MINUTES OF THE PARISH COUNCIL MEETING OF BUCKLAND BREWER PARISH COUNCIL HELD ON
WEDNESDAY 9th NOVEMBER 2016 AT 7:30 AT BUCKLAND BREWER SCHOOL
Members Present: Mrs Barbara Babb, Mrs Marie Douglas, Mr Andrew Hewitt, Mr Jim Lowe, Mr Trevor Mills, Mrs Shirley Tilley and Mr David Watson.
Also in attendance 1 member of the public and Chris Turner, Lemon Jelly Youth Work
Parish Clerk: Patrick Blosse
- Apologies for Absence Marie Douglas, George Heywood, and Cllr Alison Boyle.
- Minutes of the Meeting of the Parish Council held on 12th October 2016: The minutes of the meeting held on 12th October 2016 were confirmed and signed. It was agreed that the meeting of the Personnel Sub-committee scheduled for 21st November 2016 would be changed to a full council meeting to include a discussion of the budget for 2017/18.
- Declarations of Interest Rosie Beer re item 382a, planning application for 1 Rickards Row.
- Public Participation
- Clerk’s Report:
- Correspondence: The Clerk had distributed 44 items of correspondence by email since the last meeting. He highlighted details from Lyn Layton about ‘Battle’s Over: A Nation’s Tribute and WW1 Beacons of Light scheduled for 11th November 2018, details of the Local Plan Examination distributed by Jim Lowe, an appeal for clothing and other items for the refugees recently located in Torrington, and publication of the Wider Devon Sustainability and Transformation Plan. Most of these items were on the agenda for discussion at this meeting. Jim Lowe reported that he had received today a notification from Pearce Developments to say that a Part II certificate had been issued for the road at Hillpark, which meant that the road would be adopted by DCC in about 12 months’ time. Pearce had issued a letter of indemnity to Torridge Council to enable them to allow their refuse freighters onto the estate with effect from Monday 14th Neither Pearce nor Torridge Council had undertaken to contact the residents, so it was agreed that Jim Lowe would draft a leaflet explaining the situation and would ensure that every household on the estate received one by the weekend. Jim Lowe also explained that he had been in touch with DALC concerning the possibility of a parish councillor becoming a trustee of the Atlantic Coast Cooperative Trust. He had been advised that this might be unwise as it could lead to the Council and the individual councillor taking on unnecessary extra responsibilities. Barbara Babb wondered whether the email from Citizens Advice asking for responses to a questionnaire should be responded to formally by the Parish Council. It was agreed that councillors should respond individually.
- Invitation from Cllr. Barry Parsons to Attend a Parish Council Meeting: Cllr Parsons has not been able to respond to an offer to come to a future meeting as he is away at the moment.
- Police Report: In the absence of Liz Rendle, the Clerk read out her police report: Since the last report in September there has been 4 crimes.
1 x domestic related.
2 x theft.
1 x burglary. Entry was gained to a property while residents were home and a dog collar was taken from one of the dogs. Collar was later found near to the owner’s address.
I have also enclosed 2 documents relating to Modern Slavery,
- Website Development Update: Following a visit to one of the suppliers, telephone conversations with two others and a tendering process, the Clerk has selected and appointed ClystNet Ltd. to develop the new website. Their tendered prices were the cheapest at £450 for the initial development and a total of about £730 for the first year when training, maintenance and support costs are taken into account and ongoing annual costs of £180.00. However, this was not the only reason for selecting the company. They had submitted a very comprehensive tender response which met, and in some cases exceeded, the Parish Council’s requirements. They had demonstrated a thorough understanding of the Council’s requirements and the demands of the Transparency Code and had demonstrated a high level of commitment in the way they had responded to a visit to their offices and to emails and telephone calls. The company has already started work on the project and it is hoped that the site will be live by mid-December. The Clerk suggested that it would benefit from a number of up to date photographs of the village and surrounding parish. This will be advertised in Village Scene but this will take some time before its published so members were asked to pass the message on by word of mouth if possible. Members were shown an example of the Abbotskerswell website, which the Clerk recommended should form a template for Buckland Brewer’s design. The new domain will come with new email addresses for each of the councillors.
- Dates of Future Meetings It was agreed that meetings for 2017 would continue with regular monthly meetings on the 2nd Wednesday of each month, with the 4th Thursday of each month set aside for additional Planning meetings if required.
- Air Ambulance Night Time Flying Fund: The fund now stands at about £5,500 with small donations still being received by Enid Booth. Frithelstock Parish Council has also agreed to contribute its TAP Fund grant into the scheme, which will add another £658. Together with Buckland Brewer’s and Monkleigh’s TAP Fund grants, the total fund available should amount to about £8,300 plus any proceeds from two fund raising events already in the pipeline. This will be sufficient to install the lights required for night-time flying, the electricity supply, the additional stack and equipment needed to make use of the supply for other events and a small surplus to meet ongoing maintenance and replacement costs. Jim Lowe reported that he had organised the electrical installation with Western Power and the electrical supply with Eon. Arrangements appear to be on target for full operation by early December. Unfortunately, Buckland Brewer will not be the first village in North Devon to operate its own landing site as Black Torrington’s was officially opened recently.
- Review of Services at North Devon District Hospital: The Northern Devon Healthcare Trust has recently published its Wider Devon Sustainability and Transformation Plan which could have a significant impact on people requiring health care in the area. Following a discussion it was agreed that the Clerk would draft a covering letter to the NEW CCG and local MPs expressing the Council’s support for the letter issued by Combe Martin Parish Council.
- Grant Applications: The Clerk had distributed prior to the meeting a summary of the applications for grants this year, together with details of the spend against budget last year and the total that had been budgeted for various organisations for 2016/17. The following grants were approved:
Proposed by Andrew Hewitt/Seconded by Barbara Babb
Village Hall £500.00
Playing Field Association £900.00
Lemon Jelly Youth Club £300.00
Church Graveyard Maintenance £200.00
North Devon Record Office £200.00
Proposed by Andrew Hewitt/Seconded by Jim Lowe
Buckland Brewer Skittles Club £200.00
Buckland Brewer Bowls Club £200.00
Torridge Voluntary Cars £150.00
Of the original approved budget for the year. £50 was retained as it was expected that Citizens Advice would send a request later in the year.
Chris Turner of Lemon Jelly Youth Work attended the minute and gave an overview of activity at the drop-in centre. Andrew Hewitt will prepare an item about the scheme for Village Scene.
- Fields and Allotments:
- Blackhorse Fields Tenancy Claire McIntosh has sent the tenancy agreement but has not yet had a response from the tenant. Trevor Mills explained that he has been away but is due to sign shortly.
- Works to Amenity Field Trevor Mills has obtained some prices for levelling and reseeding the field. He will confirm the final costs at a future meeting but it was believed that the works could be completed well within the total budget available of £9,000.00, of which only a few hundred has been spent so far.
- School Field: Jim Lowe explained that an agreement needed to be reached about the location of an entrance for the field and this this needs discussion with the Village Hall and the School. It was agreed that the Parish Council will be responsible for putting in the gate. Trevor Mills is to respond to an email from DCC concerning the legal agreement for lease of the field to the school.
- It was noted that the field previously tenanted by Brian Chappell had been vacated and works had been completed to reinstate the hedge that had been in dispute. The Clerk will advertise for expressions of interest in the field as soon as possible. It would need to be made clear that the field has a footpath across it.
- Thornhillhead Moor Mast: Trevor Mills had spoken to Robert Hicks today but there was still no news.
- Thornhillhead Moor: Review of Graziers’ Payments: Hicks & Co. had resolved a couple of outstanding issues where properties had been sold and new graziers needed to be identified. Also, the Clerk had forgotten to include one year’s worth of the payment to T J Coles for which an additional cheque was needed. A cheque made out last month to B Holt needed to be amended to pay L Holt.
- 372 Bus Service: Some changes have been proposed by the DCC Transport Manager, John Richardson-Dawes. He has been made some changes that will enable the morning bus to take paying passengers again. This service will only operate during term times but a larger bus with a step that can be lowered will be used solving the problem of the current bus being inaccessible. This larger bus will be used for all journeys, not just the early morning one. Andrew Hewitt wondered whether the bus would be able to stop at Meddon Street so that passengers could walk from there to the Pannier Market, as the changes put forward meant that buses would no longer go that way.
- Battle’s Over – A Nation’s Tribute and WW1 Beacon of Light, 11th November 2018 A beacon event, similar to the one recently organised for the Queen’s 90th birthday, is being organised for 11th November 2018. The Parish Council needs to register by January 2017 if it wishes to take part in the official chain of beacons and it was suggested that a small group of people should be asked to undertake the organisation of the event. Janet Few of the History Group is already planning a local event at the same time. It will be a Sunday so there will be a Remembrance Service on that The school might be asked to provide poems for event and it was thought that a display of 83 poppies could be made, one for each of the servicemen who died or served in the two world wars. Shirley Tilley suggested that knitted poppies could be used and a Community Tea was suggested. Details will be confirmed nearer the time but, in the meantime, it was agreed that the parish council would register for the beacon scheme.
- Members’ Reports
Barbara Babb reported that the drain at Cherryvale Cottage is still blocked. Also, there are brambles in the hedge close to where the post office van parks. Andrew Hewitt will investigate to see if he can cut them back.
Jim Lowe (i) said that he felt a Housing Survey was needed. These would normally cost between £2,500 and £3,000 but he had been in contact with DALC who had in turn contacted Torridge and they had offered to organise one for £300 in March 2017 as Torridge also needs the information for their own housing needs. The Parish Council would need to approve the survey template and deliver the survey forms to every household. It was agreed unanimously to undertake the survey and Jim Lowe will coordinate the details with Torridge Council. (ii) In relation to the proposed discussion about Cabinet style governance. He felt that this had not worked well as there had been varying degrees of commitment by members. Andrew Hewitt was effectively acting as the coordinator with outside bodies but there had little other input from other members. This will be discussed further at the meeting on 21st November. (iii) He also said that he felt that parishioners did not know what was now happening with the building of the new community hall and asked if an up to date report could be prepared for Village Scene. (iv) Jim will not be able to do the Village Scene summary for this month’s edition. Barbara Babb offered to do it for this month.
Trevor Mills (i) had collected the wreath for this year’s Remembrance Day service but he will not be able to attend. Jim Lowe offered to present it on his behalf. Matt Fry is to carry out some maintenance around the memorial before the event. (ii) Trevor also noted that leaves on the road on Glen Hill were building up again.
Shirley Tilley (i) reported that there will be a carol singing event in December on a date yet to be confirmed. (ii) She also said that the speed of traffic coming through the village continued to be a problem. (iii) Shirley also passed on a comment from George Heywood to say that there was an opportunity to purchase a snow plough attachment for a tractor but members felt this wasn’t necessary at this time.
- Application: 1/1011/2016/FUL, 1 Rickards Row, Refurbishment of the existing dwelling, new roofing Supported unanimously
- Decision: 1/0784/2016/FUL, Land To The West Of Tower Hill, Outline application for 5 dwellings – Granted permission – Noted
- Receipts and Payments
- i) Cash book balances as at 1st November 2016:
- Parish Council Current Account was £17,306.34
- Thornhillhead Moor Account was £4,329.35
- Savings Account was £28,004.37 (The interest rate on this account reduces from 0.25% to 0.05% wef 1st December 2016)
- ii) Payments due (£4,755.29)
- Parish Clerk’s salary, expenses and associated PAYE (October 2016): £367.42, including £54.80 PAYE
- DALC, Conference Fees – £80.00
- Hatherleigh Silver Band (Air Ambulance Fund Raising Event) – £200.00
- Stephen Harding, Village Green Maintenance – £6.97
- Village Hall, Grant £500.00
- Playing Field Association, grant £900.00
- Lemon Jelly Youth Club, grant £300.00
- Church Graveyard Maintenance, grant £200.00
- North Devon Record Office, grant £200.00
- Buckland Brewer Skittles Club, grant £200.00
- Buckland Brewer Bowls Club, grant £200.00
- Torridge Voluntary Cars, grant £150.00
- Graziers Rights (Thornhillhead Moor Account) – £1,460.90
(A cheque signed last month for £150 for ‘B Holt’ was amended to pay ‘L Holt’)
iii) Receipts (BBPC: £5,786.42, Air Ambulance Fund: £1,080.00)
- Air Ambulance Fund donations – £79.00
- Field Rents – £600.00
There being no further business, the meeting closed at 10:10 pm.
Date of Next Meeting:
Parish Council: Monday 21st November 2016 (Chapel, 7:30pm)
Allotment Holders Meeting: Wednesday 30th November 2016 (Village Hall, 8:009m)
Parish Council: Wednesday 14th December 2016 (Buckland Brewer School, 7:30pm)