MINUTES of a meeting of Wellington Heath Parish Council held on Tuesday 21st July 2015 in The Memorial Hall commencing at 7.30pm
Present – Cllrs. J. Jones (in the Chair – JJ) F. Rozelaar (FR) and D. Williams (DW).
Also attending – County Councillor Liz Harvey, Mrs. Valerie Clark and the Clerk.
Minutes – The Minutes of the Annual Meeting held on 19th May 2015 were taken as read, confirmed and signed by the Chairman.
Declarations of Interest in items on the Agenda – None declared/received.
County Councillor Report –
(a) Broadband – Fastershire only available in very rural areas in Herefordshire; W/Heath served by the Ledbury exchange and satellite available for businesses. Cllr Harvey confirmed she hoped to have a meeting with Representative to chat about the local issues
(b) NDP – Core Strategy delayed for four weeks due to consultation about windfarms , but expected the final Report late August/early September. The responses have been forwarded to FR about traffic survey but it was confirmed that Hereford Council are not doing a survey about the access to the site by the viaduct. It was confirmed that the planning application when submitted will have to go to full Planning Committee for consideration but there appeared to be waste disposal problems on the site even before the proposed housing development.
(c) Planning applications (i) Chance’s Pitch – some amendments made but plans back on the drawing board with some of the proposed sheds and feed silos being sunk further into the ground to reduce their height and impact on the AONB. It was also proposed to change the colour of the roof and reinstatement of the hedge line which will further conceal the sheds from the view on the road. It has also been proposed by Holbrooke’s to reduce their potato production which will have an effect on the vehicle movements. Closing date for comments is 13th August but Cllr Harvey proposed to ask for a consultation to be held in Ledbury similar to the one held recently in The Park Hotel in Colwall.
(ii) Caravans at Uplands Farm has not been determined, and the immediate neighbours have been refused the opportunity of speaking at a full Planning Committee. She advised that she did not think there will be a satisfactory outcome on this application as many issues have been included such as poly-tunnels and lack of suitable accommodation for workers on the Farm.
(iii) Three houses at Fir Tree Cottage – many concerns raised because of the narrow roads and lack of sufficient car parking proposals in the application. It was confirmed the PC had raised objections which included drainage and the access to the site and Cllr. Harvey said she would get back to us after a meeting with the Planning Officer.
(d) Budget Consultation tomorrow evening in the Shirehall Hereford which is open to Parish Councillors. Consultation process will last until mid October. Cllr Harvey warned of drastic cuts in services due to lack of funding from Central Government which will be coming into effect. Car parking charges will be increased across whole County and many streets in Ledbury seeking “residents parking”.
DW asked about the Ledbury NDP – Cllr Harvey said she hoped W/Heath would have an opportunity of input into the Ledbury NDP but commented that the Parish Council need to take the lead on where the routes are for the suggested “safe walking route into Ledbury” but she was advised that the problem might be in securing approval by the land owners. Her immediate response to this comment was that Herefordshire Council might be able to assist in overcoming this type of problem.
Update Reports –
Telephone Kiosk – Cllrs advised that there had been no response in reply to a notice in the Newsletter seeking suggestions about a defibrillator in the kiosk , and although it might be possible to tidy up the kiosk the matter was to be left in abeyance for the time being.
Road outside Swallow Farm – FR reported on meeting with Neil James, Locality Steward for Balfour Beatty who advised that it is the property owner’s responsibility to stop the road collapsing into Swallow Farm with the owner paying for supporting buttresses. Nothing further had been heard since that meeting, and he was of the opinion that the matter is a total impasse. Following a report from Hereford Council about road works due to be carried out in Wellington Heath, FB agreed to find out whether this was in fact work at Swallow Farm, and if not, it was agreed the Parish Council would write to Balfour Beatty/Herefordshire Council enquiring what was proposed to be done regarding the very dangerous road conditions adjacent to Swallow Farm. At the same time, the Locality Steward had agreed that our Lengthsman scheme could be run under the existing arrangements as we were not intending to carry out pot-hole work in the Parish which would have resulted in the required training on offer by Balfour Beatty.
Financial – the following Accounts had been received for payment –
Inland Revenue, PAYE £120.00.
Lengthsman duties £117.50.
Clerk, repayments. allowances, postages & travel £149.68.
On a proposal by DW seconded by FR and carried, the above Accounts were approved for payment and cheques signed accordingly.
Memorial Hall – the Chairman advised AGM meeting had been held – the Accounts had produced an increase in profits (copy Accounts handed to the Clerk) , storage continues to be a problem and chairs are being damaged due to rough handling/stacking. The wood floor is in need of re-lacquering.
Lengthsman & P3 schemes – see above. The Clerk reported on the balances carried forward for both of these schemes to the end of our Financial Year and she was to enquire the position regarding work which had been planned to be carried out under the P3 scheme.
NDP – FR advised final bulletin sent out with Newsletter. Grant has been awarded towards the proposed budget of £8,000 for the Plan but the working party were now looking for additional Grants to cover the whole Plan. Detailed budget to be studied at next Parish Council meeting and Cllr DW advised there had been no expenditure out of petty cash. The Clerk raised concerns that the letter offering the original Grant had been sent to David Darwood who was not a Parish Councillor and she was assured that this had been amended and in future all dealings would be by a duly elected Parish Councillor or the Clerk. The Clerk also advised that there was no need for a separate bank account to be opened to deal with the Neighbourhood Development Plan.
Cluster Group – Report submitted following last meeting, nothing to raise apart from the fact that Ledbury Council member will be Liz Harvey with her substitute as Mayor A. Crowe which would appear to indicate that Cllr. Phil Bettington will no longer be part of the the Cluster Group .
Planning – applications received included proposed erection of three houses at Fir Tree Cottage (to which objections had been raised) and a proposed house at Ochre Hill which was considered most unsuitable for the proposed plot and to which objections would also be raised. It was felt that the Parish Council would not need to comment on the proposed chicken houses in Colwall which Cllr. Liz Harvey had referred to (see above County Councillor Report).
Herefordshire CAB seeking donation.
The Planning Inspectorate advising that the appeal for erection of a house on land adjacent to Farmers Arms had been dismissed.
Confirmation that the Data Protection registration had been renewed and Certificate of Registration received.
Wicksteed Order acknowledgement for ROSPA inspection at Pool Piece.
Pensions Regulator letter that the Parish Council must look into a pension for the Clerk (final details awaited from Internal Auditor).
Clerks & Councils magazine (handed to the Chairman).
No members of the public in attendance.
Next meeting to be held in September and it was confirmed that the new dates for the meetings had been published in the latest Newsletter.
There being no further business, the Chairman declared the meeting closed at 9.45pm.