Wellow Parish Council


Geoff White

Myrtle Cottage, Wellow, BA2 8QS

Tel:  01225 830159



Minutes of a meeting of the Parish Council on Monday 14th November 2011 at 8pm in the Village Hall.


Present: Cllrs Andrews, Betts, Caudle, Clarkson, Doman, Prentice, White and Witty.

Eight members of the public in attendance.





11.141              To accept apologies for absence.

Apologies had been received from District Councillor Butters


11.142              Declarations of interest in any matters on the agenda or in October 2011 minutes



11.143              To confirm minutes of meeting held on September 12th 2011.

The minutes of the Parish Council Meeting held on October 10th 2011 were approved unanimously.


11.144              To report matters arising from the minutes and not on the agenda.

Cllr Clarkson said that the phone box in the Square was still owned by BT and that it

was their responsibility to paint it. The phone doesn’t work at the moment; BT says they will get it working.


The Acting Chairman said that she would be inspecting the possibly dangerous tree on the road leading to the Combe Hay cross-roads with Geoff Pike to see whether it was within Wellow’s parish boundary or Combe Hay’s.                                       HA


Cllr White said that she would like to be the Councillor with the trees portfolio.  This was agreed.


In view of District Cllr Butter’s absence it was agreed to defer discussion regarding the layby opposite the Trekking Centre and other planning issues to the east of the village to the December meeting.                                                                  HP


Cllr Witty reported that B&NES had not taken up government funding to install high speed broadband to rural communities because it would have meant that B&NES would have had to commit similar amounts from B&NES funds. B&NES had however set aside £25,000 to look into issues regarding rural broadband.


11.145              Election of Chair and Vice-Chair


The Chairman asked Richard Holland to conduct the election of Chairman to which he agreed.


Cllr Wheeler expressed concern that the details of the election had not been announced prior to the meeting but Mr Holland explained that, normally, the election of Chairman would take place during the first meeting of the new Council and so no advance warnings would be given.  It was agreed that the election could proceed.


Mr Holland said that the names of two candidates had been put forward, Cllrs Caudle and Prentice.  Both were asked to say a few words and then the election was held, councillors expressing their preferences on slips of paper.


Mr Holland counted the votes and reported that three votes were cast in favour of Cllr Caudle and six votes for Cllr Prentice.  Cllr Prentice was duly elected.


Having taken the chair he thanked Cllr Andrews for her work since May and –

said that, rather than hold an election for vice-chairman, he would prefer to approach individuals himself and so the vice-chairman would be appointed rather than elected.  This was agreed to.


The Chairman sought clarification of Councillors’ roles.  After some discussion, the following was agreed:


Planning                                               Cllrs Caudle and Clarkson

Burial Board                                          Cllrs Andrews and Betts

Village Hall                                            Cllrs Andrews and Betts

St Julian’s School                                 Cllr White

Finance                                                 The Chairman, the Clerk and Richard Holland (internal auditor)

Trees                                                    Cllr White

Rights of Way                                       Cllrs Caudle and Doman

Playing Field and Playground                Cllrs Wheeler and Witty

Queen’s Golden Jubilee                         Cllrs Betts and Witty

Parish Plan                                           The Chairman, Cllrs Clarkson and Doman



11.146              Planning


1.       New applications



11/004422/FUL  Clearbrook Farm, Midford. Use of agricultural land as a natural burial ground. (Revised resubmission)


Cllr Caudle said that the proposal was to prevent development of the land.  Cllr Clarkson said that she approved of the plan but was a little concerned about the possible increase in traffic.  However, guidelines suggest that funerals should be held outside peak hours.


The Council voted unanimously to support the application.



2.       Decisions received


The Council noted that permission had been granted for developments at The Laurels, Midford and at Homelea Cottage, Wellow.



3.       Other planning issues


a.       Vegetable growing opposite Ford Farm


Cllr Doman said that harvesting had been carried out on the site and there was little sign of any activity at present. The Chairman asked whether the activities on the site were illegal but was told that guidelines from B&NES were ambiguous.  He suggested that the Council put this matter on hold until the spring and this was agreed.                                                                                                                         PC/DC


b.      Forge Cottage


The Clerk said that he had been in touch with the Planning Dept at B&NES and had been told that planning permission for a car parking space was not required.


c.       Other matters




Cllr Betts reported that nothing needed to be done to the beech tree on the playing field.



11.147              Village Wear and Tear



New items


Stuart Cole said that there was a diseased elm tree on Farm Lane just above the dovecote.


Cllr Betts said that the drains in Popes Lane were blocked – but this may be caused by the seasonal leaves, which could be cleared by a visit by the council’s “drain sucker”. .


Richard Holland said that there were still problems with drainage outside the school.  Cllr Witty suggested taking photographs but Cllr White said that this had already been done. Cllr White to keep providing evidence to the B&NES and chase them for action



The Clerk was asked to report these matters to Council Connect.                         GW



11.148              Finance


·         Outstanding payments were approved and the cheques and invoices duly signed.

·         The financial report for November was approved.

·         Following the report circulated about the council’s reserves the Chairman confirmed that the council does not have any equipment on lease or hire, nor does it have any lease or rent obligations for property. As such there will be no liabilities should the council have to be wound up. The council does need sufficient for day to day cash flow in an instant access. The Chairman proposed that the Council keep three months funding, £3,250, in an instant access account,  The Clerk was asked to find out what accounts could be used for this and the remainder, to earn some interest                                                                                                                                        GW

·         The Clerk was asked to find out which Parish Council documents were stored at the bank as we had been charged £25 in respect of this.                   GW

·         The Clerk was asked to provide a list of items covered by our insurance policy                                                                                                    GW




11.149              The Queen’s Diamond Jubilee celebrations – weekend of 2nd to 5th June 2012


Cllr Witty explained that we have to give 4 months notice of any road closures but Cllr Betts said that we might not actually use the road. Cllr Betts said that she would be advertising a public meeting regarding the Jubilee early in January.             SB


11.150              Winter Maintenance Pilot Study


Richard Holland had emailed the parish asking for people to volunteer as a snow warden, but had received no response. None of the councilors felt able to be a snow warden, and so Wellow would not be taking part in this pilot.


11.151              Chairman’s Business Award


Cllr Witty said that Marian Osborne had been nominated in connection with her work at the shop.



11.152              Parish Plan


a.       Neighbourhood Watch.  Cllr Wheeler said that he had met with Louise, our Community Policeman.  He also said that Mr Jenkins, who runs the Neighbourhood Watch in Freshford would be willing to talk to the Council or to Wellow residents generally. At the public meetings regarding the neighbourhood plan, the public would be asked if they wanted a Wellow Neighbourhood Watch scheme.

b.      It was decided that Village Tidying Day would not go ahead as planned on Saturday, November 19th.  Cllr Andrews would go to the Fox and Badger at 10am on the 19th in case anyone did turn up.

c.       Cllr Betts said that the proposed petanque piste had been approved.

d.      Cllr Witty said that she has applied for grants for the renovation of the Parlour Shop and the shop next door to the pub. She has approached the owners of the pub shop to see whether the Parish Council could use it for free if we did and paid for the renovation.  They have asked for a business plan.

e.       Cllr Witty referred to the village signs which Cathy Beale had designed.  Cllr Doman felt that we should use the existing sign which is used on the village minibus as corporate image depended upon having just one logo rather than several.  The Clerk mentioned the balance in the Millennium Fund and the Chairman asked Cllr Andrews to pursue those who were the original signatories in order to release the money to the council to pay for the signs.                                                                                                                                          HA


Jennie Matthews, from the floor, spoke about her experiences of the traffic calming measures and it was agreed that it should appear on the December agenda.                                                                                                   GW


11.153              Daylight Saving


There were no strong feelings for or against the proposal to change the arrangements regarding British Summer Time.



11.154                 Correspondence


The contents of Kelvin Packer’s letter and associated chart regarding the staff in the Highways Dept at B&NES were duly noted.


11.155              Any other reports


·         Cllr Andrews confirmed that the Salvation Army would not be available for this year’s carol singing.  She said that James Watts had agreed to involve the village choir.  It was agreed that Tuesday, December 20th would be a suitable date.


·         It was noted that new kissing gates had been installed along a number of footpaths and that a laminated map showing footpaths would be available shortly.


·         The Chairman asked councillors to respond to the survey on rough sleeping which everyone had received.


·         The Chairman drew attention to the forthcoming Neighbourhood Plan meetings, inviting all parishioners to attend.


·         Richard Holland asked about the provision of a Christmas tree. Cllr Wheeler volunteered to sort this out                                                                   TW


11.156              Date of next meeting


In view of the fact that Cllrs Caudle and Clarkson will be going to the Planning Protocol meeting on December 12th and that Cllr White and the Clerk would be away, it was agreed that the next meeting would be brought forward and would be held at 8pm on December 5th.


Cllr Betts was asked to confirm that the Village Hall would be available.               SB



Geoffrey White

Parish Clerk

November 18th 2011