Minutes of a MEETING OF LYTCHETT MATRAVERS PARISH COUNCIL
Held on Monday March 20th 2017 at 7:00 in the Methodist Church, Lytchett Matravers.
PRESENT were Cllrs A Bush, A Cottman, A Huggins, K Norris, E Wilson, P Webb, C Wood, and Mr T Watton (Parish Clerk).
Three members of the public were also present.
In the absence of Cllr Colvey, Cllr Bush (Vice Chairman) took the chair.
1. REceipt of apologies for absence – Cllrs M Colvey, R Carswell, J Gracey, J Taylor and Dist Cllr Meaden
2. PUBLIC PARTICIPATION SESSION
Mrs Hampshire raised two matters:
· She reported that she had seen horses being cantered along Jubilee Walk – which is a footpath, rather than a bridleway. She is concerned that, since pedestrians frequently use the footpath, including some with pushchairs, use by horse riders is inappropriate and could be dangerous. In response, Cllr Norris agreed that he would report the matter to Dorset County Council. Action: Cllr Norris to contact Dorset County Council accordingly.
· She reported that the pavement adjacent to the new houses being built on the site formerly occupied by 19 & 20 Huntick Estate (i.e. now fronting Huntick Road) is badly damaged and may be a tripping hazard. Action: Parish clerk to check with PDC Planning Department what provisions made in place as a condition of the planning permission to make good the pavement. If necessary, Parish Clerk to also report the matter to DCC Highways for urgent attention to eliminate the risk to the public.
3. CHAIRMAN’S ANNOUNCEMENTS.
Cllr Bush referred to an e-mail from Sally Wells which the Parish Clerk had circulated to all members. In it Ms Wells had reminded the Council that it had funded the purchase of a speed watch kit to operate around the village. The local speed watch group are starting to monitor traffic again, but the radar equipment appears to have developed a fault. It is out of guarantee but they have been in touch with the manufacturer in the USA and located a company in the UK who are prepared to fix it. It is anticipated that the charge for this will be in the order of £40, and so the group wondered if the council would be prepared to meet the cost of this repair. After a brief discussion the council resolved to meet this cost. The Parish Clerk suggested that the most effective way to do so would be for the group to send equipment way for repair and request that the company sent an invoice direct to the Parish Council accordingly. Action: The Parish Clerk to respond to MS Wells accordingly.
4. DECLARATIONS OF PECUNIARY INTEREST; AND CONSIDERATION OF REQUESTS FOR SPECIAL DISPENSATIONS UNDER SECTION 33 OF THE LOCALISM ACT 2011.
There were none.
5. Minutes of The Full Council Meeting on 20th February 2017 and the Extraordinary Council meeting on 27th February 2017.
Both sets of draft minutes were APPROVED as true records of the meetings and signed by the meeting Chairman.
6. MATTERS ARISING & UPDATE ON ACTION POINTS.
i. Minute 14, 21st September 2015 – website updating. It was noted that producing the set of personal profiles is still outstanding.
ii. Minute 13, 19th September 2016 – replacement of Wareham Rd bus stop adjacent to the primary school. Further to the update provided by Cllr Wood in an email circulated to members on 17th February, she reported that she had contacted Mr. Hook again on 23rd February and he had advised that he would be “signing it off” that week. Cllr Wood had queried exactly what action he was signing off, but since then has heard nothing further from him. Consequently she had chased the matter again on the day of this meeting. She also noted that County Cllr Drane had also intervened on behalf of the Council to “encourage” Mr Hook to do what he had promised. Cllr Wood indicated that if nothing further has been heard by Friday 24th March she would escalate the matter to Mr. Andy Shaw (Mr. Hook’s line manager).
iii. Minute 20, 17th October 2016 – Decommissioning of Telephone Kiosks: At the February 2017 Council meeting Cllr Colvey had reported that there had not yet been a response either from the Conservation Officer at PDC or BT to his request for either operational retention of kiosks or their purchase by the local community. It is understood that this is still the case. In the light of this district Cllr Webb indicated that he would speak to the Conservation Officer at PDC to obtain an update or see if this matter could be expedited.
iv. Minute 11, 16th January 2017 – Deed of Dedication for protection of Old School Green. The Parish Clerk reminded those present that Old School Green was now fully protected. However, some minor paperwork still needed to be completed by Fields In Trust for the Land Registry records. The Parish Clerk indicated that he would contact FIT to chase this. Action: Parish Clerk o chase Fields In Trust accordingly
v. Minute 20, 16th January 2017 – steps in front of the pharmacy premises. At the February meeting of the Parish Council it had been suggested that it may be prudent to write to the owner of the pharmacy premises to suggest taking some action to improve public awareness of the risks presented by the steps and thus the need for members of the public to take extra care when using them – e.g. warning signs and / or painting the surface of the steps. It was noted that it had been left unclear as to who would undertake this action – and consequently the Parish Clerk indicated that he would have now prepare and send this letter. Action: Parish Clerk to write to the last known owner of the pharmacy premises.
vi. Minute 12, 20th February 2017 – Council response to consultation on PDC statement on Licencing Policy. It was noted that the Parish Clerk had written to PDC with the views expressed by the Council at its meeting on 20th February 2017 as recorded under minute 12 of that meeting. DISCHARGED.
vii. Extraordinary Council Meeting, 27th February 2017. Cllr Wood commented that she had received a disappointing response from PDC Planning Officer Sylvia Leonard regarding Cllr Wood’s Questioning of PDC’s lack of adherence to its own processes for justification for, and progress of, Rural Exception Sites. Ms Leonard’s response seems to have ignored the questions about due process which Cllr Wood raised. In the light of this, Dist Cllr Webb asked for a copy of Ms Leonard’s response so that he could pursue it further at PDC. Cllr Wood also agreed to copy the response to all Parish Council members for information. Cllr Bush made the point that it is important that the Parish Council replies to PDC on this unresolved matter – and to that end he asked for an item to be put on the next Planning Committee agenda in preparation for a recommendation to Full Council.
viii. Council training / planning day, 24 March 2017. A comment from District Cllr Meaden was noted that she may have felt that it was intended that she should not attend this event. Members did not see it this way and said they would welcome her presence. Cllr Bush agreed to contact Dist Cllr Meaden to reassure her that she is welcome to be present.
7. District Cllrs report.
Cllr Meaden provided a written report as follows:
She had attended as Vice-Chairman the Volunteer of the Year Awards.
The PDC Audit and Governance Committee had started the process to appoint new external auditors.
She had attended a Councillor Briefing on the Housing White Paper.
She had attended as Vice-Chairman with representatives from the Army and event attended by the Lord Lieutenant concerning employment of Reservists and Veterans. She reported that this had included some very interesting initiatives – especially NHS South West using them to help in hospital A & E departments and in vehicles parked in strategic points. All reservists and veterans are fully trained medics, and are used to dealing with serious trauma. They have to keep their training up to date and are paid a partial salary by the Army. This initiative has been piloted in Plymouth very successfully ad it is planned to roll it out across whole area soon.
She had attended the Commonwealth Flag Raising ceremony in March.
She visited Holton Heath with Natural England.
She attended a question and answer session at Purbeck School concerning the PDC Local Plan Review.
Within the village, Cllr Meaden’s activity had included investigation of fly-tipping by the Church – which she had picked up and examined. Unfortunately there were no clues as to the culprits.
She had also become involved in helping to investigate the problem of dog fouling on Huntick Estate. The Dog Warden had attended and had discovered culprit and warned them. A fine will follow if no improvement is seen. She continued to pursue the problem of the Motorhomes parked at the Rose and Crown Bus stop and near the bus stop opposite the War Memorial. Dorset Police have put leaflets on windscreens and spoken to vehicle owners. There has been no action by owners so the matter has now been passed to DCC Parking Enforcement officers who can ticket these vehicles and invoke fines.
There has been some sheep-worrying by dogs. Cllr Meaden reported that Dorset Police are running patrols, a poster campaign and signs for farmers to put on gates and fences to raise public awareness.
Dist Cllr Webb provided a verbal report at the Parish Council meeting covering the following:
PDC had approved its balanced budget and set the increase in Council tax to £5 on a Band D property – the maximum allowable without a referendum.
They had also agreed changes (minor) in the Dorset Homes Choices Allocations Policy, and voted to retain the 5 year local connection provision despite officers being concerned PDC might be open to legal challenge. The situation will be reviewed in a year’s time.
He reported that the application for a camping/caravanning/glamping site at Newton Farm (technically not in L Matravers) was refused by the PDC Planning Committee. One of the reasons cited was that it would be inappropriate in not preserving the ‘openness’ of the ‘green belt’. It is not known if there will be an appeal against the decision.
The relevant Government Minister is expected to give his ‘minded to’ view on the Unitary proposals for Dorset on 23rd March.
Cllr Webb advised that at PDC on 21st March there would be consideration of the responses to the draft CIL charging schedule consultation and how PDC’s CIL receipts would be applied. This latter aspect will prioritise Habitats Regulations followed by repayment of the loan taken out to finance the preparation of the Swanage Railway track for connection to the mainline at Wareham. He believes that improvements to roads, cycle ways etc. will be lucky to get very much of the CIL monies. The charging schedule will come up again in connection with the Purbeck Local Plan review. He warned that the proposal for little CIL available on developments of 200 or more houses could need watching if Lytchett Matravers ends up with more houses but none in 200+ parcels. This could mean less or no money for infrastructure improvement in the village unless PDC were persuaded to pool numbers of houses across developers.
He reported that approval for the Poole Harbour Catchment Area Nitrogen Reduction SPD is being sought. This is to require all new houses to mitigate for the extra nitrogen they produce. This may well require de-intensifying agricultural land but in the first instance developers will have to try and find other technologies – e.g. reed beds before resorting to taking land out of food production.
He also confirmed that approval for the Lytchett Matravers Neighbourhood Plan referendum is being sought. He pointed out that it is important to make sure that it gets approved so that there is some control over how development proceeds within the existing settlement boundary or any extension of it. He expressed the view that what is incredibly frustrating is the Housing White Paper’s proposals on letting Neighbourhood Plans allocate development land. He suggested that in his view it might be worth considering what might be put forward to PDC as a least bad case for the village as a whole if the ‘green belt’ protection is not as strong as would be wished. In his view PDC would then have to take note – given the work that went into the Neighbourhood Plan about alternative sites etc.
Finally, he reported that the Review of the Purbeck Local Plan continues. He felt that the Q&A session on 16th March may have answered a number of equations. As of the date of the Parish Council meeting he had not yet been fully briefed on the Forum for North East Purbeck, but he expected to hear more shortly. The first meeting is planned for some time in May.
8. County Councillor’s report
County Cllr Drane was unable to be present. It was agreed that the Parish Clerk should email further copies of Cllr Drane’s report to all members. Action: Parish Clerk to re-send the report accordingly.
9. REPORTS FROM SUB-COMMITTEES AND WORKING GROUPS
Sports Club Governance Working Group – It was reported that a Sports Club Committee meeting is scheduled to be held on 30 March 2017 to discuss a number of outstanding issues, including the matter of the financial records for previous years. It was confirmed that this would also include the outstanding payments incurred by the Parish Council for repair and maintenance work to the Lytchett Astro. Cllr Webb reported that he is currently also in the process of setting up a Sports Club Working Group meeting. Amongst other matters, these meetings will consider the proposal by the Chairman of the Sports Club to arrange for some building work to be undertaken to create a bin store within the pavilion building which will enable the rubbish bin currently located alongside the pavilion to be moved inside – thus hopefully reducing the incidence of fly tipping beside it.
Neighbourhood Planning Working Group – Cllr Bush reported that it has been settled to hold of the Neighbourhood Plan referendum alongside polling day on 4th of May 2017. Referendum voting will take place in the village hall. The Council noted that there is significant communication work to do in preparation for this event to ensure that residents understand what the referendum is about and what the Neighbourhood Plan contains and can influence within the community. It was agreed that it would be necessary to provide an outline summary of the content of the plan to be made available to all residents in advance of polling day. There is therefore a need to consider what form that communication document will take, and to verify whether Cllr Taylor would be available to edit and facilitate the production of an issue of Lytchett Link to achieve this. Cllr Bush indicated that he would speak to Cllr Taylor about this.
Huntick Cycle Way Working Group – Cllr Huggins advised that he had chased up Helen Jackson at the beginning of March. She is to get back with cost estimates for “the proposals”. However, clarification of what DCC have in mind and are costing is awaited.
Village Centre Working Group – It was noted that initial thoughts on this will be picked up in the Parish Councillors’ event due to take place on Saturday 24th March 2017.
10. Recommendations from Committees:
The following recommendations were considered:
a) Environment & Amenities Cttee – meeting 6th March 2017:
· The acceptance of the quotation of 21.50 +VAT per cut by The Landscape Group for the Southern part of the Recreation Ground. This price per cut is conditional on it being cut on the same visits as those for cutting the main sports field for the Lytchett Matravers Sports Club. AGREED.
· Approval of the letter prepared by Mr Vivian to be forwarded to DCC requesting consideration by the principal authority to transfer to the Parish Council the freehold of the land on which Club Hall stands – thereby enabling the Council to offer the Scouts a lease of sufficient length to facilitate their fundraising for the proposed new building. This was NOT APPROVED. However, after some discussion it was AGREED that a more succinct direct letter should be prepared, making it clear that this should include the land around Club Hall and the car park. Cllr Bush indicated that he would work up a revised draft of the letter emphasising that the Parish Council was asking DCC to grant freehold of this land to the Parish Council, so that it could then grant a long lease to the Scouts. Action: Cllr Bush to draft the letter accordingly. Further, it was then considered that if this letter to DCC proves unsuccessful, the matter should be escalated to County Cllr Peter Finney. In addition, Cllr Wood emphasised the need to carry out more open dialogue with the other stakeholders and interested parties – i.e. to include the Lighthouse Family Church and other youth groups in the village who might have an interest in use of the building.
· Appointment of a different ROSPA safety inspector for 2017, in order to obtain better value for money and more reliability in the report. This is due to some of the detail of the 2016 report being very similar to issues raised in the 2015 report which had been successfully dealt with. The Parish Clerk reported that he had subsequently obtained a quotation from Poole Business Services to use their group of appointed ROSPA safety inspectors. The quoted cost is less than the current inspector charges, and this proposal was AGREED.
· The purchase and installation of two self-closing gates for Rocket Park play area identical to those detailed in the report included at Appendix 1 of the minutes of the Environment & Amenities Cttee, 6th March 2017. A quotation had been obtained by the Parish Clerk but this was NOT APPROVED. Instead the Parish Clerk was tasked with asking Poole Business Services (part of Poole Borough Council) to quote for gates identical to those they have installed in the play area at Poole Park. Action: The Parish Clerk to contact Poole Business Services accordingly.
· The fitting of a combination padlock to the double gates to Lytchett Astro pitch to lock the bolt into ground in position so gate can’t accidentally swing into play area. However it was noted that these gates open outwards, and this may therefore be unnecessary. Consequently this was NOT APPROVED.
b) Planning Committee – meeting 2nd March 2017:
· No recommendations.
11. Consideration of requirement for increase in employers’ contribution to LGPS for the Parish Clerk. Cllr Norris explained that Dorset County Council had contacted Parish and Town Councils who have employees who are members of the Local Government Pension Scheme (LGPS) to advise that their Actuaries had determined that with effect from 1st April 2017, employer contribution rates to the scheme would rise to 22% of salary. After brief discussion, the Parish Council unanimously RESOLVED to approve this increase.
12. Consideration of response to Housing White Paper consultation (see email to members 09/03/17). It was noted that the consultation exercise closes on the 2nd May 2017. It was agreed that all members should read the consultation paper and email the Parish Clerk or Finance and Policy Committee Chairman their proposals for specific wording in response to the consultation exercise – in good time for consideration at the Finance and Policy Committee meeting on 10th April 2017. Action: All members to examine the consultation papers and prepare their proposed responses accordingly.
13. 2017 Housing Needs Survey (see email to members 09/03/17) Some clarification was offered regarding the colour bands into which those on the housing register are placed. There were a number of questions and some doubts over the numbers within each band, and where those people currently reside. Cllr Bush indicated that he would draft some comments and circulate these to all members for further consideration. Action: Cllr Bush to prepare and circulate a note accordingly.
14. Consideration of draft policy for donated benches / seats.
After brief discussion, and subject to Cllr Norris preparing an amendment suggested by Cllr Huggins regarding attempts to contact donors before a bench is removed, it was RESOLVED to accept the draft policy. The revised / amended policy, is attached at appendix one to these minutes.
15. Confirmation of referendum date for Neighbourhood Plan.
It was noted that the referendum will take place on Thursday 4th May 2017.
16. Annual Parish Meeting 2017 – update on plans.
It is understood that Cllr Colvey has now booked the Library for this event. Action: Parish Clerk to approach Cllr Colvey to request the invitation letter and list of addressees so that he can print these out and get them in the post.
17. Council training day – Saturday 25th March 2017.
It was noted that a small group would be meeting on Tuesday 21st March with the two guest presenters to go through the content of their respective sessions.
18. Report of any training activity undertaken in the past month.
There was none which had recently taken place. However, the Parish Clerk reported that he would be attending the annual conference of DAPTC at Kingston Maurward on Thursday 23rd March 2017, and had also booked training places on a four day SILCA course offered by the Society of Local Council Clerks (SLCC). The four days are 27th April, 22nd June, 27th July and 24th August 2017.
19. Reports of Representatives (by exception):-
|Village Hall||DAPTC||Footpaths||School Liaison|
|Youth Organisations||Sports Club|
Village Hall – AGM 4th April 2017.
DAPTC – next Purbeck Area meeting is due on 27th April
There were no other reports.
20. Council to approve the following payments due:-
|Inv||To Whom||For What||Net||VAT||Total|
|3727||T Watton||Clerk’s salary – March (12 equal monthly payments by SO)||848.68||0.00||848.68|
|3728||DCC||LGPS pension contrib Mar.||270.32||0.00||270.32|
|3729||T Homer||Handyman duties, February, plus reimbursement for gantt rails and hinges purchased.||304.46||3.21||307.67|
|3730||The Landscape Group||Cemetery maintenance – February 2017||303.49||60.70||364.19|
|3731||Churches Fire Security Ltd||Club Hall check and service of fire appliances etc.||111.78||22.36||134.14|
|3732||South Coast Fencing Ltd||Repairs to Lytchett Astro pitch Fencing||630.00||126.00||756.00|
|3733||T Watton||Reimbursement of payment of Council BT bill March 2017||120.60||24.12||144.72|
Council APPROVED all of the above payments.
21. “Openness of Local Government Bodies Regulations 2014”, Part 3, Paragraphs 6-10, Record of Decisions and Access to Documents – record of decisions taken by Parish Clerk.
The Parish Clerk referred to his decision to book a place on the four day SILCA course offered by the Society of Local Council Clerks (SLCC) – at a cost of £250 +VAT.
The Parish Clerk reported on the following correspondence received:
A letter from Brighstone Landscaping Ltd advising of a 20% increase in their charges for maintenance of the Foxhills Open Space to a total of £2978.08 (+VAT) per year. The Parish Clerk explained that in response to this he had contacted Poole Business Services and obtained a quotation of £2236.50 (+VAT) for work to the same specification from them. It was AGREED to accept the quotation from Poole Business Services. Action: Parish Clerk to contact Poole Business Services accordingly.
An email from a representative from Virgin Media who are installing superfast broadband in the village and wish to give a 10 minute presentation on the practicalities of the project. This has been arranged to be included towards the beginning of the Full Council meeting on 24th April 2017.
Cllr Norris reported on a communication he had received from DAPTC pointing out that the Parish and Town Council representatives at Area DAPTC meetings are often presented with the opportunity to vote on proposals on behalf of their councils. In order to do so they should have formal approval for such delegated authority. It was AGREED to grant that authority to the Parish Council’s appointed DAPTC representatives.
Cllr Webb reported on a letter he had received from Mrs Harris expressing her gratitude for being put forward as volunteer of the year.
23. MATTERS OF INTEREST AND INFORMATION
Cllr Huggins reported that he and Cllr Carswell had met with a tarmac contractor to obtain pricing for repositioning / 90 degree reorientation of the basketball court on the recreation ground. At the same time they and the contractor had also visited the Lytchett Astro site to evaluate the feasibility and cost of surfacing the driveway and creating car park space. Cost estimates for this are expected to be received by 25th March 2017.
The meeting closed at 9:10pm
Annotated by/on …………………………….. Signed by……………………