Myrtle Cottage, Wellow, BA2 8QS
Tel: 01225 830159
Minutes of a meeting of the Parish Council held on Monday, October 8th 2012 at 8pm in the Village Hall.
Present: Cllrs Andrews, Betts, Caudle, Clarkson, Doman, Karthauser, Prentice, Wheeler and White along with six members of the public. District Cllr Neil Butters also attended.
12.124 To accept apologies for absence
There were no apologies for absence.
12.125 Declarations of interest in any matters on the agenda or in July 2012 minutes
There were no declarations of interest.
12.126 To confirm minutes of meeting held on September 10th 2012.
The minutes of the Parish Council Meeting held on September 10th 2012 were approved unanimously.
12.127 To report matters arising from the minutes and not on the agenda.
The Chairman said that there had been no further developments regarding the shop next door to the Fox and Badger.
The Parish Clerk of Combe Hay has referred the flooding problems near Combe Hay Bridge to Council Connect.
The Clerk has reported the uneven access to the car park to Council Connect and has received a reference number in respect of it which has been circulated to the Parish Council.
It had not been possible for Cllr Wheeler and the Clerk to determine the requirements regarding the cutting of the playing field.
12.128 Localism Act
The Parish Council agreed to adopt the Code of Conduct previously circulated by B&NES and ALCA.
The Clerk agreed to contact B&NES regarding the format of the Declarations of Interest and how we should submit them. Once the format was clarified, Councillors agreed to submit the forms within 2 weeks.
12.129 Wellow Sport
The Chairman had circulated a document prior to the meeting. He reminded the Council that the Sports Committee is setting up an open meeting in the Village Hall and that he will ask them to have it prior to the next Parish Council meeting.
IF the plans being proposed by the Wellow Sports Committee are to be implemented in 2013, ie for the excavation to commence in September 2013, the Committee needs a decision from the Parish Council in December 2012. For Councillors to be sufficiently informed to make a decision at the December meeting, the Chairman proposed that the Parish Council hold a session during the hour prior to the November Parish Council meeting (ie from 7pm to 8pm), at which parishioners are invited to present their concerns/support for the plan directly to the Councillors. The Wellow Sports committee will be invited to make a short presentation at the beginning of the session. Councillors will follow up any issues prior to the December meeting so that they are sufficiently informed to make a decision on the proposals at the December meeting.
Cllr Andrews asked whether this was too short a timescale but the Chairman replied that the Sports Committee had identified a timeline of actions prior to commencing excavation, such that they needed to have a decision by December. One of the largest issues will be fundraising, and the Committee will need to be confident that they have sufficient funds raised by May 2012.
The Chairman’s proposals were agreed to unanimously.
1. New applications
12/03905/FUL and 12/03906/LBA: Rear of 1 to 7 High Street, Wellow.
Cllrs Caudle and Clarkson explained that a resubmission had been necessary as a bat survey needed to be carried out. The outcome of that survey is that there is no problem regarding bats and since the Parish Council had already approved the plans it was agreed that we should continue to do so.
Cllrs Caudle and Clarkson agreed to inform the Planning Dept at B&NES accordingly. PC/DC
12/03947/LBA: Church Farm
Cllr Caudle said that the revised proposals were better than the original and it was agreed that the Parish Council would continue to support the application. Cllr Caudle will respond accordingly. PC
12/03804/LBA: Manor House
Cllrs Caudle and Clarkson said that the work proposed looked beneficial and was all internal. The Parish Council agreed to support the application unanimously. Cllr Caudle or Clarkson agreed to respond accordingly. PC/DC
12/03944/FUL: Forget- Me-Not Cottage, Twinhoe.
Cllrs Caudle and Clarkson felt that the proposal represents a very sympathetic extension. The Parish Council agreed to support the application. Cllr Caudle or Clarkson to respond accordingly. PC/DC
2. Application for Variation of Conditions
12/04299/VAR: West End Cottages
Cllr Clarkson explained that the variation was for an extra flight of steps to be carved from the road to the intended property to avoid having to cross neighbours’ land to gain access. She felt that this was a sensible proposal as it also removed a potential safety hazard.
Cllr Karthauser said he understood that the owners of the neighbouring property were not happy to grant access rights.
Cllr Betts raised a concern about the lack of clarity about the exact position of the boundary with the road leading to the village hall. While not affecting the planning application, Cllr Caudle or Clarkson would seek to identify the exact boundary and ensure that there was a common understanding with the owner. PC/DC
3. Decisions received
The decision giving permission regarding Summerfield was duly noted.
The decision regarding Corner House, again receiving permission but not on the agenda as it was received shortly before the meeting, was also noted. However, Cllr Clarkson agreed to seek clarification from B&NES regarding what had actually been granted. DC
Richard Holland, from the floor, suggested that Planning Officers did not give enough weight to the views of the Parish Council when making their decisions. Councillors were similarly frustrated.
District Cllr Butters reminded Councillors of the process for taking planning issues to the Development Control Committee. If the Parish Council had a strong view for/against a proposal, then the Parish Council should contact him with a request that, if the officer was minded to go against the wishes of the Parish Council, then he would request that the application go to the Development Control Committee. District Cllr Butters can only make a request to the Chair of the Development Control Committee, who will make a decision based on the case put forward by the Parish Council and the planning officers.
District Cllr Butters would not expect that the Parish Council would take this route for every application, but the Parish Council should alert him if it was concerned about a significant application.
12.131 Neighbourhood Plan
The Chairman gave an update but said that the questionnaire was ready to be distributed and the pass code had been distributed. The aim would be to have the questionnaire sent out and responses collected in four weeks. Sufficient copies will be printed, and he asked other Councillors to share the distribution and collection of these to residents who needed them.
a. The Council approved the payments in respect of street cleaning, the Clerk’s salary, and the purchase of new boots for the village sweeper. Richard Holland reminded the Clerk that the various grants should also be paid now as we had received the precept and this was agreed to.
b. The financial report to October 8th was unanimously approved.
c. The Clerk informed the meeting that the funds had been received from Mogers in respect of the Wellow Residents Association. He had already banked the money.
It was agreed that the Clerk would put a notice on the notice board explaining what had been done and inviting anyone who did not agree with the plan to inform him. GW
12.133 Village Hall
Cllr Doman said that, in consultation with Cllr Wheeler, he had obtained a quote for the replacement of the bollards and advice about the condition of the driveway.
He said that installing 20 galvanised posts with 4 lockable ones would cost £1045 + VAT. The Clerk reminded everyone that we are able to reclaim VAT.
Cllr Betts suggested that we defer the installation of the bollards until we know the outcome of the Wellow Sports proposals but Cllr Doman felt that we should proceed immediately. This was put to the vote and it was unanimously agreed to proceed, not only with the installation of the bollards, but also to any repairs or alterations to the kerbstones which have become damaged by traffic onto the field. PD
Richard Holland, the Parish Council’s internal auditor, pointed out that we should obtain three quotes but, with his experience, he felt that this quote offered good value, and agreed that it is reasonable for the council to proceed with this quote.
Some discussion ensued regarding access to the keys for the lockable bollards, but no decision was made.
Cllr Doman and the contractor had inspected the road leading to the village hall, and decided that only small part of the driveway needs resurfacing. None of the road was unsafe or created a risk to safety. It was decided to not to make any repairs to the road at the moment, and the issue would be re-visited as part of the development of the playing field.
12.134 Traffic Calming
Cllr Betts gave an update regarding the signage and said that, despite this, there were still difficulties in setting up a Community Speed Watch, not least that that the police have now said they have to do some preliminary assessments to establish the need. The Parish Council continues to pursue this.
District Cllr Butters said that he would try and clarify the situation before the next meeting, particularly as B&NES are intending to introduce 20mph limits across Bath. NB
In order for the 20mph speed limit to be enforceable, the 20mph signs at the entrance to the village have to be visible – and there is a problem with foliage obscuring the signs. Cllr Wheeler has contacted all but two of the relevant landowners to ask them to agree to their foliage being cut back so the signs are kept visible – and all had agreed. He will seek agreements from the remaining two landowners, but is not expecting any opposition. He will then contact the appropriate authorities in B&NES to see if B&NES will clear foliage from the signs – at least a one-off exercise. The Parish Council will probably have to take on responsibility for keeping the signs clear in the future. TW
The bollards in the chicanes at the west entrance to the village have been destroyed by a lorry. Cllr Betts asked what action is being taken to restore them. The Chairman agreed to follow this up. HP
12.135 Village Wear and Tear
Cllr Caudle drew attention to the broken road sign at the bottom of Farm Lane. The Clerk said that he would repair it and this was agreed. GW
Stuart Cole, from the floor, said that the flooding in Stoney Littleton Lane had been sorted out. He also reported that some of the walling along the road by Hungerford Terrace was crumbling. The Clerk agreed to meet him so that he could see what the problem was and then to report to Council Connect accordingly. GW/SC
Cllr Betts said that there was a problem with a blocked drain at the west end of the village. Cllr Doman agreed to look into it and take appropriate action. PD
12.136 Obnoxious smells in the vicinity of Wellow
The Council referred to correspondence received on this issue.
Cllr Doman said that the smells arose from the spreading of chicken excrement every so often from the chicken farm in Braysdown. Any smells in Wellow depended upon the wind direction but since the owners were doing nothing illegal there was no action which the Parish Council could take.
The Clerk agreed to write to the complainant accordingly. GW
12.137 Any other reports
Cllr Betts asked Cllr White what percentage of children at St Julian’s Church School were from Wellow. Cllr White said she would let her know as she didn’t have the exact figures available. JW
Cllr Clarkson said that the phone box in The Square was in need of renovation and that she would contact BT about it. The Council also agreed that BT should ensure that the phone was operational to cater for walkers and others. DC
12.138 Next Meeting
It was confirmed that the next meeting will be on Monday, November 12th, at 8pm in the Village Hall with the possibility of an extra meeting regarding Wellow Sports at 7pm.
October 10th 2012