Meeting of Full Council, Weds 27th September 2023 at 7.00 p.m. in the Blanchard Room, Village Hall.
PRESENT were A Bush (Council Chair), B Barker, A Huggins, K Morgan, and Mr T Watton (Parish Clerk / RFO).
Also present: Dorset Cllr A Brenton.
PUBLIC PARTICIPATION SESSION (Standing orders suspended)
There was none.
DORSET COUNCILLORS’ REPORT
Dorset Cllr B Pipe provided a report in his absence which had been made available to all members ahead of the meeting. A copy is associated at Appendix 1a to these minutes.
Dorset Cllr Brenton referred to her report. A copy of this is associated at Appendix 1b to the minutes.
1. To receive and consider apologies for absence.
Cllrs V Abbott, M Attridge, R Aspray, H Khanna, K Korenevsky and P Webb. Dorset Cllrs A Starr and B Pipe also sent their apologies.
2. To receive any declarations of interest, and consider any requests for Special Dispensations under Section 33 of the Localism Act 2011.
None declared in relation to matters on the agenda of this meeting.
Cllr Barker reported that her partner has recently been co-opted to the Co-opted member of Governance and Audit Committee, Dorset Council and so she wished to update her personal; declaration. The Clerk indicated that he would send her the necessary link to enable her to do that.
3. To consider any applications for the casual vacancy on the Parish Council.
4. To receive and resolve to approve minutes of Council meeting held on 9th August 2023, and the Extraordinary Full Council meeting held on 13th September.
It was RESOLVED to approve the minutes of both of these meetings as true records of them. They were duly signed by the Council Chair.
5. To receive and consider reports of past subject matters on the minutes of the Full Council meetings (for purposes of report only).
It was RESOLVED to receive and note the contents of the following report, which had been prepared and circulated in advance of the meeting by the Parish Clerk. Italics below indicate additional comments made during the meeting.
- Minute 17, Full Council 10th Aug 2022 – dog exercise area. Actions:
Removal of the bramble roots and re-seeding with grass.
As this work had still not been done, the members present decided that the Guerrilla Gardeners would be asked to strim back as far as they can – thereby gradually increasing the area of exposed ground so that grass can grow and it can then be progressively included in the area to be mowed.
- Minute 18, 22nd Feb 2023 – Replacement of the windows and frames in the Parish Council office. This work has been completed. DISCHARGED
- Minute 20.1, 22nd Feb 2023 – communication of outcome of grant request and the confirmation of Council responsibility for churchyard maintenance including the boundary wall. The Parish Clerk had written to the PCC; and also suggested that they may wish to seek additional quotes from providers approved by the diocese. A response from Rev. Partridge thanked the Council for this and confirmed that they would seek the additional quotes. In the meantime a “Churchyard Maintenance policy” was prepared and approved by the Parish Council at its March 2023 meeting. In June 2023 a communication was received from the Fabric Chair of St Mary’s Church which reiterated the original quote obtained in August 2022 plus one further one. At a site meeting held on 10th July the Fabric Chair confirmed that the August 2022 quote was still valid, and he agreed to try to obtain one further quote. The members present at the meeting on 27th Sept 2023 noted that nothing further had been heard from the St Marys Church Fabric Chair on this matter. Action: Parish Clerk to ask Bill Carter whether a third quote is still to be expected, and if not to then confirm the selected one to do the work.In the meantime the notes / action points from the site meeting held on 10th July – which had covered several other maintenance matters – had been distributed to those present at the meeting for confirmation of the above, plus the other points which were discussed and agreed. It was intended that an action plan would be drawn up once all had agreed the notes of the meeting. No responses were received, so an action plan was been prepared based on the original notes / report. At the meeting on 27th September the Parish Clerk was instructed to inform Mr Carter of this. Action: Parish Clerk to contact Mr Carter accordingly.
- Minutes 3, 4 and 5, Extraordinary Full Council meeting, 12th April 2023 – Opening of Lloyds bank account. This account has now been opened and is ready for use. The latter of apology for the poor service, as well as the £150 cheque in compensation have been received. DISCHARGED
- Minute 18, 22 March 2023 – mandate for inactive Santander accounts. This has been completed and the accounts are now able to be operated. DISCHARGED
- Minute 6, Extraordinary Full Council meeting, 12th April 2023 – to open bank account with The Charity Bank. The application was submitted at the end of July, but a response during August advised of a shortcoming with the ID sent in support of one of the signatories – despite the same ID being sent to Lloyds with no problem. In view of the activation of the Lloyds account and the update of the mandate for the Santander accounts it was agreed to resubmit the ID documents in question. Action: Parish Clerk to resubmit the ID documents ASAP.
- Minute 16, Full Council, 26 April 2023 – to provide a mobile phone for the use of the Parish Clerk on Council business in support of remote working. Cllr Huggins carried out a further search of available offerings and has arranged for a Council account to be set up. The mobile phone has been delivered and activated and the new number is now added to all emails, outgoing letters and the forms etc published on the website. The Office landline number has been diverted to this new number. DISCHARGED
- Minute 9, Full Council, 28th June 2023 (VEWG) – to clarify the Council’s opinion on the possibility of a restriction, such as a kissing gate or chicane, at each end of Jubilee Walk to prevent access for cycles and horses. As requested, the Parish Clerk wrote to Katie Black DC Rights of Way Ranger. She advised that both Jubilee Walk and Church Walk are designated as
“public footpath[s] so bikes and horse should not be travelling down […].” Regarding the matter of installing gates or chicanes she advised that “Sadly, installing a gate is not as easy as it sounds as permission needs to be sort from the Highway Authority (is me) and I need to advertise and there may be objections. There are also limited reasons which enable gates to be installed, and standards which need to be maintained.”
Ms Blackhad said that she would be happy to meet to discuss this if required. The above response was passed back to the VEWG. It is understood that the Council Chair held a site meeting with her during week ending 5th August 2023. The site meeting duly took place and covered a wide range of issues – however the above matter was overlooked. Cllr Bush indicated that he would raise this with Ms Black again. At the meeting on 27th September it was noted that there are signs at both ends of the path making it clear that it is a public footpath only – therefore cycles and horses are not permitted on it. DISCHARGED.
- Minute 13, Full Council 26th July 2023 – Venue booking for proposed community event June 2024. As requested the Parish Clerk contacted the Village Hall bookings Secretary to request a booking of the Village Hall for Saturday and Sunday 22nd and 23rd June 2024. This has been confirmed and the Council Chair was informed accordingly. DISCHARGED
- Minute 13, Full Council 26th July 2023 – Proposed community event June 2024. Cllr Bush to contact the Lytchett Matravers Youth Football organisers to advise them that the Council has released its booking of the Village Hall on 8th and 9th June 2024 – which they may wish to contact the Village Hall bookings Secretary regarding their football tournament. DISCHARGED
- Minute 29, Full Council 26th July 2023 – continued failure of Aster Housing to maintain their children’s play area between Lockyers Way and The Spinney, or the pathways around it and the pathway connecting Abbotts Court and Wareham Rd. As requested at the Full Council meeting on 26th July, the Parish Clerk copied the most recent correspondence on these matters to Dorset Cllr Brenton. At the meeting on 27th Sept 2023 Dorset Cllr Brenton apologised that so far she has not been able to progress this matter as far as she had hoped. Concerning the children’s play area owned by Aster which is situated between Lockyers Way and The Spinney, it was suggested that a Freedom of Information request is submitted to Aster Housing Association asking for copies of the last two annual ROSPA Safety Inspection reports and any other documents arising from those inspections – i.e. concerning the actions Aster Housing Association undertook, or commissioned to be undertaken on their behalf, to deal with the issues arising from the annual safety inspections. Action: Parish Clerk to prepare and submit to Aster Housing Association the proposed Freedom of Information request.
6. Chair’s announcements (for the purposes of report only).
There were none.
7. To receive and note the content of the minutes of the Finance & General Purposes Committee Meeting on 13th September 2023 (for purposes of report only)
It was RESOLVED to receive and note the contents of these draft minutes.
8. To consider the following recommendations from the F&GP Cttee meeting on 13th September 2023
(i) That the holders to the two allotments plots identified as neglected are now given an ultimatum of substantially dealing with the weeds and general untidiness within the next 2 weeks, or disqualifying themselves from rental renewal for 2024.
RESOLVED to APPROVE.
(ii) That the holders of the two identified unkempt allotment plots are written to with a warning of the need to tidy them up.
RESOLVED to APPROVE.
(iii) That Fletchamoore (Poole) Ltd are invited to undertake the work of installing 5 new dropped kerbs, subject to satisfactory review of their original quote issued some months ago, and that it remains within a max of £13K (+VAT), which includes a 10% contingency sum.
RESOLVED to APPROVE.
(iv) The removal of the trees and scrub at Turbetts Green to create a clear “corridor” adjacent to the garages.
RESOLVED to APPROVE.
9. To consider planning application P/HOU/2023/04978 Sonora Flowers Drove Lytchett Matravers BH16 6BX. Remove rear conservatory and erect single storey extension. Erection two storey front extension. Extend and add balcony to existing dormer window at rear and add dormer window with balcony on North Elevation.
10. To receive a report from the Village Environment Working Group (for purposes of report only)
Cllr Morgan reported that there had been no changes since the report submitted to the August Full Council meeting.
11. To receive a report from the Highways Working Group (for purposes of report only)
A summary report had been made available to all members ahead of this meeting. A copy of the report is associated at Appendix 2 to these minutes.
12. Receive a report from the Neighbourhood Plan 2 Working Group (for purposes of report only).
Nothing to report.
13. To receive a report from the Lytchett Matravers Youth Hall Working Group (for purposes of report only).
Cllr Barker commented on the following matters:
- The outer framework for the fire exit had been constructed.
- Rubble for the base of the ramp had been delivered ready for compacting.
- Spray kit for damp treatment obtained.
- Safeguarding training done 2 week ago – Council to meet the fees for this.
- Quote to be obtained for widening the gap in the stud partition between the main hall and back room.
- Quote to be obtained for further plumbing work.
- Disposal of air hockey table.
- Disposal of old dishwasher.
- Establish date to move all remaining furniture to the centre of the hall to facilitate the internal decorating work.
- Internal prep for decorating – cleaning walls & paintwork, spraying damp areas.
14. To consider quotes received for a parish–wide survey of the health of all trees on Parish Council owned or managed land and to appoint a contractor to undertake the survey.
It was noted that despite best efforts only two quotes had been received. After discussion it was RESOLVED to accept the quote from Mark Hinsley Arboricultural Consultants Ltd, subject to confirmation that the quote includes an effective system of tagging / identifying each tree. Action: Parish Clerk to contact the contractor to confirm this point.
15. To consider and decide on a date for an autumn litter pick.
It was decided that this will take place on Sunday 5th November 2023 commencing at 2pm (meeting in the High St upper car park. It was also agreed to schedule 24th March 2024 for the next one. Action: Parish Clerk to diary these dates and note the March 2024 one on the draft agenda for the Feb 2024 Full Council meeting.
16. To Consider a proposal for 4 traffic surveys to be conducted by Dorset Council Highways on each side of the Rose and Crown crossroads, at a total cost of £875 +VAT, as a necessary prerequisite to an application for 20mph in the village.
It was RESOLVED to approve this.
17. Receive summary report on and recommendations arising from the annual play equipment inspection reports.
The report was made available to all members ahead of the meeting. It was RESOLVED to receive this, note its contents and accept all of the recommendations within it. A copy of the report and recommendations is associated at Appendix 3 to these minutes.
In response to the Issues identified:
- Cllr Bush indicated that he would visit the Astro to examine the section of high fence which is reported as loose and requiring a nut/bolt to be replaced. Action: Cllr Bush to arrange to visit.
- The Parish Clerk will speak to the Village Handyman about closer inspection and reporting of obstacles on / embedded in the surface of the BMX track. Action: Parish Clerk to speak to the Village Handyman.
- The Parish Clerk will speak to Sutcliffe Play about replacement of the worn chain and damaged seat on the zip line. Action: Parish Clerk to speak to Sutcliffe Play (South West) Ltd.
18. To consider a proposal to transfer £60,000 each to the Council’s bank accounts with Lloyds, Santander and HSBC.
It was noted that the deposits held in the Council’s accounts with HSBC already exceed £85,000. After discussion it was RESOLVED to deposit £85,000 in the Council’s accounts with Lloyds and Santander banks, as a first step. Action: Parish Clerk to arrange for these two deposits to be made accordingly.
19. Consideration of offer from UtilityAid for the “National Charity Tender” for electricity contracts. (see email to members 22nd Sept 2023).
The Parish Clerk explained that he has been using UtilityAid to search the market for best value electricity supply contracts for the Council since 2019 and consequently the Council is already benefitting from their support service and advice. However since the “National Charity Tender” wording is apparently new he had contacted UtilityAid to express the Council’s interest in finding out more about it – i.e. whether it is genuinely new or merely just a marketing re-badging exercise. A response is awaited.
20. To resolve to approve the following payments already made:
|Bank charges to 31st Aug 2023
|Propel Finance Plc
|Monthly repayment for LMPC Clerk’s mobile phone (DD)
It was RESOLVED to approve the above payments already made.
21. To resolve to approve the following payments due:
|Clerk’s salary – Sept 2023.
|PAYE & ENI – Sept 2023 (DD_.
|Dorset County Pension Fund
|LGPS pension contrib Sept 2023
|Handyman duties, Aug 2023
|Reimbursement of expenditure on behalf of Council
|Reimbursement of expenditure incurred on behalf of Council
|Grass cutting, Southern end of rec 5th and 15th Sept 2023 – inv 10892633
|Cemetery maintenance – Sept 2023 Inv 10892645
|Unity Trust Bank
|Charges for cheques banked 4 June – 3 Sept 2023
|Fee for external audit for year ending 31 Mar 2023
It was RESOLVED to approve all of the above payments.
22. To note any training undertaken by members or the Clerk in the past month (for purposes of report only).
23. To note any decisions and / or action taken by Parish Clerk under “Openness of Local Government Bodies Regulations 2014”, Part 3, Paragraphs 6-10, Record of Decisions and Access to Documents (for purposes of report only).
24. To note correspondence received (for purposes of report only).
The Parish Clerk reported that he had received notification from DC Finance that the second half of the 2023/24 precept had been deposited in the Council’s Unity Trust bank account. Receipt of this was confirmed by checking with the bank.
He also reported on correspondence from a resident of Gibbs Green who had suggested that some shrubs and scrub on Foxhills Open Space adjacent to her rear garden were harbouring rats which she has seen in her garden. On the basis of this she asked if the Council would clear the shrubs and other undergrowth away. Cllr Bush indicated that he would visit the area to review this. Action: Cllr Bush to visit the Foxhills Open space and this address.
The meeting closed at 20:37 Annotated by/on ……………………………..Signed by……………………
DC Ward member’s report from Cllr Bill Pipe
Firstly, my apologies for my non-attendance over the last few months.
I continue to offer assistance to the residents of Lytchett Matravers and Morden in my role as a Unitary Councillor for the Lytchetts and Upton. I must say that most of the “action” is down here in Upton where I am kept very busy. I have been chasing up Planning Applications for villagers and am currently sorting out a flooding issue caused by rainwater run-off from a new development in the village.
Planning is always an issue, particularly when we are talking about planning and proposed developments on our Green Belt areas which surround our villages and to a lesser extent, Upton. I will always oppose building on Green Belt land and try to find alternative sites as I did six or seven years ago when a plan for 650 homes was put in for the infill of Lytchett Minster. With the agreement of the Purbeck Planners, the Land Owner and the Developer, a new site was found. Fortunately, homes were not required in the Lytchett Minster area when the Local Plan was published.
We have seen a number of enforced road closures in Lytchett Matravers over the last few months. Most of these are concerned with upgrading existing utilities and of course, improving your broadband in the village. Although they do cause an annoyance, I think it is for the betterment of the lives of the inhabitants.
I also continue to work very closely with our Member of Parliament, Michael Tomlinson in sorting out, signposting and making all of our lives a little better.
The proposed school crossing is going ahead and currently sits very near to the top of Dorset Council’s work list. It should be in place after Christmas. Thank you to all those residents who aided me and the Parish Council in the campaign to get this realised.
Councillor Bill Pipe
Dorset Unitary Councillor for The Lytchetts & Upton
26th September 2023
DC Ward member’s report from Cllr A Brenton
This last month I have been very involved with the Dorset COP meeting and hearing about many environmental issues affecting Dorset, and the Country, and many initiatives which have started. It was a great meeting organised by Sustainable Dorset, DCan and Litter free Dorset in Dorchester Town Hall.
Tobias Elwood MP was the only MP to attend and gave a strong argument for protecting our soil, water and food supplies, not only in UK but globally, as water and food may be a major reason for international instability and migration.
I am particularly interested in sustainable food production, and regenerative farming as is done by many of our local farmers. I have been out with the Gert Big Dorset Hedge Project surveying hedges.
Win on Waste continues. There are various local schemes to help with recycling and reuse which we are investigating. Including the idea of a repair café in Lytchett Matravers when they have revitalised the Youth Hall.
Sewage overflows into rivers and Poole Harbour is still an issue even during dry periods there have been some spills into the river Stour. A new wetland habitat is to be created on 4 hectares below at Bulbury station Lytchett Matravers by Wessex Water and a local landowner this autumn. It should improve water quality by natural filtration reed beds, etc. It should protect ecosystems and in time may become a visitor attraction as a wetland reserve.
This is endorsed by Dorset Council, Lytchett Matravers Parish Council, Natural England and the Environment Agency. The wetland will be constructed of several interlocking cells with overflows controlled between them – the first would trap sediment with the overflows filtered by it and other cells until it reaches a wet woodland and the bottom of the site. Spoil from the digging of the cells will be used to create a wildflower area.
A site visit is planned to visit it when work starts and to see the completed new sewage works at Sandford.
Dorset Council has been announced as a finalist for Best Climate Action or Decarbonisation Initiative in this year’s Association for Public Service Excellence (APSE) Awards. The national awards recognise the very best in public services and celebrates the work of frontline service teams and the special initiatives being delivered by local authorities across the UK. Dorset has been shortlisted, alongside 8 other councils, for its extensive efforts to tackle the carbon footprint of its buildings. The award submission focussed on the Council’s flagship decarbonisation programme which saw energy efficiency and renewable energy measures fitted in over 200 council-owned buildings in just 18 months. The judges heard how the Council’s retro-fit project was ‘immense in scale and complexity’ and involved tackling emissions in schools, libraries and leisure centres, as well as a huge number of Council offices, depots, and other buildings.
The project, which has cut energy bills by over £1million a year for the council and its partners, was funded by the government’s public sector decarbonisation scheme. Dorset Council secured £19million from the scheme, one of the largest awards in the country.
Dorset Council has received notice from Powerfuel that they intend to appeal the Council’s decision to refuse planning permission for an Energy Recovery Facility at Portland Port.
On Friday 24 March 2023, Dorset Council’s Strategic and Technical Planning Committee refused to grant permission for the proposed facility, with Powerfuel stating shortly after that they would lodge an appeal in the future.
RAAC. All Dorset maintained schools that fall within the period 1950’s to 1990’s have been inspected for the presence of RAAC the lightweight concrete used in roofs in accordance with the 1st phase inspection as set out in the DoE guidelines. The Chartered Surveyors’ reports have been received and include a statement that “we have not identified RAAC within the subject property”. The Council’s remaining schools are now being surveyed as a further safeguarding measure and we are working with Academy colleagues to assist them with their processes. However the presence of asbestos is being checked and more inspections are planned but to not interfere with school time these will mostly be done in evenings or weekends. The schools have been informed of progress in this. Contacts
Anthony.walker 07522 449223
Tim.hulme 07771 764183
Other public buildings such as Surgeries Libraries etc are being checked as many buildings were constructed using these materials.
Very sad news – Malicious damage to a protected mature oak tree has meant that it needs to be cut down.
The tree, which is estimated to be at least 180 years old has been severely damaged, is close to properties, a footpath and the highway and is no longer deemed safe. It will have to be cut down. Any replacement will take many decades to make up the loss of this important feature, which, as a species supports more life than any other native tree species in the UK (source: Woodland Trust).
This tree was protected by a Tree Preservation Order (TPO). TPOs ban the cutting down, uprooting, topping, lopping, wilful damage or wilful destruction of trees without the local authority’s consent. It is a criminal offence and the penalty for carrying out work on TPO trees without consent can result in fines of up to £20,000. Unlimited fines can be handed down in the Crown Court, in the event of serious breaches.
Investigations into the two counts of suspected malicious damage to this protected oak firstly on/or before the 8 August 2023 and again on the evening of the 26 August 2023 are ongoing. The Council is appealing for information about this. If you have any information about the damage to this mature oak tree email email@example.com or call 01929 557344 quoting enforcement reference: EN/2023/00354.
Many trees are cut down well before their time when residents fear they will block light drop limbs etc. Usually the trees are generations older than the houses. Trees are the easiest and most sustainable method of Carbon Capture we have.
The creation of a new Housing Board for Dorset Council has been given Cabinet approval.
The new Board will be ready to strengthen the delivery of Dorset Council’s ambition to tackle the rising challenges and issues in housing. These range from an increase in need for affordable housing, rising costs and a lack of suitable accommodation being available. It hopes to encourage and facilitate a cross-council approach to capture the collective expertise and resources in a unified approach.
The Housing Strategy is still open until October. The interim results have been analysed, the most obvious item to me was the need for a range of housing types in villages and town so that residents can downsize to a small house or bungalow so they can stay in their own communities and free up a large house for other people.
I spoke at the Liberal Democrat conference in the Food and Farming debate on Monday – basically to highlight that Horticulture is responsible for much food production particularly fruit and vegetables, and should not be ignored in the policy.
Plant Heritage celebrated 45 years of action today at Wisley. Although I was not quite a founder member, I have been a member for 40 years. We exist to safeguard the genetic diversity of cultivated plants, and act as guardians and propagators of plants which have gone out of ‘the Trade’ but may still be valuable for future plant breeding.
Summary Report – Dorset Council Highways WG
Working Group Objective:
Review of all Highways related projects and establishing close liaison with Dorset Council Highways.
Working Group Participants:
Andrew Huggins (Chair), Ken Morgan, Alf Bush, Peter Webb, Beverly Barker, Rob Aspray
PC projects that require Dorset Council Highways interaction and agreement. To set up a more formal working arrangement with DC Highways to progress those projects.
DC Highways approval and partial funding
1. School Crossing – Highways have been given the green light to proceed with the Zebra crossing proposal, subject to various checks. 9/23 Highways fine tuning the plan before launching consultation.
2. Huntick Road Cycleway – apply for approval for next section – Rozalia Meadows to Jubilee Walk
3. High Street Crossing – apply for permission to install as a ‘place’ project.
4. Tesco Island – Create formal notice to Tesco of intentions with DCH approval. AH to write to Tesco CEO office again and CC Southampton Distribution centre and local store manager.
5. 20 MPH Zones – Apply for central village area to be set to 20 mph. Commission Traffic Speed survey.
6. Drop kerbs – proposal deferred to Sept 2023 F&GP meeting for installation of dropped kerbs on the Spinney, Burbidge Close and Vineyard Close. Cost Approx £13.5K. Budgeted £15K- Proposal
7. WG held a meeting to discuss the above and also to agree questions for survey to be launched soon.
(£000’s, excluding VAT)
|Expense to date
1. School crossing – 80 (revised estimate from DC July 2023), High St crossing 75, 20MPH – 30, Drop kerbs – 15, Huntick cycleway stage 2 – 35
2. Tesco forecourt – 80
3. Huntick cycleway stage 3 – 1,000
Play Area Inspections 2023 Summary Report
Date (Month Year): September 2023
Reported by: Cllr Andrew Huggins
Almost identical to 2022 except Skate Ramps much better after major refurb in 2023.
18 Low and 7 Very Low risk findings except two items: Zipline (multiple items such as damaged seat, worn chain, flooring issues), but level of wear and damage same as last year.
1 Very Low, 3 Low risk
Some easily resolved such as superfluous cable ties, overgrowth, litter. I note s bolt missing so one section of high fence is loose – nut/bolt to be replaced.
3 Very Low, 8 Low risk. Some items of wear and tear and missing fixings.
3 Low findings, 1 Medium finding relating to large rocks and holes in riding surface.
Seek quote from Sutcliffe Play for repairs to zip line.
Ask Sutcliffe Play to check and quote for Worn chain and damaged seat.
Astro: Request Gardening contractor to deal with overgrowth near bin, and overhanging fence. Handyman to deal with litter and cable ties and loose panel needing new bolt.
BMX Track: ensure handyman is diligent in inspection and that contractor is rectifying as requested.