it was agreed to pursue this with the current tenant. Andrew Hewitt asked if allotment holders were aware that they are responsible for the hedges bordering their plots. The Clerk will send a reminder about this.

1028 Village Green Andrew Hewitt anticipates cutting down the tree in readiness for the bonfire on 5th November. Jim Lowe will put a note about the planned poppy beds in the Village Scene. Kate Slocombe will ask the school if they would like to encourage the children to plant the seeds and bring them on.

1029 Dog Waste Bin The bin has been installed although no invoice has yet been received. Shirley Tilley suggested temporarily removing the other bins until dog owners get used to using the new waste bin.

1030 DCC Highways and Lighting Jim Lowe had reported the outstanding highways and street lighting. The gouge in the road has been repaired and a weight restriction has been requested for the Glen Bridge. He has also been told that the signpost at Craneham will be repositioned. However, it is apparently not possible to rephrase the street lights as these are set at the factory. Also, the light that is currently on all day has not yet been repaired and DCC have stated that they have insufficient budget to repair it at the moment.

1031 Football Pitch The clerk had been contacted by Tony Grills of Northside Atlantic Football Club, who was interested in taking over the pitch and would also be willing to repair or replace the pavilion. It was suggested that a shorter term lease would be more appropriate for a new tenant. The clerk also read a letter from June Gaydon, who would like to use the area for archery practice with the possibility of developing a small archery club. The Clerk was asked to negotiate with both parties with a view to accommodating both their needs.

1032 Torrington Hospital The Clerk had been contacted by the Clinical Commissioning Group who are undertaking a consultation process between 1st October and 26th November. Leaflet are to be distributed to all householders and further information will be available at the Coach and Horses, the Community Shop and on the Parish Council website. A representative has been asked to attend the next Parish Council meeting.

1033 Parish Council Grants The clerk distributed an overview of the Council’s spending to date so far this year, and anticipated spend against budget for the remainder of the year, in order that members could make appropriate decisions in relation to grant applications. Applications from seven organisations were considered. It was agreed to make the following grants:

• Buckland Brewer Playing Field Association – purchase of a dog-waste bin, £115.

• Buckland Brewer Under 5s Pre-school – £100 towards upgrading storage.

• Buckland Brewer History Group – £35 towards the cost of recording equipment, advertising and other overheads relating to a project to capture oral history interviews, principally with older members of the local community.

• Friends of Buckland Brewer School – £50 towards projects within the garden and adventure playground area of Buckland Brewer School

• Buckland Brewer Community Shop – £50 towards a shed for the storage of goods that cannot be stored inside the shop

It was agreed that, in future, applicants for grants would be asked to supply copies of accounts and statements of other sources of funds and that the Clerk would inform applicants about other potential funding sources.

1034 Budget Review Sub-Committee The next meeting has now been moved to 3rd December and will take place at the Village Hall at 8:00pm.

1035 Members’ Reports

Andrew Hewitt reported that the lengthsman has recently done one day’s work in the village but no-one had been notified that he would be coming.

Jim Lowe reported that 30 broadleaf saplings had been donated by John Bungay and that these would be planted at appropriate sites around the parish.

Robin Julian reported that the DCC Highways Committee next meets on 14th October and he would like to be told about any issues that members or parishioners would like raised at the meeting. George Heywood wanted to know if DCC intended to change the system for salting the roads as he wanted to ensure that the Parish Council and DCC did not duplicate any runs.

1036 Planning

Relaxation of Planning Regulations: To be considered at the next meeting


(i) 1/0790/2013/FUL Coles Manning, single storey side conservatory and replacement of front porch – no objection


(ii) 1/0017/2013/FUL – Bowden Farm wind turbine – Granted Permission (noted)

(iii) 1/0670/2013/EXT – Southwood House, change of use of existing barn into annex, extension of time application – granted permission (noted)

1015 Accounts

Bank balances:

• Parish Council Current Account was £3,172.45 as at 30th September 2013

• Thornehillhead Moor Account £14,514.44 as at 19th September 2013

Receipts since the last meeting (£2,666.82):

• Western Power wayleaves, £146.82

• Field rents, £770.00

• Precept £1,750.00

Payments due (£648.12):

• Parish Clerk’s salary, expenses and associated PAYE to 30th September 2013 (£138.12)

• Grant Thornton Audit Fee – £510.00 (of which £485.00 will be met from the Thornhillhead Moor Account). This item was not approved. The Clerk was asked to request a substantial reduction in the fee as it was based on turnover which included a single transaction for a loan of £72,000 which effectively doubled the Council’s turnover for the year.

(ii) The clerk had spoken to the previous clerk about the cheque for £30.28 that had not apparently been paid in to the Buckland Brewer account but which had been cleared by the bank. It was believed that the clerk may have double counted the amount in the accounts in error. It was agreed to write back the sum into the accounts.

(iii) The external auditors report has been received. It highlighted two items: a) the Chairman had not signed section 1 (rectified at the meeting), and b) that an asset register was required. The notice of conclusion of audit will be posted on the notice board.

 Dates of Next Meeting:

Wednesday 13th November 2013 at Buckland Brewer School

Tuesday 19th November 2013, Personnel Sub-Committee – Clerk’s 6-monthly review

Tuesday 3rd December. Budget Review Sub-Committee

Wednesday 11th December 2013, venue to be agreed

A list of dates for meetings in 2014 was distributed

The meeting closed at 10:05 pm

Chairman: …………………………………………. Date:

Buckland Brewer Parish Council

 Meeting Dates for 2014

Meetings are normally held on the second Wednesday of every month; venues to be confirmed at a later date. Meetings are normally held at Buckland Brewer School with two meetings per year at Thornhillhead Chapel and start at 8:00pm. The meeting scheduled for 14th May will be the Parish Council’s Annual Meeting at which officers for the year ahead will be elected. The Annual General Meeting is provisionally scheduled for the 4th Wednesday in May and usually takes place in the Village Hall.

8th January 2014

12th February 2014

12th March 2014

9th April 2014

14th May 2014 (Annual Meeting)

28th May 2014 (Annual General Meeting) (Village Hall)

11th June 2014

9th July 2014

13th August 2014

10th September 2014

8th October 2014

12th November 2014

10th December 2014


Parish council minutes 11 September 2013

Draft Minutes


Members Present: Mrs Barbara Babb, Mr Andrew Hewitt, Mr David Lloyd, Mr Jim Lowe, Mr Trevor Mills, Mrs Kate Slocombe, Mrs Shirley Tilley and Mr David Watson.
Also in attendance 10 members of the public Parish Clerk: Patrick Blosse
KEY: Actions are shown in bold blue type Decisions are shown in bold red type
995 Apologies for Absence George Heywood due to ill health.
996 Minutes of the Meeting of 14th August2013 The minutes of the meeting held on 14th August 2013 were confirmed and signed. The last sentence of the report of Alison Boyle’s contribution has been amended to read: “It is possible that the Atlantic Array Committee might be disbanded but its members are keen for it to continue to monitor progress in the event that planning permission is granted.”
997 Declarations of Interest None
998 Public Participation
(i) Maggie Melville spoke opposing the proposed wind turbine at Bilsford saying that it would tower over a Saxon Settlement and would be visible from the whole village. Also, that it conflicted with the Torridge guidelines that the Parish Council had previously adopted. She expected a 60% reduction in property values and said that insensitive siting of turbines can split a community.
(ii) George Schofield also spoke against the Bilsford turbine application saying that the different blade lengths and tower heights would look untidy, that this application would extend the footprint of turbine impact and that it would be substantial and significant.
(iii) Phil May was also opposed. He had bought his cottage at Tythecott for its garden and view and was concerned that there could potentially be 15 or 16 turbines in the valley, that turbines affect property values and that he felt they were inefficient.
999 Clerk’s Report
It has been confirmed that the 1% pay increase reported at the last meeting results in a new hourly rate of £8.835 and the Clerk’s pay has been adjusted this month to reflect the increase backdated to 1st April 2013.
Correspondence. A summary of various items of general correspondence was supplied to each member. The following item was specifically drawn to the Council’s attention: DALC Council Health Check Scheme, which the Chairman asked to be added to the next agenda.
Atlantic Array The following comment has been drafted for submission to the consultation process: “At its meeting on Wednesday 14th August Buckland Brewer Parish Council voted by 6 votes, one abstention and none against to support the building of the Atlantic Array. This followed an informed debate as to the building of the Array, seen against the background of the policy of successive governments to increase the amount of energy from renewable and low carbon technologies, which in turn will help the UK create balanced energy generation resources, secure long term energy supplies, reduce greenhouse gas emissions and slow down climate change.” The Council unanimously approved that this should be submitted.
1000 Localism Act It was agreed that a review of the Code of Conduct would be added to the next agenda.
1001 Insurance The clerk was still awaiting a response from the insurance company.
1002 Thornhillhead Moor Claire McIntosh had reported that 3 signs were originally erected on the approaches to the cattle grids, alerting motorists to the grids rather the cattle. These were statutorily required and Clair felt that their presence should indicate that cattle could be present. She knew that one of the signs had been knocked down but thought it had been replaced. If it is now no longer there, the Parish Council will be responsible for its replacement. She will investigate further and report back. Andrew Hewitt said that the public must take responsibility for observing the signs and taking appropriate care. Shirley Tilley preferred to see a sign well away from the road, where it was liable to be damaged, and preferably in the field.
1003 Thornhillhead Communications Mast A meeting with Geoffrey Cox, MP, has been arranged for 11:15 on 28th September. Jim Lowe, David Lloyd and Andrew Hewitt to attend.
1004 Village Hall Pat Blosse and Jim Lowe met with Emma Reed of Slee Blackwell on 9th September. Cost should be about £1,000, of which £500 is to be met by the Village Hall Trustees. Pearce Development will be attending the next parish council meeting. Jane Lowe is still in tender negotiation. She will attend the November meeting, by which time she should be more certain of the timescale for the scheme and who will be undertaking the work.
1005 Tuckers Park: Tarka Housing A response had been received from Christian Blackbeard of Tarka Housing which stated that there had been no change to their renting policy and that the planning permission for the these properties does not contain any restriction on the age of the tenant. This seemed to conflict with evidence supplied by Andrew Hewitt. It was agreed that the clerk would progress the matter further with Tarka Housing.
1006 Allotments Allotments 14 and 15 have now been virtually cleared. No interest has been expressed for available plot number 13. An allotment inspection has been arranged for 10:00am on Saturday 21st September.
1007 Village Green Andrew Hewitt has been waiting for a break in the weather before replacing the tree. Jim Lowe suggested a poppy bed for next summer. It was agreed that an item would be put in the Village Scene asking for any other suggestions. A bill for £300 had been received for grass cutting over the past 2 years. Payment was approved but the Council requested that future bills should be submitted more frequently – at least annually.
1008 Parish Council Website Peter McClymont had confirmed that registration of the domain name had been transferred to GoDaddy and renewed for one year. Hosting is to be transferred on 14th September and that he will start work on redesigning the site in the following week. The total cost should be no more than £50. George Schofield is updating the content of the site and Peter asked for more news items to be sent to George whenever possible. Peter will provide further guidance on advertising on the site at a later date but was not generally in favour of it.
1009 Dog Waste Bin Shirley Tilley and Lyn Layton had met with Andy Fenge of Torridge Council and decided where to place the bin, which will not be installed until an invoice has been prepared and the payment received.
1010 DCC Highways/Street Lighting Jim Lowe had contacted DCC Highways who will rectify the problems with lights as soon as possible. However, one of these is apparently privately owned. Trevor Mills pointed out that the local DCC Councillor, Robin Julian, is on the Highways Committee and it was agreed that he would be invited to another meeting.
1011 Football Club Maurice Knuckley has confirmed that he will remove any valuables by the end of this month. The Council agreed that his lease could be terminated with effect from 30th September unless Mr Knuckley chose to extend it further. Clerk to confirm this with him. It was also agreed that it is Mr Knuckley’s responsibility to remove the building. Barbara Babb had heard that another football club was interested in taking on the lease and also a letter had been received from a group wanting to open an archery club. It was agreed that further information would be obtained and these applications would be considered at the next meeting.
1012 Torrington Hospital Shirley Tilley reported that the hospital beds were open again.
1013 Members’ Reports
Barbara Babb (i) said that lights in the village were currently off between 2am and 6am and felt that 1am to 5am would be better. Clerk to report to DCC. (ii) With more houses going up in the village, she felt that Glen Bridge needs to be widened. It was agreed that this was a good idea but that budget restrictions would probably prevent any major works being approved. It only has a length restriction at the moment. Jim Lowe will talk to DCC Highways about a weight restriction.
Kate Slocombe pointed out that the Clerk’s 6-monthly review was due soon and it was agreed this would take place at 8:00pm in the Village Hall on 19th November 2013.
Shirley Tilley reported that (i) the malfunctioning light in Gorwood Road is still on permanently. (ii) There is a groove in the middle of the main road that should be reported to DCC Highways (iii) White paint and restriction signs in the road are fading, and (iv) She felt that too much information was now sent by email. It was agreed that the present system would continue for the time being.
Jim Lowe (i) set a precept setting meeting of the Budget Review sub-committee for 4th December – venue to be decided. (ii) noted that information was no longer being passed to The Journal for its community pages and would track down the person who used to do it, Janet Wright, to ask if she would like to restart it, and (iii) informed members about a consultation paper regarding relaxation of certain planning regulations which, it was agreed, would be discussed at the next meeting.
David Watson reported that the finger on the signpost at Craneham, was still not pointing the right way. David Lloyd to contact the appropriate body.
1014 Planning
(i) 1/0696/2013/FUL – The Old Mill House, Tythecott Farm – to permit full residential occupation – no objection
(ii) 1/0688/2013/FUL – Holbrook Farm, Twitchen – provision of additional accommodation – no objection
(iii) 1/0670/2013/EXT – Southwood House, time extension re change of use of existing barn into an annex – no objection
(iv) 1/0668/2013/FUL – Bilsford Farm, erection of wind turbine – unanimously objected as there are properties within 600m of the proposed installation. It was proposed by Andrew Hewitt and seconded by David Lloyd and unanimously agreed that the Parish Council would re-affirm its policy to object to all turbine applications within 600m of any residential properties.
(v) 1/0623/2013/FUL – 27 Orleigh Close, Extension and alterations – Granted Permission – noted
(vi) 1/0589/2013/FUL – Change of use, former shop and post office to residential dwelling – refused – noted
Late Item
(vii) 1/0654/2013/FUL – Land at Langtreemoor Lane, Langtree – Installation and operation of a single 250kw wind turbine. – As the application is in another parish the Council chose to make no comment but hoped that the Parish Council affected made the right decision for its parishioners.
1015 Accounts Bank balances:
Parish Council Current Account was £1,855.32 as at 31st August 2013
Thornehillhead Moor Account £14,514.44 as at 14th August 2013
Receipts since the last meeting: None
Payments due (£432.87):
Parish Clerk’s salary, expenses and associated PAYE to 31st August 2013 (£125.87)
Buckland Brewer Village Hall, booking 22nd May 2013, £7.00
Ernest Martin, grass cutting 2011/12 and 2012/13 – £300.00
A letter had been received from Lloyds TSB confirming that a cheque for £30.28 issued to close the account with that bank had been cashed on 12th September 2012. The cheque does not appear to have been cleared through the Council’s new bank account. The Clerk is to contact the previous clerk to reconcile.
A further attempt was made to get bank statements forwarded to the clerk but Barclays insist that they do not have his signature on their records. Chairman countersigned the request again.
The meeting closed at 9:50 pm
Date of Next Meeting:
Saturday 21st September 2013 – Allotment Inspection – 10.00am at the allotments
Wednesday 9th October 2013 at Buckland Brewer School
Chairman: ………………………………………………………………………. Date: …………………………………

Buckland Brewer Parish Council minutes 8 May 2013

Draft minutes of the meeting of Buckland Brewer Parish Council held on Wednesday, 8 May 2013 at 8.00pm at Buckland Brewer Primary School

  • Members Present: Mrs Barbara Babb, Mr Andrew Hewitt, Mr George Heywood, Mr David Lloyd, Mr Jim Lowe, Mr Trevor Mills, Mrs Kate Slocombe Mrs Shirley Tilley, Mr D Watson.
  • Also in attendance, 5 members of the public.
  • Parish Clerk: Patrick Blosse

Read on…



Members Present: Mr Jim Lowe, Mr David Lloyd, Mrs Kate Slocombe, Mr Andrew Hewitt, Mr D Watson, Mrs Barbara Babb, Mr Trevor Mills, Mr George Heywood, Steve Harding – Torridge District Council, Claire McIntosh – Hicks & Co and 3 members of the public.

795. Apologies: Mrs Shirley Tilley, Councillor Alison Boyle

796. Minutes: The minutes of the meeting held on 17 October 2012 were read, confimed and signed.

 797. Public Speakers: George Schofield, Planning – Sunderleigh Wind Turbine

798. Declarations of Interest: Mrs Barbara Babb, Mrs Kate Slocombe, Mr Jim Lowe, Mr George Heywood, Mr Trevor Mills, Mr David Lloyd, Mr David Watson – Village Hall; Mr Trevor Mills – Hymns Piece.

799. Correspondence: Everyone’s Tomorrow newsletter was distributed amongst Councillors.  The Clerks and Councils Direct was distributed amongst Councillors.  Letter received from the Green family….Letter received from TD Council regarding publicising the Electoral Register, which was read to the Councillors. 

800. Localism Act: The Chairman reported that he had spoken with Lesley Smith (Community Council of Devon) and Ken Miles (Torridge District Council) and that the Parish Councillors have to self certificate in terms of dispensation for the precept and discussions re the village hall. A dispensation form had been put together for dispensation for the precept with all Councillors signing and to be placed on the Agenda at the next meeting to agree. 

Mr Steve Harding of Torridge District Council talked on how things are going to happen, he spoke on how limits were going to be set on precepts but a decision by DALC would not be confirmed until around 19 December, therefore the precept deadline date has been put back to 31 January so that any advice can be given on the implementation of capping.

801. Thornehillhead Moor: Claire McIntosh reported that the fencing would be commencing over the next 10 days.  It was reported that the Devon County Council finances were expected the first week of December.   It was reported that the Audit Commission fee was higher than expected due to the money in and out of the accounts, and it was felt that the extra monies should be claimed through the Thornehillhead Moor Account, Claire will send a letter re creating an audit trail.

802. Thornehillhead Moor – Communication Mast: Mr George Heywood reported that he had contact with the MP’s office and felt that we did not have much of a case as the rights on the mast were assigned in 2003. The Parish Council felt that a letter should be sent from the MP asking for information on the megahertz. Mr Andrew Hewitt felt that its origins and the service it provided locally when erected should be emphasised.

803. Village Hall: Mr David Lloyd reported that the Committee would be appointing a qualified project manager on a design and build principle who would manage the project and oversee the tendering process.  It is hoped that Torridge District Council will make a decision on the planning application soon.  Mr David Lloyd reported that, although the builders were making a contribution, there is still a shortfall, and whilst applying for grants, there is always a question as to how much the Parish Council could support the project including financial support through the use of the precept.

804. Solar Array:  Mr George Heywood to look into for the next meeting.

805. Atlantic Array:  The Chairman reported that the proposals had been delayed due to the developers having another look at the project..

806. Hymns Piece:  Mr Richard Mills submitted his bid for the plot and his intentions.  Ms Tracey Seymour withdrew her interest due to an error in her letter and lateness of letter sent out by the clerk.  It was agreed that Hymns Piece be re-advertised with letters to be sent to Mr Mills and Ms Seymour.

807. Winter Salt Spreading:  Mr George Heywood reported that there was nothing to report, but seems to have got the salt reserves sorted.

808. Back Lane:  It was reported that Back Lane was looked at and Highways would not be able to do any work due to a lack of funds being available. The Parish Council would look to complete this work.   Mr Andrew Hewitt said that he was advised that maybe the drains were too high and he would look at this before the next meeting.

809. Diamond Jubilee:  No further information was available.

810. Field/Allotments Visit:  The Parish Council felt everything was in order.  The sign will be displayed soon, regarding dogs on leads.  The allotment numbers are currently being done.

811. Parking Problems – Chapel:  Mr David Watson reported that the bus shelter will soon be able to be used again.  There seems to be problems with parking to gain access, it was suggested that maybe some bollards could be used – this to be looked into.

812. Speeding in Village:  The Clerk to ask for the results of the black box, from Highways in Barnstaple.

813. Church Path, DCC:  The Chairman to look into the possible path across the Churchyard, and agreed to set up a meeting with the PCC to discuss the matter.

814. Lydland Water/River Duntz:  It was felt that this was the cause of the problems at Tythecott Mill Bridge and The Glen and felt a letter should be written to the Environment Agency. The Chairman to action.

815. Parish Defibrillator:  Mr Andrew Hewitt to gather further information for the next meeting.

816. Village Green:  It was felt that the state of the Village Green and the tarmac was deteriorating, Cannot put down no parking sign as the tarmac is not good enough.  The Chairman had looked at and there is an option to put a small sign to say no parking.  It was suggested to look at the Byelaws to see if we could get a byelaw for no parking, the Chairman to ask SW Highways for a price .to complete the work.  Another suggestion was made to have a large rock placed at the top and bottom corner – the Chairman to look at this.

817. Members Reports:  Mr George Heywood reported that a ram had been seriously injured which had been reported to the Police.  Mr George Heywood reported that he felt that he saw no reason why allotment holders could not sell their produce – just an idea. The Allotment conditions state this is not possible.  Mrs Barbara Babb reported that the road was breaking up by the Church Stone Wall.  Mrs Kate Slocombe reported that the road by Buda Farm, a piece had fallen away (between Sunderland and Buda).  Mrs Barbara Babb suggested Children In Need for funding for the youth club.  The Chairman reported on behalf of PC McGovern, Reported that 300 gallons of heating fuel had been stolen from a property in Tower Hill.  Mr Trevor Mills reported that on Gorwood Road at the junction (Southwood House), the roof appears to be sticking out on the shed – the Clerk to inform the Enforcement Officer at TD Council.  Mr Trevor Mills asked that a reminder be sent to SW Highways to sweep The Glen.  Mr George Heywood asked if the remembrance monument railings could be painted – this is in hand.

818. Planning:  1/0875/2012/FUL: Proposed conversion of barn to dwelling – Holbrook Farm.  The Parish Council supports this application.

1/0721/2012/FUL: Single wind turbine 55m hub height:  The Parish Council stands by its comments as previously made on this application, with 5 in favour, 2 against and 1 abstained.

1/0854/2012/FUL: Removal of holiday occupation condition – Timber Lodge:  The Parish Council does not support this application, in view of our original comments in not supporting this application, it should never have been intended for residential.

Permission granted: Erection of 50kw wind turbine – Craneham Farm

819. Minutes of Budget Review Sub Committee:  The minutes of the meeting held on Wednesday 24 October were distributed amongst Councillors.  The Clerk reported that there were alterations to proposed monies available leading to some revised figures, VAT which has been claimed and RPA funds needing to be transferred to the Thornhillhead Moor Account.  It was agreed another Budget Review Sub Committee Meeting be held to discuss the revised figures.

820. Precept:  It was agreed by the Parish Councillors that this will be set at the January meeting.

821. Accounts:  The clerk reported that the bank balances were as follows:  Barclays Account £2701.16;  Barclays Thornhillhead Moor Account £4800.99;  Cheques: Barclays Account: Audit Commission £342.00 100040; T Soanes, Clerk 100041; Transfer to BBPC Thornhillhead £1618.22 100042; Barclays Thornhillhead Moor Account R Hicks & Co £115.20 100011;  Devon Wildlife Trust £1338.00 100012;  Coles £288.00 100013. 

There being no further business, the meeting closed at 9.55pm

The next meeting being set for Wednesday 12 December 2012 at 8.00pm.

Chairman: …………………      Date:………………………